I have subscribed to Pathfinder RPG, Adveture Paths and Companions in the past but stopped. I have always found the subscriptions great value for money back in Pathfinders infancy.
While setting up a new RPG subscrition for the Ultimate Campaign book I was a little shocked by the $57.61 Price tag for one book plus shipping+handling. I know its expensive to ship outside US but this seemed rather high.
Upon checking my previous book order (Advanced Race Guide) the shipping was only $13.60 compared to the $19.97 (-$2.35 discount)
Total Price after conversion for the subscription for me comes to £37.12 based on current exchange rates so I decided to check my local options.
RRP is £29.99 in UK for Ultimate Campaign - Amazon.co.uk offer Free Shipping.
BUT, Amazon.co.uk are currently offering a Pre-Order Price Deal of £19.19!!!
Thats a Saving of £11.49!
I'm sorry to say this, but at that kind of saving, I can sure wait a couple of weeks to get my hands on the books. Perhaps its because of how popular Pathfinder has become that its now more commercially available.
I find it hard to get my players out of the
Spoiler:mentality for star wars games. What I would like to see is a rules system built with SWtoR or KotOR timelines instead of the movies.
"Your Not My Father"
WotC SAGA Rules helped standardize the ruleset over the original West End Games version (which I actually quite enjoyed playing when I was younger) but, like others, I feel the d20 system is too restrictive for the Star Wars Universe.
Heres hoping this does a better job than the others.
The Problem with using Minkai is that its vastly different from Rokugan...
Jade regent Spoilers enclosed
The 5 ruling familes are all but extinct where as the clans of Rokugan are currently at war with vast armies clashing on front lines around the emperors city.
While reading through The Minkai section in "Tides of Honor" the thought of time travel has also crept into my mind. What if, the PC return to Ameiko after Jade Regent to help with a new threat set many years in the past (assuming they succeed in Jade Regent and defeat him). The power might be an ancestor of the Jade Regent, who has been sent back in time to place a sleeper agent on the throne, while the families are still very much incontrol of Minkai? The intent would be to unmask the threat of Ameiko to the Jade Regent (or to simply steal away the Amatatsu Imperial Seal). Thus preventing her return to claim the throne.
My campaign differs quite a bit from the Minkai history...
The campaign begins life with the PCs helping to create an underground route from scorpion clan terratory into dragon terratory. the Phoenix clan is amassing an army with the help of lion military might to take control of Dragon holdings.
Once the threat of war has been averted the PCs turn their attention to the job of investigating the clans presented Heirs to the Throne. Its at this point the campaign becomes a cross between a murder mystery and a Trial of Champions.
The bulk of my campaign involves alot of traveling over the northern area of Rokugan which is an area of approximately 700 miles across. however many of the later campaign traveling can be overcome via teleportation magic. Tian Xai however spans over 7000 miles with minkai almost 2000 miles from north to south!
Considering this it wouldnt be too hard to perhaps place the clans inside a single imperial family. perhaps creating some internal struggle to declare a new imperial heir to obtain rights to one of the imperial seals.
This would create a nice follow-on to Jade Regent to allow another imperial family to challenge Ameikos Rule or in the case of Ameikos demise attempt a second threat to the Jade Regent with a new Heir to the Throne.
Overall I think im liking the follow-on approach more to the time travel. I feel it does give me more freedom to shape the future of Tian Xai while remaining mostly acceptable to the cannon of Jade Regent and future APs.
Many years ago I built a campaign for d20 Rokugan.
The campaign spanned 15 levels from 1st
The Emperor has recently died and the clans are looking to present a replacement. The main plot involves an evil force who are trying to infiltrate the empire by replacing one of the clan heir's with a sleeper agent. With much finger pointing it is up to the PCs to first discover deception, then they must discover who is behind it, and then finally uncover the agent before the ceremony to crown a new emporer.
As you can imagine the campaign was heavily dependent on the interaction of the clans presented in Rokugan. In its first incantation I had 3 PCs from the scorpion Clan (2 of which were brother and sister) and 1 from the Dragon Clan, but I had built the campaign to allow PCs to choose characters from any clan.
What I'm looking for help on is rebuilding this campaign on Golarion.
Is there any way to represent the clans and their holdings in Tian Xia?
I have ordered the Dragon Empires Gazatteer and have the Jade Regent AP for which I want to run first before launching this campaign, that and it gives me some time to rebuild it before playing.
Currently I'm looking at 2 main approaches.
The first is to scale down the campaign into one area of Tian Xia. This won't be too hard as Tian Xia is alot larger than the Rokugan in terms of scale.
My second idea is to replace the clans with smaller families and placing the campaign on a remote island.
My last option, and probably simplest, is to place the struggle on a parallel world that maintains the core campaign.
I don't like doing parallel world clichés but it's a last option as I enjoyed running this game so much due to its strong dependency on the players making key decisions to shape the campaign.
Any thoughts and input you guys have is most welcome.
The cliffs remind me of Worldworksgames terrain. good to see some 3D terrain at the Con.
Harsk: "Hey look, The Pathfinder Ride... Wow, Neat!"
Tenku: "Gimmie a break!"
Merisiel: "I dont like this!!!"
Party runs out screaming!
many games come with voice chat but for some reason they all sound terrible. I play DDO and alright its not the best voice chat example its certainly typical of poor chat implementation.
As a result I use Skype running in the background to chat with a regular group.
Voice chat should be linked into gameplay too. One word commands to broadcast chat strings, actions tied to voice, even chat linked to NPC interaction!
I know the OP isn't reading this but I understand where hes coming from.
From what I'm reading so far I'm actually being turned off the idea of playing PFO, instead of feeling an urge to google it every day to find a release date!.
I don't like PvP most of the time but occasionally I enjoy the adrenaline rush it gives me.
When I don't want to PvP I play a roleplaying or challenge game like Skyrim or Batman: arkham city.
When I want to PvP I Play an online FPS like Team Fortress, Quake III Arena, etc.
PvP has its place but it needs to be balanced and on a level playing field.
MMOs are far from balanced because of levels, time investment and achievements. I don't think there is a way to marry the two together equaly without restricting it to specific servers or areas (battlegrounds) but game designers will continue to try. in many PvP MMOs the choice is there to PvP or Not but from what I'm reading the choice may not be there at all which puts PFO squarely in the Play to PVP camp.
I have a suggestion for PVP Griefer discouragement.
Law and punishment should be upheld in the game and built into the play experience.
What do I mean? simply put when you die two things happen, you are either captured or enter a death state.
This includes captured by enemy player guilds, arrest in an NPC town and the like.
Anyone that is captured is placed in jail. Then the act of leaving jail falls not only on yourself (in the way a rogue would try and escape his cell by picking the lock while the guard sleeps; but also by your team mates who should do their best to free you from your incarceration.
failure to escape leads to two end results, you do your time and walk free (a timer that could pass while offline) for lesser crimes, or you are sentenced to death via execution for major crimes, thus entering the death state. You could also suicide to enter death state prematurely.
While many games in the past have left you with a simple button to re-spawn at your bind point or to force you to journey to specific resurrection alters, or even wait for a kind soul to resurrect you on the battlefield. to prevent death-rush griefing I propose an alternate death state. you effectively travel as a spirit in the world. You cannot interact with anything or anyone and must travel to special churches and alters before interaction can take place. This could include a communing priest (PC or NPC) or even "haunting" a dungeon or house.
Once at those alters you must wait for your soul to be united with your body. teammates can recover your corpse from the battlefield and drop you off at a shrine or church at which point you can use the alter to return to life. without a body you can be brought back via powerful resurrection magics but you must wait for either a hosting body or for the new body to regrow.
Resurrection in the battlefield should be a lengthy process - not a simple click and your up.
Death state is just as much as a journey as adventuring and if done right many players might enjoy staying in death state for extended periods of time. the spirits of others both players, NPCs, Mobs and Environment are all still there and you can fight them off as they try and prevent you from getting to a shrine or church.
Additionally the death state has a bright light that hovers above your head. A destination that allows souls to move on from the world. choosing this option (by simply clicking it) deletes your character from the game. you go back to character selection and can only choice 2 options, delete and restart. Delete clears the available character slot. restart sets your character back to its original state when first created and allows you to restart from scratch without having to remake the character.
For example deciding to be a wizard should enter you into a tutorial on how to cast spells. you are entered into the game as a young version of yourself experiencing the wizard guilds training. you then, upon completion, return to character creation and decide on additional skills, taking blacksmithing introduces you to the role of a smith and what you can make. being evil introduces you to the dregs of society in your starter town. bully's, muggers, and assassins teach you how to truly be evil.
Each skill choice and the decisions on alignment (if its in the game) should come with some form of gameplay.
Players should be able to make quickplay characters but this should be limited to 1 slot per account. That quickplay slot should be limited to 1 character per day (thus deleting it locks that slot to prevent multiple toons and each is flagged as non-PVP for the first day it enters the world.
Do's & Dont's
Some people like to be helpful and I think it would be very nice to have guide programs. Guild leaders, officers and the like could flag themselves as guides. They could tutor people during these tutorials as possible recruits for their guilds. This would only improve the interaction and immersion. Guides should be aware of the requirements however, kind of like a customer service option, the player is responsible for his actions, everything they do is reported to the Customer Service for mediation after the fact, thus highlighting (and discoraging) bad experiences for new players.
A Man In Black wrote:
I think your right on some of this.
Sniping definately needs ammending to cover what the image in the blog post portrays. Just some clarification that if you effectively "assassinate" a target from the hidden condition, those nearby will be able to make perceptions to notice the action but the act does not break stealth/hidden for those who fail to notice you.
A Man In Black wrote:
According to the writeupAction: Usually making a Stealth check is not an action. Using Stealth is part of the action you are taking.
My reading of this is the roll should be made when the GM feels it needs...
How I would work it is you make a stealth check. player starts his movement. once completed I roll perceptions for onlookers and determine results appropriately.
A Man In Black wrote:
When are you noticed if you fail a Stealth check? Before, after, or during the relevant action?
A Man In Black wrote:
What happens if you hide with multiple characters who can see you, and beat some but not all?
Another grey area and very situational. I would normally allow completion of actions and base responces on the actions that follow. If 2 of 5 guards spot a rogue moving one might call out while another might move to investigate. yet the rogue could be lucky and the guards simply turns a blind eye.
A Man In Black wrote:
You seem to have added rules that require multiple Stealth checks per turn, like if I draw a weapon with Quick Draw (free action) and walk from X to Y. Is this intentional?
Draw a weapon is part of a move action - they are one and the same. however, for each action stealth attempts may be required but the rules seem to indicate to me that the first action in a round that you try and conceal with the stealth skill applies to all those actions. this prevents mutliple rolls as indicated by the following...
Other Perception Checks: If a creature makes a Perception check as a move action to notice a hidden creature, the DC of the Perception check is the hidden creature's last Stealth check. This is also the case if a creature makes a Perception check to notice a hidden creature because the perceiving creature is entering an area where it could possibly notice a hidden creature.
A Man In Black wrote:
The part you quote covers actually making a stealth check at the start of a round - sure those actions will not break stealth but then if you wish to move in the round you will need to make a stealth check to do so. You could mentally end a spell and do no actions - as long as you have cover/concealment you are still hidden thus benefiting from stealth. See the hidden condition...
Hidden: You are difficult to detect but you not invisible. A hidden creature gains a +2 bonus on attack rolls against sighted opponents, and ignores its opponents' Dexterity bonus to AC (if any). You do not have line of sight to a creature or object that is hidden from you.
A Man In Black wrote:
Full-round actions traditionally include lots of things people in the real world can do sneakily, including slitting helpless people's throats, picking locks, or really anything that requires multiple rounds.
Agreed and already stressed in my request for expanded sniping rules.
A Man In Black wrote:
It's kind of weird that giants can't play hide-and-seek with each other, because they all suffer from huge Stealth penalties but see Medium-sized things equally as well as a human does. Oh well.
I agree too. perhaps the size category should be changed to "diference in size equals -4 per size category"?
A Man In Black wrote:
Seriously? So you can silently hew a door with a fireaxe?
A bit extreme but I can see how it would be read that way. the action would not break stealth (read hidden condition) but the sound of the action would certainly alert people to allow them to notice you thus making a perception check.
A Man In Black wrote:
Is it intentional that you can snipe someone without cover/concealment?
Sniping allows you to make a stealth check to remain hidden - since a stealth check requires some form of cover/concealment you would still need that to succeed at sniping.
A Man In Black wrote:
Does the "5' rule" only apply when taking a move action to find the scent, or is it always-on 5' range Stealth-beating radar?
I would say that if you pass within 5 ft of a creature scent is automatic like a sniffer dog or pointer searching for an item. So the latter.
A Man In Black wrote:
Unrelated to Stealth, but is this LITERAL tracks only, or can Scent let you track things that float, swim, or fly?
again dogs do not need physical references to track with scent. odours can be picked up from concrete or other solid objects. It would be GMs discression if water would effectively mask a scent which i think those rules are covered under tracking/survival (though I havent checked).
A Man In Black wrote:
Is the omission of line-of-effect intentional? This currently jumps gaps in the tremorsense medium, and I don't think that's intentional.
Noticing movement 2 rooms away certainly seems viable but would it work 15 ft away on the other side of a 500ft deep revene? again GM discression I think steps in here.
not sure this is how it would work in the real world.Trapdoor spiders, cats, etc. would actually only need to perceive their prey who most of the time would not notice the predator. its the predator that is using stealth not the other way round as your reading it. Cats effectively ready an action to attack a mouse when it "breaks" cover.
In effect predators like you describe would actually be using survival to track down their prey then stealth to wait for the moment to strike. The prey is almost always unaware of the danger until its too late.
Heres a suggestion to fix the diversion part...
Firstly, WOW what a wonderful re-write!
This is such a great improvement to the existing rules. "wonders when these conditions will get added to the condition card set? :)"
One question I do still have though. multiple onlookers.
In the past when someone spots a sniper up on a rooftop he would use an action to help others by pointing the target out (thus prompting a new perception check from those that failed). Is this how you see these rules working or would you recommend something else?
The rules do allow for additional perception checks base on new stimuly (such as sniping every round) but what about when your trying to lay low?
Alternatively you could just use my house rule.
Saves alot of uneccessary die rolls and you dont lose your spell unless your actually hit and fail the check.
Only down side I've seen to this is some players used it to get a free +4 AC on their squishy wizards which I'm not too worried about.
I'm gonna examine the distraction aspect a little more.
I think the most common distraction should be combat but a swift action is a little common even for someone executing a full attack. how about making it a move action with the following rules.
Move Action Rule wrote:
Note that these rules would have to clarify that any condition that allows stealth doesnt affect the distraction condition or prevent/allow stealth against them. someone who is not distracted can still be sneak attacked by a rogue hidden in the shadows or behind cover.
I like Helics approach to perception and distraction, its abstract, as is the way of these rules without bogging things down with sight/sound/smell/etc mechanics,something Im strongly against (but I am aware that some situations need to be addressed regarding them, noticeably with regards to certain creatures and abilities).
His approach also fits in nicely with my concept of making perception and stealth a unique mechanic like AC or CMB/CMD. Distracted could be a condition marked similar to flat-footed AC.
I personally think keeping the rules abstract is key here. I know alot of people here are hoping to see a fix for the many questions that frequently come up like tremorsence and scent. I personally am hoping for an abstract ruling that provides a way to explain their effect on those abilities without creating new rules for each.
I wonder if there will be conditions in combat that would allow for a rogue to treat an opponent as distracted, such as if they are stunned, or maybe even dazzled.
Dazzled would provide a penalty to perception anyway so the chances of sneaking are increased vs them automatically.
Stunned, as well as Dazed, prevent the recipient from taking actions thus making them distracted.
What about different levels of failure?
I like to be kind to my players when they attempt things exceptional and stealth right now is one of those do or die aspects.
What I propose is that if a stealth attempt fails by less than 5 you can "abandon" your current action to make a new stealth check to "re-stealth". The situation could be highlighted by the DM by saying, "As you go to move in on your opponent you catch sight of a loose stone just before your foot comes into contact with it." (rolls re-stealth) pass = "You quickly step back into the shadows and wait for another opportunity." fail = "as you step to avoid the stone your scabbard scrapes the nearby wall alerting your target to your presence"
I would also allow those under invisibility to increase the fail DC by 10 or less given that their effectively removing one of the senses.
Of cause there may be situations that when cover is broken it cannot be re-established so easily. this is where the second "re-stealth" could include a higher DC or perhaps prevent it altogether (if the cover ,like a wagon, has moved out of range for example).
While I like what I've read, there is still one issue that concerns me. mass die rolls.
Stealth performed every round, by multiple opponents observing can lead to a combat round getting bogged down by uncessessary die rolls.
What I propose is that if you are considering re-writing the rules perhaps is the time to hardcode in some static rules to cover stealth and perception.
Consider them along the lines of CMB/CMD where one is fixed while the other is rolled.
The advantage I see to this is allowing room for additional rules such as class benefits (assassin and ninja springs to mind) and perhaps stackable and situational bonuses to cover the differential between perception (sight) and perception (sound).
An example might be that the stealth skill for a character might be rolled against a fixed DC of perception (sight) and/or perception (sound) specified in each opponent. Perception might consider a flat 10, like AC, but gets boosted by +5 for a character that is considered alert to danger and +10 that is aware of who or where that danger is. A sleeping character might be considered to have a -10.
Fixed dice does require a slight adjustment in the rules for determining stealth since as an opposed roll the chances of succeeding against a automatic 20 rolled perception doesnt put the odds favorably on the stealthy character.
not realy a rules clarification more of an expansion on the rules presented.
The blocking feature of weapons adds +1 shield bonus to AC when fighting defensively.
My questions are;
I'd be tempted to go with 2 and 3 to keep the ability in line with existing rules...
The intention of the eastern equipment section is presented as follows
Quote: Ultimate Combat
Monks are not eastern although many prefer to think of them that way. monks are proficient with simple weapons that mimic most household items, for example the nunchaku is a weaponized version of a grain flail.
If you want your monk to be more eastern then I think it should be up to the GM to determine if you can include these weapons in your proficiency list.
Personally I think they should have done a Shaolin class to fill the eastern monk role, with 72 unique fighting styles of the shaolin kung-fu theres planty of scope for new and unique abilities for a Shaolin Monk.
Xaaon of Korvosa wrote:
The weapon is both a spiked chain and a dagger.
The weapon has reach due to the rope but can also be thrown like a dagger at a range of 20 ft assuming you release (or detach) the rope to throw.
Quijenoth, is there any reason those goblins aren't trying to sunder the armor first?
True options like sunder might help in certain situations but given the exceptional lean towards adamantine, sunder becomes less viable unless you start equiping all your monsters with adamantine weapons.
I have some comments on the Armor as Damage Reduction variant rules.
Firstly I found the size reference very confusing on first read and I think it needs its own explaination preferably with an example.
Secondly was this system even playtested?
How it reads is that even if you have the entire party wearing heavy armor with no magical properties they are going to get destroyed by any large creature because it ignores any damage reduction of armor. A fully armored fighter may as well be wearing a paper towel against many low level opponents such as horses (CR 1), gorillas (CR2), or ogres (CR 3).
And on the flip side, small, weaker creatures designed to inflict attrition against the party are now practically useless...
for example: an average goblin warrior has 10 strength (+0) and uses a shortsword 1d4 (19-20) his +1 to hit from size means that on a natural 20 he can hit AC (or defence) of 21. his maxium damage is 4 so anyone in a chain shirt or better is immune to the goblins attacks unless its a critical. even if you sent 50 goblins against the guy he can pretty much ignore them.
The problem I see is that this system, while it tried to split the attack roll vs AC into attack roll vs Def what it fails to deal with is how Damage vs DR works. medium and small creatures will find it next impossible to hurt a 2nd level fighter in full-plate armor (DR 9/armor) unless they are using two handed weapons (which most natural weapon using creatures will struggle with).
I'm not trying to rule out the system, it has some potential compared to some I have seen in the past. But, with its favoratism towards size as a factor to determine DR effectiveness, doesnt work unless you tailor the game to the system. running this with most pre-written Modules or Adventure Paths will likely either kill off the party or make the game too easy.
Also I'd like to see clarification on how the DR works with Barbarians. As far as Im reading it Barkskin cast on a barbarian will grant increased DR #/- but what about if a barbarian wears a simple breastplate or a mithril full plate? would that make all 7th level barbarians instantly gain DR 7/- (for breastplate) or DR 10/- (for mithril full-plate)? or is it treated as a seperate DR like the skeleton DR/bludeoning example?
This thread seems slightly divided into two. those discussing crafting and its effects on characters wealth and power, and those discussing the games economy in relation to magic items.
Magic Item Crafting is often considered commonplace but rarely used by PCs. I have a really strong dislike for the magic item system in 3.5/PFRPG because its for the most part completely rigid. The fact that its based on the character progression (CL) with little regard to what exactly goes into making the magic item is dull and unimaginative. I have a completely revised magic item (and equipment) ruleset that is not tied into the leveling system or WBL. I also dropped the XP cost years ago.
Bottom line is the current system, while ok, is VERY structured and by default very subject to abuse. These rules are designed to aid the DM, not to be used by the players. Thats why it was part of the DMG in 3.0/3.5.
On the economy side, there's only one simple answer. Do what is right for YOUR campaign. Every campaign is different (in most of mine towns below a certain wealth level don't use coins at all but barter with goods instead) and the control of magic items is crucial to the balance of an economy.
One last word, if you want your campaign to be free of magic items created and sold by players simply don't allow them to be sold. unless you can find someone who can tell the difference between a masterwork, +1 and +5 suit of leather armor there likely to not buy it for more than just 150gp. :)
Rite Publishing wrote:
I am hard at work on making this a pdf/print bundle with the printable map packs, as the maps are what make this product great.
So does this product include the PDF like your website print/PDF bundle?If yes, will it use the paizo download or do we have to register the purchase with you?
If no, will the print/PDF bundle(s) be added to pazio store in the future?
Andrew Betts wrote:
to expand on this a little...
Will Paizo be offering bundle sets on their subscriptions in the future that includes the print and PDF?
I ask because I canceled all my subscriptions (adventure path, companions and modules) except the roleplaying game sub. My reason for subscribing is because I travel alot when roleplaying and the PDFs where more valuable to me than the print editions however the collector in me likes to display complete sets on my shelves :). I canceled due to moving house and taking on a larger mortgage but am coming close to be in a position to resubscribe to one or two more.
It would be great if pazio offered 1 year, 6 month, or 1 quarter deals on subscription back orders that included print and PDFs. it would be even beter if they offered 5+ back orders of your choice with PDFs because then I could resubscribe without worrying about doubling up.
I wouldnt even mind paying a little extra on the print version say 1 or 2 dollars if it included the PDF.
Ok firstly im not a historian, metalsmith, weaponsmith or Mr. Smith but peoples love of the katana over other swords is completely fictional.
China (warring states 400 BC) was full of untold wonder not seen by western eyes. the great wall created almost a completely seperate world almost and the way they did things where almost alien.
however, this didnt make them superior.
What the D&D system lacks is a robust and balanced weapon identification system. there shouldnt be greatswords, longswords, shortswords, and bastardswords mixed in with wakizashi, katanas, zweihanders, or other culturally named weapons. swords should be categorised by length, shape and the number of cutting edges.
Weapons should also be broken down into construction quality. not only in its manufacture but also in the materials used.
This is where the Katana and Bastard Sword differ and I refer to my warring states comment above... The chinese used quenching techniques to create steel in 400BC but records show Steel has been crafted since 1400BC in Africa using a completely different method. Chinese steel was considered weaker but more flexible and was common in many armor plate of the time) The japanese used the same techniques as the chinese for most steel production but the construction technique used in japanese swords (katanas) mixed iron with charcoal (Tamahagane) to add strength to the blade. such conscruction required a great deal of skill just to get the ore composition correct even before it was worked into a weapon. The actual construction of a Katana takes many days and this creates the masterwork hypothasis.
Now for game purposes there should be little to no difference between a katana or a bastard sword. the only difference is that 90% of katanas should be masterwork when found outside of their native land. My personal preference is that there should actually be a second level of masterwork which stacks on top of the first - this way you have 3 types of Bastard Sword. The typical bastard sword, a masterwork bastard sword and a truely masterwork bastard sword (Katana). Only then do you give the historic and highly skilled crafting techniques of the samurai sword makers art its true recognition.
For me though I like to think that all katanas are in fact magical - the skill convertied to Ki and infused into the weapon when crafted.
Ok some people seem to be misreading the prologue and expanding it into a Sub-Class system...
Lets expand the text a little to shed some light on how I read it (designers are more than happy to elaborate of cause).
Original Text: "When a character takes a level in one of these classes, he cannot later take levels in the other version of that class. For example, when a character takes levels of ninja, he cannot later take levels of rogue. For the purposes of prerequisites or other effects, each of these alternate classes counts as the class that it is related to."
Expanded Text: "When a character takes a level in gunslinger, ninja, or the samurai classes, he cannot later take levels in the other version of that class. For example, when a character takes levels of ninja, he cannot later take levels of rogue. For the purposes of prerequisites or other effects, each of these alternate classes counts as the class that it is related to."
Ok its a small adjustment but it does give the following scenario...
a campaign starts in the inner sea. a player chooses to play a rogue, he ventures till level 5 and then the campaign moves to the east. he encounters a ninja and the GM offers up the class as a new selection. the rogue levels to 6 but instead takes a ninja level (1) he now is a rogue 5/ninja 1 but in doing so must continue training as a ninja, he can no longer return to rogue. since this is a sub class his sneak attacks stack, and it does not count as a traditional multiclass (ie the character retains his bonus hit point/skill point).
Now what does this mean in the grand scheme of things.
In the middle east ninja's and samurai's would be commonplace while rogues and cavaliers would be strangers and uncommon.
In the wild west a gunslinger would be the combat form of choice thus making a traditional sword and broad, heavily armored fighter unusual and out of place.
While I could see peoples arguments for mixing it up to make some super fighter/gunslinger, I feel by doing so you lose the uniqueness of these classes and there overall impact of a game setting. This can become traumatic for a GM who wants such oddities to remain mysterious.
I had the same idea when commenting on the magus HERE.However with SmiloDan's concern about using too many spells in a day mine utilizes the existing spells energy and effectively gives you a chance of recasting the spell on the same or even a second target (although with a much higher DC). It does require a little tweeking of the existing spell combat rules however.
This is called ROLE-playing not ROLL-playing.
I dont want to offend here Graywulfe, I 100% understand where your coming from with the roleplaying / rollplaying stance, however, this is a Playtest. The sole purpose of these posts and suggestions is to find loopholes, broken mechanics, and ultimately fine tune a potentially "roll-playing" class and turn it into a balanced "role-playing" class.
The designers have obviously envisioned the magus as a duel wielder with no thought for 2-handed or ranged fighting styles that incorporate magic. as a result the class is prevented from using those styles with its core ability.
The same occured with the cavalier during playtest, although in reverse. Precision based damage to be added to challenges (my guess is to mimic the cavaliers flavour for jousts and duels), however people jumped on this extra damage and applied it to two weapon fighting which produced much more damage per round. The lack of foresight and open ended nature of precision damage made every cavalier a two-weapon fighting machine. The precision based damage was ultimately dropped in favor of adding class level to damage.
Exactly! Spell Combat is the ability to use one handed or light weapons only. Its not "pretending" to be the still spell feat.
Dont get me wrong, I agree there needs to be "Other" options for the class and the Spell Combat ability as a class defining ability is "pigeon-holed" as you like to call it.
My concern is that, not only is the class handicapped with his choice of weapons, hes also handicapped in his spell choice AND spell level (6th max) making metamagic feats less appealing to a class that would benefit greatly from them. The strength in the class should be his focus on weilding a weapon and a spell at the same time. he should have far greater access to damaging spells to compensate for the loss of 2 handed weapons.
The book also needs to consider new wizard sorcerer spells that are designed for the magus in mind but that would benefit any other melee casters too.
Someone also mentioned something about crit multipliers and increased threat range and a magus could sure use a way to increase the potential crits on spells he casts while using spell combat.
As a whole the class falls short in every category it tries to emulate - be that the role of the fighter or the role of the mage. compared alongside the rogue or bard and again the class ends up falling short by not covering enough areas as the others do. yes he may do more damage than a bard or rogue but he lacks the skills to fill that roll in a party. The magus is yet another "5th-Wheel" that wont find his way into the average party makeup.
Thats a valid point but then no other class tries to bridge the gap of a gish class into a "new" base class like the magus does either (with perhaps the exception of the bard).
If you look at my suggested changes on the "Better late than never..." post the magus becomes more of a melee character than a wizard/fighter gish by effectively limiting him to evocation spells while increasing his BAB to match a fighter.
I don't think its the spell combat ability that restricts multi-classing though, more like the limited capability it has been presented in with this first printing. By using the TWF mechanic without actually applying logical combat rules you are handicapping the class into that style of combat. if however you took the ability, as an improvement on a new "Special Action" rule then the magus would have regained some multi-classing validity. interraction with unarmed strike needs to be clearly written, not hinted at, and spell combat from the magus "should" encourage a broader specialisation similar to that of a ranger selecting his combat style. The result would create different styles of magus meaning in a single party you could have a twf magus alongside a ranged magus and even a 2hf magus.
You know it just occurred to me while writing the previous post that spell combat could actually become a Special Action all of its own...
Spell Combat as a Special Action would allow any spellcaster to cast a spell “[b]in place of a melee attack[b] as part of a full round action”.
OK first off lets sort out the Trip issue...
Pathfinder Core Rulebook wrote:
As you can see Each combat maneuver required a specific action. The most ambiguous of these rules is the bull rush as part of a charge in place of a melee attack - it implies that you can use a weapon to bull rush but the "intent" of bull rush is to push someone back without doing any harm. What the rules should read is ..."You can make a bull rush as a standard action or as part of a charge, instead of the melee attack."
Overrun specifies its a part of the movement of a charge while grapple is a standard action and not an attack at all.
Disarm, Sunder and Trip, however, are all "in place of an Attack" meaning that you can perfom them instead of makeing an attack to do damage with whatever weapon you are wielding.
so yes you can trip with a dagger but doing so provides you NO advantage whatsoever over triping with an empty hand.
Pathfinder Core Rulebook wrote:
Yes a magus CANT'T EVEN TRY to cast a spell unless he has a free hand same as a wizard, Cleric, Sorcerer or any other spell casting class CAN'T EVEN TRY to cast a spell unless he has a free hand.
Yes I agree the rules need to cover how spell combat interacts with Verbal (V) only spells but the argument still holds that spells are a standard action! you cannot swing a weapon and cast a spell at the same time.
The Magus grants the class the unique ability to cast a spell while fighting as part of a full round action without the need for quicken spell to turn the spell into a swift action or a Still spell to avoid the empty hand dependancy This is effectively 2 effects.
Even a wizard casting a quickened (S) spell cannot do so while holding a two handed weapon...
Pathfinder Core Rulebook wrote:
At no point does quicken spell state "You can now cast Somatic (S) spells without the need for a free hand." although it is a rather mute point since releasing a hand on a weapon and regrasping it is a free action It may be an issue if the wizard is using both hands to cling to the edge of a cliff!.
Yes I know the magus still needs an empty hand and this makes Quicken superior to Spell Combat in that respect. The effect of spell combat still remains that it grants the use of spells as part of a full round action... hmmm ... sidetrack incoming (see next post).
Pathfinder Core Rulebook wrote:
Likewise Still spell does not change a (S) into a swift action so casting a spell is still a standard action and cannot be combined with a normal attack as part of a full round action.
I'm in 100% agreeance with Jason on this. You wouldnt give a class the full spellcasting ability of a wizard and the full spellcasting ability of the cleric, you would "handicap" his spell selection from both. The same should apply to fighters.
"handicapping" the magus with both spell selection and attack style guarantees the validity of a pure fighter and a pure wizard. excluding two handed fighting (while wielding spells at the same time) makes perfect sence from a flavor point of view and a balance point of view. A magus can still use 2 handed weapons he just cant cast spells at the same time so hes not breaking any realms of plausability.
As pointed out this is an ideal candidate for the bastard sword
Your forgetting the Half-Orge Racial HD - The character was a lvl 2 barbarian in a lvl 6 game - I believe he would have been level 3 when the rest of us hit level 9 due to LA costs but we just couldnt keep the game going that long. One aspect of the character I wasnt sure of involved rules taken from Races of the Dragon book because I don't own that book.
And yes he broke 100 hps while raging. I would post the character but I don't see the guy anymore (he joined our group while in town at uni but has finished uni now).
I blame the DM for allowing such a class/race combo as it destroyed all roleplaying in the campaign (which was an evil campaign BTW).
For the record the barbarian wasnt a game I was running but a game I was playing in. From what I recall the LA was applied correctly (it was questioned at least twice a session) he just used flaws and LA reduction. he was effectively only a level 2 barbarian compared to my 6th level halfing rogue but he outclassed the entire party in combat. The end result was a TPK as the GM tried to find challenges for this monster that squished the rest of the party in less than a few rounds!... It was not a fun experience for the group overall (except the barbarian) but after the 3rd session ending with a TPK the GM abandoned the campaign.
However, Despite the fact that the rules may not have been applied correctly, or that the dip doesnt suit every single class make up is besides the point.
The point I was trying to make is that Pazio have given us the opportunity to find such flaws and iron them out BEFORE the documents go to print.
For me personally, Bad/mis-interperted rules, min-maxing and general disagreements over optional rules has been the main cause of games collapsing in both games I've run and games I've played in. In fact my first pathfinder game is the only game I have successfully run to its conclusion.
james maissen wrote:
It’s not really a hate issue - more of a balance one. In 3.5 the first level rogue became almost the norm for many characters regardless of overall theme. It was just too good to turn down an extra 1d6 damage and 8 skill points (x4) by putting key abilities of classes at level 2 you negate the 1 dip min-max rule while maintaining viability as a multiclass.
One of my old gamers loved the Alternate advancement system from Unearthed Arcana and to some extent I liked it too - however the rules are put in as a whole for DMs to use and adjust to their campaigns. This is not the case for many DMs who simply say I'll allow the use of books X Y and Z at which point min-maxers rejoice and begin building characters that surpass anything the PHB has to offer. Just look at the 3.5 character optimization threads on the wizards forums (if they still exist) and you'll understand what I mean.
Paizo so far has released a core rulebook, an advanced players guide, and a game mastery guide. The rules presented in the advanced players guide has some new rules for the GM only but also presents new options for the players. So far these have been rigorously tested by the players in open playtests (the best source for ironing out broken rules IMHO) unlike many wizards’ products.
I can say with hand on my heart that I could hand any player my Pathfinder books and say make me a character without having to scrutinize the rules beforehand for possible loopholes. The same cannot be said for 3.5 (especially after having to deal with a 32 strength half-dragon half-ogre barbarian with over 100 hit points at level 6!)
I would like to continue this with future pathfinder books, and if that ever becomes a problem I will simply stop buying them to maintain game balance. If I can help that with the open playtest then that’s what I'll do.
I agree as a multi-class its not much of an issue (until you look at broad study) but I was more concerned about the 1 level dip into magus like people often do with 1 level of rogue to get 1d6 sneak attack.
You missed something re: Fighter Training -- Disruptive and Spell Breaker. (Which go great with Counterstrike, by the way, though I'm still not sure why that's base and not an arcanum.)
Thanks for pointing those out - I only skimmed the list TBH and didnt think to check the advanced players guide either :).
I agree Fighter Training should be dumped completely and the magus arcana expanded on (perhaps increasing the amount the magus gets as he levels). The arcane weapon should be the magus signature weapon and it should be noted that this will almost exclusively be a one handed or light weapon, the damage will therefore be limited while a pure fighter can increase his damage with two handed weapon choices. The pure damage of a magus should come from his spells and granting him the ability to cast high level evocation spells solidifies his role as a combatant without impeeding on the role of a true wizard.
I missed the general window to comment on the play test also and have a few Ideas and comments I’d like to air here too.
The role of the magus looks to me to be a melee combatant first and foremost. He needs to be up close and personal but fails on many levels in regards to this role due to some key aspects... AC, two weapon style, low hit points and poor BAB.
I'll discuss these in a moment but given the versatility of the rest of the class i can see where some of these restrictions/limitations stem from.
On to the core class ability, spell combat. As pointed out by the OP this is the defining ability of the class but it is also his Achilles Heel.
I don’t agree with the dropping penalties solution presented by the OP as it promotes multiclass min-maxing. I dont think moving spell combat to 1st is a good idea either as this too can cause 1 level dip min-max. Instead I would like to see more encouragement to remain a magus by increasing this abilities progression.
Thirdly, Spell strike doesn’t blend well with spell combat. I can’t see someone using spell strike unless he has previously cast a touch spell and is holding the charge until he enters combat.
Moving onto the Magus arcana abilities: arcane accuracy is fine, as is Concentrate, Dispelling strike, Empowered Magic, Familiar, Hasted Assault, Maximised Magic, Quickened Magic, Reflection, Silent Magic, Spell Shield, and Still Magic. However based on my comments so far the others need some adjustment...
Fighter Training – This ability only applies to 2 feats (of note) for the magus, Weapon Spec and Greater Weapon focus, the rest of the fighter only feats require a fighter level over 10th. This seems rather pointless as an ability at 10th level and strikes me as a poor “stocking filler” to remove an empty level.
True Magus As a capstone ability this one is lacking. I don’t agree with taking away the concentration check entirely, instead I think it should be made into a chance to keep the spell energy... “At 20th level, the magus becomes a master of spells and combat. Whenever he uses his spell combat ability, he can make a concentration check to cast the spell more than once. This ability follows the normal spell combat ability rules. A successful spell combat ability indicates that the spell is cast successfully but the spell energy is not expended and the magus may cast the spell a second time on the same target as an extra off-hand attack (similar to improved two weapon fighting). This attack requires another concentration check with a -10 penalty. A magus cannot use the Concentrate Magus Arcana ability to re-roll a failed check on this second attack.”
The ability to reduce spell resistance, increase DC or increase attack is a nice touch and should remain as an ability of the class but perhaps this would be better as its own ability, say at 10th level instead of fighter training, or in place of a bonus feat.
Lastly I’d like to comment on the other aspects of the class.
Some maths for spell combat purposes
For the Players...
For the Game Master
In the Box (in addition to the stuff above)
Things seem to be getting a little bogged down with rules and options here. As a dm i dont want to have to track shaken/panicked 50% hp, half hit threshold each round or the like and I think these go away from the principle idea of minons. minions are supposed to die in one hit they only survive if you miss them.
I know that to work in 3.5 the 1 hit point idea doesnt work and that going to increased hit points per CR causes more issues but solves others (especially with spells) but I think for minions to work their needs to be a unique concept that doesnt use damage reduction, evasion, fast healing or the like.
I also think your worrying too much about the meta-gaming side, the idea of hit counters has merits. Players will always metagame, the moment you put a tiefling on the battle map the players are talking amongst themselves as to what its resistances are, after 2-3 orcs have been slain the players start telling you they hit instead of asking you if they have. its unavoidable and its up to the individual DMs to address it not for the rules to cover. the rules should just be there to make the DMs life easier.
anyhow heres my 3rd try at tracking minions health.
minions have hit points equal to their HD; 1d6 hd equals .5 hp/HD (minimum 1), 1d8 = 1hp/HD, 1d10 = 1.5hp/HD, and 1d12 = 2hp/HD.
Minions hit points are used to determine spells and effects based on hit points such as Power Word: Blind, they are not used to track damage.
Minions that receive damage in excess of their hit threshold during a round die, if the minion is still alive at the end of the round in which it took damage, its hit threshold is reduced to 1.
New Feat - Field Marshal