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Jakardros Sovark

golem101's page

Pathfinder Society Member. 1,970 posts (1,976 including aliases). 19 reviews. No lists. 2 wishlists. 1 alias.


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Nostalgia, big time.

The first product I bought for AD&D2e, rulebooks aside, was The City of Greyhawk boxed set - before that I only played BECMi, and had a tresure trove of Mystaran Gazeteers.

Stuff already said: big picture with details, plausible history and people, nations that don't look like "a touch of this a touch of that", a feeling of danger pretty much everywhere without the need of leveled farmers and bartenders.

To me another big point was the proactiveness of NPCs, those high level legends that are DM tools rather than statblocs. Bad guys didn't just brood in dark and foreboding keeps 'cause they were eeeeeviiiil, and good guys didn't just wait in line to bash evildoers when they showed up.

Just reading the setting you had the feeling you had to keep up with the pace, there was a lot actually in motion and not in the "just about to happen" limbo.

The only setting that managed to come close was the Scarred Lands during the 3.5 days.

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For those catch-it-all values in the d20 system (HPs representint meat points, fatigue and will to fight, AC representing armor defence, shield or weapon block/parry, dodge etc.) you have to pretty much rework the game from the gorund up.

HPs split in Vitality/Wounds is a first step. But then you have a rather big issue with the disparity between attack and defence ability during the level progression and its effects n character's resilience in combat, even moreso for criticals and whatnots, all distributed among the different melee oriented or less than able classes.
Pathfinder has its own ideas for this, in one of the Ultimate hardcovers IIRC.

So, you go for Armor as DR as a second step. That alone prevents much abuse of the V/W system and complements it nicely. But it does exacerbate the divergent progression of attack and defence over the levels.
Again, Pathfinder has its own subsystem already developed, in the same hardcover as before.

So, you go for a level and class based defence progression, maybe split in two or three values: parry with equipment (mostly weapons) dependent bonus, block with equipment (mostly shields) dependent bonus, and dodge, which is already its own bonus type.
This gives you the option of developing active defence stances, with their own feats and stuff.
There's some basic stuff, mostly concepts and math progression in Green Ronin's Advanced Gamemaster's Manual.

And once you implement one of the above subsystems, you find that you kinda need to integrate it with the other two, otherwise the game is blatantly unbalanced.

At the end of the line you have a different system, which makes for a very different game, with very different results and expectations for combat situations, which is more simulative but no less wonky.

Not worth the hassle. I tried, and the results were interesting but absolutely not worth it. Slower, less intuitive, almost too much gritty.

If you want to keep it simple, even if somewhat simplicistic, keep it as it is.
If you need something more detailed and realistic, look for another ruleset altogether.

Spelling horrors offered by my tablet.

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Claxon wrote:
Do you make everyone keep track of their rations each day?

Eerrhm... yes? Being in the wilderness and foraging, or stranded in a subterranean labyrinth without enough food is quite a staple of the fantasy narrative.

Moreover, handing effectively infinite ammo even at low levels takes away meaning from specific magic items (and highly valuable, in campaigns without the magic shop mechanic).

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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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No. Just... no. No.

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I'm a huge fan of the AGE system, and I can't wait to see how the stunt gameplay will be integrated with the "romantic narrative" genre of Blue Rose.

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Haladir wrote:

A revised edition of Second Darkness would give the devs a chance to fix the way-too-choppy transition between the Children of the Void and Armageddon Echo; re-write the elves so that they're not a bunch of xenophobic jerks; and just generally address the complaints.

While I agree with the rest of your post, I'd point the problems to the first adventure being... not related with the AP as a whole.

Also the elves are a bunch of xenophobic jerks, they should be portraied as such, and having to cooperate with them is a major social conflict theme of the AP.
Please do not change, Golarion has gone vanilla enough.

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Curse of the Crimson Throne first and foremost, Legacy of Fire close second.

If a large re-haul/re-write is involved, Second Darkness or Serpent's Skull.

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Up to CR 10 or so they are in the "upper echelon" of the monster type, rare but not unknown. They usually show up as tough fights, boss monsters, BBEGs, or narrative tools (too hard to defeat, but available as allies in weird circumstances).
Powerful creatures, but still struggling with their own meteoric rise to power and without the knowledge and/or resources for a backup plan.

Over CR 10 they get into the league of movers and shakers, with a plethora of minions at their beck and call, whole organizations at their disposal, and the wisdom of ages - facing adventurers in straight combat is bad for your health, unless you're overwhelmingly more powerful.
Fighting a dragon means facing a regional spanning organization (a thieves guild operating in more than three towns, a very large mercenary band, a mage circle spanning a dozen members, etc.) or even a whole nation. That's coming to get you.

Better be ready to flee.

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Lord Fyre wrote:

Did I mention that this thread will contain spoilers?

What are the weakest books in each of the published adventure paths? (If you know of a fix, please link it.)

Rise of the Runelords: the connection between book 2 and 3 is weak as written, and the GM should orchestrate a bit better the involvement of the PCs with Magnimar's destiny. Even just having some background ties should suffice.

Book 4 is a big brawl fest, some groups may not like it. Book 6 is a bit of a sandbox in the eploration of the city of Xin-Shalast, and finding the good rythm between fights and various stuff is not always easy; also it's difficult to manage the loot.

Second Darkness: the first book is plainly... wrong sided. Reverse the plot: the PCs work for rivals of Saul and try to sabotage/investigate the Golden Goblin saloon.
Book 5 is too much of a railroad, break it apart, take the crunchy elements and the general idea and rework it from the ground up.
Book 6 is more a mini-setting than a full blown adventure, you should build lots of thematic encounters and mini-adventures.

Legacy of Fire: book 5 should be an exploratyion of the City of Brass, not being trapped (again!) in another dimension.
Collecting informations, tricks, and maybe an exotic magic item or two by doing favors and errands on behalf of powerful extraplanar beings in an unusual and inherently dangerous place.
Reverse engineer the encounters in many different places instead of a single big dungeon.

Council of Thieves: what demiurge 1138 and Lord Fyre have said.

Serpent Skull: book 3 suffers the same mini-setting and no adventure problem seen elsewhere. Also some players may not like the long voyage in book 2.

Jade Regent: the artic trek part may bore some players to death. Scrap the caravan rules altogether. Be cautious of the large cast of NPCs, they may make encounters too easy or steal the spotlight.
Book 5 should be hugely expanded: building up a national rebellion is in no way doable with an handful of encounters.
Be very, very, very cautious of the ever present narrative chokepoint, in which a deus-ex machina NPC provides the means to go forward in a place/moment/situation the PCs have no other way of getting through (this alone has been the biggest roadblock for me).

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thejeff wrote:

I'll go back to what I implied above.

All of this is individual group game contract stuff. What you and most others here are describing is a sort of default implied game contract. That's fine. Talking about what default expectations are is good.
But describing them as absolutes isn't a good idea. If a group wants to change those defaults and play in a different style, that's fine.

Absolutely (no pun intended) yes.

But I can't honestly see how what I've said contradicts your statements.
Quite the contrary.

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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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The One Ring has a very specific downtime subsystem ingrained in basic adventuring.

A Song of Ice and Fire Roleplaying - a Game of Thrones Edition also features in-between stuff to do - handling a noble house and its domain is no easy task.
This maybe fits better in your request, as a lot of adventuring may stem from events determined by this phase of the game.

The latest DragonAGE set (set 3) also introduces organizations and their handling by high level PCs, and it's most definitively stuff that may generate adventures.

Adventurer Conqueror King has extensive rules on kingdoms, guild, organizations and stuff to handle off adventuring.

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2 people marked this as a favorite.
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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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 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).

But having a storybound DM that says "now your character dies as it makes sense to me and my story", an undetectable trap that springs with no means to know of its existance and it's lethal with no saves allowed, or a plain bad luck roll that disintegrates your character of three years in the silliest moment?
Nope, nope, nope, and nope again.

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Excellent suggestions, guys! Keep them coming!

The One Bling to Rule Them All sounds awesome, it's gonna rock sooo much in the setting I'm hammering out.

I kinda forgot about that Freeport base class. Damn, I'm getting old.

Morgan/FGP, the concept is super interesting. While I'm not much into new classes (option bloat has much guilt for the aforementioned hiatus), the very mechanics on which is gonna be based will fit perfectly.
Looking forward to it.

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After a bit of hiatus, I'm getting back on track for a new campaign, this time going full steam on a custom built world.

Cutting it short, one of the main themes is the lack of advanced industry and the abundance of monstrous sized animals and creatures.

So I'm looking for a themed PDF about extracting useful parts from slain monsters (bones, horns, fangs, talons, hides, armor plates, venom sacs, exotic internal organs, etc), as harvesting prized pieces from the fallen enemies serves almost totally the role of conventional fantasy treasure, both in the mundane and magic department.

A while ago I came up with some rough and tumble rules for hacking apart foes (mostly aberrations, dragons and magical creatures), but something a bit more focused and professionally thought out, would be greatly appreciated - and help me cut some slack.


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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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Serious, with a load of humour sprinkled all over it. Sometimes IC, but mostly OoC.
As I tend to DM grim games and mature themed adventures, the properly timed joke and light hearted moment works wonedrs to give variety and not bore with uncompromising grimdark fron start to finish of the session.

When the humour is too much IC, players chastise each other for spoiling the mood - feels good as the DM.
When OoC, it's most often of the gross kind, with back-and forth exchanges that quickly devolve into something too disgusting to carry on. And that ends the moment with a shared laugh, that signals that the group is ready to carry on with the serious stuff.

Too serious, not fun. Too IC humour, spoiled mood. Too Ooc humour, sillyness of the worst type.
A good mix - based on the type of game that's played - is what works best.

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It looks I've been lucky, as just today the always awesome Paizo customer service solved a small mishap with my latest order (thanks Sharaya!!).

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Seen yesterday. Solid war themed movie, with an impressive performance by the lead actor (and I didn't imagine in the least he could be so physically imposing).
Check the audio of the theatre you're going to, some scenes could lead to permanent hearing impairment.

MeanDM wrote:

I enjoyed it quite a bit. Best movie I've seen in a long time. Bradly Cooper gives a really nuanced performance, often conveying different emotions through nonverbals from what the character is saying.

It really is one of those films where some people are going to see what they want in it. I think it really makes you think about the war and what impact it has had.

Very well said.

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It seems to me that most of the listed situations stem more from the good-evil axis of the alignement system rather than from the lawful-chaotic one.
I can easily see LE monks (or even LN) fighting other schools or rivals, stealing techniques, manipulating others, and even exploiting people for nefarious purposes - and not caring a bit about "the law", or purposefully abusing unjust rules.
Moreover, LG monks (or any other class) fighting against tyrannical governments are pretty much a clichè.

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Same here. Not happy with the math either.

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Eclipse Phase is an awesome setting with a working (not excellent) rulesystem. If you are not overloaded with the wealth of options and intricacies inherent to them, it's really really good.

The WH40K series of games is quite good both on rules (a bit heavy on that side) and with a detailed setting. Combining Rogue Trader with the rules for spaceships, Dark Heresy and Only War can bring together an impressive atmosphere.

There's always the tried and true d6 Space set of rules. More a toolbox thana defined game/setting, but very good. Better yet it's free!

If you already have a setting on your mind and you're willing to play with toolsets, generic rules like Cortex Classic and Insight are the right mix of streamlining and detail.
I may sound heretic, but FATE and Savage Worlds just don't cut it for me.

My system of choice for SF is Thousand Suns, that has a rules set simple but very flexible, (and does not get in the way while mantaining a good level of detail) and a metasetting based on "imperial sci-fi" that is not about cutting edge technology - but can have as much of it as you like - but more on galaxy-spanning adventures.

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Farael the Fallen wrote:
Isn't denying manmade global warming just like denying the theory of evolution?

Global warming is heavily influenced by man's activity, but not made or directly caused by it.

Humanity is a (relatively speaking) big nasty variable in the equation, but the equation itself existed way before humanity made an appearance.

Obviously, the equation is Cthugha and the Great Old Ones. Iä! Iä!

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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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Kitchen sink "anything goes" high-powered campaigns.
The ones with orc raised kitsune gunslinger/samurai/alchemists side by side with elf blooded oracle/barbarian tieflings (or whatever absurd but mechanically proper combination of class, traits, races and archetype you can find), that get the right magic item at that precise level, just because the planned character build needs that modifier to work better than just a jumble of numbers scribbled on the sheet.
I can't feel the setting, the adventure, the challenge, or the roleplaying.

Players that suddenly go PvP because they want to steal the spotlight. Destroys any effort built up by the group as whole, usually in many sessions, in a single jerk move.

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DM's realm.

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Seen last night. Visually awesome, very solid performances by all the actors (the young Murph is brilliant!), sound was a bit too loud but very good "minimal" OST. The robots enjoy the most innovative and believable design in a long time.

Unfortunately, the plot, after

the gravitational sling scene, when Brand is sent off alone to the last planet

goes missing. Maybe it's sucked into the black hole too.
It becomes a deus ex machina festival, with plot holes becoming so unnervingly thrown into your face, that the movie falls apart.

It's like the director is gone too, very different from the previous two thirds of the movie. Meh.

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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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Mathius wrote:

Race: Half orc

All favored class bonuses to Elf Oracle special
1. Racial Heritage (Elf)

I need brain bleach.

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Kazaan wrote:

No. Note the exact wording of the ability:

"A half-giant can use weapons designated for a creature one size larger without penalty." So if the half-giant is Medium, he can use weapons designed for Large creatures without penalty; meaning no attack penalty and no changed in effort to wield (longsword is still 1-h, greatsword is still 2-h, etc). But it says nothing for what happens beyond that; for weapons designed for creatures two sizes larger. In effect, they don't "shift" all the categories down by one so a Huge weapon is still treated as a Huge weapon meaning it gets two effort increases and takes -4 attack penalty.

So, whereas an ordinary medium creature could wield a medium longsword as a 1-h, a large longsword as a 2-h with -2 to attack, and a huge longsword is unwieldable, a half-giant wields the medium as a 1-h, the large also as a 1-h with no penalty, but the huge is still unwieldable. So you're still limited to a light huge weapon and still suffer -4 (I'd suggest going with an Aklys if you want this), even as a half-giant.

Yup. Well put.

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1 - Erik Mona (Howl of the Carrion King is THE way adventures should be written)
2 - James Jacobs
3 - F. Wesley Schneider
4 - Richard Pett/Brandon Hodge/Mike Shel/Neil Spicer/Nic Logue/Tim Hitchcock/Stephen S. Greer

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I usually do some minor changes to any published adventure to tailor-fit it to my setting (even only switching places in the same setting) and to my players's needs - as a large group has very specific requirements.

Sometimes published material needs to be fleshed out in certain areas (which are usually indicated as purposely left out to individual DMs to customize), sometimes certain areas of the material need to be cut and replaced entirely - and very rarely you ask yourself "why? just why?".

Sometimes I need to do some serious work.
I intend to run Second Darkness in the near future, and I've planned a moderate overhaul for issue #1 (flipping the adventure upside down: the PCs are investigating on who's running the Gold Goblin and then doing the sabotage stuff) and some heavy duty fleshing out for issue #6 (which is more a mini-setting, and a bit less cohesive in the adventuring department).
I don't feel particularly guilty in doing so.

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yellowdingo wrote:
golem101 wrote:

Right now seems just like a case of malaria. Extra care is taken as the patient comes from a very specific area in which the ebola virus is active, though the maximum incubation period (21 days) is already expired.

Outbreak sounds like a little exaggeration (pardon the pun).

Law of pebbles: if one hits you out of a hundred doesnt mean there is just one.

Sounds nice, but doesn't change the facts: it's not a pebble, cespite the wishful thinking.

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Right now seems just like a case of malaria. Extra care is taken as the patient comes from a very specific area in which the ebola virus is active, though the maximum incubation period (21 days) is already expired.

Outbreak sounds like a little exaggeration (pardon the pun).

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Variant large area heat metal spell, or alchemic equivalent, to weaken the underlying wood structure and eventually start fires.

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And now I have this weird mental image of a shape changed druid-monk in elephant form that wants to do a flurry of blows, and then the urge to orchestrate a TPK.

I need a vacation.

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Easily the best feature of the whole internets.

Seriously, it's really great. Now, if only I could bring myself to learn how to use properly the focus feature...

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LeesusFreak wrote:

Cavalier (Order of the Sword) 10 / Mammoth Rider 10 / Mounted Fury Barbarian 20

Mastodon mount has the Racer Archetype.

Riding a huge/gargantuan/colossal Mammoth and adding its strength to yours 1.5 times, giving it rage bonuses and bouncing them back to you... Also, the Mastodon's base speed on a charge will be well over 600, so you're now packing a nuclear lance, a stupidly huge reach, and a steed that moves stupidly fast.

You're now an ICBM.

As much as I despise theorycrafting and character builds, this one made me laugh.

Well played, sir.

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Re-read the Asaath Vigil Watch supplement last week. Boy, I miss the days.

Gonna bring the setting into my games, right now!

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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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Caster (class) level.

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Dotted for future reference.

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Lakesidefantasy wrote:
Doesn't the Dragon Age system use 3d6?

It does indeed.

A rather different feeling, considering only the basics of attacking and dealing damage - low level monsters are really low but keep their danger level for a while longer, and boss type monsters are deathly scary pretty much forever.

It's not readily comparable to a d20-switched-to-3d6 system due to its inner variants for the magic system, class level abilities, and the stunt points system.

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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:

Self-explanatory question.

Say the only way a Paladin could survive was to eat another living being of the same race. Would they do it, or would they sooner sacrifice themselves for that same person to live?

Only if resorting to cannibalism would be clearly and without any doubts in order to survive and thusly defeat a greater evil.

And after that a life of atonement.

Otherwise a paladin would rather choose a martyr's death through starvation, staying true to his/hers code of honor and personal purity, in body, mind and spirit.

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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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+1 for the Scarred Lands setting.

Not a complete setting per se, but I really like Mor Aldenn City of Mages as a "droppable" location.
There's a very interesting bundle at RPGnow, that includes player supplements, monsters, etc.

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Green Ronin's "A Song of Ice and Fire RPG" has an extensive social combat mechanic, complete with attacks, defences, and stress (equivalent of wounds) mechanic.

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