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Vanities: Porter


Pathfinder Society® General Discussion

Osirion

I have a question regarding porters and carrying capacity. Before I spend the PP on one, is this just treated for mechanical reasons like a sort of increase of carrying capacity? What if the porter is carrying an item I need in combat, etc.

And if it's purely flavour, is there anything truly stopping me from just saying I spent 5pp to spend a bunch of time figuring out how to affix my gear to me so I got used to carrying more stuff? :P

***** Venture-Captain, Massachusetts—Boston aka Harley Quinn X

It's different mechanically, as retrieving something from another person takes a different set of actions. Grabbing something from a porter (we just assume he has it out and ready for you to grab) is a move action, and you have to be next to him while you grab. That would also provoke attacks of opportunity.

If you were considered having higher carrying capacity, you could move and draw a weapon, and not provoke. If it's a lot of weapons that you're carrying around, perhaps consider an Efficient Quiver?

Grand Lodge *****

Porters do not participate in combats. I just assume they run and hide during battles. It's really up to each GM how easy it is to retrieve items from your porter so expect table variance.

Grand Lodge *****

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Tales Subscriber

Please be also aware - sometimes there is nowhere to run and hide. My wizard has a Globe of Invu;nerability, Lesser - prepared for his porter to stay save in.
Didn't help in a recent adventure when he got affected by a curse and slowly his wisdom drained until he was an extra weight to carry.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Thod wrote:

Please be also aware - sometimes there is nowhere to run and hide. My wizard has a Globe of Invu;nerability, Lesser - prepared for his porter to stay save in.

Didn't help in a recent adventure when he got affected by a curse and slowly his wisdom drained until he was an extra weight to carry.

Hm, I was under the impression that they were not able to participate in combat or other events at all, not even as a casualty. Is this not correct?

Grand Lodge *****

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Maps, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Jiggy wrote:
Hm, I was under the impression that they were not able to participate in combat or other events at all, not even as a casualty. Is this not correct?

That was what I was always led to believe.

Grand Lodge ****

One of my players has a porter.

Its just there. Its not on the battlemat, he can't access it during the fights and it is just a pack mule in between combats. That's all it is.

Shadow Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Washington—Eastern Washington aka WalterGM

sveden wrote:

One of my players has a porter.

Its just there. Its not on the battlemat, he can't access it during the fights and it is just a pack mule in between combats. That's all it is.

This ^

As a GM and a player I've never had my porter or ones that I've come across in play contribute or be involved with any combat.

They don't occupy squares, they don't have actions, they don't *do* anything. That said, as a player, you can't expect to retrieve items from them in combat, or use them for cover

They're non-combatants.

Shadow Lodge **

2 people marked this as a favorite.

So they poof into the same hammerspace that most familiars seem to?

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Can they preside over the funeral when your PC dies?

Paizo Employee ** Developer

1 person marked this as a favorite.

The idea behind the porter was that it was a sort of Nidwick character that, as mentioned above, isn't even there at all during combat, but can carry back the heavy statue that the Str 8 Wizard needs to bring home to complete his faction mission, or who can lug around a second set of armor for the fighter who is worried his current suit will get sundered or who may want to switch to his other suit for a given encounter or adventure.

Osirion

Then that needs to be spelled out even more specifically, so that people will stop making ridiculous assertions about what it means.

I understand that a porter may not be able to actually take place in melee combat, but, if I'm having him carry a ten-foot pole, I should be able to get that ten-foot pole from him whenever I want it, and not be barred from accessing it. Or if the equipment that I have him carry happens to be a torch ...

This whole "no mechanical benefit" thing seems to be taken pretty far overboard. I understand that they can't take actions that affect combat, but ... They don't occupy a square? I think this is getting out of hand. They're somehow magically impervious to harm? I get that we don't want to give them stats, because it they can die, then a player loses the benefit of their hard-earned PP. But, it's beginning to follow a pretty silly line of logic, where it's becoming more and more far-fetched to explain how they work. It's gotten to the point that we now have people purporting that we can't even access our own equipment that the porter's carrying.

I get that the porter's not for bearing shields, or affecting the outcome of combat, but if I can't even have a porter carry a torch, or allow me to use equipment while rounds are being tracked, I think that I am going to report that porter to the local chapter of the Teamster's Union, and demand my money back ...
... or, in this case, ask for my Prestige Points back.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

It's already been FAQed for months.

***** Venture-Captain, Massachusetts—Boston aka Harley Quinn X

W. Kristoph Nolen wrote:
I understand that they can't take actions that affect combat, but ... They don't occupy a square? I think this is getting out of hand. They're somehow magically impervious to harm?

Their occupying a square affects combat. It affects where people can and cannot move. Sure, they aren't affecting HP totals of anyone, but in order for them to not affect anything, they need to have to be completely gone during combat.

Andoran ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Minnesota—Anoka

My opinion is that there seems to be a disparity between what was intended with the Porter as Mark Moreland noted and what the FAQ actually says.

David is mostly correct. The Vanity NPC's aren't "present" during combat, because having them occupy a square grants a mechanical effect on combat.

However the FAQ also states that you continue to receive the benefits of the Vanity. Which means that I get 300 pounds of additional carrying capacity, in combat.

The fact its a little dude carrying my stuff is just fluff.

But with Mark's clarification above, my initial interpretation of the FAQ seems to be incorrect, and that any gear carried by the NPC, during combat, is not available.

It will be interesting to see if this is further clarified.

Osirion

Michael Brock wrote:
It's already been FAQed for months.

This FAQ isn't particularly helpful with the porter, because they provide a tangible benefit (enhanced carrying capacity) but there's no ruling on when or how gear is accessible from them. I get it may be a bit stupid to say "Oh my Str 8 wizard decided to wear full plate, but he has a porter so he isn't encumbered!" but for a high str character this could matter hugely during combat. It does seem like there's a bit of discrepancy with the porter and the faq.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

2 people marked this as FAQ candidate. 3 people marked this as a favorite.

Fair enough. Let's clear up any ambiguity. The vanity NPCs are not available and not accessible during combat. As soon as the GM advises to roll initiative, then the vanity NPC fades into the background and is not available to help swap out equipment, serve as a meat shield, or any other benefit.

Osirion

That makes sense! Though perhaps it's not the greatest for me, the Drunken Brute who was planning on having a bartender porter to carry several hundred pounds worth of ale on him. Thanks for the clarification though!

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

Stonecunning wrote:
That makes sense! Though perhaps it's not the greatest for me, the Drunken Brute who was planning on having a bartender porter to carry several hundred pounds worth of ale on him. Thanks for the clarification though!

Forget the porter. He has to find just the right drink for the occassion. Use a certain magic item and you can draw the exact right drink to your hand everytime. :-)

Grand Lodge ****

Stonecunning wrote:
Michael Brock wrote:
It's already been FAQed for months.
This FAQ isn't particularly helpful with the porter, because they provide a tangible benefit (enhanced carrying capacity) but there's no ruling on when or how gear is accessible from them. I get it may be a bit stupid to say "Oh my Str 8 wizard decided to wear full plate, but he has a porter so he isn't encumbered!" but for a high str character this could matter hugely during combat. It does seem like there's a bit of discrepancy with the porter and the faq.

Any wizard can own full plate. Owning full plate and wearing full plate are two different things.

The porter isn't out on the battle field moving your legs and arms up and down to fight against encumbrance.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

1 person marked this as a favorite.
sveden wrote:
The porter isn't out on the battle field moving your legs and arms up and down to fight against encumbrance.

Unless you employ some well-placed manacles/ropes.

Osirion

Michael Brock wrote:
Stonecunning wrote:
That makes sense! Though perhaps it's not the greatest for me, the Drunken Brute who was planning on having a bartender porter to carry several hundred pounds worth of ale on him. Thanks for the clarification though!
Forget the porter. He has to find just the right drink for the occassion. Use a certain magic item and you can draw the exact right drink to your hand everytime. :-)

Which item would this be and is there ever any chance of finding it in PFS? :P

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Handy Haversack, from the CRB.

***** Venture-Captain, Massachusetts—Boston aka Harley Quinn X

Jiggy wrote:
Handy Haversack, from the CRB.

Haversack can only hold 80 pounds in its biggest pouch. "Several hundred pounds" of alcohol might require a Bag of Holding.


80 pounds is about 10 gallons.

thats a lot o' booze

Osirion

Jiggy wrote:
Handy Haversack, from the CRB.

Now here's something I wish I'd found earlier! I'm running into a problem where the sheer weight of my armor and weapons push me right up to the edge of my carrying capacity, and alcohol is pushing me over. Oldlaw whisky is expensive but relative to weight likely the greatest weight/alcohol content of any available item, and I can keep a bottle in my hand until that empties so I can keep drinking.

That would work really well, though I wish I could find a way to drag the weight of stoneplate down, I have a habit of trying to use stone everything but stone plate + weapon + buckler + handy haversack would push me over my light carrying capacity, which would mean I'd no longer get a +5 on acrobatics even in full plate without a running start. :(

Then again, if I rage...

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Still, you could carry a white wine, a red wine, champaign, a smooth ale, and cheap beer; and then pull out whichever one is called for. ;)

Andoran ***

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game, Companion, Modules Subscriber

A porter carries extra equipment for you. He is NOT a torchbearer, except for your spare, unlit torches. If the torch is lit, your porter won't touch it. Period. You want a lit torch in the party, someone in the party needs to be holding it.

If he is carrying combat equipment, you better hope you don't need it without previous warning, because that porter with it is not only standing far in back of the company, he is already waiting to hear the all-clear message from the front door.

Think of the porter as a pack mule that is smart enough to not be in the same room when any danger arises. He follows the party, but far enough back that he is behind any ambushes that go off behind your party. And he gets the heck out of the way of anything likely to hurt him. He won't be anywhere a fireball formation or lightning bolt line. He is cowering in the corner of the room UNDER the tapestry, out of sight, out of line of sight, out of line of effect.

And, since he is nowhere near anyone in the party at that point, nothing he is carrying is going to be available at that time.

Out of combat, in no danger, you can get anything he is carrying from him. Eventually. That spare sunrod is easy for him to give you, but that spare tent or sea chest is going to take longer to pull out.

Maybe the best way to think of a porter is as an extradimensional space that jumps into your handy haversack during combat, and is therefore inaccessible due to extradimensional space layering effects. You do know that you can't access the contents of a handy haversack, bag of holding or efficient quiver when you are inside the room created by the Rope Trick spell?

***

Sorry for bringning up an old thread, but I have a related question. I've been seeing this used in pfs to carry around someones body if their using familiar melding or magic jar. Is the porter considered close enough that if you die you jump back into you body? If so, do you just magically materialize (the way the porter magically disappears) on the battlefield, or do you vome back after the battle?

Lantern Lodge ***

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Crispy3ed wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
Hm, I was under the impression that they were not able to participate in combat or other events at all, not even as a casualty. Is this not correct?
That was what I was always led to believe.

Porters are not immune to collateral damage. They have the hit points of a common laborer. Just because you spend prestige points on them doesn't mean they are immune to the consequences of the choices you make with them.

Shadow Lodge **

LazarX wrote:
Crispy3ed wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
Hm, I was under the impression that they were not able to participate in combat or other events at all, not even as a casualty. Is this not correct?
That was what I was always led to believe.
Porters are not immune to collateral damage. They have the hit points of a common laborer. Just because you spend prestige points on them doesn't mean they are immune to the consequences of the choices you make with them.

That doesn't seem to square with mike brocks post above about them fading into the background at the start of combat.

While this keeps them alive, I think it makes them poor magic jar holders.

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