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Ambrosia Slaad wrote:
While you are away, your fellow party members begin to whisper of their indescribable unease behind your back... until you return, when they forget what they were even discussing, or how many times they've had this same conversation.
"So you're saying that Ben might have some connection to Glory?"
Doesn't the Dragon Disciple prestige class turn you into a half-dragon though?
Tangentially, 'Dragon Disciple' variants that turned one into a half-fiend, half-celestial, half-fey, half-genie or half-undead for Sorcerers of the Abyssal, Infernal, Celestial, Fey, Elemental and Undead Bloodlines would make sense. (Something modular, so that it could be a single PrC (or Sorcerer Archetype!) with many options, and not a half-dozen separate PrCs/Archetypes, would be ideal, and able to also be adaptable for Rakshasa, Protean, Djinni, Efreeti, Shaitan, Marid, etc. Bloodlines.)
But yeah, a draconic race would be cool. One that incorporates eastern dragon motifs too.
It's fuzzy, but I vaguely recall Japanese tales of great warriors marrying women of unnatural grace and beauty who were the daughters of dragons, making eastern dragons perhaps far better suited, from a myth and folklore standpoint, to have humanoid 'half-dragons' than western style dragons.
And yes gnolls too!
the secret fire wrote:
+Con seems like a holdover from the stouter Gnomes of earlier editions (and seems even less on-theme now that they have ties to the fey, the creature type with the smallest HD).
There's also the muddle that Gnomes have been very different over different editions. Pre-3rd edition, and once again in 5th edition, they had high Intelligence and were associated, through the Dragonlance Tinker Gnomes, with clockwork, crafting and contraptions. In 3.5, for a few brief years, it was 'favored class Bard' and, while they didn't have a Charisma bonus, that certainly would have felt appropriate. And now they are associated with the fey and nature, more like the 'Forest Gnomes' of previous editions, and less like the 'Rock Gnomes' (aka, Dwarf-lite).
As I tend to prefer not to close doors on flavors already introduced, I'd go for the Gnome attribute modifier to be +2 Intelligence *or* +2 Wisdom *or* +2 Charisma, and no physical attribute modifiers at all. They'd be stronger (wiry little bodies!) than Halflings and most other Small races, but not as nimble as many of them (Halfling, Goblin, Kobold) tend to be, and with a completely average Con score. Unlike Elves or Dwarves, who may have subraces or castes or different attribute arrays because of being forsaken or Sovyrian or whatever, Gnomes would have no genetic component to their attribute bonus. Two gnomish tinkers with +2 Intelligence might have a kid who has a +2 to Wisdom and goes into Druidism, or +2 Charisma and takes up inspiring oratory as a wandering Bard or awakens a knack for fey Sorcery.
So folk who want to play Gimble the 3.5 Iconic Gnome Bard, can do so with a shiny +2 Charisma modifier, while those who want to play Nebbin, the 3.0 Iconic Gnome Illusionist, can have their +2 Intelligence, and those who want to play Lini, the Pathfinder Iconic Gnome Druid, can have a +2 Wisdom.
No burning need to close any of those doors.
Some gnomes can be tinker-y, or book-totin' arcanists, others can sing and perform and practice fey sorcery, and yet others can get all woodsy and spiritual and turn into bears and eat faces. Not even a need for sub-races like 'Rock Gnome' and 'Forest Gnome,' or City Mouse and Country Mouse.
Rise of the Runelords - Varisia
Of them, Andoran, Qadira, Taldor, Thuvia, Linnorm Kings Lands, Mammoth Lords Realms, Isger, Molthune, Nirmathas and Druma are all large nations with plenty of potential baked in, while other places, like Belkzen, Galt, Nidal, Rahadoum and Razmiran, are a bit more limited, and lands like Kyonin, the Five Kings Mountains, Jalmeray, Nex, Lastwall and Alkenstar/Mana Wastes will have fairly focused themes.
Given that Andoran, Qadira and Taldor are three of the 'big five' of the Pathfinder Society (along with Cheliax and Osirion), there's a ton of development space left to explore for campaigns that want to follow a more traditional fantasy adventurer niche (and avoid some of the more unique aspects that come with places like Numeria or Irrisen, or specific cultural analogues as would happen in the Lands of the Linnorm Kings or Jalmeray or the Mwangi Expanse).
Isger, Molthune and Nirmathas always seemed to me like perfect places to set 'out of the way' games, that are unlikely to interact much with published stuff, since they lack the big, big flavor of devil-haunted Thrice-Damned Cheliax or 'fantasy Egypt' or don't-call-me-Ravenloft Ustalav or Thundarr the Numerian. (All of which I love, but each veer slightly away from the Tolkien-esque 'generic fantasy Europe' to their own flavors.)
I would have done Dwarves with a DEX penalty instead of Charisma, myself.
I'd be fine with keeping both options.
Dwarves could be divided into a warrior group, +2 Con, +2 Wis, -2 Cha, and a crafts group, +2 Con, +2 Int, -2 Dex. The crafters are more common in the dwarven cities, and maintain the dwarven supremacy at metallurgy, weaponsmithing, armory, etc. Out in the world, people are more likely to meet the warrior types, as they are more likely to operate outside of clan holdings.
I prefer the idea of dwarves having a Dex penalty and an Int bonus (as well as their standard Con bonus), but I also prefer keeping the option of the +Wis/-Cha open for those who prefer that stat array.
Secret Wizard wrote:
What the hell is a Spider Goblin
Ooh, Spider-Eye Goblins.
They could be Golarion-ed up by having some Chitterwoods tribe of goblins recovering from a demoralizing near-annihilation by renewing their vows to the Mother of Monsters, and her 'blessing' them with offspring that combine the traits of the local giant spiders with their own goblin blood...
Other (perhaps more setting neutral) variants could make things interesting. Goblins that have grown up in a region where the borders between the material plane and the plane of shadow might have coal-black skin, better than average stealth and darkvision, and stronger than normal light vulnerability / light blindness, as well as the ability to snuff small light sources (darkness effect only usable to negate cantrip level light effects, or snuff torches, lanterns, sunrods, etc.). A Bugbear breed specializing in hunting fey might have some supernatural ability to resist fey magic and pass through woodlands as if it was a 4th level druid.
Spider-Man and Daredevil (and Spider-Girl/Anya and Nightcrawler and Timber Wolf and Nightwing and Jolt) are favorites of mine for the same reason, all are (in some cases, superhumanly) acrobatic fighters who are all over the place, very dynamic and kinetic. I love that sort of character.
Of the original Guardians of the Galaxy, Nikki, in addition to keen senses and resistance/immunity to some energy effects, was a super-acrobatic fighter and sharpshooter. She'd be cool to see, on screen, doing Spider-Man / Nightcrawler-like fighting moves (and perhaps shrugging off blaster fire, while remaining vulnerable to knives and fists and bullets, and still having good reason to keep moving and dodging and flipping through fights).
Ambrosia Slaad wrote:
So I bent down and picked her up, only to discover she is the newest incarnation of Graviton; she increased her gravitational attraction by at least an order of magnitude, wrenching my back.
Or, at least, we've discovered one of Cosmo's 66 secret names...
Robert Forward is about as "Hard Sci-Fi" as you can get, as all his books are based on tech that you can extrapolate from known science. And he's a real scientist who knows his stuff. However unless your the type that likes geeking out on hardware, his books have some of the least flavorful and shallowest characters you'll find in the genre, and will bore you to tears.
So, so terribly dull. Old 'classic' sci-fi like Larry Niven or Greg Bear would sometimes delve a little bit into science-talk, but Forward will spend five pages on a mathy science lesson, complete with fomula. Ugh. Give me Trek-no-babble any day!
The science (magic, historical accuracy, cultural details, fetishistic technical descriptions of guns, violence or medicine, whatever) should serve the story, not the other way around.
Dale McCoy Jr wrote:
I recently noodled around with the idea of using the ninja as a chassis to build a Kellid witch-hunter sort of character, and it might be neat to see other sorts of non-faux-Asian uses of the ninja (or samurai). Using the ninja to represent a faux-Persian Hashashin (disappear in a cloud of hashish smoke!), or some other form of supernaturally stealthy assassin, could be funky, and the samurai reflavored to be a Mameluke could be a different way to open up that class to a different culture.
The ninja's ki being reflavored to be a pool of magical energy (for a witch or sorcerer-themed 'magic assassin') or psychic energy, could be a neat way to radically change the 'ninja,' eliminating the Asian weapon choices with something more appropriate to whatever culture it represents (Persian/Qadiran, Osirioni/Egyptian (throwing scarabs instead of shuriken, with 'switchblade' sharpened 'wings' popping out of the harmless jewelry-looking item?), Mwangi/African, Ulfen/Viking/Celtic, etc.)
Gunslinger variants that work based off of the bow, sling, crossbow, or even thrown weapons (such as shuriken, darts, daggers, etc.) seem like an obvious way to go. One based off of melee weapons, similar to how the swashbuckler uses panache instead of grit, like a PF version of the old Kensai kit / PrC from AD&D, could be an interesting tweak.
A Magus variant that can fight and use spell combat while holding a pair of daggers, or a staff (traditional wizard weapons). Instead of being a 'fighter / magic-user,' it's more of a magic-user who uses their magic to enhance their wizardly fighting options, and not an armored dude with a sword that has a few spells. Perhaps even a ranged 'dagger magus' variant-on-the-variant, or a wider range of potential 'ranged magi' using darts, thrown weapons, crossbows, etc.
Edit: Ah, *racial* archetypes. My bad!
Certainly, the idea of how to integrate the culturally specific samurai and ninja into races like the elf and dwarf, as well as more exotic races, without falling back on the 'Japanese elves' notion, could be one way to go. A non-Asian samurai archetype based on dwarven clan loyalties, or a non-Asian gnomish 'ninja' that taps into their innate fey magic to enhance their stealth / etc. (magical 'ki') could be avenues to explore.
Using magus to explore races that have both magical and martial traditions, dedicated to specific racial weapons, such as an 'elven curve blade magus' or 'elven bow magus,' or using the gunslinger / swashbuckler mechanic to showcase racial-weapon-focused dwarven waraxe fighters or half-orc falchion masters or halfling sling-specialists could be another way to go.
One difference between vampires and predatory animals is that animals have to kill to survive. There's no way for a lion to bite a meal off of a gazelle without killing it. A vampire, even in systems where they have some sort of mechanical penalty for not feeding, can choose to feed from animals, or feed so lightly from charmed / dominated / friendly humans that they can recover blood lost overnight. They don't *have* to kill. (Same with ghouls, who explicitly prefer long-dead flesh, and aren't motivated by their 'biology' or 'necrology' or whatever to kill.)
What makes so many vampires, ghouls, etc., unlike tigers, evil, is that, despite not having to kill to feed (and quite possibly not having to feed at all, just wanting to), is that they *choose* to kill.
A Shoanti dual Klar style would be so much cooler (and so much *less* of an 'exploit' than) that Thunder & Fang feat that lets you dual wield an Earthbreaker and Klar.
That said, I'd totally approve of a Shield & Spear style. Allowing someone to one-hand a spear or even longspear, and equip a shield in the other hand, would simulate several real world fighting armies (like the Romans), and be less mechanically 'optimal' than being able to one-hand an Earthbreaker, which, both visually and mechanically, seems a bit over the top.
-Textile Telekinesis-use highest mental stat for str score.
I suspect you meant tactile telekinesis, although being able to supernaturally manipulate cloth and clothing could also be funky. :)
"Ooh, my boots just tripped me. And now I'm all tangled up in my undergarments, which apparently now have not only Improved Grab, but also Constriction. I thought my war dog was safe, being naked and all, but the dude's turban / sash thingie just unwrapped and is attacking like a giant cloth snake!"
Kaiju mantis shrimp 'swim' through space and use their stellar-heat-igniting 'death punch' to turn planetoids into brief-lived stars, whose flare of light attract other kaiju mantis shrimps to mate.
If one lands on an inhabited planet of larger size, the resultant firestorm is rarely large enough to destroy more than a small kingdom, but that's still pretty catastrophic for the inhabitants of said kingdom...
captain yesterday wrote:
Yeah, many APs are perfect for evil parties. 'Ooh, we stopped the evil whatever, and now we get to take over his castle / city / nation!'
Fred Saberhagen's Empire of the East is a good read, and nicely combines elements of magical fantasy and post-tech-apocalypse sci-fi (including the most mind-blowing 'demons' ever).
Roger Zelazny's Lord of Light, Isle of the Dead and Creatures of Light & Darkness and probably the Amber books (which I don't remember all that well) also combine the spiritual / mystical and technology (more mental development and psi than magic, but far from a Babylon 5 or 'psionics' sort of feel).
Andre Norton's Witch World and C.S. Friedman's When True Night Falls are post-tech-apocalyptic magic settings (as are the works of Linda Bushyager and Anne McCaffery's Dragonriders of Pern books), but none of them really have much tech at all.
DM Under The Bridge wrote:
A golarion bodyguard, for sure.
Also fits thematically with the notion of 'shieldmaidens' who provide a defensive barricade for Vikings, or front line fighters in phalanx style formations, where the person in front shield-blocks, while the second rank goes on the offensive with a reach weapon.
I see adventures as about as relevant to the financial structure of the setting as celebrities and professional athletes and pop stars and pundits with their own talk / radio shows are to our own financial structure. They exist (in relatively small numbers, compared to the general population). They consume conspicuously and spend vast amounts of money on stuff that the rest of us kind of boggle at (Diamond encrusted tooth grills? Pretty much as relevant as a metamagic rod, to those of us who have no use for either, and more important things to spend our much smaller amounts of money upon.).
Right where they are concentrated, there would be cottage industries to support them (craftsmen specializing in pumping out magic items that nobody who isn't an adventurer, or ruler of an entire nation, could possibly afford, for instance), and these would exist at (and for) the convenience of the adventuring community, just as plastic surgeons and agents / managers and high priced companions and personal chefs / trainers all exist to sell overpriced services to the celebrities and athletes and other greatly overpaid people of our world, sucking away (some of) their money and returning it to the economy.
Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
He said that in true science fiction, the story was at least in some way about how the technology changed things. Not as a MacGuffin or substitute for a threat that could just as easily be a dragon or soldier, but how society, characters, or conflict is fundamentally changed by new technologies. The fiction is at least in big part *about* the science.
Some of my favorite sci-fi deals with how society and people (and sometimes the very definition of what is 'people') have changed. Cyberpunk, for example, often delved into how technology changed society, and futurist/transhumanist authors like Greg Egan and Peter Hamilton tend to dive right into that well.
Well-thought-out fantasy worlds go the same way. Eberron, for instance, dealt pretty strongly with how the presence of magic and other races changed the world / setting. Instead of it being 'fantasy Europe + all sorts of other stuff that changes nothing,' the presence of magic and other races shaped the entire setting in many ways. Other fantasy settings (and comic book settings, often) are more likely to shove other races off into their own little ghetto nations where humans don't want to live anyway and have humanity develop more or less unchanged in any significant way despite the presence of elves, magic and dragons.
"Heavy is the crown of the god-king/queen. The flail and scepter are pretty hefty too..."
[tangent] Perhaps because of the Crown/Orb/Scepter of Might from 1st edition, I always wanted to see non-Western versions of the 'regalia,' such as a Sword/Jewel/Mirror for a Japanese set. An Egyptian set is harder, 'though, because there's the Crown/Uraeus/Mask, the Was/Scepter, the Ankh, the Flail, the Scarab and the Spear. Nailing it down to just three (Scepter/Flail/Crown?) becomes an issue, because some of them, like the ankh and scarab, are also pretty iconic. Coming up with thematic powers also becomes a thing. The ankh is life, the uraeus / crown is rulership and wisdom, the flail represents agriculture, the was/scepter measurement (determining value) and architecture, etc. [/tangent]
More explicitly Osirioni/Vudrani/Qadiri/Mwangi/Tien/Kellid/Ulfen/Varisian/Arcadian Empyreals could be pretty neat, dragging myself kicking and screaming back to topicality.
'Demihuman' (elf, dwarf, gnome, halfling) Empyreals, or even odder fare (such as a Tengu Empyreal or an Android Empyreal) also.
In the vein of the 'make your own archfiend' thread, perhaps we could come up with some new Empyreal options.
Ooh, yes! I do miss the Freeport setting with it's much more 'PC friendly' Serpentfolk.
Android, Changeling (related to other Hag types?)
Samsarans are a gold mine of potential for people wanting to play a gender-swapped or race-bent character (someone who reincarnated into a very different body when they were born Samsaran, ranging from Jadzia Dax shenanigans to full-on Sinclair-becomes-Minbari).
Vishkanya, Suli and Tengu could definitely use some fleshing out.
Guidelines to make playable versions of less-'PC friendly' races like Derro, Dark Folk, Centaurs, Ogrekin and Mites could be neat, as part of an exploration of one of those races.
Good, because all this Pro House Thrune sentiment is really, really creepy.
Considering that we have people fighting tooth and nail to turn neutral nations like Druma, Hermea and Rahadoum into evil nations, I actually *prefer* that we have an actual evil nation or two to point at and say, 'We don't *have* to distort every other nation into evil, we've already got some that *are* evil already!'
It's like singing this with complete sincerity and saying "look at those really cool uniforms".
'If you like something I don't, you're just like Hitler!'
I've always loved that argument, particularly back in the 80's when it was 'D&D has magic and monsters in it, so playing it is exactly like devil-worship!'
Oh, the Realms aren't that bad. (Plus WotC already blew them up for you! Crisis on Infinite Spellplagues, wasn't it?)
Just have Elminster be an 8th level Divination specialist Wizard, with a truly terrifying collection of commissioned erotica depicting him and various goddesses and notable female rulers (none of whom he's ever met, or have ever heard of him), and run with it.
Like pretty much every setting, you pick and choose what you like, and ignore the rest, and, it being such a big setting, there's a lot of stuff there to like.
It's not like they've got spacefaring xenophobic penguin furries, or an entire nation of tortles, or... kender.
Ugh. I just remembered gully dwarves. My soul needs a shower.
David Neilson wrote:
Oh of course, restrictions are not prohibitions. I am just wondering what the nature and severity of the barrier between the two is. I am assuming at the least a Kalistocrat is restricted to other Kalistocrats as partners.
[tangent]Since the exact nature of the 'dietary and sexual prohibitions' wasn't spelled out, when I played one (and kind of needed some specifics for role-playing), I based it around money.
A Kalistocrat wouldn't eat the flesh of an animal that would be more productively kept alive (a source of ongoing product, such as a hen or milk cow or sheep, up until their productivity slows down, at which point it becomes more efficient to slaughter them and make space for a younger faster-laying / more milk or wool producing animal). Eating extravagantly is a way of showing off wealth and practically a requirement for a Kalistocrat looking to gain / maintain status. Eating to excess, on the other hand, is considered wasteful / sinful. Similarly, a Kalistocrat would only engage in reproductive sex with their assigned partner, and only engage in *non* reproductive sex with anyone else (since rules of inheritance, and struggles over same, are big, big deals in the Kalistocracy, so everyone is very careful to only have a very small group of designated heirs, and as few 'bastards' as possible).
I mainly picked that fantasy stuff because I didn't want to go with a set of prohibitions based on any real world religion, such as Judaism, Islam or LDS.
All I'm really are seeing here, so far, is that blackberry wine is on the approved list, and that sex with one's mercenary league employees is kept on the down low.
Steve Geddes wrote:
FWIW, The question of which settings I'd rather have converted to pathfinder (which I answered) has a different answer than the question of which settings I'd like to visit in an AP.
That's also true. No setting is monolithic. An AP visit is likely to only explore a single smallish area of a setting, so it's not like an adventure set in the Scarlet Brotherhood is really touching on the other 95% of the Greyhawk setting, or would be anything like one set in Hepmonaland, or the lands of the Frost Barbarians, or the Lenore Isles.
For AP visits, smaller city-states or whatever would be the way to go.
maybe a visit to a more regionally themed area, like can be found in Naranjan, Hamunaptra or Al-Qadim, that often share a similar tone across an area, just to stop it from being a smorgasboard of big cities, which, no matter how different they are, would get stale.
Alexander Augunas wrote:
Certainly some valid things to think about. I kind of like the various 'bad things happen to Iconics' pictures demonstrating various traps and spells and (most commonly) monsters, but we do place a higher priority on pictures that include 'action,' so that one is more likely to see an illustration of the Whirlwind Attack feat or the chain lightning spell than one of the Heighten Spell feat or mage armor spell (does anybody know if metamagic-ing a spell has a visual effect? I sure don't. Does the casting of (invisible once created) mage armor, or many other spells with no noted visible effects, such as locate object or owl's wisdom, create any visible effects? Also, a mystery, perhaps best left to the hands of the GM.).
A step between your own thoughts on images of non-action 'events' like romance (or other interactions), even some illustrations of not-so-action-y skill uses like Diplomacy and Heal and Handle Animal and Craft could show off some Iconics (or less Iconic NPCs) doing stuff other than get blown up / eaten / fighting / jumping / flying backwards through the air while backflipping with knives (Merisiel's favorite thing to be doing, apparently...). :)
I'm personally a fan of pictures that include multiple people doing stuff in the same picture (like on the cover of most APs). D&D/PF has always been a game about a *team* of people doing stuff, and I'd like to see more pictures of multiple people working together, perhaps with one setting up another, or blocking an attack coming at another, or casting a spell to buff/enhance another, etc. There's a ton of solo pictures, and this has never been a solo game. Some of the Eberron books and modules had some cool WAR-drawn pictures of entire parties of adventurers, and that, to me, feels more like what the game is about.
Not just multiple people having their own individual fights in the same general vicinity, but actual interactions and teamwork, would be a plus, for me.
Masterwork studded leather armor has no armor check penalty, and is a relatively cheap (175 gp for size medium MW studded leather, 200 gp for size Large MW studded leather) +3 to AC for your companion.
A Large ape with a Large greatsword is going to deal out some hurt.
In the Golarion setting, where there's a city-state filled with armored and weapon-wielding evil apes, it's not even something far-fetched or implausible!
Mark Hoover wrote:
This topic is SO ripe for plot hooks I can't stand it.
It can also get 'meta' pretty fast. Note that, in comics, in fantasy art and novels, etc. it's almost always the ugliest person who turns out to be the traitor. Someone has scars on their face from a childhood illness? That's the person that's going to betray the Knights of Solomnia.
While there are plenty of beautiful-but-evil folk on the other side of the coin, age, fat, scarring, etc. are all warning signs that a character is going to be evil, as if we still carry the dark ages around with us, and sickness or infirmity is a sign that somebody did something morally wrong and is being punished for it (or is possessed by evil, or something).
Given that, in many fantasy worlds, 'ugliness' is often a stone-cold-fact association with evil (Scarification, piercings and body art? Kuthite! Or maybe Drow Pain Taster, but still not good!), and deformed people are associated with Lamashtu worshippers (kill the freak before it kills us!), it's entirely possible that people would seek to either 'kill alla uglees' or try to 'redeem' them by transforming them into more aesthetically pleasing sorts, since they've gone to the shallow end of associating physical appearance with moral values, and so it would make 'logical' sense to them that making an ugly evil thing into a beautiful thing would cause it to become less evil and more good.
And so, a (horribly misguided?) group, perhaps even a heretical splinter sect of a Shelynite church?, might be found to be kidnapping people who are deformed or unattractive and using surgery and magic to 'fix them' into prettier people, under the muddle-headed notion that they are fighting the influence of evil, such as Lamashtu, by cutting away deformities and alchemically 'blending' blotchy skin and pulling crooked snaggle-teeth and replacing them with aesthetically positioned and colored ivory replacements. Weak chin? Clearly a sign of moral weakness, perhaps a lack of courage. Just make a few slits and place some 'lifts' under there against the bone to 'fill it out.' Milky or lazy eye? Just pop that sucker out and we'll replace it with this flawless stone replica.
As long as ugly or fat or deformed or venerable or mentally ill people are associated with 'evil' or moral failing (even if it's just as simple as 'fat people are lazy') by various setting elements (Lamashtu, Zon-Kuthon, Great Old Ones cults, etc.), then it totally makes sense that their would be factions within the setting attempting to 'fight the spread of evil' by finding ways to eliminate or 'beautify' these people.
Mikaze - sad wrote:
Judge What-His-Name wrote:
“This court is persuaded that Louisiana has a legitimate interest ... whether obsolete in the opinion of some, or not, in the opinion of others ... in linking children to an intact family formed by their two biological parents,”
So, *clearly*, the next step is to prevent people from divorcing if they have children, or marrying a non-bio-parent if they already have children, and to prevent any sort of adoption whatsoever, and to force couples that are not fertile together to divorce and marry only persons with whom they are fertile and to prevent marriage licenses from being issues to hot young fertile people and creaky old rich folk beyond their reproductive years.
'Cause if you don't do *all* of this, all that remains of this argument is the part you were too much of a chicken**** to say out loud, 'gay people are icky and shouldn't be allowed to marry the people they love or help raise some of the abandoned children that irresponsible folk keep discarding like so much rubbish.'
While there certainly are a lot children's fantasy adventures with children as the heroes, dating well back before RPGs, those adventures tend to have a lot less slaughter than the average D&D/PF game. I think that make a difference.
The thing with Iconics is that there's an entire thread devoted to which among them get devoured, impaled, blown up, trapped, drowned, etc. the most.
A child Iconic being subjected to some of the terrible body horror deaths that Valeros, etc. get subjected to might be a little off-putting.
Certainly the art orders could simply not request the child Iconic in various 'Monsters Revisited' death scenes, but that in itself might beg the question of whether the child Iconic was a suitable 'Iconic' if there's a built in limitation on how it can be used, compared to the other Iconics...
Even if it is something easily work-around-able, I can see Paizo not wanting to open that can of worms.
You two are obviously different types of gamers, Zhayne. While this is a bit of a simplification, there are players who like a Tolkien-esque world which limits exotic races and there are players who have more fun with an anything goes star wars approach,
Tolkien, who fielded a party consisting of a bunch of dwarves, a Halfling and a demigod / aasimar / something or other, and not a single human, probably isn't the go-to example to use.
When he did use humans, one of them was an 80 something year old Numenorian (pretty much a pureblood Azlanti, in Golarion terms), and the elf in the party was a 'powerful race' completely out of balance with the hobbits and dwarf and other human.
5 hobbits, 14 dwarves, an elf, a demigod / istari / angel, a 'black Numenorian' and a single token 'normal human' (who dies in the first act) in Tolkien's two 'parties.'
Tolkien may not have had any orcs or goblins or trolls or bear-changers or ents or talking spiders in 'the party,' but he's about as 'cantina' as it gets, compared to stuff like Fafhrd & the Gray Mouser (in which the only 'party members' were human)...
And yet, that doesn't sound like a 'race / class' problem, so much as a tone or theme issue, one that would not be solved by restricting race / class, but by encouraging role-play appropriate to the tone of the game.
If your mage was played up as a more noir-ish stage magician (secretly using real magic from his dark heritage), I feel like that might have made more of a difference than whether or not your character had supernatural ties (since it's entirely possible to use supernatural stuff along the lines of 'monster comics' or even with a Lovecraftian moody feel).
Just like the 'forbid playing evil characters' or 'don't allow Paladins because PVP' trope, a problem player is going to be a problem player, whether you allow them to play an undead assassin, a Paladin or a furry fox-person. The race-you-hadn't-already-put-in-your-setting seems less about improving a game than picking one thing (unplanned races) and labeling it as 'the problem' with problem players.
I do get that sometimes what make a good painting are the colors that you don't use, and that making a stew with every single ingredient in your kitchen is a great way to create inedible swill, but it's not like your players are going to be playing *every single race and class* available to them, all at once. If you want a limited number of races to avoid 'cantina,' it's easy enough to remove races that nobody wants to play. (Someone wants to play a gnoll, and *nobody* wants to play a dwarf and you feel like all the core races + gnoll = cantina? Bang. There are no dwarves in this iteration of the setting. Your 'cantina' hang up is solved.)
Same. I try to do Weal & Woes, every now and then, and even my *shortest* attempt uses up all 1500 words on a single character!
"What is so awesome about it that it's worth reworking the campaign so that it really does fit?"
What needs to be reworked, 'though? The object of running a game is giving people a chance to share some fun for a couple of hours, not for one frustrated wanna-be author to sit four other people down and tell them a story, and refuse to allow anyone to play any character that I don't pre-approve as existing in this story I'm telling them.
There is no 'setting' outside of the group fun we are having. If the setting is the Forgotten Realms, and somebody wants to play a member of the Sueloise Brotherhood, or an Eberron Changeling, then, bang, so it happens. If we decide to play a vampire game, and one dude wants to play a werewolf, there are balance issues, because vampires are the ugly stepsisters of the World of Darkness, and either they need to be toned up (or at least have their non-daylight operations rule negated, so that the werewolf player doesn't spend half the game waiting for the sun to set and the vampire players don't spend half the game waiting for the werewolf's daytime adventures to end). 'Theme' is not an issue. We aren't a boy band, and everybody doesn't have to dance in lockstep. We're more like the Village People, one dude playing a cop does not preclude someone else playing a cowboy.
Again, I'm spoiled by superhero games, where the players can literally say 'I'm playing the avatar of an Egyptian god I just made up' and I, as GM, do not have to GAF that Egyptian gods may not have existed in the setting I'm using until this very second. It's the work of a second for me to say 'Okay.' It's not like I have to go invent an Egyptian pantheon to go along with that character origin, or rearrange any pre-existing gods I've got going on or anything.
Generally, if I'm running a game, I'm running it because my players want to play it, and so anything they want to play, whether it fits a pre-constructed setting, or my own personal tastes, is on the table as long as it isn't unbalanced in a way that would make the game unfun for some or all of them (when *everyone* wants to play something unbalanced, like our old 'monster campaigns' where ogre magi was a perfectly valid player race, then, it's on!).
We do play a lot of superhero games, where a robot, an alien, a demigod and a mutant sorceress are perfectly acceptable 'party members.' (Then again, that's not an impossible party to see in Alkenstar or Numeria...)
It's totally okay to prefer one to the other, but referring to Star Trek (1966) as a 'rip off' of Star Wars (1977) makes me wonder if your interactions with linear time are perhaps a bit misaligned.
This just in, the Eurythmics totally ripped off that Marilyn Manson song, Sweet Dreams!
Kain Darkwind wrote:
We need to nerf houses.
I'd recommend building a house with bricks imported from the infernal pit, giving it the fiendish template to make it a bit more fire resistant.
It would be cool to have some new types of Homunculi, especially a type that looks completely human.
The Semblance of Transfusion alchemical item in the Alchemy Manual (p 15), could perhaps be made permanent at 10x the cost (peeking at the ideas on p 14 for an appropriate cost).
Combining constructs with 'psychic magic;'
Guy St-Amant wrote:
Which would be relevant to the Bestiary. This particular discussion is as not-relevant to Occult Adventures as whether or not Paizo is providing a slanted view of communist philosophies, or shortchanging atheism.
While I'm sure there's precedent for a class or system based around how monstrous (or merely unattractive) a character (female or male) can get, as a way of incentivizing or promoting unattractive / unsexy characters, perhaps based around creature grafts or body scarification or a slow progression into another creature type (such as a half-dragon or hag) or a character whose powers are dependent upon age category (encouraging playing of older characters, and not parties of hot young twenty-somethings), that, as I mentioned earlier about the Bloatmage, isn't really addressing the 'all X characters tend to be sexy,' so much as making an option for people to have 'fat superpowers' or 'ugly superpowers.' A class- or mechanic-based solution would hilariously miss the mark, IMO.
That said, such a mechanic / class option could be intriguing, and fit the more transformation-y/Jekyll & Hyde/Lovecraftian body horror aspects of the 'Occult' theme, and provide an excuse for some unsexy artwork (a woman halfway through a Dragon Disciple like transformation into an Aberration, via advancement of the Aberrant Bloodline Sorcerer features, frex).
But that still creates the muddled message that the only reason a female adventurer wouldn't be crazy hot, is if she gained super-powers from being ugly, which not only doesn't address the question of why all adventuring ladies have to be four-alarm babes (even if, like Feiya, that flies in the face of their backstory...), but actually kind of makes it worse by so egregiously missing the point.
Eh. It's late, and I'm cranky about the tone. I feel like someone just drove-by a bunch of threads and said 'Topic X! Discuss, my dancing minions, because I can't be bothered! Make my random proclamation topical for me!'