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thejeff's page

Pathfinder Society Member. 18,116 posts (18,921 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist. 2 Pathfinder Society characters. 7 aliases.


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The only time I've used such an all or nothing multiple rolls approach is when the PCs want to try to circumvent something with an off the wall idea that might, but really shouldn't, work.


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ShinHakkaider wrote:
phantom1592 wrote:
ShinHakkaider wrote:

The idea that a campaign should be focused around all of the same PC's making it from beginning to end is alien and in alot of ways lacks verisimilitude considering the level of threats that they usually face. Very few of the starting PC's make it to the end of that first campaign. But some of the PC's who come in later are more memorable than some of the starting ones. But the focus should be on the campaign and keeping the story going.

I'm not really sure what you mean by Alien and Lacks Verisimilitude? MOST of the stories I've read and movies I've watched have central group of characters from the beginning to the end. There may be a change of one or two.. but the 'core' remains. I'm sure they're out there, but right now I'm having a hard time thinking of any story I know where the whole cast is gone by chapter six and a whole new group is carrying the torch.

And that's kind of my point.

I'm playing a game, not reading a book or watching a movie. Both of those media have predetermined outcomes. The author or authors have already decided whats what and as a passive participant youre just along for the ride.

There's no way that I want any game that I run or play in to be like that. Nor do I want to play with players who want that type of game. For me it kind of defeats the point of playing a game.

I find it interesting that there often seems to be this correlation of low death rates with some kind of "passive participant youre just along for the ride".

There are plenty of ways for players to not be passive and drive the game off in unexpected directions without a high death toll. In fact, you can run an awfully railroaded game, killing off PCs left and right. The story and ending are known from the start, the only question is whether it's PC 1 or 5 that'll be there at the end.
Or you can have a game where no one dies, or only a few, but the actions they took and the decisions they made drove the game in their own unpredicted ways.


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Depends. Is that action to light up a stogie and comment on the pretty patterns his blood makes? That's evil.

Is that action to stay in the fight and help keep yourself and others alive? Nah. That's pretty much expected, even good.
Is that action to run for your life because the group is getting slaughtered? Not heroic, but certainly not evil.

"leaving a PC to die if there was an easy opportunity to prevent that death" and "chose to withhold basic, free, first aid to teach a different agent a lesson about being prepared." Doesn't that pretty much say it all?


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Ignoring the classed NPC stuff for the moment, the kobold is currently roughly on par with where it should be according to the general monster design guidelines, which only go down to CR 1/2.
Hp are low for CR 1/2, probably right for 1/4.
AC is high.
Attack is a point high, damage low, for a 1/2.

Bump their AC up with better armor and give them higher damage weapons and you're pushing them way out of the proper range - but weirdly so. Hard to damage, but die if you do hit them. With better weapons, they'd still be hitting too well, but now doing damage almost on par with CR 1/2.

Whatever the NPC guidelines say, with gear to give them a couple points of AC and a couple points more damage - especially the light crossbow, they're at least CR 1/2.


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Drejk wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Drejk wrote:
Quote:
Dowries and bridepieces are loaded words, and the context they were used in was gender specific, and if they aren't inherently misogynistic I haven't seen evidence otherwise. The backstory Harsk the dwarven ranger iconic doesn't even discuss marriage let alone dowries.

With the explanation made by Crystal in the post above, that by bride price she actually meant a male equivalent of dowry, indeed the dowry could be (pardon the pun) divorced from misogyny - if parents of both bride and groom are expected to invest comparable* amount of wealth into the newly wed couple, or if both male and female are expected to provide comparable amount of wealth before entering marriage.

In the same vein it could be possible to present dwarven birde/groom price as exchange of gifts between the parents/clans of both instead of being gift traded for woman.

Actually, it sounded like it was intended to be one or the other, depending on the status of the families involved - paying to marry up the social ladder.

I understood Crystal's sentence "Dwarves do this for both their male and female children, and they have different words for each because the story was written in English and English uses two different words for this." as expressing that the dowry and bride price were intended to mean the same for different genders. I see nothing in her final post that would support real word meaning of bride price as payment to parents.

Also, with wealth as social standing, paying to marry up the social ladder would be a bit strange, because the bigger wealth means being on a higher rung of a social ladder. Giving away wealth would mean dropping down the ladder instead of raising...

So you understood and are just arguing about her using the wrong words? Fine.

And wealth is not always social standing. Think nouveau riche families marrying into old money. Or of course hereditary titles and positions. Or it might mean a loss for the family, but a step up for the child. How many real families sacrifice to ensure a better future for their children?


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Liz Courts wrote:
You realize you could just ask Crystal what she meant, instead of going back and forth about it?
Or even just read the actual post and look at the context rather than just jumping on specific words:
Quote:
Dowries and brideprices aren't inherently misogynistic in a fictional setting. They're part of how dwarven families make their available children more attractive to better marriages. You want your child to marry better than they have now, so you sweeten the pot so a family of a higher social class will okay the marriage. Is that necessarily progressive? No, but dwarves don't generally marry for love so much as to secure family lineages and political alliances. Dwarves do this for both their male and female children, and they have different words for each because the story was written in English and English uses two different words for this.

She even comments on the words.


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Anzyr wrote:
Abrisene wrote:
Stuff

I meant your rules, not a quote by someone else. But if you are willing to have the villain cast Mass Suffocate and TPK when the entire party fails the save, then that's fine. The important thing is that the game drives the story, not the other way around. Sometimes the story the game tells is "The Heroes lose."

Final note: People talk about TPKs all the time.

Yeah. Sometimes, it was awesome.

Sometimes it's just bongoing about bad GMs. I still bring up the 1st level AD&D party that got eaten by a purple worm from time to time. Doesn't mean I thought that was a great game.

Find out what the players want. Give it to them. If that's a meatgrinder, that's cool. If it's a story driven cakewalk, that's cool too.

If it's too far from what you want to run, find a different group. Or compromise, if there's a middle ground you'll both enjoy.


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Muad'Dib wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Muad'Dib wrote:

At our table the heartless fates tumble in open view across the table, feasting on the tears of lesser men.

Cheating of any kind is not allowed and this starts with the GM. The closest I've ever seen to player cheating at our table (in recent years) are players who roll attacks or skill checks before being promoted or before I as GM have given approval. These are most often honest mistakes of eagerness on the players part. In such cases I just ask that they re-roll in the open for all to see.

We are all grown ups and this arrangement has never been an issue.

I'll often roll attacks and damage while the person before me in initiative is still doing his turn (I'm not sure what "being promoted" means in this context). It's not cheating, it's speeding up the game. I have my numbers ready to go when he turns to me.

Only when I don't expect my actions to change based on the PC before me , of course.

"Being promoted" is just an acknowledgment that we (the GM and the other players) are paying attention to the upcoming dice roll. The dice rolling in open view is dramatic often eliciting high fives, fist bumps, cheers, and at times groans.

I make no judgement on your actions or your game theJeff.

It tends to happen most often in the combats that are starting to drag and have lost most of the drama.

We roll in the open, but don't worry too much about monitoring everyones rolls every time. If someone was actually cheating even semi-regularly, someone would catch it.


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One thought that would tie in the mining, but still technologically primitive aspect would be to give them something like bronze armor and weapons.

Though the real problem remains using the original folklore source of little monsters that set traps for miners with something intended to actually function as a primitive tribal society.


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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:

It's the constant "Snoozeville versus Struggle" playstyle. If you play it where things are too easy or easy enough, the story becomes extremely boring and unfun to play. If you play it where the things are too hard, the story becomes impossible to properly finish, and is also unfun to play (probably because you're save-or-sucked to death).

Some players like to breeze through things. Some players like impossible challenges just to see if they can beat them, and if they do, say "Yeah, I did that, suck it Blues." If you don't like things being automatically killable or being cannon fodder, then raise the stakes. Get out of that damn straitjacket of a playstyle, mix things up, make them interesting, take a damn good look at what you can do to make even the weakest of creatures the most terrifying things to battle against, and watch the PCs struggle for their existence, fighting tooth and nail to survive.

And into this other damn straitjacket of a playstyle.

Figure out what your players want and come up with a compromise.

Also remember that players may like easier challenges for reasons other than just breezing through things. It might let them turn down the optimization knob on their builds, while still getting what they want for an in-play challenge. Challenges also often look tougher from the player side than the GM side. Ask them if they're enjoying the level of challenge they're seeing.

Of course, if you really want to crank the knob up, don't stop by spending that equipment budget on slightly better armor and weapons - spend it on one-shot items - tanglefoot bags and other alchemical items, buffing potions and the like. You can make an encounter way above its theoretical CR. :)


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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Nathanael Love wrote:
You guys win man-- Kobolds bad/evil/dumb exist for the sole purpose of being mercilessly slaughtered by PCs and should always have only equipment that provides them with no statistical advantage whatsoever.

Technically, the role Kobolds play is also the role any monster plays in Pathfinder: To get killed by PCs. Sure, there's the occasional BBEG with his "I'll get you Gadgets!" speech, where he gets away without getting killed, but he is still defeated, everybody knows the BBEG is gonna lose his life in the end. It's typical storyline writing, slaying the dragon, saving the princess, living happily ever after, blah blah blah.

If you don't like that sort of gameplay, then it seems you should be mature enough to play a different type of campaign, where the roles are reversed (the PCs are the underdogs getting hunted by other groups of adventurers).

And the purpose of those other adventurers would be to be killed by the PCs.

I suppose you could run a game where the purpose was to kill the PCs, but I doubt many groups would take well to regular TPKs.


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Nathanael Love wrote:

You guys win man-- Kobolds bad/evil/dumb exist for the sole purpose of being mercilessly slaughtered by PCs and should always have only equipment that provides them with no statistical advantage whatsoever.

Never mind that Orcs who also have light sensitivity are listed with Falchions-- a sword that takes a massive amount of skill and long hours at the forge to create. Or the Kobolds must be dumber/less capable than the Orcs-- despite the Orcs taking penalties to Int and Wis that Kobolds don't, perhaps they aren't as skilled in hand eye coordination despite having a bonus to dex that Orcs don't get?

Never mind that the Kobold is listed as having racial bonus in profession miner. Those Kobolds mine for ore, but then have to steal anything metal they use because, again-- Kobolds only role in the world is to be slaughtered by PCs.

They must be mining only raw gold ore because its shiny, and stacking it up in big piles while they use stone spears. Must be using stone picks to do the mining with too?

Because obviously differences in culture and role in the world are meaningless. Every creature should be equipped with the gear most efficient at killing PCs.

There is a bit of confusion with kobolds, I'll admit. Largely linked to the conflation of their mythic origins as mining goblins with the tribal role they play in the world.


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Nathanael Love wrote:
the David wrote:

Because if you optimized a kobold it wouldn't be a CR1/4 anymore?

I mean, you could give it 130 gp worth of armor and 50 gp worth of weapons as described in the Creating NPC's chapter. You could give it a combat feat instead of Skill Focus (Perception), but it would alter the challenge rating. (Don't feel bad, I had to learn that the hard way.)

So yeah, you could optimize every monster in the Bestiary. That doesn't make it a good idea.

This is strictly false. A creature whose hit dice are solely a factor of class levels are always Level-1 for PC classes and level-2 for NPC classes.

Regardless of equipment, Level 1 Kobold warrior= CR 1/4, Level 1 Human warrior= CR 1/4, level 1 Goblin warrior= CR 1/4, ect.

Sure, you obviously don't want to throw every Kobold into Plate mail, but Leather armor is only 5 GP cheaper than Hide which would improve their AC by 2 and a Flail or is only 6 GP more than a Spear and would either do the same damage in a single hand or more damage as a two handed weapon.

The only reason they are listed that way in the book is so they can be slain easily by murder hobos. . . it's a hold over of earlier editions and the "Kobolds/goblins/orcs dumb/evil only exist to be slain" mentality.

Not true. With PC wealth and PC classes, they're CR=Level.

NPC Gear Adjustments wrote:
You can significantly increase or decrease the power level of an NPC with class levels by adjusting the NPC's gear. The combined value of an NPC's gear is given in Creating NPCs on Table: NPC Gear. A classed NPC encountered with no gear should have his CR reduced by 1 (provided that loss of gear actually hampers the NPC), while a classed NPC that instead has gear equivalent to that of a PC (as listed on Table: Character Wealth by Level) has a CR of 1 higher than his actual CR. Be careful awarding NPCs this extra gear, though—especially at high levels, where you can blow out your entire adventure's treasure budget in one fell swoop!

More importantly, not everything needs to be designed most efficiently to fight PCs. Spears are hunting weapons. Hide only bumps AC by one and penalizes stealth.

Plus, as said above, they're tribal cave dwellers. Spears, slings and leather are appropriate, even if not optimal. If you're dealing with the Great Kobold Empire, they'll have better gear.


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Kalindlara wrote:

From a world-building perspective, how would you recommend integrating such a form of unequal acceptance?

I'd actually done something similar for Cheliax (male/male being accepted while female/female was discouraged), since one of my players had a concept that called for it.

Honestly, I think you nailed it right there: Put it in place when a player has a concept that requires it.

Leave it fairly open otherwise.


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In fairness, your earlier post said "fun I had would sometimes depend in part on whether or not tablemates within a certain demographic thought I (or my other tablemates, for that matter) was roleplaying."

Which I didn't initially read as "because they'd publicly shame me if they didn't like it", but more as "It's hard to have fun unless everyone's on board with the way we're all roleplaying."

That post wasn't at all clear to me. I can see how Aranna took it that way. Your next one on the subject of course made it obvious that was wrong.


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Voadam wrote:
thejeff wrote:
A black (Garundi) pirate captain.

Dragonlance did it decades ago. ;)

Though I'm still not sure where the asians are in Dragonlance, I vaguely remember some mongol types in the other continent boxed set but nothing in the novels or modules.

And I don't recall any of their gods being portrayed directly as black either, although they had each culture picturing the gods appearing as themselves.

Yes, I'm sure they did.

But that specific post was in response to a complaint that Paizo lacked minority villains. Nothing to do with Dragonlance or Paizo being the first and only to have minority villains.
She also seems to be a pirate, but not actually a villain.

But that's OK. We've already learned that Dragonlance is the bestest, most inclusivest setting ever. Putting all of Paizo's efforts to shame even decades later. :)
Despite all the heroes of the main storylines being basic white fantasy types, except for the rather generic Native American pastiche.


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Snowblind wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
Rikkan wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
I understand you perfectly well. You are saying the penalty from possibly failing is what is stopping taking 10.
I'm not saying that. What I and the FAQ is stating is that possibly failing and suffering severe consequences is distracting / a threat. You're free to believe that ignoring the pathfinder design team is the proper way forward, but the FAQ is still part of the rules.
I think you are misinterpreting the design team if you think being harmed by failing stops taking 10, which is the same thing as the penalty stopping it. There is no real difference.

The penalty for failing the Contact Other Planes check is getting your spellcasting and ability scores nuked.

Getting your spellcasting and ability scores nuked(the penalty for failure) is a significant and distracting threat.

Therefore one reasonable interpretation is that severe penalties like dying or getting your spellcasting and ability scores nuked prevent taking 10 because they represent significant and distracting threats.

Can you think of any other reasonable explanation as to why getting your spellcasting and ability scores nuked on failure is a significant and distracting threat? If you can't, then severe penalty=can't take 10 is the ONLY reasonable interpretation.

The other reasonable interpretation involves the actual words of the FAQ:
Quote:
Having your Int and Cha blasted down to 8 by an extraplanar entity is a significant and distracting threat

According to the FAQ, the stat loss is caused by enemy action, thus making it far more like combat than climbing a wall is.


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I think what this whole discussion really shows (again!) is that the rules for stealth and perception and surprise are really confused and inconsistent.


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Mystic_Snowfang wrote:
And on the comment about the lack of non-white-male villains. You do realize if there are minority baddies then they could be also accused of being racist.

Plus, there have been - A lesbian queen. A black (Garundi) pirate captain. A witch queen. Those come to mind immediately, just from the few APs I'm familiar with. I suspect there have been others.


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"Devil's Advocate" wrote:

Theros Ironfeld wasn't included much in the novels as they had to trim over half of them, but he was a blacksmith that was forced into slavery after loosing his arm. It was through his dedication and mastery of hard work and the later acquisition of the Silver Arm of Ergoth that allowed to recreate the Dragonlances and present them in the time of greatest need.

Depending on your point of view, Tanis can be either a representation of bisexuality, caught between two very different worlds and not fully accepted by either, or the more common half breed. In the first, Laurana is the more feminine aspect while Kitiara is the masculine, and it also plays a great deal into how his character is least of all understood even by his closest friends. More of a read-between-the-lines case than an explicit one, as the character as presented is not bisexual.

There is also something to Tas being gay. Again, it's more read-between-the-lines, but there are a lot of comments like "when are you going to find a good Kender (Halfling) woman and settle down, start a family,. . ." and his reply is something like "I've tried. I just, well, I can't really related to other Kender anymore." The given connotation is that he has grown up, but it could also very easily be suggesting he doesn't have any attraction to females.

For the Christian part, Tracy Hickman is a devout Mormon (I believe), and he and other have included a lot of aspects in there, some as easter eggs and others as parables. For example, the Platinum Discs of Mishakal (that hold the greatest gift for mankind) is an allusion to the Joseph Smith's Golden Plates. Paladine is often presented as a carring father that wants mortals to make the right choices on their own, there are more than a few miraculous curings of the "get up and walk" style.

Both Gilthanus' and Silvara's as well as Huma's and Gwyneth are tales of interracial relationships, (as well as the more upfront Tanis and Laurana), and there is also something to be said for Raistlin being a metaphor for transgender.

Theros, I'll give you, though I don't remember him.

For the other stuff - there are half-elves (and half-orcs) throughout D&D (and thus PF) from the beginning who could play the metaphorical role you describe. Similarly for the others - you can read things into the characters if you choose to, that may or may not have been intended. In terms of inclusiveness, there's a big difference between that and actually including open non-analogy characters.

And yeah, as xavier c said, nearly every fantasy setting includes Christian references at that level.


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"Devil's Advocate" wrote:
thejeff wrote:
"Devil's Advocate" wrote:
Morzadian wrote:
Earlier versions of D&D like Greyhawk has black gods (Touv pantheon) but has far less inclusion than Pathfinder, as Pathfinder has positive black characters, like Quinn the Investigator iconic.

Huh???

Pathfinder is very far from inclusive. They might be more inclusive in some specific cases, namely gender and orientation, that's also about it in. But even for just those two, they are pretty far behind the curve, (considering thing like the WoD, oddly Greyhawk, Dragonlance, and many other similar settings). Don't get me wrong, they do a pretty good job in that sense, but there are a lot of groups out there that Pathfinder/Paizo have not touched or outright decided they will not.

I'm sure there are lots of groups Paizo hasn't touched and maybe even some they've declared they won't touch, but "far from inclusive" and "pretty far behind the curve" are very strong statements and I'll need some evidence. At least examples so I know what you're talking about.

Well, if you count yourself as an "internet expert" than WoD basically goes without saying. So, lets just look at Dragonalance.

Dragonlance, in much the same way as the X-Men movie are an analogy for homosexuality, is an analogy for, well inclusion. It has a multitude of very important characters, ranging from black to white to asian to "green" and "purple". It presented strong and independent women, and men, and a broad range of motivations and personalities. Unlike Pathfinder, it didn't shriek in fear at including everyone, so there are things like Judeo-Christianity in there, or atheism, native americans, blacks, interracialism, heroes (and villains) of all sorts.

And the fact that it's over 30 years old says something. It also says a lot that Dragonlance's war cry I "We need each other to stand strong" while Pathfinders is more along the lines of "OH, pick me, I have a _____ as an Iconic. See how progressive I am. I must be the first one to do it."...

Well, I don't count myself an "internet expert", but I'm willing to concede WoD, with the caveat that as LazarX, it's our world with twists rather than a new creation. That said, it was also pretty Eurocentric and bits of their treatment of other cultures and groups made me cringe at the time - often being more US/European pop-culture takes than anything else.

For Dragonlance, I only read the original novels (maybe 2 series?) and a couple modules and haven't done so in decades. They did have women as major characters, though I can't really comment on their roles at this point. I don't recall (and a quick internet search doesn't help) much racial diversity - though I guess Riverwind(?) & Goldmoon(?) were basically Native American?
I may be forgetting or they may have come in later, but I don't remember any black or asian characters.

I have no idea what you mean to imply by "analogy for inclusion". You can also present an analogy for something without actually including it. In fact that's how you usually do it. The original X-Men were an analogy for racism and were all white. Then it became more homosexuality, but it was still a long time before there was a homosexual character. You could have a strong theme of "We need each other to stand strong", but just not include people of different races or give them narrow stereotyped roles.

And really, "Judeo-Christianity"? In Dragonlance? As an analogy or actual Jews and Christians? Cause that's hard to fit in.

I'm also not sure why you think Paizo shrieks in fear at including everyone. They don't have Judeo-Christianity, for what I think are obvious reasons. They haven't done much if anything with Native Americans, though there is a place in the world for them and there's been some talk of it. They do have atheism, blacks, interraciallism and heroes and villains of all sorts. So, near as I can tell, you're way off base there.


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"Devil's Advocate" wrote:
Morzadian wrote:
Earlier versions of D&D like Greyhawk has black gods (Touv pantheon) but has far less inclusion than Pathfinder, as Pathfinder has positive black characters, like Quinn the Investigator iconic.

Huh???

Pathfinder is very far from inclusive. They might be more inclusive in some specific cases, namely gender and orientation, that's also about it in. But even for just those two, they are pretty far behind the curve, (considering thing like the WoD, oddly Greyhawk, Dragonlance, and many other similar settings). Don't get me wrong, they do a pretty good job in that sense, but there are a lot of groups out there that Pathfinder/Paizo have not touched or outright decided they will not.

I'm sure there are lots of groups Paizo hasn't touched and maybe even some they've declared they won't touch, but "far from inclusive" and "pretty far behind the curve" are very strong statements and I'll need some evidence. At least examples so I know what you're talking about.


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LazarX wrote:
Lady Kamari Ipeq wrote:

Where does it say what the gods' skin color is?

Different artists will picture gods differently, its not like the gods sit down for a portrait.

So the people in the Mwangi Expanse probably picture gods very differently from how the people on Northern Astivan picture the very same gods.

Kind of like how those Europeans show Jesus as a white dude?

Certainly true, but it also matters how it's presented to us the players. If all the actual pictures are of whites, but theres a note somewhere that other cultures portray them differently that still presents to us a very white set of gods.

Showing us white and black gods (and all the other hues!) and still adding notes that different cultures portray them differently gets the same point across, but also lets everyone see it viscerally. More so if they actually portray the same god in different ways. A picture is worth a thousand words, they say.


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DungeonmasterCal wrote:
If we did in real life what we do in Pathfinder we'd attack a faith we didn't like or approve of and poop on their altars. *tries to shove the train back on track*

Cause that's never happened in real life.

Edit: Nor is it something I often do in game, for that matter. Barring the kinds of faith that are sacrificing captives or some such. Those altars get desecrated after stopping the sacrificing and killing the murderers. Usually not desecrated by so crude a method though.


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Draco Bahamut wrote:
Morzadian wrote:

It's not a simple issue that's binary is nature (black or white), How allegorical is the Pathfinder campaign setting supposed to be?

Do we ban Amiri because she goes against the ideas promoted in contemporary feminist theory?

Do we hold Paizo responsible for such actions? And what do we do about it?

Do we bombard their twitter accounts like critically minded feminists did to Joss Whedon during Avengers 2?

Paizo is just a role-playing game publisher not justice's hand for all of the world's woes. They do have a policy of inclusion not exclusion, and they do that admirably, although they do have to cater to the interests of a broad range of people, and make products that sell.

Not everyone views Pathfinder as a vehicle for social progression, and its fine that people do, but I think the history of D&D/Pathfinder and its community is strong enough to have many versions of the Pathfinder game.

Create some african gods and submit them to a 3PP publisher, accountability starts at home, rather than always expecting other people to do it for you.

Edit: I have studied post-colonial theory while at university, and queer theory, my senior lecturer, Adam Geczy wrote a book about it, so I have some idea how complex the issue is. It's not an easy fix and can be divisive even among people within the same community. Paizo are doing their best in the often turbulent socio-political climate we exist in.

So, what you are saying is that Paizo don´t want money from black people ? I am ok with that.

At worst he's saying that Paizo doesn't have to. I don't think that matches well with Paizo's own stance - as shown both in statements and in characters other than gods.

From earlier in this thread:
Erik Mona wrote:

To be perfectly honest there are not enough of them in the setting right now, and the ones that ought to have Garundi features ended up a goth woman with white hair, a fey-looking white dude with half a face, and a nature spirit with a pretty inhuman form.

Honestly, this has a lot to do with the pantheon and the campaign setting being designed concurrently, so the gods had largely taken form before the ethnicities of the campaign setting began to gel.

When we get around to detailing the rest of Garund we will have more of an opportunity to address this issue, but for now we don't have a lot of great options for what you are looking for.

That being said, I can easily see the folk of Thuvia imagining Abadar as a dark-skinned Garundi, and so on, so there is always that somewhat unsatisfying tactic to fall back on before we address the issue in print.


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I like how everyone has strict, hard limits on what is or is not roleplay. And how they're all different.

And how they use a lot of the same words, so until someone goes into more detail it's easy to assume they mean the same thing you do.
Hama's first post on this page is a great example. I, and apparently HyperMissingno, read "not staying in character is a lack of role-play" as "doing things that don't fit the character" when it was apparently meant as "not speaking the character's lines".


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Doomed Hero wrote:
Egyptians don't qualify as black?

Not really. Black is usually used to refer to Sub-Saharan Africa descent, which really refers to several very distinct groups.

Historically, southern (Upper) Egypt would be from those groups - Nubia and Kush. Northern, Lower Egypt is North African. Genetically distinct from sub-Saharan Africa.

In Golarion's terms: Garundi rather than Mwangi.


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thegreenteagamer wrote:
I like Batman, but I prefer the Punisher because he steps outside of right and wrong and does what will make the world a better place, even if it makes him indivually a worse person. There is no benefit to the revolving door prison system, Arkham, etc. Two in the chest one in the head and you never would have to deal with the Joker again.

Oddly, the Punisher seems to have recurring villains too. Not as many, but that's because he doesn't have a dozen regular monthly titles.

It's a comic book trope, not a moral test. Besides, the number of times the Joker's "died", has to be in the dozens. Two in the chest, one in the head and 2-3 years later a new writer would want to use him and concoct an excuse to bring him back.


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thegreenteagamer wrote:

Well, my heroes tend to devolve into vengeful antiheroes over time anyway. For example my CG oracle of life just got tired of dealing with the dickery of the Shackles and got more jaded with time, and eventually was like "F*** it, I'm not a cleric, I get my powers no matter what. You guys cut him open until he talks, I'll keep him alive until he wishes he were dead. I don't have time for this crap any more. I tried talking nicely with you, but if you want to be a stubborn dick, I can work with that, too."

In 3.5 I had a NG druid who went to N when his half brother died out of vengeance, etc, and eventually NE because the GM was pissing me off with his interpretation of what is and isn't the correct way to interact with an animal companion, so I said, "f*** it, I'm evil then, I don't need this crap. Now animals are a tool for me to use. Happy now?" (In my defense that GM was a dick who treated everyone like crap except the girl he was boning at the time.)

I'm noticing a pattern, in hindsight. My efforts to do good, when hit by a wall, usually result in "f*** it, I don't need this crap," and then a shift downward in alignment.

...*thinks about all previous characters* hmmm...neutral, neutral, good then downshift to neutral to evil...evil...evil...good then downshift to neutral...

...Yeah, that's like 3/4 of what happens to my good characters in retrospect.

Rule of GMing - reward the behavior you want to see more of. If you want player to play good, heroic characters, make good and heroism work. Punish them, make torture and murder the most or only effective ways to succeed and you don't get characters who rise above those tempations or perish holding to their code - you get characters who survive and win by those rules. Paranoid, amoral jerks.

And talk to your players. Find out how they want to play. Does the good character want his morals to be constantly tested and challenged? Then do it. If he wants to be the shining hero, saving and redeeming people, let him do that. Don't make him rely on torture to save others.


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Crystal Frasier wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
Crystal Frasier wrote:

It varies from person to person, but:

1) Most trans people don't want their old name shared, especially without their permissions. To most people, especially women who've transitioned and live fulltime, it is a vulnerability, like sharing their medical information or allergies without their permission.

Is there a place I can find the statistics on this sort of thing?
It was a giant mistake for me to come back into this thread

I don't think it was you making the mistake.

But thank you. It clarified some things I hadn't thought through.


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I feel so cheap.

Rules ~$80 80
modules ~5*15 75
aps 19*20 380
companion/campaign ~20 20

So roughly $555 (Of course, that's ignoring the subscription discount)

That's probably more than I've spent on any other game system. With the possible (inflation adjusted) exception of AD&D.

I'm not a fan of lots of rules and I usually play homebrew content. You really can play an RPG for years with nothing but the core rules.


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Atarlost wrote:
thejeff wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
Rub-Eta wrote:
Fourleaf wrote:
Also, would you let your players do this to their party? (I corrected this for you)
I would. I'm not going to tell a player "No, you can't do this" when it's totaly legal, rules wise. [

So when a player sez his pC murders all the other PC's in their sleep and takes their stuff- and keep doing this time after time, so that no one but him gets to play more than a day- - well, that's "totaly legal, rules wise

"? And it's not by the way.

Of course it's very easy to tell a player not to do this since you are the DM and you can say "Hey, this is a No Evils campaign, that was evil, that PC is now my NPC."

It's even easier to say: "Don't be a dick or don't bother showing up next week."

Metagame problems are best solved out of game.

But imagine how hard it would have been to get an NPC trusted by the party enough that his betrayal would sting without the players being upset at the GM for the twist. If you let the jerk betray the party and then declare his character an NPC after he does so you get the sort of personal antagonist you could never get otherwise in a normal gaming group.

It might even be worth giving him warnings to string the misbehavior along to get an even more hated antagonist out of the deal.

Even worse, IMO. Fellow PCs are generally given more latitude. "PC glow". You usually can't just kick PCs out of the group or not bring the new character along. Taking advantage of that generally makes it feel like the GM and one player are conspiring against the others. The resulting anger/frustration are likely to be directed against the people as the character.

It also sets up potential future problems - don't trust any new PCs not to be set ups. It's hard enough to come up with plausible reasons for replacement characters to join up. Not a good idea to add justifiable player paranoia.


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Arturius Fischer wrote:
TheJeff wrote:
Without even looking at his data, because I've looked into this before,

And here I thought Clarey was silly for slamming on the movie without having watched it. Now you're slamming on his (so-called) data without even looking at it.

I think another poster summed it up well: "I'm so damn outraged by this thing that I've not even bothered to watch myself before getting outraged about."

I went back and read it again, since you were so polite about it. Yeah, he said basically what I'd though. Pulled a couple basic tax charts and misread them. The charts show income tax (almost certainly just federal), which is fair in the context of talking about the tax cuts, but gets blurred into all taxes in his rant, which is par for the course. I didn't need to read it because everyone who makes that "poor people are parasites because they pay no taxes" does exactly the same thing.

Arturius Fischer wrote:
TheJeff wrote:
Perhaps he meant they don't pay much federal income tax

If you read it, you know he didn't segregate and just listed it all as 'income tax'. Of course, there are other taxes, and it's entirely possible that the chart just shows Federal level and not state + local, but we don't know, because of the picking-and-choosing he used to select the examples. Maybe he's intellectually honest about it, or maybe he just cherry-picked the parts that supported his argument.

Of course, all this is immaterial, and a nice little distraction besides, as the entire rant is to break down the silly notion that "tax cuts benefit only the rich." He shows how the tax cuts improved the situation for the poor.

Not really. He showed some tables from another source and ignored the details. Showing that the change in tax rate was greater the higher your income, which wasn't really his point, though technically he was correct. The poorest got a small tax cut. Which isn't quite the same as "improved the situation for the poor". And also ignores the deficits and service cuts spawned from those tax cuts, which were showing even back in 2006.

But then he goes off on the actual attack on the poor, which isn't immaterial and only tangentially related to showing how tax cuts helped them.
CC wrote:
Secondly, I'm getting mighty sick and tired of your greedy scum bucket parasites known as "the poor" who think you have it so rough when in reality, you don't pay a freaking dime for any government service if you're in the bottom 60% of income earners. Free roads, free schools, free health care, free defense. Let alone you have the audacity to demand that the rich pay more in taxes.

And that part is just blatantly wrong. He's not limiting that to federal income tax but "don't pay a freaking dime". (BTW, how do the bottom 60% both get a tax cut and "not pay a freaking dime".) Ignoring of course all the non-income taxes they do pay.

Arturius Fischer wrote:
TheJeff wrote:
Being poor is tough. Being a Lucky Ducky who doesn't have to pay income tax doesn't make up for it.

Don't forget this part: "Let alone you have the audacity to demand that the rich pay more in taxes."

That is another part he addresses. The complaints that the rich "don't pay enough" by the people who pay the least.

Well yeah, because that's where the money is. Should we take more from those who are swimming in piles of cash or from the Lucky Duckies who don't owe any income tax because they're so broke they're already only getting by on food stamps?

The audacity of the poor working single mother demanding the rich stock broker in his limo snorting coke through hundred dollar bills pay a couple percent more in taxes that won't affect his lifestyle in the slightest. If it's so easy to be poor, since you don't have to pay taxes, maybe some of the rich wouldn't mind swapping places?


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Arturius Fischer wrote:
Doomed Hero wrote:
The whole Mad Max thing isn't even the tip of the iceberg of crazy b*+*%#%~ that Clarey spouts. For example-

Oh, this should be fun, let's look at these 'crazy examples'...

What you claim he says:

Doomed Hero wrote:
The bottom 60% of american workers are leeches

What he really says:

"tired of your greedy scum bucket parasites known as "the poor" who think you have it so rough when in reality, you don't pay a freaking dime for any government service if you're in the bottom 60% of income earners."
He said the poor who think they have it so rough are parasites. You know, the ones claiming that the rich need to pay more when the chart shows them paying about 2%. (Assuming, of course, the chart is right.)
Reading the article would make that apparent.

Parasites, leeches, seems basically equivalent to me.

It's also nonsense. Without even looking at his data, because I've looked into this before, I can tell you that people in the bottom 60% of income pay plenty for their government services. Perhaps he meant they don't pay much federal income tax, but that's far from all the taxes and fees that exist.
They don't pay much income tax because they don't make much money. The rich do pay more and the percentage they pay has been going up, strictly because the percentage of the total income they make has been going up too.

But lousy economic attitudes aside, it's the attitude that the poor who think being poor is rough are "greedy scum bucket parasites" just because they don't make enough to pay income tax that shows his colors. Being poor is tough. Being a Lucky Ducky who doesn't have to pay income tax doesn't make up for it.


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LazarX wrote:
Aberzombie wrote:

Yes, but since they're supposedly basing this off the version of Lucifer envisioned by Gaiman, Sandman comics established that he was, indeed, the second most powerful being in existence.

Then again, in Sandman, he had slipped enough in power that Hell was now being rulled by a Triumvirate with him, Baal, and Geryon, I think.

The perils of a shared universe. I think that was set up in Hellblazer.

According to Sandman, that wasn't so much "slipped in power" as bored and trying to amuse himself with games. The same boredom that led him to quit.

Quote:
In the beginning I enjoyed it. I was -- I am -- more powerful than any of them. I could have destroyed any of them -- perhaps even all of them -- without much effort. So I manipulated them; set them one against the other; let them faction and divide and plot. But... but I grew weary, Dream Lord. Mightily weary. I ceased to care.


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LazarX wrote:
Kthulhu wrote:
Contributing to this, as Steve also pointed out, 3.0 also reduced or removed most of the checks on a spellcaster's power. They can completely nova out, and one hour of studying can refill every spell slot with just an hour of skimming through your spellbooks. You get the skill Concentration, which lets you continue to cast your spells even through things that used to automatically disrupt them. Pathfinder even did away with having to sacrifice skill points to power this. If you specialize, instead of finding spells of your opposition school impossible to cast, they're just a bit harder to cast.

I don't see where you're getting this in Pathfinder.

1. You use all your spell slots, you're going to need 8 hours of rest to get them back.

Sure, 8 hours of rest, then an hour to prepare all your spells.

As opposed to 8 hours of rest, then 15 minutes per spell level. High level casters who burned all their spells would need days to prepare them all.


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RDM42 wrote:
Buri Reborn wrote:
Morzadian wrote:
What kind of options are you thinking about? Unchained has the stamina system and that provides options for martial characters, but is tied to feats.
Feats are simply tiring. The count per the last d20pfsrd db I downloaded is 1,436. Good luck parsing that every time you create or level up a character. Shoving in more simply falls flat in giving martials different kind of things to do. The other systems are nice, but will take time to see if they really work well. They don't instantly qualify for that the moment they're published. That general direction is good, though.
Quite large chunks of the feats you can dismiss without even looking at them for most individual characters, so its nothing like that for any one individual.

How do I dismiss them without looking at them? At least without some kind of automated tool. Even then the automation is tricky - far from as simple as "I don't qualify for this".

I'll admit you don't generally have to do so every time you level, because you've already parsed through them all when you planned the build. At least down to a handful of options.


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It can be. All I'm saying is that "hp are meat" isn't clearly the winner that resolves all the weirdness of hp. There are still a whole bunch of hoops you have to jump through to sort of make the system make sense.
That's after you get past the "I'm so tough I can just stand there and take multiple ax blows to the face."

Just like you have to with a "hp are evasion" approach. Or a mixed approach. None of them really fit cleanly if you think too deeply about them, because the real answer is that hp were designed as a arbitrary game mechanic without any real concern for what they meant. Everything else is a later patch.


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kyrt-ryder wrote:
thejeff wrote:

Or does he actually resist the damage so it doesn't cut as deep?

Plus at that point, if you're really "being damaged less by the same Damage", why does magic healing also heal you less?

Indeed it doesn't cut as deep. Think of damage and max HP in terms of ratios as far as damage to the body.

Healing magic runs on the same system as damage, it undoes the damage done. Think of healing as 'reversing damage' rather than simple healing.

So you also get more resistant to healing?

OK, I guess.

As I said, if it floats your boat, go for it. I prefer thinking about it differently. Luckily, since it's just changing the interpretation, not the rules, you can play with your "My meat is just tougher and can soak up more damage" interpretation and I can play with my "I'm better at avoiding blows so I just get a little scratch, but I'm slowing down a little bit" version and we can do it in the same game.

No dramatic killing blows in your version I take it? The final blow is just another nick that finally brings him down instead of a nice dramatic stab through the heart or lopping off of the head, since his meat is still just as tough.


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The 8th Dwarf wrote:
Orfamay Quest wrote:
thejeff wrote:

Death spiral mechanics, where characters get less effective with every injury, might be realistic, but they're very much counter to a genre where heroes commonly rally and win fights after even serious injuries.

And, more to the point, they're generally considered not fun, since once you start losing, you keep losing (even more badly), but you need to play the fight out to the end.

Remember as a kid when you were playing Monopoly and it was obvious about an hour into the game who was going to win, but it still took three more hours to finish the game unless Mom sent everyone off to bed before that? That wasn't fun then, and it's no more fun now. From a dramatic standpoint, you need a chance of heroic reversals. From a ludic perspective, you want to minimize the tedium.

The death spiral not only doesn't solve any problems, it makes problems worse.

Maybe it's the other way around. No penalties for the fatigue and hits you take means you dig in and grind the combat out for another hour or so of game time... Fun fun fun.

Rather than learning to withdraw and comeback, and make use of tactics and environment.

Or it just means winning initiative and getting the first hits in becomes even more important and the Rocket Tag accelerates even more.


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The 8th Dwarf wrote:
HP is also a reflection of stamina and fatigue... Still it's too vague... That's why I like Rolemaster broken arms and legs, bleed stacks, guts spilling out. Combatants flee and surrender a few rounds into combat.

"A few rounds into combat"? From my few memories of Rolemaster, combatants tended to flee before combat started.

GM: You see a weasel. It's approaching.
Players: Run!!!


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Blossora wrote:

When it comes to meta-knowledge, I treat it like this-

An author of a story doesn't meta-knowledge his characters when they interact with eachother. A good author will stay consistent to his character's personas, almost as if "they're writing themselves". If a personality is already set to act in a certain way, then that reaction shouldn't change just to favor one over another from bias.
By the same fashion, the "story" of a party in a game shouldn't have meta-knowledge applied to it. Of course, this is all up to what the GM allows.

Consistency and conveyance are the two most important aspects to adhere to in DnD, after all. To not do so would be disingenuous to your character and the game.

If a GM wants to avoid the kind of characters that, when acting in accordance to their personality screw the rest of the group out of story progression or loot, then it should be established before 1st session.
I'm assuming this was not the case for your particular campaign.

So as far as I'm concerned, if I'm going to run a game where an unscrupulous thief would be unwelcome, then I'll say so from the beginning. If not, then it's fair game and I'll make sure my players are mature enough to keep in-character and out-of-character separate, as it should be.

As it stands, I agree with your GM's call to needing the sleight of hand versus the party's perception rolls; with the appropriate modifiers to all rolls involved.

One of the big problems with this approach is that it doesn't all come down to "sleight of hand versus perception rolls" and since there are no mechanics for the rest of it, it gets hard for players, who likely know OOC that the PC is stealing loot to figure out when their characters get suspicious.

Does he keep winding up with new and better gear than the rest of the group? Unexplained new items? What is he doing in the fights anyway?
I suppose if you stole the stuff and just sold it and kept the extra gold in a stash somewhere, it would be hard to figure out.

Last time I played with a character who did this, there were lots of signs, but the GM wouldn't let us do anything about it unless we caught him red handed. Really frustrating. Luckily, I don't usually play with people like that.


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Yuugasa wrote:

On a more thread relevant note, as terrible as messes like the current Baltimore situation are, in some ways I am thankful for them.

Minorities being gunned down by the police are still a thing that happens, but at least it has widely hit the public consciousness that that is messed up.

I feel like widespread public awareness and revulsion of current police brutality might actually someday lead to a change (even if that change is at the hands of a swarm of goblins(?) and their socialist revolution.)

The ubiquitous video cameras are going to change things. Makes it much harder for the cops to just lie about what happened. Makes the abuse obvious enough that even the American public finds it hard to swallow.


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BigNorseWolf wrote:
Durngrun Stonebreaker wrote:


So we shouldn't worry about police brutality as long as crime still exists?

Even sillier, one of the most important factors in getting crime rates down is to get the community to work WITH the police. If the entire community is running the other way at just seeing the police in the street how on earth are the police supposed to question anyone to find criminals?

This is one of the .. not as monumentally difficult things to fix, which is why it should be a priority. Other fixes would be the economy educationan and social mobility, all of which are WELL over the police or even city's head.

And all of which can be handwaved away and ignored since black people are so dangerous and culturally criminal.

Black people have to fix their own culture and then maybe white people will start looking at some of the things that created that culture. But racism has nothing to do with it.


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Mark Hoover wrote:

KotBl always represented for me the classic megadungeon. I also enjoyed that there was no plot presented in the module, but hints of several. This to me makes the adventure supremely re-playable.

** spoiler omitted **El Jeffe: I agree with you that there's not much to it but it's not nostalgia that keeps me coming back. Its the fact that I don't feel I've really explored every possible combo of the "bare bones" given to me in the adventure. This module isn't so much an adventure as it is a mini-campaign setting which you can build into whatever you need it to be, and I LOVE that!

Yeah, I can see that it gives you bare bones onto which you could actually build an adventure or actual campaign. And I get the nostalgia value.

But it was billed as an introductory module, packaged with various versions of the Basic set. As such, it was very easy to take as "This is what adventures should be like" - hack and slash dungeons with tons of monsters packed into a small area with little justification, either for them being there or you fighting them.

As a framework to build an adventure around, it isn't bad. Run as presented, not so much.

Metanote: Irritating that when replying the spoiled text is counted to see when to truncate the quoted message, but isn't actually included. Bad design.


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kyrt-ryder wrote:
thejeff wrote:
Puna'chong wrote:
LazarX wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:
Yeah, we probably won't agree on it. I come from a heavy story-based background wherein the players are equal builders of the world and story to the GM.
The players can be equal contributors, that doesn't mean their characters have to be equal to the DM's NPC's to do so. One does not require the other.
Have to agree with LazarX on this: if bosses (not just enemies, or minions, but BOSSES) have to play by the rules all the time, they become a lot less interesting. But if you, say, give them two standard actions a turn, or make their fireball require two Reflex saves instead of one, or whatever, it can be a lot more fun. The PCs are beating things as a party that alone could womp them. And sometimes when you're a DM it's fun to just throw something out there that's interesting or different for you to "play" as. And it puts the fear of god into players when suddenly big bad dragon does something they couldn't have predicted. So long as it isn't just "LAZER BEEM DC 45 FORT OR DIE!!" it can add in some dramatic tension.

That's not really what we're talking about, though it's not a bad idea on it's own. Like the Legendary abilities some monsters get in 5E.

More narrative structure things here. Where the evil wizard's tower that's bigger on the inside came from. What spell created the plague we're trying to stop. How the evil Warlord created his Artifact of Doom.
Those don't all need to be spelled out in mechanics that are available to the players.

But what if the players ARE evil Warlords attempting to create an Artifact of Doom, or they want their own evil Wizard tower to be bigger on the inside, or to start their own plague?

I'm not saying a given group of PCs needs to know how it works, but I am saying it should be within their capability to do it given the right circumstances and resources.

Then they can go research it for years and be the big bads of the next game I run.

That's what the first guy did.

Game over. What do you want to play next?


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kyrt-ryder wrote:
Jester David wrote:
Aratrok wrote:
It doesn't help that 5e has an even less developed and explicit system (if you can call it a system) for Stealth than 3.x or PF. It basically comes down to "Ask the GM if you can hide and from who, because there aren't any actual rules for determining if you can."
Which is only a problem if you're not playing with a GM.
Or if your GM is new or inexperienced [or bad, we can't always vet our GMs before we get invested in a campaign.]
Quote:
The rules are like that on purpose because, after years of playing with stealth rules, they realized that harder rules always led to people being able to stealth in implausible ways. So we end up with the video game version of stealth, which equals invisibility only being non-magical. People standing in the middle of the field "stealthed" because of a corner case of the rules.
I actually LIKE that level of stealth. For someone to be so damned sneaky that they blend into the background unless somebody can successfully notice them.

I like that level of stealth, but I don't like it require corner cases of rules. It should just be "really good at stealth".


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Squirrel_Dude wrote:
Bill Dunn wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:
Bill Dunn wrote:
Squirrel_Dude wrote:
Something I would like to see in a revised Pathfinder game is a clarification of order of operations. Little things like when you roll concealment against an attack.
There's a dispute in this case?

As far as I'm aware the rules don't actually dictate which comes first.

I always have the players roll miss chance first, that way they don't roll attacks if the attack couldn't hit and they don't get bummed out by missing out on a crit or something like that.

I always roll concealment after the attack roll. Then if is a crit, I get to see the player's crestfallen face. Warms the cockles of my RBGM heart.

And that's a fine interpretation. It's just never spelled out in the book. I've always found the order of operations to be poorly explained, or at overly spread out across rules.

For example: The rules for when arcane spell failure tell you when you roll the arcane spell failure chance (before the spell has been cast), and the rules for spell resistance tell you when spell resistance should be checked against (after a spell is cast, but before saving throws).

What I'd really love to see more of is something like:

Quote:

Casting spells

- Declare a spell to cast
- Roll arcane spell failure, if applicable
- Roll for concentration if applicable
- Check that the spell can be casted in the targeted area; that it won't be interfered with or prevented by the terrain.
- Declare targets that can be effected
- Roll to overcome spell resistance against targets that possess it
- Targets that are affected roll saving throws
- Affect targets

Some of that's useful to know, but in some cases it doesn't matter. It literally makes no mechanical difference in most cases whether you roll spell resistance or saves first. I'd roll resistance first if the spell has some effect (half damage or something) if the save is made, but only because that saves on dice rolling. Otherwise, whichever one's more likely to stop the spell - again possibly less dice to roll.

Same with arcane spell failure/concentration or attack roll/miss chance. It doesn't matter, so there doesn't need to be a rule. Whatever's convenient.


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ryric wrote:

Yeah, I'm hoping for a change of the magnitude of 1e to 2e, or even BX to BE(CMI). Nothing that makes you throw away all the stuff you already have, but just cleans things up and uses the same basic system.

The three things that most contributed, in my mind, to casters getting powered up in 3.0 were:

Bonus spells for high ability scores for everyone, not just clerics.
Scaling spell DCs
and
Easy access to scrolls and wands.

Try playing a wizard with no bonus for high Int, with no backup scrolls, no utility wands, and whose spells get easier to save against the higher level the foe. That's the 1e experience, and yes, you can still dominate reality, it's just much harder to do so.

Oh and pick your initial spells from rolling randomly off a table, and stop getting your *one* free spell at level up after level 4.

So you get Bob the first level magic-user with his 3 hp, his 10 AC, his spellbook containing read magic, shocking grasp, jump, and shield, and his 1 spell a day picked from that fun set. Sure if Bob survives the 0hp=dead world of 1e incredible cosmic power awaits him. Well, if he can find a spellbook or enough scrolls to actually put those better spells in his book. And passes the random chance that he could actually understand them. And doesn't hit his maximum spells known per level.

I'm not saying all this was a good thing. Low level players want to contribute too. I just think they went too far in the other direction.

Yeah, balancing casters against martials by making casters suck and die easily early on and rule everything at high levels is absolutely the wrong way to go.

All that "first level wizards suck" part was horrible and well fixed. But it needed to be accomplished without boosting the late game casters and preferable nerfing them somewhat and/or making martials more effective later on.

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