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Hellknight

Dungeon Master Zack's page

179 posts. Alias of lordzack.


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thenovalord wrote:
Well it does end with ** spoiler omitted **

Spoiler:
You mean the one whose only like, ten years old at the time of the Quest for Erebor? In fact, he was known as this point as Estel and not as Strider or even Aragorn.

The EU will never be dead as long as there are those who enjoy it.


yellowdingo wrote:
Because the natural reversal of all those would make it better...like your own big black probe droid fitted with ripper claws (to keep jawas off your property), or daisy getting around dressed as a tuskan raider (hence the long rifle strapped to her bike), and a forestry project near tattoine's polar region where all the moiture farmers were selling their water harvest (it had to be going somewhere), And a speeder bike that looks like a land speeder being ridden on its side (all the kids are doing it these days-its the bomb).

They're not selling their water, they're using it to keep themselves alive and grow crops.


Fraust wrote:
Standard point buy being 15? And core material being just the core book plus the playtest document?

Yes and yes. I should also note that I am on EST.


That should be most weekdays in the afternoon/evening.


I could theoretically do it evenings most weekdays and am mostly free on weekends and wednesdays.


I am wondering if I could find several people to participate in a playtest of Occult Adventures. It will be 1st level, standard point buy and I would prefer that characters be limited to Core material along with the playtest materials, including spells and the like mentioned in the document. It will likely be set in Golarion, more specifically Varisia, but that's mostly just to give it an easily recognizable context.


It's strange to me that Paizo is so known for their adventure paths and yet their rules system is not really suited for it- since it's based on D&D. D&D (and therefore Pathfinder) is at it's core basically still a wargame. I like that, but it kind of gets in the way of trying to tell a story about a group of heroes on and epic quest, since there is always the possibly of the story coming to a screeching halt because of a TPK or other problems like- say a failed Survival roll to track the baddies to there lair. Yet Pathfinder still has been and might still be the most popular rpg in the world when there are many games who theoretically do what it's trying to do better.


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I should mention that I use xp for treasure. You could call that a sort of roleplaying xp for a certain value of "roleplaying". It encourages a certain kind of behavior- accumulating treasure.


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Liranys wrote:
I, as a player, usually feel cheated when, due to bad luck or an encounter that's just too hard, the character I've put months of effort into, dies. That's when I as a player feel cheated. I have never felt cheated because the DM fudged a roll to let my PC live and continue playing the game. But I get attached to my PC's, maybe other people don't.

I can't get attached to a PC that can't ever die. If my character was going to get to the same point no matter how the game went than what's the point of playing that all out? That's how I feel.


thejeff wrote:

]Fudging is the most blatant and least important way GMs have to change the odds against the PCs. Fudging rolls is a subset of that. You can roll everything in the open and the only thing that really changes is things like criticals and some saves.

Otherwise, you design the bad guys. You decide how many there are, how tough they are, whether they have reinforcements at hand, what tactics they will use, when and if they'll surrender or run, what the setting is and thus the tactical advantages, how much the PCs know about them ahead of time and so much else that actually fudging dice rolls is almost unnecessary. A lot of that can be changed on the fly with no one the wiser.

I generally don't change aspects of my adventure design on the fly unless there is a really compelling reason to do so. I'm certainly not going to do it to make sure characters do not die, for instance.


I generally don't fudge unless not doing so would punish a player for nothing but bad luck. If the PCs happen to run across the hardest monster on the dungeon level after a long and arduous expedition, for instance, I might fudge things so that they aren't instantly obliterated and have a chance to escape (but not to let them win). I might substitute a weaker random encounter if I feel that it would be disruptive to the game to have the stronger encounter at that time. Otherwise the dice fall where they may.


Tacticslion wrote:
Dungeon Master Zack wrote:
I like games that are player-driven almost exclusively and I also like "old-school" games where the game is about adventurers seeking fortune and glory, rather than heroes on a quest. Also, in my games advancement is not a given, rather it is a result of successful play.

That makes sense: definitely different play styles.

That said, however, it still does not require XP.

If you'll allow me to discuss my own reasoning?

Please bear in mind that I am not telling you how you should play, but rather my own reasoning for why I play the way I do, and how that can (if you so-choose) apply to your own styles, regardless.

One of the things that XP is useful for is minute increases - i.e. incrementally approaching a level based of of <X> variables (usually a semi-arbitrary number based off of some formula or another).

While very nice in its own, the down side of this is that varying XP amounts divided between players can result in inequitable distribution, and strange effects.

In the older editions, this was actually presumed - the XP charts had varying amounts of XP for leveling up for a combination of that reason and for some vague allusion to "game balance" (which I never really saw that it had, but that's another thing altogether).

It was also presumed that a GM would step in and arbitrate and alter, as needed, in order to make the group, as a whole, capable of working together.

One of the great things about this is that, in some ways, this is a very free-form experience, and exceedingly in-character - you level up because you've accomplished <X> and the player controls (in terms of writing it down on his or her sheet) how fast they advance.

It's nice because a GM can reward small amounts of XP as a sign of approval, or because something was well-done without worry of undue effects or unbalanced (hypothetically) options.

One of the problems, however, is that it's fiddly, minute, time-consuming, and... naturally...

I don't really get this. Tracking xp is how you determine when you have accomplished enough to level up. I give it at little at a time because the players have earned that particular amount of xp by accomplishing whatever challenge they overcame to earn that xp in the first place. Only when they have built up enough xp to attain the next level is when they have accomplished enough to attain that level up.


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Liranys wrote:
To each his own. I'd much rather have the Plot or story determine levels since we've been caught in two different situations due to the XP system. Either we've leveled too fast and are going through the encounters like a breeze, or we're almost dying because we didn't level fast enough. Going by "plot" or "story" can ensure that the PCs are the right level to make the play challenging but not too challenging.

That's not true, in my games at least, because if you're playing in a player driven game, the PCs decide which challenges to undertake in the first place. If what they are facing is too hard or to easy for that matter it's their own fault. Unless they happen to encounter a monster that is an outlier for the area, but getting into whether the PCs should always face "appropriate" challenges is a whole other can of worms.


Actually I think psionics were originally introduced in the Eldritch Wizardry supplement for OD&D.


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I like games that are player-driven almost exclusively and I also like "old-school" games where the game is about adventurers seeking fortune and glory, rather than heroes on a quest. Also, in my games advancement is not a given, rather it is a result of successful play.


XP is central to my play style. If you can determine when you should level up due to a "plot" or "story", I don't want to be in that game.


I'd suggest putting a bounty of perhaps 56 to 133 gp on goblin heads.


Pendagast wrote:

one mooooore thing,

every elf who has ever been depicted in a novel, or on the screen, has always been aloof with this heir of superiority, "I am a 147 years old, you're 20... you immature human"

But the prevailing argument here is that is NOT the case, the 147 year old elf is, physically and emotionally, 20.

So what gives in literature and movies?

I don't think this is the case, at least not in my experience. All the elves I've read about either really are that old, or are, in fact, acknowledged as immature.


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Werebat wrote:
thistledown wrote:
My image of them is stuck as Skritt. Fat don't enter into it.

Dude, they are so obviously based on the Skaven -- they should have just made them Medium sized and Chaotic Evil.

I mean, the Gulch Gunner? The alchemist variant with all the poison bombs (Poison Wind Globadier, anyone)?

Not that Skaven in Pathfinder wouldn't be totally awesome, mind you.

I like that ratfolk aren't chaotic evil.


ShinHakkaider wrote:

I agree that all of those complaining about change are not racist or sexist.

But there are certain trigger words / statements that kind of clue you into the mindset of the complainer. Use of "Political Correctness" "Affirmative Actions" "Create your own heroes" "What if we replaced black or female characters with white/male ones. Lets see...

I'm sorry but that isn't a good thing.


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I'd probably still play Swords and Wizardry than either, but it seems good (I do like Pathfinder as well).


Ross Byers wrote:
Dungeon Master Zack wrote:
Ross Byers wrote:
Dungeon Master Zack wrote:
Really the idea of gods being untouchable is not as universal as people seem to think. There are instances in mythology where the gods have been bested by mortals. Many mythological deities are certainly not able to just overpower mortals with no effort. How do you determine if a deity can defeat a particular mortal without stats? And don't say "story" because that really only applies in certain kinds of games.

If it's a mythological being that can't just overpower mortals, then it's probably a demigod, and it can have stats.

The Gods that don't have stats are the ones that are a voice in the heavens, rather than a physical being.

So Ares, Aphrodite, Athena and Poseidon, just for instance, would be demigods in the Pathfinder rules?
Yes.

Okay. That's absurd, but okay.


Ross Byers wrote:
Dungeon Master Zack wrote:
Really the idea of gods being untouchable is not as universal as people seem to think. There are instances in mythology where the gods have been bested by mortals. Many mythological deities are certainly not able to just overpower mortals with no effort. How do you determine if a deity can defeat a particular mortal without stats? And don't say "story" because that really only applies in certain kinds of games.

If it's a mythological being that can't just overpower mortals, then it's probably a demigod, and it can have stats.

The Gods that don't have stats are the ones that are a voice in the heavens, rather than a physical being.

So Ares, Aphrodite, Athena and Poseidon, just for instance, would be demigods in the Pathfinder rules?


Really the idea of gods being untouchable is not as universal as people seem to think. There are instances in mythology where the gods have been bested by mortals. Many mythological deities are certainly not able to just overpower mortals with no effort. How do you determine if a deity can defeat a particular mortal without stats? And don't say "story" because that really only applies in certain kinds of games.


If your running a game than that is entirely up to you. However, I am 99% sure that they have not been published as Open Game Content, so Paizo would be unable to use them.


* Pulls out +1 Reptilian Bane Flamethrower*


Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Alex G St-Amand wrote:
the problem.
Still standing right here. :(

Hey as long as the staff is working on the spam problem they can't deal with our goblin and kobold infestation.


Sounds interesting. What are you thinking, more specifically?


Dwarves used to have nobles, but unfortunately there were a series of unfortunate accidents and well, there aren't any anymore.


Generic Villain wrote:
Dungeon Master Zack wrote:


Wouldn't Plane Shift work?
No, because as said, Earth and Golarion inhabit the same plane. Plane shift can move you between the Material Plane and Inner/Outer Planes, but not inside the Material Plane itself. As Aetherwisp said, for that you need the 9th-level spell interplanetary teleport.
aetherwisp wrote:
it's possible that they're not only in different solar systems, but different planes as well...in which case you'd need magic even beyond the spells currently available, magic that's so far only present in artifacts like Baba Yaga's Dancing Hut, or known by Baba Yaga herself.


Wouldn't Plane Shift work?


No, it's just a dungeon that happens to have a bunch of levels.


Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
wills4223 wrote:
I'm guessing going from 1 to 13th in 16 dungeon levels that this module will be assuming fast track progression?

That's covered in a sidebar on page 21, but the short answer is yes, it assumes the fast progressions track.

That said, you can also use Emerald Spire as something players visit in-between doing other things (if they are on a slower progression and likely to clear lower levels faster than they level up to deal with the subsequent encounters), and it is designed to allow periodic trips more easily than many superdungeons I've experienced.

"Clear lower levels"? You don't clear levels in a true megadungeon. My interest is quickly evaporating...


Hey, all of you people who are thinking of posting something to the effect of "don't stat Gods", look down, right below the "preview", "cancel", "submit post" buttons.


Samasboy1 wrote:

In reference to "DR 3/- against small piercing weapons is different than DR 3/Slashing or Bludgeoning," how else were they supposed to write it?

The DR only applies against piercing weapons, but not even all of them. It only works against "small ranged piercing weapons". So it doesn't apply to any slashing weapon, any bludgeoning weapon, or even spears, picks, short swords or sianghams.

So, how could they reasonably write what the DR applies to...."DR 3/anything not a small piercing ranged weapon"...?

Instead they wrote DR 3/- that only applies to small ranged piercing weapons. Not the most elegant mechanic ever written, but not sure what the alternative would be.

Still, you can't say with a straight face that "nothing bypasses it, it is DR/-" when it only applies to a tiny subset of weapons to begin with.

This is really no different than, for ex., the Swarm trait that Tiny-creature Swarms take half damage from Piercing and Slashing weapons. If you used a Morning star (or bullet, for that matter) to attack, you don't half the damage. Similarly, if the DR only applies against Piercing, it doesn't apply to bullets which are also bludgeoning.

Fuel Drop, Dungeon Master Zack
But appeals to how real world items interact with guns aren't really relevant when discussing game mechanics.

It should be when magic is not involved in any way shape or form.


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Issac Daneil wrote:

Should a Sweater protect you from gunfire that punches through plate?

Test it by stepping into a gang fight crossfire, and get back to me.

Well actually... plate armor probably should protect against firearms of the same time period. It wasn't until later that rifles made it obsolete. So full-plate arguably should have DR that applies against firearms. Or at least the ability to apply some of it's armor bonus against firearm attacks. Though perhaps the fact that firearms only penetrate within a certain range is already enough to account for this property of plate armor.


TriOmegaZero wrote:
I can't agree with that. Getting stabbed hurts, regardless of how many hitpoints you lose. I don't know anyone that enjoys getting stabbed, and neither does my character.

Remember hp loss does not always indicate a solid hit, it can sometimes be a glancing blow or near miss. But getting stabbed definitely does hurt.


sunbeam wrote:

As someone said Wolverine's claws.

Adamantite is Adamantium (or Inertron it does the same stuff and looks the same) by another name.

Not sure what edition it came out in (3.x?), but I dare the devs who put it in to tell me with a straight face they didn't read comics.

"Adamant" as a type of mineral is a concept that long, long predates Wolverine.


Angry Cat Traps Family In Bedroom, Forces 911 Call

Maybe the d20 stats for cats aren't that far off after all.


Well the reason why the monarchy is so stable is that no one in it is powerful enough to depose the monarch. Presumably that's why the traditions are so strong as well, they are imposed from on high. It's similar with demons, they might not want to follow their leaders, but they have no choice.


I am thinking of running a game where there are two sets of players, each representing a different faction. Not to say that the game will be all about PvP, it's more about seeing how the efforts of the different players will effect the overall conflict between their factions. The PCs might never directly interact, but they exist in the same world and there actions have an impact on the other.

I am also thinking of running this as a hybrid virtual tabletop/play-by-post. The most involved adventures will be running using the virtual tabletop to speed things up, more simple/quick adventures and stuff like downtime will be handled through posts.


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Given the description given with it's stats I am going to say Super Alloy Z.


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Playing odd races is as old as the game itself. In the original Blackmoor campaign player characters included a vampire and a balrog. In fact, the only reason the "classic" races made it into the game is that people wanted to play them. Gary Gygax originally see the point in including the "classic" Tolkien races in the published game.


Pixies? I thought they were a British thing, like from the Cornwall area.


Even if they didn't share the same alignment wouldn't mean that the fey couldn't be forced into a deal by Hell.

This thread has given me the idea to create a race of fey-like fiends, similar to the Azata...


Ross Byers wrote:

It kind of sounds like Hel wants to control the Snarl for herself. Controlling the snarl requires a divine and arcane caster.

She has access to Durkon/Durkula, a powerful divine caster.

The fiendish trio have access to Varsuvius, a powerful arcane caster.

If Hel and the three fiends are aligned, this could end poorly.

Unfortunately (for them) the ritual apparently takes weeks to complete.


I wonder if people are going to start forgetting about Laurin now. Especially considering that Haley now says that she never forgot Blackwing to begin with.


Tangent101 wrote:
Easy. Back in 1st edition AD&D, monsters sat on treasure. If there was a +1 short sword, the goblins would keep it in a chest because That Was How It Was Done (and the webcomic Goblins made fun of that theme).

There was nothing inherent about old school D&D that made this so. This is more likely a result of the dungeon masters you've known getting better over time.


Actually I'm pretty sure each character can only fill one leadership role.

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