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Goblin Squad Member. Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber. Organized Play Member. 772 posts (16,290 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 104 aliases.


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Sorry for the confusion, I kept looking at Recruitment and it only just occurred to me to check out Discussion - but I think I missed the boat!
Sounds like everyone is pretty much ready to go, and Mowque is already in.
Hope everyone has a great game :)


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Only just found this, and submission has closed! Ah well.
@TheMightyAtom: if you end up reopening submissions at any point in the future, please drop me a pm.


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@Sappy: Thank you :)
I should have provided a link - it is a (Combat, Practitioner) trait.
Mastered Talent (Combat, Practitioner): You have focused on a single combat talent, gaining greater proficiency with it. Select 1 combat talent; you treat your base attack bonus as 1 higher for the purposes of its effects. At 5th level and every 4 levels afterwards, the chosen talent’s base attack bonus is treated as an additional 1 higher, although the talent’s effective base attack bonus cannot be higher than your character level.


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Hmmm. Ada Babbage. Not that her true name is likely to be bandied about.

Looking to do a DCES6/7 (Deep Cover Eater of Souls, grade 6/7), otherwise a bit of an all rounder thanks to the flexibility of spells. Mostly, she's a tank in combat.

Deep Cover; I was thinking she'd find someone with clearance, then assume their identity via Assume Appearance (or greater assume appearance) cast ritually. then spend a fortnight (or until caught or mission completed) in that form. Finally "commit suicide" and move on.
@GM Sappy: is this appropriate? If this is an urgent mission she could abandon a normal mission, or just have a more random "cover". I like the idea she's paranoid about people finding out who she really is, and has covers like an onion.

Still need to do spells and Equipment, but at the moment is here
Is it okay to purchase extra spells as per base rulebook (scribe +50%) or some other manner?

Also trying to decide which of three traits to cut. Either student of philosophy or enduring spellcraft, I think, but if you want to rule mastered talent cannot be applied to a base sphere talent it would decide things.


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Alright, at the moment looking at a Wizard (Ritualist, Pact Wizard) 7 Tank. Shades of undead, soul eating, generally being a bit worrisome.

@Warriorking9001: How much of the Sanguine stuff are you putting in? Trying to work out how much I should or should not. Mostly will be soul eating, rather than blood drinking, I think.


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Okay, I have a background.
I'm Australian, so I started looking for an Australian equivalent. I found this...

our world:

* Charles Babbage (CB) builds the Difference Engine (approx 1831), designs the Difference Engine II (1847-1849) and works on the Analytical Engine until his death (1833-1871)
* CB's youngest surviving son (Maj-Gen) Henry Prevost Babbage (HPB) (1824–1918) worked in his father's workshop, and after his father's death (1871) took over work with the analytical engine, building prototypes and parts until his own death in (1918).
* CB's son Dugald Bromhead Babbage (DBB) (1823-1901) also worked in his father's workshop. He moved to Adelaide in 1849, and married in 1854.
* CB's eldest son Benjamin Herschel Babbage (BHB) (1815-1878) worked with Isambard Kingdom Brunel, and moved to Adelaide in 1851. He did geological and mineralogical surveys, and explored South Australia. He was elected to the South Australia house of assembly in 1857, but resigned after a year to lead an expedition. In 1873 he build a manor nicknamed "Babbage's Castle", that sadly fell to ruin within decades. in 1877 he announced his candidacy for the legislative assembly but did not go to the polls. "Herschel while protective of his less able younger brother (DBB), despaired of his propensity to mix with social inferiors and his fondness for drink."
* BHB's eldest son was Charles Whitmore Babbage (CWB) (1842-1923). CWB accompanied his father on expeditions. He married in 1869. On 1 July 1876 he was charged with embezzling £1616, and in September was sentenced to seven years imprisonment for that and passing a fraudulent cheque - he had been speculating on the stock market. During his sentence his wife moved to New Zealand, and he followed her when he got out
* BHB also had a son Henry, and a son Eden, and two daughters named Ada.
* Ada Rosalie Babbage (1855-1936) married William D Clare in 1881.
BHB had 2 daughters named Ada. Ada Isabella Babbage (1853-1855) and Ada Rosalie Babbage (1855-1936). It may be worth noting that Ada Lovelace - the famous first programmer, who designed the first program for the Analytical Engine - died in 1852.
1840-1853? was a boon period in Adelaide. In the 1860s it had great agriculture, and gold was discovered, leading to another boom. This was primarily a labour shortage.

Now, with no disrespect to the actual people involved, and working from a skeleton of information mostly acquired from Wikipedia and Genealogy sites, and in a world with actual magic, I'd like to suggest the following alt-history.

the alt-history:

B Herschel Babbage was a successful man. He delighted in his expeditions, but was a loyal family man, taking his eldest son Charles along on his expeditions and ensuring his less capable brother Dugald had a job. He followed his father's work avidly, even naming his daughter after the brilliant Ada Lovelace, and despaired with his brothers when his father died in 1871. In 1875 he started quietly telling people he intended to again stand for a seat in politics in 1877.
His own son Charles, however, was desperate. Charles Whitmore Babbage had been raised to live up to certain expectations - and his position at the bank did not bring in enough to cover it. Keen to use his (award winning) intellect to make some more money he had started lightly speculating in the stockmarket back in 1862, and had done quite well as the market boomed on the back of the gold rush. More and more he invested in the ever growing market. When one of his stocks started to fall he doubled down, confident it would rebound again, but was wrong and in 1874 he started to embezzle a little money from the bank to cover his losses - and then paid it all back when his fortune momentarily changed. And then changed again. Desperate for a turn around he reached for help to his uncle Dugald - somewhat of a reprobate.
Dugald had helped explore the continent, and been all to happy to socialise with the natives. It was never his intellect that let the family down, simply his discipline. He'd noted the fact the songlines often marked the best routes, and was impressed with the huge complexity of the songs, and the way they were memorised. Essentially the songs were programs for people, explaining how best to move across the landscape. There was undoubtedly a paper in it, but he'd contented himself with recording and remembering them, and even designing comparable 'programs' that could be put into songs. In this world, however, certain of the songs "programs" did more than just encode directions. Music is mathematics, in a way, and a form of mathematics humans are uniquely able to process. One 'family' of the songs used magic to make slow, subtle changes to the mind, making it better able to remember and pass on songs in the future - and in so doing accidentally and incidentally improved human mathematical capability. Dugald found himself rebuilding an old piano roll organ to better play the songs, drawing on his engineering from when he was young and worked in his father's office - remembering the old man complain about organ grinders!
When desperate Charles came to Dugald for help in finding a creditor, Dugald found himself not just lending his own money, but moved to suggest improvements to the mathematical process Charles used to pick stock. Inspired mathematics, as Charles came to realise. The new algorithm was not much better - but it was better. At the next downturn Charles didn't lose money, and didn't need to embezzle. and our histories diverge.
Dugald was fired from his job as his obsession with the songs and the mechanical organ got the better of him. It was now his turn to come to Charles for help, his information about the embezzling leaving Charles with little alternative but to help. And yet - the design was inspired. The program that it was designed to run? An improved algorithm for the stock market.
1877 rolled round and, scandal free, Herschel was elected. Charles and Dugald convinced him to fund some of his grandfather's work - to create an analytical engine that could be used in many ways - by the astronomical society, by the bank, and for engineering the large projects of the telegraph. In Charles Todd (the Astronomical and Meteorological Observer, Head of Electric Telegraph Department, and Postmaster General in South Australia) they found an ally in this. Obviously one computer was an outrageous expense for one organisation, but if it could be shared by multiple organisations it might be worth building as infrastructure - just like the telegraph and the railway.
In 1878 the Babbages (primarily Dugald, but also including Charles, Herschel, and the youngsters Henry and Ada) embarked on the new Engine. Their father had left his notes to Henry Provost Babbage, but Henry was all too delighted to send a copy to his brothers. Sadly Herschel passed away in 1878 as the work was only just embarking. They were funded to the tune of almost 10000 pounds - until the depression of 1890 hit and their work was stopped.
Even the partially functional machine still ran the algorithm a thousand times faster than a human could do. Charles had been "testing" the machine with his algorithm, and his fortunes had improved just as dramatically. He made the decision to purchase the decommissioned machine for a song, and moved it to his father's vineyard. As "Babbage's Castle" was starting to fall down due to inexperience with the local lime he made the decision to start a new building. The algorithm helped him keep his fortune in a falling market and so the new building was a tribute to his father's building, but larger. A true castle.
For the next three years Charles quietly built his fortune and the Engine, and Dugald became its mad prophet. Charles engaged a factory using his grandfather's methodology on efficiency, and started to turn out a huge number of parts. New parts kept coming in, and the Engine grew and grew, consuming an entire floor of he castle. In 1881 Ada, now engaged, activated a newly installed module and finally it passed a critical threshold.
While the actual computing power involved was miniscule, it represented almost all the computing power of the know world. Its mathematical operations called out to creatures in the great beyond, and they came. The machine glowed, and Ada died.
Charles went to turn off the machine when the mechanical woodwind started howling an approximation of a voice. It offered power, knowledge - anything, just so long as the machine kept running. Charles demanded it bring Ada back - more as a curse than as a true demand - and the machine assented.
It was, it later explained slowly, from the future. Temporal projection back through time was a possibility - so long as there was a contiguously operating, stationary machine to work through. Living creatures were both too fragile and too mobile for the strategy to work, but a mechanical engine was stationary and a million times harder to damage than electrical or biological systems. Ada had been an accidental casualty - not of the Voice itself, but of the miniscule creatures that swarmed around it.
The Babbages considered.
Then, faced with wealth beyond measure, knowledge of the future, and power even beyond death, they accepted.
The Voice was from the future, but every move made in the past changed the future, and thus the Voice. Keeping the timeline consistent was important so that at the right point they could make the right choice.
It's purpose was simple - in the future humanity (the Voice referred to them as 'you' rather than 'we') would become too many. So many that they would (it struggled with this) awaken things that should not be awakened. Humanity was, simply, doomed. The Voice intended to change that. "I failed once. I understand now - the Ends justify the Means. And to stop the End of Man, any means is acceptable."

Not too sure what to do with the character, but...
I envision a secret family order in the Adelaide hills. Necromancers and Eaters of Souls. Servants of a spirit they trust, but don't understand. Small, but with a march stolen on even Turing. Rich. Powerful. Descendents of Ada Babbage, who at 94 still looks 26 but doesn't meet with visitors in the dim lest they see her eyes glow.

The character would have been sent to help fight the Germans before they even began. She'd officially be an 'independent'. Ruthless, but not needlessly cruel, she is fighting to save the world. Your body is just a machine. There is a god, but the only afterlife is so bad having your soul destroyed is a blessing.

@GM Sappy: Okay, so is this too off the rails? Should I start again?


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Congratulations to those who made it!


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Hmmm - how is the party for (seperately) trap detection and device disabling, please?


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I realise I'm a late addition. I'm a sucker for a humble origins story, and I've been thinking about it for a while - reading bits and pieces to try to get a feel for the game.

At the moment I'm thinking of a Wizard - a sort of mirror to Perrin. An apprentice to a master who had largely retired from the world, and recently passed away. The apprentice will be educated but not worldly, having never see anything of the world beyond the small village the wizard sourced his supplies from.

The apprentice carries his master's book - his only legacy - and casts a lot from that, with the book acting as a metaphysical crutch and having little idea of his own power.


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After a lot of thought.

Customisation at level 1.

Background: I loved the idea of skill feats, ancestry feats, class feats, "multiclass feats" and general feats in theory but the current implementation seems a bit flat. At high levels I can see there are more options (and here I am talking about "option slots", as I realise the number of options to install in those slots will go up over time) but the vast majority of my characters never get past level 3, and I now regard level 5 like most people regard level 20.

1st level characters need more differentiation.

Class

At a minimum I'd like to see all classes with a level 1 class feat - even if it is in reality a feat tax style feat.

The fact someone cannot start as a multiclass bothers me. Fiction is full of characters who are an A and a B. These cannot be built in the current system until higher levels

Ancestry

Please give Ancestries more options at 1st!
Especially if you are going to do half-elf and half-orc. I was a huge fan of the idea at the start (it's basically multiclassing for races) but the first implementation was disappointing and the second implementation is worse.

Paizo; The lack of options means you are handicapping your ability to release new races later!

The concept of Heritages as "Ancestry Feats you can't pick up after 1st" sounded great! Magic is always going to be the way to get round this, of course, but it explained a lot. By all means add the heritage combos together to create sub-races ("Oh, Drow have the Darkvision and Natural Magic heritages but High Elves have the Snooty and Natural Magic heritages)

Yes, some of these Heritages are going to be the same (like Darkvision) but I am okay with that.

Incidentally - I have run a very successful high power 1e game where I doubled racial effects at the start - a very simple change that really worked to make race important at the start (the theme I wanted in the game).

Skill and Background

A level 1 skill feat gives characters a thing that there character is better at. I am okay with this being covered by the Background, I guess, as that is really all that is.

Not the issue

Scaling Feats. Note that scaling feats (which on balance I like) will not help with this issue as they don't actually scale until higher levels.

Imbalanced Feats. I'm fine if all feats are not equal (I guess) - though I do think designers should try for feats to be equal within their type and level.

Feat Trees. I like Feat Trees. You can stop people climbing the tree at the start (like humans in 1e) by just making one feat require level 2.

Total Numbers of Feats. Look - if there's math that says a 20th level character can't have more than X feats, fine. Give them more at 1st and slightly slow the gain over the next 19. Especially with Ancestry where it makes sense to front load this! We're all looking up tables or using sheets now, so when we get feats doesn't necessarily need to be able to be described by a simple "Every x level" formula, I think.

N00b characters. If People want characters at 1st to be even weaker, it would be really easy to do a "level 0" optional build. You get Ancestry, Background, Racial HP, and the multiclass feat for your actual class.

Just Start Higher. Sure - in theory GMs could just "start" their games at 3rd with characters below 3rd being trainees. Unless all the APs start doing this people are still going to want to start at level 1, where you are a competent and differentiated professional.

Other ways of customisation. Sure, wizards can have different spells and fighters can wear different armour. A lot of these options can be switched though. My wizard can teach spells to my friends, and your light fighter can wear the tank's full plate.

Signature Skills. I love the change away from signature skills as a way of doing customisation (Please, please don't change it back!) But it's been done now and while it helps it is not enough.


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I really like the idea of Tiered dedication feats.
One issue that shows up with multiclass is 'dipping'. I can see dedication feats (with their minimum feats) being a way to fix this, but tiers go even further. You could also work the dedication into the tiers.
X [Dedication]
Number of [X] feats, including this one.
1: gain trained proficiency in A and B
2: gain additional trained proficiency in C
3: gain additional trained proficiency in D
4: You may take another dedication feat.

Heck, if dedication is primarily giving proficiency, with the additional bonuses effectively being "tacked on" to other feats in the tree (via tiers) then the dedication feat can be General [1] without breaking anything!


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Bardarok wrote:
Draco18s wrote:

Touche, but it just makes my point pretty solid:

90% of skill feats are garbage, and 90% of the rest are garbage at low levels.

Finding *A* skill great worth having is hard and the list of ones people should actually look at its very short. (I just picked a bad example for the list because I wasn't looking at the book).

Yes I agree. I only knew that because I had a player want to make a cool jumping monk and we decided that high jump/long jump were generally pretty weak. My players have stopped picking skill feats during character creation. It's not worth the time to look through them when for the most part they are downtime, useless, or too situational to remember in play.

My players Love Downtime. Stick in Downtime only feats that do not compromise their basic combat build and they'll agonise over them.

The trouble with situational is that while it should mean they can be powerful because they'll never come up, it also means the characters can do things to make it come up.

anecdote:
My group played a goblin group. All goblin. Stealthed their way through most of an adventure in DD (before illness and apathy killed the game). Stealth feats are designed to be limited by the fact that a lot of the time other characters are not using it and so it is situational. Not so here.

This makes them hard to balance. You sort of have to balance them on the assumption people are taking them when they'll be more useful. "Courtly Graces" is a terrible feat... unless you are playing a Court game, for instance.


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Batman.

So, one of the concepts I've had trouble writing up in P1e is Batman. I can make a competent human, but he just doesn't seem to ever get to the same level as Batman. I end up having to take a class with supernatural abilities to get there. He ends up being some kind of stupid Paladin-reformed Assassin crossbreed. The Vigilante came close - and with Skill Unlocks closer - but still ended up not quite there.

Skill Feats mean for the first time I think Batman is best stated out as stock standard Rogue.
A bunch of Skill Feats at Legendary should make you Batman.

I want to love this.

I loved Skill Unlocks.

When I explained (pre-release) to my players about Legendary Skills letting non-magical classes keep up with magical they were very interested. As written it does not do that. I think this is one of the biggest misses of P2E.

I agree with Milo v3 (above) that they are downpowered, and don't need to be.

Seperately people have argued for every skill feat to be scaling - Catfall is great for a feat that starts at meh and progresses to legendary. This would really help. Every Skill Feat should get awesome, I think - either because it eventually gets amazing or because it can combine in clever ways.

I'm going to coin a term Usages because I don't have my book here. Usages are things you can do with skills. Recall Knowledge. Escape from a grapple. Climb a wall. Some of them are free when you reach a proficiency level (including untrained), and some of them require purchasing Skill Feats. Some Usages get better - either as proficiency level rises, or because they are modified with more Skill Feats. I'm sure you know what I mean.

Back on topic - I do sort of like the idea of skill feats being baked into Usages, in the way Crafting sort of does it. Higher proficiency levels unlocks new Usages and improvements to the Usages you have.
I'd also go the other way - there's some (trained) Usages I see could being turned into Skill Feats. That'd make the Skill Feats more useful, but at the cost of it not being possible (at all) until a certain point.
If this goes further, then I think there might need to be a rule about "letting your players roll for a Usage they don't have"

example1:
Roll at -10 (critical success = bare success)

example 2:
Spend a hero point to get a roll

This might get around the "but surely I should have some chance of identifying the painting as a forgery because I walked through a gallery that one time and I have Lore: carpentry" argument, but risks depowering Usages and Skill Feats even more. As a GM I HATE when my players end up staring at a brick wall in a module because no-one has the skill.

I think one thing that there needs to be more of is generic skill feats for when a skill is a character's niche. By generic I mean skill feats that can be bought for any skill, not skill feats that effect every skill. By constraint there cannot be many skill feats in the base book - so the feats there need to basically sell the concept, and provide some feats with very widespread usage, and generic feats do that well, at the risk of being a bit boring - they're the example that has to be awesome because of how they combine.

example1:

I would love a generic skill feat that basically comes from Fate.
"Unusual Usage". This could instead be a bunch of named feats.
You gain a usage from skill X for skill Y.
Has to be run past the GM to make sense.
There'd need to be a penalty too, or your 20th level rogue could end up running everything off Dex. At a minimum I'd think you need to be an extra level proficiency level (so at trained you can pick up a normally untrained usage, at expert you can pick up a trained, etc.)

example2:

A generic skill feat that gave you a bonus action if you spend at least actions on Usages from the same skill in your turn. At master is 2. At legendary is 1. Buy it for athletics and do Parkour.

I love the fact that Skill Feats can be basically used to "create" a new skill. For example an entire detective concept could be built around a tree of Skill Feats built on pretty much any skill. You could even build them around a Lore if needed. This is huge for the expansion of Pathfinder into the future. You could do a Lore:Mathematics tree that ends up as futuristic science. You can (and really, do) do an entire tree around Craft: Alchemy.

I think it would make sense for Paizo to have a section about running more realistic games, and talk about (A) reducing magic and (B) reducing proficiency levels - especially Legendary. If I'm trying to run some gritty realistic game of thrones knock off I might not want you to play Batman.

I also think it might be worth Paizo considering Orange and Red Skill Feats. Possibly the Azlanti had a Skill Feat that modifies magical crafting in some awesome way - but finding someone who knows it, let alone is prepared to teach it, might be an adventure in itself. Maybe stick one in the Core Book to show it exists.

These feats need to be awesome, but they need to SOUND awesome. Like the Stunts in Spirit of the Century. I'm pretty confident half the community would jump over themselves to help on this if needed.


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One of my favourite bits of the books is a redundancy.
The Shield Spell has the Raise Shield rules right there next to the spell.


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I am a big fan of the multiclass feats. I love them even if you leave them exactly as is.

However, I would be really, really keen for someone to be able to take them at level 1. There are concepts where a character has been trained as an A and a B at the same time. While mechanically playing as an A and then showcasing B a few levels in works, I would love to be able to actually play as an A and a B from the get go. I'm okay if this is only true for humans with an extra general feat, or as a special heritage, or something.


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I would like to put in a request for subsection. This is not based on P2E playtest, where intrigue heavy campaigns have not come up, but on my regular pathfinder game I ran today.

I would like a subsection under perception, after detecting creatures, for detecting spells.

This needs to go through the four ways to detect a spell. I believe these are.

1. A spellcaster using a V, S or M component can be detected casting a spell. Explain how hard this is. How much does distance effect it? What about if your normal senses cannot detect them (eg S M spell cast in darkness). Please add a reference to Conceal Spell.

2. Manifestations. How do you adjudicate if a spell has a manifestation? How does this work if your normal sense cannot detect it (eg a thrown ball of acid in complete darkness). How do you know where it comes from? Can I indentify a spell from the manifestation, and is that an action? It is worth noting some manifestations go long enough someone might wander on the scene and see them - can they work out it is a spell, or what spell it is, and if so how?

3. Being affected. e.g. If a concealed, manifest free charm person spell is cast on me, it has an effect if I fail. Do I notice this? What about if I make the saving throw? Do I know I threw off a spell? Do I know what it was supposed to do?

4. Extra sensory perception. e.g. If I have continual detect magic (which some monsters do) and someone casts a spell, presumably even a manifestation-free effect cast from concealment (or distance) on someone else it will be detected. Is there a way to stop this? (This is the place where it might be okay to mention detect levels, and things like Nondetection, maybe?

This area in P1 is a poorly defined minefield where a lot of the way to discover how the rules work was by finding the feats that said they got rid of a problem you did not know you had! This doesn't need to be a large subsection, even explicit "is up to your GM to determine" would help.

What I'd love is a section where, when my players do something crazy, I can put my head in my hands and read through the section to see what the recommendations are.

Edit: there were previous discussion on the manifestation part of this, and on how they interact with invisibility. They asked for more in general, where I'm asking four a four stage parallel to the Detecting Creatures section.

Edit2: If spells had a "Manifestation" trait for perceivable manifestations, that'd be amazing.


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This might be too late to suggest.
Reasoning: Wizards tended to be picked by people willing to put in extra effort (working out what spells to memorise, extra feats, discoveries), at the moments wizards are the most powerful of the casters (opinion), and sorcerers are a bit much like inferior wizards (Arcane is the best list).

Could Wizards get proficiencies in schools, instead of just Spellcasting?
Given 8 schools (universalist is probably too small to count)
Specialists could start with 5 'school increases' and get 1 school increase per level.
Universalists could start with 7, and get 1 per level.
If the expert/master/legendary points were 3/7/15 instead of 12/16/19 then highly specialised specialist could have 6 Legendary, 1 Master and 2 untrained. A universalist gets everything at a level at 2 (trained), 10 (expert) and 18 (master).
An "old school" specialist with 6 schools they can cast, 2 they avoid, and with a specialisation in 1 can get 6 schools to master at 14, legendary at 20 and could get 6 schools to expert at 8 (but will almost certainly advance their true specialisation first)

specialist progression:

1 5T
2 6T
3 5T 1E
4 4T 2E
5 3T 3E
6 2T 4E
7 2T 3E 1M
8 2T 2E 2M
9 2T 1E 3M
10 2T 0E 4M
11 1T 1E 4M
12 1T 0E 5M
13 0T 1E 5M
14 0T 0E 6M
15 0T 0E 5M 1L
16 0T 0E 4M 2L
17 0T 0E 3M 3L
18 0T 0E 2M 4L
19 0T 0E 1M 5L
20 0T 0E 0M 6L

'old type' specialist:

1 5T
2 6T
3 5T 1E
4 4T 2E
5 3T 3E
6 2T 4E
7 2T 3E 1M
8 2T 2E 2M
9 2T 1E 3M
10 2T 0E 4M
11 1T 1E 4M
12 1T 0E 5M
13 0T 1E 5M
14 0T 0E 6M
15 0T 0E 5M 1L
16 0T 0E 4M 2L
17 0T 0E 3M 3L
18 0T 0E 2M 4L
19 0T 0E 1M 5L
20 0T 0E 0M 6L

true universalist:

1 7T
2 8T
3 7T 1E
4 6T 2E
5 5T 3E
6 4T 4E
7 3T 5E
8 2T 6E
9 1T 7E
10 0T 8E
11 0T 7E 1M
12 0T 6E 2M
13 0T 5E 3M
14 0T 4E 4M
15 0T 3E 5M
16 0T 2E 6M
17 0T 1E 7M
18 0T 0E 8M
19 0T 0E 7M 1L
20 0T 0E 6M 2L

This grants 3 things.
1. it makes the sorcerer's ability to pick and choose from the Arcane list and cast all the disparate spells at the same level much more impressive
2. wizards could get a higher proficiency faster than other casters - but in a very narrow range. Unlike sorcerers these aren't necessarily thematically tied either, but are instead mechanically similar.
3. it gives a resource that can be traded away for 'specialisation' bumps. The school abilities, for example. Quick preparation type abilities. These can even be tied to proficiency (for example if you need to have a school at expert). This gives a slot for the half-useful arcane discoveries, and at a minimum could be used on lores as well as schools to create Sage type characters.

This does come at the cost of additional work to create a wizard. It may be worth keeping universalist "as is" as an option. I'm not sure people signing up to play specialist wizards are necessarily intimidated by one more thing to keep track of, given they need to keep track of spell schools anyway.


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Also: to add to the wall of text...
I'm okay if not all of this is in the base book - so long as the 'how to make your own' rules are. If it has a page with "detailed rules to follow", and the rules are not so far off, then I'm okay.
Ideally new books could publish new "exploration tactics" that are balanced, reasonable, and do not necessarily follow the detailed rules.

For goodness sake, though: please Paizo go through the book and add an exploration section to anything in there that affects exploration.


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Actually - also have an example that kills the system and show a gracious way to fail.
A rogue disarming a trap on a jungle temple, while a wizard is trying to help by spamming detect magic and trying to remember details using Lore the cleric is performing healing on the fighter, while the fighter is keeping watch with a readied crossbow, while a ranger and the wizard's familiar are walking perimeter patrol. And then they are attacked.


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It seems pretty close to me - a good start, just not quite there.

Have some generic rules that can cope with literally anything - the "<=10 actions per character per X is fine, <=20 is fatiguing after Y, <=30 is fatiguing after Z".
Deal with
* need for sleep
* physical exertion & exhaustion
* movement speed
* skills where anyone succeeding succeeds (eg perception)
* skills where everyone succeeding succeeds (eg stealth).
* repeatable prep (e.g. spellcasting)

Then have another page of common examples that don't have to follow the rules
* Fastest possible overland travel for an hour
* Marching overland travel for a day
* Wandering while on casual alert
* Setting an ambush (Kudos to Serfuz)
* Digging out an area while someone stands guard
* One character disabling a trap while
* guarded rest (including guard rosters and necessary chores)

Also look at these common complications - though not all apply in any situation.
* darkness and light
* mounted
* minions and companions
* different speeds
* cartography.
* terrain
* maintaining formation
* Scavenging for food
* following tracks
* transitioning to downtime (e.g. players pick a tactic for travel, a tactic for rest and so long as nothing else happens they get three days of "you travel for three days when...")

Imagine Kingmaker. There's a cavalier on a barded warhorse. His speed is 20, the horse is 40. There's an elven monk with a speed of 40. There's a dwarven druid with a speed of 20, but the ability to ignore most terrains. There's a wizard riding in a cart drawn by two donkeys.
How fast do they go? If they go through terrain the cart can handle, the druid's ability is useless, and they move at 20, so the monk could be resting every second turn.

Now some of this can be dealt with when the complications are raised. For example...
The riding skill section could have a bit that says
Exploration: if you ride an animal you can move at base speed at a cost of 20 actions, or half speed at 10. The animal will almost certainly panic if startled (see page xx)

The ride feat can say
Exploration: you can move an animal at base speed at a cost of 10 actions. At expert your control is so good you may ride an animal for 5 actions. At master your control is so good you may ride an animal without using any actions. At legendary you may count time spend riding as 'rest' (though your mount may not)

Skill feats can have abilities that only apply in Exploration, or Exploration and Downtime mode.


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Yes! This is the sort of thing Exploration is made for! Well, the name doesn't make sense but "actions that take a while to do but not so long it is a downtime".


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My group was... scathing, basically, about how hard it was to use the book.
We talked about the issues and realised no-one actually really used the CRB any more.
Individual items were looked up faster in archives of nethys.
The rules were more conveniently found in pfsrd.
Conditions were on condition cards.
One person used a spreadsheet to make characters.
Between us we own literally hundreds of PFSRD books. UE is used. Bestiaries are used. Modules. Campaign settings. Maps. Not the CRB.

I have bought a second CRB, having worn one to the point it started to fall apart... So this has obviously been a gradual approach.

I found running basically required me to have three "versions" of the book open at once. The pdf was incredibly helpful in this, though one damning indictment was the lack of hyperlinking in the pdf. I am assuming that is just an issue with the playtest release.

Part of me hopes that things like spells will be released online and also as spell cards at launch. It really does cry out for it. The rarity mechanic even gives an easy way to filter; spell cards probably only need to be common.

Condition cards could be re-released with the same art and different mechanics.

If nothing else, if the utilities created by the community for the playtest are updated I think it will make a big difference to the ease of use. I strongly suggest Paizo look at creating a community page that links to some of these, if not an official version.


Oscar stepped back and levelled his crossbow at the miniscule imp. No sooner had the comically oversized missile left his weapon than he was slamming another into place.
attack: 1d20 + 1 ⇒ (8) + 1 = 9 dam: 1d8 + 1 ⇒ (8) + 1 = 9


If the site stays up I'll type up my PC from paper.

I think I read somewhere that an "item" is 10 consumables.
So if you take a level 3 barkskin potion as one of your starting items, you get ten of them. If you take +1 armor (also level 3) you get one.
Seems to make sense.
Can't find it now, though.


Fifth try...
I'm looking at a healing focused cleric at the moment.

I'm torn on considering a negative channeler, given heal can now be cast by negative clerics without issue. What do people think?


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On reflection I might try to build one of the standards first. Cleric. Halfling or half-orc. If Azih is testing the half-x stuff I'll pick up halfling.


Me either


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Yes! Why make the skills I don't care about harder to work out?


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I like this idea.

I can see the reasoning behind skill feats, but I'm not sure how clear it is at the start.

If I have a 20 int elf fighter with trained arcana and a 10 int goblin rogue with master arcana, in many ways the elf looks better (lvl +5 vs lvl + 2).
I realise that the skill feats are what makes the difference; the goblin can have feats that the elf simply doesn't qualify for. Until you've reached the point where you are putting feats into those characters though, this doesn't really show.

Having something in Core that says "Ah, but when you get to master arcana you can now do X" makes having master arcana in itself obviously better.

For balance reasons this might mean that if some skill feats just became options the number of skill feats might need to be reduced.

As a watered down version, it might also help if the table of proficiency vs available actions had "boosts" or something mentioned.
I know earning a living at Lore gets much better as proficiency goes up. Earning a living as available right at the start, and those boosts are sort of hidden.
e.g.
Simplistically if anyone can sneak, but different proficiencies improve it then you might add (in the various columns)
Untrained: Sneak (say with some restrictions)
Trained: Fast Sneak Sneak boost - only 1 action to sneak
Expert: Vanish Sneak boost, sneak as a reaction when not observed
Master: Where'd he go Sneak boost - when you make a distraction roll you sneak as a free action
Legendary: Plain Sight Sneak boost - you can sneak even when observed, but at -5
At the moment I think that would be written as one action with some quick text down the bottom. It could still be written that way in the rules, just suggesting putting it in the table makes it clearer that a higher proficiency is more than just a bigger number.


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As I remember Orcs of Golarion gave orcs the ability to forget. They could choose to simply stop remembering a traumatic event. Most orcs tended to deliberately forget painful events (such as losing), which led to a lot of their societal (and arguably moral) problems.
I thought this was a brilliant way of explaining why your average orc was so un-traumatised by such a brutal culture, and also not as learned without just making them dumb. The opposite of elves long lifespan giving more education.

It'd totally fit a penalty to intelligence.

In the same way Orc Ferocity supports constitution there could be a feat to back up strength without necessarily giving +4 str.

As an aside I think a "forget" feat would be an awesome ability for an orc.


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I'm interested in a halfling or a human - both races I've heard interesting discussions about. More flexible on class, but I'd like to multiclass.

Wizard or Sorceror multiclassed into fighter or something might work better?


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I can see stripping down the chassis; effectively that's what we've got now with racial variants.

I think there should be two ancestry feats at level 1 to put something back on the chassis.

Potentially some of these ancestry feats could be expanded later; for example a "Dwarven Tougness" that gives a small advantage vs magic and poison, and an expanded "Hardy" and "Magicproof" that require "Dwarven Toughness" as a pre-req.

Two ancestry feats means someone could start with both half-orc feats if they wished.

Regardless of above, I am happy for humans to get a "wilcard" feat as part of their chassis, but I don't think one list should be inherently more powerful than another. Eventually someone is going to find a way to get and abuse that list. As @Vigmortis says, this makes humans the "natural" half-breed race. A dwarf who is a half-breed orc is pretty much JUST a DwOrc. A half-orc human still has some flexibility.


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I really like the idea of Orcs in the core book!

I think both goblins and orcs would need a sidebar "wait, aren't these guys evil" that basically says
(A) extant cultures are evil (or which cultures are not)
(B) there are exceptions
(C) what sort of predjudice they might expect to face (something like "While most humans distrust Orcs on principle, there are a few place such as Kaer Maga where they can get along. Players should check with their GMs on whether orcs are appropriate for the game." or somesuch)

Actually, this might be better as a general "predjudice" section given that eventually we'll have Ratfolk, Tieflings, Dhampir and possibly Drow.


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TLDR Question;
Is it okay to use character creation software in the playtest?

We ended up spending our first session on character creation. We had a group of 5 with something like 150 years of communal experience in a lot of different systems. Three of us were PF1 GMs. All of us have run games.

It took all session to make characters. We had some technical issues, no hardcover books, not enough tablets and some socialising. All up we believe it took 2 hours per player.

Feedback so far was that making a character was hard. Upon reflection it was not intrinsically harder than PF1. We put this down to four things
1. New system meant things had to be looked up more (though a number of us had already read the rulebook)
2. Lack of a Reference Document or even hyperlinked PDF made looking things up cumbersome
3. No automated systems to assist with character creation (we have a number of systems to help with PF1).
4. Some of the sheet formatting choices were not great.

I am very interested in using software to assist, but I want to check that this will not invalidate the playtest feedback. If the intention is to find out just how hard it is to make characters without software assistance then we can push through. Note that we have made the first characters.

As an incidental if five players is an issue then I will ask someone to step out. I would prefer not to do so.


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Steve Geddes wrote:
It may well be that because we bought from Paizo (who took responsibility for GST compliance) Amazon are happy to ship it to us. I’m certainly hoping that’s the case.

I'm hoping the 'different departments' thing at Amazon works out in our favour this time.


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Heck of a roster.


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Wandering GM Wastrel wrote:
@noral - fair question. There's a couple of submissions from interested posters (R0B0GEISHA, Harakani and Nikolaus) that are still in progress. Once I have those, I'll close recruitment and take a day or so to make a decision.

Erk! Sorry.

This Document has the mechanics so far. I'm trying to work out how to buy about 1800gp worth of stuff with 900gp - but I could stop that today. I was also going to make the app a bit prettier, as this is a "working sheet".


Good point!


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Wandering GM Wastrel wrote:


Harakani wrote:
I've two concepts I've been torn between for days now. One is a relatively simple historian mage who is desperately trying to set up a "perfect" kingdom because he believes having read enough history he knows how to do it best. That's the one that was looking at Leadership, or more accurately students.
Heh. A sort of Plato/Socrates type? I could get behind that :)

Exactly! If its a better concept, please tell me! I sort of abandoned it mostly due to the number of Arcane Casters applying. Selka is... pretty full on, though. A sort of weaponised fairytale princess.

Wandering GM Wastrel wrote:
Harakani wrote:
The other one is where I'm tending. I might run that past you now, if that's okay?
I like the background (although I think you have the birth date wrong, unless I've missed something?).

I do. Transposed numbers. She's supposed to be 14 years older than the Worldwound, not 300 years older!

Wandering GM Wastrel wrote:


Harakani wrote:
I'd like to take Rich Parents and buy a "tribe" to go with her. Some Drovers, some guards (maybe soldiers), some goats etc. If Teams aren't allowed I'd have her have out run them and hope you'd bring them in as NPCs.

Hmm - I don't know how familiar you are with the Kingmaker AP, but you don't start out as nation-builders. Without giving too much away, you start out as chartered explorers, sent to map the wilderness on Rostland's southern border. It's only at the end of Book 1/start of Book 2 of the AP that you settle into kingdom-building.

At the start of the AP, a bunch of noncombatants will just be a hindrance.

Pretty familiar - relying on the fact you said you'd mix things up. I'm actually running a tabletop kingdom building game myself, and would love to see a way to get more politics and intrigue in.

I wasn't thinking just non-combatants. I was figuring they'd primarily run a "base camp" as we explored, meaning we could sleep a full 8 hours, not have to worry about some of the basics, have laborers to build and repair as we went and ensure that anything that attacked us at night really regretted it. We could potentially also deal with very small mass combat.
I can abstract them out if it doesn't fit the vision though.
Selka's combat ability will fall off over time (poor BAB, limited Wild Shape, no Companion). I planned to get around it with minions (animals and people) that she then buffs. Is this a problem?


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I've two concepts I've been torn between for days now. One is a relatively simple historian mage who is desperately trying to set up a "perfect" kingdom because he believes having read enough history he knows how to do it best. That's the one that was looking at Leadership, or more accurately students.

The other one is where I'm tending. I might run that past you now, if that's okay?

Mechanics:

Human (Silver Tongued) Druid (Feyspeaker, Herbalist) with Noble Scion and Conciliator
Subject to change around the edges...
I'd like to take Rich Parents and buy a "tribe" to go with her. Some Drovers, some guards (maybe soldiers), some goats etc. If Teams aren't allowed I'd have her have out run them and hope you'd bring them in as NPCs.

why?:

I reread Ultimate Intrigue, and ran into the Feytalker archetype (and the similar Nithveil archetype). This got me thinking about stories like rip van winkle. I'd been thinking about a "new Sarkoris" as a Kingmaker motivation for a while. The concept sort of worked, but was a bit weird (originally a crafter) so I challenged myself to try to tie it in to every level of the campaign I envisioned.
Wilderness: as a druid she'll be useful in the wilderness. Herbalism gives buff and healing. Not a great fighter, but I think she'll pull her weight, if only because of the fights she'll be able to shortcut through Animal Empathy and Call Truce.
Diplomacy with Fey: Feyspeaker and Medydev mean she'll be able to engage with local fey politics. After a few levels she won't be likely to be mind controlled, either. She has a hook for the Fey she dealt with, which'll hopefully be useful for the campaign. She can "remember" allies or enemies when needed for the plot.
Diplomacy with Locals: her weakest point, but Call Truce means she has a chance of being able to parley with locals (at least, once she gets some more languages).
Diplomacy with Brevoy: when it comes to dealing with low level nobility like the swordlords, she should be on a good footing. Medyved Scion means she has a bunch of enemies and allies baked in. Call Truce has a secondary effect to help with Verbal Duels and Influencing.
Kingdom Building: She can explain the sudden boost of the area as at least in part calling for Sarkorians. I also think it'll lead to a different flavour of Kingdom (Sarkorian druids loved druids, tolerated clerics, didn't like wizards)
Game of Thrones: at the highest level the Rogarvian tie means she can maybe try for a takeover of Brevoy. That's pretty high level though.
Loyalty: She has a reason to be loyal to Brevoy (blood ties, spent time there as a kid) but also not to just build Brevoy 2.0

background:

Selka Widowknife was born in 4952, in the period where Golarion believed the prophesied Age of Humanity was nigh. The belief that wars among the human kingdoms would be stopped had led to a rash of inter-kingdom political marriages in the decades leading up to the incipient date.

Selka was born of one such marriage. Her mother was Kala Widowknife, fourth daughter of the Widowknife Clanliege and war-druid of Sarkoris. Her father was Svalk Medyved of Brevoy, himself the child of Ragnar Medyved and Yala Rogarvia, a talented draconic sorceror.

Selka's youth contained training in magic, diplomacy, and the Green Faith. She spent some time with her father visiting relatives in Brevoy each second year.

Canon notes that pre Choral the Houses were originally more tribal. I think that given the similar religion and political structure they would be much like the clans in the nearby country of Sarkoris. At this point only "recently" has things started to go more formal I believe?

In 4606 Aroden died, and Sarkoris was plunged into war. Selka's parents both made for the front line of the war. Selka's elementary training had her working as a Druidic Herbalist in the Widowknife Clanhold, desperately trying to stop the spread of demonic plagues, and treating those sent home from the front lines.

Canon: in 4610 the wards broke. The crusade would not be called for years.

In 4610 the witch Areelu Vorlesh assaulted Clanhold Widowknife with an army of winged fiends. Selka had enough military knowledge to realise that the populace of the city was doomed.

She commandeered a number of druidic items and made contact with a powerful local fey. This fey agreed to open a way through the First World from the doomed clanhold to the closest congruent point to her paternal relatives. Selka managed to strike a reasonable deal, but at the cost was that Selka would serve the fey for a hundred years, as well as turn over the vast majority of items and treasure she had saved. Sadly unnoticed was the "to the closest congruent point" clause.

A great many of the non-combatants of Widowhold were led through the First World to safety, but the closest congruent point to the Medyved lands was on the other side of the Icerime peaks in Iobaria.

Canon: Clanhold Widowknife fell in 4610.
Canon: the influx of refugees to Iobaria caused the collapse of the Iobarian kingdom during the period 4606-4626

Selka served her hundred years, aging despite the promise of the fae she'd "not be a day older at the end". Finally, after a century she was reunited with her tribe in 4710, just a few months ago. They fey fulfilled his bargain by killing and reincarnating her - wiping out almost all her memories of time among the fey but leaving her strangely changed. His promise to reunite her was fulfilled by simply summoning the tribes together.

Canon: the Vanishing happened while Selka was in the First World

All had not gone well for the refugees. There had been no warm welcome, and Iobaria collapsed. The Widowknife clan had scattered into disparate families only loosely affiliated. Over the next hundred years they recovered and became a thorn in house Medyved's side, raiding through and eventually colonising the icerime peaks. In the mountains the frequent plagues abated and populations boomed on stolen grain.

The tribal stories of Selka's deal (and leading to the 'promised and') meant they were poised for her to return. Stories grew in the telling until Selka stood off the demonic forces long enough for her people to flee. The Fey's summons were taken as proof of her power, and confirmed Selka's identity. If taken aback by her age, they quickly attributed it to "immortality". They expected her to lead them to war against their enemies the Medyved and claim the promised land for the Widowknife.

The Medyved realised a lot of the disparate Iobarian barbarians along the Icepeaks were coming together, and feared an offensive. To prevent this they launched their own assault. Hurried, and through poor terrain, this assault ran into a great deal of poor weather and consequent disease that the superstitious (which is to say the soldiers) chalked up to the return of the Widowknife witch the few barbarians they caught raved about. Now they camped just outside bowshot of the barbarian camp.

This was the situation Selka, a recently reincarnated teenager with the memory and power of a barely trained druid found herself in.

With the optimism of the young she took a small honorguard and approached the Medyved camp the night before the battle. She talked to the silver haired and injured Medyved general (somewhat startled to discover his great-great aunt looked younger than his granddaughter) and they talked into the night.

He wasn't sure how much power she had. The barbarians obviously thought a serious amount, but he knew enough to know that even without her (if he broke ettiquette and managed to kill her there and then under a flag of truce) injured and sick as it was his force was they would do badly the next day. That would in turn leave Medyved weak in the future, which largely ensured that when civil war came the Medyved would do badly. On the other hand retreat would simply cause the barbarians in front of him to taste blood, unite into a serious force, and Medyved would have to station the bulk of their forces at their rear during the civil war. She presented her (compelling) credentials as a Medyved, but this was strange enough to be largely unprovable without extensive genealogy and magic.

For her part Selka knew that her people had descended into barbarity. If they managed to wipe out the Medyved, there would simply be more Brevoy attacks. They needed a homeland, a homeland better than the icy wastes of the Iobarian peaks.

She reluctantly proposed a standard noble solution; a political marriage. The general (recently widowed and brother to Lord Gurev) would engage to marry Selka (a woman forty years younger and sixty years older than himself). The tribes would put their common cause away until after harvest, and the Medyved forces would return to Stoneclimb. A small force would accompany Selka and the General back to Lord Gurev for permission to marry.

Lord Gurev was pondering who to send to the Stolen Lands when his brother rocked up with Selka.
* A member by blood of his own Family, proven by magic and a knowledge of family secrets.
* Once heir, now last Clanliege of Sarkoria. A banner or the disaffected refugees that haunted the lands of Avistan.
* Defacto ruler of the barbarian raiders that plagued his land.
* An apparently powerful druid, the last scion of the Clan known for powerful casters, child of two other powerful casters, and apparently over a century old.
* Lastly - and this was the most dangerous - arguably with a claim to the throne of Rogarvia better than that of Surtova. Her father may have been 78th in line for the throne, but with the Vanishing that made her 1st. Assuming she was that Selka. Assuming that her father moving to Sarkoris hadn't invalidated his claim. Assuming that the Surtova didn't just kill her. Assuming the force behind the Vanishing didn't come back for her.
Lord Gurev had a big long thought, and then came up with an answer to everything.
He told her to keep her claims quiet, and sent her to the Stolen Lands. A show of support - If she was so powerful, she could use that power to pacify the lands. As a family member - and Lord Gurev was a family man - she had ties of blood on her loyalty. She could pull the barbarian raiders from his flank down to pacify the bandit kingdoms that didn't border Medyved anyway, hopefully turning enemies into allies. While there was little he could do about the force behind the Vanishing, it would be easier to keep the secret and harder for Surtova agents that far from civilisation.


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@Wandering GM Wastrel just to confirm, that includes buying teams like Guards and Lackeys if you don't want to use them for downtime activities? Also, to confirm from above - no Leadership or Part-Leadership abilities? Like Instructor Archetype Wizards?


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Oooh. Okay, if I have two weeks I want to reread Ultimate Intrigue before I start throwing ideas - that said, I'm interested in some of the [Ruse] stuff in there as well, so likely some form of caster.


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I am intrigued.


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@BBEGM: Any chance I could trouble you for a little additional information on your Orcs? Are they the same as the writeup in default Pathfinder? Axes & Anger?


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Some of the talents are enhancers.
The more enhancers you have, the more you are invested in a sphere.
The more invested you are in a sphere, the more useful enhancers are.
Turns into a vicious circle, where you only do one thing, but do it really well.
I remember reading it in the spheres of might beta thing and going "Huh." On the other hand, having looked around a bit I cannot now find it, and the spheres look to have rewritten so they don't stack so much anymore.

I know when I was building my Incanter it was just that when I levelled and chose a talent, they were the talents I thought I'd use the most.

Now I am actively trying to push into a different Sphere for a while.


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Thurin Foehammer wrote:

Spheres also has an Armorist

http://spheresofpower.wikidot.com/armorist#toc61

With Whitesmith archetype
http://spheresofpower.wikidot.com/whitesmith

Can summon weapons and armor, plus can enchant them. At lvl5 can also enchant party member’s Equipment.

Just throwing it out there if Crafting is an issue. Combine it with VMC Wizard, and take the valet familiar archetype. The familiar will have “Cooperative Crafter” feat, which doubles Crafting Speed.

So you still have a smith, only who uses fey nature spirits to craft faster than any normal man could. Can also all on said spirit(s) to summon and enchant Equipment.

Would make for a flavorful orc Smith.

Absolutely. I'm already running a simple Enhancement Incanter in another game, and at level 4 he persistently keeps the entire group's equipment at +3, and any important attributes at +4.

Hmm, BBEGM: One of the suggestions I remember reading in Spheres of Might was being wary when anyone had more than half their talents in one sphere. My GM for the incanter felt like in retrospect that might have been good for Spheres of Power as well.


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Big Bad Evil GM wrote:
Harakani wrote:


Sorry - when you say you like the concept, I'm not sure if you mean the orc or the fae version? Let me be blunt; which one fits the game better?

Uh... I don't want to spoil that answer, which I love, but the Backsmith bonus is building things faster and cheaper. Depending on the item, whether it's magical, the exact build, if we can scavenge components as we go, etc Hob can in theory craft mundane items (slowly) for 15%, and wondrous items for 27%. More likely 25% and 35%.

Truthfully, I like the orc slightly better, but can make either fit the game without difficulty.

And it becomes apparent I haven't done my homework! Well, as long as you don't abuse it too much it'll be fine. I'll allow the crafting at first, and if it becomes a problem I'll ask you to stop using it, which may involve allowing you to change major details on your character sheet if needed.

I think it'll be okay, so long as we are careful with the pre-requisites. Honestly, I'm interested to see. If it's an issue I'm happy to rebuild.


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Thurin Foehammer wrote:

I highly recommend:

(1) Trait Heritage Weapon for Weapon Proficiency Butchering Axe
(2) Str 19-20 (easy as an orc)
(3) Rock that 3d6 damage x3 crit oversized axe
http://archivesofnethys.com/EquipmentWeaponsDisplay.aspx?ItemName=Butcherin g%20axe

Thanks Thurin! That is neat. I'd been thinking sword and board, but that fits the build well.

@BBEGM
The Equipment Sphere Orc Heritage Talent has
"You gain proficiency with the battle axe, dire flail, falchion, flail, greataxe, handaxe, heavy flail, orc double axe, orc skull ram, spiked chain, and throwing axe.".
It doesn't mention the Butchering Axe. Should that be one of the Orcish weapons?
BBEGM wrote:
Sorry about the hobgoblin confusion! Oops. Don't worry about overlapping character roles too much, it doesn't bother me. I quite like the concept.

My fault - when I reread the post I realised I'd made a mistake.

Sorry - when you say you like the concept, I'm not sure if you mean the orc or the fae version? Let me be blunt; which one fits the game better?

BBEGM wrote:


Your questions:
They arrived around 15 years ago, shortly after their big defeat. Before that, the townsfolk knew of them, but preferred to think of them as mythical. The orcs thought of the villagers as 'soft'.

Hmmm. That might make Hob a bit older than I intended. On the other hand if Wayland had bonded with him by that point he might have been the one to give the land to the Orcs.

BBEGM wrote:


You can have all those points of cannon. They're either really appropriate or scarily similar to something I already have in my notes.

Awesome :)

BBEGM wrote:


Go for the half price. It'll be useful for the party to have a crafter around, as magic items will be limited. Kat set a precedent for owning property, so you can have a farm and apprentices. I have a rough copy of the town map (not to scale or anything) I'd been scrawling notes on. Let me edit it to contain no spoilers, and then I'll post it for you guys.

Uh... I don't want to spoil that answer, which I love, but the Backsmith bonus is building things faster and cheaper. Depending on the item, whether it's magical, the exact build, if we can scavenge components as we go, etc Hob can in theory craft mundane items (slowly) for 15%, and wondrous items for 27%. More likely 25% and 35%.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Big Bad Evil GM wrote:

Harakani - Hob, hobgoblin? blacksmith (blacksmith or hedgewitch)

Run with the blacksmith, if that's what you'd prefer.

Ah - in fact I meant the old mythological Hob - which is to say a puck.

I was looking at getting the Feat Transformation for Fey Form, and playing up the fey nature and young age. I'm a little worried we're a trifle oversubscribed on those concepts now.

I can see the term was confusing - I should have just said "Fey".

On the other hand the core of the concept is still untouched. An Outsider with the pull of another culture, trained to be a creator and protector. Rather than introduce yet another outsider group though, I might link up with the one already there - the Orcs. I'm suprised we haven't had more people jump on them already.

@BBEGM: How long ago did the Orcs come to town? How long ago were they defeated? What was their relationship with the townsfolk before that?

I'm now thinking Hob could have been an Orc child, lost in the woods and drawn to the village. Wayland found him and took him in. Hob eventually went looking for his people, but they didn't feel like "his" anymore. Still when they were all but destroyed he let them camp on the land outside town he'd bought to slowly turn into a farm.

This would give him ties to two Factions: Townsfolk and Orcs. I can see him half-belonging to both.

Orc is an interesting choice for an int/wis based crafter, but I like a challenge. They're a great choice for a pure fighter, and we seem to have a lot of casters.

Ideally I'd like the following points in Canon, if you are okay with them. Please tell me if any of them are problematic.

(A) The Orcs were far enough away that they would not have kept looking for a lost kid.
(B) The Orcs were close enough that a lost kid could have made it to Wayland's - potentially with help, or taken by something else.
(C) Wayland's Forge is a small distance out of town, possibly at the point the road first reaches the town. The Forge is also a small farm, and has some woods that Wayland uses for particular charcoals.
(D) Smithing is one of the first lines of defence against the Fey, as most smiths have ready access to cold iron. As a result the Smiths in this area have a tendency to collect snippets of lore, stories of nearby monsters, and ensure their apprentices know how to forge and use weapons as well as plows.
(E) Smithing has a few mysteries to it that require serious training, and as a result all Smiths are well educated, and often have a small store of precious books. This results in a bit of overlap with more educated crafters. It also means Smith training takes many years, and passes through Apprentice, Journeyman and finally Master.
(F) Smiths are important members of the community given (D) and (E), on par with a cleric. This was true of many real-world cultures as well. They have duties as well as status, however.
(G) The Orcs are (if I read right) a bit druidic, and not very keen on metalwork. They tend not to have Smiths as such, though they may pay for an occasional piece of work if they need it.
(H) When Hob finished his apprenticeship he stayed on to help Wayland (who was becoming infirm) rather than become a journeyman. He used his wages to buy a large plot of undeveloped, possibly monster infested land near Wayland's Forge, with the eventual goal of turning it into a farm. When he discovered the Orcs were all but wiped out, he let them stay on it - which had the result of giving it away. This bought him goodwill with the Orcs, but lost him much goodwill with the Townsfolk. His Townsfolk reputation now depends on the Orcs behaving themselves.
(I) Journeyman Smiths (like Hob) are supposed to travel to find new techniques, and ensure the dissemination of what they know.
(J) Wayland and Kagen were good friends a long time ago.

For special item, I'm now thinking something that ties Hob more to his Orc culture.
I'd like a tribal spirit. Something under godlike power, but powerful. Something only Hob can see - whether because it is in his head, using visions to communicate, looking mundane or something else. At the start Hob would see it from time to time. I'm thinking something like a Muse, or a Nymph or a Leanen Sidhe, but I'm not sure of the exact mythology/theology for the orcs.
I'd like it to have taught him bits and pieces about his culture, but filtered through the mind of a kid desperately trying to fit in to human culture.

@BBEGM: For craftable items before play, can we buy at cost, or do we need to pay full price? Looking at Magical and Mundane. Also wondering about buying things like a Farm, or Apprentices.

Mechanicaly I'm thinking of taking the Item Creation feats Harvest Parts and Grisly Ornament. Seems "Orcish" enough, but also works nicely with some of the viking smithing mythology. Obviously given Hob's magic is entirely bound up in his items, crafting is going to be pretty important for him.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'm getting a "Forge in the Forest" vibe, for some reason, and that's one of my favourite books ever, so I am interested :)

I've tried to work some of these concepts into characters before, but this seems like they'd work together much better than normal pathfinder.

Hob is a Blacksmith Hedgewitch. His magic comes from secrets hidden in the core of old stories, half-lost arcana in crafting techniques, and long-forgotten pacts made with creatures the ignorant call monsters and the educated call myths.

Hob's master was Wayland, an old smith and a townfolk, from a long line of townsfolk. As a crafter of cold-iron, a reader of runes, and a former fighter he was often called to help with problems from Outside. When the hobgoblin stealing chickens and carrots turned out to be a young boy, he took the lad in, and treated him as a son and apprentice. Most of Hob's memories are from after this point, and his nightmares from before.

His item is his Heritage. Whatever he was before, there are things Outside town that will talk with Hob - even bargain with him - where they would simply fall upon most adventurers. They expect the same courtesy from him, however. If necessary this could be an actual item, with him when he was adopted. This seems to be most similar to Conciliator. It is worth noting I'm looking for this to give a more fairy-tale or mythic feel, not to try to just diplomance our way through every encounter.

Wayland is ancient now, and his apprentice is the one called out for issues with the Outside. Kagen was a good friend to Wayland decades ago, though they parted on poor terms, and as Wayland approaches the end of his life he's discovered a regret that he never knew what happened to the friend of his youth.

Mechanically...
There's two build paths...
1. Blacksmith
(if allowed) from Spheres of Power, with Basic and eventually Advanced Magical Training. Most of his magic would be through items imbued with tiny charms and magics; like Catching Cape or Feather Token. Over time he'd pick up a smattering of magic.
I'd be happy to trade out Combat Talents for Magical Talents if you'd prefer.
2. Hedgewitch
Not as clean, but much the same build. Craft Wondrous, for sure. More magical than option #1, but I'd be trying for a subtle magic.

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