I use both decks. For the crit deck, I do as you suggest (crit damage multiplier -1 and one card drawn). So an axe does x2 damage plus a card draw on a confirmed crit. A longsword does normal damage and a card draw.
I let anyone who confirms a crit or fumble draw a card. It adds real drama and danger to the game.
In the online short stories for Golarion a paladin is publically executed for killing a vampire noble. The vampire had more rights than the paladin. And the hero of the tale sided with the vampire, not the paladin. That same hero sees slave humans as simple chattel to be branded and bled by vampire lords and wouldn't want that to change.
If that type of world doesn't support monster NPCs (in the right locations of course) I don't know what world would. In many kingdoms the basic assumptions of simple good versus evil or hero versus monster don't apply.
My point would be that if a paladin killing undead can be against the law in one kingdom, then the underlying "unwritten" rules behind the core classes don't apply in Golarion. You can't just kill undead without consequences no matter what the rules seem to imply. Therefore, you ought to be able to survive as a goblin adventurer in kingdoms that don't give an auto death penalty to goblins. By extension, allowing goblin PCs makes sense as long as the player is aware of the danger.
For example, in another short story the goblins are at war with humans. I don't think a goblin adventurer could survive there and would have to opt out of adventures in that location or face the consequences.
While this scenerio could make PF Society games more difficult to run, those adventures already seem to thrive on some roleplaying challenges. Goblin PCs seem to fit with the overall theme of both Golarion and the PF Society.
Chuck Mount wrote:
The Gamemastery Guide has info on cities. If I remember correctly, the info on cities from the DMG 3.5 wasn't in the SRD so I'm not sure if it is available online anywhere else.
I’m currently playing D&D 4E but hope to switch to PF soon. I have a couple of things that I like about 4E that I’m considering trying to port over to PF.
What I like in 4E is that fights last longer and that some monsters (called minions) are easy to kill. I think 4E goes overboard in that EVERY fight lasts longer and every minion only has 1 hp.
Casters in PF appear to still be more powerful than non-casters as character level increases. I’m wondering if allowing every PC maximum hit points would help alleviate a little of the remaining power imbalance that PF has moved so elegantly towards almost correcting.
Under the correct system, the only hit point difference between a wizard and fighter with average hit points is 2 hp per level. With a cleric it is only 1 hp per level. At 10th level, a wizard would have 35 hp, a cleric 45 hp, and a fighter 55 hp. At maximum hit points, not factoring in Constitution, at 10th level the wizard would have 60 hp (extra 25), the cleric 80 hp (an extra 35), the fighter 100 (an extra 45).
This change would have two effects. One, the fighter lasts slightly longer in combat without changing the existing systems. The second effect involves the monsters.
My thought with PF would be to have most monsters have maximum hit points and have some function as minions with minimum hit points. This change would have two effects. One, combat would last longer as both PCs and monsters have more hit points (and the fighter’s extra hit points make an even bigger difference). Two, minions allow for an occasional cantrip that could take them down, or a trick move that targets many monsters for a small amount of damage.
Unlike 4E, the DM could adjust some encounters. Say have two encounters with half maximum hit points monsters followed by a fight with monsters with maximum hit points (and all three combats might have minions with minimum hit points). The casters have to be a little more careful with spells of higher than 0 level because the fights last a little longer. And the fighter gets more use out of feats that aren’t daily use because the fights last longer.
For player-controlled NPCs and summoned creatures I think I’d go with average hit points.
I have no idea how this change would play out. My goal would be a slightly longer combat, with a few lulls and some back and forth fighting for ground, like in a good novel or movie plus some easy mooks to take down on occasion. As an added bonus, push the fighters type up just a bit upwards in power. Would it work?
It sounds like I'm making it up, but after a careful study of the rules it appears that mounts only provide a bonus ability now in 4E. Each monster provides an extra ability. Riding is apparently automatic except for a falling flying mount that can use an Athletics check to pull out.
There is also no skill to pilot all the vehicles introduced in the magic and item book either. I used Nature for ride since handle animal was under it but that was not satisfying.
I played 4E for four months without realizing the skill was missing because no PC could yet afford a mount. When they bought riding horses I thought I'd have a little fun with Riding checks to control the non-war riding horses in combat.
And I sat in stunned silence when I realized the skill was missing. I'd never noticed it before.
It seemed really odd because I'd seen it Ride used as a skill challenge in Star Wars Saga to great effect (I swiped it for McWoD). To just see the skill pulled seemed, in my opinion, to indicate a real lack of playtesting.
So I have higher hopes for Pathfinder. Since the playtesting isn't completely being done in secret.
I'm still excited about Pathfinder.
I'm just getting excited. I just barely survived playing 4E for four months. I retired my core books 4E when I discovered Wizards pulled out the Ride skill. I could deal with marking and bloodied and multiple -2 conditions and collectible cards packaged with the new minis. But no Ride skill? The straw that broke the camel's back.
My players will likely buy Pathfinder too in August, which says a lot in this economy. So kudos to Paizo and all the playtesters out there.
Along with Pathfinder Beta, this Adventure Path is bringing me back to Paizo. I didn't enjoy rise of the Runelords because of the inbred incestous rapist ogres and stopped at PF 4. But this new Pathfinder direction sounds more interesting to me.
And with Pathfinder the new rules handling the next AP, I'll probably stay even if the devils are fairly gross in the adventures.
I plan to switch over to 4th edition as long as it is playable with the three core rulebooks as promised (enough classes, spells, feats, monsters etc without the need for online subscription). I'm burned out on D&D 3.5 and am only buying Pathfinder for the flavor and excellent writing. I'm actually playing Monte Cook's World of Darkness right now.
I guess I won't miss the sacred cows as much as some. I've always felt the planes were too big (bigger than most game worlds), the spellcasting system too arcane (ironic!), and the adventure building too cumbersome in 3.5. Stat blocks are a pain but treasure generation and division was the biggest headache for me. Getting rid of huge treasure hoards is a big draw for me in 4th edition.
My recommendation for Paizo would be to switch to 4th edition when feasible but really start to distance yourselves from Wizards at that point. For instance, Malhavoc Press produced generic D&D books but also Arcana Evolved and Iron Heroes. Green Ronin has True20, Warhammer, and M&M. Mongoose now has RuneQuest and Traveller.
I'd love to see a Paizo ruleset using 4th edition ideas but with your take on classes, classic monsters, etc. Built up slowly over time. After all, sourcebooks usually sell well and having a Paizo spin on things could have a large appeal. Necromancer Games sounds like it is going to cover "lost" monsters from previous editions. Maybe Paizo could do the same with classes and races.
Crimson Conquest DM wrote:
Unfortunately Rom has had to step aside so at least for now our Dwarven Cleric is not so much. I will add a post on the connection thread to let people know there is one opening for either a melee or divine caster/healer. We will begin either way after you guys get the backgrounds up as listed above.
Wow, I'm very surprised. Rom didn't tell me. What a bummer.
Vandryl hurls a javelin with great force, impaling the nose-picking goblin right in its third eye.
Valic hurls a sling stone and Telvar cuts loose with a brimstone blast, catching the backscratcher in the head and chest respectively. He is hurled backwards and bounces off the bronze doors with a ringing sound before slumping to the floor.
Harlynd rounds the corner and wildly throws his javelin, which ends up sticking in the hay bale. Goblins are harder to hit in real life than in drills!
Sling in hand, Valic moves up on one side. Vandryl, gripping his flail in two hands, quickly moves up as well. As Telvar moves up to throw fire and brimstone, Valic and Vandryl have time to act.
Harlynd of Clan Dorak wrote:
The tunnel opens into a roughly square room about the size of a small tavern with four massive wooden pillars holding up the ceiling. A torch set in a sconce to the east of a set of bronze doors set in the north wall lights the room.
Two hobgoblins, foreheads and shields marked with a dripping eye, guard the doors which depict leering demonic faces. The walls flanking the door, unlike the earth and timber of the rest of the room, are gray-green masonry. The hobgoblins are armored in half-plate and wield heavy picks. A havy is set up near the eastern wall, arrows sticking out of it.
Your party contins on to the box canyon that hides the underground lair of the hobgoblins. The hills have grown enough that bare broken rock breaks through the soil in many places.
The opening to the box canyon looks hewn from the ground and might be a natural fissure or crack in the earth. As soon as you approach the canyon you feel a terrible weight of darkness and horror press on you.
You find breathing more difficult and your minds wander down strange paths of murder and mayhem unless you focus on a task. The air in the canyon is hot and oppressive, wringing sweat from your pores.
In the canyon you see a rough tunnel, steeply sloped and littered with rubble. In only an hour, the little sunlight that illuminates the entrance for tens of feet will be swallowed by the dark.
DM--how to you want to proceed?
Harlynd of Clan Dorak wrote:
The goblins had leather armor, clubs, and javelins. Nothing else but some raw meat (plus the gauntlets). Not Eyepoppers. Based on the shrunken heads tied to their belts woven of hair and the blood ritually painted on their skin, they are probably from the Shrunken Head tribe.
The Shrunken Heads are primitive compared to the Eyepoppers. They may even have stolen the sack from the other tribe.
The tracks head away from the lair, which lends support to the idea that they stole the sack from the Eyepoppers. They probably lived in some wretched caves in the hills.
Rurik Dorak wrote:
With Harlynd right behind him, Rurik smashes into the bird-horse with his waraxe at a full run. The beast, already bleeding, concussed, and burnt by brimstone takes the chop right on the beak. Blood fountains up as it crumples into a dusty heap, nearly decapitated.
And no one in the party took a single scratch.
A blast of baleful magic energy, a sling bullet, and a javelin strike the beast. Fur and blood shoot into the air.
Rather than stopping it in its tracks, the attacks pry an enraged cry out of the monster and it continues it crashing assault. Screaming a warcry, Rurik charges toward it. He doesn't hear Vandryl shouting about stances and tactics. Rurik's blood is up and his axe will taste blood!
With a terrible crash, Rurik and the beast collide in a dust cloud of roiling feathers, blood, shrieks, and battle cries.
Rurik moves away from all the clanging and cracking, readying his axe for a charge when the thing hears the gnomish bagpipe band he brought with him. He wracks his brain for anything about the beast, but all he knows is it is unlike any animal he has seen before.
If the beast acts like a horse, it should run away spooked. If it acts like an eagle, it may consider all of you prey and try to pick one of you off. If fell magic twisted it's animal mind, however...who knows what it will do.
Harlynd adds to the cacophony before disappearing behind a tree. The tip of what could be a javelin or a branch is all that can be seen
Valic cries out a blessing from his god, as the beast can hear half of the group.
The beast's head jerks toward Vandryl and Valic, with Telvar standing behind them. It takes off at a terrifying speed, rushing at you at a speed you can barely believe!
Vandryl sets himself in a strong defensive stance, making quite a bit of racket as he adjusts his armor. Valic, with a quiet grace rare in most dwarves, moves in fron of Telvar.
Telvar moves to look around Valic. Craack! A loud branch snaps under his foot. He realizes the beast is just out of range and waits to blast it. Telvar quickly communicates what he knows about hippogriffs. Vandryl listens carefully.