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Goblin Squad Member. Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber. FullStarFullStarFullStarFullStarFullStar Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta 63 posts (162 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 32 Organized Play characters. 1 alias.


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Sczarni

JUSTIN_BOT.exe

"Let's take a looksie under their skirts and see what we're up against...

Ship Scan against Capitol Ship: 1d20 + 20 ⇒ (20) + 20 = 40 vs 5+(1.5xET)

Sczarni

KESKODAI_BOT.exe

"Allow me to check and see if my weapon performs more admirably. Chk chk, how are we looking?"

Coilgun: 1d20 + 10 + 2 ⇒ (4) + 10 + 2 = 16
Coil Gun Damage: 4d4 ⇒ (1, 1, 4, 2) = 8

I was suggesting we not use the +2 from Justin since it costs a Resolve to do it and was requesting he scan the Capitol ship or one of the Escorts

Sczarni

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More interestingly, in that same boon there appears to be a (-) where there should be a (+). I'm guessing it's a typo and we should go with the real source info?

Sczarni

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These were great, but do you have versions without as much reverb and echoing? it's easy enough to hear in a quiet area or with headphones, but in a crowded game store it was difficult for the players to understand what was being said. I have a friend wanting to run this for a few people this weekend

Sczarni

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well, I just barfed all over the forums apparently, but as Kudaku pointed out the issue has already been addressed and flagged in another thread, so at this point we're just playing the waiting game anyhow.

Sczarni

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I also assumed the diagram was in error, and seemed to be a pure holdover from Pathfinder that was missed in editing. It's sad because that means this is yet another minor change that I need to keep track of between SF and PF games, and the one page "cheat sheet" of differences is becoming woefully inadequate as a go-to helper.

Sczarni

12 people marked this as FAQ candidate.
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So this came up in the last few SFS games we had, and I was looking for a clarification.

The section on starship critical hits does not indicate anywhere that damage is doubled the way it is from personal combat, but instead causes a critical starship damage effect *if* the attack does any hull damage.

Because each phase has things happening simultaneously and without a true initiative (except the pilots), this became a bit confusing when we had more than one gunner.

1 Gunner: Critical 20 rolled, rolls out normal damage for 7 points, hits shields at 8, 1 shield left, no damage to hull, no crit effect. bummer.

1 Gunner: Critical 20 rolled, rolls out normal damage for 7 points, hits shields at 5, 2 points to hull, critical % effect rolled. huzzah!

2 Gunners: One hits, One crits, normal hit does 6 points of damage, crit does 7 points of damage, both targeting shield with 8 points. Hmmm

If I pool the damage together they clearly break through the shields, and the fact that one was a crit triggers the % roll. If I apply them in order, and the crit is handled first, then it wouldn't be enough on its own to break through the shields, so no crit effect occurs.

The pooling method seems to be the best way to handle this since everything is supposed to happen at the same time, and it doesn't seem right to penalize a player just because he rolled his crit *before* another player, but I wanted to see if there had been any discussion on this?

Sczarni

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Gah! I thought I did put it in the rules section, my bad. I'll repost in the rule section now. Thanks!

Sczarni

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but that doesn't explain why the diagram is explained incorrectly. It implies a rule that doesn't exist.

Sczarni

2 people marked this as FAQ candidate.
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OK, so in my nearly never ending list of Pathfinder -> Starfinder changes, we noted a change to the way cover works in Starfinder.

In Pathfinder:
Melee cover is determined by drawing lines from EVERY corner of the attacker square to EVERY corner of the target square.

Ranged cover is determined by drawing lines from ONE corner of the attacker square to EVERY corner of the target square. (this allows a person to shoot around a hard corner and not provoke from an opponent on the other side of the corner)

In Starfinder:
The cover section doesn't specify melee vs ranged, it simple states to draw from ONE corner of the attacker square to EVERY corner of the target square. Which means the concept of hiding around the corner and shooting a target wouldn't prevent them from taking the AOO as the melee target was still threatening you without cover.

That seems straight forward enough as written, I don't think the change was needed, but that's the only thing I found on the matter.

HOWEVER, in the example diagram directly below the cover rules... they contradict themselves with verbage and explanation that don't make sense with what's written above. They refer to drawing lines from EVERY corner of the attacker to EVERY corner of the target and thus preventing the melee creature from taking an AOO because of the corner... essentially referencing the rule the way ti worked in Pathfinder, but the text in the Starfinder book doesn't make any reference to this at all.

So which is correct? Is the example callout just flat out wrong and this was an intentional change so that hard corners no longer protect you from AOOs, or is this another editing error and the section on cover that separates melee from ranged just ended up on the editing room floor?

Sczarni

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yeah I'm onboard with the whole "new" vs "used" point, but the argument only works against shop owners and various overhead discussed.

The point for armor being damaged or a weapon wearing out making the used variant less useful falls apart (pun intended) a bit when I can loot and USE it for full effectiveness, because there's no mechanic in play for damaged good having any less usefulness in combat.

I'm also not just talking about looting for profit to purely fund new acquisitions, I'm also talking about trading up what i'm already wearing/using. it's every bit as functional at level 5 when I'm thinking about buying some new armor as it was at level 1 when I first got it, regardless of how many hits I took, crits I delt or of what types.

If I bought a new rifle for $2000 then went and shot it a few times only to have somebody gift me something I liked a whole lot more, and the shop only offered to pay me $200 for it, I'd just hold onto it and sell it to somebody directly for $1000 and still make a lot more back, and they'd still be getting an insanely good deal on something that works just as good as the brand new one in that shop.

So long as "better stuff" is being routinely added to the bad guys inventories to be salvaged, keeping what you find will always be a better option for upgrading than trying to buy new consistently and offsetting the cost by selling the stuff you found.

Sczarni

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Well, my input on this is that I think the 10% rate is a silly low number. It's so low with such a small recoupment at low levels that I've been putting off buying "slightly" better gear because I know the cost to replace it will be even worse a few levels later. I end up having to choose between upgrading armor, consistently, or weapons consistently.

Weapons tend to have larger gaps between availability if you want to pick any kind of theme or damage type to stick to, so the jumps in price are massive.

Armor on the other hand seems to have a new set at almost every level that adds 1 or more points to KAC or EAC or both. But since you get such a low sell back, you are practically re-buying the item at full price since the 10% buyback won't knock off much.

It's been a tough go trying to wrap my head around the system that promotes trashing and completely replacing basic arms and armor every couple of levels, when my PF characters usually keep the same base items from Level 2 through completion. I would've loved some kind of "upgrade" system that let you progress weapons on the same track to more powerful versions of themselves as a "pay the difference" solution like adding new enhancements to magical weapons in PF. it wouldn't come into play as much, and not for everybody, but it would seem appropriate to be able to "tune up" your arc rifle to the heavier and more efficient model that expands its capacity and damage output as its guts are replaced with better components.

Sczarni

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David knott 242 wrote:
Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
What makes you think solar weapon can't be disarmed?

That quote from page 101 given by Hiruma Kai?

THIS. This is why we are nitpicking everything so much. I just don't know what to trust anymore.

If this were a videogame I'd probably be shelving it for a few more months until the initial bugs got patched out. I get that the game is gonna have issues at launch, but man, i don't even know if I'm playing the same game as everybody else sometimes.

Sczarni

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Maybe it would be helpful to compile a list of all of the things that either are swift actions by default or that become a swift action as a result of a feat, race feature, or some other ability in addition to all the current full actions to break the norm to see if any of those are grossly imbalanced when combined with the ability to take any full action in combination with a swift action?

Swift actions in column A, full actions in column B, and see if any matches seem really terrible.

It would also show all the things that right now as written you CAN'T do together, even with those special features that make actions faster.

Sczarni

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I agree at first glance early observation, the Mechanic Overcharge ability is a great way as a STANDARD action to apply the benefit and shoot. Compared to many other classes, that's not easy and includes additional skill checks, and/or more actions.

I'm also not seeing anywhere anythign about not being able to use both the overcharge for your Standard Action attack AND using the move action to grant the bonus to an ally's touched weapon.

So Mechanic Operative and Operative Sniper buddy pair, Mechanic goes first,

Mechanic
Move Action: Boost Operative weapon
Standard Action: Ready Action for Overcharge Weapon Attack when Operative shoots

Operative
Full Action: Trick Attack now-Overcharged rifle and apply debilitation
*READIED ACTION* Overcharge Attack against now debuffed target

Operative delays next turn as the Mechanic's readied action puts him behind the Operative in initiative. Rinse. Repeat.

Sczarni

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It seems this thread has gotten far off topic and devolved into a debate against Operatives vs. Solarians.

The key suggestion I was making started with focusing on something that seemed thematically out of place, and resulted in noticing MORE things that were thematically out of place. I don't think the Solarian is thematically out of place here since they can charge and draw their weapon as part of the charge, and starting at level 2 even have an ability to support charging as a standard action (allowing 3x movement when also using your move action to move up to your speed). I'm being up front and saying I don't know a lot about the Solarian as it already feels like a pretty gimped class with lots of quirkiness, a heavy distribution of attributes it requires, and a three round build up for what appears to be a couple of let down powers at early levels. The classes all feel extremely unique in that I've noticed a small pile of balance issues when comparing one class ability against another, but the kind of errata and balancing that would be required to truly bring all the classes in line would probably be on par with numerous patch rollouts of buffs and nerfs in an MMO. Starfinder and Paizo can't support that level of change, and it would be a huge shot in the foot.

My suggestion has been pretty consistent that ALL of the issues and arguments about combined actions get resolved with one minor change, remove the swift action consumption from the full action. It just happens to be a large change based on how many things it opens up not only in just the core rules, but also in certain class builds and options, and without a thorough examination of ALL possibilities to make sure it doesn't royally break something, I'm sure it just isn't going to be a change they adopt.

Sczarni

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yeah I totally get that, which is part of the reason why the title of this thread includes "Full Attack as not working.

I'd rather see a simple solution that fixes all of this issues collectively, which boils down to undoing one of the major changes the designers incorporated into SF with regard to Swift and Full Actions.

The idea of changing the wording for Full Attacks and/or Trick Attacks seems cumbersome, but could totally be part of a simple errata that wouldn't be viewed as too obtrusive since it's just affecting the components that are exceptions to the basic rules. Changing the basic rules themselves is paramount to releasing D&D 3.5.

If these were intentional and purposeful changes that the designers really wanted us to be able to move double our speed, draw a weapon, and attack with a -2 penalty to attack and AC, but didn't want us to be able to stand still and draw a weapon and take two shots at a -4 penalty, then the system itself is telling us "you can't" a lot more than "you can."

Bonuses from multiple sources (sometimes from allies) not stacking because somebody got trigger happy with the word "insight", benefits from options that appear to speed up actions to allow new combinations don't actually work the way you'd expect them to, when running the game strictly as written I'm having to disappoint people a lot more as they realize things don't work the way they would like or expect.

Sczarni

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There are a lot of Adventure generators out there, and I think this is a great initiative for Starfinder specific settings and goals.

Rather than worrying about the specifics of the encounters, I'd just make them part of the plot or location.

Plot Hook (random):
-> Encounters (semi random)

Location (random):
-> Encounters (random):

Twist (yes/no)

picking a location appropriate random encounter shouldn't be hard once you know where they will end up as part of the rumor or plot hook. I actually think that sometimes coming up with the core hook or rumor can be the hardest part. So building a large list of those will be helpful. Locations can be somewhat easier to build a list fordepending on whether or not you're involving mostly core worlds, or specifically having them find only new planets.

The best part about this is that you don't need to actually generate everything all at once. The randomization aspect will give you tons of available combinations at the push of a button, but I think scaling the creation to just a single adventure would on its own be quite the achievement. If you have an interestingly picky group that tends to pass up hooks, then you just have to hit the button a few more times to generate a new incident or rumor for them to come across and then run with it if they go for it. A random dungeon generator would be kinda cool as well if it could be modified for the sci-fi setting and present ed as various facilities (random Starship layout for any salvage-type mission), random medical facility layout, government building, whatever.

The Alien Archive has almost everything needed to build that engine to create a CR encounter appropriate for the group, give it random capabilities and then just create a new name for your monstrocity!

Sczarni

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yeah I'm trying to look at the whole system with the collective issues I've identified, and it's hard to see everything the designers changed for the sake of a real reason.

Oddly enough, with what I have in front of me, a prone operative with weapon in hand would be able to stay prone, move up to their speed, skill check and attack.

It seems dumb, and this is the kind of stuff that I'm starting to think was less intentional and more of an editing issue that ended up on the cutting room floor.

As for the alternative, even if they go back and errata the whole prone/crawl situation, you are still perfectly allowed to use Trick attack and not *have* to move at all especially in a case like this where you *couldn't* because it's not an option to you. "As a full action, you can move up to your speed. Whether or not you moved, you can then make an attack with a melee weapon with the operative special property or with any small arm." So it even says you don't have to move at all. It doesn't say that you need to be able to move even. It seems clear to me that this isn't in anyway providing its own exception to your circumstances either, so if there's a situation preventing you from being able to move as normal, that would still apply.

Sczarni

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HWalsh, that's part of what i'm trying to address here. This isn't a weakness that every other class has, it's a poor implementation of the basic rules for Full Actions and swift actions that create a silly and unintuitive restriction that will more often than not force rules between players and fun without people specifically making house rules to go around them.

There ARE Full Actions that allow the ability to draw a weapon and use it, such as a charge. There aren't so far as I can see any ways to do it with a Full Attack. The idea here is that the same thing is still happening, a weapon is being drawn, and an attack is being made. If you wanted that attack to be two shots as part of a Full Attack, then you'd need a re-write of the core rules on Full Actions to not consume the Swift Action, the same way the Full Round Action worked in PF.

EC, the standup wouldn't be allowed for the same reason currently a draw isn't allowed, they're both listed specifically as move actions, which is consumed by the Trick Attack Full Action.

It's the barriers I continue to run into that plenty of abilities and options sound fantastic like they're letting you do something different from everybody else, until you actually step back and compare the real mechanics behind it and find that things aren't compatible or are happening in the same way, just with a different name.

If the Swift action wasn't consumed by the Full Action, it would make so much more sense and offer so many more possibilities to work in concert as real benefits when they "speed up" an action like drawing a weapon or standing up as a swift action.

If Full Actions are meant to be super restrictive and exceedingly rare and difficult to pull off, then they shouldn't make that the key way that the Operative does damage on par with other combat classes. Compare it to the Mechanic, which seems like a support character, until you realize they can add more damage (+1d6) with the overcharge ability, and it happens as PART OF the standard action, doesn't even consume a separate action, and doesn't have any chance of failure as it doesn't require a skill check like Trick Attack.

Sczarni

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The prone thing isn't as much of an issue, you just can't move while prone, but it wouldn't prevent you from Trick Attacking. Standing up from prone is explicitly a move action. in current RAW, it's not even an option for your trick attack as it doesn't say you can take a move action, it says "move up to your speed."

I'm further confusing myself here, because if I recall correctly, PF had deliberate verbage to indicate while prone the only movement you coudl take was to crawl or to stand up, but I can't find that specifically in SF. Prone as a condition just says standing up is a move action, and under move actions you have

Crawl:
You can crawl 5 feet as a move action. A crawling character is considered prone.

So what the hell does that even mean? Is crawling a move action that you take while prone? if so, why does it need to rider to say you are considered prone? If you're standing up, does it mean you can take a "crawl" action to move five feet while dropping prone ending your action in the prone condition and being considered in that condition during your movement for purposes of attacks of opportunity and such? I'm not seeing the restriction anywhere that says you need to be standing in order to take a move action to move up to your speed, and being prone doesn't seem to explicitly restrict you to the crawl action...

The more I look at this the more it hurts my head because I know what the book "should" say, but I'm just not seeing anything coverign it in the most common areas.

Sczarni

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The sniping situation was another point of confusion I was tracking that needed clarification.

The more I read and the more I play, the more I see lots of things that *seem* like it would make perfect sense for them to work, but given the default rule, they don't, and they lack the specific verbage that lets them exist as an exception to that rule.

I think it would fix things to just make the "trick" component require a swift action or move action. Swift Action: skill Check, Move Action: Move up to your speed, Standard Action: Attack against flat footed AC if Trick skill check succeeded. You could then instead just use the move action to draw your weapon, or with a +1 BAB you'd be taking the move action so it would allow the draw during that move. Alternatively you could use that move action to not move up to your speed, but instead steady the sniper weapon for the sniper shot with the move action.

It might seem cumbersome to split up the full action this way, but given the complications current with what does and does not work in specific combinations, the specification of what is happening with each action actually seems more simple.

This also opens up some interesting combinations for using trick attack with other special abilities of other classes, which might be something the designers were trying to avoid:

Operative 1/Mechanic 2
Swift: Trick Skill check (if successful +1d4)
Move: Draw Weapon
Standard: Attack with Overcharged Weapon (Level 1 or 2)
Total: 1d4/1d6 + 1d4 + 1d6 = 3-16 dmg

As a best case scenario that doesn't seem all that crazy to me compared to a static Operative

Operative 3
Swift: Trick Skill Check (if successful +1d8)
Move: Draw Weapon
Standard: Attack (level 1 or 2)
Total 1d4/1d6 +1d8 +3 (Weapon spec) = 5-17 dmg

blending multiple classes opens up all sorts of possibilities if their exploits start working together better, but they aren't going to create drastically different results. At first glance they all appear to be pretty close at low levels anyways.

Sczarni

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For Society play, I need to run it exactly as is, which means no trick attack on round one if a weapon isn't already drawn. The most important part of the +1 BAB exception is the part of the sentence "as a single move action." A trick attack does not involve a move action. It's a special type of full action that allows you to move up to your speed. In execution, almost identical, but because the exception is tied to the type of action (move) and the thing being accomplished (drawing a weapon) the two don't work together.

I suspect if it was intended by the designers to allow this to work, they would need to rewrite the entry on Trick Attack to e more in-line with how charge works:

Charge:
"...You can draw a weapon during a charge attack if your base attack bonus is at least +1."

So the fact that the Charge verbage specifically says you can, and the trick attack verbage doesn't say you can, I have to assume until errata or clarification that this was not a design/editing oversight and it was intended this way. *shrug*

For a home game, it's at the top of my list for what I'm calling "Starfinder 1.5 Houserules"

Sczarni

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No, read the rules more closely, it doesn't work.

Quickdraw Hideaway Limb:
If you have a quickdraw hideaway limb, the compartment is integrated with a specific weapon. This allows you to draw the weapon as a swift action or as part of making an attack or full attack (similar to using the Quick Draw feat).

Quick Draw Feat:
You can draw a weapon as a swift action. Additionally, when making an attack using a thrown weapon as an attack or full attack action, you can draw a weapon as part of the action of making a thrown attack with it. You can draw a hidden weapon (see Sleight of Hand on page 146) as a move action.

The Quickdraw hideaway limb would only let you draw as part of an attack with a *thrown* weapon, otherwise it is drawn as a swift, just like the feat or the armor upgrade describes.

As for drawing as part of a move that too got more specific wording that makes it only possible when taking a *move action* which you are NOT doing, you're are making a trick attack as a *full action* which consumes your move action as part of it. You're making a full action that lets you move up to your speed, it doesn't allow you to take a move action or get any of the additional tings that can happen as part of a move action to move up to your speed.

Draw or Sheathe a Weapon:
Exception: If you have a base attack bonus of +1 or higher, you can combine drawing or sheathing a weapon or weapon-like object with moving up to your speed as a single move action.

These are both things I already considered as I had run at least 5 games as a GM before making an Operative and realizing the specific implementation and changes to quick drawing and action consumption prevents it from working. It seems stupid to me and restrictive to the point where I expect the majority of people will handle it differently either out of habit or confusion, but this is where we are.

Sczarni

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So something I came across when building an Operative PC...

My idea was to build a super fast high initiative space cowboy quick draw gunfighter that could trick attack like in a duel... except it doesn't work that way thanks to how swift actions work.

A Full Action (like Trick Attack) consumes the Swift, Move, and Standard action. So the fastest I can currently find to draw a weapon is as a swift action, either through the Quick Draw Feat, or the Quick Release Sheath Armor Upgrade. So if when the fight starts the weapon isn't already in hand, you wouldn't be able to full attack or trick attack.

It just seems like something that could easily be overlooked by Pathfinder players due to the changes for the Quick Draw Feat, and that swift actions are now consumed as part of a full Action, when they used to be in addition to a full-round action in pathfinder.

The only work around I've found so far to be able to trick attack in round one and not be constantly walking around holding or twirling my pistol like an accident waiting to happen... was to use the glamered weapon fusion to make the pistol look like a pack of cards or something else that I could walk around with.

Sczarni

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Make 8 constitution checks and don't get less than a 10 or you die.

And that's being "stable."

One point of lethal damage can kill an NPC in 18 seconds if you get the GM's permission to even let him live that long.

Sczarni

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HP and Stamina Points in themselves are "meta" that's not the argument or the point. It's that Nonlethal used to be a way to reasonably ensure a target wouldn't outright die as a result of subduing them with a particular type of force. The argument that Pathfinder characters engaging in a round of nonlethal damage to create a buffer to ensure that the target didn't die outright when brought below 0 isn't stupid, or meta, it's realistic. It doesn't matter "when" those less lethal attacks come in as a series of tasers or nonlethal cold damage, or just people using fists. The thing that matters is a portion of their overall hitpoints and their level of ability to stay conscious was reduced by effects that shouldn't be able to outright kill unless they add up to a LOT (literally double the HP + con) of nonlethal damage to be able to kill the target.

I just don't like that a single point of lethal damage as the *last* attack now means the group needs to expend some additional level of effort and resources to keep the victim of a bar room fight alive because they are only seconds away from death's door. I kinda wish it had just been left the way it was so the "differences" between the systems we need to remember and focus on could have just been the bigger things like what triggers AoOs now, or how readied actions apply when a defensive vs. offensive action.

it's worth noting that everything in Starfinder seems a lot more lethal and that even a stable unconscious target is at a major risk of death. Leaving a target unconscious after a fight (if treated like a PC) would still almost spell certain death for them:

Long-Term Stability
If you are unconscious and stable but lack the Resolve Points to stay in the fight, there is a chance you will eventually recover on your own. After 1 hour elapses, you must attempt a Constitution check (see Ability Checks). If the result of this check is 20 or higher, you regain 1 HP and become conscious again. If the result of the check is at least 10 but less than 20, you don’t regain any Hit Points, but you remain stable and you must attempt another Constitution check 1 hour later. If the result of the check is 9 or lower, you die. You must continue attempting a Constitution check once per hour until you regain consciousness or until you die. After 8 hours, if you have not regained consciousness or died, you regain consciousness and recover 1 HP per character level, as if you had a full night’s rest (see Recovering Hit Points Naturally below).

Sczarni

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It just seems crazy that the "timing" of the damage is more important than the amount of damage when determining death vs unconsciousness.

Metaphysician seems to have an illness that's affecting his respiratory system ironically:

"A monster or NPC reduced to 0 HP is dead, unless the last bit of damage it took was nonlethal damage, in which case it is knocked unconscious."

That is the first and absolute sentence. What the GM *can* decide to do has no bearing in things like organized play where the rules need to be run exactly with very little room for table variation, and the argument of "well if you wanted tot ake him alive you shouldn't have shot him with a lethal weapon *even a little bit*" can clearly spell the difference between success and failure. You need to time it correctly, and in many cases taking some deep penalties to ensure that the "last bit" is nonlethal. How do we know when we're close? How do we know that somebody won't *accidentally* get a crit doing far more damage than intended? It requires bringing the outside elements of game mechanics into the roleplaying of the combat encounter in a way that I just don't feel makes any sense trying to ever incorporate nonlethal damage ever if you can instead just take them alive using lethal damage.

I appreciate Mr. Stephens weighing in though and giving a little background on why the decision was made though, so thank you!

Sczarni

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I meant more unrealistic in that "beat up" is using the stun setting on an electricity arc pistol so I'm basically tasing the guy for 99% of his HP, only to have a person apply a paper cut and have him be 18 seconds away from death...

With the way the rule is implemented they could have gotten by with a far easier solution like the have in D&D 5e where the person landing the killing blow just makes the decision to kill or knock out.

Sczarni

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Ok, so this came up in a game yesterday, and I really dislike how Nonlethal damage is handled in Starfinder compared to Pathfinder.

Here's the rule:

Dealing Nonlethal Damage
"Most attacks that deal nonlethal damage work like any other attacks, and they deal damage to your Stamina Points or Hit Points as normal. However, when nonlethal damage would reduce you to 0 or fewer Hit Points, you are reduced to exactly 0 HP and fall unconscious, but you are stable instead of dying."

So to me this reads like the ONLY time its important to differentiate between lethal and nonlethal is during the final "killing blow" that drops a foe to 0 HP. "when nonlethal damage would reduce you to 0 or fewer Hit Points..." It's reinforced by another reference:

Monster and NPC Death
"A monster or NPC reduced to 0 HP is dead, unless the last bit of damage it took was nonlethal damage, in which case it is knocked unconscious."

So call me crazy, but I could on my own do 14 points of nonlethal damage using my stun weapon to a foe NPC with 15 HP as I'm trying to take him alive, and then another PC uses a basic pistol and does 1 point of lethal damage, the target is now dying instead of being unconscious... This seems like a terrible implementation compared to Pathfinder that uses the sum of lethal and nonlethal damage compared to HP to determine when a target falls unconscious or dies outright.

And even worse, in the off-chance the foe NPC happens to have resolve points... if they were knocked unconscious successfully, they can just spend a RP to regain consciousness and stay in the fight one round later.

I just wish I could understand the reasoning behind the change, because it seems unnecessary and less realistic.

Sczarni

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

Most of my confusion came from the inability to look at all of the comparable circumstances of other options and extrapolate a probable intention to confirm.

The stealth check to hide and observation rules are the parts that specifically bug me and so far, and "doing something else with stealth" I would at least ask "what is it then?" To date I haven't been provided with a good description of actions even flavor -wise to demonstrate what the person is doing with stealth to get the benefit. From a design perspective mechanics for the sake of mechanics with no reasonable explanation generally fall flat and are open to boring abuse. The fact that the Ghost gets a +4 to a skill that is tied to their primarily ability is mostly what bugs me, and the fact that limitations exist for the computers skill with the hacker specialization prove that it *could* be a limitation that was poorly worded. If the typical limitations for using stealth while being observed and without cover don't apply to using the trick attack, then at the very least I'd like to see that verbage added.

In the games I've had so far my compromise was that if the ghost wanted to get that bonus and use stealth they would need the same kind of cover or concealment situations that were needed to hide, BUT for a trick attack that would also involve soft cover from allies or enemies.

That actually led to a pretty amusing game with the operative constantly hiding behind the Kasatha and earning the title "The Fifth Arm" as he would shoot between the Kasatha's limbs.

The fact is that because so many options with Starfinder went in different directions without explanation and without consistency it's hard to defend any intentions. We just need an actual FAQ or official ruling to help explain from the horses mouth what was intended, and how the wording can be fixed to reflect that.

Also don't forget that by level 5 the whole possible issue of hiding while being observed or without cover/concealment etc is dealt with by the Cloaking Field ability assuming the verbage on "While the cloaking field is active, you can use Stealth to hide, even while being directly observed and with no place to hide." is adequate for any changes made to the verbage for Trick attack

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

Thank you sir! That's what I was hoping it meant.

I'm assuming this also means the same scenario could be used multiple times for the higher tier if it happens to be run multiple times as a GM since it doesn't say they have to be unique.

I think in the past the term "attached" was used instead of "apply" when it came to PFS chronicles that were earned by one character, but could be used to convey benefits to another character, such as the Thassilonian Magic option or the 9-00 special character option unlocks. That could help as well.

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

the clear confusion on that still remains that th eboon explicitly says you don't get rewards for the chronicle except the +1/+1 for fame and rep. The flavor text makes it seem like you could basically get the benefit for having rerun the same scenario multiple times "You use some of your time to replay past encounters with different parameters, hoping to devise improved tactics for future use."

My concern was more for a situation where I run 1-01, 1-02, and 1-03 and apply all to one character, I then run 1-03 again can I use it with this boon on that character or not? If so, and I run 1-03 a third time, can I apply it the same way once I reach Tier 2?

More confusion, If I run 1-01, 1-02, and 1-03, then run 1-04 but apply it to a different character, then run 1-04 a second time, if I apply that second time chronicle as part of the boon for only the +1/+1 benefit, does having that chronicle "assigned" to my character prevent me from now using a Nova replay credit to apply a third running of 1-04 to my character for the normal full GM rewards?

There's just way too many possibilities to interpret this so I feel it's gonna need Thursty to chime in on the intent and possibly a rewrite.

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

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Ok, so I'm a little concerned and confused on the wording for the Exo-Guardian Tier 1 Boon "Theoretical Historian" Since it has a cost of 0 and I have Tier 1 status with the Exo-Guardians, I "purchased" it for my -1 character.

Benefit: If you run a scenario as a GM that you have already run as a GM, you can take a Chronicle sheet from that scenario and apply it to this character. This Chronicle sheet provides no rewards (such as XP, credits, or boons), except that you can mark the chronicle sheet as being completed as part of this boon and earn 1 additional Fame and 1 additional Reputation with the Exo-Guardians Faction for your associated character.

So here's my situation, I played 1-00 and applied the lessened rewards to the character and I played 1-01. I then GM'ed the Quest Pack and applied it to the character.

So here's the issue, I then ran the Commencement twice, so the second run would trigger the requirement of running a scenario as a GM that i have already run.

Can I "apply" that chronicle to this character for the +1 Fame / +1 Rep , or does "apply" in this context count just like applying a chronicle as a GM but minus the rewards? If it's applied just like a GM chronicle, that would in some cases further prevent the character from ever playing in that game, or having a regular GM chronicle applied in a case where a replay credit could be used from a GM Nova. If there is no restriction on the chronicle itself to the point where somebody could "apply" the same scenario chronicle to the character over and over, once per tier, is it possible to word this a little better like the Digital Presence boon or the other ones that allow the 1 Fame / 1 Rep bump for unique circumstances?

Sczarni

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

Stealth is the only skill that I generally have an issue with using, simply because the use of the skill requires concealment or cover from the target for it to work. The description most people use trying to justify the stealth check for the trick attack while standing in plain sight has to do with concealing the shot itself, which is pretty much the description they give as flavor text for using Sleight of Hand "You can use Sleight of Hand to make a trick attack by concealing your weapons and motions."

I mostly run for SFS right now, so the distinction of the Ghost specialization giving a +4 bonus to a dex based skill that can also have a free skill focus feat, and having the person sit in the middle of an open area using the skill "because the text says I can" is something I'm hoping gets errata'd or clarified soon. It bothers me that the more I look into the rules and the math of the system, I'm finding *less* flexibility with the rules and the things you might think work really well with the class that seems best for it, are actually outperformed by a different class.

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

Since Thursty recommended putting these points into another thread and not in the main blog post I decided to do so. I also don't see how time would have any bearing on the ruling, we can do the math with the data we already have on how many rounds people typically use and the cost comparison.

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

So the rules do a bit to gloss over the concept of "magazines" that hold the ammunition, and simply sell the ammunition in as a set quantity based on the type of cartridge.

The rules on them:
ROUNDS (HEAVY, LONGARM AND SNIPER, SMALL ARM)
Cased rounds are housed in magazines, which can be fitted into the appropriate weapon.

So if using a small arm weapon you buy 30 rounds for 40 credits, and my understanding is that it represents 1 magazine filled with 30 rounds. Unless I missed something, I don't see any way to buy less cartridges. There also shouldn't be anything restricting your ability to transfer cartridges from a partially filled magazine to another. So I don't think it would require any type of notification to the GM, but you would of course need to have looted the rounds and keep track of how they are being kept (are you crossloading the 12 bullets left in that 30 round small arm magazine into topping off the one you just fired 15 rounds from during the combat, or are you keeping them in that magazine for now).

From a real combat perspective, it's not really smart to have less than a full magazine in your weapon at all times when anticipating combat, so it should be common place for people to top off with what they find, and then if they're keeping everything anyways the rounds fired don't really matter if they are found or if they started with you. Once you loot them they are basically the same thing until the end of the scenario and you lose any rounds that you found and didn't use in excess of the number you started with.

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

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Thurston Hillman wrote:
Sid De Squid wrote:
So is the same discount going to be provided to ballistic weapons? Or is there no longer going to be game balance between battery powered weapons and ballistics?

Nothing at present. The Organized Play team will be monitoring things, as we always do, to get a sense of if other rules need tweaking.

The focus of this update had nothing to do with addressing any sort of "weapon type parity", but instead to focus on the in-game assumptions of how batteries work in the Starfinder setting. The idea of Starfinders not having a free battery recharge station available, especially when more than just weapons rely on batteries, was something we did not want players to have to deal with the minutiae of tracking. Similarly, the breaking of verisimilitude of the Society having battery charging stations at the Lorespire Complex and on starships that field agents couldn't access.

I'm well aware that this can easily lead down the rabbit hole of "why wouldn't the Society just buy us ammo for missions then?" which is an entirely different discussion, and one I certainly invite people to discuss: specifically, in a new thread in the Starfinder Society forums!

I started that discussion thread here: http://paizo.com/threads/rzs2unf9?Free-Batt-Recharging-Balance-options-for

along with two proposals for balancing ammo restock options with the free battery recharging. Feel free to provide input!

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

So now that we have the official ruling: Batteries recharge for free in certain cases.

The counter argument we saw coming was from the users of weapons that have kinetic ammo. I have two policy proposals that I think work out well enough to maybe not be perfectly the same as free battery recharges, but will close to balance the wealth gap that will develop over time.

Option A: You can loot and KEEP any ammunition you find in a scenario, not to exceed the max you started with.
***Ex. I have 40 bullets for my sniper rifle, I fire 5 during a fight and find 7 more on the mercenary we defeated. I can take them with me, if I use 4 more during the scenario I am left with 3 extra bullets, which I am then allowed to keep as it does not exceed my starting number of 40. If I end the scenario with more than 40, the excess go to the Society like other found equipment.

Option B: Same as Option A, and additionally at the end of any scenario, your magazines are "topped off" by the Society, replacing any rounds you used during the scenario, not to exceed the max you started with. This restocking is made possible by the various contributions of excess ammo turned over after missions, and the usage of UPBs from broken down gear that was unnecessary.

With either option Special Ammunition (missiles and such) are never kept beyond the end of the scenario when found, and would not be replenished by the Society.

I like Option B because it is very simple and reduces the book keeping and tracking that goes with Option A. "how many rounds did I find, were they the right kind, I'm still under my max at the end so I need to buy X more to top off as an expense." It feels simpler and in the spirit of what the battery recharging rules are trying to accomplish. With the way UPB's work I don't think it's too much of a stretch for the setting either.

Thoughts?

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

Are we going to see additional support boons? The 1 player boon we received got a less than stellar reaction compared to the variety and scope of the boons that were available at GenCon

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

That's what I suspected since the guide only makes mention of the "tag" being needed and no mention of the level or anything, glad to know I'm not missing something!

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

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Somebody's gonna ask, might as well be me... In PFS the lvl 1-2 evergreen replayable scenarios/modules/APs had additional verbage that they could be replayed with level 1 characters as many times as you like (with the obvious limit of once per Character), but you could only play the material with a level 2 character *once*.

From your official clarification Thursty, I'm guessing the level 2 restriction doesn't apply and I could give credit to my level 2 -701 character for the one I'm playing and apply credit for GMing it to my level 2 -702 character as well?

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Whoohoo! Now if we can get the Regional Support Program up and running before my Starfinder Society September Spectacular event we'll be aces ;-)

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

Magabeus wrote:
As a VC, aren't you "the authority"?

You would think, but that's not always the case! I've been wrong on some things before, nothing earth stopping, but I try to stay exactly by the book as much as I can.

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

John Compton wrote:
Matthew Hudson wrote:
Out of curiosity, for the PFS boon could it be used with the game that earns it? I'm running Risen Sands on the 17th and curious if that means players who already played Risen Sands could now sign up and effectively use the boon right away for that game?
Absolutely. You can use the boon to replay an adventure that very day.

Awesome, thanks John!

I had another question come up on this one, specifically because I'll have three new players for this event. Do players using pre-gens for Risen from the Sands *have* to use the 4 pregens in the adventure? I remember it was that way when it came out in order to spotlight the upcoming classes in the ACG, but can the now PFS legal level 4 versions of those classes along with all of the other pre-gen classes be used? I can't find any explicit verbage on the chronicle or reporting document that were put out that says other level 4 pre-gens can't be used outside of the day it was released, or excluding things other than the pre-gens the way the We Be Goblins line had to be explicitly noted. In the interest of new players getting to pick whatever class seems most interesting to them, I'd normally say they can use any pre-gen now, but I wanted to check with "the authorities" :)

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

Out of curiosity, for the PFS boon could it be used with the game that earns it? I'm running Risen Sands on the 17th and curious if that means players who already played Risen Sands could now sign up and effectively use the boon right away for that game?

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

John Compton wrote:
Matthew Hudson wrote:
John Compton wrote:
kevin_video wrote:
I'm hoping Gallows of Madness is PFS ready by Halloween. That looks intense.
The odds are good.
Only a few days away, got any treats for us John? :-D
How about today?

:-D

John, you're the best. I don't care what everyone else says about you ;)

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

John Compton wrote:
kevin_video wrote:
I'm hoping Gallows of Madness is PFS ready by Halloween. That looks intense.
The odds are good.

Only a few days away, got any treats for us John? :-D

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

So I'm not sure if anybody else has come up with a good solution for this, but as a VO that has to do all of the printing of scenarios because the local shops don't want to, it's getting tedious. not because of the effort of printing a scenario, I could care less. It's the absolute waste of ink having a 1 inch solid black border around the whole pdf page.

I've tried playing around with printing the pages at a 110% scale to alleviate some of the border issue, but really this just seems like an easy fix to save a ton of ink by just leaving the page background white.

Ia there any plan for this in the future from the designers? I'd imagine there are plans to change the general border colors for each set, yellow for skulls and shackles, red maybe for wrath of the righteous, etc, which would still serve as a simple indicator to help break them up and recognize what's what at a glance.

Sczarni ***** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Augusta aka MatthewHudson

Recently in our area more stores have been getting interested in the ACG and want to have direct access to the digital downloads for scenarios that the VO's normally receive. My question, how do they go about setting that up? I can't seem to find it mentioned anywhere and the guide tells them to talk to me as the area VC...

So far I had been keeping a copy of the game at our largest local store and printing out all of the scenarios and keeping them with a binder at the store, but I can't make it out to every area every week. If there's a better way for them to have direct access (as I recall was one of the original points of having the games playable only at retailers in the month they are released) what is the process for them?

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