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Epic Meepo's page

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32. RPG Superstar 2013 Marathon Voter, 2014 Marathon Voter, 2015 Marathon Voter. Pathfinder Society Member. 4,273 posts (4,437 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 1 Pathfinder Society character. 9 aliases.


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RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Jason Bulmahn wrote:
Be polite to your fellow platesetters everyone.

I'm going to be platesetting the vigilante this weekend, but I'm already confused by dual identity. Does an avenger's social identity go to the left or the right of the salad fork? :P

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Why does it have to be a prestige class? It could be the first-ever evangelist-like base class. That would make the vigilante a self-contained gestalt subsystem that can transform any other class in the game into its superhero alter-ego starting at 1st level. (Okay, probably starting at 2nd-level, since you can't give all of the abilities of another class in addition to the starting vigilante stuff all on 1st level. The evangelist-style stuff would have to wait until 2nd level.)

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Cthulhudrew wrote:
Epic Meepo wrote:
ow imagine what would happen if performance combat and kingdom building worked like dual identity. The only characters who could win over crowds in arenas would belong to the gladiator class. The only characters who could build and rule kingdoms would belong to the kingmaker class.

Then again, you could still achieve a similar (if not precisely identical) dual identity role for any character by using the Reputation subsystem from Ultimate Campaign.

You're not barred from playing a character similar to the Vigilante- there are already many classes and archetypes that accomplish similar things, and rules that exist to also emulate it. The Vigilante as a class is just a more specialized version of those broader efforts, to appeal to people for whom those efforts do not quite cover things.

The existence of a class doesn't suddenly shut off all options for different sorts of campaigns.

If it's true that the vigilante is a more-specialized version of something that multiple other classes can already pull off, then the vigilante shouldn't be a base class. A more-specialized version of a class that already exists is just an archetype.

In fact, the vigilante class reads a lot like a list of abilities meant to appear in archetypes for other classes. Avenger could be a brawler or fighter archetype, stalker could be a rogue archetype, warlock could be split into an arcanist and a kineticist archetype, and zealot could be an inquisitor archetype. The vigilante class is just dual identity and renown plus a bunch of abilities that should be options available to other base classes.

If the vigilante is going to be a base class, it needs to be something more compelling than "I'm kinda like that other base class, but I can socialize, too." Vigilante needs to be to the master spy what the swashbuckler is to the duelist; it needs to be a spell-less analog of the bard; it needs to be something, anything, that we don't already have. What it doesn't need to be is four existing base classes with some social subsystem abilities tacked on. That's what archetypes and feats are for.

If it's absolutely necessary that a vigilante mimic the role of another base class, at least do away with all of these designer-imposter specializations. You should just get to count some fraction of your vigilante levels as levels in one other base class of your choice and gain the features of that other class accordingly. You aren't a feaux inquisitor (or whatever other class). You're a super-diplomat who can turn into a super-boogeyman, both of whom happen to have some genuine inquisitor class features in addition to their social/anti-social talents. (Which, incidentally, makes for a great cover story. "I'm not a rebellious vigilante, I'm an inquisitor who keeps the peasants in line. I can demonstrate my inquisitor abilities if you require proof.")

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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To expand upon Abraham's point, let's compare the dual identity mechanics from Ultimate Intrigue to the performance combat mechanic from Ultimate Combat and the kingdom building mechanic from Ultimate Campaign.

  • Dual identity is a mechanic for blending into high society when not adventuring. The design goal is to make this mechanic available to characters of every major party role (arcane, divine, martial, etc.). To accomplish this, we get a vigilante class (and, presumably, vigilante archetypes) with specializations that recreate the wheel by mimicking other classes while also granting a dual identity. Characters who want a dual identity must multiclass, retrain, or archetype into vigilante.
  • Performance combat is a subsystem for winning over a crowd in an arena. The design goal is to make this mechanic available to characters of every major party role (arcane, divine, martial, etc.). To accomplish this, characters of any class can participate in performance combat by performing certain actions while in an arena. Characters wanting to be better at this can take performance combat feats, purchase performance combat items, or learn performance combat spells.
  • Kingdom building is a subsystem for building and ruling a small kingdom. The design goal is to make this mechanic available to characters of every major party role (arcane, divine, martial, etc.). To accomplish this, characters of any class can apply their ability modifiers to various kingdom statistics and can use their existing class features to explore new territory. Characters wanting to invest more in a kingdom can spend more time exploring and can donate treasure to their kingdom's treasury.
Now imagine what would happen if performance combat and kingdom building worked like dual identity. The only characters who could win over crowds in arenas would belong to the gladiator class. The only characters who could build and rule kingdoms would belong to the kingmaker class. Aside from acting as vehicles for these new subsystems, these new gladiator and kingmaker classes would just mimic the abilities of existing classes so characters wanting to play characters resembling those other classes can participate in the exclusive, new subsystems.

What happens if we want to make a new subsystem for airship pilots? Do we have to make a new airship pilot base class with specializations that allow cleric-like airship pilots, fighter-like airship pilots, rogue-like airship pilots, and wizard-like airship pilots? And do we have to go back and add an airship pilot specialization to the vigilante class, the gladiator class, and the kingmaker class?

Why should we recreate the existing base classes every time we get a new subsystem? Why not just design rules that allow characters of any class or archetype participate in the new subsystem?

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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chbgraphicarts wrote:

Either way, Dual Identity needs to allow for much-faster changes than a Full-Round Action at lv13.(!!!)

By lv11, you should be able to Transform as AT LEAST a Standard, if not a Move Action.

Avengers and stalkers, being mundane, should require a few rounds to change identities, but they should get to keep all of their talents when in their social identity (since a mundane disguise doesn't magically change who you are).

Warlocks and zealots, being magical, should lose most of their spells and talents when in their social identities (because you have to turn off your magic to hide it from other magic), but they should be able to magically assume their vigilante identities as a standard, move, or swift action.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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The vigilante's niche seems to be "one-level dip class."

You take one level in vigilante if your character concept requires a scry-proof dual identity, then immediately multiclass into something else:

vigilante (avenger) 1 / slayer X
vigilante (stalker) 1 / ninja X
vigilante (warlock) 1 / arcanist or kineticist X
vigilante (zealot) 1 / inquisitor X
vigilante (not-alchemist) 1 / alchemist X / master chymist Y
vigilante (not-investigator) 1 / investigator X
vigilante (not-occultist) 1 / occultist X
vigilante (anything) / bard X / master spy Y

You have your one vigilante level to protect your secret identity plus a bunch of levels in something else to get vigilante-like abilities you can use even when you are not using your vigilante identity.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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No mutagenic vigilantes that sprout adamantine claws or turn into big green monsters?

No artificer vigilantes that craft custom suits of magic armor?

No supernatural flight talent?

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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I have some progress to report, as well as some spoilers to reveal:

I'm getting closer to publishing an introductory version of the Custom Class Builder. I still have lots of class and archetype features to edit, but most of the central mechanics are finalized.

The Custom Class Builder streamlines a fair number of common class features by making them work like inquisitor judgments (or unchained barbarian rage stances): you can, in theory, gain a large number of these class features from a single custom class; every one of them scales with your class level, no matter how many others you gain; and you can (usually) have only one of these scaling class features active at any given time.

By setting things up this way, the Custom Class Builder makes it easy to mix and match class features like bardic performances, fighter weapon training, inquisitor judgments, ranger favored enemies, etc. A custom class grants a combination of these scaling abilities that fit its theme, and class members choose which one of these abilities is active at any given time.

In addition, every custom class has an ability called heroic effort, which serves as a general-purpose point pool. Some of the scaling class features mentioned above require heroic effort to activate and maintain. Custom classes can also grant various other features that would normally depend upon different point pools: arcanist exploits, gunslinger and swashbuckler deeds, monk and ninja ki powers, magus arcana, etc.

Every custom class grants one class feature per level plus a number of additional proficiencies on 1st level. Many low-level features of existing classes can be selected as proficiencies. Each custom class also gains a progression of bonus talents based upon its Hit Die, with smaller Hit Dice granting more bonus talents. Blocks of these bonus talents can be exchanged during class creation for spellcasting (or similar abilities), with larger blocks resulting in better spellcasting progressions.

The last major component of the class creation process, which I am developing now, involves companions (animal companions, eidolons, familiars, etc.). During creation, a custom class can exchange one or more proficiencies to gain a companion as a class feature; the more proficiencies exchanged, the better the companion. One proficiency might get you an animal, ooze, plant, or vermin companion that must be controlled using the Handle Animal skill, while four proficiencies might get you an independent dragon or outsider companion with eidolon evolutions.

The introductory version of the Custom Class Builder won't contain all of the three-thousand-plus character options currently in development, but it will contain a beta version of the custom class creation process, along with a representative sample of the many features that can be added to a custom class.

My current goal is to release this introductory PDF for playtesting and review later this summer.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Pipefox wrote:
Of course if he playtests by making up parties of characters and having them converse and interact with one another when he's the only one there... that would be a little strange.

Now I want to run a PbP with no one but myself and four aliases so I can tell the story of an AP in the form of an online novel about my four characters.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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The carnivorous dinosaurs are here (and also here).

The herbivorous dinosaurs are here (and also here).

I am referring, in the above statements, to Animal Races: Dawn of the Carnosaur and Animal Races: Dawn of the Cerapod. Each of these two, related PDFs features a new, playable and customizable race of humanoid dinosaurs.

In Animal Races: Dawn of the Carnosaur, you meet the ruthless carnosaurians, the often-villainous upper class of the Great and Terrible Lizard Empire. In Animal Races: Dawn of the Cerapod, you meet the fierce but noble Bird-Feet, Bone-Heads, Horn-Heads, and Shield-Bearers that are the common folk of the same ancient empire.

All of that is ancient history, but history tends to repeat itself. Animal Races: Dawn of the Carnosaur includes the stats of a carnosaurian lich who may be scheming to revive his long-dead race, while Animal Races: Dawn of the Carnosaur details numerous ways an ancient race might survive its apparent extinction. (Hint: one of those ways involves an extradimensional zoo which may or may not be a theme park.)

If you feel like playing an anthropomorphic dinosaur (or someone who wants to revive an ancient race of anthropomorphic dinosaurs in the modern world), check out Animal Races: Dawn of the Carnosaur and Animal Races: Dawn of the Cerapod.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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The dinosaurs are on their way...

Animal Races: Dawn of the Carnosaur and Animal Races: Dawn of the Cerapod have both been uploaded. Barring technical difficulties, both are on schedule for release on June 12th (or slightly before that, depending upon your time zone).


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LazarX wrote:
Psionics is essentially magic wearing the clothes of New Age psychic phenomena. Unlike magic, whose literary heritage spans from much older sources, Psionics in the game draws mainly from comic books, horror movies like "Scanners", and the "New Age" movement.

Psionics is essentially is less sci-fi version of D&D's magic system. Unlike D&D's Vancian magic system, which was lifted directly from a science fiction novel and appears nowhere else in literature or mythology, D&D psionics creates a mechanic that reflects the way most people assume magic would work in a fantasy setting: practioners draw upon a depletable pool of energy which they shape to their will without "preparing" or "memorizing" an abitrary number of fire-and-forget spells.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Itchy wrote:

As a dinosaur lover who has spawned a dinosaur lover, I have a question on your spelling. Dawn of the Cerapod?

Do you mean Sauropod, the family that includes all the long necked giants including Apatosaurus, Brachiosaurus and Argentinosaurus?

Or are you referring to the Ceratopsians, a family of horned/frilled dinosaurs to include Triceratops, Protoceratops, Styracosaurus, and Montanaceratops?

I am referring to the proposed Cerapoda clade, which includes Ceratopsians, Ornithopods, and Pachycephalosaurs.

The same PDF also covers Cerapoda's sister clade, Thyreophora, so it would have been more accurate to call it Dawn of the Ornithischian, but "Ornithischian" didn't sound as cool as "Cerapod" (and wouldn't have fit on the cover even if it did).

Saurapoda, meanwhile, make an appearance in both PDFs as a race of reptilian giants.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Welcome to the Jurassic Multiverse.

Your tour begins two weeks from today.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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wakedown wrote:
Epic Meepo wrote:
wakedown wrote:
[examples]
Your examples keep assuming that Pathfinder characters encounter only monsters whose CR is approximately equal to their own level. Sure, in a poorly-designed adventure ...

My examples all draw from the last 100 adventures written and published by Paizo that I've run.

I've picked random examples based on recent runs, or ones I thought were particularly fun. You'll find the average DCs/ACs all trend upward and your success rate is essentially constant, barring extreme stacking of modifiers by PCs.

Some of them are actually pretty darn good, so I don't know if I'd say they are poorly-designed because the PCs never meet groups of lower-level enemies. It practically never happens (that higher level adventures maintain lower or constant DCs/ACs), though.

** spoiler omitted **...

Ah, you're primarily running PFS scenarios. That explains why you aren't noticing any number-related character growth in Pathfinder. In my experience, PFS focuses on a very narrow slice of the Pathfinder game. Many types of encounters that showcase character growth are specifically excluded from PFS (as opposed to something like Kingmaker, where the advancement of your raw numerical bonuses can change the difficulty and feel of entire dungeons).

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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wakedown wrote:
[examples]

Your examples keep assuming that Pathfinder characters encounter only monsters whose CR is approximately equal to their own level. Sure, in a poorly-designed adventure where the PCs never meet groups of lower-level enemies, they won't feel like they are advancing. Advancement in Pathfinder is all about becoming significantly more badass than creatures that are below your level; that's why those creatures are below your level.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Duskbreaker wrote:
The problem with flying kick is that it doesn't say you actually fly when you move, so difficult terrain will still half your movement.

The description of flying kick flat out states that you move through the air when using flying kick. The first sentence reads: "The monk leaps through the air to strike a foe with a kick."

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Charon's Little Helper wrote:
LazarX wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
kestral287 wrote:


I also frankly really don't like the clothing-with-armor-bonuses thing. I just... can't make that one make sense in my mind.

It's actually in the game already:

Magic Vestment wrote:

You imbue a suit of armor or a shield with an enhancement bonus of +1 per four caster levels (maximum +5 at 20th level).

An outfit of regular clothing counts as armor that grants no AC bonus for the purpose of this spell.

I take it pants are sufficient, if you're going for the Seltyiel fan service look?
What about a loincloth for the Tarzan vibe?

And don't forget chainmail bikinis.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Puna'chong wrote:

I'll be able to post my homebrew changes soon here. I'll provide a link when it's ready, and I'll post it on the Homebrew forums. As written, the system doesn't do everything all the time, and it doesn't do it 100% effectively. That's a product of a shift of systems, but for the most part everything fits in really smoothly once you look at it.

At least, that's what I've been finding.

I can see how the unchained action economy can be made to work (as your house rules demonstrate), but I don't know that I would call the new action economy a smooth fit for the existing game.

To me, dropping the unchained action economy into the current Pathfinder game feels like replacing a car's entire engine because a few bad spark plugs are holding back its performance. I'd rather just keep the engine where it is and replace the bad spark plugs.

In Pathfinder, the full-attack action is the bad spark plug. Rather than seeing a rewrite of the entire action economy that makes combat more dynamic, I really wanted to see a rewrite of the full-attack action that makes combat just as dynamic while leaving everything other than full-attacking intact.

For (a very rough) example, change the full attack action so it grants you three acts, each of which can be used to either attack or move. [Insert the attacking and moving portion of the unchained action economy rules here.] Everything other than full-attacking uses the normal rules.

A (cleaned-up) version of the above suggestion would create dynamic combat very similar to that which occurs in the unchained action economy without having to first gut the entire Pathfinder action economy system.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Create Mr. Pitt wrote:
This quickly becoming a homebrew thread...

Any thread about implementing the unchained action economy has to be a homebrew thread. The unchained action economy is just a framework with extensive examples, not a complete system; you have to homebrew it to make it work.

That being said, if Pathfinder 2.0 is built with this action economy as a starting point, I suspect that PF2 will run much better than PF1 with no homebrewing required.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Joe M. wrote:
I'm glad they used the space in unchained for more optional rules rather than a suite of Unchained Monk options...

Off the top of my head, you can add dozens of options to the unchained monk, including backwards and forwards compatibility with Core monk support material, by adding a single ki power:

"Archetype Power: You can select a class feature granted by a monk archetype as a ki power if that class feature replaces a single monk class feature (and nothing else). To select an archetype class feature as a ki power, your monk level must be no less than the level on which that class feature is granted by a monk archetype. You cannot select a class feature as a ki power if that feature improves or relies upon an ability you do not have."

The lack of something quick but effective like that built into the unchained monk is, in my opinion, a missed opportunity.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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*reads unchained monk*
*copies unchained monk to clipboard*
*deletes all sentences that begin, "The monk must attack with..."*
*changes all saving throws to the medium progression used by prestige classes*
*moves the last three sentences of perfect self to the end of the ki pool ability description*

Yes, I think that's more to my liking.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Now available in the Paizo store and here...

Animal Races: Clan of the Swan introduces a playable race of avian shapechangers with ties to the realm of the fey. Born from the fires of the first Phoenix and the primordial magic of fairy-kind, members of the Swan Clans undergo a process of continuous reincarnation that has carried their ancient souls forward from a long-forgotten past into the present day world.

In addition to the rules you need to play Swan Clan shapechangers in modern times, this book includes guidelines for past-life adventures, allowing your character to relive memories from past lives to learn about bygone eras or to extrapolate historical trends into the future.

Whether you want to play a bird-themed shapechanger with ties to the fey or want advice for incorporating an in-character flashback to ancient times into your campaign, this PDF is for you.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Matrix Dragon wrote:
I think I'll also give all summoners a bonus evolution point at every 4th level and then ban the half-elf favored class bonus so people don't feel like they have to be half-elfs to be effective.

Why not just unchain the half-elf favored class bonus by letting any summoner take it, regardless of race?

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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The unchained monk would have been a perfect place to unchain the medium saving throw progression (+1 at every odd level) that is currently used by every prestige class in the game but not by any existing base class. The unchained monk could have had all medium saves, making it perfectly balanced without giving it saves as good as those of the d8-HD monk.


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Everyone is missing the point of Formless Mastery. Don't think of it as an unchained monk class feature; think of it as an unchained Crane Wing nerf. If you look at it that way, Formless Mastery is a thing of beauty.

You see, the standard Crane Wing nerf turned a feat that automatically blocked one melee attack into a feat that provided a +4 bonus to AC against one melee attack if you happened to burn an immediate action before that attack was rolled in the first place. That's a fairly intensive nerf, but all of the sacred cows were really holding it back.

Now that everything's been unchained, Crane Wing can be properly nerfed. If you're stuck GMing for a bunch of uppity martials who insist on taking Crane Wing, even though its been nerfed down to an occasional +4 AC bonus against one melee attack, you can teach them a lesson by giving Formless Mastery to your NPC monks.

Your monks get a +4 bonus on attack rolls against anyone using Crane Wing, perfectly counteracting the +4 bonus to AC that Crane Wing occasionally provides. Plus, to further punish the PCs for daring to take a non-magical defense nearly as effective as some 1st- or 2nd-level spells, your NPCs also get massive damage bonuses and other perks against them.

Never before has a nerf been so perfectly complete.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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On June 12th, 2015, the Animal Races series goes Jurassic.

More on that a bit later.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Re: 3pp HeroLab support:
Lemmy wrote:
Honestly... The only thing that stops me from using more 3pp stuff is that they don't usually have HeroLab support. :/

A few months ago, I wanted to write a huge 3pp HeroLab file. Sadly, the HeroLab licensing terms disallowed 90% of the content I wanted to create.

Re: Unchained.

And the winner of Pathfinder Unchained is... the warsighted oracle of battle.

  • Full spellcasting in heavy armor while wielding martial weapons: 3rd-level revelation.
  • Adding your casting stat bonus to all your saving throws: 5th-level feat.
  • Background skills to offset dumping your Intelligence: Free at 1st level.
  • Barbarian rage gained through variant multiclassing: 3rd-level feat.
  • Martial flexibility to grab stamina powers on the fly: 1st-level class feature.
  • The look on your GM's face when you emerge from the gate to your personal demiplane, shrug off a few readied attacks with your awesome saves and your full plate armor, cast miracle, grab any three stamina powers of your choice, start raging, and take a few attacks of opportunity with your greatsword, all in the same round and all using only your own powers: priceless.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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David knott 242 wrote:
I think I see some opportunities for 3rd party publishers here.

I can't properly express how much I agree with this statement. Because reasons.

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I won't have time to upload Clan of the Raptor to stores this afternoon, but it is done, so expect it in the near future.

Next month's release, Clan of the Swan, is also well underway.

After that, Clan of the Raven for all the tengu fans out there.


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Unchained core race changes sound dumb

Look, I get that halflings are not as popular as fantasy staples like dwarves and elves.

That said, I think Unchained sets a bad precedent by completely replacing the halfling core race with a tiefling core race. It's true that tieflings have better flavor and stronger mechanics than halflings, but using that as an excuse to errata halflings out of existence is a bad move. Unchained should never have done that.

And by, "Unchained," I mean, "an imaginary game supplement I saw in a dream last night," because I've never actually seen a Paizo product suggesting that halflings be replaced with tieflings. But that's beside the point. A future Paizo product might say that, so I'm putting my foot down.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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The harshest critique the Animal Races series has yet received still managed to squeak in at four out of five stars. As the reviewer correctly observes, as a race that can fly unaided at 1st level, Bats are not perfectly balanced against the standard core races.

As a matter of fact, Bats are balanced against wyrwoods and wyvarans, a pair of 0-HD races you can read about on the linked pages of the PRD. If exotic races like wyrwoods and wyvarans would work in your campaign, Bats and other flying animal races will, too. If wyrwoods and wyvarans are outside the scope of your campaign, consider instead sticking to animal races based on non-flying animals. Non-flying animal races make up the majority of the Animal Races series and have capabilities similar to members of core races with access to APG feats like Aspect of the Beast and Keen Scent.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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A note for customers who haven't checked their email lately:

If you purchased Clan of the Pig, Clan of the Raccoon, or Clan of the Turtle prior to this week, a new version of your PDF with some minor corrections should be available for you to download.

If you purchased Clan of the Bear prior to this week, a new version of your PDF with two full pages of new (and critically acclaimed) content should be available for you to download.

Enjoy.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Steve Wieck wrote:
Epic Meepo wrote:
If I purchase a community-created card, does the community member who designed that card earn a percentage of that sale?

No, at least not at this time.

One of our future feature sets will be to allow for that to happen, but this wasn't part of our initial release scope coding.

Also we (Paizo and DriveThru) want to keep the pricing of these cards as low as possible to keep them accessible to the community, so even when we develop that "royalty" capability/feature, it's unknown if we'd implement it here or not.

Steve
DriveThru

In that case, I have to object to this Card Creator on ethical grounds.

DriveThru earns money on each sale, which is perfectly fair and ethical, since Drive Thru is providing a service by printing and distributing these cards. There's nothing wrong with that part of the process.

The providers of the stock art earn money each time someone licenses their artwork, which is perfectly fair and ethical, since artists have the right to profit from their own intellectual property. There's nothing wrong with that part of the process.

But then we get to the part where Paizo is asking amateur designers to transfer ownership of their intellectual property to Paizo without compensation. And we're not talking about messageboard posts here. We're talking about designers putting time and effort into the creation of published, proprietary, Paizo-owned products without getting paid for their work.

That would be tolerable if the designers retained full ownership (or even a copyleft) of the intellectual property they created while doing this volunteer work for Paizo, Inc., but the designers don't even get that. They are donating their time (and potentially paying for licenses) to create intellectual property owned by a for-profit corporation that is not their employer.

That is exploitative, and helps perpetuate a culture where creative workers are conditioned to expect no compensation for work they perform on behalf of others. I realize this was probably not anyone's intention when setting up this project, but it is still the end result. As someone who believes artists should receive fair compensation for any work they perform that generates revenue for any party, I cannot support this Card Creator.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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If I purchase a community-created card, does the community member who designed that card earn a percentage of that sale?

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Eric Hinkle wrote:
And we get some birds, unless you mean the scaly sort of raptors. Any hints on what sort of 'subclans' we can expect in these releases? I.e., eagles, hawks, swans, ravens, etc.?

Clan of the Raptor will feature Eagle, Hawk, Owl, and Vulture clans. (Ravens have their own book.)

Clan of the Swan will feature Peacock and Swan clans, plus lots of fey and samsarans.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Ambrosia Slaad wrote:
VM mercenario wrote:
Cool thanks. I still have to buy clan of the bat and clan of the pig to see how you did flying and aquatic races, but expect to see it around mid march.
Clan of the Bat just got updated with an additional two pages of new content. w00t!

Yep, Clan of the Bat now has two pages of new information about non-vampire Bats.

Also, Clan of the Bear, Clan of the Deer, and Clan of the Rabbit were all updated to add a scent ability that got lost in cut-and-paste limbo.

Clan of the Pig and Clan of the Turtle will receive a few cosmetic tweaks soon.

After that, I will be adding two additional pages to Clan of the Bear, since I have more to say about Cave Bears and Polar Bears, plus a new bloodline option for the bloodrager class.

Following those updates, I'll be moving on to some new releases, namely Clan of the Raptor and Clan of the Swan.


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137ben wrote:

More like:

Player 1: Can I play a catfolk?
GM: No, You guys can pick any race except catfolk.
Player 1: Why?
And then the conversation branches in one of several directions
Alternative a:
Gm: Because I am the GM and I want to shove it in your face by reminding you that I can ban stuff!
Player 1: Waa! You're a tyrant!

Alternative b:
GM: Because they went extinct 400 years ago in my setting.
Player 1: Okay then, could I play a ratfolk?

Alternative c:
GM: Because I dislike the idea of talking cats--I can't think about it without being reminded of that annoying talking Meowth.
Player 1: Okay then , could I play a ratfolk?

Alternative d:
GM: Because player 2, player 3, and player 5 have expressed a strong distaste in having a PC with fur in the party.
Player 1: Okay then, could I play a gnome?

More like:

Player 1: I'm playing a catfolk.
GM: Actually, that's not a playable race in this campaign.
Player 1: Why?
And then the conversation branches in one of several directions
Alternative a:
Gm: Because I am the GM and I want to shove it in your face by reminding you that I can ban stuff!
Player 1: Waa! You're a tyrant!

Alternative b:
GM: Because they went extinct 400 years ago in my setting.
Player 1: Okay then, I'm playing an undead catfolk.
GM: No, all the undead catfolk were destroyed 400 years ago.
Player 1: Okay then, I'm playing a 500-year-old catfolk who was true res'd.
GM: Please stop looking for loopholes and just pick something else.
Player 1: Waa! You're a tyrant!

Alternative c:
GM: Because I dislike the idea of talking cats--I can't think about it without being reminded of that annoying talking Meowth.
Player 1: Okay then, I'm playing a mute catfolk who knows sign language.
GM: But cats who convey words using gestures are just as silly as talking cats.
Player 1: Okay then, I'm playing a mute catfolk psion telepath.
GM: We're not even using the rules for psionics.
Player 1: Waa! You're a tyrant!

Alternative d:
GM: Because Player 2 has expressed a strong distaste in having a PC with fur in the party.
Player 1: What? Player 2, why do you dislike races with fur?
Repeat Alternatives B and C, substituting "Player 2" for "GM"

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Cyrad wrote:
It takes 7 days of progress per spell level to finish researching a spell. That means it costs a total of 700*(spell level)^2 gp and requires 14 skill checks per spell level to complete. You cannot take 10 on any of these checks and you risk losing days of progress.

The "shenanigans" being discussed in this thread are an inefficient way to increase the number of different spells your sorcerer can choose to cast. If you have the Craft Wondrous Item feat, you can craft a page of spell knowledge for only 500*(spell level)^2 gp in less downtime than it takes to research a spell of the same level.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Animal Races: Clan of the Frog is now available in the Paizo store and here.

Products of alchemical evolution, members of the Frog Clans and their allies represent two new playable races of humanoid amphibians. Hailing from a mysterious land beyond the stars, these races now preside over ancient frog temples in the hearts of swamps everywhere. Led by templars equipped with technological relics and altered through strange alchemical and surgical experiments, these new races showcase dozens of new character options.

Spur your continuing evolution with new alchemist discoveries. Become a test subject for experimental body modification procedures. Wield circuit-threaded weapons, ray guns, and other strange gear. Worship at the altar of high technology with a new Technology cleric domain. All of these options and more are available to the boggards of the Frog Clans and to other characters who cross their path.


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illyume wrote:
If anything, Pathfinder Society Core Campaign is fixing the perceived rules bloat.

These guidelines for reducing rules bloat are nothing but unwarranted rules bloat!

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014, Marathon Voter 2015 aka Epic Meepo

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Chris Shaeffer wrote:
P.S. - Looks like our team lost at sportsball. :/

Allow me to translate that Sportsball match into Pathfinder terminology for folks with no ranks in Knowledge (Sportsball):

You are at the end of a PFS scenario. In order to win, you must move through a doorway and activate a McGuffin in your possession in the room on the other side. There are a bunch of ogres standing in the doorway, trying to stop you, and time is running out.

Your party consists of a low-level, ranged-weapon fighter with really good stats; a handful of moderately-optimized, mid-level rogues; and a super-optimized, high-level barbarian with Dodge, Mobility, Greater Bull Rush, and a special boon that increases his CMB against ogres.

Instead of handing the McGuffin to the super-optimized barbarian so he can bull rush through the ogres, your party tells the barbarian to stand guard one room over. The fighter throws the McGuffin through the crowded doorway and the rogues attempt to grab it before any of the ogres do.

The rogues predictably fail to get past the ogres to claim the McGuffin. The party attempts a few ineffectual attacks against the ogres that now own their McGuffin, time runs out, and no experience points are awarded to the party. The barbarian is still standing guard one room over.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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MAJT69 wrote:
The things the players hate more than anything is having to constantly swap out items and having bags of 'magic' vendor trash after every fight.

There's a simple house rule you can use to fix both of these problems:

Permanent magic items are user-specific. When the PCs loot an opponent, the opponent's permanent magic items become non-magical, but the PCs gain an amount of mana with a gp-value equal to the sales price of those permanent magic items. The PCs can spend their mana to upgrade their own magic items as if that mana was actual gp.

That gives you upgrading magic items without all the vendor trash.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014, Marathon Voter 2015 aka Epic Meepo

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Steven Helt wrote:
I wanna be in that glacier with time running out, background music spiked very high, and ice walls collapsing as I fight my way out.

Now I'm convinced they need to add a challenge that takes place between Rounds 2 and 3: every finalist has to submit a background music playlist for someone else's map.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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In a campaign where the GM plays efreet as creatures with their listed stats, it should be very hard to planar bind an efreeti. An efreeti has enough Spellcraft to know what planar binding is, enough Wisdom to know that people will want to bind it, and enough Intelligence to utilize a few straightforward defenses against planar binding.

The first thing any efreeti worth its stats will do in life is acquire a loyal minion (preferably an intelligent minor magic item, which is both affordable and easy to control). The efreeti can grant its minion three wishes per day and have the minion use those wishes to the efreeti's advantage. First order of business: protect the efreeti from calling spells via contingency and dimensional anchor.

Heck, the entire City of Brass (and every other place inhabited by efreet) should be blanketed with dimensional lock effects so none of its residents can be whisked away by calling spells. None of that makes it impossible to planar bind efreet, but the process should be much harder than just casting planar binding and asking for an efreeti.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Animal Races: Clan of the Frog is just around the corner. I just need to find room in this PDF for all of the content I want to include. Clan of the Frog has not one but two new playable races; new feats, new traits, and a new deity, as usual; a new Improved Familiar option or two; new technological items and artifacts; and new alchemist discoveries, several of which can be taken by non-alchemists who take a feat for subjects of alchemical and surgical experiments. (One of the options you can select gives you adamantine claws.) As soon as I cram all of that crunch into one PDF, Clan of the Frog will be good to go.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014, Marathon Voter 2015 aka Epic Meepo

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Neil Spicer wrote:
But is [studying the Top 100 list] really necessary? It's pretty clear that you can get a sense of what it takes to make the contest by simply reviewing the Top 32.

A visual learner might learn what it takes to succeed in this contest by simply reviewing the Top 32, but an auditory learner might only learn the same lesson when listening to a panel at PaizoCon. Likewise, a participatory learner might only learn the same lesson by walking through the judging process, comparing the Top 32 to their highest-ranked also-ran competition.

An alternative set of learning tools will always have value, because there are as many different ways of teaching a given lesson as their are people willing to learn it.

So the Top 100 list could certainly prove useful to some contestants. That doesn't make the list "necessary," by any means, but the list would have some value.

I can already imagine one potential response Neil Spicer might give: The whole purpose of Superstar is to help Paizo find talented freelancers, and the contest is serving that purpose just fine without catering to contestants who don't make the Top 32. Any desire to divert contest resources away from the Top 32 is ultimately self-serving, and is distracting Paizo from its talent search.

If someone posted the words I'm unfairly putting in Neil's mouth, I would agree with them 100%. Everyone asking to see a Top 100 list is being self-serving and distracting Paizo from its talent search. So is everyone (myself included) asking that the public be given more say in the Top 32 selection process. We are definitely putting our own interests ahead of Paizo's interests...

As it should be. I would not expect Paizo to host Superstar if doing so did not benefit Paizo. That being said, the audience is still the consumer and Paizo is still the producer. If Superstar is run in such a way that its achieves Paizo's goals without also providing its audience with entertainment value and opportunities for self-improvement, Paizo is eventually going to lose its audience.

The Top 32 potential freelancers are the part of this contest most important to Paizo's goals, but that doesn't mean discussions about Top 100 lists or increased voter input should be dismissed simply because they involve different agendas. Paizo is in the entertainment industry. Paizo's audience should get as much out of Paizo as Paizo gets out of its audience, no more, no less. The discussion going on in this thread should be about finding the equilibrium point in that equation.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014, Marathon Voter 2015 aka Epic Meepo

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Garrick Williams wrote:
I'd honestly like to see future years have maps as Round 2.

I'd honestly like to see future years have maps as Round 1.

Sorting 800 maps two at a time would be so much more enjoyable than sorting 800 magic items. After side-by-side voting ends, you could have the Top 64 map designers submit some descriptive text to accompany their maps (or reveal descriptive text they already submitted for their map) and let the public ballot-vote finalists into the Top 32 based upon a combination of mapping skills and writing skills.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014, Marathon Voter 2015 aka Epic Meepo

5 people marked this as a favorite.
Scott LaBarge wrote:
So are there minions around to give back-rubs in this guildhall joint or what? (Filigree not required.)

The Guildhall is fully staffed by the Staff of the Top 32 Guildhall, which can tend to all your chiropractic needs. Observe!

*pokes Scott LaBarge with a stick*


1 person marked this as FAQ candidate. 4 people marked this as a favorite.
RJGrady wrote:
That is precisely the problem, though. "You can cast any one arcane spell" is in one sentence. All the meanings we are supposed to infer are locked behind a couple of gates that start with, "If." Of course we are supposed to read the whole thing together. But the whole thing together does not restrict characters who are neither prepared nor spontaneous casters.

On its own, the phrase, "You can cast any one arcane spell," does not grant anyone the ability to cast spells. To resolve an action using the "Casting a Spell" rules in the Core, you must have a defined caster level available in case you are required to make an unexpected concentration check. The phrase in question does not, on its own, define a caster level. To rule that the phrase in question allows non-casters to cast spells, you have to invent an unwritten house rule that provides the information you must have available when resolving any "cast a spell" action. You literally cannot make that ruling without also inventing a house rule.

In the same way, the hypothetical rule, "Your attack deals sneak attack damage even if your opponent is neither flanked nor denied its Dexterity bonus to AC," does not, on its own, grant any character the ability to deal sneak attack damage. Sure, it says, "Your attack deals sneak attack damage," but to resolve a sneak attack using the Core definition of the sneak attack ability, you must have a defined amount of sneak attack damage available in case your attack hits. The phrase from the hypothetical rule does not, on its own, define your amount of sneak attack damage. If you rule that the phrase grants sneak attack damage to characters without sneak attack, your ruling requires you to invent an unwritten house rule defining the amount of that damage. You literally cannot make this ruling without also inventing a house rule.

If your interpretation of a written rule requires you to invent an unwritten house rule in order to resolve whatever it is your ruling allows, you are no longer talking about RAW. You are talking about house rules you are inventing to handle contingencies not covered by anything in the RAW. That is an instance of the RAW not defining something, not an instance of the RAW letting you do something broken.

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