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thejeff's page

Pathfinder Society Member. 20,992 posts (21,893 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist. 2 Pathfinder Society characters. 8 aliases.


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Krensky wrote:
Freehold DM wrote:
thejeff wrote:

Approximately 151,600 people die every day. I'm sure there are some who died today that I would miss less than Scalia, but I don't know of any.

The political effects will be interesting. Starting with what happens with any cases in progress in which he held a deciding vote. And then what happens with the nomination of his successor.

It's been a long time since a Justice died in office (1954, apparently) and it will be interesting to see if the Senate is willing to hold off a replacement for a full year, in the hopes of a Republican in the White House.

indeed, this is the part of it that I am most interested in.
I have a sneaking suspicion that the Senate won't confirm anyone until after the election.

I heard a somewhat delightful "worst case scenario" for a Senate that tries to hold things up.

Obama is trained in constitutional law. If Bernie or Hillary become president . . .

;D

In theory, a Republican controlled Senate could just refuse to vote to confirm any nominee indefinitely. The only consequences would be political.


Aelryinth wrote:
I believe you are correct. I don't think npc classes existed until 3e, but I can't be sure. Does someone have a 1e dmg around who can check?

They certainly didn't in 1E. There might have been something introduced late in 2e, but not in the core rules.

Most people just didn't have classes. NPC classes were introduced in 3.0 as part of the great effort to make everything follow the same rules.


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Krensky wrote:
Freehold DM wrote:
thejeff wrote:

Approximately 151,600 people die every day. I'm sure there are some who died today that I would miss less than Scalia, but I don't know of any.

The political effects will be interesting. Starting with what happens with any cases in progress in which he held a deciding vote. And then what happens with the nomination of his successor.

It's been a long time since a Justice died in office (1954, apparently) and it will be interesting to see if the Senate is willing to hold off a replacement for a full year, in the hopes of a Republican in the White House.

indeed, this is the part of it that I am most interested in.
I have a sneaking suspicion that the Senate won't confirm anyone until after the election.

We'll see. They certainly won't be happy about it.

Obama has said he will make a nomination.

Theoretically, McConnell can just not schedule a vote. That's a pretty blatant move.
More likely, they'll try to filibuster or just vote down the candidate. Which is where it gets interesting - if Obama nominates an older fairly moderate candidate will some Senators decide to cut their losses rather than risk a President Clinton (or Sanders!) nominating a younger more liberal Justice?
And of course, the picture changes as the prospects for the election change and with the public perception of the Senate's inaction.

Near as I can tell the longest nomination process was for Justice Brandeis - 125 days. There have been longer vacancies, but the nominations were actually voted on and rejected or they were withdrawn. If Obama nominates relatively soon and the Senate simply doesn't act on it, that would be completely unprecedented.


I'm Hiding In Your Closet wrote:
Fergie wrote:
I'm Hiding In Your Closet wrote:
*THE BEST, THE BIGGEST, THE CLASSIEST, MOST POPULAR MOST LUXURIOUS MOST SEXY NEW JUSTICE DAT DERE HAS EVER BEEN!!!!1
Justice Sarah Palin? That would be just super, Donchknow!
The good news there is that if even the once-mighty George W. Bush couldn't get Harriet Miers through...mercy of mercies, we HAVE seen that even under the worst circumstances, there are still some limits.

That was 10 years ago. Things have gotten much worse since then.


Approximately 151,600 people die every day. I'm sure there are some who died today that I would miss less than Scalia, but I don't know of any.

The political effects will be interesting. Starting with what happens with any cases in progress in which he held a deciding vote. And then what happens with the nomination of his successor.

It's been a long time since a Justice died in office (1954, apparently) and it will be interesting to see if the Senate is willing to hold off a replacement for a full year, in the hopes of a Republican in the White House.


I don't think they actually had level 1 commoners. Weren't NPC classes introduced in 3.0? (Or did they come up in later 2E stuff?)
Commoners were just level 0 people without classes.
From the 2E DMG:

Quote:
The situation would be utterly ridiculous if every NPC had a character class. <...> Most non-player characters are people, just people, and nothing more. <...> The great mass of humanity, elf-kind, the dwarven clans and halflings are "0-level" characters.

And much more along the same lines.

It didn't come up in modules because they didn't stat out people you weren't expected to fight. You might well meet and interact with them, but it would be as merchants and townsfolk and the like, not things you needed stats for.


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Honestly, I've almost complete tuned out the spammers. They're just white noise now.

It's annoying when they drive threads I'm interested in off the front page, so I don't notice new posts.


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Quark Blast wrote:
Also, Black Diamond Games has shown Pathfinder slipping in its Top 10 over the past few years (currently at #8), but hey it's in the Top 10.

What else is in the Top 10?

Or are we talking more broadly than table top RPGs here? We know that's a niche market.


Limeylongears wrote:
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:

Defying a war of conquest

Article on the St. Patrick's Brigade in the Mexican-American War by a former WBAI radio host who died recently.

David Rovics' song about that unit

That's where I first heard about them.

All sorts of interesting history you pick up from folk/protest songs.


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Cole Deschain wrote:
Liz Courts wrote:
If there's a call for Food and Cuisine of the Inner Sea, Wes & comrades know how to find me. >.>
Just gonna toss out, that some of the culinary notes were my favorite parts of The Dragon-Lover's Guide to Pern.

I've got to say, a book on culture, including cuisine, and ways to actually bring that alive at the table would be fascinating. It's one of my favorite parts of a lot of fantasy books and something that's really hard to do in a game. At least I've never seen it done well and rarely even attempted.

Culture, local customs, religion - not the magic parts, but the actual observances and practices, basically the alien mindset of so many past real cultures, much less those of other races.


Set wrote:
Damon Griffin wrote:
I do loves me some Justice Society, and their extended Earth-2 cast. I never have forgiven DC for killing Helena (Huntress) Wayne by having a wall fall on her during Crisis On Infinite Earths. Talk about a lame, pointless death...

Putting aside the damage done to the Legion of Super-Heroes franchise by Crisis, the deaths of Helena Wayne, Earth-2 Robin and Kole really annoyed me, back in the day. Helena Wayne was an amazing look at a 'grown up kid of Batman and a villainess carrying on the mission' unlike Damien Wayne, who'se just a meme-quoting punk, IMO.

And Crisis has mostly been undone anyway. 'Permanent' deaths or not, both Supergirl and Barry Allen are not only back (third time back, for Kara, although it took 25 years for Barry), but (hey, topic!), they've got their own TV shows!

Even the Crime Syndicate has come back multiple times, after being the only 'heroes' of a given universe to give their lives en masse to fight the destruction of their universe and 'go down with the ship.' (While the Freedom Fighters, Shazam family, Charlton heroes, etc. all managed to skate off to the remaining Earth while the billions on their Earths died, like, uh, heroes are supposed to do, according to DC?)

Kole was just another one of the Crisis deaths. That didn't really bother me. New character, kind of cool visual, kind of neat powers, but she hadn't got much characterization and what there was didn't impress me. Maybe she would have turned into something great. Probably not.

E2-Robin and Huntress were different. They were doomed by Crisis. There just was no way for them to fit in the new world. And honestly, that didn't bother me that much either. Mourn them and move on.
It was the ones who continued, but were gutted by the loss of their history that were the worst. The Legion never recovered. Infinity, Inc and All-Star Squadron, both really good titles before Crisis were never the same. All-Star Squadron died and Infinity limped on for a couple of years, but it had lost too much. Even the Titans struggled with the loss of Wonder Girl's origin.

And I'm the one on these boards who liked Damian. Not as a meme-quoting punk, but as a little kid who desperately wants his father's love, which of course Bruce has no idea how to show. Mind you, he died and did not return as some super-powered thing, whatever rumors you may have heard.:)


QuidEst wrote:
thejeff wrote:
hiiamtom wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
Change Shape already does specific things, like not changing your ability scores, restricting you to remaining within one size category, and being unlimited in duration. If the ability doesn't follow the existing Change Shape rules, you should use a different name to avoid confusion.
Good catch, thanks!
On the other existing uses of Change Shape don't particularly follow the Change Shape rules either - or can a Gargantuan gold dragon only use its ability to assume any humanoid or animal form to take on Huge (or larger) humanoid or animal forms?
Yep, that's how it works. When they get old enough, they're more or less restricted to giants and dinosaurs. Anything else would have to be a full-on polymorph, not just a simple change of shape.

RAW, yes.

By intent, no way. The ability is clearly there to let dragons do the classic pose as human rulers shtick. That it doesn't work by RAW is an unintended consequence of merging a bunch of 3.5 monster abilities together for consistency.

See here among other references.
Disclaimer: Yeah, I know James isn't the rules guy.


hiiamtom wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
Change Shape already does specific things, like not changing your ability scores, restricting you to remaining within one size category, and being unlimited in duration. If the ability doesn't follow the existing Change Shape rules, you should use a different name to avoid confusion.
Good catch, thanks!

On the other existing uses of Change Shape don't particularly follow the Change Shape rules either - or can a Gargantuan gold dragon only use its ability to assume any humanoid or animal form to take on Huge (or larger) humanoid or animal forms?


Krensky wrote:
For something completely different from the Golden Age, Cordwainer Smith.

Always willing to second that.


I think the John Carter books are usually classified as, and pretty much define, "Sword and Planet".

As for other recommendations, I'll throw out my obligatory Elizabeth Bear plug. The Jenny Casey trilogy starts as a cyberpunky kind of thing but moves towards more regular near future sf. Jacob's Ladder is a neat reworking of a lot of fantasy tropes set on a stranded generation ship.

In a lighter more space opera-ey kind of way, I've been enjoying Lee & Miller's Liaden series.


darth_borehd wrote:

I wouldn't want it to be violent or gory myself. Something like the Discworld cartoons where they focus on plot and social interactions.

Not gory, but without fighting it wouldn't be much like D&D.


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mechaPoet wrote:
The NPC wrote:
I was wondering in your communities what is the non pejorative slang for people who are not LGBTQ?
There is no universally non pejorative term, because there is always someone who gets mad or upset when their privilege is pointed out.

And on the flip side, any term with the proper tone or context can be pejorative.

In fact, that's how a lot of terms become pejorative in the first place: They get used sufficiently commonly in an insulting fashion to pick up connotations.

It's pretty much impossible to have a non-insulting term for a sufficiently despised minority because any term will be mostly used as a pejorative because that's how people talk about them. The history of terms for black people in the US is a good example.


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Jaçinto wrote:

Required to own the bestiary 4 or whatever for the enemy/monster stats, actually. We want to play legally. As in not using the srd or illegally downloaded PDFs. We support the games we play but it gets anyone when a PDF pulls the "Grats on buying this neat adventure, too bad we didn't tell you that you have to get the monster stats from a book you don't own cause we wont include it here."

For the character overshadow thing, that only bugs me in the situation of "I am making character X" Another player looks over after a session or so and says "Your character is neat. I am gonna make one that does the same stuff, same abilities and feats, but lets see if I can make it better." Goes back to "Dude, can you make your own character and not just copy mine?"

Using the SRD is legal. If you prefer not to use it, that's fine, but it's your problem not Paizo's.

I don't think any publisher has ever included complete stats in all its modules. You would have had the same problem back in the old AD&D days, except that there was no SRD (or PDF), so you actually would have had to buy the physical book.

Now, if there was no srd and the monster was only given stats in some obscure previous module, I can see the complaint, but otherwise?
Imagine the pagecount used to give full stats for every monster in every adventure.


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Kirth Gersen wrote:
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
Looks like my good bud The Nuge made the news today, too. Ted Nugent: Holocaust Victims Were 'Soulless Sheep To The Slaughter'
This is a guy who straight-up called Obama a "subhuman mongrel." I'm no great fan of the current POTUS, but man, I hate a Nazi.

Don't be silly. He's not a Nazi. He hates them too. If he'd been in Nuremberg in 1938 he's confident that we would have led the charge to disarm Nazis and kill them with their own Lugers. It's just that the Jews back then were weak and cowardly unlike real American manly men who the Jews today are trying to disarm.

Or something. It's hard to follow the logic. Or find it.


I'm not sure I'm fond of the approach.

The Change Shape using polymorph spells is a neat approach, but it might be both too powerful & too weak.

First of all, are there even any 1st level polymorph spells you can use? At second, there's Alter Self, but that's not really a combat form. Mostly just disguise. And only for a couple minutes at a time.
You're 5th level before you get animal forms, right?

You've got a lot of uses, but they're all short - minutes/level usually. Great for combat, but very limited for other utility stuff, which is where I'd always wanted a martial shifter to shine.


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I said it before in one of the D&D movie threads: I think an actual serious high-fantasy D&D series could work. Animated or even live-action, though the live one would be more expensive and much riskier - potentially higher returns though.

Run it like a campaign, with season long main plot arcs, but mostly self-contained adventures for the episodes. Start with low-level, grittier stuff, with hints at the high level craziness going on in the background, then ramp up the power levels as you go through the seasons leading into the serious world-beating threat for the final season.

All depends on the writers and the show runner. As will as the (voice) actors. And the studios to not make them do stupid things.
Which means it's likely a failure.


darth_borehd wrote:
Dire Elf wrote:
And no, I don't want anyone to 'reboot' the '80s Dungeons & Dragons cartoon. It had very little relationship with actual D&D.
Wrong. It was nearly identical to D&D. It had monsters and character classes from both basic and 1st edition.
Quote:


I want a series that has what fantasy RPGs have: wizards, warriors, paladins, rogues, clerics, races and monsters that look like creatures from the Bestiaries/Monster Manuals, spellcasting that resembles spells from the rulebooks. I want it to have some maturity, not pander to little kids, but appeal to all ages similar to what Star Wars Rebels does.

Yes, just like the 80s Dungeons & Dragons cartoon. Please don't use computer animation. Get Genndy Tartakovsky to draw it.

While it used a lot of things from D&D it wasn't at all like any D&D game I've ever seen. Kids from the real world given uber magic items that let them do sort of class related things but not actually be those classes. An actual "Dungeon Master" character. No actual killing anything violence (understandable for a cartoon of the time, but not like any D&D I've ever seen.)

I've got a nostalgic soft spot for that series, though I haven't seen it since it aired, but even back then I knew it was, at best, "inspired by" D&D.


feytharn wrote:
It is still always a problem with the players - that doesn't mean that they are bad players or problem players, just that every player probably has som concepts/ideas he can't bring to life or he (sometimes involuntarily) brings to life in a way that is disruptive (or even destructive) to the game. That doesn't mean that either the concept or the player are a problem, just don't bring them together.

Still, there are some that are more likely to cause problems with a broader variety of players. And some that you can expect almost anyone to handle without problems.

Some of these tropes really are just harder to pull off without being disruptive. Doesn't mean they'll always be a problem. Doesn't mean a player who uses one and is disruptive is always going to be a problem.
Just that it's worth being wary with them.


Aaron Bitman wrote:
Some science fiction purists have claimed that his books aren't true science fiction, but I strongly disagree. I'm referring to Michael Crichton. I particularly liked two of his novels: The Andromeda Strain and Jurassic Park. If we ever contact extraterrestrials in real life, and it happened in accordance with a science fiction story, I think that story might be The Andromeda Strain. And Jurassic Park made clever use of chaos theory, as well as the more obvious subjects such as paleontology and genetics.

They don't feel like science fiction to me. Technically, I think they're mostly Techno-thrillers - action stories with a sf backdrop.

My problem with them is that the neat SF idea draws me in, but then it's just used as an excuse for the plot and never explored in the way the kind of sf I prefer would handle it. The defining example for me was Congo, which drew me in with its Lost African City and hidden species of apparently intelligent gorillas, but really just used them as an obstacle for getting the diamonds. Even old H. Rider Haggard or Burroughs novels got you more on the culture and history of their Lost cities and mysterious races.

And it's been a long time since I read Jurassic Park, but I recall thinking the chaos theory stuff was really hand-wavy and had little to do with actual chaos theory.

Lots of people like his stuff and it's definitely at least on the edges of science fiction, which has an awful lot of subgenres, not all of which everyone's going to be fond of.


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HeHateMe wrote:

Personally, I don't believe there can be too many books. I love reading them, and I also love playing character concepts that are weird/different. I find everything in the core book to be exceptionally boring and refuse to play anything from that book. So, I guess I'm the target audience for all these books Paizo keeps creating.

I don't get the "too much" argument at all, nobody is forcing anyone to buy the books so if they don't want to. But don't crap all over those of us who enjoy reading and exploring new character possibilities.

Don't worry. You're in good company.

For the last several pages it's been more about lashing out at those not willing to use each and every option in every book and some of us trying to argue that you're not actually a bad GM if you impose some limits.


RDM42 wrote:
Hitdice wrote:

Anyone who quotes my text get a free like, but TOZ is special for not quoting it. :P

I have Generica sessions vs plot driven campaigns too, I just don't feel the need to invent a new world for each.

Its not a new word for each. A new world only pops up if the campaign couldn't fit well in one of the old worlds. That is, at this point, rare.

Whereas we tend to play with one campaign per world. The world being designed for the game in question. Usually some of its unique features playing directly into the main plot arc - whether that's actually mechanical limitations like which races or even classes are available or just the political setup.

We've been doing this essentially, with various GMs and different groups since AD&D in the late 80s. Games before that were a lot sillier. The same basically holds for non-D&D games, even when the game assumes a defined world, like Shadowrun or World of Darkness or Amber, we rarely linked back to any previous continuity. A couple of times in Call of Cthulhu, there were cameos by previous characters.


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Hitdice wrote:

Knight, this is an honest question, not snark*: is Generica, the Land of I Don't Care synonymous with Golarion, or does it also include 3pp?

I'm just curious because RDM42 mentioned published settings being treated as sacrosanct as compared to homebrew settings, but I think that sort of gets it wrong, no insult to RDM. Published settings are required to include all of said publisher's material, so I see them as a lot less sacrosanct, actually. Just using Paizo material, you can play a Clint Eastwood Man with No Name type from Alkenstar who ends up adventuring alongside an Inuyasha type party in Tian Xia, but no GM should be required to do that in a homebrew setting.

*I suppose the snark would have been directed at Paizo, not you, in any case. ;)

Well, Golarion is, since it's Paizo's only setting. And Forgotten Realms is, since it's the generic D&D setting, but D&D also has some much less generic settings. Eberron & Dark Sun don't have all the same races or have seriously altered versions of them.

I'd also say that even in Golarion, while you can play a Clint Eastwood Man with No Name type from Alkenstar who ends up adventuring alongside an Inuyasha type party in Tian Xia, individual GMs don't have to support that, even if they're running a Golarion game. That's why guns are linked to Alkenstar and not widespread. That's why Tian Xia is on the other side of the world, without close contact with the Inner Sea. Golarion was deliberately designed to have everything available, but segregated enough it would be easy to exclude the bits you don't want.

That's all sort of tangential to your actual question, I freely admit. :)


Redbeard the Scruffy wrote:

I didn't say that.

All should be considerate. If you're inconsiderate, it's not as big of a deal, as you don't make the decisions for anyone but yourself.

If you're inconsiderate, they probably shouldn't let you in the group, but if you're inconsiderate, you most certainly should not be the one running it.

The fun of all matters - including the GM, but not limited to him. As I said, a president and his cabinet, not a dictatorship, and not a Senate either.

The statement implication was one GM enjoying it when players don't. If it's one player who has a problem, tough booties son.

That I'd agree with.

It's also only a default implication in all of these discussions that all the players are at best tolerant of the restrictions, even when we're speaking specifically of one player who's having a conflict over his build.
Which in my experience isn't true. The few times I've actually seen this come up in a group, it's been one player with an odd character and everyone else happy with something that doesn't cause conflict and is just waiting to play.
If most people aren't into what the GM suggested, complete with the restrictions, we play something else. Maybe with a different GM. Maybe with the same GM, but a less quirky concept.


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Redbeard the Scruffy wrote:
You're not the only one playing. What everyone finds fun matters, not just the GM. If people cannot appreciate that fact, they should not GM.

And if I find it fun as a player, should that always be trumped by any other player who wants to ignore it?


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deinol wrote:
RDM42 wrote:
And I don't see why published campaign settings should for some reason get more respect or reverence than long established home settings.
They shouldn't. I'd rather have the rule of fun trump obscure lore, whether it be in a book or locked in the GM's head.

What if I find the obscure lore fun?


Redbeard the Scruffy wrote:
Fair enough, Jeff...but if you (again, not you specifically, but second person phrasing) want simplicity, you probably shouldn't be playing Pathfinder in the first place.

In some ways, I agree. I generally do prefer more rules-light systems.

OTOH, I've got a nostalgic fondness for a lot of the D&D tropes and I'm fairly happy with the basic PF system. I can work with Core and the first couple of layers of expansion without too much trouble. I just have no interest in chasing the constant increase in material.


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Redbeard the Scruffy wrote:

Agreed.

Sadly I have encountered the Core Only No Matter What type enough to where I am a little disgusted by that behavior, and my initial untempered reaction was vitriolic. Same with the GM who thinks he's the multimillion dollar director of a cinematic masterpiece and not some dude telling a story that will probably unwind in under a year and doesn't want his vision even remotely altered.

Honestly, I doubt the "Core Only No Matter What" type is doing it for flavor reasons. Maybe he gets overwhelmed by too many choices. I kind of have a preference for a simpler set of options, though I'd usually go beyond Core only. PF has gotten past the point where I even know what the scope really is, not just with classes, but new feats or items that open up things that just didn't use to work.

There's a big difference between that and actually aiming for a certain thing for a particular campaign. If I was looking for players and only told them "Pathfinder", then I'd be pretty much open for any options at least mechanically. Then we could start with those characters and go pretty much anywhere, developing from that starting point, but most likely, since there was no initial direction, it's going to be a fairly straightforward "f$~& it, let's go adventuring" game, at least to start with.
OTOH, if I've got something else in mind, I'll give a more focused and possibly more restricted pitch. If my prospective players don't like the idea, that's fine. We'll move on to something else. If they, or enough of them, do like the idea we'll go ahead with it, but at that point, you've agreed to the basic pitch. If you then make a character that doesn't fit, that's when we have to see what went wrong.
Did I explain things badly?
Did you really not want to play in what I'd suggested, but just wanted to play something?
Do I not see how your character really fits, even though it doesn't seem to at first?

None of this falls into "Is it possible to bend the things so your build technically doesn't violate the rules I laid down?" Cause that's not the point. It's about "Are we aiming for the same goal?"


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captain yesterday wrote:
Seems like a lot of negotiations, when you can say "f+~& it, let's just go adventuring"

Some of the best games I've played in have been intentionally limited, quirky settings with strong reasons tying each of the characters into the campaign. They involved a lot of upfront planning and negotiation and it was all worth it.

You can have a lot of fun with the "Nobody cares who you are, let's just go adventuring" approach. No denying it. Sometimes you can get a bit farther with some work.


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Hitdice wrote:

I don't mean to accuse anyone of badwrongfun, but are people convinced that the mechanics are so mated to setting that a class like swashbuckler (with the panache pool) significantly contradicts the setting in a way that fighters and rogues don't? I feel like focusing on spell casters muddies the issue, whereas new new mechanics for martials are usually answered with, "He just fights that way."

Full disclosure, I think "I was caught in an experiment gone wrong at the arcane college, so my spell book transformed into a familiar and now my magic's all screwy," is a terrific rationale for introducing the witch class to a setting.

Honestly, ninjas and samurai are usually the go to examples for this, particularly ninja, since they usually work better than the rogue.

As I said above, if I don't already have a mechanism for how magic works, that justification would be fine, but in that case so would "I'm a witch".


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Redbeard the Scruffy wrote:
Really? You can't call them non-vancian reusable spells?

I could call them anything I wanted. They just don't work like any other spells. Or like anything the other wizards can do. Apparently you get them by polymorphing your spell book into an animal - accidentally. Before 1st level.

If I don't care about having consistent magic and don't have an idea how it works already, then I'd be happy to handwave it. But in that case, I wouldn't have set the world up the way I did and we wouldn't be worrying about it.

I'll give my standard response here: "Looks to me like you're suggesting a character who doesn't fit the campaign we were talking about. Did you misunderstand something or am I missing something about the concept?" Then, assuming it's not just a misunderstanding, "Well, sell me on it. What makes this character work for the game, despite first appearances?"


Milo v3 wrote:
Redbeard the Scruffy wrote:

It shows a lack if creativity.

You can call bloodlines magic subschools, and sorcerers still use knowledge, but they're just intuitive or lucky wizards, rather than smart.

Witch patrons don't have to be mysterious forces, they can be magical thesises for a grand term paper. The familiar is a spellbook they accidentally polymorphed.

You show an extreme lack of creativity when you won't allow mechanical reflavoring.

Except sometimes you have already said x mechanic = y flavourwise in gameplay and having x mechanics = z flavourwise out of nowhere with no explaination would be ... well stupid.

Also.... some reflavours aren't just reflavours, for example "The familiar is a spellbook they accidentally polymorphed." has rules implications and is not just a reflavour it's homebrewing.

I allow tonnes of reflavouring, but not if it defies the settings pre-existing rules or isn't actually reflavouring.

Nor are hexes just a reflavoring of anything wizardly. They're an entirely different mechanism.


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To be honest, as a GM I'm wary of players wedded to specific mechanics, but willing to reflavor any way suggested. Makes me worry they're thinking strictly in those mechanical terms and don't care about the rest of the game.


Redbeard the Scruffy wrote:

You are marrying class mechanics with person.

For race, that argument makes sense, but for class? Why can't I call my witch a wizard and use the witch chassis if your world has no witches?

Depends.

Possibly you can. Possibly I object to the mechanics and find the witch's hexes and patrons don't fit into how I've long established wizards work in the world.

This question also has a flip side that has always bothered me in such cases: It's always assumed the player is only interested in the class mechanics and will be happy to completely change the flavor to whatever the GM allows. Perhaps not so obvious in the witch/wizard case, but with the ninja example, maybe the player actually wants the stereotypical black pajama clad, secret clan kind of ninja, but doesn't care about the mechanics as much and it's that stereotype that doesn't fit the setting?

Personally, in most cases, I'm more likely to shoot down concepts for flavor than to flat out ban mechanics. So up front lists of what's not allowed don't really work.


Edymnion wrote:

Back in ye olden days of 3e, it used to be a common thing for people to see in the books that unskilled labor made a silver a day and how the economy was completely broken because no peasants could afford anything with that, yadda yadda yadda.

It actually ended up working out quite well when you realized that the silver per day was for unskilled manual labor (ditch digging, basically). Any peasants would likely have Profession (Farmer) or Profession (Innkeeper) and would be making profession checks for weekly amounts of gold.

I once did up a whole thing about a typical peasant farmer family and how they not only made enough money for things like, well, FOOD, but they also made enough to set money aside for things like healing potions and trips to the cleric every once in a while, all while still keeping a fairly good standard of living (lot of stuff like having craft(clothing) and craft(cooking) and craft(woodworking) to make their own basic stuff most of the time).

Though there's still an awful lot of weirdness in having all jobs pay equally, based strictly on the skill roll of the person doing them.

A Profession(ditch-digger) earns just as much with a check of 15 as a Profession(lawyer) does. Craft(ladder) makes you as much as Craft(jewelry). You can hand-wave it by assigning higher skills to the more prestigious jobs, but it's still handwaving.


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RWBY:
Though there's no evidence the Grimm aren't just as happy destroying Faunus as humans. Barring complete "Burn it all" madness on Adam's part, the White Fang has to have more of a plan than that.


Orfamay Quest wrote:
thejeff wrote:


It's an adventure game, not a world simulator. If you want to be an adventurer who runs a business in your downtime, you can make that work. Just expect it to be handwavy.

It also breaks really, really quickly, or it gets boring really, really, quickly.

For the vast majority of humanity in time and space, getting a 1-2% return on your invested capital was considered a very good thing. That's one reason that inflation was not really a thing for centuries.

But this means that you need to invest 12,000 gp in order to get yourself a 10 gp a month "average" standard of living off your rents. By the time you're high enough level to do that, you're high enough level that it no longer matters.

So there's two ways to deal with it. One is to say "the hell with it, I'm going to run a brewery for adventure potential and role-playing purposes and not bother with the money." The other is to bamboozle the game master into letting you get a "real" RoI, which will quickly give you more wealth than you can possibly imagine, and break the game balance like a toothpick.

For much of history "capital" wasn't really a thing, but that's another debate.

Yeah, "run a brewery for adventure potential and roleplaying purposes" is the way to go.
As hiiamtom said above, separate business money and adventure cash. Keep to something like WBL for balance, whatever the business does.


Guru-Meditation wrote:
Oxylepy wrote:
...in the DnD world for a non-economist like me to handle this?

Be glad that you are a non-economist.

As one it gets ... hairtearing fast if i dont shut up the little voice in my head fast.

"Look at these gives facts. City generation rules give the following distribution of classes as X. These will lead to Y, which in turn would lead to Z, even if we control for some different price elasticity and ... pseudo-medieval campaign worlds off the rails."

And dont get me on the effects of close to zero marginal costs of golem-based production and magic-items. Or what a permanent Wall of Fire and a Decanter of endless Water can be used for. Once set up and at nearly no running costs...

I just repeat the MYST3K-Mantra:

"If you're wondering how he eats and breathes / And other science facts / Then repeat to yourself 'It's just a show, / I should really just relax.' La-la-la"

Even before you get into those weirdnesses, it's the fixed prices for everything that are based on strict multiples of the raw material cost and don't vary with Supply and Demand.

It's an adventure game, not a world simulator. If you want to be an adventurer who runs a business in your downtime, you can make that work. Just expect it to be handwavy.


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Irontruth wrote:
I disagree. I've had players who are fine as long as they stay away from these types of characters, but once they stray into these common tropes, the trope takes over.

Let's say that, like a lot of things, they're harder to do well. They can be fine, given the right approach and the right player, but they can also be a trap leading even decent players into trouble.


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Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:
tony gent wrote:

Hi all just wondering what you think the name old school gaming means to you ?

Is it just a reference to how long someone's been gaming or do you think it describes a style of play.
Your thoughts please
It's a term over40's use when we want to impress you with our age. It includes mythical beliefs such as the idea that gaming and gamers were better when THEY were younger. That more primitive ways of creating games and characters were better.

It's also a term the young kids these days use when they want to bash the old grognards and the dumb ways they played those primitive games, which couldn't possibly be as good as today's shiny new ones.

Which is of course an odd argument to find on a Pathfinder site, since that's running on a 15 year old chassis and even D&D has had two major new evolutions since then which means it must be much better now.


Ffordesoon wrote:

@thejeff:

If I may juke away from the topic for a moment, I'd like to ask you a question.

To me, "broken" used in a gaming context usually implies gaming a system to produce unintended results which subvert the spirit of the game. So, for example, summoners in Pathfinder tend to trivialize encounters intended to be difficult in a way that's not very fun for anyone, the summoner's player included. The intent of the game is to be fun for all the players. Ergo, Pathfinder summoners are broken.

By contrast, every Level 70 character in Diablo III has unfettered access to the entire vast suite of abilities granted by their class, which might seem broken from the perspective of a Diablo II player. But, while you can certainly argue it's a poor design choice for a sequel to Diablo II, you can't argue that it's a broken system, because the system works as intended.

Now, admittedly, I've never managed to play a game of Feng Shui, but I do own the rulebook for the second edition, and it seems to me that Feng Shui is quite explicitly a game where the PCs are supposed to win most fights and do impossible stuff and show off like crazy, just as in the HK action cinema which inspired the game. The intro to the second edition uses a character dashing across the tops of oncoming bullets as an example of something you are supposed to be able to do in the course of play. From a Pathfinder player's perspective, that is crazy, but I wouldn't say it's broken, because it's wholly within the spirit of the game.

All of which is to ask: What about Feng Shui is "broken" within the context I just described? I've never played it, remember, so this really is meant as an honest question

Not really in that sense. It's not really a matter of gaming the system. It's more fundamental than that.

The problem really lies in the basic mechanic. Skill+d6-d6* <> Skill. The range of the roll is tight enough that your chances drop off drastically as the difference in skill goes up. A 2 point difference in skill is workable if you've got other advantages, though you've got less than a 1 in 3 chance of success. A 3 point difference is 1 in 6 - which is fine if it's mooks attacking heroes.
The combat skill range for starting characters is 12-16. Most are within 13-15 and that mostly works. If the PCs don't keep themselves within that narrow range it gets really hard to balance fights - Anything that's a threat to the top end hits the weaker ones at will and can't be hurt by them.
Some of the archetypes also get secondary abilities a couple points down from their main skill. They may be cool, but that's essentially useless.

Mind you, I love the idea of the basic combat mechanic. One roll for hit & damage. No need for criticals or other hacks, rolling well to hit means you do more damage. Brilliantly elegant in theory. Works well within that limited range.
I had some great campaigns with it and it's still one of my favorites. It's just very fragile.

This is all with First Edition. I haven't seen the second one and don't know what they've changed.

*Open ended rolls- reroll 6s, but that doesn't really affect the basic probablity much


Krensky wrote:
Terquem wrote:

the problem with rolling once and determining order is it just turns into an IgYg battle

With rolling every round, and applying damage when it occurs, the players have an opportunity to get in two rounds of attacks before the monsters can attack back

There are other ways to make initiative matter without rolling every round. Also, your example isn't that compelling since it also means the a adversaries also have that opportunity.

For other methods, Spycraft 2.0's Fluid Initiative worked, as does the optional Ebb and Flow initiative system for Fantasy Craft. Then there are a whole pile of systems that don't easily convert to a d20 frame of refrence.

I'm not familiar with those, but I was always fond of Feng Shui's Shot system. You basically rolled initiative and counted down as normal, but when you did something it had a Shot Cost and you deducted that from your initiative to see when you'd act again. Movement only cost 1, most attacks were 3, etc. So it handled both initiative, different action types and multiple attacks all in one.

Faster characters not only went first, but got more actions.

A lot of cleverness in that system, broken though it was.


Nikolas of Green and Crimson wrote:

Of course! I'm channeling the legends of Heracles and Paul Bunyan, Jason and John Henry. I am indulging in Hyperbole. These tales are the versions known after a hundred years of retelling. Each contains a kernel of truth.

The inception of Nikolas and the Juggernaut was me imagining what the tale would look like after Nikolas played bull-fighter with a wooly rhinoceros.

Viscount K wrote:
In the right Shadow, anything is possible. Clearly, wherever Nikolas was, there was far less gravity and mass to contend with.

Good. I'm happy with either or both of those approaches.

Didn't think my expectations were that far off.


Alric of the Purple Nacre wrote:
Marjana wrote:

I have to say, I like these as tall tales or fables, but I hope the game itself isn't quite so over the top.

Amber's ridiculously powerful and epic, but not super-hero/myth powerful. The characters in the book were strong, but not like that. Corwin picked up a car, a '70s heavy iron car admittedly, but he didn't just chuck it across the road. Gerard, iconic first in Strength, beat him pretty easily, but didn't just swat him away like a bug.

I'd much rather see Strength characters who can beat the Warfare ones by bashing aside their weapons and shields, taking a hit and then crushing them, than by tossing mountains at them.

Don't the "super powers" only apply in Shadow anyway, and even then only in certain ones (or maybe always -except- certain ones)?

Not as far as I know. At least not in canon. Magic items & tech things tend to work that way, with some exceptions.

Though I've seen it as an approach to combining "Gerard is the strongest" with visits to superhero worlds and the like. If he visits the Marvel Universe, he can beat up the Hulk, but elsewhere he can't do Hulk like things.


Terquem wrote:

the problem with rolling once and determining order is it just turns into an IgYg battle

With rolling every round, and applying damage when it occurs, the players have an opportunity to get in two rounds of attacks before the monsters can attack back

Or vice versa.

You can plan less. Provides a bit of the chaos of war factor.

It is kind of a pain and slows things down. There's a trade off.


Sissyl wrote:
The 1st edition init rule had a neat option... Each character had an initiative, rolled ONCE. Talk about a roll you don't want to roll badly.

That I don't remember. But I don't think I ever understood 1E initiative and I'm damn sure we never played using it correctly.

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