I am adding an automatic AC boost to the characters that I'm still working with scale on. I may use the full progression from an old SRD article or some fraction thereof. If it's low magic it will be low magic all around. There won't be a ton of creatures that have high DC magical abilities, so the world will tailor a bit. The AC bonus will be untyped as it is low magic, not no magic. The saves I can live with being dangerous whilst avoiding save or die effects laden that would only punish the players unduly. I still think ABP goes too far, but I am considerate of the lack of defense and will address that.
Cryos I am on a similar quest and I found "The Black Company" by Green Ronin to be helful with mundane items. They have an interesting take on mastercraft which I'll be using in my campaign. I would also suggest making money hard to come by, perhaps switching to a silver standard and using the lifestyle costs with penalties below a certain level. Characters never feel the crunch of having to pay to live which is what most people spend their money on. Only ever having excess wealth is what complicates dealing with character wealth. Just my two cents...
So far, thank you for the replies. This advice is reiterated on many other forum posts dealing with a similar issue. I currently use SoP and it is "lower" magic when you consider versatility. Yes it can do game breaking things but I'm ok with magic being magical. APB is in contrast to the concept of magic being magical for the purposes of this idea. It just builds the magic into the character. I don't have an interest in keeping the existence of the current "balance" vs. CR nor anything having to do with WBL. Again I appreciate your comments and understand fully this might not want to be a game you play in... fair. The game I'll be running will be hard but it won't be an AP considering the changes I'm making would make many of those almost impossible in certain scenarios. NPC's will be playing by the same rules as the PC's, but monsters will be terrifying.
So so far, APB is not the workaround I'm looking for... again thank you, it's just not the suggestion I need.
Enhancement bonuses are a nerf to all characters when you consider Int/Wis/Cha enhancing bonuses for spellcasters. I'm not that worried about flying characters.
I appreciate everyone that offered their advice but I'm not looking to change my idea, I'm looking to dig deeper into it. Let me say that I've already gone over those options and they can't meet the narrative I'm looking for, no disservice to any of the advice offered.
I'm seeking constructive help on polishing the combination of homebrew rules I plan to use on an upcoming campaign that is still a ways off. If you flat out just don't like the idea, I completely understand, so please no need to tell me. You may still feel the need so enjoy.
Leave it in, take it out. All the rules are ultimately optional. I've taken it out of my game and we're having a great time without it, maybe the same wouldn't hold true for everyone. I'm sure I could accomplish the same thing with PF2 with very little effort. Paladins have to pay more attention to their "code" than any alignment restrictions and devils are still "evil". Steal souls and people will think you're evil and your characters soul is still going to the bad place.
Not represented: Many of the characters from Tales of the Malazan, Book of the Fallen. Admittedly the characters are rather epic in nature. Specifically D'ivers.
Master Planner/Strategist isn't a set of character rules but how one plays a character and I would find it sad to try to make into a character "class".
Pathfinder Incarnum style magic was made by Dreamscarred Press with their Akashic line.
I use a hero point variant that is similar to the one provided by Paizo with a little house ruling. It allows everyone to die once, and perhaps even twice. I do prefer death to mean something and raise/rez is very rare in the game I'm running. I do however make this very clear before anyone joins the campaign to avoid unnecessary confrontations.
Since you're just asking our opinions, I'm not going to say my opinion is right or wrong. I will say that I have fun DMing for players who enjoy role-playing, so I don't enforce it, I just don't play with people who don't want to. There are players at the game who are there to have fun, and the DM is one of the those players. He has a slightly different role, but his feelings and desires are not invalid just because he's the DM.
It's not wrong of you to not want to role-play unless you keep joining groups that say they all really enjoy role-playing and you expect that to change based on your feelings alone.
Leave the group, go out and find a new one. If you're not happy playing that is really the only option. People are trying to give you advice and you gave a list of excuses why you have to stay in that game. There Meetup, where you can find a live gaming group. Society play, not my cup of tea. Roll20, which is a bit more fun for the "face guy" in that you can probably use voice through some sort of communication. Lastly there PbP which I find less than desirable for someone who craves the interaction.
There are a lot of poeple on here who say their group no longer supports the "fun" of their hobby but won't leave. Don't be a battered play mate, but it will take work of some sort to find what you're looking for. It would be nice if your friends would become the group you want to play with, but I've learned wishing for it won't make it so.
Wow, really got caught up on Monopoly there. That was not the point. It may be a cooperative game, but the point was to give an opinion. There is no "period" in Pathfinder, D&D, AD&D, AD&D 2nd., D&D 3rd, Vampire, Shadowrun, etc. My feelings about the whole situation are similar to awards for 20th place in a 20 man race. Everyone wants to feel equal in some fashion. Everyone is not.
As far as an equal playing field, it's when you start the campaign. Don't like being in a long story where death has a setback, play modules or one-shots. Should the GM adjust the story for some setbacks sure. If death or TPK just means reload the game and try a different tactic, I have video games that mimic that style of play better.
Way back in the day, the party or people seeking someone to be raised from the dead in any fashion required more than just money. From Raise Dead to Resurrection, a service was required to be performed for the church or entity using such magic. At the 3.0 and on is when it only became a matter of money.
You just have to create a minimum bar. Take the example that all characters are currently 3rd level and if one of them were to die they would make a 2nd level character. The bar would have been brought up to 2nd level, were he unfortunate enough to die a second time, he would still come back as 2nd level.
Now the party consists of all 3rd level characters and one 2nd level character and everyone gains two levels without a character death. Everyone is now 5th level and perhaps one is still 4th level, though it's possible that character is now 5th level as well. The bar would be set at 3rd, unless the character who died previously made it to 5th, raising the bar to 4th.
With a minimum bar, there is no downward spiral.
There's a lot of the word "game" and "story" being used, and it depends on how you see this. There is a story, but it's also a game, one that doesn't have a save file. Of course it's just my perspective, but I prefer the idea of a real consequence. Everyone makes it seem like the GM can't adjust the story at all for changes in level or disparity. No one here is locked in by what they've written or the AP they're running.
Easier, that is probably the best reason not to incur a penalty. Though I'm just probably getting old and don't like awards for participation.
I prefer to have them come back as 1 level lower, starting experience for that level. The minimum being 1 level lower than the lowest member, but keep a minimum level or that could downward spiral as someone said. Adjust the difficulty and you don't have to worry about AP or modules.
I agree it does harm the party to see a character die, which I think lends to the team mentality. If it matters to the whole party, perhaps they should work together to avoid character death.
I've enjoyed Pathfinder, but I've found death to mean less in my opinion.
I think there's space for both rolling before and after. For "after" is when the roll is going to expedite a scene that you've already played a number of times or has no real significance that adds fun, i.e. gathering information in a broad sense, relationships with multiple vendors. In these examples it will almost replace the roleplay for the most part.
For "before" it can give cues as you roleplay instead of directly influencing the outcome. If you can't think of a social cue, it could boil down to a feeling that the subject shouldn't be broached or that you should change your tack. It does lack the immediate satisfaction of a good roll, but it depends on what you want social rolls to mean in your game.
I'm wondering if anyone familiar with Steven Erikson's Malazan world has done any work in making the magic of that world compatible with Spheres of Power by Drop Dead Studios? I think it's rather possible, though I'm still questioning how to handle warrens and Warp sphere. I'm just looking for anyone's who has already come up with some house rules for suggestions.
What is the purpose of the heightened quality of the enlarge person and to what level was it heightened? Are we to assume it's been heightened to 9th level? Although there are a few instances I could imagine using it offensively, they wouldn't be worth the value poured into it here. It just seems to be a waste of 8 levels of metamagic, assuming it's even heightened to 9th level which remains unclear. I've only read the first part of the AP, and I thought the heightened might matter later but I would like to know so I can plan to change it if it's of mild consequence.
I'm just curious about Agrimmosh and I thought this would be a good place to ask. What is the purpose of the heightened quality of the enlarge person and to what level was it heightened? Are we to assume it's been heightened to 9th level? I've only read the first part of the AP, and I thought the heightened might matter later but I would like to know so I can plan to change it.
I may create a separate resource pool, as that seems to strengthen their spellcasting power. Thank you for the long walk to that.
I may even up the distance of the hex, while creating a separate pool. This will make it a little more caster friendly I hope. A separate pool, mixed with the ability to try more than once a day on a given subject, and increased range may meet what I want.
I'm not taking any sense of control out of the player's hands, just the one that makes magic items. Perhaps I'm a bit retro in my belief that the control does not rest in player's hands and I'm not worried about that. Players can work together to make magic items, sharing their skills to reach the goal. I don't find making each player capable of what the other player can do any more enriching.
To all those taking a look at our rules, thank you. I've changed the replenishment since there was an oversight. Something my group was taking for granted as we had discussed it, but I forgot to write in. There is no way to magically heal any of the detriments from Exigent Magic Replenishment. "Withouthisfoot", I almost didn't understand your post until I went back and read through the rule and realized I had forgotten that important detail. I'd appreciate your feedback with the change.
I don't want to completely roll back to the witch being able to affect every person on the planet 1/day. I like the idea of multiple attempts against the same opponent, or the healing of an ally. Magic, except in small doses, generally has a limit and this is reiterated throughout fantasy and mythology. A Druid only has 1 animal companion, and though I don't hunt someone's mount/companion/cohort on a regular basis, they can be killed. Ending that resource for a time, especially if they're not used wisely. I'd appreciate any insight into how you might change it without going back to the original version.
And to Goth Guru... I would like to have a discussion here, and you would not. My apologies and happy gaming.
1. It does call the Caster's Limit, a daily limit, but I'm kind of breaking that rule. Though the idea of running away and resting is something I still see in a lot of groups as a standard tactic. Though that may just be from my reading the boards.
2. Stated under the "Armor as Damage Reduction", the negative is to the attack roll. This matter greatly in the face of enemies who can parry as they only have to beat your modified attack roll to parry. It does not matter whether the attacker has rolled a critical or not. This is more indicative of a master sparring his pupil when the gap in skill is vast. Against Dex builds, maneuvers are a better choice, which I feel is more accurate of real combat. (I know it's a game, but we try.)
3. I don't feel the witch is only up against wizards & sorcerers. They have the ability to be healers as well. They cross both classes and the ability to drop the same hex on an individual, I feel balances the limited resource.
The reason I limited the magi, bards, rangers, paladins, etc. is because their limited spell list would end up entirely with metamagic. Also the lowering of some spells to fit on their list may have unforeseen consequences. I'm am listening to what you have to say and may edit my response in the future. I just don't have any characters at the level where I can cite an example as of yet.
I will try to address individual responses and thank you for the feedback.
Excaliburproxy, the armor rules already work as the "bypass" system. The Tarrasque is still going to hit and tear you apart, but you have the chance of lessening some of the damage. "Bypass" in these rules also creates a negative for the attacker, not just a different DC. This can be stacked with other effects and used to some advantage. I also use bypass as an act of intelligence or a style a particular creature may use. You do cite some specific circumstances I should address, such as clustered shot. I do feel the need to explain shortly that I don't expect monks and rogues to be on par with fighters, and I don't think of balance the way many here on the boards do. It's about flavor, and rogues should use a host of tricks to win, and monks should use maneuvers.
I understand your opinion on the witch edit and understand Paizo's intention, and completely disagree with it. Wizards & Sorcerers only get unlimited cantrips, but Witches get unlimited hexes. It just didn't work for me, but I did lift the once per 24 hour limit usually applied. So this seems more of a taste issue.
Spell replenishment is almost nuts until you watch your group try to rest for the 3rd time in a day. There's only so many times I can ambush them while they're resting before I destroy their suspension of disbelief. I'd truly appreciate any comments on how you would try to fix any of your above concerns, as I'm looking to better the system and not discard it. (Though I'm sticking to the Witches limit.)
Bardarok, the choices for the Metamagic Mana Pool were conceived in theory and are just beginning to be tested now. I'd appreciate if you could extrapolate on how you think the current numbers will go wrong.
Thank you Amir, but I'm asking for your comments on what you think. It's not a scientific document and your opinions are appreciated.
WithoutHisFoot, thank you very much for your input. I sometimes forget how many of my house rules I haven't written yet when I hear these questions.
Regarding Armor as Damage Reduction:
1. I didn't want an automatic bypass built into the ADR system such as a material or an alignment. Taking a negative covers the only bypass I foresaw as a plausible way around it (not to mention brilliant energy weapons).
2. The reason I made it a negative for the attacker and not a bonus to the defender comes into play during the Parry rules. When I tried to do it the other way (as a bonus for the defender), I ran into a few problems that had undesirable results (from spells, feats, abilities).
Dodge & Parry Rules
1. Armor generally gives a bonus twice, once as an enhancement to the ADR and again as a Dodge bonus. So when not moving, you only get the enhancement once (yes magic armor is cool).
2. I will clarify that, thank you.
3. Taking a double move would only leave the defender with the immediate action parry, albeit with the bonuses from a shield, enhancements, feats, etc.
4. Again thank you, clarification will probably help there.
5. Absorb is when you don't want to waste a Dodge or Parry on what you consider an insignificant attack. This does not mean you'll be right, it is just a choice to represent no effort to avoid the incoming attack. You won't see it's use that often, granted, though future rules make put it to more specific use. (It solved an issue one of my players was asking about)
This should really be on the page and soon will be... I don't multiply damage on the back end. (players/enemies alike) I end up with a generally lower damage game. This has lead to more drawn out, but dynamic battles (so far).
I really do appreciate your input, and will work on many of your suggestions. These are my answers to some of the things you mentioned as of now. Thank you for taking the time to help.
First suggestion, Pupsocket, thank you and I'll get working on that.
Second... Master Craftsman is a way around coming up with an interesting answer to create magic items by non-magical characters. Pygmalion's statue comes to life due to his love for his wife and the respect of the gods. The Dwarves of Norse mythology are more than just characters with a feat and 5 ranks of skill. I am adding feats that allow greater forms of Masterwork from an older Sword & Sorcery supplement, as well as runes from the Midgard Campaign Setting. There is also no reason incantations from Midgard can't be used to create magic items as well. I just think Master Craftsman is, well, boring.
The magic of the Fighter is supposed to be feats, but the Ranger is only 2 behind by 10th level. In our home game we greatly expanded the number of feats a Fighter ends up with but with certain limitations. If you want to check it, see here
Note: Specifically Changes to the Fighter
This only seems potentially offensive to a few. It's lovely that Lord Snow has an opinion. On an interesting note most people have opinions... kind of the definition of... opinion. It both is and is not offensive only in regards to its subjective matter. This is really a non-issue, vote your beliefs where you lay down your money. If its too offensive, don't buy it. That will send a message. If enough people agree with you, the company will take notice. If not, then you are part of an infinitesimal minority (not even small)and I desperately hope they don't cater to you just because you're a squeaky wheel.
What if you just say a rogue never loses trapfinding, even if he takes an archetype. Also a rogue who doesnt take an aechetype can select any one archetype's skill that would have replaced his trap finding skill from any of of the archetypes. Consider it mostly a flavor buff, and revalidating the archetypes so the rogue does not lose his niche so to speak.
After you compile all the feats from just the core rulebooks (Core, APG, UM, UC) you get upwards of 20 pages of feats. This gets bad as I'm trying to make a reference document that you can always see what is needed before or after a particular feat. Wazat's answer about a feat tree style similar to the ranger, answer's a question that I had. Why can a ranger do what a fighter can't. Take feats without prereqs.... and a 10th level ranger only has 2 less feats than a 10th level fighter. I'm using a scale for feat tree's (of which there are 14 valid trees when you look at the compiled list) that is almost like the weapon training or the rangers favored enemy. Letting fighters pick up one of the trees and beginning new ones as he goes along.
2nd edition also had an example in the beluth (an eleven item, I know) that had a higher charge cost for one of the spells. It was still incapable of being recharged, if it's really about saving that "change wands action" and flavor, just talk your DM. If its for PFS, there's plenty of other ways to "break" the system and they're posted all over the forums.
Many people didn't like the experience component of a few of these "breaker" spells, but it was a limitation that people thought about twice compared to the monetary expense. You can also add story elements that detract from over-use of certain elements of spellcasting. Aeons seem to be made as an equalizer to these perceived abuses (and use enough that it really is a threat if the group is very high level). Teleportation creates holes in space could be your argument. Pharasma isn't a fan of you taking what she has already judged, etc., etc. All systems that do not take into all the algorithms that are what we call life will appear broken upon too close an inspection. Fix it how you like, use the right story for your group and hopefully they'll like it.
The kingdom building rules were well clarified. The downtime activities are great for players who usually can't think of what to do in downtime, and great inspiration for those who do. The big loss IMO are the mass combat rules which would really be integral to any actual kingdom building. The part that I feel is just really missing are any rules having to do with recruiting, what you can recruit, both race and levels of said recruits. Also that their might be a limit on said recruits. In kingmaker I didn't mind as that was an addendum system at the time, but with a core book being added with these rules, I think it falls a bit flat.
Looking for a loophole in the ability of the Paladin to lie without being hit by the double-edged sword of his convictions is more of a game mechanic. Paladins take theses codes upon themselves because they believe in them, and being a paladin wouldn't search for ways to circumvent their own convictions. More than breaking down what is lying or even worse "what is truth?" is irrelevant if you are in the characters' head. Put yourself in the mindset that lying is abhorrent, a damnable act, and you can play out the reaction of your character from his perspective. Whom the paladin is interacting with is not as important as to his view of what he is doing. If lying would save his friends but cost him a part of his soul, then ask yourself is he willing to pay either price. The lawful goodness of the paladin is supposed to be a burden he has chosen, not one he constantly seeks to escape.