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sunshadow21's page

Pathfinder Society Member. 3,213 posts (8,008 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist. 29 aliases.


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Wivvy wrote:
sunshadow21 wrote:
Wivvy wrote:
Yes, a VERY tough choice :)
Been there, done that, ended up running two groups because I couldn't narrow it down any further than that.
Actually that's not a bad idea. I don't know, I'll think about it.

It was a bit more work to be certain, but showed how flexible the AP was for allowing for party variance.


Wivvy wrote:
Yes, a VERY tough choice :)

Been there, done that, ended up running two groups because I couldn't narrow it down any further than that.


Matthias wrote:
Have the individual rewards be legit though, as the tokens were promised in good faith and the party did just complete a (assuming) difficult task.

It can still be legit, even if there is a prankish side effect to it. Fey are really, really good at that.


Deaths Adorable Apprentice wrote:
well there is now a fey pc in the party so there will always be a fey available.

Even better, the queen can enlist the help of fey PC to reveal the truth of quest and/or item at the most aggravating time possible. Gets multiple people at the table involved, making it more fun for the party as a whole.


I'd go with accept the apology, play the mischievous prank, skip the quest, and have the side effect only show up well after they have finished dealing with the fey, so it comes across as a truly random effect that they can't find a fey around to deal with or inform them of it's true nature. Most fey would get more of a laugh out of that than a quest. If you do a quest, make it like one of the quests in Skyrim where you had to collect a bunch of random objects to restore a staff that was never in need of restoring in the first place to maintain the capricious aspect of it.


bugleyman wrote:
sunshadow21 wrote:
I guess that's more or less where I'm sitting. The system seems good, but not really great, and while I'm willing to give WotC time to show they have learned from their mistakes, I need to see some evidence of it before I look at any of their product seriously. If in a few years, they have proven their critics wrong, and the system has shown itself to have legs, I'll reconsider, until then, I'll be watching from the sidelines on this one.
In a way I feel bad for the WotC designers. I expect they had no control over some of the steps WotC took to alienate customers, and I think they're doing good work. Hopefully the new leadership isn't so out-of-touch.

I'll give them credit for doing things this time around that don't immediately scare people off like many of the the missteps they had with 4E. If they can build on that by giving it proper support and maintaining a consistent vision of what they want the system to become, they have a decent shot at winning back at least some folks, though they will never be able to displace Pathfinder at this point. WotC can compete with Pathfinder with the right decisions, but Paizo has a loyal enough following that as long as they don't make any major mistakes, Pathfinder will do just fine regardless of how 5E does.


As usual, a tough choice for the DM. Lots of good stuff to choose from.


Hama wrote:

I can't really point out anything specific. The whole game bothers me. Maybe it's simply the fact that it's not Pathfinder and that i have a natural reaction to dislike anything that comes from WOTC, but I just couldn't bring myself to like it.

I'll give it a couple of years, and then try it again. I might change my mind.

I guess that's more or less where I'm sitting. The system seems good, but not really great, and while I'm willing to give WotC time to show they have learned from their mistakes, I need to see some evidence of it before I look at any of their product seriously. If in a few years, they have proven their critics wrong, and the system has shown itself to have legs, I'll reconsider, until then, I'll be watching from the sidelines on this one.


From what little I've seen, I like some of the stuff, and don't like other parts. My concern isn't whether it will be a good game, as even 4E wasn't a bad game in and of itself, it's whether a)it's different enough to justify buying into and learning a new system and b)WotC actually takes the time to properly support it. It's definitely not a system I am interested in buying right away, but I'll keep an eye on it, and if it's still getting mostly positive reviews by more than a small handful of people and there still seems to be a fair number of folks playing it in a year or two, I might reconsider. WotC does seem to be doing a better job this time around in managing all the little details both within the system itself and how they market it, so there is good reason to believe that it could succeed where 4E failed.


Sadly, it wouldn't, though it has always annoyed me that they don't just give druids proficiency in all simple spears. It would give the druid a few more options for backup weapons, make aid another a viable option for a druid that doesn't want to be directly by an enemy, and just generally make that part easier for everyone without adding any significant power.


Found this NPC background generator on WotC's site in their archives. Don't know if it will help or not, but it's something.


I, too, have run through book 1, and aside from details about Sandpoint itself, which is a really well built and interesting town, I don't really foresee a problem, as each party and DM is going to end up telling a slightly different story.


sarpadian wrote:
How much downtime is there in Rise of the Runelords? If I made a dwarven magus who crafts his own weapons and armor, would I have a chance to do that?

Depends on how it is run. There are potential opportunities scattered throughout, but it all comes down to how the DM chooses to play out the scenarios.


Umbranus wrote:
Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:


Likewise, I would totally allow a Huge water elemental to break someone's fall.
That's the whole point of this discussion. Your side gives some abilities what the rules give them plus every thing you think it should logically do. While the other side just gives abilities what the rules give them and stay away from bringing logic into a fantasy world.

And I find both approaches equally distasteful personally. They are made of water or fire and if you or an object directly interact with them long enough, that interaction will result in dealing with the effects of fire or water. A quick hug won't do much, unless the elemental is actively trying to burn you, nor will you get much if you expect a water elemental to be a water source, but a piece of gear that is worn all day or a torch deliberately held up to the elemental will definitely feel the effects of the burning, and forceful extraction of water is technically possible, if very ill advised. I suspect that in reality, most people from both sides would reach a decision somewhere in the middle as well in a home campaign just to keep things moving along with the least amounts of arguments, though their precise position will vary. PFS, it's probably best to assume the rules and nothing more, due it's setup; it's inevitable focus on the rules and just the rules are a big reason I don't play it. The rules shouldn't be ignored, but always looking for the strictest interpretation is equally problematic.


Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:
Regardless of what you rule it doesn't effect druid balance.

It can; take away that feat, and a lot of difficulties that are smoothed over by it rear their head and a lot of problems created by it disappear. Rule that spell components aren't affected in elemental form, and don't have to merge with the new form, and you get druids that ignore wild shape until they get elemental forms, and have the equivalent of a free feat slot that they don't have if you rule that elementals, for whatever reason, cannot easily wear a spell component pouch and access the components within it to cast spells. Just because the feat is often seen as a default druid choice, it's still a cost, and not a small one that most players would love to not have to worry about, many of which would be content to ignore the animal portion of wild shape if it meant that they could turn into an elemental at some point and not have to worry about spending a feat to access spell components.


Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:
sunshadow21 wrote:
Insain Dragoon wrote:
I always thought water elementals functioned similarly to water benders from Avatar. Their are a lot of scenes of water benders removing water from wet clothing and leaving it as dry as a desert.
So, it becomes clear the answer to can you do x with an elemental comes down to how you define an elemental. If you define it as a creature that functions more or less like every other creature in the game, just using fire or water as a base material instead of flesh and bone, you get a different answer than if you define it as spirit that manifests itself as a never ending source of that element shaped roughly into some form which is a different answer from if you see it as above. Just another reason I tend to avoid organized play and random DMs. This game is fun and fairly clear as long as you make sure to get on the same page on how things on things like this work before you begin, but becomes a mess quickly otherwise.

Oh man yeah. Sometimes my GMs want to run everything RAW and runs into issues. I try to remind them that they are the rules, that the rules are whatever they say they are, because the rules don't cover everything, because if they did you could just make PF the video game and it would work just as well as the PnP. The beauty of PnP is that you have to fill the holes and that there are holes to fill.

The rules are just a narrative tool. The mechanics are just a vehicle. WBL, CR, APL are just things that give the GM an easier time to make encounters.

Rules exist for a reason, and changing them or bending them is not something to be done lightly, even if the change seems insignificant. Just like whether or not allowing a torch to be lit off of a fire elemental can lead to a discussion of what exactly an elemental is, every decision has ripple effects. Newer DMs tend to run closer to RAW after one or two rulings that get out of hand until they get a better feel for the process and can anticipate what effects their rulings are going to have down the road. Finding that balance between being too conservative, which tends to leads to players minmaxing and rules lawyering everything, and too loose, which too often leads to players ignoring the rules entirely, is a tough challenge at the best of times. For me, at least when it comes to elementals, I've found a solution that works and is consistent with how I approach the game as a whole; others who approach the game differently will have different results.

In a parallel thread right now, swarmsuits and their precise classification is up for debate. Neither side is entirely right or entirely wrong, but both rulings have ripple effects; as long as the individual DM is consistent in how they treat the ripple effects, it's not usually a problem, but PFS has the unique problem of random DMs, random parties, and the lack of anything but the hard coded rules carrying over to the next adventure, so it comes down to how easy to DMs want to make it on themselves, by handwaving certain rules to save themselves time and an argument, vs how easy do they want to make it on the future DMs, by enforcing every rule, even if it doesn't make sense, that have to deal with any given player that could suddenly feel entitled to always having every DM interpret a given rule the exact same way.


Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:

Ok, but that doesn't mean this RAW issue is relevant to 99.99% of druids.

Also druids pick Natural spell up for animal shapes, not because they don't want to get component pouches burnt/wet.

All this shows is that most druids solve the problem before they have it because they needed that solution to solve other difficulties, not that the problems associated with becoming an elemental don't exist.


Insain Dragoon wrote:
I always thought water elementals functioned similarly to water benders from Avatar. Their are a lot of scenes of water benders removing water from wet clothing and leaving it as dry as a desert.

So, it becomes clear the answer to can you do x with an elemental comes down to how you define an elemental. If you define it as a creature that functions more or less like every other creature in the game, just using fire or water as a base material instead of flesh and bone, you get a different answer than if you define it as spirit that manifests itself as a never ending source of that element shaped roughly into some form which is a different answer from if you see it as above. Just another reason I tend to avoid organized play and random DMs. This game is fun and fairly clear as long as you make sure to get on the same page on how things on things like this work before you begin, but becomes a mess quickly otherwise.


Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:
sunshadow21 wrote:
Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:

"Natural Spell

You can cast spells even while in a form that cannot normally cast spells.

Prerequisites: Wis 13, wild shape class feature.

Benefit: You can complete the verbal and somatic components of spells while using wild shape. You substitute various noises and gestures for the normal verbal and somatic components of a spell.

You can also use any material components or focuses you possess, even if such items are melded within your current form. This feat does not permit the use of magic items while you are in a form that could not ordinarily use them, and you do not gain the ability to speak while using wild shape."

Congratulations, you spent a resource to deal with the problem. Very different from automatic access to the the spell component pouch while melded or leaving the spell component pouch on the surface as a normal object.
There are druids that don't take natural spell?

It's still a resource spent, as it's not part of the base class, and therefore, limits what you can do elsewhere. Whether it should be or not is a different debate, but for now, it's a resource spent on solving a particular problem that must exist to maintain some semblance of balance in the game.


Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:

"Natural Spell

You can cast spells even while in a form that cannot normally cast spells.

Prerequisites: Wis 13, wild shape class feature.

Benefit: You can complete the verbal and somatic components of spells while using wild shape. You substitute various noises and gestures for the normal verbal and somatic components of a spell.

You can also use any material components or focuses you possess, even if such items are melded within your current form. This feat does not permit the use of magic items while you are in a form that could not ordinarily use them, and you do not gain the ability to speak while using wild shape."

Congratulations, you spent a resource to deal with the problem. Very different from automatic access to the the spell component pouch while melded or leaving the spell component pouch on the surface as a normal object.


wraithstrike wrote:
And with that said touching does not equal an attack which is what the burn ability calls for.

This is why I tend to insist on at least some actual exposure to the elemental's surface to light a torch, and why I am pretty sure that most fire elementals would not care for it. Short of on oil laden, pitch soaked, immediately fire ready torch, it's going to take a few seconds to start burning. Short enough that an amused and/or cooperative elemental won't mind it occasionally, but long enough that it will definitely evoke a reaction.


By itself, it's not. When shaped by whatever creates the elementals, enough that direct interaction is usually required to have any effect, as the driving force is going to keep most external leakage of the life energy to a minimum. At least that's how I see it, but then I tend to view elementals as creatures that have basically the same subfunctions within their bodies as most other creatures. They have a source of energy, and can renew their source material on a limited basis, the same way that humans can and do lose some blood or skin but after a certain point, the loss is too much to overcome.

A fire elemental attempting to wear something will expose that object to effects akin to putting that object on a burning surface. The larger the elemental, the hotter the equivalent burning surface. Likewise, something sitting on water is going to get wet. The precise effects will vary as not everything reacts to being wet or getting warm the same way. Usually, for smaller elementals, there's little enough effect to not be worth the effort to track, but spell components are one thing I would track, because the properties that make them useful as spell components are going to make them more prone to react to heat or water than most gear is.


Scavion wrote:
sunshadow21 wrote:
and consider any unprotected spell components (or anything else similar in nature, really) being worn by pretty much any elemental unusable.

This whole dumb argument sprang up around this phrase which has absolutely no basis in the rules. Components are not rendered useless by being wet.

And just so we're touching all our bases.

Spell Component Pouch wrote:
Most spell component pouches are waterproof and can be strung onto a belt or bandolier.
So there we have it. Doesn't matter either way. Elementals can wear armor and other gear. It isn't destroyed by them wearing it since they don't deal damage or otherwise to objects they touch.

The two key parts there that you missed are unprotected and similar objects. Water may not ruin all components, but enough to make anything requiring components functionally inaccessible. Same with fire. And it really comes up with things beyond spell components that people may not think about protecting. A druid in fire elemental form carrying tindertwigs that are not melded into the body will set off the tindertwigs. He will also slowly lose any water stored in a waterskin that is just sitting on the surface of that form. In an actual game, the sentence that most spell components are waterproof would end the issue with water elementals, but unless specific measures were taken against fire, that would still remain; put an unprotected item against a burning surface and it's not going to be immediately usable. Protection is rarely hard or expensive, but it is a measure I expect any player wanting to play such a character to think about.


Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:
I'm not. The fire in fire elementals and the water in water elementals have the same properties as fire and water does in PF.

If that were the case, elementals couldn't exist because in real life, neither water nor fire have form. Something clearly exists in PF that allows for a coherent form; that something will alter to at least some degree the properties of the component parts. You can still get the original properties to work, but it's not an automatic thing, and determining precisely how is not something they can really codify.


Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:
Humans in PF don't run out of blood unless it's bleed damage.

This is the difficulty of the position you are trying to espouse. You can't argue that fire and water have the same properties in PF as they do in real life and then turn around and say that humans don't bleed unless they are hit with a specific attack when lots of people describe the loss of HP as bleeding out of one or more severe wounds. If you are going to choose to ignore descriptions and rules, you have to be consistent about how and when you do so, especially when you are attempting even partial reconstructions of real life.


Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:
Why would the elemental run out of water? It's made from water, that doesn't mean it runs out.

Humans can replace blood over time as well, but that doesn't mean that they give it up willingly or that they can't still bleed to death. The same applies here. You could in theory get water or air from an elemental, but no sane elemental is going to make a habit of letting it happen to them.


wraithstrike wrote:
The poster is claiming it works just like it does in real life, and it being a creature is a non factor so I am wondering how they handle certain real life aspects of this in the game, or how they would if they were a GM.

That is definitely where things can get tricky.


thejeff wrote:
sunshadow21 wrote:

This change doesn't bother as much as the changes to Thor for a few reasons. First, whether or not you like the story, it's hard to deny that the seeds of if have been there a long, long time, unlike with Thor, where they just seem to randomly hand the hammer off to anybody they can think of with no real clear justification of it in the story itself, which works once or twice, but is really starting to get really dry and old. Second, they are actually replacing Steve Rogers and clearly staying within the existing Captain America storyline, whereas with Thor, it feels more like a dry run at launching a new character without actually taking the effort to launch the new character in a way that would secure that character it's own spot in the Marvel universe, all the while writing about the old Thor at the same time.

In the end, the changes to Thor just feel more forced than the changes to Captain America. That isn't to say that the Captain America story will end up being better, just that it feels like a far better buildup to the change than the comparatively cheap cop out they keep using with Thor. With Captain America, they seem to understand how far they can go before causing permanent damage; with Thor, they seem to have kept going beyond the point where story could cover all the holes they are creating.

Aren't you really just basing this on the press release telling us it's Falcon and not telling us who the female Thor is?

I mean, we don't know yet how either change will be set up, do we?

We actually do know how Captain America's is set up aside from the hyper specific details. Likewise, we knew in advance how the death of Peter Parker would setup the new ultimate Spider Man, at least as far as the general plot was concerned. "Someone else takes over the hammer" is thin at the best of times, and even thinner when you look at how Marvel has often publicized such changes. Add in the fact that it's clearly recycled, and it's easier to understand a lot of the skepticism over that particular change and how they are going about it. The switchout for Captain America, on the other hand, actually has a solid premise to it that is actively supported by existing material. The switchout with Thor may end up being the better one, but they will have to create a fair bit of material to explain and support it well.

There also really isn't a go to character to simply hand it off to in Thor's case; there are a few that are close, but none really primed for it as far as I know. With Captain America, there actually is, making the transition a lot easier overall.


wraithstrike wrote:

What happens to water elementals as they leave their water around?

Why are people and things not taking damage just from being near to them?

For me personally, I would answer by saying the things being done require deliberate action, the cooperation of the elemental, and time. A torch won't automatically light just by being near a fire elemental, but sticking it in or on the fire elemental will likely result in it being lit; the fact that the character will likely end up dealing with an irate elemental is secondary for the moment, even if it isn't to the overall scene. Similar reasoning with getting air or water from an elemental. I could easily see elementals shedding air/water the same way that humans shed skin cells; get a large enough elemental and someone with enough time and a proper container could potentially gather enough to be useful. Whether it's enough to be worth the effort would be dubious, but it would still be possible.


This change doesn't bother as much as the changes to Thor for a few reasons. First, whether or not you like the story, it's hard to deny that the seeds of if have been there a long, long time, unlike with Thor, where they just seem to randomly hand the hammer off to anybody they can think of with no real clear justification of it in the story itself, which works once or twice, but is really starting to get really dry and old. Second, they are actually replacing Steve Rogers and clearly staying within the existing Captain America storyline, whereas with Thor, it feels more like a dry run at launching a new character without actually taking the effort to launch the new character in a way that would secure that character it's own spot in the Marvel universe, all the while writing about the old Thor at the same time.

In the end, the changes to Thor just feel more forced than the changes to Captain America. That isn't to say that the Captain America story will end up being better, just that it feels like a far better buildup to the change than the comparatively cheap cop out they keep using with Thor. With Captain America, they seem to understand how far they can go before causing permanent damage; with Thor, they seem to have kept going beyond the point where story could cover all the holes they are creating.


I present Davtumal Millstone, a slightly crazy gnomish alchemist.

Davtumal Millstone:
Davtumal 'Dav' Millstone
Male Gnome Alchemist 1 ( Pathfinder RPG Advanced Player's Guide 26 )
CG Small humanoid (gnome)
Init +2; Senses low-light vision; Perception +8
--------------------
Defense
--------------------
AC 15, touch 13, flat-footed 13 (+2 armor, +2 Dex, +1 size)
hp 10 (1d8+2)
Fort +4 (+2 trait bonus vs. disease and poison), Ref +4, Will +2
Defensive Abilities defensive training (+4 dodge bonus to AC vs. giants)
--------------------
Offense
--------------------
Speed 20 ft.
Melee dagger +2 (1d3+1/19-20) and
longspear +2 (1d6+1/×3)
Ranged bomb +4 (1d6+2 Fire) and
flask thrower +3 (1d6+1/×3) and
sling +3 (1d3+1)
Special Attacks bomb 3/day (1d6+2 fire, DC 12), +1 on attack rolls against goblinoid and reptilian
humanoids
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 1st; concentration +2)
1/day—flare (DC 11), prestidigitation, produce flame
Gnome Spell-Like Abilities (CL 1st; concentration +2)
1/day—dancing lights
Alchemist Spells Prepared (CL 1st; concentration +3):
1st—cure light wounds , true strike
--------------------
Statistics
--------------------
Str 12, Dex 14, Con 15, Int 15, Wis 14, Cha 12
Base Atk +0; CMB +0; CMD 12
Feats Brew Potion, Splash Weapon Mastery, Throw Anything
Traits etymologist, hagfish hopeful
Skills Appraise +6, Craft (alchemy) +8 (+9 to create alchemical items), Linguistics +7, Perception +8,
Sleight of Hand +6, Survival +6, Use Magic Device +5; Racial Modifiers +2 Craft (alchemy), +2
Perception
Languages Common, Draconic, Elven, Giant, Gnome, Goblin, Sylvan
SQ alchemy, mutagen

Gear leather armor, dagger, flask thrower, longspear, sling, alchemy crafting kit, backpack, bedroll,
belt pouch, belt pouch, blanket, winter, chalk (10), chalkboard, charcoal stick (10), fire carrier, flask, flint
and steel, sunrod, tindertwig (2), traveler's outfit, travelling formula book, vial (5), waterskin, 5 gp, 1 sp, 7
cp
--------------------
Special Abilities
--------------------
Alchemy +1 (Su) +1 to Craft (Alchemy) to create alchemical items, can Id potions by touch.
Bomb 1d6+2 (3/day, DC 12) (Su) Thrown Splash Weapon deals 1d6+2 fire damage.
Defensive Training +4 Gain a dodge bonus to AC vs monsters of the Giant subtype.
Hagfish Hopeful +2 trait bonus on Fortitude saves against disease and poison.
Hatred +1 Gain a bonus to attack vs goblinoid/reptilian humanoids.
Low-Light Vision See twice as far as a human in low light, distinguishing color and detail.
Mutagen (DC 12) (Su) Mutagen adds +4 to a physical & -2 to a mental attribute, and +2 nat. armor for
10 min.
Throw Anything Proficient with improvised ranged weapons. +1 to hit with thrown splash weapons.
--------------------
Appearance: nothing particularly notable, a bit on the wild side, but nothing too far out of normal

Personality: Hyper, loves fire (which he usually tries to downplay, given the recent history of the town), can be a bit crazy and wild, but
tries to keep it contained so as not to scare or frighten people

One of many middle children born to a small brewer in Magnimar, Davtumal, who goes usually goes by Dav, also found the processes involved quite interesting, but quickly grew bored of simply making ales. Through some personal experiments on his own and some tutolage from a local alchemist (provided after some of his personal experiments did not go entirely as planned), Dav has learned the basics of alchemy,
and hopes to learn enough to open his own shop one day. In the meantime, he helps out the Deverin family, who routinely ally with his family on business deals.

Roughly 5 years ago, his duties with that family took him to Sandpoint to help deal with the aftermath of the Late Unpleasantness. Falling in love with the town and it's potential, Dav requested to be allowed to
stay, and now helps out at Two Knight Brewery while getting semi-covert lessons on the side from Aliver Podiker. He has made it his goal to win the coins from Hagfish challenge, both because the coin would help him open his own shop, and for the sheer challenge of it. He is generally seen a bit crazy, but no more so than most gnomes. He is generally liked and respected by most in town, though his moderate, centrist views on the politics between the four families and his sometimes not entirely covert lessons from Aliver occasionally causes minor difficulties.

DISCLAIMER: I have run the first part of this AP before. It won't affect the progression of the plot, as I prefer to have that play out through the character's point of view, not my own as a player, but it will mean that I will be more likely to sprinkle in random NPC interactions and recent history a bit more, something I have tried to give a reasonable in game explanation for.


I'll look through my stock of characters, as I have at least one that was written for this AP.


redward wrote:
Note that Enlarge Person contains no capital H 'Humanoid's in its description.

The real question, though, is whether or not that argument is worth it the potential counter arguments and time taken away from actually playing in a particular case. In the case of Enlarge Person, probably. In the case of allowing a swarmsuit, probably not. If a ruling that favors the swarmsuit wrecks a lot of encounters, the problem isn't the swarmsuit, it's the design of the encounters.


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wraithstrike wrote:
sunshadow21 wrote:
While I generally agree with you, Wraithstrike, I would still probably allow lighting the torch (though I wouldn't guarantee the elemental's response to the effort) and consider any unprotected spell components (or anything else similar in nature, really) being worn by pretty much any elemental unusable. I might even consider the getting the water or air if it's a large enough elemental, assuming that the elemental is not actively trying to avoid that particular action. There are certain properties of all the elements that can be adjusted without rewriting all the rules.

I was not discussing what is ok to allow. That is up to a GM to go beyond the rules. I was just making a point about how using flavor or fluff to justify something can lead to unexpected issues, and that people should know that flavor/fluff are not rules.

I am actually more permissive than I seem to be in the rules section.

Fair enough, especially since I included caveats of my own regarding how those additional things might actually play out. Most things along this particular line I would probably say it's not possible because the elemental doesn't like you, because the elemental is too small, or something similar though, not because the rules don't say it's not possible. That way, if they really want to use flavor/fluff to do something, they can as long as they put in enough work to take into account most, if not all, of those unexpected issues. Tends to lead to fewer arguments than saying because the rules say so.


While I generally agree with you, Wraithstrike, I would still probably allow lighting the torch (though I wouldn't guarantee the elemental's response to the effort) and consider any unprotected spell components (or anything else similar in nature, really) being worn by pretty much any elemental unusable. I might even consider the getting the water or air if it's a large enough elemental, assuming that the elemental is not actively trying to avoid that particular action. There are certain properties of all the elements that can be adjusted without rewriting all the rules.


Jaelithe wrote:
Any number of people since that exchange have shown in their posts why this new character isn't and cannot be Thor. Can they be the God(dess) of Thunder? Sure, why not? Can they take the name "Thor"? Can't argue that. Can they simply be this other being? No. No matter the assertions of the author or his admirers/devotees, the answer is self-evidently "No." Power and essence are not personality and consciousness ... and thus they're not identity.

The long term challenge Marvel has is that Mjolner and it's power is already part of Thor's overall identity, so having another character fill in for him, even temporarily, that doesn't feel like a direct ripoff of Thor, all while giving him his powers, his name, and the immediately recognizable bits of his identity, is going to be very tough. By making it a woman, it's going to be that much tougher because a lot of people are going to expect them to continue supporting the fill-in character as a main character after they give Thor his hammer back. It's a tall order for them to pull off.

Ultimately, my concern isn't how well they handle Thor, it's how well they set up and provide the basis for long term support of the fill in character. If they just throw someone in that role long enough to focus on the real Thor's redemption, and than forget about the fill in character, it's a waste of time.


Gaberlunzie wrote:

I've always thought that low-level druids would be the number one mage for an army to try to recruit. In big battles, Entangle is such an awesome spell it's silly. Suspecting a cavalry charge? Ready an action to cast entangle, and they'll stop right in their tracks (or at least those in a 80ft diameter circle). Need to protect your archers? Entangle. Enemy is retreating? A simple entangle will break up formations and also break morale that probably was shaky to begin with (as they are retreating). Even at first level, it has a ten round duration and a 440ft range.

In addition to Entangle, handing out Goodberries can be far more useful than casting cure light wounds since you can spread the healing out (granted, it's not nearly as powerful as Healing hex). In addition, Commune with Birds, Read Weather and Pass without Trace are useful for logistics and scouting, and Diagnose Disease can aid a lot in keeping the army healthy on a prolonged campaign.

Entangle is great when there are plants around, but it hampers your own army as well as the opponent, so it can be a double edged sword. Breaking morale and forcing a retreat doesn't end up so good if your army is unable to give chase and hit the foe while they are scattered. If all you do is force them to retreat and let them regroup later, it loses a lot of it's punch. Most spells run into similar issues or the sheer number of people in an army overwhelms the capacity of the caster, especially a low level caster. Read Weather can just as easily be done by a well trained ranger with survival training, getting intel from animals in general is not the strongest idea because they aren't looking for the same stuff the army is, and a well trained and well supplied medic can do most of what healing magic can do aside from the immediate recovery aspect.

In short, the more people you add, the more casters simply get overwhelmed and magic becomes a double edged sword because it often hampers your own side as much as it does the other side. Most armies will try to have one or two casters, but a good general uses them sparingly and in specific scenarios, not as generic support for the army. Magic is useful in the right scenarios, but it's not a good way to supply the basic needs of an army.


Scavion wrote:
No allies, minimal time, all the while generating isolated destruction on his enemies.

The bolded part is where the druid will run into issues. While most campaigns have sections that are seemingly unrelated to each other, almost all of them end up tying together if they last long enough, and that is where all characters, even druids and wizards, lose the capacity for isolated actions. Spells and magic are good in small, easy to control, tactical scenarios, but they can be hard to control the direct use of in larger strategies that often involve multiple people in multiple locations, large battles with literally hundreds of people on either side, where the strength of magic can quickly become a problem if your enemy has more casters than your side, or managing logistics, supply lines, and lines of communication. Basically, effective and controlled use of magic doesn't scale well as you add more and more people and area to the equation, and most campaigns eventually do precisely that because random dungeon after random dungeon for 20 levels is not something that most people are going to be interested in. Even if it does remain a series of isolated events, the characters are gaining a fair bit of reputation in the world as a whole and the capabilities of magic in general are fairly well known, and all those countermeasures you claim are highly unlikely become more and more common as the opponents increase in power as well and become more and more proactive in their defenses both toward that specific druid and magical attacks in general.

It's very easy for a full caster, especially a druid or wizard, to muck up the plans of their foes; it's usually just as easy for their foes to return the favor if the expectation is being able to work effectively in isolation. The ultimate key to success is maintaining control of the situation once you wrest it away from the other guy, both tactically and strategically; magic, especially high level magic, does little to establish this key aspect of truly having an impact beyond the immediate scene. Anything the caster can do in isolation can usually easily be undone or countered by a rival caster. Throw in the sheer number of ripple effects that high level magic would have, and you could easily end up with an overwhelming local victory that ends up hurting you through the ripple effects in the surrounding areas that end up limiting your future actions.


Insain Dragoon wrote:

In Kingmaker the Druid can be an unstoppable force.

Army of dudes marching at your army? Have the druid become a gopher and make a small network, then have him cast devastating spells in the middle of the enemy army and decimate their morale before your own army hammers them like a blacksmith.

Need to scout an enemy position? Well your Druid can be a Squirrel, Rat, or heck even an Earth Elemental. An Earth gliding druid can't be detected by Alarm or Detect Magic and has a high enough perception check to hear conversations through a foot or more of earth.

With the right support, the druid is dangerous, but that's true of all druids, regardless of archetype. Without that support, your first example is a suicide mission,, given that the enemy probably has casters of their own that can retaliate if their attention isn't fairly quickly diverted elsewhere, and scouting assumes that you have someone to report to.


Scavion wrote:
Even so, these things may not even pop up on the radar till it's too late. A druid building up a water source to flood the enemy encampment, destroying key structures through summoned creatures/wracking storms, and personally assassinating a target by first slipping in as a bat with a +15 to Stealth before ranks and then morphing into something insane with 5 natural attacks tearing them apart before slipping back off into the night as a bat.

The key you're missing is that, yes, the druid can win battles on his own, but he is no better equipped to win the war than anybody else. Those kinds of tactics tend to work once or twice before the bad guys catch on and start to proactively defend against them or actively hunt the druid and exploit his weaknesses. Considering that pretty much every campaign I've ever been in has layers of bad guys, the chances of the druid just "waiting out" the big bad guy of the campaign is virtually nil. After taking out a couple of dungeons or assassinating a few trusted lieutenants, the druid's ability to act solo will be no greater than anybody else's. Every example you mentioned has countermeasures, and assassination attempts can go both ways, especially when the bad guys decide to figure out the precise limits of the druid's "immortality." Now such a druid with the backing of a well developed organization would be terrifying, but those tend to be restricted to NPC villains; PCs rarely develop that kind of resource, especially nature based classes, and those that do tend to take a fair bit to have it develop.

In the end, it's good, it's cool, but it's not the all powerful "I win" ability that you seem to think it is. It takes a lot of resources, time, effort, and allies to pull off what you are describing, none of which can be assumed to be automatically present ahead of time.


Scavion wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:
Wait out an enemy? Like in "waiting for him to die of old age"?
Not entirely. Druids get spells that let them shape the world around them. Over time you could collapse the dungeon in on itself or simply hit and run over a period of time with dozens of summoned monsters. Whereas the Druid is immortal(even if limited), the enemies he's chipping away at likely have finite resources.

A well written foe will be able to not only outlive the druid without having to worry about dying to do so, but they will likely have a much more reliable source of resources to defend the dungeon or actively hunt the druid than the druid will consistently have to attack his foe, either directly or indirectly, unless he can convince enough other allies to help him overcome his foe's overall organization and lines of resources. Anybody that the druid is going to be able to sit and wait is not a foe that is going to hold his attention that long because there is going to be bigger fish to fry out in the world, and campaign wise, such a foe would be a mid level boss or lieutenant at best. A worthy foe capable of forcing the druid to use that particular ability is going to have more than enough resources to overwhelm the druid on his own. A single dungeon collapsing or using summoned monsters only goes so far when the opponent probably has multiple bases and people under him that can also summon monsters to defend the dungeon. The druid, for all the power of his spells, will be bringing less resources to the table, or at best the same amount, than his opponent over time, assuming that the opponent is worth worrying about.


Scavion wrote:
Regardless, the Druid still has access to immortality. Even if it has to jump through a few hoops. Which quite frankly changes a huge portion of how a game might be played since a Druid can literally wait out a lot of enemies.

A few very expensive hoops, not the least of which is time. Time in which the rest of the party still has to deal with the problem, minus a party member; time during which the bad guys are also learning from battle, and adjusting accordingly; and time for any number of other game changing occurrences that the druid is unable to do anything about, or sometimes even know about. Time is the most precious commodity a PC has in any campaign because it is the commodity that the PC has the least control over. Giving up what little control they have over immediate events in order to be around and able to maybe do something about it a week or two later is a major price, and that's before you get into the price for acquiring and maintaining all the spells you need to get back to full strength.

Believe me, any competent DM is going to be able to manipulate the results from that ability and make the player think twice about relying on it any more than absolutely necessary. It's cool and, if used wisely, can be very powerful, but one thing it does not grant is the ability to control the fallout from missing out on the stuff while still recovering or the ability to fully maintain and access all the spells needed while recovering. The druid rarely has the luxury of simply waiting his opponents out, and even if they have the luxury once, people will figure out his weakness, and behave accordingly after the first couple of times. Like most really good tactics the system provides, it's best used sparingly and only in situations that have been setup precisely to deal with it. As a general tactic with little thought put into how it's used, it will hurt the character far more than the rest of the world or campaign.


Odraude wrote:
My singular time playing PFS, the GM wouldn't let me light a torch with a fire elemental, since it cannot do that according to the rules. So I'm inclined to agree with Kwauss. I'm okay with players at the very least, using it to make small amounts of water.

Lighting the torch I could see working as long as the elemental wasn't trying to resist your effort, getting water, not so much, or at least not enough to be useful for anything in mechanical terms unless you are dealing with large or larger elementals. It's not normal water or fire for elementals, it's the equivalent of somebody trying to extract blood or sweat from a human or poke at the nervous system. Small amounts of disturbance may be tolerated, but doing it too much without the express consent and permission of the elemental is not likely going to garner enough benefits to be worth it.


Scavion wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:
Scavion wrote:
Umbranus wrote:
Perhaps he's talking about the reincarnated druid archetype.
I am. It's pretty nuts.
PRD wrote:
Many Lives (Ex): At 5th level, if a reincarnated druid is killed, she may automatically reincarnate (as the spell) 1 day later. The reincarnated druid appears in a safe location within 1 mile of her previous body. At will for the next 7 days, she can sense the presence of her remains as if using locate object as a spell-like ability. If she is killed during these 7 days, she remains dead and does not reincarnate. The many lives ability does not function ifthe reincarnated druid is slain by a death effect. A reincarnated druid cannot be raised from the dead or resurrected, though she can be reincarnated.
He should hope he will never be killed by a death effect or a undead that turn you in an undead, as he can't be resurrected and reincarnate don't work if you died that way.
Diego I know how it works. Those two qualifiers are very specific. You could go a whole campaign without dealing with undead or death effects. Not only that, but the Reincarnated Druid also gets a +4 against Death Effects and has a Strong Fort and Will save. At 20th level, he fails your average CR 20 creature's primary death effect on a one with proper gear.

One part you seem to be missing is that reincarnate doesn't automatically bring him back as the same race, which is determined randomly, which can mean that the concepts are limited to ones that aren't disrupted by the potentially perpetual change in physical stats, and they have to deal with the social implications of suddenly becoming an orc or goblin. Add in the negative levels, and there are plenty of reasons for this character to dread dying.


Diego Rossi wrote:
sunshadow21 wrote:
Jeff Merola wrote:
A third-party source really shouldn't be "close enough" in a rules debate.
In this case, though, they aren't making any new rulings, they are simply organizing things in a slightly different way that all but the pickiest of rules lawyers would simply gloss over. So, in this case, it really is close enough, if even the people doing the formatting isn't officially Paizo.
Reorganizing the content of the different tables, including in them elements that aren't included in the rules, is rewriting the rules.

Again, though, how many people are really going to care about the difference in this case? Paizo themselves called the swarmsuit clothing in the actual description, and it could easily be listed only once under gear to save space and because they didn't feel like reworking the clothing chart for whatever reason, so they threw the swarmsuit in the next most logical location. I get the categories argument, but some categories are definitely looser than others, and not everything always gets placed in the most logical place. Throw in the fact that all of the equipment section has been changed, breaking down tents from torches for readability, and it becomes much harder to argue that they are changing much beyond formatting.

Like I said earlier, while a case can be made to not count the swarmsuit as clothing, it's thin enough to be not worth risking upsetting a player over something that has no long term impact on the game. And it makes dealing with swarms, something very difficult all the way up to the mid levels, that much easier, expanding what I as a DM can throw at a party without them being overwhelmed. It's a win for them, it's a win for me. No point in getting pedantic about what chart it was formally published under.


Jeff Merola wrote:
A third-party source really shouldn't be "close enough" in a rules debate.

In this case, though, they aren't making any new rulings, they are simply organizing things in a slightly different way that all but the pickiest of rules lawyers would simply gloss over. So, in this case, it really is close enough, if even the people doing the formatting isn't officially Paizo.


Jeff Merola wrote:
sunshadow21 wrote:
Just to make this thread intersting, the swarmsuit is actually listed under outfits if you look on the Pathfinder SRD, so it is as valid a use as a cold or hot weather outfit.
If you mean d20pfsrd, that's not an official resource at all. The PRD (which is the official one) lists swarmsuits only under the "Adventuring Gear" heading.

It's close enough for most people, and shows that it isn't all that unreasonable to treat the swarmsuit as clothing. At the very least, it shows that it is on par with the cold weather outfit or hot weather outfit in terms of actual effects in game.


Just to make this thread intersting, the swarmsuit is actually listed under outfits if you look on the Pathfinder SRD, so it is as valid a use as a cold or hot weather outfit.


Personally, I would allow it. While there are legitimate reasons to not allow it, none of them are so overwhelming to be worth the hassle of arguing over it. Sometimes it's best to go with the more favorable ruling and move on to more important things, and this strikes me as being one of those times. Swarms are difficult to deal with even with a swarmsuit, so it's not like you are giving the player an instant win over them.


Irnk, Dead-Eye's Prodigal wrote:
Which is one of the better arguments against 'switch-outs'. Unfortunately, the 'Big Two' have an atrocious track record when it comes to supporting new characters. A five minute browse through either section in your FNCS is unlikely to field more than one title in twenty with a character or team that was initially developed in the last decade, much less the last year or so. While I am a SWM, I can read the writing on the wall well enough to know that, for all that I suspect POC and women would in fact prefer new characters entirely, it is going to be easier to convince the people who make these decisions to support changing who plays the role of the IP than it is to support an entirely new IP...

Comes back to whose buying the books. As the audience changes slowly, so are the characters being supported, and I guarantee that the execs at both major companies would love to be able to sell both old and new. Until the new markets can prove they can stand on their own, of course they are going to not widely support brand new characters. Unfortunately, in the interim, these communities seem all to willing to support the bastardized versions of existing characters, making it that much harder for them to distinguish themselves from the traditional readership.

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