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441 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists.


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HarbinNick wrote:
See low magic means the bad guys are low magic too...If the bad guys have magic items, and you don't, that isn't going to end well, or fairly....That's not low magic, that's like RP'ing the Opium Wars.

I didn't say the bad guys had magic.

Sometimes they did, but when they didn't they still won.

Auxmaulous wrote:
Incorrect. You obviously don't understand resource scarce games so you shouldn't post from a position of ignorance.

I post ONLY from personal experiences as a player and a DM.

Auxmaulous wrote:
The rest of your comments are nonsensical - low resource games don't turn PCs into desperate scumbags. Bad players turn their PCs into desperate scumbags.

Well I guess you're right, there is another option. It also makes the PCs dead.

You can be a villain OR you can be a victim. I've played plenty of low-magic games and low-tech games and the end result was always the same. The bad guys won. The bad guys won big. Either we ran away and watched the town burn, stealing from the weak just to survive and leaving a stack of corpses to slow the bad guys down, or we tried to help (or at least not hurt) and died horribly, usually laughed at by the people we tried to help. It was raw, it was edgy, it was dog-eat-dog and if you didn't kill the peasant to take his food he'd shiv you when you turned your back to keep running away.

It's darker and edgier, and utterly freaking boring once you know the end is pre-determined and locked onto rails (oh excuse me, "less player agency"). To be honest, if I wanted that I'd just turn on the evening news or write gothy fanfiction. The characters would stick to my script a lot better in a work of fiction.

And your "corrections" on terminology are wrong, but feel free to keep insulting people from a position of completely mistaken authority, it's certainly an effective tactic at explaining your position.


Mancatcher, for grappling at reach.

And possibly Impaling Critical.

DC 50 as of 3.5 D&D.

The text from here:

The character can fall from great heights without taking damage, move greater distances with an adjustment, or “climb” vertical surfaces with a series of bounces.

DC Task
30 Treat a fall as if it were 20 feet shorter when determining damage.
35 Free stand.
45 Treat a fall as if it were 30 feet shorter when determining damage.
50 Climb vertical surface.
60 Treat a fall as if it were 40 feet shorter when determining damage.
100 Ignore falling damage.
Free Stand
The character can stand up from prone as a free action (instead of as a move-equivalent action).

Climb Vertical Surface
The character can climb up to 20 feet (as part of normal move-ment) by jumping and bouncing off walls, trees, or similar vertical surfaces. The character must have at least two vertical surfaces to bounce off, and the two must be within 10 feet of each other.

Ignore Falling Damage
The character can fall from any height and take no damage.

To be honest though, acrobatics got an upgrade from previous versions for a reason, so mayhaps a lower number would be in order. DM's call since we're already using non-standard rules here.

A 15 foot jump (high jump that is) is DC 60, for the record. Arguably you only have to make about 10 feet (DC 40) to get within arm's reach of the top, and pull yourself over without too much trouble.

And let's be real, when we're playing with extraordinary and paranormal characters on level with dudes who can transform into dragons, a little bit of fun with acrobatics isn't that big a deal.

Yeah, we always forget most targeted spells require line-of-sight to work.

Weapon proficiencies are kind of weird in general, they're a nothing ability you barely remember up until you have a weapon that you really need/want to use, then they're everything. And having to soak a caster level or one of your (very limited) feats to get the one weapon you actually want (and like, 50 you will never, ever use, ever) is pretty expensive.

There are ways to make shield-fighter pretty nasty, though most of them work best if you take a level or two of Fighter anyway.

Personally I find it to be a nice way to have a divine caster with high AC, a good two-handed weapon, and still have a free hand.

Christopher V Brady wrote:
And doing damage at higher levels is useless and pointless, because there are more methods (mainly magic) in which you can shut down an encounter faster.

Theory and practice both disagree with this assessment.

Those save-or-die spells that still exist tend to fail because foes get really good saves pretty fast. Or they require incredible amounts of set-up, the kind which kind of deny "adventuring." Sure the only way to kill the tarrasque is some convoluted magical trap, but that's not going on an adventure in a dungeon or a wilderness anymore, it's taking out a hit or exterminating a pestilence.

Shield bash counts as a martial weapon. To be proficient in shield bash it has to specifically say, "shield bash" or "martial weapons" because Paizo don't care 'bout your shield-fighter build and won't take the time to specify.

It also doesn't specify you're proficient with armor spikes when you're proficient with armor.

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Bandw2 wrote:
taldanrebel2187 wrote:
But the logical fact remains: Psionics are NOT and never have been core. They've always been 3PP as far as Paizo is concerned. Anyone that thinks otherwise can ask the creators at Gencon.
I still don't see why that matters. You're not playing PFS, your playing your own game, and psionics by most people is considered very balanced. If the players wants to do it, let him, even if his logic is flawed.

Because the DM doesn't like 'em, doesn't know 'em, and has no interest in dealing with 'em. Which is fine, but he seems to expect validation and acceptance of his entirely subjective personal opinion and house rules. Which ain't gonna happen, 'cuz we all seem to like psionics 'round here.

Flying lizard was an in-joke referring to the band, The Flying Lizards, and a certain person's love for them.

No, I just made that up.

Remember charisma isn't just looks, it's force of personality. Which on a trainable and easily-dominated animal is going to be low.

Also charisma and stats in general have severe limitations in how much sense they actually make, but we roll with it because the alternatives usually end up being worse.

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So are you telling me that you got the touch? Do you in fact, have the power?

Let's see...

Glitterboys: The Numerian robots.

Paint-jobs: Robot golems

Disco pits: (forget the proper term) Impact sites and hidden caches/dungeons of alien tech. Silver Mountain itself is "Disco hell."

Groove-slinger: good spellcaster

Negative Vibe Merchant: bad spellcaster

Jive-tosser: spellcaster of dubious but uncertain intent.

Stone Square: Undead, or so boring their "Squareness" is set in stone.

Stone Square Hate-merchant: infectious or intelligent undead, such as shadows, ghouls, or vampires.

Nessin': Going or being incorporeal. You become "untouchable."

Trimmin' his points: being dishonest, specifically when trying to ingratiate yourself to someone, refers to cutting the corners off of a square.

Juicer: Drug addict, specifically addicted to strange fluids, though the term suffers some dilution between "juicer" and "REAL juicer."

Chrome Turkey: Cyborg

Nipple-hater: also cyborg

Three-eyes: alien

Hater Coalition: Technic League

The Man: Authorities and/or the Black Sovereign himself.

Stitcher-witcher: Magical healer

Slideways Tourist: Outsider

Wham-banger: Evoker

Tour Guide: Conjurer

Party Bouncer: Abjurer

Shimmer-perv or Sneaky-Peeker: Diviner

Twister Champ: Transmuter

Square Peg: Necromancer

Sparkle Pimp: Enchanter

Shimmer Artist: Illusionist

Sad Wizard: Universalist

Best Finger Wiggles: Spells from the universal school

How'd he get his teleport down below a standard action?

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Recent phylogenetic research places the Red Panda closer to the weasel family than the raccoon family. On the flip side they eat Bamboo and aren't quite long'n'skinny enough physically.

Personally I'd go with Climb, since that's the first thing I think of after, "+5 adorable."

I recommend spell storing over deathless, but it depends on the campaign. "Take down the evil death cult's horrifying forces of doom" throws a lot more negative levels and negative channels than "Fight the cannibal pygmy army of the jungle-god of savagery."

There are also the flat-price enchantments. They're usually overlooked because they're weak, expensive, or only function for a short period, but having armor that gives you "Spider Climb+" for 10 rounds per day (adhesive enchantment) has its uses.

Chest-high walls.

Use cover, close to melee.

There are also different archetypes which can meddle with your summoning lists, but really the augment summoning feats and a summoner's ability to do it as a standard action seem to be much bigger changes.

I believe it is technically a -2 no matter what the size change, but most people just treat a size down as being the smaller version. Gnomish short sword = human dagger, Halfling heavy crossbow = elvish light crossbow, etc. Sure there are ways that could have an issue, like the handle being too small or your fingers being to fat for the trigger, but the question there becomes, "do you WANT to care?"

Official rules for size and enchanted items here, the the section under "Altering Existing Magic Items" makes it pretty clear if you apply magic resizing to weapons or armor you're in house-rule territory (though tacitly approved). I remember one game where we were allowed to resize masterwork armor and weapons (within one category) by having the party cleric cast Magic Vestment/magic weapon and putting it on. It still sold for the same price, so it wasn't really a big deal.

And when we're talking crossbows, does the difference even matter that much? I don't know any differences between one-handed and light when it comes to ranged weapons, but perhaps I just missed something.

bob_the_monster wrote:
RE; Psionics. Yeah whatever, they aren't core material. It's 3PP. Most DMs don't allow that nonsensical BS.

Please don't speak for other DMs. Especially when you're wrong about them.

Moving on, this whole thing reminds me of Dreadhold from the Eberron setting. It was full-on magic, with things like the Stone Ward (all prisoners are simply petrified, they are only still alive because they are too dangerous to kill) a handful of anti-magic cells, some silenced cells, walls of force, magic doors, etc.

But when you have a budget you gotta cut some corners.

Also, "start with your spellbook burned before you, but fighters are just temporarily robbed" sounds like a terrible game, but whatever. Standard magic hate and anti-creativity, moving on.

Since arcane magic is illegal, any spellcaster will be manacled and forced to wear an iron mask. Being able to cast suggestion or Charm Person isn't that useful if you can't actually convey your desires or intentions intelligibly.

How do they know you're a spellcaster? Well they don't, unless they have access to third level cleric spells, in which case they can force the truth out of you and/or know you're lying and presume guilt of magic possession.

Also it's not like monk is that different from martial class. The fighter who took Improved Unarmed Strike is almost as dangerous, and a lot of the monk's main abilities don't apply because they won't be facing spellcasters or climbing cliffs.

Since you are DM, if you really want you can just have a dead magic zone that was discovered and capitalized on. It doesn't have to be made by the government, it could just be natural or leftover from some bygone era.

Presumably anyone above level 10 is "too dangerous for normal measures" so silenced polymorph shouldn't be a problem.

I don't know...ghost guards? Sworn to service and so dedicated they serve after death for 20 more years? Since you seem to be rolling the "lawful good ain't always that good" trope you could have the inmates set against one another or given tortuous punishments and mistreatment because "it teaches them a lesson."

The main fixer/smuggler is obviously on the take and offered a shorter sentence for ratting people out.

Likewise there are probably multiple factions within the prison being manipulated, perhaps very overtly, to keep the prisoners from working together.

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A drunk mathematician.

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DominusMegadeus wrote:

People often decry Schrodinger's Wizard as unfeasible, how can you have all the perfect spells prepared for this upcoming encounter?

The answer is "by scrying on the scrub who got caught". Unless this anti-magic police force is also heavily secretive about how they fight casters, every arrest they make prepares the casters they didn't detain all the better. It may be outside the realm of possibility to make every single caster arrest completely blacked out, info-wise. As soon as word gets out that this force exists, they have to change up their strats every single time.

I'm not saying that's impossible, and if these forces are in every major city-state/country, they probably have a different set-up wherever you go. I'm juts saying they'd have to transfer and reorganize units constantly to stay a step ahead of the wizard (I almost laughed typing that) which would hurt group synergy. You could make a case for retraining agents every couple of years I guess, that'd be a cool story.

This isn't that different from modern-day crime. Cops get tricks, criminals compensate as best they can.

And most criminals wouldn't be big players. I mean you got your BBEG Dark Lord types, but they generally have a "cause" and they're empowered by The Narrative to be bigger and scarier than the authorities. The kind of straight-up criminal that you'd expect a cop to handle is going to be the second-best, the guy who started breaking the system because he couldn't succeed within it.

The kinda guy with less levels, weaker stats, and less foresight. Otherwise he'd be powerful enough to make sure all his crimes were legal.


Seems weak for a CR 17, but my metrics on that are horribly skewed by playing with a particularly brutal DM, so I'm probably wrong.

Also, those skills seem low for a critter with that many hit dice.

My first thought is that anything so electrical its parts keep a self-perpetuating charge post-mortem should have constant electrical field. One of those "hurts you if you hit it" jobs that zaps melee attackers and possibly hurts them with spikes them too. Lower damage and save DC.

Finally, perhaps its bones contain aluminum or mithral or something that can be smelted out of them by someone with the know-how.

That's all I can think of to add, it's a very nice monster.

Edit: Okay, I'll keep this short then.

Simple question 1: "Am I right, is it the vs. match-up?"

Simple question 2: "So you make the fighter immune to mind effects, the only real weakness they have against casters. Then what do the casters do now that they got nothin'?"

Edit the second: So I guess A is A, right?

Just a few pieces of tactical training go a long freakin' way. 5 dudes with bows and the knowledge "spread out, and prep to disrupt spellcasting" do a hell of a lot all by themselves.

But this thread reminds me of my wandering ruminations on setting up the city guard in my Amazing Magical Flying Metropolis of Trade and Awesomesauce. First off, constructs made heavy appearance, since Telepathic Bond, Animated Objects, Minor Image, and/or purl=]Crafte r's Eyes[/url] if your being a rules-lawyering bore can give you decent CCTV. Just being able to keep an eye on things affects a lot of magic crime in dense areas.

Standard guard unit would be a manned construct (hollow with a dude inside) for blocking and heavy hitting. Making 'em out of steel means they'll be able to handle some rough and tumble. Sealed cockpits = no line-of-sight on the guy giving orders, so it would be immune to a lot of save-or-suck and save-or-die spells. It would be backed up by a 4-man warrior team packing polearms and ranged weapons (pays to expect reach or damage auras) and a single adept with communication gear and wands for healing, repairing, etc.

They were designed for multiple threats, of course, and all NPC classes, because they're NPCs (possibly followers).

Custom gear isn't out of order either. A tanglefoot bag in the hands of a ranged specialist is all-but guaranteed to hit. A tanglefoot bag (or it's arrow equivalent because why not) with a use-triggered silence spell will END a lot of casters. You grab the arrow, "pull the pin" (activates silence spell on the arrowhead, 1 round delay) and fire it at the flying fireballing sorceror on the next round. Suddenly he has a silencing entangling arrow glued to his body and rather limited means of removing it. It would cost 350 gold, but when you can accurately name it "the caster****er," you expect a bit of a price tag.

The casters will escalate, of course, but that's the name of the game in law enforcement vs. law breakers.

Actual hunters who go after known criminals with a rap sheet and possibly a bounty would be a bit different, and they would probably be more akin to SWAT or the national guard in terms of rarity and involvement. They'd be called in for special jobs, at higher levels they'd be expected to have access to quick transport (like teleport) and they'd use magic just like the bad guys the same way cops use guns just like the bad guys.

I mean this all says, "high-magic campaign," but a nation that has enough magic showing up to invest in "magic cops" is a high-magic campaign.

Fighter is broken?

Most games I play the fighters out-damage everybody. The fighters go toe-to-toe with demon-lords and monsters the size of houses and laugh off blows that shake mountains.

I mean from this very short series of posts I don't know what the complaint *is* exactly, but it seems to be "in a vs. match the caster wins." Assuming, of course, the wizard wins initiative and gets out of reach, since locking the two in a steel cage Wrestlemania style means fighter wins and wizard can't do anything.

PC vs. matches like that boil down to who gets lucky first.

Fighters don't get many options? Meh. Compare a fighter's combat maneuvers (of which there are quite a few) with a sorceror's spell selection. Now remember that a figher doesn't run out of sword swings, a sorceror runs out of spells pretty freakin' fast.

Although I think sorceror and oracle are terrible classes, if we're going that far.

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Well, if you kill it, hollow out a section of it, and animate the corpse you can ride it.

What? Animate Dead is just my recycling program.

edit: and on a related note, I was recently looking for rules on tunneling (as in, leaving an actual tunnel behind) and found very little. In 3.5 there were a few spells and effects which explicitly allowed you to dig a tunnel at half speed, but in Pathfinder I only ever managed to find the Ankheg, which specifically talks about hosing the walls down with acid spit to make the walls.

The rules were also kind of vague on the "collapsing behind you" bit as applied to burrowing through rock, AND the question of whether a critter can burrow through rock is limited to "if it happens to get mentioned in the descriptive flavor text."

I think the design team's opinion was, "we don't like you using burrow unless you're an NPC."

Not judging that opinion, just saying.

Reason you can't "go component hunting": Maintaining and limiting character wealth by level.

Reason the rules don't list weird components you need to "magic it up": So a bad DM doesn't get confused (or dickish) and start arbitrarily raising the price or limiting availability of components.

Worryies about "getting too much" are generally overblown, I have NEVER played a game where I wasn't at least 15% behind the WBL curve (usually more like 50%).* And this is after we decided to keep things we didn't really want, like the second battleaxe that only one character can use.

Which brings us to point #3, "component hunting" is basically like farming wealth and spending the profit on flat-rate item crafting. I see no difference between selling the dragon blood at market value (assuming you can find/make up a market value) or using the dragon blood to make your ring of acid resistance, and would do the math accordingly.

I am told Ultimate Campaign has the rules for gathering resources, the specific flavor of what you collect, (essence of magma mephit, pure ice from the peaks of the Wall of Heaven) is whatever window-dressing you like.

*This only applies to characters who I had been playing a while. If I had to roll up a new character I started at WBL, and was generally richer than everyone else until we leveled again but continued to be broke.

Because Prestige Classes are the devil.

Now here's a question, how do you make something like dimensional agility work for a Hound Archon? CR 4 leaves a lot of room for character levels for the DM with a cruel mind and evil players.

"Time to split!"

Such an amusing game.

Oh absolutely not.

Really, if you have access to most magical army-moving means, you don't need an army anymore. Either you don't need it at all, or your enemy has something just as nasty that will kill it/block the infiltration.

Checking the timeline, a pack of Oni known as the Five Storms murdered the heck out of Minkai's royalty around 60 years ago. A rather recent reminder that out-and-out demons are running around murdering national leaders, taking over nations, and generally being evil.

The first gun hit Tian Xia shores around 91 years ago. A devotee of the katana probably finds such things messy and offensive.

Around 100 years ago, Amanandar arose pretty much right between Tianjing and Jinin. Amanandar is the Taldoran colony-kingdom-thing. Western-themed and (thanks to having carved it out of bandit chaos and ghost'n'spider-haunted forest) highly militarized. Anyone traveling from her adopted homeland among the elves to her (presumed) ancestral homeland of aasimar might travel through this land and see its fascinatingly different culture.

Of course this is all local politics. You know Rovagug doesn't appear in the dragon empires gazeteer? The Rough Beast is such a big deal that Golarion's name (to other civilizations) is "The Prison." Golarion's considered so important because Rovagug is trapped inside of it. Here is why that might be important: Some scholar's believe that Rovagug is a "Super Qlippoth", the same race of demons that Tianjing was founded to defend against.

Now I don't know what Bug-in-Ground* truly is, and neither does your character, but if it were my world and I ran across that theorized connection I might want to investigate it, even if it took me into the land of foreign devils and crazed pale barbarians.

*my most favoritest name for Rovagug ever

It's not like they KIDNAPPED her, they just saw an opportunity to win (or at least compete) in the "our nation's best" dick-waving contest that most diplomacy is. She was supposed to be ornamental. SUPPOSED to be, because somewhere along the way she wandered off the path set for her.

See the reason she's fey foundling is she's not just Celestial-blood, she's the stolen bastard offspring of an adventurous and troublemaking fey. The story started fairly standard, (minor) noble girl falls for bad boy, bad boy turns out to be fey, child is magically stolen away shortly after birth by first-world father. But he screwed up the ritual and she ended up in Hwanggot where the fun began.

Maybe she's looking for her father, maybe she already found him (in the jungle, hence the jungle trait), maybe she's been shamed by some byzantine b&%$!~$$ politics involved in the aforementioned Diplomatic Dick-waving contest, maybe she was just disgusted with it because, "we're good, why are we involved in this b%#!!*+# when there's demons at the door?!"

Or not. Maybe Keiko was just raised in a monastery in Tianjing. It's certainly more straightforward.

Fromper wrote:
Samurai Jane

In the Dragon Empires of Tian Xia, Aasimar mostly come from Tianjing the country which is straight-up blessed by the gods, formerly ruled by celestials, and was the one of the few to never be ruled by the Lung Wa.

But Kimyōna Shukufuku (strange blessing) was found in Hwanggot and essentially raised as a "spiritual arms race" trying to undermine Tianjing's heavenly mandate with their own god-touched citizen.

Gotta take a shower, so that's all I got for the moment.

Teleport circle is your bread-and-butter army mover. A dimensional lock or a dead magic zone will stop it, but at that point you've got an enemy smart enough you won't be "simply walking into mordor."

Use of created demiplanes with permanent portals function similarly to Teleport circle. May have the same problems.

You can always target the airship with your teleport circle instead of the dimension-locked city. Just have a lot of Feather falls ready, (it is area-effect, fortunately)

I don't know if Gate travels with a moving ship or not, probably not.

A bag of holding full of people could be launched over the wall. If it's ruled you can't open the thing from the inside, launch a person or a construct over with a ring of feather falling. They dump out the contents when they land.

"The term is 'craze.'"

Sorry, first thing I thought of.

Let's see, there should be a bebilith, who makes the tightropes and regular ropes and possibly costumes.

There should be a Strongman, The Baregara with class levels and boosted stats seems to fit the bill.

For annoying midget clowns (low threat, but they fight in a swarm) my first thought is Mephits or fiendish svirfneblin. But really, any demon of any size works, he's just dressed like a clown and fighting in a craze.

Jugglers and knife-throwers work best with extra arms, on the other hand a Glabrezu or a Marilith is freakin' big (stats and size). Maybe it could lead the troupe though. Or be the one playing the calliope.

Sexy contortionists have quite a number of options. Incubus, succubus, Lilitu, etc.

And don't forget the Animal Show. Anything from fiendish Mastodons to the more bestial demon races.

As a rule the problem with assimars is that unlike their celestial cousins they are jerks and nobody likes them. lolspelling

With PFS I recommend angel-blooded paladin. Safe, simple, straightforward.

What's the cost of a level 5 fighter hireling?

"They want what we want!"

It is also possible that the DM made it up. It was over a decade ago.

Best I can find online is the line "Whenever damage reduction completely negates the damage from an attack, it also negates most special effects that accompany the attack." which didn't come with a specific proviso for the extra damage dice of Sneak attack.

I'm giving up and saying I was wrong because I'm now bored with it. And because I don't even know if I HAVE my old books.

There was a rule in D&D 3.0 and (I think) 3.5 that said if you crit on an enemy with Damage Reduction but your first damage die can't cut through it, you don't actually get the crit. Crit = Sneak attack = rogues get screwed. This rule was thrown away because it's stupid and dicks over an already-weak class.

I honestly don't even remember where the rule was written down, I think it was some obscure section of the monster manual next to "how creature abilities work" describing in more detail what Damage Reduction was.

I'll check around since I'm OCD like that.

I'm sometimes incompetent and reading. I need to caffinate.

Sorry I'm not posting more, laziness + short attention sp-ooh, shiny objects!

wait, what were we talking about?

Another concern that pops into my head is the arcane points. I realize it's built for Magus, but it's one of those unwritten rules that you're supposed to make it POSSIBLE for other classes to "fake it." Perhaps you could have an option where the caster could, say, cast using a higher level spell slot or using two spell slots would make that ability available (but more expensive) for other caster classes. I mean you don't HAVE to, there are classes that literally only Monk or ninja can use, and it's only one class ability.

I'm also not sure about the "damage reflect" ability. It's not necessarily BAD, it's just a mechanic I never see using a methodology I almost never see in Pathfinder. It's the old conservative fear of change and the 'untested' new.

Finally, if you're doing half-favored saves, I'd give 'em reflex too.

Night Witch: Take 'er up to 3x speed. Flying PCs start out slow, flying monsters are freaky-fast. Actually, just use an amped-up version of the Monk's speed table giving +60 by level 10 instead of 20. This also means you don't have to worry about "hacks" like using the Travel Domain and then doubling or tripling its bonus.

As raiders, they are more likely to roll with Fly-by-attack than pounce, though that's arguable. A special ability that lets them drop multiple bombs (flasks of acid, etc.) in a manner akin to Manyshot might be in order.

Darkvision and increasing the range of someone's darkvision make sense, since the character is flying at night. Blindsense is tempting but kind of huge freakin' deal.

Wyrm Hunter, my first thought, increasing the range increment on a firearm, is a sledgehammer of a rules mechanic. It means you can use your "guns ignore natural armor" to punch a hole in a Steelwyrm (touch AC) from further away, or any other creature with non-dodge armor. That's really powerful, maybe too powerful. But without it most of your ranged attacks are either normal (and kinda weak) or being fired within a large creature's threat radius.

My computer appears to be doing a slow crash, have to stop here.

Lifat wrote:
I respect that. Golems can indeed be more powerful with direct supervision, I just happen to think that a wizard who is spending his time directing a hireling is wasting his time. If he can get a worthless hireling to direct another hireling effectively then it is a lot better action economy wise.

That was my whole point. I'm a wizard, I know almost NOTHING about shoring up passages and proper mining safety. My leadership feat gives me followers with NPC levels, so I get a level 3 expert in profession: mining, hand him the keys to the Mole Machine (giant mole construct) and tell him to go dig me some mithral (because I used divination magic to find out there was mithral in them thar hills). The Mole Machine is big, strong, and has a burrow speed but no idea WHERE to dig, so it needs guidance, and I got stuff to do. Hence the expert.

Probably have a whole team, really, since you want a safety-first buddy system and rotating shifts of miners. Constructs don't get tired but minions do.

Then there's battle. My castle's under attack by a Dragon because I stole his girlfriend (the one with the cute tail). I want my troops to have a chance of protecting themselves without me (because that makes sense) and I'm also indisposed at the moment because I stole his girlfriend and took her on holiday (Elysium is lovely this time of year).

*writes a whole long list of tactical battle plans, deletes them*

To keep it short, battle is fluid and a brain with good tactics beats a MUCH more powerful foe with no tactics most days of the week.

Combat, construction, mining, harvesting, delivering...all of these things tend to require (or at least do better with) skill checks or someone giving constantly-updated orders.

Now it's probably time I got back to Elysiumother things. *shifty eyes*

For simulacra...the historical trope of a simulacra (which predates D&D) is that it is a copy. Sometimes it's an evil clone, sometimes it's a good clone, sometimes it's an emo clone but it's always a copy of the person it's supposed to be and copies them really well. It was basically what writers and storytellers used for those philosophical "what is identity" explorations before we had the technological understanding to imagine "quantum cloning" or "Star Trek Transporter-made copies."

But maybe you don't care about that history because "how could I know that?" That's perfectly understandable. The rules also state it gets the skills and feats of the subject, so it's fairly reasonable to assume it will act in the same way because it has the same general "knowledge" if not the same specific memories. So it would generally give the same orders, like "take Number 5 and go build that worker barracks" or "Grab half the mole fleet and start digging the canal."

It's a very similar class to the Devoted Defender (3.5) and the Stalwart Defender (pathfinder), with full caster progression it's probably balanced but there are some powers that might be worth swapping in or out. The "get behind me" could be replaced with that one that increases a defended charge's AC and/or lets the Queen's Guard "Take the hit."

The NPC wrote:
boring7 wrote:

Well those levels will probably work, and you can ALSO have a brain-curse damaging his ability to keep long-term memories if you want, might make another excuse for why he really wants this curse gone.

"The last of my family died long ago, and I clung to their memory. Then the memory OF the memory, then nothing, the curse took even that from me. I can't even remember their names or faces or their love as my perpetual youth erodes my past! A man cannot live like this, I must find a cure or die trying!"

And of course shorter-lived races like ratfolk, strix, and grippli don't have as long before old age hits.

I see what you did there.

It was a good game and a good line.

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Well those levels will probably work, and you can ALSO have a brain-curse damaging his ability to keep long-term memories if you want, might make another excuse for why he really wants this curse gone.

"The last of my family died long ago, and I clung to their memory. Then the memory OF the memory, then nothing, the curse took even that from me. I can't even remember their names or faces or their love as my perpetual youth erodes my past! A man cannot live like this, I must find a cure or die trying!"

And of course shorter-lived races like ratfolk, strix, and grippli don't have as long before old age hits.

Thread necromancy for a slightly new question.

A friend of mine is running LoF and the party tank has dropped (killed or knocked unconscious) a major enemy* while staggered (at 0 or fewer hit points) at least 3 times, possibly 4 (I wasn't there).

Seems like if she hits 5 or 10 she should get an achievement feat of some sort but I'm not sure what. Maybe "auto-crits while at 0 or fewer hit points"?

Legacy of fire spoiler:
*The Carrion King's pet centipede-thing, Whatsisface with the really nice axe in Kelmarane, possibly the Carrion King himself.

Young characters and effects of aging.

I'd do the physical effects of the young stat mod, not do the stat mods for old age Because Magic™ and because you "never learn." XP is an issue since you're supposed to be old enough to be experienced, but maybe you got level drained or start in a higher-level game.

Role-play wise, if you don't have like 17 levels and/or a pocket empire after 500 years, you need some kind of reason why you suck so much. Maybe you're dumb, maybe the curse gives you memory problems with lots of "mental resets," maybe you're just epically lazy, but whatever the case you're not even remotely a part of the human condition anymore, you've been around so long that the language has changed from Middle Common to New Common, you've been around longer that kingdoms, you've seen gods die. In fact, given the weird nature of your curse, you've probably met gods personally, mortal wizards don't usually jump to "immortality curse" like that.

And through it all, you haven't learned anything, or you haven't learned much. I mean, you're still stuck on gaining a permanent adult body instead of just embracing permanent kid-hood with the occasional "vacation" with a contracted polymorph spell. You're still trying to live forever. You want to have your cake and eat it too.

But maybe there's more to you than a selfish brat. Maybe you're a more complicated character. You certainly have potential to be interesting.

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Thinking further on the topic, Low magic settings also usually just don't make sense. If magic is real and magic works, then it's science, it is simply "how the world works." And everyone who possibly CAN use that technology is going to unless the technology itself isn't good enough to work.

Like in Conan, there aren't magical items, hardly at all, and when they do exist they tend to be extensions of already-magical beings. And most of the magic for the magic critters and the sorcerors and the items they use only function at the cost of massive loss of humanity, pacts with dark powers, blood sacrifice, and stuff like that.

Throughout history, people don't abandon tech unless they just can't DO it. When Rome fell they used the Roman roads and walls and forts until they fell apart and kept them up whenever and wherever they could. The only places that "lost knowledge" and stopped USING Roman tech were the places that imported all that stuff to begin with and were basically never allowed to get that expertise, and they tried to copy or regain it whenever and wherever they could, they just didn't have the command and control to do really big public works projects because there was no central authority.

Even at the darkest of the dark ages, the Easter Roman Empire had all the tech it had before, they just didn't make enough to keep exporting it to every podunk former district or keep the roads and townships safe enough to help them do it for themselves. Basically, once an idea comes into society, it's really hard to kill that idea off. You have to have a humanity that is really dumb and really lazy to not have them trying as hard as they can to copy or do anything they ever heard about in myth or legend.

JoeJ wrote:
boring7 wrote:

To be honest, I'd set it to "obey whoever has the keys to the carAmulet of Control." Because if I had a mindless construct I would have loyal minions with actual minds directing it. Wizard got stuff to do, can't be micromanaging all my 'bots all the time.

But then my wizards don't really go for the whole "crazed reclusive hermit" thing.

I'd probably tell it "Obey whomever has the Amulet of Control, unless I give a conflicting order, in which case obey me." But I'm the paranoid type.

Well, obviously. There'd be a standard array of "hard-coded commands" and hierarchy of user permission settings just like any sysadmin methodology.

Which, as a DM, I might take a step further and actually have a system of "hacking" constructs which would probably involve Use Magic Device (fits flavor-wise) and/or spellcraft. Could be interesting, might be too much work, but I'm kind of meandering now.

@Lifat, In my opinion, if you are using a construct in such a way that it would not benefit from direct supervision, you are probably under-using your construct. But I'm of the mind you're better off with an Animated Object than a Golem. Burrowers for mining, flyers for shipping/delivery, and implanted weapon systems (like ballistae) which the construct can't use itself (construct ranged attack is crap, but an auto-loading ballistae aimed and fired by a human warrior is pretty good) and tools which work better with a brain guiding them.

Admittedly, there is still a place for the implacable treasure-room guardian. I'm just more of a builder than a banker.

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JoeJ wrote:
boring7 wrote:

It's not that low-magic is impossible. It is that the philosophical drive for low-magic settings is fundamentally flawed.

How so?

What's the intent of making a low magic setting?

I'll skip ahead, it's "because I want a more epic fantasy feel, where magic is rare and mysterious and even a +1 sword is the stuff of superb legends and characters aren't so expectant or jaded as to see a suit of magical HALF-plate as 'vendor trash' because it isn't full plate."

Which is code for, "I want those darned players to be weaker, poorer, and more appreciative of all my hard work DMing because they don't seem to have the emotional reaction I personally want in my magical fantasy story."

Unsurprisingly, players do NOT suddenly become super-appreciative of the first +1 short sword at level 10, they are just more exasperated when they keep running into shortages (real or perceived).

And let's take this line, "...magic is not the tool of man, rather it belongs to the spirits and the gods. A wizard has no books or scrolls to learn his trade from, he must seek out an older wizard as a mentor or barter with the spirits themselves..."

That translates to, "Wizards, whose strength has always been their versatility and creativity, are reduced to a handful of spells known, which are going to be the 'bare necessities' and essentially relegate them to boom duty with fireballs, and being less creative or varied than a martial class, which is already complained about for it's lack of options in gameplay besides hitting stuff."

The underlying principle, is holding down characters. And it doesn't make the players more special, at no time has any "low magic setting" ever said, "and this is to make the characters more special, they are epic adventurers in a world of little magic, Heroes of legend who can do what no one else can and thus save the world from evil." The setting of these low magic campaigns always makes it clear that players are more likely to be "hunted and feared" like the X-men than "demigod saviors" or "ruling god-kings."

I get it, you watched Conan or read Song of Ice and Fire and want something more like that, but that isn't how it ever plays out. The way it plays out is characters just get weaker and higher-mortality and players get more desperate or less scrupulous. If they were monty haul before they stay monty haul (or straight-up quit) but at no time has there ever been a story where players "developed a new appreciation" or campaigns got "more epic/interesting."

Of course SAYING this is going to piss a bunch of people off, but them's the breaks. You *did* ask, after all.

To be honest, I'd set it to "obey whoever has the keys to the carAmulet of Control." Because if I had a mindless construct I would have loyal minions with actual minds directing it. Wizard got stuff to do, can't be micromanaging all my 'bots all the time.

But then my wizards don't really go for the whole "crazed reclusive hermit" thing.

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