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Chengar Qordath's page

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Just tossing up another general discussion topic. In your experience, what's more important to having fun while playing Pathfinder: the mechanics and tools of the game itself, or the other people sitting across the table from you?

Personally, I find that the group dynamic is usually more important, and the rules are mainly significant in how they impact that. Rules debates or rules so unbalanced that they cause problems for the players will damage fun. Otherwise, it's all about the players and the GM. A good set of players with a good GM can have a ton of fun with any set of rules, or even just by playing freeform.

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Obviously, the dividing line on what degree of out-of-alignment action is required to cause an alignment shift is something that's prone to a lot of YMMV. There can't really be any universal rule on what it takes to earn an alignment shift, since every single example is highly context-dependent and probably depends on the moral views of the people involved in the debate. Instead, I'll just toss out two general principles.

1: Generally, isolated acts do not cause alignment shifts. If a character is consistently Lawful Good up until the point where he, say, roughs someone up to get the information they need to save a dozen orphans, and afterwards continues to act LG, they're still LG.

2: That said, extreme acts can prompt an immediate alignment shift. If a character saves those dozen orphans, but then sacrifice one of them to the Dark Gods for power, he can't still claim to be good because he saved 11/12 orphans.

Personally, I'd say action and intentions both factor into alignment.

On the topic of selfishness and self-interest, I think self-interest is a fundamentally neutral motivation. The character just wants to be a successful bard with a little fortune and glory to go along with it. It's no different from the farmer who only cares about growing his crops so he'll have enough to feed himself, and sell the rest to maybe buy an ox so next his farm will be even more productive.

Where self-interest crosses the line into selfishness (and evil) is when a character decides they're willing to step on other people in order to advance themselves. A bard who says "I want to win the singing contest at the Royal Festival for the gold prize and fame," he's neutral. When the bard says, "I want to win the singing contest at the Royal Festival for the gold prize and fame, so I better take out anyone who's good enough to challenge me," he's evil.

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Flame Effigy wrote:

Because we didn't get enough material to playtest and only the Stalker had relevant developer feedback.

Yeah, I found it rather revealing when one of the early things the devs mentioned as far as feedback went was that the class would be stronger than it looked in the playtest since it would interact very well with the rest of the new mechanics in Ultimate intrigue. When people naturally followed up by asking what those mechanics were, the answer was "Well, we haven't actually designed any of those yet..."

Flame Effigy wrote:
Samy wrote:
There's really nothing complicated about the premise: if you try to kill someone who isn't actively harming you (starting a war), you're Evil. If you try to defend yourself against someone who initiated aggression upon you, that does not make you Evil (although you may be for other reasons).

Starting the war maybe, but what about the soldiers doing the actual fighting?

I always viewed soldiers as lawful neutral.

It certainly fits the classic image of "I'm just following orders."

And just to reiterate my point, I think any alignment is playable with a group so long as the player actually tries to get along with the others at the table, and that a disruptive player can use any alignment as an excuse to be a gigantic pain in the ass.

Samy wrote:
To be fair, that was pretty much par for the course for big companies in the mid-90s. I remember all the cease and desists Marvel and DC sent to fansites then. The Internet was a new thing to the public then, and no one at companies really knew how to deal with the issue then. (They barely even do today.)

True enough. My only point was that when you compare any modern gaming company to mid-nineties TSR, the modern company's gonna look amazingly better at online policy.

Aelryinth wrote:

Because they could wear armor, crossbowers in later times would approach closer then longbowmen, set up shields, and fire with their crossbows atop their shields. They could mince a typical opposing archer formation. The Italians had plenty of mercenaries who used the formation. I'm not sure if it was Agincourt, but there was a famous battle where it raided just before the fight, and the mercenaries couldn't cover their crossbows, where the longbowmen just put their strings under their hats. Come time for the battle, the wet crossbow strings were outranged considerably by the longbows, leading to the crossbowmen getting killed...and when they retreated from the fight, decimated by the French employers who'd paid for their services.


I'm also reminded of Crecy, which was another case of the longbow outperforming the crossbow due to massively stacked deck. Given that Crecy was a battle where the French did everything wrong, right up from the decision to fight at all. Just to list everything the crossbowmen had stacked against them:

1: Since the entire army was still in marching order, the Crossbowmen had a lot of their gear (like their shields) stowed when the battle began.

2: The English held the high ground, and the terrain seriously limited the crossbowmens' ability to deploy.

3: The English position forced the crossbowmen to shoot into the sun.

4: The English were in a prepared position, and had plenty of time to dig in and make some cover.

5: The Crossbowmen were worn out from a long day of marching, while the longbowmen were fresh and rested.

6: A lot of the French Knights were bloodthirsty lunatics who would attack their own men for getting in between them and the fight. Also worth mentioning that point 6 is why the French started a battle where things couldn't possibly be more stacked against them. IIRC the king and generals wanted to hold of on attacking until the next day, but the knights in the vanguard pulled a classic Leeroy Jenkins as soon as they spotted the first Englishman.

Orfamay Quest wrote:
Neo2151 wrote:
I guess I should amend what I said to state that compared to any other company I have seen, the amount of feedback is astounding.
How does this reputation build itself?

Largely because it's compared with the gaming companies of yore, which didn't have very useful channels for feedback and didn't make use of the channels they had.

Paizo has several advantages over golden-age TSR (which was, by legend, one of the most fan-unfriendly companies in the industry, and that's saying a lot).
* Management actually plays the games they produce (for fun)
* Management is Internet-enabled, so it's easy for fans to contact them. In fact, through the message boards, it's easy for fans to contact each other.
* PDFs are easy to produce, distribute, and update, so there's no issues with trying to get hardcopies into the hands of every model railroad store across North America.

Of course, this is also true for most other gaming companies in 2015.

Yeah, golden-age TSR was infamous for being so unfriendly to its fanbase that a lot of people think the management was trying to deliberately sabotage to D&D brand so they could put it's resources to work on other properties instead. Their internet policy was so insane they were doing stuff like shutting down fansites and forums about the game, and threatening lawsuits just for mentioning it online.

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Casual Viking wrote:
EDIT: Having read another post about language templates, I have to put my finger on it: The Paizo writers are sloppy. There's no word that better describes what they do wrong.

There are definitely some pretty egregious cases of this, like how one can ask about the interaction between Precise Strike (the Duelist PrC ability), Precise Strike (the Teamwork fear) and Precise Strike (the swashbuckler deed).

Aelryinth wrote:

Bows were good against lighter armored troops. But it is notable that at the battle of Hastings, the charging knights were not killed by longbow arrows. They were killed because the mud floundered their horses, and infantry basically dragged them off their mounts and killed them by stabbing them through their visors.


I think you mean Agincourt, not Hastings. But otherwise, good stuff.

Zhayne wrote:
My Self wrote:
It's the alignments that are poorly roleplayed that cause trouble.

This statement sums up a lot of why alignment stinks. You don't roleplay an alignment; you roleplay a character, and alignment follows from how you play your dude. Alignment is not static, it's dynamic. You should never, EVER EVER, think 'I'm alignment X, therefore I must Y'. The opposite is true, you think 'I have been doing X consistently, therefore I am alignment Y'.

If your honorable fighter guy starts using some dirty tactics, then his alignment will shift, and there's nothing wrong with that. At least the rules no longer say dumb stuff like 'you did something outside your alignment? Lose a level, and maybe get hit by a bolt from the blue'.

The other part of the issue is that alignment is so loosely defined that it's easy to get debates on where the line lies. For example, let's take your example of the honorable fighter guy using dirty tactics, which leads to an alignment change.

Some GMs would say that taking the BBEG's minions hostage to force him to surrender/release his own hostages is dubious enough earn an alignment shift, while other would say it's excusable because "The Greater Good."

There are stories about Paladins whose GMs made them fall because they allowed used stealth, flanked with someone in combat, or used a ranged weapon, since those aren't "honorable."

What happens if a Fighter uses the Dirty Trick combat maneuver? Does dirt in the eyes or a kick in the crotch = alignment shift?

And so on...

cnetarian wrote:

I suspect the bans are really aimed at players who use their characters' alignments as an excuse to be jerks. While it is certainly possible to create a chaotic-evil character who works well with a party, it takes a serious role-player to do so and most of the CE characters one is likely to encounter in games are solely there to screw over the rest of the party. It is also possible to create LG characters who cannot work with a group, but again, it takes a serious role-player to do so and most of the LG characters one is likely to encounter in games are not going to be a problem.

As has been mentioned CN is one of those alignments which is often used by players to create characters with no actual character who are often incapable of functioning in a party. It tends to be cyclical in my experience, players start abusing CN alignment to justify bad characters, DM bans CN (or evil or whatever, once I saw CG get so abused it was banned) out of hand, a player comes up with a reasonable CN character and talks DM into relaxing the ban for that character, players make some reasonable CN, players start abusing CN alignment to justify bad characters... .

Yeah, I've definitely had players who picked Chaotic Evil/Neutral so that they would have an excuse to go into the nearest village and immediately start raping, murdering, and plundering. Then get really creepy about discussing how they mutilate the bodies, or asking if they can roll charisma to see if their rape victims "get into it."

My solution is to not invite those players to my table again. Problem players are generally gonna be a problem no matter what alignment they have to put on the character sheet.

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Kain Darkwind wrote:

Like I said, I suspect the car has been designed for 0-60, and they consider 45 a sweet spot. Meanwhile, most people start at 80, and go up from there.

The evidence is all over the game. Look at the NPC Codex and CR. Look at the iconics. Look at the Paizo Staff Characters in the NPC Guide. They simply aren't encountering the same problems that most of the boards do, because the boards are saying 80 is casual and 150 is optimized.

Their first combat in their first adventure suggested that the goblins avoid attacking every round, that they stop and eat bugs and stuff like that. That's a fun game, but that's not optimized goblin super commandos attacking. You can't expect to get similar results when you aren't even on remotely similar pages.

And you can argue up and down that your pages aren't wrong, but I never said they were. I said they weren't the same. That's where this dissonance is coming from.

If you don't mind, let's stick with your car analogy for a bit.

Pathfinder is a car which chugs along just fine at 35 miles an hour. which is where the devs designed it to work. However, some people want to drive it on the freeway, at 55 miles an hour. At that speed, the car shakes, rattles, and leaks. Other folks might even want to drive it on the open road, where the speed limit goes up to 70 miles an hour. At that speed, the car blows up like a Pinto.

Despite this, the car is supposedly designed as and marketed towards every driver on the road, fully capable of driving at high speeds.

Or, to drop the analogy, if the devs don't want players optimize the slightest bit, they shouldn't make a system that strongly rewards optimization. If the system can't handle people driving at 70, then don't make rules that allow people to drive at 100.

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Bandw2 wrote:
and i've mentioned before that this way of stopping "caster creep" heavily restricts the kind of story the GM is allowed to tell. I'd prefer the system didn't force this kind of behavior from the GM or the Players.

Agreed. As I noted just a couple posts ago, if the game only "works" when played one specific way out of the multitude of playstyles it's supposed to support, that's a problem with the game. Really, the fact that people talk about how to structure their entire campaign around keeping casters from being too powerful is pretty clear evidence that casters can be really powerful.

It would be nice to make lost posts a bit more easy to recover, given how broad the deletion policy is. Right now it feels way too easy to lose a perfectly good post just because it's very tangentially connected to something that broke the rules.

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Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Secret Wizard wrote:

The Sohei, the closest one to taking that title, relies desperately on Pummeling Style, and for that reason, cannot dream of surpassing the output of the UnMonk, who has full liberty to pounce AND to take Dragon Ferocity.

If you're going STR monk - sure. But in my opinion DEX is the way to go. You lose a bit of DPR (though not much as you can afford to dump STR, whereas the STR monk needs decent DEX), but your defenses are far and away better than a STR monk's, not to mention jacked up initiative is nice.

A STR monk's AC is a bit better than most THW martials, a bit behind sword & board - drawing equal with it at higher levels. A DEX monk's AC is the best in the game by a fair margin by about level 4. (Especially since the Wild armor errata keeps druids from abusing it and being a competitor for the title at high levels.)

Not to mention the Sohei can run just fine as a weapon monk instead of an unarmed one. my favorite Sohei didn't use his fists, he was a mounted combat specialist who hit things with a nodachi while riding around on a Dire Wolf.

Granted, at that point you're getting a bit far from "classic" monk flavor.

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Kain Darkwind wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:
Lower point buy does nothing but widen the gap, though. Monks are virtually unplayable on a 15 point buy, but once you get up to at least 25 points the class is usable even without pinpoint optimization. Meanwhile the only full casters that care about how many points you get are Shamans and (to a slightly lesser extent) Arcanists.

You say that, but you are working from a different baseline than that which is clearly being utilized by the designers. Ostog the Unslain hasn't worn armor since level 1. James Jacobs' character is some sort of bard-fighter multiclass. These aren't tactically sound choices, but the characters are still playing, winning, advancing.

In my games, even if overpowering enemies screw around for a single round, the entire encounter tips wildly in favor of the PCs, that's just the stakes. (The PCs, on the otherhand, are never willing to sacrifice tactical supremacy for the sake of looking cool, so I can't tell you if it can happen in reverse.) Clearly, in a game where a 12th level PC has 28 AC and 84 hp and she's doing just fine, that's not the case.

Monks can probably drive the car at 40 mph if everyone else is going 40 too.

Edit: That goes for you too, BigDTBone. This isn't just about point buy, that's just the beginning of the differences. If monsters, and encounters, and environmental damages and adventures are all way more relaxed than you are used to, the wizard and fighter can operate on the same level. Because it is never making you rev up to 50, so to speak.

I think a lot of people would say that if the game only works when you play with on specific playstyle out of several possibilities, the game claims to support, that's a weakness of the game.

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graystone wrote:
Blazej: I like the company, I just hate what they have been doing lately. Different thing. If I truly hated paizo, I've got better things to do than get pissed off at the endless series on nuclear strike nerfs rained down on the game I love. It hard to see the good things with all the mushroom clouds blotting out the sun... :P

Yeah, all the negative feedback isn't coming in because people hate Paizo. It's because we care about the company and want to see them stop going down a path that's damaging the game we all love.

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Insain Dragoon wrote:
2. I want more Jason. This man is the lead designer and the arbiter for every scrap of content we see in the books. The fact that he interacts so little with the community is really saddening.

Have to agree, to an extent. Going over a lot of SKR and Mark's statements on the matter, it seems like Jason has the last word on rules, FAQ, and Errata. I kind of get the sense that it doesn't really matter what we say to Mark or whoever is interacting with the community, because Jason's the one who actually makes the final decisions. Some of SKR's comments after leaving Paizo really make it seem like he often agreed with the community's concerns, but was vetoed by Jason and then had the unenviable task of selling Jason's position to the playerbase.

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Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Chengar Qordath wrote:
Lemmy wrote:
BigDTBone wrote:

Im pretty much there. My group is looking at seriously spending a few months of game nights and just rewriting the system. Some borrowing from 3PP (Tome of battle and spheres of power as big ones), some reverting to 3.5 (Including bringing back some favorite classes, PrCs, and feats), some borrowing from Kirthfinder, some of our own houserules from over the years, some from PF unchained, and some from PF unmolested (bard, inquisitor, and alchemist for sure.)

We plan to ground up tinker everything together and format it into a PDF and probably have a few nice copies printed for our own reference and then just play that game forever. We may may work up a "modern/future addendum but that will be our only "splat."

Converting bestiaries and monster manuals will be a chore though!

The point is, we are so dissatisfied with the direction of the game we are willing to take potentially as much as a year of playing time out of our game to fix it because we no longer trust Paizo to get it right.

I feel your pain, brother... I have a pages-long googledoc of house rules and rules fixes... And those are just the ones I bothered to write down. ><'

It's really, really difficult not to be disheartened.

Alas, my group has come to an even simpler conclusion. We were between campaigns, and debating whether to run another Pathfinder game or try something else. Considering the nerf-splosion knocked out a few character ideas people were considering for the next Pathfinder game, we're going to be playing Iron Kingdoms or World of Darkness instead.
What, it's that hard to ignore the errata? Complaining is all well and good, but why would you allow an errata you don't like to hamper your home game in such dramatic fashion?

It's not that we can't ignore it so much as it is that all the errata dimmed our enthusiasm for Pathfinder at a time when we were already debating whether or not try out a different game.

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Lemmy wrote:
BigDTBone wrote:

Im pretty much there. My group is looking at seriously spending a few months of game nights and just rewriting the system. Some borrowing from 3PP (Tome of battle and spheres of power as big ones), some reverting to 3.5 (Including bringing back some favorite classes, PrCs, and feats), some borrowing from Kirthfinder, some of our own houserules from over the years, some from PF unchained, and some from PF unmolested (bard, inquisitor, and alchemist for sure.)

We plan to ground up tinker everything together and format it into a PDF and probably have a few nice copies printed for our own reference and then just play that game forever. We may may work up a "modern/future addendum but that will be our only "splat."

Converting bestiaries and monster manuals will be a chore though!

The point is, we are so dissatisfied with the direction of the game we are willing to take potentially as much as a year of playing time out of our game to fix it because we no longer trust Paizo to get it right.

I feel your pain, brother... I have a pages-long googledoc of house rules and rules fixes... And those are just the ones I bothered to write down. ><'

It's really, really difficult not to be disheartened.

Alas, my group has come to an even simpler conclusion. We were between campaigns, and debating whether to run another Pathfinder game or try something else. Considering the nerf-splosion knocked out a few character ideas people were considering for the next Pathfinder game, we're going to be playing Iron Kingdoms or World of Darkness instead.

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Rhedyn wrote:

OK this isn't an MMO. People who play this game shouldn't need to watch for patch notes.

Also annoyed at the sheer glut of worthless unfun options.

Get your stuff together paizo. I already barely play your game.

Yeah, for me this is just as big of an issue as the the terrible balance of all these balance changes. Errata and FAQs are supposed to be for fixing mistakes and clearing up rules confusion, but at this point it's pretty clear Paizo's using them as patches to rebalance the game.

Not to mention that while all this rebalancing is going on, a whole lot of actual mistakes/unclear rules are still going unaddressed. I would really like if Paizo would spend less time nerfing things that the PFS management thinks are OP, and more time doing stuff like fixing the messy mounted combat rules or spells full of ambiguity like Simulacrum.

Seranov wrote:
Replace Paizo T1/2 classes with DSP Psionics and/or Spheres of Power. Allow Path of War. Suddenly everyone is much closer to T3.

Yeah, I'm seriously tempted to make the next game I GM a "DSP classes only" game.

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Yeah, the biggest issue the Unchained Monk has is that all his passive defense abilities became "spend ki to gain this benefit for one minute."

John Lynch 106 wrote:
I find it illuminating that he's waited until after leaving Paizo before expressing these ideas (haven't listened to these videos in detail, just going off initial impressions). Especially given his ardent stance on Pathfinder's rules being fine as they were written while employed by Paizo (see his claims regarding water balloons and crossbows). I wonder how long he's had these opinions.

From what he's said in the past, I get the sense that as long as he was working for Paizo he felt obligated to defend the official company line, regardless of any personal doubts or bits of the system he didn't like. I do recall him mentioning that a couple of the monk rulings the forum heard about through him were things he personally disagreed with, yet still got put on the spot trying to defend since back when he worked for Paizo he was pretty much the dev team's face on the forums.

Lemmy wrote:

I never understood... Why exactly is it impossible to ready an action out of combat? AFAIK, reading an action is just an standard action set to trigger when something specific happens...

So... Why wouldn't you be able to use an standard action outside of combat?

I think it was to avoid adding readied actions on top of a surprise round + things like if there's interaction before initiative, so every single character both sides readies an action for once combat starts.

shroudb wrote:
i really don't get the hate around swashbucklers, they may not be the perfect class, and they do have a few problems (mainly their ridiculous lack of fort save for a frontline fighter) but they are trully an enjoyable and quite active class

I think a lot of it stems from the fact that all the problems with the swashbuckler were pointed out during the ACG playtest, and all that feedback was completely ignored.

Orfamay Quest wrote:
Ssalarn wrote:
Tormsskull wrote:

If PF 2.0 comes out, and I get a sneak peek at it, and the Fighter class is basically a wizard but instead of spells he has "moves" or something that allows him to perform "magic in all but name," then I won't purchase that product. If the majority of the community prefer that, then they'll eventually get it (as companies produce products they know they can sell.)
I have literally never seen anyone ask for the Fighter to be "basically a wizard but instead of spells he has "moves" or something that allows him to perform "magic in all but name,"". This is more of that ridiculous and false "4th Edition fallacy" nonsense.

I'm not sure that anyone has ASKED for it, but it's something that (in my opinion) has been delivered, and yes, it was in 4th ed. that it was delivered. In my experience and that of my group, D&D 4th edition managed to deliver a completely vanilla table-top experience that made the classes entirely indistinguishable and interchangeable.

Tormskull's point is not that PF 2.0 must do it that way, but a warning that PF 2.0 might do it that way, and I doubt it would make anyone very happy.

I think it rather unlikely that Paizo, a company built off of capitalizing on the hatred of old-school gamers for 4e, would ever make something all in the vein of 4e.

Honestly, when PF 2e happens I expect that at most it would be more akin to PF 1.5e. 90% of the core rules stay the same, but lots of little tweaks to (hopefully) make things more balanced and clear up all those rules issues that can't be solved without a major rewrite (like mounted combat).

Jiggy wrote:
I'm not sure I'm quite following what the question is. What sorts of differences are you thinking of? Also, is your question specific to Pathfinder, or do other roleplaying systems count?

Basically, I want to talk about differences in how different groups play the game. Is Pathfinder as played by a group that's been gaming together for five years different from Pathfinder as played by a group where most of the players have never gamed together before?

Since we're on a Pathfinder Forum, that game would be the most relevant one to discuss. But since the topic is really about the differences betweeen long-running established groups who've been playing together for years vs ones where there's always a couple new guys, any system could apply.

So, this is one thing I've noticed indirectly coming up in a lot of conversations on the forums. People who've been in a consistent gaming group/circle for years seem to have a very different outlook on the game than folks who have a high turnover rate in gaming partners. I certainly noticed a difference in the experience when I was in a campaign with a bunch of people I knew and had gamed with several times in the past vs. times when I barely knew half the people at the table. Have other people noticed the same thing?

How much does your outlook on being a player change when you don't know the DM very well? And the opposite question if you're a DM with several new players. How do you think your group dynamics have changed your overall Pathfinder experience, and your outlook on the game as a whole?

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Just gonna second Ssalarn on why people like to stick to the RAW. Love it or hate it, the RAW is consistent. The whims of whichever GM you happen to be playing the game with aren't.

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Jeff Merola wrote:
Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Entryhazard wrote:
>implying I don't have to spend at least 5 feats to even consider doing Dex-to-damage TWF
You can't get that with feats now at all - unless your group allows Effortless Lace so you can TWF with rapiers. (Effortless Lace is OP - the general rule is if PFS bans it as the book comes out - that's a good indication it's pretty OP.)
Or it's an indication that it's something they want to save it for a chronicle sheet reward, or they feel it's not a good fit for organized play, or many other reasons. Being "OP" is only one of many reasons they ban things.

Not to mention the guys running PFS can be wrong in their interpretation of what is and isn't balanced.

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Nicos wrote:
Charon's Little Helper wrote:

It's only a tax if the pre-req is something which isn't a solid choice in it's own right.

It is also a tax if the previous feat have nothing to do with the next feat. Assuming mobility and spring attack were great feats they are still taxes for whirlwind attack since the first two and the later works with completely different fighting strategies.

Indeed. That's why Combat Expertise is infamous as a common feat tax: 99% of the feats its a prerequisite for have nothing to do with Combat Expertise.

Xethik wrote:
Pounce Lances was a fine nerf in my book. Sure, it was a martial nerf but it just got to the point where the option was like 5 times the DPR of other melee options.

Which version of it? I'd assume the current one, but there have been a couple different takes on it due to various failed attempts to clarify the horridly borked mounted combat rules.

That sad, I'd agree that the current rule of "RageLancePounce can happen, but you only multiply damage on the first hit" is a pretty reasonable compromise.

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Thinking it over, I think one the main reasons this errata is causing so many issues is because a lot of the content is not actually an errata. If the errata just fixed all the misprints, typos, and obvious mistakes like Bolt Ace keeping guns then there wouldn't be much upset over it.

However, way too much of the Errata is actually a balance patch, not an errata. And given a lot of people disagree with what the devs think is and isn't balanced (see "martial-caster disparity is a myth propagated by an evil conspiracy") any balance patch is going to be controversial.

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BigDTBone wrote:
Chess Pwn wrote:
I feel it's not so much as PFS making them change this time and more of a developers want it to be a legal option for it and decided to change stuff.
That is a distinction without a difference.

Agreed. The end result is still PFS saying "we don't like this" and the devs changing it.

LazarX wrote:
Bandw2 wrote:
bookrat wrote:

Out of curiosity - why waste a spell to CDG an enemy when you could just do it yourself what that handy scythe or pick of yours?

I suppose if you're in a situation where you can't get to that enemy in time, but that's kind of rare for level 1 scenarios.

Edit: with four wizards, you could also do this in tandem. Wizard 1 casts sleep, while wizard 2 casts summon monster. By the time summon monster casting is complete, wizard 2 will know which enemies fell asleep so he can summon his little critter right next to it for a CDG. Definitely makes the summon more valuable than a single attack that may do just a tiny bit of damage (or miss altogether!).

i did say in the other thread (or maybe i thought about saying it), but all the wizards should have scythes, but really it's a ranged coup de grace
Sure... what's a minus 4 to hit for a slow BAB class?

When a Coup De Grace is an automatic hit? Nothing.

Bandw2 wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:

I consider mundane solutions to be intrinsically 'better' in most cases. Getting up a wall with a grappling hook is a cooler visual image than using magic to do it. Convincing someone to help you by demonstrating your good intentions is less creepy than magically brainwashing them. Riding or sneaking across Mordor is more dramatic than teleporting across Mordor.

Faster? No. Safer? No. Just 'better'.

i would probably argue your point, but really it's just an opinion so i'm going to say that "better" probably isn't the best word.

Yeah, at the end of the day there's not much to discuss when someone says "I think X is more fun than Y." Because what people think is fun is almost entirely a matter of personal preference.

Though I would mention that wizards, being int-based guys, have tons of skill points to let them go for mundane solutions, plus they have magic as a fallback.

Anyway, back to the topic of the thread. My take at GMing RotRL definitely saw the Martial-Caster disparity showing up full force. Particularly once the enemy casters got high-enough level to start doing things like having Fly up at the start of an encounter or Dimension Door-ing out once things went bad (Lucretia got away from the party twice, after which the cleric made a point of dimensional anchor-ing any caster BBEG).

There were also two players who tried fighters over the course of the campaign. Both of them were unsatisfied with the fighter on account of only being able to stab things in the face, and swapped out for more casty characters (a Sorcerer and Summoner). Both these changes lead to substantially better party performance.

Claxon wrote:

Well, I would strongly disagree that the mount is included in "you".

And this is why mounted combat rules really need an overhaul. Because honestly, they're not well written. I think the design team is aware of this, but also doesn't know what to do with them either.

I think it's not so much that they have no idea what to do as it is that they know it'd take a major rewrite to fix mounted combat, and Paizo really hates the idea of making any substantial changes to the CRB. After all, changing the text might change the pagination, and everyone knows the universe would explode if so much as a single line of text was shifted to another page.

After all, making sure every single reference to a CRB page number in a five-year-old splatbook is accurate is far more important than having coherent rules.

Tormsskull wrote:
Larkspire wrote:
Seems like a form of "Molly-coddling" to basically reward characters for sucking. *shrug*

I think that really speaks to play style. Based on what you've stated, I assume that you are expecting all of your players to make, at a minimum, reasonably powerful characters.

If all of your players are on board with that and enjoy the character creation/optimization angle of the game, that probably works well.

For me, I let the players make whatever character they want, regardless of power level, as I assume that's the character they want to play. In my most recent Pathfinder campaign that I GMed, there was a player that created a ranged rogue based on throwing daggers.

After a few sessions in, it was pretty clear that he was underpowered compared to his fellow PCs. I created a custom magic item that the PC group eventually found, which essentially buffed the ranged rogue up to a point where the player felt like he was able to contribute well again.

The player was happier, the group liked that he was able to contribute more, etc. To me it was a win-win. Maybe it was "molly-coddling" to some degree, but the alternative seems to be "Sorry, you didn't do enough research, your character is going to suck. Sucks to be you."

I think, as is often the case when it comes to GMing issues, it's all about execution. The line between the GM helping one of the players out with a couple special items and outright GM favoritism can be a very fuzzy one.

Larkspire wrote:

Some players are more aggressive and/ or charismatic than others...over the course of a campaign a shrewd player can accrue quite an advantage over his or her well intention-ed comrades.

So I make sure that the wallflowers get a chance to have nice things too.

This is definitely one of the issues I've seen when loot division is handled by way of "items go to whoever speaks up about wanting them." That one game I mentioned previously where half the party was loaded down with magical gear while the other half was practically naked is what happens when half the players are very aggressive about calling dibs on loot, and the other half are passive types who don't want to start a confrontation.

Bandw2 wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Bandw2 wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
And yet even when focus fire is a viable option (often, it isn't) it's still an automatic +1-+10 to damage. And don't forget that at low levels fights tend to go on longer. Bleed is also a versatile ability—you can use it to wear enemies down, or to motivate them to fall back and find a healer.
it's a really weak damage type that is entirely mitigated by any healing and only works against stuff that bleeds and is cured by a DC 15 heal check.

The latter and former are irrelevant—nobody stops to heal themselves during combat. If they do, they've just sacrificed a whole round of attacks, making your bleed insanely effective.

The second is true, of course. It's limited in its applications.

to be clear usually this is done by the healer anyway, instead of casting cure light derp, they just smack the wound with a heal check and he keeps on chugging.

onto chugging, a lot of my bleedy mooks do carry a potion of cure light wounds.

Personally, I'd consider the enemy spending a turn downing a potion (and possibly getting AoOed as well) a pretty good deal.

Yeah, I've personally seen plenty of problems with just doing ad-hoc distribution of items, since it can easily lead to players feeling like they're not getting a fair share and/or the GM is playing favorites. I know I got rather annoyed in one game where my bard didn't have any proper magic items at level 12, while the frontliners were swinging custom magic weapons and getting toys like rings of regeneration.

Casual Viking wrote:
Gauss wrote:

Both Rider and Mount are charging. The Rider does not get to make a standard attack.

Regarding if the mount can move after making an attack or not, if the mount cannot make an attack and then move then Ride-By-Attack cannot function.

The mounted combat rules are confusing as written and in some places a strict reading of them contradicts how they are supposed to operate.

I don't see how you're getting "The Rider does not get to make a standard attack".

But yes, the mounted combat rules are a complete mess.

Urgh, yes. The mounted combat rules were already messy in 3.5, and then Paizo slapped on several of their signature overly broad patches to fix narrow "problems" with mounted combat that, per usual, broke far more than they solved.

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Tormsskull wrote:
Rogar Valertis wrote:
What the fighter should be is a champion, a master of fighting with weapons and armor, not just A soldier but THE soldier, the one who has what it takes to be the BEST. When you think "fighter" you should think about the likes of Achilles, Sandor Clegane, Gimli (the Tolkien version), Gotrek Gurnisson, Rambo and so on.

Sounds good to me. If you can buff the fighter to these levels without making him defy logic (i.e., use magic by another name,) then I'd be all for that.

What would be nice is advanced fighting styles, sort of like blademastery from Wheel of Time. You could utilize different stances, forms, etc. to perform a variety of cool, but still very "fighter"-esque abilities.

Stances and cool special abilities? Sounds a lot like Tome of Battle/Path of War.

alexd1976 wrote:
thejeff wrote:
alexd1976 wrote:
LazarX wrote:
Zombieneighbours wrote:

Didn't Conan punch out a cammel? I have memories of that being a thing.
It was Blazing Sadddles, and it was a horse.

I'm certain that Arnold as Conan punched out a camel.

It was glorious.

Horse or even camel are plausible. Unlikely. Glorious, if you wish.

There's a reason I used rhino as the example of superhuman, not much smaller, less armored creatures.

He actually winds up punching the camel initially while drunk (stumbles into it, punches it) then later, sees the same camel again, apologizes to it, it spits on him... and he knocks it out a second time by hammer punching it on top of it's head.

Later he knocks out a horse.

Conan is a bit of a dick, at least to animals.

Still glorious.

Trivia time: the camel from the first Conan movie actually died from getting punched by Arnold. It's why the movie lacks the usual "No animals were harmed" disclaimer.

kyrt-ryder wrote:
Ssalarn wrote:
Realistically, an optimized wizard may be a bit too powerful for a cooperative play setting, so that may not be the best place to put the bar.
Are we talking optimized to a practical level or abusing Simulacrums and Planar Binding and such?

Even a practically optimized wizard can easily become a fun-ruiner if he's really built to be powerful. To toss out one example I brought up earlier, wizard starts combat by casting a Dazing Fireball. Enemies get no actions for three turns, turning the fight into a complete mop-up.

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alexd1976 wrote:

I tend to trust people that have proven to me time and time again that they can learn a new system properly and run a game well.

Experience is part of this equation.

HOWEVER, I have had GMs that have been running games for years and suck at it.

I do not believe experience=argument winning, but I am more inclined to take a long-time gamers opinion on something more seriously than a 'newbie'.

I mean, if you learned (and played for years) multiple systems, then maybe you have become good at LEARNING AND PLAYING games! Maybe.

It isn't just about specific systems you play, it IS about overall experience, especially if discussing something anecdotal rather than mechanics based.

That being said, if someone is arguing a point and has to resort back to just relying on their experience as a gamer... lame.

Them: "Respect your elders!"
Me: "Earn it, you old coot."

Just gonna second all of this. While more experienced gamers are generally more likely to be good ones, I've gamed with plenty of "veteran" gamers who were absolutely terrible, and plenty of newbies who picked it all up very quickly and were real fun to game with.

Seranov wrote:
That said, the blaster spellcaster is what Pathfinder spellcasters are designed around, balance-wise, but it turns out there are plenty of non-damage spells for spellcasters which are faaaaaar more powerful and effective. And that's why there's a problem. If the Wizard didn't have access to Summon Monster, Color Spray, Glitterdust and the like (and were pretty much limited to blasting and utility spells) they'd STILL be more powerful than the Fighter, but at least they wouldn't make him effectively obsolete.

I feel compelled to point out that blaster spellcasting can be very devastating if you optimize for it. Granted, part of a good blaster's scariness usually comes from combining their damage with control-based metamagic like Dazing Spell. Fireball gets way scarier when a failed save = no actions for three rounds.

Though that does bring up the point that the OP is comparing a barbarian to a blaster wizard who has put zero effort into being good at blasting.

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thejeff wrote:
Neurophage wrote:
Ghostwasp wrote:
The reason people list how long they have played or what their experience is because there is literally no other metric in which to measure someones ability or knowledge of the game. You can say all you want that you know every rule, but on a forum that means nothing since you have all the time you want to look up rules. When trying to decide between to opinions who would you rather listen to, the guy who has stayed with the game for over 5 editions of the game or the one who thinks that they can "fix" Pathfinder after playing it for a few years.
It's not even a real metric. It doesn't mean anything. A good idea doesn't become bad just because the person who said is younger. Likewise, a bad idea doesn't become good just because the person who said it is older. Being old doesn't make a person beyond reproach. It just makes them old. When trying to decide between two opinions, you should choose the one that makes more sense, no matter who's saying it.
But the experience can show the argument. "I've been playing for 30 years and that idea is dumb" isn't helpful. "They tried that approach back in x Edition and it didn't work like you think it would" is.

Yeah, I don't think anyone minds people bringing up their experience when it's actually relevant to the topic at hand. If someone suggests bringing back some rules from 1st edition, it's quite helpful to have posters who actually played with those rules offer feedback on the matter.

The problem-posters are the ones who seem incapable of making a single post without mentioning how many years they've been playing the game, and respond to anyone who disagrees with them about anything by saying "Well I've been playing the game for a hundred years and actually shook Gygax's hand once, so..."

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