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The most complete resource is in the Second Darkness AP. One of the support articles is a 16-page piece on "Drow of Golarion". The AP itself is about the history and origin of the Drow in Golarion.
At the time of Second Darkess' publication, the existence of the Drow on Golarion was limited to rumors and unsubstantiated theories... think of it like Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster in the real world.
The "Drow of Golarion" article is in book 3 of the Adventure Path, "The Armageddon Echo". Book 4 details the Drow city of Zirnakaynin, and living there with the Drow is a central theme.
Paizo has also used some mechanical pieces from the 3.0 book "Plot & Poison: A Sourcebook on the Drow" from Green Ronin (later revised for 3.5 as "Advanced Race Codex: Drow"), but they have used no cultural/ social material from it that I recognized.
As has been mentioned before, the criteria for the first two has been: 1) 3.5 rules and 2) sold out of print stock (completely, or almost completely... at least sufficiently for Paizo to feel like they aren't wasting their efforts re-visiting the AP).
Criterion 1 means only Second Darkness and Legacy of Fire are on the "short list".
Criterion 2 means neither of those qualify. At that point, Kingmaker becomes the most favorable candidate.
Unless something changes, then, there are no APs that meet the two main criteria. There is no commitment from Paizo to even do anothery, anyway, so it is possible the lack of a "perfect" candidate could delay or prevent another hardcover compilation.
In terms of needing help (aside from being written for 3.5), the main candidates are likely:
As for some of the other common requests:
Based on a quick analysis of message-board posts here on the Paizo forums, weighted to represent the time since announcement of each AP, the winners and losers (in terms of activity) are:
TOP 5 ACTIVITY (listed from most to least active):
BOTTOM 5 ACTIVITY (listed from least active to most):
*Rise of the Runelords gained a "bump" from the Anniversary Edition, so its numbers may be over-stated in comparison to the others for that reason. Curse of the Crimson Throne, which has just released a similar compilation, placed "dead center" (10th out of 20) for activity-weighted-by-time in that analysis.
Methodology and Raw Data:
For those who care about the method and data..
Using the total posts and thread counts for each AP (listed in their headers here on the forums), and the estimated number of months since they were announced (because Ironfang Invasion would ascend to the top with a number of threads in 0 months if I used release dates...), I calculated the raw "posts per month" and "threads per month". Posts per thread would not be all that helpful, especially considering that there had been some contentious threads (esp. re: Wrath of the Righteous).
The Data, as of Sept 9:
Still, the situation was "1d3 large sharks"... not a specific number. Odds are it would be 2, but could equally well be 1 or 3. If it is 1, the Aboleth could, indeed, take it out in one round.. probably. When talking about averages, the thing to remember is that any specific roll doesn't have to obey them. You can roll high and get a critical hit, or low and miss. There's a 5% base chance of either, on each attack.. and it is possible to roll four 1s or four 20s.
If there was more than 1 shark, then while the Aboleth is working on one, the other(s) is/are working on the Aboleth.
The GM may have reasoned in that case that, if the PCs are going to move on, spending several rounds off-screen to play out the battle might not be the best use of time. That's just a guess, of course, but describing it as the Aboleth fleeing for its life is less of a stretch under 3.5 than under Pathfinder.
I will call shortly.
There is no apparent way to make the change on the "My Payment Methods" page. There are three buttons:
"Add Payment Method" and "Change" in a box in the upper right corner, and "Select Another Payment Method" under the listed method on the left. There are no other visible controls.
The "Change" button does not appear to do anything; it may be re-directing back to the same page, because there is some visible activity as the page refreshes... but nothing that would let me make a change.
bitter lily wrote:
You may be thinking of something James Jacobs has said, which amounts to "don't ask me for official rules answers because that's not my department". The world-neutral team that works on the Core Rulebook, Ultimate [whatever], and [whatever] Adventures books is a separate team from the Golarion-specific group that works on Adventure Paths, Player Companions, and Campaign Setting books.
In the past, people asked James Jacobs for his opinion on various rules bits, and his answer was sometimes different depending on when you asked him.... or different from the "official" answer that may have come later or in another thread.
If the original version of Academae Graduate was from the Curse of the Crimson Throne Player Guide, then it has two potential issues: 1) it was written for 3.5 and not Pathfinder, and 2) the campaign traits at some points were intended to be stronger than "normal" traits because the players were "strongly encouraged" to take such a trait as one of their 2 when playing in those campaigns (and, by implication, they may not be appropriate for general play campaign when NOT playing the matching Adventure Path... YMMV on that).
For those who don't know, there is an 8-page write-up of Kyonin in Pathfinder #17, A Memory of Darkness, book 5 of the Second Darkness AP. As it is all flavor, it is usable with the Pathfinder rules even though it was written in the 3.x era.
Likewise, the half-elf settlement of Erages, in Kyonin, gets a 2-page write-up in the Player Companion "Bastards of Golarion".
That's my take as well, and why I mentioned that not all of the haunts usually affect all the PCs. More information would help there.
The other thing to remember, beyond what PneumaPilot2 mentioned, is that most of the haunts only target 1 PC out of the group, based on his/her "sin". Others, and unallocated specific ones, target anyone.
A small group (less than 4 PCs) may be triggering too many haunts per character, but that can be reined in.
Mostly agreed... the issue I was trying to get to is that PC members of the Lantern Bearers will have some conflicts to deal with as the AP goes on. At the time, there was no Faction or Prestige Class for PCs to be members of, and the GMs who expected/required the PCs members generally did so in order to get around other issues in the AP.
Second Darkness aftermath:
As part of the aftermath, the PCs can choose whether to oppose the Winter Council and side with the Queen, as one way to continue. A PC Lantern Bearer could be the leader who breaks with the Winter Council and reforms the organization more along the lines of what is in the Faction Guide, as one option.
The "problem" with a Lantern Bearer PC is that there are revelations about who they work for later in the AP, and the PC may not like what that entails.
Also, once the contacts with the higher-level Lantern Bearers become common, the PC might expect to be told more than the AP plans for.
Plus, there WILL ba a problem with Book 5.
SD Book 5:
A squad of Shin'Rakorath (Lantern Bearers) are sent to capture or kill the PCs in order to silence them before they share what they know. Does the PC side with the assassins? Does the PC kill fellow Lantern Bearers? How does s/he feel about the organization once it becomes clear that the Lantern Bearers are an arm of the Winter Council?
So, while Lantern Bearer (both the Faction and the Prestige Class) feel like they should be a perfect fit for this AP, they actually can cause some problems.
For this reason, some GMs in the past have required that ALL PCs be Elves and Lantern Bearers.. so that encounter can be avoided by the Winter Council "trusting their own" to keep quiet.
I don't like that solution myself, as it feels really forced and contrived.
For what it's worth, two of the older (3.5 era) city sourcebooks.. The Guide to Absalom and the Guide to Korvosa (if I recall correctly) included both rental and purchase prices for homes and businesses in those cities.
Those have likely been superseded by the somewhat different view of the economy as Pathfinder's campaign setting has evolved.
Jester David wrote:
Unless I am mistaken, the Book+PDF bundles are all Third-Party Products... it is the decision of those publishers to offer Print+PDF bundles, and Paizo is only making available what the Publishers have indicated they wish to sell.
Paizo's own decisions along this line are influenced (again, unless I am mistaken) by a desire to maintain good relations with brick-and-mortar stores as well.
The advice to visit the forums is the best advice you can get.
Just be aware that the older posts refer to the original version of the AP, and some elements were changed for the hardcover Anniversary Edition. So mentions of a certain TPK-machine encounter in the second volume are no longer as relevant, for example.
The "Community Resources" thread is full of player-created add-ons and such.
As for the setting, if you can afford the Inner Sea Primer, that's a player-friendly condensed version of the (much larger) Inner Sea World Guide. The Pathfinder Wiki is usually helpful, but if you're strapped for the setting books, it can be a real help.
However, while it is nice to have all of the support books, they're not truly necessary other than to provide in-world options for your players. In that case, it may be good to keep them focused on the AP rather than delving into the details of the world setting. The Pathfinder Wiki should be enough to get you past any questions that come up.
There's a whole thread discussing the merits of each AP as the next candidate for a hardcover. It began well before Curse of the Crimson Throne was announced, for which reason you will see CotCT is popular and seems the most likely candidate in the earlier posts. Later posts, after announcement of the CotCT updated version, begin re-assessing... and lead to the possibility of "maybe none", as Kalindlara mentioned.
A lot of long-time players get hung up on "Memorizing" spells.. and "forgetting" them once cast; the wording from (original) D&D, AD&D, and AD&D 2nd Edition.
As of 3rd Edition, "Spell Preparation" became the term, and references to Roger Zelaznys' Amber were used to illustrate the process.
The spellbook contains the instructions for preparing the spell.
When you prepare a spell, you leave it unfinished.. ready for the last words or gestures to trigger it. You can prepare multiples of the same spell if you have the capacity. You do not "memorize" or "forget".. you "prepare" and "expend".
A scroll, unlike a spellbook, contains the energies of the completed spell (including the used up material components) in the magical writing. Casting from the scroll releases the spell, "expending" it.
Now, wish me luck trying to find where I read that before. :)
In addition to what Latrecis has said, I would offer...
I disagree that it is better if the PCs are natives to Sandpoint. The original writing is from the standpoint of newcomers to town, so it is easier to use the provided material as it explains things for a newcomer.
I don't think it is bad to have the PCs be Sandpoint natives; it just means that some of the material won't make sense as-written if they are, and needs to be presented differently... not as something they discover, but as something they already know (a handout listing the NPC names and businesses can help with this).
What I think is MOST difficult, though, is a party of mixed natives and non-natives... because then you have the added burden of remembering which PCs should already know who Kendra Deverin is and what she is like, and which ones should not.
The "Varisia: Birthplace of Legends" player companion has campaign traits for the PCs (duplicating the ones in the Rise of the Runelords Anniversary Edition Players Guide), and it is recommended that each PC should have one of those traits.. which are designed to help them have a link to Sandpoint. At least one of them makes the PC a native of Sandpoint, while the others are for strangers to town. Using these can help the players feel like their characters have more of a connection to the town.
Also, remember that various shops will offer discounts or other perks to the PCs that visit them. Rewarding the PCs for taking the time to get to know the NPCs (even only a little) will help them seem more real.
Finally, using the Downtime rules from Ultimate Campaign can allow the PCs to build homes and businesses in Sandpoint, which should help them to feel like they need to protect the town. It would also allow them to interact with the NPCs more, role-playing the working to earn capital involved.
Also, as Latrecis mentioned, role-playing out interactions with the NPCs is not for everyone. The worst case is when the group is split... four players, two of whom love to play out interactions while the other two absolutely hate it. In that case, maybe the meet-and-greet with the NPCs should be done by those who like it between sessions, over email or chat.
A mount would make the commando tougher to deal with, and is a separate creature that could keep fighting after the commando got off or was killed, for example.
First, what edition are you looking at? The original uses D&D 3.5 rules, while the Anniversary Edition has been updated to Pathfinder rules. Everything I said previously applies to the Pathfinder version, but would be different with the original version.
If the early encounter is titled "Die, Dog, Die! (EL 3)", then that is the original edition.
If the early encounter is titled "Die, Dog, Die!" with no parentheses, it is the Anniversary edition.
It would probably help us understand what you are comparing if you cited page numbers for us to look at with you.
Paizo's design philosophy for encounters is spelled out in the Core Rulebook (Chapter 12, p.397), and for humanoid creatures with class levels (Chapter 14, Creating NPCs).
As Craglansun mentioned, the encounter's CR is listed in its title. That specifies a "pool" of XP to be used for that encounter; a CR 2 encounter has a "pool" of up to 600 XP. Not every encounter will use up all of the pool, and some may be a little over.
Goblin Warriors are CR 1/3. and they are built using the notes in the Goblin entry in the Bestiary .. specifically, their racial bonuses to skills, and such.
Other Goblins in the AP are built the same way... by applying the "Creating NPCs" rules (because Goblins do not have racial Hit Dice, only class levels).
The basic CR for such a creature is Level - 1; if the creature has NPC classes instead of PC classes (as a Goblin Warrior 1 does), an additional -1 factor is applied. The negative factors do not reduce 1 to 0, but rather begin the fractional listings. So a Goblin Warrior 1 is CR 1 reduced 2 "steps" (or CR 1 -> 1/2 -> 1/3).
The Thistleop Rangers have PC classes.. they are only reduced 1 step, not two, from 1 to 1/2.
Fractional CRs indicate it takes "that many" creatures to equal a CR 1 (so 3 Goblin Warriors or 2 Goblin Rangers are a CR 1)
To figure out the CR of the entire encounter, add the XP values of the creatures in it together, and compare the total to the table in Chapter 12 to find the closest "Total XP". That's the CR of the encounter.
All of this is already done in the AP. 3.5 used the term "Encounter Level" (EL) to differentiate the combined CR of the creatures in the encounter. However, 3.5 CR was less exact than Pathfinder, and the method for determining the CR of encounters with multiple creatures was different, so the version of the AP (original 3.5 or the Anniversary edition that is Pathfinder) can make the reading a little harder.
The short answer is that there is little formally written up to show how trials are resolved all over Golarion. As mentioned, the region will influence the outcome greatly. Cheliax would likely have complex legal processes with the mentioned "sleazy lawyers" all over; Korvosa, as an admirer of Cheliax, would likely try to have the same. Magnimar (and, by extension, Sandpoint), founded by people who rejected Korvosa's leanings toward Cheliax and its Diabolism, would likely insist on keeping things simpler (as mentioned up thread).
So... Ultimate Intrigue adds "Social Combat" and "Verbal Duels" to the repertoire of the game. One use specifically mentioned for "Verbal Duels" is pleading court cases.
The Downtime rules in Ultimate Campaign include Capital resources (gold, Goods, Influence, Labor, and Magic), which can be spent to add modifiers to rolls (such as rolls in pleading court cases). PCs may balk at using Influence or Gold to alter the course of the trial, but they may want to use them to block external forces trying to do that.
Crime & Punishment is a decent book. I found it a little too "modern" in its approaches for my tastes (not too surprising since Keith Baker also was the creator of Eberron, which I also found to be more modern-style than I like), but if you're looking to replicate police- or trial- procedural shows like Law & Order or CSI, it can help.
Dragonlance's original publication was for AD&D and AD&D 2nd Edition, and used the Battlesystem rules, including cardboard counters specific to the Dragonlance armies (Draconians, etc.)
The Open Game License allows people other than the original publisher to use content declared as "Open" (or not declared as "Product Identity"), provided that the publisher publishes the product under that license.
Contents of the System Reference Document (SRD), Modern System Reference Document (MSRD), and Pathfinder Reference Document (PRD) are available for anyone to use. Since other publishers could not refer to the D&D books or game directly by name (depending on which license was involved), the SRD provided a way for the other publishers to make a reference to the written rules.
Contents published as "Product Identity" are not "open" and cannot be re-used. For D&D 3.x, that was most of the books other than the Players' Handbook, Dungeon Master's Guide, Monster Manual, and Unearthed Arcana... nobody other than Wizards of the Coast can use the contents of MM2, MM3, MM4, MM5, etc.
Whatever modern supplements there are beyond what is in the MSRD would need to be checked for "Product Identity". I would expect that NONE of the contents of those books are "open". If that is accurate, while Paizo may do their own take on a given sub-genre of Modern, they would likely take pains to make it different from the ones already published ... both in order to avoid any legal hassles from touching content that is not "open", and from a desire to respect the generosity that made ANY content open and available.
I left Jade Regent out of my comments because that's a somewhat likely scenario... especially since using the Relationship rules from Jade Regent (later in Ultimate Campaign), Shalelu could easily become a "significant other" for someone throughout Rise of the Runelords .. which could be a complicating factor for Second Darkness, if they're run in sequence or in parallel. The fact that she could also be killed in RotRL and not be available for SD or JR is also an issue.
Jade Regent includes notes, though, on substituting characters who are no longer available in your version of Golarion. The need to do that illustrates why it is easier on everyone if the APs take place far enough apart in time and geography to limit "cross-over".. that's space that some would say is better used for more adventure content.
Eh.. White Council was Lord of the Rings. Winter Council is what you mean. :)
Changes to the AP would need to preserve the key points...
Second Darkness key elements:
At the same time, it needs to correct a number of issues...
Second Darkness issues:
Another AP could address the issues ... but would not help to salvage the important setting lore that is in the original AP and make up some of the key points.
James Jacobs has said he would like to "fix" Second Darkness, and has some ideas on how to approach it, but the business justification needs to be there for that to happen. A separate AP to correct the issues is probably more justifiable in a business sense. The setting lore could be scattered over multiple other APs if necessary.
Pacing is also an issue.
While it is important to keep dramatic tension going, and to give the PCs a sense of urgency, it is also important to let them have sufficient downtime for activities like crafting or research. Also, PCs are famously good at NOT doing what was expected during the design of an adventure, which can lead to all sorts of additional encounters and events. So, no two GMs are going to have exactly the same "pace" in running an AP.
Aggressive groups might finish in 6 months "in-world", though that could take years to play out in the real world. More cautious/ deliberate groups might take multiple years "in-world" for one AP. Also, the nature of the AP may prolong it... Kingmaker uses Kingdom Turns, which are a month long. It will take years, and could take decades, "in-world" to play out... and so the end events of Kingmaker will not be seen in the world during other APs.
This is also partially why the Varisian APs are a little different... most others are scattered over the world so that they can have less impact on each other; the first APs (by necessity, as the world was being created) CAN impact each other (Curse of the Crimsom Throne has a direct tie to the events of The Skinsaw Murders in Rise of the Runelords, Shalelu Andosana appears in both Rise of the Runelords and Second Darkness, and there is a Vancaskerkin in each of the first three APs... the background of Orik in RotRL is part of the background for his father in SD). Even so, the overlap is limited in order to allow GMs the freedom to run them as they see fit.
In the end, to return to the original question, "where the heroes go" and "what happens to them after the AP" are beyond the scope of the AP, which ends when its story is completed (in success or failure). The answer is "whatever the players and GM decide."
Something else that Jiggy's suggestion may help with, and which may have been a factor (to whatever degree) in the incident that spawned the other thread (sheesh.. roundabout way to get there without naming names)...
A text message from a moderator is going to be politely worded, as befits a professional communication from a company. But text can't convey nuance well, as we have all seen. So a message worded "Please stop doing that" may be interpreted as a mild REQUEST rather than a stern ADMONISHMENT. Providing color-coded or "Infraction Points" indicators on the account may help make clear that the moderator(s) consider the message seriously.
As an aside, books like "Inner Sea Magic", "Inner Sea Combat", and "Inner Sea Intrigue" list the "movers and shakers" in their respective themes (about 20-30 of them) with capsule race/class/level bits. Many of the major NPCs from the APs are presented there as they would be when the AP begins, as well as other figures from the lore of Golarion (some noted as "Deceased", where appropriate).
The general rule is that if something doesn't say it grants an ability, it doesn't grant that ability.
In the case of spell pre-requisites, Bards can try Use Magic Device (a skill they can be pretty good with) on scrolls or wands to provide the spell, or collaborate with a spellcaster who does have access to the needed spells (as mentioned in general for crafting normal items).
Yup.. as Buri Reborn pointed out, the setting material assumes that NONE of the APs have specifically happened yet (although there are some APs that assume others, they are the exceptions).
Each of the APs has notes on "Continuing the Adventure" in the final volume, which discusses where the GM can take things for further adventures if desired... but the published materials do not assume any of this.
When it becomes time to advance the campaign setting significantly, James Jacobs (the Creative Director) has indicated he has a list of which APs have occurred and their results.
At one point, there was a loose assumption that each AP volume occurred in a corresponding time frame to its publication.. so RotRL began in August 4707, CotCT began in February 4508, Second Darkness in August 4708, etc.
How long they took to play out varies from group to group. Using that timeframe, it is entirely possible that Rise of the Runelords, Curse of the Crimson Throne, and Second Darkness could all be concurrent to some degree... but in the end, it is up to the GM to decide the timing in his/her version of Golarion. It is worth noting that Kingmaker presumes much more time passing.. as Kingdom turns are a month each, it will span years of in-world time.
"Necro-ing" a thread this old is somewhat frowned upon, even if not forbidden. And one reason for that might be that...
The posts earlier in this thread refer to stats from D&D 3.5 for the Aboleth and the Large Shark... which are somewhat different from those of the Pathfinder versions you are referring to.
D&D 3.5 Large Shark: 38 hp; AC 15; Bite +7 (1d8+4)
Pathfinder Shark: 22hp; AC 14; Bite +5 (1d8+4)
Large Sharks were much more of a threat to the Aboleth in 3.5 than they are in Pathfinder. Generally, summoned creatures are expected to be more of a nuisance or distraction than a true threat to the enemy, but in the case of the D&D Aboleth vs a D&D Large Shark, that's not so much the case.
Dang it.. I had mentioned retraining when I started writing the post, but took it out with something else that was just going to confuse the point.
Anyway, the issue is that, as noted, even-numbered level requirements for Feats are not common. While retraining is an option, I would be somewhat surprised to find that enough players are eager to change their feats so early in their character's career (4th level) for it to make sense to design the Feat requirement with that expectation.
As two of the four feats in question require proficiency with all Martial Weapons, it seems likely to me that there was some intent to make it available to Fighters at 4th level.. but the Feats are not classified as "Combat" and so do not qualify as Figther bonus feats. That's part of the question raised.
"Groom" and "Light Bearer" were originally the "Torchbearer" feat in Dungeoneer's Handbook.. which had a requirement of 5th level. The same book added Archetypes for Grooms (Rangers) and Blazing Torchbearer for Alchemists. The feats in Ultimate Intrigue combine the basic "Torchearer" feat with one ability from these archetypes to make the new feat.
"Page" and "Weapon Bearer" were originally the "Squire" feat in Knights of the Inner Sea... which had a requirement of 4th level. Again, the new feats combine the basic "like early Leadership" part of the original feat with abilities from Archetypes presented with it... the "Herald Squire" for Cavaliers and the "Weapon Bearer Squire" for Fighters.
For completeness .. "Recruits" was originally in "Cohorts and Companions", and is pretty much exactly the same (Cha 13 and 5th level as requirements).
So the question is.. was it intended that they all be 5th level and the one 4th level was used as a source in error, is the 4th level just an unusual-but-intentional requirement, or should the two geared for martial characters have been marked as "Combat" and the other two left at 5th level?
For those interested, the books I mentioned have less Golarion-specific content than some other Player Companions, and are well worth the reading. There are also other archetype options that did not get included in Ultimate Intrigue, which are well-suited for Cohorts to feel like "aides" or "assistants".
Urath DM wrote:
Eventually, Kyonin should get a Campaign Setting book of its own. --snip --
In the same vein, Riddleport is the only one of the four major cities in Varisia not to have its own supplement. It, too, languishes "trapped" in the Second Darkness AP.
Such a supplement would be g a good place to
And yet you will have players insisting that they should be allowed to.
Certainly. No matter where you go, or what kind of thing you're talking about, there are people who don't want to hear why their "perfect idea" isn't a good fit for circumstances (or even a good idea). Sometimes, people only want to hear "ok" and refuse to hear anything else.
Actually, the introduction in Shadow in the Sky recommends against allwowing a PC Drow in the campaign, making the points that 1) at this time, that the Drow exist is (mostly) unknown on the surface and 2) the Drow are intended to be the villains in this as they were in the classic adventures that introduced them.. so it is counter-productive and spoils the effect if you have a Drow PC.
The Feats listed under Variant Leadership in Ultimate Intrigue are culled from some of the Player Companion releases.
Of the 6 Feats listed, 5 of them allow early recruitment of Cohorts with limitations.
However, of these Feats, four of them (Groom, Light Bearer, Page, and Weapon Bearer) list "Character Level 4" as a Requirement. Since no characters receive Feats at level 4, this raised questions when they were originally presented in the Player Companion volumes.
Are these Feats really supposed to be 5th level (as Recruits is), or should some or all of them be marked as "Combat" Feats (which would then be available to Fighters as Bonus Feat choices as 4th level)?
Eventually, Kyonin should get a Campaign Setting book of its own. The black eyes that Second Darkness has give the Elves of Golarion can be somewhat addressed with that. It is unfortunate that the only sourcebook to-date on Kyonin is a support article "trapped" in the unpopular AP.
The "Elves of Golarion" Player Companion was light on mechanics, and heavier on flavor, as Paizo was transitioning from 3.5 at the time and did not want to create rules errors. In doing so, there are some 3.5 things that were perpetuated (Elves don't sleep, they just meditate) which should be corrected in a flavor-based supplement.
Things that could be addressed:
Of course, this would make more sense supporting another AP.. like, say, one targeting the plots of Treerazer in Tanglebriar. It won't "redeem" Second Darkness, but it might help to fix some of the issues, and could be used by GMs (new and old) to have a better handle on running Part 5 of Second Darkness.
Of course, it would also be nice if the "Drow of Golarion" article from the AP was also expanded into a Campaign Setting supplement.. though it might wind up merged with the expanded Kyonin supplement, I suppose.
James Jacobs wrote:
That's.... really REALLY bad for people trying to program this for tools like HeroLab (or any VTT that maintains your character for you, etc.).
If they are intended to be "similar but not identical", then they should have different names, not the same name. Precedent says that a new version of a Feat of the same name replaces the prior version.
Computers are really REALLY bad with "this means A sometimes, and B other times". And so are (we) programmers. :)
I've toyed with Fantasy Grounds, D20Pro, and Roll20. I'm also looking at Battlegrounds RPG edition.
I looked a bit at MapTools and found the Java dependencies and addiitional bits of people's house rules baked into some the Pathfinder stuff to be not what I wanted. It may be different since then.
The issue with most is that the GM has more "visibility" than a player would. They're all geared toward managing visibility for both types of participants, so that's something to watch out for.
Battlegrounds has a comparison chart of VTT features on their site, comparing MapTools, Battleground, D20Pro, and Fantasy Grounds.
Roll20 is probably the least difficult to set up. Create an account, create a Game, pick the rule set, and invite players (who also need accounts). The GM can switch to a player-view after setting things up, so as long as you can hide the display while making changes the players should not see, that should work. Roll20 supports vision and lighting, but I think that's only if someone in the group has a paid subscription for the extra features.
d20Pro is not hard to set up, and is being updated fairly frequently with materials from their big Kickstarter a couple of years ago. A successor program from that Kickstarter is still in development.
I think Fantasy Grounds is more pre-disposed toward distributed play, as it doesn't really have ways to hide material from the GM's view at all. All controls on player viewing are based on it being remote.
D20Pro is similar, but they also talk on their site about ways to use it for face-to-face gaming as well as remote.
For lightweight use, Roll20 is my recommendation at this time.
If the term in the text matches the ability name ("baleful shriek" vs. "angry cry"), then that pretty much means the ability.
That said, you're the GM.. the given tactics are a guideline for how the writer/developer felt the creature would act. It is not a straitjacket that forces you to do so, unless you let it. If you feel that your group would be better served by something else, then that is what you should do.
It is worth keeping in mind, though, the nature of the creature. In this case, it is a revenge-obsessed undead that will batter through anything or anyone else to reach its object of hatred. It is not something that is likely to be reasoned with, or that you can use Diplomacy with (other than "we're not with him").
Also, all they have to do is to get out of her way in order to avoid her wrath. My players, in this situation, stubbornly insisted on fighting her, even standing in the narrow hallway so that she had no choice but to batter through them... and they were beaten into unconsciousness one by one. She did not coup-de-grace any of them, though she could have, because once unconscious, they were no longer impeding her from reaching her objective. They survived because one climbed out a window, then back in after she had moved on.
Sometimes, players need a reminder that not everything is there for them to kill it, and of when discretion is the better part of valor.
Gark the Goblin wrote:
When I made my statement, I had done a similar analysis, though I used the Adventure Path Forums as the source of the counts, not the Play-by-Post. Total posts divided by number of months since announcement gives a basic (though very very raw) measure of post-per-month activity, and accounts for the 'blips" of activity when people get excited about an AP that won't start for 6 months.
Based on that, the top 3 were Rise of the Runelords, Curse of the Crimson Throne, and Kingmaker.. the bottom 3 were Second Darkness, Legacy of Fire, and Council of Thieves.
Paizo is in a better position to make more detailed analysis.. like "days between new threads" and "frequency of new posts to old threads"... which I think would be fairly indicative of interest in the AP.
Of course, message board activity is only ONE factor, so even deep analysis is hardly definitive.