Captain Wacky wrote:
1) Cthulhu isn't the 'ultimate cosmic horror' in his own mythology. He's perhaps the most powerful of the Old Ones, but it's the Outer Gods who are the ultimate cosmic horrors, and they will receive no Pathfinder stats.
2a) At CR 30, Cthulhu is beyond the reach of 20th level characters to combat directly, and still 5 levels above the APL of a level 20/tier 10 party.
Immortality (Ex) If Cthulhu is killed, his body immediately
In other words--nothing but nothing can kill Cthulhu but it is theoretically possible to force him back into torpor. Which is pretty much what happened in the original Call of Cthulhu story, as I understand it.
3) There is no sanity stat, but all Great Old Ones specifically have an 'Aura of Insanity' ability--in Cthulhu's case, any round you can see him, and are within 300 feet of him, you need to make a DC 40 Will save or immediately die of fright. Make yourself immune to fear, and you still have to save against being staggered. And unlike many similar abilities, saving against the aura once doesn't mean you're immune for 24 hours, so you need to make that save *every round*.
Natural attacks work on an entirely different model from iterative attacks.
Let's assume our 2nd level barbarian has 20 strength while enraged, the TWF feat, and a pair of light weapons. When he makes a full attack, his attack sequence looks like this: BAB +2, Strength +5, -2 for Two Weapon Fighting=+5/+5. Also, if he doesn't have the Double Slice feat, he only gets 1/2 his strength bonus on the second attack.
If the same barbarian has 2 claws, instead, then his attack sequence is one attack with each claw at full BAB--+7/+7, dealing full strength damage with each. If he then also had the Toothy feat to give him a bite attack, his attack sequence would be Bite +7, 2 claws +7/+7, all doing full strength damage. Alternately, he could wield a sword as his primary weapons, turning his natural attacks secondary. Then, he could attack at +7 with his sword, +2 with one claw, and +2 with his bite.
Lord Snow wrote:
Furious Focus would have no effect on attacks made with claws. Furious Focus explicitly only benefits made with a two-handed weapon; claws, by dint of being natural weapons, are definitionally light weapons. The cool thing about natural weapons is that all natural weapon attacks are made at the same BAB. If you have 2 claws, you can attack once with both at your highest BAB, or you can make your full iterative attacks with a one-handed weapon, plus a claw attack at your highest BAB-5. If focused entirely on natural weapons, the ideal is to get as many different natural attacks as possible.
Fey are usually considered to be spirits of the natural world, whereas outsiders are spirits of the planes. Fey are perfectly fine as they are, I think.
Spirits of the natural world=spirits of the Material Plane. Give them the Native subtype as well. And then in Golarion, there's the First World.
Let's see--I'd guess Move Earth, Stone Shape, and Stone Tell would all be under one ability, united under the theme of 'power over earth'. Detect Thoughts, Scrying and Contact Other Plane might also be united under the theme of gaining knowledge. If we assume those unifications, that makes 7 abilities, with the 8th apparently being +6 to ability score--which is an odd result, since +2 to one ability score is a tier 3 universal path ability, so one would think that accounts for three mythic abilities...
I'm looking into adding mythic ranks to some monsters that don't already have Mythic conversions done for me. To that end, I'm trying to deconstruct some of the existing conversions to get a better understanding of the process. I'm currently looking at the Mythic Nalfeshnee, since it's similar in power and concept to the monsters I'm converting (similarly CRed evil outsiders).
Now the table tells me, when I give a monster 7 mythic ranks, as with the Nalfeshnee, it gets 8 mythic abilities (MR+1). I'm having trouble accounting for them all on the Nalfeshnee. Two are called out--Demonic Knowledge and Touch of Chaos. It also appears to have gained Fast Healing, the ability to make a Steal maneuver when it hits with its claws, and it appears that adding its tier to initiative would fall into this category, as not all Mythic monsters share that trait. That still leaves three abilities unaccounted for. Do several of these count as two?
I liked it better in the original publication of Runelords, when the original virtues weren't the polar opposite of the sins, or even necessarily virtues as the modern day might have conceived of them, but more like building blocks of a nation, concepts a ruler should promote in himself and his people--but if selfishly pursued, are easily twisted into the sins. It is good for a ruler to strive to improve himself and his nation, but carried too far, it becomes a hateful obsession with becoming better than everyone else, preferably by tearing them down, and you suddenly have become bitter and Envious. A nation's health can be judged by its coffers, it's ability to feed and provide for its people. But these can easily descend into the decadence of Greed and Gluttony. A ruler should be able to hold his head high, and make his people proud to call their nation home--but that can easily become a blinding, arrogant sort of Pride. And so on...
All right, here's the plan I've come up with: Prince Batsaikhar maneuvers them into taking a qualifying bout at one of the feasts. Upon heir victory, the Ruby Phoenix Acolyte judging he bout gives them magical tokens that will transport them to the tournament, and back at the end of it. Of course, that would require leaving the seal behind with the rest of the caravan. While they're debating the merits of that, a celebration of Ordu-Aganhei's honored guests and representatives in the Tournament is held--cue the ninja attack as written. Miyaro inervenes, leads the party into the Forest of Spirits, where the caravan can take refuge with the kami while the party goes to compete in the tournament. In exchange they are to investigate the House of Withered Blossoms when they return.
At the tournament, I'm slotting agents of the Five Storms in place of the Aspis Consortium--the Jade Regent is courting Golden League support for his regime, offering them a return to Minkai, and aiding the Wu sister's bid for vengeance as a show of good faith.
As for the House of Withered Blossoms, I think that by cutting out the aranea, and a few key encounters in the penance--notably the Destrachan and the Hobgoblin lepers (who my Munuskaru would view as weak and unworthy for their affliction, and destroy), I can abbreviate the slog to a fair degree. I've also placed an Ostiarius Kyton with monk levels in the Celebration of Chains acting as Munuskaru's advisor, the teacher of the Sisters of the Broken Path, and the leader of the kytons. Ochiyo the Messenger is moved to Munuskaru's side, perhaps commanding a force of Warriors or Sisters as Munuskaru's personal guard.
All I have left to decide is any special encouners to enhance the feel of the journey through the Forest of Spirits, and what prize to give the PCs for completing the Ruby Phoenix Tournament. As I've mentioned, one possibility would be an item which could open the House of Withered Blossoms to them, thus further tying in the Tournament to the AP. But I wonder if that isn't a bit of a cop-out. And if I kept the House of Withered Blossoms openly accessible, I could hand-wave the NPCs clearing out the aranea, and thus keep the element of Munuskaru having an enemy to occupy her time and fuel her obsessions...
Matt Thomason wrote:
Non-paladin good is capable of some moral compromises without changing alignments, but that in no way makes those compromises good acts. 'Any Means Necessary', pursued with any degree of regularity, makes you Neutral and best, and most likely flat Evil.
Clearly, this isn't the popular opinion, but I think the Sound Striker archetype should be able to forego a weapon entirely and kill people just by shouting at them. If Weird Words cannot be used as the Bard's primary attack, I have no interest in the archetype. Is the 'multiplicative application of Charisma' any different than an archer making a full attack with a composite bow? I suppose the problem there would arise from the fact that the bard can do it as a Standard Action, for more damage dice. That probably is too much, though considering that the Bard must spend limited Performance rounds to make his attacks, where the archer can far more easily replenish his supply of arrows, Weird Words do need to pack more of an individual punch.
Here's the thing that may have been missed. It's the most important rule of psionics: you can't spend more PP on a power than your manifester level. The psion in question was about 15th level, meaning he can spend no more than 15 power points on a single power. It costs 11 points to manifest Disintegration at all, so he could only pay an extra 4 points into the power to augment it--which means, it should have done only 9d6 on a failed save.
Upshot--the Crusaders don't know the extent to which the demons are manipulating events. But they certainly know that demons are embodiments of corruption and sin. Given Staunton Vhane and the reasoning behind the witch hunts, they know demonic infiltrators are a thing. There are certainly many tieflings amongst the demonic forces, and the fact is that most tieflings in the world are *not* rebels against their fiendish heritage. The Crusaders have little to no reason to believe that any given tiefling is not a danger.
Well, first house rule I make in any game I run is condensing feat trees. Virtually any feat tree with the X/Improved X/Greater X nomenclature can easily be condensed into a single feat which scales with level. For example: take Two-Weapon Fighting, then get your BAB to 6 and your Dexterity to 17, and you get the benefits of Improved Two Weapon Fighting automatically. While I'm at it, I often add an extra bonus to combat maneuver feats before they upgrade--for example, base Improved Dirty Trick causes Dirty Tricks to last longer when they land, as well as making it take a standard action to remove the trick once your BAB reaches +6.
Weapons usable with weapon finesse gain a 'finesse' quality which allows anyone to use Dexterity to atack with them. The Weapon Finesse feat incorporates Agile Maneuvers, and allows you to add your Intelligence modifier as precision damage on attacks with a finesse weapon.
I've also basically eliminated Combat Expertise from all prerequisites.
Arcane Armor Training in my games is a flat reduction to Spell Failure, rather than requiring a swift action, but that's a bit less related to the topic.
So far as it goes, mechanical aesthetics are associated with Law because a machine, particularly a gear works, consists of many parts subsumed into a greater whole, each with an assigned role that must be performed exactly and without deviation, lest the whole fail to function as a result. A machine is also emblematic of a lack of free will, unable to go beyond the limitations of its design/programming.
Is it any more inconceivable than the fighter's armor and shield providing any protection from a morningstar bigger than he is?
Ipslore the Red wrote:
I'd consider traits like bow proficiency and Elven Magic far more iconic to elves, and more comparable to the traits you name than sleep immunity.
That said, perhaps a better way to phrase the question is why Pathfinder elves don't have reverie. Why not attach some fluff to that particular bit of crunch?
Aasimar and tieflings, as native outsiders, have all outsider traits, including darkvision and proficiency with all martial weapons. If they are proficient with any armor, they are also proficient with shields.
While their type is outsider, Aasimar and tieflings have no outsider Hit Dice, only hit dice from class levels, so their proficiencies are determined by their class, not their type.
Likewise, you could probably attack a monster who would normally deal electric damage to those who hit it with an unarmed strike or natural weapon without fear.
And how many of those special gunslinger tricks are just giving you a way to deal with one of the countless disadvantages of using a gun, like clearing misfires or allowing you to add an ability score to your damage as the bow does, or making ammunition *marginally* affordable? And, because it can't be sated enough--unless you're allowing rifles into your campaign, which is decidedly not the default assumption, you're only hitting touch AC if you're within charge distance.
As to your second suggestion, I'd point out that mundane, non-masterwork Pathfinder guns approach and occasionally exceed magic weapon costs all on their own, making multiple-carry distinctly infeasible.
From a realism perspective, you're quite correct. But them, from a realism perspective, neither guns nor crossbows should be reloadable in one turn, likely not in the same combat with as fast as combats go in D&D. But this is distinctly unplayable from a mechanical perspective. The full attack is king in D&D, and a weapon that can't make one is almost definitionally inferior. And if you create options-absolutely basic options, more or less specifically noted--to reload a firearm as fast as a bow, it should not be a surprise that people make full attacks with firearms.
Yes, and while you're at it, make armor and shield bonuses to AC meaningless against larger creatures, because what good is a shield against a club the size of a house?
The 10 / 03 / 13 FAQ suggests drawing an arrow 3 times is the max you can draw is a reasonable limit.
That may be true in the real world, but in Pathfinder, Firearms are actually pretty much the worst weapon in the game, until you've invested a huge amount of feats and specific class levels into them. They have all the problems of crossbow, plus they cost a gold or more a shot, blow up in your face, are nearly as expensive as a magic weapon just to get the base version, and using the feature which makes them worthwhile--targeting touch AC--requires being uncomfortably close to people wielding greataxes.
Anyone else have suggestions for a prize for the Ruby Phoenix Tournament? Something the Five Storms are after by entering their agents/sabotaging other teams, thus making it the players goal to attain it for themselves and turn it against the oni. Something that could hep reinforce a claim to rulership, maybe?
Has anyone run an abbreviated version of the Penance? It's definitely far too much of a grind as it is, but some of the encounters, like the Swine Shogun, are somewhat cool, and I want to present the Penance to my players in some respect. Partially so the title of the module still makes sense, and so they can face an oni at the end, but also because I have been building up an image of Munuskaru and her 'kingdom'--a product of her wounded narcissism, as she breeds an army of monsters and turns them on each other, obsessed with weeding out the weak, scourging away any impurity, creating a perfect army in the delusion that this could prove her worth and free her. I suppose one possibility might be to significantly reduce the number of rank and file enemies in any given area, boost the levels of those who remain, and have many areas littered with the corpses of Munuskaru's brood, to evoke the brutal natural selection at play...
The Shifty Mongoose wrote:
"Billions of bilious blistering blue barnacles in a thundering typhoon!"
Similarly, the Mandarin 'swears' in Firefly translated into colorful epithets rather than direct vulgarity--"All the planets in space flushed out my bum", for one example.
Contrariwise, I thought that was one of the most compelling powers in the book, one of those which was most in line with the mission statement of mythic, to create epic play without the absurd pinball inflation of numbersthat was one of many problems 3.5 epic rules suffered from. It's easily one of the weakest powers from a purely mechanical perspective, when the PC could be boosting his own power instead of granting it to others. But it fundamentally changes the game and the story nonetheless. This is how Irori ascended. This is the power infused by the Starstone. Your character is beginning an ascent to godhood--or demigodhood, to be strictly accurate, since they'll never gain the 5th domain except as a story effect that would likely see them out of play in the aftermath.
Can the Aurora Borealis created by a Starsoul sorcerer be created in a circle? The ability reads:
"Aurora Borealis (Sp): At 9th level, you can create a sheet of cascading colors. This power acts as a wall of fire, but it inflicts cold damage and does not radiate heat. However, one side of the aurora designated by you fascinates creatures within 10 feet, up to a maximum of 2 HD of creatures per sorcerer level. A Will save negates this fascinate effect. The save DC is equal to 10 + 1/2 your sorcerer level + your Charisma modifier. You may use this ability for a number of rounds per day equal to your sorcerer level. These rounds do not need to be consecutive."
Is 'sheet' to be taken as flavor text, or as a specific rule overriding the fact that it otherwise functions as Wall of Fire, which can be made circular?
Like a biology student who reads only books might not recognize a specific flower or a lion when seen in reality? No, wait, that's a single skill, Knowledge (Nature).
Cerberus Seven wrote:
Except, if we're using science as our analogy here, someone with ranks in Spellcraft, but none in Knowledge (Chemistry) would be able to identify chemical reactions by observation, whereas the person who invested no ranks in Spellcraft, but is the greatest chemist the world has ever known is totally unable to do so.
I don't feel that Magnuskn was condescending to me, Captain, so I don't think calling him out is necessarily called for. That said, I don't intend to cut out the Penance entirely; I only want to abbreviate it and cut down on the slog. Still want to see them going up against a crazy oni at the end of the path, for one. I am trying to think of cool rebuilds for Munuskaru, though, to tune her up for my high-powered party. Certainly going to give her some allies. I'm toying with Summoner, since she's got a bit of a 'Mother of Monsters' vibe going on...
My concern with using Teleport to get them there is that they can't bring the Seal with them, and they probably won't want to be that far separated from both the seal and the NPCs. I figured placing the festivities in Hongal or in a demiplane accessible from thence would let them take part without feeling like they abandoning anything in the process...
So a Knowledge (Arcana) check will allow me to instantly recognize a Red Dragon, determine its age category on sight, and otherwise call to mind all that there is to know about them immediately to mind, relay it to my allies, and then jog 30 feet away and cast a Shivering Ray at it. But it's definitionally too slow to identify a spell when you see it being cast? This is the same arbitrary distinction of 'Spot' and 'Search' that Pathfinder has otherwise eliminated.
I simply don't see how any skill application which is about whether you *know what something is* can ever NOT be a Knowledge check.
99% of Spellcraft rolls are to identify spells. That is to *KNOW* what spell you just saw, most certainly not to *DO* anything. And it can somehow allow a wizard to automatically know the ins and outs of divine magic, even though he knows virtually nothing about the gods (0 ranks in Knowledge: Religion).
If you want to keep Spellcraft around for crafting rolls (as if they were anything but a formality), fine. But identifying spells is definitionally a Knowledge check.
By my estimates, my group is going to finally finish crossing the Crown of the World in the next 2 or 3 sessions, so it's time I kicked my planning into high gear for Forest of Spirits. One thing I know for sure is that I want to run the Ruby Phoenix Tournament. Nothing says 'Welcome to the Orient' like a martial arts tournament, plus, I've statted up some Avatar-inspired teams to it them against, and running the tournament will allow me to abbreviate the long slog of the Pagoda of Withered Blossoms/Munuskaru's Penance. But I'm definitely going to have to do some integration work.
Currently, my idea is to have the tournament occur during their stay in Hongal, with Prince Batashaikar recruiting them to replace a team he had sponsored--whether on an idle whim after the outlanders impress him when he requests their entertainment, or because some 'accident' has befallen them--most likely, there's a prize in the Ruby Phoenix's horde that the Five Storms want, and their agents are working to rig the tournament. Perhaps the item in question can be tied to the Pagoda and Munuskaru in some way, to tie the adventure together. That way, I can still play up Batashaikar's caprice, and even if the PCs feel uncomfortable, Miyaro can show up to give them an idea of what's going on, and explain why they need to win the tournament. But what item would that be, precisely? Maybe something which would allow entrance to the Pagoda of Withered Blossoms? Perhaps Munuskaru was not simply abandoned, but left with the instructions to breed an army to rise up and support the Five Storms once their plan comes to fruition? I suppose the prize I point the PCs too, and the one the Five Storms are trying to acquire need not necessarily be the same.
As to the setting of the tournament itself, it could be analogous to the Olympics, with different nations of Tien Xia hosting every year. But one idea I've been playing with is the concept that it's actually held on a demiplane created for the purposes of testing would-be champions.
Thoughts, anyone? Any suggestions for the tournament, or for how best to abbreviate Munuskaru's Penance?
Never mind, found another thread suggesting waves of enemies bearing down on them. My party is pretty high powered, and they've got five pretty competent allies to help them, plus the Dead Man, who I will run more or less as a free Spiritual Ally spell, so the list I've made is equivalently powerful, running them through four encounters of increasing CR in rapid succession.
1st Wave (CR 9)--8 Hoarfrost Spirits
My group will be arriving at Dead Man's Dome in our next session, but I'm not really sure how to run it, since I'm not using Caravan combat rules. Has anyone else encountered this same problem? Any advice? Should I simply run it as straight combat with a boatload of hoarfrost spirits and frostfallen creatures? I don't suppose with the advent of Rasputin Must Die! that anyone's created troop statblocks for a gang of undead? Should I stat the Dead Man up as a ghost fighter or samurai, or simply as a souped up Spiritual Ally?
"If your mount moves its speed or less, you can still take a full-attack action."
I see no limitations on the nature of the movement written into that feat. Any time your mount's total move in the turn is no more than its speed, you get to take a full attack. Why would that preclude charging? Wouldn't it also allow you to make a full Ride-By Attack, presuming you didn't exceed your mount's speed even with the second part of your movement?
I maintain that so-called 'class/feat/archetype/etc. bloat' is nothing more than the natural and inevitable result of a system continuing to support itself, and that any attempt to call it a bad thing, at least inherently, is deeply misguided. If Paizo doesn't publish new feats and classes, they will go out of business
I think Expanded Psionics Handbook and Tome of Battle are the best and most balanced d20 books ever published.
I have no problem whatsoever with my D&D game turning into 'four-color heroics'. If your pixie can achieve a high enough CMB roll to grapple the Tarrasque, I won't let size stand in the way. If you have the HP to survive a fall from Low Earth Orbit, or to take a leisurely swim in lava, feel free; and I will never describe a hit as a near miss, because that is non-intuitive, and not remotely satisfying.
I think point buy is an incredibly limiting mechanic that encourages cookie cutter ability score blocks.
I love every oddball choice Paizo makes like adding guns (even if I much prefer the Heroes of Alvena homebrew rules for Gunslingers and firearms), space adventures, using Lovecraftian beasts, and fighting Rasputin in WWI era Siberia.
Lord Snow wrote:
That's all a matter of presentation, though. You could say Jade Regent is just about stopping the usurpation of the throne. Or you could focus on how the right to rule in Minkai is literally divinely granted according to ancient laws laid down by the Empress of Heaven, that the grand conspiracy of the usurpers would not only steal temporal power, but subvert divine mandates.