Horselord's page

** Pathfinder Society GM. 251 posts (255 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 14 Organized Play characters. 2 aliases.

Scarab Sages

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Easy fix for Cleric:

Change "[Cha bonus] channels per day" into "[Wis Bonus] channels per day".

This helps in numerous ways:

(1) It guarantees a modicum of channels per day.
(2) It is more limiting to clerics wanting to max channel energy uses, which is the original intent of removing the "3+" from channels per day.
(3) It gives a reason to use Wisdom, which is now considered almost a dump stat now. A cleric with a paladin dedication can use Charisma to calculate spell points and channel using spell points (if they don't/can't take the Healing domain).
(4) It makes the cleric less MAD. Unless the cleric can take the human ancestry feat "Adapted Spell" to gain an offensive cantrip, they need to be competent with a weapon, which means three stats need to be high (assuming you want spell points and resonance) thus making the cleric a compromise of options, with the Zealot of Gorum channel smite build being all but unworkable.

Scarab Sages

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I really don't like the idea of particular magical items being essential for certain builds, and druid's vestments are looking that way. The problem with these items is they are fundamental enough that characters are assumed to acquire them, thus those types of characters are assumed to possess these items when determining powers/abilities. Magical items should not make up for a class's shortcomings - the class should be fixed.

If Pest Form is not a combat shape (and it isn't) it needs a duration suitable for a utility form - preferably unlimited.

Constitution seems the most thematically appropriate stat to use when determining wild shapes.

Personally, I find dragon form thematically inappropriate for a druid. I could imagine various wild shape "packages" that fit various themes though:

Every wild shape would get pest and animal forms

1. Beast: adds dinosaurs and magical beasts
2. Cave: adds vermin, plants and oozes
3. Forest: adds plants and magical beasts
4. Desert: adds vermin, plants and dinosaurs
5. Planar: adds selected outsider group (elemental, azata, agathion)

Wild shapes should also stay viable throughout a character's career. I think the best way to do this is like in PF1 and modify the character's stats, but if Paizo pushes ahead with generic stat replacement, then these stats should improve as level does.

Scarab Sages

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Wildshape should be about versatility, not power. Heavily restricted durations and no "natural spell" equivalent makes wildshape very limited. Wildshape, like many spells, is just a combat buff now.

From what I have seen, the combat forms of wildshape are respectable, but there is no variance: every druid uses the same stats - you might as well say you're tagging Bob in for the fighting as it doesn't seem to be your character anymore.

Scarab Sages

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Firebug wrote:
Horselord wrote:

How can you ...

- be a cart horse to help move the party and supplies
- scout as a sparrow or other incognito creature
- explore areas with movement types like burrow
- swim between islands as an aquatic animal
- tolerate the cold in a native form
- track using scent
- stalk someone in plain sight as a cat or other small animal

So what I am hearing is that your 1(!) ability should be able to:

-Make you stronger than the fighter
-Make you a better scout than the rogue
-Make you better at "scrying" than the wizard
-Make you faster at swimming than the boat
-Save you a 1st level spell slot
-Make you a better tracker than a bloodhound
-Make you better at tailing someone than a shadowdancer

That about right?

Sooo ...

- Ant Haul
- Invisibility, levitate
- Summon Monster and Speak with Animals
- Touch of the Sea
- Endure Elements
- Bloodhound spell
- Invisibility

All abilities can be replicated with low-level spells, but the specific spells do it better or wildshape requires significant skill investment. Hardly all-powerful, especially as it doesn't have that many uses.

Scarab Sages

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One of the biggest pet peeves I've had with rules is effect durations. Paizo wants to simplify things yet puts awkward durations on things that really don't need it, such as sorcerer claws in PF1.0.

Wildshape now lasts a minute. Even the wild druid just gets a few more per day. This reduces wildshape down to a combat option, which is very disappointing. And the player's stats don't appear to affect the form, which I think is a move away from ideal. And finally, wildshape now draws from the limited forms listed in the spell.


The duration should be unlimited, or 24 hours at the shortest.

How can you ...
- be a cart horse to help move the party and supplies
- scout as a sparrow or other incognito creature
- explore areas with movement types like burrow
- swim between islands as an aquatic animal
- tolerate the cold in a native form
- track using scent
- stalk someone in plain sight as a cat or other small animal

Also, it hinders the ability of the druid to communicate with native animals (theme-wise).

Storywise, opportunities are missed due to the pitiful duration, such as encountering a druid who has lost himself due to staying wildshaped too long.

I really thought Paizo hit the sweet spot with wildshape in PF1.0 by "wearing a skin", so it was basically the druid modified to be an animal. Minimal statistics about the animal needed to be known and different druids were different as the same animal, yet separate statistics were not required to adopt a form (such as how you need separate animal companion statistics that are underivable from the monster entry). It had faults, but it got more right than wrong.

I do have to mention though, I like that it is now possible for a higher level druid to wildshape into a gargantuan form! That's been a problem that's needed fixing for a while ... so many dinosaurs, and rocs!

Scarab Sages

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Aaaargh!!! Stop giving sorcerers melee bloodline powers!!!!

... or at least cut it down to a minority of bloodlines.

Also, I see they're sticking with the artificially restrictive "one bonus spell per spell level". It is perfectly fine to drop this restriction and just include a fair amount of spells to round out the concept - or even better, a descriptive requirement for bonus spells, such as the demon bloodline gaining all spells with the "pain" descriptor, or all fire spells that have an instantaneous duration.

What are demons known for? What would a half-demon be able to do? These are the questions that need to be asked when determining what [demon] bloodline powers should do. Biting an opponent and gaining temporary HP sounds vampiric to me, and I cannot think of a demon that has a similar ability - maybe a succubus kiss?

PF1 Draconic bloodline was very thematic - in fact the weakest elements in terms of theme were the bonus spells (except Form of the Dragon) and the bloodline arcana (dragons can't do it). The bloodline abilities were clearly of draconic influence. That is what should be aimed for with all bloodlines.

Scarab Sages

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Seconding the Sorcerer, as too many bloodline options are melee. Sure, have a melee-focussed bloodline such as draconic, but what's an Abyssal summoner doing with claws?

Also, this is not specific to one class, but all the character options that are limited in duration and/or uses per day need a second look to decide if the ability is that powerful that it needs to be limited. The draconic sorcerer's claws are a good example of an ability that should be at will with an unlimited duration. Even wildshape would be more interesting if its duration was unlimited - you could hear stories of druids who stayed wildshaped too long and start believing they are the animal they appear to be ...

Spell taxonomy needs an overhaul - particularly for clerics. Domains with their artificial restriction of one spell per spell level means too many appropriate spells get left out and strange choices are included. If spells were grouped to a tight theme such as Healing, Creature Summoning, Undead, Charm, Polymorph (possibly needs subdivisions), etc., then a given specialty has all the spells for that specialty. Also, clerics shouldn't derive their powers from domains, but from the god they worship. Inner Sea Gods had the right idea, it just needs to be pushed further and developed more: If Urgathoa is the god of undead, make Urgathoan clerics better at undead stuff. Clerics should get full or partial access (they may need to choose) to a list of abilities matching a god's portfolio.

Necromancers should just get channel negative energy in its full capacity without any related feats or other benefits specific to the necromancer specialty. They should also have the ability to "desecrate" like a gravewalker witch instead of an arcane bond.

In general, most specialist wizards don't have much that says "I'm better than other wizards at my specialty." Specialist wizards could benefit from the tighter taxonomy above and have much stronger school powers to complement their narrow focus. A blast mage that could lower resistances and eventually reduce or strip immunity to his element of choice would be flavourful, useful, and keep the class viable at higher levels. A wizard focussing on charm who was able to have lesser effects to his charm spells if opponents made their saves would make charm spells a lot more interesting, such as a failed domination acting as a suggestion or command spell. Other ideas include a Charm specialist able to affect those immune to charms by virtue of their type, or the ability to sustain a charm attack that forces a save every round until the opponent fails.

Scarab Sages

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I really think an opportunity was missed here for all pocket editions.

If the book had all art removed, as well as fluff text, and was repaginated in a book 78% the size it would probably be smaller with the same font size as the original.

Scarab Sages

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I know how to make the test of the Starstone work in PFS!!!


A group of (possibly mythic) pre-generated characters feel it is their time to take the test of the Starstone. Each character has a series of tests interwoven into the general Starstone test. Players will need to pass all components to survive the test.

To finalise, GMs report on which characters passed the test ,which died, and Paizo then compiles the results and adds the winning character to Galorion's pantheon of gods.

The best part is the characters can be tailor-made to fit as a new god, thereby making the adventure much more targetted and rewarding. They could even use a known NPC, such as Razmir!

The cert for the adventure could have a blessing from the would-be god, or if the character passes the test, anything from a major blessing all the way up to a mythic tier.

Scarab Sages

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The most frustrating thing about not being able to replay a scenario is the secrecy going in. Players have no idea what they will get out of it, and commonly find if a cert has a unique item or boon on it, the character is inappropriate to benefit from it.

It would be interesting as a standard PFS rule if a character was allowed to "buy" a boon or item from another character's cert (same player of course). Even if it meant crossing it off the original character's cert and the buyer paid PP for the privilege, it would help a lot.

Scarab Sages

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Pizza Lord wrote:
Is it viable to magic jar into companions' bodies and apply permanency to spells which typically are caster only, then return to your body and leave them with the effects of a permanent spell?

If they affect the body, they will stay with the body. If they affect the mind, they stay with the mind. So vision enhancing spells affect the body, but spells that interpret information gained through sight affect the mind.

So the self-only spells which can be made permanent, the following will stay with the body.

Arcane sight
Detect magic
See invisibility

The reason I think this is the case is if you get Confusion cast on you, and you fail the save, then the spell ends, who ends up confused? The formerly possessed or the caster? Don't say both, it makes my brain implode.

Similarly, ability damage to Int, Wis or Cha, will affect the caster because they are the caster's stats being used in the body.

Scarab Sages

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One word to destroy them all: Abracapocalypse!

The link to the Nodwick comic says it all...


Scarab Sages

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If the Speed enchantment affects the whole body as a single entity with any attack able to be used as the extra attack, then by extension Furyborn should allow every attack to stack into a single pool, and Spell Storing should store a single spell which any attack should be able to discharge.

Scarab Sages

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I read it as you do. The Paladin is immune to fear, and this includes spells with the "fear" descriptor, magical items that replicate these spells, or related effects, as well as the conditions listed under fear: "shaken", "frightened", and "panicked" (which makes the rest redundant).

Scarab Sages

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I think of AOOs provoking AOOs like a game of Magic: the Gathering...

Every action goes on the stack and when the last action is placed they all go off in reverse order.

Scarab Sages

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As you can let go of a weapon as a free action to make a spiked gauntlet attack, and a free action can only be taken on your turn ... I believe the answer is no. The character has to decide what his hands will be weilding on his turn for AoO when it is not his turn.

Can't Armor Spikes only be used in a grapple?

Grand Lodge

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What I can do at 13th level:

Total Buffs (possible in 3 rounds)
+14 to hit, +9 to weapon damage, +3 to saves (+9 vs fear, +8 vs charm, +5 Reflex), +3 to skill checks, +4 AC, +4 CMD, +13 temporary HP

Definitely the Evangelist. Its a cleric with the best bardsongs (inspire courage is where its at) check out my profile for a statted out 13th level evangelist.

There is no single class that buffs better than an evangelist.

Scarab Sages

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I've read on other forums that designating a bastard sword as a martial two-handed weapon with the capacity to be weilded in one hand if EWP is taken makes a lot of sense. It will raise Power Attack damage (at least if the lance FAQ is precedent) but simplifies everything, even Amiri's build works just fine. I wonder why the PDT are reluctant to errata it - there would be no increase in word count and it just moves a table entry.

CRB wrote:
Inappropriately Sized Weapons: A creature can’t make optimum use of a weapon that isn’t properly sized for it. A cumulative –2 penalty applies on attack rolls for each size category of difference between the size of its intended wielder and the size of its actual wielder. If the creature isn’t proficient with the weapon, a –4 nonproficiency p enalty also applies. The measure of how much effort it takes to use a weapon (whether the weapon is designated as a light, one-handed, or two-handed weapon for a particular wielder) is altered by one step for each size category of difference between the wielder’s size and the size of the creature for which the weapon was designed. For example, a Small creature would wield a Medium one-handed weapon as a two-handed weapon. If a weapon’s designation would be changed to something other than light, one-handed, or two-handed by this alteration, the creature can’t wield the weapon at all.

Scarab Sages

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Fiendish Heritage is a dated campaign trait that addresses the perceived power increase a tiefling represents. Note aasimar weren't a playable race at the time. The trait is campaign specific so should be ignored outside of Council of Thieves.

Scarab Sages

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Vod Canockers wrote:
I think they used a formula similar to Horselord's, and then made the numbers look nice.

I think you're right. The numbers are rounded off.

Edit: Can't believe I forgot to put brackets around (Strength -10) in my formula. It should be:

Maximum Encumbrance = 100 x 4^(0.1 x (Strength - 10)) lbs.

If Strength is less than or equal to 10: Maximum Encumbrance = Strength x 10

Scarab Sages

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It is an exponential scale. The formula can be dervied from two bits of information: the growth is 4x per 10 points, and Strength 10 has a maximum load of 100 lbs. The formula should be...

Max Encumbrance = 100 x 4^(0.1 x Strength - 10)

Medium and heavy encumbrance thresholds are 1/3 and 2/3 of the maximum encumbrance, respectively. Note that very low Strengths have a linear pattern. Up to 10 strength, the maximum encumbrance is 10x strength score. This actually lowers the maximum encumbrance significantly for strength scores below 5.

Scarab Sages

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Has anyone considered that the gold or silver of Celestial Armor is just the colour?

Scarab Sages

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karossii wrote:

Nothing on this planet is inorganic, by one definition.

By the traditional definition, nothing we eat is inorganic.

I hate the 'modern' perversion of the term... organic food is redundant repetition.

The chemistry definition of organic and inorganic disagree with you. Technically, water is an inorganic compound. The rule of thumb is, if it contains carbon in a molecular form, it is organic, otherwise it is inorganic.

I agree however that the "organic" food marketing label is using the word inappropriately. Pesticides and fertilisers that "organic" bans are, themselves, organic compounds!

Scarab Sages

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I was looking into animal companions and how to get a strong one, and I came up with a character build that borders on ridiculous.

Level 28 animal companion at level 12
Play either an elf or an aasimar. An aasimar is better as you can take the Celestial Servant feat. Elf allows the Ancient Lorekeeper archetype but this can be achieved with Scion of Humanity and the Racial Heritage: Elf feat.

Choose Oracle as your favoured class and choose your racial benefit: Add +1/2 to the oracle’s level for the purpose of determining the effects of one revelation. (Choose Bonded Mount)

Start with the

Ascendant Recollection Trait:
(Ultimate Campaign, Magic Trait): Your first bloodline power is particularly strong. Your sorcerer level is considered to be 1 level higher when determining the effects of your 1st-level bloodline power.

Take 5 levels of Nature Oracle but do not take Bonded Mount until your 7th level revelation. For your 5th level feat, take

Animal Ally:
Your respect for nature is so great that you can form a
deep and lasting friendship with an animal.
Prerequisites: Nature Soul, character level 4th, must not
have an animal companion or mount that advances as an
animal companion.
Benefit: You gain an animal companion as if you were
a druid of your character level –3 from the following
list: badger, bird, camel, cat (small), dire rat, dog, horse,
pony, snake (viper), or wolf. If you later gain an animal
companion through another source (such as the Animal
domain, divine bond, hunter’s bond, mount, or nature
bond class features), the effective druid level granted by
this feat stacks with that granted by other sources.

You must take its prerequisite feat at level 1 or 3 though. As you do not have an animal companion it is legal.

For your 6th level, take a level of Sorcerer of the

Sylvan bloodline:
Animal Companion (Ex): At 1st level, you gain an animal companion. Your effective druid level for this ability is equal to your sorcerer level – 3 (minimum 1st). This bloodline power counts as your bloodline arcana.

Now take the remainder of your levels as Nature Oracle, taking

Bonded Mount:
You gain the service of an unusually intelligent, strong, and loyal mount. The creature must be one that you are capable of riding and is suitable as a mount. A Medium oracle can select a camel or a horse. A Small oracle can select a pony or wolf, but can also select a boar or a dog if she is at least 4th level. This mount functions as a druid’s animal companion, using your oracle level as your effective druid level. Bonded mounts have an Intelligence score of at least 6.
as your next revelation.

The animal companion can be selected from the entire list (sorcerer) and has a minimum intelligence of 6 (oracle).

Now to put it all together. Each Oracle level grants 1.5 animal companion levels. Your Sorcerer level grants 1 level, or 3 with a Robe of Arcane Heritage, and the Animal Ally feat grants HD -3 levels.

So assuming a Robe of Arcane Heritage is worn, just the sorcerer level with the Animal Ally feat gives you an animal companion equal to your level. Now add on ((character level -1) x 1.5, rounded down) for the oracle levels and it just explodes. At level 8, the animal companion is level 16 (18 with robes), and at character level 12 it is 26 (28 with robes).

The curious thing about this is it is entirely Pathfinder Society legal!

Some may argue that the animal companion caps at level 20, but the progression is obvious so it is easy to extend. It is unclear if the table should extend (what happens after 20th level?).

Anyway, that's my rant.

Scarab Sages

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It sounds like you don't have a regular group. Admittedly it loses some of the "benefits" of meeting new and varied people, but it allows you to carve out your own rut with people who can grow with you. It also allows the whole group to advance a group of characters to retirement (unless character death gets in the way).

The main benefit of a regular group is the people in it will become experienced at the game if they are not fairly quickly, or at least the experienced of the group can prevent glaring character weaknesses from entering a character build. It becomes a lot less individual, the experienced of the group can vet character builds (and play, through suggestion, encouragement, etc.) and help the inexperienced make the kind of character they will enjoy playing.

Admittedly, travelling makes a regular group really hard to keep up.

Scarab Sages

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erik542 wrote:
Black Fang wrote:
What is the reach for a large whip wielded by a large humanoid shaped creature?
5 ft. more

This can't be right. This would reduce its reach to the same as every other reach weapon.

Scarab Sages

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Going on the way an IQ test measures IQ, it is based on the distribution across the population. So 100 is average and the standard deviation is 15 points (according to WISC and WISE). Then if we use the probabilities of rolling 3d6 we get an IQ equivalents as listed.

The IQ's metric is measure that asks, "what fraction of the population has a lower IQ than me?" Then finds that probability on a normal curve and comes out with a number.

The only way I could get the columns to look neat:

Scarab Sages

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I am currently playing a half-orc two-weapon fighter in a campaign and accidentally made his point-buy a lot lower than it should have been (my old character died and she was made at level 11 as a replacement). Back-calculating, the lst level stats (before racial adjustments) was:

Str 15, Dex 15, Con 12, Int 7, Wis 7, Cha 7

This works out to a point buy of 4! Admittedly, I started assuming that I was going to need a high strength, dexterity, and a positive constitution mod, then dumped the rest to see what I had to play with, but somehow thought I was out of points after that, being distracted by other elements of character creation.

This has been a very interesting character to play and having no respectable mental capability, combined with a bite attack and relishing eating corpses (particularly elves) has made her a very distinctive character. Everyone has a clear view on what her capabilities are and it gets a laugh when my bad dice rolls reinforce the concept (She was charmed and for days later failed her saves, yet managed to pass all the saves the party threw at her to counter-charm - she was a bitey head poking out of a bag of holding for a while!)

Other such laughs were when she was feebleminded and no-one noticed for weeks.

To reinforce that stat dumps are not cheesy is to see how the low stat affects them. The classic of a dumped charisma is not limited to being ugly or a jerk. There is also the lack of leadership ability, lacking a respectable presence (so the character tends to get overlooked and ignored), shyness, social phobia, an inability to fit in, or undesirable mannerisms. Each stat has a broad range of concepts that fit into it - a character can be defined off of just six.

On the flipside, a high stat can be played more averagely by a character who doesn't force his full potential through his actions constantly. A very intelligent player can be subtle to be more socially normal to fit in, or just lazy.

Scarab Sages

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My medium-sized character was using a reach weapon and a large creature was next to him occupying a 10'x10' area. The DM ruled that I didn't threaten the large creature and now I'm not sure if the answer is so obvious. I can see three outcomes that are justified but it would be good to know if there was anything official that could clear things up.

The three rulings I or the DM think are valid:

1) You don't threaten an adjacent large creature with a reach weapon. The weapon doesn't threaten adjacent targets irrespective of their size. It could also be argued you attack the nearest square of a creature.

2) You do threaten an adjacent large creature with a reach weapon. The large creature occupies a square you threaten so that creature is a valid target.

3) You do threaten an adjacent large creature with a reach weapon but it gets cover. The large creature occupies a square you threaten so that creature is a valid target but nearer squares are occupied (with the same creature, but still...), so they obstruct the attack, granting cover to the defender.