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Rubia's page

FullStarFullStar Pathfinder Society GM. 206 posts. 1 review. 3 lists. 1 wishlist. 5 Pathfinder Society characters.


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Lamontius wrote:

Casting Rage on a spellcaster

This probably doesn't work the way you want it to, because Rage can only target *willing* targets.

**

I would also like to play. I have several characters in tier, mostly hovering around level 3.

**

I don't know if this is a derail or not, but I wanted to suggest a scheme to solve the "playing up" issue. What if we changed the rules for playing up as follows:

1) Earn appropriate gold for the level of the character, regardless of the played tier. For instance, for a tier 1-5 scenario, the scenario awards tier 1-2 gold for a level 1, 2, or 3 character and tier 4-5 gold for level 4 and 5 characters.

2) Award normal prestige when playing down.

3) Award additional prestige for playing up, as follows: level 4-5 characters earn the usual prestige. Level 3 characters gain 1 additional prestige for successfully completing the mission. Level 1-2 characters gain 2 additional prestige for successfully completing the mission.

In my view, this seems to solve the issue of having an overly high wealth total, since no one earns additional gold. The benefits to awarding additional prestige are subtle but neat:

a) It does not increase the buying power, only the buying maximum (based on the prestige chart). Early access to item maximums is a neat perk, but not a huge one.

b) It allows additional smaller (consumable) purchases, which is nice for low level characters, but not a big deal for high-level ones. In other words, it's a benefit that normalizes among characters as they level.

c) It helps to (slightly) defray the cost of a raise dead and/or condition removal, which is more likely when playing up.

d) It gives a slight incentive to playing up, but one that does not severely widen the gap between those who play up and those who don't.

Finally, remove the limitations on whether a group can play up or not and replace it with a recommendation of the suggested tier. This also allows for a "hard mode" that's built naturally into the tiering rules.

What do you think?

**

Andrew Christian wrote:

What is the tangible difference between:

"Sorry, no Bison at this sub-tier 1-2 table please."

and

"Ok, I'll just leave the table if you insist on bringing that Bison to this sub-tier 1-2 table."

The tangible difference is that in the second response, you would be following the rules as outlined for PFS.

**

Andrew Christian wrote:
4) If you aren’t having fun with something, and the community is not asking you to restrict something, then perhaps your GM style and the community’s play style are not compatible. Change your style to match the community, only play, or maybe PFS is not for you (Rubia will be happy to see this line).

Yup! :)


Bigdaddyjug wrote:
Yes, if Archives of Nethys had a workable search function, I would never go on d20PFSRD again.

Just use "site:archivesofnethys.com" as one of the search terms on google.

**

Andrew Christian wrote:

We obviously arent going to see eye to eye on this.

You feel it is black and white.

I accept the shades of gray.

Im not perfect and your expectations that any gm should be kind rankles.

I'm not expecting perfection. In fact, my argument is predicated upon the assumption that perfection has not been achieved.

All I've asked is that if a GM ascertains that he/she cannot be objective in applying the banhammer solely based on builds, then that individual should not GM PFS games. This assertion is based on the fact that the GM in question is not following the rules of organized play. That GM should feel free to run non-organized games.

But PLEASE stay out of organized PFS games. Thanks.

**

Andrew Christian wrote:

It is not jerk behavior to ensure the health of your table, game day, convention, community, or whatever.

Is there a line where stereotyping goes too far? Absolutely.

But making decisions on the health of your local community is actually part of the job description of a V-O.

Each community as a whole must decide where the line is.

And for the record, I am not suggesting a ban of whole classes, standard class abilities, or whatever.

Read my above post for a more detailed idea of what I'm referring to.

If you can't ensure the health of your table, etc., without using a method that could marginalize a non-jerk player playing with a build option you don't like, then please stop GMing.

I used the example of wizards and gunslingers because some GMs just don't like those classes. Some think that animal companions or eidolons are too powerful. Where would you say that PFS should draw the line?

My choice: be absolute about the whole thing. If a rules choice is legal, allow it. Ban players, not additional resources.

**

Andrew Christian wrote:
Rubia wrote:


To clarify for other readers, the word "you" in my posts and Andrew's responses are generic, not specific.

The short answer is to your questions is:

1) no one, or
2) a less-prolific GM

Frankly, both of those options are better than having a prolific GM who sometimes feels obligated to run games. The palace guard must change. Maybe the hint for prolific GMs is when they lose their ability to be impartial and fair.

Some prolific GMs run 3, 4, 5 or even 10 or more tables a month. How good is it for the community if those tables don't happen?

And all because the gm chooses to stereotype for the greater good of his table, game day, and community?

Do you think it's a good idea for people "in power" to stereotype for what they claim to be the "greater good"? Should newly-minted GMs be able to ban wizards and gunslingers because they don't like them at their tables?

Stereotyping is jerk behavior. I don't understand how you feel that behavior is justified under any circumstances. The moment we (as a community) say that jerk behavior is ok sometimes, we create a slippery slope. Why add ambiguity to a crystal-clear PFS rule?

Finally, the true greater good may be more global than the area in which the prolific GM runs games. Mostly because then PFS can retain its most important characteristic: being organized.

**

Andrew Christian wrote:

It is a fair point.

However, the reason many GM’s are 3, 4, and 5-stars is because there often is nobody else in the area who can or will GM. So that’s what they do. They GM for their community.

So who picks up the slack? If I choose not to GM for a month, who does it for me?

Afterall, there is a reason I’m 4-stars instead of just 2 or 3. I’m one of the willing prolific GM’s. I love GM’ing. So it isn’t a chore for me most of the time. But if I took a break for mental health reasons, who picks up my slack? (I’m not saying I need a break, just using myself to emphasize the point).

In many communities, if the prolific GM takes a break, those tables simply don’t happen. What then?

To clarify for other readers, the word "you" in my posts and Andrew's responses are generic, not specific.

The short answer is to your questions is:

1) no one, or
2) a less-prolific GM

Frankly, both of those options are better than having a prolific GM who sometimes feels obligated to run games. The palace guard must change. Maybe the hint for prolific GMs is when they lose their ability to be impartial and fair.

**

Andrew Christian wrote:
Rubia wrote:
Andrew Christian wrote:

Again, I'm human. Every human has a breaking point: a last straw.

And many times, those human beings don't know when that breaking point will happen, or when the last straw will kick their behind.

As such, human beings often will snap or lash out when the breaking point hits.

And often that point is while they are in the middle of GM'ing a table.

The problem is not GM's being human beings.

The problem is a certain subset of players thinking they are entitled to be selfish to the point of ruining the play experience for other players, and the community as a whole allowing it to happen.

My proof that the community allows it, is that threads like "Battle Cattle" and this one keep popping up.

When you (again, general, not specific you) reach your last straw, please stop GMing. Until you've reached that straw, please be fair and don't stereotype. I'm failing to understand why this concept is difficult to follow.

In other words, if you're frustrated to the point that you will stereotype, stop GMing. If you're not, keep GMing as long as you would like, as long as you avoid stereotyping.

And what I'm saying is, you don't necessarily know you are going to stereotype something, until it happens (because that moment is the last straw).

Right, so for that single table, you're (again general you, not specific) going to be a jerk. Not a huge deal, since GMs are after all, human, and things like this can happen.

But if, after that table, when that GM is aware that the breaking point has happened, that GM should not GM any future tables for a while until they can bring that jerk response under control.

And my argument thusfar has been, essentially, that based on responses posted (and then confirmed) on these messageboards, that it is clear that certain GMs have publicly announced that they have reached that breaking point. Those GMs should no longer GM.

**

Andrew Christian wrote:

Again, I'm human. Every human has a breaking point: a last straw.

And many times, those human beings don't know when that breaking point will happen, or when the last straw will kick their behind.

As such, human beings often will snap or lash out when the breaking point hits.

And often that point is while they are in the middle of GM'ing a table.

The problem is not GM's being human beings.

The problem is a certain subset of players thinking they are entitled to be selfish to the point of ruining the play experience for other players, and the community as a whole allowing it to happen.

My proof that the community allows it, is that threads like "Battle Cattle" and this one keep popping up.

When you (again, general, not specific you) reach your last straw, please stop GMing. Until you've reached that straw, please be fair and don't stereotype. I'm failing to understand why this concept is difficult to follow.

In other words, if you're frustrated to the point that you will stereotype, stop GMing. If you're not, keep GMing as long as you would like, as long as you avoid stereotyping.

**

Andrew Christian wrote:

I get your point, and everyone else's here, that GM's should not be stereotyping.

But what you are not getting, is that the frustration of seeing the same thing over, and over, creates the stereotypes.

I am absolutely getting that. You're trying to explain why stereotypes exist, and how they are created. I'm trying to explain that regardless of their basis in experience (or not), stereotypes are unfair, and acting on them is jerk behavior.

There are a number of real-life social issues that boil down to stereotypes. I won't mention them, but I'm sure that you can see how marginalizing a person is clearly unfair. Judge a person by that person, or don't GM at all. To me, it's black and white.

Andrew Christian wrote:
We aren't talking about banning Witches, because they are boring to GM.

I have had a GM refuse to run for a witch with the slumber hex, on the premise that any player (not just that player) who chooses that hex option is a jerk and ruins the game for everyone else. I've seen similar behavior regarding summoners and zen archers.

The details of the build choice that earns the ban-hammer from a specific GM is not at issue here. The concept of stereotyping is at issue here.

Andrew Christian wrote:

We are talking about EVERY time I see a purchased pet (tiger, bison, whatever) at Tier 1-5 scenarios, the player uses it willy nilly, and it breaks the scenario. So the next time someone brings a Bison or a Tiger to my table, my initial reaction is GOING to be, "NO!"

Now, would that be entirely appropriate? Probably not. Might it actually happen if my frustration level is at a certain point? Maybe. I'm human.

If you temper your initial reaction by talking to the player, then great. If you cannot contain your frustration enough to be fair to another human being, then please don't GM. (This is a general 'you', not a specific one.)

**

nosig wrote:
I have yet to see a judge ban someone from playing at a table because of his PC build or tactics.

I won't mention names or specific cases, but I have definitely seen this behavior displayed at other players at my table. I can recall at least four such instances. One particularly public discussion (not in my original list of four) was about whether an online GM would be allowed to ban summoners from publicly announced tables or not.

This conversation has not only come up before, but it comes up more and more frequently. It is surely a response to frustration by GMs, but that does not make it right.

Furthermore, a number of players think that since the overall scenario difficulty has increased, they need to avail themselves of powerful legal options in order to survive. Whether or not that conclusion by players is true, it muddies the waters about the intent of a particular build option present on a character sheet. No GM should be making a priori judgements about such items on a character sheet.

**

Andrew Christian wrote:
Rubia wrote:
Andrew Christian wrote:

That's exactly my point.

I have the option to not GM.

Is that what you really want? More avid and prolific GMs refusing to GM because they HAVE to let these ridiculous situations happen?

Yes, I'd rather you not GM for a while than make an a priori judgement about a player. If you can ascertain jerk behavior about a player prior to having played with that player, please tell me how to do it. If, on the other hand, you're stereotyping a player based on a build, then yes, please do not GM, since stereotyping is jerk behavior.

Thanks.

Did you read my posts in this thread?

Did you see me specifically advocating what you are suggesting?

And can you not see that there is a serious amount of frustration here?

Sure, maybe all these frustrated GM's should take a break. But then, who's going to GM the tables?

If even 20% of the GM's stop judging because of their frustration, and with threads like this that slam GM's for being frustrated and venting about it, will likely mean 20% less tables of PFS run around the world.

If there there were enough GM's to even remotely be able to fill those 20% of the shoes, they would have already done so, and given those GM's short breaks from time to time to help them re-energize.

First of all, I did not say that you did or did not advocate the behavior suggested. I simply said that IF you were going to make an a priori judgement, then don't GM. If that doesn't apply to you (or anyone else), great! If it does, please don't GM.

Second, as a PFS GM myself, I don't believe it is my job to make decisions about which additional resources get used, despite the consequence. Those decisions are firmly in Paizo's court. If there were suddenly 20% fewer tables worldwide (and that reduction could be attributed to broken builds being allowed in PFS), I can PROMISE you that Paizo would fix it.

Finally, I have been on the receiving end of such episodes, both as a player and a GM. But I, unlike the GMs I am referring to, have the awareness that the problem is the player, not the build.

It's not a job. If such a GM is frustrated, that person should quit, rather than marginalize a non-jerk player. If a GM cannot remain objective until such a time, that GM needs to quit.

**

Andrew Christian wrote:

That's exactly my point.

I have the option to not GM.

Is that what you really want? More avid and prolific GMs refusing to GM because they HAVE to let these ridiculous situations happen?

Yes, I'd rather you not GM for a while than make an a priori judgement about a player. If you can ascertain jerk behavior about a player prior to having played with that player, please tell me how to do it so that I too can avoid these jerks. If, on the other hand, you're stereotyping a player based on a build, then yes, please do not GM, since stereotyping is jerk behavior.

Thanks.

**

Kyle Baird wrote:
Rubia wrote:
Banning a build (and therefore a player) violates the most basic principle of an organized campaign: namely that it's organized.

TL;DR

Is there someone in here advocating banning a player based on a certain build or tactic without first discussing it with them first?.

Yes, that is exactly what is being advocated. Links to this were posted by other posters, but in short, included 4+ star GMs and VOs.

**

Kyle Baird wrote:
Rubia wrote:
Kyle Baird wrote:
Rubia wrote:
No GM or VO has the authority to ban a powerful legal build played by a non-jerk player.
Your problem here is that "jerk" is subjective and often impossible to quantify by the offending party.

Totally agree with the subjective nature of the word "jerk".

How can a GM or VO determine jerkhood of a player based solely on the abilities written on a character sheet?

It's very hard to objectively identify it from the writing on a character sheet, but there are stereotypes associated with certain builds and tactics. They exist for a reason, but of course aren't going to apply to everyone who is playing/using such things.

Where the "jerkhood" CAN be identified is in the initial discussion with players about their character. Asking the right questions helps identify and hopefully negate any problems before they happen.

The concern and the complaint is about an assessment that is drawn based only on the details written on a character sheet, without regard to the player himself/herself. Stereotypes aren't fair to impose on a player, without consideration of a player.

After an initial discussion with a player, a GM has a basis to determine jerk behavior (which is where subjectivity enters the conversation). Prior to that, it isn't possible to ban a powerful legal build that is being played.

The key point here is that, in order to determine whether one is a jerk player or not, the GM must at least vaguely interact with said player. Then let subjective opinions fly on the jerk behavior! That, however, is a different conversation.

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1 person marked this as a favorite.
andreww wrote:
There is a very big difference between playing a powerful character and using a powerful tactic which actively leaves the rest of your party incapable of acting. The Heavens Oracle may end an encounter quickly and easily with Colour Spray but they may well not if the enemy saves or is immune. The Deeper Darkness using jerk screws over the rest of their teammates every single time.

How do you know that the Deeper Darkness using player (accused of jerkhood) is actually a jerk without talking with the player? Again, I'm not saying that you shouldn't disallow a jerk at the table. I'm actually saying that determining jerkhood involves talking to a player, rather than SOLELY auditing a build.

Banning a build (and therefore a player) violates the most basic principle of an organized campaign: namely that it's organized.

**

Kyle Baird wrote:
Rubia wrote:
No GM or VO has the authority to ban a powerful legal build played by a non-jerk player.
Your problem here is that "jerk" is subjective and often impossible to quantify by the offending party.

Totally agree with the subjective nature of the word "jerk".

How can a GM or VO determine jerkhood of a player based solely on the abilities written on a character sheet?

**

Todd Morgan wrote:

What type of player brings a herd of bison to the table? Is it the type of player that cooperates with his teammates or one that usually tries to 'break the game' and solo encounters? In my experience, those that try to 'break the game' by running such options have been jerks, and I do not like to play with them or run them at a table. An argument could be made that the majority of players who build encounter-breaking builds are typically those you don't want to play/GM with.

There comes a point where a GM has been burned too many times by a single build/option that they 'know' no matter who the player is, it won't be fun for anyone to play with them. At that point they generally have two options:
1) Work with Mike B to try and get that option banned (Musket Master with Double Hackbut anyone?)
2) Choose not to GM a table with that option present (Anyone here a Bison Herder?)

The last option of 'Grin and Bear It' isn't valid because it WILL lead to GM burnout. If you GM too much (without playing) or run players who play legally "broken builds" everytime you WILL want to stop GMing.

There is another option for GMs that you have neglected to mention: take a break and stop GMing altogether. If a GM cannot avoid stereotyping (on the basis of build ALONE), that GM is frankly, being a giant jerk. That GM needs to stop GMing for a period of time (perhaps forever, if the attitude continues).

What I hear you advocating is the following logic (as applied to PFS):

1) I am a judge for the local criminal court.

2) I see lots of X type of people in court, accused of crime Y.

3) Most (perhaps even the vast majority) of those X type of people are guilty of crime Y.

4) Therefore let's go ahead and throw any person of type X in jail, immediately upon entering the court. There isn't, after all, any reason to explore the merits of that person's case.

5) If I don't do this as a judge, I will burn out, and be unable to be a judge future cases. Imagine what would happen if enough judges do this.... the justice system will collapse!

Frankly, I'm not buying it. I'm an experienced GM for PFS, as well as a player. I have GM'd tables where every opponent has been pummeled to death without so much as a second thought. Bison, any two-handed barbarian, witches with slumber hexes, heavens oracles, summoners, zen archers, etc, etc, etc.

No GM or VO has the authority to ban a powerful legal build played by a non-jerk player. Stop doing it. Stop advocating it. I think the PFS leadership would rather have a new GM than a biased, judgemental, and stereotyping GM.

**

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Andrew Christian wrote:
Im not saying it is completely correct, but i guarantee that 90% of these decisions are born of frustration. And if the GM feels impotent to solve their frustration and they keep getting burnt, are you willing to allow the consequences of that?

To be honest, yes, I'd be totally ok with the consequences of that frustration (i.e., that a 5-star GM would quit GMing for some period of time), despite the fact that I understand the concerns raised in this thread from a GM perspective (as I am a GM myself). Here are my reasons why:

1) There is a far more dangerous consequence of allowing GMs to whole hog ban summoners or witches with slumber hexes or bison -- organized play, for all intents and purposes, ceases to exist. If any GM, anywhere, can functionally ban any legal game element they dislike, then there is no longer any meaning to the phrase "organized campaign". At that point, every player is subject to the rulings of their individual GM. Why bother codifying rules for transferring one's character to another GM?

2) The GM in question clearly needs a break, and should probably not be running public games anyway. If that GM can't find a way to enjoy dealing with powerful legal build options from a non-jerk player, that GM needs to stop GMing for PFS.

3) Players are not the only potentially abusive members of the PFS community. Sometimes, GMs and VOs exhibit represensible behavior. Players need a defense against such people, other than to get up and leave from every table at which they are seated. (And it can be intimidating for a player to take a 5-star or VO head on.) That defense is RAW. Some players, therefore, respond with powerful legal RAW options because their past GMs have implemented some of this terrible behavior. Ironically enough, this player response is a mirror of what GMs are doing when they blindly ban build options at their table. And, any GM who doesn't like this player behavior ought not mimic it on the GM side.

These reasons are listed in order of importance, and that first one is central to the issue at hand. If you disagree with the 2nd and 3rd points, do not ignore the importance of the first.

**

SomeSlacker wrote:
El Baron de los Banditos wrote:

The other thing for PFS is the fact that there is no "Extra Ninja Trick" feat, and they have yet to errata Extra Rogue Talent to count for it.

Note that "Ninja Trick: Rogue Talent" doesn't give you the "Rogue Talent" class feature.

OK, lets approach this from a different angle.

If you were trying to build a character for PFS with the following requirements, how would you do it without multiclassing?

1. Ability to Gather Information to locate people/places/things

2. Ability to stealthily take down targets (both people/things/information)

3. Ability to survive combat encounters in PFS

4. Have a dark, supernatural component.

5. Have descent skill variety.

You wouldn't get sneak attack this way, but you could build an alchemist. I think that satisfies all of the other requirements. You can pick up class skills you need using traits, and you should have a lot of skill points since intelligence is an important statistic for alchemists.

**

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Quick question:

Does this zero challenge = zero XP opinion of yours therefore necessarily mean that a fighter (who could always roll a natural 1 and fail) and a wizard (whose opponents could always roll a natural 20 and resist) are never broken?

It is therefore just the skill specialist who satisfies the "unfun" behavior? Because in my experience, it is the former two that are far more of a problem in PFS than the latter one.

Thanks,

Rubia

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Andrew Christian wrote:

In John F.’s situation, I probably wouldn’t be as adamant. I certainly wouldn’t get up and walk away from the table. Seeing the latest actual quote from the Guide, I probably couldn’t force him to play his own character (why I would even need to seems ridiculous to me.) But I would strongly urge him to. If he was adamant to play the pregen, I’d inform them that if the only reason you are doing this is to help out party composition, then the gloves come off. If you want to play the game to ensure an optimized party, then the intelligent badguys just became tactical geniuses. Otherwise, just play your character, let the chips fall where they may, and I can use my common sense to help it be challenging, yet not a TPK. I’m not a killer GM. I don’t softball things, but I do try to scale the way I run the encounters (within the way its written of course) to be challenging, with a risk of failure, but not ridiculously easy or ridiculously hard. I do this based on what the characters are, and how in/experienced they might be.

But if you want to game the system, I can go “all out” as a GM too.

To give you a hint of why people may think your behavior is "against fun":

I read this passage as extremely aggressive and petulant behavior. If the rules allow "pregens for almost any reason", why would you make it a point to essentially penalize a party composed entirely within the rules of PFS?

If you truly do use the boards to clarify rules and hash out what what is allowed, you should have backed off once the rule was stated that allowed the behavior being discussed. Then, perhaps a new thread discussing a rule change would be appropriate. . . .

**

Michael Brock wrote:
Rubia wrote:
Michael Brock wrote:

With the rules that will match Animal Archive when Additional Resources is released next week.

Please let me know if any wording is unclear so I can update it before AR is updated next week.

Link

"The Animal Magic Item Slots table found in Animal Archive is not a legal except..."

This should probably say "is not legal" or "is not a legal source".

Thanks for the advice.

No problem. The rules seem clear enough. Thanks!!

**

Michael Brock wrote:

With the rules that will match Animal Archive when Additional Resources is released next week.

Please let me know if any wording is unclear so I can update it before AR is updated next week.

Link

"The Animal Magic Item Slots table found in Animal Archive is not a legal except..."

This should probably say "is not legal" or "is not a legal source".

**

Patrick Harris @ SD wrote:


Edit: The link to that particular clarification took me a few minutes to dig up: http://paizo.com/threads/rzs2o7vu?applying-pregen-chronicles#26

Thanks for finding that quote. So it seems that the point stands: there's too much useless stuff on chronicle sheets.

**

Eric Clingenpeel wrote:
And like Sior mentioned, it is possible (if not very probable) that a character could get to 10th lvl and not have 9 fame. I heard of one character who joined his faction solely so that he could sabotage their faction missions. In such a case, the items on the chronicle sheets become very important to such a character.

With the emphasis that campaign leadership wants to place on completion of faction missions*, it would seem to be foolish to allow "such a character" to survive.

Furthermore, I am aware that it is "possible" for a 10th level character who has played through 27 scenarios to have failed to accomplish 19 of them and finished no factions (or some combination of the two). I am pointing out the truly ridiculous circumstances that must occur for this to happen. (And, of course, still have the character be alive, since he/she probably hasn't gained enough gold to be appropriately geared to survive.)

What really underlies this whole discussion is that chronicle sheets can be interesting in a way that doesn't just involve "holding back access to goodies" and then awarding those as boons. One could institute discounts (as nosig said) or provide more unusual gear access or better gear or simply remove the clutter (and highlight the problem).

Let's not discuss pathological circumstances and instead understand the point being made. (And address it!) What's frustrating is these silly arguments are brought up to undermine what is actually a really good point: too many useless things show up on chronicle sheets in practice.

Functionally, many of these sheets are essentially blank (but have gold, XP, and fame on them).

Rubia

*as in, their completion is increasingly tied to overall faction success and that characters are a bit more well-rounded (which seems to be an encouraged goal)

**

Mike Mistele wrote:
In previous threads on this sort of topic, it's been noted that Chronicles generally feature any non-"always available" item that's recovered during the adventure. I'd strongly suspect that's why it's on the Chronicle in question.

So, we can't make the assumption that a 10th level character has earned 9 fame, or has gotten access to a cloak of resistance + 1 or higher by the time they receive this chronicle?


Lamontius wrote:


I am adding to my list of things learned on this forum that no one should ever take Furious Focus ever for any reason.

You were probably being sarcastic, but it is the better feat for the character I'm playing. I'm playing a vital strike build that uses multiple weapons (for melee and throwing). In this case, weapon focus doesn't cover both of my weapon types, but furious focus does.

Cheers,

Rubia


I would like to see a full treatment on how to deal with an E6 playstyle. Essentially, how you might throttle high-level fantasy, but still allow players to get a sense of strength and progression.


Edgar Lamoureux wrote:
I don't believe so. The term hit usually means an attack roll, and a CMB check isn't technically an attack roll, and therefore can't "hit". It can succeed, but without a hit, the shock enchantment doesn't apply any damage.

Actually, a "CMB check" uses an attack roll, as quoted below:

When you attempt to perform a combat maneuver, make an attack roll and add your CMB in place of your normal attack bonus. Add any bonuses you currently have on attack rolls due to spells, feats, and other effects.

Rubia

**

I also have an available hotel room (double) for 5/28 (Monday) through 5/31 (Thursday). Any of those nights work. I'm asking for $30 (which is a touch less than half of what I paid). It's about a 15 minute drive from the convention center, and I can carpool with folks if our schedules line up.

Please hit me up on the private message if you are interested. Thanks!

Rubia


Daryl MacLeod wrote:
Is there a consensus on the whole Bravery 1 thing? I'm considering a Lore Warden for PFS play - while this is by no means a deal breaker it would be nice to have that clarified... I'm going to proceed on the assumption that the 1 is a typo and the Expertise class feature replaces Bravery altogether.

On what basis would you choose they typo option over clearly written text? Just use the text.

**

Michael Brock wrote:

A quick note on an adjustment we are going to make to the Chronicle sheet this week.

** spoiler omitted **

Sooo, let's suppose that we've played this already. How would we go about getting access to this adjusted sheet?

**

Kyle Baird wrote:
Rubia wrote:
Kyle Baird wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
Wait, you mean like a specific type, with special abilities and everything?
Of course you actually have to survive encountering such a creature..

It was a bit touch and go for us, but we did actually

** spoiler omitted **

Touch and go sounds great! How was the entire scenario experience?

I felt it was a great scenario. I believe it's one of the few 5 star scenarios that PFS has put out thusfar. Here are the things that were right with this one that tend to mar other scenarios:

Spoiler:

1) Story made sense.
2) Story accessible to characters, rather than being only in the background summary.
3) Varied and interesting encounters, both social and combat.
4) Differing terrain.
5) Both cramped and wide open encounters.
6) Mechanically correct stat blocks and encounters.
7) Balanced to provide a real challenge, so players had to use their resources to win.
8) An iconic enemy that isn't disappointingly worthless.
9) A solo boss that overcomes the action economy by being awesome.
10) Didn't instantaneously hose a person who wanted to use a large-sized AC or mount.

**

Kyle Baird wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
Wait, you mean like a specific type, with special abilities and everything?
Of course you actually have to survive encountering such a creature..

It was a bit touch and go for us, but we did actually

Spoiler:

kill the dragon after a failed attempt at diplomacy. Required two rounds of blasting the hell out of it and getting super lucky. (Apparently, a +35 acrobatics check really doesn't help as much as you think it should. . . .)

I think we found out the name, but I forgot it.

**

Mark Moreland wrote:
Chris Mortika wrote:
In two cases, there's no penalty for taking them out of order. I think that sets players up for rude surprises, when there is a penalty.
There's no penalty. There's just no extra reward. The lack of a carrot does not equate to a stick.

This is the fundamental disconnect. Some people equate them. That's the "problem".

Rubia

**

Kyle Baird wrote:

I see this run incorrectly all the time unfortunately.

Round 1a: NPC uses at-will Deeper Darkness (room becomes unnaturally dark)
Round 1b: PC casts daylight (room returns to original lighting conditions)
Round 2: NPC uses at-will Deeper Darkness (nothing happens except the area of effect for DD could now have two points of origin)

In this example the result is the normal lighting conditions. Daylight is still going. DD is still going from two locations. Where DD and Daylight overlap, it's normal lighting conditions. The only way a second casting of DD makes the room unnaturally dark again is if they ready to cast/use DD as a counterspell or use dispel magic to target the already on-going daylight.

I see this run incorrectly all the time too. The trick is that you should use Round 2 of the NPC to dispel their daylight, just as you said. But any GM worth his/her salt ought to do that. The examples I listed above are capable of those tactics.

And there's also the slight issue that (depending on the GM), you may not be able to target any square within the deeper darkness when casting daylight. So some darkness would still linger unless the PCs dispelled instead of just casting it. (Assuming the radii of the two spells are the same, it would take two castings of daylight to "cover" the space of darkness: one to illuminate the center of the darkness effect so you can target it, and the second daylight centered on that point.)

Basically, even though I want to look on the bright side of life, I won't be able to. :)

**

Kyle Baird wrote:
Rubia wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
Relatedly, given that any time deeper darkness comes up it seems to be at-will and with counter-countermeasures, is there any point in even carrying said oil of daylight? Is there some other, more reliable countermeasure my PCs could be carrying?
Yeah, the lesson seems to be "don't bother, because if we want it to be dark, damnit, it will be dark."
What other adventures have deeper darkness and a counter for daylight?

Note that darkness has a similar relationship to light that deeper darkness has to daylight in terms of how it screws parties at-tier.

Spoiler:

A quick check of the modules I have. . . . (and I may have missed some)
Rescue at Azlant Ridge, Part II (at will deeper darkness = AWDD)
Heresy of Man Part I (AWDD)
Rats of the Round Mountain Part I (AWDD)
Drow of the Darkland Pyramids (at will darkness + 1/day dd)
Darkest Vengeance (at will darkness, AWDD at tier 1-2 and 4-5)
Hall of Drunken Heroes (AWDD)
A few additional modules with 1/day deeper darkness for multiple creatures (per encounter) that I didn't bother with.
Several low level modules with at will darkness and 1/day darkness with multiple creatures in an encounter
Several clerics in modules with deeper darkness memorized twice, along with dispel magic memorized.

That list doesn't count creatures with dispel magic and darkness/deeper darkness either, FYI.

I don't mind (deeper) darkness in an adventure. What I mind is that it seems clear that unless you can do it at will, you'll lose the arms race. Which is still fine -- I just won't bother to waste money on purchasing one-time counters.

Rubia

**

Jiggy wrote:
Relatedly, given that any time deeper darkness comes up it seems to be at-will and with counter-countermeasures, is there any point in even carrying said oil of daylight? Is there some other, more reliable countermeasure my PCs could be carrying?

Yeah, the lesson seems to be "don't bother, because if we want it to be dark, damnit, it will be dark."

The counter? Have every character take blind-fight and get true seeing.

Spoiler:

I ended up using a globe of lesser invulnerability and then hoped the creature couldn't escape.

edit: ninja'd.

**

Kyle Baird wrote:

Most of the encounters in there have similar morale. IMO, most creatures aren't up for a fight the death if it can be avoided. Using "fights to the death" for the majority of encounters is a lazy cop-out.

To answer your last question, you are correct. Them's the breaks!

That morale comment was not for the monsters but the PCs. :)

Rubia

**

Kyle Baird wrote:
Rubia wrote:

This was one of the most fun modules I've played. It was a challenge, and gave that glorious tension that *we might not win*. I wish that were in PFS more frequently.

Good GM too, btw.

That tension is incredibly difficult to design given the wide variety of PCs in PFS. I'm glad to hear that for you it worked well! I'm still anxiously awaiting the first time it falls on the dark side of fun.

p.s. Any Chelaxians at the table? Just curious what they think of their faction mission..

Yeah, I can sympathize with scenarios being hard to write for balance. That's the primary reason I advocate for GM empowerment. But you know, that's a whole other conversation. . . .

This scenario worked for us, but a lesser team would have been mindlessly slaughtered.

Spoiler:

Though I do like the "mercy" rule in the last encounter.

One Chelaxian. He loved his mission and the reason for it.

Spoiler:

So, if there's a team of all chelaxians, they get no PA?

**

Kyle Baird wrote:
Rubia wrote:

It suddenly makes sense why this felt like a killer module. We were lucky to live through it.

Rubia

It's not much of a killer if you were able to survive. ;-)

The more important question whether or not you had fun.

This was one of the most fun modules I've played. It was a challenge, and gave that glorious tension that *we might not win*. I wish that were in PFS more frequently.

Good GM too, btw.

**

1 person marked this as a favorite.

It suddenly makes sense why this felt like a killer module. We were lucky to live through it.

Rubia

**

Maybe GMs could self-select for such tables. A GM knows when he/she can do the job right.

I for one would sign up to run classics more often than not.

Rubia

**

Michael Brock wrote:
There won't be any PFS Classic games scheduled for Gen Con this year.

And I weep about this, since those are fun tables to run! :)

I don't know what it is about me, but I seem to run better when the module is mostly unprepared. . . .

Rubia


Von Marshal wrote:
Personally, when adding weapon abilities to a magus blade I have always considered them active. The blade doesn't really have the abilities you do. The speed enchant attack would be at your highest level bab but get the -2. Spell Combate is like two weapon fighting for that -. I hope that helps.

Actually, I was sort of looking for something "official" so that I could make rulings for PFS when magus PCs show up to play at my tables. Do you have any rules you can point to for these interpretations?


2 people marked this as FAQ candidate.

Let's say I'm a 5th level magus, and I just got the following really cool ability:

Magus Arcane Pool wrote:
At 5th level, these bonuses can be used to add any of the following weapon properties: dancing, flaming, flaming burst, frost, icy burst, keen, shock, shocking burst, speed, or vorpal.

So, the next combat I get into, I activate my swift action to make my blade FLAMING! No wait, I don't. I instead gain the ability to take a standard action to start my blade flaming, as per the magic weapon section (quote below). So, I spend my entire turn to activate my arcane pool ability. . . that lasts for a minute. If I foolishly chose to add flaming and frost and shock, I can set this up 3 rounds later. Is this right?

Here is the relevant quote from the Magic Weapon section:

Magic Weapon Section wrote:
Activation: Usually a character benefits from a magic weapon in the same way a character benefits from a mundane weapon—by wielding (attacking with) it. If a weapon has a special ability that the user needs to activate, then the user usually needs to utter a command word (a standard action). A character can activate the special abilities of 50 pieces of ammunition at the same time, assuming each piece has identical abilities.
Flaming wrote:
Upon command, a flaming weapon is sheathed in fire that deals an extra 1d6 points of fire damage on a successful hit. The fire does not harm the wielder. The effect remains until another command is given.

The reason it's not an issue normally is that there isn't a duration, so you can activate it "once" and it's on forever. But in this case, you don't get the ability until you spend the arcane pool as a swift action.

Question 1: Should we assume that the arcane pool brings up weapon abilities in active status?

Ok, next ability. . . speed.

It seems like a magus might want to add this to a weapon to get an extra attack when they're doing their spell combat thing. But, it seems you can't.

Here's the relevant text. I've bolded the important parts. . .

Spell Combat wrote:
At 1st level, a magus learns to cast spells and wield his weapons at the same time. This functions much like two-weapon fighting, but the off-hand weapon is a spell that is being cast. To use this ability, the magus must have one hand free (even if the spell being cast does not have somatic components), while wielding a light or one-handed melee weapon in the other hand. As a full-round action, he can make all of his attacks with his melee weapon at a –2 penalty and can also cast any spell from the magus spell list with a casting time of 1 standard action (any attack roll made as part of this spell also takes this penalty). If he casts this spell defensively, he can decide to take an additional penalty on his attack rolls, up to his Intelligence bonus, and add the same amount as a circumstance bonus on his concentration check. If the check fails, the spell is wasted, but the attacks still take the penalty. A magus can choose to cast the spell first or make the weapon attacks first, but if he has more than one attack, he cannot cast the spell between weapon attacks.
Speed Weapon Enhancement wrote:
When making a full-attack action, the wielder of a speed weapon may make one extra attack with it. The attack uses the wielder's full base attack bonus, plus any modifiers appropriate to the situation. (This benefit is not cumulative with similar effects, such as a haste spell.)

Question 2: Can you use the speed enhancement along with spell combat?

Are these items that have been FAQ'd or otherwise addressed?

Rubia

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