Bolstered - I don't think this word means what you think it does


General Discussion

Silver Crusade

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I know, the following is a fairly minor nit but its bugging me.

Bolstered, according to the dictionary, means things like aided, supported, etc. It does NOT mean "can't be done helped again for a day". It sounds like its a good thing (I want to be bolstered, right?)

May I suggested Habituated or Innured instead. Those at least suggest a limitation and NOT a benefit and are kinda close to the actual meaning.

Or even "dailyed". While not a word at least it makes the meaning clear :-) :-)


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I think the sense they are using it is once you've used the ability they are bolstered against the use of the ability for the rest of the day, which makes a lot of sense in that we're replacing "a creature cannot be the target of this hex again for 1 day" which appeared in scads of witch hexes (and other abilities.) And being reinforced against something makes it less likely to affect you.

It makes somewhat less sense with beneficial abilities like battlefield medic, but the healing hex reads "Once a creature has benefited from the healing hex, it cannot benefit from it again for 24 hours."

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Bolstered as in - you are bolstered against the effect, therefore it does harm you.

https://www.google.com/search?q=bolstered+against&rlz=1C9BKJA_enUS778US 778&hl=en-US&prmd=nsiv&source=lnms&tbm=bks&sa=X&ved =0ahUKEwiD-MPEyuDcAhUQQ6wKHQXzB3sQ_AUIFigG&biw=768&bih=909

Paizo Employee Designer

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We tried inoculated and inured and those were universally panned. The editors came to our rescue and came up with fortified, which we tried but sounded too much like fortitude, and then bolstered.


Being bolstered against sth. in the sense of being supported/aided to resist it is fine in my eyes. Not a native speaker though so your critique might be correct.


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I think some confusion does arise from the fact that Bolstered can be both a good thing and a bad thing. You can be bolstered against a curse (good!) but you can also be bolstered against your own restorative abilities (bad!)


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What about "Immunized"?


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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Honest question, did the old wording actually eat up enough wordcount that Bolstered had to be added?


Imperviable? Impervious?
Invulnerable?
Unsusceptible?

Bolstered works fine, I guess.


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Why can't we just say "immune"?


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I think it'd be fine if it was "bolstered against"
Using Bolstered kind of requires a direction of bolstering in a lot of the cases in this book.

I like the word.. but it needs parameters to work properly when half of hte time you're bolstered against beneficial properties.. such as the lv 1 feat for first aid.


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I really think it would be less awkward if this wasn't a keyword at all. It doesn't seem like its saving much space.

Silver Crusade

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I could certainly live with "bolstered against"


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Unsusceptible is the right meaning, but it's long and hard to spell. Also I'm not sure if it's a real word, or if it's supposed to be insusceptible.

Immune makes it sound very permanent. Immunized is the clearest, but sounds a bit too medical.

I can see why they had trouble finding the perfect word.


We need to make sure we're connoting that this is a temporary condition, since "immune for the next 24 hours" undoes the space-saving reasons for having Bolstered to begin with.


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As someone who DM'ed all through the D&D Next playtest, let me just say that I LOVE the use of as many keywords like this as possible. I don't have a dog in the "what word do we use" fight, but man, I love having consistency. Pathfinder players and GM's can turn into legal scholars when debating rules, so the more concrete they are, the better.


When I first read that 'bolstered' keyword it sounded strange to me, but I think it may work.
About the use of keywords in general, it makes rules more clear for sure; but I fear that having too many of them may be a turnoff for some people (and we have already seen posts saying just that).
It's hard to strike a balance between clarity, word count and readability!

Dark Archive

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Incromulated!


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TheRusty1 wrote:
As someone who DM'ed all through the D&D Next playtest, let me just say that I LOVE the use of as many keywords like this as possible. I don't have a dog in the "what word do we use" fight, but man, I love having consistency. Pathfinder players and GM's can turn into legal scholars when debating rules, so the more concrete they are, the better.

My lord Asmodeus agrees.


I like 'bolstered against'. It means you're using a minimum of four words (bolstered against this effect/your use of this effect), but most of the examples go the extra mile to make it clear how the keyword is being used. Combat medic doesn't need to specify that it only bolsters against your use of the effect since that's the default, but they went ahead and used the word count on it anyway.

Shadow Lodge

i actually like fortified the best...i think it's a different enough word from fortitude to avoid confusion...also i've never in my history in d&d been asked for a fortitude save...it's always "make a fort save"...


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Vivificient wrote:

Unsusceptible is the right meaning, but it's long and hard to spell. Also I'm not sure if it's a real word, or if it's supposed to be insusceptible.

Immune makes it sound very permanent. Immunized is the clearest, but sounds a bit too medical.

I can see why they had trouble finding the perfect word.

If you want a short simple word that has less positive/negative connotations, I'd probably have gone with "Exempt"


Some other ideas I had while reading this thread:

* Resistant to
* Shielded against
* Unaffected by

The one advantage Bolstered has over these three is that it becomes possible to just say "Bolstered" in the context of an ability and one can assume it means against that ability (even if it sounds a bit weird in context). None of these others can do that - they'd all need their prepositional phrase in order to not be confused with something else.


Mark Seifter wrote:
We tried inoculated and inured and those were universally panned. The editors came to our rescue and came up with fortified, which we tried but sounded too much like fortitude, and then bolstered.

Hm. I actually really like “inured”. It’s a fun word to say! Is there a reason it was universally disliked, or perhaps we just disagree on the ease with which it rolls off the tongue?


How about Blocked?


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graystone wrote:
How about Blocked?

Only if they add a spell named-...never mind.

Seriously though, Bolstered made sense to me immediately.


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thflame wrote:
Why can't we just say "immune"?

Yeah, immune for the next 24-hours/day, seems fine. Bolstered sounds a bit like a Magic: the Gathering card effect.


The players zestfully awaited the magical day when the system went live from beta, into a zestful period of a decade where an argument was resolved with a d20 roll. "Bolstered stays, natural 20."


How about Rebuff? As in for Battle Medic, "Regardless of your result, the target Rebuffs further uses of Battle Medic upon them."


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Unaffectable?


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I like "inured" as well.


guessing it might be that "inured" sounds and looks like "injured", but I'd still like to know why it was panned.

My problem with "bolstered" is that it sounds like something the character would be able to voluntarily lower, similar to spell resistance/immunity and saving throws in PF1.


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Mark Seifter wrote:
We tried inoculated and inured and those were universally panned. The editors came to our rescue and came up with fortified, which we tried but sounded too much like fortitude, and then bolstered.

Bolstered was better than what you had for sure, but it is a weird word. I had no idea what you meant by it when i came across it the first few times - til i found the description.

Just to illustrate how weird word association is: the word 'bolster' to me means those annoying long sausage-shaped pillows! Often found in cheap French hotels.

To the writers credit, its very hard to find a good word for it that doesn't already have in-game associations and meaning.

Maybe come at it from a slightly different grammatical direction, eg, You gain a moratorium against the same effect for the next 24 hours. Ie a noun not an adjective. There's a lot more nouns in the English language than adjectives! There's got to be one that means 'a reprieve' that hasn't been used in pathfinder before.


Yossarian wrote:
Just to illustrate how weird word association is: the word 'bolster' to me means those annoying long sausage-shaped pillows! Often found in cheap French hotels.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the two uses aren't unrelated.


Would suggesting the re-use of an old term be too awkward? I would prefer Augment(ed) rather than Bolster(ed); people are a little more used to seeing that term and Elemental Augmentations are not in the current Playtest Rulebook. In fact, there is only one ability currently using the word and that is in the name, not referring to a specific game mechanism/term :

Playtest Rulebook:
Conjuration, p.138 wrote:
You learn the augment summoning school power (see page 206), which you can cast at a cost of 1 Spell Point.
Augment Summoning, p.206 wrote:

AUGMENT SUMMONING POWER 1

Casting Verbal Casting; Trigger You complete an arcane spell that summons a creature.
The summoned creature gains a +1 conditional bonus to attack rolls, AC, and saving throws for the duration of the triggering spell.

So does it sound okay to go from this ... :

Bolstered wrote:

BOLSTERED

Some spells and abilities can’t affect a creature more than once in a day. If an effect says a creature becomes bolstered, repeated applications of that effect don’t do anything to the creature. For example, the blindness spell says, “The target is bolstered against all castings of blindness.” Casting blindness on that creature again would have no effect.
Unless otherwise stated, a creature remains bolstered for 24 hours against only that specific ability used by that specific creature. Blindness has an exception, bolstering the target against the spell no matter who casts it. Being bolstered doesn’t prevent ongoing effects of the source of the condition. For instance, if an ability makes you frightened and bolsters you against it, you don’t cease to be frightened due to becoming bolstered—you just don’t become frightened again if the same creature targets you with that ability later that day.

... to this? :

Augmented wrote:

AUGMENTED

Some spells and abilities can’t affect a creature more than once in a day. If an effect says a creature becomes augmented, repeated applications of that effect don’t do anything to the creature. For example, the blindness spell says, “The target is augmented against all castings of blindness.” Casting blindness on that creature again would have no effect.
Unless otherwise stated, a creature remains augmented for 24 hours against only that specific ability used by that specific creature. Blindness has an exception, augmenting the target against the spell no matter who casts it. Being augmented doesn’t prevent ongoing effects of the source of the condition. For instance, if an ability makes you frightened and augments you against it, you don’t cease to be frightened due to becoming augmented—you just don’t become frightened again if the same creature targets you with that ability later that day.

Example:
The above implies more of being bolstered against something, yet it is also used as a form of enhancement/increase. This works with augmented too :

TABLE 1–2: CLASSES, p.13 wrote:

Druid

The druid uses the natural world’s magic to bolster her and her allies’ strength while calling pain down upon enemies.
Wisdom | Constitution, Dexterity
TABLE 1–2: CLASSES, p.13 wrote:

Druid

The druid uses the natural world’s magic to augment her and her allies’ strength while calling pain down upon enemies.
Wisdom | Constitution, Dexterity

P.S.:
Could we also capitalize to make mechanical terms stand out from descriptive ones? For example :

Augmented wrote:

AUGMENTED

Some spells and abilities can’t affect a creature more than once in a day. If an effect says a creature becomes Augmented, repeated applications of that effect don’t do anything to the creature. For example, the blindness spell says, “The target is Augmented against all castings of blindness.” Casting blindness on that creature again would have no effect.
Unless otherwise stated, a creature remains Augmented for 24 hours against only that specific ability used by that specific creature. Blindness has an exception, Augmenting the target against the spell no matter who casts it. Being Augmented doesn’t prevent ongoing effects of the source of the condition. For instance, if an ability makes you frightened and Augments you against it, you don’t cease to be frightened due to becoming Augmented—you just don’t become frightened again if the same creature targets you with that ability later that day.

The Exchange

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When I first saw it I wondered what Bolstered meant, reading on it became clear that it meant something along the lines of what it says in the actual definition. It works and much as I love a little pedantry there are lots of other rough edges to file down.

I rather prefer inured, as bolstered has a generally positive connotation and being bolstered against something good seems a bit odd. Like describing something as an unmitigated success .

Bolster works though, it’s not that I am insusceptible or even habituated or desensitised to imaginative use of English to describe no longer being able to be affected by something from a particular source.

Since I began reading about resonance I was wondering if a simpler solution to the problem of over reliance on e.g. CLW wands would be to use a bolster like effect on spells cast from wands after a small number of uses.


Vic Ferrari wrote:
thflame wrote:
Why can't we just say "immune"?
Yeah, immune for the next 24-hours/day, seems fine. Bolstered sounds a bit like a Magic: the Gathering card effect.

It's because it is! Clan Abzan from Tarkir

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