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Pathfinder Society Member. 4,970 posts. No reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist. 1 alias.


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Shadow Lodge

Crunch Ideas:
Since my project is making school-based sorcerer bloodlines, I'm also avoiding feats that have specific race or class requirements, or really much in the way of pre-reqs at all. Since you need feats useful to people other than sorcerers, I'm going to include a bit of a wider range of feats here. Prerequisites and sources if unusual in (). I've included some feats based on common class or race features like channel energy, sneak attack, animal companions/familiars, or darkvision. Some feats may be in multiple lists.

Abjuration (15 feats)

The school of defense and magic negation.

General: Combat Expertise, Dodge, Toughness, Great Fortitude, Lightning Reflexes, Iron Will, Skill Focus (Acrobatics) – used to avoid AoO
Casters: Arcane Shield (Arcane CL 10), Combat Casting, Destructive Dispel (cast dispel magic, CL 11), Dispel Synergy (Spellcraft 5), Improved Counterspell, Spell Focus (Abjuration)
Martial: Bolstered Resilience (DR), Shield Focus (+1 BAB), Saving Shield

Worst case scenario, +2 to a saving throw.

Conjuration (14 feats)

The school of extraplanar entities, matter creation (crafting), teleportation, and healing.

General: Gunsmithing, Master Alchemist (alchemy 5 ranks), Godless Healing (Inner Sea World Guide), Fast Healer (ignore Endurance/Diehard pre-reqs – this is not a great feat), Demon Hunter (Kn Planes 6 ranks, Inner Sea World Guide), Skill Focus (Kn Planes or Heal)
Casters: Spell Penetration, Spell Focus (Conjuration), Item Creation feats?
Martial: Master Craftsman (craft 5 ranks)
Special: Alignment Channel (channel energy), Dimensional Agility (use dimension door), Elemental Channel (channel energy), Evolved Companion (Cha 13, animal companion), Evolved Familiar (Int 13, Cha 13, familiar), Improved Familiar

This one's actually quite challenging. It includes a lot of different things – none of which is associated with many solid pre-requisite free feats. Spell Penetration isn't bad, and outsiders are a common source of SR so it kinda fits. If you include Item Creation feats then casters get some options, on top of some neat stuff for casters with pets. Martials are harder – the DR penetrating feats that would be thematically similar to Spell Penetration all have elaborate pre-requisites. Teamwork feats would be potentially thematic with the “summoning allies” thing but unless a character has tactician, solo tactics, or similar they would need someone else to spend a feat to actually enjoy the benefit.

Note: if you give out Master Craftsman I highly suggest houseruling it to act as Craft Wondrous Item or Craft Magic Arms & Armour using the selected skill, which would make it an actually modestly useful feat. As is it just enables a non-casting character to take a crafting feat later.

Divination (9 feats)

The school of information and preternatural reaction speed.

General: Improved Initiative, Alertness, Amateur Investigator (Int 13, rank in a knowledge skill), Skill Focus (Knowledge, Linguistics), Lightning Reflexes
Caster: Detect Expertise (Int 13, can cast a detect spell), Spell Focus (Divination)
Martial: Blind-Fight, Combat Reflexes, Shadow Strike (BAB +1)

There aren't a lot of feats in this category, but there are several good and broadly useful ones, with Improved Initiative being the biggie.

Enchantment (12 feats)

The school of social manipulation and morale.

General: Antagonize, Battle Cry (Cha 15 and BAB +5 or Perform 5 ranks), Flagbearer (Cha 15), Persuasive, Taunt (small size), Voice of the Sibyl (Cha 15), Steadfast Personality, Iron Will, Skill Focus (bluff, diplomacy, intimidate, sense motive, perform)
Caster: Encouraging Spell (Cha 13, Diplomacy 6 ranks, Magic Tactics Toolbox), Spell Focus (Enchantment)
Martial: Enforcer (Intimidate 1 rank), Intimidating Prowess, Performance Weapon Mastery

Not a ton of variety in here, but if you make sure the title is a strong hint as to its contents no one should be disappointed. Worst case scenario someone picks up Iron Will to resist enchantments better.

Evocation (13 feats)

The blasting school, associated with primal energies, force, and damage.

General: Skill Focus (Intimidate)
Caster: Arcane Blast (arcane CL 10), Arcane Strike, Elemental Focus, Spell Focus (Evocation), Elemental Spell, Intensified Spell
Martial: Deadly Aim (Dex 13, BAB +1), Point Blank Shot, Power Attack (Str 13, BAB +1), Quick Draw (BAB +1), Improved Critical (BAB +8), Improved Natural Attack

Unfortunately martials will probably have picked up the most obvious choices (eg Point Blank Shot, Power Attack) because they are the fundamentals of basic combat styles. Quick Draw and Improved Critical will hopefully offer something, but more ideas would be good. Loosening up your no feat pre-reqs guideline a bit could allow you to include things like Improved Bull Rush, Improved Sunder, or Double Slice. Noncombat clerics, oracles, and witches might also not have the best time with this list because they don't have as many blasty or elemental spells as wizards and druids.

Illusion (10 feats)

The school of deception and stealth.

General: Deceitful, Iron Will, Conceal Scent (stealth 1 rank, survival 1 rank, Osirion Land of the Pharaohs), Skill Focus (bluff, disguise, stealth)
Caster: Spell Bluff (Bluff 5 ranks, Spellcraft 5 ranks), Still Spell, Silent Spell, Spell Focus (Illusion)
Martial: Shadow Strike (BAB +1), Dirty Fighting (Dirty Tactics Toolbox)

Not really sure what to do with this one – there don't seem to be a lot of good feats for this theme. I've included Iron Will and Shadow Strike as anti-illusion options but it's still not a great list. Feinting would be appropriate on the martial side, but those feats have pre-requisites.

Necromancy (15 feats)

The school of undead (bolstering, controlling or damaging), life force, afflictions and fatigue.

General: Necromantic Affinity (Con 15, Inner Sea World Guide), Endurance, Great Fortitude, Skill Focus (Heal, Kn Religion)
Caster: Ectoplasmic Spell, Merciful Spell, Sickening Spell, Poison Focus (Alchemy 1 rank, Alchemy Manual), Spell Focus (Necromancy)
Martial: Critical Focus (BAB +9), Deadly Finish (BAB +11), Improved Critical (BAB +8), Vital Strike (BAB +6), Treacherous Toxin (BAB +5, sneak attack, Dirty Tactics Toolbox)
Special: Command Undead (channel negative energy), Improved Channel (channel energy), Life Lure (channel positive energy), Turn Undead (channel positive energy)

My biggest concern here is that the thematic martial feats all have significant BAB requirements.

Transmutation (15 feats)

The school of shapeshifting, physical enhancement, and mobility.

General: Acrobatic, Aspect of the Beast (senses, claws, or leap, ignore wild shape pre-requisite), Athletic, Deepsight (Darkvision 60ft), Endurance, Fleet, Great Fortitude, Lightning Reflexes, Toughness, Sharp Senses (keen senses trait), Skill Focus (acrobatics, climb, swim, escape artist, fly)
Caster: Arcane Strike, Shapeshifter Foil (arcana or nature 5 ranks, can use polymorph), Spell Focus (Transmutation)
Martial: Improved Natural Attack, Improved Natural Armour (Con 13, natural armour, Bestiary)

I'd like to include one or two more martial options here, but I think it's still a reasonably good list.

Shadow Lodge

No, you can absolutely spread out your attacks among different targets!

It's usually more tactical to try and drop a single target, but if you're trying not to kill a PC...

Shadow Lodge

lemeres wrote:
Looking at the point buy- you can spend 2 points each on dex and con to get 'acceptible' levels, instead of 5. That saves you 6 points. You can then put that into strength to get a 16 or so without pulling points from anywhere, even on a 15 pt buy. The lack of penalty also means they don't have to feel like they are playing keep up like an orc does (since a hobgoblin might enjoy a good will save, or an intimidate check).

This is a very good point, though it works out a bit differently with rolled stats.

With rolling, being able to skimp on a secondary stat doesn't do anything to increase your primary stat. What it does do is reduce the number of above-average rolls you need to pull off a given concept. That means a set of rolls that a really SAD set of stats could become much more feasible for a martial. It's a lot easier to also get the above-average mental stat for the engineers, scouts, or commanders.

Looking at two sets of stats using 4d6 drop lowest:

15, 14, 12, 10, 9, 9 (12 pb)

This is a poor set of stats to start with, and there's nothing you can do to get a 16+ strength out of it for a hobgoblin - I'd be pretty tempted to go Dex-based. But 15/16/14 is not unworkable for strength-based melee character, especially if you end up taking Combat Reflexes or TWF. You could also put the 12 or 14 in a mental stat and still have an above-average Dex & Con.

17, 15, 11, 11, 9, 8 (19 pb)

This one gives you a very solid strength, but not much else. A hobgoblin could either get a 13/17 Dex & Con (nice for heavy-armour martials), or 13/13 Dex/Con with a 15 in a mental stat.

Shadow Lodge

Yes, I can probably help out with feat selection. In fact, I've been wanting to make a list of school-associated feats for a different piece of my own homebrew.

Would you rather I prioritize the chapter text or feat lookup?

Shadow Lodge

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I think the Improved Familiar alignment specifications could all use some clarification.

Improved Familiar List:
No specific rules:

Beheaded - bestiary 4
Cat Sith - familiar folio
Caypup - CG native outsider - familiar folio
Ceru - inner sea bestiary
Clockwork familiar - bestiary 5
Cacodaemon - bestiary 2
Dire Rat - bestiary 1
Quasit - bestiary 1
Imp - bestiary 1
Dweomercat cub - Sound of a Thousand Screams
Small Elemental - bestiary 1
Gremlin, Nuglub - bestiary 2
Hellfire Ignis - fey, cheliax setting
Impundulu - AP
Mockingfey - Inner sea bestiary
Pipefox - bestiary 4
Mephit - bestiary 1
Pseudodragon - bestiary 1
Pseudosphynx - familiar folio
Sin Seeker - worldwound incursion
Stirge - bestiary 1
Wysp - bestiary 5
Xiao - bestiary 5

Specify "any":

Almiraj - bestiary 4
Homunculus - bestiary 1 - ("same as creator")

Specify one step:

Coral Capuchin - "one step of neutral" - island of empty eyes AP
Faerie Dragon - "one step of CG" - bestiary 3)
Tidepool Dragon - "one step of CN" - wormwood mutiny AP)
Pyrausta - "one step of CN" - bestiary 5)

Specify partial alignment:

Agathion, silvanshee ("good") - bestiary 2
Chuspiki - "chaotic" - bestiary 5 - a magical beast)
Shadow Drake "evil" - bestiary 4 - is CE
Isitoq - "evil" - undead - bestiary 4)
Pooka - "non-lawful" - bestiary 4
Sprite, Liminal - "chaotic" - fey, bestiary 5

Specify "neutral":

Aeon, paracletus - bestiary 2
Brownie - bestiary 2 - fey
Carbuncle - bestiary 3 - a magical beast
Psychopomp, Nosoi - bestiary 4
Skvader - shards of sin AP - magical beast
Wolpertinger - shards of sin AP - magical beast

Specify single alignment:

Angel, cassissian - LG - bestiary 2 - is NG
Archon, harbinger - LG - bestiary 3
Asura, tripurasura - LE - bestiary 3
Azata, lyrakien - CG - bestiary 2
Div, Doru - NE - bestiary 3
Inevitable, Arbiter - LN - bestiary 2
Kami, Shikigami - LN - native outsider - bestiary 3
Kyton, Augur - LE - bestiary 3
Nycar - CN - dragon - bestiary 4
Oni, Spirit Oni - LE - bestiary 3 - is NE native outsider
Protean, Voidworm CN - bestiary 2
Qlippoth, Cythnigot - CE - bestiary 2
Ratling - CE - bestiary 4 - magical beast
Sahkil, Esipil - NE - bestiary 5
Rakshasa, Raktavarna - LE - bestiary 3 - native outsider
Sprite - CN - bestiary 3 - fey
Zoog - CN - bestiary 5 - magical beast

There doesn't seem to be a consistent rule for determining what alignment is specified for a familiar.

Imps, Quasits, and Cacaodaemon say one-step is fine, despite most of the other aligned outsiders wanting specific alignment restrictions. Outsiders without alignment subtypes are also mixed (Caypup and elementals are fine with one step but the Kami, Oni, and Rakshasa need a matching alignment).

The Cassissian Angel requires a LG master despite being itself NG. (The Silvanshee by comparison is fine with just "good.")

Most dragons follow one-step either explicitly or by default, except the shadow drake (which wants any evil master as a CE creature) and the nycar (only accepts CN).

Magical beasts are all over the place, with one accepting "any" alignment, several being weirdly picky about a specific alignment, and several in-between.

I note that all the familiars in the Bestiary 1 and the Familiar Folio follow the general guideline - the more specific restrictions crop up in the later bestiaries.

Shadow Lodge

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I don't think it was the original intent to disallow characters from retraining prerequisites if you end up getting a duplicate from a class feature later in character progression.

However, I can see why it might be easier to make a broad rule banning retraining prerequisites rather than trying to explain when you can retrain a prerequisite, because of the issues with prestige classes.

I think this is a really good time for a GM to exercise Rule 0 and let the player just swap out the duplicate feat.

Shadow Lodge

I think I can contribute some extra passages from the specific chapters... is there any particular time you need them by?

suggestion regarding avr's concern:
Giving skill ranks would be a decent option. I don't think that an extra skill rank a level in a specific skill is generally overpowered compared to a feat - though it does vary a bit depending on the skill.

I think the main issue with the skill feats, though, is that the skill categories you've developed are not equally valuable.

Dex/Str skills (9): Acrobatics, Climb, Disable Device, Escape Artist, Fly, Ride, Sleight of Hand, Stealth, Swim

Most characters aren't going to get much out of skill focus in any of these skills - even the better skills on the list are generally more useful to highly invested characters, the scouts and thieves of the group. If you give ranks instead of Skill Focus it gets a bit better since then you can get an Acrobatics or Stealth check that you might actually be able to do something with. But it's still not great – and the actual scouts and thieves may not have a great place to move ranks to if they've already got Acrobatics, Disable Device, and Stealth.

Int skills (14): Appraise, Craft, Knowledge (arcana, dungeoneering, engineering, geography, history, local, nature, nobility, planes, religion), Linguistics, Spellcraft.

There's a lot of skills here and about half of them are pretty good skills. Unless your group has a designated "knowledge character" (and maybe even if you do have such a character) it's likely everyone will have at least one one Int-based skill they have some investment in – and I'm betting that most characters would have somewhere useful to shuffle ranks to if you give them full ranks in their favourite Int-based skill.

Cha/Wis skills (12): Bluff, Diplomacy, Disguise, Handle Animal, Heal, Intimidate, Perception, Perform, Profession, Sense Motive, Survival, Use Magic Device

If you give out Skill Focus, worst case scenario with this list is +3 to Perception, which is useful to literally anyone. Best case is probably a bard with Versatile Performance or Pageant of the Peacock getting +6 to multiple skills. If you give out ranks it's possible that someone will have already maxed out all the skills on this list they're interested in, but it's less likely than with the Dex/Str list.

Bigger issue: It looks like you're trying to divide up the categories of feats in a very broad manner, but as a result you're shoving these categories into school associations that don't really fit. Attaching physical skills to Conjuration is a stretch in the first place – spells that let you fly or swim or jump better are Transmutation's style. Evocation's not associated with class abilities, it's about damage – but then what do you do with Necromancy? And Disguise and Perception end up associated with Enchantment when they really make much more sense associated with Illusion and Divination, respectively. I appreciate that by drawing large categories of feats you're trying to offer your players a good range of options, but it also makes it a lot harder to ensure that the options are balanced and thematic.

I would seriously consider avr's suggestion that you come up with a list of feats. You could always add the invitation for your players to suggest a feat you haven't thought of with the understanding that you're the judge of whether the suggested feat is appropriate mechanically and thematically.

Shadow Lodge

QuidEst wrote:
Squiggit wrote:
The only thing that really seems that incongruous is the stealth bonus. Otherwise I think PK nailed it here.
Even then, it means they can move quietly even when armored up. It's just a different sort of military discipline.

I feel like reducing ACP would be a better way to represent that.

Shadow Lodge

I agree with Azothath that it's ambiguous. "Aquatic creature" would make it more clear. "Water breathing creature" could mean "a creature that innately breathes water (such that its scent apparatus is designed to work in those conditions)" or "any creature currently able to breathe water (such that it is able to inhale water)."

I'd lean towards being permissive but I would understand other GMs ruling conservatively.

Shadow Lodge

1. Nah, in the big picture I don't think it affects balance. Just pointing it out.

3. Sure, you don't have to include natural attacks. Just specify that the druid can gain a swim speed or climb speed. Maybe add low-light vision or scent as well?

4. When you say "the wider gap that has to be breached," you mean that in order to change forms the druid has to take on the mindset of the new form?

A simpler way to do make the alignment gap relevant would be to either apply a penalty for each step of difference between the druid's alignment and their target or to apply a penalty for forms with an alignment component opposite yours. However, there are two problems with this, one thematic and one mechanical.

Thematically, the suggested alignments for creatures may be very loose suggestions. Your rules would mean that a LN half-elf would have a harder time adopting the mindset of an elf (typically CG) than a dwarf (typically LG). That's odd. It's a bit less of a problem if you make monsters more firmly-aligned than humanoids, but there are also many components of mindset that are not well represented by alignment, including value for nature, knowledge, or the material world.

Mechanically, it tempts players to game the system either by playing TN or, if you use the "steps" option, by finding the alignment that's closest to most of the "best" forms (people do this with the alignment-based Sacred Summons ability already). It's hard to balance costs when those costs might be dramatically different depending on a character's alignment and how that matches current Bestiary offerings.

5. Well, you'll either need to limit spellcasting or add a limitation to the extra wild shape forms that stays significant at higher levels. Maybe even both, to make it balanced - if they get full access to the normal forms plus extra worthwhile options it's going to be a power boost even if the new options are heavily limited.

Limiting duration might work, but you'd have to curb it pretty steeply to make an impact - like to a minute a level - and it would still have a bigger effect at low levels.

Personally I'd probably limit spellcasting while in one of the new forms. Reduce the druid's caster level by 2 and prevent them from using casting their most powerful level of spells (though they could prepare lower-level spells in those slots). Getting access to less power in those forms would more or less balance out the better abilities conveyed by the forms themselves, and thematically you could justify it as the new forms being a little more distant from the natural source of the druid's power.

I'm also not a super fan of designing a class to be painful to play for the first 4-6 levels. Quadratic wizards is a bug, not a feature.

Shadow Lodge

Ascalaphus wrote:

In Earth's history, people have occasionally gone to great length to write down just why they believe they have a right, maybe even a duty to oppose and displace tyrannical rulers.

Yes, Scythia mentioned earlier that a legal/traditional government can be said to lose legitimacy through its actions. Those are very good examples.

In fact, we've got a Mandate of Heaven situation in the current campaign. As a summary for those not following the link, the gods select the person most suited to rule. If you are able to take power through whatever means, that is a sign that you were favoured by the gods and that your rule is therefore legitimate. Hearing about this philosophy made my LG character feel significantly less conflicted about supporting revolutionaries.

Ascalaphus wrote:
Point is, although history is also full of "messy" revolutions, on many occasions, Revolution has been supported by a body of theory that makes it a very planned, thought-out affair. And a paladin could get behind that.

Agreed. Change may be necessary, but let's make it orderly change.

Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:
Paladins are beholden unto gods, not governments and different gods will have different idea about how governments should be treated particularly coups and so fourth.

If this were entirely true, then there wouldn't be a "respect legitimate authority" clause in the code. It may be god's law before man's law, but it's not "though shalt not give a **** about man's law." At most your deity will colour how you interpret "legitimacy" of the government being overthrown or of the transfer of power. I can see Iomedae being more accepting of someone taking up arms against an unsatisfactory government than of someone overthrowing the same government through dishonourable treachery - and more likely to condemn a sitting government for failing to honour its commitments than for curtailing civil liberties.

SquirrelyOgre wrote:
I've never advocated a character's alignment dramatically changing just by walking across a border.

Again, no one is advocating that. It's a straw man.

Shadow Lodge

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Chengar Qordath wrote:

I think anyone who seriously argues that Paladins can't depose a Chaotic Evil Tyrant because that would be a major change, and is thus against their code to do so, has hit the point of demanding Paladins play as Lawful Stupid.

If Chaotic Evil Tyrant passes a law requiring all Paladins in his territory to immediately murder an innocent, does any Paladin who refuses to follow that law fall? After all, that's breaking the law. And trying to change that law would be a major change, which is apparently chaotic now.

Well, I don't think anyone in this thread is arguing either of those things.

OP stated that both governments are non-evil and non-chaotic, so while the deposed government might not be perfect it's at least not morally abhorrent.

Also not seeing anyone arguing that the paladin can't accept change. Just that for a paladin - heck, for Lawful characters in general - it's important that the transition is as orderly as possible and ideally done through the right channels as defined by law or custom. Thus a paladin is likely to disapprove of a group taking power in a disorderly or illegitimate fashion. Whether they are inclined or morally required to do anything about it depends on the particulars.

Shadow Lodge

Ask in the PFS forum. They might have additional specific guidelines.

Shadow Lodge

The two systems are made to represent two different philosophies of magic. The wizard should have whichever opposition school is appropriate to their philosophy of magic.

Assuming that both philosophies are available to the PC, then they should indeed have a choice in which one they ascribe to, and thus which element is their opposition. This may or may not have thematic consequences for the character depending on your game world.

Shadow Lodge

Dave Justus wrote:

I would say there are two ways to look at gestalt, either go for synergy or go for flexibility.

Synergy is when you can use both classes features (at least some of them) at the same time. For example, a Magus/Fighter build, where the BAB and feats of the fighter increase the already dangerous magus spell strike. Basically, just a magus, but buffed up.

Flexibility would be something like a Wizard/Fighter or Cleric/Rogue. The second class doesn't particularly help the first one 'do it's thing' but it gives you other options that you wouldn't easily be able to do.

Obviously, few builds will be 100% on or the other, but thinking about which way you want to build can clarify your choices.

I agree that these are the two main things you're looking for (aside from decent defenses).

I'd like to elaborate a bit more on the fact that it's a matter of balancing between those two things instead of just picking one.

The fighter//magus, for example, does get a lot more feats than the magus, which opens up a wider variety of combat tactics. Compared to the fighter you get access to magical tactics like magic missile (against incorporeals at lower levels), area attacks, or dimension door.

The wizard//fighter can synergize somewhat using feats that apply to rays, or polymorph spells in combat (though as mentioned, for a high-flexibility combo I prefer wizard//slayer). Cleric//rogue can give you combat buffs+sneak attack, or sneaky domain powers, or improve your tumbling skills for reaching an ally you want to heal.

And something like fighter//bard or fighter//investigator is a really good middle option, with a strong combat base, lots of feats, limited-use buffing spells and abilities, utility spells and abilities, and lots of skills. Even some debuffing if your mental stat is high enough.

Shadow Lodge

There's a lot of good gestalt options, OP. It really would help if we had some idea of what you wanted to play, and what the rest of the party looks like.

Lady-J wrote:
i would think wizard/fighter would be a good combo as when you are out of spells to cast/dont have the right one for this siputation you can still back some ones face in with a sword very decently plus thats masically what an eldtich knight is a fighter/wizard

There's at least one better combo for if you just want a sword as a backup: wizard//slayer. You get a better ref save, better skills, better utility in general. Studied target and sneak attack, unlike weapon training, work on rays and other weapon-like spells (though sneak attack only applies once if you fire multiple rays). If you take Assassinate or another talent with a DC, it's based on intelligence. Your combat feat choices are a bit more limited, but you can still take weapon finesse, weapon focus, and three ranger combat style feats, plus any one additional feat as an advanced talent.

Alternatively, wizard//kensai magus gives you a little less sword-skill but still enough to work as a backup option, plus extra spells, action economy with spell combat (applies to wizard spells at level 6 with Broad Study Arcana), and Int to AC, Initiative, crit confirmation, and number of AoO.

Finally, alchemist//wizard. Again you get all good saves instead of just Fort/Ref, and an extra two skill points. Bombs and infusions expand your control and buffing options, and many discoveries can toughen you up. You're only proficient with simple weapons, but you could (1) use racial weapon proficiency, eg elf with a rapier (2) use natural weapons via Feral Mutagen/polymorph (3) grab a longspear which might let you score some AoO even if you are mostly casting and lobbing bombs. Since the Str mutagen reduces Int, you'll either want a Dex build, drink your mutagen only when you're done casting, or else focus more on spells that don't have saves.

Shadow Lodge

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Yes, I would also use the troop subtype (scroll down on this page, example here). It's basically a swarm but for small or medium creatures. The "troop attack," like swarm damage, gives you a guaranteed way to damage the party without making tons of attack rolls. Unlike swarms, troops don't resist weapon damage so you can easily describe your warrior cleaving through goblins as they reduce the troop's HP. If a character actually has Cleave or a similar ability, you can give them extra attacks as long as they deal a minimum amount of damage, or just treat that character's attacks as area effects (50% bonus damage).

Shadow Lodge

Cyrad wrote:

5. The class doesn't give any statistics for the dragon. It only says that the dragon breaks the math for how size categories affect it, breaks the rules for how natural attacks scale (which are usually based on size category of the creature), and breaks the math for how the natural attacks gain bonuses from Strength. There's no telling what HD it gets per dragon rider level, what its ability scores are, etc. All of this is so important that the class is essentially unplayable.

6. There's almost no class features beyond having the dragon, which is bad considering that the dragon class feature is unfinished.

The class is the dragon.

The class HD is the dragon's HD (which, yes, should probably be d8 if the BAB progresses as a rouge).

It doesn't have listed stats presumably because they will be generated with the same rolling/point buy system as the humanoid characters.

Shadow Lodge

Also a bit weird. Natural attack damage dice are usually at least loosely tied to size, and your increases are not.

It's a little less weird than the other stuff because of monk UAS damage. But I'd still strongly reconsider changing the scaling and perhaps giving them an optional talent to improve their damage dice.

Levels 1-2: 1d4 Bite. wrote:
Strength Mod adding to damage is cut by ¼, however their mod will not take damage away from their roll. (ex. The only way to get bonus damage is from a Str mod of +4 or higher, otherwise it doesn’t contribute.)

This on the other hand is just really weird. I don't know anything in the game that works like this.

Number one piece of advice: don't break the general assumptions of the game!

Shadow Lodge

Well, yes. Ivory is actually worth a bit more than gold by weight at the moment IRL, but that's because of black market pricing.

I think the range given is plausible enough.

Shadow Lodge

PK the Dragon wrote:

I enjoy using Vital Strike with crossbow builds. I haven't actually played it, but I've always liked the idea of a Ranger with Gravity Bow using a Heavy Crossbow and Grasping Strike.

I mean, no crossbow build is going to be winning DPR contests (other than maybe the Bolt Ace), but sometimes you just want to use a big crossbow and make one attack per round that does a fair amount of damage. For that, Vital Strike wins IMO.

I've seen it done (minus Grasping Strike, which wasn't out yet). Sniper type, also used Named Bullet on elemental burst ammunition to put some extra oomph behind his opening attacks. Never crunched DPR but it was plenty functional and a very memorable character. Probably helped that the party as a whole was pretty hit-and-run (we also had a buffer/debuffer bard, a cavalier, and an alchemist without fast bombs).

Shadow Lodge

I'm not aware of an official price for ivory, but I'd expect it to be somewhere between marble (which costs 5gp/lb according to Ultimate Equipment's trade goods section) and gold (50gp/lb). That would mean that the tusk is worth 100-1000gp.

Bit of a shame the AP doesn't give you a specific value, but I'd choose something in that range according to how much wealth you think the party should be getting their hands on. Since Ice Storm is a 4th level spell I expect they're high enough level that giving a value on the higher end won't be too unbalancing - especially if they're putting some effort into transporting and selling the thing.

Shadow Lodge

Untentril wrote:
Tribal challenges for leadership for instance are often/normally law-bound affairs, even in otherwise CN or CE cultures, having traditional trappings around them.

A law-bound challenge for leadership is different from an unlawful coup. If a group of people decide to transfer power in a particular way, and a person or faction uses that established method to gain power, then it is a legitimate change of leadership. That applies whether we're talking about an election, a line of succession, or killing the other guy in a duel.

The question is what happens if a group gains power using a method other than that which is legitimate, traditional, or agreed-on.

Untentril wrote:
dude wrote:
When did Paladins start swearing allegiance to a government? They are aligned with a divine power, not temporal.
Code of Conduct: wrote:
A paladin must be of lawful good alignment and loses all class features except proficiencies if she ever willingly commits an evil act. Additionally, a paladin’s code requires that she respect legitimate authority, act with honor (not lying, not cheating, not using poison, and so forth), help those in need (provided they do not use the help for evil or chaotic ends), and punish those who harm or threaten innocents.
It does say respect..and not obey, fwiw.

Yes, respect and not obey. I respect my parents, but I don't always obey them.

Paladins are certainly allowed to take on additional allegiances to a government or other mortal organization (there's even a trait that gives them a one time ability to use atonement if they break their code in service to their liege). But it's not required.

Untentril wrote:
There you have it, all alchemists are evil.

Not all things that are against the code are evil. Otherwise the code could end with "if she ever willingly commits an evil act." (Alternatively, it could read "For example" instead of "Additionally.")

Shadow Lodge

Going to agree that this is complex enough to be widely subject to individual interpretations and should be discussed with a group/table.

That said, my thoughts:

Murdock Mudeater wrote:
It is complex. I guess my main question is if a Paladin is presented with two sets of legitimate authority, is the paladin able to choose which to follow, or does the paladin have to default to the most current version?

If both are actually legitimate the paladin is required to respect both.

However respecting an authority doesn't mean the paladin has to do everything they say. I tend to read the line more as the paladin respecting the idea of authority and thus providing a certain amount of deference to those invested with authority as long as they don't abuse it.

Thus they get a choice in which government to actually follow. Assuming they actually follow a government, as opposed to merely collaborating with the government.

If one government used illegitimate means to gain power then it's likely the paladin will disapprove of that. They might be able to try to restore the old government, particularly if they swore oaths of loyalty to it. However they're limited in their ability to do so by the rest of the code. I wouldn't generally expect or even allow a paladin to start a civil war to oppose a goodly government even if they did come to power through improper channels - doing so would cause a whole lot of suffering among innocent citizens.

Murdock Mudeater wrote:
Wondering in regard to immortals that are paladins. Can they use the long deceased government's laws instead of the current government? Again, assuming both are good, legitimate governments. Or does the Paladin have to learn the new laws each time one government is replaced by another?

Laws can change even if governments don't. A paladin should make an effort to stay current. (Unfortunately they don't have Knowledge Local as a class skill, which makes this puzzlingly difficult...)

And, again, they don't necessarily have to follow these laws, though they should generally do so unless there's a compelling moral reason not to.

Shadow Lodge

"Alters" means that you get the "animal focus" ability but it functions slightly differently as described in the archetype.

In this case, that you can only apply it to yourself and that there is an unlimited duration. Second focus gives you two foci with unlimited duration.

You don't get a second version of the ability.

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Alzrius wrote:
Davia D wrote:
Question- big six?
I know the question was already answered, but here's the first time the term was ever used, almost exactly ten years ago in an article on the WotC website by Andy Collins: Big Hero Six.

That's a really good set of articles on magic item design. The different forms of item costs are a good guideline for why players pass over flavourful items, and cover points mentioned in this thread:

1) GP cost - is there something more useful I could buy with the gold?

2) Item slot cost - is there something more useful I could be wearing in the same slot?

3) Action cost - is there something more useful I could be doing with my actions in combat?

Shadow Lodge

Hit die is not directly connected to size. If you want to give the dragons more HP as they grow, give them a Con bonus with each size increase. +2 is reasonable. Note that size increases usually also come with Str bonuses and Dex penalties.

Shadow Lodge

Alina Pete does good anthropomorphic animal characters in a cartoonish style.

Shadow Lodge

First, I've flagged this so it can be moved to the Homebrew forum.

Jbabs wrote:
I'm currently making a new class that's meant to be played in conjunction with another class.

What do you mean by that? Is this intended for a gestalt game, where everyone advances in two classes at once (and perhaps you want to require everyone to advance in "dragonrider")? Or should this be a prestige class instead, something you take at level 5 or higher after having a few levels in another class? Or is this progression actually just for the dragon, like an animal companion feature - in which case do you plan for every player to just have a dragon companion on top of their other features, or do you have a different plan?

Jbabs wrote:
Hit dice per level: D6 first and second level, D8 third level, D10 thereafter.

Highly suggest sticking to one hit die type.

Jbabs wrote:
Saves Gain one in each, every other level. Starts at 1 in each.

Strongly suggest using the "good saves/poor saves" model, even if you decide to make them all good saves.

Jbabs wrote:
Skills-Starting at level 3, a dragon gains access to skill points. They gain 2 + int mod per level.

Again, anything with HD and an Int score should have skills. You shouldn't need to wait until level 3 for this.

Jbabs wrote:

Size- 1 Small 10 ft move speed. No flight

Size -2 Medium 20 feet movespeed. No flight
Size- 3 Large (Capable of prolonged flight, and can carry lighter rider's, aerial combat with rider on back has severe negatives) 30 feet move speed, 100 feet flight speed.
Size 4-10- Huge (normal flight with rider on back from here on out.) 40 feet move speed, 200 ft flight speed.
Size 11+- Gargantuan. 60 ft move speed. 200 flight.

Suggest slowing down size progression a bit. Maybe small 1-3, medium 4-6, large 7-11, huge thereafter. I'm hesitant to have it grow to gargantuan because it can complicate battle maps.

Shadow Lodge

There actually is some community homebrew I'd show your GM for the drakes - even if he decides he doesn't want to use it directly, it's a reference for what other people in the community feel is balanced.

RainbowMagicMarker wrote:
Mooncursed Barbarian, Goblin Vitalist, Human Bolt Ace Gunslinger, and an undecided, so I'm not the only ranged character.

Then a reach build sounds like your best bet to do something interesting in combat.

If you do go the elven branched spear route I'd get a Str 13-14 so you could Power Attack for decent damage. However if you're also wanting to do maneuvers as an elven cavalier you'll be feat hungry - taking Weapon Finesse slows down your ability to take Combat Reflexes and maneuver feats. I think whether you want the branched spear or a more traditional polearm (suggest ranseur or bardiche) depends on how good your stats are.

You probably want Dirty Fighting since it acts as Combat Expertise when qualifying for maneuver feats and improves your ability to perform maneuvers when flanking with the barbarian or at mid levels your drake.

Shadow Lodge

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I like QuidEst's guidelines, with a good dose of GM discretion applied.

I'd also point out that the target's reaction if it does realize it was charmed would vary wildly based on their personality. Some might simply revert to their initial attitude, some might be a bit disgruntled but still think on you somewhat more favourably than before being charmed as a result of coming to see your good qualities, and some might have such a dislike of being manipulated that they'd become even less friendly than they were initially.

Shadow Lodge

I'd just ask players to write a sentence or two describing how their daemon's form reflects their character, and expect them to roleplay accordingly. If someone can justify their rogue having the soul of a woolly mammoth, more power to them. Conversely, that would avoid a druid taking a lion daemon (normally fine) and then playing the character as a timid pacifist.

With that in mind it might be worth rebalancing some of the familiars and animal companions, so there's not too much pressure to take the best forms. The familiars that get +4 initiative could be bumped down to +2, for example. The big cat could survive a small nerf while the bear could stand to be a better long-term choice (I suggest making it medium to start, same stats, and then growing to large at level 7).

Also, reflecting on balance I'd modify my earlier suggestion by making daemons work as level 1 familiars, as Familiar Bond but I'd still grant the benefit appropriate to the familiar's form. HD, HP, saves, and skills still scale so the daemon can still survive at high levels but their intelligence and natural armour don't improve and they don't get more special abilities. Characters with familiars both scale abilities and get Improved Familiar for free as above, which essentially means that both parties get a bonus feat. Animal companions get 1st level familiar abilities. The following feats exist:

  • Improved Daemon Bond: Your daemon gains all the normal abilities available to a familiar of a wizard with a level equal to your total Hit Dice.
  • Imposing Daemon: Your daemon takes the form of a larger creature. Its base statistics are of a 1st level animal companion. It gains familiar abilities normally, including using your HD, base saves, skills, and half your HP if these values are better than those of the base creature.
  • Warlike Daemon (Prerequisite Imposing Daemon): Your daemon's base statistics are that of an animal companion of a druid with a level equal to your total Hit Dice.

If you really wanted to open up daemon options you could let familiar-having classes take either Improved Familiar or Imposing Daemon for free. Grumpy old wizard with a bear, anyone?

The only other balance concern would be whether combining the mauler or protector familiar archetypes with an Improved Familiar or animal companion would be OP - the issue with the protector being specifically improved familiars that have fast healing, and the mauler/animal companion issue being whether the daemon's strength would get too high.

Shadow Lodge


Valiant wrote:
PFS, Halfling, ride a wolf.

I think ohako's suggestions are still the best way to do it. The ACG has hunter and wild child brawler options, but as part of a party I don't think either of them would outperform the nature oracle or the cavalier. You could argue for the hunter as the third party member, but the sorcerer and bard both add more diverse abilities.

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avr wrote:
If you're focusing on trip and your drake can't fly

OP says the GM is giving the flight powers for free, so the Drake will be able to fly.

Trip would still be a problem with flyers, though.

Do you know what the rest of the party is doing? Archery might not be a bad plan if you're the only ranged character.

Shadow Lodge

So the first thing is... you sure you want an elf? Because a medium-size drakerider can't actually ride their drake until level 13. If you play a halfling or gnome instead you can start riding your drake at level 9.

Shadow Lodge

Interpreting the creature as a metaphor aside...

I wouldn't have had Berafin fall for trying to stop his fellow paladins killing the creature. This isn't inaction, it's taking a principled stand based on the idea that you shouldn't kill an intelligent creature that hasn't done anything wrong just because it was created evil.

However, I think it's extremely likely he would have fallen since then. Even if the creature isn't somehow provoking people into attacking it so it can "defend itself," self defense doesn't give you the moral or legal right to do anything you want to your attackers. "Killing its attackers in the most horrifying way possible" is evil. At that point he does have the moral right and possibly even the moral responsibility to harm the thing in order to prevent it from exacting disproportionate retribution on its attackers.

Now, it's very believable that he wouldn't want to do so because he gave up so much to defend it in the first place. But after the second time the creature "defends itself," Berafin is probably either fallen for failing to paladin hard enough in preventing it from using disproportionate force, or dead because the creature killed him for preventing it from engaging in "justified retribution."

And once we reach the point at which:

Cuup wrote:
After so long, though, Berafin probably gave up putting in anymore effort than "that's a bad idea; stop".

...he's definitely fallen. At the very least the "evil associates" clause would have done him in.

bitter lily wrote:
Because if not, society has a problem with this thing. Not just a bunch of Stupid Good paladins, but the various town militias and so on in its path. (In addition, I'd think that would actually set its alignment at CE, wouldn't it?)

Being opposed to some particular society isn't enough to make something CE - it has to be opposed to the idea of society in general.

Shadow Lodge

How about

1) Everyone gets a familiar.

2) Characters that would get a familiar from a class instead get Improved Familiar for free. They can stack it with whatever archetype they want, and apply class-derived benefits normally (like the duettist bard's performing familiar abilities). I personally would give them a 3rd level familiar right away and then let them upgrade to the 5th and 7th level choices if they want when they reach those levels - you want them to benefit from the class familiar ability right away and the 3rd level familiar abilities shouldn't be unbalanced at level 1 but the 7th level abilities might be.

3) Characters that would get an animal companion can instead have a combat-ready animal companion, adding the familiar benefits to the animal companion as Daw suggested. Remember that some of the animal companion values might be replaced by the master's BAB, saves, etc.

4) Characters that don't get an animal companion can upgrade their familiar's form to a level 1 animal companion by spending a feat. This gives you more flexibility in building characters that have exotic daemons (like if you want to model Lord Asriel as an investigator instead of a ranger). The daemon's HP, BAB, saves, etc will still scale as a familiar, so the result should be comparable to a mauler familiar. You could potentially scale it to a full animal companion with a second feat.

5) Remember that you generally don't have to take your class's familiar/animal companion so if you want to be a druid with a raven daemon and a domain, that's fine (and balanced against the vanilla bard with the songbird daemon).

6) Consider whether you're going to keep the taboo regarding people interacting directly with other peoples' daemons. This would potentially make it very difficult for those with typical daemons to deal with the stronger daemon varieties, but also limits those daemons' ability to directly protect their people.

7) You could certainly model races with different kinds of souls by ignoring these rules, but you'd have to give them traits of roughly equal value to a familiar. Alternatively, make the daemons more of a point of vulnerability so that they're not really a net benefit (eg someone can more easily affect you with mind control magic by targeting your daemon, you and your daemon have a shared pool of HP so hurting your daemon can hurt you...)

Shadow Lodge

I lean towards wraithstrike's interpretation.

Shadow Lodge

Dr. Dre, the Restoration subdomain is very useful for condition removal, but otherwise this archetype doesn't actually have a lot to offer an alchemical healer.

Avoron, good point about downtime uses of the archetype and that you can take Inquisitions.

I am very skeptical of the melee domain powers' ability to make up for mutagen.

Avoron wrote:
Chaos (Demon): For melee fighters (aka vivisectionists). Swift action buffs are great for alchemists, because they don't interfere with your extract casting. This lets you add half your level to melee attack and damage for 3+Int rounds per day - a very nice substitute for mutagen.

Aside from the super short use (4-6 rounds per day for most vivisectionists), this isn't a better damage boost than mutagen until level 6, you're losing access to feral mutagen, and it doesn't give you the defensive bonuses that mutagen does (natural armour and at high levels Dex and/or Con).

Avoron wrote:
Destruction (Rage): Admit it: you've always wanted to play a vivisectionist with rage. Well, now you can - no dipping necessary. This archetype gives you not only rage, but a 3+Int/day half-level damage bonus and eventual rage powers.

You get rage at 8th level, which leaves you under-buffed for quite a chunk of your career. Then it's only available for a round per level. And once you hit 12th level (4 levels after rage becomes available) greater mutagen becomes available for +6 str, +4 con, and +4 natural armour, which is better than standard rage by +2 con and +6 AC. You don't get access to rage powers with level prerequisites, which gives you access to only a handful of worthwhile powers and the powers you do get work at half your level, so superstitious caps out at +4 instead of +7 for a barbarian. That is a handy saving throw bonus - but a bomber alchemist can also benefit from improved saves so it's not a great argument for a melee build.

Avoron wrote:
Anger: Another way to get rage! You get about as many rounds as the rage subdomain, and you gain the ability two levels earlier. Unfortunately, you never get any rage powers, but you do get a free attack once per day against an enemy who hit you.

Earlier is good, but you're still hurting for lack of mutagen for 5 levels and in the long run I'd rather have superstition than the extra attack.


Now, I could see these domains working (1) for a reach alchemist who wants to beef up their melee a bit more but who can still bomb effectively when the melee buffs run out or aren't worth spending (2) in a campaign where you actually do only have a couple of rounds of combat a day, especially if you get warning before a combat encounter and especially if your deity has at least one solid non-combat domain you're using regularly.

Looking at example deities/concepts...

A changeling Sacrament Alchemist of Gyronna would be neat. Racial claws, natural armour bonus, and hulking changeling's melee bonus gives you back some of what you lose with Mutagen and Feral Mutagen. With Witchborn you get a racial Int bonus. You get the Demon Domain, the Rage domain at high levels (if you expect a longer combat or one that will make use of a particular rage power like superstition), and Madness for its 1st level utility power out of combat.

Andirifkhu gives you Demon, Luck, and Trickery and is thematically appropriate for a vivisectionist, particularly if you use a kukri.

As a non-evil option... Gorum is probably your best bet. Glory is useful for social scenes, which in a social-heavy campaign makes this a better plan than mutagen. On the combat side you have Tactics (low levels), Anger inquisition (levels 6-12) and the Rage domain (levels 8+). I still don't like not having an attack bonus until level 6, but for a reach build or if you start at higher levels it's probably OK.

Shadow Lodge

Lady Bluehawk wrote:
So, we actually should be up to 333 by now, or even 334, because of the number glitch? :(

Yep, Dragoncat hit 333.

With Goth Guru's new contributions, 336.

Shadow Lodge

Belabras wrote:
A monk's unarmed strike is treated as both a manufactured weapon and a natural weapon for the purpose of spells and effects that enhance or improve either manufactured weapons or natural weapons

and there is no language in the Kensai description that limits the choice. It's implied that swords are most common, but that's it. By RAW I don't see what the controversy would be.

The proficiency section says "A kensai is proficient in simple weapons and in a single martial or exotic melee weapon of his choice."

There is some debate over whether the "chosen weapon" referenced elsewhere in the archetype has to be the martial or exotic melee weapon chosen for proficiency, in which case a simple weapon like an UAS would not qualify.

Shadow Lodge


Since you not only lose mutagen but can't take it later, this is not a good archetype for a melee alchemist. Inability to take the normal cognatogen is also a bummer for a bomb-lobbing alchemist but it's less of a big deal for them, and the ability to take an additional flexible discovery may actually outweigh the cognatogen opportunity cost.

You only get one domain at a time, but get to pick a different domain each time you make your sacred cognatogen. That means you want a deity with at least one strong domain, but additional useful domains are also good. For these additional domains, powers that are situationally useful will be better for you than a typical cleric. Note that domain powers that affect spellcasting (like the 6th level Healing Domain power) do not by RAW affect your extracts, so those aren't useful unless you're playing in a home game with a permissive GM.

Liberation, Luck, Madness, Travel, Trickery, and Repose have some really nice domain powers.

Glory/Honour/Heroism are solid in an intrigue campaign, or as a situational choice for an intrigue adventure. Community can be useful - possibly more useful than for a cleric with Unity letting others take your saving throws. Reflex saves often catch several party members, and it's less likely to cause a party wipe than if everyone takes your bad Will save. Darkness could be handy. Restoration Subdomain's 1st level condition removal power is very useful at low levels (though again the high level Healing power is a waste).

There's probably some good subdomains I'm not aware of, and some domains that might be particularly useful to pick up situationally if you have a bit of warning (like Law or Chaos).

As usual, Desna is a top-notch deity for domains, with all three of Liberation, Luck, and Travel.

Sarenrae could be useful in the right campaign for Glory/Heroism, Restoration, and situational use of the Light subdomain (compared to the Sun domain it replaces a 1st-level power you can't use with one that's handy against mooks). It's also super easy to make a thematic Sarenite alchemist.

Lamashtu and Callistra both have two strong domains (Trickery/Madness and Trickery/Luck) plus some situational ones.

Cayden, Sheylyn, Abadar, Pharasma all have one very strong domain which makes them workable.

Shadow Lodge

I'm not convinced that sorcerers of the same bloodline are overly similar to each other. There are a lot of bloodlines and the major ones have wildblooded options, so it's pretty easy to avoid repeating bloodlines. Crossblooded gives you even more options. And then even if two sorcerers have the exact same bloodline, you can still customize them using archetypes, spells known, and feats (including choice of different bloodline feats).

Also, even if you're trying to avoid a power-up for the sorcerer, adding extra options like this is generally a boost in power, particularly for players that have high system mastery. Even if the new options aren't strictly better than the existing ones it gives players the opportunity to pick spells that are more useful for their particular build or campaign. For example, looking at the Abyssal bloodline the relative value of Bull's Strength vs Darkness depends a lot on party composition - how many of your party members are strength-based, and how many have Darkvision? Similarly, Infernal Bloodline's new Charm Person option is going to be more useful than Protection from Good in heroic campaigns (though not evil campaigns).

And there are a couple cases where the new spells are distinctly better than the old ones. Rakshasa bloodline now offers Charm Monster and Glibness as level 4 options, both of which are more useful than Detect Scrying in almost all campaigns.

Shadow Lodge

Claxon wrote:
Classes do evoke certain imagery and ideas for the basis of their existence, but so long as it doesn't affect mechanics you can RP your character's background however you want.

Agreed. The class imagery is a starting point, not a boundary.

My bloodrager is a martial artist who was adopted and trained by a hermit in the wilderness. Her magical abilities are related to her suli heritage and still-unfolding heroic destiny - almost all of my spells involve elemental manipulation, but I picked the Destined bloodline because I didn't want to commit to one element and the GM dropped some hints. I sometimes jokingly refer to my bloodrage as "avatar state."

Shadow Lodge

It sounds like what you really want is something that lets you see at a distance.

I think there are magic items that let you project your senses from a distant point, but I can't remember at the moment.

Shadow Lodge

Read closer.

Elements of Traps: Type wrote:

Magic: Many spells can be used to create dangerous traps. Unless the spell or item description states otherwise, assume the following to be true.

  • A successful Perception check (DC 25 + spell level) detects a magic trap before it goes off.
  • Magic traps permit a saving throw in order to avoid the effect (DC 10 + spell level × 1.5).
  • Magic traps may be disarmed by a character with the trapfinding class feature with a successful Disable Device skill check (DC 25 + spell level). Other characters have no chance to disarm a magic trap with a Disable Device check.

Magic traps are further divided into spell traps and magic device traps. Magic device traps initiate spell effects when activated, just as wands, rods, rings, and other magic items do. Creating a magic device trap requires the Craft Wondrous Item feat.

Spell traps are simply spells that themselves function as traps.

Yes, you can create traps without mechanical parts, but they are attached to a physical object (eg a tile on the floor, a statue) and can be spotted and disabled if you have trapfinding.

You need the Craft Wondrous Item feat to do so.

Magic Device Trap Cost wrote:

Building a magic device trap involves the expenditure of gp and requires the services of a spellcaster. Table: Cost Modifiers for Magic Device Traps summarizes the cost information for magic device traps. If the trap uses more than one spell (for instance, a sound or visual trigger spell in addition to the main spell effect), the builder must pay for them all (except alarm, which is free unless it must be cast by an NPC).

The costs derived from Table: Cost Modifiers for Magic Device Traps assume that the builder is casting the necessary spells himself (or perhaps some other PC is providing the spells for free). If an NPC spellcaster must be hired to cast them, those costs must be factored in as well (see Equipment).

There's a table here, but if you want it to reset an Illusory Maze Trap costs 500 gp * 2nd level spell * caster level, or 1000 gp for each round you want it to last. If it only works once it costs 100 gp per round. You do need to cast Illusory Maze (though like with crafting Wondrous Items you can skip this prerequisite by adding 5 to the DC).

Personally, I wouldn't reduce the villain's equipment to pay for the trap - I'd just figure out the trap's CR and give the players extra XP and treasure for dealing with a challenge of that CR.

Shadow Lodge

If this is a home game, ask your GM.

If it's PFS, anticipate a conservative ruling. Share Spells and Deliver Touch Spells are useless to a fighter so Emissary is still a positive over an un-archetyped familiar - but it's not compatible with Mauler so there's an opportunity cost.

Shadow Lodge

I would use the master's level as the familiar's cleric level. Otherwise many domain powers quickly become useless.

I think there's been some debate on the related question of "do familiar abilities based on HD (like poison DCs) scale with master's level?" Not sure if there's a solid consensus.

Shadow Lodge

Lorila Sorita wrote:
Ring_of_Gyges wrote:

I don't like DC tied to CR. My young son can consistently identify an Elephant. What's his knowledge nature? According to RAW that's a DC of 17 and can't be done untrained. So my first grader has around a +7 knowledge nature?

Reminds me of a game recently.

DM: "You see a large dog like creature. You can roll knowledge nature if you want."

Player 1,2,3 don't have nature.

Player 4 rolls and fails.

DM: "Yeah, some kind of large wild looking dog."

Player 4: Is it a wolf? I think I could recognize a wolf.

DM: "Apparently you can't."

This is where we remember that the pathfinder bestiaries are extensive and lots of things look similar.

Is it a wolf? Maybe. But it could also be a young dire wolf, a werewolf, a fiendish wolf, a winter wolf, or a worg. And probably some other more obscure things. You're not sure.

Shadow Lodge

Oh jeeze yeah, that curse is a way bigger issue than whether you can gain favour from multiple deities.

Unchained Curse wrote:
At 5th level, you have no alignment. You can become a member of any class, even one with an alignment requirement, and can never lose your membership because of a change in alignment. If you violate the code of ethics of any of your classes, you might still lose access to certain features of such classes, subject to GM discretion. Attempts to detect your alignment don’t return any results. If a class restricts you from casting spells with an alignment descriptor, you can cast such spells without restrictions or repercussions. If you’re the target of a spell or effect that is based on alignment, you’re treated as the most favorable alignment when determining the spell’s effect on you. Any effects that alter alignment have no effect on you.

Paladin morality and spells with alignment descriptors are two of the most contentious issues on this forum and it looks like you're dealing with both. Whether the GM allows this concept depends heavily on how they interpret morality in their game.

How your GM responds will likely depend on what exactly you want to do with this concept. Is this about using [evil] spells? Do you want to revere evil forces, presumably in addition to good ones, Godclaw style? Or do you want to draw your general spellcasting talents from evil agents that favour your character (despite the fact that you proceeded to use these powers against their interests)?

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