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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. 4,670 posts (5,276 including aliases). 4 reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist. 1 Pathfinder Society character. 15 aliases.


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Brother Fen wrote:

I have a similar occurrence at my table where some of the long time players don't like the way a younger player runs their cleric. I snip it in the bud every time with a quick - "he can play the character how he likes", and that's the end of it.

I have to do that a little bit too in a game I run. I've got 2 parents who sometimes try to jump in to tell their 8 year old daughter what she can and can't do. I had to raise my voice to shut that down one night and told them they can advise, but Zoe needs to make her own decisions.


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When a certain thing happened, we had some interesting reactions in the theater. One small child said "bye-bye" while I heard sobs from two distinct areas of the audience.

Overall, I really liked it. My kids didn't cry, but by the end, their parents sure were.


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Rub-Eta wrote:
The problem with spell casters are the spells, not the casters them selves or their ability to cast them. Making it eat up more feats/skill ranks doesn't mean anything to them, as they'll go to that length and still be as powerful as they are in the normal system. It's not a fix, just a minor inconvenience.

As a fantasy RPG, I want my magic to do things that are pretty magical. Most spells aren't a problem to me. The problem is in the ease with which magic can be used. It's far too convenient and cheap when it should involve more trade-off. Wands are a primary culprit when it comes to cheap utility. They should be curtailed. Plus, it's too easy to cast in a fight and too hard to disrupt the casting. The standard action is convenient and easy from a game rule and usability perspective, but it contributes to the relative undisruptability of the caster. I'd make a lot more spells, particularly the save or sit spells, full round to cast.

Rub-Eta wrote:

It's not the size of the lists that is the problem, it's specific spells and their effect on the game that casters can create but martials can't. The difference between a caster and a martial is great due to this. This IS the problem and therefore it's what needs to be fixed, not something else surrounding the spells.

Totally not a problem, at least not as far as I'm concerned. When the spells are game changing, they change the game for everybody, and when that's the case, it doesn't really matter which specific character does it. The whole party ultimately benefits (or suffers).

That said, I think the rules could use more explanation about the pros and cons of certain spells and how they affect the game, like the description of power in Champions (well worth looking into if you have a copy around). And GMs should be encouraged to delete spells from lists that they don't want to have to deal with.


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The game can be approached with quite a few styles of play and if you're in reasonable agreement with your players over style, then Pathfinder works just fine with long term planners as well as non-planners. The problems arise, as you might have noticed in this thread, when the styles conflict. Hopefully, with good communication, you can work through any conflicts in your game better than gamers can over the internet message boards (where the tendency to dig in is highly observable).


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:

Uuuugh. I came here to finally get some productive advice to drown out all the stupid arguing on the other thread.

What did I get? More stupid arguing. I could dig through here to find the on-topic posts, but I don't really have the energy.

Come on, people. You already have a thread for this. Go over there and leave this one in peace. If you don't think martials need fixing, go over there and make your case.

Well, if you're asking, I've already posted several things over to the thread on what I'd change about PF. Here are some examples that seem relevant here:

I wrote:

1. Get rid of small weapons and 3.5's irritating weapon sizes. Sure, it added an element of simulationism, but it's the only edition that did it and it's a pain the the butt for small characters. PF doesn't need to follow that path.

2. All saves are based on 1/2 HD, even weak ones. Strong saves gets a +2 class bonus added at end. Simplifies multiclassing and boosts weak saves.

6. Pare down the clerical combat buffs

7. Scale the combat feats so they get better with levels

9. Possibly gut the wands entirely into combat-application wands only.

10. Reform SR into bonus to saves rather than all or nothing.

11. Boost evocations by getting rid of dice caps, keep at standard action. Most other spells go to 1 round casting times, particularly the save or sit spells.

13. Give fighters 4 skill points/level. Maybe sorcerers too. Strongly consider some of the skill options in Unchanined like the 2 tiers of skills.

Thinking more about it, I'd also cut down the strength bonuses given by size to pare CMB and CMD down a bit and possibly include some damage with combat maneuvers (maybe half?) so that they provide more benefit in actually ending a fight and are more worthwhile to execute. I'd probably just condense each maneuver chain down to a single feat that scales to include the upper chain benefits.

Overall, one of the biggest problems in the PF game, in my estimation, is magic item creation. PF has taken great strides in enabling mundane characters to craft items too, but I'd probably just cut it down to investment in the relevant craft skill and the item creation feat - if I kept easy item creation at all (I'd be content to ditch it entirely). In 1e and 2e, the random magic item tables were skewed toward expendable potions, expendable scrolls, and martial items and quite far away from wizard-focused items. I run my games embracing that lost principle and I think it should return to the treasure guidelines and random tables.


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Kirth Gersen wrote:


TL;DR: "A good DM can fix this mess" is not a reason for people to pay $50 for a rulebook.

It isn't a reason not to buy one either. You have to approach the game like you do Champions. It's a very broad game in the things it includes, but the GM is encouraged to make it work for his group and his style of running the game. Far too many people take the assumption that if it's in the game it has to work for everybody and everybody's style. That is not true and never has been in any form of D&D.


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PIXIE DUST wrote:


Also, fun is subjective. Fun is not a valid argument in questions of balance. I had fun playing a Kobold Dragonfire Adept in 3.5... next to a machinegun rogue... does not necessarily mean they were well balanced against each other...

Was the rogue player having fun too? Were either of you having fun at the other one's expense? If the former question is yes and the latter is no, then I'd submit that relative balance between he two didn't matter.


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PIXIE DUST wrote:


But what happens IF YOU DON'T HAVE A WIZARD?

THAT is the problem, the game COMPLETELY CHANGES if you have a wizard, or any caster really. If you add an extra martials you really don't chnge much... just make things a little tougher so they don't die in combat so quickly, but if you add a wizard you need to completely change things because they can completely ignore things that would plague a fighter... and nothing short of intentional GM harrassment can really stop them ("Suddenly some random mage that is 13 levels higher than you teleports into your Private Mage Tower, dispells are your stuff, destroys your spare books and clones, and goes away. At the same time some rogue steals yoru current spell book SO HA!!!! NO SPELL CASTING FOR YOU!")

Who cares whether or not the game completely changes if you have a high level caster or not? If you don't have one, your game takes one trajectory. If you have them, it takes another. This is part of the brilliance of RPGs - all sorts of options are possible depending on what the PCs are, what they have, what they want to do. Traveller ends up being a pretty different game depending on whether or not the PCs have a starship - so the GM prepares the game accordingly - like a GM does in PF and D&D-based games depending on what the players bring to the table.


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PIXIE DUST wrote:


Success does not mean that the system is not without it's faults. There are many people who don't know the disparity because there are many people who think throwing a basic fireball with no Meta-Magic is still a good thing to do at level 8...

Are they having fun with it? Then it's a pretty good thing to do.

PIXIE DUST wrote:
The Forum is primary biased towards those WITH HEAVY SYSTEM KNOWLEDGE. And if those who really know the system CONSISTENTLY complain that this problem exists, chances are, it probably exists. If people don't know it because they don't know the game/have a GM playing on easy then that does not mean the system is not broke, it just means they just are not knowledgable enough to see it.

The forum his primarily biased toward people active on-line, interested in the game, and with an axe to grind in some way, shape, or form. Not necessarily toward those with heavy system knowledge.

Of course, just because you think it's broken, doesn't mean that's true for everybody. Nor is it necessarily true that people with a different assessment from yours aren't knowledgeable of the game. They may not feel the issue is as important as you think it is.


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Anzyr wrote:


They really don't.

The difference between a level 1 Fighter and a level 20 Fighter who have to move and attack with a sword is purely the numbers. Both will be forced to move and make one attack.

Meanwhile the Wizard goes from "Summon a badger" to "Make clones of Demon Lords while relaxing on your private time while Astral Projecting to do anything with virtually guaranteed safety while safe in the knowledge that should they die they'll just wake up in one of their clones".

See the difference?

Mostly, I'm seeing an issue in play style that it's up to the table to police. Why would a group of players allow one of them to astrally project in to the adventure without taking the rest of them in the same manner (since, clearly, he can)? I can't think of too many that would allow that. Yet you're showing me that's an issue that a lot of these complaints about quadratic wizards linear fights hinge on. Yes, wizards and other full casters get some powers to control the narrative that martials don't get, but if this is a group of adventurers, those powers largely serve to open up new vistas for the group as a whole. The high level casters can cast astral projection? Great - let's all go project ourselves to new worlds and adventure there! That it's the wizard, not the fighter, initiating the ability is largely immaterial.


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PIXIE DUST wrote:


Well considering how often this thread tends to pop up, I believe you sir, are the minority...

Considering how the forums are a pretty biased selection of gamers and it's many of the same people participating in these threads saying the same things (both pro and con), I think that's an inference on very weak evidence.

Pathfinder, and D&D in general, has been fantastically successful despite decades of caster/martial difference. Various editions have handled things somewhat differently, and some more successfully than others, yet the games remain quite successful. 4e, an edition that radically changed the power balance between the casters and martials, failed to supplant the editions that retained differences. Somehow, I don't really think I'm in the minority.


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PIXIE DUST wrote:


Not to be accusatory but the very problem with martials is the very thought that they need to be grounded in realism. By grounding them to realism by default just hurts those of us who WANT to play the cool Heroes of legend. You can always choose NOT to use the super powers in a system like that, as it stands we can't CHOOSE to play a super powered game without creating a whole host of house rules and custom feats and such.

E6? Why would I play E6 when the broader range of PF levels works just fine for me? I'm not having significant problems with the difference between casters and martials when I run PF, so why should I pare the game down?

I think that the way you prefer your martial characters you may have chosen to play the wrong game system. If you wanted to play your interpretation of "Heroes of Legend", why did you pick a D&D variant rather than Mutants and Masterminds or Champions, both of which would seem to fit your needs, at least for the martial characters, better than Pathfinder?

I understand a desire to mold the game into a form you would prefer. We all do it to some degree, and as GMs we are expected to, but there comes a point when you have to realize the game as it is won't fit your particular ambitions and would require more work than investing in a new system. I wouldn't mind seeing some more goodies go the martial character's way (like better scaling feats), but I like the majority of the PF system as it is - Hell, I've been enthusiastically playing some variation of it for the last 34 years as my main fantasy RPG.


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The part of my wish list I can think of right now:

1. Get rid of small weapons and 3.5's irritating weapon sizes. Sure, it added an element of simulationism, but it's the only edition that did it and it's a pain the the butt for small characters. PF doesn't need to follow that path.

2. All saves are based on 1/2 HD, even weak ones. Strong saves gets a +2 class bonus added at end. Simplifies multiclassing and boosts weak saves.

3. Stat caps. 5e settled on 20, I would consider 24.

4. Cap on anything that can add to a DC. Spells can add max of 9 already, nothing coming from HD or level should exceed +10 (keep the DCs of high HD monsters in check).

5. More MAD. Pair up the stats into 1 offensive/1 defensive. Strength/Constitution, Charisma/Wisdom, Intelligence/Dexterity. Yep, make Int the quickness/deftness offensive stat. I'd consider reskinning it Acuity. Con/Wis/Dex affect saves, Str/Cha/Int affect attacks and spell DCs.

6. Pare down the clerical combat buffs

7. Scale the combat feats so they get better with levels

8. Reconfigure magic item costs to increase cost of Big6 and make upper level healing over the cure light wand viable. That may mean scaling magical healing more like magical spell damage.

9. Possibly gut the wands entirely into combat-application wands only.

10. Reform SR into bonus to saves rather than all or nothing.

11. Boost evocations by getting rid of dice caps, keep at standard action. Most other spells go to 1 round casting times, particularly the save or sit spells.

12. Give save or sit spells an alternate effect like daze or sickened, lasting no more than a round, for successful save so that they aren't wasted actions when they fail, but so that they aren't crippling either.

13. Give fighters 4 skill points/level. Maybe sorcerers too. Strongly consider some of the skill options in Unchanined like the 2 tiers of skills.

14. Implement something like backgrounds from 5e.


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thaX wrote:


Really. Do you really want another book as thick as the CRB that only has all the "Unwritten Rules" for everyone to look through when there is an argument about silly stuff like this?

I wouldn't expect you'd need another book as thick as the CRB, not when judicious use of sidebars to illuminate designer rationale every once in a while would suffice.

But seriously, one person's "silly stuff" is another person's point of interest. Being dismissive of it isn't going to make the issue go away.


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Welcome to trade-offs. If you don't think you can tote enough gear with a 10 strength, increase it or prune back your gear. Simple as that. And, yes, it is supposed to work that way.


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Our long national nightmare is over.


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Between the barbazu beard and the gillman sea knife, you kind of get the impression that not all designers and editors are working off the same unwritten rules, don't you?


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Malwing wrote:


Out of character I know this is a bad idea. Without the enchantment I will kill the party and raise an army of kobolds and lizardfolk at the first opportunity.

... why? Why would your character, at the first opportunity, kill his adventuring companions - who are probably pretty effective at helping him enrich himself - and then raise an army of kobolds and lizardfolk when you're on a trajectory to raise an army of more reliable humans and even carve out a small kingdom for yourselves? Is his alignment Evil or Foolishly Impatient?

There's an old story, the version I know comes from Robert Duvall's character in Colors. There are two bulls, a young one and an old one. The young one says, "Let's run down to the valley and screw a couple of cows." The old one says, "No, let's walk down and screw them all."


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Welcome to the downside of pinning down the developer team - you may get an answer you don't want. It's a lot like dealing vague federal regulations. You generally don't want to seek out clarification because... you might get it.


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CapeCodRPGer wrote:


Like I said before, I have aspergers, its high functioning autism and a developmental dissablity. I can't read facial cues, vocial tone, ect.. I never will be able to do that. RPGs were my one escape and plessure growing up. Playing them I was not teased but accepted. Now people are saying because I have no social skills I can't play a character they way i want?

Discriminate much? Reading here how some people force others to play a character when they are playing everything by the rules is really turning me away from a hobby I used to love. Thanks.

If you're not playing at their table, why does it matter? Find a table compatible with the style of game you want to play.


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Irontruth wrote:

So, I point out that you are literally judging people's performance. You disagree, but then confirm that you are indeed judging people's performance.

Got it.

If that's your table, power to you. I've already stated why I don't like it.

You're talking like you don't judge what people do at your table. That seems odd to me - someone in the role of GM who won't judge? I know that as GM in any RPG, I'm doing that a lot - I judge how successful the PCs' actions are all the time. And I suspect you really are doing quite a lot of it too, but perhaps not recognizing it under that term because of some negative and possibly misplaced notion of what "judging" someone is.


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DrDeth wrote:

Yeah, you're not alone. The Alexandrian is well known for picking and choosing numbers to match his articles needs, and to use those to write very controversial articles.

I mean- a genius blacksmith? When they are known for their great strength? Not that you couldnt have both IRL, but in a game where you get a array of 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8, (or even 15, 14, 13, 12, 10, 8) it's pretty hard to justify a high Str AND a high Int. Not to mention a decent Con.

It's just possible for a 5th level human to have one 18, assuming elite array, but first of all, elite array should not be assumed, and then that leaves a 14 for the next highest stat.

His numbers are bogus.

He also leaves out Aragorns other activities later, such as being totally fearless in the face of a undead army.

To be fair, that 18 Intelligence blacksmith is called out as exceptional - an Einstein of his field. He also has an average blacksmith with an Int bonus of +1 to illustrate that it's not that hard to get a +10 right off the bat. Somehow, everyone fails to remember that in their haste to apply the snark...

And that's without even mentioning that Alexander would have statted him with 3 levels of paladin - and thus some pretty good powers against fear.


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CapeCodRPGer wrote:

Me: " I want to be charming to the bad guys girlfriend when I see Her at the party so she will give me the key code. I rolled a critical success."

GM: "What do you say to the women at the party to charm Her and have Her reveal the key code to you?"

Me: "Well since me, the player, has no idea how to handle myself in this situation, I don't know what to say. But my character has done this hundreds of times before, and I made the roll, so my character says the right thing."

Thats how it should be handled.

In the games I run, it falls a bit short. I don't ask for a heck of a lot more, but I would be pushing for more details about it. What kind of charming are you trying to be? Seductive? Friendly? Formal? I'm not going to require you to give speeches or anything if that's something you can't do, but I expect a degree of analysis, strategy, and tactics just as I expect it in combat and exploration scenes. And I reward it as well. Frankly, I'd get just as annoyed at a fighter's player who doesn't understand their feats or a skill monkey who doesn't use their skills.

If all detail is going to be stripped from any particular element of the game, including social interaction, it's not a game I'm going to run.


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Albatoonoe wrote:
Isn't the bigger problem here the SAD classes, rather than the point buy? If SAD classes didn't exist, what would everyone's opinion be on rolling vs. point buy?

It probably wouldn't change my preference much. Point buy works for some games like Mutants and Masterminds and Champions since everything in those games must be by design. But there's plenty of space in the RPG world for games in which you discover your character. Plus, the impact of imbalanced stats isn't a game breaker by any means.


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Oceanshieldwolf wrote:

* Hardy as Max was a non-event. The personality tics Mel did naturally Hardy attempts, but they seem forced. Max in Fury Road has zero personality.

At first blush, it does kind of look like that. But with a little more reflection and reading some thoughtful reviews, I think there's much more to him in this movie. At the start, he's pretty much just an animal - fight or flight, possessive about his lifeline (his car). But as the movie progresses, he starts to learn how to interact like a human again until he transforms from animal to warrior to healer. I'm kind of digging that idea.


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Albatoonoe wrote:
As someone that loves David Lynch, Kyle MacLachlan, and Patrick Stewart, I'm not sure why I didn't like that Dune.

Because it sucked? Because the screenplay was a tortured mess? Because it blatantly misses important themes in the book? All these and more can explain why you may not have liked David Lynch's Dune movie.


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Set wrote:


Quicksilver's death and the bizarre perception that 'bad luck' is too complicated a concept to introduce and that they had to therefore give the Scarlet Witch 'simpler' powers like telepathy and telekinesis, are far bigger quibbles for me than Cap shrugging off an attack from someone who was supposed to be a credible threat to people much tougher than Cap, like Thor and the Hulk.

I can live with it. The Scarlet Witch's powers are an ill-defined mess in the comics. They might as well call it "Gonna eff you up" power since there's no other rhyme or reason to it. That offers the writers a lot of narrative leeway, but it often ends up feeling a bit dues ex machina when her powers save the day. I have absolutely no problem with a bit of redefinition.


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Joe Hex wrote:


I personally, liked FAR MORE about the 5e PHB, than I didn't. Don't want to get into an "additions war", but yeah, there was some good stuff there. Also for me personally, my issue is with what came after. A lackluster DMG, and MM- and then, nothing substantial.

Lackluster MM for 5e? Man, that thing's refreshing my inspiration for quite a few monsters in ways that no other WotC-era MM has. I'm really liking that book.


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You know, the way things have been playing out (as related by the OP) aren't my cup of tea either, but outright crapping on someone else's game is rude. Maybe his players like the game as it plays out - if so, then it's fine.


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Kirth Gersen wrote:


TL;DR: I despise point-buy precisely because I DO value fairness.

Different definitions of fairness make a huge difference around this topic.


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houstonderek wrote:


Seeing as the whole thing about "New Coke" was switching from cane sugar to HFCS, basically, I'd say most Coke drinkers probably have. ;-)

That's been debunked.


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Bluenose wrote:
KestrelZ wrote:
At least you don't have to randomly roll a background like Traveler and potentially die at character creation.
Traveller is an odd duck, but there's only a few situations/versions where you'd randomly roll to get into a career, playing Classic Traveller and failing an enlistment roll being one of those. Anyway, it's in keeping with the randomness in character generation for Traveller, where in current D&D the randomness is rather out of place.

Character generation in Traveller is a game-within-a-game. How far can you keep rolling a decent character, gaining skills and more mustering out benefits, before you die?

But as far as D&D randomness being out of place? It's right where it has always been. I don't see how it's at all out of place.


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mplindustries wrote:
And I don't believe for a second that a lawful good outsider would be cool trusting a lich.

Oh, I think it's possible that a hound archon could trust a lich. It all depends on the lich. But a lich who is a former general for the Whispering Tyrant?!? I'm not sure I'd trust the hound archon's judgment and assume he was under some form of dominion.

I think the OP is much better off just having the job given to them by the archon in the first place. He can say he's working for a powerful patron and not identify who he is. Even then, they may not trust the hound archon and expect a hidden agenda - but that could then be for them to investigate.

Either way, having them rub elbows with a powerful lich when you're already assuming they'll do something self-destructive and torpedo the whole adventure sounds like a colossally bad plan. "Let's get involved in a land war in Asia" levels of bad.


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The Morphling wrote:
Okay, I know this is gonna be pretty unorthodox and weird, so bear with me. Is it possible to attack yourself as part of a full attack? I'm working with my blood conduit bloodrager, and I was thinking that an interesting way to throw a quick self-buff on himself during combat would be to hit himself with an unarmed strike with his lowest iterative, and use the Spell Conduit ability to throw a beneficial touch spell on himself at the end of a full attack. Yes, I know, it specifies "an enemy." Ignore that bit for this thread.

I've bolded a bit in my quote of your original post. This is probably why I would consider the move a bit cheesy and wouldn't allow it in any games I run. You're basically metagaming the system to turn a lower-percentage attack into an auto-success buff on the sly.


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Tacticslion wrote:
Bill Dunn wrote:


Once you've got people bandying around terms like "lying" when what you really have is a different point of view, you've got edition warring. And we have had it in this thread both before and after your post.

Or you know "number porn" or "endless treadmill" or whatever else you wanted to pull out before.

Incidentally, in the follow-up clarification, it was not the edition that was a lie (which was apologized for), but the edition as presented within arguments which is.

I'm going to disagree a bit here. It's not taking shots at an edition of a game that's edition warring. Criticism goes on all the time, always has, always will whether you're talking about QWLF, murder hobos, treadmills, number porn, video-gamey, roll-playing, or less emotion-laden terms.

It's the taking shots at and misrepresenting the people and their motivations that's the real hallmark of edition warring.


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kyrt-ryder wrote:
Bill Dunn wrote:
Squirrel_Dude wrote:
Something I would like to see in a revised Pathfinder game is a clarification of order of operations. Little things like when you roll concealment against an attack.
There's a dispute in this case?

As far as I'm aware the rules don't actually dictate which comes first.

I always have the players roll miss chance first, that way they don't roll attacks if the attack couldn't hit and they don't get bummed out by missing out on a crit or something like that.

I always roll concealment after the attack roll. Then if is a crit, I get to see the player's crestfallen face. Warms the cockles of my RBGM heart.


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Lorathorn wrote:

This, I am led to believe, is the reason for 5th edition and the design principals that extended the "sweet spot" of play. All games become unhinged when you reach upper levels, as the proliferation of high powered options, magic item accrual, and bonus stacking can quickly make a game less about a shared tactical story and fight time, and more about an arms race curated by paralegals and accountants.

Those who have been through the experience can attest to the intense levels of frustration, having tried their hardest to just return to the simplicity of telling a story, challenging the players in a way that is fun, and finding the moments of cinematic glory that come from a well balanced encounter.

Can higher level play be done right? I would wager that it can and has, but the implementation of it is a skill set that is clearly distinct from the definition that drives lower level play. Before we even implement mythic play, it seems that there is a need to codify the structure necessary to enjoy the higher level play that already exists within the 20 level paradigm.

I think high level play can be done right, but it's not just a function of game design. 4e's take on it, particularly with the scheduled bonus advancements and mathematic attempt to extend the sweet spot, relied on game design to deliver it and was a pretty tightly constrained design - and even then the opportunities for high level PCs to stunlock opponents into oblivion got out of hand.

A significant element of good high level play really has to come from GMs understanding the PCs the players have created. The more choices available in a game system (like Champions, Mutants and Masterminds, or 3e/PF) the more important this is. Rather than focus on rules at that level, I think more game design resources need to focus on analyzing what various choices lead to in the game. Champions does this reasonably well with some powers that have the potential to derail campaigns. PF could use a lot more of it, particularly when spells like fly and teleport become commonly available.


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Kirth Gersen wrote:


One adventure to get it right was "Diplomacy" (Dungeon #144), IIRC, in which an 18th level party is trying to outmaneuver various other bidders for a demi-plane full of diamonds or something. It provides a reason for high-level enemies to be in one place, minimizes mindless combat and endless slog-fests, and assumes that everyone is actually using the abilities they have (you're pretty much assumed to have a diplomancer bard backed by major arcane and divine support).

And I think this underscores why there aren't many adventures written for really high levels. I remember that issue and, as good as the adventure is, it's hard to assume that every campaign will have a diplomancer bard because, by the time PCs are that level, there have been a lot of build choices that may have shifted PCs a totally different way. The market for that publication is going to be pretty small.

Unfortunately, that's also the segment of the market that could use the most support from creative adventure writers.


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Yeah, well, Hackmaster is really a game that parodies the worst of old school gaming behavior by accentuating it.


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So, the GM put a trapped undead creature at the bottom of a well, in a situation such that the cleric could kill it without facing any real risk, and still awarded XP for it? And did so solely to the cleric?

I assume the cleric player is offering the GM sexual favors or bribe money to explain that kind of decision.


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Morzadian wrote:


A AD&D Red Dragon has an AC -1 with 9-11 HD, plus magic use, a peasant would need a 20 to hit the dragon if the dragon did not cast a Protection from Normal Missiles spell, which did not give DR but immunity no less.

Making it IMPOSSIBLE for a mob of peasants to kill a AD&D dragon.

Maybe you were thinking about D&D 5e because they can definitely do it there.

Uh-huh. Spells. Something 60% of all red dragons capable of speech (only 75% for that) in 1e AD&D couldn't do at all.


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Seerow wrote:
So basically just like flanking in more recent games?

No, not "just like flanking". Depending on how choice that shield is and the surrounded PC's Dexterity, it could be a several point swing in AC.

Good thing I'm not accusing you of lying or ignoring that little difference. 'cause that would be being a dick.


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Seerow wrote:

Disagree. This is actually one of the big lies that people have perpetuated to try to sell Bounded Accuracy. Trying to retcon it to say that old school AD&D was a bounded system and numbers didn't scale as much. All of the core numbers scaled just as much as in 3e/PF, what didn't scale as much was attributes, various "other" bonuses from class features/spells, and to a lesser degree magic items (magic Items were a much bigger deal in AD&D than they are in 5e though)

In AD&D the base AC is 10, and the Fighter would hit AC0 relatively early, as soon as he had enough loot to buy himself some full plate. A level 15+ Fighter is rocking AC-5 to -10. Similarly, his saves have at this point gone from 10-20% across the board to closer to 80-90% across the board; his THAC0 has gone from 19 down to 0. Oh and Fighters had the ability to make one attack per class level against low level enemies (such as orcs)

The AD&D Fighter had fewer hitpoints than 3e, and most of the more commonly used high level defenses were less common or non-existent at that point in time, but a high level AD&D fighter had nothing to fear from a squad of orcs. He had an AC that they needed a natural 20 to hit, a THAC0 low enough to hit them except on a 1, and could kill more than 10 of them every round. AD&D Fighters would wade through 100+ orcs before dying. And that's just the fighter, not even the rest of the party! Throw in a Cleric and a Wizard and you're taking down large armies.

Lies? Because someone disagrees with your analysis? That's pretty... strongly put, even obnoxious.

There are elements of the offense that scaled in AD&D just like 3e and PF, true. But the defense was fairly closely bounded. AC0 was attainable, but it was much harder to get better than -2 to -5 (equivalent to AC 22 to 25) because you couldn't count on getting the magical items that you can in 3e that send the AC scaling quite a bit higher. Moreover, that AC tended to drop when surrounded (as multiple orcs tend to do). If a substantial amount was based on having a magic shield, most of the orcs didn't have to worry about it thanks to facing rules.

And those multple attacks? They got them against creatures with fewer than 1 HD - kobolds and goblins, but not orcs. High level fighters just their 3/2 or 2/1 attacks. Not quite the army-rending force you might remember.


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Lord Fyre wrote:


But the way she was "calling herself a monster" implies that she feels that she is one because she cannot have children. This has to do with the scene with Banner in the farmhouse. (Note: calling herself a "monster" because of the evil deeds she is trying to atone for would have been quite different.)

You've taken quite a piling on for this one already, so I don't direct this at you. But you really can see how myopic focus on Black Widow can be. How she is treated and developed is scrutinized and criticized more than any of the other characters in the MCU.

Mark Ruffalo had a few comments about that on Reddit (further discussed here on Salon: Mark Ruffalo Defends Joss Whedon). He thinks it's because there are so few other female heroic characters in the mix to really talk about. And I think he has a point. I don't think that necessarily excuses the vitriol flying around because of the myopia, but I think it helps explain why it's there.


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Lord Snow wrote:


When people think of Marvel female characters I don't think they consider Gemorra and her sister (that blue android thing).

I'm pretty sure that when people think of Marvel characters in general, they weren't thinking of any of the Guardians of the Galaxy before the movie. That's the brilliance of that movie - they took relatively obscure characters and made an effing blockbuster out of them.


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Seerow wrote:


Basically compared to what players are used to in 3e or PF, high level player characters are made out of tissue paper. And while it's still relatively balanced when fighting a level appropriate encounter, when you run into a small squad of orc mooks at level 10 and somebody nearly dies, that is a huge tonal shift. While there are in fact players who like the idea that a handful of orcs can challenge characters regardless of level (my experience is this is mostly DMs who never quite got how to handle high level play), for just as many the idea that high level characters who are out slaying dragons and challenging gods are having trouble with a handful of ordinary orcs is ridiculous. That disconnect is antithetical to the premise high level play has operated on for decades.

A tonal shift? Maybe. But then I could see some older school players say, "Yeah, a shift back to playing D&D instead of what 3e turned D&D into." Because those D&D and AD&D PCs frequently had ACs lowly orcs could hit and had a lot fewer hit points than they had in 3e. Commoners could kill giants and dragons in those days as well.

There may be a tonal shift, but don't forget that 3e ushered in a tonal shift of its own.


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Morzadian wrote:


Bounded Accuracy strips away the concept of level. A 10th-level Fighter is no better at fighting than a 1st-level Fighter with the exception of special abilities like multiple attacks.

And AC is significantly lower across the board. It's less simulation (associated mechanic) and more democratic (disassociated mechanic). Low level NPCs (large in number) can kill dragons and demons in D&D 5e.

It's not an alternative option for combat but a totally different game system, and it's incredibly divisive. It would shatter the fan base of Pathfinder if introduced in a new edition.

If you enjoy that style of game play, play D&D 5e, as Bounded Accuracy has no place in Pathfinder.

Not quite. In fact, I'd be more tempted to say "not even close." Bounded accuracy doesn't strip away the concept of level - it just reduces a significant part of its impact on the numbers game. Levels are quite well-represented in many other ways. And 1st level fighters aren't as good at fighting as 10th level fighters, even with the numbers game. The difference in proficiency bonus may be small, but the difference in hit points remains large and the 10th level fighter has had a few chances to pack on stat improvements/feats compared to the 1st level fighter.

I won't get into the misuse of associative and dissociative mechanics here. But the idea that lower ACs and demonic/draconic vulnerability is somehow more dissociative than functionally unbounded ACs and invulnerable demons/dragons is a strange one. Neither end of that scale (vulnerability <--> invulnerability) really involves the associative/dissociative mechanic debate since neither involves stepping outside of the character's viewpoint and making decisions about metagame mechanics as part of play.

As far as being incredibly divisive - 4e was incredibly divisive (and remains so as far as I can tell). In the places I hang out, in person and online, 5e has been far more uniting and well-received.


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GreyWolfLord wrote:


Actually Bonded Accuracy started in 4e, they just didn't call it bonded accuracy. There were a few differences. First, with Attack bonuses the range was further from a +0 to a +10. Next, it was normally associated with a power on a stat (such as STR for Fighters or DEX for Rogues typically, or INT for Wizards) instead of being a base for normal attacks across the range. Everyone got the same bonuse to hit, but due to the powers system, they would normally use the stat that was associated with their class to utilize their bonus to hit.

There are some 4e fans who claim bounded accuracy started with 4e, but I consider that claim extremely far-fetched. The goal of of the bonus structure in 4e wasn't bounded accuracy at all - it was extending the sweet spot of gaming through the entire level run by maintaining offensive and defensive parity between like-leveled opponents. The number bloat as you went up in levels was only a little slower than 3e - moreover, if you slipped in your advancement schedule with higher bonuses to weapons and stats, you fell behind on the treadmill.

The bounded accuracy of 5e is far more about putting bounds on the bonuses so that high level characters don't outstrip lower level ones nearly as badly. Scheduled optimization isn't as important. Metagame constructs like minion versions of NPCs with inflated offense and gimped hit points aren't necessary because low-level participants are more significant contributors to encounters throughout the life of the campaign. And most number bloat, and if you've ever seen stat blocks for creatures like Demogorgon you know what I mean, can go away.

EDIT: Bounded accuracy also reduces the effect of number bloated skills so you can have fewer cases of lopsided opposed skill disparities.

5e is a fantastic breath of fresh air compared to the fussinesses of 3e and Pathfinder. And that's why it now has a place at my table alongside PF.

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