Runzyl seems to snap out of his casual disdain for the discussion at hand the instant Rolund lashes out against the other party members. Falla Caesenri pulses with crimson energy as the Valenar raises it to a combat position.
"If by force it must be, then so be it," the elf snarls. "It is time we learned which force is more powerful: your curse or your will to survive."
I um... I'm fully intending on going all-out blender on Rolund until he stops moving and letting Rodergo pick up the pieces when I'm done. We might want to do an initiative roll or something.
I'm still here. Runzyl doesn't have much to contribute at this point, so assume that he's just kind of quietly following along. I do try to check in here at least every other day or so, so don't count me out. I have been a little preoccupied with RPGSS stuff, though. :D
To be honest, the inspiration for this item came about during a certain PFS scenario (which shall remain nameless to avoid spoilers) in which a mage's faithful hound is positioned in a narrow hallway with no possibility of avoidance. Since the hound activates before a rogue can get close enough to attempt to disable it as he might attempt with any other magical trap, the only valid options were to teleport the entire party around the obstacle, dispel it (a straightforward and effective yet boring solution), drop a silence on the area (which would prevent the barking but not the automatic bite attacks), or have the incredible fortune of an Arcane Trickster with Ranged Legerdemain in the party (highly unlikely) to disable it from outside the activation range. The spectral lampblack would render a single person completely invisible to the hound (which is able to perceive normally invisible or ethereal creatures), allowing them to get close enough to attempt a Disable Device check.
Of course the lampblack fools all forms of magical sensing, which includes symbol effects, explosive runes, etc. as well as scrying sensors, magic mouth triggers, and a host of other magical nuisances. I felt that the rogue class and its iconic trapfinding/disabling abilities took a backseat to things like dispel magic at higher levels, and I really wanted to provide a way for rogues to get in there and "do their thing" without relying on wizards and clerics to simply dispel or otherwise completely circumvent magical obstacles.
And, to answer Steve Miller's question, the lampblack would not defeat discern location since it is not actually creating a magical "sensor" which reacts to or perceives the user's presence, it is FINDING that person. This is my interpretation of how/why discern location circumvents normal protection from scrying (as it states in the spell description).
I'll start fishing for a replacement for Joy this afternoon. I'm rather busy this morning running errands and whatnot. Kamau's player is a personal friend of mine, so I'll kick him in the butt and get him back into things as well. Agreed on the holding pattern until Pyrrius gets back. You guys have a lot of planning and whatnot to do in the meantime anyway.
Rather than continuing to bog down the game thread, I thought I'd mention the glowing effect on Falla Caesenri here. According to the standard rules for magic items:
Light Generation: Fully 30% of magic weapons shed light equivalent to a light spell. These glowing weapons are quite obviously magical. Such a weapon can't be concealed when drawn, nor can its light be shut off. Some of the specific weapons detailed below always or never glow, as defined in their descriptions.
I mentioned that it was glowing much, much earlier (right after Runzyl bought the upgrades to it). I continued to play up the idea of a visible, palpable enchantment since then. I figured, since 30% of all magic weapons glow (per RAW) it was not unreasonable for Falla Caesenri to be one such weapon. My apologies if I didn't make it clear (you're also welcome to veto the glow if you feel it's out of place).
For the record, the ring of counterspells is currently empty and thus able to receive a spell if anyone wants to put one in it. I expect the posting will slow down for the next few days as the majority of us will be involved in various holiday celebrations and whatnot. That is to be expected and I wish all of you a happy holiday, whatever your religious (or un-religious) affiliation may be. :D
In my opinion, a cantrip is not powerful enough to do the things you mentioned. While I have no objection to ray of frost being used to chill a drink, for instance, I think using it to outright freeze water solid is asking a bit much. At best, it might be able to create a very thin layer of ice, but certainly nothing load-bearing.
The only stacking bleed in the game is Bleeding Critical. A high-crit build with this feat, maximizing the number of possible attacks (and thus possible crits) is the best way I'm aware of to rapidly stack bleed damage. The prerequisites are, as with most critical feats, fairly high-level (11+) but a fighter or ranger dual-wielding high crit weapons (such as keen kukris) is very likely to stack a lot of bleed on a foe during a full attack.
Regarding the CL 16th icy prison, the description of the spell says the target is helpless but can still breathe. While the straight DC 31 STR check might be a bit challenging, if the dragon can still breathe then it can use its breath weapon. 12d10 fire damage ought to completely slag that prison in a single go (the ice would have 48 hp total).
I assume you're casting defensively to avoid provoking an AoO. Since you don't need an attack roll to hit with burning hands, I'll use your roll of 13 + your 9 concentration bonus, which is plenty to make the DC 17 check. Reflex: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (9) + 1 = 10
Solace's arcane fire spreads out from her hands, enveloping the monstrosity's flank and rendering it fully immolated on both sides. Slabs of burning undead flesh begin to peel away from the creature like rotten tree bark, splashing into the sewage with a hiss. Unbelievably, it still stands, but its destruction is clearly imminent.
Ventar/Haruk/Albrekt are up now.
Albrekt takes a tentative step out, attempting to cross the channel, but his foot strikes some large metallic object which causes him to falter. His armor, in terrible need of maintenance, catches on his cloak as he attempts to correct himself and sends the behemoth face down into the water.
Swimming in armor with no ranks = bad idea. :)
As the antipaladin struggles to bring himself upright, the current slowly begins to pull his form away from the group as he thrashes to untangle himself from his own devastated clothing. The current eventually carries him towards the intersection where the vampire spawn attacked where Albrekt discovers the sewage is considerably deeper. His thrashing figure hesitates a moment at the surface and then submerges completely.
Fortunately, your CON score is higher than 8, so you don't drown before finally making that successful check...
A moment passes in the eerie silence after Albrekt disappeared beneath the sewage. A few nervous glances are exchanged between the party members. Then, without warning, the Rovagite explodes up from the sludge at the northeastern edge of the intersection, gasping for breath and spitting up the vile sewage.
You're very, very lucky that you don't suffer from diseases right now. You are, however, considerably more smelly than before.
Albrekt manages to drag himself up onto the northern side, completely soaked from head to toe. He checks himself over for a moment, then trudges over to the fallen form of the woman on the north side.
A few words on Knowledge checks for identifying creatures:
When you make a Knowledge check to identify a creature, you should know that there are several factors involved in determining the difficulty of the check and how much information you receive about the creature if you are successful. The DC of a knowledge check to identify a creature depends on both how common the creature is and how challenging it is. Obviously, more is known about less challenging creatures simply because more people have survived to tell about their dealings with them. :)
Incredibly common creatures such as goblins, orcs, and pretty much all of the core races are DC 5 + CR. Obviously, the CR doesn't matter for general knowledge (a human has the same basic traits whether he's a level 1 commoner or a 20th level cleric) but determining the abilities of most humanoids requires other Knowledges such as Arcana, Nobility, or Religion.
"Normal" creatures are DC 10 + CR. This includes a wide variety of creatures, but not lesser known templates or variants of those creatures. It might be enough to identify a troll, for example, but a skrag, the water-dwelling troll variant, is a bit more obscure. Pretty much anything in the Bestiary will fall under this category.
Unusual creatures are DC 15 + CR. This includes pretty much any creature variant, most extraplanar creatures (except for the very obscure), and other atypical creatures. Most creatures from the Bestiary 2 or Bestiary 3 will fall into this group, as will pretty much any templated creature.
Rare creatures are DC 20 + CR. These creatures are often almost legendary and are seldom seen by anyone (or, at least, anyone who lives). Obscure creatures with multiple templates, exotic outsiders, and some types of mythical fae will fall under this category.
Remember that Knowledge checks with a DC above 10 cannot be attempted untrained under normal circumstances.
Now, with all that said, what happens when you succeed? Well, first of all, a successful knowledge check will tell you the name of the creature, its type (humanoid, undead, dragon, etc.), its hit dice, and the CR. Additionally, you learn 1 piece of information about the creature. For every 5 points you beat the DC by, you learn an additional piece of information. If you manage to beat the DC by 20 or more, you learn the entire statblock. The "pieces of information" you can learn include the following:
Senses: You learn whether the creature has darkvision, low-light vision, tremorsense, blindsight, etc. You are also aware of whether or not the creature possesses especially keen senses (such as scent or a racial bonus to Perception checks).
I will always post the DC to learn about a creature when I call for a check to identify it. Remember that Knowledge checks cannot be retried for the same creature until research is done or another rank in the skill is gained. Once you know the DC and the result of your roll, you will be able to identify how many pieces of information you may obtain. Select a number of choices from the list above equal to the result and I will provide that information to you with a spoiler.
EXAMPLE: Solace wants to know about an aboleth. Since aboleths are a "normal" CR 7 monster, the DC is set at 17. Let's say she rolls a 24. At 17, she learned that the creature was an aboleth, she learned it is an aberration (aquatic subtype), she learned that it has 8 hit dice and that it is CR 7 in addition to a single piece of information. At 22, she learns an additional piece of information. Her check of 24 is not quite high enough to get the third piece of info (she needed a 27), but she can now request two of the informational tidbits listed above.
In my experience, "Defensive Abilities" and "Special Attacks" are the most commonly requested items, but you may decide that there are other things that might be more useful to know. That is entirely your decision. I hope this helps shed a little light on how I do things.
I find that it's pretty hard to argue with the vanilla elf wizard. You basically get Spell Penetration for free (and it stacks with Spell Penetration, so SR can be made almost trivial), a +2 to your prime casting stat, a +2 to your most often used to-hit stat (and AC stat), and resistance to some of the most debilitating spells and effects in the game. The bonus to Spellcraft for identifying items is just icing, but it's especially good at low levels.
This isn't exactly the same issue. Technically speaking, metamagic feats have no prerequisites. A 1st-level fighter could take Maximize Spell if he wanted to, even though it wouldn't do him any good.
A character gains all the benefits of leveling up when he levels up. He cannot, by RAW, "hold off" on leveling until some other prerequisite is met. If your player's character will not qualify for his feat until level 4, then he must wait until level 5 (when he gets his next feat) to take it.
Green Giant wrote:
Oh right, I forgot that it worked out to 50k EACH, not 50k TOTAL. It's been a long week. Let's just sink 90k into buying our own airship so that we don't need Marrius anymore.
Albrekt Wreth wrote:
lol - that's kinda the point... I'm peppering his limited chat with the odd German/Old Germanic term (to reflect his Northman blood) :) Just flavour as to be honest he's hardly the font of all knowledge! If its annoying to read though let me know and I can scale it back or drop it
Personally, I like it. It reflects the fact that some people have very thick accents... and just like you might have difficulty understanding a foreigner's accent in the real world, it's very possible that Haruk just cannot understand Albrekt's mush-mouthed Common.
I've always operated under the assumption that gaining a level does not reduce the wounds that you have already taking (total HP missing) but simply increases your capacity to endure those wounds (max HP).
Take this example:
A 1st-level barbarian has 16 maximum hit points. In a fight, he suffers 9 points of damage, leaving him with 7 HP remaining. After the fight, he levels and adds a new hit die. Assuming an average roll plus his CON modifier of +3, his maximum hit points increase by 10. His new maximum HP is 26, but he is still missing 9 HP from that 26 until he receives healing (meaning he has 17 HP remaining after the level up).
2,000gp seems low for something like this. If it simply allowed you to take a 5' step in difficult terrain, that's one thing, but ignoring it completely? I'd price it at at least 5,000gp myself, maybe even 8,000. The ability to charge through difficult terrain is pretty hard to acquire otherwise.
Camlo Zenovia wrote:
"But what about the crime lords? Can you keep them at bay?"
The Varisian smirks and looks to Camlo.
"Camlo... we just killed a black dragon. And Hudak dropped a tower on the Black Magga in Turtleback Ferry. I'm hardly worried about crime lords at this point."
Paladins are fantastic. They make amazing "tanks" who are still able to dish out a considerable amount of damage against most foes.
Rogues are their skill points. Sneak attack, as a source of consistent damage output, pales in comparison to most other martial classes. Even if your rogue is able to CONSTANTLY get sneak attack, at best you end up staying even with the greatsword-wielding power attacker, but you've got way fewer hit points and (usually) a lower armor class, so you end up getting smashed easier.
The best way (in my opinion) to "fix" rogues would be to do any one of three different things:
1.) Give them full BAB. If they're a martial class, make them martial. Let them get their two-weapon fighting chain as fast as possible and make reliable attack routines.
2.) Upgrade Sneak Attack to d10s, but remove the "flanking" caveat. This makes rogues the master of the ambush. Catch a target off-guard or, better yet, blind him? You shank the CRAP out of them. Rogues shouldn't be about fighting fair, they should be about winning. (Spells like greater invisibility would need to be adapted to prevent this from getting seriously out of hand.)
3.) Give them a lot more survivability. Either by increasing HP, giving a passive armor bonus (like monks), or some innate abilities that just make them less of an easy mark in melee.
Monks are weak because of their multiple ability dependency. I have a very simple fix for monks: Add WIS modifier to unarmed damage. This lets them remove the focus from STR and focus on JUST DEX and WIS. They're never going to outdamage a greatsword-wielding fighter, but a base improvement in their unarmed damage along with their considerable repertoire of combat maneuvers and high defenses lets them fill a useful role in most parties.
I wasn't suggesting that there was NOTHING those characters could do, just like there isn't "nothing" for a fighter to do against flying enemies.
The fighter uses his bow against flyers. It's not his best skill, but he can do it.
The sorcerer summons or uses Conjurations with SR: No, even if he's primarily built for blasting.
The bard buffs the party and maybe attacks with a ghost touch weapon or, as you said, points out weaknesses.
The rogue really is kind of screwed, actually.
The paladin, yes, can just step up and be a sub-par fighter for awhile.
These are situations in which the character isn't at 100%, which is all I was illustrating. :)
Oh, wait, you mean there's a situation in Pathfinder in which a given class isn't able to play to the utmost of its ability? A fighter might have to use a bow instead of his greatsword? Wow, that must be hard.
What does the sorcerer do when the party fights a magic-immune golem?
What does the bard do when the party fights undead?
What does the rogue do when the party fights incorporeal foes?
What does the paladin do when the party fights non-evil enemies?
Your character is not supposed to be at 100% effectiveness all the time. Sometimes circumstances exist that mitigate your character's usefulness. That's why you have a PARTY. In any situation in which you are rendered less effective, one or more of your party members should be right in their element. It's just part of the game.
I am ready, willing, and able to put up as much as 20% of my gross income to pay taxes if it means never having to pay medical bills or worry about rising insurance costs.
20%. I will give nearly an entire week's paycheck every month to see this happen. I feel that I'd be making out like a bandit on the deal, in fact. Because, right now, private health insurance would cost about the same amount. And I still have deductibles. And co-pays. And all that other crap.
I'm *READY* to pay 20% taxes. This s+#% needs to STOP. I doubt Obamacare is ever going to cost me 20%, so for me? It's a step in the right direction.
Fort save: 1d20 + 8 ⇒ (18) + 8 = 26. Success, even with the elevated DC.
Vethran presses himself against the inside of the stone wall, seeking shelter from the fireball-tossers. Still menaced by the devil, he guards his casting carefully.
5' step to G13. Casting defensively, DC 17. 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (15) + 15 = 30 easily succeeds.
The Varisian completes his incantation and is enveloped in a brief glow of benevolent light. "Piss off, fiend!"
Protection from evil up on me. That should hopefully prevent the devil from continuing to attack.
I am finally re-employed! Still settling in at work, today was my second day on the job. Once I'm settled in, I suspect I'll be more regularly updating here. Sorry for being so intermittent these last few weeks. Lots of stuff going on lately. New house, new job, daughter just graduated kindergarten, etc.
I was one of the contributing authors on this product and after I received my contributor copy, I discovered that my favorite spell (sodden ship) wasn't even one that I'd written! What Dale says is true, though, that there are several well-written spells in this product that are very much catered to a high seas adventure with shipboard combat and monsters from the briny deep.
I don't think I've ever seen another spell that specifically targets vehicles (great for ship combat) nor have I seen spells that specifically alter aquatic terrain (my very own sargasso spell). I really do feel like you're getting something unique here, so take my recommendation however you like. :)
Since you haven't specified a race preference, you might look into making him an elf for several reasons.
1.) Built-in spell penetration (elven magic).
An interesting question came up recently in a PFS scenario I as playing at the local convention last weekend. Our cleric was trying to use his heavy shield to bash an enemy because it was more effective than using his scimitar (the enemy had DR/bludgeoning).
Clerics gain Shield Proficiency as a feat, but not Martial Weapon Proficiency (shields). Using a shield to bash is specifically listed as a martial bludgeoning weapon. The question is: Does the Shield Proficiency feat grant the ability to bash with said shield without the usual non-proficiency penalty? Or must a character possess Martial Weapon Proficiency in order to bash without penalty?
Here's why there is confusion: Improved Shield Bash lists ONLY Shield Proficiency as a prerequisite and makes no mention of Martial Weapon Proficiency. This means that a cleric could take Improved Shield Bash and STILL be swinging at a -4 penalty when using the bash. In a similar vein, it would be possible for a character to take Martial Weapon Proficiency (shield) and NOT have Shield Proficiency, meaning the shield's armor check penalty would apply to his attack rolls.
My recommendations for a ranged support bard:
1.) Headband of alluring charisma +2 - 4000gp
Short, simple, and effective. Yeah, you could go for the "swiss army knife" approach and just get bunches of wands, alchemical items, and potions, but intelligently choosing your spells known and staying mobile while firing arrows should pretty much take care of things.
Separatist cleric of Norgorber.
Domains: Evil.... and Good.
"Why of course I'm not an evil cleric! Could an evil cleric do this?!"
EDIT: Damn, couldn't actually do that, upon reading the rules. But you could take Healing or Glory or some other "goody-goody" domain that isn't actually alignment-opposed.
Scribe Scroll. For free. At 1st level.
Yeah, see invisibility is useful to have. Do you want to prep it every day? Probably not. Scribe a scroll and stuff it in your scroll case. How about scrying? Probably not using that one every day either. Scribe a scroll or two, stuff it in the scroll case. Overland flight? Darkvision? Tongues? Scrolls, scrolls, scrolls!
"But Fatespinner, a sorcerer could just take the Scribe Scroll feat too."
Of course they could, but they'd need to allocate some of their precious "spells known" to actually having the spell in question before they can scribe it. A wizard with a bit of downtime is the ultimate swiss army knife.
Then, with a scroll case full of divinations and a transmutation or three, he fills all his ACTUAL spell slots with offense/defense magic as needed, kinda like a sorcerer would have, and he gets higher level spells sooner to boot.
That, my friends, is the advantage of the wizard.
EDIT: Partially ninja'd by Kalyth.
I only play by the rules when the rules serve the story. A good, memorable story triumphs over all other traits of an RPG in my mind. If I throw in an encounter with relatively unimportant monsters, I'll let the dice fall as they may. Maybe the orc gets a lucky crit. Maybe the party vaporizes him before he gets to act. Either way, the players get to shed a little blood and enjoy some dice-rolling.
Now, when the time comes for a confrontation with a major story aspect (whether it be a villain or simply some manner of environmental/skill-based challenge), I will let the dice suggest a course of action, but I will by no means be totally constrained by them. If the PCs are navigating an underground tunnel and trigger a cave-in that deals damage to them, and I roll damage high enough to render the whole party unconscious and/or dying on a whim? No way. That's not happening. Ignoble death at the hands of a cave-in is not the end of a good story. So I fudge the damage enough to let a few of the tougher party members stay up. Now they, wounded and battered, must extract their fallen companions from the rubble and get them to safety.
Similarly, if a major villain is in danger of getting taken down by a single lucky x4 crit in the opening round? He's suddenly going to have far more HP and/or DR than I originally calculated to allow him to survive that blow and present a viable threat to the PCs. That said, the crit is certainly going to MATTER, as he'll be much easier to take on afterwards, but there's no tale to be told of the barbarian who walks in and turns the evil wizard to paste before he can even utter a word.
That, in short, is why I believe in GM screens. It's also why I don't run modules and adventure paths.. or use statblocks, really. I basically don't even play the game, now that I think about it. I tell a story and vaguely insert game mechanics around pivotal moments in the tale. :)