The Peacock - Harrow Deck

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You could play your priest as a sort of Social/Monster Darwinist.

You believe that Lamashtu has called you to cull the weak so that the strong and mutated survive and flourish. You can view killing a monster as returning it to Lamashtu so that she can make use of it and give birth to something better.

In social settings, you would find most humans unsuited for world Lamashtu is building, but you would think that those strong enough to adapt and survive are blessed by Lamashtu (even if they don't know it). You have no sympathy or pity for the weak, only respect for the strong.

You could also be a heretic in that you think of abnormality as a "deformity." You would think of anything that sets you above "normal" as a gift from Lamashtu, even if it is something non-worshipers of Lamashtu might also value. (i.e. abnormally high strength, abnormally high con, abnormally good swordsmen)

A new DM friend of my once let the power level of his level 7 evil group get out of control. He couldn't challenge them with encounters that were ECL+5. He asked me to build him a BBEG (BBGG?) to challenge the party.

My solution was another party. I created a 6-man good party to hunt down the 6-man evil party, and make them pay for their crimes. They were legal builds, or adapted from 3.5 material, and had the same WBL as the party, (which is to say the wealth of level 12 characters. Like I said, my new GM friend let things get way out of control.)

I also built in roleplaying weakness to compensate for the Good NPCs very high power level and coordination, and gave them warning/background by having the evil party stumble across a town that held these 6 adventurers as town heros. Predictably, the evil characters pillaged the town, and only one player paid any attention to the giant statue of 6 NPCs in the town center, or the background the villagers were giving before they all got slaughtered.

Anyway, the party was:
A Half-Orc Paladin who had sworn a vow against doing lethal damage, only non-lethal. Provoking him into lethal damage causes him to fall and become an ex-Paladin.

A ranged specialist Ranger, who was naive and trusting to a fault. She would let you "surrender" even without laying down your weapons, only to let you get close and attack her.

An evil Cleric who had messed up summoning a demon and was accidentally possessed by an angel instead. I used 3.5 rules for demonic possession, only reversed. The evil party could freed him from angelic possession and flipped him to their side with anything that banished good outsiders, or even using protection from good on the cleric.

A Synthesis Summoner that looked like a wolf, pretending to be ranger's animal companion. Perception check to reveal it as a non-normal wolf.

A neutral Dwarf Wizard who felt overlooked and overshadowed by the rest of the party. He would have betrayed the party if the evil party made him a good offer.

A Druid who prefers to shapeshift into an owl (pretends to be the wizards familiar), and cast spells while flying above.

The first fight, the Good NPCs caught up with the Evil party as they were breaking camp in the wilderness. The NPCs were given a chance to surrender (or pre-buff), as the good NPCs shouted at them from 60 feet away. The evil party thought they were fighting 4 NPCs (not 6) and thought it would be a cake-walk. like everything else they had encountered. so far. They were wrong. They were quickly knocked unconscious and put in jail. My friend ran a few sessions where they broke out of jail, got their gear back, and, in traditional villain fashion, kidnapped the Half-Orcs loved ones.

The second fight, they were prepared for the Good NPCs, used good tactics, and it was close. But they still lost. They were once again thrown in prison.

Finally, for the third encounter they set up a well planned ambush and managed to kill the wizard in the 2nd round, leading to the evil victory. I was disappointed that they never used the roleplaying hooks I tried to provide, but they still enjoyed the challenge.

Moral of the story:
A well planned party with good tactics (the good NPCs in this case) will have a significant advantage.

In order to challenge them, you will need to match them in planning and number of actions. You can't match 6 move, standard, and quick actions a round with 1 BBEG. Either the BBEG needs powerful minions to back him up, or make your BBEG another adventuring group.

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Antermosiph wrote:

How so? The character itself isn't inherently evil (Chaotic neutral). He has the goal of gaining power through creation & forging & magical artifacts (Sane head) or through madness, insanity, mindlessness, and The Void (Insane head). They're both the same person but separate at the same time. The paladin is in fact married to someone who relentlessly pursues knowledge as a true neutral, so she may keep him in line.

I'm not trying to judge your roleplaying ideas. I'm sure you have a fully developed story for this guy, and you should absolutely play this character if you want to.

But.... This post raises some big red flags in an RP department for me. You have a chaotic neutral cleric cherry-picking powerful domains (because you worship two different, mutually exclusive gods).

More than that, one of your personalities is motivated by getting or creating magical items. The other personality is motivated by creating chaos and madness. Some people would say your character was designed to to be a ninja-looting troll.

I'm having flashbacks to the last time I played with a Kender rogue who would successfully steal loot from the party, then tell us "You can't be mad. That is metaknowledge. Your characters don't know I stole from you. Plus, my character is a Klepto. I'm just roleplaying."

I think of Pathfinder is a roleplaying game. The objective is to have fun. If your roleplaying is causing someone else to not have fun, you should have an out-of-game conversation to sort out your differences.

In terms of roleplaying, I would severely limit the amount of time that the crazy head is "in control." I would consider limiting the crazy head to just talking, but never acting. You could have some fun, saying some crazy stuff, being mean or sarcastic, but if the madness is never "in control" of physical actions, you are far less likely to come into conflict with the rest of the party.

A Dwarven or Human cult who believe that magic users are stealing the strength of the divine. They can be set up as a red herring. Your PCs think they are responsible for the disappearances, but they are actually up to something else. (High level Cleric NPC leader, with multiple mid-level cleric NPCs. They focus on dispelling/suppressing magic)

I am having trouble with creating my next PFS character. I have a concept, but I am having alot of trouble making him playable. The mechanics just don't work well for the concept, so I am open to modification to the concept, and/or advice on how to make the build work.

Appears to be a brash and arrogant entertainer who sometimes travels with a carnaval. Prefers acting, oratory, and knife throwning displays to singing. Loves to tell grand (and obviously false) stories about his own exploits, such as killing giants, taming and riding dragons, and tricking gods.

In reality, he is a ruthless spy (loyalties currently unknown). The brashness and arrogance is an act/cover identity. His profession as a wandering entertainer allows him freedom to travel and access to information from seedy taverns to grand banquet halls.

He prefers to avoid combat, if possible, but is capable of contributing. (Combat style undecided.)

At first I thought well-rounded Bard, with a combat focus on throwing daggers, but throwning weapons are feat intensive. Mechanically, I am drawn to the utility of a support focus Bard with Flagbearer, Banner of Ancient Kings, Bodyguard, etc, but I feel like I would have to alter my concept for that.

This concept could also be changed to fit a Urban Ranger (entertainer comes just from skills, better combat power), or potentially a rogue.

Any suggestions for concept or build would be appreciated.

Thank you.

Keep in mind that for PFS, you will replace Scribe Scroll with a free Spell Focus feat at level 1. So if you make that Spell Focus(Illusion), you get another feat at level 1.

Don't call him out in public, even if you are the GM. Wait until after the game and talk to him privately. Tell him that his behavior and run of good luck is suspicious, and even if he is not cheating, anyone watching him might jump to the wrong conclusion.

Tell him 1 of 2 things is happening. Either he is cheating, which ruins the game because it removes the challenge and chance, and greatly reduces the ability if other players to participate (since a cheater can do it all with his "natural 20s"), or he looks like he is cheating, and other players will start to cheat because the think its OK or that they must to keep up with him. Either way, it has to stop.

Advise him that only rolls left on the table and witnessed by others "count", and that if he picks up or moves his dice before others see it, it is automatically a "1".

I noticed that your list includes both archtypes and builds. For example, the Ranger: Ranged and Ranger: Melee are not archtypes, but style feats. Continuing that, I will include specific builds as well as archtypes.

Urban Barbarian (from mindless melee -> tactical(optional) melee or ranged)

Cleric: (I'm not sure which type cleric you mean by "Vanilla," since clerics are fairly build dependant. I consider a "Vanilla" cleric a jack of all trades that can heal, buff, debuff, melee, summon, but doesnt specialize in any.)
Crusader(from jack-of-all trades -> melee)
Melee(general) (from jack-of-all trades -> melee)
Evangelist (from jack-of-all trades -> bard)

Divine Hunter (from melee -> ranged)
Divine Gun (from melee -> ranged w/ firearms)

Synthesist (from support caster + pet -> melee)

Ravingdork wrote:

Link does not work for me. Any way you could repost it or the URL?


insaneogeddon wrote:

Free: attacks of opp based on wis to hit
Immediate: ignore melle or ranged attack
Ferveurent Action: Cast a spell (lev -1) or extra attack
Move: Quick Channel
Standard Action: cast a spell or attack once

You can only have 1 swift or immediate action a turn, so Fervor Inquisition and Love sub-domain wouldn't both work on the same turn. Of course, you could only use Fervor once per day anyway.

Per the SRD:
Immediate Actions
Much like a swift action, an immediate action consumes a very small amount of time but represents a larger expenditure of effort and energy than a free action. However, unlike a swift action, an immediate action can be performed at any time—even if it's not your turn. Casting feather fall is an immediate action, since the spell can be cast at any time.

Using an immediate action on your turn is the same as using a swift action and counts as your swift action for that turn. You cannot use another immediate action or a swift action until after your next turn if you have used an immediate action when it is not currently your turn (effectively, using an immediate action before your turn is equivalent to using your swift action for the coming turn). You also cannot use an immediate action if you are flat-footed.

RumpinRufus wrote:

Perhaps it could help to do some verbal highlighting.

"As you enter the town, you see smoke rising from the chimney of the Prancing Nag, an apparently bustling tavern. Between two nearby houses you also see clotheslines that are attended by two women who are gossiping loudly. In the distance, you see a guard stationed at the door of a fine manor flying the flag of the local lord. What do you do?"

I agree with RumpinRufus.

Keep in mind, too much freedom can be paralyzing, especially for people who are not used to the wide open world that comes with a table-top game (compared to video games). Alot of players have the idea (either from rail-roading or from video games) that there is only 1 right way to accomplish the mission, and will do nothing rather than risk doing the wrong thing.

You need to break your roleplayers of this "1 right way" idea, and encourage them to be more free-form. Let them know this is a wide open world, and they really can do whatever they want (and are not strictly limited by combat rules).

Start with having things happen to them or near them, even if they arn't "main plot" related. If the players respond, great, reward them and improvise how it ties into their quest (or maybe it doesn't). If they don't respond, just put a new situation infront of them.

Encourage them to roleplay, and only use dice-rolling as a suppliment. If they want to use diplomacy, tell them they actually have to say outloud what they want to communicate in their diplomacy check. The dice roll only affects how clearly they communicate it.

Clever ideas should give them circumstance bonuses, and if they take your ideas and run in a different direction, or ignore the story you want to tell, and start telling their own story, DO NOT STOP THEM.

If one of the players has an idea, you should try to make sure it ends up being rewarding and successful (unless its obviously crazy, like "I'm going to bash my head against this rock until I have a prophetic vision"). By showing your players that you are willing to adapt the story to whatever they want to do, you will encourge them to be clever and proactive in the story, rather than observers.

More info would be helpful in your request, namely:
What level are your PCs?
What classes are in the party?
How does their wealth compare to average (aka How many magic items do they have)?
How experienced are the player?

Just in general, however, 7 players vs 1 NPC means the action economy is heavily in the PCs favor. Your boss is going to have to be very very strong in order to challenge them. Err on the side of making him too strong, and then you can make tactical "mistakes" in battle if you realize you made him too good.

In terms of "parry," the Duelist prestige class has it as a class feature. A substitued that is somewhat close is Crane Wing for unarmed melee. You could adapt the mechanics to include weapons too.

The synth summoner is probibly not going to be summoning very often. She cannot wear her eidolon suit and summon at the same time. Since synth summoners almost never leave the comfy confines of their eidolon suit, she will probibly not summon many demons. You should talk to her and confirm, and make sure your role-playing a semi-paladin/crusader type isn't going to cause too munch intermarry conflict.

For PFS, the random roll alternative racial abilities are not allowed. The alternative heritages (pitborn for example) are legal.

I was hoping I could get a critique/some help with this PFS character build. I have not run a PFS game before, but expect to participate in several, and hope to build 4 decent characters that can fill primary roles, depending on the table.

This is my first: A Fighter(Lore Warden) 10/Rogue2 with enough skills to fill in without a skillmonkey, while only sacrificing a very little combat potential:

Race: Human
Age: 32 (No Mechanical Effect in PFS)
Deity: Shelyn
Alignment: Neutral Good

Inner Beauty: +4 to Bluff/Craft/Diplomacy/Perform 1/day after roll is made.
Indomitable Faith: +1 to Will Save

STR 14
DEX 21 (16 + 2 Human + 3 Level)
CON 12
INT 14
WIS 10
All Increases into Dex

1: Point Blank Shot (Lore Warden 1)
.. Precise Shot (Human Bonus)
.. Rapid Shot (Fighter 1 Bonus)
2: N/A (Lore Warden 1/Rogue 1)
3: Weapon Focus: Longbow (Lore Warden 2/Rogue 1)
.. Deadly Aim (Fighter 2 Bonus)
4: N/A (Lore Warden 3/Rogue 1)
5: Weapon Specialization (Lore Warden 4/Rogue 1)
.. Point-Blank Master (Fighter 4 Bonus)
6: N/A (Lore Warden 5/Rogue 1)
7: Many Shot (Lore Warden 6/Rogue 1)
.. Snap Shot (Fighter 6 Bonus)
8: Clusted Shots (Combat Trick)(Lore Warden 6/Rogue 2)
9: Combat Reflexes (Lore Warden 7/Rogue 2)
10: Improved Snap Shot (Lore Warden 8/Rogue 2)
11: Iron Will (Lore Warden 9/Rogue 2)
12: Improved Precise Shot (Lore Warden 10/Rogue 2)

My primary purchases would be: Gloves of Dueling, +4 Str/Dex Belt, +4 Wis Headband, cloak of resistance +2, Amulet of Natural Armor +2, Ring of protection +2, Circlet of Persuasion, +2 Adaptive Shocking Composite Longbow, with various Bane arrows. I would also get a +X Mithril Breastplate of Comfort, but im unsure if it would work with the Rogue Evasion.

This also gives me 92 skill points, and just about everything you could want as a class skill. I figured I would max Perception, Diplomacy, and after that, i'm not sure.

I could put alternate between 6 knowledge skills or max 3, will still enough skills left over to put into Trained Only abilities or get a good class-skill bump in skills like swim, climb, acrobatics, disable device, etc.

With Cologne and a Circle of Persausion, my Diplomacy would be +19 all the time, with a +4 bonus 1/day, which should be good enough for most tasks, and the +4 bonus should be very useful early in my career, especially since I can use it only if I'm pretty sure it will be the difference between success and failure.

My damage output is fairly reasonable, but my armor, fort and will saves are distressingly low.

I should be doing 26 damage per hit

Longbow(1d8) + Shocking(1d6) + Weapon Training (+2) + Gloves of Dueling (+2) + Weapon Specialization (+2) + Adaptive STR (+4) + Deadly Aim (+6) + Magical Weapon (+2))
, at 21/21/21/16/11
BAB (+11) + Dex (+7) + Weapon Training (+2) + Gloves of Dueling (+2) + Weapon Focus (+1)+ Magic Weapon +2 - Rapid Shot (-2) - Deadly Aim (-3)

Thanks to Lore Warden, I should be able to get a +2/+2 against BBEGs with a knowledge check.

Compared to going Lore Warden 12 with Traits to give me Perception and Diplomacy, I
Gain: +3 Trait Bonus to Diplomacy 1/day, +1 Trait to Will save, 8 more skill points, +1d6 sneak attack, multiple class skills, +3 Reflex
Lose: 1 BAB, delay several feats/warrior class skills, +1 Trait to Perception, +2 Fort save

Thoughts? Comments?

Vincent Takeda wrote:

I probably shouldnt say anything because the last time I mentioned it I got a royal lambasting but i'm presently running a gestalt in RotRL of Universalist Wizard and Evolutionist Summoner, but my gm and I are handling it a little odd.

Instead of giving me 2 separate spell lists, one that i prepare ahead of time and one that I don't, and being able to cast twice as many spells per day, he's letting me combine the best features of both caster 'styles'...

My hd is 6, my skills is 2/Level, I get to pick a single attribute for which all my spells apply instead of having to split it between int and cha, I get to keep a spellbook and learn an infinite number of spells from spellbooks like a wizard, yet I don't have to prep spells in advance until I get up to 7th level spells which summoners don't get otherwise.

I like this unique set of rules. Its less "Gestalt" and more "Hybrid." Based upon the rules you have outlined, your hybrid Wizard/Summoner is not that much stronger than a straight wizard or a straight summoner. You have some of the advantages of both, but most of the draw-backs of both.

Also, more importantly, it sounds like you and your GM have a good relationship.

Your GM is working with you to build a fun custom class to play, while trusting you not to abuse the custom rules. You are making a fun flavorful character, while trusting that you don't need to optimize to survive.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure your situation applies to everyone. There are lots of GMs that don't trust their players, and lots of players that don't trust their GMs. And, in some cases, this lack of trust is justified. Too many munchkins and killer GMs destroy that trust, especially in pick-up games.

I am interested to know a) what the rest of your party looks like in RotRL, and b) your level vs the of the encounters you are fighting. Unless you have a munckin somewhere in your group, there is probibly no need for you GM to put you up against a CR+3 or CR+4 to challenge you. In a pure Gestalt game, you almost have to have CR+3 and CR+4 or the party will walk over every encounter.

Venomblade wrote:

Hey everyone,

I will be playing in a Gestalt home-brew campaign soon and I would like to create the Ultimate Arcane blasting machine!

I was hoping for some advice/ideas. My thought process is that I can completely prepare all of my Sorcerer spells as Direct Damage and still have plenty of spells for utility from the Mage. I will have a lot of bonus feats to get metamagics early as well.

We will be starting with a 20 point buy.

I have a few ideas already.

A Crossblooded Draconic/Orc bloodline sorcer with the eldritch heritage feat: Primal / Admixture Wizard.
This would give me +3 dmg per die and I can change the element of my spells to suit the situation. Also being Gestalt would more than make up for the lost spells.

I am also considering a Sage bloodline Sorcerer / Divination Wizard. This would only rely on Intelligence and my initiative would rock.

I would LOVE to hear what everyone's ideas are!

I highly recommend not stacking 2 d6 HD, 2+int skill, same save progression, same spell list, classes for a Gestalt game. The strength of a Gestalt character is that they get to take the best parts of each class as they level up. Sorc/Wizard is almost identical.

In order to challenge your party, your GM is going to put you up against some CR+3 and CR+4 encounters, and you are really limiting your survivability and versatility with sorc/wizard gestalt. You are only going to be good at 1 thing (casting arcane spells), your spells DCs are not going to scale as well as CR+3 and CR+4 creatures saves, and unless you build for it, you will be splitting your primary stat between Int and Cha.

I would recommend sorc/bard, sorc/oracle, wizard/magus or wizard/alchemist, if you want double casters. All those combos get you better HP, better skills, better saves, better BAB (not that you care) and either a 3/4 caster or a full caster (with a different spell list) using the same primary stat.

Sorc/bard will give you all the skills you could ever need, and a good mix of blaster sorc and buffer/controller bard. And the Sandman archtype can give you bonus to your spell DCs if you get "sneak attack" conditions against the enemy. Check with your GM if it applies just to bard spells, or to bard and sorc spells.

A sorc/oracle can get its CHA to AC, gives you 3 good save progressions, +2 HP per level, healing potential if you need it (Invis+self healing will make you much more survivable. Healing isn't an attack, so you stay invis), and gives you access to some a whole new spell list. You could theortically go Empyreal Sorc/Cleric too, and get access to domains. Those are nifty.

Wizard/Magus gets you arcana, which are better than many feats, spell recall, and the ability to cast arcane spells in armor without spell-failure.

Wizard/Alchmest... with the many strange and wonderful discoveries Alchemest get, you can really do all sorts of crazy builds. I would recommend the mind-chemist. +4 Int, +2 armor, -2 Str for 10 min/level at level 1 for a wizard? Nasty boost to your DCs and survivability, and it only gets better with discoveries.

EDIT: The more that I think about it, I think Wizard/Alchemist is my favorite. You could build your wizard to be a controller and use bombs as your blasters. Bombs are ranged touch-attacks with no save that do elemental damage. They do (half your level)d6 + Int mod damage, and you can use multiple bombs per turn. They are count as ranged attacks for feats like Rapid Shot or Point Blank Shot. And the Alchemist is a 3/4 caster that focuses on self-buffs. That leaves your wizard to focus on control spells all he wants. And you get better saves, skills, and HP than a sorc/wizard.

insaneogeddon wrote:

Having recurring issues with no one wanting to be a cleric.

In my humble opinion, the reason noone wants to play a cleric is because they feel shoe-horned into a healer by the rest of the party.

Clerics are a very strong class, and should be as varied as any other class, because domains can easily alter the cleric's playstyle. But at most gaming tables I have observed, Clerics are expected to play a healer with healing and support-oriented domains. They are expected to save all their resources and actions for healing, and pay for the wands of cure light-wounds out of their own pocket.

Now, if you want to play your cleric as a dedicated healer, there is nothing wrong with that, and there are some fairly strong choices for you (even if it isn't my prefered style of play.) But pressuring others to play that way when they don't want to is the reason people avoid "healing" classes.

So, I think your point is: "Players, you can be an effective Cleric that is not someone's personal healing machine. Try it sometime."

I agree with that point entirely. However, I do disagree with some of your advice.

Attack rolls are a pain: -4 into melle stacking with -4 past allies for soft cover or the same for hard cover means precise shot and movement dramas or allowing yourself into charge lines.

Attack roll penalties like this are only if you are using a ranged weapon or a ray spell. If you want to play a ranged cleric, you should build for it, and the most important part of any ranged build is the Percise Shot feat. However, clerics are 3/4 BAB classes, and wear medium armor. This gives clerics pretty decent survivability, even at low levels, and we have multiple spells that improve our melee (and ranged) combat. In addition, alot of our buffs and healing spells are touch spells, so you frequently want to be near the front line anyway.

Most domains are pretty boring BUT you can get inquisitions instead!

I strongly disagree with this statement. Travel, Luck, Madness, War(Tactics), and Animal(Fur & Feather), are my favorite domains, but almost all of them are good. Not just for the bonus spells (although some of those are good enough to take the domain by themselves), but you can build almost any sort of cleric you want with the right domains. Please refer to the Class Guide Sticky entries about clerics for details reviews of domains, or read them yourself. They add good flavor and interesting abilities to clerics.

Its not like you need extra benefits vs undead or extra party support spells but you do need more ways to have fun, not be mucked with and ways to buff others that don't use your actions

I agree that one of the least fun parts of being a cleric is burning all your actions to make everyone else better. It is a strong and successful strategy, but there are times where you feel like you arn't doing much. My suggestion is to summon or play a cleric with an animal companion (Fur or Feather Sub-Domains are both good for this). That way, you use your cleric's actions for the strongest part of that class (buffing others), and then you use your animal companion or summon for the fun stuff (using your awesome buffs to rip enemies to shreds).

Also, the Reach-Weapon Cleric in the Class Guide Sticky is an interesting idea. You use your actions to buff, and then you use attacks of opportunities to destroy enemies. I have not played a Reach-Weapon Cleric yet, but I plan on it in the future.

In summary: Like the OP says, too frequently players are not intersted in playing a cleric, not because the class isn't strong, but because the players assume they will playing a boring healbot. If you have never played a cleric before, try it out, and try not healing in combat unless you absolutely have to. Use your actions to do things you want to do. The Cleric is loads of fun if you play the way YOU want to play.

blackbloodtroll wrote:

First, check out the Gnomes of Golarion book.

Second, remember that a large percentage of Gnomes are Sensates, and love to experience things, for the sake of experiencing them.

That's a start.

So a dwarf that wants to feel the wind in his beard as he flew on the back of his Roc is acting with a Gnomish desire to experiencing something unique?

I have a strange character concept in my head. A pike-wielding dwarf obsessed with the sky. I see him being raised above-ground with a bird animal companion (that he wants to train to ride) and feathers braided into his beard.

My first draft of the build for this character was a Cleric of Erastil with the Feather domain, and the Adopted(gnome) trait so I could get the "Animal Friend" gnome race trait.

While I love dwarves and roleplaying them, I know very little about gnomes. I would love some roleplaying advice as to how a dwarf raised by gnomes would act. Thank you.

I would prioritize dex over cha. Cha adds to hit when you are smiting, all 3 saves, you lay on hands, and to you spell dcs. Dex adds to your hit all the time, your reflex save, your ac, and pre-reqs for feats.

As a archer, you are going to have less need for LoH on yourself, and most of the time your spell dcs will not matter, but your ac will also matter less. So it's a trade off between +hit when you are not smiting and feats pre-reqs vs fort and will saves.

Also, I didn't think stat boosting items let you qualify for feats, but I could be wrong.

I would aim for 17 dex, 16 cha, your level 4 stat bump into dex, the rest into cha.

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As has been said in every optimization thread that has ever appeared on these boards, the issue isn't how powerful or weak your character is, the issue is how powerful or weak you are compaired to every other PC at the table.

If you are under the power curve for your table, your DM either has to create hard encounters where you cannot contribute, or encounters so easy that your optimized team members trivilize it.

If you are over the power curve for your table (and act like it), your DM either has to create hard encounters where your team members can not contribute, or encounters so easy that you trivilize it.

If you are about the same level of optimization as everyone else, your DM can create fun and challenging encounters for everyone. At a table of optimizers, these might be multiple CR+3 or highers. At a table of non-optimizers, these might be CR+0s or CR-1s.

So, the secrets are:
1) Know your table. Play and build to the level of the table. Don't try to out-build everyone else, because noone will have fun.

2) If you don't know your table, or are playing something like Pathfinder Society where the optimization of the table varies day to day, then optimize your build, but play to the level of the table.

Point #2 is something most GMs have run across. The difficulty of monsters doesn't just reflect their physical attributes and special abilities, but also their tactics. Tucker's Kobolds, for example, are much more deadly than their stat-block, while unintelligent beasts or trolls or goblins could be much less challenging than their stat-block, because they do not make optimal combat descisions.

For a player, it is alot easier to "play down" to the level of the table if you are optimized. Maybe you are a strong martial character in a group of under-optimized casters. Instead of charge-full-attack killing the BBEG in two rounds, and not letting your allies have a chance, play sub-optimally. Hang back, play bodyguard or roleplay like you are trying to reason with the BBEG or try to think of clever enviromental details to use. This gives your teammates a chance to have fun and succeed, and if the fight goes sideways, you still have your optmized build to fall back on.

Of course, if you get to a table and everyone there is just as optmized as you, you can go nuts and everyone will enjoy it.

The thing that brings combat "alive" to me is having the NPCs I control roleplay. This usually involves taking non-optimal tactics as an NPC. It leaves an impression on the players as to the character of the NPCs, and encourages them to get involved in roleplaying too.

This is a great podcast about this topic.

Two examples from my recent combats:
1) I had a NPC pyromaniac wizard burning down a building. I described him as burnt on half his face, crazy eyes, and cackling while casting Dragon's Breath on the building. The rogue PC double-moves to threaten the wizard. The wizard continues to try to cast fire spells on the building, no 5-foot step, no defensive casting, and the rogue gets a crit on his AoO. The PC Oracle sees how nuts the NPC wizard is, and casts Create Water on him, drenching him (Not RAW, but I allowed it). Getting wet caused the NPC wizard to go (more) berserk, focusing on the Oracle while the Rogue killed him. Could this NPC been much more effective if he had played more strategically? Of course, but by playing in character, the players had a much more memorable combat, and the Oracle starting roleplaying in combat (The Oracle knew that Create Water wouldnt have a mechanical effect, but she did it anyway because the NPC was acting in character.)

2) An NPC Archer Ranger with favored enemy Human continually ordered his warrior lackies to stand between him and the party. His lackies would sometimes take AoO to get in position to protect the NPC ranger from a charge. This was both in-character for the ranger (he cares nothing about his minions' lives), and optimal strategy, as the ranger was able to dish out a huge amount of damage with his favored enemy bonuses, and his lackies were little more than HP with legs. The players were pissed in-character, and really wanted the ranger dead. Even more so after he fled on turn 4 after taking the half-elf summoner to negative hp, and and the human warrior (tank) to 4 hp. Now the players have a viseral hatred for this NPC, and when he comes back, the players will have no problem role-playing how satisfing it is to kill him. Now I just need to give him a name...

Azaelas Fayth wrote:

@Arthantos: how did you get CHA to AC? Or am I missing something obvious.

1 level dip into a Lore Oracle for the Sidestep Revelation. See it here

Do you want physical defense, saves, debuff immunities, or all of the above?

Paladin saves are off the charts, they can sword-and-board for decent AC, and they can self-heal as a swift action, effectively increasing your HP by a ton. And they can Smite Evil, so they still have some offensive punch against evil creatures.

Crane Style Monks, as mentioned, get to ignore 1 attack per round, can get a crazy AC will sacrificing damage, and get natural spell-resistance and debuff immunities.

1 Monk, 19 Synth. Summoner with Crane Style feats could be have absurd pure-physical defense, decent spell defense, and could be evolved to have spell resistance and/or "Undead Appearance," which grants them some very nice debuff immunities at level 12+.

Any of those 3 would suit your purposes.

So I had an idea for a campaign where part of the campaign involves Quantum-Leap-style time travel. Link to the Wikipedia page for those unfamilar with the show. The PCs would occationally (maybe 10% of the time) wake up and find themselves in control of the same 5 NPCs that are legends in the modern day. So the players will roleplay their PCs, who are currently in the bodies of NPCs.

The campaign would revolve around a) trying to figure out why they are time-traveling, b) seeing how stories differ from actual history, and c) seeing how changes in the past affect the modern world.

I wanted to start the PCs around level 2, and legends of the NPCs will be introduced early, but the time-traveling will not begin until level 5+. The NPCs around level 12, and have the PCs level up much faster than the NPCs, so by the end of the campaign, the PCs and NPCs are all about level 16.

I already have ideas as to the character classes the NPCs should be (a Paladin, a Cleric, a Wizard, a Rogue/Sorcerer, and a Warrior). The PCs are playing an Inquisitor, an Oracle, a Summoner, a Rogue, and a Ranger. Unfortunately, the Inquisitor and the Ranger are not strong in understanding the game mechanics, so I am worried that they would feel lost being asked to play any character other than their own, let alone a different character class.

My questions are:
1) Should I adapt my NPCs to mirror my PCs, in either class or role?
2) Should I ask for player input into the NPCs (thus giving away part of the surprise) or should I build the NPCs myself?
3) Should I even attempt this concept with my current group? I'm beginning to think this would work better with a more mechanically strong group?
4) Should I even attempt this as a relativly new GM? This seems like an ambitious concept and I am fairly new to GMing.
5) Any other suggestions to make this idea work?

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So, I am about to embark on my fouth GM session ever, and first time I am not running a pre-made adventure (not a knock on pre-mades, I just have a fun idea I want to try out), and I'm slightly intimidated.

I'm not worried about the rules, I know those pretty well, and I am comfortable with Rule 0 if I don't. I'm not worried about my story, I have a rough outline of that in my head, and an open enough sandbox that I don't feel like I have to railroad my players past the group formation phase. I'm not worried about the BBEG fight(s) either. I look forward to designing challenging fights for the party. That's one of the reasons I started GMing.

What I am worried about are the non-BBEG fights. I don't want every fight to feel like an "epic" BBEG combat, because that diminished the impact of the big fights. But I am worried about creating combats that are both challenging enough to keep players focused, and interesting enough to keep players having fun, while balancing the amount of prep-time I put into CR-1, CR+0, and CR+1 encounters.

This is especially worrying at low levels, and because the first half-dozen or so combats the party will encounter will all be against humanoids. I would like some variation so that that it doesn't feel like they are grinding the same group of CR 1/2 human warriors over and over again.

My group and I are about to start a new game in the Eberron setting, but using mostly Pathfinder rules. My GM is planning on using the Spell Point system from Unearthed Arcana. For those unfamiliar with it, the Open Sourced rules are listed here.

I would love to play a Magus in this setting, but I am very concerned with how the spell point system, especially paying 1 extra spell point per damage dice, would interact with the Magus's class abilities.

For example, at level 4, I will have ~10 spellpoints, and a 4d6 Shocking Grasp (level 1 spell) would cost me 4 spell points. A 4d6 Frigid Touch (level 2 spell) would cost 3 spell points, stagger the target, and have no save.

If I used an empowered Shocking Grasp (level 2 w/ metamagic) at level 10, it would cost me 10 spell points, 1 more spell point than a level 5 spell. Magus dont even get access to level 5 spells until level 13.

And how would the spell recall mechanic (spend arcane pool points to recovery spent spells) work with spell points? Could I spend 2 arcane pool point to regain all 10 spellpoints associated with an empowered shocking grasp? Or do I just recover the base cost of a level 2 spell?

Does anyone have any insight as to how to house-rule spell points with the Magus? I plan on suggesting some modifications to my GM, or potentially going with a class other than the Magus. Any custom rules, feats, or ideas are welcome. Thank you.

17) All Humans are ~6 feet tall, and ~5 feet wide.

18) Certain action, such as talking, dropping items, falling prone, etc. take literally no time.

Spiritual weapon + Widened Silence = Mage-seeking missile that shuts down down any caster with less than 40ft of move speed.

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As a DM, i think you should never fudge a roll to give yourself an advantage. You have absolute command of time and space, why do you need to fudge? Because you players surprised you with good tactics, a strong build, or plain luck?

You should be rewarding them, not cheating them out of their achievement. You only fudge if you make a mistake and make an encounter too difficult for your players. You fudge in their favor, not your own.

Wolfsnap wrote:
True strike can be a potion, as well. wrote:

The imbiber of the potion is both the caster and the target. Spells with a range of personal cannot be made into potions.


The rules are pretty clearly set up to prevent spells with range = personal from being applied to another person. The only way to get around this is with a high UMD check, hince why UMD is usually considered the 2nd best skill in the game, after Perception.

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ciretose wrote:
Foghammer wrote:

I am never sure whether my optimization actually falls under power gaming, but I do stack things in my favor as much as possible without actually min-maxing (I very very rarely dump anything). But that has become much more of a "my dice keep ******* me over" than a "I want to dominate this game" thing.

My groups will tell you, as a player, I have the most ridiculous "luck." I will consistently fumble any time I try to do anything remotely heroic or badass, crit on relatively unimportant skill checks (IE: diplomacy to haggle for a few gold), but my dice are clutch. They won't let my characters die because I guess they like making them stumble around and break bowstrings or something.

Good advice though, even for non-power gamers.

The point of this post (as I read it) was that if you do these things, you aren't power gaming. You are just gaming, like everyone else.

Start with a concept, make that concept as effective as it can be, great!

Start with trying to be as powerful as you can be, complain when your "min" become a problem, try to find loopholes to "win". Fail.

I read the whole thing as a subtle jab at Powergamers. I mean if " will be able to pretend you are roleplaying like everyone else" isn't a nice shot at power gamers, I don't know what is.

Shhhh. As Tom Sawyer would say, "I like painting this fence."

Evil Lincoln wrote:
Which is not to say that James Jacobs is going to bust down the door and take your dice away if you play it differently. Ask your GM!

Dude, James Jacobs will totally show up and enforce if he has to.

Umbranus wrote:
Anburaid wrote:
its not quite rules bending, but mirror image is so ridiculously powerful that our 14th level characters are still using it.

Perhaps I'm missing something but I learned it with my magus but never used it because as I understood it it was just not good enough (for him)

At 4th level, when you can first cast it as a magus you get 1d4+1 images. So 2 to 5.
Every time someone misses you by 5 or less one image is gone.
As a magus you always try to have a decent AC, so odds are good that some or all of your images are destroyed without you having any benefit at all.

That my be totally different for a wizard with low AC. But as is I always used ablative barrier instead of mirror image. I didn't benefit from the AC bonus (except vs incorporeals) but a good amount of damage I was delt was nonlethal at least.
And except for not being hit there wasn't anything that could just make my spell useless.

Lets examine this at level 4:

1d4+1 images (average of 3.5). At this level, you can only wear light armor. Assuming 24 AC (10 + 4 Dex + 4 Hide Armor + 4 Shield spell + 2 Deflection/Natural armor magic item) against a +10 enemy (4 Str + 4 BAB + 2 Magic).

Without Mirror Image
Hit chance: 14+ to hit or 35% hit

1st swing:
Hit chance: 35% hit * (1/(1+3.5)) hit you, not an image = 7.7778%
Mirror Image dies?: (Roll of 9-13:) 25% + 35%*3.5/(1+3.5) = 52% chance to lose an image

2nd swing: 48% chance to be same as 1st swing, 52% chance of 2.5 images remaining.
Hit chance: 7.778% * 48% + 52% * (35% * 1/(1+2.5)) = 8.933%
Mirror Image dies?: 25% + 35%*48%*52%+35%*52%*(1/(1+2.5) )= 38.9%

3rd swing: 48%*48%=23% chance to have 3.5 images. 39% chance to have 1.5 images. (1-.23*.39)=38% chance to have 2.5 images.
Hit Chance: 7.778%*23%+10.0%*.38%+(35%*1/(1+1.5))*39%=11%
Mirror Image dies? 25% + 35%*23%*48% + 35%*38%*39%+35%+39%*(1/(1+1.5))= 35%

etc..... As the average # of images drop, average chance to get hit goes up, but average chance to kill an image goes down.

Summary: you drop from ~35% chance to be hit to ~12% chance to be hit for ~7 swings. That is a better miss chance than greater invis or blink and last long enough for most fights.

Mirror Image might not be your cup of tea, but it is one of the best spells for physical defense in the game.

Fleshgrinder wrote:

Well, Pen and Paper CAN be PvP.

There are entire 3rd party product lines dedicated to the concept.

An antagonizing character can be fun if he's played right and knows when to not be an antagonist.

The antagonist is only acceptable if the character, and not the player, is an antagonist, and everyone in the party understands that distinction.

I find this to be rare, and typically only acceptable with a group of people that all know each other fairly well.

Fappy wrote:
I moderated the hell out of a monk I built in my sister's campaign a while back. I even went so far as to give her hints about my weaknesses. That monk was super OP though, so I don't really blame her for her frustration.

OP Monk... Does... not... compute

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We Powergamers are a much maligned group of players. We play a game and want to be the best at it, and yet are called out for ruining the game that we love. We are branded, so to speak, as munchkins, min-maxers, non-roleplayers, rules-lawyers, and other mean labels. All because we love (and are good at) rules synergy and math.

So below, I am listing my top 5 tips for being a powergamer and hiding your evil math-based powers from your group.

1) Create a Backstory and Roleplay: Powergamers frequently get identified by their lack of roleplaying, so fake it. Create a backstory and character based upon your favorite comic book or video game character not named Wolverine or Sephiroth, and just think "What would so-and-so do?" It takes very little time and effort, and you will be able to pretend you are roleplaying like everyone else. Which brings me to number 2.

2) Don't roleplay the antagonist: Keeping in mind that D&D is usually not player vs. player, a quick and easy way to identify powergamers at the table is by comparing characters. If your character has higher damage than the Barbarian, better defense than the Sword+Board Paladin, and is a better Skillmonkey than the Bard, people will notice. So don't give them a reason to compare character sheets. Don't intentionally start inter-party conflict to prove your character can "win" against the non-powergamers. If you do, rocks will fall, and your character will die.

3) Moderate your min/maxing (no extremes): I know this is counter-intuitive, but min/maxing will usually not help you in the game. Sure, it will give you a mechanical advantage, but there is no faster way to single yourself out from your group than extreme min/maxing, which, in turn, could trigger DM retribution. For example, instead of taking 20 Str and dumping Int to 7, take 19 Str and keep Int at 10. Or instead of taking the 9 best feats for your build, take the 8 best feats and 1 OK feat instead.

4) Give credit to the other players: So combat is over and your party just barely survived. And by "just barely survived," I mean that your teammates are near death and out of resources, and you were hardly touched. You should instantly compliment your teammates in or out of character. "Man Cleric, without your Bless and Protection from Evil, I would have been in trouble. Thank you." "Wizard, that Haste saved my life!" "Bard, your singing totally won that fight?" Is it true? Probably not, but by attributing your success to other people, you encourage people to overlook the fact that you are overpowered.

5) Don't show off unless you need to: You are a powergamer. You have a better build that everyone else in your party. You don't need to prove it. In fact, you want to *hide* it. You don't want your DM to know your super-nasty rage-charge-lance-pounce-autocrit-stun combo, because then the bad guys will prepare for it. And in most combat, being superpowered is unnecessary. Your party is more than a match for that CR=APL ogre guard, so why 1 shot it in the first round of combat? That is just showing off how awesome you are. The smarter thing is to *hide* how awesome you are until it matters. Instead of being the jerk who 1 shots an easy enemy and doesn't let anyone else play, be the hero who kills the dragon when all hope seems lost.

Follow these 5 tips, and noone will suspect that you are a powergamer. No gaming group will ostracize you. No DM will design encounters specifically to counter you. Lay low, roleplay, minimize your min/maxing, play nice with the party, and people will cheer you killing the dragon, instead of cheering when the dragon kills you.

ossian666 wrote:

Even if thats the case its not like its anything special...short of combining the Half Dhampir with Half Orc its just a multiclassed hodge-podge of meh. Just because he wants to make a Dhampir Half Orc doesn't mean he gets any half orc racial traits. He is treated as being a Dhampir...thats it. And personally Dhampirs are a poor party choice because they get light sensitivity AND they are harmed by positive energy so you have to work as a partnership with someone that can cast harm spells to heal you.

I think part of the problem is that baalbamoth might be inaccurately discribing the capabilities of this person's build. I agree that a rules-legal summoner/monk multiclass isn't a overpowered combination. But some of what baalbamoth is discribing in terms of combat capabilities that are not in line with a strict interpretation of the rules.

Maybe baalbamoth is over-estimating his party-members strength, or maybe the DM is allowing some questionable rules interpretations.

But I agree with you, this is not a "powergamer" issue. This is a DM issue. The DM doesn't know how to deal with complex rule situations or non-Core material, but allows it in his game anyway.

ossian666 wrote:

Wait are calling this guy a powergamer? HOW? Did you read his character concept? A Hungry Ghost Monk with a multiclass into a Sanguin Bloodline Sorcerer! That is the opposite of a matter of fact his character design sounds more like power roleplaying than powergaming.

At this point its not even about being a more powerful character its just the GM being a terrible GM. He may as well come out and say, "Here is the story I want to read you guys so I need you to make these characters to play."

now another player created a half damphere half ork, hungry ghost monk, summoner with sanguine bloodline, so he can bite people and drain hp cause stat damage etc.

I read that as a monk/summoner gestalt (or maybe synthesist summoner with a monk dip for Dragon Style) with a custom built race from the ARG that maybe took the Eldrich Heritage feat.

I'm not seeing how the Sanguine Bloodline allows him to drain hp or cause stat damage, since the Sanguine Bloodline only allows you to drink from corpses to regain HP.

The character in question sounds dubiously rules-legal.

Kobold Cleaver wrote:

Once, with a dire rat (a very minor enemy, keep in mind), I rolled a 'one'. Since I have a fumble house rule, I rolled again to confirm, and I rolled a second 'one'.

Curious, I rolled again...and I got a third 'one'. I rolled again and got a 'two'.
There was a moment of silence.
ME: "The rat explodes."

Similarly, our DM in RotRL rolled 1, 1, 1 for a Sinspawn. It lunged towards a player, tripped, slammed into the staircase nearby, and snapped its own neck.

Jiggy wrote:

I've gotta say, clerics are pretty sweet. Full casters, solid armor proficiencies, fantastic spell list, incredible diversity/flexibility via domains...

Yeah, there's no such thing as a bad cleric.

Except, you know, the clerics that go bad, and are just flat nasty with swarms of undead minions.

Bakunin wrote:
What would you say the best class for both surviving combat as well as posing an offensive threat would be? I'm trying to find a good balance of offense and defense for a 5th character in a party with no other full BAB classes.

Sword and Board(aka Shield) Paladin is the classic choice. Get a decent Str, Con, and Cha, without dumping Dex, and you are frontline fighter with some protection.

You could also go with a Barbarian. Forget AC, focus on damage and HP, play slightly defensively (IE you are a warlord, not a pure berserker. You understand that no general is successful without an army, and you don't charge off on your own). Especially at lower levels, the high HP of Barbarians is plenty of protection as long as you don't play like you have INT 7.

You could also play a Synthesis Summoner. They... well... lots of people consider them cheesy. Lots of GMs will ban them. They arn't as broken as alot of people seem to think, but they do have the potential to cause lots of headaches for the GM, steal the spotlight from other players, and inadvertantly be rules-illegal (because they seem to have a ton of custom-made rules and errata just for them). If you want to play a Synthesis Summoner, talk to your GM first.

Buri wrote:
What are these "big six" items? I've seen them refereed to but have never seen them listed.

I had to Google it:

Andy Collins wrote:

Instead, the majority of a character’s item slots are spent on what I call the “Big Six”:

Magic weapon
Magic armor & shield
Ring of protection
Cloak of resistance
Amulet of natural armor
Ability-score boosters

Link to the article.

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baalbamoth wrote:
oh btw. we had another session last night, DM spent 40 min trying to figure out if DR got applied before or after the save split the damage... sure it was common sense to us that it would be applied after but he wanted to read it and couldnent find it... hes a very exacting guy and has a lotta trouble with the books. One big issue is the descriptions in the beasteary, the monster entry will say type"construct" then he has to try and find where that is located at to see if it is immune to some form of damage, then he has to go to three other areas to find where DR is covered... ugg... took forever... and eventually we just begged him to make a decision rather than keep trying to find it...

3 points:

1) If the rule is something not specific to the monster, then everyone should look for the rule, not just the DM. It will save time if you find it and say, "Hey, I think what you are looking for is on page 230 of the Advanced Players Guide." Obviously, this does not apply if it requires you to pull out the Bestiary and look up the monster, because then you might get some metagame info.

2) Encourage your DM to try It has almost all the info of the books and it has hyperlinks and a great google-powered search. So if you see "Constuct," you should be able to click on the link and read the construct rules, or google search. And the works great on an iPad if your DM has one.

3) Remind the DM of "Rule 0": When in doubt, he has the final say. He sets the rules and he can, as you said, make a decision rather than stop the game. Even if he later finds out his rule was not RAW, he can keep his old rule as a house rule or state that he made a minor mistake, and from now on, he will be using the RAW.

Jiggy wrote:

I'm currently planning a "problem solver" cleric for PFS. The idea with him is that whatever disadvantage an enemy tries to throw at the party, he has an answer.

Nasty sonic-dependent monster/caster? I have silence prepared.
Mind control? I have a wand of protection from evil.
Critter spamming deeper darkness? Starting at 8th level, my Sun Domain ability completely hoses it.
Poisons? I have restoration (and lesser) available.
Need a buff? Aura of heroism.
Died? I can actually get to you and use a scroll of breath of life in one turn.

What kind of role would you call that? ;)


Yeah, other than the rock (I would have called that non-lethal damage from an improvised weapon), you did exactly what I would have done. You did all you could to give the wizard a chance to live. He was trespassing, aggressive towards an NPC, pulled out a lethal weapon, and at no point tried to do anything but threaten or disable the LAWFUL OWNER of the property.

Not to mention: This dude has 11 hitpoints at level 3 and is antagonizing people without the meatshield around? I call this natural selection.

I would have him roll up a new character, let him be whatever he wants, from a different class to the identical twin brother of the dead wizard. Depending upon how progressed the rest of the party is towards level 4, I would start him either at level 2, with 3/4 of the exp needed for level 3, or at level 3, with the starting gold of a level 2. That feels like a punishment, but it is going to be meaningless after 1 or 2 sessions.

I have several questions about the Ancestral Gift spell that appears in Dwarves of Golarion .

1) Is this spell restricted to Dwarves? The source of the rules and the access to dwarven weapons implies that it is, but nothing in the spell description in the SRD states "Dwarves Only."

2) Can this spell create a different weapon per casting? For example, can it produce a longsword 1st cast, greatsword 2nd cast, composite longbow 3rd cast?

3) Can the weapons in this spell have other non-magical properies? For example, can "the weapon of my choice" be a +1 flaming cold iron waraxe or a +1 guided silver greataxe?

4) If I create a weapon that is also armor, do I get the benefit of the armor? For example, a spiked heavy shield is listed as a type of weapon. Can I create a spiked heavy shield as a weapon and get the AC bonuses from it?

5) Can I cast Greater Magic Weapon on this weapon?

6) The spell states that if it leaves my hands, it disappears. Does that mean if I sheath the weapon or sling it across my back for any reason (to show non-hostile intent or to pull out spell components) that it disappears? Or does that just apply if the weapon leaves my body (I get disarmed or try to throw the weapon, etc.)

I am currently in this campaign with 9(!!!) players. We just finished the first module. Fortunately, we rarely had more than 7 show up for a game, which made for a very strange circulation of "Oh, the PC druid just remembered he had something to do back in Sandpoint and headed back to town. He ran into the PC monk on the way out, and told him where you guys are" every week.

One of the biggest issues I noticed was with more people was the smaller hallways and rooms got cramped very quickly. For example, the Glassworks, which is supposed big and impressive, felt tiny and overcrowded. That many players greatly limits the manuverability of everyone, PCs and monsters.

I would recommend moving some fights into larger rooms (or customizing the map slightly so it is larger).

Also, when you add mooks, maybe they hear the battle and run in behind the party. Yes, this is a tactical disadvantage to the party, and you can make the mooks weaker to compensate, but this is really the only way you are going to make any caster or archer feel threatened, because
they know they have a wall of meatshields between them and the enemies most of the time. Don't try to kill the ranged players, just encourage them to invest in atleast some defensive abilities.

Reckless wrote:

Right, the profession/craft bonuses are coupled with an extra 100gp starting loot. The other +2 skill bonuses are to more "adventure friendly" skills like swim, handle animal, and diplomacy, or add to two skills under specific circumstances.

Most of these bonuses mirror other traits from previous adventure paths or from the APG.

The +1 to hit with bows is probably the strongest one I created up there, and was kind of modeled after the +1 to hit with longswords and aldori dueling swords from Kingmaker. It probably should be a typed bonus (maybe morale so it doesn't stack with a lot of spells.)

I would like to point out that traditionally, traits give a trait-typed bonus, so they can't stack with other traits, but they do stack with everything else.

Also, traits are usually worth 1/2 a feat (+2 init trait vs +4 Improved initiative). +1 Attack with a bow is basically Weapon Focus (Bow), without the access to follow-up feats.

Granted, it is in line with the Sword Scion trait from Kingmaker, but that trait is significantly more powerful than most other traits and is an automatic choice for any archer.

Maybe limit it by location or lighting? +1 attack in outdoor areas? +1 attack in dim light? Just a suggestion.

Overall, the traits are great. Thank you

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