I honestly think that the first maneuver feats shouldn't exist. If you are a trained combatant, you know how to use your weapons and you should be capable of something as basic as a trip attempt without investment.
For maneuvers that are attempted with a weapon, I might agree. But I do find it hard to agree with someone who is unarmed getting away with the same thing as someone with a weapon. It probably should be harder to disarm a man with a sword with your bare hands.
I think I could easily agree to having unarmed combat against someone who is armed provoke and AoO and generalize that to also include the combat maneuvers. And then have a single feat (Improved Unarmed Attack) negate that AoO in all cases. That could consolidate feats nicely.
After that, any Improved <insert maneuver here> feat could simply give the combatant a bonus to succeed or a special benefit.
I've been wondering about his departure too, particularly after Stan! turned down a job offer and blogged about it. Since Monte said that his beef was with management rather than the design team and design of the game, I suspected that his reason for leaving was similar to Stan!'s for not taking the offer - the freedom to work on other, non-WotC projects.
WotC has a non-competitive clause or something of that nature that prevents their designers/developers from working freelance on other projects. That's a policy that employees can request to be released from and they turned Stan!'s request for that down - so he turned down a permanent (or as permanent as WotC allows) position. Considering how soon Monte's Numenera Kickstarter debuted after he announced he was leaving WotC again, I figured he wanted to work on that too and, like Stan!, had his release from the restriction turned down.
I have absolutely no evidence of this. It was just something that occurred to me after Stan!'s blog posts.
I certainly wouldn't say the first iteration of the D&D Next rules got universal scorn. The bulk of the scorn I witnessed it receiving was from 4e enthusiasts because it moves away from quite a bit of 4e's development direction. In the online areas I frequent, there was a lot of enthusiasm for the public play test - or at least curiosity. There was also a lot of skepticism that WotC couldn't pull off their goals.
That said, while there is still a large body of 4e-fan critics decrying being jilted at the altar, there does seem to be a growing core of players interested in where it is going. So I agree that D&D Next will put up a pretty good marketplace challenge for Pathfinder. Hell, as much as I like Pathfinder and Paizo's take on design, I'm interested in D&D Next too. So far, in many ways, it does play simpler and characters are an easier build. It harkens back to 1e/2e in substantial ways and, I think, has a good chance of drawing some OSR fans into its sphere of influence.
Right now, there's still so much in flux that it's hard to see where it will all go. They could have a big winner, an also ran, or a flop. They could manage it brilliantly or cock it up completely (this is WotC we're talking about). But, all things coming off with average competency, and I think D&D Next will product a strong showing with a product that will do better among Pathfinder fans than 4e did.
So the EU says he got even fatter and less mobile between Episode IV and VI? Of course, even if true (and that was canonical as of Episode VI's release) that still doesn't make him helpless.
If anything, I see this as a failing of the EU. If they've redefined Jabba as an immobile fatty, largely helpless, they've robbed Leia of her heroic act. Revisionism and poor continuity just keep dumping on the poor girl.
I dunno. T'Pol offered a lot of fan service...
It is possible to over-analyze these things. It's really just an example of overlapping contingencies. Lando's on the inside in disguise with both droids. If Leia's attempt fails, Lando's in a position to potentially ameliorate the worst outcomes. Notice how he doesn't break cover. And if all hell hasn't broken loose, Luke is in position for his attempt. And if that doesn't work out as planned, there's a droid ambling about with a concealed weapon awaiting his master's call. There's no real necessity for plans to fail in specific ways as long as they don't go too pear-shaped - but like I said, Lando and R2-D2 are position to surprise in case they do.
Freehold DM wrote:
that keeps being trotted out, but the more I watch the original series, the less it holds true for women. Almost every episode had a damsel of one sort. The series was ahead of its time with respect to race relations, however.
The other old story is that they were pretty much forced to pick their battles. NBC had a limit to the controversies it was going to court and science fiction is generally full of them.
Pretty selective, there. How about Uhura going to help Spock against one of the few guys who can severely kick everybody's ass? Or Carol taking a stand against her father/admiral? And even though Uhura's shot at diplomacy goes wrong, how is facing a pack of Klingons alone not a big deal and give the movie some gutsy, tough woman cred?
I am thoroughly enjoying Pathfinder but I do feel lure of somewhat simpler systems as well - and that's why I'm still curious about D&D Next and would rate 2e as my 2nd favorite D&D variety.
I will admit also that there are some elements of PF that I would like to see changed - mainly because 3.5 screwed them up. For example, golem magic immunities are so much weaker now thanks to the change in 3.5 that I believe was ill considered.
But what does work best at making a game D&D as opposed to Swords and Sorcery, Fantasy Trip, Rolemaster, GURPS Fantasy, Hero Fantasy, Tunnels and Trolls, Ars Magica, or any other fantasy RPG? There are reasons that some mechanics really should be sacred cows - because they differentiate D&D from the other games out there. Simply being about fantasy adventuring, or even killing monsters and taking their stuff, won't do it.
What strikes me about the Hebert essay is it reminds me so very much of the statements that several 4e fan/edition warriors on another site expound on (ad infinitum, if given the chance). And there's an element of arrogant, pseudo-objective progressivism in what they post that almost sneers at OSR or even just older edition fans.
Thankfully for both of us, PF now incorporates both with different classes and, using one as a boilerplate for the other, it's really easy to convert the casting of any one class as a house rule. Ideally, PF 2.0 would be able to do so as well and continue to satisfy both our preferences - Vancian and the 1 step away spontaneous slot variation.
I hadn't read those yet. But I have to say that Hebert's responses don't exactly disabuse me of the notion.
I notice that Wolfgang Baur posted a rebuttal here.
bugleyman, you read this yet? Seems relevant to the topic.
Meh. Reads like another diatribe against D&D Next backsliding away from 4e by a 4e fan to me.
As for me and Vancian casting, I like it. I think it's one of the core elements that makes the D&D family distinct from other fantasy RPGs. Some players may chafe at it, but I think it should remain a core PF mechanic. And I think that is a good enough reason to keep it. Distinctness of identity in the marketplace has value.
I've already held forth about why I prefer saving throws to static defenses, so I don't do that again here.
Fourteen years in the Academy?!? I'd like to see the citation on that one. Memory Alpha has him entering the Academy in 2250 and serving as a Lieutenant on the USS Farragut (meaning he had graduated) before 2255. He gains his first command in 2264 so that 14 years is right in one area, but not for spending all that time in the Academy.
It's true that the movies do compress the timeline substantially. From entering the Academy to command was 14 years according to Memory Alpha in TOS, in the movies, it's more like three years. Entering the Academy around 2255 and taking command of the Enterprise as acting Captain in 2258 and then taking full command, being busted down for violating the Prime Directive and hiding it in 2259, and then becoming Captain again shortly thereafter..
Alexander Augunas wrote:
You could add 1d6 to your defense, but you lose a crucial element of the system - feedback. With action points, the player gets to see his d20 roll before he decides whether or not to burn an action point to gain +1d6 (though the action point use has to be declared before the result - success or failure - is announced by the GM). If you roll badly, you may estimate that an action point won't help and save it. But if you think the roll is on the cusp of success, you use the point. With a static defense, that element is gone. You're burning the action point blind to how well the roll turned out. A static defense just doesn't work well with that style of action point - and it really is a very good style.
I can think of 3 reasons why I prefer saving throws.
1) Rolling to hit a defense introduces the idea of a critical hit - something I don't think should be possible for lots of spells (like area effect spells).
2) I like the Action Point system from Eberron and 3e's Unearthed Arcana. You can spend a point to roll a number of d6 and add the best one to your d20 roll - be it a skill check, and attack, or a save. You can't really use it to pump up a static defense like your AC or 4e-style Non-AC Defense (NAD). I noticed this in SWSE with Force points. You can use them offensively, but you can't really use them very well defensively and that's backwards.
3) Saving throws were, as introduced, a last ditch attempt for a PC to survive certain death - hence the name saving throw. Turning them into a constant defense, I think, makes them too mundane and simply doesn't fit in with the rest of the game's tradition or feel.
Chris Mortika wrote:
I don't think I'd agree with that assessment. On one hand, it teaches him to listen to the advice of people he trusts. Scotty balks over the torpedoes - Kirk comes to realize he's right. Spock badgers him into rethinking the morality of the mission - Kirk agrees which leads to the exposure of the main plot. In both of those cases, failure to listen leads to or would lead to trouble.
I'd say a lot of people learn that authority and power clearly don't make anyone trustworthy and it's good to have a surprise play at hand.
I know of several others for whom the changes were so drastic that it wasn't worth converting their campaigns. My gut suggests that the number who converted old campaigns into 4e is small compared to the ones who brought 2e campaigns into 3e.
I have it on good authority (The Onion) that R'lyeh is sunken in Lake Mendota and Cthulhu has been known to wander the University of Wisconsin steam tunnels. And The Onion wouldn't lie to me.
And you're worried about fabricate and 9th+ level wizards obsoleting dwarven smiths? How does that fit in with emulating great fantasy? It seems more of an irrelevant question given that parameter.
I'm not sure I'd agree with the assumption that it isn't a fun job. Even people turfed out by WotC seem to have enjoyed much of their jobs. At the very least, they say positive things about it and the people and projects they worked with. Is that just putting a positive spin on things? I doubt it.
My guess is people work in game design because they have a passion for it. That covers over a lot of ills or otherwise sub-optimal behavior - kind of like the way people have played fighters, rogues, and blaster wizards all through D&D's 3e/PF history despite the internet peanut gallery calling such characters sub-optimal. Being able to eke out a living doing what you love to do is often more enjoyable than making more money doing something that you don't like as much.
For me, the ideal solution to this is evolutionary change in any new edition. I do not particularly want a new PF edition that is not largely compatible with the current edition. That was my single biggest problem with 4e and one of the biggest benefits we experienced when we blended 1e and 2e together throughout the 1990s. We had campaign continuity and the editions worked together well, allowing us to replace problematic 1e rules with 2e's better organization, and allowing us to continue to use 1e classes where the 2e classes didn't measure up (like the ranger).
The shift to 3e from 2e didn't allow us to be nearly as seamless, yet conversions from 2e to 3e worked reasonably well. We could't really even do that with 4e so there was no chance of taking the 20+ year old campaign and characters to the new system.
Lord Mhoram wrote:
I think to be fair, we'd have to compare it to Superman spending a lot of time as Clark Kent while still pursuing the story movie - and isn't that largely the successful Smallville?
Are we talking about Abrams or about M. Night Shyamalan? Trying to hide the Khan reveal over the last several months was pretty hamfisted, true, but I think the reception and reviews underscore that the secrecy was not necessary at all.
In the course of the movie, I thought the balance between surprise and foreshadowing was nicely done.
An NPC. How is this a problem since NPCs are entirely under the GM's control? If a GM is causing problems for his own campaign with an NPC abusing a powerful spell, he's got worse problems than the spel.
It sounds to me like you're still trying to make an economic sim out of it. Fabricate is a powerful spell. At 5th level, it's out of reach of most wizards in a campaign setting, so its macro-level impact will be minor, at most. Its rules are written to aid a GM adjudicate a player making one-off stuff in an adventure, not run a shop. If a player thinks they can abuse the system with it, the GM should just say, "No, that's not what we are here to play."
There are a lot of debates like these that come up that I think can be relatively easily solved by a GM with the cojones to rein a wizard in to the spirit of the game.
I'm pretty much OK with PvP and killing other PCs as long as the players at the table are OK with playing in a campaign that won't prohibit that sort of thing. If even one person expresses reservations about not prohibiting PvP or shows that they can't handle it, the option is off the table.
John Vettori wrote:
OK, so he wants redemption. Involve the player and hash out how he can achieve redemption. Does he set aside his share of any treasure to compensate the victims and rebuild the block? Does he personally toil to rebuild the block? Does he tread the strait and narrow path because he has learned the consequences of his thoughtless actions? All of those could certainly work in favor of redemption.
Don't set out to hurt the PC (or player) with penalties. If the law has not been involved or he has no immunity, being a marked man may be penalty enough because he has to be on the lam. Seek to find ways for the PC to earn redemption and hold him to them.
Don't brain-eating zombies try to coup de grace in order to devour brains?
Unlikely. I would expect them to just drag the PC off and start gnawing away. That's probably more damage but I wouldn't call it a coup de grace. The effect will likely be about the same - PC death - but maybe a slightly slower one that affords more opportunities for rescue.
I do not believe you are misinterpreting. Hama's context makes it pretty clear.
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
I have a bit of trouble with fudging, so I completely abstain nowadays. It's too tempting to spare a character I like, PC or NPC. And it's important to set an example for a cheater in the group, so we roll all dice in plain view.
If the character in question is a pleasure to have in the game and that dynamic will be changed because of an unlucky death - why is it bad to spare that character? I don't get it. If the character is a good contributor to the campaign, what's wrong with a little plot immunity? This isn't to say that letting the dice fall where they may is bad, it's just mystifying to me the number of people who, for some reason, characterize fudging as some kind of weakness, moral or otherwise.
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
However, if fudging works for you, and nobody's complaining, I don't see much wrong with it. I think you miss out on a lot of excitement, though.
And you get to avoid a lot of frustration in favor of excitement too. Because sometimes it's more exciting to stay in the fight rather than be killed by that lucky x3 or x4 crit on the first shot of the combat.<sarcastic bored monotone>"Ooo, killed before I get a chance to act. How exciting."</sarcastic bored monotone>
The masterwork component is actually abstract. It's not literally a separate thing to be made, rather, it represents the extra materials and effort going into making the standard item masterwork and is part and parcel of the crafting of the item. This is why I don't necessarily have a problem with using a fabricate spell to make a masterwork item - I just require skill checks for quite a bit more than that as well.
A chain shirt doesn't require a high degree of craftsmanship? My interpretation would be that it does. Something that wouldn't might be sheets of metal, horseshoes, maces, or crowbars rather than armor or swords, basic bookshelves or tables rather than glide rockers or puzzle boxes.
The method we typically use is for both the player and the DM to roll an appropriate die - the PC gets whichever is better. It doesn't prevent 1s from happening, but it does make them a lot less likely. It also makes maxing out hit points more likely, though the expected value tends to be in the 60+% of max hit points depending on the size of the hit die rolled.
I agree with Are, here. Full round actions are generally adjudicated all on the acting character's turn. The 1 round casting time makes this unnecessarily confusing because it is both a 1 round time and a full round action as well. It's easy to make the assumption that other full round actions should be adjudicated same.
I also agree that a 1 round action resolution would be a good way to house rule the coup de grace. But I also think that, as a tactic, its use should be rare as long as there are potentially dangerous PCs still up in the fight. Better for a creature who wants to eat the dying PC to drag the meat away from immediate danger before biting down and finishing the PC off for further consumption. Yes, that makes it more likely for another PC to be able to rescue the stricken PC (up to a point), but it's also probably treating the characters (PCs and NPCs) less like game tokens with actions and hit points and in a more in-character fashion.
Yeah, you have issues. The biggest one is that you're making big assumptions about how they derived the prices for metamagic rods. I don't expect that they had a standard formula going in that they expected to apply to all meta magic feats. Instead, I suspect they followed the standard advice - eyeball it and compare to other things that are roughly as useful.
It does not say that. It says that the caster holding the charge may elect to make a normal, unarmed attack (or with a natural weapon) and do that damage as well but the attack will count as unarmed or armed as normal for the attack type. Touch attacks backed by held charges are not considered armed for the first round only.
I agree that's what the rules say, but let's push the situation a little bit. Suppose the magus using spell combat casts a touch spell with a single touch charge and, due to a bad roll, misses. Now, he can't use the same general fighting style to retry the touch attack despite the situation becoming less complicated because now he no longer has to actually cast the spell that round. He has to either make a touch attack or strike with his weapon (which could still discharge the spell but requires him to hit the full AC of the target), cutting down what he can do despite removing a complication.
As I say, I agree that the text of the rules does not allow that, I'm just not sure that it would be a game breaker to allow the magus to make his touch attacks along with his other attacks at the easier spell combat penalties even if he's not actually casting a spell.
I have always found it a bit weird to have 1 round not equal a full-round. I'm not sure we really benefit much from having two different and distinct measurements for taking up a whole round, particularly with respect to spell-casting. I mean, I get that the full-round action is a lot easier to administer because you resolve it all on the acting character's turn. But I think, conceptually, it injects a lot of unnecessary confusion.
I wouldn't mind seeing more full-round actions like coup de grace and spontaneous metamagic be increased to 1 round actions to increase their interruptability. But then, I think a lot more spells should be increased in casting time to increase their interruptability and decrease caster mobility as well.
It's all about the super-villain ego. His first impulse is selfish, rather like Korvac giving himself new form after absorbing power on Galactus's ship or Doctor Doom fixing his face when he capture's the Beyonder's powers. Killian fixes himself first and then probably hoards the best enhancements for himself so that, always omega dog before, he's now the alpha.
Captain Sir Hexen Ineptus wrote:
As far as the spoiler above:
Since when has any superhero comic really dealt with the issue of burning calories/mass when it comes to powering any superhero ability? It's passingly rare and usually not sustained through the duration of the comic and I've yet to see it really dealt with in a movie or TV adaptation other than the Flash super-eating to replace calories lost to his powers.
In fairness, being able to make a perception check due to activities going on in any direction regardless of which direction the creature is currently looking isn't the same as All-Around Vision. For one thing, All-Around Vision precludes the possibility of being flanked - 360 degree perception doesn't include that. And for a second, 360 degree perception also includes hearing and smelling, not just seeing.
An awful lot about these debates on stealth and perception tend to focus on the stealth target's sight. One one hand, that's fair since most of us (and most PCs/NPCs) are going to be sight focused. Foiling sight is the single most important way to achieve a successfully stealthy action, but we shouldn't forget the target's hearing (or other senses). This is why he still gets a perception check to hear the sneak even though there are reasons he absolutely can't see him. And conversely, getting eyes on a sneak is the single best way to foil his ability to be stealthy - hence the need for some kind of visual obscurement be it cover or concealment or attention drawn elsewhere for a moment.
Good points. Distance can always add a factor. And I had forgotten about the +5 DC for perception if the perceiver is distracted - definitely makes that -10 dash to cover less of a bitter pill.
Simplified is good, particularly since the phrase I was responding to wasn't accurate. It's not a question of being able to draw a line without obstruction in most cases. Every line you draw must be free of obstructions to disqualify cover or concealment except in the case of melee attacks vs adjacent targets and concealment.
I think it's a really important caveat to make and it's probably a caveat that the GM should be encouraged to be lenient with. In one of the famous threads about sneaking up to steal a chicken, moving across an open spot, while the farmer sits on the porch, I'd rule the farmer distracted if he's doing pretty much anything that doesn't involve looking around for trouble - whittling, drinking moonshine from a jug, sharpening a knife. That rogue can make a move across the open terrain and back into stealth-appropriate territory with a -10 on his check.
I'd even allow a sneak to dash from one column to another in an otherwise open view if he's waiting and watching until the sentry turns to look in another direction under the distraction clause - he's distracted by looking over there rather than in the sneak's direction. I do think the -10 penalty, under these circumstances, may be a bit harsh.
I think it's better characterized as "If the creature in question does not have either cover or concealment and my character doesn't count as distracted (which enables the dash to cover clause in the stealth rules), he can be seen without needing a perception check." Simply drawing one unobstructed line is usually not enough because most checks for cover/concealment succeed as long as at least one line is obstructed.
There is a caveat on that. If your observer can be considered distracted and you can reach an unobserved location, you can make the stealth check at -10. What constitutes distracted is, effectively, GM's decision.