The devs are going to hate this, but here is another question about Deflected attacks:
If an attack is deflected (such as by Deflect Arrows or Crane Wing), do all harmful effects get negated along with just the raw damage of the attack?
For example: A shocking arrow is shot at a monk with deflect arrows, does the successful block negate all damage, or just the physical damage.
Is a melee touch considered an attack that may be deflected?
For example, a wraith's attack of negative energy and con drain, or a wizard's melee touch with a shocking grasp?
In short, is anything harmful to the character that relies on an attack roll negated by the deflection, or is only actual physical damage negated, or something in between?
In another thread I paused to consider what options are available for improving these three classes. Rather than throwing abilities at the classes, or radical changes, I would suggest that any changes must be thematic with the class's nature. They must also be minimal, so that they can be applied with minimal disruption to the game.
The monk I have done a lot of work on along this vein, and there is a thread for my preferred fixes here.
The Rogue I've thought about now and then for a while. The monk's main features are their skills, their main combat ability is sneak attack. The big problem for the rogue is that other classes do skills as well if not better (and have other skills beside), and sneak attack...has problems. The rogue is meant to be a clever 'everyman' guy, someone who has his wits as his weapon. Any fixes should take this into account.
The fighter is the 'least weak' of the three. Nonetheless the fighter has his problems: he has little out-of-combat utility, and his Will saves are famously weak. The fighter's concept is again an 'everyman' hero who uses his discipline and skill-at-arms to overcome. Any fixes should come from this angle.
Ideas for Rogue Fixes
Jack of All Trades - The rogue uses his wits to improvise what he doesn't know from what he does. The rogue may treat any skill in which he has no skill ranks as having as many ranks as he has Intelligence bonus. This does not gain him the +3 bonus for class skills he would get if he had actual ranks in a skill, but does allow him to make untrained checks on any skill.
Work Smarter, Not Harder - The rogue uses his smarts to improve what he's good at. The rogue gains a bonus equal to his Intelligence bonus to any skills he has ranks in that do not rely on Intelligence.
Hit Where it Hurts - The rogue may make a Perception check as a swift action against the AC of an enemy. If they succeed they may make a sneak attack as a standard action, even if the target is neither flanked nor denied it's dexterity bonus.
Placed Blow - whenever making a sneak attack, the rogue may go for accuracy over damage. Each 1d6 of sneak attack instead becomes a +1 insight bonus to both attack and damage, and the bonus damage will multiply on critical hits.
Strike with Precision - when not making a sneak attack, the rogue gains a +1 bonus to damage for each 1d6 of sneak attack they possess if they attack with a finesse weapon.
Ideas for Fighter Fixes
Discipline - replaces Bravery, Discipline is a bonus to Will saves across the board, not just to fear effects. Also adds to physical (strength and dexterity based, to represent athleticism) and Craft (weapons)/Craft (armour) skills (have to maintain equipment!) that the fighter has ranks in.
Skills - the fighter gains 4+int ranks per level, not 2.
Following from some threads concerning monks and suggested changes, I realised that I was in a perfect position to test my own ideas, running a game where by a quirk of fate we have a monk as the primary martial character. The party (when all present) consists of:
Halfling wizard (transmuter)
Here are the monk's stats:
Male Human (Taldan) Monk (Qinggong Monk) 3
LG Medium Humanoid (human)
Init +2; Senses Perception +9
AC 16, touch 16, flat-footed 13 (+2 Dex, +1 dodge)
hp 25 (3d8+7)
Fort +5, Ref +6, Will +6; +2 vs. enchantment spells and effects, +2 trait bonus vs. fear effects
Defensive Abilities evasion
Speed 40 ft.
Melee +1 Ghost touch Handaxe +6 (1d6+3/x3) and
. . Temple sword +5 (1d8+2/19-20/x2) and
. . Unarmed strike +5 (1d6+2/x2)
Ranged Masterwork Shuriken +6 (1d2+2/x2) and
. . Shuriken +5 (1d2+2/x2)
Special Attacks flurry of blows +1/+1
Str 14, Dex 14, Con 14, Int 10, Wis 16, Cha 10
Base Atk +2; CMB +6 (+8 Grappling); CMD 21 (23 vs. Grapple)
Feats Deflect Arrows, Dodge, Improved Grapple, Improved Unarmed Strike, Scorpion Style (DC 14), Snake Style, Stunning Fist (3/day) (DC 14)
Traits Deft Dodger, Making Good on Promises
Skills Acrobatics +8 (+12 jump), Climb +6, Escape Artist +6, Knowledge (religion) +4, Perception +9, Sense Motive +11, Stealth +8, Survival +4, Swim +6
SQ ac bonus +3, fast movement (+10'), maneuver training, stunning fist (stun), unarmed strike (1d6)
Combat Gear Potion of cure light wounds, Potion of restoration, lesser, Alchemist's fire, Antiplague (2), Bloodblock (3), Healer's kit; Other Gear +1 Ghost touch Handaxe, Masterwork Shuriken (12), Shuriken (50), Temple sword, Backpack (empty), Bedroll, Flint and steel, Silk rope, Torch, 209 GP, 8 SP, 9 CP
Alchemist's fire - 0/1
Antiplague - 0/2
Bloodblock - 0/3
Healer's kit (10/10 uses remaining) - 0/10
Masterwork Shuriken - 0/12
Potion of cure light wounds - 0/2
Potion of restoration, lesser - 0/1
Shuriken - 0/50
Stunning Fist (3/day) (DC 14) - 0/3
Torch - 0/1
AC Bonus +3 The Monk adds his Wisdom bonus to AC and CMD, more at higher levels.
Deflect Arrows Deflect an incoming arrow once per round.
Evasion (Ex) If you succeed at a Reflex save for half damage, you take none instead.
Fast Movement (+10') The Monk adds 10 or more feet to his base speed.
Flurry of Blows +1/+1 (Ex) Make Flurry of Blows attack as a full rd action.
Improved Grapple You don't provoke attacks of opportunity when grappling a foe.
Improved Unarmed Strike Unarmed strikes don't cause attacks of opportunity, and can be lethal.
Making Good on Promises At some point in the past, Professor Lorrimor did you a favor under the condition that he would someday call on you to repay it. After he came to your aid, however, you never saw nor heard from him again, leaving you with a sense of unending anticipa
Maneuver Training (Ex) CMB = other BABs + Monk level
Scorpion Style (DC 14) Standard action: Unarmed strike also reduces target's land speed to 5 ft.
Snake Style Gain +2 on Sense Motive checks, and deal piercing damage with unarmed attacks
Stunning Fist (3/day) (DC 14) You can stun an opponent with an unarmed attack.
Stunning Fist (Stun) (Ex) At 1st level, the monk gains Stunning Fist as a bonus feat, even if he does not meet the prerequisites. At 4th level, and every 4 levels thereafter, the monk gains the ability to apply a new condition to the target of his Stunning Fist. This conditio
Unarmed Strike (1d6) The Monk does lethal damage with his unarmed strikes.
The player was new to Pathfinder, which is one reason I wanted to try my changes after the first few sessions of frustration for the player.
The changes I am making are:
2) A monk’s unarmed strike treats the hardness or damage resistance (of any type) of a target as less by one point for every level of monk the character possesses. This is a big one, replacing the existing ki-strike options and making the monk able to attempt to hurt anything.
3a) Amending the Ki-Pool entry as follows:
3b) By spending 1 point from his ki pool, a monk can make one additional attack a round at his highest attack bonus. As opposed to just with flurry-of-blows
3c) In addition, he can spend 1 point to move 20 feet in a swift action. As opposed to just +20' movement.
Currently the character only has access to the first two changes. The great thing about this test is that I am running the same adventure for two different groups on two different days. The other group is martial-heavy with a ranger, cavalier, magus, and a barbarian, so there is plenty to compare the monk's performance too.
We completed the first session with these changes this evening. The edge from having wisdom to hit came into play fighting a burning skeleton, securing one successful hit that finished off the undead. A lucky crit with a hand-axe made him the star of damage dealing against a wraith variant, although that had little to do with my changes. Will keep everyone posted about subsequent sessions.
OK, it's been a while since Paizo released the changes for the monk in repsonse to a lot of feedback that the core monk (and most archetypes) is weak and underpowered compared to other classes. For those that missed them they are:
Now, how have people found these changes? Have they fixed monk problems, or are they still extant?
For myself...no. They've helped, but not significantly.
Flurry of Blows: This was how most people already played it. No change there, though that was a welcome clear ruling.
Ki Strike: Bypassing cold iron or silver at 7th level can be handy but mainly for fighting later creatures with DRs that include it - the ones that had that DR exclusively you tangled with five levels ago when everyone else had cold iron or silver weapons.
AoMF: Still capped at +5, so any properties exclude you from getting past any DR at later levels. The cost reduction is nice, but still keeps you behind slightly as the TWFers will stagger their enhancements. It also blocks up that amulet slot.
For me, the problems are still multiple:
* MADness: The monk still needs too many good scores. Abilities that all depend on good Wisdom, Dexterity, and Strength to function properly don't function at all when you have to skimp one or more of these scores. You will still always be behind at something. There are a lot of options for fixing this, as the paladin was fixed to depend on only two scores, not three or four.
* Bodywraps of Mighty Strikes: this is the item that really needed fixing, it really rubs the monk's nose in it when used by another class that does not suffer the drawbacks. There were better ways of making it less effective than the AoMF than limiting the number of hits you could apply it too.
* Monk abilities not fit for purpose: I could list them individually, but really it would take too long. Suffice to say that wholeness of body is a great example of a never-used ability, and diamond soul of an ability that nerfs you more than it helps you. Ki as a resource is too sparse on the ground.
So, what do other players think? Has the monk been fixed?
I recently played a game of a D20 system, Darwin's world, and the DM made a few changes that worked fairly well.
I'd like to expand on this for the next game I DM, starting Thursday, using Pathfinder.
The changes I am making are:
1) Armour as DR. This is a fairly standard one to use.
2) Because AC is now touch AC in effect, no stats add a bonus to hit. CMB/CMD remain unchanged.
3) As stats are less emphasised for combat, the same should hold for casting. Save DCs are now calculated as 12 + spell level + 1/2 caster level.
I'm hoping this will lead to a more interesting game with high stats de-emphasised a little, giving PCs a little more flexibility in character creation. MAD classes don't suffer so much, particularly the monk.
There have been a few of these threads to see if the optimizers can see exploits we cannot in some of the 'monk fix' suggestions.
Here's my set of suggestions, I would appreciate if anyone can see a way of making these fix ideas 'broken' in combination or in isolation:
Fix #1: Enhancement:
This means, you can wear an amulet of mighty fists but only the enhancement damage bonus will apply, and any properties it has, to the monk's unaremd strike. Thus the AoMF is still relevant and useful, but not essential and the monk is able to 'keep up' with the martial classes in terms of hitting their targets.
Fix #2: MAD:
This I can't see as any more broken than Weapon Finesse or Guided Hand (but then that's the reason for this thread), but reduces the monk's dependence on maxing out several stats to just one.
Fix #3: DR-bypass:
DR shuts down monks if they are not HULKSMASH-monk, if the damage output is to be kept low. This allows the many-small-attacks concept to actually function as intended, and gives monk a nice little extra trick to help them stay useful in a fight.
Existing ki-strike damage bypass is removed with these fixes. We crunched numbers in another thread, and found a monk built with these fixes has similar to-hit numbers to a non-smiting paladin, but only between 60%-70% of the DPR. Odds of getting a stunning fist were good but far from automatic - it just about made up for the lack of damage.
However, I'm more concerned about how this could be exploited by dipping levels of monk and then using the effects for other classes. I don't think anything exists that can't already be exploited by Guided Hand or several other feats, but I'm not the world's greatest optimizer.
Our party just met a version of the Deck of Many Things, and one PC ended up a werebear. As I have all the PCs on HeroLab, I'm looking for a way of applying the werebear template to him. Now I know I may have to get an extra supplement, but I don;t know if I'll need the Advanced Race Guide or the Bestiaries for HeroLab to get this option, if I can at all. Can anyone help?
My Mystic Monk build attracted a lot of attention in another thread some time back, but I abandoned work on it at the time as Paizo said that they were not looking at a complete restructuring but just tweaks. Recently I blew the dust off it and rebuilt it somewhat. It is rather different from the typical monk in essence but not in feel, I think. A lot of monk archetypes can be restructured and made just from this base class, which I like a lot. I've included an archetype not many people would associate with the monk just as an example, I'll work on more as time goes on.
For example, Qingong Monk can simply replace the existing mystic powers with those of their own selection. Sohei and Zen Archer primarily just need the flurry options available at 1st level with non-monk weapons.
Anyway, her is is: The Mystic Monk
I had an idea for something to expand Combat Expertise that draws on some personal experience with martial arts & sword fencing, where when pressed you can either fall back from an attack, yielding ground, or dart inside it to avoid the force of a swing.
How does this sound:
Is it me, or does this monk archetype basically not deliver? Their ability to heal is extremely limited, and to do so they lose some of their better abilities. They jump from healing a few hit points to suddenly raising the dead...
It just doesn't do it for me. So I drew up an alternative...
I've borrowed the paladin's lay-on-hands and mercy features to make them able to function as the party healer. Ki is going to be thin on the ground, but the monk can use vows to offset this.
Recently perusing the threads, I had an idea for an item that might make up the difference for the poor old monk, and might not annoy the devs by replacing the amulet of mighty fists.
Advantages: This item helps the monk in the area where he struggles, actually delivering accurate strikes and getting through DR. It can stack with the amulet of mighty fists to provide the equivelant of up to a +10 weapon (almost) at high level, at the same cost as a +10 weapon.It does not replace the AoMF, so no items are made redundant, but it is a cheaper option than the AoMF in providing the monk an enhancement bonus on a tighter budget.
It's also a useful weapon for the 'multi-weapon fighter' concept that some have lamented will not work in Pathfinder. Rather than buying half-a-dozen magic weapons, buy one ring, then get much cheaper magic weapons and still be effective with them.
It's a dandy item for a paladin with a weapon bond, because the weapon itself does not then need any enhancement: your paladin can continue using his father's masterwork sword all the way through to the highest level without enchanting or upgrading it - divine bond for properties, ring for enhancement.
Disadvantages: This item does not provide any enhancement bonus to damage. For the monk this is not a bad thing, their damage scales regardless. It also means it does not replace the need for magic enhancement on weapons themselves.
Questions for the forum: Should this item enhance natural weapons as well? My instinct was not, the druid and his animal companion have greater magic fang, they do not need this, and nor does the dragon or other monsters. Any other thoughts/feelings?
There is a debate on anothere thread about whether it is legal for a wizard to cast project image and then cast ethereal jaunt to place oneself on the ethereal plane without breaking the link to the projected image.
The important line in project image is this one:
Now the argument that ethereal jaunt is legal stems from the fact it is not a transportation spell but a transformation spell. Most importantly:
Now here is the argument: Does becoming ethereal and the resulting alteration in your senses disrupt the link to the projected image, or not? There are those that argue this is legal, and a wizard can use project image and then become ethereal and still attack material foes through the projected image. There are others that say that clearly, although project image is not specifically mentioned, it breaks RAI and RAW in that you are shifting to another plane, and that the momentary shift in senses is indeed that mentioned that should disrupt the project image spell.
This thread is for the suggested changes to the monk to make it, well, do what it's meant to do, really, and not struggle to do anything at all but make saves and run away.
I'll open the batting with my own ideas.
This version of the monk class is designed to correct some perceived flaws with the monk class as it currently stands. The monk is a combat class that struggles to inflict significant damage on its targets – or indeed, to hit them with its primary offensive feature, the flurry-of-blows with an unarmed strike. The monk has other problems, too: the monk’s high mobility is at odds with the flurry-of-blows class feature, making the custom skirmisher class a poor skirmisher; while their multi-attribute-dependency makes them famously poor in any one area.
Because I am looking at a fix to the existing monk, rather than rebuilding the class, any class features I do not mention are unchanged.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Monks are proficient with the club, crossbow (light or heavy), dagger, handaxe, javelin, kama, nunchaku, quarterstaff, sai, shortspear, short sword, shuriken, siangham, sling, and spear, and with any weapon with ‘monk’ in its description.
I’ve added the clause that monks are proficient with any monk weapon. It’s a no-brainer, most monk weapons are not worth taking a feat to use.
Flurry of Blows (Ex): Starting at 1st level, a monk can make a flurry of blows as a full-attack action. When doing so he may make one additional attack using any combination of unarmed strikes or attacks with a special monk weapon (kama, nunchaku, quarterstaff, sai, shuriken, and siangham) at the same number and penalty as if using the Two-Weapon Fighting feat (even if the monk does not meet the prerequisites for the feat), but without restriction on which weapons can be used in what order, and all monk weapons counted as light weapons. If the monk wishes to use the same weapon for all attacks, they may do so. For the purpose of these attacks, the monk’s base attack bonus is equal to his monk level less the penalty for Two Weapon Fighting. For all other purposes, such as qualifying for a feat or a prestige class, the monk uses his normal base attack bonus.
Save for the Power Attack clause, this is identical to the flurry-of-blows as used since Pathfinder’s inception by the majority of players. Two-handed monk users need not worry, however, just keep reading.
Monk Weapon Training: At 1st level, monks have training to maximize their effectiveness with monk weapons. The monk can be treated as having the Weapon Finesse feat when wielding any monk weapon to which the feat is applied, including the monk’s unarmed strike.
This feature is designed to reduce MAD, by reducing requirements on strength without imposing a crippling feat-tax. It also encourages the monk away from high strength while not prohibiting it – the traditional Shoalin priest was a small, lightly built man, not a hulking brick outhouse.
Unarmed Strike: At 1st level, a monk gains Improved Unarmed Strike as a bonus feat. A monk’s attacks may be with fist, elbows, knees, and feet. This means that a monk may make unarmed strikes with his hands full. There is no such thing as an off-hand attack for a monk striking unarmed. A monk may thus apply his full Strength bonus on damage rolls for all his unarmed strikes.
This may appear counter-intuitive, but the reason for having such a low and non-rising base damage will become clear below.
Monk Precision: At 2nd level, the monk gains a +1 competence bonus to damage when using their unarmed strike or a monk weapon. Every four levels this bonus increases by another +1, to +5 at 18th level.
This is the first off-set to monk’s low damage output, armed or unarmed; by making it a competence bonus it doesn’t stack with a number of buffs, off-setting its usefulness in all situations. The monk is supposed to be a self-sufficient class, and this way he becomes his own buffer.
Maneuver Training (Ex): At 3rd level, a monk uses his monk level in place of his base attack bonus when calculating his Combat Maneuver Bonus. Base attack bonuses granted from other classes are unaffected and are added normally. In addition, the monk may make maneuvers as if possessing the Agile Maneuvers feat if they do so unarmed, or with a monk weapon, if they wish.
Again, reducing dependence on high strength scores and making the ‘traditional’ monk more viable.
Ki Pool (Su): At 4th level, a monk gains a pool of ki points, supernatural energy he can use to accomplish amazing feats. The number of points in a monk’s ki pool is equal to 1/2 his monk level + his Wisdom modifier. As long as he has at least 1 point in his ki pool, he can make a ki strike with his unarmed attack or a ki focus weapon. At 4th level, ki strike gains a +1 enhancement bonus to hit and damage, treated as magic weapons for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction. ki strike improves with the character’s monk level; ever four additional levels the ki strike increases by +1, to a maximum of +5 at 20th level. This enhancement bonus overcomes damage resistance as if it were a magic weapon, but will not stack with a magic weapon’s own enhancement bonus if a ki focus weapon is used – only the higher of the two enhancements will be used. At 8th level it also bypasses five points of hardness when damaging objects, and this increases by five points every four levels to 20 points of hardness at 20th level.
The ‘short flurry’ is the real ace-in-the-hole, it allows the monk to actually move and attack effectively. The enhancement bonus gets around the monk’s major problem of gaining enhancement to the unarmed strike. Combined with the Monk’s precision you gain a total +5 bonus to hit +10 bonus to damage when using your unarmed strike – and 1d6+10 damage isn’t that much more dangerous than 2d10 damage, especially when you consider it can get no further magical enhancement. It makes the amulet of mighty fists the gravy, not the main course, of the monk’s attacks. When applied to weapons the fact that the enhancement bonus only works with a ki-focus weapon and does not stack with it helps cap off the damage before it threatens the fighter’s top-spot.
At 20th level, a TWF fighter will have +6 to hit from feats and weapon training, with +5 from the weapon for +11 in total. To damage they will have +8 from feats and weapon training and +5 from the weapon, for +11/+13.
There is a greater issue with two-handed weapons, in that the monk can flurry with them. However, the monk’s lack of Power Attack enhancement tells against them, as do the poorer nature of monk weapons with which they can flurry. It’s important to remember that +1 to hit is worth +2 to damage in these comparisons.
At 20th level a fighter will have the same bonuses above, with -6 to hit +18 to damage. The monk will have -5 to hit and +10 to damage from power attack, their effective BAB being two points below the fighter’s. The fighter is therefore at +5 to hit +31 to damage with less attacks, the monk at +1 to hit and +20 to damage. Bear in mind, the fighter is also likely to have higher strength which will also increase their damage potential still further, they will achieve more hits and their weapons have better threat ranges.
The result of these changes is that while the monk is now in the same ball-park as the fighter, he’s not able to approach the fighter’s top-spot. In addition to this, his AC might be comparable (if he throws most of his resources into it) but his hit points are likely to be worse, and at high level hits are inevitable. The fighter is still better at fighting, but the monk is now able to fulfill his stated role of hitting hard and fast.
Addressing problems with Monks
The monk is a good class, let me make that clear at the outset, but it is a class that suffers from some fundamental problems. While monks can be effective, they have real problems performing in some arenas. Fundamentally, the monk is a combat class that has major problems dealing damage to foes at the mid-to-high range of the CR spectrum. They are also MAD classes, requiring several good ability scores to work effectively.
There have been a lot of suggestions for ‘fixing’ monks, such as arminas’ monk here. However, they all seem to require re-writing the class in some way. I can’t see this happening for a long time yet, so when DeathQuaker pointed out the issues the monk faces I came up with easily implementable ideas based on some suggestions from Skull.
Leaving aside the currently undecided matter of exactly how flurry-of-blows works, they can be summed up as follows:
At mid-level and onwards, monks have difficulty hitting and damaging many CR-equivalent foes. The issue is due to a combination of factors:
Now I don’t think we can fix all of these issues, and as the monk has a lot of other abilities I am not entirely sure that we should want to fix them all either. That said, there is a lot we can do to bring the monk up some so that they can be effective in combat while still leaving the dedicated combat classes ahead of the curve. Here are some ideas for ‘fixes’ in the form of feats and items that can make the monk better without unbalancing the game in their favor.
Ki Focused Strike
To be sure, the ki strike (adamantine) sort of goes here, but doesn’t at the same time. By requiring ki and focusing on DR rather than hardness, this is not the same ability. Instead the monk is attuning the ki to the creature’s vulnerabilities. Ki is a shallow resource, and this ability addresses one of the monk’s major disadvantages, particularly with unarmed strike, as the AoMF does not bypass any DR.
Improved Ki Focused Strike
Some martial arts masters are reputed to be able to burst internal organs by focusing ki to flow past the defenses of the target and into their bodies. This simulates that, allowing the monk to ‘get in a good one’ on a target. However, as noted ki is a limited resource. A wise monk will save this for very high AC foes they would otherwise have problems striking.
Ringing the Gong
An extension on the theme above, this isn’t really here to address a flaw so much as to complete the set.
Enhanced Ki Strike
This addresses the monks major issue of hitting the target at all. It does not replace or stack with magical enhancements, as it is only an ehancement bonus to hit, but it does help close the gap with the combat classes using magic weapons. It could be combined with the AoMF using the latter to supply weapon properties rather than enhancements to hit if so desired.
Gloves & Tabi of Striking
This item is not going to replace the AoMF – for one thing, while half the price it takes up two body slots, not inappropriate for an item enhancing the whole body. For another, it does not enhance natural weapons, only unarmed strikes.
Greater Ki Focus: As ki focus, a monk with these weapons can apply their ki abilities that they would normally focus through an unarmed strike through a weapon with this quality. Furthermore, the monk may substitute their unarmed strike damage for the damage dice of the weapon if they wish. This weapon quality is equivalent to a +2 bonus.
This is a biggee, it allows the monk to use a weapon AND get the advantage of their unarmed strike damage. On the flip side, they lose out on +2 worth of enhancements. That can be worth +2d6 damage, which makes the replacement of 1d6 with 2d10 at level 20 a lot more palatable. The biggest advantage of this feature is that a weapon can have a higher threat range than an unarmed strike, although using such a weapon usually requires another feat from the monk for the proficiency…
I need a system to generate me spell books and/or lists for my players, who are all largely new to the game. I have found some on-line generators, but I'd rather have a generator that gives me a list or spells with a short description that I can store, update and print off for them, rather than mess about with spell-cards for each and every player.
I've used PCGen, but it doesn't seem to have the latest content from Paizo. I've looked at HeroLab, and it seems a much slicker program, but I get the feeling it assumes every player is updating and working on their own character sheets when I need something I can print off and hand out.
Does anyone know of a suitable system?
OK, here is an idea I was working with and posted in another thread, but I'd like to paste it here for ideas and feedback to. I started with the Cavelier as a base, but it just wasn't flexible enough for the archetypes I wanted, it was too tightly focussed.
So I started on a 'nobleman' class that would be flexible, but that name seemed inappropriate given that not all of the styles were appropriate for the 'gentleman' and yet some definitely were. So I settled on the name, 'Elite' to describe the focussed styles of the class.
This is far from complete, I have basic ideas and concepts down, but have not worked out the details of many class abilities. I'm posting it up here for people to comment on the basic structure of the class and to make suggestions on abilities.
I want to keep this class with clear specialisations and I want to avoid magic - this is a spell-free class! so ... thoughts, anyone?
Here's an idea I am using in my games now. I like traits, and I think they have a place as more than just background. After all, 'background' is 'everything that has happened before' and that includes adventuring career. So rather than starting with one or two, I start PCs with one and then allow them to add one after each significant 'chapter' in the adventure (like each module in an adventure path). This represents personal and background development, much like ordinary experience gains, but can be used to add flavour or other hooks to the character. Players are encouraged to select for flavour rather than effect.
Chapter 1: Burnt Offerings
Sandpoint is a small town sitting on the Varisian coast within the influence of the city of Magnimar. Lying on the overland North-South trade route it sees many visitors, and has it’s own industry in the lumbar mill, glassworks and a shipyard in it’s sheltered harbour. The town also sports a small dojo, a school, a theatre, and under construction an impressive cathedral. It is a bastion of civilization on the wild coast amid the crumbling ruins of an ancient time: ‘Old Light’ is the ruined tower from a time out of legend, the stump of which only hints at a former height far in excess of any building in the town today.
Newcomers to the town recently are struck by the industry and optimism in the citizens. The preparations are well underway for the upcoming consecration of the cathedral and the festival surrounding it.
A cloud seems to be lifting from the town at last. Five years ago was ‘the late unpleasantness’ – when a serial killer stalked the streets and brutally murdered many citizens before he was tracked down. Further tragedy came after his death when the town’s church was burned down in a terrible accident, killing the resident priest of Desna and his young ward.
The Swallowtail Festival
It is the first day of Autumn, cool and crisp but sunny and clear. As the sun burns off the morning mist the people are out and working hard preparing for the festival, setting up tables and stalls, preparing food and laying out their wares. Relieved of school children scamper around underfoot and generally get their best clothes in danger of becoming dirty as they alternately help out or get underfoot. Even the towns older and grumpier citizens are dignified and if not smiling, at least not complaining.
Amid the town are many visitors: some Varisians have come, for the festival is sacred to Desna, their patron, and others for the festivities, and others are merely passing through along the coast road.
All of you are variously present at the start of the day …
... and there's no-one around to see it, does he change alignment?
More seriously, there is an issue about paladins and falling, and what constitutes an act that would make him 'fall'. So rather than have a thread arguing about the particulars of a given situation, how about a thread that compiles some genuine opinions about whether a paladin should fall or not for a given action.
So can people give their opinions, please ...
On what a paladin can definitely do.
On what a paladin can definitely not do.
On what a paladin might do that can be atoned for.
And on what areas in between are grey areas and should be looked at closely.
Seeing as we now have numbers and people are generating character ideas, we'll migrate the thread here.
For character creation, use 25 point buy. APG stuff is OK, as is any of the updated beta from Dreamscarred Press save for the soulknife, which is still a work in progress. I won't rule out other sources, but please ask me first.
2 traits per character, with the following psionic traits also available:
Clairsentient Talent: If you have psionic focus, you can be treated as having detect psionics running, but only effective in the space you occupy. This is a psi-like ability, and you must concentrate on it for a round to glean any more meaningful information than a 'hunch'.
Mental Discipline: you have had some basic training in mental control. Autohypnosis is always considered a class skill for you, and you get a +1 trait bonus to your score in the skill.
Metacreative Talent: While you maintain psionic focus you can manifest small shards of crystal as a swift action that last for one round. These can be used like shuriken or small knives if you use them immediately (you are proficient in their use; 1d2 slashing damage, range 10 feet).
Perceptive Talent: While maintaining psionic focus you are more aware on a subliminal level of the thoughts and intentions of those around you. You gain a +1 bonus on initiative and on Perception checks while you are psionically focused.
Psigifted: You have an affinity for one particular power from those that you know, and your effective manifester level for that psionic power increases by 1. Once this power is selected it cannot be changed.
Psionic Knack: You are psionically gifted, your psionic manifester level is considered to be two higher than it is, up to a limit of your hit dice.
Psionic Power Focus: Pick a first level power you know with an ability you can use while psionically focused. You are always treated as being psionically focused for this purpose, even if you are not.
Psionic Theory: You have studied psionics deeply, gain a +2 bonus to Spellcraft checks when analyzing psionic powers or items.
Psychokinetic Talent: If you have the ability to gain psionic focus, you can expend it to manifest far hand as a psi-like ability for one round, as a swift action, with a range of ten feet and able to move a maximum weight of 1 lb. If you have psionic power points, you may expend one to extend the duration of this psi-like ability by one round.
Psychoportive Talent: if you have the ability to gain psionic focus, you can expend it as an immediate action to make a five-foot step. You may do this even if you have already moved in the round in question, and doing so does not prevent further movement in this round.
Telepathic Talent: If you can gain psionic focus, you can expend it to gain a +2 bonus against any attempt to influence your mind by enchantment or telepathy.
I'm going to need a little time to rework a few encounters for a party this big, so please feel free to take your time!
I've been involved in Dreamscarred Press's work on updating 3.5 psionics to Pathfinder standard, and their work has come on very nicely, to the state where I'm looking to help with some play-testing.
I'd like to run a PbP game of Rise of the Runelords (as it's an AP I have and it's a good standard to run against) for a party that includes (but does not have to consist exclusively of) psionic characters using the beta-releases from Dreamscarred's site. Currently they have everything in beta to my satisfaction except the soulknife, for which a beta-2 is expected shortly.
More information will follow, including a little history on where such psionics could fit in the Golarian cosmology, but who's interested?
OK, well the last thread I started has kind of imploded now, as was inevitable I suppose, but it gave a LOT of good information all the same. So again, another 'market research' thread here, only this time I want to know what people LIKE about the 3.5 psionics system that they would like to see maintained in a Pathfinder version.
I know that there are some things it may not be possible to incorporate, but all the same there are sacred cows to some of us that we want to see if we can. Hence I'd like for people to NOT come onto this thread saying "You cannot have that in Pathfinder psionics!" - this thread is asking people for their wish-lists, not their demands or expectations.
For example, I have three items on my list:
1 - Backward compatibility: I have existing psionic characters, some in Pathfinder games, that I want to update if any rules come out, and any new rules would have to fulfil the backward compatibility goal of Pathfinder to 3.5 for that to happen.
2 - Power Points: I know these are a contentious issue, but I absolutely love the way the power point system works and synergises with what I perceive as the basic concepts of the system.
3 - Flexible Powers: In line with the power points, the fact that powers are more flexible, but you get less of them, is a concept that I really like.
I was thinking about how on occasion you just have a run of luck that seems to go right for doing one particular thing, and how you could reward that kind of fluky-ness. It’s not the sort of thing you would spend a feat on, but at the same time you want to have something that will effect the game and make clear the effect that seemingly random events can have.
For example, a character in a game at the moment has an unerring run of luck with their slingshot. I didn’t even want to take the sling as a weapon, but I needed a missile weapon and to keep the weight down, so I took it at first level, intending to drop it pretty much as soon as I got my hands on a crossbow.
Except that … my first use of it in difficult conditions was a critical hit. In fact, I had to get it out again when the party wizard ran out of spells and I gave them my crossbow. I kept hitting and hitting well with it. The dice loved that slingshot, and I wanted a reason to keep using it after a while.
Wouldn’t it be an interesting twist if characters could gain a new trait, say every four levels, that could reflect their happenstance development over the course of the last four levels?
Just an idea to chuck out there …
This is a question aimed at those who do not like the 3.5-type psionics system. I'm not looking to start a flame war or anything, I just genuinely want to get an idea of the reasons why some DMs and players do not like that system from those people. So please, no psionics-lovers posting their conjectures here or trying to correct 'misunderstandings' about their beloved systems (I'm a lover of the psionics system myself).
I just want to know what the obstacles are to a Pathfinder psionics project from those that wouldn't want to see an upgrade of the OGL psionics system.
Just reading through the APG and some of the details on the Free Hand Fighter variant (something I like conceptually) jumped out at me: Singleton is gained at level 5 instead of Weapon Training, and grants a +1 on attacks and damage just like Weapon Training does. However, Weapon Training scales up at 9th, 13th and 17th levels, but it does not state that Singleton does this (not asking if he gains weapon training at these levels, just if the original ability scales as the Weapon Training you took your first benefit with does). If it does, the FHF become very viable, if it doesn't the FHF ... doesn't cut it. Losing that potential damage and chance to hit increments alone is enough to make one think twice.
A question: In Pathfinder, the grappled condition does not deny the dexterity bonus to a person grappled any more, instead it applies a -4 to their dexterity.
However, it is unclear if this makes the grappled person vulnerable to sneak attacks, particularly from their grappler. It can be argued that while they are not denied their dexterity bonus, they still cannot defend themselves adequately, much as a person who is flanked does not lose his Dex bonus but is still vulnerable to sneak attack.
So is someone with the grappled condition vulnerable to sneak attack?
I had it pointed out to me that Freedom of Movement prevents you being swallowed whole, as you have to be successfully grappled first before you can be swallowed. Now while technically correct, it occurs to me that if the bite hits, you might just be easier to swallow as you are skewered on the teeth.
How do these interact? Is the RAW correct and you effectively cannot be swallowed? And would you be an instant constipation cure if you were?
I'm currently trying to make a finesse-based fighter work in a game, and was looking at ways to up the damage potential. Unfortunately there isn't much - you can take the combat expertise based feats, but when it comes to actually sticking someone where it hurts, there aren't many options.
Now Power Attack works OK for the heavy smiters, and if you attack at range, Deadly Aim works too, and I was thinking about adding a feat to apply extra damage to a finesseable weapon along the same principal when I thought, "hang on, if you can aim an arrow to do more damage, surely you can aim a rapier for more damage?"
So here's a question for you all:
Should Deadly Aim apply to finesseable weapons? (not does it, because as written it doesn't, I know that and don't need to be told it, but should it)
I currently play with the iWARPUK group in Gloucester, but in mid-November I will be moving to Glossop, Derbyshire. If anyone games or knows of groups in the vicinity of Glossop or Manchester I would be very grateful ...
I play mainly D&D3.5/Pathfinder, but will cheerfully join in most games! I know there's a group that meets in Stockport, and I'm looking for others too ...
In preparation for my next campaign, for which I intend to use Pathfinder, and which I intend to set in Eberron, I was considering reworking the Eberron races (which were pretty well balanced with 3.5, making them sub-standard in Pathfinder).
The only real detail from Eberron that needs updating are the new races: Kalashtar, Warforged, Shifters and Changelings. The main factors to change are their stat adjustments and their favoured classes; in the case of Pathfinder all races have on average an extra +2 bonus to a stat, and two or more favoured classes. Some of the Eberron classes had more penalties than bonuses; this was due to their having abilities that compensated – warforged had their natural armour, their fortification and their immunities; shifters had their shifting ability. This is still reflected bellow, shifters and warforged come out a net 2 points bellow other races once all penalties and bonuses are calculated.
• Changelings are experts at disseminating, at appearing to be one thing or another. They are masters of the art of being personable. Hence they gain a +2 bonus to Charisma.
• The Kalashtar are gestalt beings, with an intense spiritual connection to their host spirits. At the same time, Kalashtar were at one time human. Kalashtar gain a +2 bonus on any mental ability score of their choice – intelligence, wisdom or charisma.
• The shifter race are close to their animal side, and often seek the direct solution to any problem they encounter. Shifters gain a +2 bonus to Dexterity, and a -2 penalty to intelligence. They no longer take a penalty to charisma.
• The warforged are made for battle, not cogitation. They gain a +2 bonus to strength and constitution, and a -2 penalty to wisdom and charisma.