Goblin with Beehive

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Mostly with new players, I'd say.


The "roles" will vary according to the angle you use to inspect the matter, a few different combinations have been proposed and many have their merits.

The role requirement will also vary according to what kind of game you play. The default PF game today is quite different to the default D&D game of when it first started. With that style of game (gritty and deadly dungeon crawling for the sake of it), then a skill monkey character can be quite useful, and a "face" character not so much. Whereas nowadays, dungeons are no longer expected to be every single quest, and many players never see any traps anymore, while social interactions tend to take a bigger importance.

Roles can vary depending on if you look at combat specifically, or campaigns/challengers as a whole. The rogue plays no specific role in combat. He's a squishy second-rate martial, whose damage will circumstantially be roughly the same as dedicated martials. He's have more defenses (reflex saves, evasion, uncanny dodge, etc.) than your average fighter, but with probably a much lower HP pool, and much lower damage output when not flanking or otherwise getting his sneak attack. There isn't really anything the rogue does in combat that others don't do (better).

Rogues would excel more in out of combat utility. A large skill point pool, good class skills, and class perks to trap-finding and surviving. The rogue will typically be better equipped than most to spot and disable traps. And when that fails, he will typically be the best equipped to mitigate as much damage as possible. In theory, anyhow.

The rogue's problem is that he isn't even all that good at that. There are spells to find traps. A wizard will have very high int, giving him a lot of skills, on top of having spells that largely negate the point of investing in skills. Evasion can be bought (ring). Keeping dex bonus to AC against traps is made moot by the tough guy just wearing a blinged up full-plate armor (with maybe a shield). A paladin will probably have better saves than the rogue anyways, can wear full plate armor, and carry a full plate armor and a shield, and will then still have the ability to heal himself if he takes damage.

Add in all of the other skill monkey classes (bard, investigator, etc.), the rogue doesn't really cover any role that can't be better done by anyone else.

That can mostly be said of every class in PF, though, due to the sheer number of classes, which then have a billion archetypes (and variant multiclassing).

Thing is, PF wasn't designed around a handful of roles assumed by pre-set classes. And most things can be achieved through many different ways.


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There's no one way to play.

Some class combos can make some campaigns 'easier', but 'easier' is not likely to mean 'more fun'.


EldonGuyre wrote:
The GM has had it for about a week, but has yet to read it, as far as I know.

The peril with any overly long backstory.


Lelomenia wrote:
Goblin_Priest wrote:
SheepishEidolon wrote:


EK 11+
Allowing eldritch knight 11+ should give the player only a small edge over taking wizard levels, but this edge comes at a time when full casters go bonkers anyway. I wouldn't give them a free power-up at level 13+. You could go with Goblin_Priest's idea of no spell advancement at EK 11, but I am pretty sure the player will scoff at the idea and stick with 10 levels then.

Compare to alternatives: the homebrew bonus should be no better than they are.

As it is, there is no other option that will allow him to increase his caster level at 1:1 other than dipping into his base class directly.

If he wants to take arcane trickster, which gives a caster level at every level, he'll have to dip at least one level in order to gain sneak attack, unless he takes variant multiclassing, in which case there's still at least a good price to pay to opt in.

Mystic Theurge would require him to dip 3-4 levels into a pure divine caster class, so giving him 5 bonus caster levels out of the 8 invested.

Dragon Disciple would give him 6 caster levels out of the 8 invested, assuming he can qualify.

Same thing with Arcane Archer.

But really, I don't see a point to homebrew additional EK levels. There are already plenty of options. Swashbuckler 1/Wizard 1/EK10/Rogue 1/Arcane Tricker 7 gives you a CL of 17 and lvl 9 spells, with a BAB of +16/+11/+6/+1 (the cap number of iteratives), better than 2/3 classes. So better BAB than a magus, more and better spells than a magus, a bunch of abilities... On top of the huge gold value of the buffs Drow Noble grants.

And that's not enough for him?

trickster is 1/2 BAB, so it would be +14. Sounds like the player is seeking +19 BAB with a CL 19 in a full caster class (probably CL 20), and any of your proposed rules-based options would be detrimental to that goal.

I must have had a wrong tab open when checking the BAB. The point still stands, though, it's basically a magus , but better.

Besides even that's not RAW-legit, because his SLAs should not qualify for for EK with only 1 level of wizard.


SheepishEidolon wrote:


EK 11+
Allowing eldritch knight 11+ should give the player only a small edge over taking wizard levels, but this edge comes at a time when full casters go bonkers anyway. I wouldn't give them a free power-up at level 13+. You could go with Goblin_Priest's idea of no spell advancement at EK 11, but I am pretty sure the player will scoff at the idea and stick with 10 levels then.

Compare to alternatives: the homebrew bonus should be no better than they are.

As it is, there is no other option that will allow him to increase his caster level at 1:1 other than dipping into his base class directly.

If he wants to take arcane trickster, which gives a caster level at every level, he'll have to dip at least one level in order to gain sneak attack, unless he takes variant multiclassing, in which case there's still at least a good price to pay to opt in.

Mystic Theurge would require him to dip 3-4 levels into a pure divine caster class, so giving him 5 bonus caster levels out of the 8 invested.

Dragon Disciple would give him 6 caster levels out of the 8 invested, assuming he can qualify.

Same thing with Arcane Archer.

But really, I don't see a point to homebrew additional EK levels. There are already plenty of options. Swashbuckler 1/Wizard 1/EK10/Rogue 1/Arcane Tricker 7 gives you a CL of 17 and lvl 9 spells, with a BAB of +16/+11/+6/+1 (the cap number of iteratives), better than 2/3 classes. So better BAB than a magus, more and better spells than a magus, a bunch of abilities... On top of the huge gold value of the buffs Drow Noble grants.

And that's not enough for him?


No, always turn "right", because that's the "right" way to go. Get it?

Get it???

A maze without normal geometry and dimensions is what you give your players when you really hate them and want everyone to ragequit the table.


Stats aside, 3.5 had rules for what gods could do on the material plane, according to divine rank and portfolio.

I prefer the "whatever the GM wants them to do" approach, otherwise you can look up the "Deities & Demigods" book.


If I were to do it, which I certainly wouldn't, lvl 11 EK would NOT increase caster level, just like level 1 doesn't.

And the pre req says he needs to be able to cast level 3 spells. Not merely have a lvl3 spell-like. The 5-6 level investment is intended, no prestige class that I can think off the top of mu head allows entry before having 5 other levels first.

I hope the other players get free hacks as well because this character is supet cheese.


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How did he qualify for EK to begin with?

And you let him play drow noble? Cheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeese

But no, I would not invent additional EK levels. He can dip back into his base classes or pick up another prestige class.


Sure, most PCs should be about equal.

I disagree about the need for balanced parties. I preffer unbalanced parties both as a player and GM.

I also disagree about every player needing to min max their cheesy builds. PF is now bloated, there's so much content it is impossible to know and remember it all. This is a game, not an engineering job.

I don't quite follow most of your claims. Is that sarcasm? As a GM, I am bound by no rules but my own. The written rules are a convenience, not shackles.


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We require GM permission to get it at our table. But it's been granted plenty of times, and honestly I don't think the cohorts ever caused a problem. And even when we don't have leadership, we tend to just recruit folks down the road as DMPCs anyways. Because there's always that moment you find a friendly NPC and the party goes "he's so helpful, we gotta keep him!". :P


We don't make much of a fuss about it. As long as the paladin is non-villainous, and the anti-paladin is. In my own setting, alignment is removed, and paladins are largely just turned into racists extraordinaire (their smite abilities target opposing races instead of opposing morals).

We don't care much for their code of conduct (the AP one is just literally silly), but these are both very fun classes to play mechanically. Well rounded.

We've only ever done one villainous party. The AP worked to take over the drug industry, and things were starting to kick off, but she met an untimely death. The player was then allowed to make a paladin, and the inability to associate with evil companions was handwaved away (FOR THE GREATER GOOD! XD ). That player just loves the class, and almost only plays that. A few of the other players keep their evil arcs, such as my cannibal who gleefully shreds his enemies to pieces with claws and teeth on the battlefield.

Telling the paladin's player he needs to police his peers never did anyone any good. No code of conducts should extend to the actions of others. There's just no fun in that.


What does a Symbol of Death look like? Nobody saw one and lived to tell the tale.

XD


All with essentially the same answer of "do whatever you want to with your game" :P


I guess it cancels the old effect and then forces you to roll again for it all?


Scott Wilhelm wrote:
Goblin_Priest wrote:
So why take a bunch of feats to do about the same in the best of cases and do worse in the rest?

I was thinking in terms of a Druidzilla character getting Attacks through Wildshape and increasing the Damage/Attack by taking levels in Warpriest. Warpriests inflict Sacred Weapon Damage instead of regular NA Damage for weapons they have Weapon Focus in. If you have a Human, Half Elven, or Half Orc Warpriest, you can take Martial Versatility and apply feats like Weapon Focus to all the Attacks in any single weapon Group. Unarmed Strikes are in both the Close and Natural fighter weapon group. So that might not be a reason to actually combine Unarmed Strikes in a Natural Full Attack, but there is a reason for some Natural Attacking characters to invest Feats into Unarmed Strikes. Another thing to consider is that sometimes a Druid like that will be in Human form, and then it would be nice if she had some decent melee capability.

Goblin_Priest wrote:
In my case the goal was to fish for more natural attacks, not manufactured weapons or unarmed strikes.
How many did you get, and how did you get them?

Every build will require its own calculations.

Right now with my 3 natural attacks I think I have the highest DPR of the party, and I also grapple and coup de grace like a total beast. But my defenses are bad so that's the next priority. But the most obvious way to increase my DPR will be with casting Monstrous Extremities twice every morning to gain 2 hoof attacks. There are probably ways to get wing attacks or tail attacks as well but I am not sure.


Once pinned people can just coup de grace the enemy though. With throat slicer and greater grapple you can off a grappled dude much quicker this way than by doing damage.


In my case I was turning 3 natural attacks at full BAB and full str (+10) and power attack for 1 attack at full BAB and 4 at -5 and all at half strength and half power attack. The amulet of mighty fist bonus benefits from more attacks but overall each attack did almost half as much on a hit with a 25% lower chance of hitting.

Taking all of the feats like multiattack only made it average out to "about the same". So why take a bunch of feats to do about the same in the best of cases and do worse in the rest? In my case the goal was to fish for more natural attacks, not manufactured weapons or unarmed strikes.

But the key element here is that lizardfolk get 3 primary natural weapons. If all you have are secondary natural weapons, then you may as well stack 'em with manufactured or unarmed attacks. But in those cases you should be going for monk or brawler, I don't recall which is best.


Regardless of historical accuracy, in a world with foes that have DR/bludgeoning, it makes perfect sense to have a polearm able to do piercing with the top spike, slashing with an axe blade, and bludgeoning with an opposed hammer head.


Feels to me like whacking your small axe head at full plate armor would dull it quickly. A small hammer head would focus the kinetic energy better. I think. At least a little bit?


The only reason I could get my head around the idea of a devil breaking a contract is if they can void it legitimately, but I can't really imagine on what grounds. Contract voiding varies by jurisdiction, but typically occurs over stuff you would expect the devils to do themselves without letting their victims off the hook. "Hah, this infernal contract is void because it was signed under duress!" Really? Can't fathom it.


If his natural attacks were already secondary, that probably changes everything. My guy attacks with a +10 str modifier, on 3 primary natural attacks, so turning those into secondary attacks greatly lowered the output per attack and made it really bad vs. DR enemies.


Yes, but you should not. In most cases, anyways, unless the enemy has really, really terrible AC and you have a very high BAB.

Because if you use natural attacks with iteratives, they become secondary attacks with a large penalty (-5). So while you may get more attacks, all of them are way less likely to hit.

I crunched the numbers with my lvl 10 bloodrager lizardfolk. With low AC, my average damage using improved unarmed attack was about the same as when just using my natural attacks. And against more normal AC, I was losing a lot of DPR.


A good old-fashioned bribe, maybe?


Long pointed sticks are the best.

That said, I suspect that it's very much intentional, from a game-balance perspective, that's there's no weapon that does every possible damage type, even if it wouldn't be so hard to imagine a polearm with a pointed tip, a blade, and a hammer. Even if their damage dice were small, the ability to easily bypass most initial DRs would be bothersome I reckon.


Hammer end is better for heavier armor, I'd expect, than any sort of blade would be? /shrug


ErichAD wrote:
The halberd is an axe/spear sort of combo. What makes you think it has a hammer side?

I think I saw artwork showing it as such. Somewhere. Maybe pre-PF?

Like this https://www.bytheswordinc.com/images/product/large/cd-1046_1_.jpg


I dunno, contracts are kinda their thing.


Honestly, I feel like the phylactery should have had limitations on its rejuvination ability, such as being on the same plane as the Lich's remains, or even within a certain distance.

Because if you have a really high level caster who has 1 macguffin that keeps him alive, naturally he would spend great effort and resources to make that thing unfindable and undestroyable.

But then that makes for terrible play.


Lady Asharah wrote:

One lich I faced many, many years ago had his phylactery inscribed in a form of arcane runes on his own ribcage.

Seems counterproductive but unless you know that this is in fact the phylactery, how many people have a habit of pulverizing bodies of slain enemies?

I dunno, in the case of a Lich, any runes are bound to rise a flag when it comes to finding its phylactery. Kinda sounds like the worst place to put it.


Huh. I thought the halberd had an axe side opposed to a hammer side, but it doesn't look like it.


I'm not sure that a lich can create a new phylactery if the old one gets destroyed.

But yea by RAW there's no overt consequence to the lich if you destroy it while it's alive, other than the fact that rejuvenation won't kick in.


There's a fine but important line between punishment and disincentivization.

Punishing a player for dying, by denying him important resources, is going to increase the likelihood that he dies again. But rewarding a player for dying, by granting him greater wealth, is also going to increase the likelihood that he dies again, for different reasons.

I do think that death should have cost, in order to make sure it is not incentivized, but in order to avoid creating a vicious cycle, that cost should not put him under the wealth level to be expected in the party (i.e. should not make him poorer than the poorest character).

Because clearly OP has a problem where, however he set things up, it results in players /wanting/ to die frequently.


Coidzor wrote:
Goblin_Priest wrote:
Senko wrote:
Plating is very thin as in thinner than human hair so it wouldn't do much to weight though it would impact the siler ability but on the guard that's not a big deal.
By RAW gold plating increases normal weight by 50%.

That's debatable as to whether that applies to gold-plated objects, too, or just to objects made of solid gold, at least based upon the wording I've seen.

Unless we have some specific, direct statements by the designers?

Oh yea read that too fast. 50% looks like it's for pure gold items.


Senko wrote:
Plating is very thin as in thinner than human hair so it wouldn't do much to weight though it would impact the siler ability but on the guard that's not a big deal.

By RAW gold plating increases normal weight by 50%.


That strategy only helps avoid getting lost or going in loops. It's not a particularily good strategy either.

But the problem with mazes is not whether or not they can be solved. It's actually pretty certain it will be


That doesn't seem very fun to me. :P

A maze is basically a series of consequential uninformed decisions. Every time a fork is reached, the party must agree on a direction, with no information on which path to choose. Lacking any information to work with, they can basically just decide at random, though, or just pre-set a pattern to follow. With a simple maze, there's no option to solve it quicker. You can't "think harder", or "choose more riskily". All forks offer equally unknown paths.

Mazes/labyrinths are inherently tedious. Dungeons can have forks that force informed decisions, such as between "risky" and "safe", "fast" and "slow", "direct" and "bountiful", and so on, but those are not maze features, and the more of them you add, the less maze-y is your maze. If you offer a risky shortcut in the maze, you are de-mazifying it.

Which is fine, because the less maze-y it is, the better it is. IMHO.


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EldonGuyre wrote:
Goblin_Priest wrote:

A few sessions back we were all chanting for a TPK at our table.

Good times.

There must be an interesting story there...

...do we get to hear it?

I mean, not particularly, I don't think? We never had a TPK, and at an important battle, a bunch of us just made some bad calls (which only became clear in hindsight), and things had turned clearly in our disfavor. Can't speak for everyone, but I reckon we were just signaling that we were ready to assume responsibility for our failures, and not to go soft on us.

We weren't suicidal, and actually two characters of the very large party (on that day) did manage to escape. Maybe some schadenfreude from the fallen PCs who didn't want to be the only ones felled? Being the only one who dies sucks, dying with everyone else, now that's pretty rare and memorable.


Artificial 20 wrote:
Goblin_Priest wrote:
Yea clearly new PCs should not have more wealth than the poorest surviving PC.

Well that much should be obvious.

That's why you transfer all wealth in escrow to 1 PC before the rest of the party suicides. Everyone surely knows such basic metaeconomics.

At which point, you go from player to player, and give them a good smack on the face while screaming "NO!"

I mean, seriously, if this is a problem, it's not one to solve in-game, but out of character. Because while I could think of ways to screw up such a party in-game, that'd just be a bandaid on a more serious problem.


Yea clearly new PCs should not have more wealth than the poorest surviving PC.


WBL is a guideline. If players are farming death for wealth, there are a number of things wrong at your table.


A few sessions back we were all chanting for a TPK at our table.

Good times.


Yea. Mapping the maze doesn't make it fun, it's just tedious.

It should either be handwavable (we always keep to our right) or solved with a few rolls (int checks, knw checks, whatever).

A few forks are fine but mazes are an inherently non cooperative challenge.


Honestly I can't really see of a reason to do damage instead of tie up. Unless you only have ropes that you expect the bad guy can break or get out of. But it's pretty unlikely. Anything that can bust out of bloodvines ropes is likely to break your grapple. But maybe you don't have rope on hand? Or you are dueling? Once he's pinned he won't be able to fight back.


Mithral is hard and light. If you want to add heavy and soft metal on top, you are kinda negating the advantage of mithral to begin with.


Quixote wrote:
Goblin_Priest wrote:
...because I don't really find maze solving to be a very fun tabletop RPG challenge...

Can't think of anyone who does. When I've got a physical maze in front of me on the back of a cereal box or whatever, it's just barely entertainment. Taking out the visual element doesn't exactly help.

And the fact that solving a maze is just a guaranteed success through trial and error makes it even worse for table top.

Without some kind of additional element, they're just awful.

Some time ago I proposed "We keep to our right". It kinda stuck since. You are basically garanteed to make it through this way, though it will probably be very long IG. It sure saved a whole lot of table time and made it much easier to manage however.


Greater Grapple + Throat Slicer. Never need rope again.


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Well what do you mean? If the playerd are on a downwards spiral, and you decide to delay or cancel the reinforcements the enemy was going to get... is that going easy? Because to me that's just the realization that the initial encounter was too hard.

Literally giving them easy encounters, though? Depends, as mandated by the plot. Over easy encounters can feel like a tedious waste of time, but they can help soften the PCs for follow-up challenges.


Lady Platypus wrote:
Goblin_Priest wrote:
My setting has a demi-plane that is essentially the world in Orcs Must Die, where the boss creature (whoever wears the helm major artifact) can reshape the plane, turn it into a deadly maze and add various traps to it. This demiplane has rifts/portals that can lead to various destinations that are otherwise hard or impossible to get to.
It sounds... complicated. How are players supposed to push on if the enemy can reshape the dungeon at will?

Just winged it. It's a location they only spent a single session in, didn't bother with the mechanics. If greater details would have been needed, such as for a return, well... basically, assume the video game logic. Using the helm requires resources (credits/mana/power points/etc.). Some powers would have been X times per day, others would have drained a regenerating pool. Spawning traps was on the cheap end of the scale, changing the layout on the more draining end. And he did create obstacles for them, but he also wasn't aware of their presence for the full time, and they had a native spirit guide them for part of it (because I don't really find maze solving to be a very fun tabletop RPG challenge).

Honestly, I'm not a fan of the statted artifacts. It's like the statted gods, they suck. Artifacts merit to be in the realm of GM fiat. The boss did not abuse his control over the maze because it was beyond his power to do so, it really doesn't need to be any more complicated than that.

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