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Old Marm

DeathQuaker's page

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8. RPG Superstar 6 Season Star Voter, 7 Season Star Voter, 8 Season Star Voter. Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber. 6,503 posts (10,450 including aliases). 5 reviews. 5 lists. 1 wishlist. 17 aliases.


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RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Sharoth wrote:
So what use ARE settlements? They are a huge sink of money and materials. What does the player get out of them other than the satisfaction of building them up?

Beyond being a place where you have guaranteed friendlies where you can keep your stuff (including your companions for easy finding):

- You can farm food, water, and random supplies for free. I don't just mean by manually harvesting plants: any surplus your settlement produces gets stored in your workshop's inventory. So for example, I have a lot of food planted at Sanctuary, a water purifier, and a scavenging station. When I go to Sanctuary after awhile and check the workshop's inventory, I find extra food, purified water, and other things like ammunition and other supplies stored there that I didn't put there. While it's not a massive boon, it's nice and sometimes it's helped me restock on materials for recipes particularly.

- If you have the level 2 Local Leadership perk (and sometimes other pre-requisite perks) you can build shops. Over time they carry pretty decent inventory. The more settlements you have, the less far you have to schlep to sell off your gear and restock on ammo and crucial items.

- Place to build crafting benches. Moreover, if you establish supply lines, settlements share workshop inventory, so not only can you raid all of your settlements for extra food and water per above, but it also means you have access to all your spare mods and supplies for modding your equipment from any settlement--reduced schlepping and weighing yourself down.

- Traveling merchants visit your settlements, like Stockton and Trashcan Carla. While you can also just randomly run into these folks on the road, it's nice, again, to have a guaranteed safe spot where you can deal with them. They can carry some very nice stuff, including some unique gear.

- Oddly, the occasional raider or super mutant attack is "useful" in that basically creatures that tend to carry relatively decent loot spawn in an easily defensible space.

- I haven't tested this yet, but I kind of assume that the stronger and better your settlements are, the more support you can get from the Minutemen if you need it. I could be wrong though.

Now, a lot of this of course is dependent upon your interests in building up settlement-related perks. If you're not into tht kind of stuff, probably best to keep Red Rocket as a homebase for modding your weapons and armor and storing your power armor, and ignore the rest of it. A lot of it is indeed building stuff for the sake of it, so it isn't for everyone.

ETA: Also, what Caineach said.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

If you take the Cha perk that makes companions tougher, there's a level where you can't hurt them.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Caineach wrote:
why is the settlement item cap so low?

If I am understanding you correctly, I believe it counts scrappable items against your limit, so if you don't have a lot of room to build stuff, make sure you've gone through an area and scrapped all the trees, barrels, broken fences, etc. That should free up some space (and give you lots of wood and steel to boot).

Thanks for the comment reply about power, too. I thought if you put a connector in the right "radius" it would extend the power radius more, but I guess I have to take a different approach. I might try some pylons, which I think have a wider radius than the connectors.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Scythia wrote:
Otherwhere wrote:

I wish they had done the settlement building more like Skyrim, which was far easier to handle. Yes, I appreciate the customization this offers, but I hate micromanaging and would love to have a "steward" (robot, civil engineer) who could carry on with building while I am off adventuring!

I'm on the Xbox One and I don't see how to: rotate structures; lift of slide structures; etc. There's zero guidance and I have to keep going to the Internet to look thing up!

In the PS4 version, you can use the triggers to rotate a selected item in build mode, I'd imagine The X one is the same.

And on PC you use right and left mouse buttons to rotate items. You can only spin things around on a horizontal axis (you can't flip something upside down for example).

I really, really, really hope Bethesda patches the crafting UI so that it's more apparent what to do. And maybe adds in an optional, more robust crafting tutorial. I desperately need some guidance on setting up power -- I've gotten that I build a generator, attach a wire with the space bar, and click on what's white to attach it. But get more complex than that... I'm trying to light a house, for example. I know that if I build a generator outside, I can attach a wall connector to the wall of the house, and draw a line from the generator to the wall connector, it brings power into the house. If, say, I put a lightbulb in the interior near where the generator wire is coming in, the lightbulb should light up.

But beyond that, it is not clear about how the power travels through walls. For example, I did the above: put a lightbulb in a room, then went outside, set up a generator, and attached a wall connector to the house exterior near the room where I put the light bulb. And boom, draw wire from generator to connector--light bulb turns on. Yay! But I also built a terminal in that room, which needs to be powered. It needs a line directly attached to it. So I attach a wall connector ON THE SAME WALL (but interior rather than exterior) and attach a wire from it to the terminal. Terminal isn't receiving power. Why? My generator puts out 5 power, and all it's otherwise powering is a lightbulb. How does power flow through the house? Why does the ceiling fan in the kitchen work on the same power system but not the terminal or a lightbulb in the hallway? None of this is apparent.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

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Alex Martin wrote:

While I wouldn't mind Obsidian doing more on Fallout, I'd prefer they not muck up the mythology being told on the East Coast by Bethesda. Having played all the Fallout games (and DLC's), I kind of like the degree of difference you see - it gives the feeling of a distinct world despite the common apocalypse and technology.

Obsidian has crafted the Fallout history of the western states; Bethesda has created it's own environment on the east coast. Each is distinct and I'm not sure Obsidian can play in that sandbox without making their adjustments to the game. I'd rather see something that explores something like The Pitt, than another ramble into the politics of the wasteland aka New Vegas of the East.

That's a rather fascinating opinion to read, given that usually Bethesda is accused of ruining the mythology established by Black Isle/Obsidian in Fallout, Fallout 2, and New Vegas, rather than the other way around. For example, a lot of people didn't like the BOS civil war, or the recreation of the super mutants (the super mutants were supposed to be relatively unique creations of the Master out in the West, and some don't like how the East Coast mutants were shoehorn-created by the Vault 87 FEV). (I don't care about either, personally, just noting that point of view is out there.) A lot of folks felt in Fallout 3 in particular Bethesda just raided the West Coast mythology and threw entities that largely "should" have had prominent West Coast presences only (the Enclave (which makes sense it has an East Coast faction, but they were introduced in Fallout 2), the Brotherhood, the Super mutants, even the ghouls in spite of those simply being common radiation mutants) rather than work harder on developing their own factions. And while I'm again, fine with the Capital Wasteland story, I AM glad Bethesda seemed to take that to heart and developed more prominent local factions in Fallout 4, e.g., the Minutemen, the Railroad, and the Institute.

I don't agree or disagree with you, that's just the first time I've seen someone frame that kind of thought in that way, and find it interesting enough to point out.

That said, yes, as Werthead said, I believe just as Obsidian is in California and Bethesda is in the DC metro area, they plan largely to develop areas on "their" respective coasts. I further don't see any reason WHY Obsidian would feel the need or desire to work with the local factions, etc. that Bethesda has developed.

Now, I don't know who gets dibs on, say, the midwest. :)

I still would like a real collaboration--but the point of collaboration of course is that since they'd be working TOGETHER, there would be no unintentional toe-stepping.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Claxon wrote:
DeathQuaker wrote:

Well, to be fair, I wouldn't say "got them wrong." They were well aware they were changing things and did so quite intentionally. Lyons' chapter was essentially a rogue chapter that caused a civil war, which was made clear in Fallout 3... at least if you paid attention. There's several places that note he is doing something different from what the Brotherhood usually did. There were also the "rebel" BoS in Fallout 3 who would shake you down for tech--they represented the faction as they traditionally were.

The problem was that since Fallout 3 was the introduction for many to the world of Fallout, the more "helpful" BoS was imprinted upon them as the way the BoS "should" be, even though, again, the narrative notes Lyons caused a civil war and was in fact doing things differently.

** spoiler omitted **

I haven't played through a lot of the BOS plot in Fallout 4 yet, but my sense is that Lyons and his daughter both died while Arthur was still relatively young, and those with other ideals got a hold of Maxson to mold him into the way he is now. Maybe the Circle of Steel even got involved (total guess on my part, though).

As for how they were in F:NV, it depends a LOT on how you work with them--the outcome you describe is ONLY if you side with NCR, convince them not to destroy the Brotherhood, get high reputation with the Brotherhood, and keep the current Elder in charge (rather than encourage that one Paladin to mutiny). Any choice variations outside that result in that chapter of the Brotherhood either being tyrannical... or utterly destroyed. Notably, if you fight for an independent New Vegas, even if you are in good with the Brotherhood and have good rep etc., they start bullying travelers because outside of the NCR's purview, they feel they can get away with it. In other words, beyond the Courier's minimal influence, the only reason the Brotherhood end up behaving is because they're afraid of the NCR and know they are only allowed to exist at the NCR's discretion.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Scythia wrote:
Werthead wrote:

Based on Bethesda's release schedule and alternating game pattern, they've probably already begun initial design work on ELDER SCROLLS VI. I also wouldn't be surprised if they've contracted Obsidian for a FALLOUT follow-up game.

Sharoth wrote:

BoS thoughts.

** spoiler omitted **

Yes, and this is the correct characterisation of the Brotherhood of Steel. FALLOUT 3 got them rather wrong.

** spoiler omitted **

Given how they shorted Obsidian on bonuses based on Metacritic ratings for FNV, I doubt that's a partnership that will be renewed.

Although I admit, I do wish they'd farm the dlc out to Obsidian. :P

According to this article, at least JE Sawyer says he'd be open to doing another Fallout game. Article was a year ago, but that still was well after the Metacritic debacle. Whether as a company they'd agree to it vs. Sawyer's willingness is questioned... though it would be awesome if, say, Bethesda hired some of the Obsidian folks as consultants. Bethesda does broad but shallow, Obsidian does narrower but deep, the two properly working together could produce some awesome things. They are physically on opposite coasts but in this day and age that's probably minimal issue.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Well, to be fair, I wouldn't say "got them wrong." They were well aware they were changing things and did so quite intentionally. Lyons' chapter was essentially a rogue chapter that caused a civil war, which was made clear in Fallout 3... at least if you paid attention. There's several places that note he is doing something different from what the Brotherhood usually did. There were also the "rebel" BoS in Fallout 3 who would shake you down for tech--they represented the faction as they traditionally were.

The problem was that since Fallout 3 was the introduction for many to the world of Fallout, the more "helpful" BoS was imprinted upon them as the way the BoS "should" be, even though, again, the narrative notes Lyons caused a civil war and was in fact doing things differently.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Scythia wrote:
Kevin Mack wrote:
So new at fallout games and may have given my character an addiction to jet how does one go about curing themself of it?

In previous games, you went to a doctor to get cured.

I've also seen a chem called "Addictol" on some vendors, but I don't know if it cures addiction (which it says), or just treats withdraw.

In previous games you took Fixer, which would cure you, but itself had side effects for a few minutes (occasional blurred vision which eventually cleared).

Addictol seems to fully cure without consequences which actually kind of bugs me. I liked that they made dealing with the addiction without a doctor's help a little harder (and even then it's not like the effects of fixer lasted very long).

There's also an item called "Refreshing beverage" that you can brew that basically is a panacea that amongst other things cures addiction. I think there's a food item that does too but I don't remember what it is--it's one of the meat-based items you can prepare at a crafting station. Look at the food items you can craft because many of them do have special effects beyond removing rads from food and making them heal you more---some of them grant special benefits, e.g., IIRC off the top of my head, yao guai ribs gives you a 15 damage resistance (useful when I suddenly found myself rather close to several super mutants), roasted radscorpion gives you a small amount of energy resistance, and mirelurk cakes can let you breathe underwater.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

In settlements, you can also move items in workshop mode. This is helpful if you're trying to do something like pick up a chair and put it upright, or put a bottle of Nuka-Cola on a table, which the free-grab action doesn't manage very well.

Outside settlements, the grab is useful for getting items out of the way. It works the same way as in Skyrim if you've played that.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

I have some of the fancy Army Transport bags and similar items, such as those Vic linked to, are great...

But on the cheaper side, there are tackleboxes. They aren't foam filled, but it is very easy to adjust the size of the inserts.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

I'm not far enough to pick a faction, but I expect I'll probably stick with the Minutemen. I've spent too long fortifying their settlements to not otherwise invest in them in the long term.

MeanDM, maybe wait awhile? I think the companions walk back the long way to wherever they're going. He might have gotten stuck somewhere.

If you're on PC, you could also try console commands to either move yourself to the companion or them to you.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Can you ask the settler to trade and take it manually off of him?

And next time take the fusion core out of the armor when you park it. :) Not only will companions and settlers sometimes take it if you don't, enemies will also climb in and use it. They're smart that way.

ETA: Also, wanted to correct something I said earlier: I said if you scrap a container, the contents disappear. I was wrong--the contents get transferred to the workshop.

I've also noticed that extra items are showing up in the workshop inventory--I'm not sure, but I think that's how the scavenging table works if you have one set up. So check your workshop inventory from time to time because you may find stuff like food or ammo.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

I wore my power armor into the Glowing Sea, and glad I did.

Otherwise I haven't used it a whole lot, but have noted some areas it would probably be good to help provide protection when I clear it out. (I still appreciate knowing where fusion cores are though). Part of why I haven't used it much is power armor causes a bunch of camera issues in third-person, to the point of it being literally headache inducing. The frustrating but is all they need to do is let you zoom out a little more. First person play makes me ill so I just can't do that save for very brief periods, and so I end up not using it much.

I too am just thinking about console commanding in an improved carrying capacity---I've always been an awful packrat in these games, and the crafting and settlement system is just making it worse. Lately what's weighing me down isn't junk but weapons and armor I want to buff up my settlers with so they can defend themselves. Maybe it's not necessary but I feel like at least my guards need to have better than a pipe pistol and a t-shirt and jeans. I just went through an area where some guys were dropping some pretty decent stuff, and actually slow-walked back to the nearest settlement to distribute it (I had weighed down Piper to her max capacity as well---though she was still urging me to drop some stuff or give it to her. "Lookin' a little wobbly there, Blue, sure you don't want me to carry anything?" I like how willing she is to help out though. :) ).

Have Piper dressed up in a courser's uniform and fedora. She looks pretty badass. Trying to find a hat to dress Codsworth in--I tend to swap between the two depending on where I go. I abandoned Dogmeat first chance I got and kind of hate the way the game wants to push him on you--sorry, want a companion I can talk to.

Annoyance with Dogmeat re: plot:
One of the biggest WTF moments is the part of the main plot where you need to track the guy who shot your spouse, and Nick Valentine suggests "Hey, why don't you use Dogmeat?" -- when I have never traveled with Dogmeat anywhere near Nick and never told him about him. And then when you go outside, Dogmeat is waiting for you as if you telepathically summoned him and he teleported in from Sanctuary Hills. It REALLY breaks the verisimilitude, and smacks strongly of incredibly lazy programming/forced writing. I know to expect stuff like that from Bethesda, but it's bizarre there are side plots that are so much more organically written while the main plot at many steps is just one cheesy, shoehorned event after another.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Doomkitten, echoing the others in that if you want to craft, you want a higher Strength -- also because you want a decent carrying capacity.

If you don't care about crafting or settlements, you're probably fine. Check the perk chart and think about what you want too. If you find certain items in game you can also raise your attributes higher.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Sharoth wrote:
Someone said that this is the DC version of Piper. I agree.

Here's the "super" interesting thing on that comparison: the voice actress who plays Piper is the wife of Brandon Routh, who played Superman in "Superman Returns" (horrible movie IMHO though I thought he was a good pick for the character). So the "Lois Lane" character is Superman's wife....

I think it's coincidence (I certainly hope she was chosen for her acting ability and I enjoy her performance) but I found that amusing.

On the subject of voice acting... different people have opinions on both the voicing of various characters (especially the main char) and the lip sync with the animation.... but I do like that they've worked to give the character models far more obvious emotes. I remember trying to get screencaps of characters in Skyrim and FNV with different looks on their face (for the purposes of a roleplaying journal which is embarrassingly a thing I used to do) and apart from some vaguely different combat faces, I realized they never really had changes in expression. It's nice to see the characters really smile, scowl, frown, etc. Some of it is even possibly overanimated, but given the nature of animation I prefer that to underdone.

OT: on Elder Scrolls, modders are working on a "Skyblivion" which runs Oblivion in the Skyrim engine (you have to own both to play)... certainly what they've come up with looks great. If they finish it should be interesting. As for ES6, yes, I believe they are working on that.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

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Caineach wrote:
At this point I'm level 23 or so. I find a lot of my XP comes from settlement building. Maintaining 10 settlements is hard, but caravans are amazing. I cannot for the life of me find enough oil and fiber optics though.

In the workshop, there's a way to tag resources you're seeking out. Then when you come across items that contain that resource, it'll show a little "magnifying glass" icon by the resource to help make it pop out to you that's something you're looking for.

I've been very lazily selling or scrapping spare weapons rather than swapping out and saving the mods. Gah! So many materials I probably could have saved... ah well. This game really needs a manual and a detailed crafting tutorial.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Scythia wrote:
Threeshades wrote:
So I have the Local Leader 1 perk... can someone tell me how to establish these fabled supply lines I've been promised?

In workshop mode, select a settler (I have found it only works using the generic "settler", not named ones), in addition to the option to assign them to a chore you should now have a "supply line" option (it's R1 on console). If you select that, you'll get a list of other settlements, and you can select which one to establish a line to. The selected settler will then begin making trips between the two settlements.

I armed and armoured mine, and try not to send them across overly dangerous routes.

Oooh, I get it now. Neat! Thanks!

To answer the question upthread, my character is level 17. I feel like I'm about halfway through the main plot but I've been trying to focus on it (when I'm not obsessing over settlement building; my char is like "Save child, build shacks? Save child, build shacks? Hmmm.). And I may be less far along than I think.

Melee specialty (she has killed a supermutant in one blow with a supersledge and a critical hit, although that was an incredibly lucky hit), but can fire a gun decently (but not with massive damage) even though she has low Agility/Perception (need to boost that but have been working on crafting and Charisma perks, along with the melee damage perk). I use VATS when I have trouble seeing a target or when there are a lot of targets and I need the slowed time to get a sense of where everyone is and who is the most likely I should go after... or just when I feel overwhelmed and need a second to think (which is probably often)... though because of low Agil I have limited AP.

Companion Spoiler:
Romanced Piper after impressing her with my congenial personality and superior picklocking skills. Seriously, the "I idolize you" conversation was triggered by picking a lock.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Yay! I just found Wonder Woman! Happy day!

(Lynda Carter voices a character--including singing!)

In sadder news, I think there's a memory leak or something. Game gets really laggy for me if I play awhile.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

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Oh, one more thing if you're really getting into crafting and decorating: if you want to put objects on a shelf or something (like putting your collection of children's blocks on a shelf so you can spell "fart" or whatever) --- drop them on the ground, enter workshop mode, then select the item so you can move it. It will keep the item upright (rotated in the direction you want) and set the object on the shelf neatly. This is a lot easier than trying to use the "pick up" function and trying to wriggle it in the proper position as you had to do in prior Bethesda games, and then throwing it at the ground in frustration.

I don't remember the joke, Sharoth! Probably better that way. :)

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Caineach wrote:
Sharoth wrote:

Originally Posted by Sayt View Post

There's a trick for adhesive. 3xTatos, 3xCorn, 3xMutfruits, and 1xPurified water turns into one vegetable starch at a cooking area. One vegestarch breaks down into five adhesive. Someone point this out was a godsend.

I just figured that this might be useful to someone. I will be using it.

considering the amount of wonderglue and duct tape I have found, I'm not sure why this is necessary. I barely use adhesive

Adhesive is necessary for nearly all weapon, armor, and power armor mods. I've been experimenting with the modification system a lot, so I've been burning through my adhesive. The above info Sharoth gave is really useful for people like me. Thanks, Sharoth.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

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Sharoth wrote:
CapeCodRPGer wrote:
When I was at a armor or weapon work bench when you put stuff in there is an option to scrap for parts.
Cool. I will have to check it out tonight.
Claxon wrote:
If you have the junk in your inventory or in the inventory of the work areas (which is shared between all work areas in a city) then you will automatically break them down when they are needed. I think there might be a manual way to scrap them, but it is unnecessary. Also, be aware that an item that breaks down into multiple things will give you all the parts when broken down automatically, so don't worry. The unused parts for the item your crafting go back into the inventory of the work areas.

Yes, the workshop "auto-scraps" your junk if you store it in the workshop -- plus, when you build stuff from junk, it will show you on the screen what item it is breaking down (e.g., if you are building something that needs adhesive, it will show you that it is using the Wonderglue you stored in the workshop bench).

The manual way to scrap things is if you are IN a settlement area and enter workshop mode, any scrappable item will highlight and give you the option to scrap. THIS IS IN FACT NECESSARY -- well, not necessary I guess if you don't care about the crafting system, BUT is the only way you can scrap items you can't pick up or make use of, like tires, cars, broken furniture, ruined houses, and dead trees. This is the main way you get enough wood and steel for new structures (a dead tree is like 20 wood, a ruined house has a bunch of wood and steel). You will need to do this if you really want to clear space and have a lot of materials for building structures and furniture especially.

All objects that can be scrapped will either highlight as a bright yellow color, or whatever your HUD color is (so I set my HUD to blue so everything highlights in blue, so when I say "blue" here, think of whatever your HUD color is; I think the default is green). If it's BLUE, it is a usable object -- for example if it's a chair, you can keep and use it as a chair. You can scrap these, but you can also select them and place them elsewhere; for example, if a chair that is toppled over on the floor highlights blue, you can select it, and it will upright itself and you can replace it in a more aesthetically pleasing manner. The IMPORTANT THING to note about this is it costs more materials to MAKE an item than you will get breaking it down, so if you want a chair, don't scrap an existing one and then rebuild it, because you'll waste materials. (But if you don't want the chair and would rather scrap it, then do so!).

A yellow object is an item that is broken and/or cannot be moved or made use of. Things like broken furniture, dead trees, and tires highlight in yellow; those can be safely scrapped. However, SOME CONTAINERS highlight as yellow, like suitcases and some safes: they are not "broken," they just can't be moved.

BE SURE BEFORE MOVING OR SCRAPPING ANY CONTAINER (no matter whether it highlights yellow or blue) that you have removed the contents, or else they disappear. I think I've lost some loot because I accidentally scrapped a suitcase or file cabinet before realizing I hadn't looted it first. Workshop mode does NOT tell you if objects are in a container, so leave workshop mode to loot, then go back into workshop mode to scrap.

And on that note, the one thing this game SERIOUSLY lacks in is proper settlement building tutorial. A lot of stuff you have to figure out through experimentation, and the UI is not intuitive. I just tried my hand at building a house and it was weirdly frustrating -- the metal walls include a "corner piece" that doesn't bend in the right direction, and while there is a grid snap system, the snaps can be very fiddly. Trying to figure out how to wire powered items to a generator is also not clear, especially when trying to figure out how to get lights to turn on (hint, you need a wall switch: build the generator, then build a switch, then build the light attached to a nearby wall or ceiling, then go back to the generator, press SPACE (on PC) to bring up a wire, and then drag the wire to the switch and click to attach it. The bulb SHOULD turn on (although sometimes it takes a few seconds for it register).

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

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Paizo Booth Babe, please do not quote me out of context. It's rude.

I said "Titties or Assface." Please give asses their proper due.

(Seriously though, the joke is cute, I see what you were going for, but it's very poor etiquette to change the wording of someone's actual quote. If you had actually just copy pasted it, the joke still would have been clear, or you could have just replied without quotation at all.)


I think the power armor access and early SPOILER fight is rather clever design. The devs are well aware there are people who are going to figure out where the high end equipment is and just try to sprint for it and hope they get lucky and get it. This way it's right in front of you--but not in great condition. You have a source of assistance if you want to take on some harder areas (so you don't feel monster walled -- one of the big complaints about New Vegas, even if you had half a brain you could get around it pretty easily), but it's limited. (And if course if you want to try to take on the dangerous stuff without power armor you can try.)

Likewise you get to see how tough some high tier enemies are early on, so you can judge if you've walked into an area you can't handle yet (or if it's a place you want to spend a rare fusion core on).

My one big complaint is one I've seen in reviews as well -- it's annoying you can seem to be able to add piecemeal armor pieces to some under-suits, but not all, and it is not evident which is which. Nor, I think, should there be a distinction. If I want to wear a spiky raider leg over a tuxedo I should be able to do so. Not sure I see why they did it like that.

Otherwise I'm having a great time. I might say this is the best work Bethesda's done, that I've personally seen anyway. Looks great even on my low-end PC, I like the settlement building, and I like the neighborhoods and characters.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

MeanGM, I know, right?

RainyDayNinja wrote:
What's the best way to euthanize my computer, so I can justify buying a new one (which will just so happen to meet the system requirements) to my wife? I need a guy who can make it look like an accident...

If you have liquid cooling, crack (as in physically break) the hardware so coolant leaks on your motherboard, and say it was a failure in the cooling system.

(I don't actually recommend this, but a coolant leak was why I had to replace a motherboard a year ago or so.)

RainyDayNinja wrote:
When someone manages to tear themselves away from playing, care to share what made it onto the in-game playlist?

You mean the music on the radio? Sadly so far the swing/crooner playlist seems to be a lot of repeats from Fallout 3 -- good songs, like "Crazy He Calls Me" by Billie Holliday, but repeats. But I'm not sure if it's all repeats or what the extent of the playlist is, however. I only played a little before I went to work.

There's also a classical music station.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

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It's frustrating yet amusing that turns out I picked a name that won't be vocalized -- Rosie, as in "the Riveter," a classic WWII reference -- but if I had picked "Titties" or "Assface" I would have been fine.

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I was gonna wait at least a couple weeks so a few patches would be out.

But I'm going away this weekend and I... I just can't. I need to have it in my hot little hands. It's Fallout.

So it's paid for, full price, and pre-loaded on my PC, waiting to go. I know this doesn't seem like a big deal but I'm a cheap gamer. I in fact hate pre-ordering and hate a lot of corruptions in the game industry it encourages (like pre-order bonuses that only pre-orderers get, or hyping a really awful game and getting enough people to buy it before people know how awful it is). Unless I backed it on Kickstarter (wherein the game is probably unusual and the developer one I trust), I never pre-order. In fact, I am the kind of person who waits till the GOTY edition or at least until it's on sale on Steam.

But it's Fallout. IT'S FALLOUT DAMMIT.

I am not planning to call in sick at work Tuesday, but I AM tempted to skip chorus rehearsal tomorrow night... I've been a good girl all season and I've got my music learned.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Yeah, that just sounds like hype management rather than avoiding bad reviews. There's enough that's leaked that if it was going to be bad, those rumors would be circulating.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Lee is currently standing in a shallow part of the reef and is mechanically considered "on land". This means he doesn't need to make concentration checks to cast.

Ray of frost will not fail due to hitting or moving through water, but I would apply the -2 penalty to attacks per every 5 feet the attack has to travel through water.

Reefclaw 1 grappled Threnody in the shallows. So for mechanical purposes, I am not considering him to be under water. Since he is in melee you take a -4 penalty to hit, but his touch AC is also 2 lower because he's grappling, so that should more or less balance out.

Reefclaw 2 is in the water. In addition to reefclaw 1s advantages and disadvantages, he gets a +8 cover bonus because he is in water and you are on land.

Reefclaw 3 is in the water and not grappling. He gets his +8 cover bonus and you are at a -2 for shooting 5 ft into the water.

Yes, in all cases you are hitting touch AC, which helps a little.

I will note magic missile has none of these problems as it auto-hits with no attack roll, and deals force damage.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8 aka DeathQuaker

Wanted to comment on these before the contest ended, but time was not on my side. Congrats, Crystal, for getting into the top 4!

For whatever reason, your title grabbed me the most--I think I like locations to draw me in, and you did a good job both with title and establishing indeed a sense of place. You have a strong plot and it was easy to see where a went to b, etc. and yet without feeling too railroady. I loved the idea of a star hags (although given the sinister nature of hags, I think I'd prefer it if it were a "void hag") and no, we do not have enough hags. Hags are well used in this story as well.

I would have liked a little more detail both on how to hook in the PCs and why they might care, as well as some more particular encounter descriptions. What IS there is good, I'd just like more. I always prefer an adventure with more focus on NOW than on backstory, and with stories with complex backstories--which this COULD be, maybe--often PCs never even learn half the backstory that the writer has worked so hard to dream up. But it's a good story!

I also worry that in the final encounter, something could go horribly awry just because of a bad roll on a Diplomacy check. Parties normally get multiple attack checks in combat, but one social check (even if with Aid Another) in most intrigue scenarios. I'd want a more robust way to deal with Calla at the end -- while still keeping the possibly dire consequences if the party fails.

You've excelled in this competition with very strongly thematic pieces and this is no exception. Be proud, and I look forward to hearing about your PFS scenario when the time comes.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8 aka DeathQuaker

Wanted to comment on these before the contest ended, but time was not on my side. Congrats, Jason for getting to the top 4!

You've designed a cool proposal very appropriate to the Sodden Lands, and you kept well to swampy themes while avoiding some of the more typical sorts of hazards you have to deal with. The very involvement of an orrery gets me excited :) -- what great potential in a fantasy setting. I love the lode motes, I don't think we have a lot of monsters that deal with gravity.

I did have trouble following your narrative and developing a sense of pacing of the PCs journey, and would like to have had a little cleaner organization. The adventure requires and presumes upon the kindness of the PCs, so to speak, and a more opportunistic party might take this very well off the rails -- while a more timid one, if Meika dies, might not feel the need to pursue the rest of the adventure on her behalf. We can't always presume what players will do but some more delicate threads may need to have been woven in here.

There's still some wonderful imagery and a good mythical feel for this story. Thanks for an excellent performance in this contest, and good luck, when the time comes, on your PFS scenario. I look forward to hearing about it.

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Wanted to comment on these before the contest ended, but time was not on my side. Congrats, Nick, for your well-deserved victory!

I loved this proposal, from the title to a lot of the nitty gritty details. Your summary at the start has enough detail to make it feel specific to the region and provide some compelling backstory without getting bogged down in too much background. It makes a lot of sense to use a thunderbird for the Sodden Lands and it's a creature we don't get to see enough of otherwise. Your proposal is clear, well-organized, and easy to follow, and I like that you took the time to outline some PC hooks.

The start of the adventure makes me feel a little nervous. You propose a new mechanic that is going to have to work just right and be easy to pick up to help the game move along (still, your design chops suggest you should be able to pull this off). Starting the adventure in a bit of a sandbox can also be tricky -- it puts a lot of expectation on the PCs to be outgoing and risk-taking to find the things they will need to find; being a GM with players who are often very timid when given the option to simply explore or fashion adventure on their own, so I am prone to worrying about giving the PCs enough hooks---and my players would be the kind who didn't do the "thorough enough" investigation to find the items required to deal with encounter 3 in chapter 3. You do of course provide some scripted adventures so hopefully such things would not be as much of a problem as the anxious part of me worries.

Still there's a lot of really creative encounters, a good narrative flow and build up, and all kinds of different opportunities for adventure here. I look forward to the release of this module!

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8 aka DeathQuaker

Wanted to comment on these before the contest ended, but time was not on my side. Congrats, Charlie, for getting to the top 4!

Many moments in your proposal shine--I love the twist that the dragon is not the true threat, and I like some of the variance of your challenges--they're not all fights but also include other solutions like convincing the ghosts to find their peace. The "drowned garden" sounds like a cool location.

It feels a bit like you tried to cram a bit too much in, however, and the adventure feels like a bunch of episode adventures loosely woven together by the environmental threat. It's a little hard to follow the flow of events, too. The influence of the qlippoth doesn't seem obvious or noticed till the very end, which seems odd given how corruptive and nasty these creatures are. I liked the idea of the garden, even as amazing as gnome structures can be, I find it odd that giants would find it "easy" to move in to a place built for Small creatures--even if ceilings were high, remains of furniture, width of passageways etc, might all be challenging. I loved the idea of your monster but it felt out of place in the rest of the adventure. I'd worry with a lot of myriad environmental hazards (acid rain, acid soil, and the many challenges that can come with a flooded ruin), it would be hard for a GM to keep track of them all.

Still, there's a lot of fantastic elements of adventure here and some cool enemies--a good crown to your solid performance throughout the competition. I look forward to hearing about your eventual PFS Scenario when the time comes.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8 aka DeathQuaker

Wow, Nick! Congratulations. You had some amazingly stiff competition -- congrats really to everyone who was a contestant for a good contest and kudos to Nick for a spectacular, hard-earned victory.

Thanks to the ever-hard working judges, to our host, and to Chris for all the tireless technical support.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8 aka DeathQuaker

Thanks, Chris!

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Nice, OP! I have some plastic squares that you can use dry erase on to some effect, but this is a great idea and would work better. If you're lucky, you can also find woodcraft squares already in the right size (although frustratingly they often come in sizes that aren't QUITE right, like 2.25" rather than 2", etc., so I also see the appeal of doing custom cut if you already have the tools to do it.)

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Damon Griffin wrote:
That absurd nit-pick out of the way, I liked most of the show. Did not care for alpha male Jimmy; he should be good at his job and all, but if he's not something of a nerd/geek he doesn't feel like Jimmy Olsen.

I agree he should be more geeky, but I do like the actor playing him.


as well as having to swallow (a) the notion that an entire prison full of superpowered Kryptonian criminals has been keeping a low profile on Earth for a decade, popping their heads up (despite having some long term big plan) only when Alura's kid goes public; and (b) that no one's bothered to tell Big Blue about Fort Rozz over the past 10 years? I get that Henshaw doesn't trust aliens, but it's just dumb not to use the wolf he knows against the wolves he doesn't know. How would Superman not know about that huge prison crashing anyway?

Here's my fan-lampshading of the situation (minor spoilers):

When the wormhole-thing from the Phantom Zone was opened, THREE things came out: Fort Rozz, Kara's spaceship, and a craft/containment device holding General Zod and his lackeys. Kal-El tracked the latter two, fighting General Zod and co (in whatever version of that conflict you want to imagine), and finding Kara and welcoming her to Earth and getting her set up. He did not find Fort Rozz and the DEO worked to keep it from him, much in the way they tried to keep Kara in the dark until her rise to herodom attracted the Fort Rozz prisoners' attention. They either feel threatened by or alternately uninterested in Kal-El so haven't gone out of their way to attract his attention--the pilot made clear they specifically made themselves known to Kara because they know she is Allura's daughter. (We also don't know what else might be keeping him preoccupied.)

The only reason Supergirl was made aware of it was because of the circumstances we saw unfold in the pilot: a) the prisoners are very specifically targeting Kara and otherwise keeping a low profile, and b) her sister is part of the DEO and eventually realized she needed to let Kara know what was really happen (and it even took her awhile to realize that was the best course of action).

While agree there's still some unanswered questions (like why doesn't Astra feel threatened by Kal-El's presence?), that is enough to allow me to handwave things until the show provides more information (which it may well do, given this was only the pilot).

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

I think I posted mods I used in another thread, but I'm playing Fallout NV with:

JE Sawyer Mod (the lead developer's mod for how he would have liked the game to be -- tweaks some difficulty, makes some things heavier, adjusts some karma loss/gain, etc.)

Freeside Open and a number of the other "New Vegas Uncut" mods (highly recommended--adds back a lot of cut quests and makes the New Vegas area a little fuller with more NPCs, etc. Freeside Open in particular can make your game crash because it's loading a lot of stuff into one area, although I believe the 4GB mod or one like it you mentioned upthread can mitigate that.

A simple mod I can't remember the name of that turns some of the grass green.

Fellout NV (to remove the orange marmalade smear on the camera lens) and a brighter pip boy ---- although at some point I'll probably replace Fellout with a different sky/lighting/weather mod like Nevada Skies or something.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Tels wrote:
I'm going to say I disagree with a lot of what you posted for various reasons. However, I will also mention, I don't think Life is Strange's story is complete. This article seems to imply that Dontnod Entertainment wants to make a "season 2" of Life is Strange. Whether that will be with the same characters, or new characters or not is unknown, but it makes me think there is more to the story than what is in those 5 episodes. It may also resolve some of the issues you have with the game as well.

If they make another "Life is Strange," according to this article it would definitely be with an all-new cast.

Somewhat a shame... I haven't been playing Life is Strange but I've been watching playthroughs (to see if I'd like it or not)... the one element I really liked is Max herself, and I'd love to see her in another story, even if it otherwise had a totally different cast. Probably not going to happen though. As it is, the game seems a bit too sadness porny for me to want to play through myself. Personal preference, of course, and my personal preferences are not a judgment upon yours or what you found entertaining.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

I don't think ink even on the edges will wreck the mat (unless you REALLY soak it) but I am not understanding why you consider cutting it up more convenient. If it's a matter of it not unfolding flat, it doesn't take long for a heavy object to flatten it out during pre-game prep time.

If you like smaller bits to shove around, map packs may also be generally more desirable for you.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8 aka DeathQuaker

Congrats top 4! Go go go go go go!

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8 aka DeathQuaker

True, but the site has said consistently PM for this one. It's a shame if others didn't get the chance to vote because of this.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8 aka DeathQuaker

Mark Griffin wrote:
Nick Wasko wrote:
In unrelated news, can we comment on the encounters now? With the AM/PM mix-up, I'm hesitant to jump the gun.
I don't see why not, no matter which time was correct, voting it done.

I would advise staying quiet until the reveal, as per usual. It would REALLY suck at this phase to see someone disqualified*.

* So very not a hard word to spell out.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8 aka DeathQuaker

I'm looking at the voting page, and it says (copy pasting directly from the page):

Chris Lambertz wrote:
Vote for your favorite RPG Superstar contestants–you can select up to two candidates. You can change your mind anytime until voting closes Sunday, October 18 at 11:59 PM Pacific time.

Copy pasting the time stamp, it says the current time is:

The current time is Sun, Oct 18, 2015, 06:26 PM US/Pacific

Which means the votes should still be open for something like five and a half hours.

But the poll says it closed six hours ago (meaning it closed at 11:59 AM instead of PM.

Am I missing something? (Besides my chance to vote?)

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

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Steve Geddes wrote:
DeathQuaker wrote:
Entertainment value and ease-of-use should not be mutually exclusive.

Yeah, I agree. Some of the methods people have tried to make modules easier to run ruin the readability-for-fun and some of the modules which are enjoyable to read are a nightmare to find important stuff during the game.

I didn't mean to suggest that publishers need to make a choice between one group or the other. It seems to me that if a method could be found to improve the experience for both there can only be winners. :)

I don't think that's what you were arguing but I realized we (the participants in this thread in general, myself included) were starting to take on the tone of "Crunchy!" "Creamy!" "Crunchy!" "Creamy!" and not really getting anywhere. :)

So, I've been arguing before that we need to prioritize ease-of-use for GMs--since ostensibly the whole POINT of adventures is to make GMs' lives easier--but we're uselessly splitting ourselves up into "camps" and not getting what I think ALL OF US want: delicious peanut butter. I mean, a well-written, well-organized adventure.

I've said before that I don't prioritize "entertainment value" personally--but I've realized dismissing that elides the point that frankly, a well-written, well-organized adventure SHOULD be, in fact, entertaining too. And that nothing is wrong with wanting an adventure to BE entertaining.

So let's not use entertainment value--or any other factor--as a conversational deflection from discussing what we all want here: better adventures.

I think we all can agree that Paizo and other publishers do put out great adventures, but there are sticking points folks have with many, and maybe lots of people buy them as is, but if there's a way to make them better so more people buy things, that can only be a good thing.

When it comes down to it, when I've struggled with bad adventure organization, the things that made me struggle as a GM to use ALSO made it hard to simply read through the adventure just to get a sense of or enjoy the plot. I'll bring up Skull and Shackles again just because I'm running it right now (in a PBP here): the first book's organization (or seeming lack thereof) is not only a nightmare for me as a GM to work with, it's impossible to read through and get a consistent sense of story, character, or action. For example, the whole beginning of the story gets bisected partway through by a lengthy, several-page-long description of the ship before going back to the narrative---that does NOT lend itself to "entertainment"; rather, an average reader is likely left distracted and confused. I do NOT have fun reading this AP book. It is NOT fun at all. And I have probably done as much or more prep for this campaign as I have for the campaigns I've run from scratch/on the fly, in part because the book is so poorly organized. I am having fun running the game, but much of that is thanks to my players and the ability to finally bring the NPCs to life--with little and confusing help from the book. I have sat down and made lots of cheat sheets and other things to help me run the game, but that's time I shouldn't have had to spend, given the ostensible point of pre-written adventures is to save a GM time -- nor should I need a cheat sheet if I am reading through just to enjoy it, but for S&S you might need one just to remember who all the NPCs are.

The reason the "The Wormwood Mutiny" is unfun is because the developers tried to cram effectively a sandbox into a dungeon-design format, and it doesn't work. This goes back to an earlier point I've made: if the format makes it harder for a GM to use--or a reader to read--THEN IT HAS FAILED. Period.

So--everybody: when a module IS fun and easy to follow when reading, what does it do?

When it is not, what happened?

We've said some things about making sure encounter descriptions clearly delineate mechanical actions a GM may need to be aware of. What else is helpful? What has worked in existing adventures? What hasn't? People talk about Delve not working--but for those of us who haven't used it, what specifically about it failed?

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Entertainment value and ease-of-use should not be mutually exclusive.

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If I want to read a story, I buy a novel.

If I want to run a story, I buy a module, but I want the designer to trust me to bring that story to life and stick to the details I need to know.

I like to read modules for ideas and inspiration, certainly, and yes, like everyone I suspect I own more than I've run. Concisely listed stats and mechanics makes it easier for me to get the information I need to adapt for my uses. Brief narrative text is fine and good writing is always appreciated regardless of format. However, if the text is badly organized, where key points of what is there and what it might do and how to manage it are buried for the sake of trying to fit a square peg (a game accessory) into a round hole (prose fiction), this makes it LESS readable to me for my purposes, harder for me to make use of it, and thus less likely to purchase it. Currently, I purchase very few modules or adventures.

Obviously, YMMV.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Sharoth wrote:

Does anyone have a list of some good Fallout New Vegas mods? I will be getting my new gaming computer next week and I want to start a modded FO - NV run.

Edit - Why not. Are there any good FO 3 mods too that you all would recommend?

For Fallout New Vegas, the New Vegas Uncut mods are really good. I use Freeside Open, Pacers Gambit, Outside Bets, a Van Graff Scorned, and a Thorny Situation. They restore cut content and fix a bunch of bugs. These things in particular make Freeside and the immediate New Vegas a lot more interesting and dynamic as the devs originally intended, both with more quests as well as fixing existing quests to resolve properly. Freeside Open in particular is very graphically demanding (it folds the Mormon Fort into Freeside so you don't get a load screen when transitioning and more heavily populates Freeside, so the environment being loaded is a lot larger) so you should read the author's warnings about problems with it. It has made my game crash on occasion, but not obnoxiously or game-breakingly so.

I also use a combo of Fellout NV which makes the sky less orange and the night sky darker, and a brighter Pip-Boy mod (to compensate for the darker desert nights). I don't remember the Pip-Boy mod name, but it's easily searchable. I keep meaning to switch to a better sky/weather mod and brighter night lights mod but just haven't gotten around to it. I also use vegetation mod but I don't remember which one.

Haven't played Fallout 3 in ages and it's not on my current machine; IIRC I used some bugfixes and Fellout. There are of course some amazing ones out there.

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On a more possibly useful note, I like Schadenfreude's and Dudemeister's suggestions. Some stuff like lighting could be indicated by icons, as someone suggested upthread, to save space.

I like stuff in Rusted Iron Games' example, but it repeats some stuff and indeed does take space. One thing is is I would forget the encounter scaling notes, preserving that only for key fights. I think most games have a sidebar for suggestions for scaling encounters, and it's best to let GMs decide what they want to do for scaling on their own--as sometimes they need to adjust for party build and/or player styles as well.

My biggest worry at this point is we won't see needed changes to help GMs--especially new GMs--where game developers might prioritize nostalgia and an intentionally restricted perception of what is "fun" over readability, comprehensibility, and ease-of-use, and friendliness to new GMs (who may not know, be used to, have "fun" with, or care about "what it used to be like"). The game can't exist without GMs, so everything to cultivate them and make their lives easier should be top priority --- not making something look like it did in 1980 because reasons.

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I'm Hiding In Your Closet wrote:

"Why is the adventure format stuck in the past?"


"You may ask, but how did this tradition get started. Well, I'll tell you...

"... I don't know.

"But it's a tradition!"

The RPG industry in a nutshell.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

Did you look at the booster packs, not just the collection? There's quite a lot of them, and a wide variety. Probably if you take the time to use their figure finder for "human clothes" (adding gender, etc.) you will find other minis that also fit, but you have to probably take the time to do it yourself.

Also, if you have more specific needs than "people in clothes," perhaps you should describe what those are if you want people to be able to help you effectively.

Or buy some greenstuff and convert what you need yourself.

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