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Kobold

Jiggy's page

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32. RPG Superstar 6 Season Marathon Voter, 7 Season Dedicated Voter, 8 Season Dedicated Voter. FullStarFullStar Pathfinder Society GM. 19,083 posts (21,657 including aliases). 17 reviews. 4 lists. 1 wishlist. 13 Pathfinder Society characters. 23 aliases.


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TriOmegaZero wrote:
I don't know how to make it any clearer.

QFT. This seems to be a running theme in the current dialogue.

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Seth Dresari wrote:
That Bounded Accuracy thing sounds cool, but it also takes the uniqueness out of certain items, traits and/or feats that provide bonuses to certain skills, including but not limited to circumstance bonuses.

Those things are gone, too. And let's be honest: in a game where the math is a pile of +1s and +2s all adding up to be a level-appropriate total, there's nothing "unique" about those individual pluses. By contrast, in a game where the math is your stat mod plus a binary yes/no for adding your proficiency bonus, the small handful of things that actually further modify the math are far more "unique" than any given brick in Pathfinder's mathwall.

In 5E, the fact that the rogue can double his proficiency bonus on a couple of skills is actually special. In 5E, the fact that some bards can add half their proficiency bonus to every skill they're not already proficient in is actually meaningful. In 5E, bless can be your math-changer for the whole game, instead of fading into insignificance around 4th level or so.

The pluses you accrue in Pathfinder aren't unique. The pluses in 5E are.

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thejeff wrote:

OTOH, powergamers do exist. The multiclassing approach he's talking about was more of a 3.5 thing, since PF boosted the base classes, but in some cases it's still real. People really do plan out builds for power with little concern for the character reasoning behind it. They do look for unexpected synergies between different classes or between class abilities and feats or spells or any other powers.

These things do happen. They're not a figment of anyone's imagination.

Can you point me to anyone who suggested otherwise? Because what I keep seeing happen in discussions like these is this:

Bob: If you do X, it's a pretty strong indication of Y.
Alice: No it's not, there are LOTS of reasons to do X, and most of them are the opposite of Y. My whole group X's every game and there's only one Y among us.
Carl: Well it's not like Y doesn't exist; they totally do, and that's definitely the thing that needs to be focused on right now, much more than Bob's assertion that Y is almost always the reason for X.

Yes, these players exist, but I think constantly reminding people of their existence is less important than reminding people not to berate each other.

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Aniuś the Talewise wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
Aniuś the Talewise wrote:
Jiggy wrote:

Some dude: Doing X means you're really being unreasonable.

Me: I don't think there's anything wrong with doing X.

Some dude: Oh, I totally agree, nothing wrong with doing X.

Me: Oh, maybe I misunderstood you then. Carry on.

Some dude: A person really must've missed the boat to actually do X.

Repeat a few times, then:

Me: I'm confused. Whenever you're asked directly about X, you say it's totally legit. But whenever you're discussing X directly, you keep bashing it like somebody would have to be really messed up to do X. You're contradicting yourself, sometimes even from one breath to the next. What gives?

Some dude: What are you talking about? Of course it's fine to do X; I even explicitly said so! Are you not bothering to pay attention to what I'm saying?

I am so confused by this.

I imagine it's a phenomenon similar to how someone can know that racism is bad, but if they drive through a new part of town and all the pedestrians are black they conclude it's a "rough neighborhood" and try to avoid it, and don't even know that's how they came to that conclusion.

EDIT: Or like how there was a study where a man and a woman would have a conversation, and they'd both think the woman did most of the talking, when actually (per the recording) the man did most of the talking.

People are pros at cognitive dissonance.

Related (I think) to this is the fact that I keep seeing posts (seems like more lately, but I could just be noticing them more) where people say nasty things about others, then end with a one- or two-line disclaimer about it's totally okay for you to be the kind of dirty worthless scumbag I just finished describing. And if you take offense, I'll come down hard on you, because I just said that it was totally fine for you to be that way, so how could you possibly take offense?

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Mykull, let me see if I can help explain some issues with your earlier post, a bit more clearly and softly than some others have done.

Mykull wrote:
Upho, each class has its own particular niche. There is a great deal of fluff before the mechanics of each one. When one pulls from many different sources, one is generally indicating that they care less for the motives and drives behind that class than they are interested in the one cool mechanic that is derived from a dip into that class. That is just one way “a player that creates his/her PC 'by pulling from a lot of different books' tell you [me] that the player is likely 'much more interested in ROLLplaying than ROLEplaying”?

You are incorrect here, in two different ways.

First, you are incorrect that the presence of multiple classes/options in one character means that the player is ignoring each class's non-mechanical description. Your assertion would only be true if the descriptions of the classes were mutually-exclusive. However, this is not the case. It is entirely possible for a single character to exemplify the descriptions of, say, the cleric and the slayer classes. There are very, very few combinations of classes (or other options) where a character could not fit all the descriptions at once. Therefore, your assertion that dipping means disregarding class descriptions is wrong.

Second, you are incorrect that someone who does disregard the written descriptions of their classes is therefore also disregarding roleplay in general. The described standard is not the only way to play a given class, or combination of classes. There is an infinite number of roleplay concepts out there, while the number of roleplay concepts embodied by the classes' descriptions are extremely finite. As such, what is a player to do when they come up with a roleplay concept that isn't described at the front of any class description? Just not play it? No, they go looking for whatever will help them produce the character they want to roleplay, which may well mean dipping multiple classes and pulling features from multiple books. Thus, the thing you say indicates a preference of "rollplaying" is very often actually a sign of a devotion to roleplaying.

Now, related to the above is how you expressed the things you were wrong about: that whole "rollplay vs roleplay" thing? It's got a long history of being weaponized. Lots of people have been attacked for years under that banner. And the perpetrators are usually making the same (or nearly the same) errors you did. The similarity is enough to make it very reasonable to draw the conclusion that you too are aiming to assert your superiority. (I myself am not even convinced of your innocence; after all, you knew the term, so thinking you somehow managed to learn it without knowing that it's primarily an elitist put-down is a bit suspect; but I'm trying really hard to give you the benefit of the doubt for now.) So if you're honestly not looking to put anybody down, then I recommend just dropping the word "rollplay" from your vocabulary entirely.

Mykull wrote:

Demeaning to whom? To you? I named no one. I referred to a type of person who power-games but won't admit it. Beyond my 'emotional jerk reflex' I draw on my decades of gaming experience to separate the wheat from the chaff; in this case, the deeply-moving back story that happens to be optimized and the min/maxed pastiched whatever that has as much 'life' to it as Frankenstein's monster.

“Odious and unforgivable”?!? I never said that. I didn't even come close. I pointed out that there is a type of player out there that cares only about mechanics, about the table-top tactical miniature game and not about story, but they hide this fact. I feel that these types of players are becoming more common. It isn't my play-style, but hardly unforgivable.

I'm going to once again try to give you the benefit of the doubt here and presume you don't see what you just did.

"Separate the wheat from the chaff", with "wheat" and "chaff" referring to playstyles, is absolutely demeaning to everyone who could possibly be described as whatever you label as "chaff". "Chaff" literally refers to the junk you throw away and need to get away from the good stuff. That's where the expression comes from. That is very mean of you to say that.

The line "min/maxed pastiched whatever" is pretty dismissive. It's like the subject is such utter nonsense that it doesn't even merit normal identification/description. It's just a... thing.

"That has as much 'life' to it as Frankenstein's monster" is another serious put-down. Any reasonable person who stops a moment to look at it can see why.

So in the very post where you contest the assertion that you were putting anyone down, you launched a rapid-fire three-point insult. Now, go back and look at the terminology and expressions you used in your earlier post, and hopefully you can see why Kirth Gersen summarized your sentiments with the terms "odious and unforgivable". That is indeed exactly what you described.

Yes, you ended your post with "And that's okay", but that doesn't mean much when the post you tacked it onto is full of very clear ire. Imagine if I wrote a post asserting that your "playstyle" was the manifestation of a lack of skill on your part that indicated apathy, laziness, and limited intelligence. Imagine that I ended such a post with "And that's okay". (And imagine that I genuinely meant it, as you presumably meant yours.) Would you feel okay about that post? Or would you have some things to say about the content, despite the disclaimer? You are responsible for how you present your opinions, regardless of what disclaimers you follow them with.

I hope that helps you understand where people are coming from in their reactions to your post.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8 aka Jiggy

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Isaac V wrote:
Did anyone notice that the site didn't go down at any point? This was a triumph!

I'm making a note here: "huge success".

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Aniuś the Talewise wrote:
Jiggy wrote:

Some dude: Doing X means you're really being unreasonable.

Me: I don't think there's anything wrong with doing X.

Some dude: Oh, I totally agree, nothing wrong with doing X.

Me: Oh, maybe I misunderstood you then. Carry on.

Some dude: A person really must've missed the boat to actually do X.

Repeat a few times, then:

Me: I'm confused. Whenever you're asked directly about X, you say it's totally legit. But whenever you're discussing X directly, you keep bashing it like somebody would have to be really messed up to do X. You're contradicting yourself, sometimes even from one breath to the next. What gives?

Some dude: What are you talking about? Of course it's fine to do X; I even explicitly said so! Are you not bothering to pay attention to what I'm saying?

I am so confused by this.

I imagine it's a phenomenon similar to how someone can know that racism is bad, but if they drive through a new part of town and all the pedestrians are black they conclude it's a "rough neighborhood" and try to avoid it, and don't even know that's how they came to that conclusion.

EDIT: Or like how there was a study where a man and a woman would have a conversation, and they'd both think the woman did most of the talking, when actually (per the recording) the man did most of the talking.

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Aniuś the Talewise wrote:

Videos, movies, etc without subtitles.

Why do you hurt me in this way.

If there are no subtitles, I have to make the volume louder, and replay seconds of the video over and over to attempt to understand what was being said. subtitles eliminate my having to do this.

I'm kinda hit-and-miss with this. Some movies/videos seem impossible to understand, while others are fine even without raising the volume.

Related: movies with massive swings in volume; you turn it up to hear what's going on, then get deafened in the next scene.

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Some dude: Doing X means you're really being unreasonable.

Me: I don't think there's anything wrong with doing X.

Some dude: Oh, I totally agree, nothing wrong with doing X.

Me: Oh, maybe I misunderstood you then. Carry on.

Some dude: A person really must've missed the boat to actually do X.

Repeat a few times, then:

Me: I'm confused. Whenever you're asked directly about X, you say it's totally legit. But whenever you're discussing X directly, you keep bashing it like somebody would have to be really messed up to do X. You're contradicting yourself, sometimes even from one breath to the next. What gives?

Some dude: What are you talking about? Of course it's fine to do X; I even explicitly said so! Are you not bothering to pay attention to what I'm saying?

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Guy prepares to run game for a new group he's never played with.

Guy reviews characters prior to any actual gameplay.

Guy concludes players have zero interest in any story-related aspects of the gaming experience.

(I've also seen the player-to-player version of this, where you show up to a convention/game day table, lean over to see your neighbor's stats, then say something like "So much for thinking there'll be any actual roleplay in this game.")

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I remember when this thread wasn't like four pages of traffic and army arguments.

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el cuervo wrote:
...and the players know the golem is aware of their presence, which changes their behavior towards said golem. As I mentioned earlier, I am not blessed with perfect players who never metagame.

Then teach them to do better.

It is okay to say "...but your character wouldn't know that."

It is okay to say "Why would your character be doing that?"

It is okay to say "Is that really what your character would do when he doesn't know X?"

Those are all preferable to the experience you had.

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Skylancer4 wrote:
"Damn shame the game doesn't work like the real world isn't it?"

Wait, then how did you determine that a dagger was an ineffective weapon against a wall in the first place?

It sounds like you're changing the standards of what it takes for something to work so as to only favor what you already want to be the result, and trying to avoid directly addressing any inconvenient counterpoints.

But I don't want to come to that conclusion prematurely; maybe your posts just look that way by chance. Could you explain your position in a bit more detail? Thanks.

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Skylancer4 wrote:
Is paying an additional 3000gp for your weapon, justification for bypassing and trivializing numerous encounters, plot points and various other situations in the game?

I submit that if "numerous" encounters/plots can be bypassed/trivialized by the ability to cut things, the ability to cut things is not the problem.

Quote:
My gut is saying no.

Guts are no less prone to error than heads are.

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Not telling your players whether it's a surprise round or a regular round is kinda like making them guess which Knowledge to roll to ID the monster. It's (presumably) a well-intentioned hedge against metagaming, but it actually harms the narrative by having the characters do nonsensical things because they're controlled by players who don't know which sets of mechanics to use. The GM's effort to preserve roleplay actually damages it instead.

Look at the in-character narrative of what happened: for about six seconds, the PCs suddenly all slowed down to about half speed for no (in-universe) reason, then sped back up to normal. That's complete nonsense.

If you want to preserve the narrative/roleplay, you've got to tell the players which sets of mechanics are appropriate for interacting with the current scene of the narrative.

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At my job, I (and my team) often have to write letters. Since they're the same handful of letters over and over again, we use "templates" (meaning Word docs with fillable fields for name, address, relevant customer info, etc).

Now, since it would be chaos if everyone could edit these templates, only a certain person can edit them. Thus, if a letter needs to be changed (maybe updated wording for legal reasons, or to reflect a change in procedure, whatever), you have to go through this person.

As it happens, there is a certain letter template which I personally am the only person in the whole company who uses it. Then one day, I discover that it has been changed.

I was not asked whether it needed to be changed.

I was not asked whether the proposed changes would be helpful or not. (There wasn't even a "proposed changes" phase.)

I was not so much as informed of the change.

I just ran into it when preparing to write a letter. And the actual changes? They ranged from completely unnecessary to actively detrimental.

Completely unnecessary: Changed the wording on a couple of things, still communicating the same message with no meaningful change.

Worse than unnecessary: Added additional fields of information to be filled in (extra steps for me to do), despite not being relevant to the topic or function of the letter.

Dubya tee eff: Removed the phone number the customer can call with questions and replaced it with a drop-down menu where I have to select a phone number. However, (1) that letter always has the exact same number so selecting one is pointless, and (2) the correct phone number isn't even in the list! So I have to delete that field entirely and then type in the number manually.

GWAAAARRRGGGH!!!!

I didn't request that the letter be revised, and nobody else uses it, so why did this person even decide to spend time on this in the first place? And how were these decisions made of what changes to actually make? URGH!

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Knitifine wrote:

Is it the power gamer attitude?

Is it bad DMing?
Or is it simply player inattentiveness?

First of all, I think you would gain some benefit from comparing this list of ideas you came up with to some of the ideas that myself and others will offer, and seeing if you can discern some trends in your own ways of thinking that might help explain why you've encountered so much friction with other gamers lately. You might end up happier in the end. :)

Now then, I have indeed had a couple of instances of getting tired of a character. I'll try to articulate my experiences:

I had a fighter that I played up to 9th level. I thought maybe I could buck stereotypes and have a "smart fighter" who was able to defeat foes as much with superior cunning as with brute force. So I made a fighter with some INT, and picked up things like Improved Trip and Improved Disarm. Up through about level 3-4 or so, it was pretty cool: tripping and disarming was something that other PCs couldn't do, so the character actually felt different instead of being just another brute. Sure, I did a little less damage than others, but it didn't seem to be making much difference. So it was cool and fun.

But Pathfinder changes as you level up. I started facing foes who couldn't be tripped (no legs, flying, too many legs) or didn't care much about being tripped (spellcasters) and who couldn't be disarmed (monsters, spellcasters). Against those foes, my fighter played exactly like all the carbon-copy brutes (except weaker, though that was a smaller issue than the loss of identity). Also, I eventually realized that even when I was at my best using trip/disarm/AoO tactics against humanoid weapon-users, the net result on any given round was that I'd taken this long, roundabout path to eventually just dealing damage, but did it during AoOs instead of on my turn. So I was still just hitting things like everyone else, except I used up more table time doing it because of how many extra dice it took to get the same final result.

So to sum up, I got tired of a character because Pathfinder doesn't support the concept I wanted to roleplay. (Pathfinder's so bad at it, in fact, that years later I even published some 3PP "smart fighting" material to try and help fill the gap, with mixed success.)

I've had other characters with similar stories: I would get a cool concept in my mind, make the character, then discover over the course of a few levels that it did not at all offer the play experience I was after. There was a rogue, a druid, a cleric, one or two others... (Eventually I did manage a "perfect storm" of a concept that I liked and which was also supportable in the system, and he was my favorite character ever—and well-liked by my tablemates too!)

I would make a guess that this is one of the more common reasons people get tired of their characters: they don't support the intended concept as well as expected, leaving them playing a character other than the one they were in love with.

Hope that helps. :)

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

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I think I'll just stick with "Pathfinder's Knowledge skill system is borked". ;)

But just for fun:

Aniuś the Talewise wrote:
getting the core idea across that Jesus had to feed hundreds of people with only 5 loaves of bread and two fish, and by blessing the food he was able to not only feed the entire crowd but had several baskets of waste left over.

Well, you're close: it was thousands, not hundreds, and in fact the source material includes more than one instance of him using one lunch to feed thousands of people and get a few baskets of leftovers. So what DC do you suppose you hit? Maybe 13? ;)

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Aniuś the Talewise wrote:
Well that's part of what makes the knowledge local skill kind of odd in my opinion. I can be from Hartford and particularly well studied in the gossips, rumors and local legends (nor do I even have to be to know common rumors in my community), but none of that experience tells me anything about the talk of the town in Seoul.

Maybe Kn(local) is like Reddit or something? Yeah, you're not the only one who finds it odd. :/

Quote:
On the other hand, I am not trained at all in Christian theology, but I can remember some Christian myths and some of the commandments. If I saw iconography of Jesus holding bread and fish I would undoubtedly recognize the story it's based on. In that case maybe we have a different definition of the word 'common'.

It's DC 10 to be able to recognize holy symbols and clergy (which, remember, requires that you have some concept of that religion's nature/existence in the first place).

As for knowing some of the myths, you say you "remember" some of them; buuuuut can you actually recite those stories, accurate to the source material (in this example, the Bible)? Or do you just kinda remember "there was this one story where he fed a lot of people with bread and fish"? I'm of the opinion that a successful Knowledge check means actual, accurate, real, solid knowledge of the thing in question, not just kinda recognizing it. If you do really know the stories, then I bet you at least went to Sunday School as a kid or something, in which case you totally have at least one rank.

Or maybe Pathfinder's Knowledge skills are just borked beyond hope. ;)

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kyrt-ryder wrote:
In PbP you lack the magic of rolling dice at a table with friends, it's just a digital random number generator.

I'm a little confused. Are you saying that the only reason you include randomized resolution mechanics in an RPG is because you like throwing pieces of plastic on a table? I'm very curious about that notion, as to me the primary role of dice in an RPG is literally just to serve as a random number generator for resolving actions when success/failure is unclear. I'd love to hear more.

Quote:
Besides that, with a dice-based game like Pathfinder you have to wait until dice are rolled to know how you should RP your turn.

That's a simple matter of hitting "Preview" then typing up your post. Honestly, given that the roller can do the math for you, I find that "waiting until the dice are rolled" is often shorter in PbP than how long I usually wait for someone to resolve an action in face-to-face. I honestly have no idea what significant delay you're seeing here. Could you elaborate?

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thejeff wrote:

True, but those examples seem to line up pretty closely with good/bad (or mature/immature?). Nobody is actually aiming to be the guy who gets upset when the game doesn't go his way.

The GNS paradigm (and I think nosig's two schools) are actually different good & valid approaches to the game. Different things to strive for. And potential causes of conflict when that isn't acknowledged and different people in a group are pulling for different things, assuming the others also want what they do.

Although some of the specific behaviors I described aren't great, the core divide I described is not one of good/bad or mature/immature.

For instance, maybe a group of friends decides they'd have a blast playing out a hyper-cliche'd "horror" narrative for laughs. To that end, they might all be interested in things going as one might expect in pulp horror (like investigating strange noises alone in your most revealing underwear while there's a killer on the loose). Curveballs (in this example, things like having your character behave with a sense of self-preservation) would ruin the fun of such an endeavor. There's nothing wrong with a game like that.

Just like with the GNS paradigm, it's a good and valid way to play, and the issues arise when not everyone's on the same page (i.e., some players want to play up the unrealistic pulp horror tropes while others want to start with that premise but then act like real people and see what happens as a result).

EDIT: And I'll go ahead and add that in my experience, 99% of the instances of people NOT being on the same page mostly has to do with one or more persons not realizing that there are different pages to be on, and/or which one describes themselves.

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nosig wrote:
For years I have noticed two general kinds of Players (and we are players on both sides of the DM Screen) – which I refer to as falling into the “Two Schools of RPG Gaming.”
Flite wrote:
I prefer the gamist-narativist-simulationist trichotomy.

Interestingly, I think there's an even more fundamental divide than either of these breakdowns.

I think the most basic, root-level way to classify players/GMs is whether or not they're open to seeing things go differently than they expected. I think there are some gamers who, if thrown a curveball, will get upset or argumentative and try to force things back toward their own vision (and shame those who get in their way), while there are others who will encounter such twists and simply adapt (possibly even loving the fact that such adaptation was warranted).

The reason I think this is a more fundamental categorization than the others presented is because you could take any of the categories listed above and find that it contains this division.

For example, take nosig's #1 (the "Us vs Them" gamer): If it's the GM, then he probably has an idea of how deadly a given encounter will be. If the players then do something which bypasses, shortens, or otherwise overcomes the obstacle with less time/resource loss than anticipated, then the GM will react in one of two ways: either they'll accept it and think "Okay, next time I've got to be ready for that possibility," or they'll fudge HP, mysteriously always make the save (at least until a PC is unconscious), or start arguing about how absurd it is to think that the players' ideas/capabilities would actually work. Or on the player side, you can see this divide when he encounters a peculiar situation where his normal specialty doesn't work: does he think "Ouch, I didn't realize this gap in my capabilities would be this harsh; I need to find countermeasures"? Or does he (much like the GM, above) start arguing about the difficult circumstance being unreasonable?

For another example, take Flite's "narrativist". They're playing to tell a story, but have they already created that story (whether through worldbuilding on the GM side or elaborate backstory on the player side) and they'll get upset when the game goes in a direction that doesn't spotlight their masterpiece (foil the BBEG the wrong way, use an unanticipated solution to an obstacle, fail to include the network of NPC contacts from the backstory, etc)? Or are they coming to the table with only a starting point, intending to discover what story gets created as it happens?

Regardless of whether someone likes winning encounters, telling a story, defeating the other side of the screen, or whatever else; to me, the big thing is whether or not there's a certain thing they need the experience to end up aligning with.

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When assessing how many "options" 5E has compared to PF, you have to remember a couple of things:

First, it's easy to overlook a lot of the options 5E has because they don't require feat chains or specialized abilities to perform; you can just DO them. For instance, literally anyone can use TWFing with no investment in 5E, but I bet a lot of people see fighter's (and a couple of pseudo-fighters') TWF style boost, and think they're the only classes that can TWF, and chalk it up to 5E having fewer options than PF, when really it's an example of the opposite. There are lots of examples of that: PF trains you to expect an "Ability to do X" feat, you see no such feature in 5E, and think (incorrectly) that you don't have that option in 5E.

Second, what counts as an "option"? Is it literally anything you could theoretically choose for your character? Or does it only count as an "option" if it's something you might actually use? I lean toward the latter, which causes PF to have far fewer "options" than its accumulated pagecount would suggest. 5E, on the other hand, has a lot fewer "selectables" that you'll never take than PF does.

The option gap is far smaller than it seems at first glance.

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DM_Blake wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
If a player came to me saying there was something about their character they didn't like (maybe a choice didn't pan out as they expected), I'd work out a solution and not even bother with "retraining"; I'd just wave my GM wand and say "Poof! The game is fun for you again!"
But I have to ask Jiggy, and a few others who replied in similar fashion, is the "fun" of this game so fragile that a single feat is hte difference between fun and not fun?

Equating "something" with "exactly one feat" is quite an assumption on your part. It could be one feat, it could be a feat tree (which could in turn include stat prereqs and so forth), it could be which of a group of similar classes they thought would enable their concept the best, it could be a fighting style and the various choices made to support it; the list goes on and on. I'd call any of those "something".

Quote:
Is there anybody that looks at a character they built over a period of months or maybe years, with which they've had fun adventures, fun role-play, and generally enjoyed gaming, but yet they say "Well, that one feat here is making this game no fun for me"?

Your statement is literally self-contradictory: a character that they've been having fun with and is simultaneously "no fun".

If someone made a character choice that's draining the fun from the game, then that character is not "a character they built over a period of months or maybe years, with which they've had fun adventures, fun role-play, and generally enjoyed gaming". That's kind of the point.

Then there's also the situation of a character that was fun at first, but didn't stay that way. For instance, I had a fighter that I played from 1st to about 9th over the course of many months. I gave him a 13 INT so I could go for Combat Expertise and Improved Trip/Disarm with a flail.

At 1st-3rd levels, he was pretty fun: he could do things that others couldn't. Others focused on damage, but 2HPA is kind of overkill against things with 10HP, so my slightly lesser damage wasn't an issue.

But then the game changed. Math scaled. Enemies changed. My own understanding of the game improved. Started fighting monsters who didn't use weapons and which flew or had lots of legs (or no legs), leaving me to do nothing but attack for damage, which I wasn't as good at. Against armed humanoids, I started to realize that tripping and disarming didn't actually move the fight toward resolution. I tried to remedy this with Combat Reflexes and Greater Trip, so that with a single expenditure of an attack I could trip and disarm the guy, whack him with my iterative, then whack him with AoOs.

Then I figured out that the net result was the same as if I just 2HPA'd him on my own turn, except it's slower to resolve (more rolls) and is costing me a whole host of extra feats instead of just Power Attack.

And it still didn't feel like I was playing the "smart fighter" that I thought I had created.

So I went into it making a smarter-than-average fighter who could do stuff others couldn't and was generally pretty useful. But then his abilities gradually became irrelevant, and his identity disappeared as his differences from other fighters failed to set him apart.

That (along with some other things) drained the fun out of the experience. Had that been the PC of a player in a campaign I was running, I'd have let them change things up for free, because the game tends not to be fun when your character isn't matching your concept anymore.

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Is our enjoyment of this game teetering on such a razor's edge?

If by "razor's edge" you mean the ridiculous "single feat means the whole game is simultaneously fun and not fun" oxymoron that you contrived in order to make your point sound better, then the answer to your question is "no". If by "razor's edge" you mean "choices that fail to produce the desired result can make the game less fun", then the answer to your question is yes.

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Aniuś the Talewise wrote:
Jiggy wrote:

When people use a common phrase/expression, but get the words wrong in such a way as to demonstrate that they have no idea what they're actually saying, and are instead mindlessly parroting something they don't even understand, just because they think other people say it.

Good example:
"For all intensive purposes," when what they really meant was "for all intents and purposes".

fwgafvegag

I like to mix up the phrase "sharpest knife in the drawer" and its variants

Sharpest brick in the fire, and so forth.

Now, see, that's deliberately making a joke. Totally different thing.

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When people use a common phrase/expression, but get the words wrong in such a way as to demonstrate that they have no idea what they're actually saying, and are instead mindlessly parroting something they don't even understand, just because they think other people say it.

Good example:
"For all intensive purposes," when what they really meant was "for all intents and purposes".

fwgafvegag

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Personally, my ideal would be a system where raising the dead is difficult/impossible/complicated/etc, but where death never comes from a single d20 roll (no save-or-die, no low-level insta-gib crits, etc; death would have to require either astounding stupidity, heroic sacrifice, or a dramatic escalation of negative events).

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If a player came to me saying there was something about their character they didn't like (maybe a choice didn't pan out as they expected), I'd work out a solution and not even bother with "retraining"; I'd just wave my GM wand and say "Poof! The game is fun for you again!"

As for retraining HP, well, there's a reason I never have my players roll HP in the first place. :/

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There's a difference between healthy and unhealthy ways for a community to operate, and right and wrong ways for a game to be played.

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tony gent wrote:
it should be

Herein lies the root of some of the darkest parts of this community's history. It's not the theorycrafting or the FAQratta or the rules lawyering or the poor editing or the optimization; the nastiness produced by all of those put together pales in comparison to the simple application of "should".

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This is an area where I don't like how Pathfinder handles things.

For one thing, everything is so binary: most of the skills' DCs are "if you roll below this, TOTAL FAILURE". It's a harsh yes/no.

In Pathfinder, if you try to sneak up and spy on a bandit camp but roll low on your Stealth, then every single bandit who beat your Stealth check is immediately staring right at you. Game over. Failed.

What I would personally prefer is that if you rolled low on that check, then maybe you stepped on a twig and a guard or two went "What was that?" and one of them comes over to investigate. Things still got worse, but there's at least a chance that you could still evade detection (maybe he fails to find you and figures the noise was a rabbit or something). A consequence for failure without the whole operation falling apart at the first low roll.

A corollary to this is how thoroughly codified Pathfinder's skills are: right down to individual action expenditures. If you had more generally-worded skills, like "when you're doing X type of thing and need to resolve the results, use Y skill", that's one thing. But in Pathfinder, you go to do X thing, determine that it takes about a minute to do, then reference the skill and see that you need to make a check for every move action, so that's 20 checks. And remembering what I said above about how binary Pathfinder's skills are, only ONE of those 20 checks have to roll low to make it all fall apart.

Additionally, Pathfinder assigns a DC to even the most trivial of things, such as literally noticing somebody just standing right there. Pathfinder sets up the precedent that it's not entirely uncommon for a commoner to be able to be walking down a deserted street and fail to notice someone across the street aiming a bow at him (not kidding; do the math). This sets up an expectation that even the most basic of things require checks, which leads to the (IMO, silly) trend of adventure authors writing things like that a PC who opens a drawer and looks in won't discover the macguffin that's sitting right there in the drawer unless they succeed at a Perception check. It's silly, and it's not explicitly required by the system rules, but it's the expectation that the system sets up by having rules for noticing that somebody's standing right there saying "Stop or I'll shoot".

I prefer a skill system where the only thing the rules tell you is which skill to use to resolve a given type of activity and how to determine the math. Let the narrative and the people at the table determine when it's time to actually make a check, and what the high and low rolls mean.

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Zilvar2k11 wrote:
The idea that damage has a static value or representation is pretty thinly supported by any form of rules. For that to work, any damage value of..what, 14 or more (8 CON, d6 hd, level 1) has to automatically describe a wound that is instantly fatal. Not potentially fatal. Not 'might die in a few seconds to bleed out', but instantly fatal to any PC.

No, instantly fatal to that PC. "Fatal" is just a description of whether or not the damage killed the creature, because that's what "fatal" means. An attack that deals 20 damage might be fatal to one character but not another, all while being an identical amount of damage.

Quote:
And now you've got to make up stories about how your uber hero shrugged off having a sword stuck through his heart or had his head removed, because that's what the same means, isn't it?

If you can explain why taking a lethal amount of damage automatically means decapitation, then yeah, I'll have to defend why decapitation doesn't kill someone with more HP. Until then, though, all I have to defend is the notion that the same quantity of flesh-harming can be lethal for one person but not for another.

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I don't think that the game works in the fashion in which you are describing, but Pathfinder itself is pretty vague on the subject, isn't it?
Quote:

The proportional damage model is lifted pretty much straight out of the 3.0 (3.5?) players handbook which included a paragraph describing how a wizard who had lost half his hit points was about as hurt as a fighter who had lost half of his. 'Damage', for 3.x-based games, has pretty much always been defined as proportional to

the overall health of the target.

Until Pathfinder was published with no such description. I mean, you're welcome to do it that way, if that's what works for you. Just please don't claim some kind of universal, system-transcendant definition of HP that even applies to games which don't mention it.

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Aaron Whitley wrote:
Jiggy wrote:


I realize I'm adding to a bit of a derail here, but maybe I can be helpful.
Isn't asking "why is 4 points of healing less effective on a 14HP creature than on an 8HP creature" kind of like asking "why is raise dead less effective on a 10-man party than on a 4-man party"?
Maybe I'm an idiot but I'm not seeing the comparison.

The raise dead only heals 10% of a 10-man party, but it heals 25% of a 4-man party. Just like how you've been describing a CLW spell healing ~30% of a fighter but healing ~80% of a wizard.

Quote:
Jiggy wrote:


If the 6HP wizard and the 12HP fighter each take a 5-damage longsword stab, they both have the same injury. It's just that the fighter could take it again and still be fighting, while the wizard couldn't. Then, when someone comes along and heals them for 5HP each, the healing was equally effective: they both had their identical stab-wounds removed. The only difference is that the fighter might have a second stab-wound that also needs healing.

The healing was not more effective on one than the other: the same amount of injury got healed. There is no inconsistency.

Are we assuming they are receiving the exact same physical injury? If so why?

We're not "assuming" anything; rather, the two injuries are equal by definition. A greater or lesser amount of injury is represented by a higher or lower damage value. Five points of damage is the same as five points of damage because that's what "the same" means.

Quote:
That 5 HP hit on a wizard is 5/6 of his HP while on the fighter it is 5/12. I don't think I would consider them the exact same injury.

Why not? It sounds like your issue is not with the actual HP and damage rules Pathfinder uses, but rather with the "injury based on percentage of HP remaining" houserule that you forced upon yourself. You've decided that every character has exactly 100 points of actual health/injury, and you're doing math to convert damage/HP back and forth from the given values to the ratios that you've decided yourself are the true descriptions of injury levels.

Which, I mean, is fine if you want to do that, but it sounds like you're not fine with it; so I'm offering you the alternative of abandoning the paradigms you've set up for yourself and simply taking the HP/damage system at face value.


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Lore Warden 7 | Init +5 | HP 73/73 22/87 | AC 26, T 15, FF 23 | Fort +8 +10, Ref +6, Will +6 | CMB +16 (+21 Trip), CMD 31 (33 Trip) | Perc +11, SensMtv +6 | -1 CHA

Reflex: 1d20 + 6 + 2 ⇒ (1) + 6 + 2 = 9

I don't suppose the dragon happens to be positioned conveniently within reach of the cliff, like they always are in all the promotional art that tries to make it look like fighters can engage dragons?

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Aaron Whitley wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:

...

Aaron Whitley wrote:
I think the bigger issue is with healing in general. Magical healing makes no sense in context of the rest of the HP and healing rules. It is odd that a healing spell becomes less effective on someone as that person levels.

This is an example of what I was talking about. People seeing levels as something less than 'becoming more powerful,' wherein of course a more powerful being who can endure more damage is going to require greater magic to heal that damage.

In a game without levels you scrap the whole cure line and are left with 'Cure', 'Cure Mass' and 'Cure Fatal/Breath of Life'

I think it's more than that though. Why is CLW (1d8+1 at first level) more effective when cast on a wizard than a barbarian? Assuming it heals 4 points on average that's half a first level wizard's hit points (assuming 6 to start plus 2 from Con) but less than a third of a barbarian's hit points (assuming 12 to start plus at least 2 from Con). That seems strange to me.

I realize I'm adding to a bit of a derail here, but maybe I can be helpful.

Isn't asking "why is 4 points of healing less effective on a 14HP creature than on an 8HP creature" kind of like asking "why is raise dead less effective on a 10-man party than on a 4-man party"?

If the 6HP wizard and the 12HP fighter each take a 5-damage longsword stab, they both have the same injury. It's just that the fighter could take it again and still be fighting, while the wizard couldn't. Then, when someone comes along and heals them for 5HP each, the healing was equally effective: they both had their identical stab-wounds removed. The only difference is that the fighter might have a second stab-wound that also needs healing.

The healing was not more effective on one than the other: the same amount of injury got healed. There is no inconsistency.

Quote:
Now compare that 4 hit points of healing to natural healing. At first level it is 4 days worth of natural healing or 2 days of full bed rest. At 4th level it is 1 day of healing or 1/2 day of full bed rest. Why the change?

Because a higher-level character is so tough they can heal from the same stab-wound faster than a lower-level character? I honestly don't see the issue here.

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I could easily leave behind any of the listed things, and in fact some of them are parts of larger mechanics that I'd be fine with scrapping altogether as part of a much larger system overhaul.

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In the Mummy's Mask group I was in, we sometimes had the soundtrack of The Mummy playing in the background (not so loud as to drown out anyone's voices), which I found added to the atmosphere a bit. Haven't tried it anywhere else.

I've sometimes considered including YouTube links to appropriate music in some of my GM posts in my PbP, but haven't actually done it yet.

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Customer sends in a form requesting to be billed electronically every month. My team sets this up.

The following month, the customer sends in a check for their quarterly amount that they used to be paying. We refund it, with a letter explaining that since they're set up for EFT now, they don't need to send in money.

Same thing happens the next month.

And the next.

And the next.

We look for a phone number, but can't find one. So every month, we refund his overpaid premium with a letter asking him to stop sending in checks.

This continues EVERY MONTH for three years. He never writes back, never calls, never in any way tries to contact us to ask why the hell he keeps getting checks in the mail for the past 36 months in a row.

#tableflip

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Nathanael Love wrote:
But if you'e come to the point that only going to a different game system will satisfy you, I sure wish that you wouldn't repeatedly start and derail threads

I didn't start this thread. Also, this thread's purpose is to talk about what you do and don't like about Pathfinder. Thus, doing so is not a derail. Tick one tally.

Quote:
telling everyone else how its impossible to have fun with Pathfinder because of Caster/Martial disparity.

I repeatedly specified "for me personally" over and over and over again. I never told ANYONE that it's "impossible to have fun" for anyone but myself. Tick one tally.

Quote:
When you aren't looking for a solution, you are just looking to frustrate others.

I already told you why I stay involved with these discussions: trying to get people to be more civil, and seeing how people articulate their thoughts on mechanical issues so I can feed my own game design skills. It's not to try and frustrate others. Tick one tally. Also, you should already know the above, since you replied directly to the post it was in. Tick one tally.

Quote:
I don't go into the forums of games I've quit playing and post endlessly about how the reason I quit playing them is so awful and ruined the game.

Neither do I. But I do go into a thread specifically designed to talk about likes and dislikes of Pathfinder, and do exactly that. Tick one tally.

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I quit playing Shadowrun because I feel that the core mechanic in the current game is set up to make actions on average far too difficult to perform. But I have started or redirected dozens upon dozens of threads in the Shadowrun forums to that topic--

Again, this thread is a perfectly appropriate one for the topic. I've neither started nor redirected "dozens upon dozens" of threads. Tick one tally.

Quote:
because if the game just isn't for me, why should I beat my chest so loudly trying to get others to also stop enjoying it?

Again, my discussion of Pathfinder's mechanical issues has been about my own preferences, with no intent to change other people's preferences or try to block anyone's fun. Tick one tally.

Look, if Pathfinder gives you what you want, I'm happy for you. I'd be even happier to read detailed thoughts on the how and why, so that I can keep your preferences in mind in my own design work.

I don't ever want you to stop having fun with a game you enjoy.

The only thing I want you to stop doing is managing to cram 7 instances of lying, belligerence, and condescension into a single post just because I don't like the same things as you.

You are the one being toxic, not me.

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What could have happened from the beginning:

Bob: The caster/martial disparity really makes it hard for me to enjoy this game.
Mary: Really? I never noticed it in my own games; sorry, wish I could help!
Fred: I see what you mean, but I actually prefer it that way. To each his own, I guess.
Betty: Oh, Bob, I had the same issues, but I've found that using X workaround alleviates it a bit. Hope that helps!

What's historically happened instead:

Bob: The caster/martial disparity really makes it hard for me to enjoy this game.
Mary: Really? I never noticed it in my own games; it's probably just dirty theorycraft. Do you even actually PLAY this game? Does anyone actually have any real-life stories of this coming out in actual gameplay?
Fred: That's how the game was MEANT to be played. Maybe if you weren't an MMO-generation powergamer obsessed with trying to 'win' a cooperative game, then you could just focus on having fun instead.
Betty: Well Bob, I've implemented X houserules that alleviate that disparity, therefore I'm pretty sure the disparity never existed, and you're creating it yourself through your GM's ineptitude.

---------------------------------------------------------------

Now, some people seem to think that the only reason anyone would ever mention an issue they have with the game more than once is to try to use repetition as a means of lobbying for the game to be changed to match their vision. Maybe some people are doing that. But for myself, I keep getting in these discussions in the hopes of guiding one more player back toward the first type of discussion in place of the second. (Also I'm interested in game design and seeing people articulate and re-articulate their ideas on the topic is helpful for me, but the above is still true.)

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Wow, commute + dinner = 55 new posts. Let's see...

knightnday wrote:
Does your wife repeat herself incessantly about the mess and talk about you, your parents, and in general run you down about it? If not, then it isn't a good comparison.

If I kept leaving the mess there in spite of her requests, for years on end? Yeah, she just might get to that point. (Isn't that where certain stereotypes come from?) Were you under the impression that the consistent re-dredging of old topics was the initial response the first time the issue popped up, equivalent to the first time I made a mess at home?

Wrath wrote:
we play as the game was intended

*takes a shot*

Wrath wrote:

Perhaps the disparity you see is from this house rule of non co operation.

A group of individuals does not a team make.

*takes a shot*

Gonna need more booze at this rate.

Wrath wrote:
But when I'm told playing by design intent makes a problem non existent is called a "house rule or gentle mans agreement"', that is not condescending or rude.

No, it's not. Houserules and gentleman's agreements are good things. Why the hell would correctly identifying them be offensive?

...And then a bunch of stuff about scry and fry. Meh.

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Yeah, this whole paradigm of responding to complaints with "Since you obviously dislike it so much, why are you here talking about it?" is really weird and nonsensical, yet it keeps coming up.

I bet my wife is glad that when she points out the mess I've left in the other room I don't respond with "Well if you don't like me anyway, wouldn't there be better ways to spend your time than here with me?"

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knightnday wrote:
rather than trying to discourage others from liking it

I'm curious what constitutes "discourage others from liking it" for you, because I don't think I've ever seen such a post. I've seen posts harshly discouraging others from disliking certain elements (recent-ish example: "Maybe the reason you have these issues is just because you don't treat your tablemates like actual friends, you forget that it's a team game, and you're not really there to have fun?"). But I can't think of an example of a post that really seemed like the poster wanted the reader to end up liking Pathfinder less.

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I would amend #3 to "People who acknowledge it exists, but either don't care or actually like it".

Rare, but real.

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Kirth Gersen wrote:
Darklord Morius wrote:
Today i discovered why my boss keep saying my e-mails are "subpar". They want me to write on it to whom the e-mail is for.

Workplace emails differ from texts to your friends. In general, you are expected to start the email with a salutation to the recipient, and to sign your name beyond just replying on the signature block.

Example:

Your Email wrote:

Mark,

The results of the recent sampling have been tabulated; please see attached. If you need anything else, don't hesitate to let me know.

Regards,
--Morius

Yes, it's quite true that the sender, recipient, and paperclip icon indicating an attachment are all right there to see. But that's not the point. The point is that, within the body of the email, you're taking the time and effort to interact with the recipient almost as you would as a person, rather than as if you are simply an auto-send function on a machine.

I think you misread his post. He said his boss wants his emails to say "Dear So-and-so" like you're talking about, but then also lead off with an additional "To So-and-so" before that salutation.

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but it seems your preachy lecture to kids these days about how to remember that people aren't computers is a bit misplaced this time. :/

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cmastah wrote:
Minimum speed limit: It's not dangerous to drive slow, just annoying.

No, it can be dangerous. Driving slow doesn't trip brake lights. When you're doing 70mph down the interstate and the guy ahead of you changes lanes, revealing someone you don't already know is only going 35mph, it's a very real possibility that you couldn't stop in time.

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Freehold DM wrote:

Right turns on red lights.

They make no sense to me.

There are times and places where it's fine, it's just that some motorists seem to extrapolate that they're as entitled to proceed as at a green light no matter what the traffic situation. I've had times where I was in a right turn lane waiting for a break in traffic and had the person behind me (in some cases, unable to see anything but what's directly in front of them) repeatedly honk at me for being stopped.

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Pre-coffee is alarming.

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