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Jakardros Sovark

golem101's page

Pathfinder Society Member. 2,001 posts (2,007 including aliases). 19 reviews. No lists. 2 wishlists. 1 alias.

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I play 3.5 and miss 3.0 (mostly due to DR, cover details and those quirky 1d4+1 to stat spells). And Unearthed Arcana, with weapon groups and a couple of things more.

PFRPG has a baseline too much geared towards the upper reaches of the "high fantasy" concept; I know it can be custom-tweaked towards a more gritty play, but it's a hassle I'm not willing to undertake.
I'm getting old.

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No character sheets in it, sorry.

The book is a "toolbox" of sorts, as it discusses the various mechanics, how they work, what is their function, their relevance in game, why they were designed that way, how to apply and eventually modify them, which one to pick and choose for a game centered on a theme such as social drama/investigation/combat/whatever, and so on (or just featuring some of them quite often).

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There's the Cortex Plus Hacker Guide, which presents the system in various incarnations (superheroes, fantasy, investigation, social drama, etc.) and talks about the inner workings of the mechanics involved.

It should be the one you're looking for.

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Dragon78 wrote:
Like for example golem101?

Dragonfall has been one of three adventures I used as a campaign ending, and it's pretty much canon in draconic lore.

The Slohr still has an eerie influence in Andoran, both in the Arthfell and in occult circles.

Asmodeus has paladins. Of the LG type. Master of trickery and all that follows.

The cult of Sarenrae is banned in Taldor, and the faithfuls of the Dawnflower actively persecuted. Pretty much half a campaign of mine revolved around this.

Erastil still has debatable elements, which are enforced in the more isolated communities and toned down in civilized areas. Again, this is canon, accepted (and somewhat expected) at my table.

Avistan, and to a lesser extent Garund and Casmaron, are way more human-centric (the way Golarion was presented at first) than it is now.

Half-elves often have a disturbed psyche.

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By Crom!

A lot, if not most, of the stuff that has been "retconned", has or has had an impact of some sort in my games. Some of it was even a major point.

I feel like living the weird alternate universe from The Fringe. I'm playing in doppelganger-Golarion.

Dark Archive

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It's for the LulZ. The fun of arguing for its own sake or to prove you are a better orator (writer?), you can waste away time just fine, your logic is more flawless (whatever it means), and any other less than productive reason you could come up with.

Welcome to the internet. It has long since bored me away.

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Jester David wrote:
9000 years with no art or music under the rule the theocratic rule of a sadist god's clergy...

Graphic descriptions of nastiness.

Art is the blemishes, scars, burn marks and bruises on the skins of the flayed sacrifices.

Or the performances given by the spasms and death throes of the victims of slow, week-long, ritual mutilations.

Music is the screams of the tortured, with properly timed punctures to the lungs and throath to obtain some nasty, otherworly sounds.

It's not YOUR art, but kuthonites like it. Sometimes a bit too much.
And they had close to ten thousand years to develop it, refine it, create styles and trends.

Stay away, or you may become art.

Dark Archive

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As a long time sufferer from Atypical Trigeminal Neuralgia, my understanding is that annoying headaches are the first step towards unhappiness.
Painful, mind-numbing, week or month long unhappiness.

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Aniuś the Talewise wrote:

I really want to houserule resurrection right out of my campaign, or at least make it mindbogglingly rare, so rare that you can't expect to resurrect dead players when you get to the next town.

Death is supposed to be special dammit!

Actually ontopic, dime-a-dozen resurrection doesn't happen in the games I play in with my group. I don't know if it's because we don't think about it or because the other GMs in our group grant full hit die and so we have a lot of hp and are seldom at risk of death.


There's an awesome article on the matter in an old issue of Dragon Magazine (3.5 run), with some limitations to apply - resurrection possible on certain places/holidays/phases of the moon/etc - and some really nasty side-effects (you open the door to the other side, but you're not so sure that only the desired soul goes through the passage) which scale up with the character level, so the more powerful he is, the worst things happen.

Once you have a resurrection on a disputed holy ground on the eve of an astronomical convergence trying not to allow angry spirits of the unquiet dead to follow up your fallen companion... well, it's nice the first time, but afterwards your players will consider their lost characters as gone for good.


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15 minutes adventuring day never happened.

Healers are sought after with a passion.

No magic shop/WBL/magic item wishlists. And the game works fine.

Alignment/paladin stuff. There are times when things get strange, but the group as a whole discusses the matter, and positively expects the DM to be the final arbiter of the thing at hand.

No class tiers. There are those who are good at fighting, those who are good at buffing, at stealth, at defence/healing, at arcane magic (both in the blasting and utility spells variants). A group that does not cover as many niches as possible is in trouble, both in the short and long run.

Archetypes, racial class bonus, traits have been ditched as the common consensus was "they botch the game".

Smurf infestation. None, ever.

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Good job. Excellent thinking on the blue wash over the pallid flesh tones.

I'd rather do the armor/weapons drybrush before starting to work on the flesh tones, because it's a messy technique and could ruin a rather long and accurate paintjob.

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MrConradTheDuck wrote:
Rolling stats and hit die? It's not fun or interesting. You either have a godlike character that dumps on everything, or one so weak you might as well do better things with your life. I seriously left my last 3 games because of it then the GMs wasted my time asking why. *sigh* I just want to play the game without being completely crippled by stupid, arbitrary rules from a bi-gone era that force me to either waste my time completely or leave, still having wasted time on it in the first place. The worst part is when the game isn't advertised as such so I show up with no idea it's going to be bad.

Sometimes it's fun to have a character that's so full of stat points he doesn't even know where to start. Paladin? Easy. Monk? Don't be silly. Three way multiclass? Hmmm, lemme think.

And strange as it may sound, often it makes a challenge all in itself, living up to be the legend that the statbloc promises.

Sometimes it's fun to have a character whose statbloc makes him incredibly impaired compared to the average of his companions - but he succeeds and survives nonetheless, with a little help.
Is he older? Younger? Cursed? Is he just unable to survive in the darwinistic fantasy world or has he some interesting tale to tell?

Sometimes it's fun to have a character with a stabloc that includes good values and abismal ones - I know my half-orc grappler monk is one of them.
And it may even happen that the dump stat is not really the one you'd have chosen in a careful plan, but you have to roll with it (no pun intended), and you find it even enjoyable.

Having a balanced character (math/point wise, that is) surely eliminates some nasty problems and some annoying stuff, but does not always equate to more fun or more useful in the party balance - including those with low stats.

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Kirth Gersen wrote:
golem101 wrote:
I honestly don't get this dichotomy between "no fudging: death always on" and "fudging: no death ever".
Well, I see it like this: if I get pulled over for speeding and say, "Well, officer, I usually go the speed limit, so it's totally OK that I was just going 90, right?" -- it's not really going to help.

Uhm... if you go over the speed limits for no other reason than going fast... well no, it's not going to help. It shouldn't.

If you had reasonable motives, the police officer might listen. Maybe fine you nonetheless, but also help you get there faster.

But if the debate is about a principle that exists in a void without situations that might or might not apply and influence it, we're done: subjectively altering random dice results is bad.

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Kirth Gersen wrote:

So, flipping it around, as a player do you tolerate DM cheating? The most common example is, of course, rolls getting fudged so that the party always "just barely" wins every major fight. And, yes, it's controversial, but I maintain that the DM is not by definition "immune" to accusations of cheating. Sorry, but as DM, I don't do it. And as a player, I always ask the DM not to do it, especially in a sandbox-style game. I don't like being railroaded, and, similarly, I want my PC to die if I get in over my head. I know that houstonderek shares that view when he's playing -- it's one of the things that convinced us we'd be a good pairing for a long-term game.

EDIT: Let me add that, for an occasional less-serious game showcasing goofy characters and over-the-top scenarios, I'd heartily approve of any amount of fudging, if it sets the atmosphere. I just intensely dislike it when we're supposedly playing a more serious game in which death actually exists.

I honestly don't get this dichotomy between "no fudging: death always on" and "fudging: no death ever".

If a player "gets in over his head", death for his character is absolutely fine. Stupid tactic? Sorry, fantasy life is harsh. A fight that ends poorly just for that last roll, despite being head to head for all the time? That makes stuff for an epic dirge. A failed save that means a spell will stop a character dead on his tracks, while the battle is raging (and his companions will have to spend hard won resources to bring him back to the living)? Fine, too.

If a player's character risks death for another player being dumb and putting other PCs in mortal danger for his foolishness... well not so much fun (nor sense, narratively speaking). And I've seen this scene once too much.
Or for an incredibly long string of poor rolls. Two, four, one, three, six... close but not enough, hey! four again, five, sorry you're dead. Ugh. That too happens.

I don't ask the GM to have PCs "barely win" every fight (or when I'm the GM I won't do that), it's just that having them survive - when the overall story balance and the choices made by the players grant this privilege - maybe fleeing the encounter with a sense of dread and impending doom, doesn't feel like cheating at all.

A GM adjusts encounters when designing adventures to make them more challenging and fun for the PCs, taking away stuff too dangerous or too easy.
A GM often has to improvise an encounter because the PCs took an unexpected turn, adding stuff on the fly to make up for a better scene, that would be otherwise unsatisfying.
A GM can't fudge a roll or two, saving a PC (different from making him win) or having a climatic scene "boss enemy" survive for another round or two, 'cause that would be cheating. Well, no.

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Honest answer: because the fictional pantheon of different gods serves a precise function in the game of recreating an equally fictional setting, contributing in making it a plausible fantasy world (as much as an oxymoron as it may sound) and helping player immersion and identification in their characters.

Personal answer: why should I force my personal beliefs onto other players in a fantasy roleplaying game by having the setting mirror my personal idea of what is or is not a deity?

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Big Lemon wrote:
A GM directly controlling what a character may or may not do is wrong, I think we can all agree:

Yes, 110%.

Big Lemon wrote:
"No, you can't take that side-strret", "No, you cannot visit the witch first and the dungeon second", etc. Many also feel that "excessive restrictions" on character options also makes a bad GM, i.e. "You cannot play a dwarf wizard because I decided dwarves can't be wizards", and the countless myriad of variations.

OK, none of these examples look bad, per se. Situational, probably. But not inherently wrong.

Big Lemon wrote:
My question, though, is: Is it acceptable for a GM to veto a decision based on the in-character reasons the player has come up with?

Only if what the player has come up with is blatantly against the world, campaign, play style, agreed rules, or else the GM and the other players have previously agreed upon.

Aka: a player has no right to wreck a game, because "that's his thing".

Big Lemon wrote:

-Is it unfair to restrict player options if the story does not warrant them? (i.e. does Story trump Rules?)

-Is PC backstory sacred and purely the domain of the player? Does the GM have a right to decide what may or may not be in the PCs backstory?
-Should the fluff not matter as long as the rules are followed?

Not unfair as long as it's common knowledge at the table.

Mostly yes. Usually a few blank spots are left floating about for the GM and the player to expand and work on as needed. If the new stuff doesn't contradict previously agreed material, no problem (Aka: a GM has no right to wreck a character because "that's his campaign").

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wraithstrike wrote:
golem101 wrote:
While I certainly like a more deadly, harsh and realistic style of gaming, the subjectivity and all around randomness of the early editions is not on my wishlist. In any wishlist.

I agree.


I strongly support player characters as protagonists of the story being told and heroes of that story, but they're protagonists and heroes not thanks to some ingrained mechanic of the system, but because of their choices and their actions.
Recent editions have transformed hard-bitten heroes who struggled to earn their status into (horresco referens, a TV tropes nudge) Mary Sues who do what they do because they're built that way and have to succeed otherwise the story grinds to a halt. To hell with that.
I'd rather play other games (and I do, when house rules do not suffice).

Could you give an example. I am thinking you are confusing edition issues with GM'ing issues, but I may be misunderstanding you.

I think that my examples would only lead to a rather long winded discussion on what's an edition issue, a GMing issue and which one of them stems from the other.

It's best to paraphrase one of my regular players: "It feels like I'm playing the game just to level up time and time again: I have to plan a character instead of letting the adventures shape him, or having him survive the adventures despite shortcomings in his abilities.
And even not considering the combat encounters and that mountain of modifiers, with all this planning, skill grades, feats, prerequisites, class stuff and equipment, I feel more like an accountant on behalf of my character rather than a player".

BTW, we stuck to 3.X/PFRPG for a bit more than a decade, we came there from AD&D2e, CoC and Kult 1st ed (shudder), and we're now playing Blade of the Iron Throne and Thousand Suns. Pretty much all systems with an hefty load of things to take in consideration - OK, CoC and TS less than the others.
But with the d20 evolution of D&D we had the distinct feeling that the system itself required more attention than it was due. For its own sake, not detail, simulation, or that brain-numbing concept that is "system mastery".

And all of this rant leads to the (maybe) unexpected result: the characters are mechanically built to be heroes. They're not just fledgling adventurers with some tricks upon their sleeves (the feeling you got with earlier editions).
Once you sum up all of the modifiers, skills, feats, class features, traits, equipment, stuff, a 1st level character's leagues away from any other mortal. And it gets worse with every level.
With a game like Exalted, it would be OK. A high magic fantasy game... it still is too much. A sword and sorcery game needs to be rethinked so much it's best to play something else altogether.

And with published adventures we're still there, superheroes with no superproblems. Published adventures which I take are the baseline from the game publishers on how the system works (adventures may be good, bad, or else in any system).
There's no longer a random lethal moment (this is good), but the lethal moment is now only seen when characters are not built/equipped/developed in a path.
No longer they die because they chose the wrong option despite all the evidence. No longer they die because they take on an enemy they do know is more powerful than they are. Hey! It's not fun I die because I did something stupid.
Now they die because the accounting for the encounter bests the accounting the players did for their characters.

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Majuba wrote:
I won't touch the ACG, but still no to the premise.

Yup. Same here.

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Farael the Fallen wrote:
I believe the recent extreme weather conditions in the Northwest are being caused by manmade global warming. Agree or disagree?

I believe that's caused by Cthugha's influence, with Fomalhaut being more visible in the northern emisphere during autumn.

Or maybe it's just Fthaggua and those pesky Fire Vampires. Blasted critters.

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Please bear with my rusty English, as it's not my primary language, and trying to express kinda vague, personal concepts is a bit hard.

The last day of september, a friend of mine passed away from cancer. The illness developed mostly without symptoms, and by the time the first ones showed up, it was too late for any attempt of cure or therapy. In a short three months he wore out, leaving a sense of loss that I know no human words can properly describe.
We knew each other since 25 years ago - a veritable lifetime of friendship - and he's been a regular player at my table ever since, every friday night. He was a great chess player, a good connoisseur of fine music, a passable guitar and piano player, a cinema enthusiast, and a superb writer. Way better than professionals.

A couple weeks later I found myself in possession of one manuscript he wrote about 20 years ago, a typewrited 100-pages long adventure. It's a murder mistery based investigation for Call of Cthulhu (our RPG of choice back in the days), that in the text frequently addresses me directly as the GM (Keeper, in the game) to make adjustements or to cover blank elements, as I'd deem most appropriate. Very few cosmic horrors, and a lot of old fashioned hardboiled detective action, Philip Marlowe style; maybe even more akin to the older Fu Manchu novels.
After a feverish reading and a lot of nighttime crying, fueled by copious amounts of single malt, I decided to give the original text to his beloved wife, as a keepsake of his uncanny knack for writing and as a tangible explanation of how I got to know him.
Then I asked her the permission to actually complete the adventure, filling in the blank spots, adjusting the design elements he was not so sure of, and double-checking the game stats. To have it published in print, even if just in a small private run. We cried a lot more.

It's the only thing I can imagine that could give a semblance of... logic, maybe, to what has happened. Again, words fail me.
It may not be the greatest adventure ever, it sure is not a novel or even a novella, but to me it's the greatest legacy I could ever think of. He gave me his idea.

So, now I find myself re-writing the text (I will NOT allow an OCR software lay its soulless gaze on it), making annotations, checking rules and resources, changing bits and adjusting where necessary - the least possible. The prospect of changing too much, or deviating from his original concept is absolutely terrifying to me.
Sometimes, while I'm typing at the keyboard, I feel like he's right beside me. And I cry a lot.

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Awww... I still root for my "early draft" Golarion, with paladins of Asmodeus, human-centric world, and all the rough edges and contradictions that made the setting special.

Less all-around nice guys, more unstoppable hellknights.

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Being one of the original... patrons (before being a backer became commonplace) of Sinister Adventures timeframe, and having not folded my pledge, I can't praise enough Louis, Nick, Rich, all the awesome guys who contributed to the effort, and the fine people at Frog God games that made this possible.

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Super-cool bugbears and drows, but the beauty-model like orcs are a let down.

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Nic Logue? Will resubscribe. Will do.

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Cheliax only has a Companion AFAIK, not really a book (just like Andoran, Taldor, Qadira, and until a few weeks a go, Osirion).
It deserves a proper Setting book, given its major role in the history, politics, and action of the Inner Sea.

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Best of luck, Sean and Jodi.

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Blakmane wrote:
Perhaps a little devil's advocate, but I sure would be angry if my GM saved classes for special snowflake NPCs and denied them to his PCs. The players are supposed to be the heroes, not the supporting cast.

While I absolutely agree, I also feel compelled to say that they're the heroes because of what they do, not (only) because of what they are.

Important NPCs must be special as much as the playing characters, even exotic or exceedingly rare, and even moreso due to their limited playing time in a show focused on the PCs.

Players requesting to have "all the options" to perform as protagonists is not a valid argument - at least in my book.
Players requesting to shine as protagonists more than NPCs in a given story is perfectly reasonable.

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Seen it. Once, then they learned.

Short story, the group charged into melee, crashing headlong into an orc multi-tribal horde.
After a couple of rounds of cleaving and arcane blasting, the warchiefs shouted orders, and the first line of orcs started foaming at the mouth. Then they went in, oblivious of losses, grabbed the wizard and the bard (easiest grapple victims), and brought them away.
The group panicked.
A few hundred yards away, orc shamans started bringing up crude contraptions to ritually slaughter victims on the battlefield, to appease the orcish gods.
The group panicked some more.

The rest of the party went through a lot of hurt, while trying to get their comrades back to safety, harassed by lowly troops and slowed by the occasional elite enemy (orc warchiefs, ogres, an handful of giants), and ran for their lives as soon as possible.

Back at their base camp, they also suffered the indignity of an army officer berating them for risking their lives of most capable warriors and spellcasters just for a few dozen orcs.

tl;dr: split the party. Wreck their strategy.
No battleplan survives contact with the enemy, neither should a lousy one such as six people against a whole army in an open field.

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Hastur, Hastur, Hastur.

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New desktop!

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As far as user interfaces are involved, unifying the desktop and mobile environment is simply stupid. I'm not using my CAD the same way I'm fiddling with my tablet, get over it once and for all.
Head of departments may disagree, but that's because they know jack$#!& about drawing with CAD software for hours on. Try doing that on a mobile touchscreen device, you monkey.

And this is true for a hundred other professional softwares.

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Taku Ooka Nin wrote:


Every time we are camping for the night I dig a 10-ft deep trench around our camp so we will get some early warning and a buffer from mindless enemies attacking our fortified position.

Sorry but my brain kinda crashed into a brick wall and refused to read further after this.

You dig a 10 ft. deep (about 3 metres) trench every time you camp around a defensive area. Every time. 10 ft. deep.

Even with a gross approximation, how long is this trench? Do you accomplish this herculean feat alone? Do you have some kind of magic assistance in doing this?

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Yet another vote for Call of Cthulhu - the d100 version.

More recent systems, The One Ring (set 5 years after the Battle of Five Armies) which deals a lot with travelling and social interactions with the people of the Middle Earth; and A song of Ice and Fire RPG, which has a robust social interaction system and an equally developed domain management part.

Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay 3rd Ed. (with the Lure of Power supplement) can be easily used for a political/social campaign in which physical combat is the least frequent option.

Also, Thousand Suns is a good sci-fi game that has combat not in the forefront, and I seem to recall that Rogue Trader features an interesting commercial focus, with a great concept of managing your own space vessel and its crew.

A lot of Cortex based games, like Leverage, also do not have combat as the main element of the game.

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I'd like to see bigger tiles, like the ones produced by Rakham for its Cadwallon/Confrontation lines (they were called something like "reversible hybrid tiles"), massive 12" x 12" laminated card tiles.
As they were really modular, it was easy to assemble a few of them to build a sprawling city harbor/slum/noble quarter, a forest area, a sewer complex, and even some cave system or dungeon area. Kinda like geomorphs.

But they would also heavily interfere with flip mats and map packs, which I understand is not a good idea.

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This is amazingly useful.

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Gorbacz wrote:
Hitdice wrote:
Stefan Hill wrote:
That is sad news :(

It is sad news, but the sadness started for me back when they went web only. It makes me very curious as to what D&DNext, the edition made to unite all the divided gamers out there, is even going to have for regular, accessible support.

RPGs have always been a niche hobby, and times have certainly moved on from the eighties, but I don't think WotC/Hasbro really gets how much having a monthly magazine with awesome van-art on the cover every month popularized the hobby.

It's 2013. Paper is dead. The concept of a periodical publication is dead outside of academia, and even there its days are numbered. Video game magazines are folding, specialized publications are barely making it through every month, Kobold Quarterly died a sad death after a valiant attempt to become Dragon Reloaded. People don't learn about cool hobbies from periodical stands anymore, they learn about them from social media and blogs.

I like my dinosaur way: evolution slow and steady, maybe with a couple too much dead branches, but sparking inspiration even at wrong turns.

These new social mammalians mutate too fast, even discarding choices before having effectively perused them.

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TriOmegaZero wrote:
PathfinderFan64 wrote:
I can't believe how people keep defending Gary.
We defended Nic after Razor Coast too.

Best 35 $ placed in a preorder - ever!!

(and many thanks to Lou and everyone else involved in the project too, obviously)

Given how much I've enjoyed WotW, I'm more than willing to give Gary an undisclosed amount of slack.

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Hell yes Vencarlo!

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I play with only core rulebook and (most part of the) advanced players guide allowed. None of the latest hardcovers have survived the vetoing process - neither the companions.
I think that the archetype and trait system is way too abused, along the same path of the 3.X era PRCs.

I play in what I call Golarion 1.0, the one from the old harcover, with paladins of Asmodeus, conflicting references, a lot less deities, and what the developers have called "the rough edges". I like the pulp-era style it has compared the the sterilized feel of the new HC.

I prefer the 3.5 era AP compared to the PFRPG ones. Reading the latter gave me the feeling of a sanitized version of the originals, without the blood stains, the gritty scenes, and... the real danger. The one that does not only kill your PC, but it scares the living $#!£ out the player too.

I think that the WBL tables are seriously messed up and should be scrapped altogether.

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The book has just showed up at my door (the other side of the pond).

As one of the original pre-orderers (?) all the way back to Sinister times, I'd like to thank Lou, Bill, Greg, Tim, Richard, Adam, Frank and everyone involved in bringing this bloodthirsty tome back from the depths of the ocean.

It will now stand proudly beside other glorious hardcovers, such as Ptolus, The Shackled City, Rise of the Runelords, and Trouble at Durbenford.

Thanks guys.

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I was reading "Ultimate Brothel Campaign" for some strange reason. Well...

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GypsyMischief wrote:
Also, why the hate on opposed attack roles? I mean, I get that they add one more roll to combat, but, oh god, 5 whole seconds, what a gamebreaker. I suppose I stole the idea from a system that doesn't use damage rolls, so combat was sped up somewhat compared to standard PF combat, but that secondary randomness being added into the mix sounds enjoyable enough for me to deal with an extra roll.

The problem doesn't come from the opposed roll (as in the time it takes to roll the dice), but rather it stems from the time it takes to compute all the necessary modifiers to the opposed rolls themselves.

Opposed checks without the whole "system mastery" (spell buff, piece of equipment, feat, situational modifier, class feature, racial ability, etc.) math apparatus of the d20 system is great.
Right now, the opposed check brings along such a train of luggage that becomes unwieldy even at lower levels, and completely nightmarish from 10th level up.

I strongly support more articulated defensive maneuvers, but the current AC+HP concepts and d20 roll+pile of modifiers does not help at all implementing anything different from a roll vs a static number - and that comes before class based, leveled defense bonus and armor as DR plus a Vitality/Wounds system.

EDIT: and yes, what Kolokotroni said above.

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I find the idea of a 20th level fighter (or any class character, for that matter) being dealt damage by a commoner with a pointy stick being excellent, if not positively desirable.

The idea of a 20th level fighter (or any combat oriented class) being hit by a commoner with a pointy stick is another matter.
Also, the fact that a character improves his/her attack ability but not his/her defensive attitute after being wounded a hundred thousand times is really... funny.

However the HPs value is a catch-it all number that defines stamina, phisical wounds, determination, will to survive, fatigue and other stuff - at least for PCs: for adversaries it's just the sustainable damage amount. Sucks to be them.
At the same time, the AC value is another catch-it-all number that includes, dodging, weaving, blocking, parrying, feinting, armor damage soaking capacity, and other stuff too, that you just can't do as an active response maneuvre, but add as a flat modifier to a static number. Yayyyyy.

Game balance and playability moreover desires that attack succeeds a little bit better than defence, and that a combat exchange goes as fast and smooth as possible. Other game systems have a way more complex and slow procedure, as in "I choose my combat stance, my opponent does the same, them I roll for attack with modifiers for conflicting stances, my opponent rolls for defense with different modifiers for the same two conflicting stances of before, then I roll for damage, subtract the armor soaking value, change my opponent vitality points and add yet another modifier to combat due to sustained damage, stress and fatigue. OK, roll again for initiative, you're facing the third goblin now".

So, unless you rework from the ground up the whole system, lots of HPs, high attack vs not so high defense, roll vs static number, they all stay right there.

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Broken wrote:

Pathfinder Campaign Setting : 4715

Our world is on a razors edge. Thassilon reaches for us from the past and darkness creeps at us from below. Untested rulers try to hold cursed thrones while monsters crawl out from the darkest corners to strip away our future.

In the nation of Taldor, Grand Prince Stavian III has died, leaving behind a country tearing at the seems. His daughter, Princess Eutropia seeks to claim the throne but the calcified traditions of Taldor have other plans.

The nations of the world are watching and preparing, for now is the time of the final pronouncements. Now the last lines of the Book of 1,000 Whispers will unfold. In the city of Oppara, The Harbingers of Fate stand watch, waiting for the echo of glory to usher in a new age.

Your ideas are intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter.

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Alchemist, Magus, Oracle and Cavalier - I like. Fantasy traditions since a very long time.

Inquisitor, Witch and Summoner - not my cup of tea, but I can't really find anything completely wrong in them (Summoners are really advanced classes though, with a lot of pitfalls). Sometimes they overshine other classes, sometimes they don't.

Samurai, Ninja and Gunslinger - not at my table. Unless I've developed a campaign that makes them fitting.

Right now, too many racial options, archetypes, feats, traits (I've come to despise them with the strenght of a thousand fiery suns), silly races and spells, the option bloat already seen in the 3.X era. And the inevitable race to combos and bonus stacking.

But I'm still the DM and my veto is strong as ever, so the hassle is listing what's good and what's not. "I don't care, there are no dwarf-adopted feline humanoid gunslingers in my fantasy world. And there will never be".

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Not every weapon is created equal or has the same efficiency.

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Zark wrote:
Sean K Reynolds wrote:
In a world where people can make pacts with demons or dodge 20-foot-radius fireballs, I don't think it's weird for a person to be able to retrain a now-obsolete feat, archetype, or even a class level.

I love hearing a Dev saying this, especially when it comes from you :-)

Thank you!

Not being able to retrain feats is probably one of the main reasons I don’t like playing some of classes such as ranger and fighter (even though fighters can retrain some feats). Cleave is great at some levels but one of those feats that you might want to swap. And what if you pick a feat chain and the regret it?

This deserves an explanation. Mind that's a very personal explanation, so take it with a grain of salt and all the rest.

I come from an early era of RPGs, both PnP and CRPGs. Feats, skill points, retraining was something done only with command line cheats or third party "trainer" softwares (for videogames) or not at all (for tabletop RPGs).
Perhaps this has stuck as an unfair move. Don't know.

Moreover, I developed a simultaneous interest in tabletop wargames. The ones with a hex map full of symbols and two or three colors (not the fancy hand painted maps or high-definition renders), and small cardboard counters - games that actively tried to fry your brain, like Breakout Normandy.
In those games, an often explitly stated rule was that any counter moved during your turn coudn't be taken back later if you changed your mind - even if it was still your turn and you hadn't finished making movements/choices. That simulated the tactical mistakes made by HQ during a battle.

Choosing a feat (or devoting a bunch of skill points for Use Rope) is choosing a strategy. You may make mistakes. You survive and live with your mistakes. These are things that define your character as much (or sometimes, more) as your optimal choices.
You have fun playing a character that's succefull despite not having the optimal feat at the optimal level range.

You don't retrain your past. Not at my table.

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Gully Foyle is my name
And Terra is my nation
Deep space is my dwelling place
The stars my destination

I owe my username to Alfred Bester, that was the least I could do.

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Wilbur Whateley wrote:
Old Man Whateley wrote:

You know what they call a quarter pounder wit cheese in Innsmouth?


You know why they call it theat? Metric system. They don't know what a quarter pound is.

Plus they all got fish heads.

The path of the sorcerous hybrid man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the pious and the tyranny of religious men. Blessed is he who, in the name of Yog-Sothoth, herds the weak to the abbatoir, for he is truly his brother's keeper and the eater of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and curses in Aklo those who would attempt to thwart me and my invisible brother. And you will know My name is the Gate Opener when I lay My vengeance upon thee.

This is actually a quote I can use in my PF games.

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I'm running a Darkmoon Vale campaign for a large group (8 players) and I had to figure out some fill-ins for extra XP. Some of them are from older 3.X stuff, but really easy to convert, even on the fly.
So, here's the run-down of the adventures:

- Hollow (Tales of the Old Margreve); to bring the party upward in XP count.
- Hollow's Last Hope (less the fungus thing); to reach level 2.
- Crown of the Kobold King (no changes); enough to reach level 3.
- Wingclipper's Revenge (Dungeon Magazine #132); halfway to level 5. Feys at war.
- Challenge of the Fang (Tales of the Old Margreve); up to level 5. Werewolves and tradition.
- Revenge of the Kobold King (no changes); enough to reach level 5.
- Hungry are the Dead (no changes); to reach level 6.
- Gall of the Spider Crone (Tales of the Old Margreve); a little short of level 7. Again, tradition.
- Blood of the Gorgon (from Open Design, I was a patron); enough to reach level 8. A big "whodunit" urban adventure, which I set in Olfden.

I also plannes some different "roads" based on PCs choice; you can substitute Revenge of the Kobold King and Hungry are the Dead with Tower of the Last Baron and Treasure of Chimera Cove. Moreover it's possible to substitute Wingclipper's Revenge and Challenge of the Fang with The Automatic Hound (Dungeon Magazine #148) and Carnival of Fear.
Each different path gives a specific vibe to the campaign, a result I'm pretty satisfied with.

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