Chain Mauler

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In PF1, I felt there were a lot of "unspoken rules" that a new GM might not know about if they didn't comb through message boards or see the small print in each book (such as certain magic items being expected for players for the math to work out or that player characters for APs were expected to be built with 15 point buy). With new emphasis on empowering GMs, can we expect more transparency in the base expectations of the game for the smoothest play experience? A Game Mastery Guide seems like it would be a good place for this.

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During the 2E Advanced Player's Guide announcements, it seemed that it would be positioned as a "core" book (pretty much a baseline book expected at every table along with the CRB and Bestiary). However, in the 2E APG, we will be getting "new" Ancestries in the planar scions, tengu, catfolk etc (the 1E APG included ideas that became core to Pathfinder including traits, archetypes and new classes but did not have new Races).

Does this mean we might expect broader representation of these "new" Ancestries in future materials (NPCs in adventure paths, number of feats and story development on part with those in CRB, possibly even an iconic from those races)?

And now that 2E has launched, is there any chance we will continue with exploring the iconics on Twitch?

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I'm pleased that aasimar and tiefling (as I assume the other plane-touched races will be) are just humanoid instead of outsiders based on the bestiary.

Disappointed that there doesn't seem to be an option for urban terrain for ranger anymore.

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Isabelle Lee wrote:

I took a stab at doing that with the devil binder summoner from Adventurer's Guide (though it doesn't really change the summoner, only the eidolon). While it's devil- and Hellknight-specific in the book, it's modular enough that variants for other outsider types should be easy enough to manage.

Hopefully, if and when summoner hits PF2, that sort of option will be baked in and made more versatile. ^_^

Hmm...I will have to look into that. Admittedly I kinda glossed over that entry myself as I was deep into a campaign and tended to only look at new magic items or spells to reward my group with. Good to know!

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I don't get into the whole debate about paladin alignment because everyone has their vision of how they see them and that's fine. But I'd like to ask the designers is there actually anything in the paladin toolbox mechanically that backs up the lawful alignment (aside from tenants)? I was easily able to house rule PF1 paladins as being any good alignment because mechanically there was little the core paladin got that even hinted at the lawful/chaotic axis.
They got Detect Evil (not Detect Chaos, like a Hellknight), Smite Evil, treat their weapons as good and gained DR/evil. The only ability that I remember that makes use of the lawful aspect of the class is being able to make your weapon axiomatic, which is in addition to a lot of other properties it could have. Do correct me if I am wrong.

Is this changing in PF2 with just as many lawful class feats as good? And if not, then it would seem the main "complications" of non-lawful good paladins is from a lore/legacy perspective (which again, many people have different visions of) and not necessarily a mechanical one. If that is the case, giving the option for it in the final game (not the playtest) wouldn't seem to be a huge step.

Obviously I don't know about all the moving pieces that are at play here as there might be some other mechanical reasons this isn't immediately viable since we don't know the full rules. And if there are no changes towards the law spectrum, it's easy enough for me to house rule in the future just as I did for PF1, but I would be interested in the thoughts behind the decision.

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I'm in the camp with restricting Raise Dead but making PC dying more difficult. I didn't like that in my previous campaign death was just a speedbump and had no gravity to any situation. It just broke my immersion when party members had no problem picking a fight with a huge dragon but everyone in the party would abandon an area just at the signs that there were rust monsters nearby (because Raise Dead and two Restorations is cheaper than that +3 weapon I bought!)
So for the next campaign I made changes to how long it would take them to fall permanently but made it clear that coming from the back from the dead was fairly rare and risky. Divine casters straight up won't entertain the idea if person in question is of an opposed alignment or ideology to their faith or risk losing their own divine abilities (and even if they are of a similar or same faith, they may ask for something besides monetary compensation such as vowing to spread the word of their faith, doing some work on their behalf etc).

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Technically I use Artistry and Lore in my games, but they are mostly for NPCs as my players rarely put anything into them (but to be fair, my players don't use Craft, Profession or Perform in the first place either). I'm on board with what Benjamin posted, using Artistry for creating those works that aren't tangibles (like composing music, poetry, or being a playwright).
For Lore, to me it helps fine tune ideas when I think the Knowledge skills are too broad for me. If want a character to know about black dragons (my lore options tend to be a bit broader than the examples the book gives), but there's no reason for him to know about magic in general then Lore (black dragons) fits better than Knowledge (arcana). When there's an xenophobic elven character that is only concerned about the history of his people and doesn't' care about the broader history of other races, Lore (Elven history) works better for me than making something where I give an arbitrary penalty to his Knowledge (History) regarding other races--that sort of thing. Then as a house rule I lower the DC of Lore checks compared to their Knowledge equivalent--if you're more specialized in your study (and if you've spent the points to be more specialized) then I feel you should come across information much easier than when you're casting a broad net.

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I would love this. The blog on poison (and then later the one on darkness) really helped me. For starting GMs there is a lot of stuff to keep in mind and players always seem to find some odd thing that you didn't prepare for. At this point with all the rules, feats, spells, class abilities etc it is really easy to second guess yourself when starting out--you don't want to cheat the players out of something cool, but you also don't want to set the precedent for something working one way that will have a domino effect on some other part of the game later (I'm still trying to parse ranger camouflage vs hide in plain sight with the stealth skill as it is written). Any experienced input, especially from devs, is always welcome.

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This was used all the time by my players to an infuriating degree. Having a way to have a safe place to sleep, but for the level of the spell this always seemed a bit much to me. The players could see out, but creatures outside could not see in. The extradimensional space is not limited in actual size but by how many creatures can occupy it so even if a larger enemy or creature tried to sneak up on them in the space, they could be outnumbered (or the party would just bring in small creatures with them to reach the max occupancy and prevent anyone from entering). Having a way to sleep more safely in a lengthy dungeon crawl is fine, but it became the "normal" way for the party to sleep (like they would get a room at an inn and then cast rope trick in their room that night).

CBDunkerson wrote:

I've heard of the theory that you just cast rope trick, climb up, and take a nap in the middle of a dungeon / enemy camp / whatever... but I've never understood how that makes any sense.

Why exactly wouldn't the monsters notice this and set traps / ambush for when you inevitably emerged?

While Guru has a point, the issue I ran into was the fact that the group could see outside of the space while the creatures on the outside could not. They could see what was there and buff/plan accordingly while the the enemies on the outside are left to guess as to what could come out. I did eventually start having the enemies lay out traps far away from the rope trick so they were out of sight or changing the environment to get ready for a fight.

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My problem with Suggestion is that it's not terribly difficult to come up with a suggestion that takes a character out of the combat, but if used on a player that basically just leaves the player there twiddling his thumbs (having been on the receiving end of that, I know it's no fun, especially for the duration of the spell or if combat goes on for a while). So I try to use suggestions that at least can keep the player in the game instead of shutting them down, even if it isn't the wisest option for the character to use. I've used variations of some of those mentioned ("it's really hot here. You should remove your armor."), but I look forward to seeing more that significantly hinder the characters rather than completely taking them out of the fight.

"Your clumsy greatswords and arrows will never be able to pierce me. You'll need the precision of a dagger." (used on those that really focus on the damage of their heavy weapons.)

"That last spell you cast used up the last of the contents of your spell component pouch. You'll have to rely on spells without components or other methods."

"Your friends are taking significant damage. Focus exclusively on healing them." (used on clerics to expend their channel energy and spell slots to heal allies during battle instead of attacking. Whether they use up their higher level slots to heal minor HP loss, using channel energy to heal everyone when on only 1 ally is injured, or expending charges out of a wand, they end up casting instead of attacking).

"Your archer/mage friend is very vulnerable. You should stay beside them and protect them from anyone getting close." (used on the heaviest melee damage dealer, effectively putting him in the back and out of range where he is less of a threat)

"Oh no! Not fire (or cold, electricity or acid etc)--my one true weakness! That is the only attack you have that is effective so only use fire attacks!" (used by someone immune to fire or with high resistance.

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Honestly I'd love a new one if for no other reason that to pull all the magic items in the rest of the APs and modules into one place. There have been several magic items that I've just happened upon in looking through APs that I have given to my players because they fit the theme of the game or the character, but I would've never known about them if I wasn't just idly looking through APs which I otherwise had no interest in running. Granted that's not enough for a new full-on hardback release (and there are only so many new weapons, armor and alchemical items you can add before you're really getting into minutiae) but having a resource that puts them all together like UE did would be helpful. A player companion "Equipment of the Inner Sea" or something would work just as fine for me.
I also would've loved it they reprinted all the crafting rules together in one section in UE as that could be useful as well for creating new items but that boat has sailed.

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Good on you! That made me ha-ha.

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Admittedly the original medium was one of the classes that turned me off of the Occult classes due to the complexity of so many spirits. The new version sounds AWESOME though with some really cool variations in the archetypes! Really looking forward to Occult Adventures now!

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-Vancian Casting: Oh dear heavens I would love to be rid of the "spells per day" for something like a mana pool or casting simply requiring fatigue saves by the caster or something else.

-Ability Scores: Just use the modifiers

-Magical items/WBL etc: If the +whatever bonuses are really needed, then just make them inherent to character progression. I'd rather imagine my character getting more awesome rather than he found a better sword while his actual skill hasn't changed.

-Fewer bonus types: so many different bonus types just to figure out what stacks with what.

-Iterative attacks: I'd rather see this removed and replaced with something that keeps combat quick and allows for more mobility in combat for everyone, not just those with specific feats

-Broader feats and spells: Every new product introduces at least a few (usually a lot) of new feats and spells, many of which have very circumstantial uses or just give a bit of improvement over the previous version. And then there's the whole unnecessary feat tree/feat tax issue. I'd rather see a lot of these simplified into single feats or spells that automatically get stronger as you level.

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I find it more humorous that Seoni finds her way onto the (temporary) cover of the Weapon Master book instead of any of the martial characters.

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I've actually thought about this as well (since they started introducing the other characters in the comics), but I probably wouldn't separate the character's by what book they appear in, especially since Seltiyel was first the iconic EK before becoming a Magus.
The party I'd like to see is

Alain, Damiel, Freiya, Lem, Alahazra, Amiri.
Poor Alain is everyone's whipping boy (and deservedly so). With Alahazra and Freiya it could be interesting having these characters that have these great powers from a force outside of deities (as far as they know) and how they interact with a world that may have a more limited view on magic sources.
Most likely leader: Freiya or Alahazra

Sajan, Seelah, Seltiyel, Imrijka, Balazar, Lirrianne
I'd be interested in seeing Seelah and Imrijka interact or Sajan and Seelah interacting (their views on redemption and their stance on being "lawful")
Most likely leader: Seelah

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I'd love one fully in Tian Xia. Really give us a chance to pull out ninja, samurai, monks and some Eastern-themed archetypes in their native environment.

Vudra/Jalmeray would be a close second.

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Morzadian wrote:

Should all character classes get skill unlocks or should it be strictly a rogue thing?

A bit of a conundrum as skill unlocks definitely make the rogue class more appealing but there are many other classes who rely on skills, like the Bard and Investigator.

I'm gonna keep it just for rogues. The other classes usually already have something going for them, whether its spells or whatever. And one of the things people kept complaining about with the rogue was other classes basically taking what the rogue does (via archetypes granting trapfinding, sneak attack etc) and still getting nice class features so I wanna keep this as one of the special things only the rogue gets (at least until they start releasing archetypes that steal it too!)

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My group was 6 PCs (but I believe they were 1 level higher than they would've been following the book's progression. I've tried to stay a bit thematic with the creatures I added to the fight. With the Dark Rider, I believe I added a few shadow mastiffs and vilkacis for a hunting party.

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Chyrone wrote:
A ghost train coming right at them, no way to dodge, but harmless.

Though that does make me want to have my party encounter a river of ooze (or oozes) underground now.

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I'm Hiding In Your Closet wrote:

A room containing a pair of moldering skeletons in ornate robes who shout "Let's dance!" when the PCs enter the room.

If the players respond by attacking them, they fight as 20th-level Bloodragers with the benefits of a haste spell, unlimited Bloodrage, +5 vorpal weapons, 1000 hit points each, SR 1000, +100 to all saving throws, and immunity to all forms of damage.

If the players stay their hands, they proceed to perform a simple, elegant dance for about 3 minutes before collapsing into inanimate piles of bone and cloth, and the room becomes free to pass and explore.

Was that a Monster Party reference?

Which makes me think I should make a room with the corpse of a single huge spider enchanted with Magic Mouth to say "I am already dead".

*edit* seems someone already made this comment. Certainly worth it though!

My players were all playing races that had dark vision so they got used to just going around in the dark tombs and dungeons easily. In one dungeon I put in a tiled floor with certain tiles triggering traps. The tiles were color coded--the enemies just carried torches to step on the right colored tiles.

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I'm Hiding In Your Closet wrote:

- A small room containing nothing but a Catholic Church-style confessional (figure out whichever religion in your campaign's pantheon might practice such a thing); it seems abandoned, but if someone bothers to enter either side of it, a spectral cleric or penitent appears in the other booth and starts talking to the PC; after about a round or two of this, roll 1d4: on a 2 or 3, the specter then fades without consequence; on a 4, the specter leaves behind a small bottle of consecrated wine that acts as a random 1st-level potion; on a 1, the specter is abruptly replaced by a spiritual weapon (as appropriate to whatever religion the confessional is courtesy of) and takes one good swipe at the PC before vanishing.

I can't believe I haven't used that SotN "trap" in my game yet. It is so happening now.

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Honestly if they did it any other way I'd be rather let down. I think there's enough said and options given for the core races in all the other materials while several of the original (or at least new) races haven't been fleshed out by more than a page or two. Although new crunch is welcome, I'd be less interested in seeing new archetypes, traits, feats etc than seeing the society of these races, where they fit in the world (both socially and geographically) and such.

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I wonder if creating a new progression scale for PCs (Ability points, saves etc) would fall into the purview of this to help eliminate the dependency on magic items (or some other way to help address this).

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I'd certainly be up for this! Would love a dragon-blooded PC race.
Granted the point made about all the different types of dragons giving variant abilities (and we know that's just likely to grow with future bestiaries) is quite valid, I would be cool with just having variants for the different dragon base groups (chromatic, metallic, Imperial, Primal, and Outer).

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I used baykoks in that area. Thought it fit with the Dark Rider's "hunting party".