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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. 20,243 posts (24,206 including aliases). 17 reviews. 4 lists. 1 wishlist. 13 Pathfinder Society characters. 35 aliases.


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Skeld wrote:
Liz Courts wrote:
Removed posts and their responses. Please be civil to each other, and please remember that people play the game differently—what works for you and your group won't work for another.

Wow.

-Skeld

Wow indeed. No idea if you and I are having the same "wow", but yes, wow.

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The trip maneuver can always use a weapon. The trip property lets you drop the weapon instead of falling on your ass if you fail by 10 or more.

EDIT: LINK

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@thejeff/Bill Dunn — Uh... I think I've been vastly misunderstood, but I think I'll drop it rather than derail the thread any further.

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Kazuka wrote:
Some people prioritize their perceptions of reality over reality itself.

No. People can't tell the difference between their perceptions of reality and reality itself. They think their perceptions of reality ARE reality itself. That's what "perception" means. As far as any given person is aware, their perceptions of reality and reality itself are one and the same.

Prioritizing X over Y requires knowledge that X and Y are two different things. But if someone knew that their perceptions of reality didn't match actual reality, then the former would no longer be their perceptions of reality.

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Jessica Price wrote:
We're not in need of your "lessons." You have nothing legitimate to teach us.

Speaking of civility...

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Ssyvan wrote:
I'm only just now surprised that there is no method for rolling stats that produced random stat arrays at a given point buy.

Actually, I've seen one, though there can be a bit of up-front legwork. I saw this in a PbP recruitment thread for a 5E game: someone made a list of every possible array you could buy with that game's point buy system. That's (apparently) 55 possible arrays. So you roll 1d55 (weird, but doable electronically) to see which array you get. Then, you number the stats in the array and roll 1d6 to pick a stat. That score goes into STR. Adjust the labels, roll 1d5, put that score in DEX. Rinse and repeat.

Boom. Randomized stats on a point-buy. You just have to have a table of all possible arrays first. Or you could just make a handful of arrays instead of ALL of them, if you prefer.

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Tangent101 wrote:

You know, I half-suspect a large part of the problem with Wrath of the Righteous was that a number of the games were done with higher-than-15-point builds. When you factor in that by level 12, the Mythic groups had gained another +5 to +7 to the starting stats, if they were running with a 25-point build or higher, they were quite a bit overpowered compared to their enemies.

Let me explain it another way. A 25-point build is the equivalence to adding +1 level to the characters. If you were running Rise of the Runelords starting at 2nd level and didn't change the goblins, do you think they'd be a threat at all to the group, even assuming the GM didn't play them as jokes? You would be running the group on "easy" mode, one level higher, with greater power, hit points, to-hit chance, and on down the line.

One flaw with your idea:

The bigger the numbers get, the smaller the impact of a given gap size will be.

That is, the difference between 14 and 16 STR and the difference between 32 and 34 STR are the same gap in an absolute sense, but the gap is proportionally smaller in the second case than in the first. There's less impact.

This difference is even more clear in your "+1 level" analogy. The difference between 1st and 2nd level is waaaaay bigger than the difference between, say, 18th and 19th level. The character advancing from 1st to 2nd will very nearly double their HP (which is a HUGE boost to survivability at that level), whereas the HP increase from 18th to 19th will be a mere drop in the bucket. Same goes for BAB, saves, skills, etc. Moving a bonus from +4 to +5 is a 25% increase, while moving from +32 to +33 is only a 3% increase.

Generous stats are a huge boon at low levels, but their significance wanes rapidly as you advance in level (at least, in Pathfinder). Thus, many GMs overestimate the ability of high starting stats to wreck entire campaigns.

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Dot.

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Sissyl wrote:
Problem is, I have literally never not seen a buffer cleric be disappointed because the combats are too short. Joining on round three means mopping up the last miserable bugbear who has six hp left. Yaaaay. And even with the buffs up, you are STILL not more powerful than the fighter in melee. The people who claim that buffs make clerics powerful obviously never played one for long.

Sounds like you missed my story earlier, eh?

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Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Does anybody have any examples from their games of a cleric getting "out of hand"? I think it'd be interesting, and it might make more sense to me.

Depends on where your bar for "out of hand" is, but I played a cleric to almost 12th level in PFS a couple years back. In combat, Plan A was to fight very nearly as well as a fighter in melee, but unlike a fighter, he actually had options for Plan B. And out of combat (or in combats that had some kind of twist to them), he had all kinds of ways to engage.

In Pathfinder, your AC is about gear, not class, so I could buy all the same armor as a fighter. Plus, since I could cast greater magic weapon on my non-masterwork longsword, I actually had more wealth available to spend on defensive gear than most fighters would. As a result, I typically had the highest AC at the table. Offensively, by the time his lesser BAB started to "show" and I needed to be buffing for combat, I was at the level where lots of foes have multiple attacks, so you don't want to be moving forward and attacking on round 1 anyway (since that lets them full-attack you). Instead, I'd cast a single buff spell (which is all it takes) and move just far enough forward to get the baddies' attention. Then they move up and attack, and I return with a full-attack at full power. I was always one of the top melee combatants at the table.

Of course, there are some enemies where nobody can really go toe-to-toe with them. The fighter's option here is to just try and dump as much damage into it as possible before dropping, and hope the rest of the party can finish it off and then resuscitate him. But clerics have options. Big brutes like that tend to have low Will saves, so I'd pack a couple of plane shifts. When round 1 opened with a colossal titan centipede trampling the entire party to half HP or less, everyone else scrambled to try and come up with a plan (and started discussing resurrection options) while I just walked up and sent the encounter to hell. Poof. Did the same to an undead mammoth in another scenario, and again to a CON-draining ooze in another. Because honestly, 95% of enemies tend to come in two types: those you can go toe-to-toe with, and those who fold to plane shift.

So, combat is basically covered, and the only spells that are spoken for so far are a few 1st-level slots (divine favor), a couple 5th-level slots (plane shift) and a 4th-level slot (greater magic weapon). So I'm already leaving martials in the dust and I've still got the vast majority of my spell slots available. Since I didn't need them for basic functioning, I could fill them with situationally-ridiculous spells (like the time my GM boggled at learning I had stone shape prepared, after an enemy had wall of stone'd a party member into a cave alone with a harpy). I could also leave a few slots open for condition removal, etc. Give me a day to prepare and I can even raise the dead, or ask God what's up and expect a meaningful answer.

And that's before we even get to my Knowledge skills, my domain power to add my level to social skills, my domain power to auto-dispel all magical darkness, my domain power to get heroism as a swift action for the whole team, and so forth.

And ironically, people sometimes b@!~@ed that I wasn't standing in the back, ready to heal their fighter.

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Oceanshieldwolf wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
Terquem wrote:
Well, I think it would give me the exact experience I think it would, which I think might not be the sort of experience a lot of players would like. But that's just me.
I suppose it was indeed presumptuous of me to just assume you'd dislike the fighter/cleric scenario I described. My apologies; if that's fun, then knock yourself out. :)
Your scenario seemed awesome to me Jiggy - everything came down to timing, and the cleric died before he could save anyone. As a Player I would be groaning, but would accept it as suitably heroic/epic.

You might want to re-read the story. The cleric didn't die, he walked past his injured allies to a thrice-dead fighter and cast a cure spell on the corpse.

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Tiny Coffee Golem wrote:

Your body moves around, but that's it.

If that's an insufficient answer I'm going to need you to clarify what part is unclear because I'm not understanding the confusion.

Well, look at some of your comments so far, talking as though you're shocked that people would so readily accept becoming a "horrible undead monster" and offering reminders to the effect of "but you're still dead!" and so forth.

So clearly there's something which, in your mind, is inherently part of being undead and is presumably objectionable in some way, to such a degree as to be worth commenting on when somebody's okay with it.

But the things that immediately come to mind when speaking of "undeath" are things like a skeletal visage, various forms of evilness (like eating the living or whatever), and no longer really being yourself.

But you took all that away, so unless you're having trouble keeping track of your own proposition, those aren't the things you're reacting to.

So let me frame my question this way: what are all the aspects of undeath that you're surprised to see people so readily accept?

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Tiny Coffee Golem wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
I would definitely need to know exactly what it means to "be undead" in the context of this world. The OP's premise already takes away the auto-evil part, which I think is perhaps(?) the biggest component of why lichdom is generally considered objectionable.
You're a walking corpse, but otherwise you are yourself. In this case it's more a matter of how your body functions and not your mind. I'm very certain that most people would choose to be an extremely well preserved corpse as to continue to appear human. However, this doesn't change the fact that you're dead.

Okay, so I'm normal-looking, still myself, and I'm up and walking around, but "this doesn't change the fact that you're dead". You now need to define "dead", because you've just removed most of what it actually means.

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I would definitely need to know exactly what it means to "be undead" in the context of this world. The OP's premise already takes away the auto-evil part, which I think is perhaps(?) the biggest component of why lichdom is generally considered objectionable.

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Lemmy wrote:
Basically, I despise ... how strictly GMs are supposed to adhere to the rules and scenarios.

Ironically, part of why I quit was because of how often I encountered GMs enforcing their own preferences and calling it "adjudication" (or just not even justifying it at all). Go figure, eh? :)

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Lemmy wrote:
thegreenteagamer wrote:
Lemmy wrote:
And that's why I avoid having characters at different levels and no longer use exp.
Me too, but we're talking about PFS here. You can't choose to do that.
And that's why I avoid PFS.

Really? That's why? I've got my own list of reasons, but I must say that the above is not on the list.

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GM 1990 wrote:
TriOmegaZero wrote:
GM 1990 wrote:
How do PFS game nights work? Is it like a set evening during the week, weekends, both?
Usually I hit up my crew on Facebook or email and say 'you free this night for this scenario?' then we gather on Roll20.

Interesting. It never occurred to me people might do PFS online as their campaign scenario with a steady group.

Can anyone access the scenarios and run them as one-shots?

Well, the scenarios aren't free, just like the modules and adventure paths aren't free. But once you've got one, you can do whatever you want with it, just like any other published adventure. The only reason to follow any special rules with it is if you want organized play credit, and the only reason you'd need that is if you want to be able to take your character to any PFS event around the world and be able to sit down and play.

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Melkiador wrote:
Imbicatus wrote:
15 point buy does nothing to limit SAD characters (casters) and makes playing a MAD character (martial) more difficult.
It doesn't do "nothing" to limit SAD classes. Sad classes still deeply want other stats. It's just not as high of a priority. For instance, a wizard with a low dexterity and constitution isn't going to live very long with his low hit points.

But that's the thing: the wizard won't have such low DEX/CON compared to the martial of the same point buy.

15pt Human Wizard:
STR 7
DEX 14
CON 14
INT 17(+2 racial)
WIS 10
CHA 7

15pt Human Fighter:
STR 16(+2 racial)
DEX 12
CON 14
INT 10
WIS 12
CHA 7

See how they've got the same CON? Plus, since the wizard has more skill points, it's easier for him to put his FCB into HP. And since he's less reliant on feat trees to be effective (EDIT: God forbid the 15pt fighter needs 13 INT for Combat Expertise.), he can more easily spare his human bonus feat on Toughness.

So the human fighter has 12-13 HP (depending on FCB), while the human wizard can easily have 12 HP. The fighter gains 8-9 HP/level, and the wizard gains 8 HP/level. So already, the wizard is virtually (or perhaps even literally) on par with the fighter for HP.

But wait, there's more! The wizard has item crafting as a built-in class feature, so he can get his CON belt at half price (and on-demand). And since he's not trying to split that magic item slot with STR like the fighter is, the price gap just gets bigger and bigger. So the wizard's CON is going to jump sooner and faster than the fighter's. You can mitigate the crafting disparity if they're in the same party together, but there's still the whole "the wizard's +4 CON belt is a lot cheaper than the fighter's +4 STR/CON belt" issue.

So, a Pathfinder wizard starts with HP similar to a fighter, and easily catches up or even passes him as levels rise.

Pathfinder is not a system that supports the "squishy wizard" trope. Sorry.

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Deighton Thrane wrote:
Yes, NPCs with PC classes get heroic stat array (15,14,13,12,10,08). NPCs with NPC classes get the basic stat array (13,12,11,10,09,08).

Which, when you think about the non-human races' ability to have functional societies despite putting racial penalties on top of those arrays, tells you interesting things about what "dump stats" translate to in-world.

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Auxmaulous wrote:
It didn't happen in 2nd but it's being framed retroactively like it did to fit the narrative.

Your use of unspecified pronouns makes this sentence really hard to parse. Can you be more explicit as to what you're trying to communicate here?

Quote:
Again, compared to Pathfinder, declared initiative rounds with weapon/action speeds and lost actions go x10 faster than my PF games with all the round-to-round ticking off of buff/debuff +1/-1 nonsense. I've tested combats and adventure completion between AD&D and PF, AD&D wins hands down every time.

I think it's pretty close to universally agreed that 3.X is basically the slowest combat system ever, so I'm not sure who you think you're arguing with here.

Unless maybe you're trying to attribute the difference to the different initiative systems? That would seem kinda silly, and I don't think you're trying to say that, but I'm not sure what other point you could be making here. Can you elaborate?

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Terquem wrote:
Well, I think it would give me the exact experience I think it would, which I think might not be the sort of experience a lot of players would like. But that's just me.

I suppose it was indeed presumptuous of me to just assume you'd dislike the fighter/cleric scenario I described. My apologies; if that's fun, then knock yourself out. :)

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Terquem wrote:
AND then

I think you mean "and THEN". ;)

Anyway, it's an interesting idea, but I think it's based on an easy-to-make but nevertheless false assumption: that "random"/"unpredictable" is inherently more lifelike or believable.

There are some cases where it makes sense. I mean, all those elven archers at the top of Helm's Deep are firing at the same time with no communication about their targets. Isn't it likely that there's going to be at least a little bit of target-selection overlap, and somebody's arrow is going to be headed for an already-dead uruk-hai? It's easy to imagine things like this (I actually had this thought while watching this and other movies) and then picture this "blind initiative" system as delivering on this hectic experience of bloody mayhem. Cool, right?

Yeah, until you consider all the other scenarios it also enables. For example, the fighter is badly injured, so the cleric declares his intent to move up and cast a cure spell on him. Meanwhile, the enemy archers all target the fighter (figuring on some of them missing due to the fighter's high AC) and the enemy mage tosses a fireball in hopes of finishing him off while damaging the rest of the PCs in the process.

Then the cleric rolls the lowest initiative, and you get this scenario:
Enemy mage fireballs the party with a high damage roll, killing the fighter and leaving other PCs injured.
Enemy archer #1 shoots the fighter's body (much easier to hit now).
Enemy archer #2 shoots the fighter's body as well.
Enemy archer #3 crits the dead fighter.
The PC with the highest Wisdom score in the party walks past his injured comrades to cast a powerful healing spell on the charred corpse with three arrows in its face.

That's ridiculous. It's nonsensical. It's so dumb that it's even more immersion-shatteringly "meta" than the modern initiative system you moved away from. And it's mind-bogglingly different from what you were going for.

So what do you do, then? Maybe safeguard against situations like the above with a list of exceptions? Like, maybe if there are enough initiative counts between a plan-altering event (like the fighter dying) and your own turn, you can change? Or maybe actions like archery are deemed easy enough to adjust that those archers can change targets when the fighter dies to the fireball? Or if your turn involves movement and a touch spell, you're still committed to those actions but can change what target you move toward? Maybe all of the above?

Okay, so now you've gone from the original blind initiative idea to a whole subsystem with its own list of special rules and exceptions, and each one of those special rules brings the net result one step closer to the modern initiative system you were moving away from in the first place.

Meanwhile, if you're anywhere between the two extremes of these different initiative systems, people would just play toward the best options. That is, if archery gets to change targets easily, then everybody wants to be an archer. If something else gets an exception, folks play to that. Whatever's worst off doesn't get used (for instance, folks might just decide to never heal each other in battle for fear of the above scenario, and push even harder toward "rocket tag", which is probably not what you're after either).

Of course, you could then take the most forgiving actions initiative-wise and give them other drawbacks (like maybe archery deals less damage, etc) in an attempt to rebalance things so that there's real diversity and choice again, so you can have your complicated-but-dynamic initiative system without breaking anything. Great, except now you're rewriting so much of the game in your attempt to create a workable context in which your initiative system can function, that you may as well be playing a different game.

You know, like 2E. Side note: Just because a mechanic "worked just fine" in one game doesn't mean it'll work just as well in another. Classic homebrewer pitfall. The context in which a mechanic will operate is as important as—if not moreso than—the mechanic itself.

TLDR: The idea sounds neat, but won't deliver the experience you think it will.

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justaworm wrote:
Orfamay Quest wrote:
lots of stuff, not re-quoting
Quite a bit of a strawman since you utilized CR1 non-lethal traps. CRs (of anything) equivalent to the APL are not overly challenging by themselves. The hero should be walking through the "Hall of Infinte CR 3 traps" instead.

You're not really in a position to throw stones here, since you're pretending that a single character is equivalent to a 4-5 person party of the same level for determining the intended lethality of a given CR. That's pretty dishonest of you, and you should stop it.

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nosig wrote:

I can recall an old home game where I felt bad about the amount of treasure (or lack thereof) that I had given out in an earlier game. So I placed a large gem (a ruby) in the hall for the players to find. I reasoned that another adventuring party had dropped it as they left - and had not noticed it.

So as the players approached a intersection they caught sight of a "red twinkle" on the floor ahead. Out came the detect spell, the rogue checking for traps, the works. Ultimately, even discovering that it was a gem, they elected to bypass that section of tunnel to avoid approaching it, as they could come up with NO REASON FOR IT TO BE THERE. It HAD to be a trap, and one they couldn't figure out, so best to bust a hole in a couple room walls to bypass the intersection entirely...

"I always think everything could be a trap. Which is why I'm still alive."

— Prince Humperdinck

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Celdrexen wrote:
True, but most dungeons are not dynamic with monster movement, they are static.

Interestingly, this is not the fault of the interaction between detect magic and magical traps.

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Maybe one of these days I'll get back to in-person GMing instead of just PbP GMing. I'll have to keep some of these ideas in mind.

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Having never witnessed an episode of Star Trek get ruined by the characters' frequent and thorough use of tricorders, I really have to wonder about all these campaigns that are getting ruined by the characters' frequent and thorough use of detect magic.

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I'd never thought of having a separate GM alias for each campaign I'm running. There's an idea...

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MendedWall12 wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
I've actually failed DC 0 checks before. Even got as low as a -2 on an Initiative check once.
That's awesome, I've tripped going down the stairs before, but I do not want my game about heroic adventurers to in any way simulate the foibles of real life. I want it to be fun to play and not make me worry about whether Conan will see Red Sonja lying half naked on furs 10' away from him, or unsuccessfully set his sword on a table.

You're welcome to ignore elements of the game in order to play it more smoothly. This does not mean that the folks who understand how the published system actually works are being ridiculous. The ridiculousness is in the system, not the reader.

The nasty taste comes from the cake that was made with salt in place of sugar, not from the person who tasted the saltiness and correctly diagnosed how it got that way. And the person who hears that diagnosis and replies, "Come on, you know cake is supposed to be sweet; stop getting hung up on the petty details of the ingredients and just enjoy it!" is being pretty silly.

Also, don't confuse comprehension with support. Recognizing the nasty taste of salt-cake and being able to point out what happened is not the same as saying you prefer your cake to be salty. Similarly, recognizing how Pathfinder's skill mechanics work and what repercussions they have is not the same as being in favor of gaming that way. Neither of us is playing by-the-book Pathfinder: you've chosen things to ignore, and I've switched systems.

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Chess Pwn wrote:

Or take 10! Just hope that the GM isn't lame and say your wife is a distraction to taking 10 to see your wife.

References a pit being the distraction stopping take 10 to jump said pit.

FAQ something something dramatic tension...?

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thorin001 wrote:
MendedWall12 wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
Remember that we're talking about a system where there's an explicitly listed Perception DC for noticing that somebody's standing next to you and for hearing what they're saying to you.
Come on Jiggy, you can do better than that!? The listed DC is ZERO!!! Meaning they only listed them as a frame of reference for ad-hocing other DCs, not because someone might actually fail at it...
It becomes much more relevant when you include the "1 always fails" crowd.

Not necessary. Pathfinder assumes most folks (including adventurers; that is, folks with PC class levels) have an assortment of stats that include a single-digit number—possibly even two, or one that's as low as a 6, depending on race. If we assume random distribution, a good number of the population of Golarion has a WIS of less than 10. Among them, those who don't have any ranks in Perception are fully capable of failing this check.

When Bob the 8 WIS merchant opens his bedroom door to reveal that his wife is lying hopefully in bed 10ft away (+1 to the DC), there's a 10% chance he won't even notice her.

Don't dump WIS, folks. At least not in Pathfinder.

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The Green Tea Gamer wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
Because it's not like people can fake their rolls when they're right there for everyone to see, so are you meaning something else?

Not exactly true.

You can hit preview, and if you don't like what you see, roll that dice in another thread, re-post your dice roll, delete the roll from another thread, and move on.

Really? I thought the forum had a separate "memory" for any given thread.

Quote:
It's a lot of work to cheat, but it is possible. I don't know why you'd cheat in an RPG - you don't get a prize for winning or anything, but...some people are that type.

I find it usually has to do with getting the gameplay to match your expectations. The most classic example is when the fight is supposed to be difficult and scary but the game is telling you it's much easier than anticipated, so the GM cheats the rolls (or inflates the HP, or whatever) in order to get things to play out the way they envisioned. On the player side, it might be something like wanting to execute a cool, cinematic turn that starts with a chandelier swing which—if the Acrobatics check fails—instead results in you faceplanting and accomplishing nothing, in a manner completely at odds with how you envisioned the scene going and bruises your super-cool mental image of your character.

Basically, I think the cheating comes in when people forget that there are differences between RPGs and other storytelling mediums, and they sometimes feel like they're authors and the dice are coming into their workshops and rewriting their lovingly-crafted manuscripts against their will.

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Arbane the Terrible wrote:
MendedWall12 wrote:
Daniel Yeatman wrote:
I'm almost certain that tying ropes in a non-grapply situation is a Sleight of Hand check now.
Tying ropes not on a person is called roleplaying. If you need some kind of a DC for the knot it's the character's CMD. We're talking about hearty heroes and adventurers here, why do they need to roll something to tie a rope on an inanimate object?

[badgm]

No action is interesting without the possibility of humiliating and potentially lethal failure.
[/badgm]

Remember that we're talking about a system where there's an explicitly listed Perception DC for noticing that somebody's standing next to you and for hearing what they're saying to you.

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thegreenteagamer wrote:
[various complaints]

Hm, you might be a good fit for my next campaign. One of my campaigns is likely to wrap up this summer (they're on the last dungeon before the final showdown, and making good progress). Once that happens, I will very likely start up another one.

I will confess being guilty of one of your annoyances, though: I do leave recruitment open for more than a week. Just because someone can consistently come up with a few minutes with access to the site every day to post, doesn't mean they can come up with four hours of character creation at home with their books within a couple of days of seeing a recruitment thread. Thus, I like my recruitments to include two weekends.

But if you can deal with that, keep an eye out for my next game.

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LazGrizzle wrote:
KenderKin wrote:
Not sure why anyone might be against play by post games?

Had a bad experience with one. Dice rolls were iffy, one player dominates by posting pages that the other players now cannot contradict, DM disappearing, etc. An established, set time with voice communication is ideal for my gaming preferences.

Just not my cup of tea.

Okay, I have to ask, as this is (I think) the second time you've mentioned die-roll issues in PbP. What exactly was going on? Was it here on Paizo.com? Because it's not like people can fake their rolls when they're right there for everyone to see, so are you meaning something else?

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NobodysHome wrote:

Yeah, the Constitution party sounds pretty much like an "anti-me" party.

The entire purpose of a government is to "promote the common welfare". The way I would approach this is:

  • Every city of over 100,000 residents would have dormitory-style housing with a capacity of 10% of the population. Anyone who felt like it could stay in this housing for free, indefinitely, as long as a weekly inspection proved that they were living in the housing, keeping it clean, and not performing any illegal activities therein.

    Considering colleges charge students only around $20,000 per capita for such housing, this would be CHEAPER than the current welfare system, and would eliminate abuse. The moment you give someone cash or cash equivalent (food stamps, etc.), you're asking for abuse. "You can live here forever, but we're going to inspect your place every week and kick your sorry butt out if it's not up to snuff," is enough to discourage most people, but provide for the truly needy.

    I'm totally willing to see my taxes foot the bill for the lazy, if it's also paying for the needy, and there's no chance that that money's being used for liquor, drugs, cigarettes, or other abuses.

    It also eliminates those street-corner beggars. "This country provides free food and housing. If you're out here begging it means you screwed that up and got thrown out. Sorry, no cash for you, bub!"

  • National health care like any other first-world country. The fact that my friend's doctor recommends an MRI and his insurance company refuses to pay for it because it costs too much is indicative of what's wrong with this country's health system. (And don't get me started on my son's broken arm, where the surgery was covered but the anaesthesia wasn't.)
  • Eliminate all other programs. Social security? Don't need it. We have free housing for all. Medicare? Don't need it. We have free medical care for all.

  • Basically, I'm a huge advocate of NEVER handing anyone money for any reason, ever, and instead providing the essential...

    Interesting! I've entertained similar thought experiments in the past, but yours is all articulate and formulated, so I'll take yours and poke it and see what happens.

    You mentioned housing and medical care; what about food?

    Also, what's the plan when more than 10% of the city's population wants to live in this free dorm?

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    I favorited 2 and 3, because I think I'm somewhere in between. It's a hard question to answer, though, when you consider the varying logistics of different gaming outlets.

    For example: my RPG-ing takes the form of a weekly face-to-face group and about a half-dozen play-by-posts (two of which I'm GMing). The meatspace group is on a regular schedule, and the PbPs are on my lunchbreaks at work or at other times when I have a moment.

    I'm also into playing Magic: the Gathering. I play with a group of friends/acquaintances now and then (like, maybe one evening every 2-3 months), and I play local semi-competitive events about twice a month.

    Other nerdy pastimes are generally done one-on-one with my wife, such as watching sci-fi/fantasy/anime/whatever together or playing Ascension (a deckbuilding game), or occasionally going to a local game store where you can borrow a game from their library and play it.

    Now, think about the time commitment for each of those. The PbPs can be done at work, while none of the others can. So I'm spending time on them, but does that time "count" for this poll, since it's incapable of competing with my other hobbies? Meanwhile, the TV/movie-watching and 2-player games with my wife (as well as MtG deckbuilding) can be done any time I have a free evening/afternoon, so I'd have to get REALLY busy before that could conflict with any of the scheduled events (meatspace D&D, FLGS Magic).

    This poll frames the prioritization of free time expenditure in terms of which activities pull time away from other activities. But if all the activities fit into different time slots with little to no overlap, how do we rank them?

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    @LazGrizzle — How do you know that the players/GMs you've had trouble with are "today's millennials" rather than your fellow 35-year-olds in their underwear with a micro-brewed beer and a joint (or any other demographic for that matter, such as overweight retirees with 30+ years of entrenched habits RPG experience)? Did your online RPG groups regularly disburse personal information or something?

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    So you want me to hand a teenager $500 in cash, then expect them to go buy me something with it for the verbal promise of more money upon completion, when they could instead just walk away with the $500 I've just handed them so they don't have to do any work or trust my word?

    And then you want me to do the same thing with a "day laborer", except this time I'm handing him enough cash for several months worth of rent and food and inviting him to leave my sight with it?

    Are you serious?

    EDIT: And that's before we even touch on the idea that they might not be total idiots and realize there might be something up with a guy paying fat stacks of cash for relatively trivial errands. Anyone with half a brain, upon being sent on the errand, would immediately contact the police. Unless, of course, they're really desperate for cash, in which case we're right back to "take what you give them up front and leave". And then possibly still call the police, just anonymously.

    This plan is terrible.

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    Jaçinto wrote:
    Also I miss the days when MtG cared about the story and would put novels in the fat packs. The story was the best part of magic but now, ech.

    Interestingly enough, Magic has changed a lot in the 15+ years since Homelands. In recent years, there's actually been a pretty heavy emphasis on flavor, especially in the most recent set, Shadows Over Innistrad.

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

    I'm... trying to decide if I could stomach an entire AP's worth of the Pathfinder ruleset...

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

    I'm not interested in Out of the Abyss, but don't know much about the other. What's the general idea, and the level range?

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    ryric wrote:

    I'm just thinking of a recent game where the players applied their adamantine "universal lockpick" to a treasure chest they were too lazy to try and pick. They were less happy when I described the tinkling of broken glass and how a multicolored liquid began to leak out of the bottom of the chest. They managed to open it, but the potions and scrolls within were all destroyed(scrolls by the liquid from the potions).

    Loud and violent brute force solutions often work, but can have unintended consequences. To me, that's sufficient reason to use them as a last resort.

    Makes sense if the brute force solution was to break a hole in the chest with a greataxe and the treasure gets smashed in the process.

    Though in the context of the OP, where the "brute force solution" is to break the lock with an adamantine dagger, the destruction of all the treasure within mostly just tells us some unfortunate things about the kind of person the GM is.

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    Terquem, why would anyone ask you questions about the environment when your initial descriptions are so wonderfully detailed in the first place?

    I think your observation of less question-asking might have less to do with computer games and disinterest in the setting, and more to do with no longer needing to assume that the GM is hoping for a lethal "Gotcha!" if you fail to explicitly ask whether the statue is in the process of stabbing you.

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    Davor wrote:
    Yes, everyone, I understand the character will not be contributing much in the damage department. His party contributions will revolve around skill support, scouting, social strength, and aiding during combat (with combat reflexes/bodyguard, he'll regularly be throwing out +5 untyped bonuses to attack rolls/AC thanks to good traits). No, he won't be putting out much damage, but I've already accepted he'll be a support character that will be strong in social/trapfinding situations.

    I think you're using the wrong game system for your concept, and unless the GM does a lot of tweaking and/or the other PCs force weaknesses into themselves specifically to leave room for you, you're going to eventually run into problems.

    It's not about your damage output. It's about how the whole game is set up.

    For example, a character's AC is built almost entirely on magic items. Even if you decide to invest in extra armor proficiencies (or use thing nonproficiently) and wear full plate and a tower shield, the highest AC you can ever get without magic items will be 26 (and even that is assuming a couple more feats).

    That means you're only into mid levels when monsters start consistently hitting you with single-digit rolls. By the low teen levels, even monsters' secondary attacks are going to be hitting you a lot. Thus, you're going to be taking more damage than normal. On top of that, you're not going to have the CON belt (and other stat boosts later on) that the monsters' damage output is assuming you've got, so you can't even take as many hits. By mid levels, a single pouncing animal is going to down you in a single round, and it's only going to get worse from there.

    And then there's your saves. Without a cloak of resistance, stat boosters, etc; you're gradually going to need higher and higher rolls to make your saves, and the effects of failure are going to get more and more dramatic.

    So as levels rise, more and more you'll find that you're neutralized in the first round. Then nobody gets those untyped assistance bonuses you were hoping to contribute, because you're not around to provide them.

    Out of combat, you were hoping to be good at social skills and other such things? Not without magic. Skill DCs tend to scale faster than the +1 per level that ranks give you, because it's assumed that you're boosting relevant stats and accumulating magic bonuses. Your success rate is going to continue to drop over the course of the game.

    I'm sorry, I like your concept, but Pathfinder is a system that's built on omnipresent magic and punishes concepts like this past the first few levels. Making it work will require lots of bending over backwards from everyone else at the table, both players and GMs. You need to ask them if they're okay with it.

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    ChaosTicket wrote:

    Im new to RPGs but Its clear that I lean towards gaming as I like to create powerful characters(within the rules of course) and care less about roleplaying, making up backstory before even using a character, and giving drawbacks .

    Do you as a player or Dungeon master allow this or do you enforce roleplaying?

    Are we talking about actually roleplaying, or are we talking about "speaking in first-person"? Despite common overlap, those are two different things; unfortunately, a lot of folks conflate the two.

    Roleplaying is when your character's interaction with the game world is based on the character's knowledge and personality rather than that of the player. You might act this out in first-person speech, or you might describe it instead. In some cases, roleplaying requires that you not even have your character speak at all (whether portrayed in first person or not).

    There's a similar distinction between roleplaying and the backstories and flaws and such. When you remember that roleplaying just means that your interactions with the world are true to character, it becomes clear that things which aren't part of your interactions with the world are not roleplaying. Thus, writing a backstory is not roleplaying. Writing a backstory is a roleplaying aid – it gives you information about your character so that when you ARE roleplaying, it will be easier and/or more fun to do so.

    With all that understood, let's go back to the idea of "enforcing roleplay". This actually means "enforcing that PCs' interactions with the world are true to character". This sounds like it's obviously something worth doing, but it's not so simple. For example, just today I started as a player in a new PbP campaign, and the opening adventure hook involved the PCs being part of a larger group (more NPCs than PCs) who noticed signs of trouble in the distance. When my character expressed an interest in having some of the people investigate while others guarded the civilians, that was roleplaying (due to character motivations I won't go into here). But when the specific people I requested go with me to investigate just happened to be the PCs (while armed and capable NPCs stayed behind), that was not roleplaying, even though it involved first-person speech. In fact, it was blatant metagaming. But it was good for the game.

    So do I enforce roleplaying? Only where appropriate. :)

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    Saldiven wrote:
    Jiggy wrote:
    The way Pathfinder is structured as a system, by the time the party can afford to have 3,000gp tied up in an adamantine dagger, the sentence "it's locked" is no longer supposed to represent a meaningful obstacle.
    Tell that to the AP designers.

    Yeah, I know. That's part of the multi-faceted reason I gave up on Pathfinder: there seems to be quite a disconnect between what the game is billed as doing, how the game actually works, and how the adventure writers (and PFS leadership, and the GMing community, etc) seem to think the game is structured.

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    The way Pathfinder is structured as a system, by the time the party can afford to have 3,000gp tied up in an adamantine dagger, the sentence "it's locked" is no longer supposed to represent a meaningful obstacle.

    Pathfinder is a game where leveling up* means that your previous types of challenges become trivial and you move on to what would have been impossible a few levels ago but now presents about the same amount of challenge that the now-trivial obstacles of the past used to present.

    *And in Pathfinder, "leveling up" includes the accumulation of fantastic gear and magic items, as that's a built-in mechanism of character advancement.

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    Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
    Jiggy wrote:
    Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
    @ Jiggy: The success stories of Final Fantasy and other similar JRPG genres would like to have a word with you; they're still alive and kicking, and quite virulently, too. I don't like such games, but clearly it's appreciated a lot more than you care to admit.
    You seem to be under the impression that I said something very different than what I actually wrote. Feel free to re-read and try again. Or not. Your call.
    I appreciate the clarification. But it doesn't change my point.

    I wasn't trying to change your point. You're 0/2 now on taking a moment to understand what someone has said before replying (well, "replying"). As a result, I won't be devoting any more time to you unless you first demonstrate having devoted some time to what I've already written.

    Claxon wrote:
    If you read my second post Jiggy you would see that I'm not actually so strict on all things,

    I wasn't commenting on your GMing style as a whole, only on the specific practice to which I was responding.

    Quote:
    but things that effectively one shot an enemy without chance for save or recourse are things I simply wouldn't allow to work.

    Okay.

    Quote:
    Some things aren't good for the game even if you view them as "inventive" or "role playing".

    If roleplaying isn't good for a roleplaying game, then there's probably a deeper problem that isn't fixed by vetoing the roleplay.

    Quote:
    It's roleplaying to have a character who uses simulacrums of themselves to overpower any encounter and be virtually undefeatable, or using simulacrums of Efreeti to get lots of wishes.

    See above.

    Quote:
    This isn't as broken as doing those things, it still doesn't mean I should allow it.

    I never said you should allow it.

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    Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
    @ Jiggy: The success stories of Final Fantasy and other similar JRPG genres would like to have a word with you; they're still alive and kicking, and quite virulently, too. I don't like such games, but clearly it's appreciated a lot more than you care to admit.

    You seem to be under the impression that I said something very different than what I actually wrote. Feel free to re-read and try again. Or not. Your call.

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