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Ways to bypass hardness are important in S6 and there's a feat tax to do anything knowledge-y for the season. There are no longer faction missions for prestige, but a primary/secondary goal for the table, the secondary of which is not explicitly stated most of the time, but you can figure it out typically.
I would recommend reviewing the Additional Resources to see if the legality of your characters has changed since 2012.
I had hoped to play this weekend, but I'm still missing a chronicle from my Tuesday game and the local organizers picked scenarios that I'd already played. Sadly, this means I won't be able to assist anymore during the playtest period.
I do plan to play Drusk in PFS going forward as I have the 1 line boon to do it. Mark, would you want more data after the playtest period? If so, how would you like that communicated?
I agree with your ruling, RD, especially if the player is dual-wielding sabres. RAW does not explicitly allow it and RAI would almost certainly forbid it. I mean, it's hard to see why you would allow non-lethal when this is the definition:
A coup de grâce (/ˌkuː də ˈɡrɑːs/; French for "blow of mercy") is a death blow to end the suffering of a severely wounded person or animal. It may be a mercy killing of civilians or soldiers, friends or enemies, with or without the sufferer's consent.
[PFS] Survivability of Fullcasters at level 1? Or is it impossible to make your first PFS character a fullcaster without getting some GM or pre-gen credit first?
I want an initiative booster at level 1 such as noble scion or improved initiative, so sadly toughness at level 1 is not an option without getting it as a bonus feat somehow. I suppose that means sorcerer is totally out from a survivability standpoint, correct? What about oracle, in that case? How survivable are oracles at level 1?
I understand your desire for an initiative booster. When you get 3 experience, you can trade out Toughness for either Imp Init or Noble Scion at no cost through the level 1 rebuild rules. It's on page 10 of the Guide to Pathfinder Society Organized Play, for reference.
[PFS] Survivability of Fullcasters at level 1? Or is it impossible to make your first PFS character a fullcaster without getting some GM or pre-gen credit first?
Take Toughness as a level 1 feat. When you get 3 XP, retrain it to something that you want or, if you want Toughness (it's honestly a good choice), keep it.. BAM! Survivability problem solved.
Seriously, it's not a big problem. As a Kitsune, in fact, you get around one of the most deadly things that scenario writers tend to put in: Favored Enemy (Human). In fact, if you consistently tend towards the back of the marching order, you'll likely have no problems avoiding melee, which is where most of the damage is, anyway.
My understanding of retraining is that you are treated as though you never had the relevant class features. If that is the case, then retraining out of all your Oracle levels would result in no longer having said "disadvantage." I put that in quotes because some of them (deaf, lame) could be seen as quite advantageous for other classes.
Going back to the old PS1 days here, and they may only be obscure here in Australia, but I always wondered why the Legend of Dragoon and Legend of Legaia never got more attention. I know that Legend of Dragoon is at least available on PSN on the North American and Asian PSN as classic games, but for some reason they never released it on the store here. Disappointing too, as it's not likely to be due to a licensing issue, since it was a Sony owned and developed title to begin with as well as having had a local release back when it first came out, but given that they seem to have stopped releasing more classic titles for the most part, it looks like it's something that won't ever be corrected.
Legend of Dragoon was a cool story, but it was incredibly frustrating to play if you were tired or couldn't manage the combos consistently.
Legend of Legaia was fabulous. I have my copy sitting upstairs.
Jayson MF Kip wrote:
"It's a skin condition. No, Remove Disease won't help. Why do you have to be so mean?"
Some players might be offended, some will likely be completely oblivious to it, and others might think it's pretty cool. This is the same general breakdown of any other table activity, including a complete lack of roleplaying or table interaction besides combat.
I would expect that the player share this information with the GM, but that the GM keep the OOC/IC metagame barrier in place for his monsters and enemies.
Need more playtests to unlock extra stuff.
Freedom and Oppression don't sound like alignments because there's a longstanding tradition of Law and Chaos as alignments, which specifically skews Chaos as "less positive." Dynamic vs Static or Individualism vs Collectivism would cover it just as well. The idea in renaming here is to put Chaos on more friendly footing with Law, or even superior footing, given that Chaos typically gets relegated to the same realm as Evil with no particularly good justification.
The system historically assumes heroic characters. When we look at abilities like Cook People, it seems fairly obvious that this was intended as a mechanical ability specifically for certain aberrant enemies. Sure, there are spells and abilities with the [Evil] descriptor that are more player-centric, but a large number of them are designed to be relatively table-unfriendly to discourage use or to specifically label a target as Evil.
That should be the case. Specifically:
its wearer needs only sleep 2 hours per day to gain the benefit of 8 hours of sleep.
Healing, Combat section of CRB wrote:
With a full night's rest (8 hours of sleep or more)
Zak Glade wrote:
Norgorber worshippers, too.
Actual (para)phrases heard at tables in my region:
"I have been touched by Arshea and you can be touched by Arshea, too. Arshea is the way." (one of many local Clerics)
"He told that guy to drop his weapon and he did, I told that guy to die and he did. I must be a Cleric too!" (Barbarian, upon witnessing a Command spell. There were valiant attempts to heal things later.)
As I tell other people, coming to PFS with an elaborate backstory is pointless. The rest of the table isn't going to really care about that. What you can and should bring to the table is a set of character guidelines: "What would my character do if (X) happened?" This allows you to collaborate with the table, generally, or create interesting conflict, but it doesn't require that the table know who you are. Let's be honest, until at least level 3 or 4, most characters are relatively indistinguishable, anyway.
It could be that your region is full of people who look at scenarios as puzzles to be solved rather than experiences to play through, perhaps. I would be surprised if that were the case.
Drusk the Bear is now level 4. For some reason, I allowed myself to be dragged through a subtier 6-7 with a Fighter 7, Cleric 5/Ranger 1, Rogue 6, and Magus 5.
Yes, we all survived. Barely. And creatively. I'm happy to report that Drusk is now eligible to join the Blakros family whenever he obtains the requisite 20 PP. That'll probably happen.
As always, I'm not spoilering. Read at your own peril, Pathfinders!
Drandle Dreng (that rascal!) wakes us up in the middle of the night to do paperwork, as he is wont to do, then hurriedly sends us to the Blakros Museum. We opt to skip the exposition here. I'm tired, so I take a backseat on the RP train while the foppish Elf Magus does much of the talking/doing.
First encounter: Robots! With DR 15/Adamantine! As I could not bypass this with my pitiful claws and bite, I pulled out the greataxe and went to town. Fighter had an adamantine weapon, Magus did his thing with Shocking Grasp. I opted to conserve my Trances in case I need them later and we quickly disable these menaces.
The rogue successfully diplomances the Technic lady (Diplomancy being the least appreciated school of magic), so she gives us a gun and a flashbang. We successfully locate all of the secrets in all of the land, including all of the emergency kits and the secret stairwell. The Magus steals Nigel's nameplate and breaks it in half out of spite, as he has previously been here for Mists of Mwangi.
Encounter the second: PLANT! The GM allowed me to Survival to discern if it was dangerous, which went well. The Cleric/Ranger got a little gung-ho and started the encounter. The plant blinds the Rogue and me, who get max rounds and proceed to hide in a hallway. Fighter gets swallowed. Magus and Cleric/Ranger pretend to be useful for a few rounds until we're all back up, save for the poor Fighter. I cast Enlarge on myself just in time for the Magus to obliterate the plant. The fighter is healed from -14 (15 CON baby!) back to full.
Encounter 3: LOL, there's a robot we skipped because we came up the secret stairwell and didn't go into the other area. Good on us because we still ran over.
Encounter 4: OOZE! I decided that natural weapons seemed ill-advised for things with tumors, so I re-Enlarge myself. I attack one with my greataxe, see it heal, and decide to improvise a blunt weapon by using some of the taxidermy in the hall. That worked remarkably well. I left said taxidermy on top of the Tyrant Lizard after the oozes were slain. No growths, thankfully.
Encounter 5: Magus starts this encounter by wandering up the stairs out of boredom, sees the robot and Pendleton, and starts out with Glitterdust. Both fail and are blind. I trance into Big Sky for the DR/Hardness ignoring. Magus had used the token for the dancing whip, which trips the robot. I move into a flank, then unload with naturals, not quite realizing how robust the DR happens to be. We still smoosh it. Cleric and Fighter decide to fight the machine on the wall, much like Durkon from OotS and the trees. Magus and I move to Pendleton. I initiate a grapple, succeeding with a natural 20. Swarm-thing dives out, attacks me, hits, and I fail my Fort save. GM plays some games with me, trying to get to the robot to revive it, but the swarm is forced out by the Remove Disease wand. Then comes the part we were afraid of: in the course of fighting the plant, we utilized a number of our splash weapons already. Magus brilliantly suggests using flasks of oil, which he and the Rogue have a few of, to keep the thing lit on fire. I uselessly limp to the corner, having been brutalized by AoOs, and contribute my last Acid Flask to the war effort. The GM accepts this, in part due to time constraints, and we walk out like a boss.
I continued to contribute as one might expect an under-tiered melee character to do. While I was playing the Dwarven Door Game in Emerald Spire 2, I was quite conservative in this scenario for fear of instadeath. That could have been forthcoming quite easily, given the circumstance. I'm pleased with my survival and the advent of out-of-subtier gold.
Even though it was just Enlarge Person, I was happy to finally have spells to use. It was a nice change of pace.
My half-orc Medium introduces himself to the table by walking up to each character and taking a big whiff of their scent (he has Keen Scent). I describe him as big, hairy, and feral looking. While I say that he's a half-orc, the only person I mention the class to is the GM, and only so they know what chassis I'm playing from. Bear in mind that the character has primarily done Emerald Spire levels, which leave little to the RP imagination.
It's about setting the tone early on. When introductions are happening, specifically go first.
One other point of note is that, from what I've seen, a lot of characters don't really get rolling character-wise until they've had a few sessions under their belt. This gives the table some experiences to play off of, such as a local Barbarian who thinks he's a Cleric because he saw one successfully cast Command, then he yelled "DIE!" at and enemy and cut them in half. 5th level characters typically have a bit more character to them than freshly drawn up ones.
Spirit Totem, Lesser doesn't target undead. It's specifically an "adjacent, living foe." That also means you can't use Negative Energy Affinity to get free healing for you or your party.
Honestly, this Rage Power is one of the absolute best. Use it with friends who can summon monster or summon nature's ally.
The Hunter does mounted combat better than pretty much any other class. Lead Blades + Undersized Mount at level 1 leads to some ridiculous charges on a flying mount. Remember to Ant Haul the Roc/Dire Bat/Mantis pet that you're using.
Want cheesy buffs? Kill off your companion and use the Divine Hunter archetype. lemeres pointed out that the Primal Companion Hunter does this with evolutions, but it equally applies with Animal or Verminous Focus. Verminous has a FAR superior list of buffs.
The biggest problem for the eagle, besides being a slow cast, was that the one encounter where it stayed out and did things (the Bone Priest), it was severely hampered by the fact that the monster had DR/Magic and Bludgeon.
Oh, on that subject, are there plans to have an Arcane Strike-type feat for Psychic casters? That'd be quite handy.
Mark Seifter wrote:
There's no way to get zounds of pig farmers with the current ability until level 13 while trancing, and it's dicey even then. Your best bet for this ability is if you know there are going to be hordes of enemies and you've picked up Whirlwind Attack (probably actually picked up the feat rather than snagging it through The Cyclone, given where it falls on The Cyclone's progression) along with a reach weapon, Improved Unarmed Strike, and an Enlarge.
The assumption here is that you have enough bonuses to your attack that you only lose out on a natural 1 against the room, of course, but that could get you the number of pig farmers you so richly desire.
If you happen to be doing this at a high level, having The Cyclone's capstone would make this very, very appealing. A level 20 Medium could use Astral Beacon with Cyclone, Beating, Bear, and Uprising to singlehandedly wipe out an army with a combo like this. It is, however, very unlikely to come up in actual play.
Point of note on the progression: From a Strength spirit perspective, it's really odd/stilting that the Spirit Bonus increases 1 level prior to the BAB drop for 3/4 BAB. Example: Level 4 moves you up to +3 BAB and +2 Spirit Bonus (+2 over the prior level, combined), but level 5 is flat. This also temporarily puts you over full BAB's attack bonus.
Should the Spirit Bonus line up with the BAB-less levels (1, 5, 9, 13, 17), but keep the move to +6 at level 20?
As always, I have a complete and utter disregard for spoilers. If you don't want this module spoiled, skeedaddle.
Nobody noticed the first secret door. We proceeded down the partially open door and the Bard fell down the hole. Eidolon breaks the trap open after the Moon Spider sealed it. Dirge Bard eats some delicious, delicious poison for STR damage and we move from "let's roll for perception" to "let's take 20 the whole dungeon."
Skeleton in the adjacent room is noticed before the cage falls, so we trigger the cage using one of the corpses. Fighter bashes the skeleton and it reassembles outside. I smash it, the Eidolon takes the head and throws it down the pit. Convenient, that. We take the secret passage to the crypt. There are 6 skeletons, but they all use full-round actions to leave their coffins, which means that we have more than enough time to obliterate them without taking damage.
The adjacent hallway has another pit, which is triggered without stepping on it via the Fighter. Spider climbs up, gets smooshed. Adjacent room with webs (which we had seen from the hallway with the first pit) is initiated using Spark on the webs. Smoosh. We backtrack to the other door. Zombie gets similarly smooshed. We take the secret door to the falling ceiling room, chuckle at the note after the Occultist disarms the trap. Proceed through adjacent hallway, ignore the pit trap.
Oh, there's a giant portcullis here? Take 20 on a Strength check to break it, using my Anytool as a crowbar for the +2 and enjoying The Bear's seance bonus. 27 bends the bars and we proceed to the room with the pit to level 3, ignoring the entrance to the final encounter. We find a pit trap, but fail to notice the secret door. Walk around, open the path back to the entrance, then proceed to the swarm room.
Bard is paranoid, so he runs from the swarm as he claims he has nothing he can do against it, fails to recall that we marked the trap, so he falls in and eats more delicious, delicious poison. Occultist and I both throw Acid Flasks at the swarm, which takes care of it. The Witch was readied to Burning Hands if it approached, but she was able to save the spell because of our alchemical cruelty. Eidolon, Fighter, and Summoner take care of the Moon Spider in the pit, rescuing the poor Bard, who is now at heavy encumbrance. I didn't realize that STR damage affected encumbrance, but the Bard insisted it did, so I just rolled with it.
As they're doing the rescue mission for the Bard, Occultist and I play the Dwarven Door Game, see the final encounter on the other side of the secret door, and I quickly close the door again. There's a lot of humorous delaying on both sides, a few buffs, etc. Eidolon opens the door, readied attacks from skeletons both miss, Eidolon and I wreck them. I 5' in and get hit with Hold Person, failing the save with a pitiful roll. Party moves in (generally) and Witch spams Magic Missile. I'm not sure where that was coming from, but the player was extremely competent, so I'm assuming that was legal. I break free of the Hold Person after 2 rounds, just in time to charge in and kill steal from the Fighter.
This is the first scenario where The Bear's bonus to break checks mattered. I had honestly written that off until tonight, when I found it suddenly mattered several times - the pit traps, the portcullis, etc. Seriously, at least 3 times tonight. I still haven't used Trance, though, and now I'll have Enlarge Person as a spell anyway and The Beating isn't worth using a Trance on right now. At least my level 3 bonus was...oh yeah, another use of Trance each day. Honestly, this felt like a dead level to the Strength build. Since I'm in PFS with this character, I don't have access to Beseech at this time, else I'd be channeling damage occasionally.
Occultist spent a fair amount of time summoning an eagle, which was sort of hit or miss. It was a good flank buddy for the final encounter, but other times it came out just in time for the fight to be over. There were also some timely energy rays from the Evoc implement.
For the most part, this entire module was a lesson in patience, aka TAKE 20 EVERYWHERE. We finished in something like 4.5 hours, maybe 5. The Bard was the only one who was ever in any real danger and only once did I think "Man, he deserved that." Of course, at the same time that I was thinking that, I was playing the Dwarven Door Game, which I won, thank you very much.
What he is saying is that none of those are inherently good. All of those can be used by any aligned witch to further again any alignment. The evil hexes are just that evil by rules, note that I also have issue with [evil] spells too.
You have to bear in mind the baggage of legacy here. The game assumes that you are a Good or Neutral character and that Evil is antithetical to your nature. This goes back ALL THE WAY to the very beginning of D&D. Tagging things with the [Evil] descriptor is more along the lines of "players shouldn't take this" than anything, since the core assumption is that only enemies/monsters are Evil.
It's just like how the 9 alignments are viewed from the perspective that Lawful Good is the highest-and-best Good. That's why it's Law-Chaos and not Freedom-Oppression. You don't need to necessarily say things are Good-aligned unless you specifically DON'T want enemies/monsters to have them.
Here's how it works with a fairly extreme example: Level 9 Tengu Ninja
Racial swap: Claw Attack
This is a character designed to throw tons of attacks. You have a few different options, ignoring the option to use a Ki point for an extra attack:
Claw/Claw/Bite (all at full bonus)
By the rules no they can't but I would let them take non spirit hexes for sure. Shamans have some very nice buffing hexes. For some reason they flat out made witches evil which closes off a lot of good character ideas. So I see giving them shaman hexes as a way to expand out of that forced hole.
APG in PRD, Witch class wrote:
There are some hexes that are Evil actions, but the class is not Evil.
I don't see a particularly compelling argument for making the new ability or Shared Seance move out of 2nd level. They can both sit there without creating an imbalance.