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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber. 88 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
I think multiple checks for picking locks makes sense if we're talking about pin an tumbler locks, since you have to set all the pins to the correct height in order to pick the lock.

Given that pin tumbler locks are a 19th century invention, (and the kind you are probably thinking of mid-19th century), you probably aren't going to be encountering them on Golarion.

The best you are likely to encounter are lever tumbler, (TBH even those are pushing it a bit), but even a basic warded lock can justify multiple checks, (as you maneuver the pick around the wards). Another reason for requiring multiple successes would be locks with hidden and/or false keyholes, (something that was done before the various types of tumbler lock were invented).

More complicated warded lock setups can even justify having setbacks in the rules: Consider a lock with two keyholes where unlocking #1 will re-lock #2. A critical failure there can represent doing #2 first then discovering that you have to do it again.


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zimmerwald1915 wrote:
And now for something completely different: where is New Thassilon's southern frontier?

It's fuzzy, and I don't just mean in the sense that it isn't well defined in the AP. Remember that Golarion isn't at the point where you generally have borders that are simple lines you can draw on a map¹ but rather are more vague things that are only truly well defined when there is a (near) impassible barrier².

For a first pass of what is actually controlled, I'd say the southern extent would be defined by the Red Mountains in the west, the North edge of Lurkwood, the Aloren and Chavali river valleys to their meeting, dropping south from the east corner of the Gnashers to the Iron Peaks, the north shore of the Storval Deep then across from the north edge of the Wyvern mountains to the north edge of the Urglin Gap. Even this is likely highly disputed east of Lurkwood with the Shundar-Quah Shoanti so the solid control might be just along the Kodar foothills.

Claimed territory would be farther south, including the Velashu Uplands, Lurkwood, everthing north of the western Storval Rise and all but the south end of the Storval Deep.

The big question is how well Sorshen deals with the Shoanti. If she can get the Shundar-Quah on side, that quickly solidifies my first pass. If she can't, that pushes early control back to the foothills and an ongoing conflict that may be familiar to those from Australia, Canada and the US as settlements develop along trade routes.

One near-term possibility is a Kodar foothills extent with an exclave on the north end of the Storval Deep. Instead of taking territory from the Shundar-Quah, she just asserts travel and navigation rights on the Kazaron and Stalak rivers. Turtleback Ferry would like be vary happy with this, at least once a port is built at their end of the Deep.

1: Remember that it wasn't until about the end of the 20th century that we got rid of all the uncontested national borders that were things like "somewhere in the patch of desert south of these hills and north of those stony ridges over there."

2: Think mountain ranges and seas, not rivers, (which actually should tend to be in the middle of nations).


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James Jacobs wrote:
Qualidar wrote:

There's a half-orc NPC in the city, but unless I'm mistaken with the timeline, orcs are unknown in the tine of Thassilon. They're driven to the surface by the dwarves' Quest for Sky in the following Age of Darkness, right?

Orcs still exist, and thus half-orcs can exist, even before the Quest For Sky. Dwarves are the ones that, before this event, are more obscure. Orcs lived in the uppermost reaches, between dwarves and the surface, and as such would often drift up above ground to raid or explore or whatever.

Or they could be encountered by those exploring down.

I could certainly see a Thassilonian expedition having gone down and brought back up a number of 'specimens' of whatever races they encountered. Combine that with humans being about as randy as dolphins, (and/or some not exactly ethical breeding experiments), and you get a handful of half-orcs floating around.


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Meirril wrote:
A player could never play a deity. It is never said why deities don't directly act in the world, but they don't. Probably because if they did there wouldn't be any need for us.

I have a go-to reason for that kind of thing: Overt action brings, and justifies, a response from other gods. Combine the likelihood of the response outweighing the initial action with the dangers of a possible escalation spiral, (and even that it's something that just isn't done), and you get something most of the gods will avoid doing.

Even most the nastier gods probably follow the 'rules' out of self interest. Rovagug might not, but there's a reason he's locked up.

(This also gives a reason for Mythic characters to not run around fixing things: They count as low-tier divine actors, they're fine so long as they stick to their 'fully mortal' concerns but if they start sticking their noses elsewhere they generate excuses for intervention.)


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Roswynn wrote:
Her backup plan? Can rogues have contingencies now perhaps? Kyra and a whole host of other clerics sound a bit too much even for such a mechanic...

While the whole thing might be a bit too much, I could see an ability that allows for some details 'to be determined later'. That she smuggled in the godbotherers and got them concealed in one of the tomb chambers was already set, but exactly which one was left open until she 'led' the vamps there.

It's similar to what I sometimes do with highly intelligent and/or tactically skilled NPCs: I allow them to cheat a bit because they are far smarter/more skilled than I am. Of course The Immortal Warlord™ ended up at his escape hatch while you are on the far side of a barrier field, it's not like he doesn't have a couple thousand years of fighting experience and the smarts to predict exactly how you would move during the fight.


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For encounters while traveling, one thing to do is to make them varied. Sure, the PCs might encounter an aggressive animal or murderous bandits but they might also meet a traveling merchant¹ heading the other way.

The combat encounters that do occur are also not going to be like those found while "actively adventuring": The danger is going to be more from the PCs not being prepared. Bulky/heavy weapons and heavier armour are likely to be packed, not worn, and prepared spellcasters are going to have non-combat loadouts, (e.g. having Tiny Hut or Secure Shelter prepped for when you stop for the night).

For longer trips, you might want to make sure you have a selection of side treks that you can throw in². Things to do along the way will help develop the setting, generate a sense of scale and give the PCs a chance to be heroes/mercenary scum/blackguards/whatever.

1: Who may or may not be honest.

2: If you are designing them yourselves, make any built in hooks flexible. There's no need for the players to know that the lost children and stolen holy knick-knack the players ignored would have both led to the same band of bandits that the kidnapped daughter did.


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Derklord wrote:
­
Chakat Firepaw wrote:

Ah, I see your problem. You did things in the wrong order for using rolled stats.

While with arrays and point buy you want to decide on race/class then determine ability scores, that's not what you do when rolling. With rolled stats you do it the other way around, roll the ability scores first then you decide on race and class.¹

That showcases why it's a bad idea for new players. How would they know what character worked on such stats and which don't?

Such lack of knowledge is just as, if not more, problematic for things like point buy. If you can't tell if {stat array} is good for a class or not, you don't know what you need to construct an array for that class.

Derklord wrote:
Monk was the most intriguing class for me, so I wanted to play that.

One of the things about rolled stats is that sometimes you don't get to play your first choice for a character. Be glad you weren't playing in the days when wanting to play a paladin meant crossing your fingers that the less than 1/1000 chance of getting the rolls needed panned out.

Derklord wrote:
­I'm still not seeing the appeal of a system were powergaming is basically mandatory.

The core appeal is in its ability to push you out of ruts. Many people develop go-to character builds, rolled ability scores force you to deal with the numbers you got.


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Derklord wrote:
It's not just that, it's also that a roll that would even be great on some characters makes others (usually the ones already the weakest) almost unplayable. For instance, my very first character was a Monk (cMonk, unchained didn't exist back then) with a 4d6 drop lowest roll of 18/17/13/9/8/8. Pretty nice rolls on plenty of characters (and some of the other players envied my rolls), but on a Monk?

Ah, I see your problem. You did things in the wrong order for using rolled stats.

While with arrays and point buy you want to decide on race/class then determine ability scores, that's not what you do when rolling. With rolled stats you do it the other way around, roll the ability scores first then you decide on race and class.¹

Derklord wrote:
There are other methods to stat generation that work, like a choice of arrays (haven't tried that yet, but I can see it being the best method). But rolling like described in the CRB (all four methods) is just way too likely to lead to inner-party imbalances and frustration.

There are systems that work better for intraparty balance, such as 23-25-27².

1: In the extreme case of 1ed D&D, you didn't even know what races or classes you could choose until after you rolled. (You rolled a 3 for Int: Do you want your fighter to be a half-orc, dwarf or human?)

2: A, B and C are rolled with 3d6 each, D=23-A, E=25-B, F=27-C, reroll any result that generates a number above 18. Add 2 to any one stat of 16 or less and arrange as desired.


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As a general rule, no. The main exception are the spells granted in the "worshiper specific" sidebars, (e.g. while an Inquisitor of any deity can cast Harvest Knowledge, Clerics can only cast it if they worship Calistria), and any spell or item can have a restriction specific to it.

Now, such items and spells are certainly going to be more common with worshipers of the deity in question. Partly because they have easier access to them and partly because they are the kinds of things they would use, (what worshiper of Abadar isn't going to be interested in a spell that makes appraisals easier, faster and never unknowingly wrong?).


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MaxAstro wrote:
PS: I just realized, Chakat Firepaw, are you on NAR also? Small world, you are the second person I have "met" both on these forums and elsewhere.

Yes, that is almost certainly me, (while there is another chakat named Firepaw, shi isn't someone's fursona).


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Gargs454 wrote:


2) Consider limiting the players to the Core Rulebook (or maybe just one additional splatbook). This keeps the options down, makes it easier for both the players and you to learn the rules, and avoids analysis paralysis.

Yep, the classic advice about "not saying no" is about what the characters try to do, not character creation. There is nothing wrong with saying "that character option causes problems and/or is inappropriate for this campaign," and disallowing it. One thing you might do is to spend a little time making up a list of what you are going to allow, what you need players to ask you about, (either for informative purposes¹ or to get permission²), and what is a flat no³.

As a new GM, I would advise you to err a little bit on the side of disallowing things. It's easier to allow something later than to remove something that has become a problem and it's easier to fix something if it was only allowed provisionally in the first place.

It's also worth dropping hints during character creation. Telling your players that their characters "need to be willing to travel," gives them a warning that they shouldn't use builds focused on being really effective when in their home city.

1: For instance, you probably want to tell players that buying firearms and related gear will be inconvenient for their Gunslinger and you want to know about what oddball languages they have taken, (sure, most don't matter but you also probably don't want to specifically call out Tien as mattering to a campaign in Galt).

2: Some things can either work fine or wreck the campaign depending on how they are played. For instance, I require evil PCs to get permission because I need to hear how the player is going to be handling the character, ("your LE character is the sworn protector of another PC and is a 'demonic bodyguard' type? Sure, go ahead").

3: It's still good to avoid flat nos, mostly it should be things that are simply contrary a functional party. (e.g. I ban priests of Rovagug and Father Skinsaw.)


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Crayon wrote:
YMMV, but for my money the old kobolds were cuter. *shrug*

.

I wouldn't say cuter, but the older ones don't scream "the art director said make them cute and marketable," to me.

TBH, I've never really been a fan of that set of proportions. It works for comedic and it works for being creepy but outside of that I have almost never come across it working.


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You are assuming single-path monodimensional time. It's common to use at least bidemensional time in fiction involving time travel.

Think of there being a 'history' dimension and a 'perception' dimension. Normally, people's lives trace a straight diagonal¹, but time travel changes that. When you travel into the past, your line of existence jumps along the history axis but stays at the same point in the perception axis.

So, if a time traveler causes a change to history at p=n₁ and another reverses it at p=n₂, the 'graph of history' will have three bands: Two bands with the 'original' history when looking below p=n₁ or above p=n₂ and one band between those two lines with the changed history.

With this sort of setup, all you have to assume is that time travel, (or at least the relevant forms of it), grants the ability to remember lines of history from earlier points in your perception.

1: If you were to account for relativity, there would be curvature but it would always remain positive in both dimensions.


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katataban wrote:
Primogeniture, litterally meaning the firstborn is invested. Meaning that the firstborn child of the ruler inherits all titles.

Historically, when the term primogeniture has been used it has been presumed to be agnatic or at least male-preference primogeniture rather than absolute primogeniture. Remember that in RL, almost no nation used absolute primogeniture until the late 20th century.


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Meirril wrote:
I'm just going to point out that this isn't a good idea. While you could use averages or whatever other statistical derivation you wish to use to say how many creatures save, it won't tell you which creatures save. And at the end of the day, which creatures save is much more important than how many. Especially if you keep applying area of effect spells to the same group of creatures.

The reason for using things like binomial tables is for when you have a large group of functionally identical creatures. If there are 100 archers up on that ridge line firing at you, you don't really care if Albert hit you and Bob missed or if Bob hit and Albert missed.

Now, these days it's easier to use dice software to do a mass roll rather than simulating it with a binomial table, but they end up working the same.

There are a number of ways of distributing multiple effects. The most basic being to divide up the group as effects are applied. So, for your example, you do a mass roll with all of them for the entangle, followed by two rolls for the slow and four rolls for the fireball. That's still much less rolling than rolling all 90 saves.


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Claxon wrote:
RUMBLETiGER wrote:
I don't understand. Form of the Dragon I states "you become a Medium chromatic or metallic dragon" in its opening line, and it lists Bronze as one of the Dragon options. Medium sized bronze dragon is what the spell does.

So maybe it's just the vindictive GM in me that loves for players to do non-standard things with wishes but:

Quote:
I Wish to become a Bronze Dragon as per the Polymorph Any Object spell.
When I hear that wish, I default to adult bronze dragon, even though Polymorph Any Object can't actually fulfill that. But the wish attempts to fulfill it to the best of it's abilities. If you had specified a Young Bronze Dragon I would agree on the size part.

I tend to be generous when Wish-type spells are used to simulate highly flexible spells, given that part of the power of a wish is how flexible it is. Part of what makes Polymorph any Object 8th level is that you can use it to turn just about anything into just about anything.

I would be inclined to allow this as true change in form into a young Bronze Dragon, modulo how well I trusted the player to handle it.

Claxon wrote:
But I also would have told you that it wouldn't work exactly as you envision, and not just waste your wish.

Yep, when granted as a reward/boon I would never pervert or wreck a wish.

(Mind you, that demon who granted you a wish in payment for something just might.)


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I've been letting a bit of thought roll around about this and I think the original "virtues as purified versions" works better. The fact that three of them end up as compounds is even a benefit: It helps portray Thassalon as being a different culture. In Thassalonian, those are singular short words and that says something about their values.

If it comes up in play, all you need to do to cover the 'clumsy wording' is to point out that an exact translation isn't possible even with the aid of magic. The only way to put those concepts into Taldade is to include qualifiers and even then it isn't going to be quite right.


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The Raven Black wrote:
If the cable TV companies offered a completely new offer and stopped offering their previous line and heavily advertised the fact that the old was coming to an end, while the new was taking over with a very specific date, and all of this was announced more than a year before the change, with advance warning by email, I do not see on what basis people could complain about having to spend money on something they do not want.

You mean except for that being specifically _illegal_ here?

When this was an issue with the cable companies, the argument Shaw, Rogers, etc. were making was that they were giving warning and people had plenty of time to cancel.


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Deadmanwalking wrote:
Chakat Firepaw wrote:
There is a difference between "if you want to be a dick, this fits," and "this is written in a way that some players will read it as being told to be a dick." The worry on some of out parts is that goblins are going to be the latter, the same way that kender were.
Goblins are not written that way, though. Not in the PF2 playtest, and presumably not in the final version.

You've obviously never dealt with a character who has a prankster complex.

Rysky wrote:
Chakat Firepaw wrote:
Which will matter for the minority of players who ever actually see that character description.
The same could be said for the "minority" of people who look into other Golarion Goblin lore. And since he's an Iconic he's probably gonna be seen by more than a few.

No, he'll just be seen by the few that read the blog. Most players aren't going to see anything that isn't in the actual rule and setting books.

Rysky wrote:
Quote:
and "this is written in a way that some players will read it as being told to be a dick." The worry on some of out parts is that goblins are going to be the latter, the same way that kender were.
It most likely won't and even if it did that's a player issue that you as a GM have the full ability to resolve.

That it was possible for a GM to deal with the results did not change the fact that the way kender were described caused problems.

Rysky wrote:
It's also a common sense thing. I can spend all my starting gold buying pizza ingredients and make pizza rather than adventure with everyone else trying to play, but that doesn't mean I should.

You clearly didn't understand the distinction I was making there. For the analogy to work, it would have to involve something that implies (character type) has a constant desire for fresh pizza.


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Rysky wrote:
Chakat Firepaw wrote:
One: They did, they subscribed to something that said it was for PF1 products and that's what they were paying to get.
That's one way of looking at it, I view as getting Paizo products in that line.

And PF2 is a _NEW LINE_.

Rysky wrote:
Quote:
Two: The cable companies around here made the _exact same argument_ when they were trying to keep negative-option billing from being banned. Note that those arguments failed.
"Around here" is rather nebulous so just going off guessing, it's not the same thing. You're subscribed to rulebooks, you're getting rulebooks.

If you need to know: Ontario

And you are _still_ making the same arguments the cable TV companies did when they were doing all the negative-option stuff. People were subscribed to cable TV and they were getting cable TV, just new channels that they never said they wanted and that they had to cancel if they didn't want to pay for them.

Rysky wrote:
Quote:
It would be just as easy to send emails that, instead of requiring those who don't want PF2 stuff to take properly timed action, offer a quick way of subscribing to the PF2 stuff that matches the existing PF1 subscriptions.
Writing the email probably wouldn't but canceling every single Pathfinder subscription adn then forcing their customers to sign back up would be a total nightmare for both parties.

A nightmare?

You let the existing ones come to an end and you give a single link to say "subscribe to the PF2 equivalents."

Rysky wrote:
Quote:
Requiring people say no to not get something they don't want comes across as wanting to grab some money from people who don't want it. IOW, you will have people who see it as 'picking their pocket'.
That's on them, those people have had to do the same thing a supplemental or a new AP they're not interested in has come out.

You are confusing one-offs with switching to an entirely new product line.

Rysky wrote:
The same thing here, you're not getting a line of toner ink from Paizo, you're getting rulebooks and Adventures. The same as when they switched from 3.5 to Pathfinder.

PF1 was fully compatible with 3.5 in a way that PF2 isn't with PF1.

Rysky wrote:
Quote:
Requiring people to say yes to get the new line of products proactively says to people "we want to do this the right way" and only creates a very mild inconvenience.
To you maybe, to me and plenty of others it's an enormous and unneeded headache.

I'm sorry that you find something that could be done with a single link in an email to be an enormous headache.

Rysky wrote:
Quote:
It's not "who gets inconvenienced" it's "inconvenience v. appearing to be dishonest money-grubbers."
No it's just an inconvenience thing.

It's oh so nice of you to tell me what I think, do you also do card tricks?

Rysky wrote:
Quote:
The difference being that this is a permanent switch to a new product line as opposed to an oddball singular unwanted item. For an analogy, think a computer gaming magazine issue focused on flight simulators v. that magazine switching from covering PC games to covering Playstation games.
Not remotely close to what's happening. We're getting a new edition, that's it.

Congratulations, you just discovered that no analogy is perfect. Now, are you claiming that this isn't a permanent change in the game they are going to be sending out products for?

Also, I'm finding the changes in PF2 to be enough that I have been evaluating it as a new game, not a revision, so that makes my analogy exactly on point.


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Ed Reppert wrote:
Requiring people to cancel their existing PF1 subs if they don't want to continue with PF2 is inconvenient for those people.

You totally missed my point: It's not about it being inconvienent, it's about it coming across as dishonest. Plus there will be people who are going to be "WTF is this thing? This isn't the kind of thing I wanted to buy, they're ripping me off!"

Ed Reppert wrote:
Requiring people to start new PF2 subs (while automatically cancelling their existing PF1 subs) is inconvenient for those people. IOW, whichever way you do it, someone will be inconvenienced.

It's not "who gets inconvenienced" it's "inconvenience v. appearing to be dishonest money-grubbers."

Ed Reppert wrote:
Since if there were to be no transition to PF2 the situation would be the same as it has been since subs were first started (if you don't want to continue to get sub materials, you have to cancel the sub(s))

The difference being that this is a permanent switch to a new product line as opposed to an oddball singular unwanted item. For an analogy, think a computer gaming magazine issue focused on flight simulators v. that magazine switching from covering PC games to covering Playstation games.

Ed Reppert wrote:
and since it seems likely there will be more people wanting to continue than to quit, it seems most reasonable to me to require people to cancel if they don't want to continue. Of course, I do want to continue, which I suppose means I'm biased. But then I'm pretty sure everybody else taking sides on this is also biased one way or t'other.

An important thing here:

Requiring action to cancel is not just going to burn goodwill with those people, but also people they talk to about it. That burn is also not just going to be over an inconvenience but over a business practice that edges into territory that gets people mad enough to take it to the government.


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Cole Deschain wrote:
I suppose, then, that it's good thing the iconic goblin is presented as a guy who... ISN'T a toxic party-wrecker, then.

Which will matter for the minority of players who ever actually see that character description.

Cole Deschain wrote:
"but the rulebook says" requires the rulebook to actually say things, after all.

Which is why I premised my position on "as presented in the playtest rules". If the PF2 CRB presents goblins the way they were in the playtest, they are going to be solidly in GM permission territory at my table.

If they are presented differently, then things are likely going to be different.

Deadmanwalking wrote:
Gnomes are already pretty easy to play as kender/the most annoying and disruptive PC possible. If Goblins are not available peeople inclined to do this will just play a Gnome.

There is a difference between "if you want to be a dick, this fits," and "this is written in a way that some players will read it as being told to be a dick." The worry on some of out parts is that goblins are going to be the latter, the same way that kender were.

Deadmanwalking wrote:
Really, having something not be core because 'some players will use this as an excuse to be a dick' is a profoundly dumb idea.

It's also a strawman.


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MaxAstro wrote:
I think it's sad that some GMs have such low expectations of their players as to assume from the get-go that they will use goblins as an excuse to play kenders.

It's a combination of knowing what kinds of players are out there and that there are also a lot that will look at how the race is described and end up party slime without any intentional malice. There were a lot of very annoying kender players who were all "why are you all mad at me? I'm just playing him the way the book says to."

MaxAstro wrote:
I also think it's strange that those same GMs don't realize that players will do that anyway.

Trust me, there are plenty of players out there who are going to be all "but the rulebook says..." as an excuse¹. That includes players who otherwise wouldn't be a problem.

Are there people who are no problem when they take options that are serious party slime bait? Certainly, I even know a couple that I would trust to play kenders as originally written. That does not mean it is a good idea to give all the ones who will be a problem a RAW license to do it.

1: And even more who will implicitly support them with that (EXP.DEL.) vastly overbroad misunderstanding of the "don't say no" advice.


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Rysky wrote:
Amanda Plageman wrote:
PC Goblins are a deal-breaker for a lot of players and GMs alike. Shoving them down our throats is one of the things making people hesitant about 2e.
So having Goblins as core (they've always been playable) is "shoving them-"... why do I feel like I've had this conversation before?

Placing an option in core means you get players who are going to react even worse to being told "goblins are GM permission only". When something is in a core rulebook you get a lot of people who assume that means it is an option which can simply be taken.

TBH, as described in the playtest rules, goblins are solidly party slime bait. I also don't see much in the way of reasonable routes to fix this, all of which are likely to be badly received by the very people who are going "goblins in core? GREAT!" Perhaps Paizo has something really cool under their hats, but as it stands they would hold the distinction of being the first core option in a game that I declared¹ GM permission² at my table.

1: As opposed to the rules themselves calling it out. Such as anything marked STOP in Hero.

2: I use five levels: Permitted, GM consultation, (you have to talk to me about it), GM permission, (you have to ask and justify the choice), Special permission, (you have to ask and should expect a no), Banned, (don't even bother asking).


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Rysky wrote:
Chakat Firepaw wrote:

As a note on this point: Just continuing subscriptions on into PF2 is going to come across as something like negative-option billing for people who have decided PF2 isn't for them. So you probably want to be a bit proactive in asking people and perhaps assuming "yes" isn't the best choice.

Uh, that's really on the subscriber to check on in on their subscription to see what they're paying to get.

One: They did, they subscribed to something that said it was for PF1 products and that's what they were paying to get.

Two: The cable companies around here made the _exact same argument_ when they were trying to keep negative-option billing from being banned. Note that those arguments failed.

Rysky wrote:
I don't doubt they won't send emails though beforehand.

It would be just as easy to send emails that, instead of requiring those who don't want PF2 stuff to take properly timed action, offer a quick way of subscribing to the PF2 stuff that matches the existing PF1 subscriptions.

Looking at it from a customer goodwill perspective:

Requiring people say no to not get something they don't want comes across as wanting to grab some money from people who don't want it. IOW, you will have people who see it as 'picking their pocket'.

Requiring people to say yes to get the new line of products proactively says to people "we want to do this the right way" and only creates a very mild inconvenience.


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Erik Mona wrote:
the Haunted Jester wrote:
I noticed that Book 6 of Tyrants Grasp and Book 1 of Age of Ashes are both slated for July on their product pages. Will both of these APs come out in July? Will there be a time to cancel an AP subscription after Tyrants Grasp but before Age of Ashes?

They are both slated to come out in July (technically August 1, but practically they will be part of the July sub shipments).

That's a good question re: cancelling between the two volumes. We'll get back to you on that once we've had a few more conversations in-house.

As a note on this point: Just continuing subscriptions on into PF2 is going to come across as something like negative-option billing for people who have decided PF2 isn't for them. So you probably want to be a bit proactive in asking people and perhaps assuming "yes" isn't the best choice.


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j b 200 wrote:
I would expect that your subscription will carry over as the AP subscription from 3.5 to pathfinder carried over seamlessly.

Well, except that the shift isn't going to be as seamless as it was between Legacy of Fire and Council of Thieves.

Personally, I think it would be a good idea to at least send out a wave of notifications asking people to confirm that they want subscriptions to continue. Simply continuing without asking would needlessly burn goodwill with people who don't want to follow them into PF2. (It might also cross the line into negative-option billing, which could mean legal problems as they sell in places that ban it.)

Better, IMHO, would be to create new subscriptions with the notifications being more: "These PF2 subscriptions are the equivalent of the PF1 subscriptions you have. Here's a quick way to subscribe to all of them...."


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R0b0tBadgr wrote:

So i just read this article: https://theangrygm.com/theorycrafting-an-unsummary/ and it made me think about buying, selling, crafting and economics in general. I just looked briefly in the index in how to sell items, and there isn't anything there. First edition i know you sell things for half price. And apparently D&D 5th is the same except you can't sell magic items, and if you do, well you lose.

If that's the case, who in their right mind would ever make a magical item, except one that they needed???

You are making a classic error here: The "sell stuff for half price" rule is no more and no less than a game convention for how to quickly handle non-businesspeople who want to quickly convert valuable items into spendable cash. It's the discount the merchant gets for reducing liquidity and/or needing to transport it to where he can sell it. People who make things to order or who are able to have it sit in their stock for a year aren't covered by the "half price selling" rule.

If you have players who want more, and you are all willing to add the detail and work to the game, nothing is stopping you from doing things like making a 'demand' roll to see if there is someone who wants to buy their magical whatsit. Or rather, at what price will someone buy it.


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Sutehp wrote:
Seriously, how did the inhabitants of Golarion come to name the trompe l'oeils as "trompe l'oeils"? French doesn't exist on Golarion, does it? Sure, Common might be the Golarion version of English, but that's Translation Convention, isn't it?

I assume "trompe l'oeil" is itself just translation convention: Its English meaning, (an art technique that uses realistic imagery to create the illusion of a 3D object), directly matches the creature.

(Insert oft-misattributed James Nicoll quote here.)

Sutehp wrote:
And if I'm wrong and Common essentially *is* English on Golarion, then which language does French become on Golarion? Taldan? If Galt is essentially Revolutionary France, then is Hallit (which is the other language besides Common spoken in Galt) essentially French but just spoken on Golarion?

Taldane/Common would probably be the French equivalent, given how it is spoken in all five of the "Frances", (Andoran, Chelax, Galt, Isger and Taldor¹). And, TBH, why shouldn't the lingua franca be the French equivalent?

1: The Revolution truly successful, First Empire but diabolic, The Terrors unending, Vichy, and First Kingdom's twilight.


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Xenocrat wrote:
I like Rovagug as a partial solution to the problem of scale in Pathfinder and the number of outsiders in the outer planes.

My assumption is that the outer planes as a whole are simply incredibly large. Not, "man that's big" large or even "infinitely large" large but at least as large as the continuum¹. The outer planes we see in the Pathfinder setting are just a tiny fraction of what's out there which makes the population density very low over all.

Why aren't people finding those other outer planes? Because travel through the astral involves directions that are as much conceptual as anything else, you get to Heaven by going half-way between honour and justice then taking a turn towards caring. It's kind of hard to get somewhere out blortways if you don't have the idea of blortness.

There are probably enough travelers who manage to get sufficiently lost that they go from one 'cluster' of outer planers to another that an outside observer would notice the occasional out of place bit, (e.g. a religion on one world using the names of some evil (near-)gods from a distant cluster as the 'many names of evil' in their dithiestic faith).

This is close to "separate outer planes for each galaxy," but combined with what you get with a random start in Risk.

1: That's the number of irrational numbers, which may or may not be the next larger number after infinity.


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You might be on to something, but I think you are looking at the wrong conversion point:

I doubt the goal is to make converting published adventures easy, but rather to make converting _campaigns_ easy. Aim at the people whose campaigns are pushing the limits of 5e with a "this conversion isn't hard, you can do it on the fly without really breaking anything."


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Mark Carlson 255 wrote:
The main idea is "how to get more people groups involved in the settings and keep them involved?". Will the living setting idea work? In the past (I think it was called the living city project or soemthing back in the 90's) I think it was tried but the things you need were not in place (the internet). And I seem to remember that there was comments about organization of "how things were done" that some people thought were troublesome.

Living City was an RPGA organized play system for AD&D based around the city of Raven's Bluff in the Forgotten Realms. It was pretty much exclusively run as events at things like conventions and tournaments, so the communication issues weren't as bad as you imply.

Living City also ran for about 15 years, so I think it qualifies for a bit more than just "tried".


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dmerceless wrote:


- Magic item dependence. I know the big six were reduced to like... the big two? But I'd rather see the big zero, and people getting magical items because they do cool stuff, and not because they are useless without them.

To be honest, I don't think that this is a problem that even can be fixed on the rules side of things¹. I think it is, at its root, a setting problem: There will always be ideal sets of magic items and if the setting allows people to have whatever items they want within some resource limits, then there will be a push for everyone to have the appropriate set. This will result in "characters have the sets" becoming more of an adventure design assumption, which feeds back into people being encouraged to get those sets.

Go around that loop a few times and "you are best off getting these" becomes "if you don't have those, you will be a boat anchor."

1: At least short of making magic items all but irrelevant across the board.


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Ranishe wrote:
Did you not already have to do this? In pf1 if you wanted a skill challenge for swim, did you not have it at least in some way relative to the party's level? Or did swim DC never go up above 10 because no one ever put ranks into it, so any more difficult swim related task would be impossible for everyone? Or did it not go up, but the party invested in swim in some way, so they automatically passed any swim checks they came upon, but at that point is it even a skill challenge that needs the numbers at all?

The underlying design of 3.x/PF1 includes the fact that some skills have a point at which they become simply functional¹, (e.g. a net of +5 to climb gets you most of what a non-specialist needs to do²). Once you have a few levels under your belt, you might start saying things like "I can clear a 15' gap while taking 10, that's good enough," and start spreading out into making more skills 'functional'.

This runs into an assumption some make that the "level appropriate skill DC" means "this is about how hard all skill tasks for the party should be." As opposed to the assumption that those DCs are what's meant to be a challenge for a specialist of that level, (and just not really applicable to some skills).

The resulting conflict between "you have X trained skills" and "decide where you want to be good going on great and where you just want to be functional" has been an issue in Pathfinder since the original beta. Which to do as a player depends on your GM and adventure writers.

1: The extreme example is linguistics when bought to learn languages³. A single rank is enough, if you are just interested in talking to the people from the other side of those mountains.

2: This is where you can pull yourself back up over an edge you are holding on to and can climb a free hanging rope.

3: Some skills have uses where they are simply functional and others where they scale indefinitely. e.g. Acrobatics is functional for most jumping and crossing narrow surfaces but scaling if you want to dodge AOOs, make inhuman jumps⁴ or balance in extreme conditions. If you are only interested in the functional part, ("No I can't climb that, that's why Bob has a coil of rope"), it's possible to forego keeping up with the scaling part.

4: a roll of 30 would break the world long jump record and do it landing on ones feet, a similar roll would break the one for the high jump with you able to land on top of the bar.


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Matthew Downie wrote:
Convoluted probably isn't the right word, but it's messy when you're moving across a mixture of orthogonal, diagonal and difficult terrain. "I move 5, 10, 15, 25, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50... Wait, was that an odd or even number of diagonals? Where did I start from again?"

I find that if you are losing track of the odd/even diagonal moves a simple token works wonders.


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"Every second 5' square of diagonal movement costs 5' extra" is convoluted?


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Grey Star wrote:
The DM of wrote:
The most common rolling method of the 80's, however, was: 4d6, rerolling 1's once, and taking the top 3.
In the 80's most people rolled 3d6 six times and I think some of the players still attributed their results in the same order as they rolled. The first roll was for strength, the second for dexterity, etc. For D&D, at least.

By the '80s, pure "3d6 in order" was a sign of a hard-core 'tough guy' player. IME the norm was 4d6, drop the lowest, arrange as desired.

The DMG, (1979), admits 3d6 in order is probably a bad idea and recommends one of these four:

1: 6 X 4d6 dropping lowest, arrange.
2: 12 X 3d6, take best 6 results, arrange
3: 6 X 3d6, take best result, for each ability in order.
4: 6 X 3d6, in order, do 12 times and select preferred set.

1: To be honest, it was really designed for how the Lake Geneva crowd played. Players having multiple characters was the norm plus characters were often unavailable for that day's game, (Bigby's still doing spell research and Elmo's busy supervising the building of his watchtower so I'll roll someone new up²).

2: As a rule of thumb, if you ran into a "retired adventurer" in a '70s/early '80s TSR adventure it was probably someone's character from the games Gary Gygax was involved in who really had retired to command a militia/run an inn/rule somewhere/etc.).


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This has been bouncing around my head for a bit, so I figured I'd let other people look at it. Primarily so that I can get some feedback before I start adding it to my campaign guidelines handouts, but also so that if others want to steal it in whole or part they can¹

When it comes down to it, Resonance is doing four things:

- Providing a limit on how many permanent items a character is using.
- Limiting the ability of characters to have multiple "X/day" items that they switch out.
- Encouraging the use of higher level consumables.
- Giving everyone a good secondary use for Charisma.²

Now, it isn't actually bad at three of those. It could be better, but it does work. The problem is with consumables, so I'm thinking of splitting that out to its own system.³

First, Investing items.

For now, I'm sticking with level+Chr modifier for the number of points. Investment works similarly to how it does now, you assign a point to the item and you can use it properly, (although there might be a check involved).

Using non-invested items: If you have not invested an item, you don't directly benefit from any of its magical abilities, (the ring doesn't turn you invisible, the sword doesn't guide your hand to more telling blows, the boots don't allow you to fly, etc), but you still gain any mundane benefits, (your feet are kept dry, you can still hit things, it does look nice on your hand, etc.), plus the item still works on itself, (that crystal sword won't shatter with the first blow).

Investing: Investing an item takes a full round, (i.e. three actions), and requires a standard level+Chr mod check against a DC of 10+Item Level⁴. Failure locks out that point for further investment attempts until you rest for the night. If you can spend a full hour with the item, you receive +5 on the check. You maintain the investment, (and the assignment of the point), until you chose to release it while resting.

Forcing an activation: You can attempt to force a single activation of an item, (e.g. a single force bolt from a Ring of the Ram), you have not invested with a DC of 15+Item Level. A failure simply wastes the time while a critical failure causes a backlash dealing 1d6 damage for every 5 item level involved.⁵

Item slots only apply in the sense that some things have logical limits but if you want to war a dozen rings, a trio of necklaces or a cloth skullcap under your helmet, go for it. You might not be able to invest all of them, but perhaps you don't maintain the investment on a couple items so that you can use the one or two you need today.

Next, consumables.

Since the goal is to encourage the use of a smaller number of more powerful buffs and heals, we will add a bit of a risk to using a large number of them through what amounts to a magical toxic buildup.

Each day, you track how many consumables you have benefited from, (easy, since it only ever goes up or fully resets). When you take more than your Chr mod plus any unassigned investment points you start making checks modified only by your Chr mod and any unassigned points, (+1/point). If you fail the check, the consumable is expended to no effect. On a critical failure you also take 1d6 damage.

With this system it would also be quite possible to include things like items that cost multiple points to invest, either as a minimum, (artifacts probably should), or split up for different powers, (e.g. a suit of armour where you can invest for the AC bonus, the true sight granted by helmet or both⁶). You could also have 'cheap and dirty' potions that generate extra buildup.

It would also be something you could offer class feats to modify. Perhaps a Wizard can take a feat that grants a bonus to investment checks, a Rogue one that make him more able to force activations and an Alchemist one that gives a bonus to buildup checks.

1: Satisfaction guaranteed or your money back.⁷

2: It is the only one that lacks it. Str has carrying capacity, Dex has AC and Reflex saves, Con has HP and Fort saves, Int has Skill Points and languages, Wis has Will saves and Perception.

3: Annoyingly, I can't think of good names to use for the two parts. Resonance works for both, but I need to change it for one of them.

4: Caster level in PF1.

5: Personally I'm going to look to Hero's rules for fractional Damage Classes, so it will go 1, 1d3-1 (min 1), 1d3, 1d6-1 (min 1), 1d6. However, that's me and I would hardly expect others to go to that detail.

6: Perhaps even a bonus power, (protection from gaze attacks?), if you have both.

7: All $0 of it.


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Matthew Downie wrote:
Doktor Weasel wrote:
The dragon hoard issue is probably always going to be a problem, mostly because artwork tends to show absolutely absurd piles of gold. It's a running joke in my group that an adventure will have a picture showing the dragon sitting on a 20 ft tall mountain of gold and then the treasure list is like: 2,000 gp, 4,000 sp, 9,000 cp. Smaug was possibly sitting on more gold than has ever been mined on Earth.
I had a dragon hoard in a recent D&D game that was something like 300,000cp, with a thin layer of gold on top, for show. That feels about right to me.

No such luck: With 25% efficient packing that's still only a cubic meter at 50 coins per pound. The old 10 coins per pound of early (A)D&D could give those "dragon bed" hordes, but only barely.

As for Smaug: The two hordes portrayed in the movies would have more gold than mined on Earth¹, the one in the book would not, (it isn't the 'sea' of treasure the movies used).

1: About 60 semi-trailers worth of volume, although you would need far more to carry it.


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CommanderCoyler wrote:

Good idea, I'd lower those by two each though. Would feel weird to need investment for Padded/Leather and need to wait until level 10 to wear plate effectively.

Also why are hide and breastplate randomly so high?

One classic way of dealing with this sort of thing is to base the penalty on how much you are short of the minimum.

So someone with 18 Str might get a penalty when wearing full plate, but it isn't as bad as the penalty his 16 Str friend is dealing with.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:

It feels like the example from 1979 doesn't hold up if you actually set out to test it.

Like if we have two people who are tied up and someone is shooting them with crossbow bolts from sufficiently close that you cannot possibly miss the level 20 character can survive upwards of 20 crossbow bolts having pierced their flesh, the level 1 character might die after the 3rd shot.

I think the broader point is that sufficiently isolated and stripped of the context of "actual gameplay" all gamist conventions like hit points and spell slots and metacurrencies become silly. We avoid this absurdity simply by not setting out to expose it.

Congratulations: You have discovered that it's pretty much impossible to write a set of game rules that are both playable and a perfect model of what it represents.

Although, you should remember that being tied up is not going to eliminate all of the various other factors that HP represent. Luck still applies, as does divine protection, the various magical defenses that are abstracted into HP and such.

BTW: Your counterexample isn't as good as you think. 20 coup de grace attempts are probably going to kill anybody given the 20 Fort saves with DCs up to 34, (light XBow), or 40, (heavy XBow).

(P.S.: The quote is from '79, the example is mine.)


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Ed Reppert wrote:
Vic Ferrari wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
Like hit points sort of imply that a high level character can be pierced by a dozen spears and then do a tap routine every bit as good as they could if they did not have sharp metal and wood stuck in their body.
That is not how hit points work, what they represent, this was all explained over 40 years ago.
I daresay some people playing this game, and probably even some in this thread, weren't even born then. So they're probably unaware of this explanation. And I'm too old to remember it. Can you enlighten us?

While the 1ed DMG isn't quite that old, (1979):

Quote:
It is quite unreasonable to assume that as a character gains levels of ability in his or her class that a corresponding gain in actual ability to sustain physical damage takes place. It is preposterous to state such an assumption, for if we are to assume that a man is killed by a sword thrust which does 4 hit points of damage, we must similarly assume that a hero could, on the average, withstand five such thrusts before being slain! Why then the increase in hit points? Because these reflect both the actual physical ability of the character to withstand damage—as indicated by constitution bonuses—and a commensurate increase in such areas as skill in combat and similar life-or-death situations, the “sixth sense” which warns the individual of some otherwise unforeseen events, sheer luck, and the fantastic provisions of magical protections and/or divine protection.

To give some examples, allow me to introduce Grok. Grok is quite good with a spear, more importantly he is very consistent and always does exactly 10 points of damage.

Let us begin with the lamentably named Unfortunate Exemplar, a peasant with 3HP.

"What do you mean lam-URK!"

As we can see, Mr. Exemplar has a spear clear through him and is rapidly bleeding out. Next we have Bob the warrior, with 20HP. Notice how Bob takes a fairly nasty leg wound because he knew to jump back when Grok lunged at him.

Mandrake here, as you might expect, is a wizard but he's been around the block more than a few times and has 50HP. He is less able to dodge the blow than Bob, but he does have a number of minor protective magics that slow and deflect it resulting in it just putting a gash in his arm.

Finally we have Balka, a priestess of Gorum. She is highly experienced and rather tough with 120HP. Notice how the battle senses granted to her by her Lord in Iron allow her to react even before Grok begins his thrust, deflecting it so that it merely draws a scar across her cheek. Which is why Grok can now be seen leaving the forum at a fairly rapid pace.

In general, the more HP you have the less damage you are actually taking.

Oh, don't worry about Grok: They know each other and this is foreplay for them.


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thflame wrote:
One thing I am trying to implement in my home system is a mana system where magic regenerates like hit points do. It takes a few days to heal wounds naturally, so it makes sense that it takes a few days to regenerate spells naturally. If you "go nova" you can't just rest for 8 hours and be ready to go the next day. You may have to camp out for a week, in which time there is plenty of narrative freedom to have all manner of beasts assail the party.

Sounds like you are doing something similar to 1ed AD&D: It became impossible for a Magic-user to cast a full load of spells two days in a row at 12th level¹ and you were running into limitations for being on watch as early as 5th.

1: You needed 8 hours of complete rest, (i.e. sleep or the like), to recover 5th and 6th level spells plus 16½ hours for the 66 spell levels. Since that put you over 24 hours, you needed to rest _again_ for 4 hours to recover the final one or two spells.


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neaven wrote:
Timed missions? Boo.

Never mind timed missions, I have seriously run into people who are adamantly against even having "the bad guys" react to your attack yesterday by being on alert for another one today.

IMHO, 'time pressure'¹ is the #1 thing to use against the 15 minute adventuring day. It doesn't even always need to be in play, just something the players automatically consider.

1: Broadly defined. Not just deadlines, but also things like increased levels of alertness, reinforcements, securing now revealed back doors or even packing up and fleeing in the night.


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Cyrad wrote:


1) Worn items and consumables use the same Resonance pool, creating the problem where magical gear somehow limits your ability to use consumables. This feels awful, doesn't make much narrative sense, and punishes non-magical classes who have to rely on magical gear to make up for not having magical effects to handle high level threats.

This is exactly what I pretty much instantly saw as a potential problem with Resonance, trying to fix two different problems with one solution.

Now, setting a limit that says "you can only have this much enchanted gear that works" and using it to replace most of the slot system? That's a great idea and I'll probably steal it even if I don't end up using PF2¹. Using the same limited resource for limiting consumable use... yahno.

Now, the "Wand of CLW" hasn't been a big issue in my games, (I will admit that a huge part of that is player personality), but if I were to implement a fix on that sort of thing I would probably lean on my not minding a bit of record-keeping. For cure spells specifically, a first thought is that characters build 'resistance' to them from constant casting, (e.g, -1 to the roll for every previous cure spell that day²).

1: Not stealing it would probably involve things like "switching to non-fantasy games for a while," (which would moot point the issue), or "dusting off my Fantasy Hero notes," (Hero already covers that ground).

2: Just a first pass spitballing that makes spamming a basic CLW Wand, (avg. 20.5 HP over 9 castings), only barely better than a single use of Cure Serious Wounds, (avg. 18.5HP).


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ChibiNyan wrote:
I think PFS balance has more of an impact on this edition than people realize. It is in this medium that balance concerns and silly builds become the most dramatic since GMs are told they can't improvise anything or change any rules in order to accomodate strange characters. With heavy homgenization and super tight math, that means the quests will always be appropiate and nobody will be able to break the game.

PF2 being "PFS, the RPG rules" has been my core worry pretty much from the get-go. As you note, organized play has particular concerns and lacks key tools for dealing with many problems¹.

Worse, the high value for system imposed balance that results is going to be focused on whatever tends to be the norm in adventure design for the organized play system². Even if there is an active effort to 'mix it up', you are still going to run into the impacts of event time restrictions. A large amount of the adventures are going to need to be playable in a fixed time slot with no ability to say things like "this is a good place to stop, we'll pick up next week after your characters have had a good night's rest."

1: The big one being the ability to say things like "no, you are not playing The Landlord³ in my game."

2: I suspect design feedback loops are in play, pushing players to builds aimed at the most common adventure conditions and the adventures to things fun for the more common builds.

3: A stock Champions example of a by-the-rules but totally broken character. He has a base with grounds that cover the entire Earth and 7.6 billion followers.


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Mathmuse wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:


If you're running a playtest, you primarily want to see how the classes and systems perform in 'standard' conditions - eg, level one characters stumble upon four goblins in a room who attack immediately. If the game is interesting under these circumstances, then the system is probably good.

No.

I have playtested often at a game design club named Table Treasure Games. One need is to test the strategies that the designer overlooked. Likewise, I have tested algorithms and software on my job, and we have to test the extremes. The standard conditions are the part that people understand the best. The extremes have the new data.

You are thinking of a different part of the testing: This round of testing is "does it work?" not "can we break it?"


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Secret Wizard wrote:
So one of my favorite types of campaigns to run are Survival campaigns.

Combining a full-up survival game with food conjuration does tend to be a problem and it probably does require some house ruling from a more general set of rules. One thing I used in Skull & Shackles to explain why sailors would put into islands to get water was the belief that too much "faerie water" would leave you vulnerable to magic¹. Adding some penalty for relying on constantly conjuring food leaves it as an option for emergencies while making the finding of 'real food' still vital.

1: The truth was that you would build up a saving throw penalty against most fay magic if most of your food/water was conjured. IIRC, it was something like -1/week and you needed to go 100% 'real' to recover at about the same rate.


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dragonhunterq wrote:
Bjørn Røyrvik wrote:
BretI wrote:

Hero System (the rules underlying Champions) used a language chart that showed languages with common roots. It made other languages from the same family easier to learn than completely different ones.

Ars Magica for instance lists language families and mutual intelligibility.
Sounds painfully dull if I'm honest and I actually prefer PF2 to that level of detail.

In use the Hero language rules aren't much of an imposition on the players. The hardest part is finding languages on the rather clear chart and it's only as dense as it is because the one given as a sample is for a wide selection of RL languages, (71 languages plus a catch-all for First Nations/Aboriginal/etc.). For a typical FRP setting you aren't going to have anywhere near that many unless you are taking advantage of it to split languages¹.

The real work is creating the language relationship table in the first place. And min-maxers who are going to try and figure out the right order to take things to save a character point or two.²

1: e.g. instead of Elven, you have -

High Elven (Kyonin)
Old Elven (Mordant Spire)
Low Elven (forlorn of the Inner Sea region, think Yiddish)
Drowish
North Elven (Snowcaster)
South Elven (Mwangi and Osiri desert)
Jinin

All of which are related to each other at fairly high levels.

2: Hmmm, I need to learn Arabic... I have 4 points in German, that gives me 2 in Yiddish which means I get a free point if I buy Hebrew which will do the same for Arabic so I can spend 2 points to get both Hebrew and Arabic at the 2-point level rather than 2 to just get Arabic at the 1-point level.


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While PF2 isn't saying things like "trees get harder to climb", as was the common misinterpretation of things in 4e it is shading into the actual issue 4e had with skill DCs:

An encouragement of 'backwards' design, where you start with the DC you need to have an appropriate challenge then figure out what would give that DC. So if the characters are, say, 10th level there simply won't be a tree anywhere useful for getting over a wall or into a window¹ and the wall will generally be hard to climb. As opposed to 'forwards' design where you start with what is right for the adventure from a plot and setting perspective and then deal with things that are too hard/too easy, (too hard might mean 'this probably isn't an option' and too easy may have something else attached to it² or simply be assumed as something the party can just do).

N.B. Encourage and require are not synonyms.

1: If one wanted to be silly about it a GM could say "you advance to sixth level, in 'totally unrelated' news a new landscaping fad for short bushes is sweeping the nation."

2: e.g. The guards know about how easy it is to climb in that window and thus include the lord's childhood room in their rounds.

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