When wearing armor, using a shield, or carrying a medium or heavy load, a monk loses his AC bonus, as well as his fast movement and flurry of blows abilities
All I lose is AC bonus (not an issue - no WIS bonus), fast movement (I can get over that), and flurry of blows (which I don't have - I have flurry of maneuvers. I researched this on rules questions threads.)So really, I don't lose much. And I can't do medium mithral armor anyway because that still kills my Evasion and such. So light armor it is.
Armor/shield spikes are definitely a good "always-armed" option (though I think gauntlets/spiked gauntlets work for that too, right?), but in the rare instance in which weapons are disallowed or at risk (such as fighting mean statues), unarmed strike is a good thing to have. I could be persuaded on this point, but the monk level still gives me Improved Trip and Flurry of Maneuvers.
Yes, I was speaking of Ruford. The idea was to start with a horsechopper, and use either the whip or horsechopper as things progress, depending on strategic needs. Obviously the whip with whirlwind attack is my ideal, but there may be times when I don't expect to trip anyone, so horsechopper will be my damage output weapon.
Of course I can use either one in a pinch, especially with my level of Monk. Monk gives me Improved Unarmed Strike, which means that, at level 2, even with my horsechopper out, I threaten adjacent squares as well as reach squares. With Combat Reflexes, getting that maximized threat area out there ASAP is important.
The Kensai Magus gives me proficiency and Weapon Focus in a single level, which is a pretty dense feat load for a single level. The Weapon Focus offsets the loss of a single BAB, and then I get two arcane pool points to use for a free +1 enhancement whenever I want. I also get a spell, but I'll be in armor and will suffer from arcane spell failure chance, and my save DC would be terrible, so I'm just writing off that part mostly.
I'm dumping WIS because I don't need it for anything. The Monk's AC bonus won't apply as I'll be wearing light armor. The Kensai's Canny Defense bonus *will* apply, so that's a good reason to have at least 12 INT. Also, that gets me another arcane pool point. And of course I need 13 INT for whirlwind attack. Extra INT beyond that would only give me additional arcane pool points, so I see it as a waste of stat points.
My CHA is pumped to improve the DC of my spell-like abilities from the Shadowdancer class. If I took 3 Bard levels, I'd lose:
+1 AC from Magus
2 arcane pool points from Magus
Weapon Focus from Magus
Improved Unarmed Strike (important for threatening, as mentioned before) from Monk
Improved Trip from Monk
Flurry of Maneuvers from Monk (which gets me multi-attacking before I get access to whirlwind attack)
6th level of Shadowdancer, including Rogue Talent, another use of Shadow Conjuration, and another 40ft of Shadow Jump.
I never get medium armor proficiency either way, which is fine, since Evasion requires light armor, and so does Canny Defense (+1 AC). Using light armor will keep up my mobility (well, that, and Mobility) so I can get in position to whip every single enemy on the battlefield. And for icing on the cake, I believe that Flurry of Maneuvers (add a free combat maneuver to a full attack action) stacks with Whirlwind Attack (forfeit all other extra *attacks* for one attack per enemy) by RAW (since a combat maneuver is not an attack, but rather, can replace an attack).
First off, your point buy is wrong. You've spent 18 points (there's a stray 2 floating around from dropping CHA to 8). You could spend 2 on STR to pump your melee damage and carrying capacity, or you could pump Dex to 17, leaving you a good 4th-level upgrade option. Or, you could drop CHA to 7 and do both (since you're only using that point of CHA for the extra +1 to Perform, and +1 to melee damage is arguably more valuable).
Also, have you considered a little Disable Device? With your Perception and Dexterity you'd be good at handling traps.
Haha. Alright. Almost a shame though... it'd be funny to see to competing character concepts level up side by side.
I'm pretty sure it does CON damage to the victim. That's really taking one for the team.
@rashly - Correct on the saves progression. Hexes should work as described. Just keep in mind the first reaction most people would have if they saw you do something explicitly magical, such as flying. You'll want to keep it low-key, though I imagine not many people would object to being healed by magic. At least they should be conflicted about it rather than blatantly hostile, one would think.
@Stormwind - I thought the differences might edge you out eventually. Thanks for the suggestions and submission though! I hope you find a game more suited to your taste.
Well alright then. I suppose for now I'll leave recruitment open in the general in case anyone else wants to express interest.
@Stormwind - Oh I see. Well if it helps you imagine the environment, haven't you ever driven through a town that was like a time warp to the past? I want Devil's Fork to be like that, as though somehow stuck behind the rest of the world. In the city (and you guys may well end up taking a field trip to the city), guns will be more "guns everywhere", except that people are less likely to be overtly armed there.
@Smith - Interesting build. Not what I would have done with him, but I like it.
@Cole - Good backstory. Very nice.
@Loup - I'll allow a shotgun, musket, or double-barrel pistol. And of course you can still buy a coat pistol.
@All - Making it official, 5% list price for early and 10% list price for advanced firearms and ammunition.
@All2 - I'll go ahead and make the stiletto & derringer available as follows:
@All3 - Since you've built around the human racial bonuses, lets just leave them.
This might be a moment of negativity that I later regret, but really, do we need to make all these accommodations?
Loup, your character can buy leather armor, a coat pistol, a dagger, a club, and a sap, with 1gp to spare. That's pretty outfitted for a start.
Storm, unless you're spending a feat or I'm missing something else, you wouldn't even be proficient with a revolver anyway. If you want a gun to be part of your backstory and you want your character to have it and know how to use it, couldn't you just dip gunslinger?
I think the best thing to do at this point would be to:
Would this suit everyone alright?
I understand that the doctor's story makes sense for him to have a revolver, but by the original parameters I gave he shouldn't be able to afford one (though I'll admit it would make sense to have *some* amount of gear collected by that point in life). But I'm doing this campaign mostly for the story aspect of it, and I want the town in general to be ill-prepared ("no heroes") for whatever perils await.
I would however be willing to grant you a revolver with the "broken" condition, which you could buy off later much like the gunslinger buys off his "battered" firearm condition. I would want that to cost at least 50gp initially, and the buy-off to cost, say, 400gp. This allows you to keep the story element without having early access to a weapon beyond your price range.
As a sidenote, I was considering cutting the costs in half, so 5% for early and 10% for advanced. In this case, the buyoff would be more like 200gp.
EDIT: Second sidenote. Originally I was mostly keeping the gold low so you wouldn't have as much spending cash. I'd be willing to do a divided system whereby you get X starting gold, of which you may only keep Y amount for the outset of the campaign. But I'd rather *prefer* to just keep it as it is, with little coat pistols & such, to retain the "no heroes" feel. A compromise would be to introduce (for cheap) a couple of new weapons I'd considered, being the stiletto (a 1d3 dagger with more conceal bonus) and derringer (basically an advanced coat pistol with double-barrel option).
If you feel like one of the current players is over- or underpowered, feel free to voice your concerns so we can work on balance before the game. Most of all, I want everyone to have the chance to RP, write a good story, and have fun.
@Wilkens - I didn't run your numbers, but it basically looks good. I did want to note a few things:
@Cole - Also good. Here are some notes for you:
@All - I'm not sure if I want to do human racial bonuses or not. It seems too hero-ish to me. Could I barter away your racial bonuses with like, skill focus or endurance?
Smith, as a general groundskeeper, starts out with a firearm. I won't stop that from being a rifle, revolver, or shotgun, and I won't stop him from turning it over to you to borrow if RP-ing should so dictate.
Those are all correct. HP should be half+1, but full HD on first level.
You can get a repeater eventually, but for now, muzzle-loader will have to do.
Oh, and I should have mentioned, two-handed melee weapons (with the exception of, say, a shovel) are generally frowned upon.
A witch would be fine for the Madman. Without going into spoilers, he contacted another plane and thus went mad. A witch is probably as high-magic as you can get in this kind of structure, but the Madman has the highest-magic story potential, so it's fine. Hexes have their own built-in low magic limitations.
I see no particular reason to increase gold with level in this instance, so I'd say it's fine as-is.
Yes, standard feat progression. I'd call a 2-handed shovel a greatclub.
4 Skill ranks per level (+/- intelligence mod)
Cole - 50gp - Appraise, Bluff, Diplo, Intim, Climb, Handle Animal, Kno(local), Kno(nature), Profession. 2/0/0 saves.
Wilkens - 200gp - Heal, Kno(geography), Kno(history), Kno(local), Kno(religion), Linguistics, Profession, Sleight of Hand. 0/0/2 saves.
Richardson - 100gp - Acro, Climb, Disable Dev, Disguise, Esc Artist, Kno(arcana), kno(dungeoneering), kno(geography), kno(local), kno(nobility), Percep, Ride, Sense Motive, Stealth, Survival. 2/2/2 saves.
Smith - 25gp + firearm + 5 rounds ammunition - Bluff, Craft, Heal, Intimidate, kno(arcana), kno(engineering), kno(history), kno(local), kno(religion), Percep, Profession, Sense Motive, Survival. 2/0/2 saves.
Madman - 50gp - Appraise, Bluff, Diplo, Disable Dev, Disguise, Escape Artist, kno(arcana), kno(nature), kno(planes), Linguistics, Percep, Perform, Sleight of Hand, Spellcraft, Stealth. 0/2/2 saves.
I'm thinking the Madman as a Witch with the Insanity Patron.
Since there are no spells, there are no patron spells, so there are no patrons. But otherwise, that was good thinking.
And perhaps he could have attached himself to one of the bats living in the Church's tower as his familiar?
That sounds fine. A rat or centipede or something would also make sense.
I don't know how much leeway I have in the background of the Madman--did you already have something in mind for his insanity or history?
You can make his background up to the point where he went mad. I have a reason for him going mad, and while he has been mad, he's basically feral and unreasoning.
At the beginning of the campaign he will be entirely mad and not the least bit coherent. He has no feelings towards Smith as he doesn't even recognize him from day to day. The Madman will enter the campaign once he is coherent, and will have no memory of the events that transpired since going mad.
Good background. I like it. I assume then you're going Chirurgeon?
As far as firearms, they fall somewhere between "commonplace" and "everywhere", with flintlocks being simple weapons at 1/10th listed costs and advanced firearms being martial weapons at 1/5th listed cost. I realize this is about 30 years late for that kind of firearms setting, but Devil's Fork is stuck just a little bit in the past, abstracted from surrounding civilization.
Yes, you can consider history to be real, though each character can have a different perspective/opinion on history ("Robert E Lee was Dracula!") with varying degrees of truth or relevance, depending on how the story unfolds.
As far as aging rules, lets move back everything by one step, landing Smith in the middle age or old age category rather than old or venerable (your choice for how old he really is).
@Padawan: I actually know a guy doing that in PFS with this trait. He's like a level 5 cleric or something and still hasn't found a good reason to stop using his shovel.
I was going to allow one trait per character, pending GM approval.
I've not considered other systems, no. I only know a few, don't have a lot of time to learn a new one, and well, Devi's Fork is Southeast. But it's definitely something to think about if I should decide to do any follow-up scenarios in the same basic universe, but perhaps in California or even Mexico.
As far as character creation:
Okay, so far we have interest as follows:
Filios - Madman (knife expert) or Cole (rogue thug)
About character creation - Since most of you are fantasizing about classes, I think the class features system would work the best. This would allow a Madman knife expert or Cole rogue thug with very few changes from straight PF. It would also Richardson gunslinger/ranger without the full BAB/HD of a real hero. Smith could be a strong inquisitor with few edits (most notably a lack of spells), and I'd allow a special case for a Wilkens chirurgeon (perhaps losing bombs and gaining a small range of extracts, most importantly CLW).
About the setting - Monsters are only slightly more real than they are now (most people don't believe in them, some people do). Other planes exist, as well as perhaps rare magic items and other supernatural abilities as described in the character creation possibilities. But magic deities or arcane masters are non-existent. This is *almost* real-world.
About Richardson - no pre-planned reason for the paranoia, but based on the setting, he could have met some strange and mystical individuals, encountered what he thinks might have been a monster, or somehow become aware of another plane. Or he could have more mundane reasons for paranoia, including mental issues. I'll leave this up to the player.
About Smith - just because he tends the church doesn't mean he's churchy. He's no minister certainly. So while divine classes may suit him well, there's really a lot of options for him.
More background - True story, the Devil's Fork area is one of the rainiest places in the US. Also, perhaps the earliest construction in the area was a large Victorian-style home. Can't make this stuff up.
Filios, I agree that it's generally better to not fix what isn't broken, but I didn't really think the standard system would suit the "no heroes" feel. I figured trimming spells from spellcasters, still allowing spell-like class features, then evening fighter-types & casters by flattening out BAB & HD, would be a pretty simple but fair way to do it.
Padawan09, I'd considered those options, but the entire feel of having "spells" as magic ritually cast using focus and material components and such seems archaic for the setting. I think I'd rather all supernatural effects come from mysterious items or strange evocations (like a cleric's domain power or a wizard's school power). That way there's still a chance to use strange abilities, but it's not tied to a deity or to precise arcane mastery. It's more of an inherent (and restricted) ability.