Chromantic Durgon <3 wrote:
Well it's underrated at my table. On the forums, perhaps less so, but it still lacks flashiness, and usually it's best just plain up (or with one of few archetypes). I've played fighter a few times at my table, I think, but I don't remember others doing so. They tend to find it looks boring and repetitive.
As another said, this kind of suggests that outsiders aren't extraplanar when on their home planes, and thus you can't call creatures that are either on your own plane or on their native one.
Clearly not RAI though.
Yea, basically as long as everyone can touch each other, it's all fine, or thus we've always ruled it.
Tangent question: is there any indication of how common rods attuned to planes are supposed to be? I've had GMs where anyone can have all those they want, and others where basically they don't exist.
Very common, going by how often sling bullets are found in archaeological digs. Not that commonness was relevant for proficiency typing, anyway. Since a slinge is one of the simplest weapons there is, it's very easy for a civilian to have one and thus learn how to use it. I'm pretty sure kids using self-made slings to mayby hunt some birds or something were rather common in medieval times.
But, hmm, how to put it... how common was mastering it? I mean, it's cheap, so I could see it being "common" despite everyone having a -4 non-proficiency penalty to use it. Also, how much was it used in war? Seems to be many accounts of it, but didn't find much in its prevalence. If it throws really far, costs almost nothing to make, uses free ammunition, then sure in many cases it can make a lot of sense to give a bunch of them to your men, especially if they just sling stones at a crowd. That doesn't necessarily require these people to really be proficient with it and know how to aim (well), though. Launching stones at a crowd and aiming at a target are different challenges, indeed.
Personally, if I had to go to war in the days (without fortifications), I would likely much rather be given a longspear than a sling, if we stay low budget. Assuming hiding in the back ranks forever isn't an option. Even a bow is easier to aim, imo, and quicker to reload.
But maybe I'm biased because I have almost no experience with a sling, while I have some with bows and firearms.
Tarik Blackhands wrote:
In my setting gunpowder is extremely limited, its secrets only known by an isolationist gnome island nation. Crossbows targetting touch AC at half-increment helps fill the void the lack of firearms creates.
A lawful evil society where everybody is kinda vapid and simple seems hard to pull off, since you probably need someone sharp to have their hand on the tiller lest things fall apart and descend into chaos.
Yea, but the lawful evil race would not need to be led by one of its own. I think Pathfinder orcs tend to put half-orcs in leadership roles due to their higher intelligence, for example? If hobgoblins were dumber, maybe bugbears would be the ones bullying them around?
To work, they'd essentially need rapid reproductive cycles. Loyal evil minions that can die in droves without getting wiped off.
Haha, discussing alignment and not expecting it to derail. Adding dragons in the mix and then not expecting discussions on the technical feasibility of eugenics? Good one!
Now this gold dragon, he's clearly lawful good, and very smart, so we can certainly expect him not to fall into the traps of RL counter-parts, breeding for frivolous traits like eye color and such non-sense. Focus on the good stuff, like longevity, health, stamina, strength, intelligence, creativity, benevolence, and such.
I wonder if powerful divination magic could help screen candidates for a breeding program? :P
Old enough gold dragons get access to spells, right? And one of the biggest hurdles in human breeding humans is that a breeder is only likely to achieve, at most, 4 generations in his whole career, but dragons are much longer living though so that's one less issue to worry about. Then there's costs, but there's literally a state dedicated to it, so again one less practical issue to worry about.
If anyone can pull it off, Mendrake the gold dragon can! :P
Sappers aren't siege engines, canons and mortars are post medieval and even then I don't think they reliably made points of entries. Catapults certainly did not. Ladders bypass walls they don't destroy them.
Real sieges often involved starving the enemy out not destroying the castle (which typically an invader will want to use himself afterwards anyways). The doors certainly might be targetted but it just seems like a weird mechanic to handle that and rams would probably be the weapon of choice for that.
All of which is a little silly with 100 wyverns to slaughter the defenders.
All undead come with racial HD though. And though I don't think there's LA in PF, the principle applies.
Is a juju zombie antipaladin better than a human antipaladin of the same level? Probably. But the same could be said for a fighter, or a cleric, etc.
Undead do get some vulnerabilities and nuisances that living creatures don't have though.
As for the FAQ, it says you can't stack twice the same bonus: in the case, Cha.
At my table people aren't really interested in picking up NPCs, though. Myself included. Especially at high levels, being dumped a character sheet you aren't familiar with can be a bit overwhelming. In the heat of a battle, it's hard to both familiarize yourself with this new character and keep track of what's going on.
Yea, but since when is that there? Players initiated with earlier editions might have been brought up with a different mentality. Also, well, video games. An enemy that flees grants no XP in video games. Also no loot, no matter the platform.
I do put enemies that flee in games I run, not systematically but often enough. We don't use XP though so that part is irrelevant. To me it's an extra form of non-lethal challenge for the players. Denying flight is often more challenging than killing off the last few survivors.
I also allow players to put their numbers on any ability they want. For instance, I have in one of my games a 13 year old girl who plays a Monk with a 16 STR. It's totally unrealistic but we're going with it because of the rule of cool.
For my last two-handed fighter, I looked at the minimum random stats for humans. Result?
I'm playing a 16 year old human female that measures 4'5", weighs 95lb, and boasts 23 strength (21 before the belt).
Then I crack jokes about people getting beat up by a little girl.
She's also a total bipolar psycho that creeps everyone out.
Lots of fun.
I'd houserule it the same way. (Anti)paladins are supposed to get great saves. Killing off part of a core class bonus just because the creature's type uses a different stat than normal for fort? Unfair. Especially with how iconic an undead antipaladin is. The champion of evil wouldn't be much of a champion if he's dusted at the first disintegrate.
One could argue that there are no rules for pregnancy, and thus it doesn't exist in PF. ;)
I think part of it is that lots of PCs expect to utterly defeat what they encounter. If they get ambushed, and the enemies ran away, they don't tend to feel like they won. Indeed, it kind of feels like a defeat. Especially among folks that get into the game with a culture of "you need to kill it to get the XP".
I have my creatures more likely to flee in games I run, but heck I'm fully aware that even when I'm a PC, and the other GMs have foes fleeing, I tend to want to interrupt the escape and kill them all.
It's kind of how, in video games, many missions have optional objectives, and it's a little disappointing if these aren't all checked off at the end.
Also, though, a point could be made that most animals are naturally afraid of humans and wouldn't attack them, and that those who do tend to be diseased (rabies), which could explain why they lack a sense of self-preservation. Though in that case players should probably roll to resist the disease too. :P
So I get the appeal of having one kind of person come in a bunch of different flavors, but why do those flavors have to be dependent on sex? We could just as easily make a certain kind of people end up different based on the phase of the moon under which they were born, the season they were born, the environment in which they grew up, "what the sorting hat said" etc.
I'd welcome more diverse options, sexually dimorphic or not.
Monstrous races are often much easier to balance when everyone's got something similar. Material about monstrous adventures with alternate sets of playable races, that balance against each other exclusively, might be easier than adding monstrous races and trying to balance them with the core options.
Social shapeshifting humanoids could be interesting, for example. A species that bonds with peers (party mates), and every weak, they adopt the same random mutation. Or maybe they all roll randomly?
A campaign module where the players are ghosts?
I'm up for any diversity.
To some people, maybe. If I want to play a human, I'll play a human. If I don't want to play a human, I'd much rather play a sentient gelatinous cube than an elf.
Centaur's not really a great example of interesting monstrous race. For one, it's essentially just a dude on a horse. For two, it's got all of the disadvantages of a dude on a horse minus the advantages. Dungeon crawl? Can't dismount. Enlarge Person? Great now a player threatens half the mat. Originality? Zero, it's a frigging man on a frigging horse. Just make a cavalier. I exagerate a bit, but still.
I've had lots of fun with monstrous races. Tiny characters, characters with climb speeds, outsiders, undead, etc.
Some of them had balance issues, but then again most of them were never designed to be players to begin with.
The little rogue spider-dude I had that once? A total blast in dungeon crawls. I would climb on the walls, drop on foes for sneak attacks. Had lots of fun with that, and it did not feel broken to me. Troglodytes with their stench were fun to play as well, that special ability made them a little more than "human with scales". Goblins don't get much that's super special, but still their various perks are interesting, as is their immunity to goblin dog rashes.
If given options to play a viable sentient gelatinous cube, I'd find that pretty interesting concept (though I doubt there's a way to balance that in an interesting manner). I always thought that an undead PC race with rejuvenation would be interesting (other than Lich, which is reserved for spellcasters, and which almost all GMs just bar access to).
It'd be pretty easy to create a race of bird people, where the males are smaller (as in, Small vs Medium size) and get a buff to cha and perform that the females don't have. I don't think that'd really be offensive to anyone. Or bee-people where the female gets a stinger attack, and the male is larger and gets grapple and bull rush bonuses. Or plant-people, where females get sprays and males can create smoke clouds (kinky!). Okay, some of these might be silly, and just ripping off nature and making it anthropomorphic isn't the most original route, but still, it's just a starting point. Hey, just playable plant creatures could be interesting, we don't have any of that. I guess there's a balance concern for sticking to humanoids since many spells can't target non-humanoids.
But those would be interesting. Short long-living human v1 (dwarf), v2 (halfling), and v3 (gnome) are not particularly interesting. Slender human with pointy ears and long living, to me, is not interesting at all. Why are all the quasi-humans super long living, anyways?
Gonna have to add playable sentient gelatinous cube to PF2 feature requests.
edit: I'm not really familiar with oozemorph, but pretty much all the archetypes I've seen that let you turn into something else are utter garbage, like the paladin that turns you into a celestial (he does remember that angelic aspect is on his spell list right?) or the antipaladin that turns you into an undead. They make you trade out so much to gain so little in return.
I get that some people are queasy when it comes to biological determinism, given historical precedents leading to extremes such as genocides, but as an animal (and plant) breeder myself, it's just a blatant part of nature. For some behavioral traits, a mother and a father can be assessed and quantified, and the result in their offspring can be reliably predicted. Physical traits' inheritance tends to be even more blatant.
A large number of species in the animal kingdom, if not the majority, express sexual dimorphism. One of the most blatant systems is all of the species that use haplodiploidy. Males and females in those cases have different numbers of chromosome sets! And often are hugely different. Often males are just short-lived mating material. In the case of bumble bees, the difference is small. For ants, the males will be winged, unlike the female workers. For honey bees, the males will be much larger, but stingless. Birds are another common examples, males are often smaller and usually have much more colorful plumage, or other mate-attracting trait, such as improved singing. For the American kestrel, the male is smaller and has much more vivid blue colors. The turkey and the peacock have grand tail feathers to show off. As does the rooster, to a lesser extent.
Plus all of the unusual sexual behaviors to be found across the various species. In sea horses, the males get pregnant. In many hymenopteran insects, the fertile female gets mated only at the beginning of her life, and puts sperm in her internal storage to draw upon it through the rest of her life.
I find it unfortunate that the default for races in most fantasy settings is to take a human body, and just add antennae or scales or another cosmetic detail. These aren't actors that we need to put makeup on with a limited budget! We already have humans, why would we need 5 different species of quasi-humans? And why does the only time the concept is explored, it's the enshrine the cliché "brutish dimwit man, sexy strong woman"?
Effects that instantly take players out are not fun, and unfortunately 3.5/PF is full of them.
Except for that one time I got charged by a boss cavalier (who maybe landed a crit?) with his lance while I was flat-footed, I don't remember characters dying in one shot from HP damage.
What makes HP damage more fun than petrification is that, usually, you can take on HP damage for many rounds before it kills you. You also have a lot of options, usually, to mitigate or cancel HP dmg. For petrification, you get, like, one save. And that's it. Medusas's got a DC 16 on her gaze, so even with my lvl 8 fighter, that'd be on a 1-5 roll, so, probably about 50% chance with my typical luck.
At least the cockatrice does dex damage now.
Lashunta are the only Paizo-published race I know of with such a quality.
I've never heard of them before. I read up a bit on them... it's a pity that the only occasion they touched on sexual dimorphism they basically just enshrined sexist sterotypes on what is otherwise pretty much a human body.
Yea, sadly my post is too old to edit or delete. I thought I had read it was a +1 bonus / 2 levels on a check, must have confused it with something else.
I'd say though that in my experience, there has never been a difference between a "hostile animal" and "combat with an animal". As pauljathome put it, I've pretty much only seen "robotic death machines willing to die if they can injure you a little in the process".
Does anyone have an app, or website, or spreadsheet to recommend for homebrewing monsters?
Those I tried have been buggy, and few are for PF.
I want something that's fairly simple (though long to code, I would reckon). I want to be able to able to input a creature's type, HD, size, ability scores, namely, and it automatically give me what are its HP, saves, attack bonus, feat #, skill points, base type abilities, etc.
I can and have done it all manually in the past, but I like to homebrew my creatures a lot and would be delighted if there were tools to save the time of cross-referencing a bunch of tables and entries.
I've reread the rules, and I apologize for responding with incorrect information.
I think it's a pity honestly. In my homebrew setting I made the 3 goblinoids a single sexually dimorphic race, goblins are the kids, hobgoblins the males ans bugbears the females. They get different stats and their society has strong gender roles. I think it can offer interesting narrative elements even without devolving to sexist tropes.
Haha, I got suckered into PF because, at the time, it had significantly /less/ content than the system I was playing then (3.5) (even if theoretically stuff was portable). More choices tends to mean more bad choices, and more time prepping, cross-referencing abilities, archetypes, feats, etc.
Maybe that's what I prefer lower level play, haha. Less focus on analyzing a million mechanical options, more focus on the crux of the action.
Actually, you could kind of revert to simpler PF. "Core rulebook material only", for example. But I guess that as you said you like the additional options, so I'm not really sure how to help you on that. More options = more complexity = more remembering and cross-referencing. Other than having the material on hand and being familiar enough with it to find desired stuff quickly, there's not all that much to do, other than possibly just winging stuff more on the spot and verifying the rules later perhaps.
If APs help you save time, then by all means keep using them. Especially if you've already sold the other two on it. But as you said, that's more stuff to memorize, and books to waddle through. I'll be honest and admit I haven't opened up one of these since Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil, though. Which I started a few times but never finished...