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Tar-Baphon's Ogre

EntrerisShadow's page

Pathfinder Society Member. 725 posts. No reviews. 1 list. No wishlists. 2 Pathfinder Society characters. 2 aliases.


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BigNorseWolf wrote:
Paladin of Baha-Who? wrote:
When people react badly to suggestions about how to make RPG gaming welcoming to women, it always makes me wonder why they value the behavior that is offputting so highly.

Its not necessarily the behavior itself that's valued but the ability to not constantly have to think about what you're saying and doing. Taking that self monitoring up to a level that more women would be comfortable with can detract quite a bit from the fun.

You have to avoid a level of offense that's set by another person. Its not static, its not objective, and most importantly its not visible. Telling when you've stepped over the line or are coming close can be VERY hard so it's a constant worry that anything you say might be over the line.

Someone asked me who my previous post was directed at --- and this right here is a related, if not perfect, example.

Really, other people do this every day. The fact alone that we have a concept of 'emasculation' in our culture is a good indication about how often women are just expected to adjust their attitudes based on the subjective sensibilities of someone else. Yet we almost never argue about what is actually emasculating in that context - it's just generally assumed that they know because they've been taught from early childhood, as women, what sort of things are typically expected by and around men. Every woman I have ever met does this. This is the reality of their lives. And yet here we are again fretting about being asked to do the same thing for others we have grown completely accustomed to expecting from them.

And what's particularly telling is what exactly we are worried about. Like we won't be able to relax because what? Because somebody might unfairly dislike us? Wanna talk about what women have to fear if they step over the line?

It's not an argument worth having. We have some pretty strong guidelines about what should be expected. I think the line is typically a lot clearer than we want to believe because if it is our excuses dry up. But even if you do inadvertently step over it, you just apologize and try to do better. There are no REAL consequences for a slip up. What a freaking gift that is!

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I sorta try to avoid this topics now as they get my rankles up... but I can't help it, because this always happens. Someone talks about how you can be more inclusive and the straight white guys inevitably bring up a ridiculous argument about how everyone needs to get over it and NOT being offensive would be its own form of discrimination by not treating people 'equally'. And I hate, hate, hate that argument with a passion.

Maybe there's a point, and maybe somebody gets to say that. But not you. Not me. Not us. Not the people whose entire lives have been defined by others going out of their way not to offend us.

Making a big budget Hollywood movie? Better not make it too black! Or only include women! Hell, you just better not even make it too 'girly' regardless of your male-to-female ratio.

Remember Magic Mike? How many of you actually saw it? Notice the actual ratio of male-to-female nudity in there? Even if you're targeting women in a provocative way you have to include something for their boyfriends in case they get 'dragged' along to see it. Ever see any such consideration given to women?

All this talk about sexy iconics and never once is it considered that it would actually be more than fair if Pathfinder never included a sexualized female character and only focused on the female gaze because it still wouldn't bring the industry close to parity. There was never a point at which heterosexual men were NOT considered as part of the target demographic. Can you say that about any other group?

Want to sell a predominately black musical genre to a white audience? It'd better have a white face stamped on it, even if they're despicable human beings. (Eminem springs to mind.)

Want to make feminism relevant to men? Better list the myriad ways that men are hurt by patriarchy, too - as if subjugating 51% of the population in the guise of tradition wasn't enough of a reason. And you'd better begin every single point by reminding men - mostly straight white men specifically, as the only group of people who predominately have so few actual problems that they have to go looking for them - that you don't hate them or aren't biased toward them.

Stop acting like being asked not to offend is hypersensitive or some great burden on you or like you're the "true" Egalitarian(TM) for not buying it. It's just people asking for the same basic courtesy we've taken for granted since we pretty much got control of the Western world 500 years ago. If we lived in a society that didn't do that, then you might have a case. But since you have ZERO idea what it's like to constantly be expected to just 'get over it' or being diminished, then no, you're not being fair when you're "equally" crude or belittling to everyone you meet. Especially when they're things that can only very specifically target someone for their gender - like rape, for instance - but ultimately no matter what the context.

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I usually play Lawful Neutral has having a very strict code of honor, but not one that's particularly altruistic.

My last LN character, for instance, was in our 5E game - a Paladin of Vengeance who believed that everyone must pay for their sins (including himself). He would take a final confession but still execute the guilty as he was absolving their souls by giving them a chance to ask for redemption and doling out the penance they needed for the confession to be accepted.

I did a Half-Orc Fighter based on Charon from Fallout 3. Once he signed a contract, he was unbreakably loyal to the person he'd contract himself to. It never came up, but if his party did ever commit an unspeakable evil (like, raising the dead or selling children into slavery) he would complete his contract with them, but once it was over, all bets were off.

But ultimately, I feel like every alignment has its detractors:

LG - Stick in the mud.
NG - Typically the most accepted, but considered dull.
CG - Trite, wants to be the 'good guy' but still screw other people over.
LN - Like LG, but more orderly stick in the mud than "Good" stick in the mud.
TN - Doesn't care about anything.
CN - We all know why people hate this one.

Whole Evil spectrum - Don't want problematic jerks who are going to screw the party when it suits them.

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Undone wrote:

I don't know how people play characters without good will saves. I really just don't I've done it before and about half of the time you end up failing a will save and waiting for combat to end.

I'm not talking about alleged bad will saves (Looking at you superstitious) I'm talking about honest to god bad will saves like fighters, slayers, and such.

Do you invest in iron will?
Is there another magic item which buffs your will save beyond the cloak/stone?
Do you pump wisdom?

I know too many DM's that see power only as a measure of HP and damage output. I easily play low-Will Save chars in their games because they think a 'challenge' is lots of natural attacks and big damage mods.

I personally hate low Will saves still, but if I really want to try out a certain class - like when the Slayer came out - I wait for those games confident my odds of being dominated are slim-to-nill.

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Bloodrager/Scarred Witch Doctor has officially replaced everything as the most OP possible combination.

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Laurefindel wrote:
What are the criteria to make it AL legal?

If I recall correctly, it cannot grant Skill or Tool proficiencies which are not specifically spelled out in the PHB. So you can mix-n-match granted abilities and boons, but no unique ones.

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A mounted, knight-type Fighter is the biggest gap. (Paladin would work, but I really can't think of a good Oath that wouldn't just be a rehash of the Oath of Protection.)

A Rogue that focuses on admixtures and splash weapons. (Good alchemist stand-in.)

And definitely more Sorcerer bloodlines. Draconic or Wild is pretty limited.

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MagusJanus wrote:
EntrerisShadow wrote:
thejeff wrote:


And all of that is without considering climate change.

Kind of surprised this hasn't come up more. We are in a unique situation where the doomsday warning aren't coming from religions or prophets or mystics - but peer reviewed scientific research.

Again, probably won't wipe humans out (EDIT: completely), but it'll be apocalyptic in that the world on the other side is going to look very different.

It's not unique. This isn't the first time science has predicted humanity's demise.

The first time is one of the pieces of science that led to China's one-child-only policy and many of the human rights abuses China has performed while maintaining that policy.

It's since been disproven, but that doesn't exactly do much to comfort all of the victims of implementing its suggestions.

Edit: Almost forgot... there were also the scientists who were afraid the first atomic weapon would ignite Earth's atmosphere. They were quickly proven wrong, but for awhile there was some serious consideration that the U.S. may be building a weapon that would destroy the planet.

I don't even know where to begin with this. You're comparing apples to oranges here.

The atomic bomb concern was a small fraction of scientists worried about the possibility of a chain reaction. A better example would be the small fraction of people who thought the large hadron collider would open up a black hole. They were there, certainly, but a fringe group that were almost universally dismissed out of hand. It's hardly anywhere near the consensus we have on climate change.

I don't know enough about China's one-child-policy to say what lead to it, but if what you say is true, then again there's an enormous difference between clinging to policy in light of debunking evidence, and refusing to acknowledge legitimate findings.

Jaelithe wrote:
EntrerisShadow wrote:
Kind of surprised this hasn't come up more. We are in a unique situation where the doomsday warning aren't coming from religions or prophets or mystics - but peer reviewed scientific research.
Yes, because when people in lab coats start clucking that the sky is falling, it must be true.

Wow, arrogant much? I definitely trust those 'people in lab coats' - that is, people who have dedicated their entire lives to studying and understanding natural phenomena - when they overwhelmingly agree there going to be potentially catastrophic consequences, to the drivel of anti-intellectual knuckle-draggers who think their lack of education on the matter somehow makes their opinions more valid.

Dark Archive

thejeff wrote:


And all of that is without considering climate change.

Kind of surprised this hasn't come up more. We are in a unique situation where the doomsday warning aren't coming from religions or prophets or mystics - but peer reviewed scientific research.

Again, probably won't wipe humans out (EDIT: completely), but it'll be apocalyptic in that the world on the other side is going to look very different.

Dark Archive

Actually . . . kind of.

The human race will (EDIT: probably) endure, but existence is going to change drastically.

Dark Archive

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OK, so I saw my last post was deleted. I'm not surprised. I was angry when I wrote it - I still am. I'm furious. I wrote that Fergurg, and people like him, are delusional.

I get why my post was deleted. I don't agree with it, but I expected it. However, a few posts beyond that, I find this:

Fergurg wrote:

BTW: You want a conspiracy theory? I got one, and I don't think it's too far-fetched: Garner's legal issues, and the reason he knew that particular cop, were related to not paying cigarette taxes. The mayor of NYC loves himself some taxes. The people who elected him, the same people who would be part of the grand jury pool, elected a man who campaigned on raising taxes.

Is it just me, or does this sound like a "Business man didn't pay the money we wanted him to pay. Sure was a tragic 'accident' what happened to him. If only he had paid, that could have been avoided."

And this is precisely what I'm talking about. Our slavish devotion to an abstract notion of 'civility' (toward other white males who have none for anyone else) has sincerely hampered our position. Unless you catch someone organizing a cross-burning, you can bet calling a racist racist is going to get stamped down hard.

Yet here is someone insinuating that the mayor, who has a black family - who has been touched directly by the brutality and racism of the NYPD - is responsible for the death of an innocent man over TAXES. Here is somebody who has done nothing but try to justify the murder of unarmed black citizens as legitimate police work, now using those same people he denigrated as pawns for some right-wing fantasy about Tax Collecting Death Squads.

What a vile, racist and ridiculous thing to say. What a vile, racist, and delusional position to hold. Fegurg is a very disturbed individual with disturbing views. Yet my post is the 'inflammatory' one for pointing that out?

My guess is this will probably be deleted, too. Something might happen to my account - a temporary suspension or something so I can "calm down" or whatever. But we whites who for too long placed the feelings of racists in our midst above the lives and justice for those who didn't look like us - we are just as responsible for these statistics as the "I Am Darren Wilson" crowd. Every time we legitimized these people, every time we refused to call them what they are, every time we got up on the proverbial stage and shook hands and acted like The Loyal Opposition with murderers we perpetuated that system. There is blood on all of our hands now.

I'm done treating people with respect whose entire existence is one dedicated to the oppression and murder of others. I'll save my respect for their victims.

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Logan1138 wrote:
lorenlord wrote:


...Like I said before, the only thing I wish they would've done is spread the saves around the abilities more, so there's more of a downside to dumping stats.
I was surprised to see that compulsion spells like Charm Person and Command (to name a few) were Wisdom saves when they seem like natural candidates to be Charisma saves.

I think they decided Charisma is almost specifically related to outsider/undead sorta stuff ---- banishment, possession, haunting, etc. The only exception I found was Nothics, who require a Charisma save in order not to reveal a secret about yourself to them.

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I prefer balance to optimization. So my ideal would be:

Inquisitor (Cleric) - 6th level casting with heals and some fine skills to boot.

Bard (Thief) - Can face, scout, skill-monkey and pretty much everything better than a rogue.

Ranger (Fighter) - Can do the heavy hitting and back up the Bard as a fellow scout.

Sorcerer (Wizard) - I've said before that Sorcerers would be about the only Full Caster I would keep if we slimmed the class list down. Spontaneous casting keeps it at least somewhat balanced and Sorcerers are just way more interesting, anyway.

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bugleyman wrote:
thejeff wrote:
It also ties in nicely to the "It's the black people's fault" theme. If it's not because they're criminals, it's because they must just be jerks to cops more often.
If they don't enjoy being shot to death, maybe they should trying being a little less black. /s

I know it's sarcasm, but that's about a perfect summation of FOX News' position.

Pardon the expression, but there are few issues on the scene right now that are as black and white as this one. (The only one that immediately springs to mind is torture.) You are on the side of victims, or you are on the side of the murderers. This is not left vs right, law and order vs civil liberties. This is as close to being on the side of objective good versus objective evil you will ever get.

Look at the photos from the 1950's and 60's, where the cops turned firehoses on civil-rights protesters and consider for a long while, if you'd been raised in that era, whose side you would be on.

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Caineach wrote:
Lemmy wrote:

IME with the police from 3 different nations, (including Brazil, which is not exactly known for it's amazing police force and safe streets), most police officers are actually honest people doing their work, usually legitimately trying to protect and serve the community.

As is the case with any other organization, though, it has bad apples. A$#%#%%s will be a@@~@$@s, no matter their job. And if those a*!%%*@s are in a position of power, they'll abuse it. It doesn't matter if it's the power of carrying loaded arms and beating up people or the power to write and approve bad laws.

Additionally, police officers don't grow on police trees. They most likely come from the communities where they work. The police (much like government) reflects the society that it works for. In a place where racism is common, expect lots of racist cops. In a place where corruption runs rampant, expect corrupt cops.

I know the quality of police forces varies wildly from place to place, but I tend to at least show police officers some respect and give them the benefit of doubt. Their job is often dangerous and underpaid, and to make things worse, the communities they protect often see them with bad eyes...

It's certainly not an easy job. Especially in the communities that most desperately need an effective police force.

A. As mentioned above, they often don't live in the communities they work and prefer to have a relatively long commute to avoid running into people they have arrested. This is more true the likely more urban an area is.

B. Aren't recruited from communities which have grown to distrust the police, like minority ones, because people don't grow up to aspire to be their enemy. By actively discriminating against a community, you reduce the number of people from that community interested in being recruited.

At this point, I more or less assume a cop is scum on a power trip and deal with them like any other bully, unless they give me the rare cause to think something else.

Also,...

^--- All of that. Also, semi-related, but you want to talk underpaid? More fast food workers are killed per capita than cops and their asking to be paid more than the minimum wage is met with derision and anger by the same people who defend criminal cops. I'll leave it there so as not to hijack, but it really gets my cackles up.

There's a definite problem with the police, especially when interacting with minority groups.

Truthfully, it can probably be traced back to our unique relationship with slavery and how this made America distinct from its European fellows in its development of white supremacy. The way-too-simplified explanation would probably be, whereas European white supremacy was outwardly focused and expansionist, America's looked inward. Rich European immigrants experienced uprising and revolts of both slaves and poor white immigrants - usually brought over as little more than slaves themselves - and learned quickly to divide and conquer. Keep institutionally powerless lower-class whites looking down, afraid of blacks rising to their very limited station, so they wouldn't look up and see whose boot was on the back of their neck. The very institution of the municipal police department is at its core racist, an extension of this meant to insulate white communities and cow minority ones into submission.

To put it succinctly, it working precisely how it is designed to work.

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Artanthos wrote:
EntrerisShadow wrote:
My 5E game has 5th level characters and they've yet to find a magic weapon, but it doesn't seem to be hurting them at all. (In fairness, the party has a Sorcerer, Druid, and Cleric; but the Paladin and Fighter are still effective.)

This is campaign specific, not game system specific.

I am running a WoTR game and playing in another. In both the only characters with magic weapons at 4th level was the paladin. At 5th, nobody used the second magic weapon we found (only the paladin was using a longsword).

Not necessarily. In PF, a certain amount of magical equipment is assumed by each level. Less magical equipment would mean my martials would be functionally useless in a PF game.

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What I thought of Eberron in a nutshell.

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Logan1138 wrote:
Kthulhu wrote:
I personally find items that merely make an existing number bigger to be absolutely the most boring items in the entire catalog of Magic items. Even (and especially) the vaunted "Big Six".
I absolutely agree. +x weapons and armor are nice for their utility but just don't spark the imagination the way a Cloak of Manta Ray or Horn of Blasting does. Those are truly "cool" items that often solve a problem or turn the tide of battle in ways that create a memorable experience.

Thia is something old school I'd like to see make a comeback. Far fewer magic items, but the ones that exist have epic names and stories behind them, rather than just +X whatever.

My 5E game has 5th level characters and they've yet to find a magic weapon, but it doesn't seem to be hurting them at all. (In fairness, the party has a Sorcerer, Druid, and Cleric; but the Paladin and Fighter are still effective.)

Actually, the only magical equipment they've found thus far is a quest item with a minor effect. But it felt a lot more special than buying enchantments when they're in town.

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Christopher Dudley wrote:
My peeve is getting interested in joining a new campaign but being told for the 497th time in a row "Core only." Since 2nd edition I've been buying just about every sourcebook I could get my hands on from TSR, then WotC, then Paizo. And I read up and find some new race/class/feat/build that makes me want to play it. Only I'll give my idea to the GM and he'll say "Oh, I'm not allowing that." I don't think I ever got to play in a 2e game with the training wheels off, and I can only think of 1 3e game I got to play a later core class (Warblade from Book of 9 Swords - thank you SlyFlourish!). To be fair, I did get approved to try a duskblade in another game, but the game folded before I got to write it up.

Core Only is one of my major pet peeves, too. I often limit my games around a certain theme or I might say no to particular class/race combinations, but if I'm going to the DM, I do the heavy lifting of making sure it's balanced and appropriate. My biggest complaint about DM's is cutting things arbitrarily. I got banned from playing an alchemist by a DM because he hadn't bothered to read the class and didn't want to.

You know what I hate? Ninjas. You know what class I read all about anyway? Ninjas. You know what class I let my players choose if they're so inclined? Ninjas.

Also going to chime in with the chorus of people who can't stand Chaotic Evil Chaotic Neutral players. I love Chaotic Neutral. It's one of my favorite alignments since it is so freeing. But I know any DM that sees "CN" on my character sheet is going to groan and roll her eyes because too many players have used it as a license to kill, brutalize, rape and pillage indiscriminately.

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Logan1138 wrote:

I have a theory about the divide between those who like games with less "crunch" and character options and those who prefer the heavy crunch games:

The first group, which includes myself, plays (played, in my case) to experience a cool, memorable adventure and socialize with friends. The second group plays to craft a cool, memorable character and, very likely, to socialize with friends.

I think yes and no here. On the one hand, 5E character abilities are scaled to be much more balanced with one another. They function on a level that offers a more blurry delineation than the PF divide between classes. On the other, 5E actively encourages building the character as more than an arbitrary set of numbers by tying several skills, languages, and proficiencies to their background. I love character building - in between games, I often come up with characters for fun.

Currently, I'd still say I prefer the 5E rules. Although when I want to build something silly, I go straight for PF. Mechanics-wise, it's the difference between Lord of the Rings and Conan the Barbarian to me ---- both have their place, but PF is better for romps and campiness than serious character building.

Steve Geddes wrote:

In my opinion, 5E is much more of a "threat" to OSRIC games - or would be, if there were a commercially successful one.

5E and PF seem to be targeting different players. As a fan of both companies, I'm hopeful they both thrive.

Off-topic (sorta), and not to make it too political, but whether I prefer PF or 5E, I hope no matter what Paizo continues to thrive. Even though it's looking like my group will be converting to 5E (for the forseeable future, anyway), I will continue to buy material from Paizo - not just because I enjoy the art, iconic characters, fiction, and AP's - but because I like the company. I like what they stand for. Too many companies undervalue what their corporate philosophy means to their customers. And I like that it seems their influence is pushing WotC in a more inclusive direction. (RPGPundit and Zak Smith controversy aside.)

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David Bowles wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:

Meh. I'm glad you didnt. I dont really read these threads to hear a whole bunch of people agree with one another.

I found your perspective interesting - it's miles from mine (and I dont really agree with some of your conclusions), but we dont play at the same table so who cares. :)

Would it really be an issue if we did? If Pathfinder, I'd play a cleric my way and you'd play it your way. If forced into 5th, I'd find the class I felt was the least gutted and use it. At this point, probably fighter.

I'd say Rogue, personally. Since skill points don't exist any longer, being able to double your proficiency in two skills is a lot tastier. And you don't get to double any of those static bonuses you get as a fighter when you critical hit any longer, but you do get to double your sneak attack dice.

As to which class is most powerful, I STILL say Diviner Wizard (You get to choose two rolls a day that you succeed or the bad guy fails. Either way, you basically get to make it work to your advantage twice. And I promise spells aren't as bad as you think.) but Rogues definitely take the cake for most buffed.

The 3.PF rogue is beyond fixing, to me. It was built in a system that doesn't support it. You can't 'fix' it without changing the underlying mechanics of the either the class or the game.

I still find Sorcerers lackluster, though. I hated them in 3.5, loved them in PF, and just feel sorry for them in 5E. WotC seems to have a grudge against the poor Sorcerer for reasons I'll never understand.

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Somewhat back on topic, one of the things I appreciate most about 5E is the dismantling of "Save or Die" spells. There are a still a few high level "I Win" buttons, but saves and DCs never reach the absurd heights they do in 3.PF. So no more, it's a complete waste of time to cast "Hold Monster" on a caster-type enemy, but no more Charm the Heavy-Hitting mook and combat is over, either.

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Mr.u wrote:
EntrerisShadow wrote:
Usual Suspect wrote:
As examples; the Catholic Church (and the Vatican) is clearly not lawful good but does have a lawful and just society as a goal that we would call lawful good. But as any large institution is inevitably prone to corruption the Catholic Church has problems with abuse of power and position as well as institutional attempts to whitewash current and past events that put the church in a bad light. Any political institution (which means any country and any large religious organization) can ascribe to lofty goals like being a just society.

I wouldn't call any city-state whose utopian ideals include the subjugation of women and non-believers "good".

Hence the problem with every Abrahamic religious organization. It's not that they're bad when they're corrupt; it's that they're bad when they're following their teachings to the letter.

There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female, for you are all one in Jesus Christ"- Paul the Apostle

As in all the congregations of the Lord’s people… Women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the law says. If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church. --- Also Paul the Apostle. There's good and bad in all holy books, but the bad is REALLY bad. Morality isn't a zero sum game.

I'll also have to retract my earlier statement about New Zealand in light of the additional information. Guess there's none. Wait . . . maybe Iceland?

Nobody ruin Iceland for me.

Dark Archive

I feel like channel isn't that great. Sure, you could roll high, but typically - like sneak attack - you never roll high enough for the level you're at that it'll matter. The spontaneous cure spells are marginally better since you add your CL, but eh, in combat healing is never that spectacular.

Control is largely dependent on domains. But you've never been impressed with the cleric's ability to do damage? Really? Enlarge Person, Bull's Strength, Divine Favor, and so on and so on . . .

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David Bowles wrote:
Interesting. You think maybe it would be less dangerous if the clerics were adopting the heal stick role? Because maybe it's dangerous because cleric players aren't sucking it up and doing the right thing for the group.

Blech. I'll watch all of my friends die painfully before I play a healbot. In 5E especially, support-style clerics have so many buffs/debuffs that if you're healing in combat, you've already failed at your job.

But in fairness, that was my philosophy in PF, too. My Cleric is either all about control or doing damage. And then, if you really need it, when we're done I'll throw down some channels.

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Usual Suspect wrote:
As examples; the Catholic Church (and the Vatican) is clearly not lawful good but does have a lawful and just society as a goal that we would call lawful good. But as any large institution is inevitably prone to corruption the Catholic Church has problems with abuse of power and position as well as institutional attempts to whitewash current and past events that put the church in a bad light. Any political institution (which means any country and any large religious organization) can ascribe to lofty goals like being a just society.

I wouldn't call any city-state whose utopian ideals include the subjugation of women and non-believers "good".

Hence the problem with every Abrahamic religious organization. It's not that they're bad when they're corrupt; it's that they're bad when they're following their teachings to the letter.

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David Bowles wrote:
EntrerisShadow wrote:
David Bowles wrote:
I know nothing of the 5th ed CR system. Any dev bad at math can incorrectly assign any monster a CR in any system, however.
True. Just pointing out the difference, for me at least, was that in 3.PF it seemed like it was almost always a gross underestimation, as opposed to a gross overestimation like it is in 5E. If something was "CR 1" when we started a game, I usually needed 2-3 of them to provide an appropriate challenge with slight exception. (Ghouls, for instance - although even those were a joke if you had a mostly-to-all elf party.)
Until the ghasts get mixed in. Or the ghouls are templated with barbarian. Templating is the great equalizer.

You're still increasing the CR in those instances. Point is CR 1 is still a joke for an actual Lv 1 party.

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David Bowles wrote:
I know nothing of the 5th ed CR system. Any dev bad at math can incorrectly assign any monster a CR in any system, however.

True. Just pointing out the difference, for me at least, was that in 3.PF it seemed like it was almost always a gross underestimation, as opposed to a gross overestimation like it is in 5E. If something was "CR 1" when we started a game, I usually needed 2-3 of them to provide an appropriate challenge with slight exception. (Ghouls, for instance - although even those were a joke if you had a mostly-to-all elf party.)

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I'd say probably the closest is New Zealand. No lawful state on earth will ever be good, since the entire history of the world is one of oppressors' victory over the oppressed, (Human beings are just terrible. Every revolution pretty much begets another wave of abuse.) but they were the first to give women the vote, they have recognized seats in their government for the indigenous, and they have some of the lowest rates of crime, very little political corruption, and one of the best track records on universal human rights in the world.

And for being so good and inoffensive, we typically forget to include them on our maps.

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David Bowles wrote:
How tactically oriented is your GM? Because I'll tell you right now that if I were GMing this system, it would be incredibly hazardous for casters. I would take full advantage of this... feature as early and as often as possible. It's not...

Unrelated to the caster thing, but I have to say that it's interesting that in such a stripped down system, 5E demands players be more tactically astute than the rules-heavy 3.PF model.

The Monster Manual pretty much hands out advantage to GM's like candy. Even the staple of low-level counters - 1/4 CR wolves - become deadly if you throw more than one of them in there. (Automatic advantage when in a pack, and DC 13 trip attempts on every attack.)

A Level 1 Fighter in 3.PF could probably kill a dozen rats without breaking a sweat. I almost killed our party fighter with 4 of them, due to the new finesse attack/damage rules.

In PF I always had to throw harder CR's at my players to make the encounters challenging. In 5E I'm wondering what drunk hobo thought "1/8" was an appropriate challenge rating for something that can knock out your fighter in two hits.

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sunshadow21 wrote:
Laurefindel wrote:
The fact that casters can't go in and out of combat with impunity is not a bad thing IMO even if it changes the paradigm a bit.
It hurts the robustness of the overall system if you limit it too much. 3.x/PF probably went a bit far, but casters still need some ability to do so, as combat is going to be where the party spends a lot of time, and returning to AD&D levels is to me too far of a step back. Maybe 5E pulls it off in play without having to have the perfect group, but on paper, it seems like it has most, if not quite all, of the difficulties that AD&D had, which makes me less likely to actually try the game because I like to play casters and I need them to be not entirely reliant on teammates or DM fiat to be both fun and useful. 5E just doesn't seem to have that from what I've seen so far.

Well, our level 1 sorcerer did single-handedly end an encounter with 5 goblins last session.... so I can say with certainty it's not unheard of for a caster to hold up by themselves. (Like I said - Sleep is still a great equalizer. Probably moreso now that that there's no save.)

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David Bowles wrote:
Kthulhu wrote:

It sounds to me like your biggest problem with the system is that it doesn't give spellcasters a "win" button.

And yes, a party that has serious different roles filled is definitively stronger than a party that over-specializes. That ain't rocket science.

It seems to me that a party of all martials is the way to go in 5th.

Not necessarily. You're screwed in the healing department, you're all (pretty much) facing the same bad saves, and since proficiency replaced BAB you're not really getting a lot more out of being a martial class attack wise until the mid-levels, when spells take a jump in power.

I think it's quite possible to go all caster or all martial in 5E. I will say that in modules, considering their emphasis on straight P v E combat over ingenuity or role-playing, martials will have a much easier time of it. But a caster party isn't without merit. (A well-timed sleep spell still ends nearly every encounter faster and cleaner than Greatsword swinging fighter.)

sunshadow21 wrote:
Kthulhu wrote:
A spellcaster shouldn't be able to ignore the enemy that's standing right next to him when he's trying to cast. Whether that enemy be a martial or a spellcaster.
Ignore, no. But not being able to get away from them so that the caster could do something the next round seems a bit much.

You can still disengage (certain tank builds notwithstanding). And that again is where I say it encourages party support. And it makes Sentinel feats and the Defense fighting style viable.

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They're still limited by action economy. A party of casters could remain viable, although it's probably stronger to have a variety.

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David Bowles wrote:
I disagree with your last statement. I think there is a VERY real chance of getting crushed by a martial, because once they are adjacent, you can't get away. And cranking down spell slots seems to me to be cranking down choice. Maybe I'm just looking at it very differently.

I actually like that quite a bit. Essentially, D&D is a party based system, meaning that no class should be a one man show. You need every member of a party to effectively do different things.

So casters really shouldn't be able to get away from martials. In a party, the martials should be killing opposing casters or trying to prevent the other beat sticks from killing their caster.

The caster, depending on the type, should either be killing scores of smaller enemies, buffing their allies and debuffing opponents, or shaping the battlefield so it is more advantageous toward their group.

Casters should cast and martials should . . . uh, martial. I could see a two-adventurer party with a Battle Master Fighter and Diviner Wizard being more dangerous than the standard group of 4.

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David Bowles wrote:
Kthulhu wrote:
David Bowles wrote:
The point is that they have taken away a lot of caster choice and enhanced martials tremendously. I see no reason to play a caster at all in 5th ed. Because some martial is going to come pound me like railroad tie.

Let's pretend for a moment that 5e actually was weighted in the favor or martial.

Is that so g@*!~%n bad? And if it is, then the bad news for Pathfinder is that it's way WAY more unbalanced, just in the opposite direction.

Perhaps. I find that high level DPR must be performed by martials in Pathfinder, because all the attack spells just bounce off the opponents. In Pathfinder, caster strength is diversity of effects. That's why I dislike sorcerers in homebrew games.

The whole full attack after full move combined with how disengaging from an opponent in combat works means that a caster can never get away from a martial in combat. The can't even mitigate the incoming damage. Combine this with gimped casting, no channeling, no meta magic and it adds up to a bunch of classes I would never play.

That is helpful in recommendations, at least.

If you think martials got shafted in 3.5/Pathfinder, you'll probably see 5E as a godsend.

If you think PF is balanced already, you'll probably find 5E completely unfair.

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David Bowles wrote:
I have seen them. And casters are eviscerated in 5th. No channel. No summons.

You can still summon as a Caster. (Conjure X spells exist) And they do have channel?

Summoning is powerful, but I wouldn't even say it's the most powerful thing you can do as a conjurer. (Black Tentacles, Pit spells, Glitterdust, and so on.)

I guess it is a pointless argument - different strokes, and all that - but I've found casters to still be incredibly powerful.

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David Bowles wrote:
Eben TheQuiet wrote:
David Bowles wrote:
I dislike the lack of dynamic range of 5th edition greatly. Getting rid of all the "+1's" makes 5th ed combat pretty boring to me.

I agree with this. I've only played a few pick up games (and all at level 1 & 2, so keep that in mind), but there really didn't seem like much difference between someone invested in a particular area and someone who wasn't.

I can appreciate a simplified system, and I can appreciate the flexibility it gives DM's to improvise and keep things moving narratively, but I want my character build choices and conceptual areas-of-focus to make the character mechanically stand out.

I improvise just fine in Pathfinder. But I've been templating since 2000. The first 3.0 game I ran had templated NPCs in it.

One more point about 5th: I hate it that martials can take a move and then get all thier attacks. 5th, from what I have seen, is balanced very heavily in favor of martials. I would, for example, never play a cleric in 5th. I'd make someone else do that job.

Wait, what?!

Dude, have you seen the cantrips in this edition? Unlimited Xd6-Xd12/day at range with several feats and class features that allow you to add your casting stat to it?

I'm playing a Cleric with the War domain right now who currently has more attacks than our fighter and does more damage per swing. (Though that'll change around 5th level, as it should.) Plus spells get stupid powerful in the higher levels.

The only real difference I can see is it lets martial characters actually do their schtick instead of forcing everyone go into archery so they can get their full attack routine reliably.

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Charon's Little Helper wrote:

Yours wasn't the only review of 5e I've read which suggested dex builds being OP, but it's certainly possible that it's only a first blush thing.

Nonetheless - if it is balanced in 5e - it goes to show that such a balance - from a pure mechanical perspective - needs to go futher than just giving dex to damage with certain weapons.

I'm inclined to agree. I feel like a big part of the reason that it works in 5E is because they ditched touch AC and tied a save to every single stat instead of the Big 3.

Dex-to-Damage could work in PF, but there needs to be some balancing against str. And something still needs to be done about archery.

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Charon's Little Helper wrote:

Actually - I've heard in many of the 5th ed reviews that one negative is that they have to come up with fluff reasons to actually use strength instead of dexterity.

And if you don't care about realism - why do you even want dex to damage? Just pretend that strength is dex.

Sorry, if someone has already done this (there's 150 posts between this and mine) but I wanted to respond.

I actually was one of those people who decried Dex-to-Damage in 5th Ed. But with a little digging you see reasons why it actually isn't too overpowered:


  • Armor is much more balanced between heavy and light.
  • The "Thrown" weapon property that uses Str for Attack rather than Dex.
  • There are STR saves in addition to the typical REF/WILL/FORT.
  • STR-based heavy weapon fighters are the only ones that qualify for power attack.
  • A lot of bonuses to damage are now extra dice, which benefits weapons with larger damage dice more.

At first blush, it seems like dex-to-damage is overpowered . . . and truthfully, archery still is, but it is in Pathfinder, too . . . but it works out.

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Ssalarn wrote:

Here's a little anecdotal theory of my own: the less a GM knows about the game, the stronger a Rogue seems. I can think of at least 3 instances where I joined a group who thought Rogues were just the most OP thing ever, only to discover the Rogue was being given insane advantages:

Rogue player:"My Rogue is going to use acrobatics to roll into flanking. Success!"

This mirrors my experience perfectly. In my group, the other GM's nerfed rogues hard due to some misunderstandings about how a lot of things work. One broken rogue played completely ignoring rules for moving through threatened squares, concealment/cover, and sneak attack not multiplying on a critical hit and they were convinced this was the most powerful class ever.

The funny thing is, all of those broken rules just let him stay on par with the Two-Handed Fighter damage wise - and it required a critical hit to do so.

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Beast Rider Archer Cavalier.

You lose out on Heavy Armor (pfft - who needs it?) for an AWESOME mount. Go with an archer build - I like the halfling sling staff, but since you're probably dumping STR, a bow works just as well.

Choose a T-rex mount and you're playing a prehistoric pigmy. If that doesn't go against the typical Halfling, I don't know what does.

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ElementalXX wrote:
You know i have no problem with Str to AC, actually it makes much more sense than charisma to ac

I actually get that. I sort of equated it with being supernaturally lucky.

Wisdom - You listen to the secrets of the aether and understand them.

Charisma - The aether listens to your whims and understands you.

Wisdom to AC - You "hear" what everything is telling you and see the blow incoming in time to dodge out of the way.

Cha to AC - Suddenly everything is just slightly out of place to the aggressor; the target isn't where he thought it was, or something shifted his balance ever so slightly, knocking his trajectory off course.

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Better:

-Stopped prepping so much. I used to have enormous stories that I wanted to tell; grand-sweeping sagas that put the fate of the universe in the players' hands. I had booklets filled with information, world building, special rules --- and campaigns that fell apart after a few sessions. Now I've learned to go with the flow and let the story occur naturally. Start with a very simple setup and see what they want to do with it.

-Not letting people split the party and hog the spotlight. Party splits are inevitable, but when it happens I spend no more than 10 minutes with each and find excuses to get them back together ASAP.

Still needs improvement:

-Coddling players. I let too many things slide. I finally put the kibosh on god-stats and epic rolling. (2d6+6) But I'm still hesitant to let characters die. I think it's important to find the balance between feeling empowered and being challenged at alternate times in a campaign, but I've yet to find that balance.

(Am glad to say that in my last 5E session, the boss did take two characters to 0 HP and it was only a judicious use of Inspiration that saved them. Very proud moment for me as a GM.)

-Not describing things as well as I think I am. Obviously I have a very clear picture of what things look like, but communication is a tricky thing.

Worse:

-Flip side of that going with the flow is I too often try to let players dictate what happens next. My other great fear as a GM is railroading, so I try to leave things open ended enough that they always have choices. Unfortunately, those threads aren't always as visible as I think they are, and I end up having to push one way or the other.

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Paladin of Baha-who? wrote:
Stealing horses because you'd rather not pay even though you could: CE.

I think you could still argue the last one is CN, depending on the circumstances. In the circumstances he described, yes, I'd say so. But what if the person you're stealing from is an enormous jerk? Stealing because someone mistreated you seems more along the L/C axis than G/E to me. And what if it was someone who could afford it? I probably wouldn't cause anyone to rewrite "E" on their sheet because they stole a bunch of horses from a stuffy nobleman. It's not good per se, but it creates an inconvenience rather than doing lasting harm. I might make a Paladin answer for it, but the CN Rogue would be safe.

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The Human Diversion wrote:
EntrerisShadow wrote:
I'm confused about what you're saying is untrue here?
I think he was pointing out that rogues gain sneak attack dice faster than slayers.

I get that. I just don't get how that's a counter to my argument that nothing really separates them conceptually?

EDIT: OK, I think that's a response to when I said "aside from being better at everything" about the Slayer.

While Rogues do get a better SA progression, that's balanced by losing out on full-BAB and the Slayer also gets the Studied Target for +x to hit and damage. I'd say the ST + SA is still overall better than a full SA progression.

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So let's look at the facts:

1) You're in a 10-point buy. Every MAD class is out.

2) Your GM is always looking to destroy companions.

Synthesist Summoner. Dump everything but CHA (keep CON at 10 for level up) and make your GM cry. 2nd level go Lore Oracle so you can add CHA to AC and eventually qualify for that feat that lets Divine casters add their CHA to all saves.

Pretty much everything but your to-hit/damage is going to be covered by CHA, and that won't be too shabby thanks to your merged form. The GM can focus on attacking the "companion" still, but that means having to go toe-to-toe with you, and you can buff yourself out the wazoo and litter the battlefield with critters at the same time.

Sadly, this will suck for the other party members, but if it comes down to that or dying every other session, I say this might make him reconsider 10-point buy. All it does is lock players into boxes without actually making things more challenging.

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Starbuck_II wrote:
EntrerisShadow wrote:

There's no fixing the Rogue.

Well, let me clarify - it's been fixed. Any fixes now will just make it more like a Slayer. (Best combat rogue) or more like an Investigator (Best skill monkey rogue) Now, yes, I understand people are like, "But that's a Slayer now! We need to fix the Rogue!"

Why bother? It's a waste of intellectual time and, if it were implemented, a waste of print space. You have two very good classes that fill your Rogue role. Three if you count the Bard, but for flavor's sake, the Slayer and Investigator ARE closer. Besides the name and being better at everything, what REALLY differentiates a Slayer from a Rogue? A few things technically. Nothing conceptually.

And really, other fixes are just going to make it do (more) things other classes do better, anyway.

Combat feats? That's a fighter.
Debuffs? That's a Bard, and a Witch.
Take out Dex-to-Damage for other classes and make it specific to the rogue? Admission the only fix is to gimp other classes.

There are a lot of sacred cows that need to be slaughtered for every new iteration of the 3.PF rules, and the Rogue is chief among them. Rip every wasted paragraph that deals with the Rogue out. Or rip out the Slayer and put that statblock over the old Rogue. Or take Arcane Trickster out of PrC, make it a 1-20 base class, and boom - new "rogue".

Untrue, Full BAB Rogue is better than Slayer in Sneak attack (full progression).

I'm confused about what you're saying is untrue here?

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Additional thoughts after playing a few more 5E sessions. Some of these are just observations, rather than a judgment on whether it's superior to PF:

Rangers suck

Wow, do they suck. After years of getting used to Fighters being such a disappointment that I'd just play a Ranger, I'm finding the reverse to be true. There's nothing a Ranger gets that a Fighter won't do better. And the new Favored Enemy bonuses are so situational that they'll almost never be used at most tables. The Beast Master archetype is the lamest thing I've ever seen. You sacrifice your attack to make your companion take a (much weaker) attack. Perhaps someone here sees something I don't, since I'm still new to it obviously, but I can't find much redeemable about them. Seems like Rangers are the Rogue/Monk of 5E. Speaking of which -

Fighters, Rogues, and Monks are kind of spectacular

Part of that, of course, is the new feat system. But also considering the bonded accuracy and the Monks Dex-to-Attack/Damage option being built into the class, you have a pretty amazing build from Level 1. A TWF Fighter is probably the best damage option at early levels, with a Dueling fighter coming in close behind. Rogues are at the top of the skills again, providing something very different from Bards. (Excellent mods in a couple of important skills for the Rogue versus good mods in all of them for the Bard.) And with the way crits work now, more damage dice is actually better than a flat modifier.

Magic is broken, still

I think I see where they were going with this. The idea is that, even with bonded accuracy, a Fighter will put more points into Dex/Str than a Wizard, and have more weapon options, so he'll come out ahead. Which he does, kinda --- but really, a Sorc/Wiz will probably use a finesse weapon and pump Dex, so it's all the same. Spells (especially Cantrips) should've been weakened or their accuracy dropped.

Magic is improved, kinda

A lot of 1st-Level spells are actually weaker now, but they also work in a better way. QED, I'm playing a Cleric with the War Domain in a friend's game. One of my 1st level spells is Divine Favor, which lets me add 1d4 Radiant(Holy) damage to each of my attacks for 1-minute. Not really that much, but it also lets me cast as a bonus action - so I get to cast and attack. I love this. It's not system-breakingly powerful, but it lets me buff at the beginning of combat and do damage in a way that highlights how my battle cleric is different from a strict martial.

The difference is very GM/Player dependent

I know, that seems obvious. But the two biggest mechanics in the game - Advantage and Inspiration - require the GM to remember and use them. They aren't built into stat blocks or attacks the way most PF bonuses are. Last game we played our GM didn't remember either and it played very similar to a Pathfinder session, but with smaller total numbers. I forgot during an encounter with some Worgs and found my players stomping over it like they often do with PF characters. (Those pack tactics probably would've ripped the group to shreds, in retrospect.) When I remembered to use Inspiration, I saw a profound change in the behavior of my players. You will always have the different gaming types, but my combat-lovers were thinking through ways to fight *in-character*, rather than just trying to find the "best" options. 5E is a lot easier to learn to play than PF, but I think it requires much more advanced GMing --- you need to be at a level where you're comfortable taking a lot of initiative yourself. Even a module will require you to think on your feet and be on the lookout for opportunities to foster role-play or play up smart tactics so your baddies can have Advantage/negate Disadvantage to provide a real challenge.

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Asphere wrote:
I think you misunderstood what modularity means. It doesn't mean that you will be able to make 5E look like 4E, 3E, or 2E (that would be impossible).

Do not try to bend the finished editions--- that would be impossible. Instead, only try to realize the truth. There are no finished editions.

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Tequila Sunrise wrote:
Usual Suspect wrote:

I had a DM that let the party gang rape my character's cohort. The idiot couldn't quite understand why I quit after that. Kept pushing to know why I quit coming to the game (I had made a polite excuse as to why I wouldn't be back). He was terribly upset when I explained what a douchbag move it was for the DM to ignore evil actions in a game where he had specifically outlawed evil characters. Most of his players thought it was hillarious. Honestly, 3 twenty-something guys couldn't figure out why rape isn't fin or funny.

Pretty much ruined gaming for a year as I wasn't even interested in role-playing because of that.

Wow, that's an asinine group. The DM wouldn't have had to push me to know why I left...

Rape is something that the heroes kill villainous NPCs for doing, not something that PCs do because lolz the evulz!

I feel like even THAT has to be handled with tact, shouldn't be introduced until you've properly gotten to know the vibe at the table, and still should be used very, very sparingly. (Aside from any other offense it may cause, rape to establish that this is a 'dark' campaign is cliche.)

But what Tequila Sunrise described is just sick. Even if they were evil characters, even if the DM enforced that and made them rewrite all of their character sheets --- some things are just so beyond the pale of human decency I couldn't imagine how anyone would want to play it out in a board game in the first place.

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