Snow Leopard

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Interesting Character wrote:
JulianW wrote:
Interesting Character - Do you think it would be possible to distill it down into a few questions to define where someone's tastes and preferences put them on that grid?

Maybe eventually. I'm autistic, so communication is difficult. Took me years to get this far in trying to discuss the topic, and it has been something I've been analyzing for the past decade or so, especially after I got my minor is psychology.

Forming this into a set of questions is something I'll look into. Not something I'll be able to just put together with any kind of speed.

There is a germ of something brilliant here.

Your original post is as you quite rightly describe, an essay - the guidance I got given when I did my undergrad at Oxford was the weekly essay should be close to 3000 words, no more or less. Your post is 2879 - my tutor would have smiled at that. Essays are great for getting your thoughts in order and laying them out ready for an academic discussion. Ideally the outcome of the essay plus the discussions is then a shorter set of conclusions that can then be applied in practice.

My learning here is that this is all about communication.

You're looking to be able to get expectations about the campaign's play style more formally set upfront - its key information you want them to communicate to inform decisions on if to play, what character to play and how to play them with that group. Most groups don't take the time to spell this out formally, or if they are they aren't covering all the topics you want to cover.

The challenge is how to best communicate that request for information to the group, especially as most won't take the time to read an essay or if they do, they won't all draw the same conclusions from it.

I think what you need is to find the simplest way you can of explaining to groups how they can place themselves on the grid of your mental model without them needing to understand the full theory - whether its a list of questions, simple examples of what different points on the scale look like or maybe a flow chart.

Its designing a classification system, ideally one that is quick and simple to use.


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Interesting Character - Do you think it would be possible to distill it down into a few questions to define where someone's tastes and preferences put them on that grid?

On the lines of "which of the following statements would you agree with?" (I'm not advocating any of these as right or wrong - several contradict each other)

- The GM should aim to make an interesting story. It is a player's responsibility to give their character a reason to be interested in it.

- The GM should aim to make an interesting world. It is a player's responsibility to give their character interesting objectives.

- The challenge of an adventure should be driven by what is there in the world. If the players have planned well it should be easier, if they are stupid they will suffer

- The challenge of an adventure should be driven by what will make an exciting session - the GM should dial it up or down based on the party's capabilities to ensure its both challenging and fair

- A character should have flaws and weaknesses , because they make for a more interesting story.

- If a character has flaws that is their look out. The player should plan to mitigate their weaknesses if they can.

- The approach a character takes to a task is as, if not more important than their skill roll - for example what they say to the NPC and how they say it, where they are looking for traps and how they attempt to disable them

- Its the party's responsibility to cover their bases - if they have no diplomat they should expect to struggle socially, if they didn't enough combat capability that's their risk

- The choice of which characters to play is a good indicator of what the players find fun. If no one wants to play a rogue the GM shouldn't use many traps, if they are light on martial characters then reduce the amount of combat.

- A character that has had hours of thought put into their design should be more effective than one that has not

- A character should be shaped by what happens to them from the story and the other characters. Its rude to your GM and fellow players if nothing they do will make you deviate from a plan you made before level 1

I'm sure you have a different list of questions but hopefully these illustrate what I'm getting at.


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What I would if running giantslayer again, because some parts are excellent.

giantslayer spoilers:

Books 1 & 2 are superb - run as is.

Book 3 is the first serious section of giant bashing and book 4 has the whole cool commando raid feel to it so basically sound. But I'd look to add in

- more interactions with possible allies - persuading people from Lastwall, Jandhoff, Magnimar, Nithramas etc that the giants are a threat and they need to start gathering armies (or evacuating small settlements)

Also perhaps side quests to go look for magical items / flying mounts or some such.

Don't just let them go off and buy a +1 giantsbane weapon each, have a session or two at least involved in winning the favour of someone who can do it and getting ingredients for them for example.

Give the Storm Tyrant some other allies - doesn't matter what kind of group - just something intelligent and very different to giants. Could just be a bunch of quisling types willing to sell out the human nations for gold or to settle a score with their rulers.

Book 5 goes basically in the bin. As it stands, one communal resist fire spell is about all you need to trivialise all non giant encounters in it.

Instead really play up the orb of dragonkind thing - make this all about fighting dragons.

Towards the end of your replacement book 5, have things start gearing up for a huge pitched battle as the armies of the small folk get ready to clash with armies of giants - lots of trying to win over allies, prepare defences, build ridiculous siege engines, allow the PCs to play drill sergeant giving the regular soldiers training on how to fight giants.

After the battle, the Storm Tyrant flees to his castle and the PCs as the victorious champions take him on in his lair. Have the castle flying over and in danger of crashing into the capital of whichever nation they care most about - otherwise run book 6 as is


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Dragon78 wrote:

I would also like to play Iron Gods but our DM is not a fan of the "Sci-fi stuff" in D&D/Pathfinder.

What is the problem that people have with Giantslayer?

Having reffed it, Giantslayer delivers what it says on the label.

However that becomes problematic for several reasons

1. Its very easy for parties to specialise in killing giants. This leads to big set piece encounters becoming trivial but random wandering encounters nothing to do with the plot were the ones that killed people.

2. So much of a giant's CR is eaten up by their HD & strength there's little room to give them class levels, so they make very poor casters and generally are much worse at missile fire than melee. For obvious reasons they aren't good at sneaking about or social infiltration. This means most encounters turn into them trying to walk up and hit the party, maybe mixed in with some combat maneuvers. This can get very repetitive.

3. Giants live in giant buildings as makes sense. These give rise to huge maps, which is cool. However while the maps are two, three, four times bigger than normal maps, giants are only 10ft around faster than medium creatures. Giants also suck at ranged combat (see #2)- so the party often got to pepper them with arrows, cast any buff spells they wanted, maybe have a leisurely cup of coffee while the giants crawled across the huge maps towards them.

4. Its a pretty straightforward story. After the first couple of books there is very little in the way of roleplay, diplomacy, investigation or
similar - there are big obvious bad guys and you get to go fight them.

This probably adds up to a couple of ways people find books 3-6 get dull
- players that enjoy non-combat stuff may get bored by the lack of it
- players who are very combat focused will find the fights very repetitive

Its eminently fixable though if a referee wants to sub in their own content - I'll put up a separate post under a spoiler shortly


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GM'ing Giantslayer

The Frost Giant stablehand of total badassness.

Starts off with a nat 20 and a good enough roll to confirm a crit flinging the huge bucket of soapy water with which he is washing the boss' war mammoth

Party front line charge in, he pulls his great axe and rolls 4 natural 20s in a row, sundering both the Paladin's divine bonded sword and the warpriest's sacred weapon polearm.

Finally he dies, let down by the fact the mammoth that was supposed to be the focus of the encounter proved totally useless.

He did achieve a victory however - unlike many supposedly tougher or named npc frost giants, he forced the party to retreat and rest up, with party members desperately researching if the cleric can fix things with the right level of make whole spell.


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Shadette I think this is most rules lawyering argument, splitting of the finest of hairs I have seen in 40 years of playing RPGs

There’s no RAI, in character logic or game balance argument for your very strange ruling.

Your RAW argument has nothing you quote to support it - only you demanding we give you RAW text to prove you wrong on two separate obscure claims and then denying all rules quoted to you as not being incontrovertible enough in your mind.

You have nothing to positively support any of the claims that
- the bow isn’t the weapon doing the damage
- it makes a difference if the bow or the arrow does the damage
- ammunition doesn’t count as a weapon when used in a bow

This is the second forum I’ve seen you raise this on. On the Facebook group this got hundreds of comments. NOT ONE SINGLE PERSON on either forum has agreed with your bizarre logic - does that not make you consider you might be wrong?


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Averaging a couple games of PF1 per week with a mix of groups, none of which has shown any appetite to switch.

Have played a few PF2 sessions - keep trying it and trying to like it but so far the jury is still out for me. Think that makes me the most pro PF2 person at any of those tables.


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Shadette wrote:


Under projectile weapons it says nothing about how damage is actually applied, pointing out again how ammunition aren't treated the same as weapons.

You said

"Really I am just looking for any RAW source that says explicitly that ammunition are weapons."

The text from page 141 specifically lists ammunition as a category of weapon.


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OK, from the weapon rules in the core rulebook (linking to PFSRD here)
[url]https://www.d20pfsrd.com/equipmenT/weapons/#Weapon_Rules[/url]
p140 & 141 of core rulebook

The section below gives us three key pieces - all RAW
1) "All weapons deal hit point damage" (page 140)
2) Both projectile weapons and ammunition are specifically listed as sub categories of weapon on page 141
3) The projectile weapons section on page 141 states it is the projectile weapon doing the damage anyway

Added together these are completely unambiguous - if someone is shot with a bow and arrow, they are taking weapon damage.

Full text from core rulebook:

-------------------------------------
Weapons

All weapons deal hit point damage. This damage is subtracted from the current hit points of any creature struck by the weapon. When the result of the die roll to make an attack is a natural 20 (that is, the die actually shows a 20), his is known as a critical threat (although some weapons can score a critical threat on a roll of less than 20). If a
critical threat is scored, another attack roll is made, using
the same modifiers as the original attack roll. If this second
attack roll is equal to or greater than the target’s AC, the hit
becomes a critical hit, dealing additional damage.

Weapons are grouped into several interlocking sets of categories. These categories pertain to what training is needed to become proficient in a weapon’s use (simple, martial, or exotic), the weapon’s usefulness either in close combat (melee) or at a distance (ranged, which includes both thrown and projectile weapons), its relative encumbrance (light, one-handed, or two-handed), and its size (Small, Medium, or Large).

Simple, Martial, and Exotic Weapons: Anybody but
a druid, monk, or wizard is proficient with all simple
weapons. Barbarians, fighters, paladins, and rangers
are proficient with all simple and all martial weapons.
Characters of other classes are proficient with an
assortment of simple weapons and possibly some martial
or even exotic weapons. All characters are proficient with
unarmed strikes and any natural weapons possessed by
their race. A character who uses a weapon with which he is
not proficient takes a –4 penalty on attack rolls.

Melee and Ranged Weapons: Melee weapons are used
for making melee attacks, though some of them can be
thrown as well. Ranged weapons are thrown weapons or
projectile weapons that are not effective in melee.

Reach Weapons: Glaives, guisarmes, lances, longspears,
ranseurs, and whips are reach weapons. A reach weapon is
a melee weapon that allows its wielder to strike at targets
that aren’t adjacent to him. Most reach weapons double
the wielder’s natural reach, meaning that a typical Small
or Medium wielder of such a weapon can attack a creature
10 feet away, but not a creature in an adjacent square. A
typical Large character wielding a reach weapon of the
appropriate size can attack a creature 15 or 20 feet away,
but not adjacent creatures or creatures up to 10 feet away.

Double Weapons: Dire flails, dwarven urgroshes, gnome
hooked hammers, orc double axes, quarterstaves, and
two-bladed swords are double weapons. A character
can fight with both ends of a double weapon as if fighting
with two weapons, but he incurs all the normal attack
penalties associated with two-weapon combat, just
as though the character were wielding a one-handed
weapon and a light weapon (see page 202). The character can also choose to use a double weapon two-handed, attacking with only one end of it. A creature wielding a double weapon in one hand can’t use it as a double weapon—only one end of the weapon can be used in any given round.

Thrown Weapons: Daggers, clubs, shortspears, spears,
darts, javelins, throwing axes, light hammers, tridents,
shuriken, and nets are thrown weapons. The wielder
applies his Strength modifier to damage dealt by thrown
weapons (except for splash weapons). It is possible to throw
a weapon that isn’t designed to be thrown (that is, a melee
weapon that doesn’t have a numeric entry in the Range
column on Table 6–4), and a character who does so takes
a –4 penalty on the attack roll. Throwing a light or onehanded
weapon is a standard action, while throwing a two handed
weapon is a full-round action. Regardless of the
type of weapon, such an attack scores a threat only on a
natural roll of 20 and deals double damage on a critical hit.
Such a weapon has a range increment of 10 feet.

Projectile Weapons: Blowguns, light crossbows, slings,
heavy crossbows, shortbows, composite shortbows,
longbows, composite longbows, half ling sling staves,
hand crossbows, and repeating crossbows are projectile
weapons. Most projectile weapons require two hands to
use (see specific weapon descriptions). A character gets
no Strength bonus on damage rolls with a projectile
weapon unless it’s a specially built composite shortbow or
longbow, or a sling. If the character has a penalty for low
Strength, apply it to damage rolls when he uses a bow or
a sling.

Ammunition: Projectile weapons use ammunition:
arrows (for bows), bolts (for crossbows), darts (for
blowguns), or sling bullets (for slings and half ling
sling staves). When using a bow, a character can draw
ammunition as a free action; crossbows and slings require
an action for reloading (as noted in their descriptions).
Generally speaking, ammunition that hits its target is
destroyed or rendered useless, while ammunition that
misses has a 50% chance of being destroyed or lost.
Although they are thrown weapons, shuriken are
treated as ammunition for the purposes of drawing them,
crafting masterwork or otherwise special versions of them
(see Masterwork Weapons on page 149), and what happens
to them after they are thrown.

Light, One-Handed, and Two-Handed Melee Weapons:
This designation is a measure of how much effort it takes
to wield a weapon in combat. It indicates whether a melee
weapon, when wielded by a character of the weapon’s
size category, is considered a light weapon, a one-handed
weapon, or a two-handed weapon.

Light: A light weapon is used in one hand. It is easier to
use in one’s off hand than a one-handed weapon is, and can
be used while grappling (see Chapter 8). Add the wielder’s
Strength modifier to damage rolls for melee attacks with
a light weapon if it’s used in the primary hand, or half the
wielder’s Strength bonus if it’s used in the off hand. Using
two hands to wield a light weapon gives no advantage on
damage; the Strength bonus applies as though the weapon
were held in the wielder’s primary hand only.
An unarmed strike is always considered a light weapon.

One-Handed: A one-handed weapon can be used in either
the primary hand or the off hand. Add the wielder’s Strength
bonus to damage rolls for melee attacks with a one-handed
weapon if it’s used in the primary hand, or 1/2 his Strength
bonus if it’s used in the off hand. If a one-handed weapon
is wielded with two hands during melee combat, add 1-1/2
times the character’s Strength bonus to damage rolls.

Two-Handed: Two hands are required to use a twohanded
melee weapon effectively. Apply 1-1/2 times the
character’s Strength bonus to damage rolls for melee
attacks with such a weapon.


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Shadette wrote:


What I am saying is, that the bonus wouldn't go to damage for the same reasons you can't take weapon specialization for arrows. They aren't weapons, they're ammunition.

You can however take weapon specialization in longbow or shortbow.


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Thanks all.


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I'm still getting used to the rules for exploration mode. Looking for advice please.

What official exploration mode actions are being done by the example characters below? What would they use for initiative if a fight did start here?

-------------------------------------------------------------
A party of adventurers approach a small ruined village in a woodland clearing. Smoke hangs over several buildings and the party suspect the local goblins may responsible and perhaps waiting in ambush.

Part 1

Anna, the rogue, attempts to sneak into the village to see if any goblins or other threats are obviously visible without drawing attention to the party.

The rest of the party wait out of sight, watching from the treeline.

Anna plans to either sneak back to the party to report back or if spotted, run like hell back to them.

Part 2

Anna comes back reporting no obvious active enemies but did hear some sounds of movement so the party approach the village warily

Balin the paladin takes the lead, weapons at the ready, looking out for goblins as he advances.

Anna starts peeking into each house they pass, looking for signs of goblins, abandoned valuables or possible traps.

Dwalin the druid examines tracks in the village and/or looks for anything that may have been dropped as clues of what happened

Charlie the ranger is worried about ambushers, especially someone jumping on Dwallin while he's staring at the ground. Charlie takes out his crossbow and loads it. He wants to 'cover' Dwallin as he pokes about. If he was in an encounter he would like to ready to shoot anything attacking Dwallin but he's not sure how to do this in exploration mode.


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Its like the speed you drive your car at.

Explanation:
Anyone who drives noticeably faster than you is a reckless boy racer who is a hazard to everyone else on the road and deserves to loose their driving licence.

Anyone who drives noticeably slower than you is a timid Sunday driver who is impeding traffic and shouldn't be on the road.

Anyone whose character is more effective than yours is a fun stealing munchkin optimizer who can't role-play and you should exclude them from your game for lowering the tone.

Anyone whose character is less effective than yours is endangering the rest of the party by not pulling their weight and you should dump the newb loser.

It takes a few uncomfortable conversations to go through with all that and you may take some social splash damage, but it will eventually lead to the nirvana of a perfect game. Or more likely finding yourself googling "how to play TTRPGs solo?"

2/5

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Encounter B (burning woods) mentions 'calming the wolverines' but no specifics about how this might be done - any suggestions here?

(is it referring to handle animal or a druid's wild empathy?)


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I like rarity.

If gives a nice structure by which a GM can say 'you can assume easy access to any of these and theorycraft to your heart's content, but these things you'll need to work in game to get hold of'


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Examplar traits sound very cool but am I missing something here?

"Traveler of a Hundred Lands trait allows you to gain more class skills for every two regional traits you have"

I thought one of the core rules of traits was you could only have one of each type - e.g. only ever have 1 regional trait... what am I missing?


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A bit of bump here as I'm about to start reffing this book this weekend

Did your parties get to rest anywhere ? Did they leave the cloud citadel and come back somehow?

If no to all this, how did you handle leveling?

How did it work out in terms of challenge either way?

Mainly asking because plot wise it feels like the whole book should be one break-neck run through as the party invade the flying castle, which is very cool flavour wise. But my concern is are the stats assuming the party get their spells and other abilities back once in a while? (as book 1 seemed too)


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Joey Virtue wrote:

How are they trying to leave?

Teleport? Or something else?

Teleport or flying I would expect.

They haven't got there yet.

Currently my reading of the book is that the party seem to be expected to rush in (without a rest after the last part of book 5) and then go straight through the whole of book 6 without replenishing spells or abilities at any point.

Mainly I'm looking to check that with other folks who have GM'd it to see if I'm misreading that or if that's actually part of the author's plan.


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How did other GMs handle parties resting or attempting to leave the fortress and return in this book?


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Things I would change (with hindsight, just finished book 5)

Across the whole AP there are a lot of monsters that are melee attackers with high strength + two handed weapon + power attack.

I wish had put in more time to do this but I advise, for each book, making variants of the vanilla orc / ogre / hill / stone / frost / fire giants.

Just simple stuff like some variant weapons - reach ones, weapon + shield, throwing specialists or archers.

Try swapping out some of the racial feats (and/or adding a level of fighter / warrior, freeing up feats) - perhaps some teamwork feats given all the 'training camp' stuff or combat maneuver focused guys.

There are lots of encounters that feature rank and file folks like this and some variety really helps (I had the orcs in book 2 doing pike blocks with sarissa because they had been prepping to fight the giant)

Book 5 really needs more variety - as per my post in that thread, almost all the encounter there are 'fight giants in melee' or 'fight something fiery' - once the PCs put a communal resist fire up most of the book becomes 'fight giants in melee'

Book 1 - I found the simplest way to handle the long long battle was simply to hand wave a rest point 'buoyed up by victory over so many orcs and all the adrenaline, you level up to level 3 and get the equivalent of a night's rest' and then ask any player that is too upset by that not being how the rules work to just go with it as a one thing for the sake of the story.


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Just finished running this module. Sadly seems the weakest of the series so far.

The players felt the fights seemed very samey.

They did like doing a 'contest of champions' with the King and his toughest allies in the throne room as suggested, but most other encounters turned into either

- fighting waves of fire giants with greatswords
- allies of the fire giants who are all about doing fire damage

The first they are very used to dealing with by this stage in the AP, the second were all shut down by casting communal resist fire a couple of times (which is a pretty obvious spell to prep when fighting fire giants in a volcano)

I'd definitely advise anyone running this in future to look for ways to add in more encounters that are something different in style to those most common two types.


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Wow - the design team just gave me everything on my Christmas wish at a single stroke!

Fantastic to see levels of proficiency make a real difference again and my wizard can choose to suck at wielding weapons!

Love that magic is getting a buff.

Glad that potency isn't the only thing driving damage

Suddenly very keen again


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I reckon the economy of the game causes a few problems here - so much of a character's stats coming from their equipment, a lot of players would rather fight to the death and roll up a new character, than surrender and play a character who's lost all their gear


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MrCharisma wrote:
JulianW wrote:
Staff magus - for a very different take on wise old guy with a stick
I alwayse loved this idea, I only wish the Staff Magus got INT to AC like the Kensai so I could properly fool my foes into thinking I'm a defenceless old man.

Combat expertise, improved disarm and improved trip make this great fun, especially when you are fighting people you don't want to kill. Especially when combined with casting true strike or blade lash.


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Expulsionist & Sanctified Slayer for Inquisitor - the former for feeling like a real ghost hunter

Daring Champion Cavalier - out swashes the swashbuckler and feels like a real lead from the front type - I can great fun as one of these as a pirate captain in skull and shackles.

Staff magus - for a very different take on wise old guy with a stick


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Longer duration buff spells mean they are actually useful in exploration mode & the casters getting to choose if they use them for combat or non-combat purposes - hoping a lot of spells get moved back to decent durations here.


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To take it very literally - pick a big fiery monster like a demon or devil and have fire elementals appear out of their flames each round.

Variant of the same - anti-paladin type whose sword is haunted with the spirits of all the people he has murdered. Each round another wraith or similar incorporeal undead pops out of the sword and is forced to attack his opponents.


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Klorox wrote:
Yeah, but D&D/PF is mostly based on Western cultures, and for some reason lamellar is a hallmark of Eastern civilisations.

One of the best tricks I ever found to making a setting feel different was changing what the most commonly found weapons and armour were - e.g. letting the players know from the start they were far more likely to see magic scimitars and lances rather than longswords and greatswords just because those were the local traditional weapons.


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MageHunter wrote:

Well...

Due to circumstances I've never actually been able to play Pathfinder with a group regularly; just a couple one shots.

What's kept me interested since 2015 is theory crafting. When I started there was just a wealth of options to draw from. It took a lot of time and commitment to learn the rules, the different options, and piece everything together.

Reading and rereading all the books made theory crafting so fun since you can make just about any concept work. Particularly enticing was that no build was ever perfect or complete, and could always use continual refinement

I like that the rules are so convoluted because it makes builds so much fun to create. PF2 is less enticing because of the simpler rules, and the lack of variety compared to what I'm used to.

So I will miss how dynamic and active these forums are with all the geeks.

This reminds me of a conversation I had years ago with a friend.

Back in the 90s, the UK introduced a lottery. I had a very analytically minded friend who started buying a ticket every week. I asked him why, given the odds. He said "Ah, I'm not just buying a chance of winning, I'm buying an excuse to daydream all week about what I'd buy if I won!"

For me PF1 provides a ton of excuse to daydream and theorycraft character ideas, far beyond the weekly game if even if you aren't actively in a game. I'd miss not having that.


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My all time favorite RPG in over 3 decades of gaming.

Why do I love it - the sheer freedom and variety it brings, especially to characters and player choice - that one class can be built to do a dozen different things or that one role could be filled from a dozen different classes - it gives near infinite capacity to keep the game fresh no matter how much you play, especially so long as the adventure content keeps coming...

On the pathfinder group yesterday someone asked about how she could make a character that attacked people with flowers. By the answers there were immediately 20+ ways to do it in the written rules before even considering re-fluffing or house-ruling anything. For me that's one of the essences of Pathfinder.


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Grab & CMB

I dislike the way large / huge monsters tack a free grapple onto attacks and have such big CMB / CMD that even a brawler type with improved grapple or a rogue with maxed escape artist has little chance of breaking free.

Why?

Because this stops casting & attempts to break free seem doomed to fail (even with liberating command helping), the only hope the party have is to kill it quick before their friend is crushed or swallowed. Pushes players to optimise for DPR and drives the game towards rocket tag more than anything else.


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It always struck me as a bit sad that archetypes and multiclasses were fighting for the same slots.

Some of the archetypes (e.g. pirate) already seem pretty skill based - if you paid for them with skill feats instead it would open up a lot more possible combinations.


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Colette Brunel wrote:
Ludovicus wrote:
One question, though: do you think your players' tactics have, consistently, been informed and efficient? If not, your results may reflect a mismatch between the GM and the players more than a problem with the rules.
You can view the response of a player of mine here.

Very interesting post that tells us a lot about 2E.

You've got a group where everyone is experienced, players enjoy optimising and the GM plays the monsters as efficiently and creatively as they can. Both sides play hardball and in 1E it balances out just fine for them.

In the playtest, the GM plays hardball, the players try to do the same but find they still basically have a softball, because there just isn't that much they can optimise in either build or tactics. Result - TPK after TPK.


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More spells designed specifically for use in exploration or downtime modes


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For me the amount of time you can enjoyably invest in the game outside of the game session (but don't have to) is a huge positive and something I'm worried about losing in PF2.

Its like painting minis or designing a Magic deck. The hobby provides fun beyond when you can get the gang together to play. Heck, its like the fact I enjoy cooking from scratch more than eating in a restaurant.


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I'm a big fan of Dragon Age's crit system (the tabletop rpg version - yes, there is one)

The character / NPC getting the crit gets a number of points to spend on a critical effects table - things like trips, bypassing armour based DR, knockbacks, extra damage etc

The nature of getting to choose when it happens adds a lot of tactical fun for players & referee


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Just so long as they don't move to inventing their own weird dice with something other than numbers.

Now that there are lots of companies out there making all sorts of elegant and attractive dice, its annoying when games are designed so you can only use the manufacturer's custom symbol ones


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Its the Stormwind fallacy again. With a side order of just insulting people for playing a different game to the author's.

If I'm playing a game, the depth or simplicity of the rules system doesn't make me roleplay any more or less.

Regardless of the system I still want to think about who my characters are as people, how they act, where they come from, what background made them that way. Those magical moments where your own character surprises you with how they'd react to something are entirely independent of system, however rules light or heavy.

If depth of rules hinder the focus on narrative and identity then why have a ruleset at all? If that were true then Mike's 5th Ed may be better than PF1, but surely by that logic its infinitely inferior to Fighting Fantasy, or better yet, freeform improv? If Mike is correct why not to do away with rulesets and hence game designers like him entirely?

Truth is, we don't suddenly become better or worse role-players or storytellers when we pick up a different rulebook. Its not a zero sum.


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dnoisette wrote:

There are extensive posts on these forums that detail how using a weapon is now an essential part of playing a Bard, Sorcerer or Wizard effectively.

It's not just about armour, it's about becoming a martial character - in part. It's likely surveys from later chapters would have revealed people were also taking additional feats from that archetype and not their own, magic-enhancing class feats, because you do not need anything from your class apart from Magical Striker.

This is a core issue - there are plenty of concepts that are about playing characters that don't use weapons. Not every wizard should need to be a gish type to be useful.

Right now the whole game seems to be about either hitting things with weapons, helping yourself hit things with weapons or helping someone else hit things with weapons.


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With a lot of spells reduced in duration (presumably with the mindset that these are meant to be single encounter buffs), far fewer spells have much application outside of combat now.

Given exploration and downtime are more formal modes now, I'd love to see more spells that are designed to use in those modes - e.g. travel, investigation, stealth or even crafting things that aren't intended for use in combat but have more interaction with the exploration rules.

I've always enjoyed having the option to adjust my wizard or druid's focus to something other than combat.


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Brother Fen wrote:


Why use "commonplace" with no advanced firearms though? I've allowed advanced weapons, It's no big deal. It does reduce the misfire penalties and makes reloading easier, but nothing game breaking.

I'm after a specific era of technology - 17th Century, in the style of The Three Musketeers, Solomon Kane and / or numerous pirate adventures.

Flintlock / wheel-lock / match lock single shot pistols and muskets are commonplace weapons - regiments of musketeers and cannon are common in most armies, any gentleman or highwayman might be expected to own a pair of pistols, even the average farmer might have a musket for hunting.

However revolvers and rifles just haven't been invented yet.


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Has anyone had experience running or playing in a campaign that had the commonplace firearms option?

If so
- how did it work out?

- did you do anything for gunslingers and/or firearm based archetypes to balance the fact they have exotic weapon proficiency in weapons that are now considered martial?

- did any advanced firearms show up?

Thinking about a homebrew setting with a 17th century swashbuckling theme and looking to represent early firearms being pretty common (but no advanced firearms)


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Its a lovely archetype - really looking forward to the chance to play one


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KohaiKHaos wrote:

If equal level enemies should be massively inferior at stealth and detection than players, then shouldn't they also be significantly worse at combat?

This is the problem with the +level to everything on the monster side.

It leaves little room for a monster like a big dumb giant who is great at smashing things with his club but not so good at perception.

I.e. where the sensible choice is to send the halfling rogue to try to sneak past him rather than the whole party walk up and fight.

Or conversely the alert guard dog with great perception but weak will save, where sending the rogue is a terrible plan but the ranger with a juicy chunk of meat or a wizard with a sleep spell is better.


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Likes

1. Move to silver as the basic standard. A huge amount of flavour setting for a tiny change.

2. The multi-class option. This one has grown on me - means we get an ever growing number of possible hybrid classes

3. Crit success on beating by > 10 (not the nat 20 part)

Dislikes

1. Spells and caster nerfing. I don't accept the premise that casters were unbalanced compared to maritals in the slightest or that there was a need for any kind of nerf to spells at all.

2. Skills #1 - can't specialise - lack of ability to be notably good at any skill, no degree of choice between competent at a broad range of skills or really good at a narrower list.

3. Skills #2 - too low chance of success - having a maxed out character pegged to 50% chance of success vs level appropriate monsters makes takes like scouting or bluffing so risky most groups won't let their rogue or bard try them

As things are now, all the likes are 'ooh that's kind of nice' and all the dislikes are 'this needs to change for me to want to play the game beyond playtesting'


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This would certainly explain the number of 'this is not the same game' / 'this is not the style of game I wanted from Pathfinder' reactions I've seen from passionate fans of 1st edition.

2/5

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HWalsh wrote:
Maybe just toss in (at least) a small section under each encounter that says things like: "The GM can, if they wish, substitute out these monsters for X, Y, or Z if they choose to."

The idea of scenarios offering you a subs bench for some encounters seems cool.

Especially as a lot of scenarios have a monster with a statblock that recurs and/or turns up in large groups - e.g. a group of 'basic orc warriors' turn up a couple of times - scenario gives the options to swap some for some archers or a shaman's apprentice or just give one a bag of alchemist's fire vials or a magic weapon


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Starfox wrote:


If cloaks of flying and pegasi steeds are commonly available, flying is not a problem for martials. But many GMs think magic items should be something the GM hands out and the players just have to accept what they get. In such a game, casters will shine, not because they are powerful, but because they are the only ones with access to all the candy. The other PCs have to beg them for handouts. Not cool.

Very true

I've never experienced the caster-martial disparity & always been mystified by reports casters are overpowered - and I play far more martials than casters

But then I've never had a GM that's combined both high fantasy style encounters (i.e. lots of flying monsters, long underwater sections, planar travel) with low fantasy availability of magic items.


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Lord_Malkov wrote:

It would actually be nice to see a list of goals rather than some over-arching philosophy.

Specifically, each contentious system could be described by what it is attempting to achieve.

Totally agree here.

I feel like the feedback surveys are trying to ask 'how well did mechanic X do at preventing Y on a scale of 1 - 10?' and I'm trying to find how to say 'But I don't want to prevent Y, I want more of it, having it is one of the cool parts of Pathfinder 1E!'


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Those are some pretty scary numbers.

Counting out the 2 that left due to technical issues / scheduling, that means only 1 in 3 of the signed up players is enjoying it enough to keep playing - the rest either put off by the rulebook or the experience of play.

Colette - did any/many of them say what it was that was putting them off?

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