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MisterSlanky's page

Goblin Squad Member. Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber. FullStarFullStarFullStarFullStar Pathfinder Society GM. 2,597 posts (2,620 including aliases). 43 reviews. 2 lists. 1 wishlist. 11 Pathfinder Society characters. 3 aliases.


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Shadow Lodge ****

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I still think the rule is silly for all the reasons that if you care to know you can dig them up in my post history.

Shadow Lodge ****

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IMHO Retraining is nothing more than (another) tool used primarily (not always, but primarily) by those more interested in tweeking out every last ounce of power out of their character rather than just playing. Having watched them grow more powerful with each release (and subsequently watched my fun playing at those tables go down), seeing more tools available for those kinds of players doesn't make me happy. In fact, in your specific example of traits, I find them to be primary examples of what defines a character. So while retraining of feats, classes, and even hit points irritates me to no end, I find it abhorrent to allow trait retraining because it damages my verisimilitude.

So your examples of why it wouldn't hurt gameplay mean nothing to me, because they do not address a fundamental issue I have with the rules in general.

Retraining is a phenomenon from the MMO world, and frankly it's one I think PnP gaming can do without. It'll never be allowed at my home table, and while the decision has been made for PFS, I'll be happy to enforce every last rule involving retraining to the letter to try to minimize it from occurring. We already have enough custom rules in PFS, we do not need a custom rule for this.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Andrew Christian wrote:
And frankly, it is the responsibility of the leadership (myself included) of the campaign to make sure that players are being educated on the rules. Based on what MisterSlanky said, it appears that the veteran players and GM's and the V-O's (including MisterSlanky when he was V-C of the Twin Cities) were lax in making sure this was taught correctly.

I would like to point out they were all new players from after my era. ;-)

Shadow Lodge ****

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Scott Young wrote:
GM signoffs on purchases have ALWAYS been required. Always. This just puts it all on a nice form for ease of player and GM reference.

Scott, could you please show me where in the current (or previous) versions of the guide it said that initials (or signature) from the GM were required? I'm not trying to be aggressive here, it's just I don't ever recall seeing that rule written down and in my tenure as VC I ran the region that way - signatures on equipment purchases were not required because the guide does not make mention of it. That requirement has held locally since my resignation as well.

Quote:

But your Chronicles and now the Tracking Sheet are the official character sheet, not Hero Lab. This will be a much better system going forward, because it will remove the accidental "did I use that?" consumable issue, and make it reasonable for a GM to know what a character actually has. As it stands, it takes a GM so long to audit a single character sheet, that it can't be realistically done at the table. This means mistakes, and more malicious behaviour, go unchallenged, skewing game balance and rewarding bad or sloppy record-keeping. That is worse for the campaign than a little bit of extra paperwork that was supposed to be done anyway.

I certainly don't disagree with the idea that the Chronicle and (now) Tracking Sheet are your official record (not Hero Lab), but I don't agree that it will facilitate GM review of equipment. Looking through 20 chronicles, and looking through 4-5 equipment sheets are both time consuming. I probably bought two pages worth of equipment for my alchemist before Thornkeep with the 5 sessions of GM credit I had lying around.

I also think that this firmly puts the campaign on "defensive mode" regarding cheating. With some of my more recent experiences, perhaps this is a warranted change, but in general I don't agree that the extra paperwork is worth it. It is a game after all. If I want to do paperwork, I'll go to work.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Michael Brock wrote:
Lab_Rat wrote:
Will all characters (both new and old) be required to use the inventory tracker? If so, should I just right in everything on the tracker and then get my next GM to initial the whole batch?
Yes. Check the FAQ please.

With respect, I think this is going too far.

I don't particularly like the new inventory tracking and sign-off rules (it's already hard enough running a scenario under the time limits sometimes), but to ask me to go back and transcribe 30 some records of purchases, item uses, and sales IMHO is asking a little much.

I did a full character audit of my wizard before Eyes of the Ten making sure I spent all the gold I was supposed to spent (since keeping track of scrolls plus scribing costs often gets a little cumbersome) and the entire process took me roughly 4-6 hours (one evening dedicated solely to this activity), I do not want to, nor do I intend to spend even half that time to transcribe/audit my other 8 characters (the lowest level of which is 4).

Shadow Lodge ****

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Kyle Baird wrote:
Hmm... I'm going to assume that I still need to hand out faction missions for Eyes of the Ten.

BEAKY III DEMANDS IT!

Shadow Lodge ****

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I'd be lying if I said I wasn't upset about the removal of the faction's importance in Season 5. I'm also kind of upset that this is being done retroactively to seasons 0-4 (because I enjoy the faction missions all things considered).

That said, if they've lost their importance, I wish factions had just been done away with altogether.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Kyle Baird wrote:
Woo! New chronicle for season 5!

OMG OMG OMG...is that current prestige and then fame?! Did we get it ordered right this time!?

Shadow Lodge ****

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I will continue to run faction missions whenever possible regardless.

Why? Five words.

I do this for Taldor!

Shadow Lodge ****

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Eric, the complaint being made is that you have shown no incentive to look things up yourself, it is not that you're incapable of memorizing an entire set of rulebooks (I don't think anybody except Kyle Baird and maybe Jiggy can claim to have done that). You're happy to ask somebody else to spend their time looking up a rule, but you're not willing to spend any effort yourself in doing so. Believe it or not, that may be considered rude.

What most of us want to do is live by the mantra of "teach a person to fish". I (and others) don't want to answer every previously answered question ad nauseum. We'd rather that you take a minute or two to do a search and find out the answer to yourself. Believe it or not, it may actually save you time.

Out of curiosity I went and tried to answer your question and timed myself to see how long it took (because I didn't know the answer either).

Eric Saxon wrote:
Tell me where in those rules you can find out that an Aasimar with the Scion of Humanity can use Human only Feats and Traits, in all books other than the Advanced Race Guide?

I couldn't remember which book Scion of Humanity was in (I assume if I were curious, I'd probably know, but I'm giving you the benefit of the doubt that you're using Hero Labs or something). Total time to navigate to d20pfsrd, do a search on 'Scion of humanity', find 'scion of humanity' on the page, and navigate to figure out which book it's from - 22.5 seconds.

I then opened up a new browser window, navigated to the additional resources, searched for 'Advanced Race Guide' and looked through the list (realizing at this point it's sorted by race) and saw the statement that all traits and feats are legal for Aasamir. Time spent doing that? 33.04 seconds.

Again, you likely know this information since you had the book open looking up a resource in the first place, but since I already have the browser window for d20pfsrd open, and I personally don't recall where "World Traveler" is from I did a search looked up the trait, and saw it was from the APG. Time spent, 18.63 seconds.

I went back to paizo.com (already open), looked up "Advanced Race Guide" and "Scion of Humanity" with the find function on the additional resource page. Discovered that the following traits are NOT legal section. Trait is not on the list, I know I'm good to go. Time spent - 13.52 seconds.

Total time spent with the extra time required for me to look up sources = 87.69 seconds, or less than one and a half minutes.

Total time spent specifically reviewing the additional resources = 46.56 seconds, or less than one minute.

I've spent a lot longer than even the more rigorous just writing up this e-mail to respond about whether it's legal or not. I also spent my 1.5 minutes (rather than having you spend yours). That's what I believe is driving people off. You ask basic questions that you don't need to know the rules inside and out to answer, you just need a little search savvy.

Shadow Lodge

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Here's how you read that stat block.

Single Attack
You get one move, and one standard action each round. A standard action may be used to swing your sword once, fire your crossbow once, or do a slew of other actions listed as "Standard actions" in the core rulebook (e.g. grapple somebody, cast spells, drink a potion, use a special ability, etc.).

Full Attack
A full attack takes up BOTH your move action and standard action. This comes into play in two very important situations, one is iterative attacks (which you won't have to worry about for some time), the second is dual wielding (which your character appears to do with two daggers).

So...what does that mean in terms of the +'s?

Breaking up the weapon stat
Look at a basic weapon stat - Longsword +6 (1d8+4 19-20)


  • Longsword - Name of the weapon
  • +6 - What you get to add to your d20 roll to-hit
  • 1d8+4 - Your weapon damage, how much damage you to get to roll if you hit.
  • 19-20 - Your critical threat range. If you roll this number on your to-hit roll and you hit, you may roll again to see if you do extra damage. If no multiplier is listed, it's always x2 damage, otherwise the block may say "x3", "x4" etc. If no range is listed, assume you only may crit on a natural 20.

So here's your specific character example...
Where it says "Single Attack" you have two options:


  • Swing your dagger - You roll a d20 and add +2 to the roll (the bonus indicated before the damage). If the number you roll meets or exceeds the AC of your opponent, you hit and do 1d3+1 damage (the number written in the parentheses). In addition, rolling a 19 or a 20 on the d20 roll to hit MAY allow you a second to-hit (assuming you hit with the first attack, the next to hit would also involve rolling a d20 and adding +2). If you hit on the second roll, you do critical damage and roll 2d3+2 damage (your damage twice).
  • Fire your crossbow - You roll a d20 and add +3 to the roll (the bonus indicated before the damage). Again, you have to meet or exceed the AC of your target to hit. You'll notice the critical range is the same for your dagger, so those rules noted above apply as well, and you may do 2d6 damage on a crit.

Now, the other thing to remember is that you still have a move action left. You could move up to your speed (as a halfling probably 20 feet or 4 squares). You could move before you use your weapon. You can also do some actions such as open a door or pull out an item as examples.

Where it says "Full Attack" you have two options as well:
Before I begin. I believe your stat block is wrong (I know, that confuses things). I will do a write-up here using the numbers you listed, and then explain why I think they're wrong after.


  • Swing your main hand dagger AND swing your off-hand dagger. In this case you roll a d20 and add +2 for your main hand (using the damage noted to the right), and roll a d20 a second time and add -4 for your off-hand (using the slightly reduced damage listed if you hit). This allows for two attacks. Otherwise it functions exactly as noted above.
  • Fire your crossbow - There is actually no reason (with an exception I won't get into) why you would ever fire your crossbow as a full attack. Crossbows may be fired as standard actions, so using a full action makes you lose your move action. You'll also see it's identical to the previously listed stats. I would cross this row out and forget it exists.

Now for why I think your stat block is wrong. You determine your to-hit by adding in your Base Attack Bonus (BAB) and the bonus of your strength (for melee attacks), or dexterity (for ranged attacks). So a dagger would be +2 to hit (level 1 rogue BAB = +0, strength 14 = +2). When two-weapon fighting, you get a second roll, but you take penalties on both rolls, specifically a -4 and a -8 (assuming you're not trained with the two-weapon-fighting feat). That means your +2 to hit, would become a -2 and a -6 to hit (if you had the two-weapon fighting feat, the penalties are reduced to -2 and -2, which would put you at +0 and +0 for your two attacks).

I know it's a lot to digest, so let me know if you have any questions. There are other rules as well (weapon finesse, your sneak attack die) etc. I did not cover here because frankly there was a lot of info in there already.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Andrew Christian wrote:

Mister Slanky considers himself a casual player. He's GM'd more than I have, was the V-C of my region for awhile, and so on and so forth.

Please do not label me something I never labeled myself. Please do not make definitions I did not make. Please do not make threads in my name misrepresenting the issue.

I am not a casual player. I am not a new player. That said, as VC I learned to champion their causes and I do have vested interest in watching them have fun.

That's all. I'm not even reading this thread.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Andrew Christian wrote:

So scenarios should be written without challenging DC's so that people who don't want to use the rules of the game to their advantage can roll dice and still succeed 50% of the time?

I'm really not seeing the validity in this argument at all.

Riiiiiiight...

So setting a trap DC to 34 (you know, to make it challenging), with a table that always takes 20, on somebody with a +14 to their perception skill, makes that trap 'challenging". Their ability to spot every trap, never set a trap off, and walk through ignoring all traps makes things challenging. Yet for the group with the slightly less awesome rogue (who's not relying on every perception boost known to mankind) with a +13 (equally cool, but not as awesome as the +14 guy), sets off every trap he encounters. That makes it challenging, to take 20 all the time and see them all (unless of course your perception doesn't let you, in which case that must be the challenge).

Or...

You could have a game where your traps are a little easier to spot, most people are rolling instead of taking 20 because they find it kind of fun, and occasionally (proportionally based on how good they are at spotting things), may set off a trap and have to deal with the consequences (that hopefully don't involve 4d6 damage for 4 rounds with no way to react should you fail the three saving throws involved).

I know which one seems like a challenge to me.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Ryan Blomquist wrote:
In fact, most of the horror stories that make it back to me are cases of poor player tactics and falling into the bad habit of simply trying to "brute force" your way through the scenarios.

Ryan,

We had the following:


  • Level 6 Fighter/Oracle of Metal Beefstick
  • level 7 Monk/Rogue Trapfinder/high AC "tank" and damage dealer (ignores DR)
  • Level 6 Wizard specced for control spells
  • Level 6 Pistolero/Mysterious Stranger gunslinger
  • Level 6 Pure support cleric with direct damage
  • Level 5 Damage dealing sorcerer

In other words we had a nearly perfect group balance. I used my buffs wisely (casting them the best I could to take advantage of their durations), our rogue searched every single hallway twice-over for traps, our wizard thought out good strategies and uses for his control spells brilliantly, our cleric balanced her support and buff spells fantastically and our damage dealers dealt damage when needed. I can tell you we were a thoughtful group that didn't just jump the gun and use a big sword to solve everything.

We still...

Spoiler:
Had an AC 30 character hit twice with pretty average rolls with enough damage to bring her to near death. Had an AC 23 character get hit with enough damage to take her to negative -24 hit points in round 1. Had our rogue roll once on her own (and the GM rolling once with trap sense) a 11 and a 9, which weren't enough to spot the trap. Had three members of the group fail a DC 20 fort save (you know, with a 50-50 fail on a +10 FORT at level 6). Had the 4 members fail the equally difficult distraction/nausea check (you know, which prevents movement in the web altogether because you can't make the standard action to break free). That trap alone, all three saves? You're going to fail one minimum, probably two. We then had all but one character fail the DC 20+ Will save in the Ouidda fight (where it didn't matter because I went cheese-weasel and bought a clear spindle ioun stone).

This is just absurd. Just as absurd as Way of the Kirin (2-death adventure due to bad guys that were virtually impossible to avoid) which fortunately had an awesome enough story and premise to be not-bad.

Not happy, and I'm not happy the casual gamer is being marginalized the way they are with comments from the Venture Leadership just solidifying the "casual gamers need not apply" issue I'm seeing growing. What Jon said mirrors my feelings perfectly and I wish I had put it that eloquently to begin with.

I suggest taking a step back and take off your "I've played for ages" hat. Take off your "I've participated in Living Grayhawk" hat. Take off the hat of somebody who's hardcore (you have to be hardcore to want to be a VO, I've been there, I know). Now, consider what it's like for a new player to show up for a game, and get slaughtered because their experience, casualness, or even playstyle. Consider that the pregens are just meat sacks now in some of these scenarios. Now imagine how that makes you feel, are you going to show up again? No.

Too much of the game has begun to focus on the vocal crowd here on these forums, those that want the "challenge" of death every scenario. I like a challenge too, but apparently my feeling of a challenge does not involve being unconscious for most of the fight, or being knocked to 13 HP in the surprise round hoping that somebody can hit my corpse in time with a cure light. I'm sick and tired of it, and I'm tired of the few that do come in to complain being told that "no, this was easy" by the group that insists on making the level 6 wizard that can do 6d6+20 points of damage with a fireball marginalizing combats, or the archer that takes down a dragon in a single round of combat, or any other of the absurd builds I'm watching walking around locally. Sure, for them these are easy, but for the rest, frankly they're not.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Andrew Christian wrote:
But overall I enjoy season 4 more than zero and one, which for both story and challenge were weak.

I don't think it's fair to ever bring season 0 into a discussion on difficulty (since it's not even Pathfinder), and with Season 1 everything was new and the training wheels were still on with the new system. I can't speak to the Season 4 metastory, since I haven't gotten anything out of it at all (which may be speaking to the Season 4 metastory, or it might betray the fact I've not played that many scenarios in Season 4).

That all said, for Season 4:


  • I've murdered half a table in the surprise round/first action in one game
  • While GMing nearly murdered a table another game where only the presence of an uber-build saved the day
  • I've watched a GM pull WAAAY back in order to prevent a series of multiple TPKs on a nearly perfectly-balanced but unoptimized group
  • I watched as a player two characters get steamrolled and killed by near-unbeatable NPC builds in another scenario
  • I've watched optimized builds plow through a scenario that would have killed everybody else had that one player not been there on two occasions.
  • One scenario broke my cardinal sin of gaming by making most of the table sit out most of the combat (oh this is fun)
  • The Disappeared was actually a fun scenario.
  • Oh, and in one scenario we played with Goblins, and it was fun.

That's 7/9 season 4's. At this point I think I've identified a trend, and it's one I'm tired of hearing isn't a problem.

And to go back to the original point, the biggest complaint about this particular scenario (the first point actually) was that it's back to the "you just get to watch". That's not fun. Why not let the players...

Spoiler:
just capture Torch in a fight with him? I mean he can just break out later, or maybe it's part of his master scheme. This is regardless of the fact that I think turning him into a "bad guy" was a major cop-out, especially when most people still agree with him and want to see him succeed.

Terrible, terrible scenario on multiple levels.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Andrew Christian wrote:
Don't really want to have this argument on the forums with you. But I think you are over reacting. We've shown above that it isn't hard to make a guy capable of getting the 41 without too much investment.

You've shown that there is a particular build that makes it possible to roll something around a 16 to notice what's going on, a build that for all intents and purposes will make that character a one trick pony to notice what's going on in this scenario who will invest a lot of their abilities and points into sense motive.

I agree with Andrew Hoskins, they should have just written it as boxed text...would have been the same result.

Quote:
And I'm not sure that organized play has ever been, in any of its incarnations from living city until now, a good place for casual play.

And Andrew, that is where our opinions differ. PFS should be a good place for all players, not just those that like to optimize, or those who want to ride every scenario on the edge. That group of players that should be included are absolutely casual players, and kids who don't know how to optimize, and those that just want to make a good Pathfinder vs. the latest Ubermench. I believe that until recently (i.e. Season 4), playing PFS worked just fine for casual players. Now you get one kid at your table who can't concentrate, and/or the significant other that's just along for the fun and you're watching your group get stomped. I've now lived twice in season 4 only because of these damn powerbuilds. Franky it's not fun to watch your character get stomped to death or near death on the freakin' surprise round in any scenario, which is becoming the norm rather than the exception, and Rivalry's End is just another example of that, to the extreme.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Andrew Christian wrote:
So you are upset that an NPC with a major NPC plot point had a skill check the equivalent of a bluff optimized PC skill check?

Yes...yes I am.

1) As discussed ad nauseam for The Dalsine Affair, being on the sidelines watching the story rather than participating in the story are not fun. Having an "unbeatable" skill check for the sake of having a "cutscene" is not fun. Having the party have virtually no chance (short of a divination wizard who gets initative) to capture Torch simply because the powers that be demanded that to be the end of the story is not fun.

2) Along with other things, is one of the problems with season 4, optimized opponents that we need optimized characters to defeat. Apparently making the combats over the top isn't enough anymore, now the skills have to go there.

Spoiler:
Whether it's the one-shot kill clockworks (on a level 7 with a buffed up AC of 28 who is taking -4 to all hits and a CON of 16), the web/nausea/4d6 damage/dex damage big f-you mid-scenario (causing two of the party to end because of lucky rolls at 1 DEX each), the dominating-confusion casting-invisible crap that follows, or the crit-build barbarian/rogues apparently now the only way I'm supposed to play is through optimization. Woe to the casual group or the casual players.

I swore I wouldn't be the cheese-weasel that buys the Clear Spindle Ioun Stone....now I'm glad I violated my own complaint on one of the dumbest items ever allowed in society simply because it let me actually survive this rancid crap.

Terrible scenario, TERRIBLE ending to the Shadow Lodge (and one I saw coming a mile away once it was announced that it was a huge "twist"), and one that I'll be glad has no relevance after this month.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Andrew Christian wrote:
So I’m not seeing any power “creep.” Just necessary changes to make sure the campaign stays challenging with all the options players have.

And Andrew, this is the current problem (in my eyes) with the campaign. It wasn't necessary. It was necessary to make the crazies with crazy builds happier, but it certainly wasn't necessary.

I consider myself a pretty hardcore PFS player, I've been playing since the beginning, I've sat in the VO chair, yet I'm finding the scenarios in Season 4 to become complete slogs. Season to me tends (not always, but certainly more often than not) to be challenges of endurance in a 5 hour session, not a fun get-together they used to be. Rather than a fun day of gaming, I'm finding myself exhausted after participating (and this is either playing or running). I'm finding we survive only because of these crazy builds, which makes them more and more popular.

In other words, I'm finding myself having less fun.

I'm one side of the coin. The other side is far more problematic.

My GF has gone from being open about PFS to completely uninterested. Why? Because she's a more casual player. The stories of what's happening at game days (all perpetuated by the 6-player table decision) have turned her off entirely. Her idea of fun isn't the "challenges" being introduced now. She wants to play a fun and creative character she can get into, which she's not feeling she can.

I think PFS needs to be careful. While the OPs call that this was the end of LG is certainly not entirely true, it's something to worry about, because like it or not, it's happening. Maybe not to all of you, certainly not to the handful of hardcore players who post on these forums 24/7, but it's happening.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Don't know if was addressed or not but here's my big one.

It's abundantly obvious that the form was not developed by somebody with a math background. On the current sheet, Fame and Prestige are in the wrong order.

If I've earned 10 fame total in my life, and spent four of it (leaving me with 6 prestige), I don't write 10/6, I write 6/10. Please, for the love of Pete express it as the fraction it is.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Mark Moreland wrote:
When I outlined it and assigned it to Dennis, I told him to watch Skyfall specifically to try to emulate the final siege. Glad to see the influence came through.

Then Mark, I am sorry to inform you that we went to Home Alone first.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Hairy Pat wrote:

Retraining will be the death of the Pathfinder Society Organized Play Campaign as we know it.

I can see the other side of the looking glass and I don't like it one bit.

Really? Retraining? Ugh...

I get level 1 retraining and new characters, characters with pregens, etc. Retraining though past then? Please, let's hope that there's still room for discussion to bring that answer to "no".

Shadow Lodge ****

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Thanks to those of you who insist on skirting every damn rule to the edge of lunacy, we now have an overarching rule that hurts low level (and new) players. You have in one stroke caused more dead players than any other stupid-request to date. So thank you.

Before we could live with a negative level or a point of drain until we could afford to deal with the issue. Now, as Mike has made clear, we need to:

"drain needs to be cleared at the end of the scenario."
"you have to dispel negative levels at the end of an adventure."

So playing through a certain level 2 module now carries the distinct risk of death. Walking away from a point or two of wisdom drain (not reoccurring drain like from a disease or poison mind you) from an Alip at level 3 means you're dead. All you've done is hurt low-level play.

I don't blame Mike. He's trying to manage some semblance of control over absolute bat-crazy concepts that by all intents and purposes should be reasonably not allowed (such as the idea that it's okay to play with a squirrel) with a rule that's more generic.

I hope long term Mike can come up with a better solution, but for now, thanks a ton those of you who pressed this issue.

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Andrew Christian wrote:

Minnesota now has

4 - 4 Stars with one close on the way.

Are you sure it's not two? Sveden is close (he can't come to mention it himself since he's not permitted to post).

Shadow Lodge ****

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Although I claim to no longer have the time to dedicate to becoming a five-star GM, somehow in 4 months I've hit 1/5 of the way there.

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You just mentioned catfolk to deflect my utter disdain for Kitsune didn't you? Something else for me to focus my murderous GM tendencies on.

Shadow Lodge ****

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Patrick Harris @ SD wrote:
MisterSlanky wrote:
I chose to much on the downed character to save the other four people playing. That's about the only occasion I've hit so far where I've felt a need to attack a downed PC.
I don't think this is kosher at all. The GM is supposed to be an impartial arbitrator. In this case you chose to lay down summary judgment on a PC, in a way which really breaks verisimilitude, instead of doing the thing that made sense--TPKing the party--and letting them decide if it was a funny story or all that one dude's fault.

It's easy to make all sorts of judgements like these, but you weren't there. The players had fun and were glad there wasn't a TPK. They were all new at the time, and frankly, I'd give up one veteran player's verisimilitude to make sure that a group of five other newbies enjoyed themselves.

That's the key I think people forget (and I hear it all the time from veteran GMs), it's about playing to your table. If your table would rather have the cakewalk, I'll make it a cakewalk, if you want me to grind you down to a pulp, I'll grind you all down to a pulp. To be frank though, I probably saved two to three players coming back that day by killing one player, and for that I am not going to apologize.

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redward wrote:
MisterSlanky wrote:
I chose to much on the downed character to save the other four people playing. That's about the only occasion I've hit so far where I've felt a need to attack a downed PC.

So the ghoul looked at the party, looked at the one party member that was still a threat, then looked down and groaned "you, this is all your fault, so I'm going to kill you and hope that other guy doesn't finish me off."

Speaking only for myself, I wouldn't feel that great about "surviving" that way. The thrill of winning doesn't mean as much to me without the fear of defeat.

To each their own. There are a lot of people who DO want to survive, regardless of the reasons why. My job is to make a game day fun, not realistic.

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Bob Jonquet wrote:
Drogon wrote:
Have authors and developers actually begun approaching each encounter with Kill Someone in mind? Have GMs begun approaching them that way?
IMO, no. It just seems that way because they are starting to use the same skills/powers/tactics that PCs use against them. If my uber-archer build can stand in the back of a few blockers and destroy the baddies, sounds like there just might be an evil guy somewhere who develops the same idea. Players love powerful builds...until they are used against them. So, I don't think the authors/developers are specifically aspiring to boost the death-toll, but it is a by-product

Six of one, half a dozen of another.

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As VC I "officially" had to support the banning of two players. It does happen, and there are often good reasons for doing so.

The most heinous of the two was at a game day I made a surprise "hello, you weren't expecting me, but I'm going to play today." The GM then proceeded to make two racist remarks (one anti East Asian, and one anti Arab which was combined with an anti-Semitic remark). At the time I was still new at the position and didn't bring the ban hammer as fast as I should have, and I still regret that. I should have stopped his game on the spot and taken over GMing the table. The good news, he left our region soon thereafter, but I have his GM number and I do watch our local sign-ups just in case he makes an appearance again.

So while I cannot speak to the situation at hand, nor will I, I can tell you that there are times that a VC can (and should) have the authority to ban players.

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Three years ago at a convention when I had a table of the following:

Level 6 Wizard (me)
Level 4 Bard
Level 4 Barbarian
Level 4 Fighter
Level 4 Ranger
Level 2 Monk

Because we were a last group arriving we were put at a table where the scenario was going to be picked on the spot. After much asking around we figured out that about the only scenario we all hadn't played that was available in 1-7 was "Voice in the Void".

The GM did the math (APL 5) and asked the table what to do. The Level 2 wanted nothing to do with playing up. I (the level 6) sided with the level 2 player, figuring it was unfair to do that to him. Nosig brought up a good point about playing a different character, but I did not actually have one with me to play, otherwise I would have. The rest of the table demanded that they would play up to 6-7 (again with a group of 4's and a 2). The GM, rather than deciding on unanimous decision went with majority rules.

The only reason we didn't die in...

Spoiler:
The room with the huge T-Rex skeleton

...was because...

Spoiler:
I had command undead available on my spell list and used it out of my arcane bond which subsequently ended the fight immediately after the barbarian went from full health to 2 HP in one hit.

The only reason we didn't die in...

Spoiler:
The room with the huge black pudding and Gibbering Mouther

...was because...

Spoiler:
I was an evoker wizard with fire spells up the wazoo, since half the party broke their weapons in that fight and had to resort to backup weapons the last module.

We skipped another of the huge major battles by just the happenstance of taking the right path, and the only reason we didn't die in the last fight (having run the fight numerous times I can tell you we would have been murdered) is because we ran out of time and never got to it.

This whole experience was horrible for the level 2, who couldn't hit anything, couldn't contribute, and basically needed to stand in the back in fear of death because he was so underclassed for the scenario. We didn't have a group of six, we had a group of five who got to play a 6-7 scenario because they were jerks to the Level 2.

That one experience put me on the same exact path as suggested by The Gnome above, "If the party APL is in the middle ... I let the table know they have the choice, but that the table has to be unanimous on playing up -- if it's a lower level party and their are level 1s ... I also don't let pregens have a say in the matter as they have nothing to loose." If you don't like it, you can walk.

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There is the secret dance. No GMing at home without performing it.

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Andrew Christian wrote:

Actually that isn't true.

If you have the Master Poisoner feat, and are a poisoner Rogue or Alchemist, you can craft the always available poisons just like an alchemist can craft alchemical items.

If you want to be all technical...as a generality, crafting is not permitted. So change my statement to read:

"Crafting is not permitted in PFS*."

*Special exceptions are permitted for wizards (bonded items), gunslingers (ammunition), alchemists (alchemical items/poisons), and poisoner rogues (poisons).

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Let's just hope it's not July again. June was nice, July was a pain in the ass.

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I guess we shouldn't tell Chris about the 5 star reroll then.

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Alorha wrote:
Reading the explanation for the ban, it seems a lot to do with flavor, though. I don't think it was all about power.

I would focus on this. There would appear to be two categories of removed classes - those with mechanical problems (not power mind you, but either game slowing or confusing) and those with thematic levels of evil associated with them.

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Michael Brock wrote:
No, people do not get to change ability scores.

Interestingly...my synthesist can become a very effective bard or sorcerer with his synthesist scores (go-go not dumping physical stats!)

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HoldenLongwood wrote:
I have only played pathfinder for a couple of weeks. Before that it was 3.5 and before that well you guys know the story.. Thirty years later most of my companions have re -prioritized their lives or died. So I have to settle for four hour scenarios once a week that sometimes remind me of get the cheese.......

What Sven said.

Also, be forewarned, knowing 3.5 is sometimes a detriment for GMing Pathfinder. The rules *have* changed, and things are not all the same, especially minor things. Knowing 3.5 (in my experience) is just as much a hindrance as it is helpful).

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Joko PO wrote:
That is why I will always call out any PFS GM who says "Not at my table!" As I have said before, It is not YOUR table. There is just simply no way to draw such a line in the sand in a shared campaign and not come off like an arrogant jerk.

Joko, with all due respect, it is my table. I spent the time prepping, I spent the time organizing, and I am responsible for every player at that table (yes, including you, but not just you) having a good time. If I make a rules call at my table, including rules calls about free actions (which are covered RAW), I am not being a jerk, I am being a GM.

Nine times out of ten the cheese brought to the table does not make the table fun. I have had a number of players complain to me about builds like these. Every time (not just sometimes), these rules fall on the edge builds which skirt an RAI, or work off of a rules inconsistency. These kinds of situations cause game days to devolve into rules arguments trying to figure out what's going on and are very un-fun for everybody, especially the other players. If I am able to interject another rule to counter that kind of build and bring the table fun for the other players back into equilibrium, I am not being a jerk. What you see as me interjecting my viewpoint into the campaign, I see as me making sure the majority of players at my table are having a good time. That is, after all, my job as Venture Captain. At the end of the day, I'd rather have those five back playing again, than just the one.

I've said it time and time again. There are legitimate reasons to fall on both sides of the RAW vs. RAI spectrum, but to claim, even for a second that I'm being a jerk for trying to run a table, I'd rather not have you at my table.

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Not necessarily.

Based on my believed "time and effort" required to take out and put away a shield, regardless of it being a quickdraw shield, I believe that in the "reasonable limits" of time, you're going to get it out, or put it away, not both.

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Some Random Dood wrote:
So RAW this is legal. But if you take too many free actions in a single round, the GM may limit the amount you can do.

You are sort-of correct - I missed that he had Quickdraw in his original build. So if you just look at that rule, it's legal per RAW.

That said, my new favorite rule?

PRD wrote:
Free Action: Free actions consume a very small amount of time and effort. You can perform one or more free actions while taking another action normally. However, there are reasonable limits on what you can really do for free, as decided by the GM.

So no...at my table, no it's not legal per RAW.

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Deidre Tiriel wrote:
I believe it requires at least 12 tables for a con.

Fifteen (15) tables actually.

Also, running a con does not guarantee a specific (or any for that matter) race boon. The decision on which boons to offer for any convention are determined by the campaign leadership and vary from con to con.

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Dragnmoon wrote:
So to make this clear, There are no dumb questions in PFS, only dumb answers... and I have plenty of those... ;)

An addendum then to Dragnmoon's comment is that there are no dumb questions, only Dragnmoon.

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It's Kyle - True Resurrection is needed.

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Deidre Tiriel wrote:

And the Moral of the Story is:

Use a Credit Card, not a Debit Card.

Unless of course you've never in 35+ years owned a credit card and have no interest in doing so.

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As a PFS player (and VC) with a synthesist all I can say is "please don't".

Synthesists are a huge rules gray area. Both you and your GM need to be up on things like Armor stacking, equipment dual use, how healing and conditions work, and a lot of minor rules that players normally don't deal with. As a first character its an awful choice.

Now add these problems to the other half. Synthesist characters (and usually by extension their players) become the pariah of the table. I've watched two tables now where the synthesist, by extension of its power have completely ruined the game experience for the other five players and the table's GM. When the errata came out I used it as a chance to deliberately underpower myself and I still feel like a complete jerk when I run her.

If you like summoner you should play one, but stay far away from the synthesist.

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