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FullStarFullStarFullStarFullStar Pathfinder Society GM. 8,221 posts (9,180 including aliases). No reviews. 1 list. No wishlists. 33 Pathfinder Society characters. 1 alias.

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The Exchange ****

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depends a lot on the player too though.

Some of them will take it as a challenge... where as if they realize (sometimes even later) that you "soft-balled it" they can feel a little cheated. Seen that too.

If you feel the need to "soft-ball" something, try really hard to make it impossible to see...

The Exchange ****

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The Fox wrote:
Bob Jonquet wrote:
If sometimes I have to "fudge" the dice, I would hope [players] know I am doing it to increase their enjoyment of the game to improve the experience. If not, then perhaps I have lost touch with what the game is all about and it has evolved past this old grognard.

A "fudged" die roll has never increased my enjoyment of the game. When a die is "fudged," whether in my favor or against, I feel like I'm on the GM Storytime Train. Choo choo!

I'm sure that the vast majority of GMs who "fudge" dice have the noblest of intentions.

The road to hell..., and all that.


so very true.

The Exchange ****

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if someone really feels the need to "roll behind the screen" so that they can ensure the outcome, why roll at all? Just pick whatever is best for "the sake of story".

Scarab Sages ****

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Player walks up to a table and pull out his third level PC that has played Part 1 of a 3 part series. (A Crypt Breaker Alchemist. This Archetype swaps out Brew Potion to get Trapfinding.)

Judge A looks over the PCs and zeros in on a "problem" and says: "wow, you can't swap off Brew Potion twice! In PFS that is swapped for Extra Bombs! You'll need to correct this PC now - before we play!"
Alchemist Player: "wait, this is a legal Archetype, it swaps out Brew Potion before it's swapped off for..."
Judge A: "Not going to let you pull that at my table. You fix this PC right now."..."No, if you have a PC in the level range you aren't permitted to just run a Generic - you have to run your PC."
(20 minutes later, after having re-written this PC as a standard Alchemist)
Judge A: "now we can game. I'm going to keep my eye on you, trying to get away with things like that. And now everyone - Welcome to Part II!"

(Later that day, at the next table getting ready to play Part 3)
Judge B: (who ran Part 1 for the group): "Glad to see you guys again! I'm your judge for Part 3, you guys playing the same PCs? there's a boon for playing all three."

(after intros)
Judge B: "What's this? You're a Standard Alchemist now? Did you retrain? No way you had the PP to that... What are you trying to pull? You remove this unlawful re-write right now - you're not allowed to just write your PC up anyway you want. You need to switch this guy back to what he was before - right now, before we play. And I'll be watching you from now on..."
(20 minutes later, after having re-written this PC as a C.B. Alchemist...)

Sheeesh... this is looking to be great fun...

The Exchange ****

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A lot of the posts/treads on the boards lately have involved what I think of as Player Trust. and I've been giving it some thought. Here are a few reflections...sorry for the long post.

Do we trust our fellow players? (on both sides of the DM screen). I mean, basically, on a root level, what's our default?

When a game is setting up, and we are sitting down with 4 to 6 relative strangers, do we trust them? Remember, the only thing we know about this person is that they play PFS (even if this is their first game...). Do we give them the benefit of the doubt, or make them earn our trust? What do we trust them on? How much do we trust them?

For Myself: I tend to be pretty trusting.

I have to say, yeah, I tend to trust people. If they say something works like XX, and I don't know, then I'll tend to go along with them. Heck, even if I think it works differently, I'll review what I think and ask if they are using some type of exception. If it's really cool, I may ask something like "Wow, that's cool! How'd you do that?"

If they roll a die, and say "I have a 26", normally it works for me. I'm not going to strain myself checking. If it "feels" like a real weird result, I might say - "26? How's you get that? Mind if I steal your gimmick?"

But mostly I don't even think about it. It's not something I would even consider (them not being trustworthy). Sometimes it burns me and someone "cheats" and gets away with it. I realize this, and you know what? I guess it's a part of my personality. I'm a trusting kind of person, seeing the good side of people.

Yellow Tengu example:

So, someone sits at your table and says:
"I have a Yellow Tengu!"

do you

A) spend game time to explain why he can't do this and make him correct it on his permanent PC sheet? Explain that you will be checking later to make sure he doesn't change it back?
B) spend game time coming up with a way that he can have his Yellow Tengu? Have him note it, so that he has an "in character story" for his next table?

Which is more fun?

On second thought, do you:
A) spend time trying to figure out what he's up to? what advantage does a yellow tengu have? what's he trying to pull?
B) ask the player why he want's a yellow tengu? and how he thinks he may have got that way?

yeah, it's a matter of trust. Some judges may have been burned by players in the past, and want to make sure it doesn't happen again** - so they make the players earn their trust before they assume the player isn't "gaming the system". They default to believing the player IS "gaming the system", or even cheating. Which side do you start new (to you) players on?

**I wonder about this view though, as I have been burned lots of times in the past, and I still default to trusting the new guy. And I have seen new judges/players that seem to start out with the "skeptic" viewpoint

(IMHO) As a Player, the default position should be to trust the Judge. He knows more than you do (he's read the scenario).

Trust the judge until they give you a GOOD reason not to. Even then, maybe it was a one time slip... (If it's a repeat problem, maybe you shouldn't play at the judges' table any more? But by then we are out of the realm of "playing with strangers").

Trust the player to know their PC and his gimmicks. If it feels "off", or if it's "not fun" politely ask for him to run thru the item in question for you. "Wow, that's cool! How'd you do that?"

But a lot of people on the boards (and maybe at the gaming table?) seem to feel the exact reverse. Their default position is "he's got to EARN my trust". I personally cannot understand how someone can play this game of ours with strangers if they feel this way. To me, it would be no fun at all...

Thanks for you time. I'm going back to lurking again I think...

The Exchange ****

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Lorewalker wrote:
... I don't know how you can disagree with this.

this is the best line I have heard all week.

"Allan Quatermain: This is Africa, dear boy. Sweating is what we do."

[paraphrase]"This is the PFS board, dear boy. Disagreeing is what we do."[/paraphrase]

The Exchange ****

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BigNorseWolf wrote:
dragonhunterq wrote:

What is the lesser of 2 evils? making someone not play or forcing them to play a pre-gen (with all the negative impact that has), or accepting a modified character?

And if the latter is the lesser evil, why should the player not be ready with a prepared alternative anticipating table variance?

Or accepting a questionably legal character for the game- that HAS to be an option. The flexibility can't all come from the player.

Some people are unable (for some reason) to trust, and must control all options. Type One gamers.

The Exchange ****

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I have been lurking in the background on this thread sense the start...

long version of the post - skip it if you want...:

every year or so we field one of these threads, and every few years the goalpost gets nudged a little.

No replay,
Judge Star replays
Renew with a boon Star replays
Core (replay everything)

and every time one of these threads pops up, a lot of us "old hands" who have played almost everything come on and say something like..."Please don't break the way this works, trying to 'fix' something for me, when I don't think it's a problem"...

Mostly it seems to me that this thread is not saying...

"I've played everything, I need to be able to replay to play"

but is rather saying

"I'm having trouble scheduling stuff that everyone can play. If we loosen the re-play restriction it would make my job easier."

SO... My vote - my opinion, whatever...

I have played almost everything. And I've been like this for years... and I'm happy with the way it works now. Please don't brake it, trying to fix a problem for me... when I don't think it's a problem.

The Exchange ****

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BigNorseWolf wrote:
Gregory Rebelo wrote:

Reading through this thread has given me a lot to think about ( although maybe not so much the RAW vs RAI portion ).

I do think that having a rule for it not to be applied by what seems to be a large majority of the PFS community (or at least those who participate on these forums) is silly. Either we follow that rule and there are real repercussions for those who do not fill in the chronicle sheets correctly (I'm looking at you, people who fill these in pencil) or the rule needs to be modified.

There is no requirement that they be filled out in pen. Gamers often grab the first writing utensil handy and thats usually a pencil. Calling it improper and therefore not legal to deny someone the ability to play their own character is both baseless and twitish.

What the people against filling in the blanks later don't seem to understand is that when the player is done the results look exactly the same" something as i filled out at the table. There's nothing for a later dm TO object to. The only thing it does is give the player time between sessions to shop


ah... on page 36 of the PFS Roleplaying Guild Guide (version 7.0), in the section titled "Filling Out a Chronicle Sheet", last line of the first paragraph: "Always fill out Chronicle sheets in pen, and write clearly and legibly at all time."

My biggest problem has always been the "write clearly and legibly at all times" which is why I normally ignore the "in pen" part, so that I can fix the not clearly or legibly parts...

bolding mine

The Exchange ****

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Michael Eshleman wrote:
Lord Laird Bates wrote:

I saw an older thread from 2012 where people were putting funny things that happened to them, I'd like to restart that only it doesn't have to just be funny, as long as a good time was had and something amazing happened during play feel to share.

Our samurai (lv. 1) gets pulled 40ft. straight up by a cave fisher, drops most of his arrows on a low athl. roll, and when he gets pulled the remaining 20ft. and is face to face with it he has to use alchemist fire because the cave is too small for his katana and he didn't by a dagger. Fortunately he was able to finish it off in a fiery explosion and roll an 18 athl. to grab onto the edge of the cave to keep from frying or going splat.

I'm not sure why a failed skill check to climb (presumably what you mean by "low athl. roll") would cause you to drop any of your equipment?

Also, if the samurai was in the cave there is nothing preventing him from using his katana. If it is small enough to impose squeezing penalties, then those apply but the samurai can still use his katana.

Catching yourself while falling requires a Climb check (DC = wall's DC + 20) so an 18 probably shouldn't have succeeded.

derail for side comments from the peanut gallery:
when I read this I just figured the things you pointed out were "judges inputs" (i.e. "House Rules")... which we shouldn't get in PFS, but seem to often pop up.

You know, "modifications" that let the judge "control the ...tension of the game"... that "..vary based on the pacing and dramatic needs of the moment".

The Exchange ****

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But-But- if we allow this, pretty soon people will want to play YELLOW TENGU!

sorry - couldn't help myself... yeah, what everyone else is saying. Should be fine, but... fear "Table Variation".

Dark Archive ****

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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:

What is kind of neat during this discussion is a recollection I had of a WBG I'd played (can't remember if was Too! or Free!) and Poog was a freaking tactical genius with his placements of AoE.

C'mon, if goblins (who have no reason to get along all the time) can do it, members of the Society can, right?

wait - you mean Poog was able to place the AoE where he got all the Longshanks and the other Goblins too?


The Exchange ****

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Jack Callaway wrote:
Murdock Mudeater wrote:
Ring_of_Gyges wrote:
What good character is going to stand around while my character tortures their slaves or carves up screaming squirrels?
No different from a neutral good druid standing by while a gardener shapes hedges with huge clippers. Those hedges are totally being tortured/disfigured by the gardener, all for the petty purpose of looking good in the eyes of people that don't appreciate the natural world...
That is not even remotely the same.

well... yes it is. At least in the eyes of the Druid.

The Exchange ****

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TOZ wrote:
In this thread, people tell the GM of the organized play campaign he is not allowed to houserule.

and no one is surprised by this...well most of us aren't anyway. This is a internet board after all...

Scarab Sages ****

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why do people keep casting Chaos/Law as Evil/Good?

Chaos =/= Evil

and more importantly

Law =/= Good

Something can be Chaotic and Good just as easily as something (else) can be Lawful and Evil.


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wow... I have a great idea!

I've got a good Disguise skill (something in the +30s) BEFORE I add in Hat of Disguise...

so I wonder if I can start disguising myself as GMT! This could get ... interesting...

We'll need to get more bubbles in the bath though.


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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:
UndeadMitch wrote:
Woo! TOZ and Kinevon are arguing about GMT again! Everyone finish their drink!
...I can't afford to pay for that last round. Someone spot me?

I think I missed my perception roll - I didn't spot you... lol!

The Exchange ****

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if you feel up to doing a little research - check some of the older threads on the subject.

here's one....

but mostly I'd say a good Judge and a good group of players make the scenario.

if you have a good judge and ok players, even a "poor" scenario will shine.

a good scenario, run by a poor judge, with dysfunctional players... and it's going to be one of the worst you've ever played.

The Exchange ****

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The boards seem to be really negative lately. Everyone being real negative and even a little hateful. Perhaps it's just me...

So, I just wanted to float a "nice thread" to the top of the boards. This one has lots of nice things going for it. It's fun to read... there's some really great things said here - esp. the top of this page, the post from redward (#51).

SO to para-phrase the title of this, "How does your character make the game more fun for the other people there?"


The Exchange ****

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re-posting the thread purpose (as I see it)

nosig wrote:


Reading thru the Blog post I notice the following point of interest...

... Pathfinder Society Campaign Clarifications Document...

...Pathfinder Society characters have many options....
...some of these options can be interpreted in different ways...
...these ambiguities can lead to substantially different rules interpretations from table to table...
...created this document to ...
...provide an equitable gaming experience to players all over the world. The Clarifications Document is a centralized place for us to offer official rulings for ambiguous rules....

...these are not official errata...
...principally addresses rules material that appears in softcover sources...rather than the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game hardcover books. ...

...What rules ambiguities have you seen in your Pathfinder Society games that you would like to see resolved?

SO, it looks like this post is mainly dealing with "rules ambiguities" when dealing with PFS Character options in softcover books. Is that correct?

The Exchange ****

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ah... can we just continue doing this the way we have for the last seven years?

The Exchange ****

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here's an older thread on this same subject...

Chronicle Sheet Process.

I'm sure there are other, older ones...

The Exchange ****

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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:
Jeff Hazuka wrote:

It's easier. Fill out 1xp, 2pp, some gold, and 'HELD UNTIL LEVEL 7' somewhere.

Then, take a minute to ensure the player knows what that means.

Okay, so in a given situation a player has three scenarios that are 'held' until Level 7. They play the last scenario of Level 6 at an Omaha event at the end of a convention/gameday...

How do those three chronicles apply/purchases get made/etc? How can that information be 'filled in' if the player doesn't even know what that information is going to be?

I do somewhat have a horse in this particular race, as I do happen to have three scenarios that are being held until L7 for a character that is finishing up L5 on 'slow' to finish a story arc.

clearly the answer is...

"don't play this PC in Omaha!"


The Exchange ****

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Christopher Rowe wrote:
Yeah, I use extra-large dice with the numbers clearly inked/painted in a high-contrast color so that anybody at the table can read what was rolled. I wish everybody would, frankly. The use of "collectable" dice with nigh-indecipherable runic characters in sepia on brown and etc and etc, now that's disruptive. But if you want to hear people at a gaming table growl and complain, then tell them to use a table set of GM-provided dice.

yeah - I have something like 8 sets of the extra-large dice (getting old, so my eyes aren't what they used to be...), but I'd rather just take 10... no rolling needed at all.


The Exchange ****

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Nohwear wrote:
Bob Jonquet wrote:
nosig wrote:
what about those of us whose dice (almost) always roll low?
Depends if that is just a perceived "always" like when you way, "every time I go to McDonald's drive through, they mess up my order." Not really, you just remember the fails because it elicits an emotional response. Now, if you have actually tested the die/dice and found that they statistically role a deviation (or more) below the average and continue to use them, I have to question your sanity ;-)
I do tend to have erratic dice luck. My rolls have been wonky to the point that my players made me openly roll until I proved it.

bad dice rolls story:

during a game run by my local VC I had the following experience...

Running the "scout" my PC moves a little ahead of the party to check out something that just screams TRAP! and what do you know - it's a trap. A Haunt actually....

VC (knowing I go in the surprise round due to 1 level of Foresight wizard): "roll Init"
Me: (roll and add) "9, yeah I rolled a 3 +6 = 9" my worst Init roll so far in that game...
VC describes powerful visions and then says: "Make a will save"
Me: rolling a "Nat 1". sigh, "there is a reason I always take 10 on things... Wait, I bet this is a D$%# Haunt isn't it - I hate those things... Can I use my shirt re-roll?"
VC: "yeah," dramatic pause "... maybe you should"
Me: Another "Nat 1".
VC: "wow... "
Me off-handedly: "Yeah, it's my karma - I never roll better with re-rolls - It's a haunt isn't it? you know I have holy water in a spring wrist sheath just for these stupid things...."
2nd player handing me another die: "here, try with this one..."
Me: "oh, I can do it with this one too." roll "Nat 1."
All these are with EXTRA BIG dice.... so everyone can see the three d20s in a cluster on the table front of me, all reading "1"
I pick up my "special dice" and roll it too... Yeah, "Natural 1" for the fourth time in a row.
VC gets up from the table to walk around a second and then looking back to the table he asks "are you some type of warlock or something?"
Me: "Nah, my dice just hate me..."

Really - there is a reason I try to always take 10. It's 10 times as much as a "1"....

but a lot of time I run the table, so players are often fond of my dice...

The Exchange ****

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Mark Stratton wrote:


Nefreet isn't merely asking someone to stop doing something - he is outright prohibiting people from using a tool which, to date, is still legal to use.

What you are suggesting as matters of etiquette, while right on the money, isn't the issue here (at least, from my perspective, it isn't.)

Nefreet is asking for a player to have a paper sheet. He doesn't feel comfortable (or whatever) with having a player with the only copy of her sheet on an electronic device. SOOO... Please have a paper sheet to give to Nefreet when you play at his table. Kind of like if I were to sit at someones table who objected to me having rules on my shirt - so I bring an extra shirt to change to for them.

edit: and you're right (I think). He's not asking someone to STOP something. He's asking them to DO something. He's asking them to bring a paper copy of their PC. The issue here (I think) is not that they are using an electronic PC sheet for themselves. It's that he wants them to have a paper copy for him when he runs the table.

At least he doesn't insist on using spiked gauntlets when he reviews the PC... ("I was just tapping the screen!")LOL!

The Exchange ****

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I am sooo glad I don't have a horse (or Axbeak or dire bat, or whatever) in this race...

here's a few comments from the peanut gallery...

a couple things I have encountered at a PFS table dealing with character sheets... not sure if they are "RAW", but both sort of worked... While reading the latest post here I had flash backs to both these games...

Hard to read? for some people:

Fun Example:
we had a visually impaired player show up with his braille character sheets. It was great!

Best comment from the judge:
"It had a few points that just stood out!"

less fun example:

well - it is a paper character sheet:

While running intro games at a local ComicCon...I was setting up my first table, expecting a group of total newbies, and someone shows up excited to see there is a Pathfinder table at the ComicCon. I was much relieved that I did not have a total table of newbies, until I asked him what he's played before and he says he doesn't know the names, but he has the sheets ("receipts" he called them)... and he pulls two chronicles out of his wallet with the sheet of notebook paper that is his character sheet. Nothing besides the judges info is filled out on the CRs, and when presented with a fresh new PC sheet to fill in, he says he likes his "personal" sheet (which has only a dozen or so lines of smudged pencil that I couldn't read on it) - afterword I did give him a folder to put his PC in, but I think he just put the pages back in his wallet (Folded up all together).

that game sort of went down hill from there...

I did actually get him to start to put his character on a standard PC sheet by the end of the first game, but he had lost it before the second (though he still had every other paper I had given him, along with the folder, including the ITS - which was un-used...)

(eye roll)
brother has this thread escalated... and now we appear to be discussing what I would call table ETIQUETTE....

If a judge at a table asked me to stop doing something because it was outside his comfort zone, I'd stop doing it. I don't play with a electronic character sheet (on laptop/tablet/phone/whatever), but I have other things that might bug someone. If I was rattling dice on the table top (something that I ask players to PLEASE not do when I am talking) and the judge asked me to stop - I would. If he asked me to bring/use a paper PC sheet - why wouldn't I?

Some things I've been asked to stop:

My "silly voice" bothered my judge (something I was asked to stop doing more than once), I'd switch it.
My shirt upset anyone at the table - I'd switched it (I bring an extra just to do that).
I'm jiggling my leg (nervse habbit, sorry!) - I'd quit.
I'm crunching ice (my bad habit - drives my wife thru the roof!) - I'd put it back in the cup and TRY to stop.
My PC is "hitting" on someones PC and it's "creeping me out guy" - I'd stop right away.

Heck - this is about ETIQUETTE - about "playing nice" together.

If ANYONE at the table asks me to change some easily controlled (within my power to change) thing - like using paper character sheet - I DON'T CARE WHY - I'd try my darnest to do it. Maybe his dead wife always played from behind an Dell Laptop. WHATEVER the reason. I wanna be his friend. I want him to have fun too. If it helps him have fun, and doesn't hurt my fun, why not do it if he asks nice?

Or are we saying that there are people who CAN'T play without a laptop? I have played with a blind man. He had his laptop with him to read rules and stuff to him. He'd crouch down and listen to the (soft mono-tone) reader on his PC when he wanted to "look something up". Frankly, it was kind of cool. But you know what, even he set the PC slightly to the side of him so that he was "in the group" and he couldn't even see the rest of us!

Are we just making a mountain out of a ... tablet?

Heck, if you need to have your PC sheet printed in Wing-Ding Font in white ink on black paper... just have one the rest of us can read to, in case you need help with something. OK? Please?

The Exchange ****

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VykkDraygo wrote:
I got something from a soft cover. How about the healing bomb discovery from Magical Marketplace. I have a character built around this, but the discovery does not adequately explain how throwing a healing bomb works. Can my ally choose to be flatfooted if he knows a healing bomb is coming? It mostly matters if I want to heal a roguey type, since they tend to have the most formidable touch AC.

I had forgotten this one. Yeah, I have two PCs with this and it runs different at every table I sit at (sometimes with the same judge, at the same CON, in two different scenarios.)

and here's a link

Healing Bombs and Alchemists Throw Anything.

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I've just been watching this thread, and not commenting - but now I guess I am getting pulled in.
Reading thru the Blog post I notice the following point of interest...

... Pathfinder Society Campaign Clarifications Document...

...Pathfinder Society characters have many options....
...some of these options can be interpreted in different ways...
...these ambiguities can lead to substantially different rules interpretations from table to table...
...created this document to ...
...provide an equitable gaming experience to players all over the world. The Clarifications Document is a centralized place for us to offer official rulings for ambiguous rules....

...these are not official errata...
...principally addresses rules material that appears in softcover sources...rather than the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game hardcover books. ...

...What rules ambiguities have you seen in your Pathfinder Society games that you would like to see resolved?

SO, it looks like this post is mainly dealing with "rules ambiguities" when dealing with PFS Character options in softcover books. Is that correct?

Almost all of the "rules ambiguities"/"table variation" issues I encounter in PFS deal with rules in the hardcover books - and mostly with those in the CRB. This may be because I tend not to use many things from the softcover books - mostly BECAUSE of the "rules ambiguities"/"table variation" I encounter when I try to work with them. But, in any event, the "table variation" issues I normally encounter have very little to do with PFS Character options, and instead deal with basic rules. (Cover/Concealment, Flight, Perception, Social Skills like Diplomacy, the spell beguiling gift, Stealth, Take 10, Take 20, Etc.)

For soft cover ones... perhaps the write-up on Sound Striker Bard. I have a Sound Striker that I have stopped playing, just because of the "rules ambiguities"/"table variation" with the way her abilities work. Yeah, it would be nice to have a clearer write-up on how to run this Bard Archetype.

The Exchange ****

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Nefreet wrote:
I think if the prices I outlined up thread were included just after that text it would eliminate any further questions on what Gunslingers pay for ammunition.

I would think it would eliminate almost all - but I am confident that some of our fellow posters (myself included) could "question" (argue) about whatever was posted.

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Scott Zimmerman wrote:
andreww wrote:
That isn't true. If the players go well off script then the game world can react to that. I seem to recall Mike Brock describing one game he ran where the players just kept fighting wave after wave of town guards.
I remember that post as well, and applied it last week. The PCs got themselves arrested on two charges (one false) by returning to the bar where they had left the employees unconscious on the floor. The PC who assaulted a fleeing NPC in the streets of Absalom had to pay 5 PP for body recovery, and the rest of the party paid for zone of truth to prove that the other charge was false.

I would think the changes for the zone of truth would have been assessed against the persons who were not telling the truth... unless it was just a mis-understanding

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so...joke time.

A VC headed home from a game late one night, takes a shortcut to the parking lot that just happens to cross part of the local graveyard... and what should pop up but a ghost.

At first very frightened, the VC realizes that this is the ghost of a gamer buddy of his that had died last year, so maybe he's ok...

VC: "Say, Joe, you scared me a bit there!... but you know, now that I got you here, I get to ask the question that every PFS player really wants to know the answer to. Is there PFS on the other side?"

Joe (the ghost): "well, I got some good news and some bad news... Good news is: Yeah! lots, we got regular events 3 times a week! ... Bad new: Warhorn has you down for running 5 tables next Saturday..."

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UndeadMitch wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:
UndeadMitch wrote:

Here's what I do if I need to communicate my current HP for PFS:

If my current HP is...

-between full and 75% I tell people I'm lightly wounded.
-between 75-50% I say I'm moderately wounded.
-between 50-25% I say I'm seriously wounded.
-between 25-10% I say I'm critically wounded.
-below 10% I say "Oh crap, I'm about to die!"
-below neg con I say "BARGLARGLARGL...".

Unless you've agreed this code with the healers of the group, that's potentially confusing - you're using all the words from the Cure spells but with a different meaning. A lot of other people use "lightly wounded" to mean "lost less than 10HP, only need a Cure Light Wounds, and "moderately wounded" to mean "I need a Cure Moderate Wounds to get back to healthy". Which only works out to 50-75% HP for a fairly small range of character levels.

"BARGLARGLARGL" is clear enough, though.

It's mainly a moot point for me, in-combat healers are relatively rare around my area, and in general I've noticed that most groups tend to stick to out of combat healing.

But, if somebody asked and healed me based on my response, I would pretty much just take what I get, I would save asking for in combat healing until I had about a third of my max HP anyways. I don't want people fussing over me when they can be contributing in other ways.

If I am sitting at a table and am playing one of my "Combat Medics" I will be checking during combat (and other times too) to see how your PC is doing. I (the player) will ask you (the player) what my PC can see - how you look to be doing. I would like you to, as quickly as possible, and in as little time OOC, tell me what my PC can see. If you happen to have a Hat of Disguise on making look like you are "fresh as a daisy" (something some of my PCs will do), then you should tell me that. That way I can ask if I get a Will save to see thru the Illusion, or if I should just assume you have some way of not taking damage.

But I - the player - have to know what my PC knows, and sometimes doesn't know, to know how to play his role properly.

The Exchange ****

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chris manning wrote:
when i play my cleric, i tell the other PC's at the start of the scenario, that unless they make some comment about the physical state of their damage (NOT the actual number of HP's) 'ouch that hurt A LOT' or 'hes almost cut off my arm!', then I wont make healing them a priority on my turn (unless they hit the floor) as I dont track damage taken.

I can see this a being very problematic with some of my PCs.

I have some that wouldn't (in character) admit to themselves that they have been hurt bad, let alone speak it out loud to the other characters. Then some don't have the CHA to speak to the other PCs... Then there are the few that would go on and on about a chipped nail like they were on deaths doorstep. In character statements would need to be qualified with Player statements about what someone could clearly see (perhaps with a Perception check?).

As a PLAYER I would/will tell you what your PC can tell (perceive) about my PC (and I will do this in the clearest, fastest means possible - so that we can get back to the In Character parts of the game)- In Character my PC would tell your PC what would be appropriate for my PC to say. Heck, I do this starting from character introductions. I have a PC whom is always disguised as a different race (Dwarf disguised as a gnome), and I tell the Players this so that they can "play along". The PCs with a good Sense Motive/Perception detect it and the PCs with poor Sense Motive/Perception never notice and the player knows how to "play" his character.

Does you Cleric have a very low perception? or a problem interacting with the other party members? Can he tell by looking at another PC that they have been in a fight and gotten banged up? If not, perhaps one of the other PCs will call it to his attention.

Or I guess we could just off-load this to the judge, and have him tell us what our PCs can "Perceive" about each other. But that seems like a bunch of extra work...

Cleric Player: "GM, anyone hurt bad right now?"
Judge to the table at large: "Anyone down more than half their HP?"
Fighter Player: "I'm down 20 of my 35HP..."
Judge to Cleric Player: "Roll a Perception, DC ah... 15"
Cleric Player: "Got it. Rolled a 22 actually..."
Judge to Cleric Player: "Looks like the fighter is favoring his shield side, and he's got blood seeping from under his left vambrace. He's 'blooded'."
Cleric Player to Judge: "What the heck is a vambrace?"
Judge to Cleric Player: "Part of the armor covering his lower arm, the forearm guard."
Cleric Player: "I'll check on him - 'Hay, fighter, you hurt?'"
Fighter Player: "'This scratch? I've been hurt more playing with my kids!' and he staggers back to the front of the party.

IMHO: Part of the communication at the table HAS to be Player to Player. Insisting that everything one player says to another be done "in character" is not workable. If you, as a player, ask me something about my PC, I as a player am going to give you a very different answer than if you, IN CHARACTER, ask my PC something. And in both cases we are still "playing the game"...


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GM_Beernorg wrote:

I believe it has been said, "It is astounding what one can accomplish with a riding crop, some well blown glass, and a little tight leather."

To which I would reply, "usually that costs extra. But perhaps we can make an exception just this once for y'all!"

The Exchange ****

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Chris Mortika wrote:


nosig, the earliest editions of D&D instructed the DM to run sort of what your DM did, except hit points were re-rolled at the beginning of each level. One of the more recent retro-clones, "Adventurer, Conquerer, King," did pretty much the same thing.

Yeah - sort of.

I was playing back then... (Old gamer alert! Nurses come to wheel the old guy back to his room... )

"I tell you, I was gaming back when Druids were a monster! Heck, Elf was a CLASS! You younguns got it easy, we had to paint our own minis, which were lead!, an another thing..." door slams

Sovereign Court ****

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Finlanderboy wrote:

As a DM I do not allow players to discuss their current HP if they drop. If your character can not communicate I do not want you providing other PCs information that they could not get themselves. To me it is metagaming, and removes the abilities of people that spent resources to know these things.

A heal check I allow you to make will determine how bad they are. But this is not a video game where the stats are available to everyone. If they stabilize you will not know this either.

If you are awake or can communicate I do not care, go ahead say you have 5 hp, you are bloodied, whatever.

There are no rules in the game that allow you to know how negative a person is, if they stabilized, or even if they are finally dead.

As a player I have stabilized 3 people that were already stabilized. I have healed dead people because I was too dumb to make the check to determine his life.

Do you do that when running the game too?

Take actions as a Mooks to pour a potion into a dead ally?
Attack someone already dead?

Dark Archive ****

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waltero wrote:
LF = looking for

AH! thanks. (sorry - just an "old guy" here...)

The Exchange ****

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Here's a quote from someplace else... Extra credit if you recognize where it's from...

Nobody wants to play a campaign with Emperor Fred or High Chancellor Gary, and so the usual approach is to give everyone high fantasy names like King Geon’ai, Sir Lua’an-Eradin, or Lady Alaain Mera-Dovrel. You know, strange and fantasy-ish. Of course, this means the names will all be unpronouncable, difficult to spell, and easily confused. For fun, have your players describe the plot of your campaign after it’s over. I promise it will sound something like this:

"The dragon guy with that black sword was oppressing the people that lived on those hills. Then that one king with the really long beard got that one chick with the crazy hair, and she went to that one lake. Then she got corrupted by that curse thing that made her attack that group of guys we found dead. You know, the ones that had that +1 sword and the bag of holding? Once we broke her curse she told us about the dragon guy and gave us that thing. And the map. Then we found the dragon dude and kicked his ass."

It’s like living in a word without proper nouns. I’ve always wanted to make a campaign like this:

"The Dark Lord Walter, wielder of the Black Sword of choppery, was opressing the peoples of Pittsburgh. Then King George Washington enlisted the help of the Warrior Princess Rapunzel. Sadly, in the Land of Yellowstone she fell under a spell and slew the Steelers, Knights of Pittsburgh. At last the heroes freed the princess, traveled through the kingdom of Barstow, and confronted Walter in the land of Spokane."

Sure, it sounds stupid, but you have to admit: your players will be able to remember, pronounce, and even spell all of the important people and places.

Now, think back to your last game... What names do you remember? What ones can you pronounce?

older thread on names

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Nefreet wrote:

Masterwork Tool: Soft Leather Boots. 50gp, 1lb, +2 Diplomacy with cobblers.

Masterwork Tool: Flowing Green Cape. 50gp, 1lb, +2 Perform (Oratory) vs Elves.

Masterwork Tool: Handy Dandy Belt. 50gp, 1lb, +2 Profession (Courtesan) when wearing nothing else.


Ah need to get Mahself another H-D Belt... though Ah will likely wear it with my Peek-a-Boo Mistmail (the only armor you can get "out of" with just a command word).

The Exchange ****

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I could see someone introduced as "Bob Blacros-no relation"... Playing up the fact that there is no connection.

Dark Archive ****

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Nefreet wrote:
You can Take 20 in the morning when nobody's looking, too.

I'm not sure about this one... Each attempt takes 1d3x10minutes, so an average of 20 minutes... 20x20 minutes would be 400 minutes, or almost 7 hours... And possibly 10 hours.

And a lot of judges aren't going to let you try 20 times on it... YMMV.

Scarab Sages ****

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Fromper wrote:
Bob Jonquet wrote:
thecause80 wrote:
What if my character wants to claim...
Claim is the important part of this. You can claim whatever you want. Bluff/Disguise/etc are all there for you to simluate something you are not. Reskinning (or refluffing) is generally when someone actually wants to be something they are not permitted to be. Saying you have dwarven blood or ancestry is fine, but you are not a half-dwarf and no one would/should ever construe that based on your descriptions.

Yeah, liars and/or delusional characters can be fun.

I remember one guy playing a dumped int/wis half-orc barbarian who honestly believed he was a really tall goblin. All the other PCs just looked at him like he was insane.

I'm currently coming up with a character idea for a worshiper of an evil deity who hides his true affiliation. That could be fun to play, and will require a good bluff skill, which is part of why I'm looking at inquisitor options that add wisdom to bluff. I haven't started playing this guy yet, but I'm imagining that I'll ask everyone to roll sense motive during my character introduction. :P

sounds like fun, but you might want to review the thread on deceptive characters...

deceptive characters

I have no problem with, and often enjoy playing with, "deceptive characters". I do have a problem with, and often avoid playing with, "deceptive players". I see a difference in these two things... it appears that some people do not.

Scarab Sages ****

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I realized last night that I have one or two fun "refluffed" characters. So I'll post as one of those, and talk a bit about play style. I do this as an example of different play styles, to show how I play a character who is sort of "re-fluffed" in a way, he's trying to decieve his fellows - and in fact in the game he's trying to decieve a diety. (and trying this with a "7" INT). So he actually spends some in game resources to have a little in game effect - but mostly it's for RP fun (with the other players)

When I sit down at the PFS table with players who have never met me before, I will introduce myself as:

Buba Casanunda, "Gnomish" cleric of Nivi Rhombadazzle (yeah, with quote marks - "air quotes"). But I'm not your typical cleric - I have a bit of militia training and so wear full plate armor and use a tower shield. I carry this oversized ax (medium sized Dwarven War Ax) and am really not very good with it, so don't expect me to be very effective in combat. But I will be in combat - right up there on the bleeding edge, as I'm a combat medic. My Domains are Travel and Trickery.

During the adventure, it may come up that Buba has darkvision - I'll point out that Nivi is the goddess of Deep Gnomes, the first Gnome of the Underdark in fact. Clearly he is not your typical Gnome - he claims to be a Deep Gnome and have darkvision. (I explain OOC to anyone new or looking puzzled that we can't have Deep Gnome PCs...there is no Boon for that race.)

He moves fast - 40' during most of the adventure (longstrider lasts an hour per level) - and his movement is not effected by how much he carries....kind of like a dwarf you know?

Out of Character, I will explain to the other PLAYERs that I am a Dwarven Sepratist Cleric/Fighter who is sure that Nivi will not give him spells unless she thinks he is a Gnome - so he goes around disguised as a Gnome. Green Dyed hair, even his beard, silly hat, and funny turned up shoes. Not being real bright (he has an INT of 7), he slips up sometimes, so if you hang around with him much you should be able to figure several problems with his disguise.
He's Medium sized.
He moves to fast for his armor.
He uses Dwarven weapons, not Gnomeish weapons.
He doesn't even speak Gnome...
I think the most fun I have had playing him was when I was sitting at a table with someone playing a Wayang who was also claiming to be a Gnome. "Lot of differences in appearance! Clearly it's that First World influence in the gene pool! Yeap, and Darkvision must be more common in Gnomes - and a good thing we both have Fleet of Foot!" All the while trying not to give my disguise away to "the other Gnome" in the party.
Basicly - I let the other players in on the joke and they can enjoy playing along too... or not if it bugs them. Buba gets introduced to the NPCs by other players a lot. "and this is Buba, our Gnomish cleric [wink,wink - finger twirl by ear]". And sometimes a Player will give me a pointer on helping my disguise...and sometimes the Characters never figure out "my secret"... But you know the best part? when I meet a player again that I've only played with once months ago, they remember "that crazy gnome cleric of the god with the funny name - yep, biggest gnome I've ever met."

That to me is Re-Fluffing.

The Exchange ****

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Thea Peters wrote:

So what all this basically boils down to is when you are at walgreens or cvs or wherever. .. spend the extra buck fifty on a nose and mouth mask and keep your sickness to yourself.

Everyone is happy ... the crud doesn't spread and we can go back to talking about the smelly people

Hay! This sounds like a PC idea... Some type of low CHA desert dweller... Maybe a gunslinger from the Mana Waste.

Thanks Thea! I needed a new PC idea and you may have given me the "germ" of an idea for one.

The Exchange ****

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Tabletop Giant wrote:
Andrew Christian wrote:

It is not constructive to allow someone to play an illegal character.

I wholeheartedly agree; but I also feel making a judgment without taking in the surrounding context is myopic and even less constructive.

I do not feel that all infringements upon rules need be corrected immediately and with an iron fist. Bring them to the right path; don't shove them. By the end of the situation, Divvox2 helped the player completely rebuild his character, and thus completely fixed the problem. No one can say he didn't fix the problem; it's only the timing of the fix that is an issue.

Being that he did fix the problem by helping the player rebuild his character into the realm of legality, I do not see any destructive fallout from the situation. What Divvox2 did was enforce the rules in a positive manner, and this is likely to attract more players to his table. I applaud him.

Andrew Christian wrote:

And, yeah, I know what the next argument is going to be, "Why is that OK for you to fudge, and I can't fudge this over here "

If you're going to try to predict what I will say next, you're almost always going to be wrong. As Charlie said from Always Sunny in Philadelphia - "Wildcard, b*%*@es!".

(Bolding mine)

5 other players learned that playing an "non-standard" character is "ok" - as long as we only do it once...

But that's ok, after all, we'd never take advantage of that right?

(This is back to the Two Schools of RPG Gaming)

The Exchange ****

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This is a quote from a post I made a couple years ago:

What I like to see in a scenario? I like a story line that I can understand (even if it is a simple one - simple ones are great!).

Games with only one or two big fights are great. Much better than the long drawn-out slug fests some scenarios turn into. They don't even have to be the end fight! And everything doesn't have to be solved with a fight!

A story that goes somewhere is often lost in the "little" fights - with the judge trying to ensure that every Iron Cobra fights to the last HP... but who trims the NPC telling us WHY we are even here.

If I was Judging and we are in the boss fight and one of the players asks "who is this guy and why are we trying to kill him again?" then I know I as the judge have failed (perhaps the scenario is at fault, but I should have tried to come up with some sort of a reason to fit the story). It may be a little failure, but it's still a fail.

But you know what? If we are in the boss fight and the Pistol Cheese Whiz drops the BBE and all the mooks in 3.2 seconds before anyone else in the party can do anything... and the Sorcerer goes over to kick the body, because the "evil dude" deserves it, that's a win. Even if the fight was a "Cake Walk"...

The Exchange ****

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Matthew Morris wrote:
Stephen Ross wrote:

time to burn some GM stars on Bonekeep... dibs on the Estra tha Spiritualist...

I've only had the pleasure of running Bonekeep I once, but it is amusing how people take Bonekeep.

Group A. Bring it on! (I actually have a couple locals working on a GM star just for a rematch)

Group B. Let me work a new character up to level, so I won't feel bad when it dies. :-(

or option three:

"Wait, Bonekeep? I didn't sign up for... wait, I think my wife needs me at home. Sorry, gotta go!"

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