Mylon's page

47 posts. Alias of Jeff Sowers 30.

So my group is doing the Kingmaker module. We're currently on the second book. The GM is fairly new to things and he's running things very much by-the-book. He's also pretty smart and he could be using the monsters in much nastier ways.

Unfortunately the encounters are slaughtering us. We've got a group of 4 non-twinked characters and each encounter typically results in a character death. Monsters that hit on a 3, do half a character's health on a full round attack (before crits), and have perception checks in the DC 35 range to spot before they ambush, the works. I've noticed many of the counters revolve around the giant beatstick style (something I've done myself when being lazy as a GM), but more importantly they're effective beatsticks.

Most importantly is that I've gotten tired of the combat heavy games for a while now. I've made this clear with the GM and the kingmaker module seems like it might be interesting, but at the moment is still more combat than anything and I doubt this will change much.

So here's what I'm asking for. I'm looking for some kind of super-twink that can trivialize these encounters so I can cut through the crap. I tried playing a wizard but the only decent crowd control spell I could find was the create pit one. Web has conditions, doesn't work outdoors except in forests, anything with a fortitude save is out the window by default given the beat-stick style opponents. I'm thinking Druid might be better and relying on animal and plant spells. New character is starting at level 6, but with only gear for a level 5, because apparently the party didn't get any loot for most of the time at level 5. Other characters in the party include a battle cleric, a necromancy focused Sorcerer, and a ranger that hasn't a clue (took the ranged path, spends most of his time in melee).

So in my game there was a giant squid rocking the ship the party was on. The wizard failed his balance check against the rocking ship and fell down. So, instead of standing up, he started casting summon monster while prone. I allowed it for the time being, but... Should that be possible without penalty?

My idea would to give casting prone an arcane failure rate of 20%, as the wizard could hit his elbow on the ground or make some other maneuver that would ruin the somatic component of the spell. The idea of a wizard lying down in a trench casting fireball would give the wizard some significant boosts versus ranged fire, but seems decidedly un-D&D-like.

So I've been thinking... When it really boils down to it, the magic items that are the flat out no-duh choice (in other words, potentially unbalanced) are +stat items. For 4000 gold, a character can get a +1 to all rolls relevant to their character. +1 to attack and +1 to damage, +1 to save DCs and 1 (or more) extra spells, and/or +1 to a group of skills. Or +1 hp/level and +1 to fort saves. It's hard to beat that kind of power. A +1 sword only gives +1 to damage (compared to masterwork) for half the price, but doesn't get the 1.5x benefit when two-handing and may be rendered irrelevant if a different weapon is required (such as versus a skeleton). For + to spell DCs, there is no comparison.

So, should these items be more expensive? I'm thinking 50% more might be a good number that doesn't put it overboard. Or am I merely over-estimating their usefulness?

The ability for rogues to sneak attack undead, constructs, and other formerly sneak-attack immune critters bugs me on some level. And their inability to sneak attack elementals, oozes, etc confounds me.

So I thought of this modification:

Starting at level 3, and every 4 levels after (7th, 11th, 15th, and 19th) rogues train in how to apply their destructive attacks to creatures that cannot normally be sneak attacked. The rogue chooses one creature type (undead, plant, construct, ooze, elemental, incorporeal, etc) and the rogue now knows how to strike those foes to devastating effect. The rogue must prepare her weapon as a move action with a special kit (minor cost, like 50 gold) to sneak attack a creature type.

As an added benefit, the rogue may pass such a prepared weapon to an ally and that ally gains one third of the rogue's sneak attack dice as a bonus to their damage (minimum +1d6). This bonus does not stack with existing precision damage from class abilities such as Cavalier's challenge or another rogue's sneak attack.

This preparation lasts for 1min/level.

So what do you guys think? It gives them the versatility of being able to sneak attack 3.5 crit-immune monsters without totally stealing the flavor of those monsters (and let's be honest, undead don't have a lot going for them without a con score for the HP). I've thought about adding a special requirement to sneak attack incorporeal creatures, but that would add an extra exception to the rule that would complicate things further.

So, after having kicked off a new pathfinder game, I have a few concerns. Maybe they're unfounded, but that's why I want to bring them up with the community, as maybe I can get a better understanding as to why things are the way they are.

Paladin. Between the ability to wield a nice sword and make it even nicer, which is pretty cool all in all, but also the smite-until-dead? And for 2x damage on outsiders and dragons? Paladins got a huge boost.

Linguistics. The level 3 wizard in the party is running out of languages to learn. Combined with his normal bonus languages for intelligence, being human for an extra language, plus 3 more for points in this skill... I'm thinking he might have to start taking pig latin. Or maybe he'll learn to speak Modron.

Skills. To a lesser extent, skills as a whole. Consolidating some of the skills was a good thing, but now the Rogue's 8+int skills or even other classes 6+int seems like a lot of power.

Dazzling Display. Maybe I'm just not seeing it right, but the fighter's ability to make a CMB check to scare stuff? I think the better way to handle this would be will save DC 10 + 1/2 character HD + cha mod (like most special attacks), fear effect so another fighter's bravery bonus would come into play.