Noblejohn, look up Hex Crawl type supplements. I know Frog God games has a line. Here's a big map, a bunch of stuff that happens in certain hexes when the PCs enter it, and it doesn't have to tie to a specific plot.
I do like random encounters, because the world is random. You're going to the grocery store, get stopped at a red light, get rear-ended by someone not paying attention. You go to the airport heading to PaizoCon, and you get picked for the random "let's get the exam gloves out" check. You're walking to the library and see a $10 bill on the ground.
Not every battle is one of their choosing, on the perfect battleground, against a "fair" opponent(s).
Now, I also don't run Pathfinder. I go with more old-school games (Castles & Crusades is my current game). Combats go a lot faster when players don't have to look over a list of feats or a tactical battle grip trying to decide what trick to pull out next and where to maneuver to maximise AOOs, reach weapons, and flanking bonuses.
As for the "15 minute" adventuring day . . . well, intelligent adversaries take advantage of the downtime. Goblins can sneak and scout too, you know.
Hey, I'm 40 years old and still don't mind my adventuring exploits staying at the PG level.
As I was thinking about it, I should also plug Raging Swan's "Shadowed Keep on the Borderlands." It's a pretty straight forward adventure, plenty of chances to beat stuff up, but chances for intelligent role-play as well.
Plus, if you don't like it, Raging Swan has a money-back guarantee.
Some of the Paizo stuff is stronger than I would like, but for the most part it can be removed without an issue. Failing that, you can look for adventures that have reviews written, and email the reviewer (or private-message him/her) to ask if the material is appropriate.
Personally, I'm a fan of some of the older-edition stuff (Village of Hommlet, Keep on the Borderlands, Secret of Bone Hill, Sinister Secret of Saltmarsh). It's not Pathfinder, but I prefer fewer rules. I think someone on the boards has a Pathfinder-ized version of the Keep on the Borderlands. A little searching may be in order.
Quella, as to your first question: Yes, there are third-party beginner box adventures. 0one Games has some (that's zero-one), and there was recent a Store Blog post that highlighted others (it's the Weds May 1 entry; I'm not smart enough to figure out the web address).
As for younger gamers, I'm at a bit of a loss. I string together modules for a 12 and 14 year old, and just keep out anything that might be objectionable. But the 12 year old quickly discovered the "loot the bodies!" bandwagon.
Also, don't be afraid of forgetting the rules. Better to make up a ruling on the spot and look it up later, after the game. Because your players will . . . WILL . . . try to put together a plan that the rules don't cover. Especially children. Super-creative minds that aren't bound by knowledge of the "rules."
Aren't we told again and again that "information wants to be free"?
Looks like it is.
And no, government does not respect your First Amendment rights.
That's why the Founders placed the Bill of Rights into the Constitution. They knew that those in power could not be trusted.
Plenty of room on my hard drive for this file.
If you always use the Kevlin scale, you'll never have a negative temperature.
Funny story: As a chemist, I use Celcius for all temps at work. It was weird as heck when the refrigerator repair guy said my freezer should get down to zero. My immediate thought was, yeah, that's the problem, things aren't freezing as well as they should . . . . Stupid Farenheit.
It all depends on the overall power-level of your game.
I prefer a more low-to-mid powered game, where a 10th level character is a Big Deal, an epic achievment worthy of ballads.
Pathfinder (and 3.x) default the game to something else. A slower level advancement rate pushes this default power-level to my preference, where a faster leveling rate makes it more of a super-hero game.
Also, remember that "reality" has little to do with this game. If there are dragons/demons/acids that show damage effects within 6 seconds, there can totally be a PC who goes from a level 1 farmer to a level 15 hero in the course of a season or two.
Of course, this is also coming from a 1st Ed Gamer who played a game for 5 years and went from level 1 to level 7. Talk about earning your way in the world . . . .
Endzeitgeist, thanks for all your work. You've directed me to some cool stuff, and your reviews are one of the first things I look for when scoping out new stuff (literally! "Oooh, this product has a cool name and five stars from reviewers . . . but not one for Endzeitgeist . . . Hmmm . . . Guess I'll look at the product description now.).
As to your requests:
2) My big-book purchases are fewer these days, so I'd vote for more of the smaller files. Besides, I'm in the RC kickstarter, so I'm already getting it. I can wait on your review. :) And honestly, for bigger books I prefer the physical book. And more often, I can find a copy of the larger book and get an idea of the product. I can't do that for most of the smaller pdfs.
3) I don't use facebook, and God-willing I never will.
4) I haven't visited your site but once (older material . . . okay, I've got that stuff already!). But I do want to support your work, so reminders that you have a site where I can go through an affiliate program will help. Also, I've seen a couple blogs that have a "tip jar" thingie for PayPal. Don't know if you find those obnoxious or not, or how well they work, but that might help a little bit. I tip my servers at restaurants, and you're providing me a better service (the meal only lasts a few hours; pdfs last until the hard drive crashes).
5) OBS, Paizo, RPGaggression (where I went back specifically to read your reviews, since browing through OBS or Paizo sometimes doesn't cut it). While I do collect Pathways, I can't say your reviews there are a huge draw for me (mainly because I can find them on RPGaggression).
I need to add your site to my regular blogroll/site list. Or an RSS feed or something. That will prompt me to go there more often.
Can you enlist a trusted friend to do some tagging for you? I'm not familiar with website programs or code, but I would think there would be a crowd-sourcing function to auto-tag posts ("Here's a list of tags; which applies to this post?"). But I wouldn't listen to me about technical issues . . . .
Thanks again for all the reviews.
The guy got bitten to death by a beaver.
Yes, I'm making fun of it.
If I get chewed to death by an herbivore, I hope someone will mock that situation as well.
And when I get home tonight and share the story with my wife, I'm going to say "Honey, you know that beaver we have living in our lake? If something should happen . . . please post the video on YouTube."
Yes, I have a beaver living in my lake. Used to be four.
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
Personally, I'd be much happier if the DHS spent all of its money on Celtic instruments...
They're too busy buying hollow-point ammunition.
And thanks, because now I'm imagining two dozen DHS agents in kilts with bad Irish accents. That's what I get for watching Brave last night.
To further the discussion . . . .
I personally run a Castles & Crusades game for some young teenagers. It's mostly compatible with 3.x/Pathfinder, more like AD&D without all the tables. From this system I also run Basic/Labyrith Lord modules.
So, to introduce your kids, use LL. It's what you're familiar with, the rule book is free, and there's lots of support for it (including the original Basic modules from TSR available on pdf). If you want to expand to C&C, it's not a big leap system wise, but you'd need to spend some money on books and such.
Or stick with LL. There's an "Advanced Edition Companion" that mimics AD&D rules (haven't seen it yet, so can't comment on how good it is), and there's a growing comminity of "Old School" games and gamers that can point you in the right direction for more cool stuff.
That said, you could use the Pathfinder Beginner Box as is. There's at least one company producing modules for it (0one Games - that's 'zero-one'). Lots of cool fiddly bits, too.
The great news is that there are way more games available today, for all different play types and skill levels, than there were back in the early 80s. Heck, I came across "Hero Kids", which is an rpg for younger kids (mine can't read yet, so I've got time).
There's also a large online community that do reviews of all sorts of products, so pretty much any product you want to know about, you can find someone who has a review of it.
Frogimus, check out Labyrinth Lord by Goblinoid Games. It's a clone of the Basic rules. The no-art version of the rule book is free.
There's also Basic Fantasy, but I'm not as familiar with that system.
Or Adventurer Conqueror King, which plays on the concept that the PCs will want to be ruling their own domains.
Personally, I'd start with Labryinth Lord.
I use these little 1inch square adhesive things. Double sided sticky squares. A normal human sized mini can be held at all angles, even upside down. I also use poster tack putty. Mine's yellow, but there's also blue. Normally used to tack posters to walls instead of tacks/nails.
For really heavy minis, I just superglue the base to the top of a large pill bottle.
I like how they have a picture of Cthulhu, but not of the critters.
edit: Okay, so old versions of IE aren't supported by the site to do all the cool stuff Celestial Healer mentions. Guess I'll just have to wait to get home before I see the creatures that will drive me insane.
Marc, if you are using Reaper's Master Series Paint, you do not need to prime the Bones.
I painted my first Bones models at Gen Con last year, threw the painted figures in my backpack, and took them out when I got home. They were fine.
I did that because there were a lot of people asking about not primering the models at the paint-n-take, and I wanted to be sure about my answer before I gave it.
I have no experience with Bones using other paints as a basecoat.
In real life, if you suddenly encountered a vampire, you'd likely grab a cross, holy water, garlic, and a wooden stake or two. If you encountered a werewolf, you'd try to acquire some silver bullets.
The game world has myths, legends, folk tales, and rumors just like the real world has. How is it our characters, who are assumed to be roughly early adults, not supposed to know stuff like how to deal with a troll?
Reskin stuff as appropriate.
There's gold in them there goblin hideouts.
"What's in it for me?"
Honestly, once the first module is out of the way, the PC should have enough connection to the townsfolk and the other PCs that his motivation would be "help my friends."
And have a roving bounty hunter turn up asking for him is always a good way to make sure he takes off with the party to parts unknown. I might not make it part of the overarching campaign. With luck, a little nudge is all the player will need.
Out of curiosity, why?
I mean this as a sincere question. Many feudal nobles had holdings spread out all over (in part because this meant he couldn't maintain one large force as a threat to his lord). So if you needed him to have more money, he has a small interest in a mine that's off the map to the northwest, or a small fief several days' ride south.
I've always found that by locking in this level of detail, I've locked out the possiblity of something better down the road.
Again, I'm just curious, and that information might help out with the answers you receive.
I believe elsewhere it was stated by a High Muckety-Muck of Paizo that Knowledge: Local was indeed similar to "gather information" and that locality didn't matter. The character's ability to glean information about the local situation was the same no matter where he goes.
I don't see how this is over-powered/broken. One can't use the skill to learn details about the neighboring kingdom, since that's not local knowledge. But one could use it to know the heraldric banners of the local lords, or find out who has moved to town recently.
I can easily see this as something like the modern traveller driving through New Orleans and saying "Oh yeah, I've heard about Bourbon Street! Let's go see it. But we should be careful because the neighboring streets can be a bit dangerous. But my friend told me about this really good restaurant . . . ." None of this information mattered when the guy was back in Iowa; it only matters once he's in New Orleans. Similarly, since he's in New Orleans, whatever information he wants to use involving New York City would be a different skill. He's not in New York City, therefore can't make a Knowledge: Local roll.
Field and Stream magazine does a good job on conducting the interview, and not debating the VP.
As a side note, I'm really looking forward to him running in 2016.
There are several reasons for this behavior.
Wall of Text:
First, who wants to go through all the trouble of having a different character sheet for every situation? Leisure sheet, Adventuring sheet, Going out for a night on the town but might be attacked by rival murder-hobo gang sheet . . . etc.
Second, the "story" usually surrounds the activities where one would wear full armor, have full complement of buffing and protective spells, and carry massive amounts of weapons. Adventuring is the basis for most of the "story" in this game, so it makes sense that whenever a "scene" occurs, the players will be prepared as they would for any other scene (fully decked out and ready to fight).
Third, there are a lot of players who get penalized for not wearing armor 24/7. Many GMs don't understand pacing or story development, and when notified that the fighter is wandering around town in nothing more than a linen jerkin and some trousers, will do everything in his power to have something attack the character. If you have this happen to you enough, you start wearing your armor all the time. After all, it's not paranoia if they're really out to get you. On the flip side, how ticked are you gonna be if a street thug crits your warrior and a few points of AC would have changed the result?
Fourth, equipment is often an identifying feature of the characters. Power balance in games is usually determined by equipment carried. Feats for a fighter depend on having the right weapon with you. A wizard still has his spell complement and maybe even some meta-magic feats he can apply, and a fighter without his armor and preferred weapons is at a significant disadvantage.
I'm sure there are other reasons.
For myself, I like a game where I can take the day off and have my wizard take in a little local color without doping up on magical opiates prior to setting out. In one game I played, our characters were relaxing in a tavern, when we were attacked by our rivals. My dwarf proceed to get hit very hard, and the GM said something to the effect of "I thought your AC was higher than that?" My reply? "Not right now it isn't." He grumbled. On my attack, I declared that my warrior would punch the nearest bad guy with his mug of ale. The GM got mad at me for not taking his game seriously. He couldn't understand why I wouldn't want to use my armored-up dwarf for this encounter, and never realized that there are times when the armor comes off.
I still want to play in a game where I don't have to be all blinged out for every encounter, but the only time that occurs is because our characters were set upon during the night while they slept.
But in direct answer to one of your questions, yes, people do keep knives on their persons at all times. Even weddings. It's one of the hallmarks of medieval society, and likely more important in a magical medieval society.
Just pointing out the folly of government, especially when the Dear Leader waxes eloquent about religious freedom, but ignores the fact that family will be financially ruined and their children potentially forcibly removed from the household for following their religious beliefs should they be deported.
You are free to ignore the ironic nature of the situation.
The new Treasury Secretary was paid severance when he voluntarily left his position at CitiGroup to go work for the President. His contract was specifically written to treat Citi as a revolving door between Wall Street and Washington. Kinda weird when a "too big to fail" bank fully expects a top employee to start working at a senior position within the regulatory agency it has to bow to.
Final quote: "A too-big-to-fail bank must be pleased to know that in a little more than two years it made the sacrifice of government so much easier for America's most powerful banking regulator."
I'm sure there's nothing to see here. Move along, Citizen.
President Obama wrote:
Today, we also remember that religious liberty is not just an American right; it is a universal human right to be protected here at home and across the globe. This freedom is an essential part of human dignity, and without it our world cannot know lasting peace.
Lead it into a narrow canyon. Cause avalanche.
Get on a ship, lead it into the water, spear it with the prow.
One character draws a short straw, loads himself up with the most potent combination of poison known. Rolls around in garlic butter to make himself irresitable. Sure, someone gets swallowed, but that's why you make sure you don't get the short straw. Throw in some delayed-blast fireballs for good effect.
But it's a plot device, so you won't be able to kill it. If you don't care, then go with the flow.
I don't think the "large city" idea is going to work. It already showed no fear of annihilating a city of 40,000 people.
And there was no one in the city capable of launching an arrow at it? Seriously? If, in a city with 40000 people, there wasn't one person capable of at least slowing it down, your characters have absolutely no chance.
Your GM is being a jerk. Maybe he thinks he's being challenging. Maybe he's just using it to make himself feel better because you can't figure a way around his plot device. Maybe he's just not a good GM. Either way, tell him to stop. And if he doesn't, your paladin should stand his ground, draw his sword, and die proudly. Think 300-esque, where the end is already written, there's nothing you can do to change the outcome. But you can die bravely, instead of fleeing like rats from a sinking ship.
Paladin in our group. Most of the rest of the group is "good" aligned as well.
Honestly, your GM is out of bounds on this one. I enjoy placing the occasional critter that the PCs have to run away from, but I don't make it a central pillar of the campaign.
That said, if you can convince the paladin (in-character) that this thing is an avatar sent to see the wicked punished, if only he'd lead it to the deserving, you could have some fun with that.
If it were me, I'd just say "Stop. We're going to fight it here. And we're going to die. If the GM doesn't want us to play, then let's get it over with because I've got better things to do."
Now, if you really want to kill it . . . lead it to the biggest, most powerful city around. Get rooms at an inn in the center of the city. Wait. Once the critter appears on the horizon, the city and all its powerful inhabitants are going to respond. Or the GM is going to have to trash his campaign world one city at a time.
Turning this thread into a discussion involving the pros and cons of regulation isn't necessarily what this thread was about, although there is some discussion regarding drug laws. I'll be happy to have the discussion elsewhere, although I don't see the point as you won't change my mind and I won't change yours. Is there really any point in having Paizo lock yet another pointless thread?
I agree with our goblinod Comrade: Don't do leprosy and thalidamide unless you've got cancer drugs.
There is no such thing as "climate stasis," so you can choose either an ice age that puts glaciers over the areas currently the most fertile, or you can choose warming and the problems associated with it.
Normally, if things are related, there is a very strong mathematical relationship between them. For example, smokers generally have more health problems. This paper examines the same principle as applied to human-caused global warming.
They didn't find a linear response between greenhouse gas increases and temperature increases. (A linear response would be smoking 1 pack a day meant a 10% increase in health problems, smoking 2 packs meant a 20% increase, etc.)
However, they used temperature data from Michael Mann's research (he's a climatologist who massaged his data enough to give him the result he wanted.) And, in regards to the non-linear result, they couldn't find any data currently published reflecting a non-linear response of global warming (it's not getting more warmer faster as time goes on). This may or may not be accurate, because, gosh darn it, climate stuff is complicated. They also didn't take into account water vapor issues, since that is a pretty linear relationship, and would therefore affect all the data equally. Of course, water vapor is a major contributor to warming. There might also be a multiplier effect between variables that we can't account for. For example, if solar radiation increases, it may increase the interaction between ozone and water vapor in ways that hasn't been discovered yet.
We believe there is a temporary effect of humans on temperature, for which the earth corrects itself over time (for example, decades, but we're not really certain).
This doesn't mean that human-caused global warming doesn't exist. It also doesn't mean we are correct; we could be wrong, but we don't think so. By the way, climate stuff is hard, so don't sue us if we're incorrect.
Does that cover the basics? Sure there's more, but you wanted simple. I think I covered it. I'm sure I missed something, because my son is demanding attention and he's far more important than this article.
I'm pointing out that other research exists besides the "Al Gore's Everyone Is Going to Die Horribly from Massive Flooding and Hurricanes and Why Aren't You People Listening to Me!" position. And I would rather have global warming than global cooling. Scott seems to be an expert on lots of stuff, so I figured he'd be open minded enough to look at an interesting article. If you find the information kinda neat, awesome. If not, that's fine.
Now y'all can continue your demonization of Glenn Beck. Because it's okay to attack people with whom we have divergent opinions.
Sissyl, you're correct. And they all want the FDA to continue to exist, for the reasons you mentioned and for the cover it provides them if something goes wrong. "FDA-approved" shifts part of the blame over to someone else.
Biotech stuff has been making inroads, since those companies are generally smaller and don't necessarily need the large infrastructure needed to manufacture their products. Which is why pharma is pushing "biosimilar" legislation.
There is, however, a strong push for new medicines. The "low hanging fruit" strategy has failed to pay off, as has the acquisition strategy of buying up new and novel treatments/companies. Too bad it takes between 7-10 years to bring a new drug to market.
You asked a question that had nothing to do with my post.
Here's a quick repeat: There is no rubber stamp. The next time the FDA approves a drug and says something along the lines of "and this drug will save 10000 lives a year," you should realize that by slowing the approval process they allowed 10000 people to die during the past year.
Mainly ignorance. Nice try, though.
You know thalidamide is still used, don't you?
Scott Betts wrote:
Yep, my scrutiny. Being able to accurately reflect real climate changes against the model. There isn't one model that can accurately show what happened the past 10 years.
As for "consensus" . . .
Scientific search for truth doesn't operate by consensus.
You might want to start investigating people who have a less "Chicken Little" approach. I suggest Anthony Watts. And no, he's not a denier.