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JOHN DICKERSON's page

FullStarFullStar Pathfinder Society GM. 49 posts (1,249 including aliases). 1 review. No lists. No wishlists. 10 Pathfinder Society characters.


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I never track encumberance. But I do apply common sense to it. My Str 7 sorceror carries very little beyond what he is wearing, while my friends 18 str cavalier can carry a lot more.

As a GM, I tell my players that I won't worry about emcumberance as long as they don't abuse it.

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Malag wrote:


Also, offering sacrifices is evil act most likely, so only neutral and good outsiders would be considered. Maybe even Imp.

Sacrificing people would definitly be an evil act, but animal sacrifice shouldn't tick my alignment down to evil.

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Malag wrote:

@John

I don't know if you can Bind same outsider over and over again, but it seems very hazardous to your character's health to me if you do it.

My sorceror has an 8 wisdom. He thinks it's a great idea.

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Sober Caydenite wrote:
JOHN DICKERSON wrote:

Per the rules of pathfinder society, I would need to be higher level, know continual flame, and have heighten spell to do that, since you can't hire NPC casters to cast spells or make scroll with meta magic effects applied to spells.

Also, the continual flame would only supress darkness effects within the radius that torchlight would shine on.

I can get a scroll with 2 castings of Daylight on it for 2PP. A much more immediate solution to the problem. And it would probably throw penalties on most creatures that would use the deeper darkness trick.

Where do the rules state that you can't pay for NPCs to cast metamagicked spells? The only reference to NPC's spell casting in the campaign guide says to go by the rules in the Core book, which in turn simply gives a formula of (spell level X caster level) X 10 GP plus expensive material component costs and/or 1/10th of any expensive focus.

Check the FAQ. It explicitly says you can't buy meta magic spellcasting services.

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Okay, so Daylight radius meets Deeper Darkness raduis == both effects in the radius temporarily negated. That serves my purpose just fine. I think common sense

For those of you continuing to rag on the fact that I can't read a scroll in the dark, notice my earlier answer to this gag. It turns out that it's not difficult to move out of the area of effect of spells like darkness and deeper darkness, read a scroll targeting your buddy with a giant sword, and then enjoy the slaughter that follows.

Haunt wise - I've never encountered a haunt in PFS, but I've seen haunts in other Pathfinder products. One that comes to mind keeps shooting out a Scorching Ray every round as long as it has targets to shoot, once it's active. It's that kind of haunt that I want to have some answer to, since I'm pretty sure that our rogue can't pick the lock to the door next to the haunt at the same time he's being burned to death.

It seems to be the consensis here that there really aren't any good answers to haunts that I didn't list off in my first post. Or am I missing something.

Can anyone think of any other contingencies that I should have a plan for. I'm grabbing Glitter Dust next level to deal with Invisibility. Magic Missile will deal with incorpeality, and I'm not sure there are great options to deal with Golems (Acid Arrow?).

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From Lesser Planar Binding
"You make a Charisma check opposed by the creature's Charisma check. The check is assigned a bonus of +0 to +6 based on the nature of the service and the reward. If the creature wins the opposed check, it refuses service"

At first I didn't see where this could be ruled as to giving the creature a bonus on its check, though now that I read it again, I can see how non-specific grammar could be read either way. It's not clear which check "the check" refers to in the second sentence, although if it was meant to apply to both checks it should say "these checks" instead. Rather than argue about the authors intent or the rules of grammar, I would say this is up to the GM on a case by case basis.

I think it would be pretty reasonable to not allow more than one bound outsider per scenario. Fits under the same vein as not being able to have more than one animal companion/bought combat trained animal.

On a non PFS note, I don't see why Binding the same Bearded Devil over and over again, and paying him in equipment he can use to be more badass in combat would be a form of payment it wouldn't want. What Bearded Devil wouldn't want a +1 Cold Iron Glaive?

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Per the rules of pathfinder society, I would need to be higher level, know continual flame, and have heighten spell to do that, since you can't hire NPC casters to cast spells or make scroll with meta magic effects applied to spells.

Also, the continual flame would only supress darkness effects within the radius that torchlight would shine on.

I can get a scroll with 2 castings of Daylight on it for 2PP. A much more immediate solution to the problem. And it would probably throw penalties on most creatures that would use the deeper darkness trick.

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Yeah, Deeper Darkness is still a problem. Been considering grabbing a scroll or two of Daylight to counter it. I need to check if that's on the sorceror/wizard spell list, and if not what the UMD DC would be to use it.

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I had seen a link to that page before, but all those modules are tier 7-8 at the lowest.

Are season 0 modules legal to play? I thought they were all written for 3.5 dnd rules.

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Jiggy wrote:
Aside: You might want to re-think those scrolls of darkvision...

Heh, my friends joke about the usefulness of a scroll of light in another game we play.

But scrolls of Darkvision last for 3 hours, and most darkness inducing spells have an area that I can walk out of, cast the scroll on our melee beast, and then smile as he marches in and slaughters the jerk hiding in the darkness. It's also a good combo for when our tiefling uses his own darkness ability.

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So I am playing a Cheliax Sorceror who plans on using Planar Binding at higher levels, and I was wondering how those spells work in PFS.

I know that any creature that I bind goes away at the end of the scenario.

I assume that I can't keep binding the same creature (assuming I know it's name), and paying it with useful combat gear that it will still have the next time I bind it.

Does Augmented Summoning apply to creatures I bind?

Can I get away with not paying the creature by just beating it at the opposed charisma checks?

Are there any other restrictions the PFS rules place on Planar Binding?

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I have this feeling that there is going to be a haunt in a PFS module where the "running away" tactic means that we won't be able to complete the adventure, though I don't fault you logic in the slightest. I'm mostly looking for a way to deal with a haunt after it has activated, because it can be pretty hard to know that it's a haunt right off the bat, before it's done anything.

I'm going to wait until my character levels up and takes ranks in knowledge religion before acquiring a haunt contingency plan, but I'm running low on ideas.

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So me and my friends play a group of Cheliaxian PCs and are really into roleplaying the characters as trueblue nationals. I was wondering if people had any suggestions of what modules would be fun to play? We're pretty new to PFS, and are playing through "The Devil you Know" series, and just played "Citadel of Fire". We're on the edge between 1-2 and 3-4 tier right now, so adventures in that range would be what we're looking for.

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So I play a sorceror in pathfinder society, with a pretty regular group of my friends. I've taken it as my job in the party to be the person who has answers to the random tricky situations we come up against. I have burning hands to deal with swarms, scrolls of gust of wind for obscuring mist, and scrolls of darkvision for dealing with darkness.

What I'm not sure how to deal with are haunts. Our group doesn't have a positive energy channeling cleric, so I'm not sure what a good answer to haunts would be.

Would disrupt undead work on haunts? Holy water? Are haunt siphons worth the cost?

Any help would be appriciated. Also, if anyone can think of tricky situations I haven't thought of, let me know.


My playgroups also use a russian accents for our Cheliaxians.

We do Brevoy as more Eastern European, and Cheliax as more Mother Russia.


Any GM reference material for this part of the adventure path?


If other people wish to fund building in the PC's cities, that's one thing. But if the State uses funds to build an inn or a magic shop, those buildings belong to the State.

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As someone new to pathfinder society, I'm going to repeat my earlier question. Are the post level 11 modules, like EoT, something that can only run at conventions, or can they be played at local or home events?

John


I like most of those changes, but Gibs has a poor life expectancy once the adventure gets into motion. PC's tend kill people who come at them with giant fricking razors.


Did you tone down the Abberant Promeathean? Because as written, it pretty much kills one PC a round when it full attack and grabs then constricts on the second attack.


I don't see any problem with building a monestary or magic shop in town and saying the PC's own them. Just be sure to explain to the wizard that it doesn't mean he gets the magic items the magic shop produces for free. His employed wizards won't work for nothing.

Technically, the PC's own the entire town/kingdom.


This is a classic horror trick. Don't fill in the details for the players, and their imagination will come up with the most terrible possible explaination without you haven't to say anything.


The leadership idea is the only reasonable way to do this.

However, remember that the Beast has a very child like mind, so he probably not going to want to leave his father far behind him.

If you let the PC's take the beast, as written in the adventure path, with them, he will outshine all of them in combat, and the rest of the path will be signifigantly less fun.

Fighting werewolfs? The Beast can't be diseased.
Fighting necromancers? The beast is immune to thier spells.
Fighting undead? The Beast is immune to their status draining effects.


If I was playing in a game, and discovered the GM let himself be hoodwinked by this kind of cheese, I would quit the game and refuse to play in another game that person ran.

If I was GMing a game, and a player seriously submitted this idea to me, he would be kicked out of the game and never asked to play in a game I ran again.

Your other players fun will be ruined by allowing this character to break one of the coolest aspects of this adventure path: Things here are awful, and it's terrifying because there a good chance your character will die.

Your fast healing, silver DR super damphir is never going to be in serious threat of death. His DR is going to be mitigating more than half the damage he takes every swing in the first book, and he's going to be healed to full between every encounter. Playing this kind of character in a survival horror setting is completely missing the entire point of the setting.


Windspirit wrote:
Riuken wrote:
JOHN DICKERSON wrote:
Windspirit wrote:

We had a VERY interesting time with the Paladin. He is played extremely well.

KEVIN STAY OUT ;)
** spoiler omitted **

If a paladin in my game killed someone soley because they pinged on dectect evil, that paladin would not have any paladin powers until they fully atoned for that murder. Detect evil shouldn't shouldn't replace a paladin's moral judgement.
This is where that whole lawful part of LG comes in. Funny how often paladins ignore half of their alignment.
Your right. However the person WAS also an evildoer and on the slaughter list. Thats why he got off lightly.

I guess I've never really agreed with the DnD mentality that killing an evil creature is always a good action, no matter what.

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Where do you find the chronical sheets for the books?


Windspirit wrote:

We had a VERY interesting time with the Paladin. He is played extremely well.

KEVIN STAY OUT ;)
** spoiler omitted **

If a paladin in my game killed someone soley because they pinged on dectect evil, that paladin would not have any paladin powers until they fully atoned for that murder. Detect evil shouldn't shouldn't replace a paladin's moral judgement.


I would not allow a character to play in my carrion crown game with either constant detect undead, or DR/silver.

Also, your change would be DR/ silver OR magic, not silver AND magic. Silver and Magic DR can only be overcome with a magic silver weapon.

I would never allow a player to makes their own customer race from the Race book. If the players wants to play something customer, the DM should create it for him. This kind of powergaming will make the game less fun for everyone else.

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There are two monk orders in Cheliax already. One is the Sisterhood of the Golden Eyrines, and the other is devouted to Iomedea and I forget the name, and they are great rivals. More information can be found in the Cheliax nation splatbook. There is an amazing feat for monks in that book too, that gives your unarmed attacks 1d4 bleed damage by copying the fighting styles of certain devils.

I like your idea with the island. Since you know that it would just be roleplaying fluff, I would say go for it. The island could easily be off the coast of Cheliax. Of course it would not be official cannon in the pathfinder world, but there's nothing in offical cannon that says that there couldn't be an island monestary off the coast of Cheliax.

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While Pathfinder isn't a low magic setting, it isn't a high magic setting either. Those spells are not so commonplace that morality assumes everyone has access to them. Remember, abilities that adventurers possess are not something within the reach of common people. Think about how many Day Job checks a 1st level would have to make to earn enough to get access to those kind of spells. And they would have to spend the gold on spellcasting instead of feeding their family.

In a setting like DnD's Ebberon, where spellcasting is common and part of everyday life, perhaps the moral compass would change to reflect this.

Maybe for someone with access to those spells, the arguement would be true, but Pathfinder has an objective moral alignment system. Good and Evil are inherently defined things.

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Saint Caleth wrote:

Yes, and all the contrived situations that you can try to make up to justify it in certain circumstances don't help because of the existence of magic which can be used to make someone give up information without torture at all (charm and dominate as well as things like zone of truth).

The use of such magic is something that even a paladin can do, but it is still just as wrong as torture by our modern moral standards.

The existance of magic doesn't change the moral compass of the world. By your arguement, murder wouldn't be evil because people can get raised from the dead.

I agree that magical compulsion and charm would be considered wrong by today's moral standards.

I don't think all torture is inherently an evil act. It's definitly not a good act, though.

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I was wondering if Spiked Chain was an exotic weapon the Tian Weapon Training boon could grant proficiency with. It's not explicitly listed on the table mentioned by the boon, but it is listed under Tian weapons that Lantern Lodge PCs can spend prestige points to gain profiency with.


I would really enjoy playing an Adventure Path set in Cheliax.

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Are these modules only available at conventions?

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so 7 level 2 PCs(APL3) can play subtier 4-5, but 7 level 1 PCs(APL2) can't play subtier 3-4? Is there a table somewhere that explains this, or am I missing something.

2 level 1 PC's and 5 level 2 PCs would be APL 12/7 + 1 = 2.714
Could they play tier 3-4?

What APL would 2 level 1 PCs and 4 level 2 PCs be?

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I would say that doing this on a regular basis would prompt and aligment change towards evil.

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GPFSOP, Page 32:
Some scenarios or special events offer more than two subtiers. In these cases, no PC can play at a subtier more than 1 step away from her character level.

This does not say that a character can not play at a subtier more than 1 'level' away from their character level. It says if there are more than 2 subtiers, they can't play one more than 1 'step' away from their character level. If one sub tier is 1-2, the next is 3-4, and the next is 5-6, the subtier that is one step from 1-2 is subtier 3-4. Subtier 5-6 would be 2 steps away from subtier 1-2.

The wording on this is make even more clear by the fact that this rule only applies if there are more than 2 subtiers. with 2 or less subtiers, it would be impossible to go more than one step away from character level.

I don't see another way to reasonably define 'step' in this context. Other wise, at level 1, you would be defining the subtier that is at your character level, subtier 1-2, as the exact same subtier that is 1 step away from your character level. if A is one step away from B, A cannot be the same as B.

[addition upon realizing that a campaign admin posted earlier in the thread] If it the intention of the campaign administration that you are not allowed to play a more difficult scenario for greater rewards and greater challenge, then that rule needs to be changed. Because even if you defined 'step' as 'level', if I'm level 2, then subtier 3-4 is blatently not more than 1 level away from my level.

As organized play, we are obligated to follow the rules as written for the campaign, not what we think the authors of those rules really mean.

I might have been at the table in question in the original post, and we've played up for at least 2-3 modules, with different GMs. Playing the 1-2 subtier encounters with parties of 6-7 experienced players would not have been a fun experience. Playing the 3-4 subtier encounters was very much fun, full of drama and tension and a real risk of failure, and created memorable expeirences that we've been talking about for weeks.

The GM explained that adventures from that particular season were childishly simple at tier 1-2, and that in later seasons that problem had fixed itself. Everyone at the table agreed to play up in difficulty.

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I'm pretty sure it's very illegal in Cheliax to worship a devil other than Asmodeus, but I don't remember where I read that.


I really like the first two parts of the adventure path. It is my opinion that you should run it as a whole at a later point in time, so you all get the full experience. Carrion Crown is a very different kind of campaign than your typical pathfinder game, so jumping in, in the middle, sounds problematic to me.


From my experience playing and DMing, fights with more enemies with less hit points tend to be more exciting that fights against few enemies with lots of hit points. But increasing the numbers does increase the damage output of the monsters, but 8 players can soak a lot more damage than 4.

However, more enemies plus a lot of players means combat will take a lot of time.

At level 1, normal zombies are a scary encounter, though. They hit really hard and have a ton of HP and you don't always have a slashing weapon to overcome their DR. When you only have 8-12 hp, 1d6+3 will mess you up fast.


Wow, those are amazing. Good job, sir.


While I agree completely with most of the GM's who have said that most of the races you have listed don't make very much sense for the campaign, for pretty much the same reasons they listed, I'm very curious to see how your game goes.

However, I do feel the need to stress one point made above. With the way the people of the land of Ustalav are presented in the Adventure Path, it is very easy for PC's to start to question whether these people are worth risking their lives to save. In the first two adventure books you have townsfolk that start out incredibly unfriendly, who turn into violent mobs if the PC's start doing thing that they don't like. In the game that I'm running, with three human PC's and one half elf, they quickly started to get feed up with the BS from the townsfolk, and racial predujuce wasn't even on the table.

While I really enjoy playing and GMing for monsterous races like Goblins, I have a lot of trouble seeing them have a proper place in this kind of story. But I can't wait to see what you end up doing with such as varied and fantastic PC party.


Of course, my bias against life oracles is showing through in the above post. As far as I'm concerned, if you're going to play a life oracle you might as well just be cheating.


Allowing a Life Oracle into the Carrion Crown Adventure Path will spoil a lot of the horror/suspense that is the entire point of the campaign. In HoH, having charisma as main stat + being about to channel positive energy will make most of the prison a cake walk.

When I ran this adventure I even banned the cleric class. A couple PC's ended up dying (mostly resulting from bad rolls and bad tactics), but more important than that, the character were actually scared of this terrible haunted prison that they had to cleanse to save the town.

Of course you can run the path however you want, but my advice would be to really try and milk the horror aspect as much as you can. The way I did so was to limit access to channeling positive energy and to strictly limit the game to 4 pc's, no matter how much my other friends wanted to play too.

Carrior Crown is a very, very different kind of campaign than Kingmaker was. In later modules the PC's will be strained for resources and time and rest and facing threats greater than they can just go up and smash head on.


You're character not knowing how to deal with the haunts initially is actually pretty much expected in the module, and one of the reasons this adventure path has a horrow survival feel to it. You might want to do some research or talk to people in town about what's going on.

That said, this adventure path actually requires your GM be very prepared. A gentle suggestion that he take a close look at the mechanics and encounters in the prison and think about how the party will interact with them might be helpful.

Bonus Hint: Holy water and ghosts don't mix well

Mechanically, the Hardness on animated objects works pretty much identicle to how DR/Adamantine works, if I understand it correctly.


That is a quite strange party for the swordlords to hire to explore the stolen lands, but it sounds fun.

I raw 'we be goblins' as a drunken birthday present for my room-mate, and most everyone ended up killing each other at the end. It was great.

I can understand how much fun the wrestler inspired character could be to have at the table. I once played a bard/barbarian who's only perform skill was bragging about how awesome he was in third person.


I concur. Having one PC as a semi-monsterous race might make for interesting RP, but half orc allows for that in the core races. An entire party of semi-monsterous PC should result in angry mobs being formed.

Hell, I'm of the opinion that non-human races should be less trusted by the insular townsfolk. There's what, one demi-human in Ravengro?

I'll admit my opinions on the matter are heavily influenced by the Ravenloft D&D campaign setting, but it's very clear that Carrion Crown is attempting to capture the same mood and feel as Ravenloft.

I've actually banned "cleric" from my group because it signifigantly ups the tension and adds a lot of the survival horror feel of the adventures.


My advice is don't run for 7 players. It will be less fun for everyone involved, most importantly you. I am running for 4 people, and have had to tell half a dozen other friends who begged to play that there wasn't room for them. You're the DM, it's your job to be in control of the game, and sometimes that means having to be the bad guy.

With a lot of other games you might be able to get away with extra players, but you'll ruin the entire gothic horror feel of this adventure path by allowing so many players.


Inkwell wrote:
Trinite wrote:
I do think that part of the adventure is kinda poorly put together in the book. I'm always having to flip back and forth between the NPC descriptions, the event descriptions, and the room descriptions for the Lodge. It's a little aggravating for me as a GM.
While Windspirit has his own guide (and a very helpful one at that), I broke down and organized my own (Here). I will, however, not be using it. I seek to work on an "Ascanor Lodge: Expanded" version for myself. I don't know how well this will work out but I could work around to uploading the Expanded version if anyone is interested.

The link to Windspirits guide leads to a thread about trial of the beast. Is there a GM reference PDF for Broken Moon available anywhere, because I'm dying to see it. Any help would be appriciated.

Also, Vrood's write up lists him as having Channel Negative energy 7 times a day, but I can't figure out how a necromancer wizard/agent of the grave can pick up channeling like a cleric. Any suggestions, or was this perhaps another change from an ealier version of agent of the grave.


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