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Golden-Esque's page

Goblin Squad Member. Pathfinder Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber. Pathfinder Society Member. 764 posts (4,309 including aliases). 38 reviews. 1 list. No wishlists. 3 Pathfinder Society characters. 3 aliases.

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We've broken through $9,000! You guys must REALLY want Dario to write more content for the book. (I'm sure he's thrilled. ;-] )

Less than 24 hours to snag this product at the special Kickstarter price!

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Luthorne wrote:
By the way, how long after the Kickstarter is over will it be before we get the playtest materials? I'm working on an occultist character for an upcoming game, but not sure if I should delay a bit for the playtest materials, or just make an occultist with current material and then update when I get the playtest materials come out...

I was planning on releasing Chapters 1 through 4 within a week of the Kickstarter ending. That's the classes chapter (Chapter 1), the feats chapter (Chapter 2), the pact basics chapter (Chapter 3), and the spirits chapter (Chapter 4). The new Chapter 7 (the one that was unlocked as a stretch goal) is not ready yet, and there are a couple sections in Chapter 5 and Chapter 8 that aren't finished. Chapter 6 is technically done, but it would feel weird to be if I released Chapter 6 but not Chapter 5.

Everything except what I've noted is done and has been play tested by Amora Game, so I really only need the feedback from the backers at this point, anyway. Those first four chapters are the most "sensitive" in terms that bad stuff'll happen if those aren't balanced well. (Which they are, of course, but the more eyes the merrier. Something might not be worded very well or whatnot. ;-))

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So clearly yesterday's article theme was, "Alexander Augunas," wasn't it Endzeitgeist? Not that I'm complaining in this case. ;-)

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Since APs never assume that APs have happened, I'd imagine that Hell's Rebels might have huge ramifications for YOUR Cheliax, but not for Cheliax as it stands in the setting.

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Duiker wrote:
Hi, I'm the guy before the guy who pushed it over $6000 (I think it went to $5990 or so after mine. Anyway, I just wanted to make sure I pledged right for what I want. I wanted to get the $50 package (print/pdf) plus the Age of Electrotech $17 (print/pdf). So I pledged at the $50 level, and then manually typed in $67 instead of $50 for the amount. There didn't seem to be anywhere to actually select the add-ons, so I just wanted to make sure that I did that right.

Kickstarter actually doesn't have add-on managing infrastructure built into its coding despite how integral to the experience add-ons have become. Dario and I will be sending out a survey after the Kickstarter ends to allow backers to finalize their orders. In the meantime, you did everything correctly.

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LoneKnave wrote:
Which kinda begs the question: why tell people that you don't have an issue with something? What could that possibly achieve?

As others have said, this is why.

I'm not saying that you specifically have said anything negative in this thread, LoneKnave (I've been skimming through it at best and don't really know what has and hasn't been said yet), but it is important to practice positive communication even when you're feeling negative, especially when you're communicating across the internet. I feel that some major gaming industries have fostered a mentality that its acceptable to say rude, derogatory things online because "It's OK if you act toxically because that just tells us that you care," when in reality those comments hurt the people they're directed at psychologically. To some of the folks at Paizo, there's a fairly good chance that they're feeling as demoralized by the people on the boards as you might feel after getting a verbal scolding from your boss at work. Except that veil of ambiguity that makes so many people feel invincible online works both ways; it makes people on the receive end feel as though the entire world feels the same way. Even the most confident person crumbles to that sort of assault sooner or later.

To many people in the community, combating this negativity is important. To be blunt, we don't want to be marginalized and placed in the same consumer base as the people who are making some of the truly horrible remarks at specific Paizo employees and Paizo in general. Personally, I'm with many people in this thread: I'm getting antsy for the Advanced Class Guide errata too. But I (like many others, I'm sure) don't want all this negativity associated with my identity.

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Here's hoping that while Jason is away, the other designers will play ... with the PDT account and publish EXTRA FAQs in his absence!

Seriously, though, this is a good chance. I have a friend who's been wanting to play this archetype forever, but weird words' original wording was holding him back. Looking forward to seeing what gets clarified next.

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Mark Seifter wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
Mark, what do you think about Chris muscling in on your thread when she already has her own?

I beg her forgiveness! Bwahahaha, that's something that's supposed to happen in her thread, so now we're even!

Also, how long do you predict it will be until Linda gets one, and will you be competing for thread length?
Linda has told me that since she was not really a forum personality before being hired, so people don't know who she is, she is quite confident that she will not get one of these threads for a long time.

You know that by saying this, SOMEONE is going to make an Ask Linda thread now, right? You've sort of doomed her to life as an internet persona .... ;-)

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$6,000! We officially have enough for the color artwork! Now all funds that Dario and I get from here on out go towards improving the quality of that artwork.

Also, thanks to a very generation donation from Jonathan Nelson, I'm pleased to report that I'm able to offer a free 1-month subscription to AdventureAWeek to all Grimoire of Lost Souls backers that pledge $15 or more! Backers don't need to do anything special; you get it for FREE when the Kickstarter ends, as long as you've pledged $15 or more.

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I'm surprised that no one's begun swooning over the new bardic masterpiece in this book. Absolutely, unquestionably, incredibly amazing.

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Aaron Motta wrote:

I get that NPCs "following the rules" is important to some, and while there is nothing wrong with that, it seems unlikely that the players would ever note this discrepancy unless the GM shows them [REDACTED]'s stat-block.

In short, this seems like something best ignored. YMMV.

That's a big assumption to make. I'm a huge kitsune fan / kitsune type player, and I noticed the issue after reading the story plot description because I'm familiar with the feat; I never needed to look at the stat block or the Advanced Race Guide. You might have a similar reaction as I did if a scenario depended upon a dwarf villain automatically finding a secret door made of wood, built into a wooden wall, with his stone cunning racial trait. Good storytelling shouldn't be an excuse to go against the rules, or what's the point of having rules in the first place?

That isn't to say that what's done shouldn't remain done. I've already said that my personal solution is to cite [REDACTED]'s wish bonuses as the source of this peculiarity. I only brought it to PFS's attention because it is a rather glaring issue that will (hopefully) be avoided in the future.

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Silver Griffin wrote:
I know you already have the ergon & ravaged bloodlines for sorcerers, but have you considered having an atlan one as a way to introduce their heritage. Maybe even some feats to build on it (funding permitting) like you did with the demon eyes.

If there's room, maybe. Sorcerers actually get a lot in the Grimoire, as the ergon and ravaged bloodlines actually don't grant the ability to bind spirits anymore; there's a new archetype for that.

Speaking of which I agree with Luthorne & I’m not sure you should keep the name demon eye. I know it’s from the original book but it really gives the wrong impression of them. Especially if you are going to doing the race via racial feats. A feats name really should give a good idea of what it does & not mislead you. I really think you should be calling them either occult eye or spirit blighted eye feats & then mention that people with these afflictions are often accused of being demonic. It would help clarify the feat & the sidebar could keep the flavor.

We are going to have to agree to disagree on this, then.

I’m not sure I agree with the idea that people who bought the occult options pdf will feel that it’s being devalued any more than people who bought the pact magic unbound books would now that the pact magic grimoire book is being made.

I actually had people tell me that much. Ultimately, we'll see. If I have space that needs filling, I'll import more. If I don't, I probably won't.

Speaking as a person who has bought it I can honestly say that I would expect to see all the old stuff you have done show up in this compilation (despite the fact that I am kind of paying for it twice). It’s a much stronger selling point for your book to say it has all my old stuff & more instead of most my old stuff so you have to buy more after getting my compilation book. It’s kind of the nature of things when you use kickstarter to bring out a revised product. You can always send coupons out to people who bought the PDF to the book once the kickstarter is done. It would even help promote it.

The Kickstarter doesn't advertise that, "All the old stuff I've ever done with Pact Magic," is in the compilation. It says right on the tin what you're getting: Vol 1 and Vol 2 plus 120+ pages of NEW stuff. To randomly throw in Occult Options 1 would likely upset some people, and I can understand why. It would also be false advertising. If I'm copy/pasting the material from something I did independently of Radiance House, its not exactly, "new material," Regardless, adding Occult Options isn't something that I'm willing to do unless I decide that I absolutely have to..

Speaking of promoting the book, the only reason I know about the kickstarter is because I saw it on facebook. You should use the list of people who bought products from everyman games from drivethough RPG & send a notice to all of them. Paizo as well if they will let you.

We (Dario and I) did that. Not with Paizo, but with DriveThru. I asked informally if Paizo would promote it; I'm asking formally today. I also did an interview with Pathways Magazine that I'm hoping will help out.

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I have an eventual sequel hook that I'm eventually going to act on called the Economist's Handbook, which deals more with the Downtime System and gives Leadership stuff based on building a business. That's not for a-ways down the road, however.

With that in mind, what other Leadership aspects do you folks find lacking in the Leadership Handbook? I can see about putting together something small in the meantime to address some open holes.

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Third Mind wrote:
Would one of the constellation aspects give dark vision? I know I could probably get it through some of the spirits that shapeshift, but I feel like if I ended up not going with shapeshifters, it'd be a handy option. Especially since I tend to play Humans.

I don't think so. Darkvision is typically valued as a 2nd-level spell.

Other question. Is there a spirit who's main thing is telekinesis use? Just curious.

Yes. Hi'Ryia, a 5th-level Starless spirit.

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To hold you over while we're (hopefully) waiting for Color, here's my draft of the Demon Eye feats that have been unlocked for the Grimoire:


Demon Eye

Prenatal exposure to occult influences has warped you into a demon eye, a deformed child of the spirits.

Prerequisites: Must be taken character level 1st.

Benefit: Select one constellation aspect, chosen from those available to an occultist. Once per day as a standard action, you can open a third eye that protrudes from your forehead in order to activate that constellation aspect, using your character level as your occultist level.

When you select this feat, you gain the occult subtype in addition to your other subtypes and you gain one of the following deformities. Once you select a deformity, you cannot change it later.

Cloven Hooves (Ex) Instead of feet, your legs end in a set of cracked, ugly hooves that restrict your movement. Your base speed is reduced by 10 feet if your base speed is 30 feet or more. If your base speed is less than 30 feet, your speed is reduced by 5 feet instead. Your speed is never reduced by encumbrance.

Spiny Skin (Ex): You possess thick, leathery sinew that is covered in unsightly stubs. You take a –4 penalty on Diplomacy and Handle Animal checks and any animal or person’s initial attitude towards you starts one level lower than normal. You gain a +1 natural armor bonus to your Armor Class.

Misshapen Arm (Ex): One of your arms is disproportionate to the other and ends with a twisted, claw-like appendage. Select one of your hands. You are considered to be one size category smaller when wielding weapons in that hand and any shield bonus that you gain from wielding a shield in that hand is reduced by half (minimum 1). In addition, you take a –4 penalty on attack rolls made with two-handed weapons and on Disable Device and Sleight of Hand skill checks. You gain a slam attack with your chosen hand that deals 1d6 points of damage (or 1d4 if you are Small). Your slam attack can deal bludgeoning damage, slashing damage, or both.


Demon Eye Exemplar

You turn weakness into strength, mastering your deformity for additional benefit.
Prerequisites: Demon Eye, character level 10th.

Benefit: Select one deformity that is listed by the Demon Eye feat. You gain the selected deformity. Alternatively, you can select a deformity that you already possess in order to gain an additional benefit, as described below.

Cloven Hooves (Ex): Your speed is never reduced by armor or encumbrance.
Spiny Skin (Ex): You gain acid resistance 5, cold resistance 5, and fire resistance 5.

Misshapen Arm (Ex): The damage dealt by your slam attack increases to 1d8 if you are Medium or 1d6 if you are Small.

Special: You can select this feat multiple times. Its effects don’t stack. Each time you select this feat, choose a different deformity to gain.


Extra Demon Eye

You can open your third eye more often than other demon eyes.

Prerequisite: Demon Eye.

Benefit: You can use your demon eye to gain your chosen constellation aspect one additional time per day.

Special: This feat can be taken once at 1st level, 6th level, 12th level, and 18th level.

As an aside, there's also going to be a prestige class for characters with the Demon Eye feat that's similar to the evangelist (from Inner Sea Gods), except its designed to reduce the feat taxes associated with being a Demon Eye in exchange for delaying your other class features by a few levels.

That is, if the Prestige Class goal unlocks. ;-)

Otherwise, I might just stick it into the Esoteria section or make it into a cheap PDF if I don't have room there. The class is basically done.

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Since most of the arguments seem to revolve around acquiring a free rebuild, I wonder if the REAL issue is that rebuilding is too costly in Pathfinder Society.

I mean, the resources that you need to rebuild your character in Pathfinder Society are also the only resource that can save your character from zero-recovery perma-death. In Ultimate Campaign, you pay a relatively small gold fee and time. In Pathfinder Society, you pay the same gold fee and prestige points, which are infinitely more valuable than time.

Also, I'm super proud that my Venture Captain didn't ge baited by any of the negative comments hurled his way. :-)

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The combo's perfectly legal; here's the build that I made using it for Iconic Design.

I also quote the FAQ that specially allows this interaction to work.

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Instead of quoting all of the backers on this thread individually, I'm just going to give one, huge thanks.


We couldn't have gotten this far without you! Literally.

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We –really– want to get to color too, Luthorne!

That diagram idea is interesting. I don't think its something we've specifically nailed down yet, but its a cool idea. Remind me again when the Kickstarter is drawing to a close; I think I have a place for it.

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Arcanic Drake wrote:


Edit: Witnessed 100% Pledge! That's Awesome! (Can't take credit for 100% completion though)

Lewis Crown, a long-time supporter of Dario and my stuff got that honor.


I have so many FASCINATING rewards planned for you backers. The game has only just started, so prepare yourself to partake in the epic adventure that is ... post-funding fund-raising.

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Third Mind wrote:

I definitely plan on trying to pledge soon and hope that it reaches at least 4,000.00 for the forgotten pact lore. That said, for the play test most backers will be getting, what all might be coming with it? Will it be large portions of the class(es) but with stuff trimmed out, sort of like how paizo did their occult adventures play test? Or will it be a bit different?

This is just out of curiosity of course, I still plan to pledge either way when I can.

Dario and I talk about it in the video.


You'll get EVERYTHING our playtesters got, which is everything. We literally just handed [our playtesters] a picture-less copy of the entire book with all of the words carefully organized in it and told them to go to down. And that's what our backers will get on March 28th, if we fund.


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After months of planning, its finally here!

The Pact Magic Unbound: Grimoire of Lost Souls Kickstarter is finally here!

What We're About
Pact Magic Unbound: Grimoire of Lost Souls is a compilation of Pact Magic Unbound, Vol 1 and Vol 2, with 100+ pages of new material, plus entirely new high-end artwork.

Dario and I have gotten many requests for a product like this ever since we released Pact Magic Unbound, Vol 2. We want to deliver on the idea of the Ultimate Pact Magic Product in the biggest way possible.

What We Need
Dario and I are asking for $2,500. In truth, the product is already written and has been going through rigorous playtesting over the past two months. We need your help in order to commission new artwork for the book, however, so we're not stuck recycling the artwork from our existing products, most of which is from Dario's original Secrets of Pact Magic and is thereby ten years old.

What We're Offering
Dario and I are offering a variety of pledge tiers that will allow our backers to get exactly what they want out of this Kickstarter. We also have a number of exciting add-ons that will allow our backers to gain fantastic rewards. We have a number of Stretch Goals planned beyond what is listed, but we're also listening for backer feedback in regards to what our consumer base wants to see added to the Kickstarter. Want me to make Spirit Cards? Ask for them! Want Dario to record an audio drama where he gets people to read legends in accents? We can do that too!

The incentive that I'm most excited for is our Create-A-Character add-on. Essentially, if you pledge enough funds for us to commission a piece of artwork, we'll let you decide what characters are portrayed in that artwork. Your character(s) can be forever immortalize in the forbidden pages of the Grimoire of Lost Souls, either flaunting occult power or becoming horribly maimed by it. For instance, my kitsune cavalier, Kyr'shin, will be making an appearance in the Grimoire of Lost Souls as the unfortunate victim of an alter age spell.

Thanks for your interest! Please keep up with this thread, as I'll be making announcements on it as the Kickstarter moves along.

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I've gotten the go-ahead!

The Pact Magic Unbound: Grimoire of Lost Souls Kickstarter begins at 7am EST!

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Hollister wrote:
Calth wrote:
The designer who made this item wouldn't happen to post here, would they? Would be useful to hear their thoughts.

He posts here all the time, as a matter of fact.

I answered this question with my intent here and here. Remember, this is all just my intent, so this shouldn't be taken as an FAQ / Flame War Fodder or anything. Although the fact that the effortless lace isn't PFS legal certainly takes a lot of the heat from the discussion. ;-)

Basically, I wanted the effortless lace to be able to allow you to treat the weapon as a light weapon while two-weapon fighting, but only if you actually had the Two-Weapon Fighting feat. So effortless lace + two-weapon fighting doesn't work, but effortless lace + Two-Weapon Fighting does. My justification for my wording appears in one of the posts that I commented; the Sword and Pistol feat, from Ultimate Combat, likewise notes a difference between two-weapon fighting and Two-Weapon Fighting.

So in case anyone wanted to know my intent, that's my intent. It isn't a Paizo-official response, though, so don't feel entitled to my ruling at your GM's table. Talk it over with her and work together to run the item in a way that works for you.

I believe that this text block could use a FAQ for clarification.

Although I would be honored if my item was the first item in a Player Companion in recent memory to get an FAQ, I don't foresee that happening in the near future. Since you can't use the effortless lace in Pathfinder Society anyway, you'll have to settle for discussing what you're looking for in your build with your GM like an adult. :-)

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So as an update, according to Kickstarter there's an issue with the Kickstarter than I need to resolve before the project goes live. It has to do with the video thing that I mentioned earlier. They (Kickstarter) are saying that I'll have to wait a business day or two before I can launch it.

So what I'm going to do is whenever Kickstarter gives me the all-clear, I'll post back here and let you guys know. Then the VERY NEXT DAY at 7:00 am EST I'll launch the Kickstarter, make the new thread, and all that wonderful stuff. For those of you on the other side of the pond (aka ErictheCleric), that means that I'll be launching it around noontime for you, as soon as I get the all-clear signal from Kickstarter.

Sorry about this, folks. It really comes down on me and how I wrote the video file. Apparently there's a reason that I'm a podcast host and NOT a v-blogger. :-P

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The Stars are Right!

The Pact Magic Unbound: Grimoire of Lost Souls Kickstarter will begin Tuesday, February 24th.

We've got a lot of stuff planned. One of them is this add-on: Everyman Gaming 2015 Subscription. If you add on $25 to your pledge of $5 or more, you'll get Everyman Archetypes: Swashbuckler, Microsized Adventures, and every other Everyman Gaming product that I publish in 2015, or up to $30 of product if something beyond my control happens and I don't product $30 of product this year.

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Third Mind wrote:

Not to necro, but I had a question. Any chance we'll see a feat or an ability that would allow one to bypass the need for the items in the ceremony aspect? I ask because I think it would be sort of cool that if a character were imprisoned, left with pretty much nothing, that they could still make a pact (if that means scratching the seal into the stone with a loose rock).

Just a thought really.

You're not necro-ing; this thread is relevant until the Kickstarter goes live.

As ericthecleric mentions, Scribe Binter Tattoo will get the job done. That said, having plenty of creepy tattoos inked across your body is a perfectly valid reason for your enemies to keep better-than-average tabs on you. ;-)

Also, exciting news! I took Part One of Dario's workshop today! When the workshop ends on Saturday, we're going to be recording the official, final Kickstarter video. We'll be announcing the Kickstarter's launch date on the following Sunday (the 22nd). Check back here for more information!

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Eric Hinkle wrote:

This sounds like it could help me try something I heard about long ago (though done for the old 'Bunnies & Burrows' system), where the player characters got shrunk down to the size of mice in a very creepy old house, and end up having to deal with these hyperintelligent mutant rats who have been messing around with this one book from the library, Necronomicon something or other...

Basically, they ended up in the house from 'Rats in the Walls', but Brown Jenkin was around, too.

Microsized Adventures would excel in an adventure like that.

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Mark Seifter wrote:
We're all pretty excited about the idea of creating new and fun ways for everyone to play around with new options, and it's definitely true that in many ways, the old version of the FAQ holds back any potential for such things becoming available for more characters in exchange for granting backdoor access to fewer characters.

I'm honestly hoping that the one thing that the Design Team takes away from this is that Prestige Classes have an audience in a post-3.5 world. The "Prestige Classes are too strong" sentiment has clearly calmed down substantially, and I believe that this thread shows that plenty of people want to try them out.

But asking players to wade through a mathematically inferior option to some golden field of intent in the higher level range just isn't feasible. Most games (sans PFS) fall apart well before any player reaches a level that's high enough to appreciate, say, the Mystic Theurge. This is largely due to a major component of Pathfinder's class design philosophy, which has been apparent since the Advanced Player's Guide: a heavy focus on class level, not caster level or base attack bonus. That design philosophy alone kills Prestige Class builds for people who are interested in them and leads to many pro-Prestige Class player's critiques of, "the Designers intent for us all to fit into neat little cookie cutters," even though that's clearly not true.

I'm not saying to make Ultimate Prestige your next product. I'm not even saying to put a single Prestige Class into Occult Adventures. But for now, at least try to include some feats that play off of Prestige Class features (Extra Shadow Jump or Extra Impromptu Sneak Attack would be welcome) and give us more ways to ease the penalties of multiclassing (a caster level version of Shapeshifting Focus would be nice). Prestige Classes are a legacy component of Pathfinder's system, and rather than discarding them completely, you should be looking for a way to make the system your own, just like you took the Epic Rules and made them into something uniquely yours.

You've got four of the brightest minds in the business at your disposal. It would be a shame not to use them to fill an area where the game is lacking.

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ericthecleric wrote:

Waiting (im)patiently for Alexander to announce the start of the KS! ;)

Hope it starts before I go to bed tonight!

It will not.

The Kickstarter will happen before February's over, but not before next weekend. The reason? Dario is coming to Philadelphia to do a neurology workshop and he's invited me to attend. So for the first time ever, Dario and I are going to be at the same place at the same time. We've decided to shoot our Kickstarter video when we're together.

So yeah, before February's over but not before next weekend.

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For anyone interested, Ryan and Perram talked to John Compton last night on Know Direction, and he even HELD UP a copy of the Strategy Guide and SHOWED OFF SOME OF ITS CONTENT for our readers / listeners.

You can watch the improbable become the definite here, at!

And why don't you stay and read some of my blog, Guidance, while you're there. I promise its the most effective way to possibly keep me from going on a Gorbacz-style rampage throughout Seattle, stealing all of the whine as I go for my own, nefarious ends.

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Gorbacz wrote:

The Adventure ends four pages in when Gorbacz enters a drinking contest with Jason Bulhman, and everything turns out alright without any PC intervention.


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Wiggz wrote:
LazarX wrote:
We get about two bloat threads a month. They all end the same way, with some folks convinced that there is too much and others that want more.
So we keep getting bloat threads... and we keep getting more bloat. Seems like one side's getting everything they want and the other is getting increasingly marginalized.

Probably because the no-bloat people's arguments basically boil down to, "Stop making money, Paizo."

Whether you prefer to think otherwise or not is your business, but products targeted at players sell better than those targeted at GMs because when you target GMs, you're only selling to one-fifth of the player base. Players don't need Lands of the Linnorm Kings; they want People of the North.

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Zaister wrote:

It's also how D&D 4th edition "saving throws" work, if I remember correctly. Since both the Saga and 4E systems are not Open Gaming Content it might be difficult to "steal" this mechanism, but I believe the mechanism is actually open, as it was an optional rule in the 3E book Unearthed Arcana, most of which is OGC.

Indeed: here it is.

If I remember my legal mumbo-jumbo right (and I might not, as this is an untrained Profession [barrister] check for me), you can't copyright game mechanics, but you can copy right the terminology that goes with it. For instance, you could copyright the word, "Samophage Defense" if Samophage is something that's your Intellectual Property, but the mechanic itself (your Dexterity + a value = a number that your opponent needs to beat with a die role) can't be copyrighted because that sort of language can't be considered intellectual property. Its the same reason why every FPS game ever can use the same general button combinations on the same consoles without one having the right to sue the other.

So, for example, the term "saving throw" is considered Open Content under the OGL, and adding values to 10 to determine a defense isn't copyrightable, so there's nothing stopping Paizo from going this route if that's what they want to do in Unchained.

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Here's my thoughts on the new classes after seeing them in action and testing a few builds:

Arcanist: Didn't break the game. Turns out that having a witch's spell progression with no at-will powers and no bonus spells known is a great balancing factor after all.

Bloodrager: This is a freaking good class. I never thought bloodlines could be as useful as they are here. This went from being a, "What the heck is this? This is a dumb, unsupported concept," to, "Holy crap! This is AWESOME!" in my eyes.

Brawler: Flippin' fun, but I'm disappointed that there isn't more I can do with it. Many weapons that feel like brawler weapons are specifically excluded. We could use a feat or ability that allows a weapon to be treated as a monk weapon for the purpose of monk and brawler class abilities. (Monks / brawlers with katanas would be awesome, for example.)

Hunter: I ended up really liking this class as the spontaneous nature caster. I still think that its the most bland of the new classes, but I will attest that no animal companion is quite as powerful as a hunter's animal companion, especially when those characters are teaming up.

Investigator: I'm a big fan of this class, but I hate having to wait until 4th level for studied combat. I wish it came sooner, because that's essentially the crown jewel to the investigator's combat strategy.

Shaman: I haven't been as crazy about this class as I thought I was going to be. Part of it is that I could *really* use a familiar-less shaman archetype. Another problem is that my favorite archetype (animist) doesn't leave you with any hexes to customize your build with. It sort of feels like an oracle without an abundance of useful revelations.

Skald: Probably my favorite of the new classes. Its basically the battle bard. They lose a lot on their versatility compared to the bard, namely in the performance department. In my experience, the skald isn't as good of a team player as the bard is, either. That said, I do really like this class.

Slayer: I think the slayer could have used more class-unique talents. Almost everything it has it bums off of the rogue, which is disappointing. Investigator got TONS of unique stuff in addition to the rogue / alchemist abilities. Slayer ... not so much. Also, I'm really surprised that none of the freelancers made a slayer archetype that swapped out rogue / ranger for ninja / ranger. That's just common sense, in my opinion.

Swashbuckler: This is the class that I have the most experience with because I play it personally, and my opinions basically boil down to: Too much gunslinger, not enough fighter. The class has severe problems with when it gets abilities. For instance, my swashbuckler was almost entirely useless until he got precise strike; I've never had a character just randomly "turn on" like that before. Meanwhile, you get two defensive deeds at 1st level, for a total of three 1st-level deeds that all gobble up your panache. If I was designing the class, I would have put precise strike at 1st level and moved opportune parry and riposte to 3rd level. Second, while the evasive deed works for gunslingers, having all of those important melee abilities locked away until 11th level really hurts the swashbuckler. Finally, I have so much stuff tugging at my swift actions and my panache that most of those abilities don't get use. I'm officially a 5th level swashbuckler now, and I can honestly save that I've doubled my precise strike damage a total of one time, and that's mostly because of charmed life. In my personal opinion, the swashbuckler is the only ACG class that needs a true overhaul.

Warpriest: I honestly think that the warpriest, while not the most exciting of the classes, is the most balanced. Its the closest to being a hybrid in the same vein as the magus. Sure, its not as explosive, but every time I've seen it in action its been a solid, reliable class with plenty of fun tricks up its sleeve. The new blessing system has been a blast to see in action and some relatively poor cleric domains (Artifice) have awesome blessing equivalents, which is cool. If I had a complaint, I hate how alignment-based options are always carbon copies of one another.

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Disk Elemental wrote:

There's a few issues here.

Firstly, yes. Most of the ACG classes are straight up superior to the classes their based on. A Swashbuckler will kill a Fighter in a straight up fight, baring triplock shenanigans from the fighter. Skalds are better than Bards in nearly every way. Bloodragers are just another option for the two-handed combat monsters PFS players seem to love so much. Brawler loses 1 good save in exchange for full BaB, d10 HD, and the ability to wear armor. To say the ACG is hideously unbalanced is an understatement.

Your points are only correct here if you're talking about raw damage output. Most of the Advanced Class Guide classes are one-trick ponies while the core classes (and even the base classes) are more general. A well-built fighter has a more diverse array of things that he can do compared to a swashbuckler. Inspire rage might be situationally more powerful than inspire courage, but the bard's other performances are better than all of the skald's other performances. Bloodragers also are more specialized than barbarians are.

Secondly, it's the book itself. As Esquin said, the book is really, really sloppy. There are obvious typos, things are poorly formatted, it's just a mess. Paizo tried to do too much, too quickly (I'd be willing to bet Paizo rushed it out at Gencon so that they'd have something to compete with 5e), when the book really could have benefited from having half the content cut, and spending a bit more time in editing.

When you get right down to it, the Advanced Class Guide's scope is more focused on player options than any other book that Paizo's done. It has the least number of spells of any Core Rulebook product, it has the second-most number of classes (behind only the Core Rulebook itself) and feats (behind only Ultimate Combat), and the greatest number of archetypes for the most number of classes. Remember that Ultimate Magic and Ultimate Combat each left several classes out while the Advanced Class Guide tried to service them all. Meanwhile, Ultimate Combat and Ultimate Magic both have extensive rules systems that didn't add to player power while the Advanced Player's Guide had more equipment (both magical and mundane) as well as the section on races and the Additional Rules section. The Advanced Class Guide really only has the philosophy of class design section taking away from its crunch, and its really quite small.

Lastly, it's rules fatigue. There are ten new classes in the book, the amount of content you have to process in order to GM for ACG parties is insane. In a homegame you can ban it, but PFS requires you to GM for the table, regardless of the party comp, so there's no way to avoid learning the mechanics.

Honestly, I don't think you really *need* to know every new class in order to GM for ACG parties. You only really need to know whatever shows up at your table. In short, what your describing is really more of a PFS problem than a universal problem with the book, and its a problem that repeats itself whenever a big rulebook is released.

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What's the worst place in the Inner Sea to bring someone on a Valentine's Day date?

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James Jacobs wrote:
I do kinda like the idea that everyone's home games set in Golarion constitute the parallel universes though. That's actually really cool. It does further mean we'll NEVER do stuff with those universes, of course! Which is fine with me!

This reminds me of this far-out theory behind Pokemon's recent game remakes, Pokemon Alpha Ruby and Omega Sapphire. I know you've said that you're not a Pokemon buff, but as a Sci-Fi buff, I think you might appreciate it as a thought exercise.

Will you give the video a shot?

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As a general rule, having the benefits of a feat is different than having a feat.

For example, part of the reason that Two-Weapon Flurry and similar feats exist is that having flurry of blows is not the same as having Two-Weapon Fighting, even though the former effectively works like the later. This is why Swashbuckler's Finesse specifically calls out that it functions as Weapon Finesse for feat prerequisites.

Swashbuckler Weapon Training doesn't have that language, however, so you don't have the feat for the purpose of meeting feat prerequisites. You have swashbuckler weapon training.

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bookrat wrote:

Once again, I would like to thank everyone for their input. Since you've all taken the time to give such great recommendations and advice, I've decided to compile the entire thread into one post with links to the products.

Bwuhahahahahahahahaha! I'm on that list four times! Exeeeeeecellent.

Twiddles fingers like Monty Burns.

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Luthorne wrote:

Personally, I think a decoy familiar would be quite apt for a rakshasa sorcerer.

Improved Familiars don't get the speak with animals ability, so therefore they don't qualify for most of the familiar archetypes.

I can't recall if the decoy familiar replaces speak with animals or not off of the top of my head. If it does, a rakshasa familiar couldn't take it.

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Kudaku wrote:
Unless D&D Next embraces the SRD philosophy I have no interest in making the switch wholesale or buying anything more than (possibly) the basic rule set from them.

Personally, I think this is unlikely if D&D sticks to their traditional business model, which would be their focus on Game Mechanics as their primary product rather than Adventures and IP.

On-topic, I'm hoping Inner Sea Races includes:

– A reprint of all of the racial feats that various X of Golarion products that have been created over the years, similar to Inner Sea God's reprints.

– Some new racial archetypes. (Could take the place of subdomains.)

– Content for the android and ghorian races.

– Since this is Inner Sea Races, I'd like some mention made for any non-Inner Sea race noting where in the Inner Sea the largest population of that race can be found. For instance, saying, "Wayangs have a small presence in Nidal," would be awesome.

– I'm crossing my fingers for another modular Prestige Class along the same veins as the Evangelist / Sentinel / Exalted, but I'm sure sure if something like that is feasible. It would be awesome if there was a Racial Exemplar feat that could pull off something like that, though. (Dibs on that idea if Paizo didn't use it in Inner Sea Races.)

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James Jacobs wrote:
And in the end... it IS a game. A certain level of metagaming should not only be expected, but allowed or even encouraged.

You have no idea how happy it makes me to hear you voice that opinion. I did an article about how metagaming in regards to fighting monsters is a good thing and I generally got a lot of backlash for it. Tons of people saying, "No! You're metagaming! You're making the barbarian too powerful and devaluing the bard!" and stuff like that.

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I thought I had 7,000 words with which to write one of my sections in an upcoming Player Companion, but in reality I only have 1,700. Must be Cosmo's fault.

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Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:

Fast play rules go bye bye?


Not necessarily. The "and much more!" is still there.

That said, I'm not sure that "fast play" combat is a good idea for a game like Pathfinder. Things to improve play and make it more fluid, sure, but as a GM, most of my monsters don't live very long as-is. Why would I want play to be faster?

Whether you agree or not, combat is the focus of the Pathfinder RPG. Virtually all class features are built around it, as are most encounters in Paizo's dungeons. Also, the gaps between classes' in out-of-combat utility are much greater than gaps between classes' in-combat utility, so speeding up combat doesn't really help out the fighter or the barbarian very much.


When I say, "gaps between out of combat ability," I'm referring specifically to two things: skill points and out of combat options. Most classes don't have powers or abilities that function well outside of combat; the rogue does, most spell casters do as well, but the fighter, barbarian, cavalier, and more benefit their party in combat exclusively.

You can also see this in the skill point system. On average, the difference between the lowest Hit Die class (d6, or 3.5 hit points per level) and the highest Hit Die class (d12, or 6.5 hit points per level) is 3 hit points per level. For skill ranks, the lowest is 2 ranks and the highest 8is , for a staggering 6 ranks per level difference. Whereas the difference in HP between a fighter and a rogue at 12th level is about 36 hit points, the difference in skill ranks is 72 skill ranks.

If I had one wish for unchained, it would be for skill ranks to progress at the same intervals for Hit Dice; 6 + Int for the least skilled classes, 10 + Int for the most skilled classes, and 12 + Int for the Rogue. A revamp like that would certainly help to provide some legroom into an Ultimate Skills system, because then you'd actually have given every class enough resources to specialize in an array of different skills.

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terraleon wrote:
White Templar, but emphasis mine wrote:
And to take it one more step, wasn't it WotC that gave us Leap Attack, Shock Trooper, Divine Metamagic, Nightsticks, Leadership, Swiftblade, Divine Minion, and any number of other things you can find on the old theoretical optimization boards?

Aside from a good bottle of 16-year Lagavulin, the Leadership feat is the greatest gift you can give your GM. It says, "I want to be invested in the campaign world, with ties to the community, people who rely on me, and an easy source of hooks and story seeds. I want to give the world and my character more depth."

I feel sad for the tables that ban Leadership, for all the opportunities missed, the npcs left fallow, the plots left unturned.


My thoughts exactly. That's why I wrote the Leadership Handbook. ;-)

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@Insain Dragoon The wording was correct and intentional. The elemental strike feature of the mystic's ki pool never once mentions that the type of the damage is altered by the elemental strike; the path basics feature of the mystic's elemental path modifies this.

Effectively, elemental strike increases the damage dice of your weapon up to a certain point and your weapon deals damage based on that value, but still of the weapon's type. Path Basics allows you to further modify the kind of damage that your weapon deals, so you could exchange half or all of the damage that your weapon deals for the type(s) indicated by the path basics ability.

In order words, you read the ability correctly. If you want to fluff it as flame rocket elbows, you can.

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blackbloodtroll wrote:
graystone wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

Here it is:

Pathfinder Player Companion:Giant Hunter’s Handbook. wrote:


PRICE: 2,500 GP
SLOT none CL 15th WEIGHT —
AURA strong transmutation
This elegant silk ribbon gleams like mithral and feels like polished steel.
When wrapped around the grip of a one-handed piercing or slashing melee weapon for 24 hours, the ribbon’s magic permanently merges with the weapon, reducing the attack roll penalty incurred by a wielder who is smaller than the weapon’s intended wielder by 2 (to a minimum penalty of 0). If the weapon is wielded by a creature whose size matches that of the weapon’s intended wielder, the weapon is treated as a light melee weapon when determining whether it can be used with Weapon Finesse, as well as with any feat, spell, or special weapon ability that can be used in conjunction with light weapons. Once an effortless lace’s abilities have been conveyed to a weapon, the ribbon must remain attached to the weapon or its effects end immediately, its magic is permanently lost, and it is reduced to worthless cloth. Effects that would dispel the magic of the weapon or cause the weapon to gain the broken condition (such as sundering) destroy the ribbon as well.
Craft Magic Arms and Armor, shrink item.
LOL Now what happens when you put it on a bastard sword? A light weapon you need two hands to wield? :P


A light weapon, that requires two hands to use.

Oh, and fools we be to suggest such a thing is silly.


The effortless lace only makes you a light weapon for the purpose of feats, spells, and special weapon abilities. One of the reasons that I choose to specifically lay out what it affects rather than allow it to be treated as a light weapon "for all purposes" was so that people didn't get the impression that they could wrap it around a greatsword and use said greatsword in one hand.

The bastard sword (and by extension, the katana) is something of an outlier as far as the effortless lace goes. However, there's an awesome FAQ on the topic. Basically, the FAQ states that a bastard sword's handedness counts as needing as many hands as you need to wield it, so two hands if you don't have Exotic Weapon Proficiency or one hand if you do. This means that if you don't have Exotic Weapon Proficiency, the effortless lace does NOTHING for you. That FAQ also goes on to state that the bastard sword is treated as a two-handed weapon when you wield it in two hands, so effectively the effortless lace "turns off" if you try to wield your bastard sword in two hands.

In short, the effortless lace DOES NOT transform your bastard sword / katana into an elven curved blade.

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Kudaku wrote:

Thanks for the replies! I did a little bit of digging and found this post:

Alexander Augunas wrote:

Without giving away any spoilers on the book, I will say that one of the reasons I worded the Effortless Lace as I did was to make dual-scimitar builds something that could actually be accomplished without a massive –4 penalty on attack rolls. We'll see soon enough how the fine gentlemen with the Pathfinder Society choose to handle the Effortless Lace, I'm sure, but I designed it the way I did to expand upon the number of finesse builds that people could play effectively. In that way, its sort of like a blinkback belt or belt of hurling, but for finesse weapons.

Again, not a Paizo-official response. If you quote my post and try to use it as +1 flaming finesse weapon bane ammo, I can't promise that an angry rune giant won't show at your doorstep in the wee hours of the morning, looking for vengeance.

The RaI seems perfectly clear, which is good enough for it to fly in my game. :)

I am a little curious why he didn't simply use a phrase such as " the weapon is treated as a light melee weapon for all purposes" rather than specifically listing feats, spells and special weapon abilities, perhaps it was changed in development or phrased that way to limit the possibilities for shenanigans? I sent Alexander a PM and invited him to weigh in. :)

The reason that the effortless lace specifically states that it only works in conjunction with feats, spells, and special abilities is to ensure that it isn't an item that just anyone can pick up and get a ton of mileage out of. The effortless lace was always intended to be a specialist item; either you use it because you found some giant treasure or specialize in wielding bigger-than-thou weapons or because you're a finesse guy and specialize in using lighter weapons.

As for Two-Weapon Fighting, yes. I did intend for the effortless lace to make Two-Weapon Fighting more inclusive for other weapons. However, the effortless lace does nothing unless you actually have the Two-Weapon Fighting feat; merely fighting with a weapon in each hand is not enough for the effortless lace's magic to work. This isn't the first effect in the game that specifically requires the Two-Weapon Fighting feat to function in any case; the Sword and Pistol feat specifically notes that you have to be using Two-Weapon Fighting for its effects to function as well, that merely "wielding a weapon in each hand" isn't enough.

Despite being the writer, please remember that this is really just my intent for how I envisioned the item working. It isn't iron-cast and if you as a GM think that such an interaction is too good, don't use my intent. PFS people can't use it period, which is one of the major reasons I'm disclosing my intent on the item in the first place. I really don't want people slapping each other with my words.

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Matrix Dragon wrote:

D: D:

Luckily for me I think I have a good method of balancing out dragon player characters in my games. I use houserules for replacing about half of a player's magical items with a feat-like subsystem. I'll simply take away a good number of a dragon character's abilities (with some sort of explanation of course) and require him to buy them back at the cost of a number of his picks from the subsystem. I might also give them a wisdom penalty since they're young by dragon standards ;)

The alternative that you could do is to allow your players to grab more racial traits themselves. Giving them each an extra +2 to two different ability scores as well as a bonus feat would bring every core race up to about 25 - 26 rp.

Of course, +2 to two different ability scores and a bonus feat are MUCH better than what dragons receive as racial traits, but that's my subjective opinion.

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