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Hal Maclean's page

Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 16. 474 posts. 1 review. No lists. No wishlists.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 16, Contributor

10 people marked this as a favorite.

This is the third attempt I've made to post something. Each time I end up deleting it after the first few sentences.

Everything seems trite and cliched.

And then it just hit me.

Mike would know how to fix it.

Maybe he'd casually cut out a sentence and merge two others into one. Or he might send it back for revision with a couple offhand comments that would make me slap my forehead and wonder why I didn't see the problem myself.

He was a wonderful editor. He made everything better. And of course, he was a fantastic writer in his own right.

The thing with great talent is how much we are willing to forgive. For most people, if they can produce what others can't, if they prove, time after time, that we need them more than they need us, they let the darkness out. And we accept that as the price for the wonders they create.

The thing about Mike is he wasn't like that. Even with all his gifts he was still warm and generous and filled with joy.

There's a thread in my email stretching out over months that began as just another rejection. I replied with a joke. He replied with a joke. And then a witty observation. More banter from me. And more banter from him. Every now and then I commented on how weird it was that he was taking time out of day to keep a perfunctory rejection email thread alive. By then he must have realized he didn't need to salve my feelings but he kept on hitting reply.

I wrote a lot of things for Mike. He was my favorite editor. Everything he touched came out better. And, in my own way, I feel like I came out better too.

I'm sad that I never got to meet him in person. But I'm ever so glad that I got to know him even if just at a distance.

I can only imagine how much pain the people who actually knew him the flesh must feel.

Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 16

3 people marked this as a favorite.

I've actually been running a Hermean Exiles campaign since Christmas. So far so good.

It's a great premise for a campaign. Especially for players that don't know a lot about Golarion. A group of 16-year olds kicked off their island home and dumped on the mostly legendary mainland (or the "Outside" as Hermeans call it).

I had a lot of fun with a series of "What every Hermean knows about..." essays as part of the campaign documents.

A quote from one of them:

Tips on dealing with them: Ulfen require a firm but understanding hand. Speak slowly and clearly to them. Use small words and gestures to help them grasp difficult concepts. People unused to dealing with Ulfen often mistake confusion for disagreement. Don’t make that gaffe. If an Ulfen seems to argue with you be patient but firm. Speak more slowly and use simpler words. Explain what he is to do and make sure he understands that you won’t tolerate any backtalk.

Some of my players have really enjoyed the experience of figuring out what parts of Hermean general knowledge they can take at face value and what they can't.

Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 16

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Nebten wrote:

Hey all. I have a question about Rheumy Refrain in Blood of Fiends on page 28.

It states:

"If the target fails its Will save, whenever it attempts any action other than moving up to its base speed or making a single melee attack (but not both) in a single round, it must succeed at a concentration check (DC 10 + your Charisma modifier) to avoid wasting its action because of a fit of coughing and sneezing."

My question is, how is a Concentration check made for non-casters (Fighters, rogues, barbarians, etc)? Is this an errror in the print or is there a rule I'm not aware of non-caster Concentration checks?

If it is an error, what check/saving throw is used to replace it?

First, sorry to leave you waiting. This got developed after it left my hands so I was hesitant to step in right away.

I think it's simplest to handle non-spellcasters with a level check + Con modifier. My rationale for this is that it's the default for everybody. However, spellcasters receive special training on how to "play through the pain" which allows them to make a concentration check instead.

Hope that helps. :)

Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 16

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Colin Credric wrote:

Quick question about the keepsakes describes in the Halflings of Golarion sourcebook. The overview mentions that that allow divine casters new options when casting certain spells. But do they allow the halfling to cast a spell they ordinarily wouldn't have access to?

For example, I would like to give my character a Harvester's Pouch or a Persuasive Arrowhead since they match his deity best. But he's a cleric and the spells are for druids/rangers (Goodberry and Charm Animal). Do the keepsakes allow him to cast those specific spells?

Thanks in advance!

That wasn't the intent when I wrote the article. The keepsakes are foci which give you the option of casting one of your spells in a different way to bring about a different effect. They don't give you access to spells you couldn't already cast.

Sorry. :)

Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 16

1 person marked this as a favorite.

"Enemy Hammer" was my spell (one of a couple of things I did to make it into the preview). I don't want to step on Jason's toes but I'll quickly drop in and say the intent when I wrote it was if you make your save nothing happens to you that round (act normally).

Hats off, some very creative people are coming up with some really cool ways to use this spell. :)

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