Hexes and Foes!

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

It's Class Deck preview time again! Before we dive into the mysteries of the Witch, I want to note that the monthly parade of Class Deck releases will go on hiatus for a little while starting in November. We had originally intended to put Class Decks on hiatus during the six months that we're releasing Mummy's Mask, but production delays earlier in the year caused the Summoner Class Deck to slide into October alongside the Mummy's Mask Base Set and Character Add-On Deck. We're therefore starting the hiatus a month later than we had intended.

Now, on with the hexing.

Witch Design Brainstorming

We knew even before we started designing this deck that we wanted to do a version of the witch that played up familiars, and we already had the cohort technology to do it. We looked at the critters available to witches, to see what we wanted to do in addition to Daji, and the following exchange occurred:

Mike: Let's see... they've got access to the standard wizard familiars, so bat, cat, rat, weasel, to—
Tanis: I JUST SEARCHED FOR "FAMILIAR" IN THE BESTIARIES AND FOUND A DINOSAUR THEY CAN HAVE A DINOSAUR FAMILIAR WE'RE DOING IT WE'RE DOING IT
Mike: Hold that thought.
Tanis: Don't make me go get Gary.
Mike: Okay, fine, we're doing it.

Behold the compsognathus:


That's also the face I made when I saw the art.

As you can see, we decided to give the cohort some strategic implications by moving the witch's casting skill onto the familiar. This cleanly models the notion that witches gain their power through a pact with a patron represented by a familiar. The deck has several cohorts, and the non-Feiya characters get to choose which familiar they'll use at the start of each scenario. (Feiya has already chosen Daji, of course, but those of you who are QQing about that should look into her Beast-Bonder role.)

New Characters

In addition to a cohort-ified version of Feiya, we've added Kasmir, an itinerant healer who overcomes prejudice with his magnificent hair and many belts. Kasmir likes to use power efficiently, and his hex is similar to a selfish version of the original Skull & Shackles Character Add-On Deck Feiya's.

Kasmir is all heals, all the time. Cure spell in my discard? I'll take that. Get wiped out off-turn? No worries, I can still draw a card to get my heal off. He's fun to play and easy to kill, like so many of my favorite characters in the ACG.

We've also got the Blue Person, as the forums have noticed. She is indeed a Samsaran, and her name is Raheli.

The other thing that made me all-caps at the design team early in this process was the White-Haired Witch archetype. This archetype lets you fling objects at your enemies with your friggin' hair. If I had that power I would spend all day chucking pens, dice, and small action figures at my office-mates Vic and Lissa, so it's probably a good thing that magic isn't real.

Raheli's pretty much a one-trick pony, but since that pony is named Make Sure We Collect All the Boons, I think she's a pony you'll enjoy. Well, that got weird quickly. Onward!

Creepy Dolls

Since we're fond of designing cycles these days, I threw a set of creepy dolls into the Witch Deck that have a few different abilities.


It's got a ruined eye that's always open...

Since we're Paizo, we already had several creepy doll illustrations laying around, and they basically designed themselves. They sit there for a turn, do their creepy thing, and then act like spells.

The Witch Class Deck comes out at the end of the month. You can preorder yours here!

Tanis O'Connor
Adventure Card Game Designer

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Tags: Class Decks Pathfinder Adventure Card Game Witches
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Tattooed Mystic Seoni may be the best boon collector in the game with a couple of power feats and a couple of intelligence skill feats.


Mike Selinker wrote:

Playing a cohort with a non-cohort-using character generally only can happen if the scenario tells you that you get a cohort (this only happens in Wrath).

In theory you could play any character with any cohort. Just be aware that we balance a character that is assigned a cohort on her character card to be less powerful than any other character if neither has a cohort. So that means that if you play a non-cohort-using character with a cohort, you might have a more powerful character than a cohort-using character with her assigned cohort.

YMMV, as always.

This is something I should have clarified in my post as well Codcake. Characters that are designed to function with a cohort will have that cohort called out on their Card List. Adding cohorts to characters not designed specifically with them in mind might be a little more powerful than normal.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Ashram316 wrote:
Tattooed Mystic Seoni may be the best boon collector in the game with a couple of power feats and a couple of intelligence skill feats.

Dangit. I was hoping the term "boon hound" would catch on, but it's probably for the best if it doesn't.


I will name my next dog thusly


I will gladly adopt "boon hound" as part of my vocabulary.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

I will not let this slight of omission stand. With her ability not just to ~acquire~ the boons, but bury a card to redraw a new boon of the same type (or a spell! (or an ally!)), Radillo is clearly the best boon puppy. Rerolling a crappy Short Sword into bigger and better things, or a Wooden Shield into an ally for a free explode. Even if you don't get a good boon draw, you acquire it anyway so you can bury it for the next check (and bee-tee-dubs, each buried card is a +1 to your checks to acquire) AND you draw a card every time you acquire something. Radillo isn't just good at GETTING the boons, she uses them with panache (~just like everything else she does~).

<3 <3 <3 Radillo in all things <3 <3 <3

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Rebel Song wrote:
I know someone ^^^^^ who likes boon collecting. ;)

I am normally under the impression that this is the entire point of the game - except when I play with cartmanbeck, who has quite different ideas. These witches look OK at getting boons, but they only nab items and spells easier. It's not quite as awesome as Olenjack's +4 to getting anything. Or Ranzak - his Kleptomaniac role is something I am going to try sometime.


First off, James, I am on the "boon hound" wagon.

Wraitguard, I did not misunderstand and you explained well enough.
I realized the character card specific cohort when looking at some wrath and CD characters. I was unaware that cohorts in general were allowed in previous iterations of the game (due to the fact that I did not understand how cohorts functioned).

Mike, I had no interest in adding cohorts to non-cohort using characters. And I did understand the scenario specific cohorts once I did some reading. Although, I was enlightened, as I did not notice cohort using characters were inherently "weaker" characters on his/her own.

Overall, I am now pleasantly excited about some of these CDs I had no original interest in purchasing due to ignorance (I thought since I did not own wrath, that these characters were incompatible for me...).

To the wife, to beg for 30th birthday money!!!


Calthaer, Klepto Ranzak is all my wife plays. It is awesome having someone scout ahead and then we all yell "Ranzak get to (location), and get me that (boon), now!"

If you throw in a blessing with all those bonus die and bonus +s, it gets pretty sweet.

Silver Crusade

Stargazer Alahazra at the Wishing Well. All your boons are belong to me.

Silver Crusade RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

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Calthaer wrote:
Rebel Song wrote:
I know someone ^^^^^ who likes boon collecting. ;)
I am normally under the impression that this is the entire point of the game - except when I play with cartmanbeck, who has quite different ideas. These witches look OK at getting boons, but they only nab items and spells easier. It's not quite as awesome as Olenjack's +4 to getting anything. Or Ranzak - his Kleptomaniac role is something I am going to try sometime.

I get much satisfaction from destroying combat checks. Gaining boons is great, but only if they're actually upgrades. :-P


That's the spirit!!


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Ashram316 wrote:
Tattooed Mystic Seoni may be the best boon collector in the game with a couple of power feats and a couple of intelligence skill feats.

Scholar Zarlova's has even more potential; with a bunch of power feats and some skill feats, she can roll a d10 + 8 to pick up any boon.


See, cartmanbeck has the right idea. All that boon gathering only makes me feel good if I can use that shiney new weapon/spell to destroy a Villain.


Playing through S&S right now and Runelords Ezren with the Letter of Marque.

You know what that means?

It means a fistful of spells being acquired in one exploration.


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Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
cartmanbeck wrote:
I get much satisfaction from destroying combat checks. Gaining boons is great, but only if they're actually upgrades. :-P

That's what makes Radillo so great, and all these other characters just pretenders to the throne. They might be good at GETTING boons, but Radillo is good at getting MORE boons, she actually has a use for the crappy ones she picks up that doesn't clog her hand/deck/discard pile, and she can evade the ones she doesn't. Who cares about some d10 Knowledge blah blah blah? If you want a *specific* boon, play a blessing, anyone can do that. But only one character can effectively *double* the boons you encounter, and every time she swaps out an encountered boon for a new one, she gets a +1 at acquiring boons for the rest of the scenario. Never has there been a more perfect machine! b('.')b Playing Radillo through Rise of the Runelords is the only time I've seen a substantial amount of any base set's AP6 cards, and now I'm hungry to play her again and just keep stoking that boon engine.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Googam wrote:

Playing through S&S right now and Runelords Ezren with the Letter of Marque.

You know what that means?

It means a fistful of spells being acquired in one exploration.

Letter of Marque is my favorite card in the game so far. Way better than Holy Candle.


Calthaer wrote:


Letter of Marque is my favorite card in the game so far. Way better than Holy Candle.

It's amazing. Weird thing is that the first time we played throughS&S last summer no one took it! I really can't think why. We were clearly idiots.


Calthaer wrote:
Way better than Holy Candle.

Got to say that Holy Candle saved us so many times that we decided to start playing it as 'banish' rather than 'bury'. Anyone else done that?


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

By all means it should be banished :-)


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Googam wrote:
Calthaer wrote:
Way better than Holy Candle.
Got to say that Holy Candle saved us so many times that we decided to start playing it as 'banish' rather than 'bury'. Anyone else done that?

The Pathfinder Adventures App actually makes that exact change.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Googam wrote:
Calthaer wrote:
Way better than Holy Candle.
Got to say that Holy Candle saved us so many times that we decided to start playing it as 'banish' rather than 'bury'. Anyone else done that?

I think Rebel Song has pointed out that this makes it even better for Mother Myrtle.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Eliandra Giltessan wrote:
I think Rebel Song has pointed out that this makes it even better for Mother Myrtle.

How long can a single game last...


James McKendrew wrote:
Eliandra Giltessan wrote:
I think Rebel Song has pointed out that this makes it even better for Mother Myrtle.
How long can a single game last...

Unknown... but if Myrtle makes the recharge check, and then shuffles it into her deck instead of recharging it, the game could potentially last forever. :)

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Rebel Song wrote:
Unknown... but if Myrtle makes the recharge check, and then shuffles it into her deck instead of recharging it, the game could potentially last forever. :)

Gawds... Empty all the locations but don't close if you can avoid it. Find the villain, don't temp close, defeat him/her/it, get Blessings from the box, move the villain around, gather blessings, Holy Candle, face villain, lather, rinse, repeat. You could run the box out of blessings that way.


Since you take damage from not defeating the villain most of the time and defeating the villain closes the location automatically, this would have to be a very special case :)

The lengths you guys go to for all the boons... meanwhile, I'm looking at how to build Sajan in OP to be more or less reliant on very little.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
zeroth_hour2 wrote:

Since you take damage from not defeating the villain most of the time and defeating the villain closes the location automatically, this would have to be a very special case :)

The lengths you guys go to for all the boons... meanwhile, I'm looking at how to build Sajan in OP to be more or less reliant on very little.

Bah. Knew there was a hole in that logic. Taking damage isn't a problem, but getting blessings out of the blessings deck rather than the box is the real problem. Run out WAY too soon.

And banes are just those things you dodge around to get boons.

Adventure Card Game Designer

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Googam wrote:
Got to say that Holy Candle saved us so many times that we decided to start playing it as 'banish' rather than 'bury'. Anyone else done that?

I have indeed.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Calthaer wrote:
... These last few decks have been / look like they will be heads-and-shoulders better than the first seven.

Yep. I have a long time hoped to see Bard class deck 2, ranger class deck 2 and so on. So that those basic class characters would Also get some oomph.

It better this way than releasing an upgrade pack, because it would make those deck bigger, and maybe harder to balance. Also it would make it so that you can not mix old Bard deck with new Bard deck because They would be different card identifier.

But who knows, maybe we will get class Villains next. That would be cool too!
;-)

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Witch Deck Wording concern:
So, one wording hiccup I noted that may come up. Feiya's Beast-Bonder role, second power-cluster, "When you fail to defeat a non-villain, non-henchman monster (□ or fail to acquire an ally that has the Animal, Arcane, or Vermin trait), you may recharge a spell to shuffle the monster in a random (□ or any) other open location deck."

Seems like you need to change the word "monster" to some other verbage to include un-acquired ally.

Adventure Card Game Designer

Noted. Thanks.


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James McKendrew wrote:
** spoiler omitted **

It should also say "into a random blah blah" since into implies movement but that's such a tiny grammatical thing that it doesn't really matter at all. :3

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Rebel Song wrote:
James McKendrew wrote:
** spoiler omitted **
It should also say "into a random blah blah" since into implies movement but that's such a tiny grammatical thing that it doesn't really matter at all. :3

It does. I mis-transcribed.


I hope I'm not assuming too much in that Raheli was based of Rama from the Hindu religion? That's really cool!

Makes some sense with her Dex stat and the parallel that Rama had a great bow.

Hmm, might have to create a special bow that is an item that can only be used to defeat henchmen or villain with a check of 25 or higher. Rama;s bow (Brahmastra) was considered the most powerful weapon, capable of destroying all creation

I think it would have to be a bury unless you can roll some kind of super high number to discard it. Maybe roll a wisdom 30 to discard. Just musing out loud. Pay no attention to me :)


Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
KS_brkfst wrote:

I hope I'm not assuming too much in that Raheli was based of Rama from the Hindu religion? That's really cool!

Makes some sense with her Dex stat and the parallel that Rama had a great bow.

Hmm, might have to create a special bow that is an item that can only be used to defeat henchmen or villain with a check of 25 or higher. Rama;s bow (Brahmastra) was considered the most powerful weapon, capable of destroying all creation

I think it would have to be a bury unless you can roll some kind of super high number to discard it. Maybe roll a wisdom 30 to discard. Just musing out loud. Pay no attention to me :)

If you decide to pursue it, feel free to post what you come up with on the Homebrew forum (and possibly design the card in drivethrucards too so others can get it). Just keep in mind that you can never automatically succeed at a Combat check (and the rulebook does say "never" in that instance so per the Golden Rule no card can override that).


Oh, dang! Thank you for that correction. That's good to know.

The card that comes immediately to mind is Unearthly Aim - Add 10 plus the adventures scenario deck number to combat check that strength, melee, ranged trait.

Something powerful like that would work well, I think.

Skizzerz, can you tweak a characters powers? It might be interesting to , in her role card, to add some language that states if this bow item is recharged then add more powerful dice. Though, I would hate to make her too reliant on one card because, said in the comments, she is a boon hound.

Hmm, lots to consider.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

That rule still needs some adjusting to account for Potion of the Ocean. See this comment from Mike.

Obviously, you are talking homebrew stuff, but a card that specifically automatically defeated a villain or henchman would fit in the "specific types of banes" exclusion.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Hawkmoon269 wrote:
That rule still needs some adjusting to account for Potion of the Ocean. See this comment from Mike.

IMHO rather than changing the rule and potentially create many side effects on existing cards, I would just modify Potion of the Ocean (for example to add 20d12 to the check). :-)


Quick question about cards that say "this counts as playing a spell"

There are some monsters and henchmen that say can't play attack spells or make you succeed at a check to play attack spells. I'm wondering how that works when you play an item with the attack trait that says this counts as playing a spell. For example-

I have to fight the blood demon.
I play Staff of Cackling Wrath.
Since this card says this counts as playing a spell and it has the attack trait should I have attempted the Blood Demons check to play spells with the attack trait?

I feel like the answer will be rather obvious. I'm just confused on if, while in my hand, it's an item and then once it is played it becomes a spell, or it stays an item, but counts as playing a spell so then I wouldn't be able to play a spell like Brilliance along with it.

Thanks for your help

Silver Crusade RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

KS_brkfst wrote:

Quick question about cards that say "this counts as playing a spell"

There are some monsters and henchmen that say can't play attack spells or make you succeed at a check to play attack spells. I'm wondering how that works when you play an item with the attack trait that says this counts as playing a spell. For example-

I have to fight the blood demon.
I play Staff of Cackling Wrath.
Since this card says this counts as playing a spell and it has the attack trait should I have attempted the Blood Demons check to play spells with the attack trait?

I feel like the answer will be rather obvious. I'm just confused on if, while in my hand, it's an item and then once it is played it becomes a spell, or it stays an item, but counts as playing a spell so then I wouldn't be able to play a spell like Brilliance along with it.

Thanks for your help

I think the answer is yes, and that's exactly the reason why they add the "this counts as playing a spell" line. If you are making a check that has the Attack trait and you are either actually using a spell card or the card or power you're using says "this counts as playing a spell", then cards that are immune to spells with the Attack trait would be immune.

The question of whether you can play another spell is a BIT more subtle, but I would say the answer would be no, you can't then play another spell on the check.


So by that logic, If I made a successful check to play attack spells, I would also be able to play an item because the item (Staff of Cackling Wrath) now counts as an attack spell and would fill the spell slot for playing one card of each type during a check, which in turn leaves the slot for an item to be played during the encounter vacant.

I would still like some more input on my first question. Don't take that the wrong way cartmanbeck. I like what you had to say and am leaning that way too, but I'm just trying to be as informed about the situation as I can be.

- Edit -

Not to get too much into semantics, but I wonder if the word "counts" could be a clue?

If it counts as playing a spell then, in my opinion, that would mean for that encounter your one spell has been played. Staff of Cackling Wrath is not a spell card. It is an Item card with the attack trait and not a spell card with the attack trait. I think it will fill the spell and item slot when played.

If that sounds like the ranting of a madman, please, someone hit me

Silver Crusade RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

KS_brkfst wrote:

So by that logic, If I made a successful check to play attack spells, I would also be able to play an item because the item (Staff of Cackling Wrath) now counts as an attack spell and would fill the spell slot for playing one card of each type during a check, which in turn leaves the slot for an item to be played during the encounter vacant.

I would still like some more input on my first question. Don't take that the wrong way cartmanbeck. I like what you had to say and am leaning that way too, but I'm just trying to be as informed about the situation as I can be.

- Edit -

Not to get too much into semantics, but I wonder if the word "counts" could be a clue?

If it counts as playing a spell then, in my opinion, that would mean for that encounter your one spell has been played. Staff of Cackling Wrath is not a spell card. It is an Item card with the attack trait and not a spell card with the attack trait. I think it will fill the spell and item slot when played.

If that sounds like the ranting of a madman, please, someone hit me

I don't totally agree with that... if you play an item, you've played an item. In some items' cases, though, they ALSO count as playing a spell, so you've used both your Item and your Spell slot for that check. It doesn't say "playing this item instead counts as playing a spell", ya know?

It doesn't sound like the ranting of a madman, though, as these things are not straightforward. :)

I would ALSO love to hear Vic's or Mike's take on this question, for the record.


If a power or card counts as playing a spell, and it has the Attack trait, then anything that restricts playing spells with the Attack trait restricts using that power or card. RotR Seoni can't use her blast against the Carrion Golem. Neither could she play the Staff of Cackling Wrath.

Playing the Staff of Cackling Wrath definitely uses up the one item slot you have for the check. It's an item. You played it.

I'm not clear on whether the Staff of Cackling Wrath uses up the one spell slot you have for the check. I can see an argument either way. It seems like it would, but that doesn't seem fair, since it used your item slot.

(Purists: sorry for the loose "slot" language.)


Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
elcoderdude wrote:

If a power or card counts as playing a spell, and it has the Attack trait, then anything that restricts playing spells with the Attack trait restricts using that power or card. RotR Seoni can't use her blast against the Carrion Golem. Neither could she play the Staff of Cackling Wrath.

Playing the Staff of Cackling Wrath definitely uses up the one item slot you have for the check. It's an item. You played it.

I'm not clear on whether the Staff of Cackling Wrath uses up the one spell slot you have for the check. I can see an argument either way. It seems like it would, but that doesn't seem fair, since it used your item slot.

(Purists: sorry for the loose "slot" language.)

I view it as the opposite; it guaranteed uses up your one allowed spell, but it is unclear as to whether or not it also uses up your one allowed item. Recall that you are only allowed to play one card of each type during a check, so a card that counts as playing a spell means that you played a spell. Same thing with a power that counts as playing a spell on a character card -- using that power means you can't play any other spells on that check. The question is does it also still count as playing an item, or does the fact it is now a spell mean it is no longer an item? I'm sure this was asked and answered before but my search-fu is failing me. Right now I'm leaning on the side that it uses up both your spell and item though.

WotR Rulebook, p9 wrote:
Playing a card means using a power on that card by revealing, displaying, discarding, recharging, burying, or banishing that card or by performing another action specified by that card. Activating a power on a displayed card also counts as playing it. If a power says using it counts as playing a boon, it counts as playing a card.

(The bit about the check being required is correct, though)


Just to make sure I'm understanding -

If you encounter a monster/henchman/villain that requires a check to play attack spells (Blood Demon) you must succeed at the check to be able to play any card with the attack trait that says "this counts as playing a spell"

If you encounter a monster/henchman/villain that doesn't allow attack spells to be played at all (Carrion Golem) then cards with the attack trait that say "this counts as playing a spell" cannot be played at all.

Where we are still unclear is whether or not playing an item that reads "this counts as playing a spell" fills the item and spell slots during an encounter or just the spell slot.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

I'll wait for Vic's answer but if we are consistent with many other threads on similar subjects I would say:
If an item has a power that says "it counts as playing a spell", it somehow adds the spell type to the item type.
While if an item had a power that says "it counts as playing a spell INSTEAD", it would get the spell type and lose item type. IMHO.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

The question came up before. I'd agree that it counts as both, since nothing says it doesn't still count as the type of card it is.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

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Playing an item counts as playing an item, unless something tells you otherwise, and nothing here is telling you otherwise. (Note in Hawk's link above, Goblin Buckler Gun tells you it counts as playing a weapon instead of an armor.)

Playing a spell limits your ability to play other spells, so doing something that counts as playing a spell limits your ability to play other spells.

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