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Elf with Varisian tattoo? (feat)


Rise of the Runelords


Can other cultures than the Varsians use the magic tattoos? more precisely: Could an Elf-Wizard have a varsian tattoo?

Cheliax

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I don't really see any specific reason against it, particularly if the elf in question is a follower of Desna - she's also the patron goddess of the Varisians, after all.


You'd have to incorporate in your background a reason why a varisian would have tattoed an elf
But it should be possible


As a DM, I would allow it (or an equivalent), assuming that the PC's background included associating with Varisians, which would be a very easy thing to do.

Maybe there's a tie in, like the PC befriended a family, and the tattoo was given in gratitude. Now the PC is an honorary member, along with the other perks and obligations.


DarkArt wrote:
Maybe there's a tie in, like the PC befriended a family, and the tattoo was given in gratitude. Now the PC is an honorary member, along with the other perks and obligations.

My thoughts are going in this directions.

(On the other side: why should only humans be able to draw magic tattoos based on ancient runes.)

Andoran Contributor

I could certainly see a little give and take. I mean, it's certainly possible, over the 700 or 800 that elves live, that they could manage to do SOMETHING that would impress a Varisian enough that they'd welcome you in. If they really tried hard.

And don't forget that Varisians like to trade, and elves have some exclusive deals, like old-school magic, bizarre music, and exclusive rights to travel their lands. I could see a set of tatooes being a part of a deal for some of that.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

I might actually suggest going the other direction.

The idea behind feats of that type are to help players define their character as belonging to a specific culture. The requirement on that feat was put that because that is one of the defining features of the Varisian peoples.

To let other peoples/races have it is to dilute that. An elf should not have it any more then a Chelaxian should.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

There's nothing in the Varisian Tattoo feat that requires the tattoo subject to be Varisian. We have a half-elf in "Shadow in the Sky" with the feat, in fact.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

James Jacobs wrote:
There's nothing in the Varisian Tattoo feat that requires the tattoo subject to be Varisian. We have a half-elf in "Shadow in the Sky" with the feat, in fact.

I stand - or kneel in this case - corrected. :)

Andoran Contributor

Lord Fyre wrote:
I stand - or kneel in this case - corrected. :)

Stand up, man; You're demeaning the rest of us. He's still just a man... er, dinosaur. Drake? Dang... what is that scaley little thing?

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

Immora wrote:
Lord Fyre wrote:
I stand - or kneel in this case - corrected. :)
Stand up, man; You're demeaning the rest of us. He's still just a man... er, dinosaur. Drake? Dang... what is that scaley little thing?

Nay! He is the creator of worlds - and with just two fingers on each hand! That makes him a higher being.

Cheliax

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Lord Fyre wrote:
Immora wrote:
Lord Fyre wrote:
I stand - or kneel in this case - corrected. :)
Stand up, man; You're demeaning the rest of us. He's still just a man... er, dinosaur. Drake? Dang... what is that scaley little thing?
Nay! He is the creator of worlds - and with just two fingers on each hand! That makes him a higher being.

So does that basically make him Ka, the Mystara Immortal?

Osirion RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

Immora wrote:
Dang... what is that scaley little thing?

Fiendish Tyranosaur.

Strange, because I thought James was more Demonic than Fiendish, but... oh well!

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
flash_cxxi wrote:
Immora wrote:
Dang... what is that scaley little thing?

Fiendish Tyranosaur.

Strange, because I thought James was more Demonic than Fiendish, but... oh well!

Demons are fiends too!

Osirion RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

Mothman wrote:
flash_cxxi wrote:
Immora wrote:
Dang... what is that scaley little thing?

Fiendish Tyranosaur.

Strange, because I thought James was more Demonic than Fiendish, but... oh well!

Demons are fiends too!

I thought Devils were Fiends?

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
flash_cxxi wrote:
Mothman wrote:


Demons are fiends too!

I thought Devils were Fiends?

Both are. Also Yugoloth, Daemons, Demodands and an assortment of other oddities. I think (in game terms) its pretty much a catch-all phrase for any outsider with the evil subtype, or any native of the lower planes or something like that.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Is true.

"Fiend" is a catch-all word that covers all evil outsiders, from devils to daemons to demons to demodands to rakshasas to everything else that's an outsider with the evil subtype.

I'm pretty sure that my own fiendish T-Rex is indeed from the Abyss, in any event. He smells that way, at least.

Shadow Lodge

Lord Fyre wrote:

I might actually suggest going the other direction.

The idea behind feats of that type are to help players define their character as belonging to a specific culture. The requirement on that feat was put that because that is one of the defining features of the Varisian peoples.

To let other peoples/races have it is to dilute that. An elf should not have it any more then a Chelaxian should.

This is a good argument but i was looking at the shelalu pregen and saw her race was elf(varisian). if other races can be varisians why cant they have the tatto?


Clacker wrote:
Can other cultures than the Varsians use the magic tattoos? more precisely: Could an Elf-Wizard have a varsian tattoo?

In the Pathfinder Chronicles Campaign Setting hardcover, it is a regional feat. As long as a character has the Varisian regional affinity, he or she can take the feat...in other words, race doesn't matter, but region does.


James Jacobs wrote:

Is true.

"Fiend" is a catch-all word that covers all evil outsiders, from devils to daemons to demons to demodands to rakshasas to everything else that's an outsider with the evil subtype.

I'm pretty sure that my own fiendish T-Rex is indeed from the Abyss, in any event. He smells that way, at least.

I like to be specific and I say "abyssal" or "infernal" or whatever when I use the fiendish template. It doesn't make any game mechanic difference--I'm just being uptight!

So, does an Abyssal T-Rex smell better or worse than a Infernal T-Rex? (or just different but equally horrible!)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Maps, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber

Just got a few PF books off ebay and I have a old rules-new rules question

OK, now that a magic weilder can cast any cantrip she knows all at will, does the Varisian Tattoo FEAT change with the PFRPG

(I didn't find a thread or change for this).

On a similar note, it would be nice to see a thread converting pre-PFRPG feats and rules into the present system. (Unless that's already been done...)

Cheliax

gigglestick wrote:

Just got a few PF books off ebay and I have a old rules-new rules question

OK, now that a magic weilder can cast any cantrip she knows all at will, does the Varisian Tattoo FEAT change with the PFRPG

(I didn't find a thread or change for this).

On a similar note, it would be nice to see a thread converting pre-PFRPG feats and rules into the present system. (Unless that's already been done...)

Good question ... My wife 's Half elf Sorceress is also looking forward to the answer.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

gigglestick wrote:

Just got a few PF books off ebay and I have a old rules-new rules question

OK, now that a magic weilder can cast any cantrip she knows all at will, does the Varisian Tattoo FEAT change with the PFRPG

(I didn't find a thread or change for this).

On a similar note, it would be nice to see a thread converting pre-PFRPG feats and rules into the present system. (Unless that's already been done...)

Not necessarily.

We also know from the Traits update that cantrip use gained from something other then a class feature can be limited to a number of times per day (#8 Magical Talent under the Magic Traits).

What this means is that the feat could be brought forward completely unchanged. The main feature of the tattoo feat is the +1 caster level with the school, so this does not (IMHO) devalue the feat.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

The Varisian Tattoo feat is unchanged; it works the same in 3.5 as it does in the Pathfinder RPG. Basically, you can think of it as granting a spellcaster a few extra uses per day of a cantrip over and above what he's already got, since while a spellcaster can cast his prepeared or known cantrips at will... no spellcaster can have ALL of the cantrips available at once (sorcerers are limited to a hard limit, while wizards are limited by how many they can actaully prepare).


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Maps, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
James Jacobs wrote:
The Varisian Tattoo feat is unchanged; it works the same in 3.5 as it does in the Pathfinder RPG. Basically, you can think of it as granting a spellcaster a few extra uses per day of a cantrip over and above what he's already got, since while a spellcaster can cast his prepeared or known cantrips at will... no spellcaster can have ALL of the cantrips available at once (sorcerers are limited to a hard limit, while wizards are limited by how many they can actaully prepare).

So, if I understand this correctly, it allows a caster to learn one extra cantrip, but that one cantrip is limited in its number of uses per day.

OK, I get that, makes the character mroe versatile.

Thanks.


Lord Fyre wrote:


Nay! He is the creator of worlds - and with just two fingers on each hand! That makes him a higher being.

As a tyrannosaur, he is size huge. *That* makes him a higher being. Huge is higher than medium.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

KaeYoss wrote:
Lord Fyre wrote:


Nay! He is the creator of worlds - and with just two fingers on each hand! That makes him a higher being.
As a tyrannosaur, he is size huge. *That* makes him a higher being. Huge is higher than medium.

Is that an actual quote? (It does sound like me.)


Can the Varisian Tattoo feat in the Inner Sea World Guide book be taken more than once (for different schools, and assuming prerequisites are met)... I see nothing saying you either can or can't but maybe you lot know something I don't.

Apologies for the thread necromancy... I'm not able to start a new thread (possibly cos I'm still new) and this was the closest I could find.

Osirion

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Fenton wrote:

Can the Varisian Tattoo feat in the Inner Sea World Guide book be taken more than once (for different schools, and assuming prerequisites are met)... I see nothing saying you either can or can't but maybe you lot know something I don't.

Apologies for the thread necromancy... I'm not able to start a new thread (possibly cos I'm still new) and this was the closest I could find.

The default for feats is that you can only take them once. If they can be taken more than that, there's a note that says so, and how multiples work. For instance, Extra Rage and Extra Ki say that they stack, while Weapon Focus and Skill Focus explicitly do not stack. Varisian Tattoo, therefore, is one per customer.


Quote:
The default for feats is that you can only take them once. If they can be taken more than that, there's a note that says so

That's my dilemma... the only thing I find in the core rulebook is (p113, Feat benefit):

Quote:
If a character has the same feat more than once, its benefits do not stack unless indicated otherwise in the description

But this wouldn't be stacking... The intent would be to have a spellcaster with two different tattoos, for two different schools. Just like when you take Weapon Focus or Skill Focus you can take it with another weapon or skill, so would taking the Varisian Tattoo feat... a different school of magic.

But I agree that others specifically state when you can take them but they apply to others - this says nowt one way or another. Hence why I wanted opinions.

Thanx.


My thinking is that any creature living in Varisia is Varisian. Why should a single ethnicity of a single race claim that distinction? My gnome was born and raised in the Sanos forest at the heart of Varisia, therefore he's Varisian. He sports both Varisian tattoos and is a Harrower and thinks nothing odd of it.


Ambrus wrote:
My thinking is that any creature living in Varisia is Varisian. Why should a single ethnicity of a single race claim that distinction? My gnome was born and raised in the Sanos forest at the heart of Varisia, therefore he's Varisian. He sports both Varisian tattoos and is a Harrower and thinks nothing odd of it.

I agree overall, but I'm more fussy about letting players take it, because the book says about the VT feat:

Quote:
these tattoos mark you as a worker of the ancient traditions of Varisian magic.

Thus Varisians aren't going to inscribe the tattoo lightly on outsiders who don't practice their magic. Players could help them out or learn their ways and be rewarded with it.

Alternatively, I may allow the feat name to be changed, but kept to the same thing. I often allow similar subtle changes in feats and traits - as long as it's game-balanced and fair, I'm willing to allow it. It often annoys me when you get dwarf-only or half-orc feats that only they can take, which fits perfectly for a specific concept you have for a character/npc - so I sometimes rule that it'd be allowed by members of that region. As long as it's justifiable.

I'm one of those GMs that makes players have to justify what skills they raise and what feats they get. And the justification coin goes both ways... it's about being fair and balanced, but keeping to the spirit and concept of things imo.


My take is this sort of thing depends on the campaign flavor, too.

I lean much more strongly on the RP/story side, than on the gaming side. While I understand everyone wants to have a viable and effective character...I generally dislike feats and traits that are tacked on only for advantage, or "neato" effect, and have little story reason to be there.

Personally I'd allow it if the player had a plausible background (or in game) reason to have it. I view those tattoos as being unique to the Varisian people and culture. For that reason, non-human races would be unlikely to have them. Excepting half-breeds raised within the culture.

But an elf or other might acquire them through: service, friendship, marriage, apprenticeship, paying enough gold, or a number of other ways.

That's just me. If someone is simply playing Pathfinder D&D, and building the most advantageous character they can, there is no probably no real reason to say no.

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