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Thomas Seitz wrote:
Am I the only one here that think Michael Moorcock and/or Elric Saga is great literature?
I don't know about great literature, but I'd sure love to see an adaptation of it!
Moorcock's Elric saga, Lieber's Fafhrd & Gray Mouser adventures, Andre Norton's Witch World, etc. could all make for decent fantasy franchises.
Other stuff, like Anderson's Three Hearts and Three Lions, or Saberhagen's Empire of the East, or McKillip's Forgotten Beasts of Eld could make good standalones (or TV miniseries), but it seems that 'franchise or bust' is the theme of the day.
It's particularly wonky when your wizard goes to planar bind a night hag to try and recover a stolen soul (evil spell! good act?) and having to cast protection from good as a prerequisite (good spell!) and your good alignment descriptor peanut butter gets all up in your evil alignment descriptor chocolate.
It's always been a narrative question of whether it's 'more good' to cling to your ideals (such as a code against killing) even when the world is burning around you because of it (an example being Batman constantly putting Joker, etc. into the revolving door that is Arkham, instead of going all Punisher on them, which is the fault of the writers, obviously, since multiple life sentences are generally more effective at preventing mass murder spree recidivism in the real world than in a serial medium that requires iconic villains to be back on the street every time a new creative team is on the book) or 'more good' to sacrifice your own ideals and go all morally-relativistic-boddhisatva and make the 'hard choices' or 'realistic choices' or 'practical choices' as a Punisher type would maintain, claiming that by holding to a code against killing, someone like Batman or Daredevil is valuing his own shiny moral code over *other people's entire lives.*
There's no real right answer there. If a new writer wants to use the Joker, and code-against-killing hero has put him away, he'll escape, and if 'I'll kill him to save others' hero has put a bullet in his brain, he'll get resurrected. Such is the problem with attempting to define 'good' in a serial medium like comic books, where, whether the hero kills or not, the villain will come back anyway, if he's popular enough, and no matter what, the hero looks like a failure on a long enough timeline, since the world never stays saved.
Applying that dilemma to Pathfinder, you've got various classes who don't have a viable healing option *other* than Infernal Healing, such as the Summoner or Magus. If they use it to save someone, it's evil. If they let someone die, and refuse to use it, to avoid tainting themselves with icky evil, then they are valuing their own purity over someone else's life, which seems pretty selfish (especially if alignment is so fungible that he can just cast a bunch of protection from evil spells to push the meter back, since apparently intent and result doesn't matter, just whether or not you cast a spell with the right descriptor).
I actually liked Fitz this last episode (it's like he's developed into a multifaceted person over the years, instead of the checklist of cutesy annoying tics and mannerisms that he and Simmons started out as), and didn't hate Lincoln as much as I normally do, although that might be Stockholm Syndrome or something...
Indeed, I kind of want Lincoln to tell Coulson and the rest to shut the heck up after this latest foul-up, since it seems to be all they do is jump to the exact wrong assumptions.
Mack continues attempting to be the only sane man in the room. :)
The one time I played in a LARP and we were allowed to play Tzimisce, we Tzimisce players agreed before hand that we would all pronounce our clan name differently, and correct anyone else who said it, even if they got our own personal pronunciation perfectly...
'It's pronounced zih-miss.' 'Zih-miss?' 'No, softer on the zhah sound.' 'Zhah-miss?' 'Terrible, please stop.'
Tim Statler wrote:
As to Andoran, I have to fight not to say Andorian. Star Trek nerd I am.
For me it's Calistria and the Scarred Lands nation of Calastia. Just similar enough to trip my geekbrain.
Then again, there's a lot of similarities between the settings, just because they tapped into similar archetypes. Sarenrae and Madriel (NG redeemer angel-goddess of healing, mercy and the sun) are cut from the same cloth, as are Abadar and Hedrada (LN god of law, justice, civilization, etc.). But that's an archetype thing, and no different from how Artemis (ancient Greece), Ehlonna (Greyhawk), Mielikki (the Realms) and Tanil (Scarred Lands) seem like subtly different sister nature/hunt goddesses.
James Jacobs wrote:
1 (the main reason): There simply wasn't any room in the Inner Sea World Guide for an extensive pronunciation index. This book is bigger than the previous campaign setting, but it's also a lot more jam-packed with information, and the decision of what to include and not include was very difficult—had I a few more pages, I would have included more factions and prestige classes and monsters and more details on Inner Sea holidays and a more detailed trade/resources map of the region and much, much more... which would have STILL left no room for a pronunciation index.
Ooh, a resources/trade map! Did such a thing ever get done up, and I just missed it, or is it still not-quite-ready-for-prime-time?
'Trade of the Inner Sea' with common caravan routes and merchant ship routes and what products are going from A to B. I'd buy that for, um, several dollars!
As for the topic, I never noticed the 'Saranwrap' thing, but Norgoober is unfortunately how I first read that name, and it stuck...
Eh. We have real-world gods named 'Nut' and 'Snotra' (which is like Mothra, but with boogers?) and 'Þorgerðr Hǫlgabrúðr.' Sarenrae and Norgorber have it easy.
And there's a country in Golarion named after Osiris (and another after Geb!), which you can bet your bippy annoys my namesake to no end. :)
Norman Osborne wrote:
Ditto, only substitute Nightcrawler for Kitty for 'one of my favorite comic characters.' I love that he got to buckle his swash in Excalibur, and had more serious storylines (and was taken more seriously!) than he had in the previous X-books (where he, IMO, kind of got lost / overshadowed among all the larger than life personalities like Cyclops, Storm and Wolverine).
As for the reality gem / Eye of Agamotto notion, I suspect they'll go that route, which does mean that Thanos will have to get his hot little hands on it (and Vision's head-jewel / mind stone as well). Presumably he'll do so without irreparably destroying the Vision, and Strange will find a way to survive their brief encounter as well (perhaps by fleeing into another dimension or jettisoning his astral form until his body can be healed / repaired or something).
Me? I think this is a GOLDEN AGE. I love the fact that there are so many Super-hero movies to choose from and the fact that a super-hero movie isnt a genre but a vehicle to TELL different genres within the super-hero framework.
Pretty much yes to all of this.
I love some DC characters and teams (like the Teen Titans, Young Justice, Legion of Super-Heroes, etc.) and I love some Marvel characters and teams (Young Avengers, New X-Men, Thunderbolts, X-Factor, etc.), so I've got horses in both races, and whoever 'wins,' I get a piece of the pie.
That said, there are DC movies that don't appeal to me (Nolan's Bat-trilogy), and Marvel movies that don't appeal to me (Age of Ultron), and I don't think that I'm a 'hater' for not uncritically adoring every hot steaming mess piled on my plate.
I want every superhero movie to be awesome, because the more the big tentpole characters (that I generally don't give a rat's butt about) like Superman and Iron Man and Wolverine succeed, the more likely I will be to see the characters I *really* like, like Hank Pym, Monica Rambeau, Vixen or Booster Gold.
I certainly don't want any of these movies to suck. I like superhero stuff. That would be cutting off my nose to spite my face!
I blame Cosmo for ridiculous chains of events.
For example, I had the flu in January. I coughed so much I got a hernia. The hernia gave me sciatica (I don't even). I've been limping to work for two months now (since walking to work is perversely less painful than getting into or out of a car, which leaves me almost paralyzed for a half hour), and it's really not terribly amusing any longer.
On the upside, acupuncture seems to be working. Which I don't even believe in, but, fortunately for me, lots of things I don't understand (like computers, or gravity) seem to work just fine without my permission, so that's cool.
I've always wondered at the criteria for selection of the Starstone-wrought new divinities' portfolios.
What I find intriguing about the Starstone Scions is that their portfolios suggest that nobody had those specific areas of concern before them.
For Iomedae, she took on some of Aroden's 'law' concerns, but he wasn't a god of chivalry or honor, in particular (being more 'history and civilization and humanity', IIRC). Presumably nations had cavaliers and knightly orders and chivalry and codes of honor and even paladins long before Iomedae, who is the first explicit god to address those subjects.
For Cayden Cailean, bravery and courage might have been more associated with Gorum, before he took on those aspects, and a god of beer, ale and wine is specialized enough that it's not a shock that there wasn't a major god of booze already.
Most intriguingly, there's Norgorber. Ten thousand years of rogues and thieves and assassins and alchemists and intriguing politically-minded folks and murderers, and none of that had a god, before Norgorber stepped out of the Starstone Cathedral? That seems quite unusual. Various demon lords (such as Shax, for murderers, or Haagenti, for alchemists) cover *some* of those aspects, but thieves as one of the 'big four' classes / roles of D&D-based games and settings, so it's almost as off for there not to be a 'god of thieves' (like Norebo or Mask or Brandobaris) as it would be for there not to be a 'god of magic.' Certainly some other gods seem 'thief-friendly,' such as Calistria or Zon-Kuthon, but few seem to have the political ties of Norgorber, who is sort of a 'god of intrigue' as well, or any connection to alchemy, for that matter.
As for the other ascended gods, Urgathoa, Irori and Nethys, there's a pre-existing god of magic (who died) for Nethys to replace, an implication that Urgathoa is ridiculously old (predating both disease and the existence of undead), and Irori's areas of concern are pretty specific and not as likely to represent any sort of gaping hole in religious schema, since 'self-perfection' and 'god of monks' are not quite as common themes as 'god of war' or 'god of weather.'
As for time, Brigh is apparently a god of time, through her association with clockwork, but she's a pretty minor god, and time hardly seems to be her primary focus. As god of both history and innovation, and tied heavily to prophecy, Aroden flirts pretty heavily with a 'god of time' theme, even if he isn't explicitly a 'god of time.' But he's dead, so there's certainly 'design space' in the 'pantheon' of Golarion for a god of time!
Between focusing on history and possibility / pre-ordination, domains like Charm, Knowledge, Law and Luck might suit a god of time, and perhaps a favored weapon that involves precise timing and patience to learn and use (ranged weapons like bows, crossbows or slings, with the shortbow being my first choice, since Erastil and Abadar already cover longbows and crossbows, and I wouldn't inflict favored weapon - sling on anyone, even as a punishment).
Sooooo... The Cypher/Psylocke love story? Warlock and the Magus story? Asgard? I am not sure how to feel. Agree with product of its time.
Warlock seems way to 'big' for a starting New Mutants team (since the original five had some pretty strong limitations / a lower power level).
The same with Amara/Magma, for that matter (although introducing her opens up the introduction of Selene, perhaps the New Mutants most iconic and lasting villain).
Asgard seems right out, being that Fox doesn't have permission to touch the Thor side of the Marvel universe.
Cypher/Psylocke was kind of a footnote (one I liked, but still), and I'm not sure if Cypher goes the other direction and has powers / abilities that are too subtle for the big screen. Although, Psylocke as one of the team's adult mentors could be interesting, and different than the more expected fare of Storm, Xavier, etc.
There's a lot of stuff I don't really want to see, most of which showed up later, like Gossamyr & Spyder or Karma's bionic leg or Sam being an External (until he wasn't) or Bobby as Reignfire (until he wasn't...) or anything-ever-by-Liefield. For all the team's shining moments, there was a fair amount of weird stuff in there as well.
There's also a lot of characters to choose from!
The original five; Sam/Cannonball, Dani Moonstar, Rahne/Wolfesbane, Berto/Sunspot and Xian/Karma.
Later additions; Amara/Magma, Doug/Cypher, Ilyanna/Magik, Warlock, Warpath, Boom-Boom, Siryn, Rictor, Shatterstar, Feral...
Random teens that *could* have been New Mutants; Kitty Pryde, Jubilee, Madrox, Rachel Summers
Teen foes; Jetstream, Roulette, Tarot, Catseye!, uh, other Hellions... Or even more recent 'Emma's New Mutants' like Hellion, Mercury, Rockslide, Surge, Dust, etc.
One thing I liked about the New Mutants, and definitely fresh for it's time, was that we had a 'five-man team' that had three girls and two boys, which was pretty radical in a time period when every other team seemed to be 'four dudes and a chick,' or, as one Image comic cheekily said, 'the standard new-team formula, some established loner, a couple of dudes from another team, and two bimbos nobody has ever heard of before.' Indeed, Karma, introduced previously as a Spider-Man side-character, was the only pre-existing character, and Bobby and Sam ended up being two of the 'bimbos nobody has ever heard of before!'
(That said, of the original five, Karma's probably my least favorite, and got sidelined pretty fast, in favor of shinier new characters like Magma, Magik and Warlock. I'd love for her to have come back from working for Uncle Nguyen as a badass martial artist/criminal enforcer/psychic, but then Psylocke might have had to stay British to avoid stepping on Xian's Asian ninja psychic schtick!)
Random thoughts on articles about class options with a Numerian slant;
(As usual, these are ideas I'm *not* planning on developing into articles myself, because of that pesky three-article-limit that's totally my fault anyway...) :)
Cleric (subDomains of the Domains granted by Brigh or Gorum that synch well with Numeria and it's themes, such as a Plasma subdomain of Fire, or a subdomain of Earth that replaces 'acid bolt' with tiny pellets of metal or stone fired at high velocity 'bullet bolt!' or for Artifice that conjures temporary magical ammunition for a crossbow, sling, bow or firearm)
Druid / Ranger (alien ecologist/xenonaturalist, with an 'alien' companion and some 'alien' wild shape options?)
Fighter (master of advanced or complicated weaponry, not so much 'tech' or lasers, but exotic stuff available across the setting like repeating crossbows, mancatchers, bolas, etc. as well as other 'advanced' sort of combat options like throwing alchemical fire or acid, drawing inspiration from the 'tech' used by others, but usually hoarded by the Technic League and their favored minions, forcing you to adapt to the sorts of 'advanced' technology available to everyone else)
Monk (ironforged archetype, seeks to 'become the machine' or to master 'the riddle of steel' and become as hard and unyielding as a construct, golem or robot, with skin like metal armor and fists like bludgeons or blades and a will of iron, enduring and resilient in both mind and body, able to move with mechanical speed and precision, to a limited extent, but usually more resolute and plodding and unstoppable than a traditional monk)
Wizard (stores spells in crystals or data-gizmos, and power in batteries, the opposite of a technomancer who can drain spell slots to recharge tech, you drain tech to fuel your magic. Tiny construct / robot familiar option, perhaps even with an option to store spells in the familiar's 'databanks,' sort of like a Witch)
Mesmerist (neurolinguistic hacker, uses language to 'reprogram' others to cloud their minds / distract them (stare abilities changed to more of a 'babel' effect) or directly manipulate them (compulsion / charm spells and effects))
Oracle ('Starmind' Mystery, taps into the signals from the various computer intelligences, through nanotech infiltrating one's own brain and body, perceives data from these vast and incomprehensible intelligences and taps them for divine power and unusual insights. New curses could include Aphasic - staggered physically, but eventually capable of swifter, or even multiple, mental actions, Radioactive - damages others making long-term contact with own body, eventually includes shorter term contacts at your discretion, and can expand at higher levels to affect those in adjacent squares)
Psychic (Psi-Borg, able to draw psychic strength from metal and crystal and perhaps even tech grafted to flesh, from the resonances and traumas left behind by the many, many who died in contact with those alien materials, and the occult and esoteric forces to which they've been exposed over the millennia, does not have to involve technology at all, just old and 'weird' stuff grafted to the body and used as a source of psychic power, which could allow it to be transplanted to anywhere that has old haunted ruins full of 'psychic resonance,' such as the Ghol-Gan ruins around the Shackles or ancient Thassilonion ruins in Varisia or Virlych, in Ustalav)
Cavalier (uses either a robot mount, or an alien beast (such as a Velopede) as a mount, bonus points for a holographic 'banner' option)
Wonder Woman sounds promising, at least. I am looking forward to her movie, even if I'm not the biggest fan of the character. (I'm a sucker for period pieces, like Captain America: First Avenger or Agent Carter, so Wonder Woman being set during WW1 just goes right for my happy place.)
Were there rumored cameos by Aquaman (and Mera), Cyborg, Flash and / or Green Lantern? Spoil me! (In spoilers, for those who want a fresher experience, obviously!) Of those listed, I'm most intrigued by Aquaman.
Regardless of whether or not this movie is my cup of tea, I'm still waiting impatiently for Suicide Squad!
Since the Godclaw also venerates Irori and Torag, in addition to Asmodeus, Iomedae and Abadar, there's theoretically potential for Hellknight orders more focused around Irori and Torag, but I'm not finding them as intuitive for this purpose as Abadar.
The Iroran creed to self-perfection seems, IMO, a bit to self-centered to build an Order around (although one focused on systems that prevent people from reaching their full potential, such as forbidding writing or preventing lower ranking people from studying or even using weapons, could be on-theme).
As for Torag, an Order of dwarven Hellknights seems fun, visually, as squad of dwarves who are willing to embrace and emulate the tactics of Hell in service to their goals of protection of their people, but, again, the flavor doesn't work as well for me, so I'd prefer it to be a small Order, like the Order of the Torrent.
Ooh, an eidolon that has some sort of support aura / function could be very cool, based perhaps on the angel/archon 'aura of menace' or 'aura of protection' or an azata-flavored eidolon with bardic inspiration capabilities or a 'fast healing song' or something.
It could also include some sort of support / teamwork options that don't depend quite so much on teamwork feats, like the 3.5 notion of parties having a group totem (DMG2, IIRC?), or developing some specific team tactics that don't necessarily eat up their personal feats.
Freehold DM wrote:
I have only recently introduced a new Hellknight Order into my game, The Order of Ink, which oversees Chelaxian borders physical borders and political alliances. Has anyone else made any new Orders?
An order based on the less evil aspects of Asmodeus might focus on the actual legal system itself, serving as guards to justices, and jailors and investigators and lawyers/advocates and, when it goes that way, executioners. A heavy focus on enforcing contracts and finding 'bail-jumpers' or others attempting to evade justice, as well as other more picky legal matters, would fit well. They'd be as impartial as can be, and side against what they view as perversions or misuse of the legal system, such as punishments that precede trials, or attempts to 'game the system.' Others might not live up to that ideal, and be little more than jack-booted thugs, hiding behind the color of authority.
A more Abadarite order could be focused on protecting trade, ruthlessly stamping out brigands and bandits, and yet also protecting banks and countinghouses, and seeking out counterfeiters and smugglers and pirates. In a situation like in Andoran, where the Lumber Consortium works around the law to oppress their workers, it's possible that different factions of this Order could be on different sides, some supporting the company against their workers, while the other side takes offense at the manipulation of the spirit of the law to behave unethically.
Yeah, I was also not a big fan of metaplot. Having crap like the god your 4 year running campaign Cleric worships (Lleira) having been ganked off-screen by some new mortal-turned-god from the novels you didn't read pissed me off, since it means she never got a specialty priest or anything. Similarly, it pretty much wrecked White Wolf, which was at one time the second biggest RPG company, as they rebooted their entire line post-apocalypse, with an, IMO, inferior version of what they'd just destroyed.
Given how annoyed people are that Aroden, a setting element that none of us have ever even gotten to play with, is off-limits, I can't imagine how much more annoying it would be if they had a metaplot and entire countries or races or classes changed overnight (because of storyline X, Cheliax has been liberated! because of storyline Y, Kaer Maga has been destroyed! because of storyline Z, all Magus' are now spontaneous psychic casters!).
Fractured Jester wrote:
Liberation seems like another good choice, as it's pretty chaos-friendly.
Knowledge or Magic might make acceptable choices as well, depending on how you perceive the Speakers.
Radically opposing more lawful societies (such as those of Cheliax or Nidal), and institutions like slavery or caste systems (which Proteans would see as restricting individual potential) or laws that forbid literacy or weapon bearing or whatever to specific groups, would make sense for a devotee of the Speakers. Laws in general, particularly those that restrict behavior or limit advancement, would be deliberately (if perhaps subtly, there's no reason the chaos-servant needs to be an idiot!) undermined or subverted.
Laws that enforce notions of equality, or prevent slavery, etc. might be encouraged, and yet, proteans aren't specifically good, so it's equally possible that laws that allows those with greater strength to oppress those with less strength could be seen as liberating and 'natural' and right.
The nature of the story could determine whether or not such a character is going to be disruptive. A campaign based on undermining a restrictive society (such as Hell's Rebels or Council of Thieves), or one dealing with a freer sort of flow (such as Skull and Shackles) would be better than one about building a society (Kingmaker) or enforcing a status quo (Hell's Vengeance).
Of the core deities, Irori, Nethys and Urgathoa (and Aroden) bootstrapped themselves to divinity, Cayden Cailean, Iomedae and Norgorber passed the Test of the Starstone, Shelyn and Zon-Kuthon where born to divine parents, Lamashtu *may* have worked her way up from Demon Lord (and, before that, perhaps even a lower form of demon) and presumably other devils, daemons, archons, angels, etc. could follow this path. Stealing power from another god, such as through Lamashtu killing Curchanos to usurp his mastery over beasts, also seems to be a potential route to jumping tiers.
Sponsorship of other gods, such as Aroden sponsoring Arazni and Iomedae, or those mentioned above (Kurgess, Milani, Naderi) is also a potential path.
I really like how there isn't just one way to go, in Golarion, and that so many of the pre-existing gods have followed very different paths to apotheosis.
Mersiel is a favorite for how dynamic and kinetic her various appearances can be, as she's always flipping and jumping around.
Seelah's origin story is one of my favorites, with the actions of her childhood leading directly to her current role as Paladin.
Alhazra is beautiful, with cool non-European vaguely Egyptian clothing and jewelry. Plus the shout-out to the Mad Arab al-Alhazred makes me laugh.
And Balazar is just delightfully absurd. Love the big purple hat!
New Hampshire (USA), a state known basically for 'Live Free or Die!' and the first primary every 4 years or so and being 'North Boston.'
No relation to 'Old' Hampshire, wherever the hell that is.
We also have the distinction of having all sorts of immigrants coming over the border all the time (and a sign that welcomes them, in French, since they are Quebekian tourists, here to spend their funny colored monopoly money, and generally recognizable by their lack of recognizable accent, lack of facial hair, better taste in clothing (no flannel! clothes that fit!), and unrealistically fit bodies, compared to us).
Well, it's not like there aren't already several organizations where members are masked and/or have secret identities. The Grey Gardeners, The Red Mantis Assassins, the Decemvirate...
Jatembe's Ten Magic Warriors, with their animal masks.
There are quite a few, and between the Veiled Masters and Razmir's 'priests' and the Skinsaw cults / Norgorberites and the clergy of Sivanah, there's lots of room for more in that vein.
It's no coincidence that the Eye of Abendago so closely resembles a material manifestation of Pharasma's spiral symbol...
Pharasma loathes the undead, and none so much as the incorporeal spectres, wraiths and shadows that can create more of their own kind by a simple touch, denying spirits their rightful transition to the procession of souls. And so she has turned (or perhaps created?) this supernatural storm into a *spiritual* vortex, exerting a vast 'tide' across the Inner Sea (and Arcadia), drawing such creatures inexorably into her relentless grasp, sucking them first into the 'whirlpool,' and then metaphysically 'down' into the Boneyard itself, to face the judgment that they have escaped (or been denied).
Corporeal undead have a 'tether' to the material plane, and may not even feel the Eye's pull, while certain undead or manifestations, such as ghosts and haunts, also have a connection to a material location, that helps anchor them against the Eye's spiritual 'gravity.' But other forms of discorporate undead, particularly shadows, wraiths and spectres, find themselves huddling for safety in areas of strong necromantic magic, or saturated with inherent negative energy, to avoid being drawn to their final judgment, and are rarely capable of travelling from these 'safe' areas, serving to explain, at least in part, why highly intelligent and evil creatures capable of overrunning humanoid nations in a matter of nights, remain static threats, confined to decrepit manors, dark caverns or similar locations, unable to spread their evil beyond their immediate environs.
What sort of vast spiritual emptiness would be required to create a 'soul vacuum' of this sort beggars the imagination, but the death of a god would certainly suffice...
Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:
Rip Hunter is supposed to be one DC's Universe's truly manipulative bastards. I'm not seeing it carried well here.
I never cared for Rip Hunter, and wanted Booster Gold in this role (even if he'd be pretty redundant in a group with Iron Man What Shrinks Occasionally).
Seeing what they've done with it, I'm glad I didn't get what I want, since it would have probably been a truly sucktacular Booster Gold...
It's pretty much become the Sara and Snart show, with those annoying other people...
Feels like a semantic / guilt by association thing to me. Paladins joining an organization that has Hell in the title are going to get looked at funny by people who can't draw a distinction between a *word* and actual evil, just like those who read that Hermea is run by a dragon seeking volunteers to better humanity, but see the word 'eugenics' and immediately think 'Hitler!' Doesn't matter how good an NPC or organization is, mechanically, if it gets tarnished with an unpopular word or concept that has been associated with an evil person or regime.
It's human nature to cast moral judgements on things based on how 'icky' or 'pretty' they are, hence bugs we don't like (roaches, flies, mosquitos, centipedes, etc.) or other unpopular critters, like snakes and vultures and hyenas being associated with evil forces and deities (such as Urgathoa, Ghlaunder, Ydersius, etc.), while 'pretty' animals like butterflies and deer and whatever being associated with nicer gods like Desna and Erastil. Similarly, fat, old and wrinkly, deformed, diseased, etc. people get associated with evil characters (going *way* back to the days when becoming ill was seen as a sign that you must have violated a taboo, or you wouldn't be sick), while good characters are more likely to be pretty and in shape and not having any 'evil' tattoos or body piercings.
This is just that, IMO. It's got 'Hell' in the title, so it can't possibly be not-evil.
Anything with an icky association is automatically icky itself, for having the poor taste to be associated with something icky, as if the icky is contagious, and the icky-adjacent person is morally suspect for not standing further away from the ick.
The game setting is, fortunately, a bit more nuanced than that, and there's a good goddess whose heavily focused on redemption, which kind of *requires* her faithful to get all up next to the icky and try to clean it off a bit, instead of retreating to the first range increment and shooting flaming arrows at it to 'cleanse the world of ick.'
Voice of the Outer Darkness** spoiler omitted **...
Nice! I was doing up Rule 63 Iconics, and the opposite gender Alhazra was so obviously 'the Mad Arab' al-Alhazred that it's awesome to see an evil Alhazra as an Oracle of the Outer Dark / Great Old Ones.
Tongues (Aklo) would also be a good curse for this sort of Oracle. (Then again, Blackened or Haunted would work, too, and Blind remains thematic as all heck, too, with her dead white eyes looking right at you as she begins to sing down the starspawn...)
While not exclusively (or originally) a Luke Cage villain, I've always been partial to Nightshade, one of Marvel's original female super-genius/inventors (mostly infamous for turning Captain America into a 'CapWolf' werewolf, once).
Man, looking at all the cool characters who have been in various incarnations of the Heroes for Hire, I kind of wish we could get to see some of them, such as Black Knight, Paladin, the Shroud or White Tiger (Ava, I'm not as familiar with her brother Hector).
Maybe Cause Fear should be enchantment while a similar spell called something like "Strangle Soul" should be necromancy.
GURPS had a fear-inducing necromancy spell that revealed to a victim vision of their grisly death (although that, in d20 terms, would probably be more of a divination effect).
Another option that would play well with necromancy would be a spell that selectively kills (or temporarily deadens) specific brain cells (or other precisely targeted organs or systems), to cause uncertainty, or remove short-term memories, or inflict specific neurological damasge (such as paralysis of a limb, or blindness, or linguistic difficulties). There's a ton of potential for necromantic effects on both body and brain (if not necessarily mind) as well as harder-to-define effects involving suppressing, removing, binding or even temporarily *enhancing* the soul.
'White' necromancer "I just buffed your soul."
A petty preference for my Golarion; I don't like platinum (or those infamous 'electrum mines' in the Realms). Coins go copper -> silver -> gold -> mithral.
And then, above mithral pieces, there are adamantine bits, shaped like little pyramids (by the dwarves, who claim that they shape them that way so that they can stack them efficiently in square chests, but dragons grouse they shape that way so that sleeping on stolen dwarven treasure feels like sleeping on a bed of nails!).
Elves prefer silver and mithral coins. Halflings prefer copper, silver and mithral. (Neither race is overly enamored with gold, although they certainly recognize it's allure to other races.)
Dwarves like all sorts of coins, but among themselves like to use alloys like brass and bronze and, yes, electrum, since their metallurgical skills allow them to create blends that other races find difficult to effectively forge, or whose value they also find harder to nail down. The dwarven monopoly on certain types of metalwork (such as most masterwork metal armor and weaponry, and most use of 'special materials' like mithral and adamantine) also extends to a ridiculously convoluted and, to other races, arcane and incomprehensible, network of banking and moneylending. Other races have banks and moneylenders and mints and national coinage, but dwarven coins (mostly minted by dwarven bankers in Druma, affiliated with the church of Abadar) are the most stable form of currency recognized across various nations (and races). A Chelish merchant might charge more for a purchaser attempting to pay in Andoran-minted coin, and a Taldan merchant might similarly inflate prices to someone trying to pay in Qadiran coin, but dwarven coin cuts right across national divides. Nobody shorts a dwarf.
Humans are less likely to use mithral pieces, and instead often prefer gold 'shields' or 'doubloons,' so-called because they are 'double the size' of gold 'pennies.' (Slightly more than double, actually, as they contain 10x the gold weight of a standard 'gold piece,' and are thus exactly equal to the mithral pieces used by other races.)
Gnomes lack any sort of traditional currency, although in gnomish communities, some might trade in bars of tin and iron, and others in gleaming red-gold metal 'slices' that represent a certain value of spellcasting services (with the 'wedges' fitting together to form a sphere, and each sphere being worth a complete casting of a spell of a certain level, depending on it's size). That being said, there's no real consistency, and some gnomes might sell goods for particularly rare feathers or bones or maps or anatomical drawings of rare creatures that they desire for their collection.
Illusion is another odd duck. Create light *or* darkness, and it's evocation. Create sounds, and it's evocation. Create *colored* light, or sounds that sound like creatures or shadows, and it's illus-o-cation. Conjure energy or creatures from the positive energy plane or plane of fire or sixth layer of hell and it's conjuration. Conjure something from the plane of shadow, and it's illus-uration. (And conjure something from the negative energy plane and it's necrom-uration, because, screw you, school consistency!) Mind-affecting effects are enchantment, unless they are phantasms, in which case, illus-antment! (Again, with fear spells also being necrom-antment.)
At this point, the school setup is a funky artifact of the game's D&D origins, and not something that makes a whole lot of consistent sense, and there are a ton of spells that seem to have properties of multiple schools (fire trap, evocation damage, but it has a sensor telling it not to go off on you, a minor divination effect, that makes it, not evocation *or* divination, somehow?).
And then there's just silly stuff. Negative energy *hates* life, and ideally should be what one uses to murderdeathkill disease organisms, cankers, tumors and parasites with remove disease, while positive energy *loves* life, and even causes stuff to grow dangerously out of control, which means it *exactly* should be the empowering force behind the contagion spell. And yet, they are switched, because negative energy has to have all the icky bad stuff, instead of doing what it actually is supposed to do, and positive energy is supposed to have all the happy nice stuff, even if it will kill you to death just as mercilessly if you step onto it's home plane.
It's really not a fixable thing, IMO. One persons notion of where the spells 'should' go will conflict with another persons, and there are plenty of spells that could *easily* be logically shuffled into two or three different schools (like the aforementioned fire trap, which uses divination to set up an evocation effect, and doesn't 'abjure' a darned thing).
I hope to see similar books especially for the positive energy plane, first world, axis, the maelstrom, dimension of time, and the dimension of dreams.
Being Paizo-created, the first world, axis, maelstrom, etc. seem like they would be even more a creative focus than the 'D&D standard' elemental and upper/lower planes, and require more work than picking over the coolest ideas already present in products about, say, the Hells (such as the iron city of Dis, or the nine layers).
Ditto the Boneyard and Abaddon. Although I'm also intrigued by the 'occult' planes, both esoteric ones like the dimensions of dreams and time, and old standbys like the astral, ethereal and shadow planes, which could use a breath of fresh air in this post-Gith-setting.
I don't know the gamer I refer to as "newbie" once lost six consecutive characters to cat attacks in game. To this very day his characters quake in fear at the sight of a big kitty. And he has become the target of numerous cat jokes. It is widely hypothesized that he must have been mean to kitties in a previous life and now suffers the curse of the kitties.
We had a guildie in EverQuest who seemed to have a lion-attracting aura. We'd sit down to meditate/recover between fights in the Karanas, and a lion would lope over and attack him specifically. Every time. His nickname, which he eventually chose as his characters surname, was 'Lionsnack.'
xavier c wrote:
I would like to see the Greek and Norse(core 20) pantheons on Golarion.
Rather than seeing them on Golarion, which I really wouldn't (and didn't really want to see the Egyptian pantheon, for that matter), I wouldn't mind seeing a Pathfinder book with write-ups for the Greek and Norse, etc. pantheons in the setting-neutral side of things, for people using the Pathfinder rules, but not necessarily the Golarion setting.
Sort of 'Thor, Freyja, Athena and Apollo aren't in Golarion, but here's how we'd stat up their clergy and churches if they had worshippers on some other world in the Golarion-verse.'
Ditto Quetzalcoutl and Anansi and Chernobog and Raiden, etc. (Not just the old Deities and Demigods pantheons, either, but mix it up and throw in some Yoruba and Slavic goodness!)
Critters from the Monster Manual removed from the OGL, IIRC, consist of;
Beholder (and gauth)
Neothelids, Intellect Devourers, Skum, Proteans, Serpentfolk, Urdefan, etc. replace most of them kinda/sorta, although I do miss me some Displacer Beasts.
I prefer Proteans and Serpentfolk to Slaad and Yuan-Ti, but Mind Flayers were cool-ish, and I liked to use Carrion Crawlers as pre-sapient larval Neh-Thalggu, just waiting for that first taste of brains, and particularly spellcaster brains, to make the leap to the next level... I do not miss the Gith races, or Beholders, at all!
21. Blood Wasps Raised in Calistrian apiaries and sacred to the Savored Sting, these wasps range from the size of a bird (for normal workers) to that of a housecat or small dog (for the warriors and queens), and combine traits of normal wasps, with those of mosquitos (in that they occasionally draw blood from paralyzed prey) and honeybees (in that they produce a bitter orange-hued 'blood honey' for their larva).
22. Glass Falcons These small hawks have translucent feathers and skins, and are both harder to see when aloft, and cast a smaller shadow than expected, giving them a superior ability to surprise ground-based prey. They fly with an erratic 'jinking' motion, making them unusually difficult to target with ranged attacks, adding to the difficulty of hunting them. And yet they are nearly extinct anyway, as it became fashionable for a time for aristrocratic sorts to wear long gloves of glass falcon leather, which had to be removed and treated within an hour of the creatures death or it would darken and lose it's translucency, due to the skin becoming saturated with visible compounds from the creature's visible internal organs. The feathers (which regrow if carefully gathered without harm to the animal) also retain their translucency, and are popular for quills used by arcanists and scribes. Fortunately for the glass falcon, the translucent gloves have gone out of fashion after someone went a step further and made leggings out of them as well, only to be derided for wearing 'sausage casings.' Thanks to the fickle nature of fashion, the glass falcon population in slowly recovering.
23. Rukhs / Rothawks. These carrion eating birds use vulture stats, and are unique for their paired long colorful 'scissor-tail' feathers. Rothawks are prone to mutation, perhaps because of the tainted fare they devour (particularly those native to Numeria, although they range from the Lands of the Linnorm Kings to Qadira), and the more common mutations include a rothawk being born with two heads, something of a mixed blessing, as it sometimes leads to the creature choking to death as both heads attempt to swallow at the same time, or a rothawk being born with a thick featherless lizard-like scaled tail, which serves no purpose other than to make the creature an ungainly flier.
24. Shiners These extremely tiny near-translucent shrimp are delicate and feathery creatures that live in deep darklands waterways, where they have adapted to 'feed' off of the ambient magical radiations leaching away from submerged ruins and artifacts. In the presence of magical auras, they become agitated and begin to glow dimly, with the colors and fluctuations being familiar to regular users of detect magic, who can learn about the strength and school of nearby magical sources by studying the luminescence and behavior of these tiny shrimp. In some darklands ecosystems, they serve as the base of local food pyramids, turning the magical energies left behind in magically warded ruins and structures into sustenance, first for themselves, and, in turn, for the larger fish and eels that prey upon them.
Eric Hinkle wrote:
A new candidate for dumbest/worst film ever is yet another schlocktacular from the Asylum, Night of the Wild. Meteor falls to earth outside a rural hamlet in California's Central Valley, grants local canines heightened intelligence and an insane lust for human blood, hilarity and mayhem ensue.
Not to be mistaken for Night of the Comet, which also involves a meteor and weird changes, and is terrible but *awesome* at the same time.
Wait, there is use for iconics at all?! o.O
For editor/art orders to point at for new artists and say, 'That's what a Rogue looks like.'
For experienced player to point at for new players and say, 'That's how you *don't* build a Fighter.'
For the easily distracted among us (like me) to point at and say, 'It's so shiny! Look at all the buckles and straps!'