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The "melee touch" simply defines how to adjudicate applying the ability. Nowhere in the text does it say anything about swift/immediate/free actions, so it will default to the Standard action .

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There shouldnt be any issue using a staff/wand to cast Dispel Magic as a standard counterspell action.

There may be some specific counterspell specific action/rule that allows for doing it as a different type of action, and unless you also have some commensurate ability that allows you activate a staff/wand as that same type of action, you may not be able to use those special abilities with a wand/staff.

@Meirril - Why wouldnt you get a bonus 0 slot from your specialty school?

Copy machine at a local staples or equivalent, or perhaps most printers that exist nowadays?

My group recently finished VV before we took a little break due to one of our players moving away. They basically went to VH, then met the centaurs and immediately went for V's tomb. They did a good job of it, had some rough encounters but came away ahead due to solid planning and teamwork.

Since finishing VV, the player that moved was one of the ones most interested in the kingdom building aspect of the game. They have their kingdom pretty much on autopilot at this point and only can fail any roll on a 1.

The decision was made to go to the kingdom in the background model starting with B4B. We just ran the defense of TFord and the group did OK defending the town int he partial mass combat and then made a complete mockery of the trolls that attacked the village. I had forgotten how strong the party was and in general how hard to hit all of them are. I'll remember to throw the advanced template on almost everything going forward.

My real concern is that with such an obvious threat to their kingdom and a clear and precise plea from Kisandra the group is simply going to run over to Drelev, beat the bag out of the place and then do the same to Armag while completely ignoring the surrounding areas/encounters/etc.

Should I really be concerned about that? Hexploration was fun and cool when they were mapping out uncharted lands as lowly 1st/2nd level characters, but at this point I think they've lost the drive to stop and smell the roses.

Another B4B question in general, how well known have people made the Pitaxian backing of Armag and Drelev? I've read a few posts mentioning groups that would never go along with the intro to book 5 if the party knows Pitax has it out for them. I think it would be a tough sell for my group as well, so curious how others have played that out.

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Simplify the question a bit.

What would happen to an inanimate object in the same extra-dimensional space?

Likely nothing would change, unless the item specifically has a way for things inside to get out. Any function like that would be made inoperable much like being able to add to and remove items from the outside would no longer work while polymorphed/shapechanged/etc.

Fair enough on the bracers. The OP's case doesnt utilize them anyway so dont want to muddy that discussion further.

Or simply Bracers of Armor +4, Balanced and Leather Armor +1, Deathless.

But it's not that the magical armor is "off", it's that its armor bonus is being superceded by an existing, higher value one.

If your mage armor was suddenly dispelled, if you had +1 leather you would now have +3 armor bonus.

It's obvious that you cant wear 2 sets of armor so cant stack armor enchantments that way, but armor enchantments on 2 perfectly legal items that can be worn at the same time should work by my estimation.

I think I'm likely going to start running it in the background. Will have to go check those sections of the modules a little more closely.

Any words of advice from DM's who've done the same? Any particular pitfalls to watch out for or avoid?

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So my group recently finished up VV and it seems like the kingdom building stuff is starting to drag a bit. We lost a member of the group during VV who was very interested in it, and while the others are willing to do's mostly just become a "what do we need to keep our rolls so we only fail on 1's while continuing to expand and then reach to events as the occur".

There's no real driving engagement in that aspect at this point and I dont want to damage the overall experience by forcing them to continue with the kingdom stuff if they dont really want to.

The books certainly have the "kingdom in the background" rules, but I'm more looking for any words of wisdom or simple observations from anyone who's run their whole campaign that way or perhaps even did a transition mid-game like I'm considering.

Thanks in advance.

Each unique instance of casting a "Summon Monster.." spell allows you to add the evolutions.

You would add 2 1-point evolutions to the single creature summoned via the first spell, and then do the same for the single creature summoned via the next spell.

The bit about summoning more than 1 creature would apply if you opted to use the summoning list from a lower level spell to get multiple creatures with a single spell.

Are you perhaps thinking of the Celestial Plate Armor? ial-plate-armor/

Brenden Falke wrote:
Curghann wrote:
The second part only applies to spells with a visible effect

I've seen this before, but I can't find anything in the official rules that says it needs to be visible. Do you know where I could find this?

Additionally, my question also revolves around the question: does seeing the spell aura clearly count as a visible effect?

DM DoctorEvil wrote:

In this way, the determination of an aura, as described with Cat's Grace above, may lead to a second check (with a higher DC) to determine the actual spell that aura emanates from.

Right, this is the heart of my question. Because with Arcane Sight you'd see all auras. Does seeing the specific aura of a spell (knowing the school, strength and location) count as it being visible, and allow you to do a knowledge check to identify the spell effect? And does that give you the specific spell ("Mage armor") or only a general effect ("an abjuration spell that gives an armor bonus")?

I believe it's likely a holdover from the verbiage used in 3.5 when this was covered under Spellcraft's usage:

d20SRD wrote:

15 + spell level When casting detect magic, determine the school of magic involved in the aura of a single item or creature you can see. (If the aura is not a spell effect, the DC is 15 + one-half caster level.) No action required

20 + spell level Identify a spell that’s already in place and in effect. You must be able to see or detect the effects of the spell. No action required. No retry.

I realize that's 3.5's wording and not PF's, but in the absence of something more clarifying that's how my group plays it.

Identifying the aura's school and strength does not give you any further information. A learned caster could certainly make an educated guess as to what spells were in place, but just identifying the aura would not be sufficient to let you identify the exact spell.

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Arcane Sight would allow someone to make a Knowledge Arcana check for every active spell effect on an opponent to determine what school and strength they have.

The second part only applies to spells with a visible effect, like determining that the wall in front of you is the result of a Wall of Stone spell as opposed to simply part of the dungeon, or that the glowing blue nimbus around that person is a Fire Shield (Cold) spell.

Someone under the effects of something like Cat's Grace being observed by someone with Arcane Sight would only give them opportunity to detect that they are currently affected by a Transmutaion spell of Faint strength.

Isnt it written somewhere that unless otherwise specified all feat/class abils/etc are considered (EX)?

I've never looked for it and my googling is limited while working, but I thought I'd seen that referenced enough times to assume it's gospel.

The possible distinctions are things like Mage Armor that specifically mention providing their armor bonus against incorporeal attacks.

So they decided to keep the sword and give it to the king. I thought they were going to avoid the potential repercussions by also giving the king the sheath of bladestealth they found, but they decided to sell it instead.

So now the King is walking around with Varn's sword so I'll have it come up in a month or so.

@#Spatula - I really like that idea of turning it into a kingdom event a ways down the road, but one that isnt necessarily simply negated with a loyalty or stability check. I'll have to work out some mechanics for if they simply want to say "screw that guy" where they can pass some checks without trying to buy back the sword or something and result in a small amount of unrest. There are a couple Events where even a success ends up in a little unrest.

I'm not running "stock" kingdom building so my players arent completely crazy wealthy from selling magic items, but they are certainly comfortable in their kingdom.

Between book 2 and 3 they took 2BP out per month to fund buying a scroll of Awaken for the druid's AC who is their kingdom's mascot (on the flag and everything). He has since become their royal enforcer.

The annexation of VH is going to slightly change things as their kingdom numbers swell, but they were only failing things on a 1 before and I think after their stability stays above their control DC, but their loyalty will be well below it. I imagine they will take steps to quickly remedy that.

I've got a group of 5 and I've been running the 6 player conversion as they crush the normal encounters. To that end I've been giving them the 6 player conversion loot.

They found both the +3 great sword in the wyvern laid and the grey flame sword in the elasmosaurus lake.

They're currently on pace to each have over 36k to spend after finishing Vordekai.

I definitely don't feel like they're WBL-starved by any means. Not selling the sword reduces their per-person wealth by ~1800gp.

Using it as a kingdom type event would be great but they're likely to sell everything the first chance they get. I don't want to just hand them a "return the sword for +1 loyalty" choice, but I'm struggling with how the issue/idea could come up organically before they sell it.

So my PC's have finished VV and freed the 42 lost souls that were stored in Vordekai's soul jars.

The villagers pledged themselves to my PC's kingdom, but also asked them if they had recovered any of their missing possessions after taking stock of their ravaged town.

The PC's came up with the obvious coins that the Spriggan chieftan had in his bag of holding, but other than that they've kept everything else they looted from VH.

The scroll cache in the church of Erastil is mentioned as being intended for the PC's the take/use/keep, and with them having been hidden and the priest dead, no one would really be around to know they were gone anyway.

I'm feeling similarly about the potions of Waterbreathing in the blockhouse. The one I'm kind of stuck on is Maeghar Varn's sword. They saw his dead body in the feasthall and the party scribe immediately says "guess I'm moving that sword into the "sell" column". Similarly, the Folding Boat would be a somewhat noteworthy item than the town likely could make good use of.

I think the group is likely to keep the boat, but that sword is fairly notable and I think its sale would eventually get back to the VH'ers.

Should that trigger the 1d4+2 Unrest mentioned on page 24? I'm certainly not going to give them the +1 loyalty mentioned either way, but I dont want to hose them too badly. I already didnt gift them Skybolt because they simply freed Xamanthe and let her wander back home and the quest mentions "escort her back alive". I gave then the potions and the Stability bump, but Aecora didnt hand over Skybolt.

How did/would other DM's handle this? The sword is a fairly significant piece of treasure. I dont want to go so far as to have then VH'ers ask specifically for the sword as I dont like to lead my PC's around by the nose if I dont have to. I like to reward good thinking and ideas, but I also make sure poor decisions have ramifications as well.

Standard locations dont require anything to be found and will be found during normal exploration.

I determined my groups speed and how long it would take to explore a hex and rolled randomly to determine which day they stumbled across the standards.

For hiddens, I rolled secretly for each of the group if they explored a hex with a hidden location.

As mentioned in my "Vordekai who?" Thread, my group damaged the carving in the Oculus Focys room causing V to have 20% spell failure chance.

I have no thoughts my players would ever use the thing, but would anyone else implanting the item suffer the same problem?

My group has been delving into Vordekai's Tomb for the last couple sessions, having rescued Xamanthe the previous session.

Last night, they made their way through the burial chamber and decided not to go into the Hell Pool, but rather go to the Sacristy. They found the secret door to the Occulus Focus and hacked through the wall with the Samurai's adamantine sword. After identifying the magic of the wall carving as divination, they freaked out and went about destroying it until the magic was destroyed.

This triggers Vordekai's actions to buff and Dimension Door to the focus room.

They stayed in the room for a few more rounds so Vordekai and his champion showed up in the room with them and it was on.

The PC's were well arrayed for the champion's AoE fire cone so he shot that off a couple times while Vordekai tried dispelling their buffs and and casting spells at them. The spell fail from breaking the Occulus Focus foiled 2 of his buffs and his Waves of Fatigue, and after that the PC sorceror cast Mad Monkeys on V's square and between the caster level checks for casting in the swarm and the monkeys successfully stealing his spell component pouch and the arcane spell fail he was pretty well neutered. He and the champion even ended up in a Create Pit at one point. V tried to Dim Door them back to his throne room but the failed to complete the spell due to the occulus.

The PC's certainly didnt come out unscathed, but they made quick work of V and his champ. They all had Freedom of Movement on after hearing Xamanthe's story so the couple times V did hit people they were unaffected by his paralysis.

The fight took a long time, and they seemed to enjoy it but I had figured I was going to likely kill at least one of them in the combat (and wasnt too worried about it due to the Raise Dead scrolls they got in Varnhold).

Just wanted to share an interesting combat.

For a character that gains an AC via Animal Ally, is it as simple to replace the AC if it dies as it is for a druid, simply spending 24 hours in meditation?

Relatedly, when you get a new AC do they show up with all of the tricks you want them to have or is there some kind of expectation of needing to spend time training them?

Answers preferably backed up with quotes if possible.

So my group has just rescued Xamanthe and I provided them with her description of her captor as "skeletal with a glowing gem in it's eye socket".

I can only imagine this is going to drive my long time gamers absolutely insane thinking this is some form of demi-lich. They've already been crapping their pants at dealing with the flooded entrace, the mystery around the broken amphora, and then marvelling at the absolute brutality of the water trap (that they handled amazingly but recognize just how bad it could have gone) and then a very difficult fight with the Piscodemon and a Soul Eater after getting themselves all riled up trying to figure out how to open the door to the prison.

This place has been an excellent test of their mettle after absolutely breezing through the spriggans and then avoiding any ugliness with the centaurs by identifying the bow and bringing it right to them.

They're finally moving away from assuming this is related to Nyssa (they dont know her name as of yet), which is good. The "green bracelet" was similar enough to the other "green" items I gave to the SL, Hargulka, and the cursed ring of animal friendship, so it was a logical line to take but it's nice to see them move away from it...but now they really dont know what to think and it's got them on their toes.

I started this book a couple sessions ago and I have to say I'm absolutely loving how confused and paranoid my group is as they're exploring Varnhold.

They have gone through all the buildings that were broken into and have latched onto the "jade" bracelet as being green and being another extension of the items Nyrissa has been planting in the previous 2 books (Stag's Lord's ring, Ring of Animal Friendship, and I updated Hargulka's Headband of Int to be made from "tightly woven green hair").

The dead, frozen Spriggan has them completely mystified even though they did properly identify the magical emanation as the result of a Snake Sigil.

They didnt go into any of the other buildings to notice that they have all been looted/ransacked and are working under a false assumption that only some of the buildings were ransacked. The wanton destruction at the Potter's and the complete shredding of the gemcutters place are vastly different than the level of "tossing" that occurred at Gunderson's and the temple/Inn.

I dont imagine they're going to have all that much trouble with the Spriggans, but for now it's fun to see them on heels a bit.

I'm not terribly familiar with Alchemist mechanics, but creating the bomb itself is a Standard Action. Wouldnt this be mutually exclusive with Explosive Missle?

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The biggest problem with trying to build a "tank" is that the notion of threat/taunt/etc does not exist.

You can certainly make a PC that can sustain a lot of damage through a mixture of avoidance and mitigation, but unless you can actually present yourself as a threat to others, then intelligent enemies will simply go around you.

It might help if you give more context about what aspects of "tank" you're looking to incorporate and if you have any preferences with regards to classes, source material, and optimization level.

One clarification, leaving a threatened square provokes unless you're taking the Withdraw action.

In that specific scenario, only the first square is not considered threatened.

@CB - Thank you! That was killing me.

While he's talking about being "at range", he's not actually making "ranged attacks". He's using a reach weapon to attack while not being adjacent.

I'm a bit unclear on what the actual question is though. You've identified a scenario, but havent actually asked anything about sneak attacking. It's possible Kileanna has properly guessed at your meaning, but adding some additional context might help get you to an answer more quickly.

This is what it sounds like you've correctly identified thus far:

Start of round - holding weapon in 2 hands, threaten appropriately
Free Action - Remove 1 hand from weapon, no longer threatening
Standard action - Cast spell (still not threatening)

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My group did something very interesting in our last session.

One of the characters is a halfling druid who rides a wolf. The wolf has routinely outshined the Fighter types of the party (mostly due to complete lack of optimization by those other melee'ers). The wolf quickly became the mascot of the group and when they started their kingdom, they even put the wolf on their flag.

Fast forward to the end of book 2 and the group has leveled to 7. The druid's AC at 7 gets a size bump, and the halfling's player did think his character would want to ride around the large wolf. Rather than simply dismiss him, he wanted to "reward" his stalwart companion/partner and bought a scroll of Awaken.

Our last session was a bunch of kingdom turns to bring them up to the size VV suggests they be at. They've had an opening at the Royal Enforcer for quite a while and they rallied around the druid researching a version of Anthropomorphic Animal that he could cast on the now magical beast wolf and purchasing a scroll of permanency to make it last on the wolf.

They took out 1BP per turn, dealing with the resulting Unrest to help fund this, total expenditure ~15k gp.

They were totally cool with the wolf not really wanting to be their Royal Enforcer and instead preferring something more like the Marshal. They let him tag along with the Marshal for a few months and then made a nice pitch about Royal Enforcer spinning it as much more than "killing criminals" along with a decent Diplomacy roll to get the wolf to move from his "desired" role to the one the group preferred.

I realise the wolf has a very high Str and this is a decent benefit to the kingdom, but the way it came about organically it wasnt the driving motivation behind it. They came together in support of their mascot and devoted not insignificant time/resources and then ended up with a happy coincidence.

It was really cool to see something like that happen, especially when we were getting pretty deep into the kingdom turns which can get pretty stale and meta-gamey at times.

My group handles it like Dark Midian's. You get new Max HP (and increase current HP total by increase to Max HP), BAB, Saves, CL, etc.

New spells slots are "gained" but they are empty until you are able to fill them via the normal methods for replenishing spells.

If you had a magic item that only worked if you "can cast Xth level spells" and X was your newly available spell level, we would probably rule that you could use the item.

I think the question is if you had a spell that dealt damage over multiple rounds.

Round 1: Cast, deal Xd6 dmg
Round 2: Deal Yd6 dmg
Round 3: Deal Yd6 dmg

Something like Acid Arrow if it was Evocation.

Much like the previous responses, the extra damage should only be applied on the initial damage that's dealt.

You cannot use Immediate Actions while you're flat-footed. Being able to act in a Surprise round (whether by making a Perception check or from a class ability) does not keep you from being flat-footed until your initiative order comes up in the Surprise round.

Basically, you cannot use Immediate Actions until after you have acted for the first time in a combat (general rule, an exception that kept you from being flat-footed would superceded this).

Keedo wrote:
According to the power attack rules, he only gets a +2 damage until his base attack bonus reaches 4. It is currently only a 3

Where are you getting that from? wrote:

Power Attack (Combat)
You can make exceptionally deadly melee attacks by sacrificing accuracy for strength.

Prerequisites: Str 13, base attack bonus +1.
Benefit: You can choose to take a –1 penalty on all melee attack rolls and combat maneuver checks to gain a +2 bonus on all melee damage rolls. This bonus to damage is increased by half (+50%) if you are making an attack with a two-handed weapon, a one handed weapon using two hands, or a primary natural weapon that adds 1-1/2 times your Strength modifier on damage rolls. This bonus to damage is halved (–50%) if you are making an attack with an off-hand weapon or secondary natural weapon. When your base attack bonus reaches +4, and every 4 points thereafter, the penalty increases by –1 and the bonus to damage increases by +2. You must choose to use this feat before making an attack roll, and its effects last until your next turn. The bonus damage does not apply to touch attacks or effects that do not deal hit point damage.

I dont see anything saying you dont get the +50% for 2-handing before +4 BAB.

Fighting Defensively is also it's own standard action: wrote:

Fighting Defensively as a Standard Action: You can choose to fight defensively when attacking. If you do so, you take a –4 penalty on all attacks in a round to gain a +2 dodge bonus to AC until the start of your next turn.


It doesnt read like power attack at all. It is clearly stated to be a standard action:


Aid Another
In melee combat, you can help a friend attack or defend by distracting or interfering with an opponent. If you’re in position to make a melee attack on an opponent that is engaging a friend in melee combat, you can attempt to aid your friend as a standard action.

That's going to have a huge variance based on the game/table you're playing at.

Many GM's like to roll things like Percecption/Stealth/Disable Device/etc in secret so that the player can't derive information from the roll and the information they're given.

Many players will react differently if they're searching for traps and get a 1 and the GM says "you didnt find anything" than they might if they didnt know what the roll was and the GM said the same thing. Same thing for Perception.

A lot of it also simply has to do with keeping the game moving along at a good pace. Asking the table for a Perception check and hearing the results is a lot faster than the GM rolling for everyone and having their current scores handy to check against.

I'm not sure there is "RAW" for what players vs GM's should roll but many tables/games play very differently in how that's handled.

At the very least, most tables have players rolling their own attacks and saves. From there, YMMV.


Is that documented anywhere definitively?

SRD wrote:

Unlike most magic items, intelligent items can activate their own powers without waiting for a command word from their owner. Intelligent items act during their owner’s turn in the initiative order.

Is it assumed that the Rage spell benefits are included in the Owlbear's statblock? I see the AC penalty accounted for, but not being sure what the base stats for the owlbear are I'm not sure.

PW, thanks for the information.

pennywit wrote:
I was thinking of using the Blooms to introduce different planar traits for the areas that the blooms are manifesting in. For example, erratic time in one area, enhanced nature magic in another area, or weird things like everyone can only speak a given language or unable to say certain words (which makes for interesting social encounters on trying to learn what is going on).

That's a good idea.

Wouldn't using the blooms as mass combat though might be too expensive for the PCs though? I mean in regards to paying the armies' upkeep over such long distances for so long. Still, mass combat with the fey sounds wickedly cool. :)

Well, first, my players have their armies stashed in reserve, and they break them out into "official" action and thus pay full upkeep only when they're in action.

Second, my players have a few allies they can call on for additional assistance.

Third ... the Black Prince is the distraction. I'm taking a slightly different approach. I'm stealing part of the climax of Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn for the endgame. Basically, Nyrissa is going to try to control several places of power within the Stolen Lands and Pitax if she wants to bottle the place. Hence, the armies.

Per the Bolded section, isnt that basically counter to how the army system works? I mean, if you've got something specific for you game going that's cool but having an "army" in "reserve" would mean you're paying for them and if not then you'd have to spend whatever normal time to put an army together. I havent gotten to the Mass Combat part of my game yet so I havent gone over the rules with a fine-toothed comb so maybe gathering an army doesnt really take any time and disbanding them after use doesnt have any ramifications.

One way to promote going back to Oleg's frequently is to enforce food & water rules as well as encumbrance.

For the first couple levels my group was carefully planning out how much they could carry and have on horses and forage so they could figure out how far they could range into the wilderness. Eventually, they druid got a high enough Survival that he could forage for the whole group if they left their horses behind so they did that. But then, whenever they got any kind of loot...they had to head back as lugging it around while exploring made them move ridiculously slow.

RD - What you're describing is what the rules cover as "sunder".

The fluff method for how the attendee item is made to no longer be usable for it's intended function is up to the player/dm, but the mechanics that should be used are the sunder rules.

If by that you mean "no point in going into a PrC that doesnt advance spellcasting" then yes, you're mostly right.

But there are a large number of PrC's that have a feature that advances spellcasting so you may have a lot of options available depending what you want to do.

If that's the simple wording, then I would say that it would apply to any Grapple Combat Maneuver CMB rolls made against the character who has this ability's CMD.

PFSRD wrote:

Combat Maneuvers

During combat, you can attempt to perform a number of maneuvers that can hinder or even cripple your foe, including bull rush, disarm, grapple, overrun, sunder, and trip. Although these maneuvers have vastly different results, they all use a similar mechanic to determine success.

That identifies what the "combat maneuvers" are that would be eligible to be chosen by the ability. Then anything in the heading for that specific ability that result in a CMB roll vs CMD would apply the bonus.

I think it may depend on how the specific ability is worded. Do you have any examples?

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