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Stone Giant

Fabius Maximus's page

966 posts (967 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist. 1 alias.


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Grand Magus wrote:


A flat scissors is a series of nose-to-nose turns and overshoots in the
same maneuver plane, with each pilot attempting to get behind the other.
But how does this ever end? When one guy runs out of fuel?


When one of them makes a mistake or his plane is inferior in that situation.

@jjwolven: You didn't mention how the psionic characters outshone the others (although this would not be the thread or subforum for that discussion).

Anyway, since I've finally read through the playtest document, I might as well post my impressions here.

Kineticist and Medium seem like fine classes for which I can come up with character concepts quite easily. I'm a fan of Radiance House's work for 3.5e, though, so I don't know if I will use Paizo's updated Binder.

The Mesmerist looks like an updated Beguiler, a class that - like the Warmage - should have been a Sorcerer PrC back in 3.5. I like the fluff and quite a few of the mechanics. I just don't see why it needs to be a base class.

The Occultist seems fine, even if I probably won't play one, as it doesn't interest me much. However, the weapon and armor proficiencies are weird and do not fit the class's fluff. If this was intended to be a psychic melee combatant, I'd understand, but the class seemingly wants to be something else.

The Psychic is not for me. I'm neither a fan of the fluff nor of the amplification mechanics. I'd rather play a Psion.

The Spiritualist looks good. It is basically a haunted Oracle to the extreme, although I find the fluff a bit too narrow. Maybe there will be archetypes for tethering elementals or other outsiders in the book.

So, 2 or 3 interesting classes out of 6 is not enough for me to consider buying the book.

For non-divine healing, you could take a look at Dreamscarred's Vitalist, especially the more aggressive variants. A Battle-Medic Tactician could work quite well, too.

Any chance you can lay your hands on Hunter: The Vigil (World of Darkness)? Because Supernatural is very, very similar.

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Sara Marie wrote:
liz: if Valeros quits drinking, the cumulative hangover could kill him

He's going to need some Klatchian coffee, then.

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lorenlord wrote:

Also, I believe it was in Korea with the Sabres they hunted in groups of two, and employed the Scissors technique for mutual offense/defense. If a MiG got on either one of their sixes, when they rolled back over and "closed the scissors", the other Sabre would have a firing solution on the MiG.

I believe that tactic is called the "Thach Weave" or a variant thereof. It was developed by one John Thach during WWII, because the US Navy Wildcats were inferior to the Japanese Zeros. As the Japanese pilots rarely used group tactics, it proved a pretty effective defensive tactic.

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Morzadian wrote:
Ssalarn wrote:
nighttree wrote:
As someone who didn't actually like the "psionics" feel in 3.5....I'm looking foreword to seeing what this turns out like flavor wise, as well as mechanically ;)
As someone who loved 3.5-style psionics and also loves the idea of cool Victorian and/or (Stephen) Kingsian mind magic, I too, am looking forward to seeing what this turns out like flavor wise, as well as mechanically ;)

D&D 3.5 Psionics was beyond broken. It created a new definition for what could be considered broken.

The infamous Pun-Pun build (kobold egoist) was conceived from the D&D 3.5 Expanded Psionics Handbook. With infinity looping power giving a player deity like powers.

I find it hard to understand Paizo's rationale in treading backwards into WOTC's worst blunders.

Erik Mona has a love for pulp fiction, and I can see why he would want to use the 'occult' as theme and subject matter. But D&D 3.5 psionics, please no.

Pathfinder doesn't need a Pun Pun.

Just four quick things:

1. Pun-Pun wasn't created using the Psion class. He can use the Psion class.
2. The problem was not that class, but that he can somehow force a Sarrukh to grant him one of its abilities. Sarrukh are high-level creatures from a FR splatbook, which makes him a corner case.
3. The whole thing is an experiment in extra odorous cheese and and not meant to be played.
4. You have no idea about 3.5 psionics if you use Pun-Pun as an example for its alleged brokeness.

If you want a discussion about this, PM me or use one of the psionics threads on the board, please.

Grand Magus wrote:
Fabius Maximus wrote:
Re the different pursuit types: In the prop era, there was an additional reason for using them: visibility. Depending on the target's distance and position realative to you, your plane's engine would block line of sight when in lead pursuit ...


Yay, firing while turning would be a harder shot compared to more level flight.
I have to wonder if early pilots avoided firing while turning unless the
lower chance of hitting vs. ammo use vs. desperation of the situation
demanded it.

Did they try to document and keep that type of data back then? That is,
what maneuver the plane was in during a kill shot. Information like that
would more likely be passed on word-of-mouth from pilot to pilot rather
than taught in a lecture-style assembly. Over the decades, the general
knowledge of such statistics would fade away.


I have no idea if they recorded that information. Also, confirming kills was really unreliable, because it frequently happened that a shot-up plane made it back to base or that a plane that still looked flight-capable after losing an engagement went down out of sight. The latter happened a lot in the Battle of Britain. British planes were outfitted with .303-caliber light machine guns. These things usually didn't stop German (or Italian) planes from fighting immediately, but damaged them enough that quite a few of them ended up in the drink much later.

As for lining up shots: you always wanted to approach a fighter from its six. You were way out of its firing arc and rearward visibility wasn't great in many WW II planes (the BF109 was especially bad in that respect, even if the thing blocking your view as an armor plate). But even rookies knew that. As a result, part of German air combat doctrine was "never fly more than 30 seconds in a straight and level line in a combat area". The allies had similar guidelines. More often than not, you'd catch an enemy fighter plane at an angle where a deflection shot was necessary to bring it down (the whole thing changed when engaging bombers; never approach a bomber from its six if you can avoid it).

That's not necessarily saying you'd engage in a turn fight. You needed to know your airplane's capabilities versus the attacker's plane and then decide how you wanted to continue. Most WW II planes were built with speed as their main defense in mind (with the exception of most British and Japanese aircraft). The FW-190 series for example could probably be outturned by any other single-engine plane during the war (though it had a very good roll rate, I believe, which helped a bit). It was very fast, however, and had a great dive speed, which meant pilots could dive away from engagements (provided they were out of the enemy's line of fire), then climb back up to a greater altitude and boom their opponents.

Krensky wrote:
It was much more useful in WWII and the early part of Korea when the Mk1 Eyeball was a pilot's sole sensor system.

That's where I was coming from.

Re the different pursuit types: In the prop era, there was an additional reason for using them: visibility. Depending on the target's distance and position realative to you, your plane's engine would block line of sight when in lead pursuit. But it was necessary to line up deflection shots, especially if you caught the enemy inside his turn (which you ideally wanted to do, because he showed you the "broadside" of his plane, including the cockpit). So you had to lead you target while hoping that the enemy pilot didn't change direction or - much more aggreviating - altitude when out of sight.

Krensky wrote:
In air combat they are pretty much never used except when breaking off when the other side doesn't have a good position to maneuver for an attack in the first place.

Would that not depend on your and the enemy plane's respective flight characteristics?

Well, yes. I don't know how the misappropriation of the Immelmann name came about, but it irks me. There is barely any skill involved in doing a half loop. You just have to know when you got the energy for it.

The Wingover variants actually are difficult to pull off.

Yeah, but that's not really an Immelmann turn. It's a half loop.

Originally, the Immelmann was a shallower version of a Wingover, with the expert version being the Hammerhead: After an attack on an enemy with less energy you'd pull up until your plane almost stalled, then used rudder to reverse direction, ideally going in for another attack. The enemy cannot follow you; if he does, he will stall sooner than you and therefore be unable to evade your attack.

The trailer makes Horizon look bad. I will probably watch at least the first 10 minutes, though. I'm also not a canon hound, so if Axanar works and Paramount doesn't block it, I'm fine with it, FASA or no FASA.

As for good fan movies, I recommend Star Trek: Phase II. They have done tremendous work with the scripts for the scrapped second TV series.

That worked, though I'm not much interested in the jet age, to be honest.

I wonder, shouldn't it be "Sun & Zoom", following that description?

Grand Magus wrote:


[vid = jets over korea]
In this video, goto 17 minutes from the ending (or 43 minutes from the beginning ...)
"Zoom and Sun" is a colorful name, too.


No Hulu for me, I'm afraid.

Axanar looks very, very good. It helps that they got several experienced actors for the project.

Horizon looks very bad. Not only is the trailer ineptly done, they also went with the temporal cold war background, which killed Star Trek: Enterprise.

Grand Magus wrote:


I think it was during the Korean War (1950-1953) that America first went
up against Russian jet-fighters. The jet-fighters would dive down and then
climb back up, and U.S. Pilots called them Yo-Yo attacks.


Never heard of Yo-Yo attacks. There are aerial combat maneuvers called high and low yo-yo, respectively.

The Soviet MiG-15bis was designed for intercepting B-29 bombers, which meant high service ceiling, good climb rate (and good acceleration), good high altitude performance and superior armament. To add insult to injury, the bloody thing turned really well, too.

OTOH, the MiG-15's low altitude performance wasn't great, compared to the F-86 Sabre. The firing rate of the Soviet large caliber cannons was also not really suited to combat enemy fighters and gun convergence between the 23mm and the 37mm was off, I believe.

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That's a long period to cover and I'm no expert, just an interested amateur, so take what I write with a grain of salt.

Basically, duels were much more prevalent during WW I, because of the ideal of gentlemanly combat and also because bombing tactics were just emerging. The fighter planes were really suited to these tactics, because those bi- or tri-plane fighters could turn on a dime.

After the Great War, the powers believed the future would lie in inassailable bomber formations and neglected developing fighter technology and tactics further. The Spanish Civil War kind of reinforced that impression, with the Legion Condor's bombing campaign being so successful. But the German Luftwaffe already was investing in new fighters and accompanying tactics. The Messerschmidt BF 109 was one of the first so-called energy fighters, I believe.

Energy fighting means that the pilot would try to gain altitude as rapidly as possible (meaning the planes had to have a good climb speed), because altitude equaled energy you could convert into speed used for diving down on an enemy plane, taking a shot and then using the speed gained in the dive to quickly gain altitude again, before the enemy had time to react. This was referred to by US pilots (I guess) as "Boom & Zoom", as opposed to "Turn & Burn". As this was more an ambush tactic, there barely was dueling anymore. Fighter wings would swoop down on the enemy and zoom away, then turn back and do the same again until they ran out of ammo or fuel.

The US AAF and Navy perfected this tactic and ordered their fighters to be uniquely suited for it. Late US planes would not have a great climb speed, but in the pacific theatre, the distances were so long that that didn't matter. The machines were very heavy, which meant they could outdive anything the Japanese Armed Forces (mostly using turnfighters, like the RAF) could throw at them.

Strategic bombing would be used much more heavily in WW II, so fighter escorts were standard. Again, the best plane for that role was the P-51. Its range was so great that it could range in front of bomber formation to sweep the sky clear of German interceptors, which by then were much more heavily armed than their US counterparts, but lacked the flight characteristics to keep up with them.

Grand Magus wrote:

It's possible to wonder which was more common in the olden' days: 1 v 1, or Bomber defense?

Depends on how you define "Olden Days".

Don't trust Dogfights (the show) too much. It has the reputation of being historically inaccurate.

A Split-S is a simple change in direction. You do an aileron roll while in level flight so you fly inverted. Then you pull on the elevators until you have reversed direction. It's called Split-S because from the side, the plane's flight path looks like the bottom half of the letter S.

It was a pretty effective way of dodging incoming fire, but there are much more complex maneuvers.

well, you use your caster level, ability modifier and "relevant feats" for spells cast from a staff. They may also have only 10 charges now, but you can recharge them.

EDIT: Bloody ninjas.

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I blame Cosmo that I blamed Limeylongears for something that Cosmo clearly was responsible for.

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I blame the Limey for not knowing that the leopard doesn't change its shorts.

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Laurefindel wrote:

I find pilots are not often very representative of their series. Usually when I really like a pilot, the series end-up disappointing me. When I thought the pilot was only OK, I often end-up liking the series. Sometimes it has less to do with the episode itself, but in the order or ways that things are introduced for the first time.

That was the case with Firefly. The Train Job was a good episode but a poor pilot IMO. The pilot for The Clone Wars was rather blah IIRC, and the series really picked-up by season two for me.

I don't know how it was for this one, but pilots are often manipulated by three or four different parties. "gotta have humour" "gotta have action" "gotta introduce the characters, but do it quickly". The pilot was also previewed by a test auditory, from which they got feedback and will adjust subsequent episodes (but we still got to see the same pilot)

That was the cover and back description of a book; it was meant to attract our attention but you can't judge its content solely on it.

'The Train Job' wasn't Firefly's pilot. It's the second episode. I agree that it would be a bad pilot. The real, feature length pilot is called 'Serenity' (like the movie) and sets up the characters nicely.

The problem with Rebels is that the second episode was as bad as the first one.

Lilith wrote:
Mind bullets.

That's Telekinesis, Kyle.

Been there, done that, got the scars. Orthos basically summed up my motivations.

Orthos wrote:

Coffee SMELLS amazing.

Sadly, coffee TASTES wretched. No matter how much sugar and/or cream I put in it.

That entirely depends on what coffee you drink and how you prepare it. If you use the cheap stuff from the lower shelves in the supermarket, you get a nigh-undrinkable sour brew. The same goes for a coffee maker that gets cleaned maybe once a year.

I drink my coffee like the Turks do: not-quite boiling water poured directly on ground coffee in the mug. The floating bits will sink to the bottom after a while and you get a taste very close to the fresh coffee smell.

@FreeholdDM: I'm nowhere near New York. Trends like that arrive here about 3-5 years later.

Freehold DM wrote:
Fabius Maximus wrote:
I drink both coffee and tea (though not at the same time).
I have enjoyed this concoction on occasion.

That's just disgusting.

I really wanted this to be good. Unfortunately, the pilot is as bad as the worst The Clone Wars episodes (yes, those with the Character-That-Shall-Not-Be-Named), with a disjointed narrative and flat, uninteresting, annoying characters.

Character design is also dodgy: the bruiser looks like an overgrown, purple monkey and the (supposed) Mandalorian wears so little armor she could do away with the rest, as well.

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Hama wrote:
Cr500cricket wrote:
Captain Malcolm Reynolds nuff said.
Blank stare followed by cricket noises...

Jaysus, go watch Firefly already! Cue FreeholdDM showing up in a puff of sulfurous smoke and tell you the opposite.

Reynolds is not neutral. The man has serious issues with authority, so I'd peg him has chaotic neutral.

I drink both coffee and tea (though not at the same time).

thejeff wrote:

More accurately, Sauron was a Maia. He could originally take on many forms, but it's not quite accurate to imply that he had a true form.

After the destruction of his body in the downfall of Numenor, he could no longer take on a fair seeming form.

I assume Annatar was seen in a flashback?

Yes, multiple times. All take place after the forging of the Rings of Power, which could explain why he's able to change shape.

Hama wrote:

I also love that they showed Sauron how he looked before he got ugly.

Sauron is a shapechanger. That wasn't his true form.

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Misroi wrote:

Really? It's my favorite cider. Most ciders are a bit sweet, making them dessert drinks. Strongbow is more apply than Green Apple Jolly Rancher apply, and I think it's a bit more complex than say Woodchuck or Angry Orchard. (However, Angry Orchard's cinnamon apple cider is pretty damn good.)

Also, try Ace of Spades' Pear Cider. That's crisp and delicious. Best pear cider I've ever had. (Of course, I've only found two, so I'm not sure how strong that claim is...)

I agree that most ciders are too sweet. I'm partial to Bulmers (Magners outside of Ireland; don't drink the English swill). I think it's more intensely flavoured than Strongbow while having a nice balance between sweetness and tartness.

We don't get any US ciders in old Europe, sadly. I heard some good stuff about them. As for pear cider: I liked Koppaberg's. Their apple cider tastes very artificial, though.

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I don't know about Strongbow. The stuff has basically no taste.

MannyGoblin wrote:
As I remember, Carrot put his fists up and started punching Wolfgang, Wolfgang proceed to almost put his fist through Carrot's chest which resulted in cracked ribs for Carrot. Carrot never seemed to be the one to purposely get himself into that situation since it is terribly cliche, he is more someone who would take advantage of cliches to win.(Kind like like the Indy/Swordsman fight, why get into claw range when you can drop something heavy on them for an ironic/funny win?)

That's the point of the character. Carrot is Noble, like Gavin. Gaspode comments that the wolf follows unwritten rules in the fight with Wolfgang, while Wolfgang does not; Vimes thinks the same about Carrot vs. Wolfgang. Carrot started out as a walking clichée (he's got The Birthmark and The Sword, after all) and Pratchett decided to make that the character's defining trait by modeling Carrot's psyche after it.

MannyGoblin wrote:
@Fabius It has been pointed out by the characters that Carrot has set up situations in ways that I really don't like. Remember when they went to Ubderwald and met that nazish werewolf whose name I can't remember? There was this big alpha wolf that came along with them and I think was hinted at a potential rival to Carrot in regards to Angua. Carrot set things up so the wolf was killed in a fight against the werewolf.(Carrot went HtH and got his butt kicked by the werewolf when that is not even the last thing he would do.)

I'm not sure how much you remember about the book, but that is in no way supported by the story. Gavin (the wolf with the unfortunate name) is as noble as Carrot and attacks Wolfgang the Werewolf to save Vimes, not Carrot. How would Carrot go about setting that up?

I don't know what you two are talking about.

@MannyGoblin: Carrot has royal blood, which apparently enables you to do these things on the Disc. That was hinted at as early as in "Guards, Guards!" He still is very affable, but has grown as a character

Esme Weatherwax always was powerful, but scared of using that power, because she doesn't want to end up like Black Aliss. Even so, she's shown to be terrified of both the Lords and Landies as well as the Vampyres (she even goes into hiding in the case of the latter).

@Slaunyeh: The Discworld series are (because there are multiple) almost all recurring characters. You've got the Wizards, the Watch, the Witches, Susan Sto Helit, Moist von Lipwig as well as Tiffany Aching. These make up roughly 80% of characters. Sure, some of them appear in other series as secondary characters, but that doesn't mean they have been abandoned.

As for the characters themselves, they are not generally show as "a little dumb". They always feel in over their head, though. Susan is far from "normal" from the very beginning, as is Rincewind. And the witches don't fit that description in any way.

Also, Vimes clearly is a successful character (as is Moist von Lipwig) and he's the protagonist of more novels than the others.

Hudax wrote:

One, Salvatore already has a large fanbase (as someone mentioned, larger than D&D) and a serious movie needs to attract more attention than us few dice-rollers.

I couldn't take a Drizzt movie seriously. Salvatore's writing contains so many clichées (including the atrocity that is the drunken Scottish dwarf stereotype), that it would do more harm than good.

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Hama wrote:
Crysis is a prime example. When made, it wasn't possible to run it on ultra on any gaming rig at the time.

Crysis is also known as the world's most expensive tech demo (at that time).

I don't understand the desire to always have to play games at maximum settings. If the game is good, graphics are only a nice accessory. If the game sucks, even the greatest graphics in the world will not save it.

Or you could just not play it on ultra settings.

Jeven wrote:
Fabius Maximus wrote:
Re "The Line": I think it was also crossed with the description of torture methods in Cities of Golarion. Those made me queasy; I had no problems of the sort with the degenerate hillbilly ogres.
Do you mean Nisroch? -- where the children have their mouths sewn shut with twine, and the sick, the elderly and the disabled are rounded up and incinerated alive in the crematoriums.

Not that, although that is quite dark, as well. I meant the sidebar detailing torture methods, specifically.

archmagi1 wrote:

Witches basically are the "Sell your soul for power" class in PF. They can have 'Patrons' that vary from angels to demons, cthululand, and space monsters.

By that reasoning, every Cleric and Paladin would be on "The Dark Side", as well.

Re "The Line": I think it was also crossed with the description of torture methods in Cities of Golarion. Those made me queasy; I had no problems of the sort with the degenerate hillbilly ogres.


Tels wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
Tels wrote:

My thought was fairly similar to yours, but it involved the idea of turning magic into skill points. Basically, take the Wizards 9 schools of magic and make them each a separate skill. Each spell of the associated school requires a DC to cast, and the result of your skill check determines the effectiveness of the spell; exceeding the DC of the spell means your spell is more potent, so just being able to make the bare minimum is note enough.

For example, take the spell sleep; it has a DC of 11, but for every 2 points by which you exceed the DC of 11, you increase the HD of what you can effect with the spell. In Harry Potter terms, this would be the Stunning Spell stupefy. *snip*

That sounds pretty cool. That's a lot of skills but I guess that's not a bad thing depending on how many you get and stuff. You might want to be careful about the scaling DCs though, since if your plan is for them to remain semi-relevant at upper levels, +2 DC / +1 HD means that that unless you're getting a ton of skill buffs from somewhere, the spell effect will never be relevant to things of your level past the lowest of levels (because you can put +1 to your skill / level, but the DC increases by +2).

But that might be intentional so...*ramblings*

I need to sleep. XD

Well, keep in mind that in this system the sleep spell would be better than what exists in Pathfinder. With nothing more than having 20 skill ranks from 20 levels, you're capable of hitting a DC of 30 with a roll of a 10 on the d20, so that means your sleep spell will affect up to a 13 HD of creatures.

A fireball for example, with a DC of 13, and a skill result of 30 would hit for 13d6 points of damage (5d6 for the base fireball, plus 8d6 for the high check result).

This little nugget of an idea simply comes from my desire for a d20 system in which magic is more universal. Anyone can use magic if they have the desire or need to do so. I like the idea of Skyrim in...

I think the True20 system did it like that.

I played a Lizardfolk ranger in an Eberron campaign (Q'barra). He didn't give a hoot about all those pesky humans trudging through "his" jungle, but hired himself out as a guide nonetheless. Even lizard people got to make a living.

After the party came across a threat that endangered the whole region, he helped them because his tribe was affected, too. Eating the hearts of particularly powerful enemies in front of the paladin and the treehugger elves didn't make him win popularity contests, though.

Okay, that makes more sense. I also like the idea with the painting.

Eric Clingenpeel wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
...Am I the only one who would take the pizza over the frito pie?
I know I always enjoyed my rectangular cardboard pizza. Fold it in half, dip it in ketchup... Hmmm...

If you have to dip something in ketchup to make it edible, it's not.

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Hama wrote:

In the theater where I go, the hall gets locked after the projector starts and the lights go out. You're late? Tough.

I love it.

Until a fire breaks out.

Falantrius, if you're not afraid to adapt old material, there is one (fan-generated) Witch class for the D20 system using a Book of Shadows in Liber Mysterium. I used it together with Green Ronin's The Witch's Handbook in an 3.5 FR game (but probably will update the character to a Shaman in the future). The class's balance is a bit dodgy, though.

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