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There is nothing you can do to make an unreliable character more reliable. Either bite the bullet and put up with it, or kick him. I have my own problem player of a similar vein, although it is less too busy playing other games than it is the fellow just can't keep a schedule. (example: game is set for a certain date. three days prior and I am assured he will be there. Ask the night before and am assured he will be there. Day of the game he can't make it because he scheduled something else at the same time. Generally work, he's self employed).

Now, on to the issues in the game, not paying attention. Well, what does he want to get out of the game? Does he want more social encounters? More combat? Is he bored? Is he just distracted by his phone? Again, some of these things can be fixed. Adding in more of what the player wants will generally get them more involved, but distractions... Make it a rule that the phone stays out of the game. Naturally, exceptions can be made for legitimate reasons (re: work could be calling. Family member could have medical issue. Significant other is pregnant but you really wanted to game and you're pretty sure she isn't going to go into labor for at least a few hours but just in case...) (Side note, have had all of these happen to me at least once... )

Other anti distraction rules that sometimes help include: No non-game talk during game time (save it for breaks). Significant others are okay to visit, but if they are a distraction will be asked to leave.

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Perfect Tommy wrote:
DanielBaker wrote:

you would incur the TWF penalty wielding two weapons whether you attack with them or not the wording on TWF is if you wield a second weapon in your offhand you may make a second attack. When fighting this way (a weapon in each hand) you suffer a -6 penalty to attack rolls whether you attack or not same goes if you wield a shield but wish to perform a shield bash with it ect ect.

see swashbuckler picaroon they have a archetype feature that gives them weapon finesse and two weapon fighting at level one for this reason when wielding a pistol/light weapon

also think if you attack with the longsword in your turn and later in the round try and attack with the reach weapon that counts as two weapon fighting as your attacking with weapon wielded in your offhand and as such penalties would apply to your longsword attack

thats my interpretation of the rule anyway

TLDR the main wording specifically calls out wielding not attacking as the source of the penalty the bonus attack is the benefit for wielding a second weapon and taking the penalty

As others have stated, this is not correct.

Think about it - this means that as soon as you put armor spikes on your armor (or your shield) you would incur TWF penalties. Not so.

Moreover the text in question also says may make another attack before going on to describe the penalties. No attack, the clause listed after the word may does not apply.

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In general, so long as you only attack with one weapon, it doesn't matter what you hold in the other hand. Be it a wand, a dagger ready to be thrown, or a backup weapon, or anything else. In the Pathfinder system, there is no penalty for using your off hand to wield a weapon. Personally, I (as a DM), may or may not be tempted to apply some sort of penalty. Say half strength bonus or double penalty or such, but that's all house ruling.

As for holding a reach weapon in the other hand.. The classic example is the whip. Or cheat and use a small sized weapon, which at one size category lower is considered a one handed weapon, but somehow manages to keep the same reach. Personally, I consider this the same thing as using a cheat code in a video game and bad sportsmanship, and would definitely house rule penalties for any player brazen enough to try to demand something like this, but might be talked into it with a cool enough backstory style persuasion...

Also, see the Titan Mauler archetype second level ability, Jotungrip

I remember something about a feat that lets you hold two handed weapons in one hand, but that may have been from a different system. 3.5, maybe...

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The books are actually referenced in series. Dirk once met Thor, and had a mystery involving a couch. These were from the plot of the novels, implying that the novels happened at some point before the series began.

Although.... Dirk in the novels was... different. Hinted in the show that he might have even been a different person. Definitely a smoker (there's an opening scene in the novel where he opens a hole in the clothes he's sleeping under, lights a cigarette, sucks it down to the filter, and lights another before bothering to fully wake up). Oh, and Zen Navigation (following someone wherever they go based off the theory that they know where they are going and therefor following them will get him to where he wants to go.)

Additional tack on: Watch the intros. Pay attention to the background music. Everything is interconnected. And you might just get what you deserve...

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Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:

People have been arguing about this since Basic D+D. It wasn't settled when TSR added and then removed the Comeliness attribute.

You're not going to undo a half century with a forum post.

True indeed.

Personally, I always use Charisma as a purely mental stat covering such nebulous things as self identity, general likeability, and pure charm. Much like intelligence and Wisdom, there is so much crossover in the mental characteristics category anyway that it's often hard to define any of them. Wisdom is (by dictionary) a Love of Knowledge, and by RPG more of a common sense stat. (the red box called intelligence the ability to identify those drops of water coming from the sky as rain and Wisdom as the knowledge that you should probably get out of it. Paraphrased, of course). Pathfinder describes victims of Charisma loss as becoming more withdrawn and less outgoing, traits that could apply more to a bravery drain than Charisma.

And add to that the fact that what appeals to one race may not appeal to another, let alone to individuals. Sure, that dragon's crest and horns look impressive and regal like a crown to say the standard humanoid, but to the other dragons, maybe they view it as a birth defect to have horns like a prey species? Orcs are known to like scars, but the unscarred high Charisma sorcerer is somehow prettier to them than the sliced up face of an old warrior?

By the opposite end of things sometimes in modules you have to simplify things (the whoozit of wherever flirts with the highest Charisma because they are the prettiest). The comeliness stat was... an idea. It was also a huge mess. First Ed. AD&D had Charisma modified by com, com modified by Cha, and all sorts of specifics for multiple situations. (racial modifiers because dwarves hated elves and vice versa, etc...) Of course, this was also an era when the stat caps were different for male and female characters...

Summary: It's a mess, it's going to be a mess,best play it fast and loose rather than get caught up in the morass.

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Heracles used a club for his entire career and it seemed to work fine. Your damage output with a club as a main weapon might not be optimal, but weapon replacement is cheap, almost no one tells you to leave that walking stick behind leaving you the only armed person in your side of encounters, and depending on your GM you might even get away with Captain Caveman style gadgetry.

That being said, if your concept says club, work with club. It is as viable as you want it to be, and if your character evolves with level to change his weapon out (say, staff, mace, hammer, whatever), great! if not, Great! just have fun.

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Fewer lookie loos asking what in the world we're doing every fifteen seconds. Dice for sale for that one player that inevitably forgets theirs (at least until they have a dozen or so sets bought last minute). Depending on the management, alowances to read books you didn't bring with you (always expect to pay for what you break/rip, spill soda on, etc...). Also in the management arena, reduced likelihood of being chased off for taking up space that can be used for paying customers (generally during prime hours, especially Fridays and Weekends). My shop also has terrain for use on my map if I want. And forget not the classic: People what game. Back in olden times before everything was online, we used to post a notice asking for players on the FLG's handy bulletin board. Some of us over the age of 40 still prefer that method.

And if you have a cafe that does this all for you, too (I hear the larger cities are starting to spawn things like board game cafes), then great! Me, I don't have that. I've played in Denny's(es? How do you pluralize a proper name that's also a possessive???) Homes, game stores, and once even a rented office space. Basically, there are pros and cons to each

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Thomas Seitz wrote:


Maybe but I still think the plot helped.

The two are intertwined. An R rating would have allowed the villains of the movie to behave like villains (re: We're bad guys. It's what we do).

Also, Enchantress wasn't exactly the kind of mission you send a group like the suicide squad on. They needed more ocean's eleven (or dirty dozen) than fist flying action. Tag the liberties you can take with an R rating on to that and you've got a bunch of bad guys worth watching.

P.S. You think they'll give us a scene explaining the stuffed unicorn on the blu-ray release??

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Thomas Seitz wrote:


I think the reason Deadpool won was because a) everyone saw the test footage, b) compelled Fox to make it and c) supported it when it came out.

Plus you know, plot.

And an R rating. Never underestimate the draw of forbidden fruit (and that, my friends, counts as at least a double entendre. Possibly more considering Deadpool's involved...)

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Ideally sanity is not tied to any specific ability score. Maybe certain feats get tied into it (strong willed just sounds like the sort of thing to help), or maybe there's a disadvantage that makes retaining sanity harder. But that's just not how Pathfinder works.

Yes, tieing Sanity to mental stats is unbalancing toward casters. It has been since the concept was introduced back in the game mastery guide. To be fair, the new method is somewhat more extreme...

If we take a more reality based approach, Intelligence has nothing to do with sanity, and in fact studies indicate that the opposite might be true (there again the field of psychology is ever evolving as our understanding of the human condition adapts, changes, evolves, and hopefully increases). Wisdom would imply the avoiding of situations that might challenge the sanity in the first place, and Charisma could be the source of strength against insanity, or the cause thereof in the cases of certain manias, egotisms, and megalomanias.

In fact, one could argue that the best defense against insanity is stupidity and ignorance.

Bottom line: if you don't like a system, don't use it (unaltered).

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The thing that sticks in my mind is that you encountered 50 skeletons in a single encounter before APL 3. as a DM I've had issues with 3 of the suckers taking down a six man party of level 3s. (the party was warned. Repeatedly that they were facing a necromancer. That Skeletons are resistant to non bludgeoning damage, zombies to non slashing, etc... Party ignored and failed to do a collective ten points of damage, so admittedly it's a situational thing, but still...)

It sounds to me like your GM is running a mid level campaign with low level characters. The character who is going to prevent your return as undead mid-fight... the GM should have mentioned he would take attacks of opportunity for trying that in combat and hopefully keeping his mind on the matters at hand (not that this would prevent later corpse burning, but then it's at least a remaining party discussion).

Getting a new player to play a Wild Mage is another good example of similar problems. While it isn't impossible for a new player to play a mage type well (hell, my first character was a first ed. D&D Wizard) but in my experience I always advise people to make the character they want to make, followed by explaining Wizards aren't like in anime, and might not play the way they think (I don't try to turn them off the character, but spells and spell lists generally make a beginning player's options more complex). Now if the player insists on a certain archetype, for whatever reason, that is fine, BUT unless the campaign is of a focussed type (say an adventure path), pushing for a specific type of class/archetype/whatever results in disaster more than half the time (again, to my experience).

I'm about to wrap up one campaign and start the next. It is the first chance this group will have to make all their characters together, but I'm running a few sessions of non-play so they can make a group that starts as a group (as opposed to the random peole who meet in a nar and somehow decide to become life and death companions for fame, fortune, glory, and whatever plot hook is thrown at them next...) So, yeah, a solid, cohesive goal for the party can probably get them together. I'm going to avoid saying the PC-Murder Anitpaladin wasn't mature enough for such a character (people make bad jokes independent of overall maturity levels), although I do agree that doing so isn't a good sign. That said, as GM anyone playing an evil character has to convince me they aren't going for 80's slasher movie psycho first, with extra assurances if you're making PC kill jokes.

So, I guess what I'm asking here is: how experienced is your GM? Is there anything you can do, as a player, to help in this area? Is there another player in the group you can tie your character's background to? If you really want to stay with the group, then I am sure you can find a way to enjoy the game. If you want to leave and find a new group, you can do that too (although I recommend leaving on good terms if possible.) The short short of it is that this is a hobby, meant for having a good time (ostensibly with friends), and if you aren't having fun, then why are you there?

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Rub-Eta wrote:

And this is why I never have absent players' characters present.

I've been told a few times that "your character does this" by a DM. I've hated every single one of those times. Why the hell am I even there if I don't even get to play my character? It is some of the worst moves a DM can make. I'm not talking about in-game mind controlling, I'm talking about s@!$ty DMs who can't run a game without hard-core railroading.

I'm personally glad for you that you always have that option. Myself, I can't count how many times I've had to stop a session mid-dungeon and have had to stop mid-fight a few times. So the group is prepared to step into the next room but it isn't time for a rest yet? Great! And the sorcerer can't make the next game? Are you really going to send the unarmored one back alone to the entrance and hope nothing goes wrong? Let alone how does he mysteriously find the group again when he makes the next session?

I've had at least six sessions end in the middle of a major fight. How do you account for the man in a heavy armor and shield holding the horde at bay from the wizard just suddenly disappearing when his player has to go on a business trip (vacation, whatever)?

Taking over a character when the player is absent is NOT railroading. Personally, I try to avoid making choices (I let the players decide what happens to the absent player, with right of veto). That being said, I don't allow death wish characters in my game to begin with. Several above posters have pointed out that it just isn't fun for anyone, and as a GM, it makes it hard to design adventures that are still a challenge without the possibility that one of the players will decide now is the time to cash in that honorable death card. Heroic sacrifice is one thing, a death wish another. Those characters that DO develope death wishes, I talk to the players and either arrange said death a.s.a.p., arrange a work-through also a.s.a.p., or just have the character leave the group to make way for a new character.

And I would ask if that was part of the problem as well. Are you tired of your inquisitor? You say he is the only original player left. Do you find yourself wanting to play a new character? Do you want that epic death first, maybe? Talk to your GM about it, and maybe you can work something out.

However, and this is the caveat I issue all my players: If you aren't present at the game session, expect your character to act different. We aren't you, and can only guess.

Furthering that caveat: Epic things are going to happen in the game. If it is a character specific epic plot point, I will try and avoid it until that characters player is there. (I would assume this is part of what your GM did. Avoiding the epic death until you are there for it. No point making a memorable moment for the person who isn't there to remember it...)

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Back in college I played in a group where I was the only male player. Currently I am GMing a group with two women, and another for my niece and nephew where there are three girls to one boy.

FYI, those little girls are vicious. One is a dwarf with a penchant for blunt trauma to anything with a visible head, and my niece runs a druid with a (in her words) bloodstained white kitty of doom.

Where the hell were these girls when I was twelve?

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A quick look through here and I didn't see one of the more subtle aspects of wizards over sorcerers. Freee scribe scroll feat at first level. This cuts down on the reliance of found treasures and purchased items. Have a utility spell you like to keep handy but don't want to waste a spell slot on? Spend some down time and scroll it. Want to have a back-up blast of some sort (say lightning bolt instead of the fireball you memorize standard), write one on a scroll.

Further, free item creation or metamagic feats as a wizard mean that either your base spells have a greater level of versatility through metamagics (Yes, bloodlines can grant specific feats at specific levels) or you have a steady manner of making/recharging whatever item you like.

The main advantage my players like from the sorcerer is the limited number of spells. To them it is easier to have a limited list rather than thinking about what spells to memorize every day/adventure/whatever.

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fel_horfrost wrote:
Avatar Unknown wrote:

A dwarf with one level of Ranger (or Druid, Hunter, whatever, really) for the animal companion (an Ape) and the rest of his levels in either investigator or monk. Plenty of skill points into profession: Drover and you've got the nineteen seventies classic crime solver archetype of a trucker with a monkey. Bonus points if he's named Philo Bedoe and the orangutang is Clyde...

I am totally pulling this one next time I get to be player instead of DM.

I'd go with brawler instead of monk. philo didn't seem that into enlightenment.

And favorited.

This made my day, thank you.

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A dwarf with one level of Ranger (or Druid, Hunter, whatever, really) for the animal companion (an Ape) and the rest of his levels in either investigator or monk. Plenty of skill points into profession: Drover and you've got the nineteen seventies classic crime solver archetype of a trucker with a monkey. Bonus points if he's named Philo Bedoe and the orangutang is Clyde...

I am totally pulling this one next time I get to be player instead of DM.

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Dragios wrote:
For the avatar with no name. What CR rating was your mooks as compared to the PCs?

Sorry for the reply delay. Let's blame the holidays...

Anyway, it's been scaling upward. Remember that two mythic tiers equals a CR level, so I've been figuring that in to the PC's combined level and trying to hit about a combined CR level averaging about two levels below the PCs (in the case of not having the mythic-bane weapons to use against them), or four levels down if equipped. Also keep in mind this is independant of the original encounter, and necessity and mileage of this can vary depending on how willing you are to have a reactive dungeon. Note that most demons have some variety of telepathy, and a quasit watching the battle from concealment can track the party and organize one hell (or, given that they're demons rather one abyss) of an ambush. Of course they ARE demons (mostly, a few cultists and whatnot), so cooperation isn't guaranteed. Or implied. Or even really all that easy to write into the path itself (in a few places, at least, the demons are at odds with each other as much or more than the PCs, so I used that as an excuse for one dungeon, the next they faced five bosses all at once having "learned" a little cooperation. While this should have worked, I rolled no higher than 3 on my d20's for the whole session. I literally rolled higher on a d4 on a roll for roll basis. I was never more grateful for the ridiculous +25 to hit numbers some of the thugs sported (and in one case still couldn't hit with)...

Incidentally, they threw a new trick at me last night. I suspect they might finally be learning...

Or reading my posts.

Or both...

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Been running this campaign for the last two years (our group meets infrequently as a lot of us travel for work).

The general advice is pretty much all spoilers, too, so just to be safe...

just in case...:

The biggest problem I see as a GM is the ease with which players can bypass Damage Reduction at later levels of the game. Xanthir Vang was taken down in two rounds (after fully buffing him) without the characters spending even half of their surges to activate the path power that allows them to ignore DR (or Spell resistance, as was the case for the one dedicated caster).

Admittedly, this problem was larger about midway through the second book (the assault on Drezen citadel). The fight with Sotlen... g... er... Mythic Chimera they still needed to make strategic use of their points, but with only a few more uses as a party they managed to take on Staunton and Eustoriax a days rest apart and with a full load of surges each. Perhaps I could have ruled it better, but as written they were allowed the chance to rest more or less without penalty between the events.

The other problem is that the main villains need some more support against my group. I've started adding extra mooks (non experience point minion type creatures that can't do much damage to the characters, but enough they can't just be ignored. Most of them die in a single combat round and serve mostly to let the boss get off a cool shot or two to actually threaten my group. admittedly my dice don't help much as I can generally roll higher with a d4 than a d20...) At current level I've started handing out some of the anti-mythic weapons as a standard part of the equipment for any non-mythic opponent that carries a magic weapon to begin with (+2 to hit, +2d6 to damage has made the combats between boss fights more memorable), and it was fun to watch the group try and figure out why they couldn't use Mythic Surges while holding certain weapons that suppress them. It has also helped cut down on my groups tendency to hyper-loot to the point of checking under a minimum 2 levels of flooring and wall cover (just in case. Also, the masonry's worth money, right? As the GM I know otherwise, but cut us some slack, the group's average age here is 40, so we're a bit set in our patterns here)

And finally, my group specifically, has started looking up spells and effects that drain another's mythic power. They seem to have an uncanny ability to home in on Mythic opponents and start absorbing power. In reality, they try to absorb everything, once it succeeds they home in on the one until it stops giving and move along to the next...

So right about now I'm at a point where the game makes sense to have some escaped villains come back, having seen how the group operates, and maybe even having built up a group of their own to help take down those who once defeated them

I'm using Staunton to lead a leveled up group keyed to my players' specific weaknesses. I've warned them that at some point they are going to face an encounter specifically designed to shut them down, custom made. It should be survivable with some teamwork and tactics. It is the last task they must face before getting an audience with Nocticula. So it should be within the next three sessions, depending on how long I put it off.

Overall I've been loving this campaign. I can't wait to see what my players do in the latter half of the campaign, and with a little luck they won't find out that the gods play by a whole different set of rules 'the hard way'...

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A wizard can designate an existing magic item as his bonded item. This functions in the same way as replacing a lost or destroyed item except that the new magic item retains its abilities while gaining the benefits and drawbacks of becoming a bonded item.

I would assume this was the case for any bonded item listed as treasure (that caveat is left out of the description, and by what is strictly written cannot be more than inferred), and that after the wizard's death the item reverts to its original status as a magic item before it was bonded (minus any charges that may have been used, of course). Furthermore, one would be safe in assuming that any wizard that has the needed feats to add magic to his bonded item could in effect create a new item and then bond that. Of course, then if the item is stolen, then it can be used against him (while a normal item that has then been improved could not, at least not to full effect). If the bonded item is [bold]NOT[/bold] listed as treasure, then I would assume it was specifically the first type.


Woof, the grammar on that was obnoxious... That being said, as a GM, make it a judgement call. Is the NPC paranoid and likely to worry about the item? More carefree/arrogant/whatever and likely to not worry about it? Is it a significant boost for the PCs over their current gear (I wouldn't bother giving them an extra magic item they are just going to sell off. It takes the fun out of giving treasure...)

Huh. would this make the answer to the original question: Yes, all of the above?

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From what I've read here, you've already talked about his playstyle with him, as well as your other players.

What I would want to know is: What's the gaming situation like in your area? Are there other groups around? Maybe he can find one more to his playstyle? Maybe you and your other players can help with that?

My group has a player who has an uncanny ability to powergame by instinct alone. That being said, there are several glaring exceptions to his awesomeness that put him in the position of 'well, I can't cause damage on a crit, I'm not doing anything this turn'. I have another who has a nasty habit of making disparaging sarcastic comments. Not a great combination. Eventually I had to type up a list of actions (Move to flank, aid another, total defense, etc...) with a brief rules summary and gave both a copy. Now my sarcastic player instead suggests, "Why not take a five foot discretionary step to flank with the rogue?" instead of making nasty comments, and the first player... still gets bummed at not dealing (what he considers) enough damage every turn, but still has a good time without functioning as a one man army.

I have also introduced the first player to another DM with a bit higher power player curve. I suspect I'll be losing a player at the end of the AP (or perhaps book), but I'll likely be gaining one from the other group who wants more of his character backstory brought into the game (more my style of GMing).

So, a temporary solution coupled with a GM switch might just get you a handy short and long term solution. Or not. What IS the gaming scene like in your area?

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JCServant wrote:

Actually, Flea..funny story about that...

The Dragon stayed 100 ft in the air to specifically have advantage vs. the party. Melee fighters were helpless. Spell slingers would sling spells but they were missing against the beasts' SR. Even the resident archer saw his arrows bounce off that 40 AC.

1 -- Another 7 feet in the air and none of the bombs hit. bombs have a range increment of 20', and thrown weapons a max range of 5 increments. Out of range, didn't hit. I am, of course, assuming none of the characters are over 7 feet tall.

1a -- For that matter as the GM you can disallow the hit based on a semi-realistic physics. check basic ballistics in pretty much any physics text. The further the horizontal distance travelled the higher the angle, peaking at 45 degrees (the presumed 100' max range), while a more vertical shot won't get the full 100' distance. Not RAW, but it is your game, right?)

1b -- As soon as an attack actually hits, the dragon elevates. Any attempts to follow upward are met by dispel magic/counterspelling.

2 -- Deflect arrows/Snatch Arrows (improved unarmed combat DM waived for natural attacks proficiency). Alchemist throws bomb, dragon catches bomb and can keep it or throw it back at the alchemist immediately. This also works for other monsters.

3 -- When the player announces that the alchemist plans to throw a bomb essentially straight up, raise one eyebrow, and ask if they are sure (perhaps stating the straight up part if no one else brings it up.)

3a -- If the other players or the alchemist himself don't change their mind, give the dragon a circumstance bonus to AC for wing turbulence on top of range penalties. When the attack misses, use the initial attack roll, without penalties (the alchemist is point blank range, has no wing turbulence, and the attack has to go somewhere, right?)

4 -- Full attack from the dragon, using non-lethal damage. The dragon is showing off, it can probably K.O. the Alchemist in a turn or two.

5 -- Grab the alchemist. If nothing else can hit the dragon, the Alchemist is prime target for being grabbed. Fly up afterword. If the Alchemist hits the dragon, he takes splash damage (you can hit the whole party with their own alchemist bombs sometimes. Cramped rooms work for non-draconics). After flying up if they alchemist wants to kill what keeps it in the air, probably weight over a ton, and after surviving his own splash, let him take the falling damage followed by the large object dropped on you damage. Of course, remember part 3 (raise one eyebrow and ask if he's sure)

6 -- Just plain melee. Splash damage might just be annoying to the rest of the party, but dedicated casters tend to get upset when their precious HP reserves are sucked up.

6a -- Melee with anything that gives a miss chance (incorporeality, blink, mirror image, fog cloud, displacement...) nothing like not taking damage while the party's Alchemist kills the group for you.

And Energy Resistance SHOULD be used. It is no less useful against other casters, and is a legitimate strategy. Also, by taking other energy damage types on the bombs he doesn't take other discoveries. Honestly, there's so much varied energy resistances in the Monster listings I'd be hard pressed not to take an energy type change as an alchemist on general preparedness. No all out immunity, per se, but what red dragon wouldn't have resist cold handy knowing its opponents are going to use something it's weak against?

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Aelryinth wrote:

I'll be the first to say that tracking spell comps is NOT going to be fun.

It's less fun then tracking arrows. Because you have 20 different types of arrows.

If you want to make up 'universal components' and have 'charges' for spells from a component case, that's a little different. But individual spells, tracking comps? Just, ugh.

Although, having a 'cost' to every spell cast IS somewhat grittier. You just have to determine what that fair cost is.

You also have to encourage weaker casting options, and downtone stronger ones. Like, save or dies are less effective, while blasting might be more so (easily done by increasing the damage of blasting spells).

Grim and gritty requires removing some iconic powers to keep things in the realm of hard work. You're probably looking at an E8 game.


Excellent points. Yeah, the "grittier" the campaign, the more resource tracking heavy it tends to get. Last campaign of this style I played spell components were measured in ounces (generic), with a straight up gold piece cost unless I specifically went looking for something, and eventually the DM made me split it up to components for spell level X. Anything with a specific component of value was left alone (a five gold piece item to cast that? You have one??)

I'd say ban certain spells right off as well. Create food/water. Blood money. Anything that makes survival outright guaranteed. Or alternatively, give these spells the specific components.

The real trick is finding the right balance. Spellcasters want to feel useful, but especially at low levels. Maybe give wizards a component free spell per day so long as they have their familiar or bonded item? Maybe alter eschew component to require a roll of some sort to work properly? Or Eschew components costs non-lethal HP to cast as it wears the caster out?

Personally, if I was going gritty, I'd opt for GURPS. Not the easiest translation, but the system is set up for a higher level of "realism".

Of course the REAL trick here is knowing when and how to fudge. In a low power, low resource game it's more important the keep the story going than risk precious resources on a die roll. I don't mean combat, but say the group is sneaking into position to set up a trap or something (spy on orc plans, say. Sabotage a war machine maybe) and someone blows a sneak roll. If the tension is good, go ahead and start a combat, but get creative. Sure, the orc hears one character, but maybe another can K.O. from behind as the orc investigates? missed by less than 3? The characters luck out and a rabbit hops from the bush to a burrow.

I don't remember what system it was, but there was a feat (or the equivalent thereof) called one in the chamber, or some such. Basically it let you have one piece of ammo tucked away on your person for emergencies. In effect it let you have that one shot against a boss (or earlier if it was 'dramatically important') and renewed between stories (re: back at town, with a week of downtime, a couple weeks of travel/other activities other than specifically refreshing it)... The wording was a lot more elegant than I can parse from memory. Maybe give the players something like that so they can feel they have a bit of a fallback strategy? Maybe offer it as a feat or trait choice?

I wish I was near where you play, because I'd love to try something like this from the player's side of the screen.

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Victor FriesSure, he's willing to destroy half of gotham for that diamond, but he's got a really good reason for it. I mean, you don't want to let his poor, innocent wife suffer and die, do you?

Although I like a fair number of other villains (Dr. Octopus becomes more interesting when he becomes SpiderMan for a while and we get to see his viewpoint, learning that he's actually not so far away from hero as we might be comfortable thinking. He's just willing to take it to a whole other level akin to certain extreme versions of Batman...) and the Riddler will always be my favorite (it's less about the crime than it is about proving he's smart, specifically smarter than the one person who consistently foils him), for me the best villains are the kind that you can relate to. Someone who has some goal that it is perfectly understandable why they'd do anything to accomplish, but are willing to go to an all new level to get to. Someone we might see as a hero in a different light, or in different circumstances, or without quite as much willingness to break the wrong rules (I say wrong because Batman violates all sorts of laws and human rights in the pursuit of his version of justice.... So maybe Batman could be considered a villain as well. Certainly an outlaw at the very least...)

I also have to give props out to Madara in Naruto, and my personal favorite for the mysterious type, Orochimaru (Orochi refers to a mythological 8 headed snake monster, Maru means circle, which is a cool villain name). Madara just wants to save everyone in the world, even if that means destroying this world to do it. Orochimaru has hidden, inscrutable motives that remain hidden until such time as his plans come to fruition at which point there are layers and layers of other plot going on.

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Perhaps we will find out soon. With the current level of technology evolving at a rate greater than that of our species, it may soon be possible that there will not be enough jobs left for our country. We already have robot cars. Visit a Wal Mart (incidentally one of the largest economies in the world), and find a self checkout lane. That takes care of at least a percentage of non-skilled labor, as well as semi-skilled (in the case of driving/piloting). And all without science fiction level AI.

Without jobs, there is no influx of money to consumers. Consumers not spending money means an end to production. So far we are at a level where society, economics, expense, and a few other factors prevent a technological takeover, but eventually the cost is outweighed by the savings. I say this not as a paranoid ranting, but by basic laws of how Capitalism operates. Or rather the mantra of "Cheaper, faster, more". I don't condemn it, it is how we operate. So WHEN the technology replaces a certain percentage of workers, there has to be a fundamental shift in how we, as an economy, operate. Will we eliminate money, allotting each citizen a stipend of goods and services? Will we devise a new enticement to goad people to new business/scientific/whatever ventures? Will we collapse under the weight of political inertia? Will we subsidize the common (ex)worker and otherwise remain much the same? And what of other economies as ours affects them?

An interesting posit. I have no real answers. I doubt anyone does. If history teaches us anything, though, I would wager that we do nothing about it until it is already too late, and then changing as little as possible.

And all that without the magic need killing machine spontaneously creating whatever we need (re: Star Trek's replicators...)

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I always just used them as a variant Alchemist bomb. Rather than chemicals in a flask, it's runes on paper, and modified by the delayed bomb discovery (mandatorily).

I had a ninja player who wanted to do this, but didn't want a level in the alchemist class, so I let him have it for a feat cost. I gave him a level 1 Alchemist bomb feature and then let him later take the remote detonate feat. Probably not a perfect balance, but it worked for our game.

Another alternative I might try, is make it a variation on Alchemist's Fire. I.E. the item from the core rulebook. Again, special effect change of tag instead of flask of goo, but same general effect.

That said, if you're going for a Naruto thing, it IS based of classic Japanese mythology. Traditionally they would use paper seals and charms for all sorts of spell effects (like a part of the casting costs).

All in all, they can be simulated fairly easily in a number of ways, through the basic rules and depending on how you want to do it. Personally, I think a combination of the above (i.e. change to a class feature by archetype or feat, feat access to the feature with limited per day uses simulating the amount one ninja can prepare for themselves, and "special" tags that cost more resources to prepare because they are a variant wondrous item/potion, maybe). Basically, whatever works in your game, and as long as everyone has fun.

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Nirmathas and Molthune have been fighting a sort of war for quite a while now. While not exactly a massive clash of armies (Not Nirmathas's more guerilla style anyway), and in relative stalemate, there's still fighting going on. The River Kingdoms, while smaller, have nations appear and disappear on a regular basis (The Kingmaker setting used this as a sort of dropping off point/excuse). Andoran and Cheliax don't exactly fight openly (Cheliax is involved in several ongoing fights), but periodically raid each other and deny having done so. Well, maybe not officially in the case of Andoran, but adventurers are notoriously hard to control, and if they're a bit patriotic and wanting to strike back at the big bad Diabolist nation, then what's a government really going to do about it?

Cheliax is actively conflicted with the Shackles, assisting againt the Worldwound, and generally taking political possession of Varisia (I believe Korvosa, and Magnimar were both Chelaxian holdings last I checked). Irrisen is in a more or less constant border war with most of its neighbors. And the Worldwound is most definitely pushing on all sides. Belkzen has been taking territory from (and I'm trying to remember names from memory here, so I might be off, but I believe it is) Lastwall.

Sorry for not having my books on hand for this, but political wars and civilization on civilization/Imperialist wars are there. I'm guessing they just aren't as obvious as one might expect, but in a place where actions potentially have more than just a global reprecussion, perhaps mere nations on one (or two or three) continents just don't get the attention of other threats? Or maybe they are just so constant that people stop thinking of them as wars and start thinking of them as 'just the way things have always been'.

Also, published adventures tend to avoid these long lasting or potentially border reassigning conflicts. Myself, I am curious as to when they are going o put out a new world guide, or perhaps a supplement showing the state of Golarion post APs. Over the years we've had a new nation form on the River Kingdom's border, a new leader of the Shackles, the closing of the worldwound, and a change in leadership in Irrisen (Assuming generalized success, of course). Oh, and the flooding of a major city in Varisia (almost forgot about that one). We are about to see the birth of a new god in the current path. This doesn't necessarily mean things have to change anywhere, but it would be nice if every few years they put out a booklet detailing something along the lines of 'adapting Golarion to "current" events' or something. Terrible title, but handy to at least pass out to some of my newer players who weren't part of the group when we ran the paths the first time.

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Ascalaphus wrote:
Related to this issue is that grapples tend to immobilize you. If a Roc swoops down on someone, grabs him, it can't fly away in the same round (using Flyby attack) because the grappled condition prohibits that.

Snatch universal rule. Basically grab with the ability to throw the grabee as a standard action. Personally, I don't see why this isn't part of Grab to begin with. Then again, I also feel there might be a typo somewhere as snatch specifically says dropping is a free action. admittedly, it's probably just to differentiate from the toss aside addendum, but it does get me thinking a bit...

Ascalaphus wrote:

How is this related? Through the (house rule) solution. Change the rule, so that a creature can continue to grapple a significantly smaller (>2 categories) creature with the limb used to establish the grapple, without -20, and without gaining the grappled condition itself. However, due its grabbing appendage being so big, it can't bring any other appendages to bear against the same victim.

Since the [Roc, Kraken] isn't grappled itself, it can move and drag along its victim.

A creature that starts a grapple can still move (at up to half its movement). It doesn't even have to roll to maintain the grapple. However, the grapplee gets a roll to free itself with a +4 bonus (personally I'd amend that with a 'Suckers' universal ability that negates the bonus/puts the onus on the creature's maintain grapple roll and possibly also allows full movement (perhaps dependent on relative size difference)

Ascalaphus wrote:

Since its tentacle is completely wrapped around the poor halfling, it can't grab-constrict the halfling with another tentacle as well. However, it can grab some more people with its other tentacles.

Also, no more grab-constrict-release-grab shenanigans. All those natural attacks that use full BAB happen simultaneously. If someone is grabbed by one limb, it can't be grabbed by another limb.

I agree. Then again, the grab-constrict-release can be done away with just by making it impossible for a grappler to release a grapple on the same turn it is initiated. Death/unconsciousness, of course, releases all relevant conditions. Except when it doesn't.

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Snorter wrote:
A debate ensued, in which I was the sole voice in support of the GM, that there should be no game effects for what was obviously a piece of flavour text, and even if it weren't just flavour text, it made no sense that a creature that size should be slowed in any way by a trophy that small. "He probably picks objects out of his nose that weigh more than that chicken" is a phrase that still resonates in my memory

I do believe I may have had a very similar argument myself. Similar to the 'That giant had two arms, two legs, and a head on a torso, i.e. humanoid form, ergo it is a larger than typical humanoid and it should be affected by my specifically humanoid affecting spell'.

Then again, the grapple rules in their entirety are sort of ... Let's call it streamlined. There is an unfortunate amount of room for interpretation and error.

Snorter wrote:

It needs to be a given, for any multi-limbed, tentacled, agile, intelligent creature whose modus operandi is grappling, to be able to

a) maintain holds without forfeiting all other actions for the turn, and
b) to be able to maintain more than one hold per turn, and
c) for the checks to maintain a hold to be viable, and
d) for creatures of massive size and strength not to be considered hindered by holding, dragging or carrying any target whose weight is utterly insignificant to them*

The base grappling rules indicate that maintaining the grapple nets the grappler a +5 (Circumstance) hold bonus. Is this applied to the -20 for a grab creature to maintain hold, for a net -15? Plus creatures with grab get a +4 to maintain (Maintain specifically for this purpose) or initiate a grab, do -11? Would the +2 from Improved Grapple feat bring this down to -9? Three sources, three types of bonus. And Greater Grapple would bring it down to -7, wouldn't it? Moreover, this is only if the creature chooses not to just take the grappled condition itself and make the attack to grab another with a free.... er... appendage at a -2 penalty? To grab more it would just need to take the -7 penalty on all its holds (it doesn't say that the -20 modifier is cumulative per grappled creature. Maybe it's how I read it, though...) Then again, I feel a truly colossal octopus should have the Pull universal monster ability tied to its Grab. As it is, the Giant Octopus in the bestiary is a large creature (About horse sized, but with 20 foot long tentacles if you go by the description/extra reach with tentacles)

While the multiattack feat doesn't specifically grant extra grappling ability, it seems reasonable that it should allow the multiple limbed creature to make extra grapples to at least some extent, or if not that some other ability needs added in. Multi-grab or some such to lessen the penalties or increase some of these primarily grappling creatures' holding abilities. gab-and-lift, maybe?...

I'll think about this some more after watching as many versions of 20,000 leagues under the sea as I can find this week.

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Diego Rossi wrote:

I am interested to hear how people rule the use of extradimensional containers and spell components pouches during a underwater adventure.

To explain the problems I see:

Extradimensional containers: you open a bag of holding/handy haversack underwater to draw something. The container fill with water and burst as it has been overloaded? (the maximum volume of water that he can contain is way more than the maximum weight allowance for the item.)

Overloading the space does not cause the burst. It is piercing the space from inside or out (at least RAW. Similarly, RAW does not list an effect of what happens if the bag is overloaded weight-wise. There are a few items that specifically remain dry/water-free/etc... (I'm specifically thinking of a Captain's Chest, or something of similar name from the Skull and Shackels adventure path).

Diego Rossi wrote:
Nothing in the rules I see say that if the container is open only what you want will enter it. Au contraire, if you open it the air within change, allowing a creature to survive for 10 minutes after the bag is closed again.

True enough. There is also nothing that says items you don't want get in, though. The portable hole implies otherwise (the only air that gets in or out is while it is opened), and also implies that a handy haversack or bag of holding might leak and retain integrity (food for your GMly deviousness)

Diego Rossi wrote:

Even if the bag isn't destroyed by being overloaded (we don't include the air in it in the weight carried, so we can say that the water don't count, too. A bit of a stretch, but maybe acceptable if the bag is immersed in water) it will fill with water and that will damage/destroy a lot of the stuff in the bag.

Waterlogged arrows don't work very well.

Very true. My general ruling is that the limit is an either/or thing. Either you hit the volume limit, or the weight limit. I have had characters use a bag of holding as a watersack to cross a desert before. Good fun that. Wish I'd have thought of the leak thing before-hand. Maybe take it on a case for case basis. On that note, arrows don't work so well underwater, period (cumulative -2 penalty for every 5 feet of water traveled through to hit as well as range penalties, and thrown weapons ineffective completely)

Diego Rossi wrote:

Spell component pouch: even if you get a waterproof pouch, you need to open it to manipulate the material components in it to cast your spells. That mean that it will fill with water and your components will become waterlogged and probably useless. Unless each set of components for each spell is conserved in a separate, waterproof container, I don't see a way to do that.

But lugging around teens of waterproofed small container will make our component pouches unmanageable.

For the record, I assume that our character will store the spell components for each spell is separate packets for ease of use, but that those packets are made with parchment or oiled paper. I.e. the ball shaped red packs are those used for the fireball components, the yellow square packet contain the gold dust for several spells, and so on.
[Maybe I should take a skill in Craft (origami). So I can make horse shaped container for the components for the Phantom steed spell and a dove shaped...

Probably could have edited that (and most of the prior better). I didn't. Okay, statements of obvious aside, the spell component pouch is a sort of convenience. Rather than keep track of micro-transactions within the game for three coppers of salt or what hav you, you pay a one time fee for a pouch and can cast low cost spells without having to keep track of pinches of dirt, or brass buttons, or glass rods and a piece of fur or whatever. Yes, I realize the reusable components like those for lightning bolt aren't included. that being said, Either figure a charge for waterproofing your players' pouch, or let them know they'll need to come up with something. It's not so much that your player should think of it on their own as it is a friendly warning that 'Maybe that pouch doesn't keep their pile of sugar quite as un-dissolved as they might desire'... And before they need it in combat. Alternatively, let them know about the cloud of debris rising from their pouch as things dissolve the first time they step into the water. At this point they'll probably need a new pouch (similar to how they might get one stolen in a plot related incident and how there is no refill cost for components used (further aside, I guess caster types steal more of those little diner sugar packets and what not than a her of rogues in their downtime...) it is kind of like a politeness thing at low levels and a 'ignoring anything that costs less than a certain amount because it's pointless to quibble over a few gold now' at higher levels. In theory there is a point where it evens out to 'Okay, we're at ideal charge me for component pouches level', but in practice most players and GMs alike don't like dealing with that level of detail. Sort of how second ed D&D had lists of clothing items that got chopped down to 'Generic outfit set, workers, generic set explorer, monk, priest, etc...)

Aaaaaaand... I can't even summate briefly, so I quit now.

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cibet44 wrote:


Lions don't grapple they attack with claws and bite.

Dragons don't grapple they attack with claws and bite.

Kraken don't grapple they attack with tentacles and beak.

Humans don't grapple they attack with hands or weapons.

There is no reason for grapple to exist in the game. Combat is attacking by way of the creatures various attack forms. That's it.

Lions bite, and if they get a good grip on whatever they attack with the bite, they now have a hold on it. A kind of grapple maybe?

Dragons can also get a hold with a bite, or claws (arguably having a human-like enough hand to grip things, depending on your fantasy of choice). A classic attack I like to use is to have a dragon grab someone, fly up high, and let gravity attack for them. Also, your allies make good missiles. Isn't that sort of grappling?

Kraken are essentially oversized magic squid. Ten tentacles that attack by grabbing and squeezing. That's seriously not grappling?

Humans. Really? Ground and pound. That's a classic grapple/tackle/hold 'em and continue hitting attack. or at least as classic as MMA is allowed. Or watch a grade school fight (optionally bar fight). It's amazing how often trading punches (or scratches, slaps, whatever) becomes a wrestling match on the ground. Not to mention there are lots of fun things you can do when you get a good lock on someone.s shoulder, starting with the classic of pounding their head against something hard and working up to some truly despotic actions I've seen (had done to me, failed to properly execute, and at least once accidentally invented a whole new one in the attempt of something else....)

I'm assuming you don't like the word grapple, for some reason. Remember when it was wrestling? Basically, grappling is a catch all term for holing something, against it's will, and preventing it from being able to effectively retaliate.

Of course, as ANY RPG combat system, it is vastly oversimplified. (How, exactly, does the tiny faerie with enough stats manage to effectively grapple a giant? And shouldn't someone be able to get a hold on someone that doesn't leave them in control?)

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The one character that released the demon while the rest of the party was still discussing it might have some alignment issues, depending on what his initial alignment was. Also depending on how he (or she. Don't remember or care if that was specified, but I've seen some female role players do some things in game that made me more than a bit queasy) has played the character in the past. Is the character impulsive and inherently trusting? Then sure, letting it go before anyone else can stop him is in character, independent of alignment. In my current game, the halfling (a first time player who wanted the +1 AC boost for small size) has been restrained by the party several times already over the course of just three sessions. The player never attempts a sense motive roll, insisting that whoever has a trusting face (including a faceless stalker, despite half an hour of argument on whether that was even possible on something with faceless right in the name.)

For my money, the most evil act I saw was refusing to help based off the idea that the party is somehow going to get a favor from the demon. That part sent my face into the standard DM expression of "Player say what now???" You know the one. Where the three or more question marks almost visibly appear out of nowhere. the expression that reads, "Wait a minute, you actually expect it to owe you one???" I doubt I could have replied to the players without a twitch and explanation of why it is unlikely they will be able to cash in on said favor. Moreover (and more along the evil lines), it is allowing innocents to be harmed; ostensibly by one's own actions (Using a member of the party as an extension of one's own actions), and specifically by one's own inaction. Once the demon showed evidence of rampaging (if any), there was little reason (at least based solely on alignment) that the party couldn't have interposed and negotiated or fought. Of course, it was a brief description, so the demon could have simply walked off and the PCs don't find out about it until they get to the surface. At which point appropriate shame/legal action/regret/indifference/etc occurs. (Dang. That paragraph needed split apart. Curse my deficient grammatical skills...)

Also, as Remy pointed out, there's a lot more to it, based off context and etcedera that we don't know and can alter the situation.

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The PRD wrote:


Some feats have prerequisites. Your character must have the indicated ability score, class feature, feat, skill, base attack bonus, or other quality designated in order to select or use that feat. A character can gain a feat at the same level at which he gains the prerequisite.

A character can't use a feat if he loses a prerequisite, but he does not lose the feat itself. If, at a later time, he regains the lost prerequisite, he immediately regains full use of the feat that prerequisite enables.

Most of the time this comes into play when something along the lines of level drain takes away the spellcasting ability of a class, but not the associated feat the character took, or more often when a character loses a virtual feat. Note, however, there are quite a few places where a character can take up a feat that is useless to them. Take the spell focus feat. No prerequisites, so anyone can take it. If you never take a spellcasting class, it is completely useless. Same with Spell penetration.

the PRD wrote:
While some feats are more useful to certain types of characters than others, and many of them have special prerequisites that must be met before they are selected, as a general rule feats represent abilities outside of the normal scope of your character's race and class.
the PRD wrote:
Many of them alter or enhance class abilities or soften class restrictions, while others might apply bonuses to your statistics or grant you the ability to take actions otherwise prohibited to you.

These two phrases (taken from the same paragraph, even) are the heart of this discussion. Certainly racial Heritage (Kobold) would allow you to take Tail Terror, and the second seems to imply that it would allow actual use. However, it is in the benefit section of Tail Terror that its non-use becomes implicit (not explicit). It allows the character to use his tail to make a tail attack. It does NOT allow one to grow a tail, regrow a lost tail, etc. In a similar manner Draconic Heritage does not allow you to spontaneously grow scales before they take on the color and some of the resistances of a chromatic dragon. If some other effect (a curse, side effect, wish, whatever) causes the feat holder to grow scales, a tail, or whatever is needed, then by all means they should be allowed to use the feat they (most likely pointlessly) bought. One might want to adjust damage for size first.

This isn't to say that the combination can't still be abused. One could conceive of a druid with said feat combo shapechanging into a dog and claiming a tail slap attack off that. Not that there aren't more effective manners of getting a tail slap. Better yet, changing into a mouse with a 1d4 tail slap due to lack of damage scaling. ...


Can't get the thunder-mouse thought out of my head now...

Anyway, it seems to me that any sort of comprehensive ruling on this would be far too clunky and wordy as there are all sorts of ways it could potentially be abused, but only with a few very specific conditions, or a vast re-write making some of the feats require (race) physiology and some just the race, with those requiring the physiology completely unavailable to those with Racial Heritage. Alternately, make a house rule that fits your game. You want people who paid the cost to get the effect automatically, great! You want them to only have it situationslly, cool! You want them to have to pay for some heritage awakening ritual that leaves them with a non-standard body so they can use it any time they want, o for it! You want the combintion to have no effect what-so-ever, Grand! Just make sure you let your players know before they make the character. As both a GM and a player, I hate finding these things out after the fact.

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doc the grey wrote:
can you take rapid reload on a repeating crossbow and if so does it apply to the reloading of the clip or just the lever reload?

From the feat description, I would say no. It lowers the time required for a standard crossbow type, which is the same amount of time on a heavy crossbow, but faster on a light crossbow. For that matter, the Rapid reload feat and a light crossbow effectively make a regular light crossbow as fast as a repeating variety, but with an effectively larger magazine.

As a GM, i would have no problem allowing a character to take the feat in conjunction with a repeating crossbow allowing them the same speed shift as a heavy crossbow in regards to reloading (the clip). I would even go ahead and apply the feat to both the light and heavy repeating crossbow without having to take a separate feat for both. The rationale being that the feat alone for a regular light crossbow allows for more attacks in an extended combat than the repeating variety as well as both types presumably using similar enough loading techniques.

The feat would not have any effect on the reloading lever itself, as using the lever is a free action, and there isn't really anything faster than that in game terms... well, except maybe granting an extra action a la haste, but for extra attacks feats like rapid shot already have that covered

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Okay, after several hours the tide of the thread has turned to defining exactly what (in game terms), is a miss? Interesting. And I could easily concede most of the points in favor of allowing the combo (Crane wing, snake fang, and later crane riposte)... And I really don't want to scroll back through looking for the build, but here's a few points:

One, and I mentioned this before, the game is not reality or even reality based. It is an abstraction. Hit points are an abstraction to make higher level characters tougher to kill. In reality some punk could get lucky with a dagger and kill a much more experienced warrior in one hit, at the beginning of combat. RAW, only if the 20th level fighter is helpless could the math even make that close (and no, I am not talking house rules here. I don't care if your game is more realistic in that manner by allowing chains of natural 20s to up the crit factor or whatever else, it's not RAW, and not at everyone;s table...)

Two: Table talk. As a player, I roll a die, if combat's gone on any length of significant time, I know how much I need to roll in order to hit. If I meet or exceed that number, I announce "I rolled a <number>, that's a hit." As the GM, when my players announce they rolled whatever on the first round of combat, I have them add all the relevant bonuses, and announce, based solely on AC values, that it was a hit or miss. Every table I've ever played at is pretty much the same, in pretty much every system. If someone does it different, I'd like to play that table a time or two. In my case, after the hit is rolled, the player rolls damage, and other circumstances mitigate that damage (re: damage reduction, deflection, or what have you reducing the damage to a lesser number or nullifying it all together).

Three: So it seems like a great combo, get three hits out of one counter -attack when someone hits you... I'm assuming Combat Reflexes is in there somewhere so you can make more than the one attack of opportunity per round (both Crane Riposte and Snake fang define their attacks as attacks of opportunity) there is still a limit. Say, the first attack hits, is deflected, and Crane Riposte goes into effect. If you have another AoO, do you get the Snake Fang (And its possible bonus attack), or do you hold it for the second attack from that opponent and get it when that attack misses? Okay, so maybe this particular argument works both ways (i.e. the player is likely to get both of the attacks anyway, especially at the lower attack value on his opponent's second attack so why not let him get the extra attack(s) in?), but I see using both on the same attack as a way of trying to get that one extra hit in against opponents who don't hit with as many or multiple attacks.

And as a kind of afterthought here:
Given that you're likely to have several missed attacks against you anyway, does the one extra hit per round from possibly using both actions together really cost you that many free (And immediate in the case of second attacks from Snake Fang) actions? With as many AC bonuses as you can stack on for fighting defensively (or total defense) that you have to use anyway, are that many attacks really getting through? It's been a while since I've had a player with a mid or high level monk, so maybe I'm not that current on how they end up playing. Of course, I still feel my original post in this thread is accurate in the regards that either you are hit or you are missed, but not both at the same time, thereby making only one of the two feats have their criteria satisfied...

Further aside: All the arguing about whether a deflected hit is still a hit or a miss because it didn't hit its intended target remind me of the arguments in Minority Report about whether the ball would have hit the ground if the cop hadn't caught it. Funny how human interaction screws up some easily predictable physics, innit?

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Rynjin wrote:
I can't...Are you SERIOUSLY saying your entire argument lies on the "Well they never use the word miss...exactly, they just use a word that is practically synonymous and it results in the same effect!" bit?

Practically synonymous is not exactly synonymous. Since one effect only happens if the effect hits, and the other only happens when the attack misses, they cannot logically be used at the same time. Either the attack hits (and triggers Crane Wing), or it misses (and triggers Snake Fang). Especially given the feat Crane Riposte, which allows you to make an attack after deflecting an attack with Crane Wing.

Recap: Two different, and opposing triggers (re: You can't miss if you hit, and you can't hit if you miss) as well as the same effect you are looking for via a different feat with harsher restrictions (re: no secondary attack should the first one hit). Yes, I know this isn't strictly logical in a real life sense (i.e. that an attack that doesn't reach its target by necessity missed), but it doesn't have to. the game is an abstraction. The attack officially hit when the roll to hit overcame the target armor class. From then on it was a hit, whether the damage happened or not.

As the GM, I COULD be persuaded that Crane Riposte and Snake Fange styles fused together could grant the possibility of the secondary attack, probably based off a sense motive roll (for cohesiveness). Even then, it seems a little ripe for abuse to me.

Also, isn't it enough that you can use a skill roll, with bonuses as your AC, coupled with more bonuses for fighting defensively (or total defense) and deflecting an attack (for free, no roll, no action), and by use of a fifth feat in the chain get any attack out of it at all?

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Not sure if this helps any, but I have a .... Okay, lets call it a story.

The game I'm currently running has a new player who "inherited" a half orc ranger from the original player when he moved away. The half orc is capable, with only average rolls, really, of laying waste to most anything presented in a published adventure of his level. In the same game I have two more experienced players who either try and min-max their character for combat situations

rambling commentary:
which lead to an interesting conversation about "stealthing" (many sarcastic thanks for that one Blizzard) and exactly why one cannot hide behind another character effectively. Especially not mid-combat. And twice as especially since they were fighting something with blindsense at the time...
and another who insists on trying to cram as many skills as possible into one character sheet, just in case that skill would be useful
rambling commentary:
which leads to the usual inability to do anything useful with the skills once they pass his low scores that come from one point in everything...
And the fourth who actually has a well rounded character, but picked a particular spell that can end fights pretty much instantly
rambling commentary:
Suffocate. With enough feats and ability score behind it to make it unlikely to be resisted. No, I didn't link it, look it up yourself if you care that much...

As the GM, do I decide the ranger is too powerful because his player set him up too effectively? No. Instead I take a look at my copy of his character sheet

rambling commentary:
I always have a copy of their sheet somewhere. Two reasons: One, I hate being surprised by some class feature, skill, or magic item that I forgot they had because they haven't used it the last several sessions. And two, I play with too many people who "forget" to pay for that magic item they bought, or "accidentally" know three extra spells, or what have you. And three, Sometimes it's good to give a character a chance to shine, especially if their player's been having a run of bad luck...
and design an encounter that forces the group to work together.

As the GM, do I decide the rogue can suddenly "Stealth" (really, REALLY hate using that as a verb...) at any and all times? No. Nor do I cave in to the players' request that their character stealth (More assorted cursings about misuse of the word stealth...) everywhere, all the time. Instead, I point out more instances where stealth is a viable option, as well as pointing out that he doesn't need it to 'backstab' any more, and shake my head sagaciously when he refuses to learn any more stealth skill based on its combat usefulness (or rather its lack thereof)

As the GM do I decide the skill spreading character is too powerful for being able to roll at any given skill at any time?.... Okay, well, maybe. I've warned him a couple times that needless dice rolling can slow the game down, but that's hardly an OP situation. The point here, though, is that as the GM, I get some control over difficulty numbers. Although having to do the math for them to prove that they can't be effective at doing it all really shouldn't be as necessary as I've found it to be, the character is his character, and my thoughts

rambling commentary:
as the guy who knows what they're likely to face and as such what skills are likely to actually serve a purpose beyond telling them the Monster's entry name over 'A hulking monstrosity that looks over you with fangs covered with thick ropes of spittle...' for an uncommon monster. Or even something as simple as: "No, you can NOT use your Bardic Performance skill effectively without taking any ranks in perform. Yes, I know you can make an untrained check, but trust me, if you want it to actually work, you need a little bit more than raw stat... Okay, maybe not at first level, but you haven't been first level for months.... What? Yes, yes I did let you know it wasn't working as strongly... Well, I, for one, would have taken the repeated lack of success about level four on to be a clue... You did read the ability description, didn't you? And that spell that has you make a perform check? Right. That too....
... Okay, and the adding his plus 2 for assisting everyone else's rolls did sort of help (after a fashion)

And is the sorcerer too powerful for having one, end-it-all spell? Yes. Sorta. I have patience, and that will go away in a few levels when things even out a bit. That, and it's single target, so I can just hit him with a swarm, an undead, or numerous other things it won't help against. Not too much, though, because while a certain spell, ability, or whatnot should never be too relied on, it should not be completely denied every time, either. (re: give the undead a living controller for him to suffocate, and let the other players handle some minions for a while)

As a final note, more directly in line with the start of the thread, the flavor text on Uncanny dodge:

Its in the PRD if you wanna look wrote:

Uncanny Dodge (Ex): Starting at 4th level, a rogue can react to danger before her senses would normally allow her to do so. She cannot be caught flat-footed, nor does she lose her Dex bonus to AC if the attacker is invisible. She still loses her Dexterity bonus to AC if immobilized. A rogue with this ability can still lose her Dexterity bonus to AC if an opponent successfully uses the feint action (see Combat) against her.

If a rogue already has uncanny dodge from a different class, she automatically gains improved uncanny dodge (see below) instead.

It's roughly once per session that someone with this ability tries to use the enlarged section of text to do something not listed in the next section. For a few examples: attack the whatever that surprised the rogue. Drink a potion (that is currently in the rogue's backpack) before whatever can attack the group. And in a particularly memorable debate, catch a thrown serpent and fling it back at the shadowy figure that tossed it on them.

I did let him catch it. Without a penalty, even. However, the roll was a natural one, followed by a natural one... I will honestly say that I haven't seen too many people accept catching the open mouth of a snake on their open palm with as much grace and dignity as the rogue. That being said, he assures me that the lightning reflexes feat will prevent that from ever happening again. After all, his reflexes are fast. Like lightning. Plus that ought to give him the ability to throw the next snake in the same action. Personally, I'm not sure how that applies to a plus two bonus on reflex saves, but I'm just the GM of this nuthouse...

And remember, the whole purpose of the game is fun. Maybe not all groups enjoy arguing about the game as much as playing it like mine do, but that's life. And if nothing else, it's a great excuse to enjoy a few beers and some pizza with friends, and maybe get a few passable stories out of it in the process.

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Wrath wrote:

We limit it to one stat no less than 8 in our games.

I am not offended by people building these characters, but I insist they play to their stats. I also make NPCs interact in similar ways, and interact with players based on impressions from stats.

Bullies, for example, are going to target the wizard I spoke of earlier, every time. He's scrawny, isn't wise enough to know when to shut up, and has all the charisma of a wet paper bag. I suspect that given enough time around him, most folk would feel he deserves a smack in the mouth just to stop him thinking he was so much better than the rest of them " cos of all his fancy book learning"

However, I get the distinct impression that players who build characters like that don't...

You see the wizard as a loudmouth who can't shut up, but that's not the only interpretation. He could be a scrawny wimp that's been picked on enough in his life that he cringes at the thought of confrontation and hides behind someone he considers safe. Rather than a loudmouth who thinks his intelligence makes him better, he's more akin to the bullied high school nerd who's studies might take him someplace a wiser person would have stopped. Or maybe he just plain studies so much that he doesn't get the whole 'personal interaction' thing. (That flower is lovely? Looks like any Chamomilla Verdantis common to this area to me.)(Does that dress make you look fat? I don't see how it could, there's no enchantment on it. Although I suppose Quimby the Lesser did suggest that colors have inherently illusionistic properties it was never actually proven. At least that I am aware of...).

And if bully types DO target him every time, that can be used as a plot device. That being said, bullies tend to be impressionable, and generally in a fantasy world know to avoid the scrawny robed guy with the fancy stick. Especially after he lights his pipe with his index finger. It doesn't mean they want to hang around with him, but unless they've known him long enough to know how much they can get away with, they are unlikely to try anything.

As for social situations, he'd all but have to use his spells to intimidate someone. He's just doesn't have the force of personality to back up his threats with nothing but the words. For that matter, he's also unable to tell is people are lying to him. His sense motive is god awful without training a long, long time, and he starts out behind the curve in that respect. Sure, he can point out inaccuracies with his knowledge skills, but he can't tell if it was a deliberate lie or just because the guy he's questioning isn't as smart as him. he'd get the worst deals at all the markets, and be the first person to believe that the shabby looking fellow in the long cloak with the shifty eyes really does have a map to the lost treasures of Qadira for sale, cheap. And those glances at the guards? Probably just a nervous tic, or maybe he owes someone money. After all, he must need money if he's selling a map like that!

Any way it remains a playable character, a survivable one, and possibly even interesting.

All that said, I, too, use the house rule of no more than 1 ability score lower than an 8. Min/maxing can be okay, but shouldn't be the sole focus of the game. Otherwise there'd be one standard set of stats handed out with each class type and no variety.

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Ascalaphus wrote:

Warning: not RAW, but for practicality;

You can use the Perception rules, which have penalties/modifiers for sounds farther away and behind obstacles and all that. Sit down once to figure out all the modifiers; note down the following:

* Base DC to hear the fight
* Penalty per obstacle
* Penalty per distance

Now, to keep it convenient, assume that monsters in other rooms start out Taking 5 (yes, five) on their Perception check, but in each subsequent combat round, they roll 1 higher than before. Figure out how many combat rounds it takes before they notice.

Using this, you can beforehand note down for your entire dungeon, if a fight breaks out in room X, it takes Y rounds before the monsters in room Z hear it.

Awesome rule of thumb here. Maybe not RAW, but definitely not contrary to any. For that matter, I'm probably adding this in o my game.

Now that covers the basics, but here's some extras you might want to add in, or not. I'd add that it also depends on the (and lacking a better word here) threat level of the whole run. The more on guard someone is, the higher the bonus to their perception check per round. Casual Friday and nothing ever happens on casual Fridays? Maybe there's a further penalty in there. Drunk and sleeping it off? More penalties.

For further effect, you can set a kind of delay. Say there's a stronghold where the guards in one room break out into fights over the gambling or something. If the fight lasts more than X rounds, someone is sent to investigate.

Of course if the creatures in the next area can be alerted, the whole complex might have an alert system as well. Give the combatants too long unoccupied and one of them rings the gong of alert or some such.

And as a final thought, don't forget the opposite. Silence and the associated spells are handy, but every so often someone or something notices an unnatural amount of the silence. I would definitely roll on this one. I'd give it a base 50 DC, minimum. Possibly higher. Read that as almost impossible, excepting the most skilled, lucky, and alert creatures around (including, of course, bonuses for threat level, if any)

Goblin Squad Member

Jameow wrote:
I'd live to play an old, hobbling character with frizzy, wild hair. I often feel a little disappointment when I can't make an older looking character, or even when I can, they stride around like a 20 year old

Yeah, that's likely to happen most of the time, anyway. It's one thing to alter the appearance of a character at creation, and another to completely customize movements, gait, or alter limitations. Especially in a massively multiplayer setting. Not that it wouldn't be awesome.

I just want something simple. Like buck teeth. Or patchy facial hair. Or heck, even just overweight. I'd love a nice, overweight wizzo just for the excuse to use Mage Hand to do all his *ehem* heavy lifting of five pounds or more. I'd also like a nice wheezing sound every time he has to run more than five paces, possibly accompanied by the sound of fabric burn. Or leather, should he be allowed leather pants.

Just had a horrible thought: Do enough fat as ugly and you could end up with my dad wearing his old Kiss army outfit complete with stretched out skin tight pants, beer gut, no short, and kabuki makeup...

There again, as with any character, it's one thing to make a unique character, another to make a one-off gag. Myself, I'd probably be a little too tempted to make the one off gag...

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Having had one too many games run short, end up with extra play time, or worse having a busy work week and not enough time to prep a more serious adventure, I love this type of product. Pick a level appropriate bad guy, come up with some hook, and have the PCs have at. To be fair, I've used my players' own characters against them, but eventually they figured out what I was doing.

Maybe this will keep them guessing for an extra week or two?

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deltas wrote:

Thanks for the feedback. I was really tempted since I saw several adventures for 5 dollars each and a couple of the campaign settings and other books for about 10 dollars.

It is sad that I can't find as many pathfinder modules on my area :(. I know I can buy the PDF but there is something about having the physical thing that calls out to me. I could order them online, but the shipping is too high from the places I have tried :(.

have you tried talking to the owner or manager of your flgs? If you have more than just yourself, perhaps two or three more interested players and GMs, you might be able to convince a store owner to pick up a few pathfinder products on a trial basis, or maybe even more permanantly.

Then again, if the 4e stuff is in the discount bin it could be a tough sell. (or it could be the whole 5e coming soon I've heard vague rumors about)...

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Depending on just HOW chep things are selling, there may be some useable maps. One can never have enough map to begin with, and the scale is the same in both 4e and Pathfinder.

Steve Geddes hit the nail on the head, though, in recomending the more useable campaign setting books. I would personally go so far as to say that the 4e DM's guide is one of the handier guides for beginner GMs. Less for the technical data than the authors put in a number of person experience stories and examples in the ... well, pretty much in the margins. Okay, okay, it's about three specific stories from one of the authors' personal experiences, but I still think it's a fine reference on the art of GMing successfully. That being said, there is a lot of 4e specific stuff to sort through, most of which appears in the Pathfinder Game Mastery guide in Pathfinder format.

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shallowsoul wrote:
sheadunne wrote:

So as long as there's a wizard in the party who takes beast shape x the druid can wild shape into whatever she wants? Seems like a waste of time.

Mr. Wizard, I'd like to be a polar bear, can you show me what one looks like so I can learn to wild shape into it?

Certainly my dear boy, perhaps next time your user will select a class that doesn't rely on another class for assistance using one of your primary abilities.

Once again proving that all other classes are inferior to the wizard. Yay!

You are trying to compare a spell, which has it's own set of rules in it's description, to a supernatural ability that has it's own set of rules.

We don't change the rules of one class just because you think their toys aren't as nice as those of another class. You can do that in your homebrew but that's not what you referring to.

Actually, see my previous post. A druid's Wild Shape works like the Beast Shape spell, except as listed (primarily range, lack of components (this implied by it being an ability and not a spell), and familiarity with the form taken).

They follow the same set of rules, otherwise, and is a legitimate thought. However, were I to limit druids to forms known, I would also limit the Wizard. Sure, he might get that polar bear form right, but he might also get an albino black bear. Or he might not know what a polar bear was in the first place.

Further, would a Wizard using one of the Beast Shape/Polymorph/shapechange family of spells be able to mimic the form well enough for a druid to familiarize with it? Say an arctic wizz-o beast shaping to a polar bear for a desert druid? Is the reverse enough for the Wizard? If the same group has an arctic druid and a jungle Wiz, could the effectively 'swap forms' in this manner? Why or why not?

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Mergy wrote:

So this topic started hostile and has remained so, but what I would like to know is what everyone's favourite wild shape form is! :)

A deinonychus gets 4 natural attacks and is achievable at level 4, and who doesn't like turning into a raptor?

Personally, I think this thread has toned down a lot since the start. Let's call it less hostile with background tensions, or something.

Second: No, your deinonychus transformation does NOT grant 4 natural attacks at 4th level. Although theoretically it can achieve 5 (two talons, two claws, and a secondary of bite ;) ).

Personally, I like the simple stuff. I'm a long time fan of trip, improved trip, etc..., so I like wolves (be they winter, normal, worg, dire, were, or otherwise). That said...

And I quote: "at 4th level, a druid gains the ability to turn herself into any Small or Medium animal and back again once per day. Her options for new forms include all creatures with the animal type. This ability functions like the beast shape I spell, except as noted here..."

That's on page 51 of the core rule book. Beast Shape I is on page 247 (as is version 2 and 3, version 2 applying first at level 6)
Beast Shape spells

Ergo: what the druid changes into doesn't match the creature in a "I gain the 22 strength of the rare and elusive super ape, along with four claw attacks and a rend, as well as a tail with constrict. It is also a normal animal because I say so It mimics the spell. At fourth level you look like a super ape, but your personal strength only goes up by 2. If the super ape is large, you can change into it at 6th level, but again, unless you started with 18 strength, your version of the super ape is somewhat weaker. Or maybe stronger. Unless you took a feat in multiattack, (or otherwise simulate it), you don't get all five claw attacks at the best possible attack value. Damage is by the Universal monster rules, Natural attacks by size might have to scroll a ways or ctrl-f for it This table is in every bestiary so far.

By the RAW, you technically don't even gain poison if you transform into a snake before 8th level when Beast Shape 3 kicks in.

summation: the actual animal transformed into is NOT the bestiary definition thereof. It is an approximation, different for each and every druid that transforms into that animal.

As a DM, I'd probably go ahead and fudge the rules enough to allow poison, trip attacks, etc, where appropriate (from a venomous lizard or wolf, say, respectively), but that falls under house rules. Of course, by 8th level it falls into RAW as well.

Further ergo and summation: limiting what a druid can or can't change into is little more than set dressing. Okay, no dinos in the world? Well, how about I change into a hunting cat with 4 claws and a bite instead? If the DM says no dinos in his world, but you really, really want to transform into one, you might ask about the posability of some sort of special quest, feat, or something to help you out. Again, it's mostly just set dressing, but maybe he'll let you invent a campaign specific feat (say, terrifying transformation: you can transform into shapes of extinct creatures. Their oddity grants you a +2 to intimidate, etc... so long as you are transformed) or perhaps just a ritual to allow you to make the change. Again, since it's less a stats thing than set dressing, you might be surprised with what you are allowed (especially since most of us GMing want to keep our players involved and at least somewhat happy). If it's a deal breaker for you (ie. you get the dinos, the polar bear, the super ape, whatever; or you don't play/don't play the druid)... well... I guess...

I guess that:
I'm glad it ain't me having that discussion with you. Personally, from the GM perspective I'd be upset if you left the game, but less so if you changed class. Generally the inclusion of a specific class in the game isn't needed. From a player's perspective... Okay, I've been upset over things being unavailable before, but I generally find that talking with the GM eventually turns into SOME sort of compromise, and it helps to know exactly why you want what you're asking for. If it's just the ability to turn into cool-awesome -super-munkey, a unique transformation, or even something you saw in a show once, the GM is probably able to come up with something that works toward your goals in his world. Really. Also, bribery never hurts (unless your GM is a professional dominatrix...)

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shallowsoul wrote:
Actually seeing the animal in person qualifies in my opinion as being acceptable but you suddenly turning into something that isn't even native to the region because the druids player just picked up the new bestiary is not acceptable.

Absolutely no argument about that, here.

By the same token, the mechanics of the transformation aren't into an actual animal. It is by the beast shape spell. Stats change by the spell's definitions, attack forms are gained/lost, etc, by the definition of the spell. The 'fur' around the animal, such as it is, is really just a special effect of sorts, there's not a mechanical difference. the only difference is the paint on the beast. All small animals get a +2 Dex and AC bonus, all medium gain +2 Str and and AC bonus. Furthermore, Beast Shape 1 only allows for various movement mode gains. Damage is by size/attack type (the chart in the bestiary). At higher levels you can get more effects (duplicating Beast Shapes 2 and 3), but a fourth level Druid can change into a medium cat (type they are familiar with, be it tiger, lion, leopard, other roughly size equivalent cat) or bear (black, brown, polar, zebra striped, whatever), the stats are the same. The actual 'packaging' of the animal is mainly for color, and storytelling.


Huh. I think I just talked myself into something more along your lines of thinking than what I started with.

shallowsoul wrote:
The entry only mentions that the druid must be familiar with animals. It doesn't mention they have to be familiar with an elemental to turn into one.

Indeed it does not. By the same token, my whole purpose there is pointing out a logical inconsistency (fur to flames), and show how a little handwaving helps fix it. Didn't really appl it to the conversation well, so I probably should have omitted it.

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The Drunken Dragon wrote:

I prefer to work off two systems. The first depends on where the druid comes from. For example, a druid from the Mwangi Expanse should have no problem taking the Wild Shape of jungle-based animals, i.e. apes, tigers, monkeys, hummingbirds, etc. But I could not reasonably allow them to take the shape of, lets say, a dire wolf, or a bear. Now, if they come from Brevoy, reverse that.

Aside from that, any animals they see during their campaigns also counts. So for example, a Mwangi druid who adventures in Ustalav is bound to encounter a few wolves, and should from thereafter be able to wild shape into a wolf. But unless they meet a polar bear at some point in their journey, they still can't do that. The only exception are characters who somehow had access to a menagerie, except this raises the issue of what a druid would be doing inside one of those other than working to sabotage it...

Jungles are remarkably diverse places. Not really disagreeing with the post above, but adding some commentary and such. Of course, disagreeing a little (about jungles), but that's me. A druid from there could very reasonably seen some form of wolf or bear (think Kipling). Now assuming the form of a specific breed (polar bear, let's say), might be another thing all together. Certainly it should be something of a hurdle to a first level character, but what about a level 15? Shouldn't a level 15 druid have a deeper connection to nature that allows them to transform into something they may have only heard of?

Further, what about more exotic wild shapes? If a druid is only allowed to wild shape into forms they are familiar with, what happens if by level 6 they haven't become familiar with elementals? The rules allow them to transform into a small or medium elemental. Later upgrades allow for plant creatures and more sizes, etc. So let's say our more secluded druid spent the first six levels of their career never seeing a fire elemental, then suddenly sees one. The group's rogue (or whatever) asks, "hey, can you change into one of those?" So far they have only been able to change into furry, feathery, or scaly things. that thing's got fire all over it. And in it. And... is made of it....

This is where a certain amount of metagaming is acceptable. Something tells the druid they can now change into a pile of dirt (air, water, fire...) Whether you define it as instinct, an NPC trainer, general druidic lore, whatever, the druid knows the basics of what they can do. Let's face it, there is no logical step between thrush and living fire outside known lore (re: other druids have done it).

That being said, I do like the idea of it being more difficult for a druid to change into an umfamiliar animal. I can see my player asking if they can change into that animal they just saw for the first time. Off the top of my head, I'd say I'd have him roll the knowledge nature check. Success and he could transform, if a bit slowly. Failure... Id'd probably still allow the change, but with a longer change time, maybe some temporary ability damage or something (mostly for color, but also make 'em think twice about trying something unusual mid-combat). For that matter, aside from the occassional bit of flavor text dialogue, I'd probably find most of that too time consuming in the first place and just let them transform with some penalties, no roll, and get on with it.

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blackbloodtroll wrote:

This is what I am talking about.

I wouldn't let someone put that property on a shield. Magic armor and shields have their own properties. i wouldn't even allow that on shield spikes as they don't seem to me to be legitimately melee weapons so much as an add on to the overall melee effectiveness of a shield.

Also, despite having weapon like characteristics, shields are not weapons (even when studded with spikes, the rim lined with razor blades, and bolstered by the angry spirit of every fourth grade bully to dream of perfecting the atomic wedgie). however, and as always, check with your GM. They might see it differently.

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blackbloodtroll wrote:
Just to note, a shield is a weapon, and can be enchanted as one. Would weapon properties added to a shield no longer be in effect if shield spikes are added? If the shield has the Transformative property, which material does it count as once transformed if it has both materials?

Correct. With the spikes in the way, the shield's weapon properties are no longer in effect until they are removed.

I don't know about the transformative property off hand, but would surmise that it would count as whatever material it transformed into regardless of what it was previously or was in its dormant form (in effect having transformed into the new material), and not count as both materials.

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blackbloodtroll wrote:
So, when you add adamantine spikes to a mithral shield, it no longer counts as silver?

It never counted as silver. It counted as Mithral. And yes, the spikes being the part that do the damage, they are the part that overcome damage resistance.

The shield itself being made of mithral affects the base shield weight, and max dexterity bonus. Since shields don't affect Max Dex, it doesn't even help with that. The spikes still add their own wieght to the overall total of the shield, though (a mithral board does not make adamantine spikes weigh any less).

Alternately, try using Weaponblanch on the spikes to get the Mithral effects in, too. Well, for one hit, at least...


blackbloodtroll wrote:
Would an alchemical silver shield with adamantine spikes no longer suffer a penalty to damage?

Wait? What?

I don't recal alchemical silver as having a damage penalty, but yes, the spikes being the damage-y part would negate that. The alchemic silver being the shield-y part would still have it's effect on the shield-y parts.

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Mucronis wrote:
could you make a shield half and half, both mithral and adamantine ? picture a fung sway (spelling =) ) or aes sedai symbol from the Wheel of Time series, two slightly curved drops curling around each other (usually one black, the other white, with a small dot in the middle of the opposite color) RPing, depends on the GM, RAW and RAI. I'd guess not

Talk to your GM about it. In my campaign, I'd say no. The effective part of the shield is wood or metal, with the design out front being little more than decoration. I would also disallow a mithral/adamantine alloy outright. Another GM might let you split it down the middle, do a Yin-Yang, or something else. To my mind, though, there is a seam between the metals that just doesn't weld right and ruins the effectiveness after the first hit knocks the plates lose from each other.

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