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Danse Macabre

DrDeth's page

3,975 posts. 18 reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist.

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Umbriere Moonwhisper wrote:

because the concept of alignment exists within the game, we have to include mechanics focused around it. and because it exists, we have to have reasons to justify it. would Pathfinder 2E or any

Holy wall of Text, Batman! And since you forgot to use Caps, it's nigh unreadable. But it seems to boil down to:

you don't like the alignments system? Fine, play without it, or play a game that doesn't use it.

You think it leads to MORE immature behavior rather than less? Nope. I have played RPGs of all types for a looooong time, and I can tell you that immature players will play that type of PC no matter the rules.

BUT, having alignment does help with the newbs. It does show them what sort of behavior is expected of heroes. This is good. So to a small extent, with new players, it does help to promote a heroic playstyle. Not that that's always necessary, a nice all Evil game is fun once in a while too. But it's fun precisely because it's a change of pace. Even so, I have never spent any game time murdering peasants and stealing their chickens- no, my Evil games had grander things in mind, like Trying to Take over the World, much like Pinky & The Brain.

So, D&D has had Alignment since Day 1. D&D has been the best selling Roleplaying game since Day 1- even tho the baton has passed to PF. Many, many other systems using spellpoints, or level-less skills or no alignments have been published and played, but are now gathering dust in the 30% off shelf down at your FLGS. Hmmm.

Paizo is damn smart. The have taken the most popular RPG ever when WoTC decided to do something NEW & DIFFERENT!!! with it- changed it just a bit and for the better. They'd have to be complete morons to change this extremely successful business model. So, Vancian casting, Levels, and Alignments are all here to stay. That's what sells games. Mind you, having spellpoints or something as a alternate is also a good idea, so they have tentatively gone down that path a little too. This is Good also.

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Jay the Madman wrote:

Of course a magic Missile is situational. All spells are situational.

Wizard:"We need to get out of this deep hole, what spell should I use? Magic Missile!"
GM: No effect
Wizard: "Fireball! That is my go-to spell"
GM: Still no effect
Wizard: "ooo I know. Haste! That spell is perhaps the most useful spell available"
GM: ugh

Yeah, well that's one thing about the Optimizers here on these boards.

Toughness isn't the VERY VERY best feat evar, so it's useless. The rogue niche can be filled by other classes, so the class is worthless. The crossbow isn't quite as good as the Longbow for dedicated archers, so it's there as a trap. Or maybe just there because SKR hates crossbows or some other silly reasoning.

Everything must be the very very best in ALL situations and the way THEY play or it's worthless crud, and a TRAP! by the devs.

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PF or even D&D is not a PvP game. So, I can't understand why you want to do this in the first place.

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ParagonDireRaccoon wrote:
In 1E there was an adventure module where players started out without a class, and the actions they took throughout the adventure determined what their class was. If I remember there was a checklist, the the DM kept track of actions for each PC. I may work on something like that for PF this summer, it recapture a lot of what I think of as essential to the AD&D experience- focus on roleplaying and character personality rather than build, hopefully some of the sense of wonder at...

All good points until here.

Boy did that suck. I ended up with a cleric who had a Wis of 9, and unable to cast spells. Of course, I just never played him again.

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We have too many players for the PF groups, not enuf for the 3.5 game, but we attract mature roleplayers.

No smokers. Must shower. No cheating.

I ran into a guy on the train who had a bag that said "Bag of Holding" so we started talking and I invited him.

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Manimal wrote:
Hey, bbt, if I came up to a group and asked them if they could help me flesh out a concept for my latest "toon," then proceeded to make it clear that I was talking about a PC, and a member of that group said, "Gee, I was going to help you until you used the term 'toon,'" how should I interpret their reaction?

I'd explain that our group, being mature, experienced roleplayers, do not play with "toons". Nor "murderhoboes".

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The hate isn't due to being OP, so that's a side issue and compared to Wizards Summoners might not be that OP.

The hate is mostly due to being a HUGE spotlight & table-time hog and being super complicated and the build being wrong every freaken time.

The fact they are also quite powerful just makes those two things even worse, true.

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Atarlost wrote:

1) The Eidolon rules are complicated, clumsy, poorly balanced with a very high optimization floor, and the limits are hidden or confusing while the options are an easy to see menu leading to a rash of ridiculously overpowered eidolons by people who misread the rules. I think it was almost a year from publication before many people started posting eidolon builds that everyone agreed were rules legal.

Yes, every Eidolon I have seen was illegal, first shot.

And, one other problem- the class is a 'spotlight hog". Master Summoner is the worst here.

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Jaelithe wrote:

Have all the characters that don't have innate magical powers (or that have been deemed "weak" by the community, like monks, rogues and fighters) proress on the Fast table; .

Yeah, no thanks. That "deemed "weak" by the community" is bogus. First of all, it's NOT "the community" it's a very few VERY VERY loud posters who in many cases have even admitted they don't even play Pathfinder. At our table, and in JJ's table, Fighters & Rogues are popular classes that really contribute, in fact even in our 13th level group the straight Fighter is far & away the most dangerous PC in the group.

Mind you, when we're talking 17th level+ then heck yes, spellcasters rule. But martials rule levels 1-4.

Mind you, in some of their cases, they might be playing PF and in at least one case it was shown they were playing a super-optimized 'rocket tag" game. That's not "badwrongfun"- since they were having fun.

But the rules don't need to be massively changed for a small minority*. IRL, fighters and rogues are among the most popular classes out there.

"They" will say "monks, rogues and fighters" are weak but just saying over and over again on these boards (by the same few posters) does not make it true. "They" have an agenda (or two or three agendas, in at least one case, it's obvious that poster just hates PF and will jump on any & all bandwagons to show how bad the game is. Another one wants to promote his own game, etc...)

* not that 4skp for fighters and more cool talents for rogues would be so bad...

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kyrt-ryder wrote:
Snorri Nosebiter wrote:
pure teen drama? :)
He hasn't been a Teenager since Buddy Holly was performing :P

Close, I was in Grade school. ;-)

British Invasion, baby!

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Kthulhu wrote:
DrDeth wrote:

Is that fair to the socially inept introvert who'd like to try running a silver tongued Charismatic guy once?

If a guy wants to play a barbarian with a 20 str, do you make him do pull ups for a STR check?

DrDeth wrote:
It *IS* a roleplaying game. One of the nice things in ROLEplaying is trying a character that doesn't match your IRL skill set. It's unfair to penalize that guy too much.
And then DrDeth developed a split personality.

Those two are in no way contradictory. Really.

I why do you think they are?

You have a player who is a socially inept introvert, but he really wants to play a charismatic bard, why not? Sure, maybe he'll struggle a bit, or even a lot, but why penalize him for trying?

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Karl Hammarhand wrote:

I learned that lesson the day my party assaulted the perfectly innocent statues in a courtyard. Sometimes a statue is just a statue etc. I'm just glad they didn't murder some old woman saying she was a witch in disguise.

Sometimes too much Genre savvy can be a dangerous thing. ;-)

Half-naked sexy babe chained up in BBEG room? Succubus trap, every time.

As Hrun the barbarian said: "You find chokeapples under a chokeapple tree. You find treasure under altars.".

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Snorri Nosebiter wrote:
DrDeth wrote:

And- look none of you are more experienced in DMing that I am. (That doesn't mean I am better or more imaginative and heaven knows you quite possibly know the PF ruleset better than I do). When I am DMing I am already running dozens of re-occurring roll NPCs, the BBEG and of course thousands of one shot "meet & greet or kill" monsters, shopkeepers and what not. And of course, I have a couple PC's in other games. I dunno about you guys, but this mere mortal thinks that's enuf for one guy.

none of us are more expierenced than you? oh rly? That's something only a noob would say.

How about "Get off my lawn!"? ;-)

or "when rocks were soft...."

or "Nog Nog! Mkellen bebog! V'luch Matuch Maluch M'tog!"

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Jaelithe wrote:
Captain Wacky wrote:
I do something similar to Dr. Deth, though I'm not as nice about it. You don't get to use the skills at all unless you actually try RPing to at least some degree.

My God! How unreasonable of you! Requiring role-playing in a role-playing game?! Have you completely lost your mind?!

We must all just be old.

It *IS* a roleplaying game. One of the nice things in ROLEplaying is trying a character that doesn't match your IRL skill set. It's unfair to penalize that guy too much.

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Mark Hoover wrote:

Where I find it near impossible is on social rolls. Diplomacy took the wind out of a lot of RP sails. Still, I try to muddle through.

So easy. Circumstance bonuses/penalties are the DM's friend. If they just say "I use Diplomacy on the guard to get thru the gate" assign a -2, if they say "i walk up to the guard,chat with him a few minutes, drop the name of the Guards Commander casually into the conversation..." then assign a +2. Let them know this.

That +4 difference can make or break the deal. OTOH, if the Player is socially inept but really wants to play a Diplomancer, he still can. He can say " I use my Ks Nobility or Local check to see if there's anything to say that might help" so that gets a +0 (well, maybe even a +1 if that other check is really good).

So, Good roleplaying is rewarded, and good Rolls/building is also rewarded.

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So, now let me just ask the DMPC running GM this sit rep. The party is charging across a room to rush the BBEG (for this example, he needs to be rushed, ok?) One way for your DMPC to move, in fatc the direct path- leads over a certain death trap. (You know your DMPC won;t spot it and won't make the save except on a nat 20 and won't survive due to other things). What do you do?

Moving to go around the trap is metagaming and cheating. But so is deliberately moving into the trap.

And yes, you could justify another route easily- BUT YOU CAN NOT POSSIBLY TAKE THE KNOWLEDGE OF THAT TRAP OUT OF YOUR DECISION. No matter what you decide- you have made that decision based upon your DM knowledge. Even if you let him die a horrible death- you have done so knowing.

And think of all the things you can't do- solve puzzles, know a monsters weakness- and you have to constantly keep that in mind while DMPCing. You can NEVER have that flash of brilliance- "Mellon!". You already know that the password is the ancient elvish word for 'friend".

And- look none of you are more experienced in DMing that I am. (That doesn't mean I am better or more imaginative and heaven knows you quite possibly know the PF ruleset better than I do). When I am DMing I am already running dozens of re-occurring roll NPCs, the BBEG and of course thousands of one shot "meet & greet or kill" monsters, shopkeepers and what not. And of course, I have a couple PC's in other games. I dunno about you guys, but this mere mortal thinks that's enuf for one guy.

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Tacticslion wrote:

That's understandable - they're long, overly-wordy, and often needlessly complex (like my home-brew campaign plots! Hey-oooooooooo!).

But the fact is, as a player, disregarding my status as a GM, the preponderance of GMPCs have neither bothered me nor detracted from the game in any way.

Perhaps your way of acknowling that was by hedging with the words "most". But it doesn't feel that way via text communication!

Yes, I used that terminology as you are here (as in most cases) the exception. And I mean that in the nicest possible way with all due respect.


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Jaelithe wrote:

A person offering an opinion they claim is invariably correct despite solid evidence to the contrary should be challenged or ignored.

Which is exactly what you have been doing also, so why the personal attacks?

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Neurophage wrote:
Karl Hammarhand wrote:
Sorry but I am unfamiliar with the 'Stormwind Fallacy'. I can tell you what a 'no true Scotsman' is or a 'strawman argument' but Stormwind is something I have only run across here.
The Stormwind Fallacy is an exposure of a false dichotomy between mechanical effectiveness and role-playing. It's the admission that a mechanically-effective character is not necessarily poorly-role-played, and a well-role-played character is not necessarily mechanical-ineffective. Granted, Stormwind is a buzzword for a phenomenon that never existed to any great extent in the first place, and the only reason that you never hear it outside of this forum is because this forum is the only one that needs a term for something that the rest of the RPG community accepts as a given.

But altho it is POSSIBLE for a optimized/powergamed/mechanical Player to also be great at Roleplaying, it frankly doesn't happen very often. Just like we don't have too many Theoretical Nuclear Physicists who are also Major League baseball players. It's perfectly possible for one to be a scholar and a athlete, but generally the demands of time and being a mere mortal gets in the way of exceeding at both. That's why the observation that Optimizers arent often Roleplayers is correct ... but only as a generalization, not a rule.

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Sissyl wrote:


So, the people who see DMPCs as a good thing (tm) use the definition "any NPC that travels with the party", and lo and behold, they don't see a problem. The others will in most cases agree, as long as that's the definition given. Any criticism about using DMPCs will be considered unreasonable, because this is the only definition the pro-DMPC group uses.

Those who do not like DMPCs use the definition (more or less) "a character who the DM sees as their PC, which means the DM is actively rooting for that character", and they don't like it because they see a very large risk that it ends up with plot immunity, Mary-Sue-ishness, and tons of other different bad things or pitfalls. Most of the anti-DMPC crowd see nothing wrong with having NPCs follow the party around.

As long as this discussion doesn't even try to discuss the SAME definition of the term, it's never going to be productive, in this or any other thread.

It's pretty simple. A fellow adventurer traveling with the party on a regular basis should be run by the players. (With DM over-ride authority of course).

And it's also rather simple- "the people who see DMPCs as a good thing" are (in almost every case) a DMPC running DM, one who isn't happy with running the other 99.99% of the characters in the show. Mostly they are either in denial or just have no idea how much their DMPC annoys the players.

Mind you, most players are so very grateful to get a decent DM, that a non "plot immunity, Mary-Sue-ishness" DMPC will be seen as a minor price to pay. If they see the DM needs to have one, they may even encourage it.

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Muad'Dib wrote:

Monsters criting for more hit points than players have even when fully healed. We have had multiple character obliterated by x3 crit weapons. I've never in all my years seems character die as much as I have in this game.

Player optimization is way out of hand. This ties into the magic item shop but the system itself points players down paths of optimization. The power gap between those who optimize and those who do not is vast.

Two simple cures: 1 All Monster have only X2 crits, give wider crit ranges as needed. Replace Greataxes with falchoins.

2. Limit sources- esp don't allow without careful review things they may have found on line or are in sourcebooks other than what they are/have been thru. Blood Money should be restricted to PC who find it in RotRL.

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Jaelithe wrote:
EvilTwinSkippy wrote:
Yes, there were DMs who would allow a detailed description to translate into real game effects, and of course they'd be more inclined to do so if the description were colourful and in character...See, that was part of the problem.

Yeah ... how ridiculous that someone with storytelling skills might influence a story with said skills rather than such occurring only via the vastly superior and more interesting method of rolling dice. [Tongue planted so firmly in cheek that I've drawn blood.]

I'm beginning to think there's a complete disconnect between generations.

Sure, but is D&D a story or a game? Here, you give the PLAYER with superior storytelling skills a advantage over the Player who knows the rules better or the player with PC who has the best skills and abilities. Remember, the guy who knows the rules better is not only just “rolling the dice” he know what modifiers and rules give him the best shot at succeeding. The player who has designed his PC to be best at doing those things is also not “just rolling the dice” he’s putting forethought and planning into his PC.

A good DM rewards one of these, a great DM rewards all three.

And- I am a older generation that you.

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Confessions of a repentant DMPC running DM.

Hi, I have been DMing since around 1975 or so. And, like many of you, I used to run DMPCs. Funny, most of the time, when other DM’s did it, I didn’t much care for it, or even actively hated it. But I never said anything about it to my DM. I did complain to my fellow players and once I even stopped showing up for the games.

Then, I got into a conversation with one of my players, and we’d both been playing in another DM’s game, where he ran a DMPC. The other player & I were complaining about this. Then, I thought smugly to myself- “But of course, everyone likes it when *I* run a DMPC…” …then it hit me. No, they didn’t. It was just that I wasn’t obnoxious about it like the guy most of us walked out on.

Then I thought, well, maybe sometimes the party needs another PC (Usually a healer)- then I thought about seeing others introduce a NPC, which was roleplayed by the DM during the introduction, then handed over to the players to run- with the DM stepping in if the players got silly or stupid.

I then thought back about the ONE DM I had where we all loved her DMPCs- then realized her DMPCs never did anything- well maybe healed us after battle or said things like “Hmm, I wonder what the Elvish word for “friend” is?”. Sure, she roleplayed, but the party was always her protector, not the other way around, and during combat or adventuring she did almost nothing. In fact many times we had no idea of what class she was- and of course, it didn’t matter. Her DMPC was just a Macguffin.
I then swore off the bad habit forever. Now, if the party needs another PC, I give them a real NPC- as above, one they run.

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Kthulhu wrote:

Coulson as a murderer?

2. Define "murder". I'm sure Coulson has killed people in the line of duty. That's not murder. Killing the guards at the compound where they kept the Kree is questionable, but I'd hesitate to call it murder.

That's the one. He broke in illegally and they killed two guards who were only doing their jobs, not even bad guys or anything. Flat out Homicide 1, Killing during the commission of a felony. Completely unjustified also. They could have used the tranq guns, note, but they just shot them down. Of course, the guards would have died anyway. In any case, killed two men doing their duty to save one annoying useless person who are far as Coulson knew had a good chance of dying anyway?

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OgreBattle wrote:

If you want to play AD&D, why not play AD&D? PF is for PF. It's not like AD&D stopped existing, the rules are still out there and very easy to find.

That's not what this thread is about. It's about getting some of that old school flavor in Pathfinder, which is certainly possible. I do it.

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You see, this is the issue when the DM takes the round peg that is PF and tries to hammer it into the square hole that is "low magic". Pathfinder is very popular, it's very hard to get players for any other games. If he advertised Iron heroes (D20 balanced for low magic) he likely wouldn't get any players. So, he's gonna doe false advertising and push what he calls a Pathfinder game which is actually gonna be a bad kludge.

He likely want to do low magic as he is not imaginative enough to control PC's who can do magic stuff.

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Athaleon wrote:

The mechanic of "Wizards memorize spells, then they forget the spells when they're cast and need to re-memorize them" is the sort of highly specific quirk that seems like it would be unique to one setting. "In this setting, magic works this way." Okay, that's a unique twist.

Two things- the whole "forgetting" thing is a bit a fluff that no longer exists in PF. So "forget" it. next Vancian magic is a system used by many of the most well known Fantasy authors, besides just Jack Vance.- Zelazny, Pratchett, Cook, Rosenberg, Watt-Evans, Duane, Wrede, etc.

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Neo2151 wrote:

So, just being painfully honest; I'm seeing a lot of "grognard" going on in here. ;)

•Give me Spirit Shaman casting. I like the "Vancian-ish" casting we have now, but "fire-and-forget" is dumb. When I prepare Magic Missle, I should be able to cast it as many times as I have spell slots.

I don't see the point of 'Profession' skills - They serve no purpose. You can't make enough money from them to buy anything realistically useful unless your goal is to not go adventuring. (Uh, why are you even playing then?) •Stop being afraid to fix things that were wrong with 3.X.
This pretty much sums up everything I have against PF as it currently stands, everything above included. Sacred Cows are dumb, and if you can make a better rule, you should. You're not kidding anyone with claims of, "PF is backwards compatible" anymore anyway - no sense sticking to dead rhetoric.

Hey, I resemble that remark! ;-)

We call those "sorcerers" . What's wrong with having a Wizard with true Vancian and sorc and even other systems, all as choices? I don't get the Vancian haters- if you don;t have to play vancian, then why not let the rest of us have it? Can't we have 2-3-4+ systems?

Roleplaying. Droop one rank in there and it helps for background. Other than Seaman, none really mean much anyway.

They are getting away from that, but remember, tradition is something many of us like. I agree, dump "PF is backwards compatible", tho.

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Karl Hammarhand wrote:
The main thrust of this is not 'Why is Pathfinder bad' but 'what can we do to recapture the feel of D&D'. The very fact that you are taking this as an adversarial position says quite a bit. Pathfinder isn't bad, it is different we want to regain something Pathfinder has lost not take away any of the fun you are currently enjoying.

And, i think it is very possible to regain some of the feel of Old School D&D and still play PF.

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Logan1138 wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
Mark Hoover wrote:

@DrDeth: to you specifically I'd direct this - thank you. I don't know that I've ever seen it before in other threads but this would probably be an appropriate place to do it. Thank you for your contributions to the game I love. I had the opportunity to thank Gary Gygax once in person. He wasn't at a table but just hanging out on the steps outside the convention stage while just 40' away 3x was being announced. He was very gracious and I know he was a mortal man but when he chatted for a minute with me and my buddies it was like being in the presence of some mythical creature.

Anyway doc, we owe you, and other creators of your vision a real debt for your lovely creations. I truly appreciate every effort you ever poured into the game. Moreso I thank you for instilling a sense in the game of ownership; this idea that if I as the DM didn't like something I could change it and make the game my own.

Ummm...who exactly ARE you, DrDeth?

It's in my profile. D.Daniel Wagner, Author of the now completely outmoded and rather badly done OD&D supplement Manual of Aurania , put out in 1977. This was the first Non TSR D&D supplement, and yes, for that reason it's a little important historically, as it was the first 3PP. Oh, and I (along with much help from my friends) invented the Thief class.

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Anzyr wrote:

In all honesty, the biggest problem with 4E was the marketing, which seemed to be aimed directly at making anyone who liked features of 3E extremely upset. Seriously. Those mini-commercial things left an incredibly bad taste in my mouth.

Look, I agree with Anzyr! Yeah, that whole "The previous edition was crud, this is great, so if you're still doing the old crud stuff (which we happily sold you as the best and latest for a decade) you're dumb and not hip." Wow.

I want two PF2's. One in about 2 years, with minor changes only. No re-writes, just all the FAQ, errata, a few fixes (honestly Fighters can have 4 SkP) and something better and more clearly written. All the weird crud like the Sno-cone wish machine fixed. I want it so that if you have the previous edition, you can just (for the most part) print out the free PDF they would offer, make a few notes and your old rulebooks would still be Ok, even if marked to heck. In other words, about the changes between 1st & 2nd, maybe even less.

Then TEN+ years later, it may be time for a real "2nd ed", as vis-a- vis 2nd vs 3rd. Maybe 2045 even.

gnoams- I hate & despise 'static defense'. If I am gonna die, I want my hands on the die that does it. None of this: (Dm rolls) "Hmm, you're dead."

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Mark Hoover wrote:

I remember a "campaign" that was nothing more than a trip through a tavern cellar into Underdark where I repeated this process no less than four times before I finally called it quits. I only felt really connected to 2 characters I played throughout 1e and 2e; ironically they were the PCs my DM's gave me the most leeway to design completely on my own.

PCs back in the day had no say in what magic items they got; "combat options" consisted of "do I use a mace or a 2-handed sword?"; even spells were left up to random chance. Every wizard had the chance to be the same as every other wizard depending on rolls. This meant that while you could inject whatever personality you wanted into your character, beyond ability scores he/she was mechanically the same as other kinds of the same race/class combinations. .. In fact I have a very healthy respect for them. Its just that, in MY experience, the one thing I happily left behind from older editions was the sense that the players were passive to the story save for their own combat actions or general plot interaction.

@DrDeth: to you specifically I'd direct this - thank you. I don't know that I've ever seen it before in other threads but this would probably be an appropriate place to do it. Thank you for your contributions to the game I love. I had the opportunity to thank Gary Gygax once in person. He wasn't at a table but just hanging out on the steps outside the convention stage while just 40' away 3x was being announced. He was very gracious and I know he was a mortal man but when he chatted for a minute with me and my buddies it was like being in the presence of some mythical creature.

Anyway doc, we owe you, and other creators of your vision a real debt for your lovely creations. I truly appreciate every effort you ever poured into the game. Moreso I thank you for instilling a sense in the game of ownership; this idea that if I as the DM didn't like something I could change it and make the game my own. Now with current editions my players have the same options. Thank you DrDeth for the thief and everything else you've gifted us. I just hope we don't let you prometheans down now that you gave us fire.

Well, as had been said, one thing that was hugely different back in "old school" days was the wide disparity. I mostly had good experiences, but I also played with the second most experienced group in the game. YMmostcertainlywouldV back in those days, much more than today.

And you're very welcome, but my contribution was modest compared to Gary & Dave. Of course, I am still alive, so there's that...;-)

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Here's what I try to do. Replace standard bonus items with inherent bonuses/combo items.

Make the rest of the items either minor fun things or significant unique items. Dump "ye Olde Magic Shoppe" except for scrolls, potions, etc.

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DM Under The Bridge wrote:
KaiserDM wrote:

...Looking back on AD&D, I certainly would never go back to having to design every single magic item my PC's found. I hated the way XP was done. And I do think a grid based combat system is necessary.

All that being said, the way the players and I used to roleplay was much different back then. I do agree with Gamer-Printer's assessment that the system in and of itself should not stifle role-playing, but nowadays I feel like in my busy world of wife and kids and a big boy job, that I simply can't retain the rules like I could as a teen. My brain is too full.

There is a spirit that was somewhat lost when we moved to D20 and I lament that. Would I go back to AD&D? Absolutely not. But, this has given me a lot to think about.

** spoiler omitted **...

As a thief player, I loved how xp was done.


So true. Altho I disagree with the Rogue haters around here (many of whom don;t even play rogues or even pathfinder) , even so the class certainly would be much nicer if today, as then, your rogue was 10th level while the wizard was merely 8th!

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james loveland wrote:

Hey guys. I told 5 people we will be playing the We Be Goblin module and they got quite excited. One can't make it because of work but they are quite happy to be playing as their enemy.

The players just want to have fun and kill stuff with a little Role Playing. Most of them want to kill things more than RP so I might give a little less experiance and have some extra encounters. Maybe they come across some runaway teenagers from sandpoint trying to find a camp. That'll give a little RP to see if the goblins capture the kids and bring them back or just kill them.

I really don't want my game to have overpowered stats. Example: Teifling bloodrager with oversized limbs, enlarge person, 26 strength and vital strike somehow doing 12D8+21+Shocking Burst and Speed weapon enchantments.

It's not fun when one person is extremely overpowered while another has 18/16/14/12/10 stats. 18/18/18/17/17/17 is crazy!

Good work. Yes, the main thing is making sure all the players are having fun, which is hard to do if one overshadows the others.

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beej67 wrote:
james loveland wrote:
I don't have the experience to set up a game with uber min/max characters... how do I convince them to make new ones?

Tell them you're going to up the CR of all encounters by +4 to compensate for their stats if they want to have stats like that.

Then if they decide that's what they want, let them have what they want.

I GM often for a party that's based on 25 point buys, which are considered "epic" or whatever. I just add the "advanced" template to literally everything they meet, and it works out okay.

Right, just sit down and talk this out like adults. From what i can see from your old DM, this would be a new, fresh experience for them, anyway.;-)

Explain you want them to have fun, but OTOH, it's gonna be hard for you, as a new DM, to really challenge them with stats like that. Ask their advice.

Honestly, assuming they are mature at all, they will come up with some really good ideas, and may well volunteer more nerfing that you'd consider- and they will have bought into it.

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"Good DMPCs"
"Dark light"
"Fresh Frozen Jumbo Shrimp"
"organized mess"


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kyrt-ryder wrote:

When a Wizard can start the game out with 7 skill points per level as opposed to the Fighter's 1-3, AND bend reality to his whim?

Gee, I wonder which class is more appealing, and this is way down at the bottom levels where Fighters are fairly useful (albeit less useful than their Barbarian/Ranger/Paladin peers, imo)

I am sure that to you triple fudge ripple with hot fudge, some whip cream, chopped nuts a cherry and maybe some jimmies is FAR "more appealing" than a scoop of plain vanilla. So, then why don;t you play a wizard/eat triple fudge ripple with hot fudge, some whip cream, chopped nuts a cherry and maybe some jimmies and let the other guy play a fighter/plain vanilla. Why is his decision to play a fighter badwrongfun, so badwrongfun that you must take his scoop of ice cream away from him and apply hot fudge, some whip cream, chopped nuts a cherry and maybe some jimmies because it's better for you dammit and you'll eat that hot fudge and like it as I know it tastes better!

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Justin Sane wrote:

DM: Okay guys, we're going for a high-fantasy adventure, with dragon-slaying, plane-hopping, the works. Have you picked your characters?

Player: Yeah, I'm going to play a frail old man with a sword.

Named Cohen.

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LazarX wrote:
gamer-printer wrote:
LazarX wrote:
What you're seeing is an outgrowth of not so much the rules growing complexity, but the Internet gaming culture which brings with it a mentality of "one right way to play" along with the need for instant approval of whatever is being done.

At least anecdotally, this doesn't apply to me or those I game with, out of the 30 or so people in various groups in my area (known from the local FLGS), I am the only person, I know of, who ever visits RPG forums of any kind. I know many who look to rules for MtG at Wizards site, but never for D&D. I've never met anyone face to face that ever visited the Paizo site, let alone, ENWorld or any other RPG related site in my area.

I can't even guess how widespread is the practice to follow or not follow the internet gaming community. My guess is that the non-internet gaming community members are far larger than those who do use the internet for that purpose.

So I don't think what you've stated is as true as you think it is.

I don't think so either, which is why I consider the messageboard community to be extremely disconnected from gamers at large.

Oh definitely. IRL table-top games are far disconnected from Theorycrafting. This is why when the Optimizers and theorycrafters scream loudly about (say for example) Martial/caster disparity! and 'fighters are teh suxxor' , but IRL you see games where rogue & fighter are very popular choices and even the star of the team. Then I agree with JJ in that the rules don't really need to "fix' the martial/caster disparity" because IRL, in normal tables where games rarely get to high level and players play as a TEAM instead of a set of PvP stats for a DPR comparo- then he's right, the disparity is mostly a myth.

I'd also hazard a guess that This is also why some "VERY IMPORTANT FAQ PLEASE!!!! questions don't get answered (like my very own question about "sno-cone wish machine, I will bet) as the designers know that this is just not how games are played in reality. Simulacrum gets you unlimited wishes? Well, I see how you could read the spell that way but you have to have a game where;
1. The PC's are that high
2. the player is willing to try and get something that cheezy past the DM.
3. The DM doesn't just laugh and say NO!.

I suspect there are such games, but they are so rare that I can understand why the Devs dont want to spend a lot of staff-hours fixing such rare happenings.

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Despite screams of STORMWIND! I suspect are coming, I find that chess-like tactics, along with rules optimizing (as opposed to power gaming, there's a difference) has really shut down what I used to do as Role-playing. We'd have games where no dice rolled, for example.

Now, sure- it POSSIBLE to do that even with hyperoptimized PC's in the 3.0 and later chess tactics games. But everyone is human, and you have just so much brainpower, and thus when you're thinking a lot of what chess move to make next you won't make those role-playing quips and when the rules are solid, there's less ways to try something outrageous.

And, when you have spent all your creative energies thinking of ways to get that last bit of DPr out of a character, then-STORMWIND! or no- you're not thinking as much of what your PC's actual "character" is.

I mean, back in the day, you rolled your stats, then came up with his background and personality. Now, you set up the stats, and (if you even bother) think of an excuse as to why your Fighter has INT & CHA of 7.

Rules are great to have, but every time you add an extra rule you also cut out another chance to get creative.

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Bardic knowledge is fine as-is.

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Ho, hum. It's time for another one of these? Meh.

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N. Jolly wrote:

Anytime the martial/caster disparity is brought up to the devs,

They have stated that in the normal levels of game play, they do not see any significant disparity. Most of any disparity differs more table to table and player to player than design mechanics. I agree. I have seen that exact thing. So far, in my 3 PF campaigns, martials are doing just fine, and in fact in our 13th level M1 game the Fighter is far and away the most dangerous PC.

They do not dismiss it as a "myth" as some have claimed. They just say that it's not that significant compared to player competence and campaign discrepancies.

Do note that in general that they are not talking about games where 9th level spells come into play commonly. As you may note, most Ap's end before then.

Even in my many 3.5 campaigns, where caster/martial discrepancy is higher due to so many "splatbooks" (and some spells that have been nerfed in PF), I saw that martials are better levels 1-4 and that spellcasters didn't really rule until level 17 or so. Mind you, after level 13, spellcastes certainly had a edge. However, once spellcasters got 9th level spells, martials (even BoNS) were completely superfluous. Once a caster has Shapechange (with other spells of course) he can be a better Tank than the best tank in the biz- and still be a spellcaster. My super-tank only had a superiority in HP. In Attacks, saves, ER, DR, AC, etc-the buffed spellcaster was better.

YM will almost certainly V. The discrepancy gets worse the more open your DM is to allowing source material (but you can still have issue even with just core). It's also really bad if the spellcaster player is an experienced optimizer- the martial player is a "I just wanna hit things with my sword' player and the skill monkey player is a Roleplayer first. And, note, those types of players TEND to gravitate to those roles. Not even close to always, but there I have noted a definite trend.

So taking high levels out, the discrepancy isn't significant, really.

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Caedwyr wrote:
TheSideKick wrote:
Ssalarn wrote:

Word yo. I like the Fighter and have played one many times. That doesn't prevent me from acknowledging the fact that there are many options for other classes to do what he does better or more efficiently while still being able to do lots of other cool stuff that the Fighter just can't.

but that goes both ways, fighters can do things other classes cant do.
What actual goals/effects can the fighter produce/do that other classes can't?

None, really, but so? What can the Wizard do that the Sorc can't? What can the cleric do that the oracle can't? In general- healing, but there are a couple of oracle builds (Life) which are even better at healing that cleric. PF is all about you being able to cover the traditional roles with more than one class. With archetypes you can make a rather ranger-like fighter even.

No longer will there be just ONE class for any role. What with archetypes, many class can not fill roles that previously one class had a monopoly on. This is a GOOD Thing. It allows to you have a trapfinder that does spells ala Archaeologist, etc.

The Fighter is there for the players who like a plain solid no frills build, that does two things (tank, dpr), does them well, and nothing weird going on. It's still a very popular class even tho there are other full BAB classes that can fill either role even better. But so? Maybe I don't WANT to play a barbarian or a Paladin. Maybe that's not my concept.

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Coriat wrote:

Remember that Pathfinder defines its longspear as an ~8 foot weapon (spear ~5ft, shortspear ~3ft). That's significantly shorter than the Greek dory, or many other single handed melee spears (which crop up literally all over the world, in the hands of elite and non-elite alike - the spear is history's commonest weapon).

You have to go down to ~3ft before Pathfinder will allow it to be a one handed weapon.

A longspear and shield wielder need not be a hoplite, he might be This Apache guy or this Viking guy or this Mycenaean guy or these Assyrian guys.


Apache and Viking didn't use longspears, their spears were 'spears', that could be thrown, and used one or two handed. As I noted about "One saga does mention a spear so very long that a man had to stretch his arm to touch the rivet (that would be a long spear). This was considered notable and highly unusual." Mycenaean's were Greeks.

As to troy and 300, of course they had nothing to do with reality since the worst thing that could happen is your Hoplite formation breaks. In any case, they were portrayed with 'spears" for the most part.

aboniks: those were quotes from wiki, but I am a scholar of such things. Remember, other than the Spartans and the Immortals, there were no "professional soldiers" but the Hoplites were considered elite troops. More than simple militia by far. The Samurai and Knights were also not "professional troops" nor were the Vikings (except maybe the Housecarls) etc. In fact the Hoplites were pretty close to the Knights or Samurai of their day. Well drilled, with the best equipment money could buy, and they fought nearly every year.

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Just try this. Sit down with the players and talk this over, like adults. See what they have to say.

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Lemmy wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
Lemmy wrote:
What is really absurd is that you can't use pole arms with a single hand. You know... Like it was done by warriors of every civilization ever.
Sure, but it did take special training...hmm if there was only a archetype for that....pssst -Phalanx Soldier.

Somehow I doubt every soldier ever is a 3rd level Fighter... To say they were all 3rd level Fighters with a very specific archetype is even more absurd.

The training doesn't seem to be that special either, since it's so freaking common. I'm pretty sure a bunch of 1st~2nd level Warriors used pole arms one-handed without much problem.

I dunno. It takes a LOT of drilling to march in a Hoplite formation. In fact, pretty much as soon as possible they made the spear into a pike and dumped the shield. Earlier, they used a shorter spear and a shield. In any case, Long spear and shield was the essence of the hoplite formations, which specifically were made so you'd protect the guys next to you with your shield, not yourself". Per wiki "ndividual hoplites carried their shields on their left arm, protecting not only themselves but also the soldier to the left. This meant that the men at the extreme right of the phalanx were only half-protected. In battle, opposing phalanxes would exploit this weakness by attempting to overlap the enemy's right flank.[citation needed] It also meant that, in battle, a phalanx would tend to drift to the right (as hoplites sought to remain behind the shield of their neighbour). The most experienced hoplites were often placed on the right side of the phalanx, to counteract these problems. According to Plutarch's Sayings of Spartans, "a man carried a shield for the sake of the whole line".[10]

The phalanx is an example of a military formation in which single combat and other individualistic forms of battle were suppressed for the good of the whole. .. With his friends jostling and pushing on both sides and behind, and his enemies forming a solid wall in front of him, the hoplite had little opportunity for feats of technique and weapon skill, but great need for commitment and mental toughness. By forming a human wall to provide a powerful defensive armour, the Hoplites became invincible in the battlefield. The Hoplites were elite soldiers with much disciplined and taught to be loyal and trustworthy. They had to trust their neighbours for mutual protection, so a phalanx was only as strong as its weakest elements. Its effectiveness depended on how well the hoplites could maintain this formation while in combat, and how well they could stand their ground, especially when engaged against another phalanx. The more disciplined and courageous the army, the more likely it was to win—often engagements between the various city-states of Greece would be resolved by one side fleeing before the battle. The Greek word dynamis, "will" or "ability to fight", was used to express the drive that kept hoplites in formation."

Many other peoples used a shorter spear with a shield, yes, but the Hoplite was the main long spear and shield user- and note, these troops were well drilled disciplined elite soldiers. Also note the hoplite was only dominant on the battlefield for a brief period- from about 500BC, ending in 338 BC at the battle of Chaeronea when the Macedonians switched from the long spear and Aspis (heavy shield) to the sarissa or pike. For a while a small buckler was carried over the shoulder, but not wielded.

Note about the butt-spike "The spearhead was usually a curved leaf shape, while the rear of the spear had a spike called a sauroter ('lizard-killer') which was used to stand the spear in the ground (hence the name). It was also used as a secondary weapon if the main shaft snapped. This was a common problem especially for soldiers who were involved with the initial clash with the enemy. Despite the snapping of the spear, Hoplites could easily switch to the sauroter without great consequence." Note it was only used when the shaft broke.

Vikings used smaller spears, which could be thrown. One saga does mention a spear so very long that a man had to stretch his arm to touch the rivet (that would be a long spear). This was considered notable and highly unusual.

One mistake the rules do have is that they make a Spear (not long or short) a two handed weapon, whilst it was actually usable either way. It also can be thrown IRL. I suppose calling a Spear a martial weapon in one hand would be reasonable.

But Longspear and shield was used in formation only, by highly trained elite troops.

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Doomed Hero wrote:
Ross Byers wrote:
Imattackingthedarkness wrote:
Reach weapons. There's no reason you can't use at spear at point bank range.
I thinking trying to use a reach weapon close up is at least awkward enough to take a non-proficiency penalty (like trying to deal non-lethal with a sword), and you still shouldn't actually threaten AoOs in that area.

It's really not. With a spear, you just don't stab with the pointy end when people are close. You cross-check (which does deal damage, so bull rush doesn't cover it, IMO), or trip, or any number of other things.

The thing most people don't get about spears is that once your enemy is past the business end, you don't use a spear as a spear anymore. You use it as a quarterstaff.

There is no "shifting of styles" or "improvised weapon" nonsense. It's all the same. It's all how you use a spear. The entire thing is a weapon, not just the bit at the end. A spearman who doesn't know how to deal with someone who gets past the end of their spear is a dead spearman.

Umm, no. I used one for years in SCA heavy weapons, and the shaft is a really cruddy excuse, and you're likely to conk your buddy on the head.

But you're part right : A spearman who has someone who gets past the end of their spear is a dead spearman.

See "Rodeleros" aka "espadachines ".

Once a pike formation got "broken" they usually just dropped it and ran.

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andreww wrote:
Headfirst wrote:
blue_the_wolf wrote:
I find the Paladin to be overpowered.

I do too, mainly for the same reasons. Aside from a stray +1 here and there, paladins are flat-out superior to fighters in every possible way.

Being flat out better than one of the weakest classes in the game is not really a very high bar to get over.

Just saying this over & over & over does not make it true.

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