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Red Dragon

Auxmaulous's page

Goblin Squad Member. Pathfinder Society Member. 2,077 posts (2,137 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 13 aliases.


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Cheliax

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Orfamay Quest wrote:
Well, something drove the Germans to kill in the 1930s and 1940s, and I don't think it was the spätlese. If you want to dismiss it as "magic," just remember that the Germans collectively apparently failed their Will save and six million died.

Free will and determination to do so? And collectively they and their victims paid the price.

Orfamay Quest wrote:
And, just this week, a man in Kansas apparently failed his Will save and gunned down three people while shouting "Heil Hitler!" One could try to argue -- I'm sure his defense attorney, for one, will try -- that there's no relationship between his Nazi ideology and the fact that he tried to shoot people outside a Jewish center. But based only on what I've read so far, I think that will be a difficult argument to present.

So what you are saying is that the words/ideology manipulated his mind so much that he is not personally accountable? Got it.

Orfamay Quest wrote:
Well, if D&D had killed six million people, or six hundred, for that matter, the crusades would have been well-founded.

An ideology alone did not kill 6 million people - it was the Germans, allies and sponsor states that did. These people were not suddenly "transformed" into murdering monsters and then once they shed the party and after the war they "transformed" back, i.e. gained a conscious. Absurd and simplistic view on the matter. Hatred of European Jews was vogue and in style prior to the war - this wasn't one man or magic words that did it - there were people behind those actions. Willing people.

This mindset that Nazism killed 6 million people is a form of displacement, as if the responsibility of German people lies in a corrupt ideology, as if they were possessed by mass hypnosis and hold no accountability for their actions. It was the Nazis, it wasn’t us – it was that ideology – we’re not to blame, we were lulled by the propaganda. Excuse central: We were just following orders.
Nazism was a manifestation of their hatred, it was a vehicle - it was not the cause. Stop making excuses.

Orfamay Quest wrote:
Are we? What's your explanation of the Kansas shootings?

An ignorant and rage filled moron taking it out on society?

Do you think that if that clown did not have the KKK in his life that he would have turned out as a stellar, upright and productive citizen? You are making excuses for peoples actions - Nazism, Satanism, video games made me do it, Judas Priest and Slayer desensitized me to murder, blah, blah - the bleating of sheep.

Orfamay Quest wrote:
That's a theory, certainly. The fact that there's a strong underground Fascist or WP music countercultural scene in the United States, where Holocaust denial is not illegal, suggests that you may not have your cause and effect right. In fact, the strongest Fascist party in Europe today is probably in Greece, which does not have any of the laws you decry.

There was the US in the 90’s, it's just a shadow of its former self...right now.

Europe, South America and Russia are where it’s at if we are talking WP music scene.
And I never said that there was a cause = effect, that’s your argument. I was talking about keeping it in the shadows as not being an effective tool for eliminating it. In the US there is a strong social stigma against it - a taboo subject –sporting that symbolism is also a great way to get tagged by law enforcement and the Feds, so again you get that rebel draw.

And I am very familiar with the Golden Dawn in Greece – maybe the people there need to study their history and the history of their region a little better – otherwise they deserve whatever they get.

I am not decrying their laws – it’s their country and their choice and I even explained their motivation for having those laws. My view on the matter is that it doesn’t help and in fact just adds more power to that belief system – that it’s revolutionary and needs to be banned because the current regime and society are terrified of it and it’s dangerous.

It should be brought out into the light of day and exposed, over and over again.

I do not explicitly believe that symbols and ideas = cause, what I did say was that it was a draw, an attraction. What I also said (and you dodged and keep dodging) is that Europe has a fascism/fanaticism problem - which you failed to address. They are afraid that their sheep will be drawn in by the call to arms - if your society is that gullible than you have bigger problems than trying to control speech to prevent that from happening.

Orfamay Quest wrote:
Auxmaulous wrote:
I understand their reflexive action and motivation for doing so - considering their history and the body count,
I don't think you do.

Better than you can imagine and better than you.

Cheliax

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So harmful/hateful words = threat of an actual bomb? Aren't we missing a few steps in the threat/danger process?

Feels like we are discussing the merits of censorship for the protection of the gullible, spineless and witless. Reminds me of the 80's, where the PMRC was going after music or all the crusades against the suicide inducing game call Advanced Dungeons and Dragons. So ban certain words, books, symbols and types of speech because people are too stupid to resist their magical powers that will drive them to kill?

I understand their reflexive action and motivation for doing so - considering their history and the body count, but really - if you have a recurring fascism problem in your country then banning words, speech and symbols actually just makes it more taboo which in turn makes it more attractive to younger people. People who deny the holocaust should be publicly ridiculed, not hidden away like they are revolutionaries fighting the "good fight". Because tbh, within Europe and Latin America their is a strong underground Fascist or WP music counterculture scenes - made stronger by the bans. While bans makes it harder to implement/organize (get shows going) they also serve to legitimize their ideology due to the fact that their ideas are "dangerous" - instead of what they really are; bankrupt and bereft of value.

What Germans should be doing is let people talk about this, and those responsible ones should be morally tasked to rise up and speak against these denier idiots whenever the raise their heads and spew their bilge. Maybe that should be the penitence of the German people; you don't get to hide it from the light of day - you have to argue against it whenever it pops up - forever.


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This went from stupid to surreal ..and now to stupidly surreal....


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Quote:
This thread in a nutshell:

Or: Germany created these laws because they know they have a very low Will Save vs. National Socialism?

Cheliax

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I've been watching this thread for some time and have been meaning to post. What I am going to post is going to ruffle most if not all the feathers here, but as a FORMER AP (and game, modules, campaign) subscriber I felt the need to chime in.....

For me personally I think it's too much.
All of it.

The LGTBQHetero romance angle and NPC showboating is part of what has driven me away from their AP line.

I don't want the focus on potential romantic NPCs or modern sensibilities in a fantasy game via the AP line, I want a good fantasy game (and content).
The fact that there is any kind of controversy over what goes on the cover/who is the featured NPC in the AP just tells me that this is all either a very poor distraction, a gimmick or misplaced focus (or all of the above).

I don't want modules that espouse a conservative agendas, LGBTQ or H agendas, liberal or progressive agendas, capitalist or communist agendas, vegan agendas or any other agenda than the agenda to be incredibly brilliant. I want adventures that my players are going to remember because they were challenging and unique. Not because there is some great new Beefcake/cheesecake potential story lines for players to explore or because Paizo bravely featured a Trans NPC hero on the cover. Sorry, that isn't me and I believe that isn't a majority of the people who subscribe to the AP line - the majority just puts up with this because "that's just the way it is".

I don't want APs that serve as a soap box for a cause - I get that from my right an left wing media sources every day, force fed to me even when I am trying to avoid it. I want good, challenging adventures with quality writing/plot hook or story.

I think the AP line is pretty much a lost cause and has been lost for some time. I may jump in on Iron Gods, but if I get one whiff of a Mary Sue pet NPC project from the creative staff then I will bail on that also.

It seems like the big focus from the (vocal fringe) fan base (which Paizo seems to encourage) is where the next relationship controversy/social justice issue is going to manifest. Paizo being what it is (and the composition of their staff) maybe think that's what everyone wants. We don't. Harder adventures, less filler, stories that make some sense and are supported by existing mechanics, etc. While the production quality (some of it, not the actual book binding) has gone up (artwork, maps, layout), the actual content and use value has gone down for me.

I understand their need and drive to be inclusive - I get it, it's their company, their chance to make a difference and their agenda...but for me it's overbearing and has become a distraction and the line has suffered for it. Focus should be (and should always be) on making the best product out there and I think they let their personal causes and crusades get in the way of that. If they could combine their agenda + brilliant content I could just ignore the relationship, beef/cheesecake romance and social message nonsense and run the damn things at their core - that isn't the case.

Again, this are just my take on it - I could be wrong.

gouge away...

Cheliax

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Couple of follow up points (while waiting for the Dentist to open):

Casting much like every other revised action in my AD&D 3 has a speed associated with it. I didn't list a casting speed and stated that casting should be a full round action because I was giving out pointers using the game as written (not with a modified initiative system). In my speed system lower level spells are faster than higher level spells, also spells take a speed hit if they have somatic or material components. So magic missile can almost work like a counterspell if you tag the enemy caster before he can get his spell off (hence all the various protections from that spell).

I would also say treat all casting as a full round action for purposes of movement, with the exception of a few spells that need to be cast fast (feather fall) breaking that rule.

As to the crafting suggestion that goes with any and all suggestions - if you or your players are attached to it work out a compromise. My initial post in this thread was intended to help groups who are trying to get an AD&D feel, not to cause a schism in an existing PF game where some of the players are attached to existing game mechanics.

I do feel that some of the "magic" and "awe" of earlier editions was that players could not easily craft items, that in fact not being able to make most items nor being able to buy them helped in keeping that mystique. That and putting the magic items in the DMG vs one book (PF).

All of this being my opinion of course - some people love that players can craft - just stating why it goes against the early edition feel.

Mark Hoover mentioned the Teleporting wizard at the head of his army, and why would he want to walk or ride along with them? I would postulate that part of this is purely aesthetic. Some groups want the teleporting wizard (high powered high level) while others feel that a high level wizard can still be powerful without being all powerful.

Again - this comes down to individual preference. I prefer less spells and powers, I prefer heroic instead of super heroic. I should have stuck with 2nd ed - but that's history now.

Cheliax

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To the OP (and to anyone that cares) I have been struggling with this for the longest time. I almost regret switching over to 3.5 (skipped 3rd) from 2nd ed, so this has been an ongoing issue with me an my players over the last couple of years. Now we are at the point where our PF game is on indefinite hiatus - I just don't like the system nor do I (or any of my players) want to run it.

All that being said - I do think it is possible to try an capture some of that feel from the earlier editions of the game (D&D basic, 1st ed or 2nd ed). I will hit this from two angles: The DM side of how he runs things and a more mechanical side of how things can be changed to facilitate that older edition feel. Each of these sections are a little long so I spoilered them down so as to not hurt the eys/break the mind.

DM side of running things:

”Adventure Design/Selection”:
Most older adventures came in three formats: Exploring the Unknown, Strike Against the Enemy or the Item Adventure (quest). One type often leading into another (investigate strange local, find out that there’s a threat there, etc). There are of course variations to these themes but this was the standard and staple running through most basic/1st/2nd ed published adventures. Exploration being especially effective for low to mid level adventuring, while the mission based ones (Item Quest or Strike Against) working better for mid to high level adventures.

My issue with the current crop of most all the APs is that they run the same formula without really hitting on the previous themes I’ve mentioned. There is some exploration in Paizo’s APs (usually the 1st 3 installments in any AP) while the rest ramps up to fight the BBEG. It seems to me (and it is probably just me) that the most successful AP outside of RoTRL is Kingmaker – a sort of throwback homage to earlier gaming with its initial sandbox installments.

I think if you want to go a little more old school tone down some of the NPC/BBEG drama and focus on a solid classic theme – exploration, Item quest (and not over 6 modules) or Strike Against the Enemy (Against the Giants, etc). Nothing wrong with BBEG, but your module selection should be able to stand on its own without a BBEG as the sole focus. In most classic styles of adventure the enemy is revealed very late in the story. Paizo seems to follow that trend but late in the story at 36 pages vs. late in the story at 6th AP installment is worlds apart in practice.

If you are going really old-school gaming I believe that the current masters of that genre is Frog God Games. They have a very strong 1st ed feel to them and capture much of the danger and intensity found in 1st ed adventures – Industry Standard when it comes to making modules of this sort. Another company putting out modules that are stylistically closer to 2nd ed is Raging Swan – which puts out some great modules as a whole. The feel, the writing the layout is just put together in a clean, tight and concise fashion – with excellent content and 2nd ed appeal.

”Running the Game”:
This crosses into some mechanical and meta areas so you will really need to communicate with your players your desires and outcome and make sure that everyone is on the same page and that there are no surprises.

XP and advancement: Most people who gamed in older adventures did not level up on a 1 adventure or part of adventure = 1 level. Granted there were some rules for earning xp for gained treasure but these were not usually used and as such character progression was much slower. To recapture that feel I would go with giving at the minimum the slow track Xp, but to make a real dent I would just give ½ on all CR xp and use the slow track for advancement. Since classes were somewhat balanced by xp, you could use some discretion in how you assigned progression tracks. So everyone gets ½ XP and all skill based characters (Rogues) use the fast advancement track, while most martials would use the medium track and all spell casting classes use the slow xp progression track. This is a bit of a cudgel approach, but I am making an offering here based upon the existing framework.

Encounters: I would really consider using CR as a very general guidline. If you need a moderate to powerful Dragon in your dungeon, you put it there and let the players deal with it how they feel. Smart ones will take steps to avoid it till they can take it on, while players who are of the 3rd ed mindset/background may think that “Hey, he wouldn’t throw it in unless we could kill it” are going to quickly die and get frustrated – so communication of standards and expectations is critical.

The Players and DM contract: The DM and players should focus on actually playing the game. Character focus should be directed towards character development – not mechanical, but actual character and personality. The group has to decide how much emphasis will be placed on optimization, upgrading gear or gear focus, etc vs. personal story or group story development. I would not even seek a balance between character mechanics/gear questing/optimization. For a classic feel these things need to take a backseat vs. playing the game. And by playing I mean exploring, fighting, adventuring and role-playing.

I have some more from the DM game management side without messing with the rules too much, just don’t have the time to post them here. Some of these discussions revolve around limiting resources, managing the gaming work day/novas/wandering encounters and several other smaller issues.

The Mechanical Side, aka the Hard Side aka the Side that Auxmaulous has pretty much given up on-
This area is very tough to manage for there are things you can mess with and you will break the game, possible for good. Fair Warning:

”Some Simple Mechanical Fixes”:
These are very basic fixes that won’t break the game. It may make some players angry if their gaming expectations are not met, so communicating desires and expectations of what you and they want is important.

No magic item creation/crafting: This is a simple fix. Magic items are still available for purchase and they can still be found. By eliminating this you are taking out some focus on a meta mini-game of crafting items (which can be their own headache).

No magic item creation/crafting or purchase: This is a little tougher. You can manage this if the unwanted treasure gained can somehow be traded (at diminished return) for something they want or need (more on needs later). Now as a DM this is a big undertaking – if you are writing modules you need to make sure that unwanted A can turn into needed C – even if it’s at a loss to the PCs it's still a gain.
If your players is equipped with a long sword handing out a +1 Bill Guisarme does not help the situation if they cannot trade that weapon for a magical long sword (NSA). So the onus is on the DM to make sure that at one point if everyone is using 5.56mm, that those .308,.44 and 9mm pistol rounds can be bartered into 5.56mm. It does put more work on the DM.

None of the above fixes break the game; they just shift the responsibility of where those resources are going to come from. Either the player will make them, buy them or they will find them. The latter is ALL on the DM.

”Moderate Mechanical Fixes”:
These are actual rules changes that directly impact play, I have posted these here before but this will be a “best of” set of suggestions to get a little more of the classic feel in gaming. Many are centered on spell casting which enjoyed an incredible increase in power when the game transitioned from 2nd to 3rd edition. Some get into game function as impacted by spells

- No Spammable spells: 0 level spells have limits, As DM you could make this a utility function whereas a caster can cast any 0 level spell on his list without prep or memorization, just 7/day.

- Casting is a full round action.

- Increase the DCs for being hit while casting, this is a subjective number. It could range from slightly harder to almost impossible (my way) of recovering after a hit

- Re-examine certain spells that give the game too much predictability or player control. Teleport is a great one to look at – don’t remove it, just think of the drawbacks and risks associated with it. For me the drawbacks/potential damage is weak – increase it so that it is only used as a dire method of transportation vs. the A train between Dungeonville and Castle Prospero.

- Spells that break other classes’ abilities should be hit hard in a reduction of use, eliminated entirely and/or Incentivized for proper use. What I did was change how spells interacted with different characters. Spider Climb gives +5 Climb bonus if cast on yourself or target, if you or the target also have Climb as a Class skill add another +5. This is what I call incentivizing spells and their use. A caster would get more mileage out of casting the spell on his parties Rogue than he would if he cast it on himself. There are several other minor tweaks that can be made to re-balance class and spell function to make the game function like an older edition of the game. Too many to list here really.


”Major Mechanical Fixes”:
This is major re-write zone. New attribute modifiers, changed saving throw tables, hit die and hit point ranges, limiting stackable effects, eliminating the existing feat system, overhauling the skill system, etc.

This is a dark place that most people don’t want to wade into. This is where we get heroes vs. superheroes (where the latter is hard coded in the game) and a series of hyper-optimization for end results – again –hard coded into the system and very hard to remove.

These features are too long to detail here – but what we would be looking at is basically a re-write and restructuring of the entire game.

At this point you have to decide if moving forward is even worth it. For me it isn’t – I have other games I am working on right now but I will get around to finishing up a proper AD&D3. This is the wall that I have started to surmount – but stopped mid way and asked “why”. I only included it here as part of the tombstone which was my quest to make Pathfinder more like AD&D. Imo, it can’t be done. You can make some small changes and you can run things differently, but fundamentally the focus on character optimization detracts from playing the actual game. You would have to strip much of the system down to get back to focusing on adventuring.

I think many of the "no or low magic games" or E6 or EX game threads are there for a reason and it isn't because of DM incompetence or being able to deal with world-changing magic. It's more with wanting to.

People are not getting the gaming experience they want or had out of this existing ruleset. The desire for a "classic game" is my cause and always has been my cause (and always will be), but it stems from the same frustration. General dissatisfaction with the rules.
Sorry for the negativity.

Maybe somewhere in there a few ideas may work for a DM seeking to get that classic feel. I tried it and I only got that feel when I was playing in a 2nd ed module a few years back. So it wasn’t nostalgia or being 12 – the mechanics and design expectations DO FACTOR INTO HOW THE GAME FEELS. This may go against the mantra of "it’s just how you run it" - the reality is that mechanics bleed into feel which then turns into experience.

Good luck to the Op and anyone pursuing this.

If anyone going down this road has any questions drop me a PM, I will work with anyone (however far they are along the path of impossible) if they are seeking that AD&D feel

Cheliax

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Mark Hoover wrote:
Bill Webb wrote:
Save money for add ons on the survey though!
How do I tack on the add ons?

You just go to the Manage your pledge button and increase the amount. So say you are just getting the Hardback (US) and you originally put 40 dollars, you can go back in an add more money if more offerings come up(say adding in another 5$ for a print players guide) upping your total to 45 dollars even though your pledge level is at the $40 point.

You can also change your pledge commitment from there going up or down on the list of backer options (as long as there are slots available).

That's basically it during the KS

What Bill is talking about (and correct me if I'm wrong) is setting some extra cash when this closes to add in money to buy extra books or items from FGG. So when this closes if they offer the Tome of Horrors IV at a slight discount, I will add it in - but it won't be part of the kickstarter funding (I think).

Cheliax

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I'm in as herald (80.00 - need to cover the PG).

Thanks again to Davemage for suggesting the two version hardback option and thanks to Bill for making this happen.

Seeing how finances go, may shoot for leather cover down the line.

Cheliax

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DaveMage wrote:
justmebd wrote:


You'd be surprised at how good the WiFi is in Rappan Athuk. Tsar, not so much.

Probably due to Tsar's stupid pall!!!!!

:)

It is annoying - you need to get all the way to the top of the Black Gate just to get a signal. Problem with that is once I get up there I find myself staring out east into the wasteland and begin having daydreams of conquest.

Go figure.

Cheliax

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Bill Webb wrote:
Aux--if we run out I'll add another level. The only REALLY limited pledges are the leather books.

Aww Bill that's no fun!

And here I was ready to go to cue this.

I would have won too.... I calculate in weapon speed.

Cheliax

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Just met him at Monsterpalooza (in Burbank CA) around 10 minutes. Great guy, got a signed artbook from him. Discussed some of his artwork in Darksun and Book of Vile Darkness. Funny thing, this is primarily a horror effects and art con, whereas I immediately recognized his work from D&D.

Paizo or FGG - commission some work from this guy!

Anyway - going in to see a panel on the War of the Gargantuas.

Cheliax

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Bill Webb wrote:

I was like pulling teeth to get WDB Kenower back on the job--This book is going to be great. Kenower really has a great way with low level dungeons.

I can only take credit for the wilderness on this one.

I am glad to see that he has moved on to better things, but damn - I wish he wrote more adventure content. The man is a master at low to mid level adventure design and creating environs books.

Lost City and Vault of Larin Karr are some of the best gaming/mini-campaign books ever written. They are excellent for new/novice DMs and are a fantastic starting point for experienced DMs that want to expand on their content. I may be biased a bit since Larin Karr was the basis for a long term campaign for me - running it for 8 years.

I hope the outcome and experience for Mr Kenower brings him back to do some "occasional" game writing. Everything gaming related that he has touched, I own - everything that had his name on it from Necromancer (RA Reloaded, Larin Karr, Lost City) is some of the best gaming material I have come across.

Getting him on project gets me off the fence.

Cheliax

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Matt Thomason wrote:
Well, this discussion sure went downhill.

Maybe it's just par for the course on the "Misty Purple Hill 'O Adventure"?

Chock full 'O Monsters!

Cheliax

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Kirth Gersen wrote:
RDM42 wrote:
So we should now dismiss all of your anecdotes about how your own group runs as well?

????

Are we reading the same posts?

I think for the sake of argument (and sanity) let's assume that if a DM here says that his group was having fun playing with them as the DM, that said DM is telling the truth?

I know that people may hold their own play style/DM style as the best way to go, but we should try to at least be reasonable enough to think that people are not lying about the success they have experienced with their own - different from ours - gaming styles.

We can argue the merits of group consensus vs. DM rules till the cows come home, but let's not read anything extra into these testimonies unless evidence is provided by the DM or one of his players.

Cheliax

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ShinHakkaider wrote:
Auxmaulous wrote:
"The chain in those handcuffs is high-tensile steel. It'd take you ten minutes to hack through it with this. Now, if you're lucky, you could hack through your ankle in five minutes. Go."
That's from the end of Mad Max I think. although there are few other movies / media that have aped that bit.

Bingo

Side story time as a bonus:
Mad Max was played on the TV in the US during the late 80-early 90's excessively. So for my brother and I it was a classic movie - memorized the lines, would watch it even though we had already seen it a 100 times.

At one point in this scene Max has Johnny the Boy handcuffed to a wreak of car leaking gas. This is Johnny's execution scene.

My older aunt walks in on the scene as we are watching this on the living room TV, Johnny is pleading with Max to spare his life. My aunt, not knowing what the hell is going on in the scene says in Russian (with her thick accent) "oh, so sad" expressing pity for Johnny. Of course not knowing that Johnny the Boy is a rapist, murdering piece of roadtrash my brother and I burst out in riotous laughter at her misplaced pity confusing her even more. Good times.

A true story and I am sticking with it.

Cheliax

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Matt Thomason wrote:

I think that's fair enough - you're choosing something you already know they're going to like. While it sounds dictatorial, it's the benevolent dictator that's just announced "no more taxes", and is in power because the people like what he's doing and so haven't revolted ;) The end result is the players are playing something they want to play, and that's what matters.

The issue of you adding a restriction the majority are unhappy with just doesn't occur - because you know what they'd be unhappy with and don't add those restrictions. Fair assessment?

100% spot on assesment.

I couldn't do those things if I didn't know my players or as Kirth had mentioned, if the communication wasn't there.

Cheliax

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To those arguing for more player agency or narrative I think this game (Pathfinder/D&D) works best and is under the design assumption that the players have a Contributing Narrative vs. a Shared Narrative. A Shared Narrative is what a few here are advocating - players help in design of the game world, description of events, co-GMing parts, etc. While a Contributing Narrative is what traditionally has been used for D&D/AD&D for years and even now with Pathfinder - players only get to input into the Narrative by their player interactions with the game world. Their actions, RPing, Skill checks and choices are their contributions to the game.

The game (this game at least) skews heavily to the latter, but neither way is wrong and this doesn't need to be an old school vs. new school play-style war. Even if one is more traditional, neither one is wrong if people are having fun.

Kirth, you're a smart guy and you understand the game - that doesn't give you license to pound another GM because they don't run kitchen sink or "everything is permissible" campaign like you do.

I am very much a traditionalist and exert tremendous creative control when it comes to D&D/Pathfinder because the output of that is what I am looking for in my game - capturing some sense of nostalgia and feel for what I experienced in 79. And on the flip side when I run my Gamma World game it is kitchen sink, I've had to make up special rules for the most bizarre characters on the spot and as we went because for many races/player choices there were no rules. Some guys says "I want to play an android"...well, there are no rules for android PCs so I start screaming aloud and inside my head (hard to tell which sometimes) and then 5 minutes later we are creating the 1st Android PC character for the game (and supporting rules with contributions from other players).

TL;DR - It depends, and peoples motivations are not always sinister

Everyone needs to chill out a little.

Cheliax

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Chuck Wright wrote:
Kthulhu wrote:
Chuck Wright wrote:
More tables! WHY, TSATHOGGA?!?!? WHY?!?!?!
Tome of Adventure Design flashbacks?

AND Swords & Wizardry Complete.

I'm also still not over the trauma of laying out "The Mother of All Encounter Tables".

Which you did a great job on BTW. The two Mother books are something I always bring to the table, even if I'm not using them (as a backup to mine for emergency ideas). Landscape format - while a bit weird at first for a gaming book - made perfect sense for MoAET

So the work that went into that book is greatly appreciated.

Cheliax

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Lords of Light!
Thundarr the Barbarian

Cheliax

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Fallen_Mage wrote:
Auxmaulous wrote:


Bookstore owner - "What am I, an idiot? I'm makin' a buck here. You want books, I got books. I got chicken blood, I got dog embryos, I got black candles, I got wolf-bane. Look at this: Silver bullets. Some joker ordered them. Thirty-ought-six.... . Never picked 'em up."
The Howling

The beauty about this one - from a gaming perspective that is that this guy is complaining about a special order of silver bullets and they were never picked up. Almost as if the person who made the order was an agent, investigator or envoy (thinking Chill or Call of Cthulhu rpgs) and needed the bullets to kill a werewolf, who in turn got him first.

It's a small thing - but the DM in me picked up that line and I let my imagination run with it.

Cheliax

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John Kretzer wrote:

Ok here is a easy one...

"WHOA! WHOA! OK, you are now firing a gun at your imaginary friend NEAR 400 GALLONS OF NITROGLYCERIN! "

Fight Club

Cheliax

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Jaelithe wrote:
"And if some unlucky accident should befall him ... if he should be shot in the head by a police officer ... or if should hang himself in his jail cell ... or if he's struck by a bolt of lightning ... then I'm going to blame some of the people in this room ... and that I do not forgive."

The Godfather

Cheliax

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And if they did that I would buy their product, if not just for new material for my 1st/2nd ed game.

Yeah, my doc is old - so I need to be fair to the playtest. I have the most current doc on my home pc so I will check it out.

I wish that if they did included expertise die (as an example of a rule/system) they would allow the DM the option to dump it as an option and scale your game cleanly following A,B and C considerations(because the game is designed that way - to be modular). Something 3rd ed, 4th and PF all have failed to do.

But if they put out books that covered multiple systems I would buy.

Cheliax

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I might be wrong, but I think catfolk count as Mammalian, I get what you're saying though.

It would be interesting to explore this from a outsider aspect - as in, outer planes.

Not so much the creatures that have a direct correlary with life on the prime -such as Angels or Demons, but creatures that have no direct connetion to the prime - they were never really born, nor do they have anything in common with life as we understand it - such as the Qlippoth. In PF they have been assigned human emotion/revenge style motives but I kinda of feel it sells them short and is a mistaken direction. Those things are chaos and insanity manifest, getting into the mindset and motivation which is so extreme it would be alien - even for those who understand evil, chaos and madness.

Cheliax

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Russ Taylor wrote:

Makes me think of the orlens wielding a four-handed sword in Gamma World.

This is what I was going to say - about the Orlens.

The way they were managed in GW III ('86) was that they were given larger 4-handed sword and axe options. Those weapons did a bit more damage so I just made them a bit slower on their initiative track.

And as far as the 4-armed thing and PCs (sigh, I've been dealing with this issue since the early 80's) it isn't really that much of a balance issue. Sure they can bulk up on extra shields or use larger weapons, but the flip side is that found armor does not really work for them.

You could also give them a large size drawback due to their mass/limbs without any of the benefits. Multiple arms do not necessarily mean multiple attacks at no negative, look at the current rules we have for putting a sword in each or your hands – it would also apply to the Kasatha. The current rules for two-weapon fighting require some class or feat investment to pull off properly, so it wouldn't be that hard to balance a 4-armed creature against the existing rules.

I think with some work the race could be balanced so that it's playable. That's the Gamma World GM in me - I've had some pretty stupid, er ...interesting mutant ideas presented to me from across the table.

Of course - all of this is outside of use in Iron Gods, since it would mess with the intent,focus and the reveal of the storyline.

Cheliax

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Immortalis wrote:
Auxmaulous wrote:
scaling DC (as his spell levels go up)
What you mean like scaling bonus when his base attack bonus goes up.

No - the Fighter gets the bonus as a constant (Scaling) to his BAB and with one weapon while the caster gets a scaling bonus to each of his casting tiers (spell levels).

The caster gets it as a constant (Scaling) to his DCs throughout each spell level tier. So a level 1 spell is DC base 11 + mod, level 2 spell is DC 12 + mod, level 3 is DC 13 + mod. At lower levels this isn't as much of a big deal since there less spells that are available to the caster and the binary effect isn't as powerful (it is actually, for some spells). At mid to higher level though, those tiers of power (effect) start to outpace the +X that the fighter gets to hit with every round. Having surplus X on his to-hit starts having less and less meaning as the Fighter starts getting these bonuses from everywhere so that +1 starts to have less and less meaning.
His +X doesn't really translate into extra effects or damage - he just does his trick more reliably.

While the caster DC +1 due to Spell Focus is super critical due to the binary save system and the expanding power for each successive spell level and growing circle of spells.

This is a subjective argument – since it comes down to belief: Do you think that doing hit point damage (as hit point scale exponentially) vs casting binary spells (with target saves scale poorly) is better?

Ninja'd by PirateDevon on the point of one application (weapon) vs. many spells (whole school) argument.

Immortalis wrote:
Casting spells and hitting things are the primary attack forms of the two classes. Just because for casters the +1 adds to multiple spells doesnt make it more usefull its the same +1 regardless of spell cast its still +1, it cant be taken as +1 to every spell in the game as seperate things. The +1 weapon focus adds to more than just your attack bonus but you chose not to take that into account.

Having a hard time arguing with you on this since your position is a bit absurd. "Just because for casters the +1 adds to multiple spells doesn’t make it more useful its the same +1 regardless of spell cast its still +1, it can’t be taken as +1 to every spell in the game as separate things."

If you can't or choose not to see the power in applying a +1 to multiple resources vs. one resource I can't really carry on a discussion with you on the matter. You are saying that because one feat applies to dozens of spells throughout the casters various levels it doesn't make it better than a +1 to hit with one weapon? Seriously?

Cheliax

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thejeff wrote:

Two points: Characters at X level are superheroes. Maybe it's 7, maybe it's higher. Everyone at that level is a superhero. An elephant may have more hp, but a person who has as many hp as an elephant is superhuman.

That's not so much an argument that casters are already as powerful as martials, but that realism is already out the window, so don't use it to restrict them.

Realism isn't thrown out the window because of assigned abilities - realism is thrown out the window because of number scale. But there is no heroic exceptionalism in the system, - that's my point. A Living Wall or an Animated Giant Chocolate Bar or a Giant French Pug use the same hit point system as the players - there is no current structure or system in the game that says PCs can do this, while everything else can do that. It's just a numbers game. The super-hero comparison is false - once you are so high (hit point wise) you get to play in that game – everyone and everything else does also. Now how is that exceptional?

To me it isn't.

I am not arguing against the hp system, what I am saying is that because the hp system is wonky, don't turn around and say "but Fighters have lots of hit points = superheroes". Wonky hp system =/= realism, but it also means wonky hp system =/= superheroes. All this does is illustrate a wonky hit point system or provide cover for the “but THEY ARE already SUPERHEROES argument” which is false.

thejeff wrote:

I'm also not sure about the comparison of Spell and Weapon Focus. If the fighter focuses on one weapon type, as there are plenty of other reasons to do, he'll be getting that bonus most of time. It scales with level, at least with full attacks so it stays relevant. I'm not at all sure why helping to decide if the target gets hit and thus takes any damage is more powerful than similar help to decide if a spell takes full or half/no effect.

Other than that casters are in general more powerful.

Fair enough - let's build a model to reflect the difference. The final product will be a bit subjective but I will try to lay out (mechanically) why I think these two feats are miles apart.

Low Level Comparison Between the Feat Effects:
Low Level Fighter with Weapon Focus
Step 1 - Roll to hit +1 with One Weapon (if hit, check A, if miss check B)
A - Hit: roll for damage, possibly kill low-level target with one hit
B - Miss: nothing happens, action used up.

Low Level Caster with Spell Focus (works best with Arcane casters)
Step 1 - Cast Spell One School of Spells (will be multiple spells, levels 1-9) (if target fails save, check A, if target makes save check B)
A - Failed Save: roll for damage/effects. Target takes full effect, in some cases this effect may be reduced by target level - otherwise target suffers full effect/intent of spell. Possibly kill low-level target with one hit - less likely than the fighter though
B - Makes Save: nothing happens or partial condition/stated effect.
- May need to make round by round saves if a duration area effect.

Ok, not so bad - the fighter in this example may not have as much flare as the caster - but he is very economical resource wise.

Add a few levels later -

Low/Mid Level Comparison Between the Feat Effects:
Low/Mid Level Fighter with Weapon Focus
Step 1 - Roll to hit +1 with One Weapon (if hit, check A, if miss check B)
A - Hit: roll for damage, possibly kill low/mid-level target with one hit, more than likely not though. To-hit bonuses start become less relevant as AC for most foes start to level out. Possibly get 2nd attack at negative.
B - Miss: nothing happens, action used up. Possibly get 2nd attack at negative if high enough level.

Low/Mid Level Caster with Spell Focus (works best with Arcane casters)
Step 1 - Cast Spell+1 DC on One School of Spells (will be multiple spells, levels 1-9) (if target fails save, check A, if target makes save check B).
A - Failed Save: roll for damage/effects. Target takes full effect, in some cases this effect may be reduced by target level - otherwise target suffers full effect/intent of spell. Possibly kill low-level target with one hit - still less likely than the fighter though. Spells begin to more effectively turn off foes/encounters, re: Binary save effect. The Save paradigm vs. caster Save DCs start to shift in casters favor. Especially if the caster knows which spells to cast vs. target Save strengths (Will spells vs. Beef, etc).
B - Makes Save: nothing happens or partial condition/stated effect.
- May need to make round by round saves if a duration area effect.

So in the above examples we see that the caster gets to:
- Use his feat on multiple spells with scaling DC (as his spell levels go up) vs. Fighter who uses his feat on one weapon (which he needs to make magical, and he needs to replace to keep scaling it up). Wizard gets to apply and re-apply this Feat to multiple spells throughout his career - Fighter gets it on one weapon.
- Binary/SoD/SoS effect increases. The Save DC paradigm starts to really show problems as the classes level up - while the binary effects become greater. That is, if you fail you are screwed (level 1 spell) to really screwed (level 4 spell) and so on. The cast and "I hope he fails" becomes highly mutable by the caster and the risk vs. reward grows considerably for each subsequent level.

Anyway

Cheliax

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Kirth Gersen wrote:
Auxmaulous wrote:
Feat Law is when the devs try to over-codify every action by turning them into a Feat. Some of these actions could just be managed between the players and their DM, but when they turn it into a Feat - that is "you need to have this feat to do this (X), other wise to do this (X) you do it slower, at a penalty, etc".

I agree to a point, but I feel that, instead of leaving all these things to hand-waving or DM fiat, they could easily have been rolled into skills (spreading rumors), or made into general actions you can do in combat, etc.

In other words, I don't think it's bad to have rules for how things work. I think it's very bad to charge feats for actions that are more logically skill-related, or that should be general options in combat.

I agree 100% Kirth, let me rephrase: I see any changes shuffled under Feats as bad - these things can be codified in the rules as freebies, this is how you do it, re-written skill, et al. So yeah, not against the codification (I am, but not for the sake of this argument) just the fact that they are making Feats the default "this is how you do it, and now you need a feat to do it better" approach - when in fact these could have just been written into the rules under generic stuff, combat actions, class abilities, instead of rule clarification/codification via Feat Law.

Hopefully that makes more sense.

Cheliax

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Immortalis wrote:

Ok back again. Yes after re-looking at things from my 2nd ed books the stuff you have pointed out are right. That said a fighter could still only swing his sword and a caster could bend reality. I think my point is still valid its has always been like that to diffrent degrees.

In 3rd ed at least the fighter got some cool options he could take (feats), are they as good as the stuff casters gained propably not. But you know I was happy I much prefered it over 2nd (and so did my now wife how really couldnt get to grips with 2nd but got 3rd from the get go).

The problem with feats is two-fold: Feat Taxes and what I am going to call and name Feat Laws.

As many people have pointed out in this thread and others, the devs seems to have a problem with what I am naming Feat Law: this means that at one time either in this edition or an earlier one, you were able to just do something (start a rumor, recover weapon, etc) as an assumption, DM adjudicate check or just automatically. Other posters have addressed the concept, but I'm going to go ahead and name it. Feat Law is when the devs try to over-codify every action by turning them into a Feat. Some of these actions could just be managed between the players and their DM, but when they turn it into a Feat - that is "you need to have this feat to do this (X), other wise to do this (X) you do it slower, at a penalty, etc". These decrees basically change the universe of mundane action characters, since what was once an assumption, a DM ruling, or a freebie is now governed by a Feat. I think this is bad game writing and it's incredibly lazy. Instead of re-writing the core rules to cover new ground of what you can try to do in-game, they cover this new subject by assigning a Feat to it -and a penalty if you don't have that feat. Therefore you get a Feat Law. Feat laws are a cheap way to address something not covered in the core game, or it's the devs sticking their nose and trying to stamp every conceivable action into a Law governed by a Feat.

Feat Tax most people already know: This can be a series of abilities or one type of attack/effect that requires the Fighter to invest in a series of feats, many often not that good - just to get that cool effect.
Feat Tax against assumed ability does not apply evenly. Let me give you one of the biggest offenders.

Weapon Focus vs. Spell Focus.
The first gives you +1 to hit with a single weapon type. It has a moderate to minor numerical impact.
The second one gives you a +1 DC to all saves for one spell school, doesn't matter how many different ones or what level they are. You just get this and its damn good. It scales with level (i.e, always relevant) and has a big numerical impact.

Do you think these feats are fairly balanced against each other?
I like the concept of Feats, but as they are written (and have been written since 2000) they are terrible. The first feat I listed gives you a +1 to hit - which can be pretty good when you need to hit, but the second feat helps decide if the target is going to make its save and suffer no effect/half effect or fail and take the full effect. The latter being CONSIDERABLY MORE POWERFUL THAN THE FORMER.

Also, if you were a 1st/2nd ed player trying to play a Fighter in 3rd, you need to spend several of your feats to shore up your character to meet those same levels of power. Increased Save feats to bring you saves from terrible to just bad, multiple feats so you can get extra attacks in combination - when you used to spend one proficiency and you got this for free (and better). Are some combat feats good - sure, power attack is pretty good. But tbh, a less effective version of power attack (and weapon finesse) should be available for any character swinging a weapon for free, it should be built into the game and the the power attack feat should just manage the task better (similar to all the combat maneuver feats).

TL;DR on Feats - Cool concept, poorly implemented, thought out and balanced since 2000.

Quote:
HP I roll with, what else is there 1 shot kills, being hit by a random bus and killed? It works and has done since 2nd.

I only brought up the hit point argument earlier in the thread because people keep falling into the trap of "he has higher hit points = he's superhuman!!!!!1!!!!" when in fact an Elephant or a large animal (with more HD) also has more hit points and they are not "superbeasts". Same goes for all the no-name 5th level NPCs - more hit points =/= superhuman, it just means they have more hit points.

I wasn't attacking the concept of hit points, just the people who throw it up as cover to say the game characters a super-heroes at level 7. No, they are not. Everyone at level 7 gets the same crap. The high hit points = superhuman argument actually hurts the mission to get boosts or desired buffs to martials. People think they are helping the narrative and are using it as an argument to maintain the illusion that these classes are equals (Caster vs martial) and this is a large undermining point. Wizards are weak (hp) but can cast spells, but fighters are tanks - have alot of hit points. Unfortunately, everything the fighter goes against also has more hit point, and if going by CR/threat - probably more hit points than him. Poor argument in defense of why the fighter has what he has and the caster has what he has.

Cheliax

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Orthos wrote:
I'd not mind a look.

2nd - Put it up in the suggestion forum.

I'm personally not big on power-ups to the martial class (I'd rather roll things back a bit), but I am curious to see what people have in the form of fixes for this issue and I will give everyone a read and consideration.

Cheliax

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Aelryinth wrote:

And yes, Martials got major nerfage moving from 2E to 3E, and casters got HUGE power-ups. The disparity started right there.

==Aelryinth

LOL, in my rageposting about 3rd/casters I forgot to mention .....

..............the Nerfing (sighing like Ray Stantz when he had the realization..."cross the streams").

--------------------------------------------------
DnD 3rd ed, The Nerfing -

At low level fighters went from:

- 3 attacks every 2 rounds (at no negative to hit) at level 1 with weapon specialization. And it just got better as they leveled up.

- Having really good hp in relation to everyone/everything else by getting a full Con bonus/good HD.

- Attack and move were not an issue (no such thing as "full attack").

- Decent to outrageous save progressions

------

- Now they don't get a second attack till 6th level or higher, and it's at a major negative to BAB (-5).

- Everyone and everything now gets the Fighter Con bonus, doesn't matter what class - just what your score is. Many monsters now have more than half their hit points in CON bonus.

- Attack in place like you are mashing buttons in Street Fighter 2, hoping you will get a critical that will take down your foe quicker than everyone else who is ignore the inflated hp while using your Feat investments.

- Terrible save progression with three save categories that have a high stat dependence/assumption* as modifier. Unfortunately none of them use your prime Stat value as modifier (Str).

BLEEEEAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHARRRRRGGGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (throws monitor into Wall of Force, breaking it.)

Cheliax

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In fairness to the devs I think they are sort of still stuck in pre-3rd ed mode when it comes to martials. That or they really are just failing to see the huge changes from 2nd to 3rd and not changing martials to reflect those changes

Changes to Save paradigm: Saves are harder for everyone, and harder if you can create a boost for yourself. Save DC is external (a good concept) but mutable by the source (bad concept).

Hit point inflation: You can up the damage of martial’s (and they have to considerable degree), but you can't do much but attacking the hit point track. Overall this is an uphill battle for martials because even though their hit points have increased and their damage output has increased the overall hit point increase in their foes X number foes does not measure up to those changes. When all you can do is chop down a tree in a fight - and now each tree takes an extra chop - you really have relegated direct damage dealers to the back seat (this applies to blasters also, not just martial’s). They should be able to chop down trees as fast as they could in 1st/2nd or expectations for carry-over players are going to be sullied. And they should be able to do more than chop down those trees - if we are going to apply status changing rules across the board (knockdown, stunnned, bleed, etc) martials should have a slew of those options without a feat tax commitment to create those effects. They should just be combat options already in the arsenal of tricks for anyone who uses a weapon. Feats should just make them better/more reliable -which would make Fighters masters of those tricks and options.

Mutable/meta-system manipulation and game environment: Being able to change reality (walls of force, polymorph, etc) is one thing.
Being able change a stat, which in turn changes secondary values/system manipulation is a level of cheese and stupidity which is unforgivable when it comes to game design.
Raising you Int for example should maybe give you another roll on a skill check or something to that effect - not increase all your Arcane DCs by +2 (on top of raising all you INT skill checks). This kind of manipulation is in fact the DEATH OF THE GAME and there are several instances of this level of manipulation in 3rd/PF.
These are behind-the-curtain changes that should never be in the hands of players. Meta manipulation should at best externally affect: Chance to hit, be hit, and saves on a small numeric level. Anything that changes a core stat and subsequent values is too much for the game.

Poorly thought out or not thought out at all: Example - Why oh why would you change a spell like Black Tentacles from having hit points to not having hit points/being immune to damage? This is the kind of thinking that went into 3rd ed - minimal.
Minimal impact on how this would affect encounters, how this would affect martial’s, which class ability this spell now replaces, etc, etc. This goes for most spells in core 3rd ed and PF.

So maybe it’s just that the devs don't realize the changes they made to the core rules and the way spells as the relate to martials since 2000? Maybe they are still focusing on how a weapon cord requires a move action to recover a weapon (apsect of realism) instead of a Barbarian smashing down a Wall of Force, or a Fighter getting extra saves to shake off Charm or Domination as a class feature (aspect of the game environment)....I mean c’mon, the're still are writing rules for making castles where the castle/defense concept is still in the 1st/2nd ed level of magic and 3rd ed + magic doesn't care about that technology. It could be because wards that prevent magic entry would be boring spells to write or because they don’t see it as a problem – or both, IDK.

There are a few more things but thinking about this post is making my head hurt.

So maybe it comes down to the devs having too much focus on one aspect the game - magic and spellcasting, while forgetting about the impact on all the non-casting classes?

You don't need to be able to split fireballs, but using your shield to reflect an Enervation ray back at the caster is just as reasonable as the caster casting the Enervation ray in the first place.

Cheliax

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Abyssal Lord wrote:
Immortalis wrote:

What always gets me when these questions are asked is the answer "its all 3rd ed's fault". Having played DnD for nearly 35 years i really dont see how 3rd ed is resposible for the martial/caster disparagy. I really dont see how 3rd ed messed up magic to increase that disparagy.

Since the beginning casters could bend reality and the law of physics to there will.

Indeed. Revisionist history.

The martial/caster disparagy is there from the very beginning.
If anything, 3rd edition actually put a limit on some spells like fireballs and magic missiles.

No, reality and history disagree with you - hard.

Casters had:
Less Spells/SLAs available

Spells took Longer to cast and you couldn't move or do anything while casting

Hyper-vulnerable while casting:
- No Dex AC while casting (2nd ed)
- If were hit, you lost your spell, no roll

Saves were not mutable or changable by the caster, i.e. no DC
manipulation on saves. Plus the target saves went up as they leveled up, so saves became easier, not harder or impossible (3rd ed/PF)

And on top of that there were:
- Less items to boost stats, especially casting stats
- Less defensive items, no concept of slots
- Rules were not set up to buy magic items

Were casters powerful in older editions - yes, if played correctly.
Could fighters still trounce them easily if the focused their attacks while making all their needed saves (easily) - yes, on a regular basis.

And the jaw dropping Fighter saves were the same from 1st edtion to 2nd, so they were there in 1st ed Advanced - the version you stuck with.

Edit to Add (so KG may want to remove his +1 on this post): What casters and martials could do in earlier editions was different from each other - but in a good way (imo). Each had their role to fill and they did it well if the covered each other.

For the most part the caster/martial disparity is a 3rd ed invention. There was some stupid/power creep at the end of 2nd's lifecycle, but even with that the core rules governing magic, ease of saves, risks in casting were all the same since 1st ed. RE: casting was risky and hard at ALL LEVELS.

Cheliax

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Man on his knees, begging: "Oh, please, don't kill us! Please, please don't kill us! You know I love you baby. I wouldn't leave ya. It wasn't my fault!"

Woman: "You miserable slug! You think you can talk your way out of this? You betrayed me."

Man on his knees, begging: "No, I didn't. Honest... I ran out of gas. I... I had a flat tire. I didn't have enough money for cab fare. My tux didn't come back from the cleaners. An old friend came in from out of town. Someone stole my car. There was an earthquake. A terrible flood. Locusts! IT WASN'T MY FAULT, I SWEAR TO GOD!"

Cheliax

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Doodlebug Anklebiter wrote:
ScrollMasterRob wrote:
"This could be the start of a beautiful friendship."

"I'm shocked, shocked, to discover that there is gambling going on here!"

"Your winnings, sir."

"Oh, thank you very much."

Casablanca

Funny thing is, I have several of Bogies movies but I still need to pick up: Casablanca, Maltese Falcon and Sahara (excellent movie).

Cheliax

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Mi-go in Delta Green:
I think a DM can create an alien race/entity that thinks in very inhuman way. A good example are the Mi-Go as interpreted by the guys who wrote Delta Green. In their version of the race (and Mythos), the Mi-Go are incapable of jumping to a conclusion and in fact need to work out each step in a problem solving process: A-B-C-D. So they can't just see A, guess at B and then jump to D (as a human may).Hence their fascination with humanity and their ability to solve problems.

In the write up it had something to do with their racial progression/memory and their brains functioning like computers - where old/irrelevant information frequently was purged. As a DM, I could run this because I could take my time plotting out their actions and responses (with some very bizarre results and behavior) as NPCs to great effect.
Running this as a player and staying true to the structure - considerably harder.

In my long running Gamma World campaign (‘86 edition) we had some basic rules for robotic characters. In most cases the player’s robot character would in effect be a rogue/damaged robot with a sense of self-preservation and sense of individual identity with little or no history or social background. Problems started occurring when we had to figure out how the robot PC would learn new things, why would he learn new things (if he was designed for a specific function, a Combat Droid learning Gardening for example), why would he acquire gear or even go after gear and so on.

And we role-played it all out.
Almost all the AI/robot PCs had built-in gear, so mostly what they were after in the game were answers. Where did they come from, were they malfunctioning and their free-will a flaw or were they actually designed for sentience? Most of the gear they looked for was enhancements to what they already had, or parts to keep them going (mostly the latter).

There were some strange rp scenarios and problems that came out of those characters to say the least, but they had a good time playing them as I did GMing them.

My point being this: whenever we ran alternate character races – be it rogue AI/Robots or a player who made a parasitic symbiote as character (just a half a foot long patch of gooey moss attached to a back of a host creature), they were tasked to play them like true alien intelligences. That means often forgoing loot, advancement, personal growth and gain and a whole gamut of things players take for granted as they play their characters.

We tried to stay away from the "human in rubber suit" convention as much as possible, but being human, those things leak in as influence. Running them as a GM is much more plausible than player playing the "other"; acting strange while still looking for treasure and xp (i.e. wearing a rubber suit) because to really play an alien intelligence means throwing out the concept of "my character wants to get this, buy this and learn this" - almost of of it goes out the window.

I think many people want to play the "other" only superficially and don't want to pay the price that comes with it. I don’t have an issue with people who dislike human centric games or campaign worlds, or those who what to play different default races because humans are boring. My issue is that if you claim that humans are boring, then don’t play them with purple skin, extra limbs or pointy ears.

Cheliax

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Hama wrote:

I don't get it. What is the problem of humans being the dominant or most widespread race in the setting?

Some people just want the "different" or project what they consider their personal unique persona or traits into a non-standard race.

The irony of course is that pretty much every fantasy race in all the games out there are just humans wearing a rubber monster suit, Go figure.

Cheliax

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John Kretzer wrote:

Here is some more...

" I dunno what the hell's in there, but it's weird and pissed off, whatever it is. "

The Thing (1982 ver)

.....

"I am gravely disappointed. Again you have made me unleash my dogs of war."

------------------

"What? Over? Did you say "over"? Nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell no!"

------------------

1st Guy: It's worse than horrible because a zombie has no will of his own. You see them sometimes walking around blindly with dead eyes, following orders, not knowing what they do, not caring.

2nd Guy: You mean like Democrats?

Cheliax

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DungeonmasterCal wrote:

"Greetings, my friend. We are all interested in the future, for that is where you and I are going to spend the rest of our lives. And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future."

Either Plan 9 From Outer Space or Ed Wood

Cheliax

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PsychoticWarrior wrote:
Doodlebug Anklebiter wrote:

Man answers phone: "Thrill me."

I know I've seen this movie. Great I have to go to work in 8 hours and I'll be up all night trying to remember!

I'm going to guess (because I own this movie) and I remember that the main character/cop was nuts - "Night of the Creeps"?

Very under-rated horror movie.

Cheliax

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Andrew Turner wrote:

The Governor. I don't really know what to make of this character. Everything he does has some explanatory justification, given the circumstances, except for the slaughter of the National Guardsmen. In fact, that scene is completely contrary to everything else that developes his character--that scene marks him as a psychotic tyrant, while all the remaining developmental moments correspond to a character of extreme complexity who experiences and commits immorality and inhumanity only as a means to an end for survivial and, understandably, in defense of his charges, and only as a result of life in a fantastic and wildly hellish environment.

What am I missing? What explains the NG scene? Am I completely off the mark?

The National Guardsman were a considerable threat to his ability to lord over Woodbury.

Think about it:
-Trained military force
-Built in hierarchy and command structure (they would have NEVER followed him)
-Represent a vestige of legitimacy of US gov't
-They could have (though not shown) been a group of evil bastards themselves (marauders, etc), I doubt that though.

I think they represented a power structure that was from the old world but it would have appealed to most survivors. I wouldn't be surprised if a high level NCO or Officer wouldn't be able to just push aside the Governor just by merit of representing what once was. How many people automatically assume that someone in uniform is there to help, they know what they are doing, etc.

Cheliax

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Gorbacz wrote:
I've kind of suspected from the beginning that The Real Issue here is: "some moderators express views which I don't like (and even worse, by voicing these views they empower others), so let's build an elaborate argument against them taking part in discussion".

That's strange - I thought this thread was about selective/uneven (and potentially biased) moderation letting the phrase "suck my d&^%" stand where normal moderation would have had it removed in a heartbeat.

Go figure - it must be a witch hunt.

Cheliax

1 person marked this as a favorite.
DeathQuaker wrote:
If this forum is going to allow discussion of real world topics like gender, religion, and politics, then NO ONE should be silenced on the subject. That includes the Paizo staff. And my sense is what you are asking for, between the lines, is certain people to be silenced, and I do not find that cool at all. And it is in fact antithetical and detrimental to the idea of "open discourse" that you and other posters were advocating for earlier in the thread.

Was the intention of these forums to provide information and support for paizo posters/buyers of product or was this place set up for paizo employees to engage in discourse with gamers on political and social issues? IDK - they know what they want out of this. I would assume it would be used as a vehicle to sell product and stay in touch and support their client base, but they may have a different overall objective.

And their is no "in between the lines", I don't think that paizo staff should get involved in off-topic debates unless paizo wants each employee to represent the views of their company to the general public. Or if the do want to post - if the compulsion is so great that they need to set one of their customers "right", then maybe they shouldn't be involved in that threads moderation.

DeathQuaker wrote:
As for moderators getting hotheaded and deleting something perhaps they shouldn't--my understanding is that that most of the time, staff consult with each other before deleting a post. Even though one person does it, usually it is the result of several staff conferring on the issue. There may be instances where someone's kneejerk deleted something when they shouldn't have but I sincerely doubt that is very much the exception to the rule. Should a staff member ask someone else to go through and do the deleting, even if multiple people agree on it? Possibly? But it might create more work for them that isn't really necessary.

More work? Don't they have enough to do with maintaining their product release dates and minimizing many of the technical and logistical issue they have been having come big book shipment? I know this isn't a large company so you will get a webstore staff member moderating posts or the project manager deleting offensive comments (or not) but do they really need to chime in a heated exchange on gender roles and prejudice (as an example)?

Do they need to be involved in those exchanges?
I'm asking a real question here...

And as far as staff communally reviewing posts before they get deleted I just don't believe it. Some, somewhat subjective interpretation of what is "off topic" get whacked right away - within a minute. Either its the moderator/staff making the call (since they are in the exchange) or no one has work to at paizo but read the forums all day - and I seriously doubt the latter.

DeathQuaker wrote:
And otherwise--I strongly feel, either everyone gets an opinion--or no one does. I have been to forums where "real world" topics like politics and religion were banned (and posting about such things were a warnable offense). Often, honestly, for good reason, unfortunately. But if you're going to allow hot button topics to be discussed, then I think it's only fair that everyone gets a chance to participate if they want to, and especially the people who effectively own this sandbox.

If they want this to be their own arena - where they right perceived social wrongs while sending a mixed messages about what can or cannot pass their censors (based on world view) then have at it. Like I said in my OP - this is their site, but come out and say it.

"We have X view on this subject and if you don't like it then don't post here and don't buy our product".

DeathQuaker wrote:
You may dislike it, but it's entirely your choice to be here. You can accept your choice, understanding that means you may have to put up with staff you dislike and opinions you don't want to read, or make another.

If I thought I was wasting my time here I wouldn't bother posting. I know they have a different world view from mine - I get it, and good for them. They still put out some good product and I respect their gaming pedigree even if I disagree with their politics.

That doesn't mean I need to shut up and get in line...or does it?
From the moderation of this thread I think they are listening to their customers - at least they are faking it. IDK anymore.

Cheliax

5 people marked this as a favorite.

I would rather the moderators stay out of the heated/controversial threads if they do not cover Paizo product or edition warring.

To me the core issue is when a moderator (who is human, and will take a stance on one side or another) is posting and moderating in non-paizo product thread and is either deleting posts that they dislike or is being zealous of maintaining "off topic" moderation when a post deviates from the subject matter is dear to their personal beliefs.

IMO (and this is just my opinion) - the safest and most consistent way to go would be if moderators stayed out of non-paizo product discussions and just moderate the forums - for language, post that break forum rules and to eliminate attacks/insults on other posters.

Example: Right now we have more than a few gender-roles/gender politics threads going on simultaneously and some of the regular posters in those threads are Paizo staff. I understand that this issue are near and dear to most if not all the staff here, but is it really necessary for the staff to both post in and moderate threads that are already volatile/hot-button issues? Is it necessary for Paizo staff to post in these at all?

At best this comes across as unprofessional and at worst it looks like some of the staff posters are using the threads here as a soapbox to convey their personal views and those that don't stay 100% on top of the moderators immediate discussion are quashed.

Not saying it IS SO, saying that's how it LOOKS to some of us.

You guys (staff) have all the power here.

Cheliax

2 people marked this as a favorite.
drunken_nomad wrote:
2 Koufax is in big f#%!ing trouble! Big trouble, baby! All right. Tresh is the next batter. Tresh looks in. Koufax... Koufax gets a sign from Roseboro. He kicks once. He pumps. He fires. It's a strike! Koufax's curve ball is snapping off like a f@%$ing firecracker! All right, here he comes with the next pitch. Tresh swings. It's a long fly ball to deep left center!

One flew Over the Paizo Messageboards..er, Cuckoo's Nest

Cheliax

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I wouldn't have a problem with a higher cap for male humans on strength and a bonus to female humans on con - since we are talking about averages a +1 to a 10 doesn't amount to much for either gender. I take issue with people who spasm/spittle rage for suggesting that males of certain species may be stronger or females of another being larger, etc - all on the premise that it would be offensive to quantify those differences.

That's all

Cheliax

4 people marked this as a favorite.
LazarX wrote:
Welcome to the present day, where the white angry male IS no longer the majority... in gaming, the internet, or anywhere else.

LOL!

Cheliax

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Jessica Price wrote:
Auxmaulous wrote:
Nicos wrote:
fantasy settins designed for a game, unlikes the ones designed for a novel, benefits from cultures that are like the ones presented in history. It does not have to be equal, but saying that the guys from the linnorn kingdom are like viking make easier the work of GM in general.

I agree -and I don't think that the 1st ed PHB was wrong in putting strength caps based off of race and gender. Even though it's a game Gygax and Co. were trying to emulate biological reality, where reality or realistic comparisons could be applied to the system.

This is a good thing.

Not if it's not fun for the players, it isn't.

What if the players don't care?

That is, what if we (my players and I) wanted a more realistic representation of biological limitation - based on height, sex, whatever. Should I let people who are not playing in my game determine the level of immersion the rules are trying to present due to political correctness or female privilege?

Should political correctness or influence from a group that isn't the target demogrophic for the product deterime the ruleset?

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