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Millech the Hump

rainzax's page

2,064 posts. No reviews. 1 list. 2 wishlists.


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I'm trying to tie it to magic items that I can create (as a DM).

As an example, say I create a book called A Gaeologist's Manuel to the Life Aquatic. If a caster reads the book, it adds one "aquatic" monster to each numeral of Summon Nature's Ally.

As I want to create multiple of these, though the feats help, I'd like to find a way to systematize the selection process.

If that makes sense.

Thank you for your responses! I will definitely check out that book. But again, I am looking as a DM, so while pre-existing feats are helpful, they aren't getting at what I really want: A general process for deciding whether to include a creature onto a Summon list.

Dastis wrote:
CR is probably not the best benchmark for the summon monster spells.

I agree with you in that it shouldn't be the only benchmark, but I think it is perhaps safe to make this the first benchmark, as it automatically weeds out a lot of creatures that are either too "weak" or too "powerful" for placement on a list of a certain numeral.


For example, what about using the following list as a starting point:

SM I, CR <1
SM IV, CR 3-4
SM V, CR 4-5
SM VI, CR 6-7
SM VII, CR 8-9
SM VIII, CR 10-11
SM IX, CR 12-13

Then, once I am considering a monster at that CR, looking at it's spells, spell-like abilities, and movement modes, to round out the decision?

I am looking to expand the Summon Monster lists I through IX for my players. Any advice on this would be greatly appreciated.

For example, suggested CR benchmarks for I, II, III, IV, V, VI, VII, VIII, and IX?

Any other considerations I should factor in?


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Not sure arguing MCD is helping OP...

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Seconding the importance of Tactics and Teamwork, especially when considered together. The game is very lethal unless a party works together smartly, unselfishly.

If I had to quantify it, I would say the party tactics and teamwork can be "worth" up to 3 CR in either direction. As the party understands this more, their collective chances of survival improves.

Link to a great article!

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Any spoilers?

dot for future

Charge a feat!

Alternate Magic Source
Prerequisite: Must be a 1st level character
Benefit: Choose a spellcasting class you have levels in and a mental ability score (INT, WIS, or CHA). Spellcasting from your chosen class is hereafter keyed to this ability score (including determining bonus spells, spell DCs, and concentration checks). Once chosen, this cannot be changed.

Thank you for all your responses. Let me know if this sounds good (building off Balkoth's suggestion):

An NPC has effective CR equal to their character level -2. If they have PC levels and/or wealth, each removes a -1. So, an NPC with both PC levels and wealth has effective CR equal to their character level.

Then, when attempting to defeat a challenge (for their PC friends), they have a 50% chance of success if their CR is equal to that of the challenge. This base chance is modified by +/- 20% for each difference in CR, as illustrated in this table:


Challenge / Success Rate

CR -3 / 100% (certain)
CR -2 / 90%
CR -1 / 70%
CR = / 50%
CR +1 / 30%
CR +2 / 10%
CR +3 / 0% (impossible)

Does this sound it strikes a balance between being both easy and fast to use as well as a fairly reasonable application using the CR system?

Daw wrote:
One would hope that an Aristocrat would have resources.

Aristocrats have PC wealth in my game. So yes!

Thanks for you speedy reply!

Two things I want to say.

My "plot/GM discretion" I want to leave to a single die roll. I am well aware I can simply decide an outcome, but these situations I want to explicitly adjudicate outside of my right of fiat. If that makes sense.

Ideally there are only two inputs (NPC level/status and CR) into the "equation" which yield a single quick output: an approximate % of success/failure. I'd like to completely bypass any middle steps, such as cross-referencing a table, where possible (though, these charts are excellent tools for encounter design - thanks!)

I need a quick way to determine the rough success/failure % of NPCs overcoming CRs to accomplish things "off-screen" for their PC comrades.

Say I have a Level 4 Aristocrat NPC who wants to defeat a CR 3 challenge (for their PC friend). What should be their chance of success?

How does this change if the CR exceeds the NPC's level? (Or how ought this to scale generally?)

How does this change if the NPC has PC levels (and/or equipment/wealth) instead?

Thanks in advance.

Maybe you could add a Confirmation Check to allow stacking effects?

Some more general play questions - on the Revised Action Economy itself as well as your innovations upon it (primarily the "passive act" I believe).

Was it a problem that low level PCs could attack three or four times per round?

What about the NPCs?

How do you handle creatures with natural attacks? Does it matter how many they have? For example creatures with 2, 3, 5, or 8 natural attacks?

What is the impact of getting rid of "tertiary" attacks? By this I mean the second iterative in the old system (at -10) as one might expect it to translate into the new system (at -10).

What are the exact rules for the 5-foot step? For example, if I have used 1 act to move this round, can I save my passive act for a 5-foot step? (This is prohibited in the regular rules).


Ok lemme know if I am getting this.

A character with the Two-Weapon Fighting feat may:
(Act 1) attack twice at -2/-2
(Act 2) attack again, once, at -7
(Act 3) attack again, once, at -12


A character with the Improved Two-Weapon Fighting feat may:
(Act 1) attack twice at -2/-2
(Act 2) attack twice again at -7/-7
(Act 3) attack again, once, at -12


A character with the Greater Two-Weapon Fighting feat may:
(Act 1) attack twice at -2/-2
(Act 2) attack twice again at -7/-7
(Act 3) attack twice again at -12/-12

Is that right?

So, let's say I have a Rogue who wants to use the Two-Weapon Fighting feat under this system.

I can move my full speed (first act), attack with both weapons at -2/-2 (second act), and either move my full speed again or make another double attack at -7/-7 (third act)?

Or, if I "stand still", I can use all three acts to attack a total of six times at -2/-2 (first), then -7/-7 (second), then -7/-7 (third)?

Or, if I have the Improved Feint feat, I can move my full speed (first), attempt to feint my opponent (second), then attack at -2/-2 (third)?

For all of these options, may I also take a 5-foot step (a passive act) before/after any of my other three acts? Or do 5-foot steps still follow the "only if you haven't otherwise moved" limitation?

Last question: how does the Spring Attack feat work? Is it a double-act or triple-act?

Wildebob wrote:
In literature, wands are mostly used as a focus for spellcasting. Maybe have wands grant a bonus to Concentration?

I like this base idea.

(On top of a house rule that increases the DC of concentration checks while threatened)

Ok imagine 5 different narrative junctions.

You do not have to flesh these out in advance - rather let them develop organically during play, and spend some DM time reflecting between sessions.

Each iteration, choose a single word in the prophecy to change in light of new events. You can hash it up to translation, interpretation, what have you.

Just careful not to paint yourself into a corner.

Cyrad raises a good point about risk.

Maybe a failed counterspell check leaves the counterspeller staggered or dazed for 1 round?

Take a cue from the Acrobatics skill?

If you have 3 ranks in the Acrobatics skill, you get better mileage out of Fighting Defensively and Total Defense (+1 and +2 to AC respectively).

Maybe you could cook up something similar for the Athletics skill?

If you want to work with the system (using 5th level as "earth maximum" baseline), keep the modifier modest through the first 5 ranks.

I had this happen - and was inconvenienced by an unscrupulous weasel.

I called around for the 1st book of an AP, and got a guy who worked in my local game store saying he'd sell it to me for twenty bucks. I asked him if he'd take my number "just in case" and he refused saying "what for?" So I took 2 hours public transit to the store the next day. When I got there, the guy I talked to on the phone pretended that he didn't know what I was talking about. He had a horrible poker face. I just walked out.

I think what happened was he found out he could sell it for more, and since he didn't take my number, didn't give me a courtesy call to redact his offer.

Almost jaded me enough to discontinue my patronage to the store. Almost.

Morale: if you make a deal, make sure they take your number!

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DungeonmasterCal wrote:
Only related tangentially, my group finds the Craft and Profession skills to be useless and are dump skills that receive one or two ranks at best. I know they can be fairly useful, but no one in my group ever bothers with them.

Craft can save a character money if they put in the time. Thus, I find the value of the skill to be largely dependent on the DM.

As for Profession, perhaps consider a house rule I use: For associated skill checks whose DC is under 20, Profession can act in place of other skills, provided a justification can be provided and agreed upon by player and DM. This way, you can get a little horizontal mileage out of the skill, but save specializations for the skills that actually cover the "high skill" functions.

For the sake of argument, my reasoning is threefold.

1) It's called Uncanny Dodge so I claim "intent" with this argument (you don't "dodge" a beam or wall while you traverse it).
2) The specific language "caught flat-footed" I read as an interaction between two characters - not as between a character and an obstacle (the beam or wall does not "catch" anybody flat-footed).
3) The Rogue Talent Ledge Walker was printed in the CRB well before the concept of "trading away to archetypes" existed - and then printed again in Pathfinder Unchained - so from this I infer that a partially redundant Rogue Talent was not printed twice in the very same book as the class it supports (the Rogue).

Curious to hear the reasoning of the other side though...

I'm pretty sure "cannot be caught flat-footed" is in regards to being surprised by your enemies.

So a Rogue with Uncanny Dodge is till considered flat-footed when balancing or climbing, for example.


Agreed with above posters.

If you want to improve the fighter's saves and skill points, why go the roundabout way? Just give 'em an extra save and extra skill points and class skills.

So maybe your fix could look something like:

Fighter Hotfix
Strong Fortitude and Will
Skill Points: 4 per level
New Class Feature: Skill Training

Skill Training


A 1st level fighter chooses one of the following packages below and gains the listed skills as class skills.

Derring – Acrobatics (Dex), Escape Artist (Dex), Fly (Dex), Knowledge (Local; Int),
Academic – Appraise (Int), Knowledge (Arcana; Int), Linguistics (Int), Spellcraft (Int)
Subterfuge –Bluff (Cha), Disguise (Cha), Knowledge (Geography; Int), (Planes; Int), Sleight of Hand (Dex)
Coerce – Bluff (Cha), Diplomacy (Cha), Knowledge (Nobility; Int), (Religion; Int)
Patience – Heal (Wis), Knowledge (History; Int), Sense Motive (Wis), UMD (Cha)
Scout – Disable Device (Dex), Knowledge (Nature; Int), Perception, Stealth (Dex)

I just deleted the skills that are already class skills and added a couple to even 'em out - perhaps aim for 3-5 per package

I have my own simple patch which I use in conjunction with tweaks to my base system (feats, skills, combat) and other 3rd party solutions.

Fighter gets 4 skill points, good Will saves, several more class skills (utilizing INT, WIS, CHA), and the ability to retrain their "fighter bonus feats" on a daily basis similar to how a wizard prepares spells.

Popping in to give my opinion about the Kickstarter survey (classes vs. monsters).

Count me in the camp that says changing the packages after the fact constitutes a breach in the original agreement, and is therefore bad form.

That said, I fully support the project moving forward, and expect to be dazzled by the final product. Best!

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Be a DM

I would say certain sects of those who offer the Liberation domain - perhaps working somewhat in collusion but with different strategic assessments and tactical philosophies.

But I say Desna. Church under the stars.


I am using this Unchained Fighter and I like it.

Lorekeeper also developed an Unfettered Monk which is pretty damn good too.

My change to Point Blank Shot is to let the Sneak Attack class feature "count" as it for feat pre-requisites. The reasoning is three-fold:

1) Archery is already a powerful style and deserves to be feat intensive.
2) Sneak Attack is thematically identical to Point Blank Shot.
3) Bitty boost for Rogues.

So, your 1st level Rogue (of any race) can start their career being a specialist at shooting into a melee (Point Blank Shot), shooting with incredible speed (Rapid Shot), or shooting from incredible distance (Far Shot).


Furthermore, I also allow "Sneak Attack +3d6" to count for "BAB +6" pre-requisites for the Improved Precise Shot feat (yes I lowered the BAB from +11 to +6 to allow Fighters to keep up with Rangers), and generally allow sneak attack dice to count for twice it's dice number in BAB for other feats that I find thematic for a Rogue (like Improved Critical, Lunge, and Pinpoint Targeting).

I also do similar things with Uncanny Dodge and Improved Uncanny Dodge.

To answer your last question, W E Ray, I think the idea is that you better be able to hit a target at 10 meters away [i]really well[i/] before you begin practicing anything else tricky.

I assume you are the DM. What books are you using?

I already do a few feat consolidations and bypasses (ex. "Improved Maneuver" feats upgrade immediately upon meeting pre-requisites, TWF and Improved TWF and Greater TWF are all a single feat, Sneak Attack counts as Point-Blank Shot for pre-requisite purposes, other tweaks).

But this thread got me thinking about an idea that may help you. Maybe at certain BAB unlocks (like 6, 11, 16; or maybe some other sequence) a character may "upgrade" a single feat for free by choosing another feat "up the chain" to unlock so long as they meet the prerequisites. Basing it on BAB would help the characters that need it most and be a general boost for everybody.

Ex. An 8th level rogue improving to BAB 6 who already has the Mobility feat may choose to unlock Spring Attack without spending a precious feat slot.

Good luck with your house rules in any case. Cheers!

Crazy Idea:

What if Sage were an INT class based entirely on Extraordinary abilities?

With a built-in check against using Supernatural abilities, Spell-like abilities, or Spells that were somehow entirely incompatible with his base class abilities.

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Dropping in to give my opinion on Spheres of Talent.

(because I don't have a giant in the playground account per kickstarter recommendation)

I think the answer is yes, pending the success of Spheres of Might (which I believe will actualize in a big way with the community) with a caveat:

Because combat is at the center of the Pathfinder game, I don't think it'd just be as straight-forward as releasing a third book with 10 new "rogues" - because, in my experience, with the arguable exception of the Rogue base class, all classes either have Power (spellcasting) and/or Might (big attack bonuses), which constrains the design-space around focusing solely on Talent (skills).

So, I think the smart play it would be to think of a third Sphere system as something that sits atop the base two, which perhaps 2 or 3 new classes based entirely around Talent, and twice or thrice (or more) that many also utilizing Power and Might accordingly.

Short answer: Yes!

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Some more background:

I'm actually going to run it as a "mindscape" of sorts. As in, the players will not be physically traveling to the Mwangi Expanse, but instead transported metaphysically to "re-live" an expedition that began as a successful overland adventure but quickly descended into a massacre of most of the expedition party - ending in an ancient ruin that has dark secret.

The goal of the "mindscape adventure" is expositional for a meta-plot. If even one PC survives to the "end" of the adventure, they unlock all of that backstory, basically gaining information as to what happened to the original expedition some 50 years ago.

Hope that makes sense.

As the title.
Gunna pop off a one-shot.
Ideally for 4th-5th level characters.

I want all the Jungle flavor - dangerous overland exploration, deadly flora and fauna, ancient and cursed ruins - bonus points if the adventure is an actual charter by the Pathfinder Society.

What can you recommend me?

Saint Caleth wrote:

To Do

Bellflower Escape for rainzax - I promise I'll finish eventually

Absolutely no pressure.

But I am definitely looking forward to seeing the finished product!

And if you would like some vectored feedback after I run it (with some flavor doctoring, likely), I can provide you that.

Saint Caleth wrote:

Finished my first full adventure for you guys. Its Starbuck_II's rats in the cellar adventure. Its a little bit bare-bones, but maybe I'll go back and add a little more eventually.

A Rat in the Cellar


Especially the maps.

I am very curious what you would replace MF with.

In general, if it feels like two or more skills would cover it, I allow any of them to do the thing.

Sounds good to me.

Though it is not a "new" language - been around DnD for awhile.

Are you running Linguistics by the book, then?

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I'd like to see a combined hardcover too.

Bibliophile, all that...

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keeper0 wrote:
Combat Manouvers: I would be inclined to make these more rewarding in order for martials to have more interesting options in combat. I don't have a firm suggestion (easier feat acquisition?), so I consider this optional for now.

Only provoke on a failed check.

Bwang wrote:

I use a 'ranks in' language system and the players have ha a great hand in it. 3 ranks is fluency and everyone gets a rank each level, though some classes get more (Bards). Skill points are usable, but not required. This allows for both overhearing basic conversation (1) and basic reading and writing (2) as well as actual fluency. Wizards get brevetted Draconic 3 with Scribe Scroll while Sorcerers only need and get Draconic 1. A Ranger gets a favored enemy's tongue at 2.

Having had an actual 6+ language lay person who differentiated seven (7!) different Chinese dialects in game partially spawned this and it works, Linguistics helps in translations and communication in unknown tongues. She even made up a Language Group chart for the campaign I still use, with x ranks in a group language counting as y ranks in the others: 5 ranks in 'Giant' is fluency in about a dozen languages...

...Our language rules took from the late 70s till the mid 90s to gel and only got revised in 2005. They make those odd languages workable and make real Linguists stand out.

I would love to have a look at the full proposal!

I am loving the Athletics, Boxing, and Guardian spheres. Sure they may need a tweak here and there, but overall they are looking damn solid.

The Open Hand sphere I feel needs some work. I understand that an underlying design axiom is "enable combos" (and consequently "weapon agnosticism") but it feels as though the Open Hand sphere has been hamstrung in order to try and meet that axiom. As a result it feels a little uninspired.

This is a big suggestion, but, what if that instead of thinking of it as a sort of "destination sphere" (one in which characters with other weapons pick up special tricks from) - changing it to be primarily a "origin sphere" (one which modifies unarmed attacks in such a way as they can better pick up tricks from other spheres). Essentially, to reverse the polarity of it.

I dunno if that helps, but I've been wracking my mind to think of some kind of suggestion to accompany my criticism. Digging into the combat system this deeply causes some ugly inconsistencies to rear (like "hand of effort" and "natural vs unarmed attacks" and "unarmed size increase") while simultaneously creating opportunities to address some of those inconsistencies. Perhaps with some further development, the Open Hand sphere can be such an opportunity?

Maybe "Comprehend Languages" simply adds +1 rank to every language?

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5th level is Earth max.

Some people have taken feats to learn to speak more than five languages.

Pathfinder characters level too fast.

Ergo, Linguistics is realistic.

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Wraithguard wrote:
I'm looking forward to the 'Scholar' Ssalarn hinted at earlier.


Scàthach Ulster wrote:

Personally, I think actions boil down into 5 basic types per axis.

Saintly: This is good taken to the extreme. This is being a 20th level paladin with leather armor and a longsword because he donated all his money.
Helpful: This is good that costs you little, or is tempered by law or chaos. Helping the little old lady across the street. "Good" falls between this and saintly.
Neutral: You brush your teeth.
Sketchy: This is unpleasant. It borders on evil, but has some redeeming factor. Passively sacrificing (i.e. allowing them to die) 20 to save 200.
Vile: Eating babies for pleasure. "Evil" comes into play between here and Sketchy.

Paladins, in my opinion, should perform 15% Saintly actions, 40% Helpful actions, 30% Neutral actions, 5% Sketchy actions (at most), 0% Vile actions.

Rigid: The letter of the law. If eating ice cream on Tuesday is illegal, then you MUST arrest the offender.
Legal: The spirit of the law. If a law is either obsolete or ridiculous, it can be ignored or lobbied for change.
Neutral: You brush your teeth.
Erratic: Doing your own thing. It doesn't bother you if other people are lawful, but if you want ice cream on Tuesday, you're gonna eat ice cream. This is the type of chaos that most CG characters are, I find.
Anarchic: Rage against the machine. Do what you want. And everybody should do what they want.

Paladins, in my opinion, should perform 15% Rigid actions, 40% Legal actions, 30% Neutral actions, 5% Erratic actions and 0% Anarchic actions.

I like this perspective.

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