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Contract Devil

Sebastian Hirsch's page

Goblin Squad Member. RPG Superstar 2015 Star Voter. Pathfinder Society Member. 1,369 posts (1,719 including aliases). 2 reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 2 Pathfinder Society characters. 1 alias.

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Silver Crusade

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Muja wrote:

No, I he said

"After going up the chain with a complaint I received the recommendations for the game.

It appears to be a legal tactic to do this to your players which to me is disheartening."

I'm wondering why he wants MORE from them when they already told him it was legal.

I assume he want's a FAQ by the rules team that clarifies the situation with limited wish regarding spells with material components over 1000 GP, casting time, range an other factors.

Which would not be a bad thing.

Silver Crusade

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trollbill wrote:
Andrew Christian wrote:

Players use gray areas all the time to build nearly unbeatable monstrosities and RAW is thrown in the GM's faces all the time that they have no choice but to deal with it.

I'll leave that comment stand as is.

And here we see the basic flaw in adversarial GMing philosophy. The assumption that, because some players have sometimes been abusive to GMs, then GMs have a right to be abusive to all players.

Don't get me wrong. I can certainly understand the frustration of having to deal with unstoppable cracked out characters. But that doesn't mean GMs have the right to take out that frustration on everyone else.

Trollbill I agree wholeheartedly with that statement, but I have to add something.

Once the cheese reaches a certain level it negatively affects other players, scenarios get harder, DCs rise, and their contribution to the overall scenario success becomes minuscule. There is a very good reason why I actively decided against taking the slumber hex with the characters that have access to it...

However GMs can't play that particular game of escalation, since they have all the advantages, and have the responsibility to maintain a healthy play environment.

Silver Crusade

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I managed to avoid most of the spoilers regarding the scenario, but the question seems to boil down to: "Can limited wish as a SLA be used to open pandoras box and replicate simularcrum, to create a variant creature without increasing the casting time ?"

I doubt in on a number of levels, but the real question is always should you do so. GMs are empowered to limit unclear player abilities (let's say the designers forgot to print a X times per day limit), and have to deal with the ramifications of a number of intentionally vague rules.

In this case while there is a slim chance that this turns out to be RAW and RAI (we will likely never get a FAQ to this specific issue) I think adding a such a creature to an encounter like this seems like overkill, after all unless I am missing something the new creature could solo most adventure paths fights to completion ... including rise of the runelords.

So yeah this is exactly the same issue as players using simulcarum to get infinite castings of wish.

Pretty pointless to argue that particular issue, but some video games with dungeon creation force the designer to complete the dungeon at least once, and frankly this would likely result in a TPK 99 % of the time.

In this case the GM presented the players with a situation they could not overcome, and while bad preparation and party composition can sometimes result in such an outcome, this tactic seems to actively negate any amount of preparation.

Without knowing what exactly was discussed before the game began, I am unwilling to unfairly judge any participant (not that anybody would care ), but I am willing to say, that this kind of tactic is quite appalling to me, on either side of the table.

It might be my admittedly limited experience with PFS, but it feels like the scenarios are quite challenging when it comes to the preparation and rules mastery required of the players, and consequently many players tend to grab every advantage they can get.

Not sure how to feel about that in this context. I have no problems when MMOs do it, but the consequences for failure are usually much more limited. I really like the hard mode concept for scenarios, since it is a very optional system.

Oh well, it seems most of the players at this table were happy with the result, and no character permanently died, I guess that is a result.

Silver Crusade

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Swashbuckler Paladin should work, but does limit your weapon and shield choices.

Silver Crusade

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Pretty much anything incorporeal isn't fun when the location allows them to hide in walls.

Other than that ability drain and level drain are some of the nastier abilities.

Silver Crusade

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Everybody, even and especially the ones I could have long message board discussions with.

A try to play with as many people as I can.

Silver Crusade

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Welcome to the society, the previous posters have already given you great advice, the only things I would add:

1. If you are unsure about your character, asking in the Advice part of this forum is generally a good idea. Just mention, that the character is for PFS. And until you are level 2 you can completely remake your character between sessions.

2. Get a PFS number: Go to your profile page, there should be a PFS section. This allows you to create characters (you get a PFS number and all your characters will be listed under that number.) To be honest the people at your event will be able to explain this to you, so this step is not mandatory.

3. Ask for advice and read some of the more useful guides on this part of the board. Alternatively ask other players at or after your first game on the purchases they would recommend. At least one person at the table should be able to give you great suggestions.

Silver Crusade

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Nefreet wrote:

Okay, this blew up over night.

Lots of comments to respond to, so my apologies if I do not reply to yours in particular (any I'm getting ready for work at the moment, so I probably won't be able to respond to many either way).

1st, if you show up at my table using HeroLab, you're getting audited and book-checked. In my experience thus far, that means I've turned away 100% of characters relying on HeroLab. I am completely within my right as a GM to do this.

2nd, having a HeroLab character sheet, printed out and in front of you, is fine. I believe I even mentioned that in an earlier comment. Using the software at the table, and not so much as having a single piece of paper in front of you, is what I take issue with.

3rd, Rules Atrophy. This is a serious repercussion of using HeroLab. I did not begin my stint in PFS with such utter contempt for it. It was earned over time. I've watched it convert once knowledgeable rules gurus into rules idiots. I can think of two people off the top of my head that were fantastic with the rules pre-HeroLab, and who now have forgotten how their characters even work.

I met with the creator of HeroLab at DundraCon last year and told him this. I told him I was becoming his biggest antagonist on the forums, even. When people at the table I was sitting at chastised me, I relented. And what happened? Within the very next encounter we had a heated rules debate that stemmed from using HeroLab.

Removing HeroLab removes an ever-growing thorn from my side, and the sides of other GMs who've had rules debates that interrupted their games.

4th, loss of rules knowledge isn't my only beef. Someone else up thread mentioned several other good ones. Barriers to play and too many technological distractions at the table aren't specifically directed at HeroLab, but if you get rid of one you help get rid of the others.

5th, HeroLab costs money that is not going to Paizo. I'm not sure if it's a regional occurrence, but I've encountered my fair...

responding to your points in order:

1. Call me crazy but I happen to think that some players tend to benefit from an audit. It is not relevant to me, since I dissable all the books I do not own when I make PFS characters (and almost all those sources are PDFs) I would guess, that the majority of users are in the same situation, or have some problem with the additional resources issue that could happen with other sources (like the PRD).

2. The program allows you to prepare and add buffs and similar abilities on the fly, this could help some players with the math (condition cards and the buff deck are a nice alternative).

3. I guess it really matters where you first come into contact with the new rules, in my case this happens 95% of the time by reading the PDF. I can't remember when Hero lab was actually wrong on something, and I even learned a new thing or two by toying with program ( just search my name and the courageous weapon enhancement issue).

I really don't see the issue, unless you use hero lab as a primary source, and honestly, that's usually not a very pleasant reading experience. It tends to help if you have problem understanding a class, and it was very useful to create some sample characters for the last playtest.

Would you be so kind and entertain us with a specific example regarding this complaint?

4. Technology can be an issue, ideally it should enhance the gaming experience, rather than replace it. That said tablets (for PDF, searching the PDR...) are here to stay and we all have to learn to live with it. Especially considering the mobile nature of PFS.

5. I think that HeroLab tends to get money, that Paizo would never have gotten, after all, I am paying Paizo for new content ( and Seioni crossdressing pictures ^^) and Lone Wolf Development for my convenience.
And frankly even using a source like d20pfsrd could have the same result. The GM has to check additional resources, if the player can't produce them, they can't use it.

6. This error could have been made on paper, by me, especially since some maneuvers can benefit from power attack. Frankly things like this can happen even without software assistance, and while this case was unfortunate, learning to use the software is a skill.

7. There is a big difference between a character sheet generated by the player using hero lab and a a player "just" using the software.

If the character is legal and the player can provide all the necessary paperwork, there should be no reason to reject the character.
The relevant fact here, is that HeroLab is just a tool, like a calculator, or an automated character sheet. It is not content and thus can't be part of the additional resources.

It seems a bit like arguing about the colour of dice, as long as they are legal dice some of the finer distinctions should not matter.

8. You are well within your rights as GM to make the players "show their math to you", however what kind of aid players use to provide that information is not and should not be covered in PFS.

After all the Paizo condition cards and buff deck, are not in the additional resources, yet most GMs would accept them as official, even if they only include a part of the text from the CRB.
This issue isn't different, if you are in serious doubt, you can ask the player to provide the original source (if that source isn't the CRB?)so that you can read it yourself. OF course considering errata and faq, the hero lab version might very well be correct and differ from the dead tree format.

Of course I appreciate, that your position has evolved over time, and is partially based on bad experience... and being "a bit of an old woman", but that complaint can be leveled at literally anybody.

Personally I have plenty of totally unfounded antipathy on the current Star Trek movies (without seeing any of them).

Silver Crusade

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You may thank you lucky stars that I happen to have the PDF, and that you can search.

The book is bound in bark, stamped with Sarkorian pictograms. The pages of this "scrapbook" are a mix of parchments, strips of bark and leaves of hammered copper. The book includes a mix of Thassilonian, an Hallit writings, strange geometric designs and math.

Basically the book seems to some kind of compilation from various sources, and considering the fact, that Sarkosis had a history of imprisoning spellcasters in towers... well that is pretty much it.

You can be creative and let players gather individual pages, search for clues in ancient ruins and try to recombine the book.

The novel happens to be very good, and it might give you additional ideas for your campaign.

EDIT: Source page 233 of King of Chaos

Silver Crusade

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I think at this point, I can repeat a something a very smart person (well me obviously ^^ ) said about the whole issue:

“Mythic Adventures works (well mostly the CR system tends to break down a little quicker and thus many of the published mythic monsters are under CR… but you can make it work), WotR as an adventure path works ( obviously part 1 works, but benefits from some more fleshing out and it has issues like other APs, but on the whole the concept works), they don’t work together.

Explanation: A number of Mythic abilities put quite a lot of pressure on adventure design, players tend to have exactly the right spell at the right time, and have a lot more endurance either by being able to spend mythic power instead of other resources, or by spending mythic power to regain limited class resources.
Slightly worse than that, some abilities allow players to go nova, getting access to additional standard actions, ignoring power attack penalties and plenty of other things.

This makes adventure design rather hard, you need to put enough pressure on the players, to force them to use their mythic abilities on regular combat, so they can’t just go nova in the important fights.
Obviously this means, that exhaustion tactics, do not work unless you are capable to pressure the players into a rather narrow time frame for their actions (that or do it like tomb of horrors and “regenerate” everything).

In other word mythic adventure designing is rather hard. And frankly this is something a writer needs to learn, and internalize before writing an adventure. This will quite likely clash with the usual CR calculations, I have stopped using XP, but I appreciate the fact, that a number of GMs still like them.
After the “comments” Paizi received after Dragons Demand, and they way it chose to handle that particular issue, it is apparently a topic high so… yeah.

Oh and by “don’t work together” I mean, that the adventure requires significantly more work that previous adventure paths.

Silver Crusade Star Voter 2015

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Requirement: Creator must be a halfling pirat, missing his left eye in wrestling contest with a bling gnome half dragon paladin ....

Well not this one, but some requirements seem quite specific

Silver Crusade

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Called shots

Silver Crusade

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Some kind of playtest framework could be useful, like:

Level 7:

Budget for permanent protective items: X gold
Budget for weapons/shields: X gold
Budget for expendable magic items: X Gold
Budget free allocate: X Gold

This way you could a limit the amount of money players can spend (to account for the usual expenses characters have while leveling. Maybe limit it to straight classed characters, if you feel that this gives a clearer picture. Personally quite a number of the occult classes seem to scream for a 1 level dip, to get the heaviest armor.

Since playtests are an attempt at escalation (ok guys show us the worst game breaking things you can come up with ^^ ) letting people play something like this could be very informative. Of course giving GM the option not to allow such a playtest pregen should always be the norm, after all even with the current playtest system, what is actually in the PDF, and how the class is supposed to play are two different things. (Just look at the kineticist and the clarifications in the thread).

Silver Crusade

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Grey_Mage wrote:

The evil doers on Golarion are actually pretty stupid. After all, apparently all you need to do is put a NO TRESPASSING sign up. No Paladin can invade your lair no matter what you are doing unless he gets an invitation.

Not that I believe this, but I'm just following the arguments of some people in this thread to their logical conclusion.

You didn't just prove, that all (stupid) Paladins are vampires .... right ?^^

Silver Crusade

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Consider using this spell:

Reduce Animal wrote:

Reduce Animal
School transmutation; Level druid 2, ranger 3

Casting Time 1 standard action
Components V, S

Range touch
Target one willing animal of Small, Medium, Large, or Huge size
Duration 1 hour/level (D)
Saving Throw none; Spell Resistance no

Table: Tiny and Large Weapon Damage

Medium Weapon Damage Tiny Weapon Damage Large Weapon Damage
1d2 — 1d3
1d3 1 1d4
1d4 1d2 1d6
1d6 1d3 1d8
1d8 1d4 2d6
1d10 1d6 2d8
1d12 1d8 3d6
2d4 1d4 2d6
2d6 1d8 3d6
2d8 1d10 3d8
2d10 2d6 4d8
This spell functions like reduce person, except that it affects a single willing animal. Reduce the damage dealt by the animal's natural attacks as appropriate for its new size (see Table: Tiny and Large Weapon Damage to adjust damage for size).

This should allow you to bring your animal into most dungeons, and the animal archive has:

Narrow Frame wrote:

Narrow Frame
Your excellent coordination allows you to maneuver better in close quarters.

Prerequisites: Escape Artist 1 rank, animal or magical beast.

Benefit: You do not take penalties on your attack rolls or to your AC for squeezing through a narrow space that is at least half as wide as your normal space, though each move into or through a narrow space still counts as if it were 2 squares.

Normal: You take a –4 penalty on attack rolls and a –4 penalty to AC while squeezing.

Silver Crusade

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I like the class, even if the summer roots are plain as day. It might be a tad on the weak side, but it certainly shows potential.

Some more touch spells like Frostbite would be welcome, to make the most of the deliver touch spells feature.

The Phantoms DR seems quite good at level 1, but it doesn't seem to scale at all, which is kinda disappointing.

Regarding weapons, I assume, that the Phantom can take Martial Weapon Proficiency, but can they use weapons?

Silver Crusade

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Professor Herp wrote:
LazarX wrote:
zanbato13 wrote:
LazarX wrote:
Chris Mortika wrote:
It's a bigger question than just this spell, of course. If I am trying to cast a spell with an expensive material component, and that spell takes, say, 10 minutes to cast, and I'm interrupted during the first round of casting, can I try again with the same material components?
Nope, with the interruption of casting, the components created by blood money disappear so you've lost the spell you've tried to cast, the components you've conjured to cast it, and you're left with the strength damage you've already taken.
Actually, that's still under debate.
When does ANYTHING on this board ever leave debate?
The immeasurably small amount of time between the moment a question gets FAQ'd and the moment the new debate about the FAQ begins.

I think this is actually a negative amount of time, since we are already quite skilled at discussing potential FAQs/Errata.

Silver Crusade

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This character seems to be a striker, pretty high damage, great mobility and very limited personal abilities.

My only worry, is that most classes can benefit from something like versatile weapon and align weapon even if they can't cast it themselves.
This might provide trouble when a character comes to face something like an Inevitable with DR/chaotic and regeneration/chaotic. And they lack surefire way to deal with incorporeal enemies, since they lack force effects and ghost bane weapons aren't an option.

Other than that, I like the class.

Silver Crusade

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Would it be possible to revise the language of the burn abiltiy, so it works with the mythic recuperation ability? As written a mythic paladin would regain her spells and smites, but burn is not recoverable since requires actual rest.
This quirk would make make Kineticists a much worse choice for mythic adventures.

Silver Crusade

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I am in the "wonderful" situation of not having characters above level 2, so the use of iconics is going to be a semi permanent feature for the foreseeable future. So I don't really have a horse in this race just jet, but for my 2 cents, is this really a problem?

Playing a pregen when you group makeup would otherwise be disastrous for the adventure, or when your character has some personality quirks that spell doom for the scenario.

If the adventure has a reputation for being deadly, it seems reasonable to not want to play their own characters, but it could be seen as a dick move. Of course there are gradients, when you come to a table with your beloved PC, and learn that you sit with a bunch of newbies with pregens.. chances are that your character would have to do the heavy lifting and the chances of failure are higher. I really can't blame the player there.

However the situation mentioned by the OP is different, it that case, it seems like some players are unwilling to take risks, thus increasing the risk for the other players with "real" characters. And of course, in many cases this will result in the players with non-pregens expending more personal resources on behalf of the party.
That seems to be a dick move, but I don't think we want society rules to restrict players in this area.

Silver Crusade

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Take a long hard look at the level 7 stat adjustments of a large cat animal companion and compare them to a dire tiger, that is pretty much what you get.

Silver Crusade

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I like to read scenarios after I have played them, and it is pretty nice to know that sometimes GMs manage to make copper look like gold ^^

Of course I have purchased adventures that I haven't run yet, that is just one of the realities or our situation.

Silver Crusade

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Well I don't think it is that unusual for a level 4 or 7 character to own a partially charged wand, after all this is true for nearly every PFS character since wands of cure light wounds seem to be mandatory.

Level 1 with wands are a little bit more unusual, but the pregens are usually only played for one mission, thus their expendables likely won't be used up. This is a nice change from previous pregens, since this allows them to contribute without burdening other players for stuff^^.

Silver Crusade

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Skeld wrote:
magnuskn wrote:
Skeld wrote:
magnuskn wrote:
grandpoobah wrote:
Then again, we're already seeing book 3 of Iron Gods this week, so maybe WOTR is yesterday's news....
Most probably. The devs have stopped paying attention to the board for months now. It all kinda feeds into my perception that Paizo is kind off just running in front of the lion of game mechanic problems they have created, by pushing out new products as fast as they can.

They're putting out APs at a rate of about 1/month. Just like they've done for the last 7+ years. The pace hasn't changed.


What I mean is that the developers are introducing new rules (Mythic Adventures, ACG, upcoming stuff, prior sub-systems in other AP's) which are not suffiently tested, often function clunkily at best and won't get erratae'd/FAQ'ed for years. And that they are just forging ahead with this approach and are leaving a mess behind them. AP's are of course unchanged, but many of them have suffered from those badly developed sub-systems in the past and probably will in the future.

Some of your points I sort of agree with, while others I don't agree with. I'm glad you clarified your statement, however.


I think it would be reasonable for Paizo to stop a bit, maybe delay product a bit, take a few weeks and take a hard look at the current state of the game. And of course take care of some FAQ issues and Errata.

Silver Crusade

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I would welcome this change, it is not relevant to my characters, but since there doesn't seem to be a reason not to allow it ...

Silver Crusade

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David Bowles wrote:
You know, that makes me think. Maybe we should dual societies. Maybe we should have an Aspis Society as well and the convention events could be pvp.

PVP is a very very bad idea, table variantion alone would ruin it.

Silver Crusade

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Andreas Forster wrote:
Sebastian Hirsch wrote:

Doesn't this vow impose an unfair burden on the other players?

After all, a monk with this vow is unable to own a wand of CLW, a potion of remove disease and .... well plenty of other things.

Considering Painlords suggestions, you pretty much have nothing in that list.
And this leaves the other players at the table 2 options, use their resources on the monk, or don't do so and risk a character death or worse a TPK.

Wands of Cure light Wounds are no party healers, they're backup items.

If there's a healer in the party, that character has renewable resources with which to heal injured characters. If there isn't, then healing will consume non-renewable resources.
Also, owning a Wand of Cure light Wounds is not mandatory. Everybody who buys such a wand, however, should know that his wand may have to be used as backup healing.
Also, that monk will fulfill a role as well. Many will have a few Qigong Monk abilities to make use of all their Ki points. Also, monks can be good damage dealers and/or good tanks.

If that monk just does nothing productive which might lead to increased cost in resources or even a TPK, then yes, there's an unfair burden. But it's not the vow that causes the unfair burden, it's the way the monk is played.
Such a player should just be talked to. Maybe he/she simply doesn't know they're making bad tactical choices. But always remember to be polite in such a matter, in most cases there's some kind of concept idea behind that character and what appears to be bad tactics to one person in fact fits the character idea perfectly.

In short, I'm tired of the general assumption that everybody has to bring a Wand of CLW to create a "fair" game.

A Wand of CLW is only the very first object I decided to mention, that the monk can't have. It only gets worse from there. I won't list everything the monk can't readily provide for himself, and items that would allow him to deal with temporary/permanent conditions, but he also can't invest in some of the staple items (the big 6), so among other things dealing with DR might be a problem.

But ok, if the player has wants his character to shoot himself in the foot, first thing in the morning, so be it.

Your argument about healers doesn't really work IMO, sure if the party has a character with somewhat dedicated healing resources (eg. Channel Energy), great, but I think assuming anything else is might be stretching it.
A Warpriest will quite likely plan to use his fervor to buff/heal himself, the same is true for a paladin capable of converting his lay on hands into smites and of course cleric spells.

Of course we should always cooperate, but when a player decides to play a concept, that is extremely reliant on the cooperation and resources of other party members, things get muddy.

If a play someone capable of healing, and now have to heal the stupid barbarian, that charged enraged (-4 AC) into the ranks of the enemy without wearing armor, cause it didn't fit his concept.

I know that playing stupid, and playing a substandard concept aren't the same thing, but with the above example, the barbarian could have bought a better healing wand for the cleric, or a wand of mage armor to help with his AC.

A monk with vow of poverty, does not have this option. Pretty much all he can do is "beg" his fellow party members for buffs (mage armor) and healing, since he is not capable of providing it.

This concept can work in a home game with a permanent group, but since you PFS often consists of pretty random groups...

It may sound insulting, but if someone drops his sick dog on my doorstep, I will make sure it gets medical attention, but I won't thank him for it.

Obviously once you sit at the table with a new player, things aren't nearly as critical, but I still think that taking the vow is a bad trade, the quigong archetype helps just a bit.

Silver Crusade

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Look I don't have the time right now, but I have answered this question quite a number of times already, just searching in my posts should find you answer.

Sorry if this sounds rude, but the answer to that particular question is usually quite long. And remember 5 players are substantially more powerful than 4.

Silver Crusade

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Doesn't this vow impose an unfair burden on the other players?

After all, a monk with this vow is unable to own a wand of CLW, a potion of remove disease and .... well plenty of other things.

Considering Painlords suggestions, you pretty much have nothing in that list.
And this leaves the other players at the table 2 options, use their resources on the monk, or don't do so and risk a character death or worse a TPK.

Can you when this leads to a TPK, and the monk just says "Oh well I have plenty of PP to spare..." while the other characters are just plain dead?

Silver Crusade

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Vic Wertz wrote:
Sebastian Hirsch wrote:

I supported the recent legendary gamess mythic kickstarter, and the plan seems to be to send out the pdfs to us, then gather the feedback to fix every typo and only then send it to the printer.

I appreciate, that this might cause some trouble with retail, but would this be an option you would be willing to experiment with?

Crowdsourcing development and editing come with their own problems. Yes, you will probably catch and fix more mistakes, but the in-house effort spent to find each issue will be significantly higher. Let me give you a small-scale example:

Whenever we prepare to reprint a book, we have somebody—usually Jason—scan the FAQ queue and go through the main discussion threads for that product looking for things that need to be fixed. This is a process that might take a few days. Then, he and his team work on solving those problems if they haven't already been solved. During this process, they will also be investigating problem reports that are actually false positives; for example, somebody might have complained that a number in a stat block is wrong, but when we redo the math, we often find that we were right in the first place. This might take another few days. At the end of it, we have a list of changes that then go through editing, layout, and proofing, meaning more people spending more days. And the end result of that work gets summed up in an errata doc that's usually less than a page or two. In short, many man-hours of effort that result in maybe a dozen little changes.

Now image that we do that as an open call. Our days would turn into weeks, and maybe our errata doc would grow from a dozen items to two dozen, with each of the additional items very likely being far less noticeable than the previous dozen. It's the law of diminishing returns.

And crowdsourcing still won't catch everything. We're in our 6th printing of the Core Rulebook now, and in each printing, we've made corrections in response to our community identifying...

Yes it may not be perfect, but a concentrated proofreading of fresh eyes might be able to catch quite a bit. Problems where an ability is not clearly written (example:Hunter pet skirmisher tricks), where an ability was changed and the changes to the monsters were't updated (Mythic Adventures), or when an item is printed without a saving throw (ACG Cape of Feinting).

These are the sort of errors a most people will be able to find, of course there are others, who take the time to correct things on the level of an editor (the Mythic Adventures errata threat has a good example of this). I think this would be a nice way to prevent some of the negative feelings resulting from some of the recent releases.

Obviously this would not catch everything, some combinations (Mythic x your level of system proficiency) are quite difficult to spot.

Silver Crusade

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Wiggz wrote:
Piccolo Taphodarian wrote:

I don't need much (if any) assistance as a DM other than Paizo to stop releasing combinations like this. I've been DMing over 30 years. Of course I don't need much assistance. It's a rare event that someone introduces an idea as a DM that I have not already thought of.

My problem is not my DMing skill. I'm about as good as they come at challenging players. That's why I can run a high-powered mythic campaign and have any hope of challenging my players without killing them. Because that's also the goal...not to kill them and make it fun, while challenging them. But when stuff like this gets put in the game, Paizo makes that very hard to do for the reasons I have already explained.

I disagreed quite vociferously with the introduction of the Mythic ruleset - I disagreed that it was needed to tell this particular story and I disagreed with the presumption that 'more rules = better rules', but predictably my objections went largely unheard, drowned out by the chorus of 'MOAR!', so I simply chose to exercise my privilege as GM to not use the rules. We just recently finished a completely Mythic-free run of Wrath of the Righteous and it was one of the best campaigns we've ever had, second only to a very memorable Skull n' Shackles AP.

I find that its almost always better to decide ahead of time what it is you want in your games, rather than to give your players free reign from the outset to do as they like and then spend all your time trying to stop them from doing what they like after the fact. That puts you in danger of becoming adversarial with them which can be a terrible position when the entire goal is cooperative story-telling.

Just my two cents.

I think that the mythic rulesset has the distinct potential for less rules, if used correctly.

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Ok to make this short and sweet, would I like Paizo to fix some combinations I personally think are broken, yes.

Will it happen, no.

Do I think Gunslingers with perma stun, a magus taking down a dragon with a critical calcific touch, ranger archers with APG spells...... will be changed any time soon? No.

Just cause two rules create a very powerful combo doesn't mean that Paizo has to see everything. And frankly some of the mythic feats are pretty much garbage.

Just look at mythic power attack and mythic furious focus.

I think it bears repeating, you have to decide between buffing the monsters or nerfing the players, the end result might be the same.
Just saying.

And I still don't see why dazing spell is apparently so good.

The fact that the party is very effective, is nothing new and I am still arguing, that their power equals about 2 parties, not 1 1/2.

I'll try to go into more detail tomorrow, but at this point most suggestions will be how to handle the players given the information you provided. If you give different, or more loot, or allow for more crafting time (ENFORCE THE LIMITS FROM ULTIMATE CAMPAIGN AT ALL TIMES^^) things will change.

In this case the player seems to have found a nice combo (oh and remember you can still sunder the armor, or the gauntlet. "Attacking him is rather vague). But yeah, plenty of ways around that, and killing the rest of the party first, should make things easier.
If that is your mindset, but to be honest, if the players come to the table with some hyper competitive build, this seems like a declaration of war.

IIRC Come and Get me is based on Robiliars Gamit, some beast from the dark ages (3.5), is apparently some important fighter from Greyhawk with a metal horse.

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A: The more complex this system become, the more likely things like this are going to be. It is going to happen.

B: You can still say no to come and get me.

C: This tactic goes online at level 12, plenty of time to kill the character, and if it doesn't work there are plenty of options.

DR: If the enemy DR is significant enough, even all those attacks will not sting that much.

Confusion and mind control, ranged attacks of all kinds, mirrors of opposition, fire shield and similar effects, swarms that immune to weapon damage and plenty of other effects.

HOWEVER, just like dealing with archers this can feel quite unfair for the player, instead of every enemy suddenly having wind wall or fickle winds active .. other things happen.

One of the problems here is, that the downsides (suffering more damage) are almost entirely eaten by that insane trait. But since you go for superpowerfull you might as well leave them in there.

From your second post, I assume that you don't really want help, cause I know how this tango is played:

GM"My player is overpowered"
US"So just do not allow the overpowered option/combination"
GM"But ... ... ... reasons."
US"So just use the following things"
GM"But that isn't fun for the player, he will feel unfairly victimized"
US"Well yeah, if I you make yourself almost immune to getting hit on the head, people will start kicking you in the stomach."

But yeah, a witch or a magus with the evil eye and retribution hexes should ruin the barbarians day, there are other spells and effects.

So yeah to reiterate my first suggestion, kill it with fire.

And a question, how is that character supposed to heal ?

Other than the oracle, but that healing will feel like a drop in the bucket.

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I would describe it like this:

Mythic rules are an optional subsystem that exists in addition to the traditional level structure. Mythic characters can access a wide array of powers, that allow them have in and out of combat options, that aren't available to non-mythic characters.

It is intended to allow players to replicate the epic feats of characters of legendary status. Examples of mythic abilities are: a fighter that can grab and defelect a ray with his bare hand, a rogue getting the ability to become invisible at will, a spellcaster gaining the ability to cast any spell on their spell list without having to prepare or know them.

Mythic rules can be used for a variety of things, some GMs might chose to reward their players with mythic tiers rather than class levels. This can result in more powerful characters, without access to certain high level abilities. That can be very useful.

They can also be used to improve monsters, and create memorable challenging encounters.

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If you want a quick fix, I would suggest a combination of advanced simple template and the templates on page 224 of Mythic Adventures, particularly Invincible and Agile. Arcane and Divine can be a good choice, if you want then to have some sort of evasive ability (blink, mirror immage, fly, teleport...)

And remember that you can always just increase the mythic rank to give it another mythic ability (fortification is often quite good).

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Liz Courts wrote:
Sebastian Hirsch wrote:
Might I suggest rolled up Pfannkuchen filled with jam or Nutela?
Just give me a spoon. That Nutella will get taken care of.

Can't we have to conserve resources this years nut harvest might be pretty bad (about 70% of the nuts in Nutella come from Turkey and their harvest is projected to be terrible this year.

He have to make it last.... also you can put Nutella and Bananas on top ^^ Maybe even some (white) chocolate shavings^^

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Scribbling Rambler wrote:

Mark's post on negative conditioning has implications well beyond the FAQ.

For example, when I see a particular community member who posts negative comments on every single AP, it is much harder to recognize any valid criticsms they may have. So my eyes tend to slide past their posts.

And that is for me as a casual observer - imagine what it must be like for somebody who is directly involved in the creation of the product.

Valid criticism is important, and the folks at Paizo are very good at taking it and responding when appropriate. However, when it becomes apparent that a poster will never be pleased, there's not much point in changing things to please them.

Well I think, there are legitimate ways to see this situation:

-Some people just need a place to vent, their frustrations with the adventure paths as written. The causes for those problems will likely stay the same, frankly I doubt that even a small fraction of players plays adventure paths exactly with as written or following the assumptions: 15 pts. point buy, 4 players, suggested wealth per level.... and the more you group diverges from these assumptions....
I could go on but you get the idea.

-They have legitimate complaints, no AP is perfect and mistakes do happen. Personally I have a couple of problems with Kingmaker, the kingdom building system, was as written in the AP, pretty broken (magic items...) and the subplot that gets resolved with the 6th adventure, is not very well foreshadowed. But those are the risks of trying something new. I have not played Skulls and Shackles, but it looked pretty solid to me.

James Jacobs wrote:
Sebastian Hirsch wrote:

Is there any chance of paizo taking a good look at MA and finding a way to make it more compatible with the Adventure Path? Not asking for anything extensive, just something reasonably short for us to point out to GMs asking if the AP is playable. Call it a mod if you will.

I know that Paizo is incredibly busy, but this could seriously reduce the level of complaints.

Not without sacrificing the quality we're hoping to give for our current projects. Which would be self-defeating and cause more problems than it would (in theory) solve.

I think Pathfinder Unchained might solve some of the problems/offer alternatives for perceived problems, that are multiplied by a number of mythic abilities.

Alternatively I am quite willing to purchase Mythic Rechained.

Jessica Price wrote:
Orthos wrote:
Thehigher cause wrote:
TheJayde wrote:
BigDTBone wrote:

There is absolutely no one better to judge the acceptable level of quality than the consumer.

I dont know if that's true.

The consumer as a whole is a broad term. The bigger the consumer base, the more base the product must be to appeal to the broadest group of people. Appealing to consumers on a broad level tends to make things dumbed down and uninteresting.

The Consumer is ultimately a big o' ball of bi-polarity. Too many people want one thing. I think its best if the product is simmply based on the image of what the devs think it should be, and that the community hopefully agrees enough to keep the company afloat.

How can that not be true??
Because the Customer is NOT Always Right.
Not saying it's the case in this particular instance, but: because what vocal posters say they want/say they're buying/say about how they're playing and what data shows the majority of customers actually do/what they buy/how they play are often radically different.

Voting with my wallet, seems like a nice idea, but it is rather hard to do. I still like Mythic Adventures, I like they way they decided to to it (mythic tiers as a separate system to levels), and as a fan of the old ELH stuff, this is still better.

I bought MA twice, as well as mythic origins (completely different power level aside from one thing, but a nice product) as well as the adventure path. My problem is, that I also buy quite a lot of other things, I am still quite lukewarm about the recent adventure path, but I don't expect too run it.. ever. It is just somethinge nice to read, and steal ideas from.

Are reviews an answer ?

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James Jacobs wrote:
magnuskn wrote:
Skeld wrote:

Lesson learned.


Did they? We'll see.

Iron Gods's new rules were written by the same guy who's developing Iron Gods.

Hell's Rebels and Giantslayer aren't linked to ANY new rules in any significant way.

Make of that what you will.

Great change, I haven't sunk my teeth into the the technology guide yet, but the AP looks promising (since there is no way in hell, that I can ever GM this for my "traditional" players, the fact that I am still subscribed should be a good sign).

Is there any chance of paizo taking a good look at MA and finding a way to make it more compatible with the Adventure Path? Not asking for anything extensive, just something reasonably short for us to point out to GMs asking if the AP is playable. Call it a mod if you will.

I know that Paizo is incredibly busy, but this could seriously reduce the level of complaints.

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Ssalarn wrote:

Actually, the biggest problem with Mythic Adventures was that Paizo listened too closely to their fans. Most of the big issues with the system can be traced to changes that players wanted during the playtest, including the comparative value of mythic tiers, the strength and implementation of some of the more troublesome abilities, etc.

I think that if you think Paizo isn't listening to its players, you aren't paying attention.

Yeah, sorry, but I have to call BS on that one, and while adding tiers to an existing character is one issue, eg. adding a single tier to a level 17 character, caster or otherwise, can be a massive boost in power, a fighter getting mythic power attack, fleet charge and mythic vital strike (exchanging a path abilitiy for an extra feat) is a massive boost. Adding a tier to a level 1 character has a far weaker effect.

But when it comes to the playtest, one of the things that wasn't properly tested was adventure design, and the effects mythic abilities have on certain assumptions.

And plenty of people have spoken out against abilities like mythic power attack, channel power and mythic spellcasting. The number of things a mythic channel power meteor swarm can't kill is rather low.
This feedback was pretty much ignored.
It does not help that the AP has plenty of encounters that would be trivial for players (APL-2 or just APL) even without mythic abilities.

No, too much listening really wasn't the problem, you can blame the assumption that APs are intended for non- optimized players, but a fighter taking power attack and mythic power attack is pretty much a baseline assumption.
Those abilities should not all have been in the same pool of choices.

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Zhangar wrote:

** spoiler omitted **

Yeah, his default tactics are awful, but the AP writer isn't out to kill the party. You, as the GM, are free to take a different approach =P

Edit: I'll second what Ssarlan says right above me. Low levels are easy to design encounters for, because low level characters are pretty consistently gooberish. High level characters have widely ranging levels of power and specialties, and a trivial encounter for one set of characters could be a near or actual TPK for another set.

Though I do think Paizo lowballed the median numbers of higher CR creatures, which becomes much more evident as you approach and go past CR 20.

Aside: I'd say that Carrion Crown is actually consistently mean all through the AP, but high level PCs are just better able to deal with it than lower level PCs, and so it becomes much less noticable. The ever-expanding toolbox of a high-level party means that they're a lot less likely to be missing the tool for an unexpected job.

Ssalarn wrote:
Zhangar wrote:

** spoiler omitted **

Yeah, his default tactics are awful, but the AP writer isn't out to kill the party. You, as the GM, are free to take a different approach =P

Yeah, if you actually play that guy to the hilt and ignore the stupendously poor suggested tactics, the party needs some serious luck, strategy, and one or two miracles to win the encounter. That really has the potential to be one of the most difficult encounters in the entire AP, despite the party's relative strength at that point. It's only the BBEG's mysterious aneurism that leads to inexplicably poorly thought out actions that make it easy on the default setting.

Yeah the setup is crazypants, which makes it soo much worse, since that particular NPCs is currently highly vulnerable. Charging into combat against a group, that just defeated some of his greatest minions (and taking the time to kill the remaining ones first).

Players should not kill that particular NPC in one round by being lucky. If you read the other stuff in that encounter, it is pretty clear that the writer assumes that the PCs will choose to retreat.

But what will happen at this part of their adventuring carrer, is that he will get lacerated by bane arrows.

You might argue that this is the same hubris, that lead to him getting that fancy tatoo (still trying to be vague, but to lazy for a spoiler ^^), but one would assume he learned from that.

A real fight against this guy is supposed to be a pretty handcraftet affair with enemies chosen by the boss, to counter the PCs. Yeah still pretty unhappy with that encounter, especially since the most logical tactic includes abusing mythic time stop.

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captain yesterday wrote:
so if you were adding on to monsters in kingmaker why pile on to wrath? You already know the RAW dont work for you so why are you stirring the pot?

My guess is, that when it comes to this AP the difference between a group that does try to avoid the good options and pretty much everyone else is ridiculous.

If you slap a couple of mythic tiers on the iconics even they will be able to succeed to an almost comical degree.

Even Kingmaker hat fighs as written that seriously challenged my group - turns out mind controll is even better when you group is optimized but doesn't bother with protection from evil.

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DrDeth wrote:

Quality isn't slipping (from what I have actually played with), but the response time on the FAQ and other errata is getting unacceptable.

And that's from *ME*, who is usually called one of those "most staunch Paizo fanboys".

I agree, we really need some clarifications on ACG, and frankly MY could use some strategic nerfs to make it more compatible with WotR.

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nosig wrote:

so, where do you draw the line on tactics like this?

if 5 of the 6 players have Darkvision, is it ok for the Tiefling to drop a darkness when the monsters DON'T have Darkvision?

just a couple weeks ago, I was running a game where the PCs are ambushed by a bunch of halflings (no darkvision). It happened outside, during daylight hours... The party is 2 Dwarvs, a tiefling, an aasimar, a Sylph, and a human (I think)... so the tiefling dropped a darkness.

Dim light - so no sneak dice ("all halflings are rogues right?"), and the human has a 20% miss chance... so - is this enough for it to be PvP?

How about if it had been night and he would have blinded the human (and the bad guys)?

What if only 4 of 6 the PCs had darkvision? 3 of 6? where does it get to be an issue?

It gets to be an issue once not everybody in the group is ok with the tactic. If the players without darkvision don't mind that they will have problem, there is a meeting of the minds, and thus no conflict.

These problems can be solved just by talking to the others players.

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Mike Bramnik wrote:

...Hell, if someone like that comes and wants to play, and is brave enough to tell us what they're dealing with, I'll buy them a few .pdfs. If your reaction to someone like this coming to PFS is "well, they shouldn't play anything non-core until they can afford to", you're obviously in a secure enough of a place that you can pay it forward a little, can't you?


From where I am sitting there are two sides to the issue:

-Players who do have the money, but are unwilling to support the hobby. If someone comes to a game with expensive desinger clothing, and drinks two cans of a brand energy drink, and eats snack to excess, chances are that he deserves a bit of a stern talk (particularly if he often has to borrow books from other players on the table).
The pdf of a CRB cost less than 3 packs of MTG cards, and frankly even 50-60 $ are an insignificant amount of money when it comes to that particular game and many others.
Now I don't mind if a player like this, is unwilling to spend money right away, but there comes a point where it becomes unreasonable.

-Players with financial struggles. They exist, frankly I never noticed it before, but I like to think that we are a charitable bunch. I don't mind sharing dice or books if someone has a really hard time.
To paraphrase Yahtzee in his Sim City review: "Poor people, why would they want to play a god game?"

Especially when your real life is hard, it is nice to find a way to escape that situation, if only for a little bit.
We are in the very fortunate situation, that hour hobby doesn't require much more than a pen, a bit of paper, and when it comes down to it 3 dice (d20, d12 and d8 those can simulate all the others). Of course these days we have all those wonderful ways to make it better, but I think we should not forget to leverage this strength of the medium.


Now when it comes to both groups, I think it is worth mentioning the idea or piracy that I subscribe to:
The first Idea is that piracy is a service problem, about ten years ago you couldn't get legal pdfs, so they were pirated by those who wanted them, no two ways about it. Now pathfinder, makes the CRB and those rules heavy books UC, UM... very affordable, and offers the material online, for free. I think we are golden on that front.

The other idea is to not see the pirat as an enemy, but as a potential customer. Sure plenty of young and or poor people won't be able to purchase your products right now, but they might be able to purchase product in the future.
I suspect, this is one reason, why the CRB sales are reportedly still rising, and it is worth mentioning that many gamers tend to go for the premium option, if it is offered (sure I could always use the SRD, but that leather bound CRB looks amazing).

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4 players, but starting with the second one some of them can have a fancy tea party, while 1 or two fight.

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Under A Bleeding Sun wrote:

To many single target BBEG's where a slumber hex just ends it.

Seconded.... a million trillion times.

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Since I have posted this times and times again in the Wotr area, so to keep this short:

- Either mythic characters are fine, or mythic monsters are fine, they do not work in combination, characters are just to good.

- Mythic rules break the encounters per day structure

- Mythic magic items seem fine (with the possible exception of mythic bane)

A 2-3 PDF "errata" could fix it.

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Fromper wrote:
DM Beckett wrote:
In that particular scenario, the creature in question does not actually have the Robot Subtype, so it's not actually going against the rules to use Know Arcana.

I understand the reason for the ruling, but it still doesn't make much sense. It means knowledge (arcana) is the proper skill for that particular technology based... err... "situation". It might work according to the rules, but it's so counter-intuitive that most people won't even think of it.

DM Beckett wrote:
But it doesn't help against the first encounter just trying to get into the museum which is pretty brutal.

At the higher sub-tier, my group pretty much just assumed they were constructs, so adamantine would work. And we had some other things that would do enough damage to get past DR/hardness the hard way. At the lower sub-tier, most groups won't have any adamantine, and only a small percentage of groups are likely to have the other weakness for those enemies. I can see how that would be really rough.

On our local group's signup web site, we've got this scheduled to run in a few weeks, and I've already posted comments warning people that they should avoid the lower sub-tier. Nobody seems to be taking me seriously, though. It looks like we'll have at least one table at each sub-tier. I'm going to insist on GMing the higher sub-tier, because I don't want to be there for the lower one.

Yeah I played the subtier, it was a bucket of fun. My Kyra rolled superb when it came to melee attack rolls, but even max damage didn’t have an effect. Fortunately we had a fighter with an adamantine waraxe.

And lacking the required Knowledge, the adventure ended, with Kyra almost getting eaten by “some weird silver swarm thing”. Only from conversation with other groups, that played the adventure on a higher level, did we learn about the alternate options… and frankly the group had no way to access that very specific spell. Oh and another group at the same event, didn’t get through the first encounter for “hard” reasons.

The GM did his best, but the adventure didn’t leave a great impression (the fighter wasn’t happy about the interaction between deflect arrows and lasers) .

I can understand why you would prefer to avoid GMing the subtier.

Incidentally, I the next purchase with my hunter will be 8-10 durable adamantine arrows, so that particular problem is won’t come back to bite me (yeah they might be a bit cheesy but 10 arrows is nothing for a hunter, and I would prefer to avoid cheesing with abundant ammunition).
The really sad thing is, that a durable adamantine arrow, used as an improvised melee weapon, might be the optimal purchase for characters attempting this module.

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KestlerGunner wrote:

Can't we just use magic to disintegrate this bugbear (like we do for every problem)?

Aura faint transmutation; CL 6th
Slot none; Price 500 gp; Weight 1 lb.
This silver Wayfinder has a steel button, that, when pressed, causes a buzzing green sonic field to emit from the other end of the device. This beam can scan technological material and impart a psychic understanding of the scanned target into the wielder's mind. When the wielder stands adjacent to the target and uses the Sonic Wayfinder on any technological device, including creatures, they are treated as having the Technologist feat for the purpose of skill checks.
Requirements Fabricate, Craft Wondrous Item, ; Cost 250 gp

I take issue with that item. It is way too cheap, and the colour seems kinda wrong (blue just seems right). And it understanding stuff, doesn’t seem to fit, how about:

“You can make substitute the bluff skill, when interacting with technology. If you do not have Technologist feat, you suffer a -10 penalty on the roll. Does not work on wood or food.” ^^

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hxcmike wrote:
any reason why Sanguine Wildblooded got the banhammer all of a sudden? I have a friend who will be affected by this and I know she's going to be bummed out.

The dhampir and aasimar blood consumption options have been banned too.

Your friend might have to switch to potions of infernal healing, still kinda evil (and might very well look like blood, after all that is the material component) but PFS legal.

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