Chris Kenney's page

RPG Superstar 6 Season Star Voter. Organized Play Member. 1,180 posts (4,147 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 5 Organized Play characters. 11 aliases.


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The problem isn't the generic nature of the options given alone. It's that, with the aggressive siloing of those options into neat little boxes, characters tend to feel far more generic than PF1's core options alone.

In PF1, I could make an entire party of four Bards straight from the core rulebook and they'd mostly feel distinct from one another right from level 1, before even sitting down to play. Without archetypes this wouldn't be a good idea due to the Performance overlap, but it could be done. I can't really do that in PF2 - they're restricted to a small set of very similar weapons, the large pool of known skills and shorter list of skills means they're going to have a pretty large overlap even before Bardic Lore and Versatile Performance are taken into account. There's Ancestries and Spells, but (not having had a chance to play yet) the Occult list doesn't feel like it has enough variety to make up for the fact that everyone's going to have a longsword, rapier, or their race's ancestral weapons plus a short bow.

There's also something about Signature Skills that. . . feels restrictive. It's not as bad as it feels, but you end up looking at it and getting the initial impression that "This is all the class is good for."


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magnuskn wrote:
Having encounters which get your heart pumping because you fear that your character is in serious danger is, IMO, almost always the better solution.

You've missed something. That assumes that the design of the game is around combats where every single decision should have immediate, potentially fatal consequences. 3.0 was trying to move away from that idea. The design, instead, was to create tension around weaker combatants by making the resource game important. Even if you screw up and things go badly, the party would be able to recover and move on. This was deemed important since it was no longer possible to toss a handful of dice and whip up a replacement high-level character for a dead party member in 3 minutes.

So where does the tension come from? Resource management. A bad encounter against mooks might no longer result in a character death, but the party is in much worse shape afterwards in terms of spells, per-day abilities, and consumables. That makes continuing to fight more dangerous, even against enemies of supposedly weaker power levels. Thus, the danger (and engagement) increase as the adventuring day continues.

Obviously, that didn't happen. So, what went wrong? Two things. One, the designers miscalculated, badly. They assumed the 2E norm of continuing to adventure until the GM said there were no more hours in the day would hold in 3E. Yes, believe it or not it was normal back in the day to make the wizard keep going after his spells were gone, throwing daggers and praying not to be targeted for wearing silly robes in a combat situation.

Two, they made an important resource , HP, far too easy to convert a more trivial resource, GP, to obtain.

This created the 15-minute adventuring day, and arguably every iteration of D&D since has been attempting to resolve that one issue since, once players noticed they could trivialize encounters just by going home between them, they started normalizing it.

Also, from a design perspective, you can't really 'just roll with it' and throw more dangerous monsters at the PCs since that warps the XP curve, as well as limits the variety of encounters you can design to always being super-dangerous. In the current design intent, where 4-6 encounters against even CR makes the last three deadly, you have more room to vary things up. If you want to run CR+4 encounters as mooks in your homebrew, go nuts, but as a designer you have to keep everyone in mind. Everyone from players like yourself who've been at this for 20 years to the bright 12-year-old picking up the book and running for his friends for the first time and expecting everything to work right exactly as described.


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Okay, after a decent night's sleep, it occurred to me that there might be some clues about where this is headed in the Starfinder rules, which I hadn't looked at. And lo and behold, I find these things called "Character Themes" along with an up-front declaration that those who want to stray from the path will be the weakest characters.

I'm done. Not even going to look at the playtest - it's obvious you consider that experiment wildly successful and are going to shoehorn the exact concepts you think are appropriate to your game world into the rules at a fundamental level. That's not what I use Pathfinder for, so the new edition is effectively useless.


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Stone Dog wrote:


Now, let me say right out that I'm not a fan of DEX to damage in melee, really. It just doesn't feel right, but that is just a personal option.

However! What I could get behind? Something that progresses from DEX-to-hit in melee and starts giving more frequent criticals. Improve a critical to a roll >5+AC. Let DEX-to-hit characters stack effects onto those criticals that normal heavy hitters can't do.

Big problem is that criticals tend to be swingy, and thus increasing the frequency of them can rapidly cause either frustration (since a bad run of luck means you're not actually seeing the effects of your investment) or absolutely wreck encounters (which can lead to frustration on the part of the GM). It's an idea, but it likely doesn't go where you want it to.


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...having read through both the FAQ and the thread, I feel the need to say I am...cautiously pessimistic about this. I see two places where I think, for those I play with, this new edition is going to fall down and fall down HARD.

1) Baking backgrounds directly into character creation. Please, PLEASE kill this idea now. It's almost always awful. It tends to work out best in systems that are designed to tell very narrow and limited types of stories (for example, all the characters are assumed to be members of the same military, drawn from different specializations) and break when you expand them.

You're about to tell me how you're different, how they're really broad and etc etc. Don't. The problem with this approach is that it places restrictions on how characters can pick up particular abilities to narrowly specific past experiences. (Bad) GMs will use it as an excuse to force players not to do anything with their backgrounds not explicitly spelled out in the core rulebook.

You can present it as an optional system, but put freeform backgrounds front and center. If you don't, that's a dealbreaker up front.

2) Full Golarion integration. A lot of the appeal of D&D and PF is the 'generic fantasy toolkit' with a core restricted to the cliched fantasy stereotypes. By integrating mechanics too tightly with lore, you create a system that loses a great deal of its' utility for the sake of avoiding some of the arguments over players wanting to have things that don't fit your preferences. Going this way reduces Pathfinder's utility, and therefore a great deal of its' value.


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Statboy wrote:
Boon Companion never applied to the Master but to the Companion to begin with.

I can only assume at this point you are being deliberately obtuse. I will explain one more time for the sake of anyone else reading, and then I am done with this.

If, somehow, some way, an Animal Companion takes Boon Companion, it then applies to the Animal Companion's Animal Companion, which they would then need some way of getting for it to do anything. Period. Stop. If the Companion's Boon Companion applies to themselves, then by extension ALL FEATS taken by any Animal Companion can therefore be applied to the character who that Companion belongs to, by the same logic you are applying.


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Sorry, but no. I can see where you can get that, but there are two problems.

1) I should have brought this up earlier, but your reading (and my first reading) ignores the rules text immediately above it. Complete section for reference:

Ultimate Wilderness p. 217 wrote:

As they grow in strength and experience, animal companions and mounts develop mutations, personality quirks, and tricks that grant them new abilities unlike those seen in typical animals of their kind. The following feats can be chosen by characters with the animal companion or by companions themselves, as indicated in each feat’s prerequisite line.

An animal companion or mount can select from the feats listed below that include “animal companion” as a prerequisite as if it appeared on the list of animal feats on page 53 of the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook.

The whole paragraph, along with the lack of italicization of "animal companion" makes it clear. The basic communication problem is that we're talking about two different, really confusingly named things.

animal companion: The actual creature granted by the class feature.
Animal Companion: The class feature that grants a companion. (To try to make this easier, this is usually stated as Animal Companion class feature, but not always.)

With this in mind, go back and break it down - it only refers to the "animal companion" tag, not the Animal Companion (class feature) tag.

2) Even if it operated in the more permissive fashion, it doesn't work - Boon Companion would give the +4 bonus to the (non-existent) companion of the companion if the prerequisite were somehow bypassed.


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First, to address the general reason why Inspire Courage is so good: It's about action economy and rarity. Flat bonuses to hit that stack with just about everything are hard to find. Flat bonuses to damage that stack with everything are even harder. A flat bonus to both these things as a move or swift action? You'd be a fool to pass that up.

On the other hand, haste is on so many different spell lists (Including the bard's), and so useful, that the party's almost never going to be without it, or one of its' improvements (all of which will overwrite Blazing Rondo since it lacks a spell level per the usual Haste stacking rules.) Also, for those who like to use Lingering Performance Masterpieces don't work.

Is Inspire Courage absolutely necessary? Not really, parties without Bards can certainly be successful. But if you're going to give it up in an archetype, you need a good reason. Something good enough that your party can play around it (Like the Magician's Dweomercraft if you've got a party full of 6-and-9 level casters), or something that absolutely makes your character work (A Court Bard focused on control via enchantment spells.)

To answer the specific question you're really asking, you can't look at Blazing Rondo against Inspire Courage in a vacuum. To evaluate fairly, you need to compare it plus whatever spell(s) you might cast alongside against Inspire Courage + Haste (Which is going to be your go-to if you don't have a better standard action in the first round of combat.) We'll use 7th level since that's where move-action performances come online. At that point, Blazing Rondo alone loses the fight because IC+H gives +1 damage per hit, and with iteratives that can start adding up if you have multiple martials in your party, and really add up if Companions are being used. If we use a typical 5-man party (Bard, Fighter, Wizard, Rogue, Cleric), that's between 6-10 damage a round, for no actions spent beyond the first round. That's...fairly significant over a long combat. Whatever spell you're casting alongside Blazing Rondo has to match that kind of performance, and I'm not sure many on the Bard list do.


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DeltaPangaea wrote:


Which, y'know. Ain't a good thing if it's true. The Kineticist would probably be less awful if they did, and the Medium might well have more spirits...

Uhm, both of these were adjusted per playtest feedback. The Kineticist didn't get adjusted enough but it certainly got a bump, and the problem with the Medium was the playtest version had a bewildering array of spirits, intended to introduce an exponentially larger number, and only two or three of the ones they had were of any value. They eliminated a ton of chaff and made six good ones, with the possibility of introducing more later.


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This one is going to require A LOT more information - we basically need to know your entire cosmology because you're clearly not using the Pathfinder standard, or possibly you're misunderstanding it.

However, proceeding on the presumption that you are, indeed, trying to use the PF standard cosmology, the first thing is that this kind of wanton murder is never Good. Never. The GOD would become evil for ordering it of his priesthood.

I'm going to sort of skip the first question you asked, because it's an individual thing and I don't really have enough information on what their belief system is.

Paladins who follow the order fall. Period. No ambiguity on this one - direct murder of an acknowledged innocent is a deliberate evil act, regardless of reasons. That's the one rule ALL Paladins have to follow

ALL Paladins who refuse retain their status, so long as their ethos doesn't have an edict requiring them to obey their god (And they don't have an archetype requiring them to follow a deity.) Base Pathfinder doesn't even require Paladins to draw their power from a deity, so they'll retain their powers regardless over their refusal.


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To take these in order...

Chris Lambertz wrote:


- Does having more accessible and visible introductions to our new design/development staff sound like something you want? (Either through our blog via tags or maybe our contact page?) Is there something we can do to the forums themselves to make employees more visible?

The first idea sounds all right, but it's not really what we're going for here. The key problem is that the rules team already has the tools they need, but are choosing, for whatever reason, not to use them. I'm not trying to pass judgement on their reasons for not doing so, but it's leading to the problem whereby there's a disconnect. This can't be solved by giving them more tools, but by them using the tools they have.

Quote:
- How would you prefer to see new FAQs communicated to the community? Is that in the form of a blog series, or is it a series of threads?

I think it needs both, if not more, personally. Right now FAQs are extremely difficult to find if you don't know where to look. Stickied posts at the top of the Rules forum, individual Product Forums, and the General forum (could concievably be cross-linked somehow so they only need to be posted to once) plus a BIG link on the actual product pages might work.

Quote:
- Knowing how we've handled errata up until now, what would you change? If it's a blog, what general information would you like to see us include?

The first thing I'd do is stop calling a great deal of stuff like this "errata." Instead, reserve the word "errata" purely for editing issues. A +20 where a +2 was obviously intended, pure typos, that kind of thing. This would bring you in line with the English language. Errata might change rules-as-published, but would not consist of any changes of rules-as-intended. Errata, ideally, would happen very rarely as this kind of thing should be fairly easy to catch.

Now, how to handle the rest of these kinds of changes? First, let's instead call them (for want of a better term) "Updates." Updates reflect new ideas on how a particular rule should work from the rules team. They can be folded into the FAQ system (and announced in the same manner as above - an Update doesn't require a specific forum post to ask a question) but should be subjected to pretty restricted internal review. That would, hopefully, expedite serious changes like this to avoid problems like the massive retraining crisis PFS is undergoing.

Lastly, and I think this is important - there needs to be a moratorum on Updates between the end of Paizocon and the start of GenCon. If that means they don't make the new printing, they don't make the new printing.

Quote:
- Let's assume the PRD is a blank slate and we can have any unicorn we want, how would you invision errata being notated here?

Display the updated rule as colored text (I'll suggest red, but I'm no web designer). When moused over, red text in rules shows a pop-up of the original text and a link to the Update post or relevant Errata document.

Quote:
- Are versioned PDFs a thing you'd use and want?

Probably.

Quote:
- Polls have been mentioned here, and in the past we've done a *couple* playtest surveys. If we did have polls, what do you invision them being used for? What kind of content justifies a poll versus a feedback thread in your mind?

Updates on product over a certain age should probably require a poll. Obviously, a strong 'no' vote shouldn't be an automatic veto but it should give the rules team pause, which would hopefully make the point more clearly that the community finds certain types of updates . . .less than acceptable.


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Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Grond wrote:
His idea of a paladin is the holier than thou, look down my nose, constantly checking to make sure the party isn't violating rules, ready to donate all the party's loot, never crack a joke or be anything other than some steadfast Puritan warrior. Or as some Witch Hunter using Warhammer an an example.

Frankly - if he ever tries to give away other party members' share of the treasure (as you mentioned above) - he should fall. It's stealing, no matter his reasoning. Arguably Robin Hood style stealing (though less so as it wouldn't be from evil men who'd arguably stolen it in the first place) - but he was called the Prince of Thieves for a reason.

The paladin 'Josh' likes to play epitomizes the things that make many players not like to be in a party with paladins. It sounds like 'Theresa' is doing a far better job of playing a paladin than 'Josh' ever did.

Little as I post these days, this gets me to come out of my shell. Josh isn't roleplaying paladins, he's roleplaying jerks. Even the oldest of the old-school was only required to donate his own share. Anything else wasn't his to donate, and doing more than politely suggesting it would be a minor ethos violation itself.


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Uhm, the really egriegious thing here is the GM declared "Automatic damage every round until you're dead from being grappled once and you have no options to escape." There's a bit more going on than just the legality of the grapple itself.


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the secret fire wrote:
Wizard: "Gah...uhhhhh...this is...but I...wait! I'm going to cast a web between the rocks down there, and you peeps jump down into it. It might be a bumpy landing, but it should catch you, and I can dispel it when you're all down."

And then the party dies. There are about ten reasons it doesn't work or is a rotten idea in this scenario, starting with the fact that you can't cast it on the area described in the first place.

I'm sure others will also point out that the wizard's probably going to have scrolls of better solutions to the problem handy, and know which ones.

Quote:
Arcanist: "Well crap guys, I didn't prepare the right spell, but...give me six seconds...ok, now I can cast feather fall with all of my 1st level slots. You may jump at your leisure."

And he's burned through about a fourth of his resources for the day given a probable party of five-six targets. So even IF your web scenario worked, an Arcanist working with his fewer spells has just as much, if not more, reason to apply cleverness and ingenuity to the problem so he doesn't burn through his entire spell allowance. He also doesn't have ready access to Scribe Scroll, so he's (a bit) less likely to have the right answer a move action away without spending daily resources.


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Also, and one thing I feel the need to keep bringing up, is that Golarion is written as though it's not a static setting even though it very much is. What we see isn't intended to be taken as the end point, but a continuation of a never-ending cycle whereby the sentient races (particularly humanity) rise up from the stone age, usually to the beginnings of a Magiindustrial Era...and then some moron wonders what the World Destroyer Button on the new doohickey does and/or a rock falls out of the sky and resets everything back to the stone age. This has literally happened four times in various incarnations that I can think of off the top of my head.

Golarion does not have some wondrous continual upward curve of accumulated knowledge. Even in the real world, where we don't have to contend with civilization crumbling every couple thousand years on average, knowledge has routinely been lost and regained all the time up through roughly the later half of the 20th century. And we're still rediscovering stuff we obviously once knew.

How much worse is that going to be in Golarion, without an internet, where printing presses exist for maybe 300 years at a time and then people have to burn the books to survive the winter?

It just so happens that the 'snapshot' of this development and redevelopment cycle we're given is at a point where the "unknown" about the science of arcane magic still vastly outweighs the "known."


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It should also be pointed out that Golarion goblins have been described as having a seriously unreal metabolism at times (such as four killing and eating an entire horse in a single night.) That's probably a bit extreme, but it gives you an idea of some of the problems even a "civil" goblin might cause.


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My read - a Pearl would only work if the Arcanist has some way to "burn" the prepared spell slot (Losing access to the spell prepared in that slot) and would restore it for use with their spontaneous casting pool. Right now, I don't know of any way to do that other than maybe some 'steal spells' type abilities.


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Nathanael Love wrote:
Sure if they put all the revisions in one single volume of an updated core book and don't redo any other books, that would be fine. . . that's not an "edition" though.

Uhm, yes it is. WOTC's been trying to change the idea of what constitutes a new edition by creating a new game every five years and labeling it a "new edition" but that doesn't make them right.


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captain yesterday wrote:

man! if only they would come out with a book like that, why they could call it Pathfinder to the Max, or maybe Pathfinder Unchained?, nah!

;)

These sorts of things have never proven a long-term solution. It's been tried before, and at best you get temporary bickering about as bad as any edition war short of the 3E/4E one, followed by lots of "Well, I like it but it's 'just a sourcebook' and one of the other players hates it so we don't use it." Plus it can't actually fix underlying issues like the save divide, the Feat structure, the spell level assumptions, and so on.

And yes, I believe it's possible to fix these things without invalidating the Adventure Paths, although it's enough work that I can see Paizo being very hesitant about trying.

Pathfinder Unchained is a good breeding ground to try out new ideas for a revision. It's not a substitute for actually going in and doing that revision.


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JCAB wrote:
Especially when they are not actually indented to be BBEG in Aps.

So you completely missed my point. Anybody in a secondary supplement who gets more than a few lines is potentially going to be one of these down the line. To use your example, just because the head of the Acadame has not yet been featured in an AP doesn't mean he will not be. In fact, given the background on the Acadamae, he's a very good candidate for such at some point in the future. Just because that AP hasn't been written yet doesn't make it good practice to make him unsuitable for it.


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I also think there may be a cultural aspect to it. The gestures are close to universal, but casters taught in one school may exaggerate the motions, creating sweeping gestures that have some "force" behind them to try to ensure accuracy, whereas others make the shapes in a manner that is tight and controlled, with precise angular motions. It's the same spell, looked at through slightly different lenses.


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From that link, I note the rules on Haunts are "intentionally vague" per their own writer.

This tells me they're not suitable for Organized Play.


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John Compton wrote:
With that out of the way, let me address the conclusion that you've presented: in effect, that the character can buy anything on one of these Chronicle sheets at a moment's notice—even if that character is a mile underground in a sealed demiplane—so long as it's not during combat. This is not the case. Items that show up on Chronicle sheets are not kept in a nebulous storage capsule of things that you can purchase retroactively at a moment's notice. They are items that are added to your legal purchase list (normally consisting of the "always available" list and anything you've unlocked with Fame), but one must still go through the standard channels for acquiring them.

...although looking at it now, that sure does seem like a neat one-off boon to have, doesn't it? Makes some of those older mods sheets potentially useful under the right circumstance.

Michael VonHasseln wrote:
John Compton wrote:
Items that show up on Chronicle sheets are not kept in a nebulous storage capsule of things that you can purchase retroactively at a moment's notice. They are items that are added to your legal purchase list (normally consisting of the "always available" list and anything you've unlocked with Fame), but one must still go through the standard channels for acquiring them.
Reading your response, does this mean that Fame requirements do not need to be met to purchase something listed on a Chronicle? Or do those Fame requirements STILL restrict that purchase until the fame level is hit? I ask this because I may be doing a grave disservice to my players; they have been waiting until they reach Fame requirements, just to be safe.

Fame requirements do not need to be met in order to purchase items off a chronicle sheet.


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Devilkiller wrote:
If you feel like the new Crane Wing is useless I guess you feel not only that a +4 bonus to AC once a round is useless but that Total Defense is useless too.

In every live table game I've ever been in, a +X to affect any one thing that you're not doing is useless because most GMs won't hold up to tell you when he's looking to hit you, he'll just figure out your AC and announce "3 hits, X damage" (And most of the time not even the number of hits unless you have DR) unless you force him to hold up the game for every time you're attacked, which annoys everyone.

Total Defense means no one bothers to attack you, as a rule, unless you're the only target in reach. So that's pretty close to useless too.


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Physical attacks targeting touch-AC (which only a few monsters are well-protected against, with fewer as levels rise) combined with (with some doing or using advanced firearms) all the various feats that make archery otherwise the best single-target damage in the game.

Really is that simple - archery is already borderline overpowered, and combine that with the ability to almost automatically hit every attack pushes gunslinging over. The recent rulings on the weapon cord tone this down somewhat (it now takes serious magic item investment to pull off the reload trick) but you're planning on letting your players bypass that anyway.


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So we can't have Paladins in Golarion because they're constantly forced between freeing slaves (Highly chaotic act in direct violation of the core ethos "respect legitimate authority") and not freeing slaves (apparently always an evil act.)

Well, that settles that, since they obviously don't exist.


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Matt Thomason wrote:
- Precisely how the current price of a share in a company is determined.

Well, there's no simple answer to this and I've been up all night, but I'll try to explain the basics as I remember them.

The most basic answer is that "a share in a company is worth precisely what people think it's worth" but obviously how they get there is a complicated question. The exact process of determining this is a subject worthy of an entire college degree, so for our purposes let's say that the share price any individual should set is a simple additive of the company's current value (CV) plus it's profits or potential value (PV) minus any debts (D), all divided by the number of shares available.

So the value to you is: ((CV + PV) - D)/S

Now, CV is pretty much a science, basically all the assets the company has on hand (and this should be public knowledge) but PV is murkier. So, when you want to sell or buy a stock, you name a price that seems reasonable to you. Your broker finds someone willing to sell at that price, and that becomes the price.

From there, the market value (the price you find listed in the ticker) is an average of all the prices that people have agreed to trade stock at recently.

...and this is the simple version.


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Eric, again, caps, bolded, italicized because you're not paying attention apparently: THERE IS A SCENARIO WHERE YOU WALK INTO THE REMAINS OF A NECROMANTIC EXPERIMENT IN PROGRESS THAT HAS BEEN LEFT BEHIND DURING AN ATTACK ON THE GRAND LODGE!

There's no ambiguity here. The adventure doesn't comment on it because it was written while Seekers was core assumption. They're cleaning bodies to animate into skeletons, while a number of undead that have gone uncontrolled due to the attack wander around in the next room (this is an optional encounter during a real-time-controlled Special, so you may have missed this part if you were playing and running short of time.)


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Eric Saxon wrote:
And not about to let the Society be turned into a bastion of Necromantic experimentation.

This is an expression of a fundamental misconception of the Society.

Pathfinder society members are not innately good or evil. The core of their raison d'etre is historical research. All avenues of approach to assist in this endeavor are valid to the Decemvirate. The Year of the Shadow Lodge special partially takes place in the necromantic research labs the Society maintains in the Grand Lodge. They animate the dead in there for the purposes of experimentation, both for historical ("How did the Osirions make those variant ghouls to ward off that tomb we just raided, anyway?") and immediately practical ("We need a lot of diggers in a remote area on the cheap...") purposes.

If your character can't reconcile that this is something that's going on, south gate's that way. You can't miss it.

Grand Lodge

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Male Human (Cheliaxian) Sorcerer 9 / Diabolist 2

"Typical. The one time I'm not under explicit orders to take everything not nailed down and much of what is, that's when the servants of light decide to challenge what we're doing."


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Threeshades wrote:

The 1980s version of little shop of horrors was to originally have Audrey and Seymour be killed by Audrey II and the plants taking over the world. Thanks to focus group testing we got a standard cliché happy end instead.

Just remembered that.

Bad marketing practices ruin everything.

Eh, someone unearthed the cut shown to the focus groups some time last year. It was put up on Youtube. (Starts at 5:20) It differs from the "finished version" of the ending made for the blu-ray by Disney.

But anyway, having seen that cut now...I gotta be honest here. Yes, the cliche happy-ending tripe wasn't great, not thematically consistent, and so on. But the primary complaint that the test audience had about the first version is that it's too long and tedious, and it bloody IS. It's basically disconnected from the story (which has already ended) and really goes on for about a minute too long, using a repeated loop from "Don't Feed The Plants" to bridge the two verses in a way that starts to induce a headache.

Having all versions for comparison, and only being able to choose from what was actually made (rather than making my own edits). . . I'll go with the theatrical release.

Be ruled by the focus groups, and you will produce garbage fit only for consumption by the lowest common denominator. Ignore the focus groups, and you're likely to miss glaring flaws in your work that will ruin it forever.


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As to the question of "What kind of priority does your character place on the Society" that's not really at issue, in a way. The reality of Org Play is that we're not going to get a full picture of our character's lives out there. But the core campaign assumption is that your character gives enough of a darn about the Society that they're willing to do missions for the group, and while they are doing those missions it's priority one for them.

What you do with the other 90% of your year is largely up to you.


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Just going to point out a little-used gem here.

Biggest flaw is that it precludes the use of Lingering Performance, but it works very well as a self buff for smaller encounters where a full party haste is overkill but you want some extra damage, or with one of the Dervish archetypes to get your haste on a few levels early.


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If your character has to be some insane combination of Wyatt Earp and Penn Jillette to plausibly pull off your one-round action, something's off about your combination. All I'm gonna say.


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Writer wrote:

.

Equipment: Didn't realize there were equipment caps for them either, though to be frank the value of the armor they're wearing isn't 1700 gold (I'm just using the stats). It's technically worthless as it's just obscene layers of wood and metal bolted down on the poor fellows.

No, the value of their armor is 1730. That's there as a control on their power level, so even if you arbitrarily declare it "worthless" to control wealth, you should still try to stick to the guidelines.


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Tiny Coffee Golem wrote:
Uzzy wrote:
Tiny Coffee Golem wrote:
Metroid
The recent one sold a whole half a million copies in NA, which was well below expectations.
I didn't even know there was a recent one, which only adds to the problem. I was referring to the original.

Actually, despite the article's assertion, Other M was a pretty bad game. Rather than an FPS with heavy exploration elements it tried to adapt the 2D "Metroidvania" gameplay to a 3D environment with an incredibly clunky gameplay mechanic, and you had to practice flipping the wii-mote between holding it like a controller and pointing it at the screen to effectively use missiles.

Game plot spoiler:
Then it was also an insult to the entire female gender with Samus being portrayed as a moronic blonde bimbo who needed the 'real' space marines to jump in and save her at several points, including screaming and breaking down crying in the face of Ridley. If you're aware of the series, I'll just let that sink in for a moment. If you're not, Ridley has come back from the dead so many times he may as well be a comic book hero. There was also the "Hell hallway" where she wouldn't put on the Varia suit because a man hadn't told her she could. She had it with her, just...wouldn't put it on.

...so, yeah. Using Other M to draw any reasonable conclusions about female protaganists in general is kinda hard.


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Why would you want to turn into a giant snake? It never helps...

(On a more serious note, make sure to check all the Bestiaries, plus there may be other supplemental sources with what you're looking for.)


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Reincarnate isn't remotely grounds for a Fall.


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My ruling would be that returning shuriken, which are not unreasonable in concept, should be charged as single weapons, the same way a returning dagger would be. Yes, this makes full flurry with returning shuriken prohibitively expensive, but so is a full attack with thrown daggers.


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kumanekotan wrote:
I hate that magic is not used to do anything other than fireball monsters. That is ridiculous. Are the various races of Golarion too stupid to realize magic could make every aspect of their lives infinitely better? At the very least, use golems to build stuff, move stuff, and kill stuff rather than doing so yourself. I guess toiling away and/or risking death is something they enjoy on Golarion. Only using golems to guard forgotten dungeons for thousands of years makes much more sense.

Actually, there are places on Golarion where this has been tried. The problem is that, in the long run, large numbers of golems have this tendency to decide the weak fleshy things just have to go. The ways around this involve huge networks of magical runes orders of magnitude more expensive than the golems themselves, or sticking to only a very small number of golems per creator, and the rune network trick was largely lost with the fall of Thassilon.

Remember, Golarion's had a number of apocalypses, and civilization is still recovering from the most recent one. The reason a lot of things that magic can do aren't being exploited is that the knowledge to do so is in the process of being rediscovered.


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To head things like this off in the future, explain to him the following:

PFS RULES ARE PERMISSIVE. Unlike much of the game rules, where the basic attitude is "If there's nothing saying you can't, ask the GM" in PFS the rules are assumed to outline what you're allowed to do. If it doesn't say "You can do this" somewhere, and say so explicitly, then you can't do it even if it could theoretically happen.

Kind of the nature of the Org-play beast.


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Vestrial wrote:

Your contention that movement is rare and/or hard to accomplish during fights is erroneous. Its easy to do a full move every single turn, but it doesn't even require that. If you're fighting appropriate CR opponents, the rank and file do not live more than a round or two. That means you have to move every couple rounds anyway. You also discount the value of the feat you burned on Blind fight. Power attack (or weapon focus) + Vital Strike is going to be more damage than moonlight stalker.

If the entire concept of the character is to move around a lot delivering large blows, saying 'well just stand still and full attack' doesn't really help. Your initial 'proof' revolved around 1.3 dpr. 1.3 dpr is utterly irrelevant. If you want to actually provide a 'proof' that shows stalker does so much more damage over the course of an actual encounter, be my guest. Until then, you haven't proven anything.

If you are taking more than a 5-foot step more than once an encounter as a melee fighter (note the small 'f'), someone else isn't doing their job.


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MaestroVolpe wrote:

Okay, so what I'm really hearing from all of you is that ALL of my fears are hugely confirmed.

Rogues/Ninjas are collectively seen as completely fungible, mostly useless in combat and therefore unwanted, and nobody likes a character with a well-rounded set of abilities because apparently min/maxing is the only way to go.

This does not sound like a tabletop RPG I would enjoy.

Which is a pity, this game sounded like it would be awesome.

To add to what Sky said, the problem is that the Rogue isn't well-rounded. At all. It's ridiculously over-specialized on one thing, skills. Skills Skills Skills. This is supposed to be what Rogues shine at.

The problem is, the skill system (and many classes) moved on, while Rogues did not.

Nowadays, even two guys with Int+4 classes, both human and putting their Favored Class bonus into skills, can cover the Rogue's role with basically no investment just by being reasonably careful. Bards, who got a massive boost to their skills via Versatile Performance, actually make out better on raw ranks than Rogues do.


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Here's the thing I always say about bards - unless you work for it, they're not impressive on the surface.

They won't have the feats to get off that "Make heads explode" hit you see from the paladins, barbarians, and even fighters under their ideal circumstances.

They don't have the flashy control spells that render +4 CR encounters trivial with a few unlucky die rolls.

They can't drop heals all day and keep a party that's taking a beating up like a cleric or life oracle.

Even as a skill-monkey, they're really only on par with the rogue, not massively surpassing them without some serious building for it.

What the Bard class, especially Core, excels at is "the pebble that starts the avalanche." Inspire Courage is a perfect example of how this works - at first level, it's +1 to hit, +1 to damage, and +1 to a couple of circumstantial saves. But, +1 to damage is hard to come by at first level, and HP is measured in single digits on many encounters, so it's not nothing. And it will apply to (almost) every attack made, plus it makes Power Attacking from the heavy hitters a wash (so another +2 damage for their rolls). That's your damage, even though you're not the guy rolling the dice. In a six-man party with two martial-primary characters (not unreasonable), for one round of action investment you've probably dealt somewhere between 10-20 points of damage over a five round combat. A wizard can do better with Sleep or Color Spray, if the saving throw dice go their way, but it's still pretty impressive for something you can do out of the gate.

And then you've still got an excellent array of buffs (and potentially debuffs) to go before you wade in, probably no later than round three, to start adding damage directly.

That's the trick. None of these abilities is going to set the world on fire or make people sit up and take notice. But they're always there, always working in the background to make everything and everyone around you better.


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You're going to want some levels of Samurai (Sword Saint) with the Order of the Blue Rose for both the quick-draw-strike and the ability to freely use any weapon to deal non-lethal damage. Also, bear in mind that Kenshin's real advantage is keen insight into his opponent's motivations, so ranks in Sense Motive, Bluff, and Diplomacy are going to be a must (although it took Kenshin a very long time to properly apply these traits, so getting high scores through ranks and maybe a few feat or two is acceptable.)


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Sleet Storm wrote:
Buri wrote:
In my current AP there have absolutely been DC 35's thrown at my players at level 5.

This guy is obviously trolling. LOL

A Wizard with 22 Int and max ranks in the required knowledge would have +14. That means not even a natural 20 would be enough for him to make this skill check.So if your GM likes to throw unbeatable skill checks at you thats fine , but it can't be the benchmark for anything.

Paizo APs often include "shortcuts" at unreasonably high knowledge checks. The expectation is not that every party, or even most parties, will consistently hit these results. It's that, if a character has invested heavily in the appropriate skill and gets lucky, that deserves an occasional reward.

More importantly, there is always some alternative to making these checks to get the relevant information or making the check just gives you fun, but not particularly useful, background info.

Star Voter Season 6

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Hmm...in the end, I think the disconnect here is that there are two problems:

1) Know your audience. The Paizo community, ultimately the group that decides this, has basically conceded that the Monk is decidedly on the weak side even of the martial characters. While one of the problems is definitely overcoming DR, MAD is perceived as a far nastier one. Ultimately, the problem with DR from alignments is a single cleric/inquisitor spell away, where managing MAD issues needs to be handled right at the character creation step and can fundamentally cripple a character. Making that decision even more untenable than the baseline monk is a very nasty drawback.

2) There's a precedent existing already for ki from charisma, the ninja. The end result is that the choice of which to use feels relatively arbitrary, since there's literally nothing special about the monk's lawful alignment left once that's taken into account. I suppose you could maybe count the fact that monks are allowed to use Wisdom in place of Charisma, backwards as that sounds.


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To be perfectly honest, every time I think of this I'm reminded of a joke (the source being long forgotten) about how a munchkin is the guy who, when told that the game will be about intrigue in Renaissance Italia...wishes to play a ninja.

Ninja gets a decent weapon variety, access to unarmed combat later, and Ezio is a very defensive fighter when he can't take advantage of a distraction. The only thing that's really off is the weapon list, and Ezio doesn't make great use of swords beyond the short sword anyway.


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As a generic trait, I'm willing to give Reactionary a broader reading than most. Almost any character with a long history of martial training could probably justify the idea of "You spent a lot of your childhood under threat of constant attack in some form," which might apply to a broad selection of characters.


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Honestly, what I get out of all this is this: Building a healbot is utterly pointless if you try to play a cleric. Why? Simple - once you write "cleric" and "channel positive energy" on your character sheet, you've invested enough resources to do it more than well enough unless you then make subsequent choices to negate that selection.

Healing domain? Excessive, the rest of your spells are already Cure On Demand.

Merciful Healer? That's getting really excessive, and it weakens your other abilities to get the overkill.

Selective Channel? Eh, on the off chance you start running out of feats you want (or take Versatile Channel or a variant channel) it's not a bad choice to fill a hole, gives you the option of in-combat channeling without playing a minigame of Tetris. But still not needed.

In short, if you are planning to heal every single round, you're neglecting a huge portion of your class features for the sake of sticking to a narrow and, frankly, weak play-style.

However, no battle plan (your build) will survive contact with the enemy intact. As a cleric, your major strength in dealing with this is that you can drop your initial plan at a moment's notice to start dealing with short-term problems. Many other characters with healing ability need to carefully ration it out in some fashion, whether it's picking up the spell from a list of limited spells known or actually needing to prepare all their Cure Wounds spells in advance. Just like any other versatility trick, the key to getting the most out of it is analysis of your situation. Mileage will vary based on how well you do it.

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