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Also the medium elementals you get with SM4 is CR 3 and the aerial servant is CR 11, how would this ever be balanced?

The CR equivalent of the aeerial servant would be the Elder elemental, which is summoned via SM8. At that point, it would be something you could ask your GM to houserule, but by RAW it still doesn't work.

You could get Spectral Hand as a x times per day-item or as a wand, but that only works on medium range and I assume she would be further away.

The unchained rogue is definitely better in combat, but still not good enough to be game breaking. Since he's probably kind of frustrated with the combat capabilities of his current rogue, by all means, let him do it.

@ JAMRenaissance: As of now, they are the only "good" party after the artifact, since the synthesist is, for reasons to complicated to explain, the only one who can carry it without suffering the negative levels (he can not access the power of the artifact either). But I might put in a rival "evil" party, maybe some other worshippers of Zon-Kothun who want the favour of their god for themselves. :)

@ thekpw: thanks for the input, I will probably be using a slight variation on this, since the "bad guys" are not far enough ahead of the PCs to use your suggestion completely, but the "camp of neutral primitives" is definitely going to happen thanks. :)
(Also, yes, I should totally come up with a better name for the Artifact ^^)

@ Bunnyboy: yes, tying some "random encounters" together by having them triggered/set up by a 3rd party is a good idea and gives them a little more depth. I will probably just include the cave in into this.

@ Yossarin: Their target is the first of a series of serpentfolk ruins that they will have to visit. As I wrote, one of the PCs is a Psion. The player begged me, until I allowed him to play one, but since in my version of Golarion there are no psionics (or at least haven't been so far), he has actually been transported to Golarion from Abeir Toril, where everything D&D/Pathfinder the player has played so far took place.
When he arrived on Golarion, he popped out of one of the gates of the Elfgate network, which has been expanded, made more secret and changed to function on a psionic basis (which no one really understands anymore) for the purpose of the campaign.
Now he is trying to find a way back home and has come into the possession of a journal written by Candlaron the Sculptor, the creator of the gates who was the only Psion in Golarion they now of so far. Most of the journal is encoded and the little bit of it that is readable, sent them on their way to their destination. Candlaron did this, because he wants other people after him to learn about psionics (which he did in the old serpentfolk ruins) but he doesn't want to withhold the thrill of the discovery from them, so he has set up a kind of scavenger hunt that leads the reader along the path of his journey, so they can make the discoveries themselves.

I don't have many Ideas at the moment, this is more of a shameless attempt to get you guys to give me yours.

1. Encountering/having to deal with a tribe of Morlocks or other denizens of the deep, who regularly sacrifice slaves/prisoners to their Lake-God that is actually a Living Lake

2. A cave that contains the old but deadly Remorhaz plus Brown Mold - combination

3. Encounter a group of Darkfolk slavers with a broken wagon/in front of a cave in/some other form of travel impedement and be forced to decide wether to ignore them, try to free the slaves or help them for a reward (preferably information or something else that can't be taken of their dead bodies if the players decide to attack)

Thanks Bunnyboy, stuff like this is what I'm looking for.

First of all, thanks for the reply.

Sadly I am well aware of the fact that I can reskin things and that skill challenges are an option, I just can't seem to come up with interesting ones. This is why I explicitly ask for input on those.

I know that the wilderness is dangerous and that is how I want it to be, but what I'm asking for is input on specific Ideas as to what kind of skill challenges etc I should throw at the players.

I want to avoid making this whole thing a "roll survival to find path, roll survival to spot danger, roll climb to avoid it, roll perception to notice bad guys, roll initiative..."-dicefest.

Climbing, difficult terrain, natural hazards, monster encounters, these are all things I am aware of. What I am searching for are things that are not only challenging in a mechanical way, but also interesting for the Players.

I don't want to bore my players by GMing the Frodo&Sam chapters of the 2nd book of LotR...

Hello everyone

I need some input on possible ways to continue my campaign.
Since I am rather stressed out with non-roleplay-related stuff at the moment, I haven't found time to do much prepwork lately, which means, my players have more or less caught up to the status quo of my notes last session. We will be playing again on Friday and I have a vague Idea on what I want to accomplish in the following sessions, but I can't come up with a way to do it and I fear, I am kind of blocking myself by worrying about it.

I would greatly appreciate your input for the sake of my players' fun and my sanity.

Now for the situation I need advice on:
My players (A level 7 TN Shaper-Psion (essentially a caster focused on summoning constructs and creating all kinds of stuff from ectoplasm) and a level 7 CG Synthesist (combat focused, demon-like eidolon), together with 4 level 5 and 6 Monk NSCs (controlled by the players in battle, by me outside of it) will be entering the darklands next session. They will do so through the entrance in Highhelm in the Five Kings Mountains. In my Golarion, the dwarves (being LN) allow trade with the darklands through the outer city (at a price), as long as isn't slave trade (mainly due to not wanting to anger their good neighbouring countries). Foreigners aren't allowed inside the inner city without a good reasen.

The journey is suppposed to take up about 2-3 Sessions, before they arrive in a cavern in Sekamina below Lastwall.
I know what awaits them there, but I don't want the trip to be to easy, since the characters have (rightfully) been making a big deal out of entering the darklands and are preparing for all kinds of dangers.

They have a magical device that points them into the direction of their target, but otherwise have no knowledge about the nature of the path there.

What I need now, are some interesting encounters and problems for the way. Some of them can simply be "random" encounters, but I don't want to sit there and just throw monsters at my players until the journey has been "hard" enough.

What I'm looking for are challenges that have to be solved by creative use of skills and Magic or by roleplaying.

They will most probably hire some kind of guide, so getting lost is not really an option, also I find that rather boring.

Additionally, the Synthesist is, unbeknownst to the others, trying to find an evil Artifact of Zon-Kothun that has been stolen from a Shellyn-monastery where it had been kept safe.
The only things he knows about the artifact are, that it looks like a rusty knife and it grants the the bearer enormous power, but quickly kills him. He has been told to "follow the trail of corpses".

(It can't be put down once it has been touched and the bearer needs to make a dc 20 fort save every day or gain a permanent negative level.) The bad guy who stole it is using a horde of weak minions/slaves to transport it, who, due to their low HD and saves, die about every other day. One of them will have died in Highhelm.

Now I need a situation in which the player can a) find the corpse or information about it and b)somehow be able to follow the group of bad guys based on it. (their route more or less concides with the direction the party is travelling in)
I had thought about there being some kind of dwarven police force who, upon finding the (supernaturally aged and warped) corpse, used speak with dead to find out more about it and from whom he can obtain the information (he is very charming and knows the value of a good bribe), but I am open to better suggestions.

Thanks to everyone who managed to read through my wall of text and tnanks in advance for all input.

I don't see any reason why this would not work.
Except maybe those people arguing that splash weapons are not really weapons, but i never really agreed with those.

Simple logic for the poison:
The poison is not magical, but a physical substance.
If it is a physical substance and was summoned together with the monster, it is either a part of the monsters body or part of its gear.

Both of those vanish once the spell ends.

Rather simple in my eyes.

This is actually an amusing spam post for a change. :-D

A few mechanical questions/difficulties:

Your 3rd level power doesn't say what kind of action it is and your 9th level one doesn't state the action AND doesn't clarify at what point in the round you need to state that you are going to use it.
Also, what's with the "Dispel Magic (Counterspell only)"? There are no precedents in the system for learning only part of a spell. What if the sorc wants to learn dispel magic as a normal spell? Does it still cost a full spell known?

@ Pizza Lord (Jim Butcher reference, by the way?)

I would of course rule something like that at my table, because everything else makes very little sense, but at the moment I'm looking for RAW, that I might not know about, not for GM common sense. ;)

As far as I know, it doesn't, because it doesn't say so anywhere in the creatures profile, but in the text for durable arrows, we find the following:

Durable Arrow wrote:
Durable arrows can be broken in other ways (such as deliberate snapping, hitting a fire elemental, and so on).

Of course, if you hit a fire elemental with any normal arrow, it breaks, because that's, what ammunition does, when it hits.

But the one and only function of durable arrows is to NOT break on impact.

Is this a holdover from some older edition or something?

Tinalles wrote:


Similarly, she can lay down battlefield control spells like Black Tentacles without breaking invisibility.


This is not true.

Any non-harmless spell that includes an enemy in it's area of effect counts as an attack for the purpose of breaking invisibility.

Look at the conversion of the 3.5 warlock, he can use all of his invocations an unlimited amount of times as SLAs.
Not entirely balanced in my eyes, but probably as close as you're going to get.

Yep, no need to enlarge the summoner first, you can technically play a gnome and put him into a huge eidolon, no problem.

What Graystone said.
Why does he even want to dismiss the shrink item AFTER firing the Bolt?
It doesn't say anywhere that he has to use a bolt that is properly sized for him.
Either he is allowed to carry gigantic bolts and do the appropriate damage with them, or he can craft hundreds of toothpick-sized arrows and still do 1d8 with them. And a rune giant casting it on the toothpics would do 4d6...

If he is willing to invest the magic ressources to shrink the bolts for transport and the standard actions to unshrink them before casting the spell, OR invest in a means of transport to carry them around, I would be totally fine.

As far as the whole unshrink-on-impact-thing goes, I'm in the camp that says the unshrinking happens AFTER impact, therefore having no effect on the damage, regardless whether it is calculated via the weapon or the ammunition.

I'd still ask your GM about a houserule for the hackbutt, but culverin is good too.
An option regarding the range is the farreaching sight. Using it limits you to one shot per round, but since you are targeting touch AC, you can start sniping away at your enemies from quite a distance.

Well, you are definitely in houserule territory, since the interaction between immovable rod and bigger firearms isn't described anywhere in RAW.
I as a GM would allow you to build a swivel mount that is attached to the immovable rod instead of a carriage. Maybe I would request a knowledge (engineering) check or have you pay some extra gold for a specialist who does it for you. 5000 and the skill investment in engineering are a good price to pay for saving that one standard action.

Especially since, if you go only by RAW (which I strongly discourage), nothig says you can't just assemble the carriage once and never disassemble it, lest you run into some stairs.

Common sense of course dictates that you can not drive that thing though Sand or underbrush without being slowed significantly, but since the description of the weapon doesn't mention anything about movement speed penalties or being impossible to use in difficult terrain, TECHNICALLY there is nothing that says you have to take that full round action in the first round of combat.

So I would say the immovable rod is a solution everybody should be able to live with.

I think one of the most common suggestions to this kind of thing is to attach the cannon to an immovable rod.

Yea, if you really want to minmax, making your character venerable is the way to go.
But be careful, depending on which level you start on, you will need some time to get your Eidolon ready.

Starting at 4th level you can cast "summon eidolon" to get it out as a standard action, but then it is vulunerable to dispel magic in addition to banishment etc.

If you take the right race, you can reduce the "casting time" of your normal summoning ritual by one round as a favoured class bonus, effectively making it a full action at level 9.

But excluding those two, you will be incredibly squishy in case of an attack at night or if you fail your save against a sleep spell or something similar.

Depending on the way your gm plays, the added mental scores could be worth the risk, but i advise against it.

You can use all Feats of your character in fused form, as long as he is still eligible. (which should be the case for 99% of them, because none of your stats go down in fused form if you didn't build a REALLY weird character. So if you char has the martial prof, you keep it in fused form.

All of your Eidolons Natural attacks are clearly marked as primary or secondary in their respective evolution text, so as long as you don't use weapons, that is no problem.

Once you use a weapon, according to the beastiary, all your primary natural attacks you use in that round become secondary and suffer the appropriate penalties to hit and damage.

Also, additional advice: The feats Arcane Strike and Augment summoning are incredibly great for a synthesist, since you rarely have any other uses for your swift actions and augment summoning applies to your eidolon, giving it a huge boost.

"At 2nd level, whenever a magus casts a spell with a range of “touch” from the magus spell list, he can deliver the spell through any weapon he is wielding as part of a melee attack. Instead of the free melee touch attack normally allowed to deliver the spell, a magus can make one free melee attack with his weapon (at his highest base attack bonus) as part of casting this spell."

Emphasis mine. I don't think it gets any clearer than that. Spell strike + spell combat + touch spell = free attack.

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Steal/sunder his holy symbol in the surprise round and get rid of any spares he might have beforehand.

Another intersting questin that will probably come up in my game:

Is Line of sight (through a closed window for example) enough to summon the eidolon to a place or is line of effect needed?

My players will come up on a cave where the back part is collapsed but they can look through tiny spaces in the rubble to the other side. Could the summoner dismiss her eidolon and re-summon it on the other side for scouting purposes?

Look at drow fleshcrafting and especially the feat "brew fleshcrafting poison"

This seems to be more or less what you want.

Masterwork trident would get +1 to hit, but if it's a +1 masterwork trident, which your wording seems to imply, it would actually have a +1 enhancement bonus which applies to damage and to hit, but replaces the +1 to hit from the basic masterwork (every item with magical enhancements needs to be masterwork before)

Mastwerork armor gets -1 armor check penalty to a minimum of 0, yes.

A magical piece of armor gets an enhancement bonus to AC only, but since it needs to be masterwork before, it also has a -1 check penalty.

I'm pretty certain there has been an FAQ that for larger creatures, the field extends 10 ft from all sides of their body.

You should pay special attention to the SLAs of all the creatures, maybe even write up a list of alll of them, because your summon monster effectively becomes a HUGE goldmine for ulitity spells from outsiders.

A list of what you get out of only the cr2 cratures:
know direction
speak with animals
dancing lights
detect evil
cure light wounds
protection from evil
detect chaos
make whole
protection from chaos
detect magic
feather fall
locate object
spider climb
hide from animals
purify food and drink
commune with nature
mage hand
inflict light wounds
heat metal
shocking grasp
detect law
obscuring mist
charm person

This is INSANE for a single spell and it gets even worse on higher CRs.

On top of that you get to summon undead and constructs, who have situationally extremely useful immunities.

Beware of save or suck spells like hold person or even dominate, in such a small party they make a huge difference, because 1 failed save halves the power of the party.
Also, how does the rogue intend to get flanking?

What is your problem with leadership? If you play it like any sane GM should and build the cohort yourself, it's just a permanent hireling that does not have to be paid with actual party funds...

Another thing: Whatever powers you give to the artifact, make them addicting. Players tend to metagame dangerous temptations and turn their characters into the most strongwilled, levelheaded types, who would never fall prey to them. After they use the powers, just use the addiction rules for drugs, so the character has actually fight the impulse to use it again and again in increasingly trivial situations.

According to these people on reddit, who actually did the math, it's less than 400 people...

But then again, they based their calculation on the complete amount of iron in the body, not only in the blood. Wouldn't know, how much of those 4 grams are to be found where...

If you are going with the sword or something similar, you could use an idea that i have wanted to use for a long time:

The sword (or other weapon) has been forged from the iron in the blood of a thousand righteous heroes/innocent children/virgins/whatever you want.

Somehow I just find the idea of a badguy burning away everything but the iron in the blood and collecting it to forge a blade very fitting for an evil artifact.

Edit: a friend just told me that apparently lord vetinari from the discworld series wields a blade that is said to be made in this fashion. Don't know if I read the book at some point or if I came up with it on my own, but beware, if one of your players is a Discworld nerd, he might accuse you of stealing the idea.

As far as artists go, I can recommend Ari Baker (scroll down a bit for some character designs)

Her work is great and her prices are very reasonable (between 20 and 35€, depending on size, coloring, inclusion of animal companions, background etc.)

That is not a Pseudo-Nerf, it makes Composite Bows nearly completely useless. After a certein level, NOBODY will give up their additional attacks, just for the measly +4 or something damage on their one hit...

I know, archery can be powerful, sometimes seeming overpowered. But that is only if the GM uses no cover and no obstacles and no wind wall and no sight inhibiting conditions like fog and none of the other multiple ways to make an archers life hell.

With your Rules, archery would pretty much suck...

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Sorry for the broken link earlier, even though it would not have been impossible to look at the adress bar and remove the part that obviously does not belong into the URL.

Here is the working link.

There is a 3rd party class for that.

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I have a houserule that every magical weapon, shield or armor has some kind of "focus" (a gem, a bone, a holy symbol) in which the actual magic resides.
Those can be separated from the weapon and attached to another one in a process that takes one hour per +1 enchantment, costs 100 gp per +1 and needs a spellcraft-check with a DC of 15+ enchantment bonus.
Every item can have only one focus attached and must be masterwork.
Foci can be merged in a process that takes 1 hour for every +1 of the end product, has a spellcraft DC of 15+1 per enchantment of the end product and needs magical materials worth the difference between the combined worth of the original foci and the end product.
While combining or transfering foci, the crafter can decide to keep the original magical effect or turn it into a flat enhancement of appropriate strengt (so a +1 flaming focus could be made a +2 focus). None of these rules can be used to exceed the usual limitations on item enchantment.
If the spellcraft check fails by 5 or more, the foci are imbalanced by the process and are inert for 24 hours.

This solves the problem of believability, lets the players keep their "ancient familiy heirloom sword TM" and even gives them the option of switching a focus between weapons if they have a lot of time to prepare for a fight and know about a certain DR or somwthing but also carries the risk that they botch the roll and are completely bereft of their magical weapon for a day.

Also it adds cool details to the weapons, because every Focus is unique and you might end up with a fighter in shiny armor who has a focus made from a human fingerbone attached to his weapon, because he took it from a goblin chieftain.

That would be a Point Buy way over 100. How in the world did that happen?

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Just because he charges the illusion does not mean he rugby-tackles it. He just uses the momentum of his run for his swing.

There is neither a RAW nor a "common sense" reason for him to fall over.

There is a feat in 3.5 called subduing strike that just flatout removes the penalty for all melee weapons. I as a gm wouldn't see any problem with allowing it at my table, there are way more powerful options to spend a feat on.

You could try the Lyrakien. While it's not technically a fairy, you could easily give it a bow and some more castings per day for the CLW spell.

RAI it's probably not supposed to provoke, but RAW the clause that says it doesn't (like for example in Hydraulic push) is missing.

My Paladin of Cayden has a tankard that, every time you set it down, refills with ale. He plays his character as constantly in different shades of drunkenness. The ale can not be put into other containers, you can only drink it.

Hm, can't find the rules I had in my head either, I guess that's what you get for GMing in 3 different systems...

Afaik, taking the aoo against the wizard would "discharge" your readied action, since you can't do anything else while having an action readied, so Cyrads idea wouldn't work.

Since when is being able to voluntarily fail saves a houserule? If I don't jump to the side, when the big boulder falls, i get hit and if i don't resist the mind control, it succeds. It can get a little hard to explain with Fort saves, but as far as I know you can voluntarily fail a save, at least as long as you know you have to make it, the same way that you can voluntarily miss on an attack...

Ah, thx. DR stacking hadn't really come up in my games yet.

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