A few remarks on guides for PF2, from a reader's perspective.
1) Stick to the point.
2) Mention what feats and features do.
3) Make your reasoning clear.
4) Give example partial builds and explain combos and interactions.
Since if A and B are flanking you, at any one time one of them is behind you and the other in front of you. So if the narrative for flanking was focused attention, that woukld not justify the person in front of you receiving the advantage from flanking.
So, I would prefer it if flanking just counted against all enemies once you are flanked at all.
Most low level flying enemies will melee attack, so you can ready actions to hit them when they swoop by. But if they are flying and have ranged options, your only response is to either get flight yourself through a spell or use ranged attacks, even if you're bad at it.
Or choose not to fight, lure them somewhere they can't use their advantage, ...
1) Make the battlefield interesting. Choke points, paths to flank, different elevation, difficult or. Dangerous terrain, cover,...
2) Better to have one interessting set piece than four boring dice fests with little tactics and little danger. Just ignore minor battles, make big fights bigger.
3) Show off options by having enemies use them against the PCs. Experience is the best corrective for faulty intuitions.
4) Give battles goals other than killing ist enemies. "Stop the goblin spy from escaping with the war plans!" or "Extinguish the fires before the palace burns down, while the fire newts attack!" and so on.
Maybe a game like Hero System by Hero Games or The Dark Eye by Ulysses might better support the style of play you are after. They both do away with the class and level structure that you find limiting and are not focused on balanced gameplay. TDE in particular takes get care to fit the rules to the game world.
Ed Reppert wrote:
Of course she can't. She also does not have master profciency, nor does the swordsmith have expert. These are rules for PCs, meant to regulate and define their actions and options, they should not be taken to be descriptive of the world beyond them. After all, a smith does not have to do quests and murder monsters in order to get better at smithing and goodness gracious will not be a grat warrior just because he is a goos smith.
I find it a bit irritating that Pathfinder never bothered to correct the old 3E error of having bucklers not use a hand.
To make my irritation worse, larger shields, that you actually do strap to you arm allow you to much more easily grip and even use something else in you shield hand, since a leather strip is not very thick.
It's all backwards and topsy turvy :(
My point is rather that this kind of fluff suggests a narrative logic that is vastly at odds with the ludonarrative logic of the zero-to-demigod adventuring career in something like a year at most that lies at the core of the pathfinder game.
Characters that complete their Perquisite gain the rank of Attendant, which allows them to begin advancement in Magaambyan fields of learning such as halcyon magic. Attendants are also expected to choose what branch of the Magaambya—specialized faculties within the school—the student wishes to pursue.
This suggests that these events (becoming an Attendant and studying at the school) are intended to happen during play, more precisely after level one since that is the earliest time these feats can be acquired.If so, the archetype seems pointless to me, since I do not want to play someone studying at an academy but an adventurer who maybe has studied at an academy.
Such a character however should already possess the skills to be learned there.
So, let's see:
Command an animal:
- Spend a command action, make a check, on success:
That's pretty clear.
"Any animal you’re mounted on acts on your turn, like a minion."
Now here things get FAQ worthy.
Does this imply that with the mount feat you get two mount actions for one command action ("like a minion" modifies "act") or does it mean only that the mount acts on your turn ("like a minion" modifies "acts on your turn")?
I think it more plausible from the text itself, that the latter is the case. When mounted, you trade actions one for one. The Ride feat only helps you coordinate better and autosucceed.
So basically, being mounted let's you use the mounts speed, gives a -2 to reflex and "if the mount is in the way" +2 to AC. The latter seems dubious to me. Is the mount in way of an adjacent infantrist? They would have to fight upwards, but "in the way"? Not so much. So this is completely to GM interpretation.
Finally, a warhorse, being a level 2 creature is pretty soon going to be much more vulnerable than it's rider.
PF2 crafting is a downtime activity which is balanced against other downtime moneymaking activities with the only difference being that you can get an item instead of the money. So if the tiem you want is for sale, any downtime money making activity is exactly the same as crafting.
If crafting were more economical than money making and shopping, that would create an exploitable asymmetry, which the designers explicitly do not want.
Alas, this does not fit well with what I will call 'heroic crafting', making special things such as your personal sword or the potions and scrolls you use. These things often feel like they are part of your character, rather than part of some economy and are defined by their use value, rather than by their exchange value.
So my advice for house ruling: allow faster crafting for such 'personal items' under the agreement that such items cannot be sold. The cost, however should not drop below the price minus the general income that could have been made while crafting.
So make an earn income crafting check, reduce the cost by the earned amount and rule the item crafted in the time spent.
Every day earlier that a book comes out is one day earlier that money starts to come in. If one assumes that total lifetime sales are independent from release date, any publisher has reason to release as early as possible, that is as soon as the product is in a state that will not seriously impact sales. The money to make it has mostly been spend after all and profit is a function of time.
Paizo has been following a successful sales oriented strategy for many years now, continually testing out how many books their audience will.
They will not switch to a quality first strategy. And honestly, for a system designed for bloat, Pathfinder quality tends to be fine.
High-level superheroes everywhere: lore implications for the "post-adventure-path cinematic universe"
It's really simple. Golarion obeys the rules of pathfinder only localy, that is where ever you are currently playing. As soon as something comes into play, it necessarily fits into the rules (how else could it be in play?). But when it is not featured, the rules do not apply to it.
Because really, how else would it be plausible that encounters tend to be level appropriate, 200 year old elves can be level one, someone can go from dying to a dagger stab to surviving being chewed on by a dragon in the scope of a few months. And so on and so on.
No, Golarion clearly is a Kantian world where what appears is determined by who is being played.
The entry on bloodline spells and the bloodline listing does in fact add confusion as now the term "bloodline spell" refers to focus spells and the new term for what was called bloodline spell is now "granted spell" (this is probably an artefact of the term "bloodline spell" in 1st edition).
But, your focus spells are independent of your spell slots and have a very different structure. Thus they cannot possibly satisfy the condition that your spell repertoire is to mirror your spell slots.
The "spells granted" are the only viable candidates for what was originaly, in the entry on spell repertoire, called "bloodline spells".
I think it's pretty clear.
Note that you have 5 cantrip slots and 3 1st level spell slots at first level. So your number of "spells known" mirrors your spell slots.
So with every new spell slot gained, you add a spell of that level to your repertoire. IF that slot is the first of its level that you gain, that spell is determined by your bloodline, if not, you get to chose.
So for any level of spells you have access to, you always have the bloodline spell of that level in your repertoire as well as a number of spells chosen by you equal to your spell slots of that level minus one.
Behind this "Historical Accuracy" fallacy as described lies the fact that the image most people have of the (European) middle ages and by extension of "fantasy fantasy" settings is informed not by actual historical research but the long shadow of nationalist romantic fiction of the 19th century. As these writings attempted to both construct a golden past and a historical justification for their own societies, the result is an idealized "past" for white, industrial age European people, including racial exclusion and the absence of anything reminding people of industrial age technology.
So the fallacy is double: Once taking the fiction for the real thing and secondly accepting the fiction as an authority without reflecting on its origins.
In an isolated community, anything that is consumed must be produced locally and vice versa. This means that for any economical branch, there is a strict upper limit, this goes in particular for things like mining, of which only so much is required to satisfy local needs. Once the soldiers and craftspeople are equipped all you need is enough for repairs and maintenance.
Age of Worms AP....................B+
Rise of the Runelords..............B
Legacy of Fire.........................A-
Skull & Shackles.....................C-
Reign of Winter......................A-
Wrath of the Righteous............D
General statement: I like the off-kilter stuff because Golarion is already an everything but the kitchen sink patchwork world with no common theme and very little integration between regions and the DnD/Pathfinder rule set is so unrealistic and over the top that I really do feel that anything goes.
Turn it up:
X's Father wants to politically marry X to some Hellknight/Noble/Darkwizard Y. X feels oblige to submit to her father's will and Paladin, faced with the honor in that is torn between his feelings and his sense of duty.
Unbeknownst to all, Y's child/apprentice/something-or-other Z is in love with A and unlike everyone else so far is utterly psycho, willing to abduct A and worse.
Y is none too please with finding out how crazy Z is and presto, Paladin and Y might be forced to make common cause to rescue A. Meanwhile, X grows increasingly certain of their feelings for Paladin.
During the ensuing finale, the outcome is wide open. Paladin may get the chance to get rid of Y without anyone getting wise about it; Y may show supreme cruelty in punishing Z, whom Paladin would have taken to court; Y may save X's and/or A's lives. Anyone may die.
Here's my favorite outcome:
Thymus Vulgaris wrote:
"stuff like"i.e. effects defined and measured within the rules.
There is no rule relating strength with muscle mass, appearance or even weight/height ratio. In fact, the de facto independence of weight/height and ability scores in general implies conceptual irrelevance.
There is a category mistake being made here. The crunch is not there to describe the fluff. "STR 18" is not a description of appearance, nor is a description of past nutrition, training exercise and so on.
This is the game:
Players each controlling one character fight monsters controlled by the DM on maps. After 4-6 such fights, the characters level up an fight harder monsters. Equipment is just part of levelling up and not really gear in the common sense sense of the word.
This determines the unavoidable structure of a Pathfinder game, it's very skeleton. Around this structure, a story is told, a piece of fiction, often merely simulating player choice, which is supposed to make all the fighting have some meaning and give some explanation to what's happening.
But this story is bound to follow the basic structure of the game. E.g. you cannot begin with fighting dragons or demons, you being by fighting orcs and goblins [...]. Even the most improvised and artfully told story in Pathfinder will have to follow this blueprint.
And mind you, this blueprint is utterly ridiculous and purely there for abstract reasons of rules and gaming tradition.
It's not that difficult. A druid has such a powerful base that even an unoptimized build can still be strong.
So, a druid gets 4 skill points per level, a human with INT 12 gets 2 more and six should suffice. You could max bluff, diplomacy, intimidate, sense motive, perception and stealth with that.
The Serpent Shaman archetype get access to the Trickery domain, which adds bluff, disguise and stealth to your druid class skills as well as a number of stealthiness spells.
Such spells can also be acquired via the Nagaji specific Naga Aspirant druid archetype.
You can also consider a swashbuckler dip, which will add bluff, diplomacy and intimidate to your class skills while at least not costing you a point of BAB.
Even a level of rogue would not be horrible and 1d6 sneak attack can be a good advantage when you get 5 attacks as a velociraptor.
A level of Inquisitor is probably your best choice, though. It gives you all the skills mentioned as class skills, a few 1st level spells per day as well as access to the Conversion inquisition, which keys social skills off wisdom instead of charisma. Taking the Sacred Huntsman archetype will stack with your druid animal companion while Sanctified Slayer will get you the studied strike ability, which is better than a 1/d judgement.
Finally, there are always traits and the Extra Traits feat, which can make most any skill a class skill.