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Madge Blossomheart

Gwen Smith's page

FullStarFullStarFullStar RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle. 1,544 posts (1,849 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 16 Pathfinder Society characters. 3 aliases.


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David Hebb wrote:

Thanks for the advice! The reason I didn't choose Investigator is that I don't have the Advanced Class Guide, so I don't know the stats. Also, what books are the Breadth of Experience, Scholar, and Focused Shot feats from?

Edit: Just checked out Investigator, and it turns out that they can make all Knowledge checks untrained at 3rd level, while the bard can do it at first, so that's a problem

Edit: Nvm, figured my last question out, and I found the Investigator stats

Breadth of Experience and Focused Shot are from Advanced Player's Guide. Scholar is from Inner Sea World Guide.

Bonus: Breadth of Experience lets you make knowledge checks untrained, so you might be able to drop the bard aspect altogether: Maybe go with Alchemist or Wizard?


Dave Justus wrote:

The answer is, unless the GM says a particular use of a DEX or STR skill doesn't take the penalty, it does.

Personally, I think the list above is in error. All of those examples would have the penalty (for some, the DC is low enough that success would be likely even with the penalty.)

Where I might not include the penalty would be for something where the DC included not being able to see, for example I might consider that beyond a very simple lock, sight isn't going to help you open one (they are too small to see into etc.) and so you wouldn't take a penalty for being blinded, because not being able to see what you are doing is included in the normal DC. There isn't a list of this sort of thing though, and each GM would have to make their own interpretation.

You think treading water is harder with your eyes closed?

Or that moving up a rope hand over hand (with no "feet on wall" or anything) requires sight? Granted, once you get to the grappling hook/top of the rope, the climb check to get off of the rope and onto the surface would probably take the penalty.

For Escape Artist, I was picturing a straight tunnel with no protrusions (say, like an air vent) for no penalty. Any protrusions would be "obstacles". I didn't make that very clear at all.


Well, you can pick up Focused Shot to add Int to ranged damage.

For Dex to ranged damage, I'm not aware of anything outside of Gunslinger or the Bolt Ace archetype.

Can I ask why you have your Int so high? Most of your class features and all of your spells are based off of Charisma, so you might be better off switching the 18 to Charisma and dropping your Int to 16 (especially if you ever plan to use any offensive spells).

The only benefit you get from an 18 Int are more skill points (and you already get 8+Int per level) and higher knowledge skills (you already get to add half your level). If you're trying to max out your knowledge skills, you might consider feats like Breadth of Experience or Scholar.

Alternatively, if you want to do an Int-based bard-like character, you might check out Investigator from the Advanced Class Guide. It's much like a bard, but its class features are all Int-based, so it might be a better fit for what you have in mind.

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

pH unbalanced wrote:
Dorothy Lindman wrote:

Question on summoners and the new April 29th date:

The blog post said "effective immediately" summoners from ACG were no longer legal. However, the date was then changed from "today" to April 29th.

Does this mean that pre-level 2 summoners from ACG can still be played until April 29th?

We have three tier 1-5 tables starting in 3 hours, and it would be nice to get a clarification before then.

From John earlier in the thread:

John Compton wrote:
If you have an existing summoner, you could by the pending updated date play his again before deciding on the rebuild in two days. If you have a GM credit "blob," there is no way you could create an Advanced Player's Guide version to play, as that version has been made illegal immediately, no matter when the rebuild window begins.

Sorry--I'm being dense from the sinus medication, but it sounds like what John said and what people said that John said are in contradiction.

Here's my current understanding of the breakdown:
1) No new APG summoners may be created, period.
2) An APG summoner already played at level 2 is grandfathered in (but can still take advantage of the rebuild if they want).
3) An APG summoner not yet played at level 2 (i.e., between 1 and 3 XP) can be played until April 29th but will have to be rebuilt after that.

Corner case:
If #3 is a correct statement, can a 3 XP summoner get grandfathered in if they get their 4th XP before April 29th? I believe the answer is "no".

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

TechGnosis wrote:
Dorothy Lindman wrote:

Question on summoners and the new April 29th date:

The blog post said "effective immediately" summoners from ACG were no longer legal. However, the date was then changed from "today" to April 29th.

Does this mean that pre-level 2 summoners from ACG can still be played until April 29th?

We have three tier 1-5 tables starting in 3 hours, and it would be nice to get a clarification before then.

Same(ish),

We have a (freshly) level 2 summoner (APG) playing with us on Wednesday. He doesn't get paid until the first (Friday), does this mean we have to make him play a pre-made since by PFS rules you cant play a character if you dont have the book (Hes also super-unhappy since he just bought APG so he COULD play a summoner)? A little more warning / padding would have been nice.

On a semi-related note, when is Additional Resources going to be updated to reflect the legality (or non-legality) of Unchained?

That is exactly the scenario I'm concerned about.

Even if the summoner already has 1-2 chronicles on him, and regardless of whether the player plans to rebuild it once the new book comes out, he can't play that character tonight, no matter what?

(We have a bunch of new players that come on Mondays, so it's not impossible we will see this. Just trying to make sure we have an answer before we start.)

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

Rycaut wrote:

but perhaps there is a better approach - just thinking about this:

Books with great than some N number of allowed options are ALWAYS described in terms of the specific items that are not allowed (i.e. Ultimate Equipment or other hardcovers would default to a specific list of what is NOT allowed and a general blanket statement of what is allowed. IF pages or chapters are not-allowed adding the title of that page for clarity (i.e. instead of "chapter 6 isn't allowed" say something like "Chapter 6 - customer magic systems isn't allowed"

Books which are mostly NOT allowed (following a similar criteria) would have ALL affirmatively allowed items spelled out with a blanket statement saying that everything else in the book isn't allowed (and again if entire sections/chapters were allowed these would be at least documented a bit more than just Pages 28-29)

Books which are about evenly split between what is/isn't allowed would list Both lists - the allowed items and the disallowed items. This would allow for highlighting any future changes far more clearly in these cases (mostly splat books not hardcovers)

Rycaut, this seems to be how they do it, but on a section by section basis:

If a greater number of items are allowed, then they list only the not allowed items.
If a greater number of items are not allowed, then they list only the allowed items.

The problem is that until you read the text, you have no way of know whether it will be listing allowed or not allowed--which is the same problem your system will have, and I don't see a way around that issue.

It's true that color-coding "allowed" vs. "not allowed" statements might help, but then you would lose the "updated" color coding.

I supposed it's possible that "font-coding" or "typeface-coding" would work, but since strong/bold and emphasis/italics are already used, you'd have to go with something like "Arial=allowed; Times NR=not allowed". However, depending on the site coding or CSS, that might not display the same in all browsers.

I'm not sure there's a better solution than the way they already do it, which relies on users to read the text instead of skim it.


I think the easiest answer would be to apply the text "that rely on sight" to the Strength and Dex based skills:

Acrobatics: Definitely relies on sight.
Climb: It depends. Climbing a rope doesn't require sight, but climbing a wall would (because you need to see the handholds).
Disable Device: Definitely relies on sight.
Escape Artist: It depends. Squeezing through a tunnel or escaping a grapple would probably be OK, but trying to avoid obstacles while doing so would be problematic. (And note that even if you can use Escape Artist to escape a grapple without penalty, you are still flat-footed and -2 to CMD, so the grappler will prbably just re-grapple you next round.)
Swim: It depends. Treading water would be no problem, but swimming across a body of water to the other side would be tricky.

Does that help?


Apocryphile wrote:

Sorry, what's yor question?

Is it. "Is the Ninja a (highly involved) archetype of the rogue, and therefore qualifies for the free unchained rebuild?"

Or is it more like " Are alternate classes archetypes of a progenitor class?"

Or something else? Sorry, I'm feeling a bit slow this morning..

One of the questions that triggered this was "Can I multiclass an unchained rogue and a ninja?"

Another was "Can I apply the 'ninja archetype' to an unchained rogue?"


rainzax wrote:

thejeff,

Thanks for the clarification - looks as though I have been erroneously "charging 10x" time increments for taking 10. Now I'm all bothered that I have been doing this for years! Gah! (As an opinion, taking 10 should probably take twice the time...).

Why should it? Taking 10 represents you doing the same routine you do every day, doing the thing that you're trained to do, etc.

Why should that take more time? You specifically are not trying more than once. I honestly don't understand the hostility towards taking 10. What's so wrong about with relying on skill instead of luck for relatively easy stuff? And if you've invested enough resources to get good enough at a skill that you can even take 10 and succeed on really hard stuff, why should you be punished for that?


WaterDragon wrote:

Interesting - I can see that.

But for this specfic scenario, it say
from Scenario wrote:

The summoning circle serves as a holding cell for a powerful outsider, though its magic has faded considerably over the years. The circle prohibits any extra-planar beings from exiting it and traps them as dimensional lock. Magic

functions normally within the circle itself, but no one so trapped can affect anything outside the circle, as though blocked by a wall of force. Those trapped within cannot harm the circle in any way, but those outside can attack and destroy the circle like a normal object; the circle has 50 hit points, hardness 5, and can be destroyed by dispel manic with a DC 20 caster level check. The circle's outer runes contain positive energy, preventing any undead from crossing into or out of the circle.

Anytime there's a discrepancy between regular rules and specific rules given in a scenario, go with the scenario rules.

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

Question on summoners and the new April 29th date:

The blog post said "effective immediately" summoners from ACG were no longer legal. However, the date was then changed from "today" to April 29th.

Does this mean that pre-level 2 summoners from ACG can still be played until April 29th?

We have three tier 1-5 tables starting in 3 hours, and it would be nice to get a clarification before then.


A couple of thoughts:
If the prisoner was made "friendly", he wouldn't be likely to rat you out. Killing his comrades was a factor in the Diplomacy roll, and if he was going to retaliate for it, you shouldn't have been able to make him "friendly" in the first place. If he's not going to rat you out, there's no reason to kill him.

If the GM suggests the prisoner will rat you out (via a Sense Motive check, for instance), then he's a potential threat (especially if you've been told the Hellknights will kill/imprison you). If he's a threat, then killing him is less of a problem. Now, you could try threatening to kill him if he rats you out ("And the Society will hunt you down and kill you in horrible ways if you say anything" or "It's a secret society, so you don't know which Hellknights might be members..."), which might be a better option in this case.

As far as the player spilling the beans, is this a case of "I thought it was out of character but the GM said it was in character"? I've run across that a lot over the years, because different GMs have different "default" settings, ranging all the way from "everything said at the table is in character unless you specifically say otherwise" to "everything is out of character unless you say otherwise". If your GM doesn't spell out the assumptions in advance, it can cause a lot of problems.

In PFS, when a player says something stupid (that will get them killed, blow the mission, etc.), especially when it's in a flip or joking way, I will often ask whether they intended to say it in character. If they say no, I'll give them one warning about mouthing off out of character. Sometimes, players are looking to start a fight, cause trouble, etc., or they'll say, "Yeah, my character is just that dumb." In which case, we proceed with the mayhem.


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Beginning Box is a good place to start. You might make up a bard for her using the beginner box rules.

You can also check out the Kids Track (search the Paizo site). This has some suggestions on how to run games for people with lower reading and/or math skill levels. There are a ton of people who play with kids as young as 6 or 7, and in PFS, we a 9-year-old GM who just awesome. Never assume someone can't do something until you give them the opportunity.

As far as the "not liking reading" and "not liking math", issue goes: I have usually found that students who don't like reading or math have not found anything that makes the reading or math worthwhile to them. Tens of thousands of dyslexic, low-reading skill, "I hate reading" kids will devour comic books, the Harry Potter series, and the Percy Jackson books, because they finally had a story that appeals to them enough to overcome their negative attitude toward reading. Likewise, people who hate math will often do fine with math in games: statistics of their favorite sports teams, cards, dice, etc. Most often, the issue is they don't want to do these things, not that they can't.

Keep the math to the minimum, and consider getting a program like Hero Lab to help out until she gets used to the math. The Beginner Box should be in the trial of Hero Lab, so you can see how she likes it before you buy it. (There are other character management tools, so you can search for those if no one else has a good suggestion for one.)

As far as soloing goes: you can start with soloing, but if she is more of a social person, getting a group together might be better. A lightweight, social game that isn't overly concerned with staying on track or tight rules restrictions might be the way to go, but you'll need to make that call after some demo sessions. Also, see if she's more into long term character development or one-off, "done that want to try something else" episodic adventures, and adjust accordingly.

Most of all, talk to her. Find out whether she's having fun and why/why not. Adjust the game as you go.


LazarX wrote:
WaterDragon wrote:
looking for some definitive answer on when PC attack a outsider inside a summoning circle that is bounded. The creature cannot hurt anyone inside, but can PC attack the creature and nickel and dime it to death?

The PC gets one free shot. His actions at that point, now have broken the circle, and the creature inside is now free to do whatever it wants, no longer affected by it in any way.

You've probably also royally cheesed off the person who took all that trouble to capture it in the first place.

I agree.

Scenario in question:
As I read it, what it wants is to get out, so it buggers off after scaring the crap out of the PCs. That particular monster is well beyond the CR for that scenario tier, and PCs should not even get the option of actually fighting it.
.


wraithstrike wrote:

It seems as though there is going to be an FAQ or errata to the rules saying that a 10 by 10 area is the limit for move action perception checks.

Some interpret that to mean you need them to pick up on things that a reactive check is used for "observable stimulus", may not notice.

The question is "what counts as observable stimulus"?

I understand that a complete list can't be given but examples would help.

Would a hidden door that is in line of sight count?

Would a hidden door count that is behind a curtain?

Would you get a reactive check to notice someone hiding by using stealth and/or invisibility?

Press the FAQ button please. If they are going to errata perception I think it makes sense to get as many questions out of the way at one time instead of having one FAQ/errata spawn more FAQ's.

I've seen situations where examples are unfortunately taken as the complete list (I'm looking at you, Efficient Quiver). I'm also concerned about getting into nitpicky details: for example, someone hiding behind a curtain would technically be "not observable", but we have all seen the "feet sticking out from the bottom/large lump in the curtain" shtick in movies/cartoons/games of hide and seek. (And I since I play PFS almost exclusively, this is very important to me.)

I'm wondering if it might be better to use broad concepts like line of sight, line of effect, concealment, and cover for this. Something like:

1) An item that is in line of sight is always observable. So a hidden door could be observable if there's nothing in front of it, but the DC is going to be higher. Likewise, a creature with camouflage is observable as long as it's not hiding behind something.

2) An item that not in line of sight but is in line of effect might be observable, but not to all senses or maybe with cover penalties. So a door (hidden or not) behind a curtain would not observable to sight, but it could potentially be observable to scent (if creatures are behind it) or touch (if the air is colder near it), etc. (Of course, removing the curtain or coming around the side of it changes that.) A creature hiding in the grass could be observable to sight unless it has total cover. (There's at least one PFS scenario where a hiding creature has improved cover for a +8 Stealth bonus.)

3) An item that is line of sight but in an area of concealment might be observable. For example, an item underwater is in line of sight, but depending on how murky the water is, it might have concealment, and weather-based concealment penalties apply. (This should be obvious, but having all the applicable rules at least mentioned/referenced would help a lot.)

4) An item that is not in line of effect is not observable at all.

This is just a rough, pre-coffee first pass, just to make a starting point for discussion. Where does something like the break down? Under what circumstances will it not work? Is it relying on rules that are themselves not clear?


We have an Archivist bard in our area who gives out insight bonuses that stack with normal bard competence bonuses. You could probably dovetail 3 or 4 bard archetypes with stacking bonuses.

And man, the after party would be awesome.


thejeff wrote:
Kazaan wrote:
Identifying a common plant or animal is different from identifying abilities or weaknesses. It's a DC 10 check to see a bear and know that it's a bear. It's DC 9 to know a single fact about what a bear can do (ie. its natural weapons, its potential HP, etc), presuming bears are common foes for you. This might vary based on the profession and background of the character. For a woodsman, Bears are likely a common threat to deal with and a 5+CR check. But for a city-dweller, it'd be a normal 10+CR check. If you grew up and lived in a village near a forest, Bears might be considered a common threat. If you lived in a desert, not so much. Oddly, in the case of the Bear in this case, if you had only 8-9 Int and a bear is considered a common foe for you, you might see a bear and know what it can do (DC 9), but not what it's called (DC 10). It's just a big snarly animal that can attack with its claws and bites.

I'm pretty sure that's not how it works.

The Common/normal/rare base DCs apply to identifying and knowing abilities.
A Black Bear is CR 3.
For your woodsman, that's DC 8 to identify and "remember a bit of useful information" about it.
For the city-dweller, it's a DC 13 for both.

We also have to remember that photographs and videos of black bears aren't plastered all over the Golarion Internet, so that seems pretty reasonable.

For example, twenty-thirty years ago, there was a big problem with people mistaking Newfoundland hounds for bears. That's much less of an issue these days, but it does still happen occasionally. That seems like a decent representation of a shift from DC 13 to DC 10 (for videos and photos making them "common").

Side question:
Does failing a knowledge check ever get you incorrect information (either misidentifying the creature or remembering myths or legends)?
GM: It's a DC 13: what you get?
Player: I got a 5.
GM: So you remember that the best way to tell a brown bear from a grizzly bear is to climb a tree. A brown bear will climb the tree and eat you. A grizzly bear will just push the tree over and eat you...

(Yes, that was just an excuse to tell my favorite bear joke. Ah, Girl Scouts--fond memories.)


This is a pedantic pet peeve that in no way changes the point or strength of your argument:

Pedantic digression:

Gray Warden wrote:

Bombs are considered weapons and can be selected using feats such as Point-Blank Shot and Weapon Focus.

So Bombs are actually weapons

"are considered" =/= "are actually" or "are"

On a one-to-one comparison, if thing A "is considered" thing B, it actually means that thing A is not thing B, but we will treat it as if it were thing B, at least for the discussion at hand.

In a category membership statement (the case at hand), if thing A is actually a member of Category 1, we would also just say, "Thing A is a {name of Category 1}."

In general, the only reason for an author to use the term "are considered" instead of "are" (and the only reason for an editor to let the unnecessary passive voice stand) is to allow some wiggle room in the definition for some reason.

I don't see anything in this particular discussion where any wiggle room might come into play, but it doesn't change the grammatical and rhetorical usage. If we assume the author and editor know what they're doing, then they had a reason to use "are considered" instead of "are"--especially when you realize that in two-column print layout, every letter counts, and 10 letters is a lot of wasted space for sloppy usage.

In a forum where we're always talking about "RAW", it helps if we refer to what's actually written. What's written is "are considered", not "are" or "are actually".

Like I said, it's a digression that has no actual bearing on the discussion at hand, but it's still a pet peeve.


Here's a key question for the Alchemical Weapon ability:

Alchemical Weapon says "but does not splash, spread, or otherwise affect additional targets". Does the fact that the splash is removed change the inherent category of the weapon?

Here's the issue:
Acid flask is on a table with the special quality "splash", which means it's a splash weapon and the Throw Anything feat applies.

If circumstances cause the weapon to not do splash damage in a specific case, is it still considered a "splash weapon"? The text of Throw Anything says "adds his Intelligence modifier to damage done with splash weapons, including the splash damage if any". Clearly, Throw Anything would apply if there were no targets in the splash zone, if the target was in a enclosed area where it couldn't splash, etc.

But what happens when you have abilities that effectively remove the splash from a weapon, like the Concentrated Splash feat? "When you deal a direct hit to a creature with a splash weapon that normally also deals splash damage, you can choose to forgo dealing splash damage..."

Scenario 1) With Concentrated Splash, you elect to not do the splash damage in exchange for additional damage. Is the acid flask still considered a splash weapon for the purposes of Throw Anything?

Scenario 2) Then compare that to Alchemical Weapon. You elect not to do splash damage in exchange for additional range and additional damage. So is the acid flask still considered a splash weapon for the purposes of Throw Anything in this case?

If you answer differently for each scenario, it will help if you explain your reasoning: what makes the two scenarios different?

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

Anonymous Visitor 163 576 wrote:

Wow. I find this whole thread fascinating, mostly because my definition of healing is so completely different. I see healing as a much, much bigger category.

I can recall having this conversation with another player, who was having trouble keeping up healing the party damage as we fought in a burning building. 'You know, if you had cast resist energy instead of cure moderate wounds, I would have absolutely no need of further healing. Instead, you've used three spells in the place of one.

So, I think of healing more in terms of support, and I find clerics are still greatly useful. But not for restoring hit points, that's not the primary problem after level three. Instead, clerics (yes, also oracles, and perhaps a few others) are useful for all of the 'remove awful condition spells'.

It's the cleric spell list that has lesser restoration, remove paralysis, delay poison, and resist energy. Clerics can treat disease and poison with a skill check, and can remove curses. Invisibility purge lets everyone beat down the invisible monster, as can daylight.

A well prepared 'healer' should be able to keep everyone tip-top, and thats worth quite a lot.

I would put things like energy resistance in the "buff" category, but I completely agree with things like lesser restoration, remove paralysis, etc. getting put in the "healing" category.

I tend to think of the "healer" role as "keep the rest of the party functioning". So curing one character's Dex damage might be more important than healing someone else's HP damage. I also use the "rounds remaining" measure: if I think the bad guy is going to last more rounds than the injured party members, I start healing to extend the number of rounds the party can last.

A big part of this strategy, though, depends on the GM. A lot of GMs won't describe the effects you're having on the bad guy, so you have no clue how hurt he is. That makes it kind of hard.

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

Wei Ji the Learner wrote:
Dorothy Lindman wrote:


Wait--you've encountered other players who won't use your wands on you out of combat?

My wand, my charges, party is getting/has gotten MAULED, nearly having to throw wadded up paper at the person who could USE said wand to get them to use it.

'Healer' "Oh, but I don't want to waste your charges!"

Me: "That's what they are THERE for."

'Healer' "uhhhhhh."

It's happened more than once with different people. Much to the exasperation of not only myself and some of the party members, but also the GM running.

Wow. I've never seen that. I'm not sure I can wrap my brain around it.

I guess you could tell them, "I just like the way it feels" or something. Heck, we've used wands of Mage Armor as timers before: "We only have an hour? Here--when this runs out, you'll know it's time to leave."


It will depend on your game more than anything else.

In my experience, Toughness is overvalued. In 15 characters, I've only taken Toughness once: on a 9th level frontliner who had a 10 Con (she had only been knocked out twice in her entire career). I've also only had one character death, on a 3rd level 14 Con character who got crit in the surprise round by an empowered shocking grasp with sneak attack, and the GM rolled near max damage: she went from full health to well beyond dead, and 3 more hit points would not have helped.

For a caster, I'd probably go with Combat Casting, because if you don't provoke from that casting, you won't get hit that round. With Toughness, you might not go unconscious from the AoO, but you can easily lose the spell, which hurts you twice.

But again, it all depends on your game.


wraithstrike wrote:
No double slice is not needed. It would not even do anything because it specifically calls out strength. If it used something generic such as "modifier" then it could apply to any attribute.

I'm not sure I follow: Are you saying that even it a character took Double Slice, they still wouldn't get 1x modifier on their off hand?

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

Wei Ji the Learner wrote:
Jessex wrote:

Honestly, I hate having pure healers in the party since they tend to be so useless. I much prefer effective buffing clerics or the like who can heal ooc if the need arises.

Really after a character has gotten 2pp they should be responsible for their own healing.

Part of what I was going for was an answer to this -- If the people that CAN use the wands REFUSE to out of combat, what good is the 2PP paperweight?

Granted, I've only encountered this at conventions, and the tables had... other issues.

And there were two modules at my last convention where if I *didn't* have the Healing Domain rocking... it would have ended poorly for us.

Wait--you've encountered other players who won't use your wands on you out of combat?

Or do you mean players who won't share their wands?

One dynamic I've seen is that healers are often treated as sidekicks or porters, not characters in their own right. Combined with the tendency of new players to get handed the healer role, you end up with an attitude of "Just stand there and come heal me when I tell you to." It irks me when players constantly refer to a "healbot" or "Kyrabot"--especially when they then complain that they don't see any healers around. (Hm...why might that be, do you think?)

When we're running demos, anytime I hear a player sigh and say, "OK, I guess I'll have to play the healer", I ask the GM to run the demo with the highest number of low HP undead. Sure, Kyra can heal, but have you actually checked her stats to harm undead? She kicks ass.

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

At higher levels, you can end up with dedicated healers who don't ever do anything. More than once, I've seen life oracles start healing the bad guys just so they have something to do. (Of course, I've also seen a gnome oracle use Breath of Life three times on a purchased mount, just because he thought it was cute and didn't want it to die...so that might not mean anything.)

I've met several players who have experienced getting bullied by other players when they played the healer (being told they needed to spend all their gold on healing the other characters, getting yelled at if someone's character went unconscious, etc.). I don't know how prevalent it was, but I think it resulted in kind of strike of sorts. For a while, there were very few (if any) healers in the area, and players playing a pregen would run anyone but Kyra. That pendulum has swung back more to center in the past 1.5-2 years, so it might that the damage has finally worked itself out of the system.

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

James Wygle wrote:
That Crazy Alchemist wrote:
I suppose, as a seasoned DM, I'm just a little irked at being restrained as much as I am from giving my players the best experience possible.

Every one of those GMs who were responsible for those horror stories thought they were "seasoned GMs", and every single one of those GMs thought they were "giving [their] players the best experience possible".

That Crazy Alchemist wrote:
I feel as though the Society heads are cutting off their nose to spite their face.

Let me ask you this: where would you draw the line as to what's okay to change and what isn't? As pauljathome pointed out, even changing the order of encounters can change how much resources the party has to dump; put the final encounter earlier, and they won't have as many spells and abilities left to take on what was supposed to come before that encounter, not to mention possibly forcing them to expend healing they wouldn't ordinarily have to do (seeing as many parties won't bother to use healing items after the final encounter is finished).

How is it fair to that party that they have to dump more consumable resources than they would have to when playing the same scenario with a GM that didn't change things?

Or maybe you make it easier for them. How is it fair to other parties that these guys get a free pass, when their GM ran it as it was supposed to be run?

I understand you think your changes won't cause problems; the problem is that everyone who wants to make changes thinks that. The sad truth is that you'll just have to either trust the professional writers and editors to provide you with at least an adequate adventure, or use the scenarios to run a non-sanctioned home game, where you can make all the changes you desire.

There's also the problem of sometimes the writers plant things in Encounter 2 to help the party with Encounter 4. Switching up those two encounters can be devastating.


PFWiki Scribe wrote:
Gwen Smith wrote:

I would start at the Pathfinder Wiki.

There's even a category for famous arenas.

Hey, and PFWiki includes all of the ones mentioned above! Way to bat a hundred :)

I'm a huge fan of the Pathfinder Wiki: I use whenever I'm making a new character and whenever I'm prepping a scenario. Thanks for all the work!


If any part of you left a threatened square and you moved more than 5 feet, you provoke.

I've seen a lot of GMs adjudicate large (and bigger) creature movement by picking a single corner and tracking the movement from that corner. If there's a corner of the squares you occupy that is in a threatened area, follow that corner through the movement. If it provokes following that corner, then it provokes.


Serisan wrote:
Your offhand would need to be a scimitar, as well, since SG can only affect one weapon selection and can't be taken twice. Dual Slice is not required, nor should it be given that you'll be taking a -4 penalty to hit with both hands even with TWF.

Why can't you take Slashing Grace twice and apply it to a different weapon each time?

Most of the "specific weapon" feats let you take the feat multiple times and apply each one to a different weapon. I don't see anything that prevents this one from acting the same way. Unless you're assuming that unless a feat retains the original wording of Weapon Focus ("you can gain this feat multiple times"), that you can't. The way I read it, the important part of that statement is "its effects do not stack".

Otherwise, that means that no one can ever get Point Blank Master, Close Quarters Thrower, Deadly Stroke, Penetrating Strike, Ranged Study, etc. with more than one weapon.


Serisan wrote:
Your offhand would need to be a scimitar, as well, since SG can only affect one weapon selection and can't be taken twice. Dual Slice is not required, nor should it be given that you'll be taking a -4 penalty to hit with both hands even with TWF.

Why would you not take the -4 penalty for having a one-handed weapon in your off hand? I don't see anything in either Swashbuckler's Finesse or Slashing Grace that changes the normal two-weapon fighting rules.


One thing you might consider is running pre-written modules or scenarios. That way, you don't end up with so many "You put that monster in just because you hate me" issues.

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

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Here's what we put together for our local group:

I've created a folder for Core Campaign information in the Documents folder.

Right now, there are two documents in the folder:
PFSCore_Legal_Items: this is a categorized list of all PFS Legal items from the Core Rulebook, pulled from Archives of Nethys. It also includes links to details on the item, but I thought it might be useful to have a summary offline.

Essential gear: this is a compilation of different recommended items and "must have gear" from the Paizo messageboards. I've indicated whether each item is legal in Core, and where possible I've included a substitute or workaround for items that are not legal in Core.
If you want to add anything to the list or suggest a workaround, just send me a private message.

These are sourced off of the Archive of Nethys. You can also use AoN source filter to show you only stuff from the Core Rulebook. (Items with the symbol of the open road icon are PFS legal.)


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I would start at the Pathfinder Wiki.

There's even a category for famous arenas.


Since tieflings can become paladins, there's not really any reason he couldn't remain a paladin. It's all about what he does and how he acts, not what he's turning into.

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

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GeekSpeaker wrote:
We have 2-3 people at GeekSpeaker that are wanting to try PFS . Our schedules are crazy, so we can't always commit to a set game date, but we'd LOVE to have to some new people to play with! If you're looking to increase your playerbase in GR, I know some other gamers who might be interested.

One thing I love about PFS is the flexibility. Since all the scenarios are episodic, you can drop in and out of games as your schedule demands, and it doesn't destroy continuity. We have players that play 3-4 times a week and players that play once every few months. We have students who show up only on school breaks or over the summer.

Come when you can; we'll miss you when you can't, and we'll be here when you come back. It's all good.


Tiny creatures can enter other creature's squares freely. In our area, we allow a small Mouser with Reduce Person to enter another creature's square using the "tiny creatures" rules.


The important comparison is actually "as many times in a full attack action as you could attack if you were using a bow." It is not "you can count a crossbow as a bow for any feats or abilities".

Also, this phrasing (the "same number of attacks as a bow") is used in several feats, including Quick Draw: "A character who has selected this feat may throw weapons at his full normal rate of attacks (much like a character with a bow)."

I think it's pretty clear that Manyshot is not intended to work with thrown weapons, so I would not give any weight to text comparing the number of attacks to that of a bow in this context.

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

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Neferphras, can you explain what you find funky about it? We might be able to clean up the explanation a bit.

It helps me to think of the wizard/cleric/druid spell lists as Box A, and all the other spell lists as Box B.

You always look in Box A first. If you find the spell in Box A, you find the lowest level for the spell in Box A and use that.

You only look in Box B if you can't find the spell in Box A. You use the lowest level for the spell in Box B.

So for your examples:
Life Bubble: We check Box A (wizard/cleric/druid) and find three copies of Life Bubble: wizard 5, cleric 5, and druid 4. Neither of those levels are available as a potion, so we can't get one. Note: Because we found the spell in Box A, we don't even check Box B.

Bless Weapon: We check Box A (wizard/cleric/druid), but Bless Weapon is not in there. So we check Box B and find one copy of Bless Weapon: Paladin 1. We can get level 1 spells as a potion or oil, so we can get it. (In this case, we have to get it as an oil, because it's cast on an object, not a person, but that's actually irrelevant to the spell list issue.)


claudekennilol wrote:
You can jump if you charge. You cannot jump over an obstacle during a charge because if there is an obstacle you can't declare a charge.

The way we started ruling in our area is "If you cannot fail the Acrobatics check to jump over an obstacle, it doesn't block your path."

If you have a net Acrobatics bonus of 16 after applying circumstance modifier, you can't fail to jump over any obstacle/gap/etc. that requires a DC 17 or less. So it seems reasonable that you could charge over any obstacle that would be a DC 17 or less Acrobatics check.


My barbarian archer uses pheromone arrows and picked up the scent rage power. It's a nice boost.


Kudaku wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

You can two-weapon fight with weapons you Quickdraw.

That is how two-weapon fighting with Thrown weapons work.

Don't throw thrown weapons under the bus, because you don't like this terrible combo.

I don't quite see the proposed problem with TWF and thrown weapons? You need both hands available to use TWF and throwing weapons, right?

Level 3 character with quick draw and rapid shot wants to make a rapid shot TWF attack with throwing daggers. He has 1 (BAB) +1 (rapid shot) +1 (TWF) = 3 attacks. He starts off his turn by drawing two daggers, one in each hand. He throws the right one, draws a new dagger as a free action, throws the left one, draws a new dagger as a free action, then throws another one from either the left or the right hand.

Can he do this?

1) Start his turn with an object in his off hand.
2) Draw a dagger with his main hand as a free action and throw it.
3) Switch the object to his main hand as a free action.
4) Draw a second dagger with his off hand as a free action and throw it.
5) Draw a third dagger (with either hand) as a free action, and throw it.


One big issue you'll have a grappling build is that grappled targets can still full attack you. Any feat that boosts your AC will be helpful (Crane Style is nice, Iron Hide or Cautious Fighter are good if your race allows it). Combine Qiggong Monk with Tetori and you can get Barkskin at level 7.

Equipment Trick (Rope) will let you tie someone up without pinning them at only a -5 instead of a -10. It's not as good as Export Captor, but it doesn't require a two-level dip in another class.

Extra Ki is always helpful, especially after you pick up the Grab ability at 8th level: 2 ki points to grab larger targets will add up quickly. (If you can get a Ring of Ki Mastery, this keeps this down to 1 ki point, which helps.)

Another thing to consider is what you can do to opponents who can't be grappled. Ghost Touch amulet can help there, but some straight out damage feats like Power Attack are useful.

A level dip into Brawler will get you Flurry back, which will then let you get the Grabbing Style tree at the earlier progression instead of just BAB. (And Martial Flexibility is a great way to swap out your feats on the fly.)

The True Strike approach is interesting. If you want to try that, you can also get True Strike in a single round with a Wand Wielder magus: Use Spell Combat to get your hit at +20 in round 1; use grab to initiate the grapple, then in round 2, just cast as a standard action and then tie up as a move action at +20. Wands don't provoke and they don't require a concentration check.

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

Oh, Ryzoken--that's a really good point. I'm going to be running a couple of Core tables at PaizoCon, and I'll need to watch out for that.


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I've posted my Damage Calculator Spreadhsheet and the instructions to our local group's share folder (look for the DamageCalculator folder). The instructions document contains a full explanation of the math and how the formulas are derived.


Turin the Mad wrote:
Anything with an attack roll that deals hp damage is a weapon whether that weapon is a knuckle sandwich, a vorpal sword, a machine gun or a polar ray. How is this ambiguous?

It becomes ambiguous because many effects or feats treat different categories of "weapons" differently: Align weapon, Magic weapon, Deflect arrows, Missile Shield, Ray Shield, etc.

And these effects draw a line between natural vs. manufactured weapons--which are both clearly "weapons" in the Fighter Weapon Groups table, so that raises the question of whether things that are much, much further afield than "natural weapons" would still count as "weapons" for the purposes of any given effect.

Basically, it comes down to this: if all "things that use an attack roll and deal hp damage" are equally "weapons", then we wouldn't need descriptions like "A monk's unarmed strike is treated as both a manufactured weapon and a natural weapon for the purpose of spells and effects that enhance or improve either manufactured weapons or natural weapons."

(Note: Here, I'm just explaining why people could find it ambiguous. I'm not actually making an argument one way or another. I just think it's important to try to understand the other person's point of view before declaring something "obvious". I don't believe that any written text in history has ever been 100% clear without even a single alternate interpretation.)

*** RPG Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

Most of our GMs or store coordinators get there early for game days to answer any questions, check characters for newer players, etc. When new FAQs come out or playtests roll into actual content, we'll take more time before games to talk about them. But once the tables are mustered, there's just no time for detailed character audits.

We try to schedule audit sessions before major conventions, but we usually only do full audits on request (e.g., by the player or a GM who had questions about the character). I have seen one instance where some new players at a location hadn't leveled up their characters, so we scheduled a session to audit the players at that location, but that was pretty unique circumstance (one of the regular GMs had built characters for a lot of new players; when he moved away, the newest of these players didn't know what to do).

More often, we find errors that hurt the character instead of help them, so it's usually to the player's benefit to get their character audited.


I usually use traits to pick up class skills that you don't otherwise get: Use Magic Device might be useful, depending on the rest of the party.

For this character, Wisdom in the Flesh might be a nice trait--maybe with Acrobatics, Climb, or Swim.

I'm not sure I would spend the feat on Elven Accuracy. Your Zen Archer can pick up Improved Precise Shot at level 6, which ignores all but total concealment. If you can combine that with a Seeking Bow, you will never worry about concealment in your career.

If you go that route, you might want to trade out Elven Accuracy for Improved Initiative (instead of Reactionary), or pick up Opening Volley, Dodge, or Point Blank Shot. I also like Combat Reflexes for a Zen Archer, because no one expects the archer to take an AoO--much less 2.


I don't have my spreadsheet open, but usually, you will do more damage Power Attacking unless the to-hit penalty from Power Attack drops your attack percentage below about 30%. There's some variation with iteratives and such, but it's a good rule to follow.


I wouldn't let you take two AoOs for the same action unless there was something in either one of the abilities that said something along the lines of "this AoO is in addition any other AoO provoked by the action."

BTW, Mouser combined with anything that grants teamwork feats plus the teamwork feat Paired Opportunists is a devastating combination.


Well, the bloodline power just gives you the natural attack: you still have to hit with the claws to do damage, so I would agree with your GM here.

I think Feral Combat training is more likely to get you what you want, especially if your GM will let you flurry with your claws once you grow them.

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