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Mynafee Gorse

Bill Dunn's page

Goblin Squad Member. Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber. Pathfinder Society Member. 4,203 posts (4,468 including aliases). 4 reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist. 1 Pathfinder Society character. 12 aliases.


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Dennis Harry wrote:
Interesting. I have been running 3.5 for a long time and my players have always looked at their surroundings for advantages to assist in what they are doing.

That's the case with me too, but I will acknowledge that the presentation of a game, its tone, and other elements around it can profoundly change a player's orientation toward the game - and not always in rational ways.

Some groups found that 3e's focus on rules caused their players to do so as well - even myopically. Some groups found that 4e's focus on powers turned the game into a skirmish board game of shuffling power cards. And in both cases, some groups found the structure of those games liberating from problems they found with previous editions (that many other players never even had).


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Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:

How does the economy work in the REAL world?

Anyone who claims to know is lying to you.

Q: What do you when you take all of the economists in the world and lay them down end to end?

A: Everybody pointing in a different direction.


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Jiggy wrote:


There are people who want to play a character that they themselves are not capable of representing completely, who nevertheless care a great deal about roleplaying, immersion, and the fun of the other players; and are interested in far, far more than just "diplomacy-ing people", punching faces and counting loot.

I don't understand why it is hard for you to accept that this category of people exists.

I think people are getting a bit overly emotional about his issue right now. I can totally see where the secret fire is coming from. If a player takes no effort to role play - and like he said, we're not talking rhetoric here - when other players are willing to make the effort then I think the game suffers for it.

And here, I'm not talking about always talking in character or with flowery speeches that exactly fit their Charismas. I'm looking for an effort to put together the major points of an attempt at diplomacy, the tactics used, and all fitting with the PC's perspective and what they could and would understand of the situation. If the player can do it in character, all the better.

But if someone wants to just say "I use diplomacy on him" and roll... they can do that at another table.


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Emmanuel Nouvellon-Pugh wrote:


This

This what?


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Diego Rossi wrote:


Casting Purify food and drink is enough to make it kosher?

I wouldn't think so. Process is extremely important. Taking something processed in a non-kosher manner and using magic to purify it doesn't change the process involved.

Now, purifying the food/drink could be an important part of the process...


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You may notice that diplomacy says it enables characters to change the attitudes of non-player characters. It doesn't say you can change the attitude of the other PCs - for that you need to succeed on your real life diplomacy and powers of persuasion.

That doesn't mean that diplomacy, bluff, and other skills aren't useful in portraying how the PCs perceive each other. A good diplomacy check here might lead a GM to tell the moonshiner that "the other character makes a passionate argument that distilling that alcohol will make Baby Erastil cry that you find emotionally moving, bringing an unbidden tear to your own eye - but the choice is, of course, up to you."

And I still don't understand how copying a recipe for poteen would be evil.


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It looks to me, from the boards I frequent, some people are still fighting the previous edition war.


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KingmanHighborn wrote:

I voted Star Wars, but really you could drop the Force and lightsaber stuff as it BORED me. I liked Star Wars cause there was so many cool places to go, races in universe, and the ships.

For me, the Force and the Jedi are what make Star Wars really distinctive as a space opera setting. And I don't mean the superhumanic BS that appeared in Attack of the Clones/Revenge of the Sith. I'm talking about the mystical philosophy and modestly defined powers of the original trilogy.

"Size matters not. Look at me. Judge me by my size, do you? Hmm? Hmm. And well you should not. For my ally is the Force, and a powerful ally it is. Life creates it, makes it grow. Its energy surrounds us and binds us. Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter. You must feel the Force around you; here, between you, me, the tree, the rock, everywhere, yes. Even between the land and the ship."

That's one of my favorite passages of the whole series of movies, particularly the line in bold. Star Wars without that loses half its character.


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KingmanHighborn wrote:


But see I love Trek too as long as it's not Shatner. (TOS is fine just I don't like Shatner's take on Kirk.) I grew up with TNG and loved it, as I loved the politics and 'feel' of it.

But then there was DS9 and I hated it, it was soooooooo BOOOOORRRRRINGGG! Nothing happened until the Dominion stuff started up otherwise it was Space CSI.

Voyager was the best of the best, crème de le crème series. As they had no Federation support. (Many times Enterprise had to go in for repairs or even complete rebuilds with a competent captain like Picard at the helm.)

It's like I've found my polar opposite here on the boards. I'll dub you my Bizarro Bill Dunn and you can dub me your Bizarro KingmanHighborn.


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DrDeth wrote:


Nice idea, but too many players, according to posts I have read here on these boards, would never hear of it. Team work is worthless they say, it's all about solo power. The fact that you have a Sorc in the party who is willing and able to cast T-port is meaningless everyone NEEDS to be able to teleport on his very ow nor the class is worthless.

This usually strikes me as a jealousy or competitiveness issue. I've seen it a lot, in recent years, characterized by "protagonism" and "agency" issues. The spellcasters' reality bending powers set the agenda for the game and martial characters don't get nice thing. These are all focused on what one player can do with his PC that another player cannot do with his.

But I don't see it that way. Who sets the agenda for the game? Is it a spellcaster acting as dictator or do the players have reasonably equal input? If the former, why are they playing with the jerk? And if it's the latter, then the spellcaster doesn't really have more agency, rather, his powers are at the service of the group and it doesn't really matter if it's Joe's PC who is pushing the button - he's pushing it for all of us.

Now, maybe I'm spoiled by being part of groups that have played together with relatively few changes in spans measured by decades rather than months or even years. Most of the competitiveness that comes up between players is done for role playing purposes.


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Irontruth wrote:


This is the GenCon vendor map from 2014.

Note the second column, 5th one down: Belle and Blade.

So, after complaints were made LAST YEAR about these guys. They were allowed to come back.

I don't want to link directly too them. I don't think Paizo deserves links to these guys on their website. But here are some things for sale:

- Triumph of the Will
- baseball caps with swastikas on them
- a work shirt with a Death's Head emblem with the words "Gott mit uns" common Nazi imagery from the period
- Nazi fetish porn

Neither the work shirt or baseball cap are authentic to the WW2 period, but rather reflect more modern designs of clothing. They are not intended to be historical recreations.

Their website is pretty easy to find if you search Belle and Blade.

So, now I've shown that his article DOES contain evidence. I suppose you could try to argue that Nazi fetish porn isn't racist and deserves to be at GenCon.

And, having seen the booth, I'd say that most of what it is about is movies, movies, and more movies that a lot of people are interested in. Overall, the booth was a lot less offensive than a lot of the manga/anime art ones that were very teen porny.

It's possible that anybody who investigated thought that the complaints were largely minimal compared to the overall focus of the booth. I've also seen a response from Gen Con staff that they told Bell and Blade to not display the underwear. And other posts suggest that they were no longer on prominent display - though were still for sale. And that parallels what went on with the anime porn. One booth in 2013 had the art posted high up at the top of their booth so it could be seen for some distance. Clearly someone complained since after that opening morning the racier stuff had been lowered to be within the booth itself.


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Nicos wrote:
Bill Dunn wrote:


There's no point if grousing about it. Not all games are going to enable all concepts out of the box and that's OK.
A dexterous character who wields a rapier is really iconic character concept. It is a failure that hte game do not support that concept (well, perhaps it does now with the ACG, not sure).

Funny, I can make a dexterous character who wields a rapier just fine in PF. He doesn't do as much damage as the greataxe wielding barbarian, but I'm fine with that. Damage isn't everything.


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Suichimo wrote:
thegreenteagamer wrote:
Seems to me a LOT of people complain about the system as it is. Complaints about not enough dex-to-damage options just up your strength if you really want to melee THAT badly

And if that is against your concept?

Then you've got a few choices to make:

1) house rule it with willing GM and players
2) accept your concept can only be approximated with the rules you've got and do the best you can
3) play a game in which that concept can be achieved like Mutants and Masterminds or some other system
4) change your concept

There's no point if grousing about it. Not all games are going to enable all concepts out of the box and that's OK.


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mechaPoet wrote:
4) All of that said, the reason I brought this up in the first place is because of the part where Correia mocks George for not feeling represented in gaming. George outlines what internalized racism looks like: even in a fantasy world, George can imagine fighting orcs more easily than he can imagine a non-white character for himself. This isn't an issue of George's lack of imagination; it's the result of a culture that tells him what's normal/normative for a medieval fantasy setting is that everyone is white. The narratives present in both our history and much of our pop culture about medieval/renaissance Europe has erased the history of PoC. It is affected by the other racist narratives in our culture, and affects them in turn in a vicious cycle that has made people like George feel like he doesn't have a voice or a place in the usual cultural narrative. Even when he tries to branch out and make characters of color, it's unhelpful and discouraging when people ask him if he's trying to make a statement or send a message by doing that. And for Correia to mock George and dismiss his feelings on this is a dick move. Making a half-orc with green skin isn't the same as making a character with brown or black skin, because no one is going to call you out on "message fiction" for playing a half-orc. This is a racist action--please note that I'm not saying anything about Correia's character or his ~*~innermost soul as a human being~*~, just pointing to this particular action as racist and rude. Maybe Correia wasn't bothered by not seeing himself represented in fantasy games (or, for many PoC, almost all media), or maybe he did feel represented (which is a tricky feeling to identify, because it's the feeling of being "normal" when you engage with any form of media with characters). So, you know, that's cool for him, but he's being a huge a!%$%*! about it to George and dismissing what is a serious and widespread problem. Admittedly, it is one that Paizo art tries to address, which is awesome, and which the latest edition of D&D is trying to do as well (I got a chance to flip through it, and the example pictures for the human, fighter, and wizard are all black). But for Correia to dismiss his concerns is exactly the opposite of what he praises Paizo for trying to do! So is Correia white? It seems like he doesn't identify as such, and if he experiences racism directed toward him for being non-white Portuguese, then that's s*%!ty. However, he also says some s~+@ty racist stuff in his response article, and that's just not acceptable.

Even if someone were to agree with you on this or take George at his word, there's still a gap between experiencing racism away from gaming to the point it affects your early forays into gaming and even having a racist incident at a local gaming table and projecting that onto the whole community and Gen Con. And I'd say it's an even bigger gap now than it would have been in the early days of gaming since there are major companies including diverse characters in their art, some for over a decade. The environment for attracting diversity in gaming - whether it's ethnic/racial diversity or gender/sexual preference diversity - is pretty much the best it has ever been thanks to companies like WotC and Paizo.

But at some point, people have to realize it's not gaming that doesn't afford people options. Gaming has no inherent horizon (though local groups may have their own limits and limitations). If George thinks gaming didn't or doesn't afford him those options, it's because he didn't (and maybe still doesn't) reach for them. Maybe he feels like an outsider - as a minority, that's understandable. But being an outsider doesn't make the experience inherently racist nor does he become an insider by choosing to distance himself from the community or events.


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thejeff wrote:

So, more to the point of the argument would you say that the experience of the experience of Spanish immigrants to the US is essentially the same as Mexican immigrants? They face the same kinds of discrimination? Both in the first and successive generation?

Because that's the distinction that Hispanic(White) and Hispanic(not-white) draws.

Or would the experience of that Spanish immigrant and his descendants be closer to a Polish immigrant and his? Both likely to face discrimination, but both considered white and not dealing with the same level that people of color face, especially after the first generation.

I expect there's going to be a lot of regional variation. Spanish immigrant coming to Arizona - or really anywhere in territory that used to be Mexico - probably have an experience much like a Mexican immigrant. Then, in successive generations, there's probably a good chance having a name that sounds Mexican will lead a lot of people to make assumptions that they're Mexican-American rather than Spanish-American.

Fun little aside. Remember when some people got all up in arms about Benedict Cumberbatch being cast as Khan in Star Trek: Into Darkness? There were complaints about whitewashing Khan. Here's even a blog post from someone at Tor Books about giving a person of color's part to a white guy: The Perfect Retcon to Star Trek: Into Darkness.

But here's the rub. If a Spanish immigrant to the US wouldn't be a person of color, neither was Ricardo Montalban both of whose parents immigrated to Mexico from Spain. They're assuming Montalban was a person of color because he was Mexican, had an awesome accent, and had a good tan. Or... they understood that being a PoC isn't necessarily about obvious skin tones or technical racial origin but being part of an ethnicity/race that's not necessarily treated as being white.


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Chengar Qordath wrote:


That's actually one of the main reasons I'm not a huge fan of how the Big Six items work in Pathfinder. The Big Six are very much expected and ordinary. It's hard to get excited about getting another +1, but sooner or later you need those bonuses just to survive.

Magic items that let you do something new and interesting are far more exciting than ones that just add flat numerical bonuses. Problem is, Pathfinder is very much a numbers game; no matter how good your tactics are and what creative solutions you come up with, eventually dice are going to be rolled.

You generally need some of those items to thrive, sure. But you don't need all of them, nor do all of the ones you have need to be maxed out. Yet all 6 of these are part of the Big 6 because, necessary or not, they are very valuable compared to most other magic items. Their benefits are consistent, easy to calculate, hard to forget about, and relatively cheap. For those reasons, they kick the butt of many if not most conditional-use items, like rings of shooting stars, which are generally sold off at first opportunity to get one of the Big 6.


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Maccabee wrote:
I loved Pathfinder as is. Then I started reading these forums. I've liked it less and less ever since. Less to do with the system, more to do with some of the types of people attracted to this type of system.

I can understand this leading to having contempt for fellow gamers (I have plenty of that myself thanks to my online participation here and other message boards), but I don't think I have ever let it affect my ability to like a game...


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thejeff wrote:

My stance is and remains that he claims incorrectly to be a Person of Color to mock and dismiss racial discrimination. If he experienced discrimination as a 2nd generation immigrant, which is quite possible, and he actually used those experiences in his argument, that would be one thing. But he doesn't. He doesn't talk about any such experiences. He just claims the PoC flag and he does so without justification.

Again - discovered he was (legally) Latino circa 2009. Is of European (Portuguese) descent. Latinos, in this usage, can be either White or several varieties of not-white. European qualifies as white.

I disagree. Saturday Night Live may have used the idea in a joke back when Dukakis and Bush were running for President but it's true - some Europeans are "whiter" than others. Some benefit from white privilege more than others. Not all Europeans qualify as being white in the same way - a lot of southern Europeans can tell you that. I can tell you it's well understood by Portuguese friends of mine - particularly in New England where they make up a substantial immigrant community the long-standing WASPs there don't much like (that Manhattan clam chowder? It's not from Manhattan - it's New England Portuguese - talk about "othering", they had to say it was from somewhere else to be sufficiently insulting and exclusionary).

George, in his attempt to show Gen Con's insensitivity to the issue, made a similar mistake by using the term PoC superficially as if race relations were binary. They're not.


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GreyWolfLord wrote:

I actually did point out quite a number of the posts to Paizo...they did not take action.

Clearly, you're not getting what Scott Betts was saying. He was, I think, prodding you to identify what posts or statements you thought were racist and defend them in this thread. And until you do, I don't think many of us are really going to understand what you think were racist statements.


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LazarX wrote:


He's been there, I've been there several times as both player and GM. You by your own admission haven't been there ever. Are you open to the possibility that the conclusion you've reached is at least partly due to the fact that it's what you WANT to believe?

I've been going since 1983 and I'd have a hard time saying Gen Con was racist. The fact that the hobby is mostly white may be the legacy of a society divided by racism but that hardly makes Gen Con racist or the racial differences a problem that Gen Con must address. Large concentrations of mostly white people are not inherently racist experiences.


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Kittyburger wrote:


Yep.

Correia has a pattern of bigotry and of denying the impact of bigotry when reported by other people.

I'm amused by the fact that calling out a pattern of actual behavior by the man in question is being called "character assassination." "Character assassination" would be if the claimed pattern of behavior were false - it isn't.

Whether he's a bigot or not, using that as an argument that his post is wrong or valueless is still argumentum ad hominem rather than actually interacting with the post. Granted, Correia does some of that as well with his social justice warrior stuff, but not all of his post descends to that level. Something I regrettably can't say about every post in this thread...


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Kittyburger wrote:


Indeed. Correia's best buds with Theodore "Vox Day" Beale, who is a virulent racist, sexist, and homophobe (I'm fairly sure trans people Don't Exist in Beale's world). Your friends inform who you are, and Beale's a LOT of information. Even without Beale, there's plenty of sexist, homophobic and transphobic commentary from Correia out there.

Correia's been dismissive a lot of women's science fiction, of LGBT science fiction, of science fiction of people of color, of non-American science fiction (lumping all of them together as "message fiction" - ignoring the fact that all fiction is supposed to send a message), so the pattern is pretty well-established showing him to be a pretty big flaming bigot regardless of any use or nonuse of slurs.

None of this actually gets at the specific Tor Books blog post vs response post by Corriea, though. You don't like some of his other positions, statements, and associations... but what about the topic at hand?


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GreyWolfLord wrote:

Mr. Correia actually appears to be white. He seems to be ignorant of what WHITE actually is. Latinos and Hispanics are minorities, but technically, they have been considered white for the past century in the US.

Now, obviously, that may not be true in some people's eyes...but even in South America there tend to be racism...and yes...there are Hispanics (such as Portuguese and Spaniards direct descendants...and even German descendants) that are directly as white as you can get...whereas there are others which are more akin to the relations you may see from a Native American.

There's a reason being Latino or Hispanic, though a minority, does not instantly say you are a PoC...as the term goes...so lets stop confusing the term.

The US census bureau has divided them into different categories, so it's possible to be Hispanic and Black, or Hispanic and White...so being Hispanic does not necessarily mean you are a PoC.

With Latino, it's even LESS defining as a person of Color. Latinos come from any nation that speaks a Romance (language derived from Latin) Language...hence France and Italy and Spain.

In the US, it is more specific, and specified than Hispanic, in that it refers to those from Latin America. In that sense, one would assume Mr. Correia is from Latin America...but being from Latin America is no more defining as a Person of Color than being from the US defines you as such.

I'm guessing you haven't heard of a lot of people being stopped by traffic cops for DWH (Driving while Hispanic). A friend of mine basically gets stopped for it - he's Portuguese-American.

While he may not technically be a "person of color", he's not exactly white and brimming with white privilege either.

Ultimately, I think this is actually serving Mr. Corriea's point - that use of the term POC can end up being divisive and tinged with racism. It has been a while since I attended grad school but the uses it was put to there in the 1990s had me thinking it was another version of Jim Crow thinking - just from a different perspective. It was disturbing to come to that realization that the people bandying the term about in their identity-politics stands were using the same kinds of criteria to label someone a person of color as the Jim Crow supporters were using to keep people away from the white privilege of sitting at the front of the bus or eating at the lunch counter.


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ShinHakkaider wrote:


Yeah I've never understood the whole "getting pissed at the developers" thing. I dont know, maybe I come from a different era but when we were playing D&D back in the day, when we came across a rule or something that we didnt like or want to use? We just changed it or didnt use it.
We didnt get hot at designers or call them out in Dragon Magazine. We were more concerned about playing our game. And that's it.

I don't understand getting mad either. I do understand some frustration, though, when a FAQ answer is unclear or needs clarification that only seems to come after a messageboard brouhaha breaks out. I'd prefer it if more FAQ entries included a developer-perspective rationale for the interpretation. The two-handed weapon + two-weapon fighting ban needed clarification and I think none of the ensuing messageboard discussion has filtered back up to the rule clarification. That is frustrating.

I think one reason we tend to see more testiness is because of the immediacy of the internet. Multiple exchanges can occur and sentiments build up over the course of a few hours. With Dragon, exchanges took weeks and that's a lot calmer.


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mechaPoet wrote:


-Do some of your own research into the intersection of race and gaming. Some of you seem very hesitant to believe anecdotal evidence of racism. There are a lot of people with anecdotal experience of racism; how many does it take for it to become "statistics"? This is mean to be less of a zen koan along the lines of "How many grains of rice does it take to be a pile?" and more of an encouragement to seek out this accounts on your own. When you find them, please take them seriously. And if you find yourself objecting to things that are said on the grounds that they are "not really racist," or getting offended that something you do is considered racist, please take a minute to consider those social privileges you possess. Give them the benefit of the doubt. Do more research.

The fact that people have had experiences in gaming that are affected by racism doesn't necessarily make the assertion that there is a racial problem at Gen Con true. Taking George at face value in his blog post, he clearly has had a problem with racism in his gaming life. If he can't play a black character, or a character of any ethnicity or race under the game's sun, he's clearly experiencing a problem. And, just as clearly, for those of us familiar with the Rashomon Effect, those experiences will affect his perceptions of the reality around him - including his Gen Con experience.

But the perceptions of one person don't necessarily mean there's a problem that can or needs to be addressed. To shift to another psychological lexicon, he may be projecting his own problematic view on a situation that doesn't warrant it.


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I like pith helmets.


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sunshadow21 wrote:


At this point, if I am going to be spending money, I expect to see something new and different enough to be worth the dollars spent; at least so far, 5E isn't. It's a good system, I hope it does well, but I was hoping for something that would actually compete with PF, keeping Paizo on their toes. Unless WotC comes out with a robust third party license system, I don't see that happening; WotC clearly doesn't have any plans to do much with the system directly themselves. Paizo, and other competitors as well, put out enough content of high enough quality overall that WotC is not going to be able to just put out adventures and the seemingly very occasional something else and hope to maintain a long term presence in the market; movies, video games, or whatever else they have been talking about for decades now and have yet to seriously produce would be nice to see, but a great many people won't care about them and many that do won't make the connection to the game that WotC clearly hopes they will make.

I think 5e will compete pretty strongly with PF simply for the fact that it is D&D. That brand means a lot. Just look at the edition wars - what's that all about? At it's most fundamental level, It's about being D&D players. Why else would people go to such effort to criticize 4e or backlash against those criticisms? Why else would people cling to their favorite sacred cows/sacred cow hamburger? It's because they want to be D&D players (or still be D&D players) and have the currently supported edition be an edition they can identify themselves as D&D players with.

That's going to be pretty stiff competition.


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Captain America may be a bit cheesy by today's standards, but his archetype is every bit as iconic - from the comic historian point of view - as Batman and Superman. Super patriot characters were quite common in the golden age of comics, and understandably so considering their development right before WWII.

I have read some of Cap's own comic, but most of my experience with him is in the Avengers and Invaders comics. And both Cap movies have been hitting the right tones with both comic fans and the public. I thought they covered his origin in the first movie in a way that did justice to his history and in a very accessible way for non-comic readers. The second movie really blew me away, though. But unlike others, I don't see a power creep at all - what I see is just the writers getting better at finding ways for him to shine on his own. We'll see if the Cap2 experience taught them enough to set him off well opposite the power-hitters in the Avengers 2.


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What is a charter subscriber? Someone who has spent a lot of money over the years on Adventure Paths!

Not that I mind, but I do have some reading to catch up on.


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Evil? No. A little weird? Sure, particularly for bring up in a game at the local game store. It's not every player who wants passersby to label him a pervert for having a sex toy be a prominent aspect of his character.

There was once a player I knew who had a superhero character named Phallus. He had growing powers that, ahem, didn't always work, especially around women he found attractive. But at least we were playing in private and not in a game store.


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Quark Blast wrote:

"4d6, drop lowest, in order" would almost certainly result in a party that was suboptimal.

Typically, each PCs primary stat would be 12. So, rolling my dice...

Paladin with a STR of 13 and a CHA of 8
Sorcerer with a DEX of 15 and a CHA of 9
Cleric with a WIS of 10 and a CON of 7
Rogue with a DEX of 11 and INT of 8
Wizard with a INT of 16 (hey, that's actually useful!) and a DEX of 12
Barbarian with a STR of 12, a DEX of 12 and an INT of 14

...you get some PCs that are playable (meaning at least potentially heroic) but as a party these guys suck.

I guess that if he let you pick your PCs class after rolling stats it would be slightly better but having everyone forced to play some incarnation of "Nodwick" is only fun if the group buys in to the concept first.

When you roll in order, the usual expectation is that you will be picking your class after your stats. It's not really a question of hoping the GM "lets" you do so. There is a reason, by the way, that the chapter on stats appears before the chapter on classes.


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Robert Carter 58 wrote:
Tomos wrote:

Socrates.

Gandhi.
Gandhi was a lawyer before he lead his people, Socrates was a great teacher. Definitely not commoners. Experts at least.

And probably a little warrior for Socrates as well since he was supposedly a Peloponnesian War veteran.


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Kthulhu wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:


Well, I'd say it's a quite a big cat that ate WotC's market leadership for lunch, but YMMV.
Paizo has been the market leader... while D&D was all but dormant. I wouldn't be surprised if Paizo finds themselves kicked down to #2 very quickly after 5th edition's release.

I expect it will, for a time. How long depends on how well 5e does. Even 4e had its hands full with the Pathfinder competition since PF was showing up well right during Essentials, before D&D 4e was dormant.


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Josh M. wrote:


If the players have the books containing the extra options they want to play with, what's wrong with just looking over their books? This is how my group did things for years. No one DM was expected to own everything. So long as the player has a copy on hand, what would be wrong with that?

Sometimes that isn't as convenient or the analysis not as thorough as being able to review the new material in detail and at leisure. Depending on the nature of the option to be added, I might take a while to really dig into it. If it was just a feat or new piece of equipment, reading over the text once or twice would probably suffice. But if the player wanted me to add a new class like the summoner, I'd want more time with the materials and that requires more than just skimming it over at the gaming table the night we play. In such a case, I would require photocopies of the pages at the very least, and perhaps a loan of the book for a week or so.


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kinevon wrote:

Hmmm. How about having cast a true strike?

Quote:
You gain temporary, intuitive insight into the immediate future during your next attack. Your next single attack roll (if it is made before the end of the next round) gains a +20 insight bonus. Additionally, you are not affected by the miss chance that applies to attackers trying to strike a concealed target.
Probably not...

It runs into the same problem - inability to see the target. Attacks of Opportunity events presume that the character can see that their target has dropped their guard, enabling the free attack. Keep that in mind and these questions become fairly easy.

Your regular attacks may ignore the concealment, but in order to make use of the opportunity he gives you to make an attack, you have to see that he gives you one in the first place.


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I generally ban anything I don't own on the basis of "if I don't have it at my convenience, I'm not going to be able to review and understand it appropriately enough to run with it."

Other than that, I'm pretty open with what I allow. I do, however, support any GM's effort to ban anything they want as long as they have a rational explanation for it other than "because I said so". I think GMs should have a lot of leeway in establishing what works with the setting since they will be the one dealing with it the most.


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Thomas Long 175 wrote:


I wasn't aware "buy a wand and have a single person put a single point in UMD" was system mastery. I thought that was the basics.

It's really not, particularly when dealing with players who used to play lots of older-school AD&D when wands were decidedly more difficult to make.


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Jaelithe wrote:

Jason, could the orcs and Smaug be guided and kept in the loop by Sauron from afar? His powers are greater than any other in Middle-Earth, and we know that only such as Galadriel possess the might to block his vision. The dragons are a creation of Melkor, thus Sauron might well have insight into communicating with and controlling them.

Meh. It would depend on too many suppositions that the movie will never explain. Sauron isn't supposed to know about the ring being found until he captures Gollum and that won't happen for some decades yet. Thorin and Co. are just not important enough for his attention. It's all just padding for a trilogy going too long and with Jackson and co-writers working well below their potential.


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K177Y C47 wrote:
A freaking basketweaver is not going to go out and slay a dragon...

And moisture farmers aren't going to become galaxy-liberating mystic warriors, barmaids aren't going to become heroes, blacksmith's sons aren't going to become king, Civil War vets turned prospectors aren't going to become planetary warlords...


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Scavion wrote:

I think its weird that people don't want better designed classes and actively promote that we shouldn't try bringing weaker classes up to par.

I think that really is a misreading of the issue that people bring up when they say that claims of fighter and rogue uselessness and weakness are exaggerated. It's not that we don't think adding a couple of skill points to the fighter would be bad. It's not that we think scaling some combat feats better so they advance with the character level would be bad.

Rather, it's that doing so isn't absolutely necessary as much as they could be reasonably welcomed options since, in our experience, we're doing just fine despite the so-called deficiencies of these classes. So we may be picky about what changes we think will actually help matters without damaging the overall flavor of the game.


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Kirth Gersen wrote:


I find it very sad when a game is structured so that one person's fun and another person's are mutually-contradictory. I'd rather the baselines were similar, so that we could all play together.

Even if the baselines were identical, you'd still have people whose game styles were incompatible. So I don't see it as a problem because baselines differ, rather, I think it's because some people have incompatible ideas of a good time.


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Terquem wrote:
anyone that is put off by the rendition of an upright walking, bipedal, human sized, Dragon headed, winged (or not), fire breathing, sentient, heroic, weapon wielding, five fingered (with opposable thumb), fantasy character, because it has breasts, is being, in my opinion, a bit ridiculous

Oh, I don't think so. I can easily see a legitimate criticism against the need to put breasts on a lizard woman to pander to juvenile male desires.


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Tequila Sunrise wrote:


I give JJ & Co. props for being honest with their customers, but that honesty has more or less ensured that I'll never buy a PF book. Maybe an AP that I can convert, sometime when I have more money to throw around. Paizo is responding to someone's needs, but they ain't mine. :/

Of course they're not responding to your needs. They're respoding to mine and I'm keeping them busy.

Tequila Sunrise wrote:
I can't imagine a game company telling anyone what they want, though I've heard this complaint aimed at various companies before. I mean, they all do their best to sell their games, but telling us what we want? Sounds like a fan-reaction to whichever company makes the game that he or she happens to not like.

You've never heard of advertising? Companies tell people what they need and want all the time.


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Aaron Bitman wrote:


zagnabbit wrote:
The beauty of Greyhawk is stasis. It's always the same year until you play.
Um... what? I must be misunderstanding you. Greyhawk's been changing constantly. Materials like "Fate of Istus", "Greyhawk Wars", and "Die, Vecna, Die" made significant changes in the setting, requiring new editions to get all the updates. For instance, the "World of Greyhawk" boxed set was set, I think, in the late 570s CY. (My set is at home, where I can't look it up.) "From The Ashes" shows a very different world in 585 CY, due to the aforementioned Greyhawk Wars. "The Living Greyhawk Gazetteer" shows lots of changes from that, leading up to 591 CY.

I think this underscores that Greyhawkers typically take a different approach to the campaign setting and canon than fans of other published settings (with the possible exception of the Third Imperium for Traveller). With early materials being fairly sketchy for a long time, Greyhawk GMs have thrived on taking a framework of a campaign world and making it their own. And that includes feeling confident about accepting or flat out rejecting canonical developments that come later like the Greyhawk Wars or anything to do with the overuse of Vecna.


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I don't suppose we could dispense with calling the other side of the debate whiners or blaming them for why your side "can't get nice things"? Those are the attitudes that spawned the edition wars - dismissing and belittling other people's opinions. People have different opinions. We can respect that and disagree without being a jerks, can't we?

Personally, I like relying on Ex abilities for martial character and consider many of them to be some pretty damn nice things, indeed.


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cnetarian wrote:

Except it doesn't really work that way.

Take a level 1 medium ranger with a great-axe attacking an AC 21 foe without a feat applying to the attack. With a STR of 14 the ranger will hit on a 18+ and do 3-14 points of damage, while with a STR of 18 the ranger will hit on a 16+ and do 5-16 points of damage - the 18 STR ranger hits not 10% more often but TWICE as often as the 14 STR ranger as well as doing more damage. Even against an AC 10 opponent the STR 14 ranger will hit 70% of the time versus the STR 18 ranger's 80% hit rate, meaning the 18 STR ranger is about 14% more likely to hit, or 14% more effective against AC 10 opponents.

Actually, it does work the way Sgt Spectre says and it works the way you lay it out here. The difference is perspective. If the 14 Strength ranger is doing nothing but comparing successes, then your perspective dominates. But if he's not - if he's looking at all outcomes - then Sgt Spectre's perspective dominates. It's up to the GM to help manage those expectations and perspectives because they can crop up whether you use point buy or rolling for stats unless everyone ends up being built the same.


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It's important to not only notice that invisibility may increase your stealth check, but that you can ignore that modifier in situations where other senses may be particularly important. If the observer doesn't actually have direct line of sight on the invisible sneaker, just roll against his normal check to hear him - he can't see him anyway.

I think it's fine for invisibility to include a steep bonus for stealth. We're extremely visual creatures. Information enters the brain and is processed 30x faster via sight than via hearing so situations in which the eyes should be engaged but are fooled by the spell should be extremely confounding. But situations in which that is not the case (out of sight anyway, creatures that are arguably more attuned to sound or vibration or even scent), shouldn't include that modifier.


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BigNorseWolf wrote:


Because it becomes the optimal strategy.

A strategy in which you can expect to do as well or better 55% of the time and give it up isn't one I would call optimal. Taking 10 isn't optimal in any sense except for one - it saves the game time which allows players to get more done while still having their PCs do things that are time consuming. Take the case of carefully making your way through a dungeon - wary of traps. Without Taking 10, you could have the trap-searching PCs make a perception check every 5 feet - that would be a very slow moving game. Or the trap-searcher could say "I'm Taking 10 as we're going along. My trapfinding modifier is a +13."

No muss. No fuss. The GM reveals anything to be found by a DC 23 or lower, springs anything with a DC 24 or higher. And, best of all, the game flows.

But really, if I Take 10, I'm mitigating the risk of failing at relatively routine and easy tasks for my skill level by positively inviting failure against anything significantly challenging. That's no optimal strategy unless I'm always slumming in adventures well below my level.


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Marthkus wrote:
chaoseffect wrote:
I think the issue is how vague the bolded portion is, at least to me: So can I tell you all about military command structure and procedure, but it is less clear on whether or not I could use it to know how to build a military grade road or know the names of all the high ranking military officials in the kingdom next door.

It's up to the GM.

Gaps in the rules that the GM has to fill in are not a rare thing.

It's kind of a necessary thing, really. Tabletop RPGs have such unbounded scopes that it's pretty much impossible for any rule set to cover every eventuality.

For profession skills, if it seems pretty reasonable that a character with Profession (x) would have special insight into the question because of their skill in X, then consider allowing the use of the profession skill as an alternative to other skills.

Knowledge (Geography) is a great skill for knowing the lay of the land which may help your soldiers pick the most defensible ground. But a skilled soldier can probably assess that too and may know examples of how it was used in the past (which a character with Knowledge (History) might know too). I'd consider casting the geographer's results in more formal style than a soldier's which I would make more colloquial.

Ultimately, skills can overlap a great deal in PF - this is a good thing because it means PCs have multiple avenues to get to relevant information and keep a good story going rather than run into dead ends or troughs of indecision.

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