JSollars's page

Organized Play Member. 18 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 1 Organized Play character.


Grand Lodge

I am winding down my current game and will be gearing up for a new one soon and I have been looking at perhaps running of the older Dungeon mag adventure paths and was looking for any advice as to which one I should choose.

My group has 7 players, 2 girls and 5 guys. We are all at least in our mid to late thirties and have been playing DND for about 15 to 20 years each. They tend to enjoy an equal mix of both tactical combat and Role-Play, not quite as into the exploration/investigation aspects of the game.

Another consideration is that I plan to update the adventures from 3.5 to the PFRPG rules.

So should I go with Shackled City, Age of Worms, or Savage Tide?

Grand Lodge

5 people marked this as a favorite.

One of my worst experiences was also one of my first.

We travel in the wayback machine to my junior high days, when I first got into fantasy lit via the Dragonlance novels. Met a guy who mentioned he and his friends were playing in a Dragonlance D&D game and invited me to join. I happily accept and bring along another friend of mine.

Turns out they are playing the modules based on the Chronicles line of novels, and the are playing the pre-gens (Tanis, Raistlin, etc.).

What made it so utterly boring was that all the other players and the DM were absolutely determined to make the game turn out EXACTLY like the novels did.

DM: You encounter a group of gully dwarves...

Group (to my friend): You are playing Raistlin. You need to cast Charm Person now.

My friend: I didn't memorize that spell. Can't I just put them to sleep with my Sleep spell and we can just ignore them?

DM: Actually, you did remember that you might need to cast Charm Person so you memorized that spell instead.

Group: OK, there you go. Now cast it.

My friend: Um, sure. I cast Charm Person.

DM: You meet a friendly female gully dwarf named Bupu....

and so on. No room to improvise or do anything original really. The DM fudged all the dice rolls or sometime didn't even bother to roll any dice at all if they would result in even the slightest deviation from that occured in the novels.

Luckily I stuck it out with the group and as we all got older we all became much better roleplayers and gamers. I am still friends with some of these same guys to this day, 20+ years later.

Grand Lodge

Perhaps some type of "Player Tips for PFS at Large Cons" 1 page document can me produced?

Include such tips as purchasing real tickets ahead of time rather than generics, show up half-hour early before your slot, self muster into 6 player groups, try to have multiple PC's to choose from for each tier or an appropraite pre-gen, etc.

Put the document on the PFS section of and have hard copies on hand to pass out at the conventions as well (perhaps at the Paizo booth?).

Wouldn't solve all your problems (always last minute and unprepared players), but it could help alleviate some of the issues.

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I am relatively new to PFS, but I have vast amounts of experience in multiple other organized play groups and running convention games, some with 100+ players.

So I can say with some certainly the following facts:

1. Good GMing is an aquired skill with certain requirements
2. Good GMing in an organized play environment is an aquired skill with often very different requirements
3. Good GMing at a large convention is an aquired skill with often (yet again) very different requirements

I think that is something that everyone should keep in mind. I good home GM does not a good PFS GM make (and vice versa), though of course there are core elements to all good GMing that does apply across the board.

A general GM 101 would likely be little more than review for me, but should I ever step into GMing PFS scenarios, then a GM 101 tailored specifically to the Society would be a godsend.

Grand Lodge

Yes, 14 str hence the +2 bow.

I also realized the necessity of a light source when I got stuck having to hold a torch and thus couldn't use my bow. I assume that Wayfinders can be hung around the neck or the belt and don't need to be held in-hand to shed Light?

The usual Ioun stones from the core book are in UE but I seem to recall someone mentioned they have "lesser" versions that are cracked or chipped? Are those in Seeker of Secrets? I don't own that book but I might purchase the PDF if it is a good investment.

Grand Lodge

Could use some help with spending my recently aquired wealth for my PC after playing through my first 2 scenarios ever this weekend. The first was a tier 1-2 and the second was a tier 4-5 (first level PC but most of the rest of the party was higher level. I survived mostly by staying at the back of the party and using my longbow!).

My PC currently has a longbow, regular and blunt arrows, shortsword, studded leather armor and a Rangers kit. He is a 1st level Human Ranger on the archery track.

I currently have 2455 GP to spend, nothing on the chronicle sheets that I plan to purchase at this time. I also have 3 Fame and 3 PP.

My plan as it stands:

Masterwork Composite Longbow, Darkwood (+2 Str) 630 GP
Mithral Shirt 1,100 GP
Wayfinder 250 GP
Wand of Cure Light Wounds 2 PP

total 1980 GP, 2 PP

assuming my pricing is correct, that leaves me 475 Gp and 1 PP.

Should I rethink any of the above purchases? Any special ammo or gear I should add to my shopping list? I will have a copy of Ultimate Equipment soon so I will have access to anything in that tome as well.

Grand Lodge

I plan to keep Diplomacy for now.

As I understand it, if for some reason it never comes up or I end up at a table with a lot of veterans with CHA characters I can still re-write anytime before level 2?

Grand Lodge

Matt2VK wrote:
With all your skill points, you might want to put at least 1 skill point into a Craft, Preform, or Profession skill. This will allow you to make a Day job roll during each session.

I plan to pick up craft: bows at level 2 or 3. Just trying to cover the basics like Swim first for survivability and then branch out as the character gains more ranks.

Grand Lodge

Thanks for the great advice one and all!

I went with Jiggy's suggestion for ability scores, and swapped out Deadly Aim for Precise Shot.

I have been looking at Traits as well, most likely will be taking the human race trait of World Traveler from the APG for Knowledge: Local and Erastil's Speaker from Faiths of Purity (just bought the PDF!) for Diplomacy. Obviously going with Erastil as my Diety of choice.

From what I can gather from the Additional Resources both those traits are legal so long as I own the books?

I redistibuted my skill points a bit as well:

[1 rank each]
1. Diplomacy
2. Knowledge - Dungeoneering
3. Knowledge - Local
4. Knowledge - Nature
5. Perception
6. Stealth
7. Survival
8. Swim

with plans to take a rank each in Climb and Handle Animal at 2nd level.

Does Knowledge - Local need to be specified, such as Varisia or Magnimar, or just left as is?

Weapons/armor wise, I like the suggestion of gladius as a backup melee weapon. Most likely studded leather and a buckler for now until I can afford upgrades.

Any further tips/advice is appreciated, especially in regards towards things I should be building towards in future levels (assuming I survive that long).

Leaning towards Grand Lodge as my faction. Are my skill selections fairly consistent with the goals of that faction?

Grand Lodge

Due to a recent change in my employment status (in a good way!) I finally have the time to join the Pathfinder Society. My first game will be next week and any advice on my PC would be appreciated.

The general concept is a young man from a rural area (I am thinking somewhere near Sandpoint), spent most of his life learning the skills of a hunter to help feed his family and spent his free time exploring wilderness and nearby mountains and caves. Defenitely a new recruit to the PFS and hasn't seen much of the outside world up till now, and not comfortable in large crowds or structured social situations.

Mechanics wise, I am looking an archer ranger. I always gravitate towards highly skilled characters more than combat oriented or spellcasting PC's.

Race - Human
Class - Ranger

Str - 14
Dex - 18 (+2 racial)
Con - 14
Int - 10
Wis - 12
Cha - 8

Hit Points - 12 (10, +2 Con)

Skills (1 rank each)
1. climb
2. craft: bows (for day job checks and making ammo)
3. handle animal
4. knowledge - dungeoneering
5. knowledge - nature
6. perception
7. stealth
8. survival

the skills include +1 each for human racial and favored class

1. Point Blank Shot
2. Deadly Aim

That's all I have so far. Will be looking into getting a +2 composite longbow once he has the cash to afford it. Light armor and a melee weapon for backup/mopup.

Also looking at level advancement, probably going with Precise Shot as bonus feat at 2nd level, and taking the animal companion when it opens up.

I could use help with a good choice for favored enemy (goblins? humans?). Does Knowledge: Geography come up a lot as a skill check? Any good fits for a faction to be a member of? Better feat or skill picks?

I am also looking at perhaps switching Int and Wis scores, and taking the Skirmisher archetype from the APG (dropping his spells entirely).

Grand Lodge

Headband of Shrouded Memories
Aura faint abjuration and divination; CL 5th
Slot headband; Price 27,000 gp; Weight 1 lb.

This simple brass headband contains two emeralds which rest on either side of the head, usually at the temples.

The headband grants the user the ability to remove one specific piece of information (such as a name, face, location, or password, but not an entire conversation or block of time) from his memory for exactly 24 hours. The removed memory will return after the 24 hours have passed, regardless of whether or not the user is wearing the headband. Information removed in this way cannot be returned to the user’s memory at an earlier time. A user can only have one memory at a time removed in this manner.

Alternately, the user can choose to remove one specific piece of information entirely. The chosen memory is then stored in the headband itself. To regain a specific memory, a user must be wearing the headband and activate the memory retrieval as a standard action. A headband can store up to 10 memories at a time; these memories need not come from a single user. Once a memory has been stored in the headband, any user can retrieve the memories regardless of who placed them in the headband originally. If a stored memory is retrieved, it is erased from the headband.

Any user of the headband has knowledge of the number of currently stored memories but not whose memories they are or when they were placed within the headband, except for their own.

If a headband is destroyed, all memories stored within (both permanent and temporary) are lost.

Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, detect thoughts, nondetection; Cost 13,500 gp

Grand Lodge

I stopped by my FLGS tonight and saw that the new minis were out. I have had hints that I can expect at least 1 or more Bricks for my birthday next month so I did not pre-order any myself.

I did pick up 1 medium and 1 large booster as an impulse buy at the register (couldn't help myself)and ended up with 2 rares (Seelah and the Manticore) so I have been smiling all night at that. 2 for 2!

Grand Lodge

This is one of the items I worked up but did not submit. I really liked the idea of a guy running head-first into structures and smashing them down but knocking himself silly in the process. I ultimately decided it was too similar to the Ring of the Ram.

Helm of the Bighorn Ram
Aura moderate evocation; CL 11th
slot head; Price 25,000 gp; Weight 3 lbs.

This otherwise normal looking helm has a set of steel ram horns about 2 feet in total length curving out and back over the sides. Designed for sheer destructive power, the helm causes considerable damage to structures and objects by striking at their weakest point.

To use the helm, the user speaks a command word as a free action, causing the ram horns to double in size and glow with an arcane silvery light. He then lowers his head and runs in a straight line at the structure or object he intends to destroy, as though charging an opponent, and subject to the rules of a charge (must move at least 10 feet, movement cannot be hindered, etc.)

Striking at the base of a tree, cornerstone, support beam, barred door or gate, or other structural foundation; the wearer makes a Strength check to break the target. The helm adds a +5 circumstance bonus to this check, after which he gains the Staggered condition for 1 round. The user has the option to increase the circumstance bonus by an additional +5, but retains the Staggered condition for another round for each such increase, up to a total of +20. If the target falls or is toppled over as a result of this check, the user chooses the direction in which it falls.

The helm has no effect on living creatures or hand held items. It can be used up to three times per day.

Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, forceful hand; Cost 12,500 gp

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Since this just happened to me, I thought I would post it for others.

I apparently just dodged a bullet, as I had my item all ready to go (properly formatted, spells researched, price calculated, etc.)

I was perusing some of the older superstar final 32 item submissions, when I noticed a previous item that was dabbling in the same area my item was supposed to (incorporeal creatures, in this case). Then I noticed a second one. There was a third submission in the critique my item threads that also dealt with incorporeal creatueres and one of the points against it was that the writer had not done their research and seen that this an area already explored by previous contestants.

So, it is back to the drawing board for me. And I urge all prospective item creators to look back over the previous years of the contest at what the actual items were to avoid a lack of originality ding.

Also, look over the Judges Critique My Item threads. I often find the judges comments on the items that did not win to be more informative than the winning entries.

Grand Lodge

Thanks for the reply!

I am not creating new mechanics. It's much closer, for example, to the description of the Chime of Opening.

Rather than simply stating that the Chime only opens 1 lock per use and ending it there, it also clarifies in the text that a chest with 4 different locks on it would need to have the Chime used 4 seperate times until it could be opened.

My item, for now, includes a small clarfication as to it's use as well. It is not necessary in order to understand how the item works, but I think it helps. I can easily remove that part of the item description if it comes across as amateurish though.

Grand Lodge

I have a question for the community/judges, since this is my first year entering the competition.

If I have a mildly unusual mechanic as part of my item, is it a good or bad idea to include an example of that mechanic in use as part of the item description?

Grand Lodge

Hail Pathfinder players!

I recently jumped back into the Fantasy RPG hobby after far too many years away. I have been playing DND Encounters and although I enjoy 4th ed. it is not the game that I have fond memories of playing back in my youth when AD&D 2nd ed. was the king of the rpg world.

I recently learned about Pathfinder and the forthcoming (at that time) Beginner Box so I bided my time and now I have it in my grubby little paws and I was blown away! It is very much the spiritual successor to the game that I loved back in the day. I also picked up the Core Rulebook and Beastiary, and I am planning a campagn to start in January.

My question here is about character creation, and I aplogize if this sort of thing has been hashed out here before but I am a newbie to these forums.

In 4th ed DND, the new race rules allow for a fixed +2 bonus to one ability score and then a choice between 2 other abilities for a second +2. Has this sort of thing ever been used or considered as a house rule for Pathfinder campaigns? Good or bad results?

To my thinking, it would look something like this:

Dwarf: +2 Constitution, +2 Wisdom or Strength, -2 Charisma

Elf: +2 Dexterity, +2 Intelligence or Wisdom, -2 Constitution

Gnome: +2 Charisma, +2 Constitution or Intelligence, -2 Strength

Half-Elf: +2 to One Ability Score

Half-Orc: +2 to One Ability Score

Halfling: +2 to Dexterity, +2 to Charisma or Con. -2 to Strength

Human: +2 to One Ability Score

All other racial traits would remain the same.

Questions, comments, etc. ?

Grand Lodge

3 people marked this as a favorite.

I picked up my set tonight at my FLGS. Awesome set, looks great.

I was actually there to play in my weekly Encounters game but all the DND players (including myself) kept getting distracted by these Pathfinder mini's. And this was during the final chapter of the current encounters season, mind you, a battle with a Dragon. Several came over to ask to borrow my set for closer inspection and then rushed to purchase their own copy before the store ran out!

Bravo to Paizo and Wizkids **cue applause** .