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Satyr

Kirth Gersen's page

25,513 posts (26,428 including aliases). 8 reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist. 14 aliases.


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The words "Winter is Coming" don't actually appear in any of George R.R. Martin's novels. They were invented by HBO as a catchy tag phrase for the TV series.

Spoiler:
This "fact" is totally bogus, of course.


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Kazuka wrote:
in the Vance novels, people were effectively charging themselves with magical energy that was set to go off. So the limit on spells wasn't a limit on how many you could remember, but on how much energy your body could store without killing you.

You clearly have never read The Dying Earth. Let's please not just make up the "facts" that go in this thread out of whole cloth.


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David M Mallon wrote:
On a 1999 episode of TV series 3rd Rock From The Sun entitled "Dick's Big Giant Headache, part 1," series protagonist Dick Solomon (John Lithgow) meets the character Big Giant Head (William Shatner) at the airport. During the scene, Big Giant Head mentions "seeing something on the wing of the plane," to which Dick replies, "the same thing happened to me!" This is a reference to the fact that both Shatner and Lithgow played variations on the same character in the 1963 Twilight Zone episode "Nightmare At 20,000 Feet," and the "Nightmare At 20,000 Feet" segment of the 1983 film The Twilight Zone: The Movie, respectively.

Similar fanservice in-joke in the pilot eposide of the 1980s Buck Rogers TV show -- Gil Gerard, playing the main character who has been frozen for 500 years, meets an old-time pilot who makes some comment about comparative ages; they go back and forth a bit. The old-timer was played by Buster Crabbe, who portrayed Buck Rogers in the late '30s.


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Thes problems being debated in this thread have mostly already been solved. Metamagic feats that apply effects to specific energy types work. The problem is in the metamagic system, not in the blasting spells. See the house rules link I posted above and check out the magic chapter -- you can get spiffy effects without throwing out martial classes.

A couple of caveats, though:

1. As TAS correctly points out, martials in the core game already have a feeble claim to existence. I would go further and say they pretty much have nothing to do outside of flavor, because "damage dealer" isn't a legitimate role in a game where SOL spells exist. The way around this is to massively buff the martials. Which we've done -- see "Classes" docs.

2. To counterbalance energy spells potentially getting all kinds of bells and whistles, you need to start handing out specific energy resistances a lot more liberally. That way you introduce a rock-paper-scissors element into the game, in place of the "you lose" element.

I'd also very strongly advocate removing spells that step all over existing skills and class features, but that's a discussion for a different thread.


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Kaisoku wrote:
** spoiler omitted **...

Your condition tracks lump too much. For example, [fear] effects follow a progression: shaken -> frightened -> panicked -> cowering.

More importantly, "fascinated" is massively more debilitating than "shaken."

FWIW, a lot of the condition track stuff you're spitballing has been done already: Click on "Introduction" and then go to Combat\Conditions. for a somewhat out-of-date draft.


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Firewarrior44 wrote:
but I digress

Spoiler:
You've helped me find some (and I've altered the current draft docs at home accordingly) -- thank you! If there are more, I'd welcome the discussion over on the appropriate thread.

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Bwang wrote:
I cheat and give it to my most rules abusing player to test drive.

Destructive playtesting is absolutely the kind that's most valuable.


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That's actually something I'm already doing with my house rules, albeit with a much smaller sample size and less statistical rigor. One of my long-term goals is to collapse the number of feats by paring and/or combining unused ones.


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Wish List:

1. More animals and vermin
2. More monsters without inflated CR/HD
3. More basic monsters that I can advance/customize using templates, added HD, and/or class levels -- based on current needs -- rather than all that being pre-done.


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I'm Hiding In Your Closet wrote:
this time around we've finally invented robots, so this dilemma may, for the first time ever, actually finally be solved.

...until the andys start sneaking back to Earth and I have to give up my day job to go around "retiring" them.


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Blew through PKD's Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep and loved it. Started Flow My Tears, The Policeman Said this morning.


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BARBARIAN (Revised)

HD: d12; BAB: Full
1st Endure elements, furious counterstroke, power attack, rage (+1), totem, vital strike
2nd Damage reduction 1/–, lesser rage power
3rd Totem ability
4th Totem feat, lesser rage power
5th Improved rage (+2)
6th Damage reduction 2/–, improved rage power
7th Totem ability
8th Totem feat, improved rage power
9th Greater rage (+3)
10th Damage reduction 3/–, greater rage power
11th Indomitable will
12th Totem feat, greater rage power
13th Mighty rage (+4)
14th Damage reduction 4/–, mighty rage power
15th Tireless rage
16th Totem feat, mighty rage power
17th Primal rage (+5)
18th Damage reduction 5/–, primal rage power
19th Perpetual rage
20th Totem feat, primal rage power

Saves: Barbarians gain a +2 class bonus to Fortitude and Intuition saves.

Bonus Skills: All barbarians automatically receive one free rank per class level in Athletics, Endurance, and Perception. These are otherwise treated as class skills, but do not count against your total number of skill points.

Class Skills: Acrobatics, Bluff, Craft (any), Handle Animal, Knowledge (linguistics, lore, warfare), Planar Sense, Profession (sailing), Stealth, Survival.
Skill Ranks per Level: 2 + Int modifier.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency:

Spoiler:
A barbarian has Martial proficiency with all weapons and shields, and is proficient with light armor and medium armor. At your option, you can make one or more of the following exchanges:
  • Agile Dodge (Ex): You may choose to give up light and medium armor proficiencies in exchange for the Dodge feat. When unarmored, you also gain a morale bonus to saving throws against fear equal to your dodge bonus. You can gain these benefits and still use a shield.
  • Canny Defense (Ex): You can trade proficiency with shields for the Canny Defense feat.
  • Brawler (Ex): You may choose to downgrade your weapon proficiencies to Simple rather than Martial. If you do so, you gain Exotic proficiency with unarmed attacks and Two-Weapon Fighting (unarmed only) as bonus feats. At 6th level you gain Improved Two-Weapon Fighting (unarmed) as a bonus feat.
  • Endure Elements (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    Whether they hail from the frozen north, the steaming jungles, or the blazing deserts, barbarians are inured to harsh climates. A barbarian can survive in conditions between –50 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit without having to make Fortitude saves or Endurance checks. This ability provides no protection from fire or cold damage, nor does it protect against other environmental hazards such as smoke, lack of air, and so forth.

    Furious Counterstroke (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    At 1st level, you gain Diehard as a bonus feat. In addition, when near death you are spurred to a murderous fury. Whenever you have less than 1 hit point remaining but are still functioning (due to the Diehard feat), you gain a +1 circumstance bonus to attack rolls and +2 to damage in melee or with hurled weapons (other than splash weapons or grenade-like missiles). These bonuses increase depending on the type of rage of which you are capable, according to the following table.

    Rage Attack/Damage Bonus
    Lesser +1/+2
    Improved +2/+4
    Greater +3/+6
    Mighty +4/+8
    Primal +5/+10

    Power Attack: All barbarians gain Power Attack as a bonus feat at 1st level.

    Rage (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    As a free action, a barbarian can call upon inner reserves of strength and ferocity, granting additional combat prowess. Starting at 1st level, you can rage for a number of rounds per day equal to 4 + your Constitution modifier. At each level after 1st, you can rage for 2 additional rounds. Temporary increases to Constitution, such as those gained from spells like bear's endurance, do not increase the total number of rounds that you can rage per day. You can enter rage as a free action. The total number of rounds of rage per day is renewed after resting for 8 hours, although these hours do not need to be consecutive.
    While in a rage, you gain the following:
  • +1 morale bonus to all d20 rolls (attacks, combat maneuver checks, initiative, saving throws, skill and attribute checks, etc.) and to all static d20 target values (AC, CMD, special ability DCs, etc.). This bonus overlaps (does not stack with) morale bonuses from other sources (spells, a bard’s inspire courage ability, etc.). However, during any round in which both effects are active, you choose which of the bonuses to accept, and that round does not count against your daily rounds’ worth of rage.
  • Temporary hit points equal to your rage bonus x your total number of hit dice. When your rage ends, any temporary hit points not already lost disappear.
  • Temporarily immunity to the effects of minor conditions (Chapter 7). These conditions are not removed; they are merely suspended until your rage ends.
  • While in a rage, you cannot cast spells, use any Intelligence-based skills, or use any other ability that requires patience or care on your part; your effective Intelligence score for other purposes is reduced by an amount equal to your twice rage bonus (to a minimum effective score of 2). The use of spell-like abilities in a rage is generally permitted, however.

    When your rage ends, you take 1 point of damage per round spent raging (not reduced by damage reduction) and are fatigued for a number of rounds equal to twice the number of rounds spent in the rage. If you are already fatigued, you become exhausted instead (if already exhausted, you become unconscious). You cannot enter a new rage while fatigued or exhausted unless you succeed at an Endurance check (Chapter 4) to ignore that condition. If you fall unconscious for any reason while raging, your rage ends, and you are at risk of death when you take the damage from your rage ending.

  • Totem (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    You may select one totem from the list provided in Appendix A, to reflect the guardian spirit associated with your tribe, or else a personal spirit guide. Each totem grants a favored terrain and a special bonus as listed in Appendix A. Your totem bonus is equal to your rage bonus (q.v.), although it applies even when you are not raging. Unless otherwise noted specifically in the description, this bonus is considered a sacred bonus.

    Vital Strike (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    At 1st level, you gain Vital Strike (Chapter 5) as a bonus feat. When in a rage, all successful attacks you make deal Vital Strike damage, even if the normal activating conditions are not met, and this additional damage stacks with sneak attack damage (if any).

    Damage Reduction (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    At 2nd level, a barbarian gains damage reduction. Subtract 1 from the damage you take each time you are dealt damage from a weapon or a natural attack. Every four barbarian levels thereafter (6th, 10th, 14th, and 18th level), this damage reduction increases by 1 point. While you are raging, add your rage bonus to this damage reduction (e.g., an 11th level barbarian in a greater rage has damage reduction 6/—, rather than DR 3/—).

    Rage Powers:

    Spoiler:
    As you gain levels, you learn to use your rage in new ways. You gain the benefits of rage powers only while raging, and some of these powers require you to take an action first. Unless otherwise noted, you cannot select an individual power more than once. Rage powers come in 5 “levels”—lesser, improved, greater, mighty, and primal—based on the level of rage (q.v.) of which you are capable. When eligible for a new rage power, you can choose to select a lower-level power in place of a higher-level one, if desired. Tables listing examples of rage powers are provided in Appendix B, with rules descriptions following.

    Totem Ability (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    Your totem provides a special ability at 3rd level, as described for the totem chosen at 1st level. You gain an additional totem ability at 7th level. You may also choose to have no totem, gaining more generic barbarian class features instead (see Totems, below).

    Totem Feat:

    Spoiler:
    At 4th level, and every 4 class levels thereafter, your totem provides you with a bonus feat, drawn from the list given for your totem (barbarians without totems still gain bonus feats, taken from a separate list). You must meet all prerequisites to select any given listed feat.

    Improved Rage (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    Starting at 5th level, during your rage, your rage bonus improves to +2, and you are temporarily immune to the effects of minor and moderate conditions (Chapter 7). These conditions are not removed; they are merely suspended until your rage ends. Likewise, any magical [death] effects you would otherwise succumb to (such as a wail of the banshee spell), as well as death from massive damage, are delayed until your rage ends. You can ignore up to 1 negative level while raging, and attempt a save to remove that negative level when your rage ends.
    As the name implies, improved rage is an improvement to your normal rage, not a separate ability to be kept track of separately. Likewise, the greater rage ability (q.v.) is an improvement to your improved rage, and so on.

    Greater Rage (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    Starting at 9th level, your rage bonus improves to +3, and you are temporarily immune to the effects of minor, moderate, and severe conditions. These conditions are not removed; they are merely suspended until your rage ends. If ignoring an energy drained condition, you can attempt a save to remove the negative levels when your rage ends.

    Indomitable Will (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    Starting at 11th level, once per rage, you may attempt a second saving throw against any condition temporarily suppressed by your rage; if successful, that condition ends.
    If you are affected by an enchantment spell or effect while not in a rage, you can choose to activate your rage as an immediate action so as to delay the onset of the effects (assuming you have rounds of rage remaining for that day).

    Mighty Rage (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    Starting at 13th level, your rage bonus improves to +4, and you are temporarily immune to minor, moderate, severe, and critical conditions. These conditions are not removed; they are merely suspended until your rage ends.

    Tireless Rage (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    Starting at 15th level, you are no longer fatigued at the end of your rage, nor do you take damage for your rage ending.

    Primal Rage (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    Starting at 17th level, your rage bonus improves to +5. During a rage you are temporarily immune to the effects of all status conditions and effects—including death—that would impede your fighting. These conditions are not removed; they are merely suspended until your rage ends.

    Perpetual Rage (Ex):

    Spoiler:
    At 19th level, as an immediate action you can initiate any rage power you know even when you are not raging. This lasts as long as desired, but only one such power can be in effect at a time. You can switch out the power manifested as an immediate action.


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    Yes, the rules I described supersede the PF rules for held and readied actions. You can read more HERE, in the Introduction. The classes, skills, feats, etc. might be of interest as well, but there's 600 pages of material there.


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    I keep mentally pronouncing the X as an "Sh." Pretty sure that's not what you were going for, though!


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    Kolokotroni wrote:
    You know baring a specific exception a character taking a full round action can still take a 5ft step right?

    Actually, no, I didn't. That's freaking asinine.

    BTW, does any caster in PF ever need to cast defensively, unless the opponent has like a 30-ft. reach? Oh, wait, I just looked through all the Bestiaries and noticed most monsters get reach way out of proportion to their size. It's only martial characters who are unable to disrupt spellcasting.


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    Buri Reborn wrote:
    Reason being, essentially, the gradual stacking effects of those more small bonuses makes a certain outcome much more achievable than loud, flashy effects which might fail or have usage caps.

    Compare small, stacking Climb and Swim bonuses with overland flight and get back to me, when we need to cross a monster-infested river at the bottom of a ravine and then climb up the other side.


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    rainzax wrote:
    Can Fred use his held movement/actions to interrupt the barbarians on their actions?

    Yes, subject to his limited allotment of movement/attacks and the immediate actions needed to trigger them.

    rainzax wrote:
    To what extent does this slow down your combats?

    So far, not at all. Granted, a lot of the playtesting has been in the BAB +6 range vs. the BAB +16 range, but even when we had martials with multiple immediate actions, it was a lot more common for them to use all their attacks immediately, and maybe spend the immediate actions to Aid Another (which we rolled "flanking" into) or attacks of opportunity. Most of them chose other ally-defending options that didn't eat into their action economy (e.g., KELGAN).

    rainzax wrote:
    What about with newer players?

    They generally need help with almost every aspect of a system this complex. My main worry is that they'll later on end up in a straight PF game, realize they can't do stuff that seems obvious, and be upset.


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    The problem is that any point system for feats any person derived would be almost completely different from one that any other person made up. Paizo, for example, still feels that "uses per day" balances an "I win" button, and that a minor situational bonus that you can otherwise use at will (on the off-chance that situation comes up) is incredibly valuable.


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    Shoot, people still order General Tso's chicken at "Chinese" restaurants, despite the fact that it was invented in America.


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    Envall wrote:
    Figure out some kind of a point system for feats so you can get buttload of crap ones instead of one good one.

    That was exactly the (unfortunate) idea behind feat chains.


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    rainzax wrote:
    Kirth Gersen wrote:
    The real key to this is that you HAVE to give martial characters in the party the ability to interrupt people attacking the casters, by getting in the way as an immediate action.
    Can you clarify this?

    (1) You can move and still make iterative attacks.

    (2) I give a number of immediate actions per round equal to the combatant's number of iterative attacks, based on BAB.
    (3) On your turn, you can choose to not make some of your movement and/or attacks.
    (4) You can then spend immediate actions to do those things before your next turn.

    For example: Fred the fighter and Wally the wizard are 7th level, and are fighting a couple of evil 7th level barbarians. Wally wants to get off his confusion spell pronto, but with two berserks at BAB +7, he needs to make a DC 10 + 7 + 2x4 + 2 = 27 Concentration check to do it -- the odds of it succeeding are pretty bad.

    Fred has the highest initiative, takes one swing at one of the barbarians, and then waits. Wally goes next, and starts to cast -- normally the barbarians would interfere at this point, but Fred now spends an immediate action to step in between the barbarians and Wally, preventing them from getting at him to disrupt his casting, and then uses his other immediate action to make his second attack that round. Wally's spell goes off unhindered, and the barbarians learn that 1 fighter + 1 wizard >> 2 fighters or 2 wizards.


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    (1) I'd advise not trying to bring in too much RL experience into a discussion of game mechanics. For example, I'm agile as hell, but I can't shoot worth a damn, and am not very good at the hatchet toss. Does that mean Pathfinder is WRONG for using Dex mod for ranged attacks? No. (Using Str for thrown weapons and Wis for projectiles, as I'm doing at home, is a fun experiment but has no bearing on how the game "should" work.) "Simple" and "well-balanced" should pretty much always trump "realistic" in the hierarchy of design goals for a published RPG.

    (2) Always beware of your own subconscious fanboyism. I love TWF, which makes me want to err on the side of making it LESS good, not more so. There have been too many threads demanding a 2d6/15-20/x4 finesse katana for me to discount the role this plays, and why it's not good for game design.


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    We've been happily playing since 2009 using a very similar house rule:

    Kirthfinder wrote:

    Cast Defensively:

    Spoiler:
    If you are threatened by an opponent who has at least one attack of opportunity remaining, you can elect to attempt to cast defensively. If you choose not to do so, you provoke an attack of opportunity. To cast defensively, you must succeed at a Concentration check at a base DC of 10 + the BAB of the threatening opponent; as noted, you take a penalty to the check equal to twice the level of the spell you’re casting. If this check fails, a threatening opponent can spend an attack of opportunity to automatically disrupt your spell. If the check is successful, the spellcasting continues uninterrupted.

    Allies of the threatening opponent who also threaten you can choose to potentially spend attacks of opportunity themselves in order to Aid Another (see Introduction); each one who does so adds +2 circumstance bonus to the DC of the defensive casting check (and again, uses up the attack of opportunity only if your Concentration check fails).
    As a risky strategy against a skilled opponent, you can ignore the threat and simply cast the spell normally, but doing so provokes an attack of opportunity from all threatening opponents. If you are struck by an attack of opportunity provoked by not casting defensively, you must succeed at a concentration check after all, but you also add the damage sustained to the check DC (see table). Threatening opponents can disrupt spellcasting more reliably than noted above by withholding an attack (see Preemptive Actions in Chapter 1) and striking you as an immediate action.

    The real key to this is that you HAVE to give martial characters in the party the ability to interrupt people attacking the casters, by getting in the way as an immediate action. If you do that, then the casters rely on bodyguards to give them a chance to get off high-level encounter-ending spells -- you reinforce the need for team interdependence. If you don't do that, you end up with no one playing a caster.


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    Neils Bohr wrote:
    especially if you make the caster choose the target area before casting, which seems to be what you're implying

    No; the caster could still pick the area as it goes off; he just couldn't move around first in order to maximize the number of targets, nor take a 5-ft. step back to avoid having to cast defensively, etc.


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    The small cone shape becomes a real limiting factor if you make color spray a full-round casting instead of a standard action -- if the caster can't move to position the cone ideally, it's a lot harder to catch people in it.

    In fact, I'd strongly recommend making pretty much all "standard" casting times a full-round action, but that's just me.


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    One thing that would really, really help me would be to fix the "search" function so that if, for example, you're searching for "Fighter," the fighter class (CRB) would be listed first, maybe fighter archetypes next, and example fighters after that, etc.

    Or, searching for "ogre" should come up with the standard Bestiary ogre first, then maybe the mythic ogre and ogre mage, and after that all the other stuff that tangentially has "ogre" in the name.

    Currently, the results seem to be in date order, which means that the oldest stuff (generally the main entry you're actually looking for) is really far down the list.


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    HyperMissingno wrote:
    I'd be down for a redone sorcerer. Made the bloodlines like mysteries, give them bonus spells on even levels, give them some more skill points...just make sure to get rid of the ring of spell knowledge while you're at it.

    Try this one.


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    "So, sign on the dotted line and you'll have a literal eternity to regret that you'll never have another cup of coffee!"

    Yeah, no thanks. I'd rather be actually dead than be undead.


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    Some more ideas; feel free to grab any/all. My goals were to help the fighter (a) deal with common conditions and keep on coming, (b) control the battlefield, and (c) eventually awe the people around him with his sheer heroic presence. Helping him with gear (d) was a tertiary objective.

    UNCHAINED FIGHTER
    HD d10; BAB full; skill points: 4+Int mod/level
    Good saves: Fort, Ref, Will (Making bravery apply to Will saves has always seemed like an inefficient means of addressing his poor will save.)

    1: Combat Expertise, feat aptitude, war master's edge +1
    2: Bonus feat, bravery I
    3: Mettle, personal weapon +1
    4: Bonus feat, stamina I, strong stomach I
    5: Battlefield control (10 ft.), war master's edge +2
    6: Bonus feat, bravery II, onslaught of blows
    7: Combat mobility, personal weapon +2
    8: Bonus feat, stamina II
    9: Battlefield control (15 ft.), war master's edge +3,
    10: Bonus feat, bravery III, tactical commander
    11: Personal weapon +3, warlord
    12: Bonus feat, strong stomach II
    13: Superior battlefield control (20 ft.), war master's edge +4
    14: Bonus feat, bravery IV, cheat the fog of war
    15: Indomitable will, personal weapon +4
    16: Bonus feat, supreme vital strike
    17: Battlefield control (25 ft.), war master's edge +5
    18: Bonus feat, supreme warlord
    19: Personal weapon +5
    20: Bonus feat, desperate resolve

    Spoiler:
    Feat Aptitude (Ex): When selecting a combat feat, the fighter can ignore one of the feat's prerequisites.

    War Master's Edge (Ex): Combat is the fighter's stock in trade, and he's better at it than anyone. At 1st level, his training provides a +1 insight bonus to attacks, CMB, damage, initiative checks, and AC/CMD. In addition, his armor check penalty is reduced by 1 and the max Dex AC from armor increases by 1. (i.e., weapon training + armor training + initiative bonus.) The bonus provided by this ability increases as shown in the table.

    Bravery (Ex): At 2nd level, the fighter is immune to effects that cause the shaken condition. For more severe fear, the effect is lessened by 1 step (cowering -> panicked -> frightened -> shaken). The severity is reduced by 2 steps at 6th level, by 3 steps at 10th level, and a fighter of 14th level or higher is immune to [fear] effects.

    Mettle (Ex): As evasion, but applies to Fort/Will effects.

    Personal Weapon (Su): At 3rd level, the fighter selects a single weapon (not type of weapon) at the start of each day. That weapon gains a +1 enhancement bonus when wielded by the fighter. If already +1, the fighter can increase its enhancement bonus by +1 or cause it to gain a +1 equivalent weapon property. The additional enhancement bonus to this weapon improved as shown in the table.

    Stamina (Ex): At 4th level, the fighter's endurance training renders him immune to effects that cause the fatigued condition. If he would normally be exhausted, he becomes fatigued instead. At 8th level he is immune to exhaustion.

    Strong Stomach (Ex): A fighter is inured to the sight of blood and the stench of corpses on the battlefield. At 4th level he is immune to effects that cause the sickened condition; if nauseated, he is sickened instead. At 12th level he is immune to nausea.

    Battlefield Control (Ex): At 5h level, the fighter gains Combat Reflexes as a bonus feat. In addition, he can choose to reduce his movement speed by 5 ft. for one round in order to extend his threatened area by 5 ft. For every 4 levels above 5th, he can trade an additional 5 ft. (up to his maximum movement speed). Enemies who have not seen the fighter use this ability are not necessarily aware of it.

    Onslaught of Blows (Ex): A fighter takes no penalty on iterative attacks (thus, a 16th level fighter attacks at +16/+16/+16/+16).

    Combat Mobility (Ex): At 7th level, a fighter can take a full move and still full attack. Movement and attacks can be interspaced as the fighter sees fit, but all movement must be taken in 5-ft. increments. This ability also allows the fighter to make a full attack at the end of a charge.

    Tactical Commander (Ex): Starting at 10th level, the fighter can spend a move action in order to grant allies who can see and hear him the benefits of his War Master’s Edge, but at only half his normal bonus.

    Warlord (Ex): At 11th level, the fighter’s prowess and renown are is such that he can assemble an army eager to serve under him. This requires 1 week and provides personnel as if the fighter had the Leadership feat (if he or she already has the Leadership feat, the effects stack). The newly-assembled army remains until the purpose of assembling is fulfilled, or after 1 month of inactivity in any event.

    Superior Battlefield Control (Ex): Starting at 13th level, as a free action the fighter can designate any portion of his threatened area as difficult terrain.

    Cheat the Fog of War (Ex): At 14th level, the fighter’s instinctive awareness of tactics and battlefield positioning is unmatched. He can deduce which effects are illusory and which threats are real, even from magically-concealed enemies; this counts as true seeing, but is an extraordinary ability that cannot be dispelled. When faced with a projected image, the fighter can deduce the actual location of the caster.

    Indomitable Will (Ex): A fighter of 15th level or higher under an ongoing [mind-affecting] effect may attempt an additional Will save each round to end the effect. If the effect does not normally allow a save, the fighter gains a Will save (DC 25) to end the effect.

    Supreme Vital Strike (Ex): Starting at 16th level, as full round action the fighter can make a single melee or ranged weapon attack that deals base damage equal to the normal weapon base damage x his fighter level. Effects like lead blades, etc. follow the normal rules for adding multipliers (e.g., a 16th level fighter with a lead bladed longsword deals a base 17d8 damage with this attack).

    Supreme Warlord (Ex): Starting at 18th level, opponents with a CR equal to half the fighter’s level or less must save vs. Will each round (DC 10 + the fighter’s level) spent in combat against him. Failure indicates that they are so awed by his prowess that they throw down their arms and surrender to him; if he or his companions continue to attack them, they flee if possible (a dishonorable fighter can use his battlefield control ability to impede their retreat, allowing them to be slaughtered). If their surrender is accepted, the fighter can spend a move action to recruit them to his side; this change of allegiance lasts for as long as they remain within his presence.

    Desperate Resolve (Ex): Starting at 20th level, the fighter no longer automatically fails saves on a natural 1.


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    Kobold Cleaver wrote:
    Does anybody have any examples from their games of a cleric getting "out of hand"?

    (Chokes and coughs.) I still hate myself for accidentally ruining Mundane's 7th-8th level "Underwater All-Stars" campaign. She told us it would be very challenging, so I dutifully rolled up a cleric, ignored Str and Dex, and jacked up my Wis and Cha as high as I could. We all had to play underwater races, which I took as a hint, and grabbed the Water domain. Our group also had an ubercharger cavalier and some kind of dashing skirmisher guy.

    The adventure was mostly investigation and social stuff, which I inadvertently dominated, because after the skirmisher bought Dex, Str, Con, he didn't have much left for Int and Cha. I was making all the Sense Motive checks, and discerning lies and so on, and even untrained, Bluff wasn't that hard against mooks. I could also summon spies and minions, and cast divination, etc., etc. All this was effective enough that we got too close to the BBEG too quickly, and she attacked us with everything she had.

    Which I'd expected. We allowed ourselves to be caught in an underwater place, and a lot of souped-up underwater monsters attacked. I told the cavalier who to charge and he 1-shotted the disguised BBEG. Then I cast lower water and a couple other choice spells, and the rest was anticlimactic. The skirmisher said, "Why am I even here? He just finished the entire adventure solo."

    I tried to talk up the cavalier's killing of the BBEG as the real key to the adventure, but I don't think he believed me.

    In retrospect, I wish I'd played a fire oracle or something. Even if we'd all died, I'd feel better about myself.


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    Belle Sorciere wrote:
    Wizard 10/Fighter 10 is suboptimal in any iteration of 3e of which I am aware.

    See clarification you might have added above. There are a number of 3.x variants that have functional multiclassing rules, and don't require archetypes/PrCs/hybrid classes to do the job. Hell, my house rules even do all that. Functional multiclassing really isn't a lot to ask.


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    My Skull & Shackles home game finally has given us a view of the barbarian as a PC, and convinced me to make some revisions. The need for (basically) two character sheets was getting to be a drag, so I decided to maybe go the Unchained route and just use a straight bonus:

    Revised Barbarian wrote:

    Rage (Ex): As a free action, a barbarian can call upon inner reserves of strength and ferocity, granting additional combat prowess. Starting at 1st level, you can rage for a number of rounds per day equal to 4 + your Constitution modifier. At each level after 1st, you can rage for 2 additional rounds. Temporary increases to Constitution, such as those gained from spells like bear's endurance, do not increase the total number of rounds that you can rage per day. You can enter rage as a free action. The total number of rounds of rage per day is renewed after resting for 8 hours, although these hours do not need to be consecutive.

    While in a rage, you gain the following:

  • +1 morale bonus to all d20 rolls (attacks, combat maneuver checks, initiative, saving throws, skill and attribute checks, etc.) and to all static d20 target values (AC, CMD, special ability DCs, etc.). This bonus overlaps (does not stack with) morale bonuses from other sources (spells, a bard’s inspire courage ability, etc.). However, during any round in which both effects are active, you choose which of the bonuses to accept, and that round does not count against your daily rounds’ worth of rage.
  • Temporary hit points equal to your rage bonus x your total number of hit dice. When your rage ends, any temporary hit points not already lost disappear.
  • Temporarily immunity to the effects of minor conditions (Chapter 7). These conditions are not removed; they are merely suspended until your rage ends. While in a rage, you cannot cast spells, use any Intelligence-based skills, or use any other ability that requires patience or care on your part; the use of spell-like abilities is generally permitted, however.
  • You cannot use Intelligence-based skills, and your effective Intelligence score for other purposes is reduced by an amount equal to your twice rage bonus (to a minimum effective score of 2).

    When your rage ends, you take 1 point of damage per round spent raging (not reduced by damage reduction) and are fatigued for a number of rounds equal to twice the number of rounds spent in the rage. If you are already fatigued, you become exhausted instead (if already exhausted, you become unconscious). You cannot enter a new rage while fatigued or exhausted unless you succeed at an Endurance check (Chapter 4) to ignore that condition. If you fall unconscious for any reason while raging, your rage ends, and you are at risk of death when you take the damage from your rage ending.


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    Fighter 10/wizard 10 = wizard 10 who's facing 20th-level challenges. Ouch.
    3.5 tried to bridge that gap with PrCs. Paizo tells you to play a magus. But there are other 3X variants that have functional multiclassing rules.


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    Ssalarn wrote:
    Martial/Caster disparity exists, and it only grows as an issue as the hobby gains new players who are very familiar with using internet guides and markedly less familiar with the archaic structures often referred to as gentlemen's agreements the "old-timers" like myself have traditionally used to rein in the outer edges of the game.

    To follow up on this, I've often pointed out the benefits to the hobby as a whole if all those "gentleman's agreements" were hard-written into the rules, rather than being left as an arcane, invisible "cheat code" that's needed to actually play without eventually falling into a booby-trap that ruins the game. With enough experience or luck, people will figure them out -- or ones enough like them to do the job -- but it's an incredible barrier to entry, finding out that the rules posted on the PRD are incomplete or even unworkable without a second set of unwritten rules as well.

    Tabletop games seem to be a dwindling hobby. I'd like to make them easier to pick up, by making the rules and game play as smooth and as transparent as possible. Sitting around and congratulating ourselves that we know the "right" way to play -- or, worse, condescendingly telling people that insights we learned through years of effort are "just common sense" (I've seen that a LOT!) -- turns off new players and will eventually ensure that a dwindling hobby dies.


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    The Sword wrote:
    That was the DMs justification for trying to stop his character doing it. Which surely we can all agree stinks?

    Sure. What I've done at my table -- which as far as I know is unique -- is draft up a house rule to cover it after the session, disseminate the proposed rule, and have a discussion and vote at the beginning of the next session, with me abstaining except in the case of a tie.


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    The Sword wrote:
    If however the cmd can only be identified by the most mechanically skilled players (not necessarily the best players as you have said) can it truly be considered a significant problem in the game?

    If it's not identified, but still ruins the game -- which is exactly what happened in a Savage Tide game I was in, BTW -- then, yes, it can still be a significant problem.


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    I should point out that my 1.5-year-old daughter finds nursery rhymes to be incredibly interesting. I obviously don't agree. Then again, I find reading Icelandic Sagas to her to be incredibly interesting, but she has come to violently disagree with my assessment.

    The thing is, I don't get to tell her she's "wrong."

    "Fun" isn't monolithic. What's "creative" and "fun" for you might leave the rest of the table irritable and annoyed.


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    MrTsFloatinghead wrote:
    Really? 80% of players play closer to the floor than the ceiling? What does that even mean? Why is "Makes a mechanically optimized character" a "higher" level of play than "Makes an interesting character"?

    It HAS to mean mechanical, because there is no floor or ceiling for "interesting." Number of pages of backstory doesn't cut it. Compare:

  • Player 1 shows up with Gledalff the Ghrey, a wizard, and describes his beard and robes in loving detail, and all the carvings on his staff and so on, and has pages describing how Gledalff Elf-Friend is the Chosen One and survived an attack by Molgart when he was a baby and was raised by Muggles.
  • Player 2 shows up with a mongrelfolk barbarian named "Dog" with no written backstory.

    Is Player 1's character more interesting? On paper I say no, because he's a ripoff of a bunch of tired old cliches that are far better off in the dustbin than on the gaming table. "Dog" at least gives us a lot of room for surprises. Is Player 1 a "better" role-player? Maybe he always talks in the first person using an Ian McKellen imitation and has Gledalff issue impressive-sounding pronouncements. Great! But maybe all his dialogue turns out to be ripped off from LotR movies -- and maybe Gledalff ends up with no personality of his own. Maybe Dog's player talks in the third person, but ends up showing that Dog is an interesting and unique individual with real nuances of character. None of these things are quantifiable, and really can't even be ranked in terms of a "floor" or "ceiling."


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    darth_borehd wrote:
    Trust me, it's all in your head. Now relax...

    It's amazing -- every time I hear this in real life, it means the person talking is about to create a huge godawful mess and I'm going to have to be the one who cleans up after them.


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    Ssalarn wrote:

    If you go back far enough on the Paizo forums, you can even find me arguing that this is a team game and the Fighter is fine!

    As I got stronger with the rules, and as my group dynamics shifted to more public and organized play settings, C/MD issues became more and more apparent to me, because they were harder to spot fix while being fair to everyone.

    Exact same experience here. Go back far enough (and I've been on the boards for-ev-ar!) and you'll see me making the same "there is no disparity" arguments that people are still repeating ad nauseum. You'll gradually also see me sharing game experiences in which C/MD cropped up and just couldn't be easily fixed on the spot at the table, and which eventually caused us to abandon an AP entirely, because the (3.5e) barbarian was basically sitting out most adventures without getting to do anything. The Alpha PF playtests hit, I still hadn't quite "gotten" it, and I got patiently and very exhaustively schooled by more experienced people.

    Now I'm one of the most vehement people around, when it comes to pointing out why there is, indeed, a disparity and why it's bad for the hobby as a whole even if it doesn't affect a particular table.


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    Letric wrote:

    Most complicated thing I've done? Wizard 5.

    I rarely see the need to combine so many thing, and I strongly believe most of the time that is only done to achieve a mechanical advantage and rarely is done for roleplaying reasons.

    On the contrary, the strongest character you can possibly build is a single-classed wizard or cleric (or something comparable like witch). Multiclassing with any full caster cuts them off at the knees -- full-casting cheese PrCs like Initiate of the Seven Veil are gone now. Nothing screams "powergamer!" in PF more than the build you quoted above.

    In fact, Pathfinder in general punishes you so severely for multiclassing (rather than using their prepackaged "hybrid classes") that it's nearly impossible to build a multiclassed character with any advantage at all over a single-classed one.

    So why would anyone want to multiclass? Dare I to say that it might involve, I don't know... roleplaying reasons?


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    Player: "I buy a horse!"
    DM: "You're a dwarf. You can't ride a horse."
    Player: "OK, I buy a pony!"
    DM: "Fine. They sell you one for 30 gp. Food will be 16 gp a month."
    Player: "For some oats and hay?!"
    Me (helpfully): "They're steel-cut oats, certified organic and non-GMO."


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    Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:
    Affectionate cat... but colossally stupid.

    It never ceases to amaze me, the sheer spread of intelligence among housecats -- it's like the standard deviation is as large as the mean. I've had cats dumber than dirt, and cats smarter than I am (some would argue the latter is no great feat).


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    When the grapefruit tree in my front yard was past ripeness and the fruit kept falling, the yard squirrel would gorge on the fallen fruit. It got so fat it could barely hop around or climb, just waddle from grapefruit to grapefruit to hiding place. The cats watched intently from indoors and wanted desperately to go out and eat him, but I vetoed that and kept them in, because rotting fruit in the yard attracts flies, but empty rinds are fairly harmless. I almost got to thinking of the squirrel as a pet.

    I do view the lizards living in the bougainvillea to be very welcome residents and semi-pets, but when it rains too much (and this spring has been nothing but), they tend to find ways into the house -- and the kitties are always anxious to hunt them there, which makes me sad.

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