Considering that the world can actually end, or at least get severely screwed up, depending on characters level of success or failure in Second Darkness. The world ending has been and continues to be a thing.
Any scenario in which the PCs at your table take a major role in world critical events is by default canonically divergent.
I honestly just named my Sarcesian mechanic Indrid Cold because my first thought when I saw the race was "Space Mothman." But for Golarion based names, her butterfly inspired hover drone is called NM-02, named after the Night Monarch herald of Desna, who is still around obviously but... might possibly have different heralds it's been so long.
I'm not sure if I'd play a Bantrid myself but I am happy they are included in the game and that weird races are really getting their time to shine in Starfinder. I love the unusual becomes the mundane aspect of the game when it comes to player race variety.
Also when I read about what Bantrids were, I immediately thought of the Mulefa from His Dark Materials.
I support any decision that makes equipment such as weapon and armor choice less fiddly for small races. Just let me use things I find and not have to worry about resizing it for figuring out what 'sized' weapon it converts to just because I'm a halfling. Or both to remember what weapons I'm 'allowed' to use because of my size, no thank you.
Especially now if weapon damage dice is going to be multiplied in any way by weapon enhancements. Demanding that a small dagger does d3 instead of d4 just really doesn't matter when eventually I'm going to be rolling like 8 of them.
Let's be real the only thing small damage dice did was make it so if you played a gnome/halfing you couldn't use 90% of the gear that dropped.
"You find a +2 flaming burst warhammer."
"Awesome! I want it!"
"Well... It's medium sized."
And then you have go through whether or not your GM allows resizing rules for weapons/armor and whether or not those rules are actually any good. "Sure you can resize it, but it's going to cost just as much as buying one sized for you so there's no real point in you keeping this one."
It's less work for the GM than having to remember to either make house rules, or remembering to consistently throw your small sized PC's some bones with the otherwise overwhelmingly medium as standard loot tables, especially if you run modules/APs.
I am imagining the future Tiefling ancestral feats.
Now that I think about how this ancestry system works. I'm actually glad that Tieflings are not core.
Tieflings need their own book to truly have the space to be tieflings in all the ways that Pathfinder Tieflings rule. You gotta have those appearance and ability charts.
I like the breaking of racial traits into more digestable customizable chunks. I was talking with my partner about this change in PF2E, and she said something to the effect of, "Thank god. One of the main reasons I never wanted to be a Dwarf was I looked at their racial entry and they had like... 15 different things I needed to write down."
The Goblin in Council of Thieves who wants to join the Hell Knights, an order so lawful Judge Dredd would joine, and is completely 100% tolerated by them and even given a relatively important job comes to mind as one source.
Nox Aeterna wrote:
They do have to deal with the real world though. Our creations are always partly influenced by of our thoughts, values, and morals as a society. Completely reflective of it? No, not always. But they do resonate with human experiences, and as a role playing game where we are literally putting ourselves in the shoes of other people and world views this needs to be kept into consideration at the table. Especially since this is not a single player game.
Racism and bigotry as seen in game from the perspective of a PC or portrayed by a GM is inherently influenced by our historical knowledge or experience of racism in the real world. This is why saying something like, "X are born evil." is a charged statement both in game and out. You might be looking at a player, currently in the role of an Orc, who might be part of a cultural group that was once thought to be 'born evil'. The adjacency of thought between this statement in a fantasy world to this statement in a real world is what can make people uncomfortable, and why its inclusion in a social game is flawed and to be handled with care and mutual consent.
Tarik Blackhands wrote:
It's not that different, and that's why I don't really care for the above. However it is a lot more culturally charged, and comes very very close to some ideas that I'm sure Paizo isn't interested in associating themselves with.
But then again, how literal are creation myths? Is that what actually happened, or just a story? Is that story as told reflected in their mechanics? The only playable mortal race that I can recall that comes close to 100% evil is Drow, but there is that sidebar that says, "Drow are not 100% evil" so really they aren't even worth mentioning as an example.
I don't understand why evil races are unrealistic. Biology drives behavior just as much as environment. Maybe evil races have brain chemistry that leads to evil acts?
This would be an incredibly unfortunate road to take, and would amplify the problem of evil races rather than doing anything to fix it.
Please don't do this Paizo.
Attempts to use science to justify inherent biological inferiority or lack of character has led to some of the greatest atrocities in history. Baking this as fact into your setting is... not a great PR move.
I agree, evil races are completely unrealistic. And its a sort of inherited problem with Pathfinder, and a lot of fantasy based fiction in general. Its useful to have stereotypes in a fantasy setting so people can more easily grasp what they're looking at immediately, but again they're just stereotypes. Easy to write and with a use for a tabletop setting, but more of starting off point from which to expand than the definitive. I can actually think of very few mortal races in Pathfinder that are definitively all the time evil. Actually only one, and that's drow, but they even have a sidebar that says, "Sometimes drow are different" so that isn't even the case. All the definitive alignments I can think of are creatures with an aligned subtype, generally outsiders.
My issue lies with some arguments I've seen where people want racism in their game, because a world without discrimination isn't realistic and ruins their suspension of disbelief. But they aren't willing to deal all the moral questions and development that arise from having exactly what they wanted because that's too serious and ruining their fun. It's wanting to have your cake and eat it too.
Interestingly enough, shouldn't most elves seen out of Kyonin, which would be... 90% of elven adventurers, be considered atypical and few in number? The iconic elf is even a Forlorn elf. Elves who have chosen to live outside of Kyonin among other races of lesser longevity are outside the norm in comparison to their entire racial demographic and culturally ingrained xenophobia.
Also to ask for the game to be just realistic enough so you can include discrimination and potentially racism fueled violence where you feel is warranted in setting, while stipulating that the cultural push back by targeted minorites in response to the above maladaptive social divides is too realistic because 'I'm just here to play a game, man' is both a double-standard and dishonest.
It's like playing expecting to play a game of dodgeball, but where only your team gets to throw, and all the opposing team can do is dodge if they're lucky.
There is an argument that not having NPCs react in a way that matches what the GM feels like their outlook should be on a 'typically evil' race is unrealistic.
The idea that all members of a race act the same way, share the same worldview, and worship the same gods is unrealistic. Especially in a world where there are so many different cultures in such close proximity with each other. Culture is not a stagnant thing, and no one society is an island. Even if a culture was somehow completely uninfluenced from the outside world, culture evolves and changes as the participating members of that culture innovate due to changing needs.
Laird IceCubez wrote:
Banning core material feels weird doesn't it? Imagine trying to justify banning goblins once they become core.
My personal preference is not to ban things like races and classes. The most common Core related thing I've seen banned is Gnomes, because they were either 'potentially disruptive' (like Goblins?) or because they were 'too anime' what with the big eyes and colorful hair, or too 'lol random'.
In my experience, it just seem like a way to make the players feel like the GM is super ready to pre-judge them on their character preference alone.
And if I love Goblins, and I just really want to play one because I have a great character idea? What if goblins are my favorite race? I should just forget about it because my GM doesn't really like them that much. Despite the fact that it is my character, and not theirs. And the fact that I might be the only goblin in their entire campaign. And the fact that I would be perfectly fine with them ignoring the fact that I was a goblin and having an NPCs never ever comment on it.
I actually had a DM who banned Stryx from his table for no reason other than, "he didn't like them". No reason given other than he wasn't feeling them. This wasn't made apparent until I approached with the express purpose of wanting to play one because I thought they were really cool both aesthetically and lore wise. Nope. Banned. Why? I still don't know. To this day, still never gotten the chance to play one.
This same GM also banned Gunslingers because he didn't like them. It didn't keep him from playing them exclusively as GMNPCs though. He liked them enough for that I guess. But hey, not everyone's fun is equal.
Isn't there a story about how Pathfinder almost didn't have Dwarves because one of the developers just didn't like them?
Jester David wrote:
Coincidentally I would play the hell out of a "We Be Orcs" or "We Be Tieflings", especially if the Tiefling one got to use the customizing mutation/ability tables.
Paize, please feel free to publish those books and more once the Goblin issue is put to bed.
If it's agreed upon between player and GM, and both parties consent that discrimination be part of the PCs backstory or ongoing story... Thats a-okay, and there is interesting character development to explore there.
Having, "I will make the lives of this race as hard as possible in order to discourage my players from ever picking this option again" is not a-okay. Even "I will let you play this race only on the condition that you allow me to insert very real, heavy, and damaging hardship into whatever character you have planned. Otherwise it's banned." sucks. I've run into that latter one often enough when attempting to play uncommon races.
When you say dragonkin, are you referring to Dragonborn in terms of design?
Pathfinder already has Dragonkin. They're aliens from the planet Triaxus and they're basically the closest thing you can get to tabletop equivalent to a dragon from Dragonriders of Pern. They're playable in Starfinder.
Dragonborn, in terms of physical design, also already exist in Pathfinder in the form of the Wyvaran.
"Compassion and peace are her greatest virtues, and if enemies of the faith can be redeemed, they should be."
Redemption, especially of foes often seen as irredeemable or not worth redeeming, is Sarenrae to the bone. It would make a lot of sense for a goblin, especially a goblin paladin, to worship Sarenrae as her clergy are likely some of the most devoted toward nurturing that change it outlook.
An extremely sheltered goblin from, lets say a relatively isolated Kingdom of Low Repute of the River Kingdoms, where goblins living among the populace is completely normalized and they are every day citizens. This goblin goes on an adventure and is absolutely baffled and caught off guard by the continual reactions that people have to him.
Someone reincarnated as a goblin might be fun too. I'm thinking something similar to the gnome character in one AP who was reincarnated as a Kobold, but without the crazy self-hating vengeance angle.
I'm going to say, I had a recent revelation regarding Starfinder that I feel applies to this discussion, which is now one of my favorite things about that system. In Starfinder era Golarion-verse, the options for races are way more varied and some incredibly bizarre compared to what is playable in PF. Its a giant rapidly expanding interconnected cosmos where more and more oddities are making themselves known, coming to the forefront of society, contributing to the economy, etc. ( See the new Pact Worlds book for some of the crazier things. )
In Starfinder it's incredibly difficult for the GM to do the tropey have NPC's just shoot you in the street for playing something atypical because you're just so weeeeirrd. The atypical is now pretty much the usual. If you haven't seen that alien before on your planet, then you've probably heard about them on the internet, or seen them on a media broadcast.
It's actually so refreshing as a player to not have to deal with constant IC (and occasionally OOC diguised as IC) resistance to your character choices.
Pretty much all this blog has said is: "Hey guys, sometimes Goblins can be totally cool, and like to go on road trips to be big hero guys."
Even if that was all the justification that was given, and we never get this upcoming lore revelation that Jason mentioned, the above statement is completely fine and reasonable in terms of including them as a player race. This isn't making huge sweeping changes to their currently existing culture. Its a 'sometimes', its a 'recently', its a 'few'. This is not "watering down" the lore.
It's sad that I can almost see why they have to put that "Sometimes Goblins are good" sentence in there. Because otherwise, if someone wanted to play a goblin character they might get told, "You're playing a goblin wrong." "You're not acting goblin-y enough." "Are you sure you don't just want to be a halfling or a gnome instead?"
Starfall in Numeria, and a few River Kingdoms if I recall.
I don't see how any of that is changing. I love those goblins too. We can still play those goblins, we can still use those goblins as a GM. Those goblins in lore aren't going anywhere. But what we love about Goblins doesn't mean there isn't room for growth, especially when it comes to PC options.
Diversity is not a 'watering down', it's adding another dimension to what it currently understood as the full picture. Racial stereotypes can be useful in a fantasy setting because they can easily let players grasp what they're looking at in a few key words. But stereotypes is all they are at the end of the day. The fact that there might be entire tribes or just single lone goblins of different worldviews makes them more interesting, not less.
Just to point out that a problem player is often going to be playing a problem no matter what race they are. If you don't trust your players to play a goblin, you've got bigger problems than goblins as a core race.
I can see how this might be a concern in Society where you are matched up with a table of strangers every session, but if they are disruptive in that case, is there no policy for Venture Captains to eventually weed out bad players? I'm honestly curious as I've never played PFS.
Now people are going to have to say "Core Only, NO GOBLINS!" instead of just "Core Only!"
Tangent, but nothing turns me off of considering joining a game faster than the words, "Core Only."
I'm interested in having goblins added because it gives lots of opportunity to explore their space as characters, and have a lot of fun potentially playing against type.
In the previous rules, an animal companion would carry out the command until the command changed, similar to a summon. I'd be okay with it controlling like a Starfinder drone, but if it stays the same as the old companions, that's fine too.
Also if you have an animal companion and you don't want it, thats when you get a small useful non-combat animal like a hawk and use it entirely for outside of combat skill use. Have it scout, have it carry messages, etc.
Also don't forget people that critical failures also exist with several spells in PF1E already, and compared to the new system they are really just... very fiddly and kind of terrible to actually try to use.
"Attended (Held/Wielded etc.) Items: Unless the descriptive text for a spell (or attack) specifies otherwise, all items carried or worn by a creature are assumed to survive a magical attack. If a creature rolls a natural 1 on its saving throw against the effect, however, an exposed item is harmed (if the attack can harm objects). Refer to Table: Items Affected by Magical Attacks to determine order in which items are affected. Determine which four objects carried or worn by the creature are most likely to be affected and roll randomly among them. The randomly determined item must make a saving throw against the attack form and take whatever damage the attack dealt. If the selected item is not carried or worn and is not magical, it does not get a saving throw. It simply is dealt the appropriate damage."
I would rather take double damage than lose expensive enchanted weapon to a fireball on a failed save. It beats having to slow down the game trying to figure out how much HP a Cloak of Resistance +1 has.
N N 959 wrote:
It already does though. If I'm investing my limited options to improve my character into my pet to improve its overall performance in preference to mine, why shouldn't it get stronger though?
If I'm willing to focus all the resources I'm given into the pet, those resources aren't going toward the functioning of the actual PC. If I choose to specialize in a melee front-line companion, why shouldn't it be competitive? I'd like to be able to have it contribute, and not be told, "Oh, you have a animal companion, but that's just going to make it so crowded..."
Having played a Mechanic in Starfinder and enjoyed it, which has a similar system with it consuming one of your actions and gradually improving to be more and more independent. I'm fine with this change.
What I'm more interested in is the amount to which I'm able to invest in my animal companion for my ranger or druid or whatever. I like classes that give you pets. Often, I want to use pet as a primary combatant rather than the character, and when I level up I immediately look to see in what ways I can improve the aspect of my class that I enjoy the most: the pet. If there is no way to really do that other than just leveling up along the track... It's a little disappointing.
I hope there are plenty of class feats that let you train your little Pokemon pals to be the very best that ever was.
I'm liking what I see. Gives a chance for spells especially to come with more flavor baked in for what is actually happening to the character rather than just, "you succeed" or "you fail." Levels of success and failure giving GMs a nice prompt for descriptive effects, while taking an additional step to make spell casting players feel like their spell helped in combat.
Slow being baked in the success on dominate is cool, and when used by enemies of the PCs will make those bad guys seem like even more of a threat, and when used by a PC might shift the tide of the battle.