All the 'ban it' and 'omg overpowered' stuff is coming from people with no playtest examples posted and no builds posted.
It's the mystic theurge all over again. Sounds super, in reality, not so much.
It seems odd to me that heavy armor is 'prohibited'. I understand not proficient, but when it comes to druidic oaths and such, I feel that a cold iron spiked breastplate seems less in character than a suit of full plate made out of dragon (or mammoth or purple worm) hide would be. Or stone armor, or darkwood plate or whatever. Especially if they can only use wooden shields.
All in all, I'm not really sure what this class is supposed to be.
Heh. That's funny.
I ignore the tier system on a regular basis, acknowledging it only for internet arguments where I hold it to be a shortsighted and clumsy attempt to explain the game. I'm glad the Paizo designers consider it to be a lot of drek.
The arcanist I would allow freely into my games. It doesn't threaten my world. I like the different but similar feel it has to the existing arcane casters. Neatly bridges the gap in a way the ultimate magus from 3.0 never really did.
It is true that the dispelling of the buffs directly led to the sick sick damage output inflicted upon Warduke. Had I designed Warduke according to actual CR parameters instead of based off of my experience with the group, he would have been smeared immediately, even prior.
I'm also pretty sure that last time my fighter personally ventured forth from the arcanists' apron strings to fight without wizardly support he (and two other PCs) got roflstomped by an NPC caster of lower level than all three of them (in an encounter lasting - I think - seven or eight rounds), so I'm not sure that Kain finds it hard to challenge my fighter at all or provide him long fights. That experience would seem to indicate that in and of himself he is notably easy to challenge.
I remember this. You, the bard and the cleric sat in a cloudkill for several rounds, while the undead sorcerer and his skeleton were unmolested. It seems poor tactics lost the day there, however, rather than a specific caster/martial imbalance.
In general, I have found that the massive damage the fighters deal is harder to control than anything spellcasting does. Spellcasting seems to get out of hand when spells aren't used how they are intended to. But it hardly seems likely that a fighter's attack and damage bonus aren't working as intended when they make mincemeat out of any AC/hp combination in the bestiary inside a couple rounds.
Mob template has been incredibly useful on more than one occasion for me, so we can definitely take it off the anti-wishlist. In fact, Paizo, you can probably move it to the top of the wishlist. Templates that expedite high level battles are excellent.
I'd like to see less spiders, oozes, golems, giants, demons and devils.
Peter Stewart wrote:
Even armed with a non-magical blade it is the ability to beat back a group of hill giant mummies single-handedly (true story, happened in my campaign with a 12th or 13th level fighter).
Going to call B.S. on this one.
They were gryfadon mummies.
Gyoradon Mummy (CR 13)
LE Large Undead (Fire, Reptilian)
Init +1; Senses Darkvision, Low-light, Perception +18
Languages Draconic, Sauron
Aura Despair (DC 21 negates paralyzed 1d4 rounds)
AC 27 (+1 Dex, +17 natural, -1 size) touch 10, flat-footed 26, combat 39
Speed 30 ft.
SQ Rapid strike
Mummy Rot Fort DC 21
Rapid Strike Gyoradons can make iterative attacks with their primary natural weapons.
Toss Those struck by a gyoradon's gore attack are subject to a combat maneuver check. If successful, they are tossed 1d6 x 5 ft. away.
James Jacobs wrote:
That sounds fair. There are times when I want the players to be able to teleport someplace, and there are times when I do not want them to be able to do so.
In your games, what constitutes 'viewed once' for teleport? Looking at a picture of the place?
Ross Byers wrote:
Didn't the Nosferatu appear in an old PF AP, that predates the mythic rules?
Yes. To be clear, I completely understand why they didn't make nosferatu as mythic creatures. I simply also see the merits in doing so.
I'm glad Grendel was CR 19. Iconic fight against one of the iconic mythic heroes from our own world? They nailed it perfectly. If you need him to be weaker, just sub his attack bonuses and hit points with those listed in the monster creation block as appropriate.
I totally agree about the Argus though. Really would have pegged them as a bit more powerful.
teleport PRD wrote:
“Viewed once” is a place that you have seen once, possibly using magic such as scrying.
James, do you reconcile this with your view on scrying?
I'm not really against scry and fry as a tactic. I'm against anything being 'the perfect tactic'. I've provided a couple opportunities for scry and fry in my game, and I've also provided plenty of reasons for that to be a bad go-to tactic. The appeal of scry and fry to players (who like it) is risk minimization. The distaste of it to DMs (who dislike it) is the reduction of adventure, risk, challenge and story.
If you want to cut down on it, toss a few teleport traps. Just a couple. Not everyone. Just those who should be prepared for magic in a world with magic. Destination can be cells, or a room sealed with poison gas and ten foot thick walls.
The problem should not be with a single use of a spell or tactic to solve one adventure or riddle. The problem is when these are used for every adventure, for every riddle, all the time. The game is most fun to me when things are mixed up a bit. If that means the players have to actually break out ropes and scale a cliff at high level instead of flying or teleporting up, so be it. But letting them use their toys is fun too. I don't want to plan out six months of sailing adventures every time they leave the Isle of Dread anymore than they want to suffer through them.
I never really noticed the 'hype' or push as the 'mythic bestiary', so I didn't feel let down by any such lack. However, I know that at least 12 monsters (the demon/celestial lords, G.Old Ones and kaiju) are all of such a level that mythic is required to realistically fight them. Then there are real mythic creatures, 17 of them.
There are quite a few people that petulantly state the exact opposite of what you want. The first preview, where Grendel debuted, was filled with people stating that it was useless for them because Grendel used mythic rules. For them to pack an entire bestiary, or even half of one, with monsters that are primarily designed for use with an optional ruleset would probably prove detrimental to their longterm sales goals.
Uh, I have every single Adventure Path since the inception, and I am never upset to see the greatest hits make it into the big bestiaries. Especially the awesome material we had for this one. Phantom armor, flying medusa heads, nosferatu, etc. I loved Carrion Crown and Skull and Shackles' monsters. I do wish we would have gotten that triple headed shark kraken though.
Also, I don't see a single 'setting specific' entity, so that's a nonsense argument. (Not yours, I know.) Even the kaiju were done so as to be placed in any game that features kaiju. Empyreal lords, the closest argument here, have been mentioned since Bestiary 1, and none of them are so deeply tied to Golarion lore that they can't be used in other areas.
I do agree that we are to the point where a bestiary makes more sense every 2-3 years. I'm hoping the NPC Codices do something more though. Right now, the stats are mechanically too weak for their CR, and there's very little flavor for those builds. I actually greatly enjoyed the builds in the GMG, so there is a sweet spot to hit here. I wouldn't mind seeing a 'monster codex' where we get class leveled hobgoblins, ogres, giants and such.
Thank you for repeating what I just said, Dragon78, about resistance and vulnerabilities. It is good to know that in this day and age of internet vitriol, that some people still care about reading comprehension and ensuring that they adequately understand someone else's position. In all instances that you've stuck to speaking on the carnivorous blob equating to the Blob, you are correct.
Naturally, the hungry flesh is also inspired by the Blob. Not only is it a lower CR, and thus appropriate for the movie monster (which was certainly not brought down by a party of 13th level characters), but its growth mechanic, which represents an in-combat growth, not simply DM monster advancement, is lifted wholesale from the movie's story. It starts smaller, which is much truer to the film's representation, rather than the carnivorous blob which begins right at Colossal. To suggest that it 'means nothing' is to ignore the source matter, possibly due to a lack of understanding or exposure.
The two are different images inspired by the same source material. In a similar way to the shabboath from WotC 3.5 clearly being inspired by shoggoths without actually being shoggoths.
The hungry flesh is definitely the Blob. Mechanics for growing larger and everything. Carnivorous blob is also the Blob. No mechanics for growing larger, but the resistances and vulnerability is there. Both solid adaptations from the source material. Overall, I like the hungry flesh much better. It appeals to a more sophisticated design than the carnivorous blob does.
I would like to see nascent demon lords, archdevils, dukes of Hell, malebranche, and maybe a sample 'uber 20' from all the outsiders that had them listed. This sort of thing could go in a world specific or general bestiary, I don't mind. And more empyreal lords, demon lords, kaiju, Great Old Ones...pretty much, 2-3 of any of those big guys you put in the Bestiary 4, I'm solid on doing more of.
I don't want to see Inner Sea Bestiary ripped from until it's sold out or nearly so. If you want the monsters in there, there is a simple solution...buy it.
I do like seeing the AP bestiaries compiled though, so the poster who mentioned so many of those (was it you, Mikase?) has a thumbs up from me.
I would like seeing lesser titans, regular old formorian giants (or some type of fey giant/giant from First World), an adamantine and mithril colossus, elemental lords and First World Eldest.
I wouldn't mind more kytons, qlippoth, aeons, inevitibles, or proteans. Especially proteans, they've got pretty slim pickins at the moment. Asura, psychopomps and rakshasa seem to have a pretty solid setup, though I wouldn't complain if we got more. Same with the celestials.
I would like more alien creatures, old ones drawn from whatever properties are out there, new originals, etc.
I would like to see cait sith.
Not sure whatelse at the moment.
I'm of the same opinion, Meatrace. This isn't why girls have image problems. They took a cute girl who hadn't done her hair and are trying to make some point about how easily photoshop turns ugly into pretty.
The Oma is for outer space and the Astral Leviathan is for the astral plane so I do see the need for both though I do like the Oma more.
Zero need for either, but nearly completely interchangeable with a small alteration to environment.
The Cliff Giants fill a niche of little used Native American stuff. New giants are never useless to me.
Not seeing how they are any different than stone giants, other than some different SLAs. Completely replaceable by a stone giant or taiga giant druid. Love the art though.
Devils and demons are useless to me beside there are so many of them now and we have so many other evil outsider groups to use. What we really need is more LN and CN outsiders.
Well, you should be thrilled with the zero new demons in the book. As for the idol devil, absolutely hands down best new flavor for a monster ever. I agree that both of these creature subtypes are fully fleshed out however. With the addition of the new demons throughout the Wrath AP, demons should probably be full to bursting.
The nightmare creature template didn't do anything for me at all. Also why does it have both a fear aura and frightful presence?
I'll be honest, haven't looked at the template. That art though, is awesome.
There some good oozes but nothing as cool as what was in Bestiary 1 and 2.
Guess you read a different book. Boilborn, an actual bubble monster. Colour out of space, cthulhu classic. Hungry flesh, aka The Blob. Immortal ichor, aka the Prince of Darkness, blood of a dead god. Nothing comes close in those other books.
Well, sir, there's nothing on earth
I hear those things are awfully loud
What about us brain-dead slobs?
The ring came off my pudding can
But Main Street's still all cracked and broken
Other than the ocean giant, I didn't really think any of the giants filled a needed niche. They were, for the most part, superfluous. Ironically, the one 'giant' I really wanted, the formorian, was altered into an inferior titan. Which was a bummer, because their last titan addition, the hekto, was amazing. The giant artwork was good, especially the cliff giant, but I just really have no reason to incorporate a new giant race into the game when I've already got a ton of amazing ones like stone or taiga giants.
Conversely, the areas where 'new monster reskin X' are often found, the ooze and golems, were filled with interesting and original additions. I've already used a sentient wax golem in my game, as a more 'foolproof' BBEG duplicate. True seeing doesn't break that disguise.
I sort of wonder if you couldn't just have combined the oma and astral leviathan for a singular creature. I like them both, it is just that they seem to fill similar spots.
The nightmare creature's art seems to invoke a Phyrexian praetor, which is pretty cool. The template itself does not, just the art.
The shadow lord template is interesting as well. Given that I have a shadowmancer in my group, I wonder if a change in basic nature is in order.
Advodazas have one of the coolest devil origins I've ever seen. I wouldn't have even been surprised if they'd been a mythic creature.
The ill fated V Asphyxian, wiped out off screen by the son of Demogorgon.
[size=120]V Asphyxian, First Cohort (XP )[/size]
CE Colossal army of tieflings (fighter 2)
hp 49; ACR 9
DV 19; OM +11
Tactics Relentless brutality
Special bravery +1, darkvision, magic weapons
Speed 1; Consumption 44
[size=120]V Asphyxian, Second Cohort (XP )[/size]
Gancanagh, Erlking is CN.
Troodos, if you think brachiosaurus couldn't beat diplodocus in a fight, I'm not sure we are going to be able to communicate on the subject beyond agreeing to disagree. While CR and animal design is more art than science, this one seems to flout the previously established themes in a way that is contradictory rather than complementary.
Evil Midnight Lurker, I was thinking the exact same thing, and had the exact same reaction!
JENOVA folks, the drakaina is definitely not Jenova in the same way that King Mogaru is who he is. However, when I saw her, and when I saw the other monster from 3.5 (in Elder Evils, Ragnora, or something?) I immediately thought of Jenova, traveling through outerspace, destroying worlds through her seeded spawn. The drakaina has abilities and a motif that make me think of Jenova, rather than those that are obviously ripped from the character.
Ok, wow. This book has a lot.
First off, none of the mythic power monsters need access to mythic rules or mythic characters to play. You can just run them right out of the book. Mythic power is literally no different mechanically than ki points, in that it is a pool of points that you can spend to different purposes. Or for that matter, sorcerer spell slots. X slots, Y different things you can do with those slots.
The mythic creatures obviously grab the immediate attention. Nearly all of them are really cool, and they aren't the most powerful creatures in the book.
I think by far the best chunk of creatures in this book is the fey. Hamadryads, erlkings, leanan sidhe...a PC flying fey race, and a bunch more. The erlking looks really low on the offense department for a CR 18 though, thanks to fey BaB. Maybe some innate weapon training, given that he counts as a 20th level fighter in other areas? Just a thought.
The empyreal lords were a bit disappointing. Most (2/3) of them are inferior to a solar in mental stats, with those same two having exactly identical mental stat arrays. Celestials seem to be continuing that trend from early WotC 3e, actually. And I totally prefer Cernnunos as a fey lord, even though aside from his disappointing mentals, he actually has a pretty cool set of powers, from druid spells to archery abilities. Another note from high level play...according to your own rules, a +5 keen weapon penetrates Cernnunos' DR. That's child's play for a 30th level party to obtain. Even without that, there exist enough DR lowering abilities that I would start epic DRs at 20, and go all the way up to 30. Experience with my own (14th level) players has demonstrated how mild DRs of 15 and under can really be.
Death dogs. What's the point of a two headed evil dog when you have a three headed evil cerberi dog...oh. Oh, that's actually pretty cool. Carry on, nicely done.
Demon lords all had superior mental stats to balors, even Kochiechie, who was the one guy I figured could be acceptable otherwise. Demon lords were all excellently done. I admit a bit of a twinge when I saw that the art was reused for two of them, but that art was so damn good to begin with that it was mild.
One question I had was if demon/empyreals gain 10 mythic powers in their realm to go along with that effective mythic rank? Or just surge?
Dinosaurs. James. Really? How...how can a diplodocus be bigger, have a higher CR than a bracheosaurus? That's...heresy. I was really surprised by that.
Outer dragons were all really cool. I actually really like how each set of dragons is really distinct from the others, rather than the additional dragons in old 3e, that seemed to just be tacked on.
Jenova being in there as a CR 25/MR 10 was a nice surprise. Oh, you called her something else. Same difference. Very cool.
Einherjar were suitably cool, and make great companions to the sleepnir and valkyries already in B3.
So much cool and I've only really spent time in the D-E section. A very good purchase after all.
I hate to end on a bad note, but one guy stood out to me as a disappointment. The formorian titan. I was really looking forward to the fey deformed giants, or the non-fey deformed giants, or just something else. The mythic titan was a bit of a let down. He doesn't have much to do with his mythic power, and other than different SLAs, he could easily be a thanatotic titan with a mace. And an 8 point lower attack bonus. There's not really much to distinguish the two.
Aw hell, I'm not going to end on a bad note. Kaiju! Great Old Ones! Invading ant creatures from outer space (and not lawful planes)! Cthulhuian creatures abound! Cool golems! Collossi! Variant bugbears alluded to in previous incredible revisited books! All this stuff rocks.
The bestiaries have easily been my favorite additions to the game every time they come out. I'm hoping we get another two year break before B5, with an NPC codex next fall, but don't stop the magic. I've got more monsters than I know what to do with, but keep it coming!
The GM made this decision that annoyed me. With time to reflect, I believe they did the right thing and I was actually wrong.
I guess I'm not sure if this thread is where the DM ruled against my character (causing them mechanical harm), or ruled against me as a player (disagreed with my interpretation).
The only time I was upset with being killed as a character was when I begged my DM to let me make a tiefling character, and he didn't want to. After he finally allowed me to do so (and the other player to make an aasimar), our characters were beset by a team of characters using perfect team tactics and immediately killed. I thought it was a waste of all of our time. I would have preferred just never being allowed to play one at all. Writing up a first level tiefling didn't scratch my itch, and engendered more resentment than denying me the opportunity ever could have.
As for mechanical disagreements, I'm the DM mostly these days, so I'm not really suited for that aspect. If I run into any, I'll bring them up, but my position for DMs (as a DM and player) is to make your expectations clear, let the DM make a given ruling immediately, and evaluate the ruling after the session is done, as a group.
One side of this argument is imagining the DM to be a chef who invites people over for a steak dinner. When they arrive, one of the guests mentions they are a vegetarian, and everyone needs to eat carrots instead. When some object to the change of plans, he pulls out a gun and threatens to kill himself and everyone present if carrots, rather than steak, is not eaten.
The other side of the argument is imagining the guests to be headed over for a steak dinner, and one of them brings along his grandma's special baked potatoes, hoping to add to the enjoyment of the meal. The jerkish host swats the potatoes out of the guest's hands, shattering his mom's best dish, and then sics the dogs on the guest, who chase him down the street bleeding.
It's all rather insane, with most likely a dash of autism tossed in for good measure.
The fact is, everyone has different tolerances for discussion. These can range from person to person, or from situation to situation within a single person. Be civil to each other, and really considerate of each others' time, and you'll eliminate most of the issues here.
If a DM says 'no elves', why would an elven character be your (as a player) go-to choice? If you as DM say 'no elves', why would a player who loves his elven characters to the exclusion of all else be your go-to choice? I can't even imagine that kind of asinine conflict coming up. Far more likely to me, is a player approaching me about playing a viking character in my tropical pirate setting, and me not having considered vikings one way or another. Obviously they don't immediately fit. What to do then? For me, it involved talking things over with the player, asking for how they saw things going, and deciding that I had a wealth of opportunities in allowing the viking character. If it had been another point in the campaign, another approach, another point in my busy life, that could have easily went the other way.
Let's see. After There is No Honor, there is some time before the Bullywug Gambit. I had my players run Fiend's Embrace during that bit. After the Bullywug Gambit, there is a break.
The Sea Wyvern's Wake and Here There Be Monsters are sort of on a direct line, without a lot of opportunities for a break, but SWW has tons of unscheduled time, so the players can make good use of that or not.
The Tides of Dread is also on a timeclock, but the DM has the ability to adjust it as needed.
After Tides of Dread, there is a chance for a large break. I had my players run The Mud Sorcerer's Tomb and Torrents of Dread before we started The Lightless Depths.
The Lightless Depths, depending on how you run it, can afford opportunities to tackle piecemeal. I personally felt that destroyed the creepy atmosphere, so I incorporated the teleportation blocking concepts that have long been part of the Underdark. I wanted the PCs to feel trapped.
After TLD, our group did the Temple of Demogorgon. That adventure can be done at a player determined pace.
Then, as Pete mentions, they headed to Sasserine, where they did The Freeport Trilogy, interspersed with elements, either wholesale or partly, from The Prince of Redhand, Fall of Greymalkin Academy, The Standing Stone, and The Twice Damned Prince.
Having wrapped that up, they are going to enjoy some Isle based downtime, go hunt some of the Seven (Eight), maybe explore the old Olman Citadel, maybe try to tangle with some of the more dangerous Isle inhabitants, before heading in to City of Broken Idols.
City of Broken Idols is an adventure the players can take piecemeal as well. They don't have to charge from beginning to end, so if they explore it bit by bit, they can use the time between to tackle things they want to do.
As written, Serpents of Scuttlecove affords absolutely zero IC reason not to blow through as quickly as possible, and I want the PCs to spend some time in Scuttlecove. As such, I'm rewriting the hooks so that the players don't feel like asses for taking their time. I hope to let them build some relationships there, with the less unsavory elements, and maybe run some stuff from Razor's Coast while we're at it.
Into the Maw is another one that once they reach the main setpiece, they sort of have to commit. It isn't on a time schedule, perse, but bouncing in and out isn't easy (as appropriate for a prison).
After that, I sort of want to get a chance to tie up some loose ends, before launching the final leg. Once the PCs choose to run through Wells of Darkness > Enemies of my Enemy, they are on their own time line. The final adventure is another one that locks players in. I'm hoping for some truly epic PCs by then, and the opportunity to provide them with a solidly incredible finale to their journey.
No, not in the slightest. I'm saying that appropriate, the term written into the RAW you are placing such value on, allows a variety of different results, ranging from 3/day wish 5HD efreet to no simulacrum being allowed to have any spell-like ability and a host of options in between. I'm glad I was able to illuminate your ignorance on my position.
I think it's been fairly clear that most people run things fairly in accordance with what Peter has suggested, including the devs themselves. And another chunk run things unbridled, but happily so. The rules as written say 'appropriate', and each game gets to determine what is appropriate. I think that's probably a superior approach than trying to hash out every possible simulacrum option. I can think of games in which an army of wish granting efreeti would be very appropriate, and others in which it would not.
As for eschew materials, I suppose making it a focus for the spell might circumvent it. But then I'm not going to have players trying to get around the requirement that they have genetic material from the creature they are simulating. Period. If you need tighter wording, that's on you. I don't.
As for making half HD simulacrums being absurdly powerful, I think it opens a lot of opportunities. If even that is too powerful for your game, obviously you'll need to ban it. It doesn't disrupt mine at all.
"Link to designer specifically stating that it is both assumed and designed under said assumption that a DM will determine 'appropriate' in regards to a simulacrum. Link to creative director explaining how he envisions the spell."
Response: "That's just his opinion, and he admits it isn't in the RAW! Winning!"
Wow. That level of cognitive dissonance suggests that there is no real chance of changing your mind, rendering further discussion on the matter inappropriate. Perhaps you should consider a position in Congress, or on the Supreme Court. In any event, I don't think I could lay it down more clearly than Peter did in his last post.
Like most internet arguments, this doesn't actually exist for real games that go on for substantial periods of time. Either the group embraces the wonkyness of an unmitigated simulacrum fest, or they deny it in some fashion. Perhaps by banning it, but I suspect more likely by running it more reasonably.
LazarX, I think that is a fantastic houserule for the spell, and probably one that should have been built in. Blood money, unlike simulacrum, is fairly poorly worded. Does it exist in PF, or just 3.5?
I for one, miss the component requirement for the simulacrum spell that existed in 3.5. I have reinstated it in my own games, no doubt singlehandedly preventing all of the nonsense that seems to accompany it when discussed online.
Hey guys, as they often do, our free hosting site vanished into the night without warning.
Refusing to learn our lesson, we've started another site here at Freeforums. You can also join the Dicefreaks facebook group if you want a means of communication with the community that doesn't crash every few years.
If you've got archived material, feel free to post it. Due to the sudden demise, people didn't have a lot of time to get things saved.
The wording on Epic Damage reduction is a massive step away from how DR x/epic worked in the past, to the point of rendering it the second easiest to bypass.
Previously, only a +6 enhancement weapon, or monster with epic damage reduction could penetrate DR. That meant a +4 bane weapon, or an actual +6 enhancement such as those that showed up on some artifacts like the Axe of the Dwarven Lords.
Currently, due to the rewording of the text, a +5 keen weapon, frostbrand, holy avenger, vorpal sword, +3 sword of speed....all of these penetrate DR x/epic. It has become that a +6 weapon of any sort, the kind that costs 72,000 gp, penetrates DR x/epic.
As someone pointed out on a different thread, that means the adamantine golem is vulnerable to the magic sword that the stone golem ignores. It means that a +5 flaming sword penetrates ALL damage reduction in Pathfinder.
I'm listing it here because it is possible that it was a misunderstanding and not a design choice, since it is such a radical shift away from the old concept.
You might not find it worthwhile to try and improve it, Elorebaen, but there are plenty of threads that don't deal with improving the playtest. This one is about how we can improve it. If you don't have anything to add to that, feel free to not.
So far the big suggestions are all variants on improve communication. Improve specificity in what Paizo is looking for, improve communication during the playtest, make sure the close of the playtest is communicated, etc.
On that very last one, I wonder, does Paizo know before the playtest starts when they intend to end it? Providing that timespan up front if possible seems like it would have headed off the entire issue from Mythic.
Steve Geddes wrote:
I agree that many playtesters need to check a bit/lot of their ego at the door. They aren't developers. On the other hand, the point of the playtest is to solicit multiple opinions. I think that's where the communication comes in. I don't mind if you do things differently, as long as I know you heard me.
Confounding Blades (Ult Combat) vs Slow Reactions (Core) and Mythic Bond (Mythic Adv) vs Hunter's Bond (Core) are things that wouldn't have happened if the abilities had been playtested. Someone would have caught the overlap.
Tinalles makes a good point. Clear(er) guidance on what is being looked for would definitely help, it gets back to that communication thing.
Sean K Reynolds has been known to write up some of the best explanations for entries into the RPG Superstar contest. While I've never entered, I certainly feel that if I were to, I'd read over those pieces to make sure that my concepts were fitting within those rules. Something similarly specific aimed at clarifying what we should be providing in a playtest would definitely be a useful direction to head in.
Let me begin by reiterating, needlessly, the first rule of the boards, which is don't be a jerk. Let's keep this thread on topic, without resorting to bitter jabs or oneupmanship.
By its nature, we'll have to look at things that people felt negatively about. Let's all approach this from a position that we want to avoid those situations in the future, rather than extort some apology or acknowledgement about the past.
Now, I have taken part in various playtests since before Pathfinder was just an idea, back in the Alpha days. I think they are one of the best things about Paizo, and really showcase how different they approach their business. As such, I like to see them be as successful as possible.
I'd like to start out by listing five points I've observed.
1. More frequently playtested material is better than less.
Maximizing these two facets within reason is obviously a desirable goal. We all understand that you can't give ALL of the material into the playtest. I want Paizo to realize that the material that is given, and worked on, typically seems to come out the best and most usable in my games. If you compare the alpha and beta playtests in Core to the mythic adventures playtest, you see that a lot more material was playtested, and combinations of such were better vetted, often going through multiple updates. Same goes for the ultimate and advanced releases. The materials that returned in a final 'feedback altered' form generally were more successful. Success in this case being a subjective term for 'useable with less to no changes in my game'
3. Acknowledgement of feedback is important. For instance, in the mythic playtest, I suggested surge be a free action. In the final form, it was still a swift/immediate action. That's a fine decision, but at no time did I feel that Paizo had considered, decided against, or even noticed my suggestion. I also got the same impression reading most of the other feedback. It didn't feel like we were being listened to, regardless of the end decisions. More importantly, that was NOT the feeling I had in previous playtests.
4. Timely communication is important. The mythic playtest was updated exactly once that I'm aware of. Then, six weeks after the fact, we were informed that the playtest had concluded. I'm not going to lie, that felt borked. I felt like I'd been wasting my time, when even a simple 'hey, playtest closed' note would have let me know to stop. I don't expect pay or accolades from playtesting, but I hate feeling like I was so insignificant that even the barest of common courtesies was too much hassle to extend. And when it was brought up, those of us who brought it up were treated as though we were entitled pricks. That's not right or fair. A couple days late is understandable, but a month and a half isn't.
5. Explanations are appreciated. We're all nerds or geeks here. When designers have had and taken the time to explain how they envision things working, or how they were used in their own games, that really gives valuable insight into the intent of abilities or features. I get geeked out when I can read that stuff. It builds excitement and a sense of community for me. I know that time constraints keep it from being possible always, but whenever you guys have the chance, that stuff's gold.
Well, that's it for right now, at least from me. What sort of suggestions for future playtests (on both Paizo and playtester side of the aisle) would you guys like to see?
So Mythic Adventures is out. Legendary Games is eschewing flavor in favor of mechanics for their mythic offerings (which look to be pretty awesome), but flavor is precisely what gets me interested in monsters.
One of my absolute favorite monsters in the book was the First Owlbear. I thought it was such a fantastic concept. That first inexplicable pairing of a deadly animal with a far less deadly one.
My least favorite are the mythic fiends. I don't really know yet how to work in a hierarchy where there are mythic mariliths that hit less well than a non-mythic (and lower CR) balor. What makes a mythic vrock? Should that just be the 'Pazuzu blessed'? Does the non-mythic Duke of Hell outrank the mythic pit fiend? What about the mythic pit-fiend that is also a Duke? Same with nascent demon lords...and rakshasa. A lot of thinking about this. I suspect the new AP will give me some solid ideas.
I think mythic dragons are a cool concept, even if the mythic red wyrm dies from a single mythic meteor swarm if the caster has a rod of maximize. In my game, I added the dracos invictus (elder wyrm) age category from Gary Gygax's work in the Slayer's Guide to Dragons. I'm still working out precisely how to use the mythic stuff in conjunction with that. One idea I had is replacing non-mythic dragons' spellcasting with mythic abilities and powers, similar to how the Xorvintal template removed spellcasting in favor of more 'dragony' abilities.
Elementals are another one that I already have a gargantuan (monolith) and colossal (primal) version of, so mythic elder elementals need to go somewhere else. I sort of view them as elementals forged at the cores of the elemental planes, like they said, but also maybe some of the original sparks of creation? Or go with the divinely empowered by an elemental lord.
The giants and Greek monsters I think are all great, and pretty much work as is. I would have liked to see a mythic storm giant though.
It's amusing that mythic treants didn't get greensight, because I've been giving even normal treants that ability in my games for years. Seems that it would be something they could benefit from though.
So how do the Paizonians work with the mythic versions? How do they 'rank' next to advanced versions and such?
I completely support making some of the final villains in the Savage Tide mythic, even if you do not allow your PCs to do so.
I am using mythic to cover post 20 levels, so I will definitely be employing it for the PCs. There are a few good points to use for the apothesis, if you don't simply give it to the players at the onset. From Chapter 9 on, you start meeting a lot of heavies. Either after a combat or encounter with them, an apothesis moment makes sense.
I have my own moment already planned out, though I can't share it since my players sometimes try to read these boards...
Marigold Malachite wrote:
I imagine it might be that. However, it certainly isn't clear if the +50% clause applies only to normal power attack or mythic as well, it makes the math less solid, unlike the original and there is still the horrible 'doubles on a crit before the multiplier' bit.
Plus, the description of mythic power attack on the feats table in no way resembles the text of the feat itself.
+3s instead of +2s...but what about two handed weapons?
Extra damage from the feat is doubled before being applied to critical modifier?
So let's pretend I have my greataxe, and normally hit for 1d12+7. With power attack at level 10, my barbarian is hitting for 1d12+16. On a crit, he rolls damage and multiplies it by 3.
But mythic power attack...hmm. Do I use +4 damage per -1? Let's assume not, for a second. Now, my same power attack is 1d12+16. But on a crit, I have to double the bonus damage from power attack (or is it just from mythic power attack?) first, before multiplying it by 3, so now it becomes 3[1d12+7+2(9)].
Sure, you can write out that your damage is 1d12+16 (power attack), 1d12+25x3 on a crit, but that's just needless complication to something that was once very simple.
My group was very concerned about the aboleth too, but they decided to free the souls anyways. Some of them are taking precautions about building up Farshore and the Olman Seven to one day fight a second Aboleth War. They realize it might be generations, but to prepare now means a more likely victory for the future.
The mahar are from Edgar Rice Burroughs' Pellucidar series. (Picture here)
In those books, they rule the humans, having powers of hypnosis and command of the sagoths, ape men who do their bidding.
I thought they also sounded like Sauron of the X-men. I didn't need sagoth stats, because we have girrilons which fit the bill almost to the T. But I did whip up some mahar stats, sort of a combination between the two sources. I'll PM them to you, since Pete is a player in my game and I'd hate for him to have spoilers.
My party either found out or nearly found out the aboleth ruse, enough that they weren't going to be tricked into destroying the Tear. I had originally envisioned an earlier oracle party member having a divine mission from Tlaloc to destroy the tear, but due to her exit from the game (to be replaced by blabbermouth bard), that was unavailable.
Instead, I played up the entire bit about the souls being trapped here in perpetuity, and being tired from their long term of service. The PCs were then doing those souls a well deserved good deed.
It's kind of funny that you paired him up with Urdefhan, since I'm planning my second attempt at running STAP to be a mash-up with Serpent's Skull, the latter parts of which heavily feature Urdefhan. That makes this version of him all the easier to tie into my game.
That's not funny at all...I specifically utilized a bunch of the materials from Serpent's Skull to great effect during TLD. The Temple of Doom dinner was a close if not direct mirror of the Gorilla King's own. Serpent folk showed up in the depths of Golismorga as well, disenfranchised members of an ancient alliance between sea (kopru), land (serpent folk) and air (mahar). In a similar fashion, their gods (demon princes) were aligned as well, Demogorgon, Ydersius and Pazuzu. As that alliance has frayed in modern day, Demogorgon has absorbed more than his share. The serpentfolk's land portion of the triumvirate has largely been replaced by troglodytes that worship Demogorgon, and they are not happy about that.