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Just noticed in the Advanced Class Guide listing. These two sentences contradict each other:
Archetypes: all archetypes on pages 75-133 are legal for play, except forgepriest, hex channeler, musketeer, mutation warrior, packmaster, primal companion hunter, primalist, spirit summoner, and steel hound. Hex channeler, mutation warrior, and primal companion hunter are now legal for play.
I'm assuming the second sentence is supposed to undo the first for those three archetypes, but those three should probably be removed from the list of disallowed archetypes, for clarity.
I'd also expect nearly all GMs to accept the longhammer. I FAQ'ed your post.
Actually, having looked at it some, I'm not so sure it belongs in the hammer group. It seems that reach weapons that have fighter weapon groups defined are all in the polearm group, but almost none of them are in any other group. This might be intentional. In which case, perhaps the longhammer shouldn't count as a hammer. I could go either way on this. I'd just like to know, one way or another.
I was (mostly) kidding. There really is a feast in Feast of Ravenmoor, but I'd still say it's more Halloween themed than Thanksgiving themed. Could work for both, though, since the holidays are so close to each other.
Bear in mind that it's a module, not a scenario, though. It should take 8-12 hours to play, mostly depending on how much your group gets into the non-combat RP stuff.
Well, I also have a couple of other vague ideas for new PCs.
There's one I've looked into in detail recently and decided it probably isn't worth the effort.
Another is a front line divine warrior type. I've never played an inquisitor or warpriest, so this would be a good time to read up on both of those classes in detail and decide which would work best with the specific idea. Probably a warpriest, but with a very different personality than you'd expect from the class.
Is the ban hammer in the hammer weapon group?
I could, but I don't want to. I really do want to get Molos up to level 2 and save up for his full plate, so he can a mega-tank.
I've been thinking I'm about due to make a new PC, anyway. This will be the first time in about 3 years that I don't have a level 1 in the bullpen. Or I could play Wounded Wisp with a level 2.
I might just go ahead and make my other fighter idea. It's a little redundant to have two low level fighters, instead of branching out to other classes, but I've wanted to do the Foehammer archetype from the dwarf section of the Advanced Race Guide ever since I saw that archetype. And I've got a great idea for his personality, which gives him a related day job, alignment, faction, etc. My big delay in making this PC has been that I want to use a reach weapon with him, but I can't get a ruling from Paizo on whether the dwarven longhammer (introduced in the same chapter of the same book) is in the hammer weapon group and works with the archetype.
I've never actually played Wounded Wisp. Despite being so active in PFS previously and currently, I was busy with other things and didn't do much PFS during season 6, so I haven't played most of those scenarios.
As I said, I have two future PC ideas, but I actually started thinking about them in more detail tonight. One just isn't worth the effort of trying to make it work as I imagined it. The other is probably too redundant to my other recent PCs to bother.
I have no idea what my next level 1 should be. Wounded Wisp can be played with a level 2 also, can't it? I might join you without making a new level 1.
Once this is over, Molos will be level 2, so I won't have a level 1 left to bring to Wounded Wisp. Unless you're doing Core - I've only done 1 Core game so far, so that PC is level 1.
I have ideas for two future PCs, but I'm waiting on a rules decision from Paizo on one of them, and the other is just a general idea that I'm nowhere near figuring out how to stat yet. I don't even know what class that second one will be, just the concept.
I was prepping this last night, and realized that the guardian of that door is all fire damage, so it's not going to hurt any of them. The oracle used a communal spell to give them all fire resistance when they first arrived on the library level (knowing Mokmurian's a wizard, and that this level would be more dangerous than what they'd seen so far).
So on the one hand, this will be a harmless fight for them. On the other hand, it might wear down the fire resistance enough to let Mokmurian damage them with his prepared Fireball and Scorching Ray spells.
Or they might just spend so much time trying to figure out how to open the door that they run out of duration on the fire resistance. I'm ok with that, too. *evil grin*
Putting Wasp Familiar on a Chronicle Sheet seems silly since its already so restricted the odd of you playing it with the proper character are astronomical unless its done as it unlocks it for all characters like a few other the rare boons do.
It wouldn't have to be on an adventure chronicle. It could be a convention boon, like the race boons, that could be applied to a new PC.
Really, I'm surprised they haven't done stuff like improved familiars that aren't usually available or intelligent items as convention boons. They've been on the occasional adventure, but putting them on a convention boon would be more popular than the non-race boons they give out at conventions now.
The library door below Jorgenfist says that it summons a protector when someone tries to force it open. In another sentence, it says that it does this whenever someone tries to open it without the key or password.
So how much can the PCs get away with before they get attacked? Obviously, trying to bash in the door summons the guardian. But what about just walking up to it and trying to push it open normally, hoping it isn't locked? Would that start a fight?
While I can't help with the specific question of the familiar casting spells on the fighter, I would recommend checking out the familiar archetypes. They're in the same book (Familiar Folio) that you got the fighter archetype. Some of them trade out the share spells ability for things that a non-spellcaster could actually use on their familiar.
Just the PCs I've actually played so far:
Looking at the creation order, I tended towards mostly good PCs early on (except my first PC who I played the most), and have gone more neutral later.
I also have two more not listed above, because I've never actually played them.
One is a level 2 GM baby that's officially listed as CN, but I don't even remember why I chose that alignment for him. I think N or even LN might work better for his personality. But I'm considering scrapping that whole character idea and rebuilding him from scratch.
I also have a specific idea for an LN character that I haven't gotten around to building yet.
For that matter, I have a less specific idea for a PC that I haven't built yet, who will probably be good aligned, but I couldn't tell you which variety of good. I'd lean toward CG with that one, but maybe NG.
I should also note that three of my PCs have changed alignment during their adventuring careers. All of these were voluntary, not the result of alignment infractions.
I only have one PC that I consider borderline evil, and she's CN. My other neutrals are either truly neutral (generally selfish, but not totally uncaring of others or cruel), or else lean slightly towards good.
What alignment are Animal Companions, Monstrous Mounts, or Bonded Mounts?
I don't know about monstrous mounts, but the others are unmodified animals, just better trained, so they still have 1 or 2. That means true neutral.
Like most here, I disagree with dragonhunterq's opinion that familiars have to stay true neutral. Obviously, that was their alignment when their intelligence was 1 or 2, as backed up by the quotes he pulled out. But once their int gets boosted to 6, and they become magical creatures, they should be able to change their personality enough to establish their own alignment.
Improved familiars only have to be within one alignment step of their master. I have a CN tattooed sorceress (my one borderline evil PC, just for variety, since I tend to lean more towards heroic/good PCs) who I plan on getting a CG improved familiar at level 7. The personality conflict between my borderline evil PC and her good familiar should make for some fun RP.
Familiars are definitely their own individuals. While they're loyal to their masters, they do have 6+ intelligence, and are fully capable of having their own personalities.
What about the Chosen One archetype for paladins from the Familiar Folio? The familiar is sent by a deity (not necessarily LG - could be NG or LN) to choose a LG person to become their paladin. At level 7, the archetype says that the familiar reveals its true nature (I forget the exact wording) and becomes an improved familiar of the same alignment as the deity. This would imply that it was actually the improved familiar all along, just pretending to have been a dumb animal turned into a magical beast, so their alignment would always have matched the deity who sent them.
Looks like the contradiction I noted here isn't corrected, either.
So you don't have to click the link, here it is again:
All the standard familiars are basically dumb animals that got magically enhanced. But once they get that enhancement that makes them a familiar, they start with 6 int and a strong empathic link to their master. One would assume that would alter their outlook on life from back when they only had 1 or 2 int.
Do they share their master's alignment, or are they still officially true neutral?
Markov Spiked Chain wrote:
No, just for players. If you have no knowledge of a scenario, you shouldn't be able to check the treasure and pick which PC to play based on that.
But boon shopping for GMs is perfectly normal. I know I made a point of GMing one that gives a special improved familiar just so I could apply it to a PC that can use that familiar. In that case, I knew about the boon on the chronicle from having previously played the adventure with a different PC.
I GMed Pathfinder Society quite a bit before running an adventure path, and Runelords is my first AP. Nearly two years later, my PCs are only 12th level, and we're still having fun with it.
But the biggest thing I've learned that helps my sessions go smoothly is to read every section of the adventure twice before running it.
First, go through and get the flow of the plot and the understanding of every NPC and monster's motivations. Decide how specific people will speak and behave around your PCs. But don't look at the details of monster stats or rules stuff yet.
Then go back and re-read, to make sure you remember as many of those details as possible, and to pay attention to the details the second time. That includes looking at every stat on the monsters and making sure you know what they all mean. Spend the time to look things up and take notes so you won't forget the important details when it comes up.
And after all that, expect your players to find some way to make all that prep useless, and force you to improvise. If that happens, don't be afraid to say "let me think about that for a minute" before responding to your players about things. Take the time to come up with good answers to their unusual behavior.
I'm not saying it should be a sloppy circle. Put in as much detail to make it look like the ruins of a stone tower as you want. But it's not something that requires a pre-printed map.
Heck, when I ran this battle, I just blew up the town map of Sandpoint, used pushpins to represent where different people/groups were, and only threw down a battle mat when they came into close contact with enemies. And then, I was mostly just tossing rectangles on the map to represent buildings.
I've started the battle for Sandpoint, and I've run into a slight snag. Teraktinus is headed for the Old Light to grab the stone. I haven't found a single map of the Old Light as it seems that's where they're likely to run into him. Does anyone have any Old Light maps they would be able to share?
It's just the ruined exterior of a tower. He'll be walking around the outside. Put a rough circle on the map and call it a day.
Yeah, quests as they exist today seem like they should only be used as a recruiting tool for new players at conventions. I don't know why anyone would bother with them in any other context.
My local group scheduled Phantom Phenomena at our store's game day a few weeks ago. I signed up to play, not knowing anything about quests, and I didn't realize it was pregen only. We had two tables, both playing all 6 parts in a single session. Everyone at both tables were experienced PFS regulars who had PCs they could have brought if that was allowed. We enjoyed the game overall, but we spent half our time making fun of the pregens.
I decided I'll never play a quest again as long as you're required to play pregens in them.
Have them level up as they are entering the 2nd level of Jorgenfist's underground. But don't let them get new spells until they rest up. (Though I let clerics use the spell slot for their Cure spells.)
I'm still debating how to handle this. They're three rooms into the library level now, having defeated the runeslave in the reduction room, the golem in the cauldron room, and the Headless Lord and zombies. They also got attacked by the forgefiend twice, but it didn't last long.
I've already told them to prepare their level up for next session, figuring I'll have them finish off the forgefiend in its room and then have them advance, so they'll be level 13 when they fight Mokmurian.
But since they're advancing during an adventuring day, which is odd, I haven't decided how best to deal with spell slots and new spells learned. The party's casters are a sorcerer and oracle, so they're spontaneous, not prepared. Technically, they've got a paladin and ranger who can cast, too, but their spells are utility and healing stuff usually, so they won't affect combat against Mokmurian. I'm thinking I'll just give them the extra slots right away. With the way they're blowing through spells in this place, they're going to need them.
I also get to plan out how Mokmurian will prepare and attack them based on what the Headless Lord saw and told them - some of which is useful, and some of which is actually slightly off.
When they first reached the Headless Lord's room, the undead stood around pretending to be empty suits of armor, figuring they'd attack when the whole group was in the room. But the paladin detected evil on the nearest one from the entrance and told the group they're evil. That's when the Headless Lord ordered the attack. So Mokmurian has good reason to assume that the guy in full plate with Detect Evil is a paladin.
The Headless Lord hit them with Fear, and the cavalier failed his save, despite being within range to get a +4 from the paladin's Aura of Courage, so Mokmurian knows who has the weakest Will save in the group. The sad part is that he blew is Iron Will reroll for the day on that one, and still failed.
The sorceress used Fireball and Chain Lightning to blast the undead, so Mokmurian knows she has those spells. He would know that Chain Lightning is more dangerous, so that's what he's likely to use his Resist Energy on, figuring she'll hit him with her best spells, but that's not actually the best use for Resist Energy against this group. The sorceress is draconic, specializing in acid, and having Elemental Metamagic, so she'll hit him with Fireballs converted to acid damage when they fight more often than the Chain Lightning. M also doesn't know that the oracle is a flame oracle who also has Fireball. Then again, he's likely to assume (correctly) that the sorceress can throw more Fireballs in a day than Chain Lightnings, so maybe he would go with fire resistance for that reason.
Based on the fight against the Headless Lord, Mokmurian knows that the oracle is a caster who doesn't focus on offense. He'd probably assume cleric, but doesn't know for sure. He doesn't know what spells the oracle was casting in that fight, but the Headless Lord didn't see him heal anyone or do anything with an obvious result (the Protection from Evil on the cavalier didn't help him overcome the Fear affect).
And the ranger tossed a whole lotta arrows at the undead, so Mokmurian knows he's a strong damage dealer in that way. His fog spells should serve him well in that regard. Actually, M would know that the arrows were doing cold damage on top of the regular damage (the ranger still has Baden's icy burst longbow), so I guess he could consider using his energy resistance to block cold damage instead. Probably not, though.
I could see how the sawmill could be kinda dull if they just go straight in.
My group staked out the place and watched everyone coming and going for a day before actually approaching. They were seen doing it, so the judge was ready for them. The paladin managed to detect evil on one of the guys going in, and overestimate the mooks' strength because of it (they're level 1 clerics, after all). Then, the judge managed to catch the whole party with Confusion, and half of them failed the save. It was fun. :)
Spike E. Bits wrote:
That I'd disagree with. It's still a wizard spell. It's just a wizard spell that he doesn't have access to in any form other than the wand. So he doesn't have a scroll, can't copy it into his spellbook and prepare it, etc.
Now there's a question: If you get a scroll of a non-Core spell from a chronicle, can a wizard copy it into his spellbook and continue to use it in the future? I know spellbooks can be copied, but scrolls?
I occasionally wonder if some of my PCs are underpowered, but I'm nowhere near as bad as the examples in the last few posts.
My first PFS PC was pretty powerful. I was new to the game (returning to table top RPGs after a 20ish year break), and was invited to join a home PFS group at the last minute, so I didn't know what they already had for PCs or what power level to go for. I was worried about not contributing, so I figured a good front liner should be easy to build, and I threw together a min/maxed barbarian (dumping all 3 mental stats, but not all the way down to 7). By level 2, I had the APG and time to read the online guides, so he ended up being the stereotypical min/maxed Invulnerable Rager with the Beast Totem line.
After that, I learned that PFS scenarios weren't difficult enough to require uber-optimization to overcome (this was season 3, so just before season 4 pumped up the difficulty). I also had time to learn a lot more about the game, so I was able to design PCs that are somewhat optimized, but I intentionally don't go all out with it, and I try to put concept ahead of character.
But I still worry about whether or not my PCs can contribute enough.
As an example, I have a skill monkey bard at level 5 who is AMAZING at social, knowledge, and a couple of other skills, but I worry that he isn't useful enough in combat. He carries a wand of Cure Light and has some debuffing, but if the rest of the group isn't built to kill our enemies, he's not the one to solve that problem.
As another example, my melee paladin just hit level 3 and still only does 1d8+4 damage. At levels 1-2, that's fine, but in sub-tier 4-5, is that enough? So I was agonizing over whether or not I could afford to postpone Power Attack until level 5 to take something else at 3rd.
And then there's my Halfling Opportunist. I liked the idea of this prestige class enough to make one, and optimized the concept as much as I could at the time (before Advanced Class Guide and Unchained were published, which probably open up better methods of doing this). But when I finally got that far, I realized the prestige class kinda sucks. The end result is a level 7 rogue/opportunist/Dawnflower Dervish bard who is probably on par with the average core Rogue in combat. He contributes, but probably not enough to help keep weaker parties alive.
Check out the bard spells in Advanced Players Guide. Lots of good immediate action spells to boost your allies' rolls, including the reroll stuff like kinevon mentioned. I actually have an archery focused bard who has almost all immediate action spells at low levels, since he's too busy shooting arrows in combat to bother casting with his standard actions.
Since you're focusing on support, maybe consider boosting your Use Magic Device through the roof and picking up wands or scrolls of various buff spells from other classes.
Or maybe a one level dip into oracle, since it would work well with your high charisma, and give some neat abilities right from level 1, along with opening up the whole cleric spell list for wands and scrolls.
You had me until Arcane Strike. I'm not sure I've seen a bard that focuses enough on weapons to bother with that feat. Or if they do, it's an archery build that has the archery feat chain, and not enough feats to squeeze Arcane Strike in there. None of my 3 bards in Pathfinder Society has Arcane Strike, though one of those is also a weird multiclass with only 1 level of bard.
The others are much more common. There are occasionally melee builds that focus on combat maneuvers instead of damage, so don't bother with Power Attack, or some types of druids that don't need Natural Spell, but it's safe to say that 90% or more of those character types take those feats.
Raging Vitality is mandatory for barbarians, even more than Power Attack, I'd say.
I'd say Spell Penetration is non-optional for offensive casters, by level 9 at the latest. Possibly Greater Spell Penetration, too, though maybe not for elves, since they get a racial +2 to overcome spell resistance.
Selective Channeling isn't quite as mandatory, but still common enough that probably 2/3 or more of clerics take it.
Fey Foundling and Greater Mercy are both VERY popular with paladins. The class is feat starved enough that if they just want to kill things faster, they skip those for more offensive stuff, but that much swift action healing is hard to pass up.
Daniel Myhre wrote:
That's completely unlike my skill choices. I always make sure I have one social skill trained, just so I can participate in non-combat situations.
After that, it's whatever fits the PC. Some have day jobs, while others don't. Some have perception and/or sense motive, while others are intentionally built to be clueless. Most have at least one knowledge skill, based on what makes sense for the character.
I like having skill ranks, but I can settle for 2 per level on certain PCs, like my clueless paladin with high diplomacy and not much of anything else. I'd never dump int so far that I only get 1 per level.
Played this yesterday. Our group was only 3 PCs. The other two had level 5 melee monsters, so I brought my level 4 debuffer cleric, and we brought Kyra along as a heal stick with legs.
From reading this thread, it's obvious that my GM didn't read this thread. Which is fine, but certain things played out differently than what's described here.
I was playing Green Beard the Pirate, half orc cleric of Besmara, who has +9 profession: sailor at level 4. I rolled high on the net trap, and he didn't have us stopped at all, so we completely missed that whole section of the adventure.
Also, this was Green Beard's first time meeting Calisro Benarry, the female, half orc Venture-Captain who lives on a ship, and now he's madly in love. I had fun playing up my pirate with 7 charisma trying to hit on her... badly.
Also, when the boxed text describe us seeing huts walking around on stilt legs in the distance, two of us went nuts. Green Beard had been saving up his "Pathfinderin' money" to buy his own pirate ship in the future, but now he's thinking of getting one of them walking huts to "go a-piratin' on land". One of the other players agreed - the ability to get one of those huts for prestige as a vanity should definitely have been a scenario reward for this one. Two of us would definitely have done it.
The fights were pretty easy for us. The dwarf did some damage, but Kyra just sat there channel healing the melee types, while they beat the sucker down. She could have channeled for damage to the undead, but we figured we'd let the melee monsters have their fun.
All in all, a good time was had by all. And now that I'm reading this thread and realizing how much I missed, I'm tempted to buy this scenario to read and GM in the future.
My group started with 5, but one moved away fairly early, leaving us with 4. We added a 5th player shortly after that, but he only lasted a couple of sessions. Then another one moved away a few months later, when the group was only around level 4 (we're a pretty slow group). That leaves us with 3.
When the first guy moved away, we didn't think to keep his PC around as an NPC. For the 2nd and 3rd to leave, that's what we did. So our 3 remaining players have 5 total PCs, with two of them playing the absent players' characters as kind of "secondary PC's" after their main ones.
It worked out particularly well when one guy died and still had someone else's PC to play while they waited to get him raised from the dead. This was around level 8, when they had the cash for a Raise Dead, but were nowhere near anyone who could do it. So they sent a messenger from Turtleback Ferry back to Magnimar to buy a scroll of Raise Dead, and visited the dam and fey woods while waiting for him, but postponed going to "The Hook" for a week or two until the dead guy was back among the living.
My big complaint about quests is that they require you to play a pregen. When I show up to play, I want to play my own PCs. I can see how they're good recruitment tools for conventions, but I'd prefer to never see them anywhere else.
We played Phantom Phenomena at our local game store a few weeks ago, and I didn't realize we had to play pregens until I showed up that day. If I'd known, I probably would have skipped playing that week. I don't have much time to read/prep new adventures these days, due to other life stuff, or I'd say I would have volunteered to GM instead.