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Can I cripple my own character in PFS?


Pathfinder Society® General Discussion

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Sczarni ***

Can I set mechanical disadvantage to my characters? In my case it's permanent blindness.

****

Take a level of Oracle?

Sczarni ***

I have checked already everything regarding that, Oracle isn't what I want nor does it grant full blindness.

****

To the best of my knowledge, there is no mechanic for just deciding to be blind.

I would argue that, given the perilous nature of Pathfinder missions, the Grand Lodge would be likely to send more traditionally able-bodied people into the field, with an exception made for Oracles, who receive powerful compensation for their curses.

Golarion isn't a world with lobbying groups who support access for disabled people. And even in the real world, where those lobbying groups do support full access, we're not in the habit of putting blind cops, firefighters, or soldiers into field positions.

Long story short, it's not supported by the rules, and I would be inclined to veto it at my tables.

Sczarni ***

Patrick Harris @ SD wrote:

To the best of my knowledge, there is no mechanic for just deciding to be blind.

I would argue that, given the perilous nature of Pathfinder missions, the Grand Lodge would be likely to send more traditionally able-bodied people into the field, with an exception made for Oracles, who receive powerful compensation for their curses.

Golarion isn't a world with lobbying groups who support access for disabled people. And even in the real world, where those lobbying groups do support full access, we're not in the habit of putting blind cops, firefighters, or soldiers into field positions.

Long story short, it's not supported by the rules, and I would be inclined to veto it at my tables.

I actually agree with you, pathfinders wouldn't likely pick this kind of person, but if person can get the job done, it matters little.

I actually don't want to start discussion regarding this since most people will try to discourage me from it.

I will need direct answer or quote from the Guide. So far I can't find anywhere anything regarding it, but I am still looking.

Liberty's Edge *****

1 person marked this as a favorite.

No you cannot.

Blindness does offer a mechanical advantage in that you are immune to most gaze attacks, pattern based illusions and other such effects requiring site.

If you want to be blind, then make sure you get hit by a blindness/deafness spell in a scenario, and then don't pay to have it removed.


Yeah I have a similar anwser to Andrew, get hit with a (Pay for a casting of?) Blindness/Deafness and fail the save.

It's only a level 2 spell so the cost for a cast would be really low.

Or buy a scroll and ask a buddy to maim you.

Either way this is NOT a good plan. (IMHO)

Happy gaming.

Sczarni ***

@ Andrew & Thefurmonger

Thanks for the suggestion, that's a good idea.

I can substract the gold needed to cast Blindness/Deafness spell before the scenario.

However, I don't see it fair if my character is naturaly blind.
It's kind of ridiculous way to look at blind condition, that it grants mechanical advantage, because penalties are much larger then gain.


well no, its not a perfect solution.

just chalk the loss of 60Gp (the cost for a 3rd level caster to cast a 2nd level spell) up to you not making as much money in your pre-pathfinder days due to well.... being blind.

but for 60 Gp you get what you want and all is..... good?

Sczarni ***

As much as it can be. Yes.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

So you're going to make your own character blind intentionally? I didn't see that coming...and neither did your character. ;)

Dark Archive ***

Currently getting an NPC to cast that spell on you would not work, as spells cast as part of spell casting services or by other PC's do not persist past the end of the scenario with a few listed exceptions of which blindness and deafness is not.

You would need a hostile NPC caster to cast blindness on you (many NPC clerics have this in their tactics) and then willing fail the fort save (legal) and not pay to remove it at the end of the session, as such it would be on your cert and locked to your character until you paid to remove it, or a friendly PC removed it for you (you do get a fort save to resist the removal).

Shadow Lodge *

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber
Caderyn wrote:
Currently getting an NPC to cast that spell on you would not work, as spells cast as part of spell casting services or by other PC's do not persist past the end of the scenario with a few listed exceptions of which blindness and deafness is not.

Wouldn't this line include blindness and deafness from any source?

Guide to Pathfinder Society, page 23 wrote:
When playing your own character, all conditions (including death) not resolved within the scenario or module carry beyond the end of the adventure.

Also, I wanted to point out this line in the remove blindness text.

Remove Blindness-Deafness wrote:
The spell does not restore ears or eyes that have been lost, but it repairs them if they are damaged.

So if the character had their eyes gauged out, remove blindness could not recover their blindness, the question would be how to legally get your eyes gouged out, you could potentially attempt to gauge your own eyes out in a scenario, but that may be frowned upon.

Shadow Lodge *** Dedicated Voter 2014

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Please don't do this to your fellow people at the table. They're relying on you, and don't really have the option of doing what their characters would do, which would be to leave your character somewhere safe for their own good.

Grand Lodge **** Venture-Lieutenant, Wisconsin—Green Bay aka Slamy Mcbiteo

Just wondering why? Seems a pretty severe list penalties to impose on your character

Blinded: The creature cannot see. It takes a –2 penalty to Armor Class, loses its Dexterity bonus to AC (if any), and takes a –4 penalty on most Strength- and Dexterity-based skill checks and on opposed Perception skill checks. All checks and activities that rely on vision (such as reading and Perception checks based on sight) automatically fail. All opponents are considered to have total concealment (50% miss chance) against the blinded character. Blind creatures must make a DC 10 Acrobatics skill check to move faster than half speed. Creatures that fail this check fall prone. Characters who remain blinded for a long time grow accustomed to these drawbacks and can overcome some of them.

The last line may be your saving grace...but it seems pretty soft and up to the GM to determine that....

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Modules Subscriber
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Please don't do this to your fellow people at the table. They're relying on you, and don't really have the option of doing what their characters would do, which would be to leave your character somewhere safe for their own good.

I agree with this. While the idea of playing a character with severe disadvantages is fine in a regular group, PFS is the kind of setting where you may not have the same players (or even characters) from session to session. Also, while certainly interesting in providing Role Playing, PFS isn't exactly encouraging to such in-depth RP; it's far more mission and scenario oriented.

It's an interesting character idea, just as a deaf or paralyzed character would be. But I would suggest saving this idea for a regular gaming group.

Sczarni ***

To everyone who wonders why?

I love playing challenging characters in pen and paper, video games, everywhere so I figured that playing blind warrior would be nice challenge for a change. I have seen people doing much much worse character builds from mine and I am quite a optimizier if needed. Beside that, Blind Fight feat solves most of negative sides and only leaves -4 on skill checks which hurt but not to bad, so far everything is in positive numbers. Statisticly I have 25% chance to miss on every attack, and around 35% chance to hit. It's not that bad really, not to mention that it grants sight immunity on everything related to sight.

While most people cant understand this remember that you don't need to understand. So far most of responses go as "don't do it". To make this even more adaptable consider this: If I have Blindness cast from a spell, I can always remove it if things don't work out as they are supposed to. Simple as that.

People will be warned about my character up in front and I won't let anyone die on my watch.

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Modules Subscriber
Malag wrote:

To everyone who wonders why?

I love playing challenging characters in pen and paper, video games, everywhere so I figured that playing blind warrior would be nice challenge for a change. I have seen people doing much much worse character builds from mine and I am quite a optimizier if needed. Beside that, Blind Fight feat solves most of negative sides and only leaves -4 on skill checks which hurt but not to bad, so far everything is in positive numbers. Statisticly I have 25% chance to miss on every attack, and around 35% chance to hit. It's not that bad really, not to mention that it grants sight immunity on everything related to sight.

While most people cant understand this remember that you don't need to understand. So far most of responses go as "don't do it". To make this even more adaptable consider this: If I have Blindness cast from a spell, I can always remove it if things don't work out as they are supposed to. Simple as that.

People will be warned about my character up in front and I won't let anyone die on my watch.

No, I completely understand why you want to do it. I've been RPing for over 30 years now, and I've played many characters that have a disability such as blind, deaf, paralyzed, or mute. It's a fun RP challenge and they make wonderful characters with deep, enjoyable RP. There's the challenge of overcoming the obvious hindrance and showing that you're just as capable as everyone else; sometimes more so. And blind swordsmen are a staple of Japanese fantasy stories. Conceptually, there's nothing wrong with playing such a character.

In practice, however, PFS is not your usual campaign.

1) You are not guaranteed to have the same players each session. Some may not want to adventure with a blind character for any number of reasons

2)GM's are far more restricted in running the games. They have a set scenario that every member of the PFS campaign worldwide can play through. They don't have the same freedom to alter details to match the party's capabilities that a regular GM does. Hence, encounters featuring gaze attacks will be less of a challenge than encounters with, say, sonic enchantments. In other words, the GM can't swap out a Medusa for an equivalent CR of Harpies to make the encounter an equal challenge to factor in your blindness and thus are immune to the main threat of the encounter.

3)You appear to want to do this to add depth and role-play to the character, which is perfectly fine. However, FPS games are not situated around such depth; you can't go off on an RP tangent and then continue the scenario next week after you run out of scheduled time like you can in a normal campaign. I have a Dragon-Blooded Sorcerer decended from a Silver Dragon. I have a whole backstory of the lineage and how the dragon was part of the fight to liberate Andoran. Is this going to *ever* be used in PFS games? Of course not, there's not enough time in sessions to deal with it and it's not fair to the other players for me to expect to have the focus if my character is more RP-oriented than others. Ultimately, in PFS, you will have both role-players and 'I just wanna kill stuff and get loot' players. The second kind of player will be far less inclined to want to deal with a 'handicapped' character.

Like I said, it's a fine character idea, but one that would be better served and more enjoyable to role-play in a normal campaign. Otherwise, it comes off as a min/maxing attempt: 'Yeah, I get immunity to all gaze attacks and I just have a small minus to some skill rolls where the penalty will be meaningless at higher levels. I miss a lot at first, but level advancement and magic weapons solve that.'

Sczarni ***

@Runescryer

It's not that big of problem really, my PFS community isn't big, but it's growing. We have around 10-15 active players and more are joining slowly. At the moment I know every player there and they know me. If someone doesn't like my blind character, then I won't play him. GMs will also be informed of it.

Beside that, I plan to play my character somewhat defensively, more oriented on protecting others or following them, instead of madly charging around. He will be durable and party tank also.

Min/maxing attempt or not, I only said that he does have some benefits beside having disadvantages. I plan to make him viable after 2nd or 3rd level immediately in either case.

If everything else fails, I can always remove Blindness via Remove Blindness/Deafness spell.

Liberty's Edge *****

Slamy Mcbiteo wrote:


Characters who remain blinded for a long time grow accustomed to these drawbacks and can overcome some of them.

The last line may be your saving grace...but it seems pretty soft and up to the GM to determine that....

In a home game, yes. In PFS, no. If he remains blinded, he's blind, period in PFS.

Sczarni *** RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16 , Star Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

To run contrary to most of the people replying here, I would say, "Sure!"

If you came up to my table with a blind character, who was simply blind from birth or due to an accident or whatever, and the character had the appropriate penalties worked in, I would think you had a really neat concept and deserve credit for actually trying to create a unique character and give yourself an interesting role-playing hook.

So what if it's not officially in the rules? There's a reason for that: the heroes are usually not going to run around blinding themselves deliberately! And most people would think having a blind PC is no fun. But as long as there isn't a mechanical benefit (and in this case, there is the *opposite*) I don't see it as a problem.

Bottom line: expect table variation. Some GMs (sadly, it seems like most of the people posting above fall into this category) will have a problem with the concept. Others won't. Bring a back-up character to play just in case someone can't handle your concept, or if being "the blind guy" would totally cripple your party. If they are OK with it, then have fun!

Happy gaming!

Sczarni *** RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16 , Star Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

Andrew Christian wrote:
Slamy Mcbiteo wrote:


Characters who remain blinded for a long time grow accustomed to these drawbacks and can overcome some of them.

The last line may be your saving grace...but it seems pretty soft and up to the GM to determine that....

In a home game, yes. In PFS, no. If he remains blinded, he's blind, period in PFS.

I disagree. I think this is another case of "Expect Table Variation." The rules say a character who is blind for a long time may be able to overcome some of the drawbacks. That's the *only* thing they say, which means it is up to the table GM to give a good-faith effort to apply them.

While you are correct to say that the character will not just spontaneously become un-blind, the effects of being blind may be different for someone who is used to it. The rules say so, right in black and white! What they *don't* say is exactly *how* they will be different. Different GMs will interpret this line differently. Ask your table GM *before* you play to make sure you are all on the same page.

Silver Crusade ***** Venture-Captain, Indiana—Bloomington aka CanisDirus

Just an idea for another option - Smoked Goggles, 10 gp, 0 lbs - penalty to perception and attacks but major bonus vs visual-based attacks. You could RP-story it by saying your character hates bright lights, gives him/her migraines, etc.

Another option is to see if the ARG has any PFS-legal racial variants that have "light sensitivity" as a drawback, and play that - it gives a RP challenge and difficulty yes, but probably does have a positive tradeoff that won't make your character a risk to a party surviving a PFS scenario (and smoked goggles work for that kind of a character too heh).

I always build weaknesses into my characters, even in PFS, but I try not to let them be so big that they risk other characters' lives for the sake of my role play experience.

Liberty's Edge ****

Tamago wrote:
Andrew Christian wrote:
Slamy Mcbiteo wrote:


Characters who remain blinded for a long time grow accustomed to these drawbacks and can overcome some of them.

The last line may be your saving grace...but it seems pretty soft and up to the GM to determine that....

In a home game, yes. In PFS, no. If he remains blinded, he's blind, period in PFS.

I disagree. I think this is another case of "Expect Table Variation." The rules say a character who is blind for a long time may be able to overcome some of the drawbacks. That's the *only* thing they say, which means it is up to the table GM to give a good-faith effort to apply them.

While you are correct to say that the character will not just spontaneously become un-blind, the effects of being blind may be different for someone who is used to it. The rules say so, right in black and white! What they *don't* say is exactly *how* they will be different. Different GMs will interpret this line differently. Ask your table GM *before* you play to make sure you are all on the same page.

And you have hit the nail on the head, and why all the experienced PFS GMs are, for the most part, saying it is a less than good idea for PFS.

Remember taht the table GM is not the campaign GM, but simply the judge for the game.

The campaign GM, who would be the person responsible for determining anything that has a GM interpretation tag must be determined by Mike Brock and Mark Moreland. Without rules from them for this kind of thing, it is, in general, not going to fly in PFS.

How long is "long" for being blind? Is it one whole scenario, one whole level, one year of real world time, or some other, currently undefined, time span?

Also reember, as the OP has confirmed, being blind doews convey a mechanical advantage, along with the disadvantages. The blind person is immune to all gaze effects.

Add in that, IMO, there is no feasible way for a blind person, given the PFRPG rules, can ever make a reasonable tank, and you wind up with, maybe, a blind archer, who requires actions and time from another PC in order to be effective, along with having enough Fame, minimum, for a +2 weapon.

Tank? Hard to tank effectively when you will always be subject to sneak attack damage, even when you aren't flanked. AC, at best, is going to be only fractionally higher than someone in the same armor who is paralyzed or unconscious. No AoOs, no stickiness. How do you tank when the enemies ignore you?

As I mentioned, an archer with a seeing eye helper (target enemy in B6!) and a Seeking bow is the only way I can see to be effective. Blind fight will reduce the ineffectiveness of a melee combatant, if the meleer can even tell which square to attack.

Move at half speed or have a chance to trip every round? Yeesh.

Sczarni ***

Kinevon,

Anyone can gain temporary blind condition by closing their eyes and everyone can gain immunity to gaze. Don't twist my words please.

@CanisDirus

Smoked Goggles unfortunately isn't something which Shoanti Barbarian would wear and I don't have ARG so I can't really pick those traits if there are any.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Modules Subscriber
Tamago wrote:

To run contrary to most of the people replying here, I would say, "Sure!"

If you came up to my table with a blind character, who was simply blind from birth or due to an accident or whatever, and the character had the appropriate penalties worked in, I would think you had a really neat concept and deserve credit for actually trying to create a unique character and give yourself an interesting role-playing hook.

So what if it's not officially in the rules? There's a reason for that: the heroes are usually not going to run around blinding themselves deliberately! And most people would think having a blind PC is no fun. But as long as there isn't a mechanical benefit (and in this case, there is the *opposite*) I don't see it as a problem.

Bottom line: expect table variation. Some GMs (sadly, it seems like most of the people posting above fall into this category) will have a problem with the concept. Others won't. Bring a back-up character to play just in case someone can't handle your concept, or if being "the blind guy" would totally cripple your party. If they are OK with it, then have fun!

Happy gaming!

But there is a mechanical benefit: immunity to gaze attacks, sight-based illusions, and several other spells. The tradeoff is spending 1 Feat at 1st Level (with no prerequisites), to lessen the miss chance (normally a 50% miss chance, you get to re-roll which makes it an effective 25% miss chance. Also with the Blind Fight feat, you eliminate *all* penalties that come from invisible attackers in melee.

So, at 1st level
Benefits:
-Immunity to all gaze attacks, sight-based illusions, and multiple spells (daze, color spray, ect)
-Negate all advantages of an invisible melee attacker (+2 to hit for being invisible)
-Reroll all misses caused by Concealment (50% chance normally, reroll makes it an effective 25% chance)
-Move at full speed without making an Acrobatics check

Penalties:
-No bonus to AC from Dex (not usually a bit deal for Fighters. Does hurt Touch AC, but Fighters tend to have lower Dex)
-4 On most Strength & Dexterity based Skill checks
-Acrobatics (Not used much and can be worked around with teamwork)
-Climb (Again, can be worked around with teamwork)
-Disable Device (Moot Point for a Fighter)
-Escape Artist (Not very necessary, can wait for the Rouge to help)
-Fly (Moot Point)
-Ride (No check needed for basic riding, only for chases & stunts. Also can be overcome with certain saddles)
-Slight of Hand (Moot point)
-Stealth (Fighters rarely use stealth due to armor)
-Swim (Only large disadvantage since it's potentially life threatening and stacks with the Armor Penalty)

So, the only real drawback at Level 1 would be minuses on some non-essential skills for a fighter and never using the Dex bonus for AC. Not quite an equitable trade-off for the massive benefits you get, IMO. You may miss 25% of the time, but you have the rest of your party to make up for that. Most problems the skill check penalty causes can be overcome by having someone go ahead first and secure ropes for walking a ledge or a system to pull the blind character up. That takes extra time in game, but not much else.

Now, let's say our blind swordsman gets to level 10. He's put 1 rank every level into perception. Now, he's eligible for Improved Blind Fight. It's a Combat Feat, so he'd get it as a fighter.

At 10th Level
Benefits:
-Eliminates advantages of Ranged Invisible opponents once a Perception check locates them

So now, he gets his full AC on both ranged and Melee attacks

At a potential 15th Level, Greater Blind Fight can be taken. Now the miss chance is reduced from 50% to 20%, plus the reroll, which makes it an effective 16% miss chance. Even though regular PFS play only goes to 12, there are convention events and such that can take you to higher levels.

Now, this is not to rag on Malag at all. This is simply the analysis and though process that goes on for most GM's. Malag, if your local PFS GM is fine with it, awesome. Play the character and have fun. My opinion is that if I were the GM, I wouldn't allow the blindness if I were running PFS; for a regular campaign, I'll be completely fine with it. Because in a regular campaign, I can tailor the encounters as I see fit. PFS does not let GM's alter the encounters in scenarios.

This is a part of the downside of equibility for PFS. Things that are fine in a normal campaign are disallowed in PFS because they can be exploited with no recourse for GM's. It's why we can't do any crafting of magical items in PFS. There is enforced balance.

Again, Malag, this isn't to discourage you. This is to show you the thought processes that are leading many of us to say 'it's not a good idea' and why not every PFS GM you'll encounter will let you play that character.

Sczarni ***

@Runescryer

Actually, small correction only

Blind-Fight lets you keep your DEX bonus to AC from Invisible attackers, it says so in feat description and you need 10 ranks in Perception for Improved Blind Fight.

So even if I am blind, I retain Dex bonus, at least on melee attacks. Uncanny dodge further would help me to keep it forever up to AC.

Dark Archive ***

I personally would be more than willing to allow people to be blind as long as they follow a rules legal method to attain it of which there is three although the first involves physical damage to your PC which would prevent most casters removing the blindness.

The only magical way to attain permanent blindness that remains after scenarios is to get a hostile NPC to cast blindness on you and willingly fail the fort save, spellcasting services or other PC's do not count as per the guide.

The third option which is possible but not permanent is to buy the spellcasting service every session, which would also be legal as while it ends at the end of each session it would last for the whole session regardless of how many days the party travelled.

I am more than willing to allow people to do things for roleplaying reasons in PFS games, but remember just because its for RP reasons does not mean you can ignore the rules as written which state clearly how such things should be adjudicated, so in my case there would be no table variation as the rules for this are spelled out clearly and if he was to attend a table without a rules legal method of being blind then he would be able to see and it would go on his session record, if he pulled the character then I would be required to inform my VC about it so he could take appropriate action.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Modules Subscriber
Malag wrote:

@Runescryer

Actually, small correction only

Blind-Fight lets you keep your DEX bonus to AC from Invisible attackers, it says so in feat description and you need 10 ranks in Perception for Improved Blind Fight.

So even if I am blind, I retain Dex bonus, at least on melee attacks. Uncanny dodge further would help me to keep it forever up to AC.

Actually, the rules for the Blind condition on 285 of the Core Rules says that you loose any Dex bonus to AC in addition to all melee being in Total Concealment and the Acrobatics check to move faster than 1/2 speed. If you read the rules for Blind Fight, it only negates the movement restriction and gives you the concealment re-roll; the loss of the Dex bonus to AC remains for the Blinded condition. Invisible opponents impose a seperate set of penalties, which Blind Fight eliminates. The basic AC penalty from Blindness still remains even with Blind Fight.

Sczarni ***

runescryer wrote:
Malag wrote:

@Runescryer

Actually, small correction only

Blind-Fight lets you keep your DEX bonus to AC from Invisible attackers, it says so in feat description and you need 10 ranks in Perception for Improved Blind Fight.

So even if I am blind, I retain Dex bonus, at least on melee attacks. Uncanny dodge further would help me to keep it forever up to AC.

Actually, the rules for the Blind condition on 285 of the Core Rules says that you loose any Dex bonus to AC in addition to all melee being in Total Concealment and the Acrobatics check to move faster than 1/2 speed. If you read the rules for Blind Fight, it only negates the movement restriction and gives you the concealment re-roll; the loss of the Dex bonus to AC remains for the Blinded condition. Invisible opponents impose a seperate set of penalties, which Blind Fight eliminates. The basic AC penalty from Blindness still remains even with Blind Fight.

Are you saying that invisible person isn't same as not being visible while being Blind?

Blind person treats everyone as Invisible, that's why the feat mentions Invisible bonuses.

If you check the Blind condition penalties:
- Denied Dex
- -2 to AC
- total concealment
- autofail on vision checks

All of this is what Invisible person gains in general. It's same condition, only the Blind person applies Invisible "buff" to everyone around him.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Modules Subscriber

Yes. They are two separate effects/conditions. The Blindness condition rules do not say 'treat all opponents as if they were invisible'. They list the effects without mentioning Invisibility at all. Similarly, the Blind Fight rules diferentiate between general Concealment effects, Invisibility, and the Blindness movement penalty. Similarly, Blind Fight doesn't negate the Perception penalties to see an Invisible character, they only eliminate the AC penalty and give you the Concealment reroll. Blind Fight lists exactly what it does, and the general AC and Dex penalties from Blindness aren't listed, while the Movement restriction is.

A further example: Obscuring Mist creates Concealment and eliminates visual targeting at ranges greater than 5 feet, but it does not impose the AC and Dex penalties like Invisibility does, even if the attacker has a way of overcoming the Mist.

Shadow Lodge

Malag wrote:

Kinevon,

Anyone can gain temporary blind condition by closing their eyes and everyone can gain immunity to gaze. Don't twist my words please.

@CanisDirus

Smoked Goggles unfortunately isn't something which Shoanti Barbarian would wear and I don't have ARG so I can't really pick those traits if there are any.

I don't think you can just 'close your eyes' to overcome gaze attacks, though I'm too lazy to look up the thread were this war was waged. IIRC, some GMs allowed closing/opening eyes as a swift action (so, only on your turn), but I don't recall if there was an official response.

Seeing as how Gaze attacks and Illusion spells can be quite nasty, a swift action to negate them (without much penalty if you're in the back ranks, providing support, as opposed to attacking) seems to be a bit too much.

Sczarni ***

Hm, if that's the case, I might reconsider 1 level dip in Oracle for the sight curse.

But in case it's true what you say, Blind creature doesn't treat others as Invisible then. Meaning that others don't get Stealth bonus and +2 bonus to him in melee.

Grand Lodge **** Dedicated Voter 2013, Star Voter 2015

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Can I play a crippled hemophiliac?

I think there would be Very Rich Roleplaying Opportunities that come about from adventuring with a crippled hemophiliac. I look forward to playing at tables where my prone, low constitution bearer of massively disabling, rare inherited genetic conditions would lie trembling and struggle to breathe as battle, spells and traps rage around him.

****

runescryer wrote:
Yes. They are two separate effects/conditions. The Blindness condition rules do not say 'treat all opponents as if they were invisible'. They list the effects without mentioning Invisibility at all.

I don't even know where to begin.

You're arguing that if someone has the Blind-Fight feat, and they fail their save against a Blindness spell, they don't get the AC benefit of Blind-Fight ... but they would if, while blinded, they were fighting an enemy who was also invisible.

Really?

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Modules Subscriber
Malag wrote:

Hm, if that's the case, I might reconsider 1 level dip in Oracle for the sight curse.

But in case it's true what you say, Blind creature doesn't treat others as Invisible then. Meaning that others don't get Stealth bonus and +2 bonus to him in melee.

You still have the -2 AC from the Blindness condition.

The Invisibility Stealth bonus is more of a fuzzy matter. Perception includes both sight (which doesn't apply) and hearing (which would). I would be more inclined to eliminate the Stealth Bonus, unless the Invisible creature is magically silenced.

Keep in mind these are only my opinions and how I would work 'house rules'. Your local GM might agree that Blind Fight eliminates the AC and Dex penalties from Blindness as well as Invisibility. YMMV.

Grand Lodge **** Dedicated Voter 2013, Star Voter 2015

If Paizo didn't intend for me to play Stefani Hawkingsworth, prone cripple hemophiliac sage of Taldor, they wouldn't have written the drag and bleed rules.

Grand Lodge ***

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Tamago wrote:
I disagree. I think this is another case of "Expect Table Variation." The rules say a character who is blind for a long time may be able to overcome some of the drawbacks. That's the *only* thing they say, which means it is up to the table GM to give a good-faith effort to apply them.

As a PFS GM, I'm not empowered to give any kind of variation any more that I can say you can bring a custom magic item to table. You bring a blind character to my table, you get the full disadvantages as per the blinded condition. PFS is not the place to be if you expect to be playing Matt Murdoch.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Modules Subscriber
Patrick Harris @ SD wrote:
runescryer wrote:
Yes. They are two separate effects/conditions. The Blindness condition rules do not say 'treat all opponents as if they were invisible'. They list the effects without mentioning Invisibility at all.

I don't even know where to begin.

You're arguing that if someone has the Blind-Fight feat, and they fail their save against a Blindness spell, they don't get the AC benefit of Blind-Fight ... but they would if, while blinded, they were fighting an enemy who was also invisible.

Really?

That's not quite what I said; or, at least, meant. I was posting from my phone, so I can understand if the synopsis wasn't totally clear. So, here's a detailed look at the logic and the rules behind the logic.

First: a quick review of calculating AC bonuses, since it's relevant. There's 8 potential modifiers to AC: Dex bonus or penalty, Natural Armor, Armor, Shield, Dodge, Deflection, Size, and Miscellaneous (Dwarf bonus to AC when fighting Giants, for example). You can only have one modifier for each 'type'. So, the +4 AC bonus from Mage Armor doesn't stack with the +4 bonus from wearing a chain shirt armor; both are Armor bonuses. However, the +4 AC bonus from Shield Spell would stack with either since it's a Shield Bonus. Similarly, the AC bonus from a Shield of Faith spell stacks with both Armor and Shield, since it's a Deflection bonus. Therefore, you cannot recieve more than one Bonus in a single 'type' of AC bonus and you end up using whichever the greater bonus is. By correlation, penlties to AC do not stack if they are of the same 'type'.

Now, the heart of my argument is that Invisibility and Blindness are two separate things, even though they have some smiliar properties. But just like the Mage Armor spell doesn't stack with worn Armor, the AC and defnesive penalties of Invisibility don't stack with those of Blindness. Both Invisibility and Blindness share the following penalties:
-A -2 to defender's AC
-Loss of Dex bonus to AC
-Treat opponent as if they were in total concealment. The differnce here is that Blindness causes all opponents to be treated as if they were in Total Concealment, Invisibility alone only causes the Invisible opponent to be treated as if he was in Total COncealment.

Taking these one by one, you will only get a maximum of a -2 penalty to AC, since you don't stack penalties of the same type from difernet sources. You have already lost your Dex Bonus to AC, so you cannot loose it again by having the second effect occur. And, by having one of the conditions, you are already treating all opponents as if they are in Total Concelament, so that does not stack. The other, non-shared aspects of both Blindness and Invisibility are put into effect. The Perception DC to spot an Invisible character is a moot point to a Blinded character since the Blinded condition means that all visual Perception tests automatically fail. The only other effects added in would be the Movement restriction via Blindness: Moving greater than half speed requires and Acrobatics roll, and a -4 to Str and Dex based skill checks.

So, a character that is Blinded and attacked by an Invisible opponent would have the following penalties and effects applied.
-A -2 to AC, since the penalties don't stack
-Loss of Dex Bonus to AC, since you can only loose the Dex bonus once
-Treat all Opponents as if they were in Total Concealment; the greater penalty from Blindness superceeds the single opponent effect of Invisibility.
-All visual-based Perception checks automatically fail
-Movement greater than 1/2 speed requires an Acrobatics check.
-A -4 penalty to most Str and Dex based skill checks

Now, the Blind FIght feat gives the following bonuses:
-Allows a reroll on failed chances to overcome Concealment of any kind. COncealment is the active word, meaning that the reroll comes irregardless of what is providing the Concealment, be it Darkness, Blindness, Invisibility, Obscuring MIst, ect.
-Negates the -2 AC and loss of Dex Bonus caused by an Invisible opponent. It specifically states the Invisible effect here, not Blindness or any other visual condition that would caue a loss of AC and loss of Dex bonus.
-Eliminates the need for an Acrobatics Roll to move faster than half speed if blinded.

That's all that it does, no more, no less.

So, if we take into account the Blind Fight feat, our Blinded character attacking an Invisible opponent has the following effects:
-A -2 to AC, since the penalty from the Blindness condition still applies.
-Loss of Dex Bonus to AC from the Blindness condition
-Treat all opponents as if they were in Total Concealment, but reroll any failed checks to overcome Concealment.
-All Visual-based Perception checks automatically fail.
-Movement greater than 1/2 speed no longer requires an Acrobatics check.
-A -4 penalty to most Str and Dex based skill checks.

So, why is it set up like this? I can only guess, but I'd say that the reason is probably to make Blindness a more serious condition that is preferable to avoid. It limits the effectiveness of an exploit like 'I stay blinded then get a mage to Craft me a helmet that gives me bat-like echo-location that will eliminate all Concealment caused by visual impairment.'

Sovereign Court ****

It feels quite counter-intuitive to have Blind-fight feat not affect you when you're blind. Say, you are in a pitch black room.

This blindness/invisibility thing seems just like a RAI vs. RAW issue. Rule As Intended versus Rule As Written, for those who don't know.

Regarding the original issue about bringing crippled characters to the table, I can see why some oppose to the idea. You bring one, and suddenly these hemophiliacs or whatnot start appearing all the time. While I understand that blindness isn't all that severe in Pathfinder, it could create a landslide.

I personally have a deaf elf, and I chose to have her mute as well. That simply means she doesn't say a word. I haven't gotten a chance to play her yet, so I'm unsure how it'd affect the party.

Shadow Lodge *** Dedicated Voter 2014

Malag wrote:
Beside that, Blind Fight feat solves most of negative sides and only leaves -4 on skill checks which hurt but not to bad, so far everything is in positive numbers. Statisticly I have 25% chance to miss on every attack, and around 35% chance to hit. It's not that bad really, not to mention that it grants sight immunity on everything related to sight.

As bad as hitting less often than a sorcerer with a stick is, its not the worst part of being blind.

1) You have to know what square to swing at to have ANY chance at all of hitting them. That's the real tactical advantage of invisibility and stealth. Your chance of hitting somethings is FAR less than the simple math would indicate

2) You will start pretty much every combat surprised.

3) You cannot make perception checks for your/others faction missions.

4) You cannot make attacks of opportunity. People can walk right past your fighter to attack the squishies in the back. That's half a fighters job.

The Exchange *

Firstly, I'd allow this if I were GM - even in PFS. There is no rule in the game that says that PCs must be perfect specimens, so blind, deaf, paraplegic, bald, mute, etc. are all equally valid choices. If there is no rule to forbid it then I should allow it.

Blindness does indeed have a mechanical effect, but no more so than a choice of sex, sexuality or race would have an effect on diplomacy checks against certain NPCs in PFS. I'm sure that nobody here would forbid a character based on those attributes.

Personally, scouring the rules for a mechanical reason to forbid this makes me feel uneasy.

A general question: would your decision on whether or not to allow this character at your table change depending on whether the player was blind or not?

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Malag wrote:
Beside that, Blind Fight feat solves most of negative sides and only leaves -4 on skill checks which hurt but not to bad, so far everything is in positive numbers. Statisticly I have 25% chance to miss on every attack, and around 35% chance to hit. It's not that bad really, not to mention that it grants sight immunity on everything related to sight.

As bad as hitting less often than a sorcerer with a stick is, its not the worst part of being blind.

1) You have to know what square to swing at to have ANY chance at all of hitting them. That's the real tactical advantage of invisibility and stealth. Your chance of hitting somethings is FAR less than the simple math would indicate

That said, the tricky bit would be convincing me that you were not using player knowledge when it comes to the fact that while you can see the battle mat, your character can't. The book-keeping and constant perception checks to work out what the state of your characters mental map of the world is like would also slow play down.

So, it would be a pain for me as GM and I'd grumpily wish you hadn't done it, but unless it significantly disrupted the table as a whole I'd feel bound to let you do it. I'd also give you warnings and then boot you from the table if I thought that you were using player knowledge to lessen the impact of the blindness on your character. Not, of course, implying that you would.

*****

Mike and Mark are really the only people who can determine the benefits of long term blindness in PFS, but they are just as likely to ban the option entirely. Much like the occurrence of the 10 year old barbarian with 20 Str or the 4 year old archmage.

If you do intend on using this character in PFS. Do your fellow players a favor, and make it a GM credit project. Use GM credit to level this character to a decent level where you have the feats and magic items to effectively eliminate the characters blindness entirely. Once you have options granting you blindsense (or to a lesser extent tremorsense) out to at least 15-20 feet you can ignore most of the issues other players would have with you using a blinded character. Once you get the character set with GM credit you can then play him at slow advancement for the rest of his career to get the same amount of play time in.

Grand Lodge ***

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
brock, no the other one... wrote:

Firstly, I'd allow this if I were GM - even in PFS. There is no rule in the game that says that PCs must be perfect specimens, so blind, deaf, paraplegic, bald, mute, etc. are all equally valid choices. If there is no rule to forbid it then I should allow it.

Some of it is just common sense. When you tell me how a paraplegic, blind, or deaf can avoid washing out of Pathfinder Boot Camp, or any of today's field services, that have similar training, I'll rethink my position. Because you're talking about some serious handicaps there and every Pathfinder is expected to have some degree of self reliance and to pull their weight in a group.

The Exchange *

LazarX wrote:
brock, no the other one... wrote:
Firstly, I'd allow this if I were GM - even in PFS. There is no rule in the game that says that PCs must be perfect specimens, so blind, deaf, paraplegic, bald, mute, etc. are all equally valid choices. If there is no rule to forbid it then I should allow it.
Some of it is just common sense. When you tell me how a paraplegic, blind, or deaf can avoid washing out of Pathfinder Boot Camp, or any of today's field services, that have similar training, I'll rethink my position. Because you're talking about some serious handicaps there and every Pathfinder is expected to have some degree of self reliance and to pull their weight in a group.

That's a fair point, as certain things do stretch the suspension of disbelief of certain players beyond breaking point. In that event a compromise between not playing the character and the objecting player leaving the table needs to be reached.

However, I've never witnessed anyones backstory for their character being vetted before letting them play. Given what I've witnessed in real life, I'm also not qualified to comment a-priori on the ability of anyone with any variety of impairment to do a particular job. Further, the character may have been blinded after boot-camp and before their first mission, or may have had access to some form of aid during their training that they no longer have. Both perfectly acceptable story-based reasons for such a character existing.

I guess my position is : I'm not prepared to say that there are no blind Pathfinders, because no blind person could be good enough to be a Pathfinder.

I would be prepared to say that a specific character backstory was unrealistic, if it came up in the game, and suggest that a player work on it some more just in case it came up in a future game. However, if someone went to the lengths to create such a character I'd expect the backstory to be good enough that my players would go away enjoying having adventured with the character.

Scarab Sages

LazarX wrote:


Some of it is just common sense. When you tell me how a paraplegic, blind, or deaf can avoid washing out of Pathfinder Boot Camp, or any of today's field services, that have similar training, I'll rethink my position. Because you're talking about some serious handicaps there and every Pathfinder is expected to have some degree of self reliance and to pull their weight in a group.

Well, considering any oracle can take crippling penalties and call it good for the rest of his/her life with dual cursed, I'd say that blows that out of the water. Hell, my oracle has dual cursed with blindness and tongues (tongues being the curse that doesn't improve) and he's a complete gibbering maniac who is barely capable of forming a thought beyond adoration of the old ones. If he can be a Pathfinder, so can a blind guy.

****

runescryer wrote:
So, why is it set up like this? I can only guess, but I'd say that the reason is probably to make Blindness a more serious condition that is preferable to avoid. It limits the effectiveness of an exploit like 'I stay blinded then get a mage to Craft me a helmet that gives me bat-like echo-location that will eliminate all Concealment caused by visual impairment.'

I see that you've put a lot of thought in to this, but I still think you're wrong. This is RAI vs RAW. If the Paizo team had crafted every single sentence with the precision of a ninja turned lawyer, we wouldn't need a category called RAI. But they're human, and there's a lot of sentences; they did a great job but there's always going to be some interpretation issues. Which is where we bring in common sense. My common sense pretty clearly dictates that "Blind-Fight" is useful while under the condition called "Blindness." Call me crazy.

Liberty's Edge *****

If it isn't something specifically stated as something you can add to a character during character creation, you can't add it to your character in PFS. Like it or not, and regardless of any logical argument, this is part of organized play, and you can't just do whatever you want.


Stonecunning wrote:
LazarX wrote:


Some of it is just common sense. When you tell me how a paraplegic, blind, or deaf can avoid washing out of Pathfinder Boot Camp, or any of today's field services, that have similar training, I'll rethink my position. Because you're talking about some serious handicaps there and every Pathfinder is expected to have some degree of self reliance and to pull their weight in a group.
Well, considering any oracle can take crippling penalties and call it good for the rest of his/her life with dual cursed, I'd say that blows that out of the water. Hell, my oracle has dual cursed with blindness and tongues (tongues being the curse that doesn't improve) and he's a complete gibbering maniac who is barely capable of forming a thought beyond adoration of the old ones. If he can be a Pathfinder, so can a blind guy.

Except that the Blind curse isn't really blind, and the Tongues curse is so laughably easily worked around that it shouldn't even be on the list.

If the Blind curse was Blind like the deaf curse was deaf and if Tongues ripped out your tongue and prevented you from talking *ever* then you might have an argument..

-S

Sczarni ***

I have made seperate topic for Blind Fight feat and Blinded condition.

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