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If there's time to purchase equipment, pregens can sell and buy equipment. If there's time to prepare spells, pregens can prepare new spells, with the caveat, from what I've heard, that the pregens are considered to have prepared the spells listed on their sheets that day, and so a new day has to dawn in order to prepare again, along with making any other choices that one makes when preparing spells, e.g. wandering spirits for shamans. (Why Kyra drank a potion of stupid-making that day and prepared cure spells instead of just spontaneously casting them, no idea. Maybe Merisiel kept her up too late the previous night. If I ever play a Kyra pregen in the same game as a Meri pregen that'll totally be my story.) Everything else is fixed, except of course level 1 pregens can be used as the basis for a different character.
In addition, if you play APs or the new, 64-page modules with local friends, the sanctioned portions of those can be applied in 'campaign mode' to PFS characters. This lets you play normally without PFS rules.
You can also play PFS scenarios yourself, as your private games, if you are willing to use PFS rules for those scenarios. I don't know if you ever get to game away from conventions, but it is an option.
Both will be highly effective. You'll critical more often with the rapier, and your crits will do more damage, making it more likely you'll put a foe down in one strike, with a falcata. With the falcata you'll want to focus on ways to boost static damage, with things like power attack, weapon specialization and so forth. I might even consider a few levels in Rondolero Duelist.
Bottom line is, falcata are badass and you should use one if you want. You will not be handicapping yourself. Rapier may be slightly more damage on average, but it's not a huge difference, and if you like falcatas better then use one. If you like rapiers better then use one of those.
Skull and Shackles would work very well with a party of bards, as long as they are a little varied in how they work. For instance, an archeologist bard, an arcane healer, an arcane duelist, and a magician bard would be a very effective combination. Such a combination would have difficulty with condition removal, so it would be wise to take Sandara Quinn as a cohort at the earliest opportunity.
If you are talking about an animal, it's reasonable to say that one may need to use handle animal to induce the animal to attack, without the clause in Summon Monster that specifically says it attacks.
However, intelligent devils, angels, archons, etc. can be spoken to if you know their language, and often they have truespeech or telepathy or speak common. Given that the mount spell says the summoned creature serves willingly, that would imply that if you tell it to do something that it can understand, it will do that thing if it can.
If you used speak with animals to talk to a summoned horse and asked it to do something that it wasn't trained to do but was capable of doing, it would probably do it. You might still have to use handle animal if it was something it didn't want to do, like attack something scary.
Dwarf bloodrager 1 (Pathfinder RPG Advanced Class Guide 15)
CG Medium humanoid (dwarf)
Init +1; Senses darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +3
AC 17, touch 11, flat-footed 16 (+6 armor, +1 Dex)
hp 13 (1d10+3)
Fort +4, Ref +1, Will -1; +2 vs. poison, spells, and spell-like abilities
Defensive Abilities defensive training
Speed 30 ft.
Melee chakram +3 (1d8+3) or
. . dwarven boulder helmet +4 (1d4+3) or
. . dwarven waraxe +4 (1d10+4/×3)
Special Attacks bloodrage (6 rounds/day), claws, hatred
Str 17, Dex 13, Con 15, Int 10, Wis 9, Cha 12
Base Atk +1; CMB +4; CMD 15
Feats Power Attack
Traits artifact hunter, friend in every town
Skills Diplomacy +6, Knowledge (arcana) +4, Perception +3, Use Magic Device +6; Racial Modifiers craftsman
Languages Common, Dwarven
SQ fast movement, mountaineer, rock stepper
Other Gear four-mirror, chakram (6), dwarven boulder helmet, dwarven waraxe, backpack, belt pouch, blanket, flint and steel, soap, trail rations (5), waterskin, 40 gp, 9 sp
Artifact Hunter (Use Magic Device) +1 bonus to Spellcraft to ID magic item properties. % chance to ID artifact.
Bloodrage (6 rounds/day) (Su) +4 Str, +4 Con, +2 to Will saves, -2 to AC when enraged.
Claws (Ex) 2 Claw attacks deal 1d6 damage
Craftsman +2 on Craft/Profession checks related to metal/stone.
Darkvision (60 feet) You can see in the dark (black and white vision only).
Defensive Training +4 Gain a dodge bonus to AC vs monsters of the Giant subtype.
Fast Movement +10 (Ex) +10 feet to speed, unless heavily loaded.
Hatred +1 Gain a racial bonus to attacks vs Goblinoids/Orcs.
Mountaineer Retain Dex bonus on narrow/slippery surfaces, immune to altitude sickness.
Power Attack -1/+2 You can subtract from your attack roll to add to your damage.
Rock Stepper Ignore rubble, broken ground, or steep stairs when taking 5 ft step.
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Ulstarr is a native of Janderhoff, but left home at a young age to become an apprentice of the Pathfinder Society. He has always been fascinated by magical artifacts and treasures, a trait his father shared, and attributed to the long-ago mingling of their lineage with a copper dragon. He trained hard with the Master of Blades, who found him to be a strong, reliable guardian, but with a fierce temper that made it impossible for the Master of Spells to teach him spellcasting. Finally, they sent him back to Janderhoff to assist the Venture Captain there.
Loves: Magic items, hidden treasures, and discovering secrets. He also loves music and dancing, and he's better than average at it, having learned a few things at the Grand Lodge in Absalom.
Hates: Being made fun of. The reason he left home, that was hushed up by his family, was the way he brutally mauled a fellow student at his school when the lad tormented him until he broke into a rage, growing claws and leaving the other badly hurt. Also hates bugs, most especially spiders. They give him the willies. Doesn't stop him from squishing them when he finds them, but he has a tough time going to sleep afterwards.
His long-term goals: He doesn't know if he's cut out to be a Pathfinder, and perhaps there's a more heroic, or profitable, opportunity out there for him. His father was an adventurer who brought home a treasure that catapulted his family from tradesfolk to rubbing elbows with the nobility. Maybe the son can follow in the father's footsteps?
Mechanical plans: with the recent FAQ that Dragon Disciple advances the Draconic bloodrager bloodline, I want to explore this further and make a straight Bloodrager / DD as far as the adventure lets me go.
I would argue that the designers anticipated that possibility -- well, not that exact possibility, but shenanigans with inappropriately sized weapons -- and that is why the weapon finesse feat (which swashbuckler finesse references and therefore has the same restriction) requires that the weapon be properly sized for the wielder.
The only reason the FAQ of slashing grace would apply to dervish dance is if the two feats used the same wording. They do not. Dervish dance disallows carrying a weapon or shield in your offhand. Slashing grace disallows the offhand being occupied in any way, including, explicitly in the FAQ, spell combat, but not a buckler. Spell combat works in a similar way to TWF, but it is NOT TWF and a spell being cast is NOT a weapon or a shield being carried.
An unusual case of the handedness rule is an ability that allows you to treat a two-handed weapon as a one-handed weapon. For example, the titan mauler's jotungrip (which allows you to wield a two-handed weapon with one hand) allows you to wield a bastard sword in one hand even without the Exotic Weapon Proficiency, and (as the ability states) treats it as a one-handed weapon, therefore it is treated as a one-handed weapon for other effects.
Although again we should be careful not to overgeneralize, this FAQ does appear to indicate that if an ability allows one to treat a weapon as a one-handed weapon, it is treated as a one-handed weapon for other effects, which would include feats. A Swashbuckler/Titan Mauler could use a Bastard Sword in one hand and qualify for Slashing grace without the EWP.
Whip Magus who could trip and disarm and deliver debuff spells from 15 feet away. (Yes, they still can, but now they have very little opportunity to deal damage as well, meaning when their spells are used up, that ends the adventuring day.)
Aldori swordlord magi who focused on being a duelist with a bit of magic.
Spellcasting Samurai with Katana.
Hell, I've seen dwarf Magi with battleaxes since then, using a swashbuckler dip.
All of these things were made much more viable with the slashing grace option, even without extending it to light weapons.
Not to mention the two-weapon-fighting red mantis assassins and so forth, although those aren't magi.
Now we're going to get a whole lot of scimitar dervish dancers, or rapier fencing grace. That certainly doesn't EXPAND variety.
Sebastian Hirsch wrote:
How was it clear before the errata that you couldn't use it with spell combat? That makes no sense.
Michael Hallet wrote:
It did, but it's a much more recently published rule (less than a year old) whereas Dervish Dance was published in 2011 and has been extensively used since then.
Why would FAQs not set precedence like any other ruling? Having 2 different rules items with similar wording work 2 different ways because one source gets more attention from the PTD makes zero sense.
They set precedence on what they explicitly say. They don't set precedence by analogy. This FAQ determines that "bucklers work because they don't occupy the hand", for example. It says that SG doesn't work with spell combat, but it doesn't say it does because it works like two-weapon fighting. Instead, two-weapon fighting and spell combat are called out as two distinct situations where the hand is occupied and it doesn't work for that reason.
Unfortunately, the PDT seems to have gone back to working with metaphorical hands, rather than literal hands, since TWF with armor spikes presumably doesn't work, as well as spell combat with no somatic gestures, which wouldn't actually use a hand for anything. Why you can't bite while being graceful and slashing is not clear either. So this falls into about the same clarity and usefulness as the TWF/armor spikes FAQ, and I expect it to cause about the same amount of confusion, like people arguing that you can't cast a spell and then two-hand a weapon (without using spell combat) because the hand is 'occupied', much like people have argued that kicking someone causes your buckler to stop protecting you.
Actually, there's a possibility that given that a buckler is identified as not being carried in the other hand, it might be OK with dervish dance. I don't agree, but the reasoning people are making with disallowing spell combat with dervish dance would also apply to bucklers, as the Slashing Grace FAQ clarifies that a buckler is not carried in the hand. (I don't extrapolate from one FAQ to another, and the PDT has said in the past that you shouldn't. But people still do.)
That said, I don't expect them to FAQ this; it's in a setting book, not one of the RPG line books. Also, it would invalidate untold numbers of long-established characters.
Ok, granted, magi with significant dips in other classes can work. However, they are VERY different characters from the single-class slashing grace magus pre-errata. A person may not be interested in playing that kind of character, as opposed to an agile swordfighter who used magic.
Classes with 4 levels of casting ate balanced around that. Magi are not.
It answers the first, but the errata'd slashing grace uses the word "occupied". What this FAQ does is indicate that spell casting occupies your free hand. If it were the touch spell acting as a weapon that mattered, then slashing grace would work with a spell that didn't involve an attack roll, such as true strike or Shield.
Carry. The FAQ says what it says and does not say what it does not say. Making dervish dance not work with spell combat would invalidate almost every single magus in PFS, including characters that have been played for years. It would require another FAQ or eratta, and I do not expect to see it. Any PFS GM who tries to disallow a dervish dancing magus based on this FAQ should expect a fight.
Well, there's tradition, and then there's persecution. I can see a good deity saying that family and children and fertility and reproduction are the most important thing, so gay people should marry the opposite sex and have kids even if their hearts aren't in it, because of the importance of keeping society going with lots of children and maintaining the family line. But I can't see a good deity allowing gay people to be imprisoned, or tortured, or burned at the stake, because of who they love. It's just not possible. I also can't see a good deity allowing this of nearly anyone, for that matter.
Totes McScrotes wrote:
FAQs mean what they say and ONLY what they say. This FAQ does not have any relevance on any feat other than slashing grace. The design team has always operated on that assumption. Don't try to make precedent based on analogies.
Really? You think taking 3 levels of Rogue is going to make for a viable Magus, when you only have 11 effective levels to work with in PFS? How does having 2nd level spells at 7th level work?
Well, we're going to see a lot of Magi retraining to use dervish dance instead. So, instead of variety and fun, if you want to cast spells and hit things with a sword at the same time, you HAVE to use one particular weapon in one particular style. Variety, fun, difference; all bad. Magi are not allowed to use anything other than rapiers or scimitars, or else get killed because they have an AC of 16 at 5th level.
Don't suppose there's room for a "tallest dwarf in the world" i.e. a human orphan raised by dwarves, ala Captain Carrot from Terry Pratchett's Discworld novels? I'd take the Racial Heritage (Dwarf) feat at first level or the Adoptive Parentage alternate racial trait (replaces human bonus feat with adoptive language and weapon familiarity). I'd be doing it mostly for humor, honestly.
For those considering this archetype, make sure you do not dump charisma. With the recently released errata, Consume Spells and Consume Magic Items are now limited to a number of times per day equal to the charisma modifier. This can start to become very limiting at higher levels. Starting with at least a 14 in charisma seems to be the minimum now, allowing you to get a +2 item later for 3 consume spells and 3 consume items per day. You may find it very hard to get enough arcane reservoir points to use your summons at higher levels if you do not do this.
If you complete the full AP of either Rise of the Runelords or Shattered Star, you could see perhaps one or more of the PCs trying to adapt the sources of power the runelords used to become as powerful themselves, particularly if in Shattered star:
In the Curse of the Lady's Light, a PC falls victim to the 'body swap' trap that puts them into Runelord Shorsen's body.
Or 1 + CHA mod, even. This is pretty rough. I had to dump strength AND wisdom on my occultist and reduce a 20 int to 19 in order to get CHA to 14. And that only gives me 2, as opposed to 1 if I stayed with 7.
If it has to be that limited, maybe the amount of points we get when consuming spells and items should increase, or we can get max points at the beginning of the day.
Ioun stones provide a boost separate from the headband. It's more expensive to begin with, but doesn't increase the cost of future headband upgrades.