As a comment on the health thing, I can say one major reason GMs don't allow players to play seriously sick character is because, well, they're not as fun. If you were fat enough to be beyond the limits of handwaving it, you wouldn't actually get any sort of bonus to str or con. You'd probably get a penalty because that's unhealthily fat. Would you want to play an adventurer who cannot adventure normally?
(Spoiler so as not to step on the toes of those submitting corset designs)
I agree that in most cases a player won't choose to play a character with obesity, degenerative disease, or any number of serious health concerns. But that's only most cases. I had a particular player who intentionally shot himself in the foot with every character he ever created for my games. He tended towards low Con scores because he smoked cigarettes at the gaming table, and wanted to play smokers. He emphasized flaws in judgement and role playing (the character developing kind, not the disruptive kind) unique to his characters. Honestly, I learned a lot about creating engaging NPCs from the way he put his characters together, and in particular the way he capitalized on flaws.
There are precedents in fiction - even D&D fiction - of characters who are at least partially defined by their flaws. Raistlin Majere comes to mind immediately. Even the Pathfinder Bestiary includes the occasional monster who could use a diet. The Con boost was added for the same reason that it takes more poison to kill an elephant than it does a man - the reflect the significance of mass on those kinds of substances. Within reason, fat can act almost like muscle, hence the Str boost. Let's not forget about sumo wrestlers, after all - an entire martial arts style predicated on the mass of the combatants.
I'm ultimately not trying to argue that obese characters should make up a large portion of the adventuring community. I simply lament any instance in which an option is unavailable that may be appropriate to a particular concept. Indicating that most players wouldn't want to do something suggests that some players will.
Neil Spicer wrote:
A bunch of stuff.
Thank you for your critique. Allow me to explain.
In my role-playing game experience I have seldom come across mechanics that allow a player or GM to design a character with some significant health flaw - obesity for example. Generally speaking it is something that can be include for flavor (WoTC released a pre-made character in Monster Manual V who was obese, but without mechanics to support it) but not as part of a statistical character concept. A way to achieve this item would be to say "the wearer gains the Obese inherited template", but it doesn't exist.
That being said, it was put together with the idea of the character who wants a mechanical element to his or her obesity - as achieved through a magic item. I settled on a bonus to Str and Con, a Dex penalty, a speed penalty, an Intimidate bonus, and a natural armor bonus.
The name was designed around subtle consonance and a form of morphic assonance. That's why I strayed from the 'corset' and into the 'bustier' - which is purely poetic conceit on my part.
I concede on the slot. The decision was based on that which the item effects more so than that upon which the item is worn - which is a mechanical conclusion without inarguable precedent.
It seems to me that most people would consider corsets to be feminine items. I was willing to dive head first into that and call it a women's garment. I intentionally used 'he' as my gender qualifier in the item description, however, in hopes to tackle the confusion.
I included the mention of armor because, as per the description of full-plate armor in the Core Rulebook: "Each suit of full plate must be individually fitted to its owner by a master armorsmith [...]". That was to indicate that the changes to the body would render such customization moot - of course, one could simply have their armor refitted as though it was 'captured' armor.
I strongly considered making disguise self a requirement for the item, but I couldn't justify it from the perspective that the 'disguise' is a byproduct and not the purpose. Since the spell description states that the caster can make themselves 'look fat', I figured that actually being obese would have the same effect. In other words, the subject is as unrecognizable as they would be had they used the spell.
Finally, my last point is that of Dex damage as opposed to a simple penalty - because I considered this before including it as part of the item. I was shooting for the effect of entropy. After removing the bustier, it takes to body a while (as per guidelines about healing ability damage) to get back into shape. Clearly, the process is much faster for an adventurer than it would be for someone in the real world, but it was the simplest way to include that particular piece of flavor.
Thank you again.
Randomly came across this thread, and figured I'd toss something together.
Epic Meepo wrote:
Um, you can't just take the name of someone's religion and appropriate it to mean whatever you want it to mean. Wicca doesn't mean "every pagan religion" any more than Christianity means "every monotheistic religion."
I didn't. I made a highly disputable claim concerning the evolution from organized pagan practices only known as "Witch Cults" or "The Witch Cult" into modern Wicca. There are plenty of arguments which suggest differently, but modern misconceptions about Wicca and the false accusations made in the Maleus Maleficarum are similar enough to suggest a connection - if only in terms of misinformation rather than actual practices.
Sorry if that was unclear.
Umbral Reaver wrote:
You do know Wicca didn't exist until the 20th century, right?
Wicca, in my post, was being used as a modernized term that has been adapted to represent 'witchcraft' as discussed in the Maleus Maleficarum. Modern understanding of Wicca, as a practice, is a descendant of original unnammed Witch-Cults attacked by the persecution of any pagan/non-Christian religious beliefs instigated by the book. Since, in the volume, these practices are almost wholly designated as 'Satan Worship', I chose against using that terminology and favored 'Wicca'.
The point still stands. As of publication of the book, 'witchcraft' has been designated as feminine territory, and strictly for purposes of maintaining patriarchy. This perspective is no more true than assuming that paganism has been a purely female pursuit - which thousands of years of 'pagan' theology firmly disputes.
In the interest of staying on topic, regardless of whether my terminology clouds the point that I'm attempting to express, there is a very distinct real-world shift into the gender identification that doesn't exist in the game world. Frankly, the worship of Golarion gods would be an affront to the religion that spawned gender identification of 'witches' - if it existed in game. It doesn't, and so the manufactured byproducts don't either - until the developers see fit to say otherwise.
The widespread understanding that witches are primarily female is a result of the 1487 anti-witchcraft handbook the Malleus Maleficarum, a text of influence concerning what eventually became the widespread persecution of Wiccan practitioners. Of particular emphasis in the book is that witches, in the vast majority, are female - which jives with beliefs held in religious practice even today (original sin, Eve's corruption of Adam, etc.). Ultimately, it came down to gender persecution, where females were placed in a state of fear and compliance, since unusual or unwanted activity could easily result in unfounded accusations of witchcraft, generally leading to execution.
Of course, the volume provides as little meaningful knowledge of actual Wicca as possible, pushing religiously theocentric intolerance and ignorance. This includes the misconception that witches are all women, which was merely a convenient method of maintaining patriarchal religious rule. The Latin "Maleficarum" is even a feminine gender word. Application of the word "warlock" to males, considering the 'oath breaker', 'in league with the devil' etymology, seems to be an artifact of the same religious intolerance. Since the roots of the word are negative, applying the term to those who would practice non-Christian belief systems furthers the agenda of the church.
Since Golarion lacks these histories, it can be safely assumed that within the confines of the game world there is no gender distinction for witches. Use of popular terms for game elements is a way to supply ease of understanding through recognition. There is no real gender limitation, real world or otherwise.
(not to mention pointless at this point)
So guns are supposed to have something special about them. We get resolving attacks against touch AC. That's fixed, printed, done, and beyond the ability of anything save errata to correct - which I'm not optimistic about. Perhaps a variant sidebar (please), but no resolving fix.
We also see (arguably) a lot of concerns with damage output. Make your own decisions about that, I suppose, but this suggestion is assuming low damage output.
Guns were special. Super crazy special. What if they got iterative attacks ever 3 BAB instead of every 6? Insane concept, considering how hard wired the iterative attack progression is, but so was 'hit AC to damage with a ranged weapon', and that was dismissed. Call it a cumulative -2 for iterative attacks, so:
+20/+18/+16/+14/+12/+10/+8/+6/+4/+2 at 20th...
...which is way too much. Even with lightning reloading, that's an absurd number of shots. So scale back the progression for the gunslinger.
+15/+13/+11/+9/+7/+5/+3/+1 at 20th. 8 shots in 6 seconds. If there were a revolver in the game that could chamber 8 shots (or a gunslinger with 2 revolvers) I could see that in terms of firing rate for folks with itchy fingers. Tack on rapid shot and two weapon fighting and it goes to 10 shots - still doable with a few blazing guns, but without that heightened BAB from above. Expensive, considering the per shot cost, but pulls some of the 'flurry of bullets' flavor from forum posts about monk gunners.
Still too much? How about iterative attacks at every +4 BAB? +5?
And my, what powerful pickle shots we get.
Of course, not only gunslingers use guns, and with that +20 for fighters and barbarians - that's a lot of shots. Solution? Make it a gunslinger class feature. Put it high enough in the level progression that you can't just dip in and make your rogue an insane sneak attacker. Or scale it - spread out the bonus attacks over a lot of levels so the other classes can't simply dip deep enough for a single class feature to give them 4 extra attacks.
This is merely for the consideration of the forum. The idea came randomly and with only phantom clarity, so it's pretty raw. With touch AC this would be...much. I offer it as an alternative, not as an addition.
First, it's not different. Simply another manifestation of an old problem with new flavor.
Second, there are two sides to a balance. When one side goes infinite, that balance is, as one might expect, disrupted. Your sarcasm was comprised of standard actions, iterative attacks, and the mechanics based around drawing those items, which was never the issue.
And third, my 'misunderstanding' was merely offering a potentially understandable explanation for what otherwise might be considered unnecessary and unproductive negativism. Since I would prefer to imagine that contributions to these discussions are made with only the most viable end result at heart, I chose to provide the benefit of the doubt as to your motivations.
Appreciated. I'm seeing a whole lot of passionate disagreement over this class (and the firearm), and it offers very little incentive for attempting civil discussion of the issues. I'm honestly getting a bit exasperated going through them.
In any case, the 7+ is manageable to me - considering that the character earned it through having a high Dex. I like that people like the suggestion - but I'm not totally in love with it myself.
The one simplification that I was hoping to instigate was to render that conversation between gunslinger and GM unnecessary. Doing so promotes ease of play and a common understanding of how the rules work - which strike me as goals worth pursuing.
1) I've always been a fan of features that reward a character for their ability scores. In general, I get a lot of mileage out of the idea in homebrew design.2) I read it both ways, and I figured the wording was vague enough to benefit from clarification - if it is the intent that only a single barrel be reloaded per round, regardless of the action it uses. I don't think that the common understanding is that it only works once, and there's certainly room for interpretation there.
One might argue that a good reason to complain is that deeds are given, not chosen - but that's a different thread.
Abraham spalding wrote:
Unless the suggestion is that we should allow an unlimited number of standard actions and iterative attacks, I'm not sure what the utility of your statements are.
These features of the battle system offer a reasonably warped version of reality that strains what we understand of human capability in order to maintain balance within the game. I wasn't arguing against the spirit of that balance.
In fact, that balance is precisely what I'd like to see preserved. Which can be accomplished. What I'm seeing in response is an unexpected resistance to having this particular feature wrestled from GM arbitration, followed by unnecessary sarcasm. Had I any reason to expect that this reloading situation was one of emotional agitation, I might have avoided the issue entirely.
With all due respect, and in hopes of curbing this before it becomes aggravating, I'm not suggesting a boycott on GMs or rules interpretations. If there were fascist police hanging outside my door every week waiting for me to make a house ruling for my game, I don't think I'd be comfortable playing the game. But what I have just stated is an extreme version of my argument, just as your 'table top computer game' is an extreme version of yours. GM unity. Carpe GM.
This isn't a huge issue for me. My house rule? It's a swift action. If I feel generous, it's a free action that can be taken each round a number of times equal to the character's Dex modifier. My issue stems from the fact that it's a rule that allows a character, by RAW, to do something that would be easily ruled as impossible.
Ask yourself how you'd rule it. It's a decision a lot of GMs with a 11th level gunslinger will have to make. Or the developers could give a baseline and avoid the issue altogether.
And so I mention it. This doesn't mean I'm going to build a robot to run my games for me. It's a playtest forum. I found what I consider to be a flaw - and an easily fixed one at that. Should the developers choose to alter the rule, it's simply a matter of GM choice whether to follow the new rule.
What stops him? His GM. There are things in the book that are up to GM arbitration. Free actions encompass several things, and while it might not be realistic to reload seven thousand guns at once, it might be realistic to drop one gun, draw it with Quick Draw at the same time. That's why there isn't a hard cap on free actions, instead left up to the GM.
Look, I'm not about taking anything out of the GMs hands, but when looking at a playtest and seeing something that stretches the realms of belief in obvious and probable ways, I find it difficult to be satisfied with "It works until the GM says it doesn't". In other words, this class feature is only as good as your GM wants it to be.
A number of us aren't going to use the rules as written. Touch AC firearms, grit, class skills and skills per level, bonus feats - people are all over the forums mentioning aspects they aren't going to run the way the class is presented. We are illuminating the problems in hopes that the RAW is as close to what we want as possible. Which means the GM arbiter solution isn't a solution. It isn't in the best interest of the game to have such vague limitations - assuming the designers want to consistent play experience - for which I present exhibit: Society.
This isn't exactly a unsolvable riddle. We shouldn't write it off as necessarily vague just yet.
All well and good, but what I'm getting from this is that I'm not missing anything. I don't think it's a stretch to say that there are players, both in home games and organized play, who would happily exploit these rules as far as they'll endure. And of those players, there are a number who would consider it unfair treatment to have their class abilities limited by GM arbitration.
Realistically, a GM doesn't need a specified statement to know that they can say 'no' to a player trying to exploit the rules. Better is a rulebook with rules that aren't so easily exploited. Honestly, what gunslinger isn't going to have all of the requisite components I listed in the original post by level 11?
I want to make sure I have this right:
I have a gunslinger, level 11, with Rapid Reload, Quick Drawn, and the lightning reload deed. He has a point of grit, and a massive arsenal of firearms that need loaded. Let's say 1000 of them. He's also holding enough bullets to shoot everyone in the world twice. He's pretty encumbered, so he's dropping each one as he Quick Draws and reloads.
So, as far as I can tell, he loads them all in a single round. What GM would allow this is beyond me, but as far as RAW goes it seems feasible.
Dropping back a little from the exaggerated numbers, and imagine he has 4-7 firearms. This I could imagine, and it still seems like a lot of action for 6 seconds.
What am I missing?
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
A few things.
I would expect some form of Craft skill associated with firearms - as well as new Craft options in UC concerning airships and the like. What I'm unclear on, then, is what this feat offers that replaces skill use. Does this mean, then, that some of the options available using the feat would not be available through Craft checks? Alchemical ammunition, for example?
The skill bump was merely suggested as a potential alternative. I've run a lot of Craft heavy characters, both as a player and as a GM. I think they're fun - particularly in a system with a lot of options for crafting unusual items. In my book, firearms qualify. I'm really not that concerned with the class being feat starved or skill starved - of my issues, those don't rank very high. What concerns me is a departure from the precedent that non-magic item creation uses a feat (though I'm less concerned provided it doesn't necessarily require a feat).
I did a quick review of Society rules after your post. I'm not a Society player, but I respect the attention to organized play, as it seems like the most potentially problematic place to insert new rules. If I understand correctly, the intent is to offer a fast and reliable crafting option to gunslingers (or characters who use guns) in organized games without a lot of downtime, while providing a few options otherwise unavailable (like restoring a starting firearm).
That seems fair - but...I'm still not convinced it couldn't be covered in the skill description. If there's something I'm overlooking, please correct me, but with standard item creation feats unavailable in organized play doesn't that make this feat a strange exception? To be fair, other classes already have to take the Exotic Weapon Proficiency to make use of firearms effectively - and also take this feat to unlock crafting options for that weapon. Does this render ranks in the Craft (gunsmithing) skill irrelevant? Or does a character get the option of either to accomplish the same task?
Aside from a famine of downtime in games I've played, I haven't experienced any problems with the system as it stands. This deviation still strikes me as an odd choice for accomplishing this goal.
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Perhaps it's a bias intertwined with the fact that I'm not a fan of guns acting like magic items, but I'm still not sold on this idea. What this inclusion suggests is that the crafting of firearms is an extraordinary ability rather than a skill. There isn't precedent for non-magical items to have a feat requirement because non-magical items are simple enough provided the crafter has the appropriate know-how - via skill checks.
It seems like one more instance in which gun are 'special', which, at least to me, jives as superfluous. From a GM perspective, saying there's no Craft (gunsmithing) doesn't occur as any more significant a hassle. And if this feat ever becomes launching point for a feat chain, additional hassle could be avoided.
As far as economy goes, and the idea of making other classes pay for things the gunslinger gets for free - I have a hard time reconciling this concept with the reality that a character always has to dedicate skill points to be able to craft items anyway. There is already a cost involved, and it's baked into the system. This raises that cost, and needlessly if Craft DCs for firearms are going to have any height to them.
Wouldn't it be easier to offer a skill bump for gunslingers, making ammunition craft an easier task due to a class feature? +1/2 level when crafting ammunition, for example. I'm not even sure this part is up for playtest, but I think the overall texture of the system should be considered before implementing a new feat that breaks from the norm. Texturally, this is something I doubt I'd use. I wouldn't be angry or annoyed in any kind of passionate way by the omission, and this doesn't rank as a huge concern to me, but in favor of consistency it seems like a misstep.
Does anyone else find it odd that there is an item creation feat associated with an otherwise mundane craft item? Sure, it lacks some of the features expected from a magic item feat, but it stands alone as a replacement for the Craft skill mechanic.
I don't expect guns to be easily craftable - use of Craft (gunsmithing) or (engineering) and tough DCs - but a feat? Considering it's a free feat for the Gunslinger, why bother?
Abraham spalding wrote:
the problem isn't his nit-picking its his inability to remember basic facts about the abilities he wants to use that already addresses his concerns -- like this quick clear thing -- it could work if he has a misfire after the partial sundering as this is the only time quick clear can be used -- he should have realized that.
I don't think it's a matter of overlooking material, but rather a pursuit of clarification. A lot of issues could be simplified in favor of GM discretion, but the qualification that it 'could work' under precise circumstances is vague enough to cause minor complications in closet cases. Clarification isn't a bad thing, even if it seems superfluous in the majority of cases. With society play, and RAW crazy rules lawyers in non-society games, the system only benefits from sufficiently tightened RAW.
My personal opinion, they chose the best from a list of bad choices.
Well, I'd hazard to say the best choice would've been to stick to the tried and true "weapons have to hit AC" option. What they did instead was effectively provide a single type of weapon with a marginally conditional, better 'brilliant energy'. That's a free +4 bonus equivalent, and ignores natural armor in addition to manufactured armor.
Mind you, in order to accomplish penetration, all of the potential options are a little dicey. If it was an absolute necessity, I'd have favored AP ammunition over the blanket ruling, though.
Thanks! Can I use quick clear to similarly repair my firearm after it has been (partially) sundered?
Off topic: It seems like you just pour over the books and, using some freak encyclopedic knowledge of the rules nit-pick the hell out of every insignificant detail that has even the most remote chance of appearing in a game.
I really really like that about you. I never hesitate to read your posts. I've seen people give you grief over it, but I probably get more information from your contributions to the rules forums than from anyone else.
I believe we are in agreement. The developers wanted guns to be unique and the gunslinger to have unique options for the unique weapon it uses. However, the system that we have produces a number of problems with implementation. In my book, if you have to cite more than two exceptions for a new mechanic, the mechanic strains the system too much. We are seeing all kinds of threads pop up with issues - and not with the class we're supposed to be playtesting, but with the weapon it uses - which we can do nothing about except complain into the ether. The class is taking a second seat to the firearm, and has been since round 1. Now the class is strained under the weight of a discontent that has, from what I've seen, caused a lot of otherwise intelligent and level-headed contributors to the forums to devolve to immature bickering over mechanics that we've been reminded repeatedly are not even a part of the playtest.
It was called the Warlock :P
I don't disagree with what you're saying. However, it would be remiss to ignore the penalties involved with that mechanic - the most glaring omission being a smaller base attack bonus. Also a smaller hit die, and an inability to enchant the eldritch blast without advancing in the class and gaining new blast invocations.
Most importantly, though, with guns potentially available to everyone it would be similar to providing the eldritch blast as an option to every class, complete with enhancements and customization.
You incidentally hit on something there. When building this concept they seem to really be thinking six shooters, westerns - that the class is a 'gunsliger' not a 'musketeer' or 'grenadier' or somesuch shows it - As though in the upcomming martial power their thought was to add a medeavalised Clint Eastwood class, to go with their fantasised Tishiro Mafune and Ninja Assassin classes. But this isn't a Westerns RPG, and that far a genre leap makes for more of a disconnect than necessary (or desireable IMO).
To be honest, I was pretty stoked with the idea. Once upon a time in an Eberron campaign I played a Shifter Gunslinger that was totally a riff from the western concept. It was a lot of fun, and one of my more memorable characters.
That's not to say I think the idea of firearms should be pigeonholed into one concept. It's not a massive leap of intuition to assume that the developers watched True Grit while conceptualizing this class. The "No Name" feat serves to drive the point further home. I'd like to see the blatantly obvious references toned back and a creative alternative flavor added in order to allow multiple interpretations of what the gunslinger can become.
Scipion del Ferro wrote:
I still think it should have been a monk alternate class since so many features line up.
Or fighter, or...anything. A lot of classes benefit from the ability to strike touch AC, and depending on the prevalence of guns, each class can see benefits (except Druid...). Rather than a class at all, I'd prefer new rogue abilities, new archetypes, and specific options that highlight benefits. Alchemists with neat guns instead of bombs, a magus with special gunmage abilities, or even a smite-happy paladin with a gunblade would be cool. It would certainly limit "all gunlsingers are the same" arguments.
I don't hate flurry of bullets replacing flurry of blows, and a rogue sharpshooter with unique targeting options (hopefully better than the current "Boom...head..shot?" ability) would provide nifty alternatives that illuminate firearm capabilities.
There's plenty of debate concerning the legitimacy of a firearm having special capability when it comes to damaging an individual in armor. My stance is that no, they don't necessarily always ignore armor, and for many of the reasons cited. To further represent the point, review rules concerning sundering and see that firearms are no more capable of sundering items than other weapons (including shooting a glass bottle on a fence).
Additionally, removed from logical intuitions of realism and moving closer to the flavor of the gunslinger, I suggest the iconic scene from Fistful of Dollars, easily found on the internet by searching for "The Heart, Ramon. Don't Forget the Heart." or some such. While the scene offers nothing but a representation of 'something cool' that isn't possible using the system, I think it's worth consideration.
Lastly, the argument of kinetic force. Bullets, even without breaking through armor, can cause bruising and bludgeoning damage. Whether one chooses individually to buy into this argument is personal choice, but the rules don't exactly back up the suggestion of punch, particularly considering the sundering rules. By the rules, a bullet intended to sunder the armor of the target would deal no damage, while a bullet targeting the armor's wearing would ignore that armor in order to deal damage.
I can only imagine that the continued beating of this dead horse is part of some necromantic ritual that will lead to an undead horse impervious to bullets entirely, and that is something I support.
The intention was not to start another 'guns hitting touch AC' is broken. It's just difficult to ignore the fact that it doesn't make a whole lot of sense in the system as it stands. In general, RPG systems including guns rely on DR, 'vitality points', or 'soak' to deal with issues of realism while leaving the stopping power of guns intact. There are usually also option for armor that stops bullets, and subsequently armor-piercing bullets. In a fantasy setting including a blanket ruling for this specific weapon stating that armor does nothing to stop or reduce bullet damage only leads to what we've seen on the forums - a lot of argument and complaint.
The system wasn't designed for this. Touch AC wasn't made for guns. Armor, natural armor, and the system that accommodates them wasn't built to factor against weapons that could ignore it. Sure, brilliant energy, but that's an enchantment with a cost - one that was once paid in experience amongst other things. This is very new, and a lot of old traditions are creaking against the weight.
Given a full base attack bonus, it wasn't a necessary inclusion. And given the low damage and short range, it is unjustifiable from a perspective of 'realism'. But it's done. The developers have been quite firm in their defense of this mechanic, and beating the dead horse until there's not enough left for a gunslinger to hit on a natural 2 isn't going to change that.
You're in luck, because bullets don't penetrate armor, kinetic force penetrates armor.
That seems to be the go-to argument, yes. It is also an argument that ignores the difference between a blunt shock and a bullet penetration, both of which do the same physical damage in the system. That is without going into lengthy rants about the kinetic force a bullet would possess considering the low range on all these weapons. Kinetic energy requires velocity, and velocity offers more stopping power. If they really possess so much kinetic force, they should really be providing more damage.
Again, can't break glass on minimum damage - kinetic force or no.
I've been reading over the forums, lurking my way through the concerns that people seem to have with this class. I agree with a lot of the problems people have with this class, and figured I'd throw in my two cents.
First, the touch AC issue. It's a problem, albeit one that isn't going to be addressed. Yes, it's odd that a high enough level gunslinger doesn't need the guiding ability score for ranged attackers in order to hit his target. Yes, it's strange that soft lead balls ignore +Epic Armor. And yeah, it's tough to reconcile the idea that a bullet that can pierce armor can fails to break through glass with minimum damage rolled.
Further, I can see no better poison delivery system than a scattergun. Of course, even without Touch AC issues that's true.
Though, and I say this with a sigh, this doesn't look like it will change. It may render a full base attack bonus superfluous, and might be seem unfair to other touch attackers who have to deal with Spell Resistance, but it is what it is. One can always houserule.
Reloading and misfires are also hot topics. While the new playtest offers a number of feats, class features, and gun enchantments that serve to remedy these problems, I find myself wondering at the contribution that these inclusions make to the game. Reloading has never bothered me the way that it has some people, and guns with multiple shots (or pickled shots) offer what I consider to be the best solution. Misfires, on the other hand, offer little in terms of a pleasurable gaming experience. I can see how, as a machine, if a firearm is broken in some way one will experience misfires. Improper cleaning and maintenance will do that, but for a fully functioning gun to suffer the same causes me some confusion.
These issues, as well as similar issues based around gun rules, make up a hefty number of gunslinger options. What we have as a result is a class whose main contribution is fixes for what feel like unnecessary penalties. The class is taxed with feat choices and grit retention in order to simply make their weapons viable.
It may sound like another 'guns are awful' commentary, but without optimism for guns to be reworked for Ultimate Combat, my point is that 'fixing' guns for the gunslinger is a good - excellent idea. It's just not enough to make the class an exciting option.
Gunslinger damage has been discussed as sub par. Players face a similar concern with unarmed damage. The solution was to allow the monk, a class focused on unarmed strikes, to get a damage boost as they gained class levels. Make it a static +1/2 class level, make it a damage die increase, or even something as unusual as "+1d4 1d6s per 6 levels", but offering the gunslinger something to move towards wouldn't hurt the class.
Deeds should be chosen, not automatic. Paizo's people did a fantastic job with customizable classes in the APG, both in terms of current product and future expansion through upcoming products. Gone were the woes of seeing book after WoTC book that offered a hundred new spells for casters and nothing but feats for the mundane folks. I referenced that kind of brilliant design strategy when prodding my friends to give Pathfinder a try. If the gunslinger deeds were chosen, we'd see that idea persist. It was a good idea, and it should persist.
I'm glad Perception made it onto class skills. There's a part of me that wishes Perform was in there, simply because I was raised to understand that every cowboy sings a sad, sad song. In fact, that sentiment is an integral component to what I know as the meaning of life. I will, however, persevere.
Finally, the "Firearms in Your Campaign" sidebar. It's clear what the intention was, and I understand that until players and GMs stop looking towards developers to answer their questions and guide their hands these things are necessary. I don't, however, think this was beneficial to the playtest. There are arguments going on that reduce concerns to 'that's only for that era of play'. The rules have changes, and the baseline is unclear, and so for thematic design interests we don't have everyone on the same page. That's no more beneficial to the playtest than saying 'if you don't like it, don't use guns'.
It also seems like a cop-out - with all due respect. I enjoy my GM discretion as much as anyone, and probably more than most, but I still appreciate a solid ruling. Variants are all well and good, and an appreciated addition to the GM toolbox, but with the source document providing such a vague "we set it up for this type of game, but whatever", my confidence level wanes. I yearn for the clarity of knowing that 'this is how it is' and it will always be my decision whether I should accept that.
Long posts are cathartic.
What kind of cosmetic flavor does the staff have? This is relevant, because you could easily avoid complication by simply enchanting the component cosmetics as wondrous items, and having them be attached to the staff.
I remember the first time I ever even considered playing D&D, I was asking a friend if it would be possible to have a staff that was not appropriate as a weapon, but had a series of magical effects tied to a series of rings that hung from the business end. I was trying to throw together a wide keyring with smaller rings hanging off of it, each of which did something similar to what you're describing. I remember him scratching his head.
Now, after having DM/GMed for long enough to make me wish my friends were interested in running games, I ultimately decided that it's possible. As possible as using the guidelines in the book to create wondrous items, anyway - which means more effects means it is more costly.
As for light at will, it's a 0-level spell for every spellcaster, which means it's going to be at will - provided it is prepared. As a wizard, if you really want to leave that 0 level slot open for disrupt undead, a small orb at the end of the staff (the orb of which would be the wondrous item) or a brass ring affixed around the staff's width with the appropriate enchantment would do it.
It's questionable whether smacking someone with the staff is really feasible with a bunch of gadgets attached. One could say that that's the trade, while someone else could argue that monks don't break their rings when they punch people. For 0-level spell options, I don't figure it's worth much consideration beyond the 'cool' factor.
Whoa, there. "Enhancing a weapon, suit of armor, or shield takes 1 day for each 1,000 gp in the price of its magical features." Core Rulebook, pg. 120: The Craft Magic Arms and Armor feat.
I like the Penetration Rating idea. It should probably work not just as AC penetration but as Ignore Hardness as well, so shooting a musket at close range ignores 6 hardness and -2 for each range increment (or -1 for each half range increment).
There's already a mechanic in the game that allows for that. Adamantine weapons ignore up to 20 hardness, so a few adamantine bullets would accomplish the same task, but with greater effect - though expensive.
That said, and with the interest of 'maintaining realism', as seems to be the assumed development motive, why not armor penetrating bullets? That's what is used to penetrate armor today, and is an invention necessitated by the inability of bullets (let alone round slugs) to break easily through some materials. Provide the bullet with the penetration rating, not the gun, and allow it to ignore a set amount of armor and natural armor bonus.
My only concern with that route is that it starts to dip into mechanics that remind me the Star Wars Saga Edition, which often allowed options which 'treated x number as x lower'. It's not my favorite system, so I'd hate to see the design ideas bleed over.
Is it just me or Grit would make an awsome action point system usable by anyone providing a good cinematic feel to characters actions?
They have that. It's called Hero Points and it's in the APG. You can regain them using the same 'daring act' ('heroic act') style mechanic, amongst other ways.
I don't get the reference sorry. but other than the dramatic difference in melting points between the two metals making iron smelting problematic on the go I guess so.
It's about pricing rules. One can melt an iron pot in order to get a larger return in iron ingots based on the price of iron. Likewise, one can cut a ladder into its component rods and get a similarly bloated return.
No, that sounds about right.
Agreed. In homebrew classes I've worked on, the emphasis tended to fall on versatility. Most of the core classes offer a lot of options for players, be it feat selection, spell selection, or an increasingly large pool of rogue talents. Each time a supplement is released, those options swell.
Of course, as an alternate class the gunslinger has no demands upon it to be versatile. Call that an argument that a new base class would be better, allowing for a varied collection of gun using characters. The argument could be made that each is possible with the inclusion of guns and the use of the exotic weapon feat with some of the core classes - which limits the necessity of a new alternate class with abilities centered around a specific ideal firearms user.
By your longswords are just as silly in the hands of a character with no strength mod, meaning the glass has the same 1 in 8 chance of surviving. Really using item breaking rules to demonstrate that guns as written is silly because the breaking rules are themselves frequently silly.
The big difference here being that longswords don't get a chance to ignore armor. The rules suggest a unique level of stopping power assigned to guns, but the way it manifests in the description serves only to illuminate other mild flaws in the system. These flaws could normally be overlooked with a shrug and a 'it's just a game, not everything can be perfect', but this particular oddity - assumed to be an attempt at realism - is so counter-intuitive and patently absurd that shrugging it away becomes terribly difficult.
This brings to mind the classic scene in A Fistful of Dollars, where Clint Eastwood is shot repeatedly and keeps getting back up, because he's hidden a metal plate under his poncho to stop the bullets.
They parodied (payed homage to) the scene in the 3rd Back to the Future movie as well.
Noted. I was skimming for my numbers, and saw the Small sized character damage. I revise to 1 in 6 for small, 1 in 8 for medium. I'm still feeling that a shot from a gun that can pierce (or dent, or bruise) should be able to make short work of a glass window.
Which would fine if there were any precedent for this kind of mechanic. However, as has been stated in other posts, Gods still have to hit AC to deal damage. The terrasque has to hit AC to deal damage. It doesn't matter if the 1d8+9999 damage strike hits your touch AC - if it doesn't beat your AC, it doesn't deal damage.
I'm not sure the new quantification for damage is - a topic that has been of debate before - but the specificity of this particular weapon and the way it interacts with the main defensive mechanic of the game fails to make sense with the material already accepted and in use. Again, minimum damage fails to break glass - but will break bones? Will dent steel?
In the spirit of again demonstrating the silliness of providing bullets the opportunity to ignore armor, I'd like to point out that by the rules, a bullet fired from a gun cannot even sunder the armor that it pierces. Steel, with 10 hardness, could take a pistol shot without denting. Harder substances, such as mithral and adamantine, would need massive bonus damage assigned to the gun before they even realized they were being shot.
The real kicker is that a pistol or musket, doing minimum damage, wouldn't even damage glass. A glass window has a 1 in 6 chance of surviving a shot from a pistol. Yet that same bullet punches through adamantine full plate to get that 1 point of damage on the armor's wearer.
Bump to see what others think~
I think you're right.
Of the many problems I have with this class, its implementation, and the weaponry it uses, one of the most nagging is the question of what the designers were going for.
I ask myself, why use a gun in the first place? The answer, for me, is because of some 'cool' factor, but a more utilitarian answer is in order to do high damage with a ranged weapon. Clearly, that isn't happening.
What would a gunslinger's skills be? For the answer to this one has to consider the feats for which a real-world firearm expert seeks to become proficient. It doesn't take a wild stretch to say that expending finite energy to shoot locks and popping people in the head in order to confuse them aren't on the list. The fact is, it's a whole lot simpler than that. Shoot, hit the target, deal damage.
What use are firearms over other forms of attack? Basically, they deal extensive damage to the area that the bullet hits. If the bullet pierces, there can be extreme internal injuries as the lead rips through tissue and bone. If it doesn't pierce (hence bludgeoning damage), it'll still leave a hefty bruise. Of course, this is where calling your shots comes in - though the rules as presented lack any of gravity of being shot with a gun. Shooting someone in the arm doesn't even deal damage.
There is a mechanic designed around extra damage for attacking vital areas. It's called sneak attack, and it's a rogue thing. As it stands, a rogue with a gun is probably more effective than a gunslinger anyway.
There are encumbrance issues from level one because of the amount of 'free' equipment the character receives, and the cost to replace it is extreme for when it blows up. Grit is a throwaway mechanic that, unfortunately, serves as the basis for the class. Feats must be spent to gain new uses for grit, each with heavy prerequisites. Not to mention that for a fighter variant, the designers certainly limited one great fighter advantage - lots of feats.
Even the capstone ability pales in comparison to what was traded. Considering the critical multiplier they chose for these guns (which seems like the only place they went too far), I'd prefer that all my critical hits were automatically confirmed rather than gaining the ability to shoot locks for free.
I'm also crazed about gun hitting touch ACs. I'm not sure why this misconception that bullets can inherently go through metal persists. These lead balls lack the piercing power of a sharp arrow - which, for the record, historically had more luck going through armor. That's why bows get a x3 multiplier - because when they get through, they go deep. Meanwhile, despite the fact that pistols can't even beat the hardness of steel by themselves, they get to ignore armor. Even adamantine armor, which would normally require 31 points of damage from a single shot.
I'm trying to stay objective and constructive on this, but the approach taken is making it very difficult to escape that nihilistic voice in my head that's shouting for this particular piece of content to be removed before it becomes official.
I'm surprised the encumbrance issue hasn't gotten more attention. Most of the builds I've seen have a 10 Str gunslinger - which means that he'd be unable to even carrying his starting equipment without submitting to a medium load - before any other equipment. That, of course, is assuming bullets weigh the same as sling bullets, and that powder weighs at least 1 pound per 50 shots (which would be very low weight).
Previously in the game I'm running I introduced a character who used firearms, but was using the crossbowman archetype from the APG, but replacing all instances of 'crossbow' with 'firearm'.
I'm curious as to what people think of potential comparisons between this class vs. the simple alteration of the archetype. For example, the crossbowman gets to add half his Dex mod to damage when he readies an attack with any crossbow at 3rd level. The gunslinger gets his full Dex bonus with a specific firearm at 5th level, without the need to ready the attack. Crossbowmen get their full Dex bonus to damage at 11th level. Gunslingers get to attack against a touch AC. Crossbowmen, when readying, can deny their opponent their Dex bonus to AC at 7th level. At 13th level crossbowmen no longer provoke an AOO when using a crossbow. Gunslingers spend grit to accomplish the same, provided they've taken the feat.
Etc., etc. Thoughts? If you don't have access to the APG, the pertinent information is here.
The more I look over this class the more that I think it's a bad idea. I'd almost rather that instead of trying to bring the firearms idea into Pathfinder, Paizo should leave this element to the 3rd party developers and house-rulers - particularly if this the approach that they're taking with it. Mind you, I want a class that provides for unique character options for guns - it's something I've been including in my games for a long time through one avenue or another. But I don't think I've ever used, or would ever attempt to use something as disjointed and unfriendly to the player as what this class seems to be.
In the GMG, technology is mentioned as something that can really upset a game, and guns are mentioned specifically as particularly hard on a setting. I think what we're seeing here is the wisdom in that idea. A lot of people are unhappy with the limitations placed on what is the main equipment of a class - an expensive, difficult to acquire item that has a tendency to blow up on you. The efforts to repair the problems that arise have only served to illuminate that these problems exist, and the class has suffered terribly for it.
It's not that I don't think this can be done well. I just think that the starting point provided in this playtest falls miles from the mark. I'd like the whole thing scrapped and rebuilt from the ground up, starting with an approach that makes gun viable weapons that are as worth the weapon group proficiency feat as any other exotic weapon, priced reasonably, and given a power level that doesn't disrupt the game.
There just isn't that much here that I would keep. It's not what I expected my reaction to be to a class that attempts to fill a niche I've always wanted filled. I just expect more from official material produced by the people that made a game that I enjoy as much as I enjoy Pathfinder.
Joseph Caubo wrote:
And I think typically Charisma has been tied to how great you look (at least that's how my friends and local PFS players have interpreted it).
Were that the case it wouldn't make sense for sorcerers either. It's supposed to be a force of personality, for which physical attractiveness is one manifestation.