Calybos1's page

Organized Play Member. 1,557 posts. 2 reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 26 Organized Play characters.


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"Help me fill in the continent of Azlant."

I thought the ocean did a pretty good job of that. *rimshot*


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For fairness' sake, here's a player gripe: NPCs who somehow know exactly how long to delay confronting the PCs until all their buffs have had time to expire.

And for that matter, NPCs who must have a constant Seek Thoughts ability to ensure that they will never, ever take the action you just readied for. Example: "I ready to fire Scorching Ray at the first guard who comes around the corner in response to the alarm." "Hmm, for some reason they all seem to be hanging back....."

This is such a reliable thing that at times, I've declared a readied action just to guarantee that none of our enemies will use a given tactic. "I ready to cast Glitterdust--huh, they've all decided to stay visible, what a huge surprise."


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Secretive casting: The rule I use in my games is that casting a spell, under any circumstances, is treated exactly the same as drawing a sword: Always Obvious, Always Noticed, Always Treated As Hostile. And still my players ask if they can sneak in a cast while someone else is talking to the NPC.

On the disabilities side, I did play a one-armed monk. Never slowed him down in the slightest, including Two-Weapon Fighting. ("A knee is a weapon!")

Additional gripe: Knowledge checks. I have one player who always, always, always asks about "Special Abilities"--meaning all of a monster's special attacks, defenses, spells and SLAs, auras, supernatural senses, flight speed, etc. No matter how many times I tell him that his questions need to be more specific, he always ignores me and defaults to asking "Tell me all its special abilities."


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It's a powerful roleplaying aid for people that are, essentially, amateur actors trying to pretend to be someone else and needing all the characterization support they can get. I love it and my games will always use it.


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Thinking in another direction... what if x-per-day items were flat-out eliminated entirely? Nothing with charges (no wands, staffs, etc.), just two types of magic items: one-use consumables and permanent effects. If you want to keep wands and staffs around for flavor, give them a different permanent effect instead of extra spell charges--for example, metamagic such as heightening.


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The part I like best has nothing to do with mechanics. It's the setting. I love all the nations, the history, the lore, the cultural clashes, and the different beliefs and philosophies you can encounter.


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Sorry to hear that. Good luck to you.


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"I'm bored, I pick a fight." Seen it way too many times, and with multiple players.


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johnlocke90 wrote:
Metaphysician wrote:
Calybos1 wrote:
We have a dragonkin soldier in our group. His primary function is to provide cover for our enemies against all other PC attacks. Once he goes down, then the rest of us can participate in the fight.
Why are they not shooting at other enemies? Or using abilities that aren't dependent on cover? Or, if there's only one enemy, just maneuvering so their one big ally is *not* between them and the foe anymore?
Splitting damage is bad. So is depending on everyone to have abilities that ignore cover and environments that allow you to easily maneuver around.

Correct. I keep hearing about these "maneuver around" ideas and wondering if we're the only group that never gets to fight in wide, open terrain. All of our fights are in narrow, cramped spaces with zero maneuvering options. Once the dragonkin blocks the only access point, the rest of us sit around behind him, unable to do anything until he drops.


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How to deal with this? Encourage it. This should be a standard element of every good sci-fi game. Stealth and cunning and cool technology should ALWAYS provide a significant advantage over a frontal attack.


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We have a dragonkin soldier in our group. His primary function is to provide cover for our enemies against all other PC attacks. Once he goes down, then the rest of us can participate in the fight.


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Someone pointed out yesterday at a PFS game that I have an uncommon character on several points. She's a non-spellcasting elf, good-aligned and in the Silver Crusade. And she's a rogue, with low Charisma (8).


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Setting. Golarion's nations, cultures, history, races, factions... all of it. I snap up every nation book I can find. Some dismiss it as 'fluff'--I call it the core of the game and its main attraction.


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My home group wants to fight some undead... has anything been published that takes place in Geb, other than You Only Die Twice? Something around 9-11 would be ideal, maybe involving Arazni.


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NaeNae wrote:
As for character concept, yes... I don't have to be optimal in combat. In fact it would fit Elana's personality not to be.

Side note: With this comment, you have probably caused several dozen posters' heads to explode. Well done! Keep the focus on fun.


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Oh, Reginald...

I disagree!


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DungeonmasterCal wrote:
One of my players never levels up until game time. He spends ALL his free time on comic book and Dr. Who forums.

To be fair, that sounds like a life well-spent.


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A lot of GMs seem to have Favored Enemy: Paladins, don't they?


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One of my online groups are hardcore powergaming optimizers... I'm afraid to tell them that I basically never plan out my leveling and just browse for neat ideas or options whenever I happen to level up.

Seriously. I don't know which of them might have heart conditions. It's just too risky.


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I wonder how the Paizo staff would rewrite the rules if they had the chance to go back and start over... knowing what they know now about how each one affects complications and delays in gameplay.

Anything that has a "stop and do it over again" effect would surely get a LOT of scrutiny.


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Lying is an example of a behavior that is often dishonorable; lying is not automatically, completely, and always dishonorable. Thus, a paladin can lie under certain circumstances, provided he does so honorably and in a just cause.

In principle, any spell effect can be used in both honorable and dishonorable ways; the same applies to Disguise Self.

Side note: Objections that it's dishonorable to use magic for an "unfair advantage" can be quickly dismissed by demanding that the paladin always fight naked with a sharp stick, so as to avoid the unfair advantage of armor and weapons. Also, paladins should not level up because it's dishonorable to ever fight a weaker opponent with fewer hit dice. (Yes, I've heard that one.)


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"Reality is the enemy, but we have the tools to defeat it."


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necromental wrote:
Calybos1 wrote:

"Alignment is morally offensive to me, and smacks of slavery and fascism. No good person can approve of it. Paizo should quit publishing stuff that mentions it. And apologize for their moral turpitude. Attica! Attica!"

Nice strawman. Again, its about alignment restriction (which don't make sense especially in the light of other published classes, in cases other than paladin).

I use alignment in my games, but will probably be using "people are neutral" variant in future ones (paladins will still be affected).

Not a strawman. Again, check the previous thread.


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Listen, I came here for a good argument!


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Kirth Gersen wrote:
CBDunkerson wrote:
I can't figure out what you were trying to say with your second and third points. People won't buy EVs because they are sleek, quiet, and require less maintenance?

This is actually dead-on true for a large percentage of drivers. Most of the people who commute around Houston, for example, insist on driving the biggest, noisiest, most gas-guzzling trucks imaginable. More than one of my co-workers has seen my tiny car and very earnestly explained to me that I *NEED* a 3/4 ton truck (at minimum), extended cab preferred, and that my very survival is at dire risk until I get one. And these are educated scientists -- the hicks are even worse. It's an image/lifestyle thing -- if these people could legally drive Abrams tanks downtown, they would all totally do that. So, yes, the reality is that, to a very large proportion of drivers, size does matter.

Excellent point, and one that's often overlooked. There is a psychological angle to many consumers' choices; SUVs were consciously designed to appeal to people's very worst instincts of insecurity and aggression, ironically marketed as "safety." The book High and Mighty: The world's most dangerous vehicles and how they got that way explores this mentality. Some SUV drivers even request more 'aggressive' and 'dangerous'-looking grills, or idly wish they could get front-mounted spikes to ensure that they destroy anything that gets in their way.

Even at the egotistical-teen level, you can see this in any town. Many young drivers prefer to have no muffler, or even remove it, to ensure a maximum of engine noise from their Power Machine.

Short form: If you want to ensure that no conservative ever buys an electric car, simply slap a 'liberal' label on it. No amount of logical arguments based on safety, cost savings, personal convenience, or long-term species survival will compare with the emotional high of buying something liberals hate. And the applicability to why anti-climate conspiracy theories are so popular should be obvious.


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Key differences:

"I don't like alignment, so I don't use it in my games."

vs

"I don't like alignment, so nobody should use it in THEIR games."

vs

"Alignment is morally offensive to me, and smacks of slavery and fascism. No good person can approve of it. Paizo should quit publishing stuff that mentions it. And apologize for their moral turpitude. Attica! Attica!"


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I see it as a two-stage process. When you're first trying out roleplaying, picking a nonhuman race for your character is a good way to feel 'different' from yourself. And as you get more familiar with the world's most common races, the more exotic ones--catfolk, tengu, nagaji, etc.--remain a quick and easy way to get your "This Character is Different" fix.

But later on, you find that creating interesting personas and backstories is all it takes to make your character fun and interesting to play. At that point, racial selection becomes less important, unless you have a setting-specific backstory or motivation in mind.

Or, as one player in our group put it, "If you've got a good character concept, you don't need to staple on wings and glitter to make it special."


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MageHunter wrote:
There is a Lawful Good Empyreal Lord of Ignorance. If no one even knows Cthulhu exists then they won't worship him.

Yep. My monk is a follower of this one (Ghenshau). "Sorry, I don't have any Knowledge skills; it's against my religion."


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"Concordance of Rivals" continues to exist only in the mind... the denizens and hierarchies of the neutral planes remain a mystery.


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Just had a rare sighting yesterday: an all-human party. Six players, every one of them bringing a human PC to the table. No "it looks human, but isn't," just Actual Humans. SIX of 'em.


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I had a player at a PFS table who flat-out refused to believe that my character was a rogue. "Rogues don't exist. You're kidding us, right? It's actually a slayer, it's gotta be--there's just no REASON to play a rogue. Slayers are the rogues that actually work. What were you thinking?"


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Paladins always follow the Law--where "the Law" is defined as the principles of their paladin code.

Local governments depart from those principles at their peril.


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Exactly. The paladin doesn't define what's right; his code (derived from his deity) does. Any government or authority that departs from that definition of righteous principles can and should be opposed--lawfully, judiciously, and with the degree of force needed to accomplish a good end.

EVERY paladin has that right, and requires no external authorization to oppose an evil empire.


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Ahh, the 'legitimate authority' bit that hero-haters try to use to bring down the hated Paladin. I love that gambit, because it's so much fun to destroy.

A "legitimate authority" is one that conforms to the paladin's own code. Period. To the degree that an authority/government/mayor departs from Lawful Goodness, the paladin is authorized to disobey, circumvent, or even overthrow the authority to that same degree.

Here's a handy example to use against paladin-hating GMs: "So tell us: Would a paladin be violating his code to invade Hell and topple Asmodeus from his throne, because he's the Legitimate Authority?" When it's stated that baldly, the GM is trapped into admitting he's just being a dick.


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My wizard once ended a fight with an evil high-level bard by casting Resilient Sphere, leading to this wonderful exchange:

GM: "Wow, I've never heard of that spell. Where did you find it?"
Me: "Core Rulebook."


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Since this was a PFS session, the GM clearly handled it wrong. No scenario can present a no-win situation that requires a paladin to "either fall or fail the mission."


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Be careful; self-selected nicknames can backfire.


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Loot division is easy. Just let the rogue do it.


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Don't feel bad, OP, there are posters who complain "Why can't my wizard automatically cast ALL types of spells, divine, arcane, AND psychic? Oh, and wear armor too."

And that's no misunderstanding; they really don't see the point of playing if they can't be the best at everything.


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darkerthought7 wrote:
So, I guess my next question is: Why did you make a wizard if you aren't allowed to PLAY a wizard? Caster Levels are important to the alchemy of the class and the game. The wizard spell list, in particular, is basically hobbled if you can't expend character resources on raising DCs and CLs. All a wizard has going for them from the class chassis is spells. Removing DC/CL sounds like a DM that doesn't know what they're doing... Sorry if it seems judgmental, but someone made a mistake from the get-go, here.

This isn't an arbitrary house rule; the GM is following the rules for the Limited Magic system spelled out in Pathfinder Unchained.


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I once saw a character with ranks in Intimidate make a Diplomacy check!


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Kelly Youngblood wrote:
The party healer is a sorcerer with max ranks in UMD and a wand of cure serious... in Eyes of the Ten.

You had Cure Serious? You were lucky. WE used to have to get up at three in the morning and lick the campsite clean with our tongues... eat a cold, leftover Heroes' Feast, work a 45-minute day down in the dungeon, and when we camped, our gods would Power Word: Kill us and dance about on our graves before Animating Dead.


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Ferious Thune wrote:
there's a local Barbarian that notoriously hates doors.

Our home group loves doors. They're always made of adamantium and equipped with superior masterwork locks (Disable Device at least 35), so they fetch a huge price on the open market when we lug them back to town. The look on the GM's face is an added bonus.


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Thanks for the tips, everyone!

I should note that it's also an Unchained "Limited Magic" game, with preset save DCs and minimum caster levels, so spells aren't too useful in combat.


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Val'bryn2 wrote:

He's really got his work cut out for him. I'ld suggest weapon focus, improved initiative, anything that can help him get a better attack bonus, because it's going to be low. Gear, get him a robe of the monk ASAP, or have him get it. Really, this isn't a combo that's got much going for it. He's losing on spells, trying to be a frontliner when he really isn't, etc.

It can be done, what do his wizard levels look like? A transmutationist will do MUCH better than an illusionist in this case.

Level 5 Diviner, good Dex and Wisdom. (And a crossbow.)

Orfamay Quest wrote:

* Feats : he's not going to be combat effective enough to justify spending any of his level-up feats on non-wizard stuff, but there are a few good monk tricks out there. He gets Improved Unarmed Strike for free, and has enough intelligence to make Combat Expertise possibly worth taking for the additional AC. This, in turn, opens up Improved Trip, which could be useful as an alternative to beating on people with his wimpy strength.

Good idea! Maybe he'll go for judo throws over karate chops. Basically, he's just bored with standing around uselessly after all his spells are used up.


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For many of our games, the GM had a subtle signal to the players that their PC was doing, or about to do, something monumentally stupid: a brown-and-white dog would trot up out of nowhere, pee on their leg, and then disappear.

"Leopold has judged you."


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This could be a scavenger hunt. Bonus points if you can find....

Last season: A table without a Kineticist.
Two seasons ago: A table without an Arcanist or Brawler.
Three seasons ago: A table without a Gunslinger.
Four+ seasons ago: A table without a Tiefling (of Ragathiel, the only Empyreal Lord in existence!).


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...two or more players during the character introductions state "Don't expect me to do anything in combat. My character's not a combat character."

ONE, you can survive. Two or more? No way.


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Llyr the Scoundrel wrote:

Example... I've run a character that through a little racial twist had a 1/day stoneshape ability. And then for the next 8 levels we were constantly traveling over earthen ground covered in snow with nothing rocky nearby to use this ability. Making this little trick useless.

You are in an abusive gaming relationship with a player-beater. Get out and go to a shelter!


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I have a gnome alchemist who plays the straight man in all RP situations--saying really obvious setup lines that others can jump in on to make silly puns. He enjoys it.

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