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Liberty's Edge

I have taken Lady Docur and the Lacunafex and made them major movers and shakers in Dance of the Damn. Basically I have a gang war going on between the Norgorber (Skinshaw) faction and the Lacunafex.

The PC's are tied into it a bit but I am not sure if I am taking too much liberty with Docur and her school/guild. I will not be running Song of Silver and I don't want to mess too much up for the next GM. Lady Docur is coming off as rather shady since opium is involved... and there is a member of the party who wrote into his backstory a family connection to a cult of Norgorber which he has yet to disavow... quiet the opposite - he gave them the dagger from book 2.

Will the PC's accidentally siding with Norgorber ruin the adventure?

Thanks in advance.

Liberty's Edge

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Please don't forget that the Warlock also has spells from Wizard/Sorcerer. So the Warlock has the ability to throw or cause the mystic bolts AND cast buff spells. It works pretty well in combat and is very versatile because it is still a vigilante and has a lot of RP potential attached as well.

Liberty's Edge

Clectabled wrote:
Mathwei ap Niall wrote:


First, protection from Good doesn't protect you, the spell is explicit that only protection from evil works. (as the recent faq on Pro Evil helped clarify).

So the quoted "or a similar ward" means whats exactly?

Ref please on the Pro Evil FAQ.

Don't disagree with anything else you had..

This looks like an issue of laziness or poor editing. The text for magic jar is cut-n-pasted right out of 3.5 OGL making 3.5 and Pathfinder identical when it comes to the wording of magic jar (I believe - I am human after all and might have missed something.) BUT protection from evil is different in 3.5 and Pathfinder. 3.5 specifically says "This second effect works regardless of alignment." And Pathfinder states, "This second effect only functions against spells and effects created by evil creatures or objects, subject to GM discretion."

By RAW magic jar is not an evil spell because it doesn't have the descriptor and I think you could argue by RAW protection from evil will only work when the caster is evil. The text as RAW says "It is blocked by protection from evil or a similar ward". The key is "or" had it said "protection from evil and similar wards" it would be clear that protection from evil always works, but since it says "or similar ward," protection of evil is not always included. But that is my argument - which I believe keeps the game to as close to how it was meant to be. That is RAW

By RAI - there is an argument that magic jar became an evil spell because a spell that protects against evil specifically protects against magic jar. But it is not an argument I would make. Following the logic above, by RAI I would say that Magic Jar is an ongoing compulsion or possession and a spell that protects against such a thing, such as protection from evil when the caster is evil or protection from good when the caster is good would protect against magic jar.

Liberty's Edge

I think they are compatible. Unless Tattoo came out later than the FAQ (which doesn't seem likely) I think they would have addressed this in the FAQ. There are not a lot of sorcerer archetypes to address in regards to Crossblooded. I think their silence on the matter is telling since the crossblooded was addressed.

I am one of the people who believes that by RAW the crossblooded sorcerer expands on the options one can choose with the class ability rather than alters the class ability. I think Crossblooded creates a hybrid bloodline - simply that, a hybrid bloodline.

As quoted by Quandry above, the crossblooded "combines the bonus feat lists from both of her bloodlines and may select her bloodline bonus feats" Emphasis should be on "may select _her_ bloodline bonus feats" as in bonus feats granted by the sorcerer class unaltered. That is the way all the powers work.

Just a note - I find it curious and a bit disappointing that so many would make a huge exception for the Quinggong monk (including the dev's) and pass it off as just an exception to the rules they are happy to see, but then get uber strict with something that has genuine ambiguity in regards to interpretation, more so than the Qinggong monk.

Liberty's Edge

In regards to optimization: It has always annoyed me. I must admit that I do it to a degree but I like to think that I am creative. I hardly ever as in almost never dump stats to 7 and if I dump a stat to 8 it is usually for a thematic reason. Although I am currently guilty of a non thematic reason for a spellcaster and... I have to make sure I role play it.

And that's just it. I make people live with their class dumps. If someone dumps a stat to 7 or god forbid 5, I make them role play it. For instance one of my players has a 7 int and a 7 wisdom. I informed the player that I consider the character to have a 70 IQ which is on the verge of legally incompetent but with the 7 wisdom the edge was past and the character is essentially mentally disabled and I will enforce such with roll playing.

It is harsh but if one is going to reap the benefits of min/maxing for half the game (the board game like combat) then I think as a GM and for the sake of my table both presently and in the future I have to make sure the other half of the game (the roll playing) is challenging.

I discourage optimization or min/maxing to the extreme because it creates a race to the bottom and sets a difficulty bar that discourages roll playing. In order to keep things interesting challenges must be heroic but if one PC can take on the entire encounter the heroism melts away until other players catch up. In order to catch up, they min/max. And all this destroys the roll playing part of the game. If people are going to min/max at my tables I make them play it.

Liberty's Edge

My Advice: Get Pounce.

Beastmorph Alchemist can give you pounce
Kitsunie can get it.

Get the Mounted Combat Feats and Leadership for a Mount or the Feats that grant any character class a Mount (there are about three needed).

Personally I would go Alchemist and Fighter. The buffs will help a lot and the loss of BAB is minimal given the mutagen; loss of feats is hard but... so it goes. You still get 8 feats from level and 4 feats from fighter (go Dragoon and get Skill Focus(ride) for free = 12 feats.
For this build 9 feats are necessary: Mounted Combat, Ride-by-Attack, Spirited Charge, Wheeling-Charge, Power Attack, Three feats for the animal companion...(I think).

Weapon Focus and Weapon Specialization are nice but as you will see below not super necessary.

16th Level(10 Beastmorph Alchemist/6 Dragoon Fighter:
32 Str with mutagen (Begin w/ 18 +4 for 16th level and +6 for items + 4 for mutagen). Bab +13. +2 Lance. Weapon Focus. Weapon Mastery.

+30 Charge +26 w/ power attack. (+11str+13bab+1WF+1WM+2weapon+2charge)

Damage: Two hand lance with Power Attack and W. Specl.= 1d8+33
(+16str+2WS+2weapon+12PA+1WM)

Charge with pounce +26/+21/+16 3d8+99. If you hit all three times you are looking at over 300 pts of damage in a round.

All that can be done with minimal expense. Obviously replace fighter with Paladin would be even bigger, but the feats would be harder to get and the question was how to get a fighter to do over 200 hps in a round. I understand the above breaks away from the original question - to that point I must admit that I am stumped. I have other builds that don't require the above but they are all multi-classed to some degree, so I have no pure fighter idea.

Liberty's Edge

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The Blight Druid? You get a cool miasma (which could be interpreted as an aura of "death") and you can take the Darkness, Death or Destruction Domain or take a "Pale Horse" Animal Companion and get some mounted combat feats - take a couple levels of fighter with boon companion.

Liberty's Edge

I am trying to figure out the best use of a familiar.

For about a day I was under the impression that you could cast magic jar through your familiar due to share spell. But then you read the description of magic jar and the target is "one person" even though one clearly is not casting magic jar on a person. It sounds like one casts the spell, put's one's soul in the jar AND then targets an individual. Either tricky writers were a step ahead of me, there is a mistake, or the spell is uniquely complex and I just ain't seeing how the familiar could be the soul in the jar.

Anyhow... What are good spells to use with one's familiar?

Liberty's Edge

A celebrity witch, you know a witch of the stars, could use Ice Tomb on the body and then maybe a Handy Haversak or Bag of Holding... I say maybe because in theory you are placing the body in a different dimension which would clearly violate the range one can be from the body. But I'm sure there are ways of shrinking objects etc.

Maybe a halfling witch with a greater hat of disguised altered to tiny, then carried by whom ever, sweeten the deal by using Ice Tomb and being placed in a whineskin so the fighter has a perpetually chilled drink while carring the body.

Liberty's Edge

I have no idea why so many people are against the idea. Elvan Chainmail is light armor because there was a mistake and it was printed as light armor... and they decided it was nice that Elvan Chainmail was different than standard mithral armor. Sometimes mistakes make the game better.

The Mysterious Pistolero is actually the smallest reason I am disappointed. Who cares if the gunslinger can use Charisma instead of Wisdom. Honestly this should have been a Charisma class from the get go; that just corrects something. But really this is about players and a fun game. I think it would have been nice to see double dexterity damage. I am not trying to break the game nor do I condone that. It's pretty easy to break this game - it's just math after all; We could all just play summoners cause Eidolons break the game everyday. I would have liked double dexterity damage because I want to see a player who took the chance to play a risky, flavor based class have as much fun as the great-sword fighter or the wizard. Being a Gunslinger is hard. Period. What other class has to pay so much gold just to use their class abilities? And again, what other class has fumble rules written into it? And I keep coming back to that because I have seen how deflating those fumbles can be. People are trying to play a something right out of Unforgiven (double pistol wielding Pirate); something incredible cool you know a Pistolero or a Mysterious Stranger that comes to town on a dust storm (people are playing exactly what the developers wanted)and when they roll poorly, which happens, it almost like they can't play the character they intended. It becomes almost slap stick. In fact, I have been suggesting that anyone who seriously wants to play that type of character should just play a light repeating crossbow character who duel wields (just a dip into Inquisitor). Yeah you don't get touch attacks or dexterity to damage but you don't fumble, you don't pay a mint for every attack, your exotic weapons are cheaper than the guns, and you can actually play the "Two Guns" character you really wanted. With some fighter levels (cause that is what you are taking instead of Gunslinger) you get Weapon Mastery and specialization - now you aren't so far behind the dexterity for damage. Sure the grit stuff is nice, but when you really think about it half of the grit deeds seem just to mitigate a whole bunch of suck... spend a grit point and this class is a bit better.

I am being harsh. I know. But this class is a roll playing class more than so many other classes (it gives carrots for good roll playing while summoning up images of Americana that we all understand) and I want to see it live. Double dexterity damage would have helped and that is all this class needs - a little help.

I'm not saying that guns are completely useless - touch attack at short range with an amazing critical multiplier - I don't see why a fighter can't be a better gunslinger than a Gunslinger.

Regarding the range of pistols: The range is fine but the touch attack range is... shorter and that is what people are going for. The musket is like forty feet. The pistol is twenty feet. Against one big bad guy with fighters to block - you are correct. But if it is a virtual melee with lots of enemies, I think at twenty foot range you are in the thick of it pretty much all the time and will be provoking or having to avoid AoO's a lot.

Liberty's Edge

I think RAI completely meant for someone to get double Dex on damage with the Pistolero. The Pistolero sacrificed the ability to use other guns without a spending a feat. Therefore it is stuck essentially fighting in close quarters... which require more feats. To make up for it the developers essentially gave it a super weapon specialization... on a weapon that can jam in combat and require a full round action and a roll to continue. No other class is built around a weapon with a fumble and thus no other class can fumble. So... I do think the Pistolero is meant to do more damage god... they deserve it. By high levels the extra five to seven points isn't going to be the huge difference maker... it's not like they get a WHOLE extra arrow with damage modifies and all when they full attack.

I am biased for two reasons. I am now making a Mysterious Pistolero and I think a class built around ranged combat should at least be as good as a fighter with a bow - at least AS good. Because of the whole fumbling thing, I have not given the Gunslinger a lot of credit, so really anything that makes it a bit better is OK with me. I know at high levels gunslingers can be really cool but as I see it, and I could be wrong, you are sweating the early levels - cause you are broke from buying ammunition and your attacks don't do lots of damage for a time... oh and there is chance EVERY attack that you just broke your class's, not your character's, your class's chosen weapon. In fact I have not seen a pure gunslinger YET they all seem multiclassed cause... I think the early levels are kind of a chore. Oh yeah and since it is REALLY hard to have more than one attack a round, a first of second level monk and completely nullify the only real attack the whole class has.

Please, I am not trying to sound like a jerk, I just think gunslinger was a good idea - a rather well executed class - but because archery is SO powerful (there are lots of things that are powerful Archery is probably not the most of which) it dominates ranged combat and if you want to make a ranged character; by the numbers you buy a bow and that is sort of sad. So that is why I sound like a jerk. I really mean no offense.

Liberty's Edge

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I have had an issue with this recently. I thing extra ordinary races should be handled with care. To me, at this point in my gaming "career", the game is about the story and extra ordinary races can take from the story.

If you are exclusively playing something like PFS then its no big deal a bunch of native outsiders walk into a bar and nobody flinches because you have a fixed amount of time to do the scenario and no time to role play so who cares...and the scenario has a hook for you to follow. Don't get me wrong, I love PFS, but it recently a lodge meeting more resembles an intergalactic mixer than a "Fellowship" reunion.

In AP's and home games I am becoming that GM-jerk who is limiting races because although I appreciate the role playing a unique race might have with a story that characters race should not become the story for everyone. If the whole party are Drizzit then the story you wanted to tell is a bit different but hey, everyone is included and that is something cool. But the individual with the gnoll makes every other character deal with that PC's drama whether they want to or not. As a GM I guess I could ignore it, but then the integrity of the world you are running is "cheapened" to quote a previous post because the extra ordinary has become the mundane and the fantastic is not so much anymore and then where is the in-game thrill.

Playing a weird race is like the role playing "Easy Button" - you have build in story right out of the box no creativity required but it comes with a price every other PC has to pay for and it shifts the "gravity" of the game. I think that unless the RP reason for the extra ordinary race is very compelling, it is a disservice to the player to allow it - when you take away the "Easy Button" you force the player to RP with "less" which will bring so much more to the table and the player.

My crotchety thoughts - but then I just started running Dragon's Demand and had a table of four where three quarters of the players were native outsiders with no story connection.

Liberty's Edge

Hypothetical: you have a bloodline that grants the claws power, you also have extra appendages (wings, tentacles, third arm, etc). Can you grow your bloodline claws on the extra appendage and thus gain secondary attacks so you can 1) keep a weapon in you hands or 2) use claws gained from a different source which are already on your hands.

My thought is no. 1) There is usually a specific entry for wings, tentalces, extra appendage, in a creature's profile and are therefore something seperate things. 2) It seems like there is a definition of claws, somewhere, that I a missing. 3) To be stupid technical, the bloodline abilities say you can make two claw attacks, not two additional claw attacks.

Counter argument. It is a magical ability that can alter what it's placed upon.

Related question. Can a Strix gain aspect of the beast: claws on its wings?

Thanks.

Liberty's Edge

I've learned a lot from this thread. I learned about encounters. I learned a familiar can take down an mook. And finally I learned the dangers of everyday house cats. I bet cats have been killing all the cattle in the Mountain West all along... and we want to blame it on wolves. I guess some people have been hunting the wrong predators from helicopters.

Where this thread has gone is silly and deserves silliness. Let's combine it all I challenge the rest of y'all to purpose an encounter completely based on house cat based villains....

I'll go first: Trap Detect DC 25 Disarm DC 25: Bucket of fish oil falls on PC... huge swarm of cats (tiny creatures) devour the smelly PC.

Liberty's Edge

Thanks for this Mok.

I don't get in Dreamwalker. The question is based upon a sound footing as presented in the 3.5 DMG not on a generic question of how many encounters can a party really fit into PF as opposed to 3.5. Organized play only comes into the equation because it is a sound way of seeing how authors write and number encounters for a single gaming session. I think looking at organized play is the best way to do a comparison. Organized Play contains more variety and just like in lab work, the the more variety one introduces to an experiment the lower the margin of error one will have when calibrating one's finds. Also the adventures are written and edited by PF developers and collaborators. So basically, the creators of the game are inserting sort of the truth of the game as written into all this variety. Lastly the varied adventures, written by those who currently officially define the game, are meant to be played by a variety of PC groups which all conform to specific level, build and item restrictions and basic time limit of play. ... I could go on. But basically, I cannot find any fault in this method save that the DMG is a theory and organized play is an applied system.

I understand that part of the "mistake" was comparing PFS modules to what was written in the 3.5 DMG. I get that this is not a perfect comparison given the known flaws with 3.5 CR's and encounters. Nevertheless this is still the standard set by the developers of 3.5 so it is the standard by which the experiment is being conducted. For purposes of organized play comparisons regarding the transition from 3.5 to PF ,Dreamwalker has a point. But again... that's not the issue at hand - the issue is dealing with something from the 3.X DMG and an assumption that it is an accurate estimation given 3.5 rules. Perhaps there is another question to be asked given the initial issue of the post, maybe comparing Greyhawk or Living City adventures to PFS adventures but again... that's not the question Mok asked nor the data he had available to test formulate his question.

As to PF vs. 3.X: there are six major changes that I can think of off the top of my head that make a huge difference between these two games when it comes to base power comparisons
1) Each race is more powerful in PF than it was in 3.X.
2) Each character class is more powerful in PF than it was in 3.X
3) The skill systems allows characters to be more "skillful" in PF. This is accomplished with consolidated skills and the +3 bump for class skills.
4) Characters in Pathfinder can multiclass more easily for better optimization and can receive a bonus in a favored class.
5) Armor works better in PF than it did in 3.5. Breastplate = 6pts rather than 5 and full plate = 9pts instead of 8.
6) Most monsters did not see equivalent increases in power partially due to the bonuses many no longer received for being large and partially because it seems their AC's and HP's stayed about the same.

Furthermore, and here is another reason why organized play is useful for this sort of issue, many of us have had to opportunity to play PF characters in 3.5 games through organized play and frankly, the encounters don't stack up. The same party that is challenged by an adventure written for PF characters will absolutely stomp the year zero 3.5 adventure - unless the adventure had something that was just inappropriate... in which case it was probably banned as a playable adventure. Just an additional note regard this: those adventures that prove the most lethal in organized play are those that have NPC's with character classes fighting the party. Monsters can be hard but the bad guys with character classes are by far the hardest encounters.

Thanks again, Mok for all the effort.

Liberty's Edge

Sorry to take so long to reply.

I initially designed this character to be a wild-man and unfortunately if you want a character that can fight without armor and weapons you HAVE to take monk. There is no easier way - and it's not too hard to design a character with a nice wisdom. So I started him out as Lawful and then when to Neutral.

Liberty's Edge

james maissen wrote:


You're missing that improved crit: unarmed strike isn't really the most common use of the feat, rather its for weapons with a critical much better than 20/x2.

The free intimidate check on a crit is meh at best, you have feats out there that let you make one with each attack while power attacking. Not to mention that there are feats out there for fighters to stack much better extras on crits (either save against or CMD against). Finish with CHA not exactly being in a monk's top 5 stat scores...

Honestly I think that the new version of the feat is the stronger version.

-James

I can't completely agree with that.

The old feat allowed for fists of fury to become keen scimitars for one attack. Yes you can get the feat at low levels but at high levels the thing really pays off. The more attacks you have the more chance you are going to roll a crit and if every round you are attacking four or five times... then all of a sudden you are using this feat a lot. But I don't disagree that by that time a lot of combats don't really see much more than three rounds of combat. The above versus the new feat which allows a character to throwing piercing unarmed attacks which only crit on a natural 20. It is not as often that the piercing attack is the thing that is making the difference.

But I don't really disagree with James either. If you take the new feat and buddy it up (as I think it was meant to do) with the Hamatu Impaling feats from the Cheliax book - then this feat is a gateway to a kind of "grab." It is an expensive gateway as in it requires a high BAB and a bunch of feats to do well, and there is still a negative to the CMB attempt), and by that level chances are the CMD's are too high to just willy-nilly grab opponents... but the visuals of having a monk who can impale baddies with her fist are worth the suboptimal spending of feats. And when that combo works it works well b/c it allows a monk (or I guess anyone really) to suddenly make a grapple attack on an AoO which is very useful... or you could just have a cestus and not spend a feat on Hamatulatsu. And thus my argument as to why the new feat should be allowed for organized play. In the end it is mostly frivolous (given the limited feats monks get) and mostly attractive to those who prioritize role-playing over power-gaming.

But what is really interesting about the older feat is that it was designed for 3.5. In 3.5 this is an outlandishly powerful feat, but that's b/c there were so many way to get unarmed combat damage to outlandish levels. The most powerful character I ever made in 3.5 was an unarmed fighter - and that was mostly a RAW character (Monk 2, Barbarian 2, Fighter 1, Fist of the Forest 3, Bear Warrior 1, Warshaper 4) with all the TWF, ImTWF, & GreaterTWF and ImpNA. The damage went from d6 -> d10 b/c of Fist of the Forest. From d10 -> 2d8 b/c of ImNA -> 3d8 from Warshaper during rages/bear form attacks. I readily admit that First of the Forest is a bit much but that was part of the point of the character - to demonstrate why the class was way too much.

Be well.

Liberty's Edge

james maissen wrote:

Funny cause I think shadowdancers work just fine in pathfinder. I don't see the problem you are having with it.

But then again I don't follow some of your complaints (like hellcat stealth being usable everywhere, etc).

Of course lighting conditions matter, and tracking them is just good judging.

-James

Before one had to be within ten feet of a shadow, that can be from a table, a fellow PC, the crook of a wall, etc. Since there was no in-game modifier that necessarily had to be appyied the whole table, it was easy to make a quick call and move on (don't want the whole table to get bogged down b/c of one character). But the dim light requirement is not so simple since dim light has relevance to the whole table and there is an in-game effect since dim light grants concealment. Of course big areas of dim light are important to note since a 20% miss chance is a big deal - but figuring out and noting every full square of dim light, for perhaps one PC, can be too much when you are trying to keep the pace of the adventure moving.

As for Hellcat Stealth: I think it is a great feat - awesome in fact, I hope it doesn't go away. But it maybe more powerful than a Shadow Dancer's HiPS at this time. My complaint isn't against Hellcat Stealth its against the dim light requirement of HiPS for Shadow Dancers given all that one has to go through in order to be a Shadow Dancer. And don't get me wrong, I think the class is still great but since it's not like there is an Advanced HiPS at fifth level or something like that which improves the first level ability... I think the class has been severely handicapped.

HiPS is a relatively expensive ability that can be undone by a sun rod or zero level spell or a torch and Hellcat Stealth can't be undone unless you can beat the stealth roll (again it is a great feat) - meaning that if you get a sun rod within ten feet of the shadow dancer, then the shadow dancer can no longer use HiPS and becomes unhiddenOR if you can get just get rid of the dim light then the HiPS stops to work. This isn't so hard when you consider that a torch, sun rod and light spell brightly light an area of twenty or thirty feet radius.

Example: Nero the Shadow Dancer is hiding in wait from the fighter Thron the Half-Blind. Nero is hiding within ten feet of the dim light produced by the shadow on the ceiling of the corner of the room. Thron the Half-Blind was attacked the round before and was able to see the spring attacking Nero retreat towards that part of the room. He does not have a chance to beat Nero's stealth roll, but even he can identify dim lighting due to it's significant effect in-game (he can tell where he can and can't see well due to shadows and darkness). Rather than spot Nero, Thron throws his torch/sun rod towards the corner of the room as a standard action. He rolls better than an AC 5 and the torch lands on the floor brightly illuminating the corner and eliminating the dim light area on the ceiling Nero was relying on. Nero is no longer hidden since now the normal rules for stealth have to apply and Nero is not hidden behind cover or in another form of concealment and there is no other dim light area within ten feat. Under the old rules that only required a shadow for HiPS, Nero might be fine since he is still within ten feet of a shadow (which could be Thron's shadow produced by the new area of light and it's source) it could be argued that Nero would still be hidden. But Thron's own shadow does not produce concealment since he is not that big... Nero is out of luck. Thron uses his move action to approach Nero, preventing the requisite ten feet of movement for a spring attack without provoking an AoO. If Nero had Hellcat Stealth, Nero might still be hidden or at least would arguably still require an opposed roll from Thron the Half-Blind since Hellcat Stealth requires nothing to be hidden obviously, but since Nero spent most of his feats on becoming a Shadow Dancer, he does not have Hellcat Stealth (even though it is only two extra feats); alternatively if Nero was a second level Ninja he could just spend a swift action on his tern to turn invisible as a supernatural ability, but Nero is rogue dungeon delver who likes to find traps. As Thron grins menacingly Nero resolves that he will have to think of plan B.

Sorry I got carried away by my own example.

Be well