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Not first party but Spheres of Power has the Gleam Brush, which is 200 gp and basically does this but with a paintbrush instead of a pen.

Gleam Brush wrote:
A gleam brush takes the form of a handheld brush with a wooden handle decorated with colored whorls and spirals. This magic brush is considered a masterwork tool for appropriate Craft skills (such as calligraphy or painting) and creates ink of any color, changing to any color the user imagines as a free action; the ink glows, increasing the light level by one step 5 feet around it. The ink created by a gleam brush is nonmagical and permanent, and may cleaned up or removed from surfaces as normal ink can. A gleam brush never runs out of ink. Different styles of brush can be found and produced, ranging from fine tipped ink brushes to wide, thick paintbrushes, but they are always small enough to be held in one hand.

It's probably underpriced since the light effect is basically infinite free permanent heatless candles but you could always remove that if you think it's too much.

Personally, I think it's a great thematic fun item and the price is fine. The "but" here is that if the player really wants there's nothing stopping them from painting literally everything glowing neon and decorating your world in cyberpunk.

Far Shot wrote:

Benefit: You only suffer a –1 penalty per full range increment between you and your target when using a ranged weapon.

Normal: You suffer a –2 penalty per full range increment between you and your target.

So I would say yes, it appears they stack. Far Shot changes the range increment penalty from -2 to -1, the scope reduces that by 1 to 0. One sets it to a specific value, the other reduces the value. I don't see why they wouldn't stack.

allisonkaas wrote:
Bob Bob Bob wrote:
allisonkaas wrote:
I don't care if it's realistic; I prefer unrealism in my games, but this has no bearing on what's good for the base game. What I'm confused about is the inconsistency. Why did the devs ever think it was okay to use the capabilities of aging, out of shape game developers as the basis for experienced, skilled heroic fantasy warriors that don't exist in real life? Assuming that this makes sense, why did they not use that same basis for every class, given that all the classes represent characters which are equally imaginary?

That's actually how they did rules for a lot of early stuff and I don't think they ever stopped. I swear a developer (I think 3.0) actually put down lines and did standing long jumps to figure out what an average person could jump.

Again though, it's not inconsistent. High level Fighting Men are unrealistic. Unrealistic things require magic (or SCIENCE!) or the divine. Therefore Fighting Men without one of those are limited to real world things. It's bad, sure, but the logic is consistent. There's a reason the fancier abilities tend to be tagged SU and all the monk powers work off of Ki (SU).

It is inconsistent. Why should unrealistic things necessarily be magical? This is an assertion which requires support, not a tautology.

My assertion is the developers have decided that unrealistic abilities require a magical, divine, or supernatural basis. That makes the statement "unrealistic abilities are magical" a tautology. To be inconsistent with that your thread title would need to be incorrect. So no, still not inconsistent.

Kasoh wrote:
Bob Bob Bob wrote:
The exact number isn't given but the description of Emerging Guns suggests
Emerging Guns wrote:
Advanced firearms may exist, but only as rare and wondrous items—the stuff of high-level treasure troves.

So this should be beyond the standard checks. Since the Knowledge skills says "really tough questions" should be DC 20 or 30, 35 or 40 sounds about right.

That being said, given the setting (both weapon availability and adventure path), I would suggest rather than a check to create one out of nothing you make it a check to recognize and repair one that already exists.

Since we know that availability isn't a balance concern, and the DM in the situation is amenable to the PC having advanced firearms, I'm a little curious as to why its better to repair one as opposed to a singular PC being able to take credit for inventing it. The end result is the same, PC has advanced firearm, but in the end, someone has to, and aren't PCs uniquely special individuals anyway?

Its just an interesting distinction to make. If a PC wants to be the Eliphalet Remington of Golarion...well, why not?

The rest of that, that you cut off, says:
Or cobble together the parts from found technology, or strip the parts from a robot, or however you end up choosing to describe it.

I don't know how the GM or the player want to introduce the guns. I was just listing options, one of which is repair it. The other two are "build it out of high tech parts".

As for why not just let them take a hunk of steel and turn it into an advanced firearm, because then you need an explanation for why other people haven't done it first. A DC 35 is high for normal people. It's not for a mid-level adventurer or as demonstrated here, a level 6 gun nut. If all you needed was Gunsmithing and a lot of Knowledge (Engineering) then someone definitely made them already. Unless the world only moves at the speed of PCs.

"It uses salvaged alien technology" seemed a thematically appropriate reason for the adventure path (and apparently the character) and a good reason why nobody else had mass-produced them yet. And I never said they couldn't make more, just that limiting the creation materials would make them rare and special to fit the description in the setting. If the character wanted to spend their time mass-producing them to spread presumably they could (though maybe not in the adventure path, from my experience many are quite linear).

The exact number isn't given but the description of Emerging Guns suggests

Emerging Guns wrote:
Advanced firearms may exist, but only as rare and wondrous items—the stuff of high-level treasure troves.

So this should be beyond the standard checks. Since the Knowledge skills says "really tough questions" should be DC 20 or 30, 35 or 40 sounds about right.

That being said, given the setting (both weapon availability and adventure path), I would suggest rather than a check to create one out of nothing you make it a check to recognize and repair one that already exists. Or cobble together the parts from found technology, or strip the parts from a robot, or however you end up choosing to describe it. That would make advanced firearms rare and special by limiting the supply of creation materials but should give the player what they want. I haven't played the adventure path but I'm led to believe tech is fairly plentiful (and fought over).

thorin001 wrote:
But that same horde should go down to a single fireball.

The troop mechanic is an abstraction. There's way more glaring oddities than just "should be killed entirely by AoE effects". A troop at one HP still has just as many members and is just as effective as one at full health. But do one damage to it and they just decide "eh, screw it, the rest of us give up". For pit traps if the leading edge falls in do all the rest have to slapstick their way in after them? For the fireball, as someone else said, maybe the other zombies provide total cover. But that's the way it works. The explanation is left to the GM.

Armor doesn't protect against damage it protects against being hit. A natural 20 always hits. Twenty archers, on average, will hit once regardless of how terrible their bonuses are. That's what swarm/troop damage is meant to represent. It's not so much automatic as inevitable (which sounds perfect for a zombie apocalypse, personally).

We're not talking about four or five zombies taking a swing at someone, we're talking forty zombies climbing over each other to each take a swing/bite at someone. Again, by pathfinder rules, on average two of them will hit no matter how many penalties you add for squeezing, power attack, whatever.

If you don't like that the damage is automatic you could calculate the chance of hitting and use that. Start with 20 or 40 zombies (for ease of calculation), figure out what they'd need to actually hit, multiply the damage by every hit. So assuming 20 AC either 5 or 10 zombies hit (I'll ignore crit chance) for 5d6+20 or 10d6+40 damage. That sounds lethal for 5th level characters. At higher levels the damage would go down but by that point the zombie troop isn't supposed to be a threat anymore. And even then it's doing 1d6+4 or 2d6+8 which is about what it'd be doing as troop damage anyway.

If you remove or make Holy worse then your players are probably just going to replace it with Bane (evil outsider) and/or Bane (undead) for pretty much the same functionality. It gives more damage and an attack bonus for lower cost and the extra +2 enhancement bonus will end up bypassing DR/good anyway when they get it up to a +3 weapon. Even before that it might bypass the DR because most outsiders with DR/good have DR/good or (silver/cold iron) at lower levels which is bypassed by a +3 weapon.

I'm just not seeing the problem here. +2d6 damage against a broad variety of opponents is good, sure, but you can also get that kind of effect with Shock+Corrosive. For all the Evil enemies with resistance you do less against you're probably adding an equal amount of Neutrals you do get bonus damage on. As for bypassing DR that's basically only an evil Cleric or Evil Outsider thing (unless I'm missing something). And again, a +1 Bane (evil outsiders) weapon probably does that at low levels and a +3 Bane (evil outsiders) weapon definitely does it. Holy also shuts down regeneration (good) but off the top of my head I couldn't tell you anything that has that. I just can't see a way in which Holy is significantly better than Corrosive+Shock or Bane (evil outsiders) (or Shock+Bane (evil outsiders)). Easier to calculate (is it evil? Add 7 damage) but not so significantly better you nerf it.

Bram Hart wrote:

I am not sure if I am asking for anything, just wondering why this does not exist?

I mean, from an IC perspective it seems like this would be a no-brainer.

Is there a balance reason not to do this?

Third party definitely has items like this: Pocket of Holding. And Paizo has made cheaper versions (Pathfinder Pouch). In this specific case I would say it's more of a world-building thing than a balance thing. Masterwork backpacks are 50 gp and add a variable number to carrying capacity (usually ~3-4 lbs). So it doesn't seem to be a price thing. Therefore the best explanation I can come up with is that Paizo doesn't want super cheap permanent magic items, especially ones that everyone would use. As you say, everyone should have one. A basic level 1 NPC has 260 gp. Every commoner should have one of these. At which point your world is filled with magic (well, one very specific magic). If that's not what you want...

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Honestly, I assumed magic items are made mad-libs style. So your "plain silver band" requires some crazy set of ingredients based on what kind of silver it is (or the time of year, or the caster, or some other incredibly variable thing). So "any possession from the home of a king", "anything stolen from a troll", "dry and brown earth", and "cheek of a carpenter". Considering the list that came from that was both tame and appropriate.

So the cost is more about obscurity or rarity than actual costs. Instead of a "gold coin" you need "a gold coin that won a longshot bet" or "a gold coin that was used to pay to kill a king". And the rest of the cost is finding or making that.

Sort of like the lich ritual. There's requirements, there's a cost, but everything else is "make up something personal to them".

Penumbra wrote:
The target of this spell does not suffer any penalties or blindness caused by bright light, such as those from light sensitivity or light blindness.
Glitterdust wrote:

School conjuration (creation);

Components V, S, M (ground mica)

Bolding mine.

Penumbra specifically protects against bright light induced blindess. Glitterdust is a literal handful of glitter you whip at someone and use magic to make more of. It's not a light spell and it'd be hard to argue the sparkle causes the blindness (otherwise everyone who looks at the glitterbomb would need to save too). It's just a fancy version of whipping sand in someone's eye.

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rorek55 wrote:
I suppose making a side quest to get an item that can resurrect one dead person due to a character death at very low levels would be fiat as well?

If the item didn't exist until the GM needed it? Yes. Inventing items is fairly firmly GM fiat.

I'm not saying GM fiat is good or bad. I'm saying that you need to pick one (hard rules or fiat) and stick with it. If you create a formalized list of injuries you also need a formalized list of solutions. When a player loses a hand the answer can't be "make up something to fix it". That's a system for crippling players and nothing else.

Why I said fiat was better was simply because I don't think there can ever be a single table that covers every possible type of "death". It would make more sense and probably feel better for players if the damages were chosen based on the specific reason for their crippling. Rather than a table to roll on I would make a set of guidelines for conditions to apply. Like if they took only a little damage they're dazzled (face burned, eye cut) but if they took a lot of damage they're staggered (whole body burned, chest wound barely held closed). That's how I would do it though.

Again, very short version, if you really want a random crippling list then it should come with solutions. Written, detailed solutions. Otherwise it just seems like a punishment.

So this sounds like an impossible chore at low levels and a pointless waste of time at high levels. If that's what you're going for, great. Somehow I doubt it though.

The first and foremost problem is that the fixes to these problems as provided by the game itself are moderately expensive (6,400) or high level magic. Your solution to this is, well, GM fiat (provide sidequests, invent items). That's not a solution, that's a patch for a flaw. You cannot invent rules for hacking off body parts without also including rules for replacing them that are accessible to lower levels (unless the goal is to screw over low levels).

Second, some of those conditions are much worse for certain characters and pointless for others. Hack off a wizard's hand? So what, they just use the other hand to cast. Do the same thing to a greatsword fighter? There goes a bunch of feats/class features. And punctured lung sounds like death by any other name. If it can't be healed except by the Heal check then they're just going to die if nobody can make it (or took the skill).

The short version? I don't see any benefit to formalizing this. If you're already going to GM fiat away the problem I don't see why you can't also GM fiat the problem itself. Just tell your players that "If you would be knocked down to lethal HP you can choose to accept a grievous injury instead of dying" and then make up whatever injury you think fits. It's never going to be one size fits all. Death by flamethrower is very different to death by sword. One list is never going to make sense unless it's very abstract.

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Quixote wrote:
So how is the concern that I may be taking some of the authenticity and accuracy away from a people's culture political?

Because governments have (and still do) engage in genocide, cultural or otherwise. And one of the standard ways to do so is by "othering" those people, creating some description to make them seem fundamentally different from everyone else. And you can do that when you take part of someone's culture and exaggerate, amplify, or delete aspects of it and magnify and mainstream that version of the culture.

The person above me mentioned "third world countries" as more likely to have "pockets of true conflict and suffering exist". Third world country just means they did not support the US or USSR during the Cold War. Nothing about that implies that more conflict exists there. Ireland, Sweden, Finland, Switzerland, all third world countries. The phrase has taken on negative connotations since its creation that the person's usage seems to imply. More violence, less wealth, etc. Which is then used as justification to exploit, invade, or otherwise treat them as lesser by other countries. Using the phrase that way continues to spread and reinforce those connotations and therefore allow more exploitation.

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So the easiest answer if you can get Greater Create Demiplane is to create a demiplane that is Timeless with respect to magic.

Timeless wrote:
If a plane is timeless with respect to magic, any spell cast with a noninstantaneous duration is permanent until dispelled.

Like, say, Create Demiplane. So you only need to make one demiplane permanent and cast every other spell on that plane. It will effectively become a keystone because if anyone ever manages to destroy that plane the duration on the other planes will probably run out instantly. Of course, as defenses you can basically just put any summon or spell you want since they last forever.

1. Assuming one cast a day, 200 ft by 200 ft times 365 days times 200 years... like 100 square miles? It's a good sized city, that's about it. You could probably do it faster with Miracle duplicating the spell (and skipping the casting time). That's not including any extra features you want to add. More casters would make it go faster.

2. No need for gold with a Timeless (magic) demiplane.

3. Trap planes, basically. Usually using dead magic planes. My favorite I've seen (or made, I forget) used objective directional gravity and an unsolvable, moving maze. So the whole plane was a floor to ceiling maze filled with golems who would move around the walls. The trick was that in the upper half of the room gravity went up and the only exit was a hidden trap door on the ceiling. Sprinkle in some fake portals to death planes and monsters to taste.

5&6. Honestly, every plane should be its own unique thing. There's probably an original plane where the survivors first settled in that's grown to some kind of hub but everything after that should be completely and utterly unique. Why would the Structure option exist if not for that exact reason? You can either pick the survivors and design a plane around them or pick a cool plane idea and figure out who would live there. Think of it like interior design, only with magic instantly making whatever you feel like. It's also mutable, maybe in a year you remove the desert and replace it with an ocean. And maybe there's trends, open concept no walled structures are the new hotness this year. Maybe last year it was only using wood for your plane. Stuff like that.

As for death, well, here's the rest of Timeless.

Timeless wrote:
On planes with this trait, time still passes, but the effects of time are diminished. How the timeless trait affects certain activities or conditions such as hunger, thirst, aging, the effects of poison, and healing varies from plane to plane. The danger of a timeless plane is that once an individual leaves such a plane for one where time flows normally, conditions such as hunger and aging occur retroactively.

So no, nobody, caster or otherwise, need ever die of old age or lack of food, apparently. If they stay too long they might never be able to leave though, so potentially there's an elder class of people who live on this plane who are permanently stuck there because leaving would cause them to shrivel up from age, hunger, and thirst.

Discipline (Subdiscipline) wrote:
For the purpose of psionics–magic transparency, clairsentience powers are equivalent to powers of the divination school (thus, creatures immune to divination spells are also immune to clairsentience powers).

Detect Hostile Intent is Telepathy which makes it equivalent to Enchantment.

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So I see two specific problems. First, you're using Huge+ monsters as bosses or mid-bosses (solo monsters of higher CR). Of course your players aren't going to have fun with Huge+ creatures if every one is a boss-level fight (unless they really love just the boss fights, I guess). Second, and somewhat tied into the first, you seem to favor a specific kind of scenario (giant monster surprises players) which is even more difficult for the players. That Croc has a Stealth of +8. It's not impossible it got the drop on the players but it is unlikely. The Giant Flytrap is explicitly designed to do just that. Turning characters into the stars of a horror movie is only fun if that's what the players want. Playing Strange Aeons? Sure. Playing Giantslayer? Probably not.

The Cetus is Paizo's fault though. Seriously, weak to petrification? Regeneration (petrification)? And here I thought we'd managed to move away from these kinds of stupid puzzle monsters. "And now hit its body parts in alphabetical order! Abdomen, buttocks, circulatory system..." This isn't meant to be a random encounter, it's meant to be something the players have time to research and study before fighting.

So there's a couple easy ways to fix this. One is to normalize giant monsters. Add them to other fights rather than making them the exclusive focus of the fight. Give a monster a couple giant minions. Giant Grizzlies are CR 5 and Huge, really easy to throw those in somewhere. Have a swarm (6-8) of Giant Giant Scorpions (CR 4 each). Animals and vermin are usually your best bet for low CR for their size (and rarely complicated). The other is to make Huge enemies obvious and preplanned fights. Have a village ask them to fight the monster threatening them. When they ask what monster, point to it poking out over the trees. So rather than a suprise attack it's something the PCs can plan for, knowing where it is at all times and being able to research how to fight it, make plans, try to lay traps, in general get the jump on it instead of vice-versa. is this cheese? They're using the curse exactly as it's supposed to be used. They're required to eat more often. That's it. If getting food isn't an issue then the curse won't be either. If you want to make it an issue then the campaign has to make getting food an issue.

If your player wanted a curse with zero consequences they would have taken Legalistic. The only consequence happens if you break your word. Just don't make any promises and it will be completely irrelevant.

Isn't there some Bible quote about evil cloaking itself in righteousness? I'd write more but I find it hard to complete the thought without referencing several real-world political and religious organizations which I'm pretty sure is not allowed (and will ignite a firestorm even if it is). The short version: can you really not think of a real world person or organization that claims to be good, moral, and/or holy (and uses the imagery of such) but does something you personally find reprehensible? Because I definitely can.

As for in Cheliax, well, they definitely have some around (from invaders they've killed at least). They're probably trophies though, not generally up for sale. Even if they were, they wouldn't be in use. Cheliax doesn't pretend it's good. They revel in their Evil. Walking around in Celestial Armor is probably like walking around with holy symbols of a Good god. You constantly get harassed by people and have to explain that you're only wearing it ironically. Might make a good masquerade ball though, "Dress up like those stuck up do-gooders".

That being said, I don't see a reason you couldn't reskin it. It's fancied up Mithral Chainmail. There's zero reason it has to be made by a good caster other than, presumably, legacy reasons. So up to you whether you want to keep the strict flavor or let them make their own.

McDaygo wrote:
Backstory isn’t what I mean by well rounded. Sure the fighter doesn’t need to be a face but what does your character do during downtime to make them interesting and entertaining to listen to.

Brothels and taverns. I thought that was the adventurer default. No feats, skill points, or class features required. On a different character (not the ablative meat shield who's gonna live life to the fullest before a monster swallows them again) I might splurge a skill point in Craft, Profession, or Perform to indicate a focus on their outside hobbies... but nothing is stopping the Fighter with zero ranks and 8 Charisma from singing every night in the bars, they just suck at it. Again, zero character resources of any kind spent.

What a character does for fun is not a class feature. A character's hobbies do not need skill points. Feats are not required to give a character a family, friends, or rivals. If that's what you mean by well-rounded, any character can be.

Optimized one dimensional characters, all day. At least I know they are capable of something. Character, by which I mean the mental and physical traits that distinguish a person, doesn't require class features or feats (there might be a few exceptions I'm missing). If I'm forced to choose between two characters, one who says they're "good at this one thing you need" and another who says they're "okay at everything", I'll always take "good at one thing". They can still have flavor. And the jack of all trades might not have flavor, nothing requires it.

It even has a name, given specifically so it'd be catchier and people would remember it.

Stormwind Fallacy wrote:
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa.

As for mechanical choices outside your focus, Pathfinder rewards specialization. The focused sneaker doesn't want an amateur with them. Anyone who might be able to spot the expert will definitely spot the amateur. If the Fighter is having trouble hitting the Bard definitely isn't hitting. If McBrain the Wizard can't hit the knowledge check then MrOnerankineverything definitely can't either.

The Pathfinder provided art for a Stone Golem is an exaggerated human figure. The waist is as small as the head. The biceps seem to be smaller than the swords it holds. The knees make me wonder how it doesn't collapse under its own weight. The point being, I see lots of extremely vulnerable spots that could be more easily broken and cripple the thing. Of course, I also think a warhammer would be a much better choice to do that but Pathfinder doesn't model those kind of weapon vs defense interactions (and I don't want to bring them back, screw you weapon tables).

Critical hits are not hits to vulnerable anatomy. They're just hits that do more damage. If there are thinner parts of a golem then there are parts you can hit for more damage. The only way to avoid that is a perfect sphere, in which case any hit to the dead center will do more damage by virtue of not being deflected in some way. Again, if something has a place you can hit harder (because it's weaker, hurts more, is thinner, smaller, whatever) then it makes perfect sense you can crit it.

The high crit range weapon choices might not make sense but that's a completely different problem.

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It's not folklore in Pathfinder. It's lore. Paizo has explicitly said that's how it works in the flavor text. And it still doesn't contradict the folklore. Instead of the rune bringing the golem to life itself it can bind the Elemental into the golem (therefore bringing it to life). I'm not aware of anywhere they actually specify those kind of details of the golem building process.

A critical hit is not a debilitating hit unless you take a feat to allow you to do that. A critical hit is just more damage. What that means is... well, complicated. HP is an abstraction, 20 damage is lethal to low levels and ignorable at high levels. Do high level people's eyes become immune to stabbings? I'd assume a golem's knee is just as vulnerable (compared to the rest of it) as a human knee. And you can whack them with a sword repeatedly and it somehow hurts them (ignoring DR, which even the Flesh Golem has despite exclusively being made of meat, wires, and staples) so presumably there's stronger and weaker bits.

...the Terbutje is a finesse weapon? The bunch of spiky stuff jammed into a club? Still 19-20 crit range. The Falchion, a weapon described as "better for chopping than stabbing"? Best crit range in the game. Crit ranges are a mechanical construct to add variety to weapon types. I think most high crit range weapons are piercing just because it's the least useful damage type (bypasses the least resistances).

Yqatuba wrote:
I get why a robot or clockwork might be vulnerable (you could break some important gears or computer chip), but how can a stone golem, which is just a homogenous humanoid shaped mass of stone be hit by a critical? It's like with that rock monster on Galaxy Quest "It's a rock, it doesn't have any vulnerable spots!"

A Stone Golem is not a huge humanoid shaped mass of stone. That's an Earth Elemental. They are immune to critical hits.

Stone Golem wrote:

This towering stone automaton bears the likeness of an archaic, armored warrior. It moves with ponderous but inexorable steps.

A stone golem has a humanoid body made from stone, frequently stylized to suit its creator. For example, it might look like it is wearing armor, with a particular symbol carved on the breastplate, or have designs worked into the stone of its limbs. Its head is often carved to resemble a helmet or the head of some beast. While it may be sculpted to carry a stone shield or stone weapon such as a sword, these aesthetic choices do not affect its combat abilities.

So Stone Golems are very explicitly made to resemble people which easily leads to critical hit ideas (joints, the head, etc.).

The folklore version also supports this as it has a big rune that gives it life that you can remove, destroy, or rewrite (depending on which story we're talking about).

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Snatch Arrows wrote:
Benefit: When using the Deflect Arrows feat you may choose to catch the weapon instead of just deflecting it.
Deflect Arrows wrote:
Unusually massive ranged weapons (such as boulders or ballista bolts) and ranged attacks generated by natural attacks or spell effects can’t be deflected.

I'm pretty sure most instances of giants throwing rocks are "unusually massive ranged weapons". Maybe there's a Small giant with rock throwing but I can't think of one. Anyway, you can't use Snatch Arrows on something unless you can use Deflect Arrows on it and boulders are specifically called out as something you can't use it on.

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If 3.5 is on the table just use Dragonfire Adept.

The classic is breaking the Magic Circle. It even says it's a bad trap because anyone can break it.

Honestly, I always just assumed that's what all of them were. And trapfinding is just "and this is the part you need to break, the rest are decoys". Like defusing a bomb in movies. Cut the red wire.

Probably there's some unwritten assumptions that guide all of this. Like the spell manifestations stuff. They just always assumed it worked that way but never bothered to write it down. Maybe all magical traps are just fancy magic circles and you need to be able to see the circle for it to affect you. So it's not that the Rogue sees an invisible field, they see magic writing they recognize as a sensor. Then... have a giant stick they use to break it? Actually, given that's exactly what the 10-foot pole was for, probably. So potentially it's just pre-skill check D&D being carried forward without accounting for the changes (alarm spell is now larger, some traps are line of sight).

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Linnorms are heavily inspired by Lindworms. Seriously, the Father of All Linnorms is Fafnheir. Now where the curse specifically comes from I don't know. The Wagner version of the Nibelungenleid has the ring that transformed Fafnir cursed to pass on misfortune to whoever had it. I think some versions might have the gold it made cursed as well. That's my best guess.

As blahpers mentioned this is basically what Throat Slicer is made for. The name even evokes the image we're discussing, holding a deadly weapon to a hostage and threatening to kill them if anyone moves. Of course, amusingly, the best weapon to use it with is a Pick because a x4 crit is probably more important that whatever weapon specific bonuses they get.

There's a reason this ended up abstracted out. For every hostage situation that's super deadly serious there's another where the hero quickdraws and shoots the weapon out of their hand/shoots the hostage taker. And both work in Pathfinder (to an extent). It's not hard to make Coup de Grace dangerous, just use an axe (or any other x3 weapon). Two-handed if you really want to make it brutal. A standard bestiary Orc with a Greataxe can force a 25+ Fort save at level 1. Likely much, much higher (average of 40). The part where it falls apart is in stopping someone from Coup de Graceing. If they're high level enough you probably can't kill them in a single shot and the AoO it provokes doesn't actually interrupt the attempt. Saving the hostage at high levels can probably only be done by making them no longer helpless.

But all that rambling aside, if you can put your gun to someone's head and they don't resist, yeah, it's probably a Coup de Grace. But people resist everything unless they have a condition that says they don't. Paralyzed people get Reflex saves. Objects get Reflex saves (magical objects, but still). So unless they have a condition (like helpless) that allows Coup de Grace then you can't just walk up and put the gun to their head. They will resist. Even the Cloak of Resistance.

Create Demiplane wrote:
Alternatively, when cast within your demiplane, you may add (or remove) one of the following features to your demiplane with each casting of the spell, in which case it has an instantaneous duration.
Creation Subschool wrote:
Creation: a creation spell manipulates matter to create an object or creature in the place the spellcaster designates. If the spell has a duration other than instantaneous, magic holds the creation together, and when the spell ends, the conjured creature or object vanishes without a trace. If the spell has an instantaneous duration, the created object or creature is merely assembled through magic. It lasts indefinitely and does not depend on magic for its existence.

Bolding mine. Adding or removing features changes the duration to instantaneous. Instantaneous duration on a Conjuration (creation) spell means that the spell makes something which then sticks around forever. The something in this case is the changes to the demiplane. The only thing you need to use permanency on is creating or expanding it.

Alternatively, you can just cast it again to renew the duration. It's days/level, you don't have to check in more than once a week.

Again, "F (a forked metal rod worth at least 500 gp)" is a one time cost. It's a focus, not a material component. You buy it once and you can use it again and again. By the time you're throwing around 7th level spells a single 500 gp purchase should be peanuts.

Lesser Create Demiplane wrote:
When you cast the spell, you decide whether the demiplane is within the Astral or the Ethereal Plane. It is filled with air or water (decided by you). The plane is generally flat and featureless, such as an earth, stone, water, or wood floor. The “walls” and “ceiling” of the plane may appear like solid earth, stone, wood, or water, or they may end in mist, a featureless void, or a similar unreal-looking border. The plane’s environmental conditions are those of a temperate spring day on the Material Plane. You determine the plane’s light level (bright, normal, dim, or darkness), which affects the entire plane.
Create Demiplane wrote:

This spell functions as create lesser demiplane, except the area is larger and you can add more features to the plane. You can use this spell to expand a demiplane you created with create lesser demiplane (you do not need to create an entirely new plane using this spell), in which case it has a duration of 1 day/level. Alternatively, when cast within your demiplane, you may add (or remove) one of the following features to your demiplane with each casting of the spell, in which case it has an instantaneous duration.

Greater Create Demiplane wrote:

This spell functions as create demiplane, except the area is larger and you can add more features to the plane. You can use this spell to expand a demiplane you created with lesser create demiplane or create demiplane (you do not need to create an entirely new plane using this spell), in which case it has a duration of 1 day/level. Alternatively, when cast within your demiplane, you may add to your demiplane (or remove from it) one of the following features (or any of the features described in create demiplane) with each casting of the spell, in which case it has an instantaneous duration.

It looks like you get to choose Material or Ethereal, water or air, light level, and a general theme (walls and ceiling). That's apparently all you get for free. It also specifies that you can only add one feature at a time with each new casting.

Why do you think it's expensive though? It uses a focus, not a material component. You just need it once. And adding features is instantaneous, i.e. permanent and undispellable.

Cavall wrote:

Being so angry you could fly was stupid in the first place. There. I said it.

And justifying system abuse by saying not doing it is stopping you from roleplaying is even worse.

Unchained barbarian is great, and was made for everyone playing tired of system abuse and clunky mechanics.

Don't forget growing claws, sprouting spikes (that eventually hurt Good creatures that get too close), getting a toxic bite, giving their mount DR/magic, and summoning spirits that protect them and attack their enemies. Oh wait, those are the powers the Unchained Barbarian still gets. Growing a pair of wings and flying? Really not that strange.

Like I said last time, I am going to continue to call it a nerf because it explicitly pruned the rage power list of the better powers and a bunch of not great powers that apparently didn't fit their idea of Barbarian. If you can give me one good reason why Dragon Totem Wings was removed while the rest of its line was included then I'll reconsider. But until then it's just a stealth nerf Paizo slipped in while claiming to fix the class.

That looks like what I expected.

The Gunslinger is playing agressively. The buff might not have helped. The Wizard did not use the buff because they thought it would not help and was not needed. The Gunslinger did not play how the Wizard expected and it led to the death.

Now what I cannot figure out because of the language barrier. Either the Wizard never casts long duration spells or the real Wizard player casts them and the substitute player does not. Also the Wizard doesn't get Magic Vestment (which is what I am guessing Mighty Magic Armor is) so I am a little confused about what the spells are. Heroism is the only one of those spells that stacks with common magic items though. Greater Magic Weapon and Magic Vestment (at level 15) have no point if you have +3 armor and weapons already. By level 15 you should have +3 armor and weapons. Probably higher.

deathstern wrote:
I'm a ranged, why do I need as much life and RK as a melee?

This does need to be talked about though. Ranged attackers do not need as much AC (RK?) if they stay out of monster's attack range. If you are standing near a monster then you need just as much AC as the melee fighters. And in that story you seemed to be standing real close to the monster.

Ryan Freire wrote:


Flying, for all the amount you should need in an adventuring day is 16k in boots.


Ubarb in particular gets the crit multiplier increase 4 levels earlier than fighter, who gets it at capstone, thats basically an entire adventure path. The +6 to confirm EVERY crit combined with the +4 from crit focus (if youre building a crit fisher) > one auto crit on a charge in actual play. +10 to hit on a martial is basically an autoconfirm.

3/day is usually enough. But definitely not always. Additionally, 16k is only cheap at higher levels. At level 10, when the CBarb could get flying, it's 26% of their money. Does that come from the armor, the weapon, the stat booster, the cloak? Where are they taking money away from? And Winged Boots means no Boots of Speed.

As I said last time, I've never played a UBarb. So maybe there's something obvious I'm missing, but is there some way you can enter a stance as a free/swift action? Because without that the UBarb's first turn is Rage, Accurate Stance, and maybe a move/activate the boots while the CBarb's first turn is Rage/Pouncemurder. You'd need an awful lot of extra damage (and probably some super long battles) to make up the difference of a Barbarian's full attack.

If I'm reading that correctly then it just depends on the group whether to do few buffs or a lot of buffs. But you can never expect someone else to cast buffs for your character. Their character is their own, they decide what to do with it. If they made a Wizard who shoots Fireballs, that's what they're going to want to do.

I'm curious what buffs you wanted though. The Gunslinger should have decent AC and HP, the Wizard defensive buffs tend to be personal, cost money, or are single target. And almost all of them are very short duration. They might not have the buffs you want or the buffs might not work how you think they do.

As a general rule, healing in combat is a bad idea because healing doesn't heal as much as the damage being done. Sometimes it's a good idea to heal, the Heal spell heals enough to be worth it, but generally the attacks are doing more damage than healing. The best use of the healer's actions is to try to kill the enemies before they can attack again.

Similarly, buffing is a balancing act between improving party members and hurting enemies. The best buffs last a long time (and are cast before battle) or affect the entire party. A spell to protect a single party member either better be a really powerful spell or that party member has to be really important. And while your own character is super important to you, that doesn't mean they're important to the party as a whole.

The best guideline I've seen is that if you ask for a spell you compensate the caster in some way. If your friend is a chef you don't just show up at their house and demand they make you dinner. You might bring them some fancy ingredient you got and ask them nicely to cook it though.

Ryan Freire wrote:

Barbarians get their crit multiplier boost at level 16, 4 levels and likely an entire module before fighters get weapon mastery which is their capstone.

Ubarb, class abilities only as to hit boosts are a wash, +20 BAB, + 4 from rage +6 from accurate stance.

Fighter +20bab +6/7 from weapon training + gloves of dueling

Slayer +20bab +5 from studied target

How is the fighter or slayer more accurate than the Ubarb while dual wielding again?


Reckless abandon: dumping AC while youre already at -2 ac from raging is how you get wrecked.

Lot of theory, very little actual play demonstrated in this thread.

A bard. Inspire Courage doesn't stack with Accurate Stance. For the Fighter, Warrior Spirit to give their weapon Bane and Greater Weapon Focus. For the Slayer, Quarry and Ranger Combat Styles (to dump Dex).

I have not played a Ubarb. I have played a regular Barb and the most annoying part was sitting around doing nothing or plinking away with my bow (eventually Adaptive, but that's a minor patch at best). I took Greater Elemental Blood before Greater Beast Totem just so I wasn't sitting around while the enemy was out of reach. If they don't fly they cast walls or pit traps or the terrain hurts you or there's so many minions you can't reach them. I don't really care if the Ubarb or Barb is more accurate or hits harder unless it's some obscene difference. I do care whether Smashy McFace can take her axe and smash some faces in. Ubarb not only doesn't have those options, they actively removed them. And if you think it's theorycraft that lots of mid-high level enemies can fly or prevent you from reaching them, I don't think you've ever played at higher levels.

Kraken Caller Druid.

Wild Shape wrote:

The kraken caller can alternatively expend a daily use of wild shape to grow tentacles out of her body while otherwise retaining her own form. This effect lasts for 10 minutes per level, or until the kraken caller changes back.

At each of 6th, 8th, 10th, and 12th levels, a kraken caller can grow an additional tentacle. As a move action, she can retract or regrow any number of the additional tentacles, redistributing the mass of any retracted tentacles. For every 2 retracted tentacles, she can increase the reach of the remaining tentacles by 5 feet (to a maximum of 15 feet), or increase the damage dealt by her tentacles as if she were one size category larger.

I can never think of UBarbarian as anything but a downgrade since I noticed that they very explicitly excised any way for the Barbarian to get flying. They include the other two Dragon Totem powers but not Dragon Totem Wings. It wasn't even that good and they still went out of their way to get rid of it. And the UBarb will never get a bonus on ranged attacks. CBarb at least could do it with Belt of Mighty Hurling.

thejeff wrote:
But yeah, some aren't good at it, but that's not the same as "It's always obvious". Most of those who fudge don't fudge entire combats, so it's not like you can tell "the rolls aren't really random". Often you're just dialing back weird dice luck to something closer to what would be expected. The six goblins just rolled 3 20s in that round? Nah, one of them was really a crit, the others just normal hits.
That's a nice ideal. Three posts later:
Matthew Downie wrote:
That's why it's better if you can roll openly. If you roll behind a screen, it's a natural assumption that anything statistically unusual is probably the GM changing the numbers - isn't that the primary reason for them to use a screen in the first place?

Here's some reality. You are right, not all fudging is caught. But not all "catches" are fudging either. And anything that looks like it's not random to the player is going to be labeled fudging by someone looking for it.

And in the nicest way, people are really bad at understanding probability. Randomness to them means the results keep changing. You even allude to that yourself by talking about "dialing back dice luck". But what happens if the goblins all roll above 13 next round (or whatever they need to hit)? Do you make a few of them misses so the goblins don't all hit? Because otherwise the players will suspect you changed the dice, even though you didn't that round.

This is why I personally roll in the open. I am not willing to commit to continuously altering dice rolls so that players think it's random in defiance of actual randomness. There's a thousand other tools on the GM side during battle (target priority, spell choice, HP values) and outside of battle (healing/resurrection for quests, provided loot) that changing the actual dice rolls just doesn't seem worth it.

This is an opinion thing. There is no universal right answer, just right for you. And as I've said previously in this thread, right for you with that GM. One I absolutely trust and am happy to let fudge in that I'd know he has a good reason. The other I would much rather see the rolls so I can ask how that monster has a +26 to attack at level 6 (it was the AC). I trust that he has our best interests in mind, I just don't trust that he knows the rules that well. And fudging when you don't fully understand the rules can end up setting bad precedents and unbalancing the game or worse, making fudging the default answer to any problem.

As for the assertion that only pedantic rules lawyers will notice fudging, GMs are also pretty good at finding it out. I can't tell you what the attack bonus of a Goblin is. I can tell you if we're fighting six of them at level 6 then they're either a complete cakewalk or have an attack bonus somewhere around +6-8. More rolls also means it's easier to spot when the rolls aren't really random. Then there's the GMs that are just terrible poker players. Roll, make a disappointed face, ask for your AC, tell you it hit. Some even skip asking for AC even though they've never seen your sheet and it's the first battle.

What (hopefully) everyone can agree with is that the players and GM need to agree on how they want to run these things.

If the players/PCs aren't involved and don't plan to be involved then there's no reason to roll dice unless you want randomness to decide something. Single roll for the battle, contesting rolls for a blow-by-blow, whatever you want randomness to decide. Or you can just skip it and narrate what happens if you already know what you want. Think of it like video game cutscenes with player interrupts. If they don't click a button it plays out the way you say. If they click a button then they can change the results. Just keep in mind the same problem with video game cutscenes, don't make the characters more awesome/powerful than they actually are. Nothing quite as disappointing as finally getting that awesome character as a party member... and realizing they're weaker than you and can't do anything they did in the cutscene.

The rules are pretty clear, the mask blinds you. Not "the mask blocks vision" it just straight up blinds you. Personally I always figured it was like those face computers they love in sci-fi. You put it on and when you think of something it pulls up the relevant part of the appropriate book and displays it. Making it invisible would make it completely useless. That way also implies you could make a miniaturized version if you can take the DBZ jokes.

Okay, so we definitely need to make some distinctions here. Your "overt" punishment is just in-game consequences for the characters. It's punishing the characters. Your "covert" punishment is punishing the players.

There are absolutely times you might need to punish the players but "had a terrible, stupid, disruptive plan" isn't usually one unless it's like the tenth time and you've already told them to knock it off a few times already. My point is, unless this is a regular occurence and you've asked them to stop, this isn't really the kind of thing you should be punishing the physical humans behind the characters for.

I don't really see why this is so complicated. The character literally ran onto a field, interrupted a duel by stealing a weapon, stole a holy relic, and did it in full view of a whole bunch of people who wouldn't tolerate that, even after you reminded them how stupid an idea this was. What was their getaway plan? What was their endgame? If they can actually escape you might be able to have a nice chase scene/fight as the Church tracks them down. If not... well, then they deserve what they get. Ask whether they prefer service to the Church or new characters. Geas/Quest is made for this. If the whole party is involved (which is sounds like not) then you might need to recalibrate your expectations for the game. If it's just a couple of players then you might need to sit them down out of game and explain why setting fire to orphanages, attempting to assassinate the king, and generally trying to be an internet troll in game is no fun for everyone else.

So as a GM, there's really not much problem with Occult stuff. It's fairly complex but you'll never have to learn more than what your players actually plan on using. The only thing from there I've actually had a player want to play is Kineticist and it seems a popular enough option (blast all day) I wouldn't suggest outright banning it without a good reason (though banning the whole book is a pretty good reason).

I've done average (round up) HP before and it's seemed about right. PCs died because they took big risks or an axe got a crit. 50-100% more HP than that seems like PCs would never be in danger.

I've dropped Weapon Finesse, the players liked it but I think it only came up ten times over the entire campaign. The melee types still used Strength, the casters were the only one who used it (and not often).

As a player I've never felt more feat starved than when trying to build a low level martial. Power Attack and Deadly Aim as default options would have made it less frustrating and made that backup ranged weapon not feel like a peashooter. So, yes to the feat changes, at least as a player. It'd just make those first few levels easier, especially as a class without a pile of bonus feats (Barbarian or Bloodrager mostly).

Now the obligatory question, why 1e and not 2e? If you want the Unchained action economy, well, 2e is basically designed around that. 1e isn't and a few classes play poorly with it. 2e gives max HP, everyone gets Perception (which is now also Sense Motive), and they reworked feats. Basically, it includes a lot of your changes in a system designed around them. Depending on what you want it might be better to homebrew 1e stuff into 2e than houseruling 1e. I've seen some epic length houserule documents, that's all I'm saying.

Wonderstell wrote:
I kinda feel we've left the original character concept behind in pursuit of numbers. The idea was to make a playable assassin that could dish out big numbers, probably more than once per day/career.
The original character given by the OP required 4 attack rolls to hit for which their solution was "using prescience to ensure hits", an ability with 3+Int uses a day. Also they never gave an attack bonus and my ballpark guess put it in the "needs at least an 11 to hit with the best attack". So "can do it multiple times in a single day" doesn't really seem like the goal. And as for the focus on numbers:
Omagi wrote:
Looking for assistance in building a character capable of this damage output at level 6. Thanks in advance!

That's exactly what the OP asked for. They didn't ask for sneaking, or approaching the target, or anything outside "win at initiative, deal 140 damage against 24 AC". If they ever come back I'm sure they can give us more direction but I don't see any reason these builds wouldn't be what they want. They're all really good at killing a specific target.

Honestly, it sounds like PvP arena combat to me. 24 AC and 140 HP is weirdly specific (AC is CR 10, HP is between CR 10 and 11).

Did they ever fix Pageant of the Peacock to not be the most ridiculous thing ever?

The relevant bit for this thread:

Pageant of the Peacock wrote:
For the duration of the effect, you gain a +4 circumstance bonus on Bluff checks, and may attempt a Bluff check in place of an Intelligence check or Intelligence-based skill check.

So for 10 minutes all your lies accidentally turn out to be true. Or you're so good at blending in you just automatically know the answer to knowledge checks. There's really no good explanation other than "you lie so hard the universe makes it true". Probably won't fly if the GM's already vetoing character choices though.

It's just to save space and ink on the printing. They generally only list skills that the monster has ranks or bonuses in. Everything can do any skill (except the ones requiring trained only). You are right on the ability mod for the Bugbear but keep in mind it's wearing leather armor and using a shield, that comes with an ACP of -1 (the shield) for an end mod of +0 and +2, respectively.

Omagi wrote:

Preferably this character would be able to consistently be able to eliminate a foe within one round

The goal: deal 140 damage to an opponent before they can act at level 6 against an AC of 24.
Wizard for acting in surprise round and for initiative purposes and accuracy, using prescience to ensure hits.
63+28.5 = 91.5 on average assuming all attacks hit.

...okay, so I hate to nitpick but I've got a few problems with this specifically. The formula for DPR needs the attack bonus for good reason. You even supply the target AC, you can't then ignore the need to hit it. With a Wizard 1/Ninja 5 you're looking at +4 BAB and apparently +7 Dex. That's +11, you would need a 13 or higher to hit. With TWF you'd need a 15 or higher to hit. Flat-footed can lower your target number (average is -3) but also might not at all. With 3+Int extra rolls (how high is Int?) and 4 attack rolls that need to hit, the odds of all of them hitting is definitely less than 100%.

Basically, this seems to rely a lot on skipping the actual hitting part. And it really shouldn't, since it's using lots of attacks and taking extra to-hit penalties to do it.

Since you asked though, I'll throw out the default big hit build. Human Cavalier (Order of the Sword). Mounted Combat, Ride-by-Attack, Spirited Charge, Power Attack, Furious Focus. Spot enemy, challenge, charge with two-handed lance. Attack is +6 (BAB) +7 (Str, assuming same numbers as you) +4 (charge) +2 (order) for a total of +19. Damage is 3d8+30(Str)+18(PA)+18(challenge) for an average of 79.5. Expected DPR is 63.6 and the only limited resource used is challenge (3/day). To win initiative make your horse a Racer and open combat by charging from 600 feet away. Presumably you could also use Ride-by-Attack and do it from 300 feet away then run 300 feet away before they can do anything. ...will need to max Perception, probably use a spyglass to find their target.

That being said, I'd expect a magic weapon at this point. Cyclops Helm would most likely give the Cavalier a crit (average 132.5) and a new expected DPR 121.9. With actual build rules I might be able to scrounge up 140 DPR (just need +2 damage and +4 to hit).

Oh, I fully agree that high level characters aren't realistic. Specifically HP, BAB (and combat maneuvers), saves, and skills. Basically anything with auto-scaling. But I'm specifically talking about class design (and more specifically class abilities).

The 19th level Fighter ability is DR 5/- while wearing armor or using a shield. At the same level 9th level spells are getting slung around the Fighter gets "can use armor or a shield to take less damage". Literally identical to an optional subsystem they made that gives access to everyone at all levels. That's not a high level ability. In fact, all evidence is that even the developers think it's a 1st level ability.

allisonkaas wrote:
I don't care if it's realistic; I prefer unrealism in my games, but this has no bearing on what's good for the base game. What I'm confused about is the inconsistency. Why did the devs ever think it was okay to use the capabilities of aging, out of shape game developers as the basis for experienced, skilled heroic fantasy warriors that don't exist in real life? Assuming that this makes sense, why did they not use that same basis for every class, given that all the classes represent characters which are equally imaginary?

That's actually how they did rules for a lot of early stuff and I don't think they ever stopped. I swear a developer (I think 3.0) actually put down lines and did standing long jumps to figure out what an average person could jump.

Again though, it's not inconsistent. High level Fighting Men are unrealistic. Unrealistic things require magic (or SCIENCE!) or the divine. Therefore Fighting Men without one of those are limited to real world things. It's bad, sure, but the logic is consistent. There's a reason the fancier abilities tend to be tagged SU and all the monk powers work off of Ki (SU).

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