This misses the point of what I was attempting to communicate, but I will take the hint and get lost.
To expand, in the past when paizo has covered content that was previously covered by another publisher they have typically recreated all that content as though no one else has ever done something (in scientific sense, they don't do literature searches). In some cases in the past several years, this has resulted in the paizo solution being rather poor (see gun rules) compared to what had already been done by others for the Pathfinder system. More recently, they have seemed to do less of that, of which as David knott 242 notes, Occult Adventures does something new compared to Psionics Unleashed. It is my hope that they either adopt some of the underwater adventure systems provided in Cerulean Seas, don't rush in to fill those gaps with a different system just for the sake of being different, or even take a system provided by others and improve upon it.
The addition of designers like Alex Augunas, Mark Seifter, and Owen Stephens who have a broad knowledge of 3rd party products is probably a contributing factor to why we've seen more of the second and third options on my list, and that makes me happy.
A great 3rd party example of that is actually the Cerulean Seas books and how they handle a lot of Paizo content. Other good examples include the Leadership Handbook, Ultimate War and Ultimate Battle (and many other Legendary Games products), Ultimate Charisma, Companions of the Firmament, and many others I can't recall at the moment.
So this post is really more of a saying "I hope paizo continues to follow recent practices and do their literature search/research on what is already out there for this content, and then build on that foundation or take inspiration/improve what others have done." This seems to produce higher quality products which I am all for.
To add to my previous lists, there is some great underwater adventure content by Kobold Press: Sunken Empires that is worth taking a look at as well for inspiration.
For those wanting high quality underwater and water proximal adventuring content, Cerulean Seas has you covered:
Cerulean Seas - The core underwater adventure book, with a mini campaign setting as well.
I hope that Paizo doesn't reinvent the wheel again with Aquatic Adventures and instead borrows some of what works from Cerulean Seas and similar products. Or if they do decide to retread well walked paths they produce something superior. More underwater content is always welcome.
The Samurai resolve ability does not work as intended when using the determined function
Samurai, Resolve: Determined wrote:
Determined: As a standard action, the samurai can spend one use of his resolve to remove the fatigued, shaken, or sickened condition. If the samurai is at least 8th level, he can alternatively remove the exhausted, frightened, nauseated, or staggered condition. If the condition has a duration longer than 1 hour or is permanent, this ability removes the condition for 1 hour, at which time the condition returns.
Bolded text is important:
Note that the nauseated condition says the following:
Nauseated: Creatures with the nauseated condition experience stomach distress. Nauseated creatures are unable to attack, cast spells, concentrate on spells, or do anything else requiring attention. The only action such a character can take is a single move actions per turn.
Bolded text is important. Also, the section "actions" in the bolded sentence should be "action".
As such, the Resolve: Determined ability is unable to remove the naseauted condition because the naseuated condition prevents the use of standard actions.
This issue for this response, is that it treats the moderation system as a profanity filter. It doesn't stop the offending behaviour. The person who's post gets removed probably doesn't even notice or care since it was a contentless post anyways. And it is just as likely to get the thread closed due to there being too many off-topic posts. This has repeated often enough at this site for a pattern to emerge.
If posting off-topic is against the rules but the rule is repeatedly broken then either the rule should change or the enforcement should change. Right now the situation is that there is an unequal enforcement of the rule such that it looks like an excuse to shut down threads that someone would rather not continue and less like a rule designed to foster positive engagement/discussion on the forums.
Note that off-topic posting isn't actually called out specifically in the Community Guidelines, although there is a heading for Spam which might fit. Sort of. If you tilt your head and squint. Either way, that should probably be clarified.
captain yesterday wrote:
I absolutely do it on purpose, to break the tension.
I take it then that you disagree with Jiggy's critique of such behaviour and how it enables poor behaviour or as Hayato Ken discussion of how such is frequently indistinguishable from attempts to take the thread off-topic (to either kill the thread, or shout down a discussion the poster does not want to continue).
@Captain Yesterday: Have you read Jiggy's excellent post over in the other thread in Website Feedback that has been getting some attention? While you may think you are helping by making jokes and keeping the stress level down, your behaviour also comes off as very dismissive and an attempt to distract or move the thread off-topic from the discussion at hand. Given Paizo's rules on thread-off topicness, this could put the thread at risk of being closed, while there still appears to be appetite for further discussion. With this in mind, please reconsider the appropriateness of your behaviour in this thread.
Thank you for your contributions to the conversation.
Cerulean Seas: Waves of Thought and Cerulean Seas: Indigo Ice also contains some additional psionic material, although aimed at adventuring in undersea environments. They are both based on the Dreamscarred Press psionics.
Waves of Thought has the following psionic material:
Psionic Prestige Classes
Indigo Ice has the following psionic prestige classes:
Cyrokineticist: 3/4 BAB psionic character themed around ice/cold.
Steven Schopmeyer wrote:
This strikes me as a situation where some view combat as war that should be won as quickly and decisively as possible with minimal risk taken while others view combat as a sport where you want an enjoyable bit of competition and suspense as to who might win. Neither is wrong, but they are different playstyles.
Possible errata required:
Petrifern, Petrify (Ex) ability wrote:
The two bolded sections contradict each other and do not seem to be written in a way that a plain-English reading of the text could infer that one is an exception to the other. This text needs something else to make it more clear that the only action a Petrifen can take while petrified is a standard action to end the petrification.
The Sword wrote:
This does create a situation where it is difficult for new GMs to take on the role since it requires such in depth knowledge of how the game mechanics work and how they can influence the story. I know from personal experience how off-putting that can be.
Mark Seifter wrote:
Thanks for the extra info Mark.
Mark Seifter wrote:
Would it be accurate then to summarize the advice as constraining the outcomes of the skill system for diplomacy within the mundane and not extending into the fantastic? It sounds from the description above, that silver-tongued tricksters have to rely on magic or supernatural power sources now and cannot achieve the same effect through incredible skill. This is also more consistent with the rest of the skill system and the types of outcomes it allows.
Freehold DM wrote:
Sorry, but the ninja, as well as the samurai, are too deeply rooted in 2nd ed OA (semi)nonsense for the two to ever be completely divorced. A simple name change isn't going to do it. You're going to need to build a time machine and convince gygax and Co to build a less eurocentric world their first time out.
Why does this apply to the ninja/samurai but not the monk?
It depends of course, how you flavour rage in game. If you treat rage as a battle trance, then at higher levels the ability to rage cycle could be flavoured as gaining a greater mastery over the battle concentration and allowing the barbarian to more easily slip in and out of their battle trance. Rand in the Wheel of Time books goes through a development like this as he gains greater mastery of the "void" concentration technique through the stories.
You could look at allowing the fighter to pick up different weapon and armor properties at set breakpoint levels in the FE/FT mold that they can apply to their weapons/armor free. Either + equivalencies or from a pre-curated list. Flavour it as the fighter gaining increasing mastery over their equipment granting them the ability to get more out of it.
Or you could have the different breakpoints grant additional equipment tricks to borrow another subsystem.
The effect seems to also allow you to change DR X/Evil to just DR X/--. That could be useful in some campaigns.
Actually, water furycrafters are shown several times to use their water furycraft to allow them to breathe under the water (by making an air pocket).
Take a look at Cerulean Seas for how electrical attacks are modified underwater. It has pretty comprehensive rules.
Cerulean Seas, Chapter 6: Magic of the Sea wrote:
Electricity Energy Effects: Electricity is a common element under the ocean, though it assumes a much different form than it does on land. On land, electricity is known for its bright crackling arcs of lightning. While these are not unheard of in an undersea setting, the fact is that the oceans rarely get hit with lightning. The surface water of the sea does not typically heat up enough to cause the positive charge needed for lightning to occur. When it does occur, it is almost always near shore. After lightning hits the water, it disperses in a great and terrible electrical sphere that is as deadly as it is undetectable. The picture this paints of underwater electricity is more commonly exemplified by the electric eel. Instead of flashy and sweeping arcs, electricity is known for its invisible spheres of damage. The lightning bolt of the sea, electrical surge, is actually a small sphere of electricity that travels towards the target, rather than a continuous arc. Aside from a trail of dead plankton and the occasional bubble of steam, this effect is relatively quiet and undetectable compared to its drylander equivalent.
Cerulean Seas, Chapter 6: Magic of the Sea - Electrical Surge wrote:
Based off these two, if you wanted to modify electrical spells in the water when they haven't been designed for the environment, you could make them touch ranged spheres rather than their normal effect.
If you want some good material for underwater adventuring, I'd recommend checking out Cerulean Seas by Alluria Publishing. It has lots of undersea magic, some new equipment, weapons, armor, and magic items as well as rules for underwater combat and hazards. If you are planning on doing much underwater/water proximal adventuring or are looking for some really cool ideas I'd recommend checking it out.
So, here's a question while we are on the topic of honour and paladins. In Pathfinder, is the honour in the paladin code internal honor or external honor? Does the type of honor the paladin must follow depend on if they get their powers from a deity or from a concept? How does the existence of divination powers affect the type of honor?
Or in other words, if a paladin commits a sin, but no one is around, does anyone hear the sound?
Speaking as a person with less GM experience, I would prefer to have the CR of dragons/outsiders etc reflect their actual capabilities and be consistent in how they are applied compared to other creatures/NPCs. This would make it easier to use them in encounters that I design because it doesn't have a hidden assumption that they are going to be used as a solo monster.
If you want to make it easier for a GM to use as a solo monster, maybe a general rule or template could be designed to help turn a creature/NPC into an appropriate solo monster fight. The PF system already has problems in encounter design for solo fights. Enemies are either too powerful and wipe the floor with the players if they aren't holding the idiot ball, or they are overwhelmed by the action economy.
If you look at how other games treat solo enemy fights, they normally have padded HP, more actions, and attacks/moves that put pressure on the entire party, but not high enough damage/threat that they can one-shot party members. Then again, many games also make their solo enemies hold the idiot ball and not use their abilities to the fullest. Personally, I've always found encounters that involve multiple enemies, terrain, and hazards to be much more interesting and satisfying.
For enemies that normally come in groups, I can see a potential problem in the other direction. Solo they are weaker than normal, but group synergy can raise their threat level above what multiple monsters/npcs would normally provide. I'm guessing you have some sort of adjustment factor to the CR calculations, but if you don't, a tool such as this would make it much easier for GMs to design encounters and have the expected difficulty levels.
You still run into this bit of text:
You can cast a spell at a lower caster level than normal, but the caster level you choose must be high enough for you to cast the spell in question, and all level-dependent features must be based on the same caster level.
Of course, if we go to Spell-like Abilities we find the following:
PRD Bestiary Universal Monster Rules wrote:
For creatures with spell-like abilities, a designated caster level defines how difficult it is to dispel their spell-like effects and to define any level-dependent variables (such as range and duration) the abilities might have. The creature's caster level never affects which spell-like abilities the creature has; sometimes the given caster level is lower than the level a spellcasting character would need to cast the spell of the same name. If no caster level is specified, the caster level is equal to the creature's Hit Dice. The saving throw (if any) against a spell-like ability is 10 + the level of the spell the ability resembles or duplicates + the creature's Charisma modifier.
Where the bolded text says quite explicitly that lowering caster level doesn't impact the ability of the creature to cast the spells, but it also provides good evidence for Anzyr's argument that abilities not explicitly tied to HD are not modified by Simulacrum.
So, in conclusion I agree that you are correct and that level draining/enervating a monster doesn't prevent them from using their SLAs. It would remove the ability to cast a spell however if the caster level dropped below the required CL to cast the spell. These rule interactions just make creating simulacrums of creatures with lots of non-level/HD dependent SLAs the better choice in many situations. I would suggest that it still leaves the Simulacrum spell pretty much unplayable outside of a GM adjudicated plot device. To make it more usable, it either needs to be modified for both player and GM use, or it needs to be marked similar to artifacts where they are not part of the systems considered open to everyone.
On the more interesting part of the discussion, how would people rewrite Simulacrum so it is actually useable as written in a game without distorting everything?
One of the ideas I've seen is to have spells like Simulacrum, planar binding, create undead, animate dead, planar ally and similar add options to the Leadership rules and run everything under the Leadership system.
Under such a system, Simulacrum would still need to be rewritten to better define what it does and what a half-powered version entails with respect to things that are not explicitly linked to HD. The more complete solution would be to link more things in bestiary stat blocks to HD so the game would give a meaningful response to things like level drain or other effects that play with character level on enemies that don't have any class levels.
So, Ghouls = pak'ma'ra? The suggestion of the text in the bestiary is that they are canabilistic as well as carrion eaters/prefer their meat aged. However, the canabilistic portion is rarely the part that gets called out in discussions and instead the focus tends to be on the carrion eater portion. I'm not really going anywhere with this, I just thought it was an interesting observation of how these types of discussions normally go.
From my experience with technical writing where it is important to eliminate ambiguity, writing less is often the best approach. It takes more work but you can frequently find a way to communicate a concept or meaning using fewer words with less ambiguity.
Even within the legal community, there is a movement to eliminate legalese as it is difficult to understand and frequently creates additional ambiguity which in turns requires additional text to eliminate.
The sad thing is, conceptually this type of fighter should be able to work with the feats and gear selected. A guy who is lightly armored and mobile and who fights with two hand cross-bows seems right out of a Van Hellsing/League of Extraordinary Gentlemen story. The feats are the obvious ones a new player would select to realize the concept.
@Ashiel: Going straight to an accusation of lying is a very strong and antagonistic move. You'd be better off saying "you appear to be mistaken here". It doesn't make any claims to the poster's motive and honesty. The accusations of lying can come out later once the poster has revealed more of their motives/argument techniques and you can actually catch them in a deliberate falsehood.
Norman Osborne wrote:
A lot of the stuff may be allowable in a strictly RAW manner, but there's a ton of stuff that is RAW-legal that any GM who is even halfway competent isn't going to allow.
Okay, then that is saying that there is lots of material in the game which will trip up any new GM and thus newer players/GMs should either find another game or expect to have lots of problems until they have stepped on all the landmines.
It is actually possible to create Arkalion according to the game rules. It is not necessary to cheat, as you seem to be implying, to build the character. Now, common house rules and gentleman agreements mean that characters like Arkalion don't normally show up in the game, but again that is like saying Rule 0 absolves Paizo of any responsibility to write worthwhile or balanced material for their game.