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Scarab Sages

Variant channeling comes from ultimate magic. It is described there as an "alternative effect" and it is never called an archetype.

The archives of nethys has that section of text under variant channeling pretty much identical beyond some formatting stuff. It is still not at all mentioned as an archetype.

Archetypes have certain rules when you choose one, and when you choose to stack multiple ones. Of note here,

"A character who takes an alternate class feature does not count as having the class feature that was replaced when meeting any requirements or prerequisites."


"A character can take more than one archetype and garner additional alternate class features, but none of the alternate class features can replace or alter the same class feature from the core class as another alternate class feature."

Of course, that first quote IS specific to abilities that are replaced and not simply altered, and there have been a few faq's that might touch on any given ability as well.

The second one, the one that limits replacements and alterations, is specific to other archetypes - not other optional alterations that you may be able to apply to any individual class feature.

So there are no specific rules that prevent them from working together. A couple notes on some of the examples above though - bloodline mutations CAN work with an archetype. The caveat is that you cannot swap a bloodline power that has been altered or replaced with an archetype for a bloodline mutation. You could still swap an unaltered power, or a bonus bloodline feat for a bloodline mutation.

Similarly, you can take advanced versatile performances with an archetype, as long as that archetype isn't altering or replacing versatile performance specifically.

Wildblooded is an archetype, so it stacks (or doesn't) following the normal archetype stacking rules.

One thing to keep in mind though is that if an archetype replaces channel energy or significantly alters it with specific limitations, then the variant channel options may no longer be applicable. For example, the Idealist cleric invoke realm alters channel energy in such a way that you are not channeling positive or negative energy - which negates variant channeling.

Scarab Sages

You still have that period of time between picking it up and tucking it in where it is basically moving on its own.

It's also reasonable to assume that a shop with more valuable items will have more valuable protections. Some basic gear shops may have dogs or npcs with scent. Other shops may have guards that can see past invisibility, or specialized alarms of some kind or another.

In my experience, the difficulty of stealing items is proportionate to how valuable it is compared to overall party wealth - and once it starts to unbalance things you'll either run into enemies with, strangely, less treasure than normal or you'll find someone has hired bounty hunters to track you down.

In other words, my experience as a player is that occasional stealing can be fun and flavorful, but once a player tries to make it a significant source of income it gets negated one way or another as needed to maintain party balance. I'm sure not all tables are like that, but those I've experienced so fare have been.

Some other things to keep in mind is that invisibility functions against visual senses, which means the gm may compare results to other senses than just vision. Hearing a case open, or the clink of coins or steps in an otherwise empty shop... It'll vary though. But it never hurts to pump those stealth ranks up.

Scarab Sages

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] we actually do shoulder some of the blame,[/quote wrote:

It makes me sad that this is the viewpoint. This range of options, the ability for a character to be truly exceptional at their area of focus, is what I value most from pathfinder. It adds real versatility to encounters, and really adds to the pool of character options. I remain brokenhearted that paizo won't continue releasing 1st edition content :/

Scarab Sages

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Your players are entering the level range where a true tpk should be extremely difficult if they've done a little bit of prep. A contingency teleport spell to a friendly temple, triggered on character death, and you're covered.

You can leave your plans with a friendly druid with directions to follow you, sneak out with some material, and reincarnate you if you go missing for more than three days.

There's also things like the clone spell. This is all assuming too that no one in the party managed to escape the party wipe in the first place. If someone DOES escape, it's on them to determine how they're going to bring the rest of the party back - or not.

But if you DO get a total tpk, well... time for a new campaign or a new party. Personally, I'd prefer a new campaign.

No matter what you do, something will be lost. If you have a full TPK and someone brings the party back, you've just informed them that they're not in any real peril and they can coast to the conclusion of your story.

If you let them bring in NEW characters, you're telling them something similar - one way or another the group is going to win even if it means throwing new party members into the mix over and over again. There's no true failure.

So I prefer losing the occasional campaign to a TPK over losing the tension of playing the game.

Caveat time: if you wipe, or nearly wipe, the party because you're homebrewing battle mechanics based on wow raids... mea culpa that. Be up front with it - hopefully before you wipe the party but if necessary immediately after it happens and just rewind to immediately prior to that fight. Admit you f&$!ed up by giving the boss a homebrew ability that was broken, and tell them you're not going to penalize the party because you were the one who made a mistake. Of course, only use that as an option if it was your error and not simply bad decisions made by party members.

Let legitimate losses stand, and be upfront about an error if the loss was unfair and based on a broken mechanic.

At that point, you might let them redo the fight without that mechanic, or just give them a super toned down enemy since, you know, they already fought that enemy once before.

Scarab Sages

I did something very similar for a game. Magic item creation feats had been all but lost because some time ago because of a significant magical calamity. Magic items that existed before that event still functioned, but afterwards it was impossible to create new magic items (or to teleport any distance greater than a dimension door). It just wouldn't work. Before the event, magic had been everywhere so there were plenty of ruins to go delving through for the party.

It worked out pretty well, with a steady supply of old relics for magic gear. Of course, the eventual plot of the campaign revealed that the source of the problem was a great magical barrier encircling the entire planet. When the party brought the barrier down, it was once again possible to create magical items.

But then they learned why the barrier had been created in the first place - as a way to protect it from an inter-planar war that had been ravaging worlds left and right. And the planet just happened to be in a key strategic location.

Anyways, an alternative would be to remove crafting as feats, allow anyone to be able to do it, but also remove the crafting discount entirely.

Scarab Sages

It raises the cap, not your caster level.

So with burning hands, if your caster level is 5 and you cast an intensified burning hands, you're dealing 5d4.

If your caster level is 7 and you cast an intensified burning hands, you're dealing 7d4.

" An intensified spell increases the maximum number of damage dice by 5 levels. You must actually have sufficient caster levels to surpass the maximum in order to benefit from this feat. No other variables of the spell are affected, and spells that inflict damage that is not modified by caster level are not affected by this feat."

Scarab Sages

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"It appears where you designate and acts immediately, on your turn. It attacks your opponents to the best of its ability. If you can communicate with the creature, you can direct it not to attack, to attack particular enemies, or to perform other actions."

The person who casts the spell controls the summoned monster. It attacks enemies of the caster to the best of its ability. The summoned monster has immediate knowledge, apparently magically obtained as part of the spell, on who the summoner considers their opponents.

Given that, the question is just, "Summoner, do you now consider your body and the creature inhabiting it to be an opponent?" If the answer to that is yes, then the summoned monster will treat the caster's body the same as any other enemy and, barring further instructions, will probably attack either whichever enemy is closest or whichever enemy it thinks is weakest against it - depending on how smart it is.

Scarab Sages

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That's not how crafting trompes works at all. They have their own construction rules. They're just incredibly underpriced for what you can do with them. It's also not the only ridiculous thing you can do in pathfinder if you follow the rules.

As usual, the best defense between a table and ridiculous things is a good rapport between gm and players, and shared expectations. And maybe the occasional thrown book.

Scarab Sages

You might find the defending weapon property faq relevant:

"Yes. Merely holding a defending weapon is not sufficient. Unless otherwise specified, you have to use a magic item in the manner it is designed (use a weapon to make attacks, wear a shield on your arm so you can defend with it, and so on) to gain its benefits.
Therefore, if you don't make an attack roll with a defending weapon on your turn, you don't gain its defensive benefit.
Likewise, while you can give a shield the defending property (after you've given it a +1 enhancement bonus to attacks, of course), you wouldn't get the AC bonus from the defending property unless you used the shield to make a shield bash that round--unless you're using the shield as a weapon (to make a shield bash), the defending weapon property has no effect."

Scarab Sages

That's the point. You don't have a stat block to use if you're not turning into a specific creature. You can't just wave your hand and pretend like yig isn't a specific creature, or divorce that specificity from the stat entry.

If you use yig's stats then you're turning into a specific creature, which violates the restriction. Yig is a specific, unique creature. Yig being unique is part of the stat block.

So, again, you don't have a stat block that is a valid option for you to use to gain the same stats as yig without being yig.

You can't use yig as a blueprint because his entry lists him as unique. And even if it didn't, duplicating the stat block of a specific creature is blocked by that first sentence because that stat block is a specific creature. You can't simply claim to change hair color and then functionally duplicate a specific creature.

Stats come in two flavors. Generic entries like goblins, and specific creatures like named npcs and named, unique monsters.

If the stat block is a specific creature then you cannot use it. That first sentence blocks you from doing so. The unique creature is the stat block.

And that first sentence does apply in that manner.

As a player you can't hand wave a version of yig that isn't a specific creature into existence. You have to use the existing stat blocks.

I understand what you're trying to say and do. It just doesn't match what the rules say. You can't create a generic or altered version of a bestiary entry as a player. So you literally can't make yig but with green hair (second sentence) until you have selected yig which you can't do at all because of the first sentence. This whole argument reminds me of the accomplished sneak attacker thread and the posters arguing that, surely, the dice cap must only apply to the dice from the feat.

Anyways, you seem unlikely to acknowledge it so I'll just leave it here for everyone else.

Scarab Sages

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Kotello wrote:
Are all constructs really automatically under the control of the creator?

From the construct handbook: "Once the crafting process is complete, the resulting construct is ready to receive orders. A construct recognizes its creator intuitively and obeys all commands issued to it by that individual." That's regarding the craft construct feat, which is the feat used to create trompes. So, in this case, yes.

Kotello wrote:
Is there really no limit to the creatures that can be copied?

From the template entry: “Trompe l’oeil” is an inherited template that can be added to any corporeal creature that has an Intelligence score (referred to hereafter as the base creature)." You're limited to corporeal creatures (sorry ghosts) that have an intelligence score (RIP vermin and unintelligent undead).

Kotello wrote:
Would copying yourself many times really be effective?

Depending on your character build it might be more or less effective. If you're a 20th level wizard, well, having two thousand of those as minions is pretty useful.

Kotello wrote:
Do Trompe L’oeil really retain all supernatural and SLA abilities?

As an inherited template, the only things you change on the base creature are what's noted in the template itself. The special qualities section only adds two abilities and does not mention removing any of the existing supernatural and SLA's the creature has, so the modified creature retains those.

There are many things you can do in pathfinder according to raw that are silly when carried to extremes. This is one of them.

Scarab Sages

Derklord wrote:

This is where you're wrong. You can take the form of a specific creature, you just won't look exactly like it. The rule about the "specific individual" does not use the word form, unlike all the sentences that talk about mechanical aspects. The very next sentence, which is undoubtedly a limitation on what you can use as a "base" to polymorph into, does use the word form.

Every human is an individual. If you take the material component, it's from an individual. Doesn't mean you can't use Alter Self to turn into a humen, though. What you can't do, and that's what the respective two sentences in the polymorph description are for, is turn into a carbon copy of the king and impersonate him. Even if you use the king's hair as a material component, you'll only look vague similar at best. if you use Yig as a blueprint for your MP2 spell, you probably won't get the crescent moon on the forehead, have different stripes on the scales, and probably a (slightly) different color. Because those are aesthetic aspects, which you are unable to copy. The natural attacks are based on the "form", which you very much are allowed to copy.

The entry entry says, "Unless otherwise noted, polymorph spells cannot be used to change into specific individuals. Although many of the fine details can be controlled, your appearance is always that of a generic member of that creature’s type. Polymorph spells cannot be used to assume the form of a creature with a template or an advanced version of a creature."

First sentence. You cannot turn into specific individuals. This is a blanket ban. It stands by itself as a limitation. It doesn't mention form at all, and is a flat ban on turning into specific individuals.
Second sentence. Although many of the fine details can be controlled, your appearance is always that of a generic member of that creature’s type. Second limitation preventing you from using a generic creature to also look like a specific creature.

You want to interpret the first sentence as something that's not a blanket ban into turning into specific individuals. But that's not what it says. It prevents you from turning into specific individuals, period. It's the entirety of the sentence. The second sentence in no way negates the first one. It adds additional restrictions. That's why you can't turn into Yig, who is a specific individual, and why you would need a bestiary entry for a generic member of Yig's race in order to transform into one. As it is, you don't know if Yig is a typical member of his race, or if he's an advanced version of his race either, which means you also may be violating the third limitation in the entry.

As written, you just can't do it legally. You don't have a valid stat block to use for it. You can, of course, do whatever you like at a home game with gm approval. And, from a more realistic perspective, a gm who isn't going to throw a book at you for turning into Yig in the first place is unlikely to tell you no anyways.

Scarab Sages

What? You can't take the form of a specific creature. You have one entry of a specific unique figure. You don't have a bestiary entry of a generic member of the race. Ergo, you don't know what abilities a generic member of that race has versus what abilities are unique to the unique creature.

Scarab Sages

Actually, I do believe that bit about changing into specific individuals would prevent you from turning into a specific named creature, like Yig, who is identified in the entry as a specific creature and not a race of creatures.

Take a peek at the organization entry for yig: solitary (unique).

Now, if we got a book of great old ones that had a generic version of Yig, sure, go to town. But since Yig is unique, there's no generic version of that race to turn into.

Pulling back from the abstract and applying a little common sense, Yig is a deity-tier being that is worshipped. We know there are other great old ones, and each one is vastly different in form, abilities, and powers.

Each one is also presented as a unique creature, an individual, not as a member of a race with formulaic powers. Even if there IS a world of creatures out there from the same race that spawned Yig, you don't have a generic member of that race to use as a base to determine what the default abilities are.

Of course that doesn't stop you from creating a simulacrum or trompe of one and then possessing it.

Scarab Sages

Actually, beastshape 4 sets any resistance or immunity to resist 20.

"If the creature has immunity or resistance to any elements, you gain resistance 20 to those elements"

It's slightly different wording than the other sections.

The 30 in my previous post was wrong though, I meant to put 20

Scarab Sages

Here's what you would get:

At 1st level, during symbiosis the synergist gains darkvision or low-light vision if the familiar possesses it.

Nosoi has both, so there you go.

At 5th level, during symbiosis the synergist gains any abilities the familiar possesses that are listed under beast shape I, except flight.

That means you would get: darkvision 60 feet, low-light vision.

At 8th level, during symbiosis the synergist gains any abilities the familiar possesses that are listed under beast shape II. If the familiar can fly, the synergist can fly for a total of 1 minute per witch level she possesses per day while in symbiosis. This duration need not be consecutive, but it must be spent in 1-minute intervals.

That means you get: fly 50 feet (average maneuverability), darkvision 60 feet, low-light vision,

Additionally, during symbiosis the synergist gains a single natural attack of a type possessed by its familiar.

The attack deals 1d6 points of damage if a primary attack (1d6 for Small synergists) and 1d4 points of damage if a secondary attack (1d3 for Small synergists).

The Nosoi only has a bite, so you gain a bite attack.

At 11th level, during symbiosis the synergist gains any abilities the familiar possesses that are listed under beast shape III. If the familiar can fly, the synergist can fly for an unlimited amount of time each day while in symbiosis.

Here you get: fly 50 feet (average maneuverability), darkvision 60 feet, low-light vision

At 14th level, during symbiosis the synergist gains any abilities the familiar possesses that are listed under beast shape IV. If the familiar has multiple natural attacks, the synergist gains them all, rather than just one."

Here you get: fly 50 feet (average maneuverability), darkvision 60 feet, low-light vision, resist cold and electricity 30

And... that looks like just about it. It's a shame the Nosoi doesn't have more abilities listed in the beast shape spells.

Scarab Sages

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Personally, out of the three virtual tabletops I've experienced so far I like maptools the most, then roll20 - though much less than maptools, and finally fantasy grounds.

Scarab Sages

I agree with Derklord, this sounds like a discussion solution, not a game solution.

Personally, I would suggest to the brown-fur transmuter player that he rotates the targets of his buffs from session to session so that everyone gets the opportunity to be a buff-lusted killing machine.

If you REALLY want to try addressing this in-game, consider dropping some loot that would help bring the non-monk characters up in terms of defenses and damage, and then you can calculate the party cr as one or two higher and balance around that.

Scarab Sages

Welp, he'll want a lot of the same things as a standard blaster. Zenith guide to guides has some wizard guides there, specifically blockbuster, that might be worth a read.

Pretty much you want to pick a spell 3rd level or lower, preferably aoe (fireball is popular for this, of course), apply wayang spell hunter and magical lineage to it. Then focus on building around spell perfection.

This means feats like spell focus/greater, elemental focus/greater, spell penetration/greater, spell specialization, and similar feats that add a bonus that would apply to spell perfection. You may also like greater spell specialization if you want to prep other things but still have your goto blasting spell available.

You'll also want some metamagic feats to get the most out of your specific spell. Intensify, empower, echoing, quicken, dazing, and persistent are all good choices to consider.

Really, you're going to be very hungry for feats for a while.

You want your wizard to be an exploiter wizard with at least the potent exploit and the school study exploit in admixture so you can switch elements on your specific spell as needed, and if possible the fiendish proboscis so you can apply the dc or caster level bonus on all your blasting spells. More feats though.

On the cleric side, you're probably looking at theologian with a domain containing your preferred spell so that you don't have to rely on trading spell slots in order to prepare it. That level adjustment from MT can be costly when you only have 3rd level spell slots.

Your channel is going to be of negligible benefit as a source of healing. Some potentially useful variants are disease for that slow ability score healing, self-perfection (ignoring a temporary condition can be clutch at times for a group) and maybe a few others if you grabbed quicken or selective channel (even more feats though).

Or you could look for another archetype to stack onto theologian that would replace channel with something more useful.

Now, at level 20, you're probably looking at casting as a 13th level cleric and a 17th level wizard. That JUST nets you 9th level spells by 20th level. However, if you're not going to reach level 20 then you might consider taking a level of crossblooded sorcerer once you've finished out mystic theurge. It's another caster level loss, but by that level you'll be adding a significant amount of damage from it.

But that's more or less the direction I'd go with a cleric/wizard blaster under the assumption that the lost caster levels would be unrecoverable.

Scarab Sages

The first thing you should do is talk to your gm about adjusting the entry requirements. The old early entry stuff made the MT a much more playable class.

Wizard 3/cleric 1/MT 10 - You can also ask if, once you reach that point, you can extend the MT prestige class using the book guidelines to continue boosting spellcasting from both classes.

If you can gain access to magic schools for eclectic and esoteric training, that also works.

If you can get BOTH of them, then you can also afford to level dip into sorcerer for the blasting damage boosts.

Archetypes are a strong consideration, given that you're getting limited access to the higher level school stuff. Admixture is still good for the damage flexibility. If you're hardcore dedicated to blasting, see if you can combine Thassilonian specialist with the admixture school.

Alternatives might be the spell sage for that 1/day +4 to caster level (more useful if you can leverage it with spell storing items), exploiter wizard with the HH pact wizard (you'll get an exploit, which will allow you to spend feats for more exploits. school understanding nets you admixture again, while you can use potent to increase your dc or caster level, and fiendish proboscis to never run out of pool points. you can also use pact wizard to net you a hex by selecting a specific patron, and get some spontaneous casting of patron spells for more flexibility).

Cleric is going to suffer a bit more from the lost of class feature progression. Look into channel foci to see if there's some alternate use for your channel energies that you might want to use. Separatist would allow you to pick and choose your preferred domains. Theologian allows you to prepare domain spells in non-domain slots - which might save you on some spell levels.

Some of the variant channels have neat effects that would still be useful too, so make sure you go over those.

Sadly though, without getting into mystic theurge earlier, or reducing the lost caster levels through magic schools, you'd do much better blasting as a sorc 1/exploiter wizard 19 or as a sorc 20.

Blasters run by boosting caster levels up, boosting dc's up, and adding more damage for every dice roll. Mystic theurge, with fewer feats and dc boosting special abilities, is going to fall behind in comparison.

And, sadly, being three spell levels behind in both classes also means you're not getting quite the mileage out of spells that you'd like.

At 9th level, you're casting as a wizard 6/cleric 6.

That means from wizard you're getting 4 cantrips, 3 1st level spells, 3 2nd level spells, and 2 3rd level spells. School specialization gives you 1 extra spell per level dependent on archetype, and thassilonian knocks that up potentially to 2.

Cleric gives you 4 orisons, 3 1st level spells, 3 2nd level spells, and 2 3rd level spells, with an extra spell slot per spell level dependent on whether you're taking an archetype that removes it or not.

In total, you're looking at 8 cantrips/orisons, 6 to 9 1st level spells, 6 to 9 2nd level spells, and 4 to 7 third level spells.

Straight wizard would net you 4 cantrips, 4 to 6 1st level spells, 4 to 6 2nd level spells, 3 to 5 third level spells, 2 to 4 fourth level spells, and 1 to 3 5th level spells.

Just adding them up, and discounting cantrips which are mostly irrelevant from a blaster point of view, MT is netting you 16 to 25 spells capped at 3rd level. Straight wizard nets you 14 to 24 spells capped at 5th level.

That, of course, doesn't factor in the differences between having one, or two, casting stats to allocate stat points to and spend money boosting. But you can see that the wizard is between 1 and 2 spells behind, but has access to two more spell levels than the MT. That's a lot of extra power on the wizard side.

Scarab Sages

I just noticed this line, " I don't know why all afflicted werecreatures seem to get the same stat boosts either, although fortunately wererats aren't that powerful." and wanted to point out that it's not exactly true.

In hybrid or animal form, you take the highest ability score between yourself and the base animal.

As for your problem, it's not as big of a problem as you might suggest. The wizard can use a few burning hands instead of a fireball, or the alchemist can bomb you and let the wizard magic missile you the rest of the way down. The summoner can blind you, or grease the walls of the pit spell to make it harder for you to climb out. The eidolon can strike with the flat of their blades to deal nonlethal damage, or simply bullrush you repeatedly into the pit.

Your party has plenty of options to beat you down before using more controlled methods to drop you unconscious.

The real problem is that you have no idea if they'll use them.

The party wakes up to a scream, a creature is chewing on one of them, maybe they notice you're gone. Maybe they connect the fight a month ago and realize you're the animal. Maybe they don't, or think that one of them followed the party and just caught up, and just decide to kill you.

Your party definitely has the capability to restrain you, but whether or not they DO is table and rp dependent.

Scarab Sages

Here's a comment from Jason Bulmahn that might be helpful to you.

"Class abilities that refer to level always refer to your level in that class unless stated otherwise."

Scarab Sages

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Well, I'm talking about reducing bonus types, not removing them entirely. Stacking would still be a thing, but I would like to make it somewhat simpler to remember. Profane and holy? That's divine now. Resistance is gone and that type is wrapped up into another category. I'm thinking inherent. I'd also want to move competence to inherent and remove competence as a type. Racial bonuses are now untyped bonuses. (and reincarnation would already be getting a rework). This would be happening in conjection with the other reworks to make sure none of the standard things would be unduly effected. The list is just longer than it needs to be to do what it needs to do. There's space to consolidate without significantly altering the stacking game. Still plenty of bonus types to stack, but more trim of a list.

For the non-standard races stuff, I'm talking about magic item slots, how many limbs can be used for weapons, twf with greatswords, wielding two longbows in four arms... basically standardizing the mechanics so they apply equally to unusual and monstrous races. This doesn't prevent a race from bringing along an explicit ability, but would remove some questions that pop up when you start adding extra arms, tentacles, or legs to your character.

Scarab Sages

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1. Combat maneuvers in general, grapple most definitely. Simplification and clarification is needed.

2. Stealth and senses. Stealth rules could use a good scrubbing.

3. Mundane crafting vs magical crafting. Crafting skills need to be more useful, crafting feats less so, and the margin between a purchase and crafted item not so wide.

4. Consolidation of bonus types. There's more than needed, and it leads to stacking issues.

5. Unification of phrasing. There are a lot of effects with similar but not-quite-the-same phrasing. It's an editing pass.

6. Bring back the prestige classes. I love 'em, I miss 'em, I want more decently balanced prestige classes.

7. Reworking some of the classes. Spontaneous casters gain spells at the same levels as prepared casters. Gunslingers (and firearms in general) get a rework. I don't feel a class feature should have a chance of blowing up whenever you use it. I'd remove the misfire chance entirely, and rework guns to target touch ac against light armored foes and regular ac against anything wearing medium or heavy armor. Alchemists could use a little integration with magic and, you know, not killing allies with mis-thrown splash weapons. Some others could get looked over.

8. Changing feats and the approach to feat content in expansion books. Instead of, say, improved disarm as a feat, you'd take a feat that granted you a handful of the improved feats. This is similar to the feat tax stuff so far. But the other thing I would do is set those up as category feats. So when a future book came out with, 'cool new weapon-based cmb thing' you could add it to 'improved weapon cmb' feat by spending a bit of gold on training equipment. Making martial content a bit more comparable to spellcasters and spells.

9. Basic definitions stuff for non-standard races. We all know it'll get weird sooner or later.

10. Rework the balance between weapons and natural attacks. Actually, on that note...

11. Bestiary needs some reworking, more variation of ac types, formatting stuff, and some different categorization. I'd be tempted to also add something like a scalable stat chart and a random list of special abilities split up by cr ranges so you could more easily roll actual unique creatures. *rolls some dice* "Martial, melee, here are the default stats and... this one is going to have an extra +4 to strength, a grab attack with constrict, and once per round it can attempt to stun one target as a free action"

12. I'd tweak carryweight to make it a bit more generous particularly at lower strength scores.

13. Spell effects. Oh, spell effects... *sigh* Consolidating bonus types would help a lot. All of the 'intense calculations required' type spells would get a rewrite. Some effects would be simplified, I'd DEFINITELY add in some greater magic missiles and magic missile storms, consolidate some of them as appropriate, super rework 'summoning' spells to make them simpler to use without a ton of cross referencing, and so on.

14 Magic items, and magic item crafting would get a rework. I'd like to see how a module system would work instead of a formula list for crafting, but it'd eat up more space and might not be any better. Might be nice to simplify the types a bit and have 'special ability' modules that could be added to 'statistics' items. Like, for example, you have a +4 str belt. You could add one special ability module to that, whether it's the dastardly 3 times a day dimension door, the spiderclimb ability, or the ability to force an enemy to reroll a crit once a day. This is kind of like the automatic progression, but not quite as big of a difference.

Anyways, it sounds like a lot of significant changes, but it'd still feel like pathfinder at the end.

Scarab Sages

Mazes can be used to keep people from getting in, to keep people from getting out, or as a form of entertainment.

Recently recovered legend has it that in days long, long ago before Earthfall, the rich and powerful spellcasters would design mazes for entertainment.

Oh, but not the entertainment you might think. Only superficially similar to garden mazes, these constructions were built for entertainment and challenge alike. Filled with terrible creatures, and deadly traps, each maze held somewhere within it a prize of great power and value.

Participants would flock to the mazes, pitting themselves against each other and the deadly traps alike in search for that treasure, and for the pride and prestige that came from success. Indeed, if the recently recovered texts are to be believed, this hobby was the inspiration for the maze spell itself.

Nowadays, these mazes are rare, and at times in in disrepair. Ten thousand years is a long time even for magically reinforced construction, after all.

But for today's adventurer's that question from long ago still holds temptation... for what, if anything, may still reside in the heart of one of these labyrinths? Danger, for sure. But could ancient treasures still lay untouched after so long, just waiting for someone to take them away?

Scarab Sages

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Have a trusted character with a good charisma use Dominate on everyone with a command along the lines of, "Act as you would normally". Then if a character is dominated by the vampire, it falls into opposed charisma checks. It's another layer in case you don't have protection from evil up when you need it.

Detect magic should tell you if the npc still has a lingering dominate effect. If that is the case, it's in your best interests to remove that effect with dispel magic - preferably without alerting the npc that you have discovered the secret. You may want to wait until they're asleep to get the jump on them and knock them unconscious/pin and tie them up first.

Another option - more defensive - would be to set up a way to breathe underwater. (bottle of air, air tablets, whatever) and then camp in or around a moving body of water. Travel via boat if possible. Running water is especially dangerous for a vampire and may convince them to leave you alone.

Never, ever separate. Gotta use the loo? Too bad. A vampire is powerful alone, but may be accompanied by many vampire spawn.

Finally, and this is a bit mercenary, ask yourself how much you really care about your level drained ally. If the vampire wants him for a specific reason, find that reason out, then if the vampire comes calling just offer him up like a slab of beef. He who lives and runs away and all that.

An angry vampire can elude you indefinitely while dominating people all night long and sending them after your party.

Don't engage unless you absolutely have to or until you're powerful enough that you're no longer concerned.

Scarab Sages

Beguiling gift offers two options for objects. They must be consumed or donned - as appropriate for the object.

I'd say neither option would be appropriate for a penny.

But wait! All is not lost! Don't offer the target a penny.

Offer the target a bite-sized muffin that just so happens to have a penny baked inside of it. And maybe a dose of poison? Poison Steep hex is a thing. You might be able to lace it with drugs as well - dm dependent. Also, at higher levels eternal slumber is another hex you could tack onto it - though you're looking at more prep time.

There are probably a number of other just terrible things you could do to that bite-sized muffin to penalize and debuff your target. If you're going to spend the time to do it, make it do more.

Scarab Sages

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Ok. I'm going to use the archives of nethys and paizo sources.

The archives of nethys is the official PRD for pathfinder. Announcement. The pathfinder rules apply to pathfinder society except where a pathfinder society resource specifically notes otherwise. You can also see some of the society specific rules there. Additionally, faq's and errata are binding for PFS.

With that established, let's break it down.

"Like other spellcasters, an oracle can cast only a certain number of spells per day of each spell level. Her base daily spell allotment is given on Table 2–5. In addition, she receives bonus spells per day if she has a high Charisma score **(see Table 1–3 of the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook)**."

Luckily, we can reference that section on the archives - and it'll be the most updated rules as well.

"In addition to having a high ability score, a spellcaster must be of a high enough class level to be able to cast spells or use spell slots of a given spell level. See the class descriptions in Chapter 3 for details."

Back to the class page. Here, we need to reference the chart shown under class features.

Here you can see that at level 1, the oracle only has 1st level spells per day. This is important because it feed up into what we've already looked at.

The oracle only gets those bonus spell slots from a high ability score if they have a high enough class level to cast spells or use spell slots of that level. At level one, the class level is only providing cantrips and 1st level slots. Because the class level is only providing 1st level spell slots at the highest, they can not use anything above 1st level spell slots. They won't receive their 2nd level spell slots (and thus be able to benefit from the bonus 2nd level spell slots from a high ability score) until they reach fourth level in oracle.

Now, we can look at that faq everyone has been tossing around.

"No. You only get the bonus spells if your class level grants you access to those spell levels. You can't even use them for lower-level spells. See page 16, Abilities and Spellcasters section: "In addition to having a high ability score, a spellcaster must be of a high enough class level to be able to cast spells of a given spell level. "

For example, a 1st-level wizard with 18 Intelligence has (according to table 1–3: Ability Modifiers and Bonus Spells) 1 bonus spell at spell levels 1, 2, and 3. However, he can only use the 1st-level bonus spell because as a 1st-level wizard he only has access to 1st-level spells (his class-based number of 2nd- and 3rd-level spells per day are "—", meaning "no access to spells of this level"). As soon as he becomes a 3rd-level wizard, he gains access to his 2nd-level spell slots and can use that bonus 2nd-level spell slot from his high Intelligence, and likewise for 3rd-level spells and bonus spells at wizard level 5.

Basically, ignore the columns for higher-level spells on table 1–3: Ability Modifiers and Bonus Spells until your class grants you access to those spell levels."

It's a big chunk of text, but let's break it down a bit.

"You only get the bonus spells if your class level grants you access to those spell levels." This reinforces what I showed above.

"However, he can only use the 1st-level bonus spell because as a 1st-level wizard he only has access to 1st-level spells (his class-based number of 2nd- and 3rd-level spells per day are "—", meaning "no access to spells of this level")."

This sentence is actually very important. It's telling you how to interpret the table - sections with those dashes mean no access to spells of this level.

Since the oracle at first level has dashes through all the 2nd to 9th level entries (reference my earlier screenshot) they have no access to spells of those levels. Because they don't have access to those spell levels through their class they can't use the bonus spells from having a high ability score for those slots.

Combine it together and you have your answer. Hopefully, the step-by-step here is helpful to you. :)

Scarab Sages

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I would say that, for the wearer, it functions in all ways as though they're wearing mithral breastplate.

In this case, the ooze is turning into armor, and providing protection as though it were a mithral breastplate. It doesn't specifically remove any of the normal aspects of wearing armor which, if it did, would be specifically called out. Since it lacks a specific exception, and "provides protection as" doesn't automatically refer only to armor bonus, or exclude the other armor aspects, you should be taking armor check penalty, spell failure, max dex bonus, and so on as appropriate for a mithril breastplate.

Scarab Sages

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Here's the bit about emotion components:

"Emotion Components: Emotion components represent a particular emotional state required to cast the spell.

A psychic spellcaster marshals her desire in order to focus and release the spell’s energy. It is impossible to cast a spell with an emotion component while the spellcaster is under the influence of a non-harmless effect with the emotion or fear descriptors. Even if the effect’s emotion matches the necessary emotion to cast the psychic spell, the spellcaster is not in control of her own desires and animal impulses, which is a necessary part of providing an emotion component."

Also this tidbit:

"If a spell’s components line lists a somatic component, that spell instead requires an emotion component when cast by psychic spellcasters"

Your gm has, apparently, decided that grief has bestowed upon you an effect with the emotion or fear descriptor.

Your technical options are:
Focus on spells without the emotional/somatic component.
Prepare spells with the logical spell metamagic or grab a rod of it.
Access a form of memory modification such as modify memory and edit out memories of that character until you've erased the emotional connection.

Your 'talk to the dm' options are:
"The way you're approaching this makes me not want to develop any new emotional connections on my characters, and it makes me want to sever my existing one. Your approach is so penalizing that it means being a murderhobo is a better option than roleplaying."
"Fine, then my character is going to sit in an inn indefinitely until you drop the penalty. The plot? No reason to touch that, and all the reason to avoid it, when I can't even do my job."
"Reasonably, someone who has to adjust their emotional state from spell to spell should have excellent emotional control. That alone should be sufficient by now, as plenty of time has passed."
"Why are you taking an approach which is incredibly penalizing, feels terrible both from a player and character viewpoint, isn't developing anything at all, and wastes my time since I basically can't play my character? How is this making the game FUN to play? Where is the enjoyment factor in this game supposed to be for me?"

Your 'snark a.f. options are:
"Sorry dave, that last attack hit your sword hand. Since your fingers hurt, you can't wield your greatsword for the next two months without a 50% chance of dropping it. It makes sense though, because holding weapons is part of your class." repeat a version every time a party member takes damage or does anything you could draw parallels to.
"My turn? I spend it weeping about my dead friend, pulling my hair, and I'm so grief-stricken that I'll even consider myself helpless. By the way, I've got a backup character who is also a psychic spellcaster but weirdly lacks any personal attachments at all."
"I'm sorry Dave, I'd like to buff you, but my years of experience and training in manipulating my emotional state has been completely overwhelmed by a sad thing that happened weeks ago. It sure is a shame that my training in emotional control didn't include control over my emotions." repeat a version every time you cast a spell
"Oh, look, a drinking cup. 'deceased character' used to use those all the time! I break down sobbing again." Repeat every single time something changes in the game. Walk between rooms? "they looked at a painting once too!" character pulls something out of a pack. "they carried a pack sometimes!"
Make everyone suffer for as long as you're suffering. Really eke out the pain. When the dm calls you on it, just reply with, "I'm just acting out the ridiculous level of grief that would be necessary to interfere so constantly and consistently with someone who is trained in controlling their emotional state. And since you refused to take a more reasonable, less penalizing approach, I don't have any choice but to act out the the degree that you've decided my character must feel. If it's annoying you, imagine how I feel about it."

Scarab Sages

In one of my campaigns, dragons used to be very common and detrimental to the civilizations of lesser beings. They had their own civilization, including a city built by, and for, dragons that very few non-dragons ever saw.

Anyways, one of the humanoid factions was a civilization built upon alchemy back when humanoid magic was still in its proto-stage. This alchemical civilization created a weapon through alchemy, a terrible disease that targeted dragons and spread to them from contaminated food sources and treasure, and from contaminated dragon to dragon.

It wiped out a massive chunk of their population. Infected dragons who had not yet died but laid eggs after being infected would give birth to many of the lesser dragonkind, such as drakes.

In retribution, the dragons laid waste to the alchemical civilization, turning their capital into virtual glass. Their rage was incredible.

Because of that event, however, dragons are exceptionally rare to encounter. Their birth rate was already low, and as magic developed and humanoids learned how to hunt and kill stronger creatures, the dragons never really recovered.

If you want the majority of dragons to survive, you could manipulate this from wiping them out to turning the world toxic to most of them - forcing them to flee or die.

In my setting, the original toxin lingered in only one place - the hidden laboratories of the royal house of alchemists, buried deep underground in the ancient wreckage of the lost capital of their civilization.

My players almost set off a new war by accidentally releasing a mutated form of it. But they realized at the last moment and I quietly shelved my notes on the 'possible dragon wars' section of the campaign.

Scarab Sages

Eh? You have to spend resources to get the poison, resources to cast the spell, and resources to deal with the subsequent ability damage that you would otherwise take.

That's a decent amount of investment in order to make it work.

Basically, it's a bull's strength with triple the requirements in return for potentially applying to more than one stat and getting a step upgrade on duration.

And it'll be limited by what poisons are available to you, leaving an in-game gm lever to adjust the potency if it ends up being too strong.

Seems fine to me.

Scarab Sages

It states oracle, so no.

Also the item grants a revelation, which oracles get and which shamans do not get - even if the hexes they can choose from their spirit animal can be similar.

Scarab Sages

Firebug wrote:
Again, if Hybridized items (mixtures) are not alchemical items why would the funnel go out of its way to say:
Hybridization Funnel wrote:
This two-spouted funnel is used to safely mix two alchemical splash weapons into a single flask. ... A mixture cannot be combined with another mixture.

Because it limits what you can combine to alchemical splash weapons and not other alchemical items.

It requires two alchemical splash weapons, and mixes them into a single flask - at which point the result is called a mixture.

A mixture is not explicitly an alchemical item. The funnel says that you can throw it as a splash weapon and, when thrown, it has the effects of both component substances. But it's still not explicitly an alchemical item, just a mixture that has the effects of two different alchemical items.

Of course, it's reasonable to say that it should still count as an alchemical weapon. And also reasonable to say that it still counts as two alchemical weapons so you couldn't use full pouch on it.

Scarab Sages

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willuwontu wrote:

Yes, you can make a tail slap attack with your tail. As long as a tail is your tail, you get a single tail slap with it. This means that you get a tail slap with any tail you have as long as it is your tail.

The only thing you're missing in making this work like that is any language that would make it work like that. 'A' is not 'every', 'A' is not any. Stop trying to add words. It gives you one tail attack. It would need more language than it has to be one tail attack per tail. Like, you know, 'per tail'.

Scarab Sages

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As others have said, tail terror specifies "a tail attack" and not, say, "tail attacks" or "one attack per tail".

It doesn't matter how many tails you might gain - you only get "a" tail attack from the ability.

Scarab Sages

That exalted boon from fiendish obedience says, "If you don’t already have the sneak attack ability, you gain sneak attack +5d6."

If you already have sneak attack from another source, you don't get the 5d6. It explicitly does not stack with pre-existing sneak attack damage.

The demonic obedience 3d6 boon explicitly does stack with your other sneak attack.

Scarab Sages

Slyme has made it pretty clear that they refuse to accept the feat works as worded, has no intention of following the rules, and will keep ignoring the restriction until/unless explicitly told they must follow it by a pfs gm.

I would personally not be comfortable using a feat at a table without specifically bringing up the relevant post/debate to the dm for a ruling - especially when it would have a substantial effect on the character. And I would encourage anyone using feats in a questionable manner to do so as well.

Beyond that it's not likely worth engaging in the discussion any longer. The rules and results are obvious and people will act in regards to them as their moral character and home rules dictate.

Scarab Sages

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Slyme wrote:

What would happen if a level 3 character with 1 level of Unchained Rogue, 1 level of Greensting Slayer Magus, and 1 level of Snakebite Striker Brawler took Accomplished Sneak Attacker as their level 3 feat?

Much like a standard wizard who decided to don fullplate and a tower shield and then tried to cast fireball, they would end up regretting that decision.

A level three character has, for the purposes of accomplished sneak attacker, a cap of 2d6. Half the level (1.5) rounded up (2). In this case, that means the feat would be a poor choice for their build.

In other news, boon companion is ineffective if you're a single classed druid with an animal companion. Sap adept and sap master are ineffective if you never use a bludgeoning weapon. Shade of the Uskwood is detrimental if you're not playing a druid. The game is littered with feats that are potentially useless if not used in the right build - and some of them even penalize you.

Scarab Sages

It doesn't matter whether or not the familiar has treasure listed. Treasure listed is not the same as gold in hand.

"Encounters against NPCs typically award three times the treasure a monster-based encounter awards, due to NPC gear."

You didn't succeed in an encounter against yourself or your familiar. You're not awarded xp or treasure for it. So you have no access to that treasure.

As a player, you can gain treasure from a creature for defeating it. Notably, that HAS to happen with the gm at the table. There's no default way to gain that treasure otherwise.

Additionally, the familiar rules do not mention the familiar coming with gold, so you don't get random gold from that. And you haven't done anything to receive the treasure. For comparison, the leadership feat explicitly mentions that cohorts should come equipped with gear appropriate for its level.

In short, treasure has specific rules about how it can be gained.

Scarab Sages

Access to some dragon-specific feats/abilities, shenanigans with reincarnate, and an attempt to keep dragons scary and menacing and not, say, every fourth member of an adventuring party. The wyvaran exist though, so there's that.

Scarab Sages

Slyme, keep in mind that this is the rules forum, not the 'how I would run it in my game' forum.

It's about what the rules actually are. Sometimes it exposes flaws or things that should be reprinted with better verbiage. People are always welcome to rule things how they prefer in their home games and it's reasonable to say, "I think this rule is ridiculous, paizo should change it, and I'm absolutely not doing that in my games!!!" when you come across something that seems unusually bad.

Paizo has had a lot of awkward and even broken rules in the past and discussions about them have on occasion spawned faqs and errata, though not always to the betterment of the ability.

So when I'm saying that these are the rules, that's not the same thing as saying I like the result or would force other people to play that way in my games. I think the only group that is really stuck to the rules is PFS.

Given that a lot of people had seemed to miss that accomplished sneak attacker wasn't a cap to the feat itself, it seems likely that your PFS gm's simply overlooked the restriction.

I looked at it myself on a handful of different occasions before I really noticed how that was worded. It's a stupid cap, but it is what it is. Feel free to go forth and ignore it as I assume the vast majority of players will do. :) Maybe we'll get lucky and paizo will release a better reprint in one of the couple of books that are left for first edition.

...It could happen... :(

Scarab Sages

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It's a phrasing issue. It doesn't limit you to only making alchemical golems. Rather, whatever construct you're creating you must use a craft alchemy skill check to create it in place of whatever skill check would normally be required.

Scarab Sages

The general rule for sneak attack dice is that they stack together. The spell reiterating that rule is not more specific than a feat that has a unique cap to sneak attack dice that is not found anywhere else.

More importantly, the feat doesn't prevent the spell, or any other ability, from working. It just limits how much of the sneak attack dice you can actually use regardless of the source. There's no conflict between the two abilities that would require a comparison. You're still going to be stuck with the limit at the end.

Scarab Sages

"Once per day an adult or older black dragon can stagnate 10 cubic feet of still water, making it foul and unable to support water-breathing life. The ability spoils liquids containing water. Liquid-based magic items (such as potions) and items in a creature’s possession must succeed on a Will save (DC equal to the dragon’s frightful presence) or become ruined. This ability is the equivalent of a 1st-level spell. Its range is equal to that of the dragon’s frightful presence."

As you said, the ability specifically mentions that "liquid based magic items (potions included) are normally affected by it, so the effect appears to consider the potion container part of the potion.

However if the effect is prevented from coming into contact with the potion (container and all) in the first place, such as the bag being closed, then it's blocked.

Speaking about bags of holding specifically, the item doesn't have any specific rules about its contents that would suggest treating it differently for line of effect than a non-magical bag. Treating it as such, you should be able to open it and see all the items you've put inside it (or at least those on top). Certainly, nothing in the (limited) content I could find about extradimensional spaces would change that. I don't see any mention that an extradimensional space by itself blocks line of effect, line of sight, or anything along those lines.

Scarab Sages

This feat doesn't work like boon companion. It works like itself. There's no bizarre wording here. It's extremely clear. To interpret it otherwise takes a lot of mental hoop jumping.

These are the rules you're thinking of, I believe.

1: "The important aspect of bonus types is that two bonuses of the same type don’t generally stack. With the exception of dodge bonuses, most circumstance bonuses, and racial bonuses, only the better bonus of a given type works. Bonuses without a type always stack, unless they are from the same source."

2: "Same Effect More than Once in Different Strengths

In cases when two or more identical spells are operating in the same area or on the same target, but at different strengths, only the one with the highest strength applies."

Now, those are general rules governing bonuses and stacking and overlapping and such. The feat has a very specific limitation. Specific trumps general, so once you've added up your dice total, you still apply the limitation the feat implements. Moreover, it doesn't actually prevent you from stacking your sources from wherever. It just sets a cap on the maximum number of sneak attack dice so that, after a certain point, you're not seeing any extra benefit from certain things.

At this point the arguments have been made over and over again. You're welcome to do what you want in your home game but the feat itself is very clear.

Scarab Sages

Caster is invisible - spell manifestations are visible. I'd suggest moving after casting a spell. In order to conceal spellcasting you need one of a very small number of feats or abilities.

Scarab Sages

Munchkin to me means someone who actively cheats in the game to make their character more powerful. Fudging dice rolls, writing down higher stats, *remembering* an item they bought to solve a clutch situation that wasn't on their sheet five minutes ago, reading the app, looking up a monster the party is fighting to figure out how best to defeat it... Someone who cheats to have a more powerful character.

Scarab Sages

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I'm going to miss a few things. First, the sense that paizo valued their core playerbase. Paizo won't even put one guy on releasing p1 content? They can't even do one book a year? Come on. That's a huge middle finger to the core base that followed them for an improved 3.5 - not a virtually new and very different system.

I'm going to miss the excitement of cracking open a new pdf and starting to read through it. P2 is incredibly unappealing to me, especially the action changes, the segregation of basic common abilities, the multiclassing, and the lack of backward compatibility. So I won't be buying any new hard copies or pdfs for the foreseeable future. On that note I'm also going to miss avoiding 3pp content. With official content ending its inevitable that most p1 groups will slowly incorporate more and more homebrew / 3pp content.

I'm also going to miss the already limited amount of errata and faqs the p1 system received. It's very likely that any unanswered questions will remain that way forever now.


Scarab Sages

You're not targeting the tree, however. You're targeting the wood, or the leaves, or the sap... you see where I'm going with this? Pick a material. Craft that material.

If you're arguing that you can make different materials with the thing you're targeting then your target isn't a specific material.

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