Marnos Moonshadow's page

340 posts. Organized Play character for Gavmania.

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OK, so we know pf2 plans to cut down on spells by merging many into one heightenable spell (e.g. Heal (1), Heal (2) etc. instead of clw, cmw, etc.) but just how far does this go?

I noticed someone complaining on the sorcerer thread that if they didn't get an arcane spell list they wouldn't have Mage armour and Shield, and someone else pointing out that divine lists have Barkskin and Shield of Faith which are essentially the same thing, and I thought, "aren't paizo committed to reducing spells by merging ones that are essentially the same?"

So it got me wondering, if this is so what else might be merged?

Then there is the question of heightened spells. We know that many spells of similar theme but different level have been merged into 1 heightenable spell, so e.g. pf2 Fly(1)= pf1 feather fall, fly (2)=levitate, fly (3)=fly, fly (4)=Overland flight, etc.

The question is, what else is there?

I know Invisibilty(2) and invisibility (4) replace invisibility and greater invisibility (there is no invisibility (3)), but is there invisibility (1), formerly vanish?

What about teleport spells; Dimension Door and Teleport obviously go together but is there a low level version (like Dimensional slide from the arcanist)?

And are there any others that obviously go together?

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What I'd like: first I'd like to be able to multi-classing casters without falling behind too much against a full caster. This could be accomplished by allowing spell slots to scale with character level, while new spells are the premise of the full caster. It would mean that the spells you do know could be heightened to usefulness while still calling behind a full caster who gets more powerful spells. My fear is it would be too powerful.

What can we expect: multi-classing out of a caster class will mean your spells and spell slots slowly fall into uselessness. Since they start with a higher utility than in pf1 it will take longer, but anything more than a few levels of another class will likely make spells other than utility spells sub optimal. I could live with this.

What do we know: at this point, nothing. Others may know more.

What I do find intriguing is the possibility that a caster class multi-classing into another caster class could have spell slots scaling as the combined class (so like a full caster) while only getting new spells from the new class. This would mean that there is no need for the mystic theurge as a cleric/wizard multi-class would do the job.

So, the new ranger preview has revealed that there is a general feat for snares, and rangers get some cool class feats that enhance it.

But it got me wondering, who else may have class feats that enhance snares? The alchemist (since many of them seem based off alchemical weapons)? the Rogue (thematically closely tied to traps and trapmaking)? Would it be possible to make a viable non-casting battlefield controller by multi-classing to pick up those class feats? What level would they be viable at and what do they do until then?

I realise we probably don't have enough info to answer all these questions, but there are people out there who know more than I do and may be able to (partially) answer how this might work.

It's certainly got me salivating at the prospect, I can't wait to see how the multiclassing system works.

I have an opportunity to make a gestalt character, and always wanted to make good use of the Arcanists Dimensional Slide ability to maneuver in combat, but I am struggling to work out what I should take as the second part of the gestalt.

Essentially I am looking for some means of boosting my survivability. I could grab Arcane Armour Training and gestalt with a more martial class, ending up with Mithral Chain Shirt, or I could go unarmoured and concentrate on spells (Mage Armor, Shield, Mirror Image, etc.) to keep me alive.

I also need to decide what attack modes I will be using. If I pick up Eldritch Archer, I can use Dimensional Slide to get out of Dodge or move to a better position. Or I could go with Kensai, Dimensinal Slide into position and go to town. Or I could go with something else (Slayer? Brawler? Fighter? Ranger? Swashbuckler?)

I am allowed any paizo class except Gunslinger (but Bolt Ace is allowed). I am also allowed Dreamscarred Press' psionic classes, but for background purposes I would find them difficult to rationalise.

The question is, how should I go about developing this character without becoming too MAD?

So, I recently came across a GM saying that in his (admittedly limited) experience it is virtually impossible to disengage in combat once engaged and as there are already rules for casting in melee, he sees no need for the 5' step rule.

Now I have played for some time with the 5'step rule in place and was a bit flabbergasted when I saw this proposal. I'm really not sure what to make of it, so I thought I'd throw it open to the wider community. Is this ruling true to life? is it a good idea? what difference would it make if implemented?

The main reason I ask is that I was considering asking to join his group (he's local, and theres not a lot else going on around here) and I'm wondering if I should try to change his mind, avoid him or live with it?

So, I am creating a Double-chain Kama trip build, and I am looking at going with Monk (it's a gestalt character so it will be Monk//Empyreal Sorceror).

The question is, which Monk should I use? As I understand it, Double-chain Kama is a reach weapon and a Monk weapon, so I can use it at reach with FoB. I plan to get Enlarge person as one of my spells, so it will give me up to 20' reach at first level.

But Maneuver Master doesn't get FoB, and Flurry of Maneuvers seems sub-par for a trip build. I considered Master of Many styles, but he doesn't even get FoB. I even considered Warpriest (Sacred Fist), but they don't get full BAB.

So is there an archetype that would be perfect for a trip build? Or should I just go with vanilla Monk or even Monk (unchained))? or something else?

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So, I was talking with a friend online about introducing our kids to RPGs, and he mentioned how difficult it is to get them to role-play, and I mentioned an idea I had to make characters based on their favourite from film/tv so that they know their character and can play accordingly.
For example:

Biff Lightspear Paladin.
Biff is a graduate of the Astral academy and is committed to defending the galaxy the world from the evil emporer Zurg. His favourite phrase when going on a quest is, "To eternity and beyond!" and he often says "Not today!"

AnnaSorceror (Elemental - Water) Bloodline.
Anna is a princess from the country of Arendelle. Since birth she has had power over Ice and is able to cast lots of ice themed spells (all summons spells are reskinned as living ice constructs)

Paddington Barbarian (Totem warrior - Bear Totem)
Paddington is from a lost tribe in deepest, darkest Garund. His actual name is unpronouncable in Common, so he picked the name of the town where he arrived. His tribe were contacted a generation ago by an explorer who left behind an invitation and a book on manners. As a result, Paddington is always unfailingly polite and prone to giving those who are rude a hard stare If only stern gaze was a barbarian ability. Unfortunately his primer on manners is a generation out of date, so he often misunderstands the situation.

So, what I was wondering, does anyone have any ideas for characters that could be used, or any other ideas to get kids into role-playing?

Why am I writing this? because I am fed up of seeing encounters reduced to a set of die rolls. Heres the typical scenario:

Perception DC16:
You see a pair of Lizardlike creatures stalking you through the trees

Knowledge (Nature) DC17:
They are Tatzlwyrms

Now, I'm not having a go at all you GM's who do this - we all do it (I know I have), but there is no "atmosphere" involved. Thed Fighters ready weapons, archers get out bows, spellcasters prepare spells, all roll initiative, a few hits later encounter over.

The reason I have been thinking about it is because I have recently been watching Mountain Monsters{/i] on Discovery channel. Now I don't care if you think it's all hogwash or not, I'm not here to start an argument about all that, but it does show how an encounter should be run.

Here are a bunch of seasoned hunters, chasing after whatever cryptid it happens to be that week. Unlike our heroes, they actually [i]know it's out there, does their encounter go like the Tatzlwyrm encounter?

No, it does not. First they hear it. Twigs snapping, or maybe some kind of noise alerts them to it's presence, but they only know roughly where it is. Edging forward into the darkness (they always hunt at night), one of them might catch a glimpse of it behind some brush.

Now heres where it gets interesting, instead of attacking, it disappears. Why? Well most large creatures are ambush predators. getting spotted is not comfortable for them, they want to get close unseen, so they vanish. The hunters edge their way over to where they saw it, only to find it's moved. Pausing to listen, they hear it again and the whole process goes around again.

exceptions are made for the pack animals; whether it's the Yahoos or the Grass man, they both attack from a distance (one by knocking trees down on the hunters, one by throwing logs at them). In all cases, the quarry is using it's natural advantages to try and outwit the hunters; running rings around them, attacking from the darkness, etc.

Now in a fantasy environment things are little different. Darkvision exists but whenever there is a light source about it is limited to 30' (so the same distance as normal vision by lamplight). This gives ample opportunity for the party to be outmaneouvred. Even Goblins have 60' darkvision. How would it be if they started shooting out of the darkness? The pc's wouldn't necessarily know what was out there, and running out into the darkness could be suicidal. How do they react? Do the fighters run out into uncertain territory, risking a fall ore being mobbed by goblins? if they don't have darkvision, how will they cope being blind? Will they think to wait until someone casts a light spell on an arrow? Will the goblins stick around when the light spell lands, or will they just move position? This simple scenario can really keep tensions high.

So that's my thoughts on running a better encounter.

Here's the thing: a CR7 Elephant, fully trained, costs 1,000gp. A CR9 Mastodon costs 2,000gp.

If you go with Wealth by level, and the restriction that GM's put on it that there is no more than (say) 25% in one item, these are affordable at 4th and 5th level respectively.

Now, at at 4th level a CR7 creature would be considered powerful enough that it would take everything a party of 4 has got to defeat it (possibly including the lives of some of them), so adding one to the party effectively doubles the "Firepower" of the party. Similarly, the Mastodon would seriously overpower the 5th level party.

Yet I can see no restriction to access them other than GM Fiat; Should their costs be changed to reflect their power (after all a CR4 Griffon is 8,000gp - way beyond WBL restrictions until 8th level, a much more reasonable costing IMHO) or is this loophole one that is not too Overpowered?

My apologies if this has been discussed and I've missed it.

Given the way that trip and other combat maneuvers have been nerfed in pathfinder, and the general lack of enthusiasm for these builds, I have to ask: can I make a viable lockdown build as a Magus? The idea is to use spells such as frostbite, combining them with Rime spell and Enforcer to stack multiple conditions on an opponent (fatigued leading to exhaustion; shaken and entangled). Attacking through a reach trip weapon via spellstrike stacks up the conditions before applying a trip attack. Feats such as lunge expand the area under lockdown, while Arcane accuracy (and/or True strike) increase probability of success.

The question is, would it work, and would it still be viable at higher levels? When would it not work and what can be done about that?

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Inspired by 1001 campaign seeds, this thread is for those who just want an idea for a one-off adventure (or a few adventures) to fill in time between campaign adventures, or just for a casual game.

1. The Beacon

Yesterday, a powerful light began pulsing from a previously uninhabited region near the city. At the same time several small earthquakes have been felt in the ground. Finally, a ghostly figure has appeared to several leaders, pleading with them to..."Help me. help me or everyone will die."

The City hires the PC's to locate the source of the beacon and discover what is going on. Upon arriving at the location of the beacon, they discover it is emanating from a cave, inside which is a fantastic magical contraption the size of a city. It is guarded by constructs and traps, and the PCs are not the only ones attempting to penetrate the mystery as several local monsters and tribes of goblinoids have seen the beacon and have responded. Working their way to the centre of the the contraption, they discover the ghostly figure is a real person strapped into the machine, but it is obvious he is dying. The pc's must get him back to the city and find out what the connection is, then return with a replacement to regain control of the machine, which is causing the earth tremors and if left unchecked will cause a massive earthquake that will bury the city and the surrounding region.

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I want to establish this thread to try and figure out how warfare would evolve in a fantasy world and how that differs from the real world.

For example, a knight from the real world would typically have a Light warhorse, chainmail and a Lance for 270gp worth of equipment (excluding cheaper stuff like saddle, bridle, etc.), making him 1st level. A troop of say 20 would have 5,400gp worth of gear between them. Would a nation invest in equipping such a troop when a single figure with a scroll worth 375gp (less than a tenth) can wipe out the entire troop with one fireball? What would a nation state invest in and why?

If we take this analogy a step further, a nation would then seek to counter lone individuals with scrolls of fireball. How do you do it? Invest in troops with evasion or missile troops who spread out or use stealth. What about a lone individual with a scroll of invisibility which he casts on a lone knight, who can then run down the enemy caster before he gets off his fireball? Or who has been the recipient of a protection from energy spell?

How then would a nation state counter these counters? As you can see it can get horribly complex very quickly. I Imagine different states would seek to solve these problems on the battlefield in different ways, leading to a variety of different types of armies, each buffed differently.

I would like to see what thoughts people have as to what kind of troops would evolve to deal with a magical world.

I'm looking to make a TWF character, and was wondering which class(es) would make the best choice. It is a feat intensive build, so pretty much all thr Feats of a normal class would be dedicated to it. My thoughts so far are:

Barbarian gets some nice boosts/attack through rage and rage powers (powerful blow and elemental rage) and has a pounce ability (Greater Beast Totem), but is probably better suited to natural attacks.

Fighter. Initially dismissed in my mind, I have now looked again and noted that weapons mastery provides some nice bonuses/attack as well as weapon specialization and various archetypes provide pounce-lite abilities (Maneouvre master or dawnflower dervish) or Lock-down capabilities (Two weapon warrior or brawler) whch improve the possibility of getting full attacks. Still suffers from MAD though.

Inquisitor I like the thought of this character, with his judgements boosting his to-hit and damage while bane gives a solid 2d6/attack boosting to 4d6 with Greater bane. Teamwork feats can give a charge as an immediate action, allowing a full attack afterwardand you get spells too.
On the other hand, How sustainable are all these boosts? Will they be available in most combats or will this character have to fall back on spells/unboosted combat on several occasions. Also the character would be super-MAD, needing some WIS to power spells and abilities as well as high DEX, STR and CON.

Monk. technically not TWF since they will use FoB, but flavour wise it would feel the same if they were using Monk weapons. No real damage options unless using Fists, which moves away from TWF.

Paladin. Smite gives a nice boost to attack and damage, lasts all combat (until target is dead) and is plentiful at higher levels. Also ignores DR. Only useful against Evil, so against non-Evil would be severely gimped. Also less useful against multiple targets since it can only target one at a time. Super-MAD due to dependency on CHA.

Ranger. Can access feat chain without super-high DEX (though some DEX important to mitigate lower ac). Can use Animal Companion to help Trip/Pin opponents, gains bonus feats inthe chain. FE provides nice boosts, but is highly situational until you get instant enemy.

Rogue. Sneak attack provides a nice damage boost, but is highly situational. Rogues suffer from lower BAB, lower ac and lower hp. Not a frontline character.

All told, I prefer Fighter or Ranger, but i am not sure which would be better.

There have been numerous threads about these three classes, usually attempting some kind of fix, and they usually devolve into a debate about whether or not we really need a fix. Anecdotally, since there are way more threads about these three classes than any others, it suggests a problem. I don't want this thread to be another one about fixing it, rather I want to seek a consensus on what exactly the problem is. To this end, it would be helpful to give examples (e.g. from books, stories, films or TV) of what the class should be like, and show where it fails this stereotype.

My view is as follows:

Rogue.: With the improvement in access to cross class skills and the bundling of many skills together, Rogue has lost his monopoly on skills. Other classes can approach or exceed his skill levels, so while he can still achieve some pretty impressive skill levels he no longer feels like the go-to man for a skill solution.

More generally, Rogues cover a wide variety of archetypal heroes: swashbucklers (from Errol Flynn to Captain Jack Sparrow), Anarchists (Zorro-though he is also a swahbuckler- or V), artificers (Da Vinci from Da Vincis demons), Cat burglars (too many examples to count). All should be represented as achievable with the class, but they are not. There is no option to exchange sneak attack for a swashbuckling style, for example. (I include swashbucklers here because they rely on Dexterity, maneouvre and, crucially, light armour). There is no real option to play an artificier type Rogue (some of this could be roleplayed), there is no option for anarchists.

Fighter.: Similarly to Rogues, fighters have suffered from the general increase in feats. Most Combat styles rely on 3-4 feats, which means that in the olden days (Pre-PF) a non-Fighter had to reach level 6-9 to complete their combat style mastery, while Fighters had comleted and polished it. By this time Critical feats were becoming available that were competing with the last feat in the combat style, after that advanced Feats started coming on line, so Non-Fighters were continually playing catch-up with Fighters to be at the same basic combat level.

Now most Fighters have got their basic combat style feats by levels 3-4. Advanced Feats haven't kicked in, so the next few feats are of increasingly sub-optimal value until critical feats/Advanced Feats kick in.
Meanwhile other Martial classes have completed their required Feats levels 5-7 and are ready for critical Feats coming online at level 9. In fact from this stage on, they are pretty much able to keep up with the Fighter as most of the Feats they need for their build don't come online much faster than the speed with which they get Feats. They don't have to take in sub-optimal feats to fill in gaps while they are waiting for the next batch of decent fetas to become available. They also get several nice abilities that help them shine both in and out of combat.

Fighters are kind of the everyman hero. Most stories (whether they are from books, films, tv, traditional, or whatever) have typical examples of the fighter, battling the odds and getting lucky. Fighters often attempt heroic stunts that save the day and are most likely to "get the girl" (apologies to female players; I am generalising). They don't tend to use clever stratagems but rather bravely charge in and somehow muddle through. There is a nod to this in that Fighters favour a charge in and fight style (though other builds are possible), but there is no ability for the Fighter to pull off incredible stunts, etc. unless you use the hero point system.

Monks.: Monks suffer from a great many problems. Comparing them to a TWF Fighter (which is considered a sub-optimal build), we see that (a) They have less AC, (b) they have less hit points, (c) they have a lower to hit chance. They still do more damage when they hit, and they have some nice maneuvre options and abilities as well as good saves. However the maneuvre mechanics of pathfinder are generally weak and do not make up for their weaknesse. They should be a frontline alternative, but they are not.

Examples include any Martial arts film (from Bruce Lee to Jackie Chan), The water Margin (think Salmon leaps and days spent staring one another with combat over after one pass), Monkey (to be fair, Monkey was also an accomplished sorceror, but when he fought it was as a staff-wielding Monk. Pigsy also fought with a rake, while sandy fought with some exotic weapon).