Count me in on wanting more love for the justicar. Maybe roll it together with the witch hunter?
I like a lot of what I've read on the blog so far.
I don't really have a problem with dwarven samurai. Dwarves have long been considered a very lawful race, so building an honor-based culture around their concepts of law and clan relationships is a pretty a organic direction to take them. Even if human society resembles ancient Babylon, there's no reason why the other races have to also belong to that same milieu, particularly, since they are longer-lived, they might have a more advanced culture.
I would nail down some of your other analogies. I agree with the others that calling mages "biker gangs" doesn't quite fit. Packs might be a good idea, or maybe hordes. Maybe sorcerers belong to specific tribal groups and believe that the are naturally superior to mundanes?
Finally, if you don't mind a little design critique about the blog: The black text on a dark background can be difficult to read. I'd go with a more contrasting color scheme.
Assuming you're talking American style Wild West, and not Pathfinder or Eberron style Wild West, I wouldn't be using the standard ruleset, I'd be using the Modern Path variant. Also since you're talking about a guns, guns, everywhere sort of world the nature of firearm access takes a radically different nature from Golarion-norm if you check up the relevant section in Ultimate Combat.
As I said, it's literally the American Wild West, it just has some flavors and technology from that era. But I wasn't really looking for advice on how to set up my campaign. I was just using it to springboard discussion about which classes other people are excluding.
It seems the two most excluded are the gunslinger and the summoner. Not really surprising there
Now that we have 20-odd classes from Paizo plus dozens from 3rd party publishers, it seems to me that not every class is needed for every campaign. What classes don't fit in your campaign?
For example, I'm building a campaign world with a wild west theme. Firearms are common and advanced (revolvers, rifles, and shotguns). This has a number of implications for many of the classes.
Take the fighter. In our real world, armor was obsolete long before the late 19th century. While my campaign is not based on actual history, the prevalence of guns does make armor less advantageous. Armor training is therefore, not as useful class ability for what is already widely regarded as a weak class. Thus, in my campaign, the fighter will probably be dropped with the gunslinger taking over its role.
The next one is the cleric. Everyone has an opinion on this class. Put me among those that dislike like it. The druid, inquisitor, and oracle are, in my opinion, far more interesting for the role of priest-type characters.
So those are probably out. On the fence are the paladin and cavalier. Obviously, cavalry has a role in a western-themed campaign, but I'll probably have to emphasize archetypes that are less dependent on heavy armor.
Also on the fence are the Asian-themed classes (monk, ninja, and samurai). Most people probably don't think about ninjas in the west, but perhaps they could be "exotic" classes brought from people who migrated from a land that is more Eastern in flavor, much like many Chinese immigrants came to the US to work on the railroad.
So, what about your campaigns? Have you looked at any classes and thought, "This just doesn't fit"?
Two thoughts on the Paladin option:
1. You're severely limiting the spell choices available for the class. Why not let him choose a small number of spells from the Paladin spell list instead of picking them for him?
2. Tying it to his lay hands ability might be unbalancing. This means a 4th level spell costs the paladin the same amount of resources as a first level spell. Maybe have them cost a number of uses equal to the spell's level.
My solution for the ranger is to just use the spell-less ranger from Open Design. Never liked the idea of rangers as spell casters.
Umbral Reaver wrote:
I sunder the spellbook.
Yeah, that's pretty much a fatal weakness for the Wizard, even if it's compensated with always having the right spell.
My idea was to add a feat:
By consulting your spellbook, you can remove an unexpended spell from the spell slot you assigned it to and replace it with different spell from your book. The old spell is now considered “unprepared” and you cannot cast it until you prepare it again. The new spell must be the same level or lower than the old spell. Consulting your spellbook and swapping spells takes a minimum of ten minutes and provokes an attack of opportunity. Consulting a spellbook must be done in real time. No magic or spell, including haste or time stop can enable a you to shorten the time it takes to consult your spellbook.
Special: A wizard may select this feat on one his bonus feats.
This gives the wizard a little spontaneous casting ability, but doesn't enable him to just pull out the perfect spell in the middle of combat.
It's definitely the heal monkey perception. Last time I played a cleric, every time one of the other characters got so much as a paper cut, they started crying "heal me! heal me!"
The other thing is that clerics are too generic. Other than domains, there isn't much to separate a cleric of a god of war from one who worships a god of love.
I've never run a low magic campaign myself. Personally, I got turned off the idea years ago after reading many emails and forum posts from others bragging about they're superior role players because they run low magic campaigns.
My guess is that the reason why many home brewers create low-magic settings is because it's a niche not served by any of the published settings. Most of them are pretty high magic. Forgotten Realms is a world where magic is on steroids and in Eberron, magic is so commonplace that it forms the basis of their economy.
Out of curiosity, why a campaign with no armor? Is this something you plan on running?
Yeah, I'm working on a "guns are commonplace" campaign. Historically, firearms made armor obsolete because it became more of a hindrance than a form of protection. So, I was kicking around some ideas of how the rules would work if armor was no longer considered a standard piece of equipment.
So, if you were going to run a campaign in which there were no armor, what house rules (non-magical) would you adopt to replace it?
How about giving each class a dodge bonus to their AC equal to 1/3 their BAB? Making the Dodge feat scale with level?
It's a pretty interesting approach. While Dreamscarred took the 3.5 psionics and "pathfinderized" them, Psionics Transcended reworked psionics to make the classes more like spellcasters. It's a matter of taste, but PT will appeal to GMs who don't like the point system.
I don't like PT's psyker class. I never cared for the idea of the soulknife as a psionic character without any psionic powers. I don't know why they call it an alternative to the bard class, though.
Anthropomorphic Animal is a temporary spell, so I wouldn't see any problem with casting it on an animal companion.
However, it can also be made permanent with a Permanency spell. It that happened, I would rule that just as an animal who had the Awaken spell cast on them, the anthropomorphized animal could no longer serve as your animal companion.
You could, however, take it as a cohort under the Leadership feat.
Not condoning or suggesting a dip. I was more saying that you are giving away all the goodies of being a 1st level monk to everyone. What benefit do you get as a monk?
Well, first I'm not giving it to everyone, just the more melee combart oriented classes. I don't expert wizards to run around punching orcs in the face.
As for what benefit you get for being a monk: The AC bonus, bonus feats, flurry of blows, and if you stick with the class, damage that increses with level and all the other class abilities exclusive to the monk.
I've thought about ways to encourage more fisticuffs in my campaign, so I came up with replacing the feat Improved Unarmed Strike with Unarmed Proficiency. Classes with full BAB plus monks and rogues would be considered proficient in unarmed attacks. All other classes would have to take the feat to become proficient, much like they have to take a feat to become proficient in a martial weapon.
Characters proficient in unarmed attacks can make unarmed attacks without provoking an attack of opportunity and can choose to inflict lethal or non-lethal damage. Medium characters do 1d6 points of damage while small ones do 1d3. Monks will continue to increase the amount of damage they do as they gain levels.
Thanks for your suggestions. I was on the fence about making Bravery scale, but I see how it isn't that powerful of a talent by itself.
Re: Armiger and Swashbuckler listed in the talents names. Those were proofreading errors on my part. I had at one point thought about making some talents path-specific, but decided against. Everything in talents should be for all fighters.
I think the formatting errors were the result of converting it from Word to Google Docs. It looked fine after I uploaded it, but I'll fix those.
Again, thanks. I'll take all of your suggestions into account when I work on the next iteration.
That's a pretty good idea.
Or how about allowing the cleric leave a few slots open and then pray for a specific spell to fill it later in the day? The prayer ritual should take at least ten minutes so that it wouldn't impact on combat, but if the party suddenly finds itself in need of a Remove Curse that no one prepared for that day, it could come in handy.
I know it is intuitive to think that removing armor training but armor training is what lets them jog in chain. Take it away and they really slow down.
Armor training is still available as a talent, so if a fighter wants to jog in chain mail, he can still go that route. But if you want to play more of a swashbuckler or martial artist kind of fighter, you probably won't want to wear chain mail in the first place.
Yeah, It's another fighter revamp.
The general idea of this design is move away from the armored tank stereotype and let players create virtually any warrior archetype they can imagine.
Summary of changes:
Weapons and armor:
Bonus Feats: Fighters now have grit and may select any grit feat in place of a combat feat. A few feats, Improved Unarmed Strike, Weapon Focus, and Weapon Specialization are modified.
I wouldn't expect any psionics from Paizo any time soon. Eric Mona has said repeatedly that they don't have much interest in it.
While Dreamscarred Press may not have as impressive artwork as Paizo's products do, from a crunch standpoint, they've done just about the best job of adapting psionics for Pathfinder as I could imagine.
The Leaping Gnome wrote:
At a glance I like it, but maybe it should have a full BAB and d10 hit die, since the devoted talents are staggered and replace some of the stuff inquisitors would ordinarily get anyway(detect alignment, track, and discern lies). That would probably shore up some of the balance issues without breaking anything.
I was thinking the same thing, but wasn't sure. Thanks for the input.
Well yes, the PrC bloat was a huge problem in 3rd edition. We're not there yet with archetypes.
I'd say 90% of PrCs were a waste of space, especially ones designed for full casters. If you played a wizard, I don't think there was a single PrC that was worth giving up 3-4 caster levels. Others were almost designed to be broken. I'm looking at you, Shining Light of Pelor.
I've never been a huge fan of PrCs. Many were designed to force characters to level-dip. 3rd edition was designed to encourage multi-classing. Pathfinder is not. Characters are rewarded for sticking with a single class. With that in mind, I question whether PrCs truly have a place in Pathfinder and aren't just a relic that should be dropped. Archetypes allow you to build a character theme from level one, rather than having to play a few levels in a class you may not want to play just to pick up a required feat or class ability.
Of course, your mileage may very.
Belle Mythix wrote:
Also depends if it's just gods or also god-like beings like the Demon Lords, arch-Devils, etc...
The various outsider races (archons, demons, devils, proteans, inevitables, etc) would be left to their own devices without gods watching over them. Many of the more powerful ones see it as "their time" to become gods. Some of the arch-devils and demon lords survived, but they can't grant spells without the assistance of the gods.
Pretty interesting. Maybe add some rogue talents and call it the charlatan.
Anyway, here are some thoughts I've had for the various divine classes:
Clerics: Probably won't be in this campaign at all. Honestly, I've always thought they were the dullest class in every incarnation of the game. They hang around mainly because of their "heal monkey" status.
Druids: Maybe keep them as worshipers of local or ancestral spirits.
Paladins: Probably won't be using them either.
Rangers: Never was comfortable with spell casting rangers. I'll probably use the spell-less ranger Open Design published instead.
Inquisitors: This class always strikes me as more suited for villains than for PCs. Anyone have experience with the variant Justicar and Witch Hunter from Super Genius? I may use them for this role instead.
Oracles: I'm kind of leaning toward having them as the result of a residual curse from the cosmic war. They may hate the very idea of gods and blame them for their curse despite the powers it grants them.
The other thought I had was to create spell-less variants of the druid and oracle.
I do this on a regular basis since I hate the idea of a priest being able to cast spells. I replace magical zealots with a s%$~load of chirurgeons (alchemists with bad handwriting and Heal as a class skill) and if anyone needs serious healing, they bring a tribute to the high-level witch in the woods.
In many ways, that's my thinking. Is there any role for priests in your campaign?
I was thinking evil arcane spell casters could organize cults just as easily as a cleric or druid could.
Has anyone ever run a campaign where there are no divine spell casters? Has it been a problem? The obvious deficit would be the lack of party healing. As a fix, would you recommend adding the Cure X Wounds spells to the sorcerer/wizard spell list, or would enabling them to cast those spells (as well as use wands and scrolls) be too unbalancing?
I'd definitely say that it's one of those unintentionally hilarious movies. The premise is completely ridiculous. I almost lost it when Lincoln gains the superpower to chop through a tree in one swipe. Or how they managed to get all the silver in Washington melted down into weapons and delivered to Gettysburg before the battle ended.
I'd say if you watch it, put aside the historical inaccuracies and just laugh at the sheer incompetence it took to make this movie.
I always thought sonic was more appropriate as an earthquake is essentially a massive sound wave traveling through the earth. But sonic always seems to be the forgotten energy type. So few spells use it and so few monsters have a resistance to it.