Nosdarb's page

Organized Play Member. 68 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 1 Organized Play character.


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Make a crow, name him Jim. Have Jim be uncomfortable around other crows because they're not enlightened like him. Enjoy watching the rest of the table squirm whenever Jim talks about other crows.

Had a player start a character at around level 7 who wanted to play an awakened cat sorcerer. I removed the bonus HD and made him pay for the spell casting out of his WBL. He ended up working out a deal for a Maximized and Empowered version of the spell, and played a Sage Sorcerer.

The Maximized and Empowered wasn't really an issue, nor was the Sage Sorcerer. His obscene sneak modifier combined with liberal use of metamagic was. He liked to cast silent Invisibility, then go scouting. Let me tell you now, no module is prepared for this scenario. The one time he almost got in trouble he just Dimension Door'd away.

It was a good time, but I'm not sure I'd want to allow such a thing in a long term campaign. I might allow it if I enforced the monster HD as levels. Keep things from getting out of hand. On the flip side, he didn't really have any item slots. So that's a pretty severe limitation.

As for keeping up the population(assuming they don't breed true), you'd need a 9th level druid to cast the spell. Alternately, a staff with more accessible lower level spells (like Abundant Ammunition) and any 9th or 10th level caster. Or a wondrous item that can be used to do it. There are options.

I currently play in a group where we sometimes don't instantly murder things when initiative is rolled. If we're not sure the thing in front of us is going to attack we generally just ready actions.

That said, it's not really the intent of the rules (as has been pointed out already, I won't harp). Also, I find that most Paizo materials don't really emphasize not murdering things. We've run a handful of modules recently, and while there's occasionally the option to not murder someone, it's never really been optimal. If you're running an AP then your players are being encouraged to murder things.

Honestly, the only thing that makes the whole situation a dick move is saying to the players afterwards "Nya ha! Got ya! He was supposed to be helpful, but I tricked you into murdering him!"

taldanrebel2187 wrote:

Well apparently this combination is legitimate. I'd like a response from the game developers, if possible.

Dimensional Assault

Prerequisites: Ability to use the abundant step class feature or cast dimension door, Dimensional Agility.

Benefit: As a full-round action, you use abundant step or cast dimension door as a special charge. Doing so allows you to teleport up to double your current speed (up to the maximum distance allowed by the spell or ability) and to make the attack normally allowed on a charge.

Here we have a similar ability. Requires level 4 spell, and allows only a single attack as per a charge.

Do the game developers not feel that Bladed Dash is a bit overpowered by comparison?

I mean let's get totally real here. Are there any other classes that get pounce access at level 4?

On page one:

Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
taldanrebel2187 wrote:

Do we really think the game developers intended to give level 4 magus a pounce ability? Sorry guys this is common sense.

If the spell text trumps full attack you get a single attack as per the spell. There are no similar spells of similar level and strength. RAI seems clear here. It was intended to provide magus a charge ability with a bonus attack. Not pounce.

I am one of Paizo's developers. I don't see the problem with balance. Pounce is an at-will ability. This is the top-level spell a magus gets at 4th level. Not even close to the same power level.

Is that acceptable?

You could prophesy things that have already happened. That's always good fun.

You could tell the truth X% of the time and lie X%.

Alternately, just Google Nostradamus. Make index cards of the ones you like best. Shuffle, then draw at random.

blahpers wrote:
Chengar Qordath wrote:
blackbloodtroll wrote:

Ah, but it doesn't say it can provide a bonus.

Generally, Pathfinder is a permissive game.

It's much easier for DM to say a listed bonus doesn't apply, due to circumstance, than to say an unlisted bonus does apply, due to circumstance.

This is much more true in PFS, when being conservative is usually the best route.

A PFS Judge that is suspected of player favoritism, can lead to very uncomfortable situations.

I think that is a fair point to raise. While the transmutation vs. illusion issue was cleared up, the item is still going to be prone to a lot of table variation. That probably can't be helped, though. Not without making the item entry a lot longer and/or changing the disguise rules.
Can't be helped? That isn't a bug; it's a feature.

Except, no. Variability is the enemy. This isn't a case of "sometimes you hit and sometimes you miss." Sometimes this will have a mechanical benefit, and sometimes it won't. It doesn't even have to change between DMs. One DM could rule one way and then the other in the same session.

As noted previously, my DM is pretty consistent. I don't anticipate having any issues with this working the way I want it to. It's all too easy to see how this could be different. If he was prone to swinging between options on a case by case basis, I would skip this item. If I were in PFS, where I might sit down at a table where I had never met the DM, I would skip this item. It might sometimes work out for me. It might also be a waste of 200 GP. I'm not a gambling man. I'll spend the 200GP on something I don't have to argue with someone over. I'll put it towards masterworking some equipment, or potions. Something, y'know, useful and reliable.

I hear the incoming "IT HAS ROLEPLAYING VALUE" now.

Of course it does. I can roleplay myself into a corner when I think the item works one way and the GM tells me that it doesn't after I've dug myself in deep. In and out of character, I'm an adventurer. I'm not going to spend resources on unreliable gear. If I have reason to suspect that it won't work (because GM fiat, or because it's simply finicky, depending on which perspective you're considering) then I'll sell it, break it down, or throw it away. My life could easily depend on a disguise. I'm not going to use the faulty one just because it's cheap. That's how you get dead.

Well, as I see it the best thing to do is get yourself one spellcaster with level 9 spells. Cleric, Oracle, Wizard, Sorcerer, and Witch are all acceptable options.

Create a Demiplane. I guess the plane you do it from doesn't matter much. It's going to need a Gate for easy access (for a while anyway), so make sure it's well hidden. On the demiplane, build a Wondrous Item. I would angle for use activated Create Greater Demiplane and use activated Permanency. Holy balls will that be expensive. It's use is self explanatory, and with a 17th level caster and (math plus math times math) call it about a year of your life, you can have your own nearly unlimited demiplane.

Okay, that's that. Now scry the ever-living hell out of some people. You're looking for people that won't attract the attention of outsiders. Ask. Augury them. Multiple times. Make an at will item for that too. Ask enough that it's statistically impossible to not know for sure. Then ask a couple more times just in case. Find someone super trustworthy and send them to use your demiplane expanding artifact. You have divination. Make sure they're trustworthy.

Send the people you find who are trustworthy and not worth attention into the plane one at a shot. Make sure you check that the population of the demiplane in aggregate won't attract attention. you have divination. Ask. A lot.

Once the demiplane is "full", expand it to a comfortable size. Make sure it's Bountiful, and bring in whatever kinds of plants you like. Continue making sure that you don't attract attention.

Remove the Gate. Shape the demiplane to taste. Impede all magic. The only thing I would Enhance would be arcane healing. You want to be sure your healing doesn't attract divine attention. So, Witch, Bard, and Alchemist healing.

And that's pretty much it. You can bottle up multiple societies like that if you want. Once you make the artifact, you just take it out of the demiplane when you close the door and start again. Eventually you're going to run out of people who won't be noticed by some outsider when they go missing, but I'd bet you could save an awful lot of people this way.

Y'know what? I was gonna write a thing here, but Bearded Ben answered this question better than I ever could. I'm just going to link to his post instead.

Here y'go.

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Ravingdork wrote:
Redneckdevil wrote:
From the way its worded, it seems like u would or still could get bonuses for visuals (bonuses to bluff, intimidate, etc) but wouldnt get bonuses for physical things such as swarmsuit or bonuses against weather etc.
I don't see why you wouldn't.

It doesn't explicitly say that you do. I (as Devil's Advocate) don't see why you would.

Lifat wrote:
I also don't know what cipher rings are, but judged solely by what is said by others in this thread, it doesn't seem like it would be gamebreaking in any way or form to allow the two to be combined as long as you pay full price for both.

I'm pretty sure he means a secret decoder ring.

blahpers wrote:
If you can't trust your GM in situations that lack carved-in-stone rules, you'll have larger problems than this. (This is what makes PFS a fundamentally flawed concept.)

Well, if it doesn't have a rule provided then you're going to have table variance. Some GMs will give you a +X to your Bluff(e.g.), but some won't. Some will let you use Disguise more quickly, but some won't. Some will allow the illusory swarmsuit to affect intelligent swarms, but some won't. Worse still, some, all, or none of these things apply depending on which GM you're playing with.

My regular GM is pretty good about this kind of thing. He'll let me know his rulings on things when I'm considering purchasing them, or when we sit down to roll characters. I've got a pretty good sense for what he considers fair (or, at least, thematically appropriate). We don't always agree, but I do tend to know these things up front. It's not really an issue for me.

Now, if I wasn't consistently stuck at work when my FLGS runs PFS, then my theoretical case of GM-Haggle: The Game! comes up. It doesn't apply to me, but it does to plenty of other people. And given the contents of this thread, at least some of them feel similarly to me. Given the unreliable nature of the rules for this item, it's just not worth the time.

Jiggy wrote:
You seem very angry with me, but you also seem to agree with me.
Wrong on both counts. :)

Well I'm glad to hear that you're not upset. We do still seem to be in agreement on the item's end result though. It doesn't list a bonus, so there isn't one applied to skills (disguise/bluff/etc.), but your DM can decide that what you're wearing (or what you appear to be wearing) has some effect. Or is that somehow different from what you said?

It's the sort of things I lump in with all the other "RAW says nothing specific. Expect table variance." With my regular GM this isn't really an issue, but if I sit down with a new/infrequent GM (or, theoretically, for PFS) it's usually not worth it to me to play the "Haggle with the GM" game as opposed to simply taking dirt standard "Explicitly RAW" options. In the first case, this is probably one of my top three magic items. In the second, I probably won't bother.

Jiggy wrote:
Nosdarb wrote:
Well, that's the problem with RAW. If the rules don't say you get a bonus, then you don't.

That's not a problem with "RAW", that's a problem with your incomplete assessment of it.

You're looking at your (correct) observation that the item does not list a specific numeric bonus to a specific skill. You are then making the (incorrect) conclusion that the item therefore does nothing.

The error is the belief that an effect which doesn't list a "+X" has no effect. This is wrong....

You seem very angry with me, but you also seem to agree with me. I'm not really sure how to handle that. So instead I'll address someone else.

Ravingdork wrote:
SRD wrote:

A character faced with proof that an illusion isn't real needs no saving throw.

That may have been true if not for the parts of the FAQ explicitly state that "The transformation changes only the appearance, including the feel, smell, and other sensory aspects" and " can’t be disbelieved".

Bugs be crawling on your skin, but they think they can't get in your suit.

I think the matter of if the bugs are fooled or not is moot. They're likely to be attempting to bite you anyway. So, I maintain that mindless swarms still deal damage and intelligent ones don't.

Tels wrote:
Gallyck wrote:
Im about to roll my first wizard and my plan is to be a Gnome Illusionist obsessed with clocks and has the eventual plan to make a Clockwork golem. I seem to notice that most illusion spells get rated as bad. Im new to pathfinder and new to wizards so im wondering if the character wil be gimp.

The problem with illusion spells is that there are whole sections of the Bestiary that are outright immune to them because they are Mind-Effecting. Creatures like Undead are immune to Mind-Effecting effects, so your illusion spells won't work at all on those creatures with few exceptions.

This isn't in the rules exactly, but some of the older GMs may be predisposed against illusionist (I know mine is) and ad-hoc nerf the illusion spells on the spot.

Yeah, your DM is a jerk. The list of Mind Affecting Spells and Illusion Spells has surprisingly little overlap.

Illusion Spells
Mind Affecting Spells

RAW, it looks like most Illusions affect mindless things just fine. (Can anyone prove me wrong on this?)

Edit: We're uh... not on Reddit. Fixed links.

I'm a dirty skimmer, but I'm pretty sure this hasn't been mentioned.

Send them to face off against a ritual spellcaster. He's casting some ritual that will cause him to ascend from his mortal shell. Final step? Human sacrifice, virgin blood. When the heroes arrive, he's standing over an alter with some poor young woman strapped to it. Heroes stop the villain, save the woman, and then the ritual is completed by the blood of the virginial ritualist they just murdered. Everyone is forcibly removed from their bodies.

Well I thought it was clever.

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Gullyble Dwarf - Lvl 7 DM wrote:

Man, so what I'm hearing is most GM's sound like this:

"So what if it makes your clothing appear as a night black outfit with just your eyes exposed on a dark night, it provides no bonus to your hiding and sneaking around. Why would it?"
"So what if it changes your clothing to that which is in fashion and matches that of the current nobles around you. Why would that provide you with a bonus to pass as a noble?"
"So what if it changes your clothes to perfectly represent the tabard of the town guard down to the finities of their emblem. Why would that help you pass yourselves off as guardsmen?"
"So what if your outfit changed from a brown jerkin and pants to a red hood and cloak when you went around the corner. Why would that give you a bonus to losing the people tailing you in the crowd?"

And I thought I was a GM lacking some chops.

Easily a keeper for my characters. Already used them to get a captive out of her hideout by putting a bag over her head and SoMG to change into Guard tabards and we walked out the front door. Worth the 200gp on that experience alone. Of course, we had a pretty good GM, so YMMV.

Well, that's the problem with RAW. If the rules don't say you get a bonus, then you don't.It may seem obvious to you that you should, but it's just as obvious to plenty others that it shouldn't. After all, if it was supposed to give a bonus it would be listed in the rules. Remember that until this thread it was equally obvious to two camps that the item was illusory or tranformative. Now it's obvious that it grands a bonus and that it doesn't.

Ravingdork wrote:
Nosdarb wrote:
Swarms appear to come in two varities: Hive Mind and Mindless. Mindless Swarms aren't subject to mind affecting effects, so they probably don't care about your illusory swarmsuit. Hive Mind swarms ... have minds. So, yeah, they probably are fooled by the suit since they can't disbelieve it.
To my knowledge, none of the swarms published to date (or even vermin in general) are immune to illusions. Illusions =/= mind-affecting effects unless it's a pattern, or specifically says it's a mind-affecting effect.

Huh. I always assumed that they were mind affecting. Hang on... How about this from the general rules on magic:

SRD wrote:
A character faced with proof that an illusion isn't real needs no saving throw.

The swarm crawling into your illusory swarmsuit doesn't get a save, but they don't need one. When they touch it they have sufficient proof that it doesn't exist.

Eben TheQuiet wrote:
The End. (Only refers to himself in the 3rd person, pro wrestler style. Bonus points if rp'd like Macho Man Randy Savage.)

Welp, I know what my next character is.

Ravingdork wrote:

So...if it can actually be felt, and can't be disbelieved, can it still protect against swarms when transformed into a swarm suit (by making them think they can't find a way in)?

Covering all 5 senses (and other fantasy senses I guess) and also not allowing a save is tantamount to saying its real in the vast majority of situations.

Swarms appear to come in two varities: Hive Mind and Mindless. Mindless Swarms aren't subject to mind affecting effects, so they probably don't care about your illusory swarmsuit. Hive Mind swarms ... have minds. So, yeah, they probably are fooled by the suit since they can't disbelieve it.

Overall, I'm a little disappointed by this ruling. The sleeves are probably still on my shopping list, if a little further down, though.

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shroudb wrote:
LazarX wrote:
shroudb wrote:
Onyxlion wrote:
No I'd like non evil focused hexes. I don't understand why this is hard to understand. There is zero reason why "child scent" should exist, it should just be scent, now add whatever flavor you want . There it's fixed for both with reduced word count.


you simply want more hexes. leave that evil/good talking apart.

here is a list of 100% purely "good" hexes:

healing hex
fortune hex
aura of purity
speak in dreams
witches bounty
major healing
lay to rest
life giver

Not a single one of those are "purely good", they can serve lawful,chaotic and even evil aims for the most part as opposed to cook people which can't be anything other than evil.

your definition of "pure good" then differs than mine.

because purifing the air, healing people, making nature grow, making food and raising people as well as avoiding combat, protecting people and destroying undead

is pretty much my definition of "good"

im curious though, what would a "pure good" hex do if not the above?

Smite Evil, or Protection from Evil seem like obvious answers here. An evil character can heal, so healing is neither good nor evil. Causing nature to flourish is pretty much bang on neutral. Smite evil, even if one evil character does it to another evil character, is acting against evil.

Less pedantically, I also wish that Child Scent was Scent and Cook People was "Witch's Brew" or something more generic than cannibalism.

Avoron wrote:

Summon Swarm

Grease (to target objects people are carrying) (pretty sure this is allowed)


The issue isn't damaging opponents. It's targeting them. Non-damaging spells qualify as attacking the enemy. He can't even grease the floor they're standing on. Though he could grease areas into which the enemy had not yet entered.

Basically, if the enemy gets a saving throw then it breaks invis. Also, if there's an attack roll involved, then it breaks invis.

ohako wrote:

1. If you throw a returning harrow card at someone, is it destroyed after being thrown, or will it return to you?
2. If I just buy sets of the 6 cards that match my alignment, can I 'randomly' draw them out of my quiver/card box?
3. If I count cards so that I know that I've got a good chance of drawing a good card (for the purposes of Role Dealer) from a half-destroyed deck, can I enchant this 'stub deck' with returning for keeping the deck the way I like it?

(would a PFS DM be driven crazy by my carrying around a 'half-used' or otherwise messed up harrow deck? are there any other harrow powers that depend on drawing from a deck that's not all together?)

Okay, gonna do my best here.

1. It's destroyed. The cards are essentially ammunition. You don't put "Returning" on arrows, nu? So this ability is for if you've got something else to throw (like daggers, or a chackram).

2. Check with your DM. I don't feel like this is too OP, so I'd probably let it slide at my table. You're basically throwing a dart (1d4+STR), but with a 19-20/x4 crit. And +4 to confirm. If you do confirm it's going to be in the range of 20-32 damage (assuming you have +4 STR). It's a lot from a dart, but not a lot in comparison to a falchion. But I'd expect table variance on this.

3. Assuming I got number one right (which I feel confidant that I did), the answer to this is "No."

There, that all seems reasonable RAI. I'm pretty sure it's RAW even. Anyone want to correct me?

So, I started running Doom comes to Dustpawn. Right out of the gate I hit a snag. One of my players has Detect Magic up at all times. He was able to detect that the water had magic stuff in it (the poison), and the party tracked the poison to the lake. So far, no big deal. The next thing that they did was cast Remove Curse on Dalviss Crenn and Nalan Hossler.

In the Dream Crystal Toxin breakout on page 18 it says:

Dream Crystal Toxin wrote:
In any event, dream crystal toxin counts as both a poison and a curse for determining what can negate its effects.

So that's pretty straight forward. Remove Curse nullifies the effects. Nalan and Dalviss both feel better until they start drinking the water again. The party tells them the lake is cursed and to draw water from the stream instead.

The problem is that in part five Nalan is supposed to turn into a huge rampaging monster. And then shortly after that Dalviss is supposed to turn into an id mutant and attack them. Now neither of these things will happen.

I'm pretty okay with this. It wasn't a totally cheap trick. One of the PCs is paranoid (Detect Magic all the time), and one of them has good intuition (Remove Curse on Dalviss, Nalan and the lake). They should be rewarded for being good adventurers, right? It just throws the whole feeling of the final act off. The module blatantly assumes that these things wont happen. Any ideas? I'm considering having another random townsperson mutate into the penultimate encounter. It feels like I'm robbing them of the experience (not just the XP) if I don't. On the other hand, not having to fight anything means that they can go into the final encounter with nearly full resources (HP, spell slots, SLAs, etc.).

Any thoughts? Remove the encounter? Run it anyway? Something else I haven't thought of? Any advice is appreciated.

Thoranin wrote:

The other session (we just jumped from lvl 2 to lvl 3)

I sold a brass steam golem hooha, bearly use--er blessed by a mythic dwarven runecaster with intricate batterns and etchings round its outside and still in perfect functioning order regarding it's use. Sold it to a kinky gnome potion merchant for 800 gold. Have I been conned? Should I have sold it for more?
What does the collective think?

PS: (If you are wondering I used my engineering skill to find valuables within the remains of a huge brass steam golem we somehow managed to slay. Upon which the grumpy DM mentioned that I found that brass hooha... which I pocketed of course. Advanced looting +50 points)

You got 800 gold for a brass hooka that a steam golem was carrying around? Sounds like you got quite a deal!

Some one mentioned ethereal creatures. I second this notion. Miss chance is going to allow things to (maybe) survive a few rounds without giving them hundreds of HP. If your spell casters have force effects it will allow them to throw their weight around too.

Also, maybe spend some time looking at MMO bosses. Lots of high end WoW bosses and a variety of FFXI encounters are "puzzle fights". The objective isn't (just) to unload damage into your opponent. There's something else that has to be done to make the boss vulnerable, or to force them to move into another stage or arena. Bearing in mind that in an MMO you can just throw yourself at a boss until you figure things out, and in Pathfinder you usually only get one attempt.

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+1 for just telling them. There's no need to be cryptic about it. Tell them at the beginning of the session "I made a special encounter. You're not going to be able to just tank-and-spank it. Remember to make those knowledge checks if something seems weird."

Frankly, if you tell them at the beginning of the session they'll probably approach even normal fights with more caution / creativity. Might be worth brewing up a couple puzzle fights and using them either as red herrings or as lead ups to a final exam fight.

Dotting so I can check these out when I get home.

So, I'm a little late to this party, but here's my two cents anyway.

Paizo is building their own VTT. If they are going to make their maps available in a package like what's being requested it seems counter productive to offer it for competitive products. Or, at the very least, it seems like they wouldn't want it available for competitive platforms before it was available for their own platform.

Of course, the Paizo VTT has been delayed for a variety of internal reasons. We are assured that it's still coming, but no guesses as to when.

Just signed up. If there's space on Monday I'm in for every Monday.

Well, if I had my druthers I would put the party together like this:

Vincent: Level 1 Fighter
Nosdarb: Level 1 Oracle
Henry: Level 2 Fighter
Yahsei: Level 1 Alchemist

That would give us a good spread. Though if Henry and Yahsei wanted to swap and give us:

Vincent: Level 1 Fighter
Nosdarb: Level 1 Oracle
Henry: Level 1 Oracle
Yahsei: Level 2 Fighter

then I'd be okay with that too. My character is pretty much just built to heal, which might influence if you want to bring another oracle along.

You're running two scenarios in one day? Ambitious.

I'd like to sign up for this too. Maybe put me down as an alternate so I don't crowd anyone else out.

Level 1 Oracle, still.

I'd also like to sign up.

1st level oracle.

CraziFuzzy - I agree. This is a pretty solid example of why there's no 3PP allowed at our table.

Don't mind me. This is just a (very) late to the party dot.

That's an impressive amount of aid. Still, if you focus a character entirely around a single action you're going to be pretty good at it. I guess the question is if you want aid-other to be that action. In general the opportunity cost to do so seems quite high, but it seems like it could be fun for an occasional two-person concept.

There are a couple things worth responding to, but I really didn't mean for this to turn into troubleshooting my campaign.

Yes, the goblins are being run as written. They weren't so bad in town, but in Thistletop they're dug in better, and more numerous. The Summoner was present for most of Thistletop and it wasn't too bad, actually. Wave after wave of fiendish dogs helped.

The Holy Gun is aware of Rapid Reload. He's got a lot of feats he wants. It's coming.

I don't know where the buying/selling penalty comes from. I haven't read the module. There's apparently something that says that prices are reduced by 10% due to something-something-something local economy. That's being applied both ways.

Wait, this is intended to be on the fast XP track? Are you sure? That would bump us all a level. That would be... significant. I'll text my GM and have him check the front of the book.

Okay. We should probably stop clogging up the thread with my problems (as fascinating and varied as they are). I honestly just wandered in to provide counterpoint. As much as I like being quoted on the Internet, we've probably gone off the rails enough, nu?

Askren wrote:
Only in the tunnels, not in the rooms. And I don't see how that's a "penalty for not making small characters". It's a realistic scenario of going to fight in an area that Goblins created for themselves. Why would they build tunnels tall enough for you to walk in?

Of course they wouldn't. We're each still eating a -4 penalty because of it.

I wasn't aware that it didn't apply in some areas. We only walked into one room that seemed to indicate that it was tall enough to not have a penalty.

Askren wrote:

Seriously, I've run this AP for at least 5 groups, and have never seen anyone have as much trouble as you claim. Your DM is messing with something, somewhere, because it's a DC14 Survival check to find the path through the woods, and each check takes 1d4 hours of wandering, with 30% chance per hour that 1d4 PCs stumble into a patch of Nettles or Goblinberries, both a Fort DC 12 save to avoide 1 point of Str or Dex damage, both being able to be avoided with a Nature check. So the idea that not only did you somehow took damage "half a dozen times" either means you're making something up, or your DM is awful.

And because you haven't had trouble it's inconceivable that we would fail anything associated with a die roll. I had forgotten they dealt ability damage. I'm sure we went back to town to lick our wounds after that.

As previously noted, the DM firmly believes in not making adjustments to things. It's pretty much the entire appeal of a module. He's running it straight.

I don't know who carries the item worth 8K, but we clearly missed it. That's a bit annoying to hear.

My GM is a stickler for the rules as written. As it says in the module, so it goes.

The penalty to sale is based on the size of the local economy. The module specifies that prices are reduced by some-odd, which logically affects selling and buying. I also attempted to sleep with what's-his-name's daughter, but since the Sorcerer left town that hasn't really been an issue.

Yes, the Holy Gun is only firing paper cartridges. The alternative is that he only fires every other round. Given the trouble we've been having we don't really want to take the hit to our DPR.

The single sinspawn was an issue, but not nearly as much as the two that were ready for us. At the time there was no Summoner, I was still running my Sorcerer. I utterly failed to land any spell on them. They floored the Monk in one or two rounds, and the Holy Gun went down after taking one out. Our Oracle managed to pull our fat out of the frier with a lucky dagger toss, if I recall correctly.

My complaints about Role play aren't that the module has no one for me to talk to. It's more that when I played a sub-optimal character for flavor reasons I ended up within 2 HP of death twice in two sessions(-8 and -9 HP, respectively). Now that I've got my Summoner Murder-hobo I'm doing better. If we had rolled pure tactical-murder-squad we would probably be doing fine, but because we had concepts and made concessions to those concepts (exchanging raw murder power for skills and flavor) we've suffered badly.

Actually, here's a thing to complain about, the hedge maze. While on our way to Thistletop, there's the area made of thorns and vines. Gogmurt (?) is in there with his cat Tangletooth (?). There's a -4 to hit while you're in there. Our group flat forgot that the penalty existed, so we only had moderate issues with Gogmurt. Had we remembered that fight would probably have ended the module for us. At the very least, a long fight would have taken twice as much time as it already required. -4 to a level 2/3 group is needlessly punitive. It's not like we failed to do something, or overlooked alternate paths (we spent some time trying to figure out other ways to the island, but were unsuccessful). We basically just made the "mistake" of not building small characters. Had the GM been a little more attentive (or had I seen fit to remind him), we likely would have been penalized to death. As it was we wandered into one more fight, then had to leave to get healing.

Ergh, and the path there. We've got a party member with a fair boost to survival and we still ran into horrible plant life a half dozen times. Nettles and goblin-berries? Something like that? We had the specific thing the module wanted us to have in this case, but because we were too low level for it to be an automatic success we got to show up at the actual event all beat up. We almost left before entering at all. Maybe we did, actually. It's been a while since that session. I forget exactly how that was handled.

TL;DR? Combat sucks. Maybe it'll get better. I'm not holding my breath. Also, sometimes the lesson really is to never try.

We haven't made enough money to be able to rely on a wand for healing. The lack of loot, and the penalty to sale prices, has been one of my major complaints. My summoner who just joined the game brought a wand with him, which has helped. Additionally, we have a gunslinging paladin. If he makes his own bullets it costs him 6 GP per shot. What little money we have come across has largely been spent to keep him in ammunition. Guns, it seems, are a liability. My opinions on them are probably best kept for another thread.

Our Oracle is generally tapped out after a single fight. Our Paladin has Lay On Hands now, but the amount of healing we need far outstrips the amount of healing built into our party. Sinspawn were an early leader for worst thing ever. Their SR rendered my sorcerer useless (It's like... 12 or 13, I know. Couldn't land a spell.), and their ambush sent us back to town after two rooms. Goblins have been less prone to flanking us into pieces, but we're generally picking up at least one unconscious body and curing everyone out of single digit hit points after every fight. Pretty much every inch of dungeon has been hard won for us.

To be fair, we spent a fair amount of time Role Playing. We built characters based on concepts, and played them in ways that made sense. If we had instead built a moderately optimized party of murder hobos we would probably be doing a little better. I'm a little upset that my RPG insists on Roll Playing just to get through it. In my opinion, this is not the highly excellent deserver of praise everyone seems to think it is. It's a fine, but somewhat broken product. As noted before, if your GM is willing to rebuild the world a little it could be fun for your party. Run straight? Well, I doubt we'll get through it.

Latrecis wrote:

That's a hard post to respond to... It may not have even been written in pursuit of a response. But that's not going to stop me from trying ;)

Snipped for length.

I wasn't specifically looking for a reply, but I'll take it.

By "resources" I mainly mean hit points, including potential hit points available via healing. Also spell slots and grit, but hit points are the main thing. Pretty much what happens is we wander into a room, are brutally savaged, and then we go back to town to rest for the day. Our average outing lasts for about five minutes of in character time. I'm not pulling for fights that don't threaten us, but our inability to have two fights in a day is starting to grate.

I do agree that our GM should be reading the module like a novel, but it's a big ass module. Good organization helps to combat the issues he's having. I really bring them up because:
1) I've see notes like the kind I refer to in other printed modules (i.e. - If combat occurs in this room, see notes in B1 & B5). Not all of them, but enough that I recognize it as the hallmark of a well designed product.
2) Some of these things (notably monster blocks) were in the original edition, but have been removed from the anniversary edition. They warranted inclusion once, but not again? I can only assume the release of other products helps to explain this gap.

None of the organizational issues are deal breakers, but they feel like insult added to injury.

Most of this is to say: This is not an amazing product. In my opinion it's barely a good product. I am here to offer counterpoint to the board's opinion at large. If you can get it cheaply, and have a GM who doesn't mind picking through and fixing broken NPCs and adjusting the world to fit your party a bit, then it might be worth it. I don't recommend it anywhere near as unabashedly as the majority of this community would though.

Hum. I might start looking at the first books of my other APs to see how I feel about them. Maybe I can find something I do like.

I'm in a group playing through the module now. I'm not that impressed. There's been a pretty small amount of loot, and since we didn't follow the strict party formation of Fighter, Rogue, Wizard, Cleric we haven't been able to use some of the loot we have found. (We're a Monk (Martial Artist), Paladin (Holy Gun), Oracle and Summoner (Master Summoner). The Summoner just swapped in when the Sorcerer left.)

I don't understand the praise the path earns. There's a little room for role playing, but it's mostly hard won fight after hard won fight. Pretty much every encounter is eating up over half our resources. Either things are badly CR'ed, or the module relies so heavily on the standard party that we're screwed for wanting to play something else.

Also, our GM keeps having a hard time finding things. Monster blocks are either not logically placed, or are simply not part of the text. Encounters that affect us but that are in adjacent rooms aren't noted in relevant locations, so we've either back tracked or simply had to do things slightly wrong. Some maps are detailed as if the party were progressing from the least logical direction. And SR at level 2 seems needlessly punitive.

Overall the whole thing has left a bad taste in my mouth. I've got a couple year's worth of module and AP subscriptions sitting on my shelf at home and this experience has made me wonder if all that support was a major mistake. (Yes, I subscribed for over a year without playing any of it. We were doing home-brew at the time, and I wanted to build up my collection for future games.) We're committed to powering through for as long as we can, but if we make it through book two I'll be surprised.

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I second shadow conjuration. Also, you may find creating illusions to be useful. Check with your GM to see if he'll allow you to cast an illusion to attempt to grant a wished for effect.

As far as I know, people like to turn it off at the beginning of their turn, use both hands (two-handed weapon or two-weapon fighting), then turn it back on.

Additionally, it shouldn't interfear with spell casting or anything else that uses both hands.

It's a force effect, so you should be able to shield bash with it. It should also affect incorporeal things, much as a magic missile would.

It can't be enchanted (it's not actually a shield), so this all seems perfectly reasonable to me. Your mileage may vary. Check with your GM for details.

SRD wrote:

Eldritch Heritage

You are descended from a long line of sorcerers, and some portion of their power flows in your veins.

Prerequisites: Cha 13, Skill Focus with the class skill of bloodline selected for this feat (see below), character level 3rd.

Benefit: Select one sorcerer bloodline. You must have Skill focus in the class skill that bloodline grants to a sorcerer at 1st level (for example, Heal for the celestial bloodline). This bloodline cannot be a bloodline you already have. You gain the first-level bloodline power for the selected bloodline. For purposes of using that power, treat your sorcerer level as equal to your character level – 2, even if you have levels in sorcerer. You do not gain any of the other bloodline abilities.


Mackackee wrote:
My thoughts on Pathfinder are that sometimes what I want isn't there or that some stuff is unnecessarily complicated. So I add in rules or take out rules to provide the experience I want. One of my players has been playing for years and I ask his advice whenever I'm planning on putting in a rule. His general arguments against my rules seem to come from a place of 'if it ain't broke don't fix it'. And he mentioned today that he gets annoyed whenever I try to "reinvent the wheel". I wouldn't exactly use those words and explained that I generally don't see a reason to limit myself. GMing is essentially designing a game, adding in rules is part of the toolset a GM has as far as I'm concerned. He on the other hand seems to see Pathfinder as a sacred document that shouldn't be touched.

Okay, totally with you so far. I don't generally make house rules, but I totally understand the desire to. We had a ton of houserules in 3.x, and eventually it just became more bookkeeping that it was worth.

Mackackee wrote:
Another player is new and has started Gming his own game. I play in that and he uses rules for everything. You want to Barter? Well no need to RP there are rules for rolling. There's a chase? Well this is how the books say how you should do chases. He doesn't seemed thrilled about rule changes in my game either.

Well, essentially correct. But I agree. You should be using those rolls to enhance role-playing not replace it. Though sometimes you just wnat to know if you can have a discount and get back to actual important game matters fast. Maybe this is okay. I haven't seen it in action.

Mackackee wrote:
The other two players. One is onboard with whatever I want to do and we generally agree on our complaints. The other is new and is kind of up in the air.

So... out of five players: one agrees with you, two disagree, one abstains, and one is you. Uh...

Mackackee wrote:
To be clear I do propose the rules at the beginning of the session and hear feedback, make changes based on feedback about balance etc. If everyone hates a rule then I don't put it in.

Wait, every SESSION? Like... every time you sit down to play things can be different?

Mackackee wrote:
I guess my question is: how do I get a player who is focused on rules, and offical rules at that, to be more accepting of house rules even if it didn't come from Paizo?

Have you considered that you may be the problem here? Most of your characters don't support your rule changes, and you're inclined to make extremely frequent changes.

Mackackee wrote:

To give context here are some examples of house rules I've tried/am trying:

I was running a survival campaign and wanted more rules on food, hunger, and survival. So you had to roll 1d4 for each degree of success and 1d4 for how long the food will last and you can cook it for it to last longer. I wanted it to be 1d8 for how long it took you to find the food but that kinda got shot down. I also had an idea for a morale system that revamped starving but that wasn't popular.

Interesting, but it brings me back to consensus building. Did you talk to the other players before launching a survival campaign? They were clearly not that interested in your additional survival rules. Given the amount of bookkeeping they added, I'm not too surprised.

Mackackee wrote:
Learning spells from spellbooks takes too long so I've told them they could just roll 1d4 and they could learn that many spells that day and the die they could roll would go up or down based on how many ranks in spellcraft they have. They often opt out and choose to just roll their spellcraft over and over again, even if their chances are lower.

This seems unnecessary, but harmless. Their choice seems to indicate that they agree. Perhaps their ideas about the relative difficulty of magic are different than yours?

Mackackee wrote:
Right now I'm adding in fumble/crit charts. There will be chances for players to break their weapon on the fumble chart. The problem seemed to be with fragile weapons. No player has a fragile weapon and the chances they'd roll two 1s is much higher than my chart. Plus they're fragile so...

Nope. You lost me. I would walk out of this game. There are too many instances of a character's class being built around their weapon for this to be a good idea in general. And it's far too punitive to me personally to lose a weapon permanently in the middle of a fight. Frankly, fumble charts may seem to make sense, but they rarely actually make the game more fun. If your response to that includes the phrase "doesn't have to be about fun" then I'm double walking away from your table.

Mackackee wrote:
And I'm adding personal quests since a player said he wanted more exp. The rules guy suggested story feats since they're in the book but...that...doesn't really address the issue for the player wanting exp.

Of course your players want more XP. Doing it individually is a really bad idea. Aside from the fact that it unbalances the party, it smacks of GM favoritism.

Mackackee wrote:
Also the main story thing right now is that there is a demon in a spirit form possessing people who then get +4 to their strength mod and two of the players are being buffed by this demon at all times. The demon is also subtype undead for the purposes of detect undead and positive energy doing damage to it. As far as I know this doesn't exist. The players don't know what's happening but seem to love it. However the player that knows all the rules killed a 6 year old kid that was possessed. The player assumed since the kid did a lot of damage on a crit that it would have a lot of health. It had 1hp and the player punched it, the player was a warrior. The player as a person I would consider to be LG, so he was not very happy about that. He also meta gamed and didn't do any knowledge checks.

He meta-gamed? Punching someone is pretty much the opposite of meta-gaming. Unless you're a trained pugilist punching someone is pretty much the worst attack you have. It sounds like he deliberately lowered his own power to try to accommodate for the host, which isn't the sort of thing that should require any kind of knowledge check. This does't look like an example of player's using out of game knowledge in character. It looks more like the GM engineered a no-win scenario.

Mackackee wrote:
My problem isn't disagreements based on balance etc. My problem is that every time I propose a change, I have to get over the hump of 'this isn't in the book, therefore it's bad'.

Okay, so, I was totally on your side at the beginning of this post, but over it's course I've really turned around.

As a GM you can run whatever game you like. As it turns out, if you foster a Player VS GM environment, change rules with little to no notice, or generally don't want to play the same game as the characters then they'll go find other games to play. Newsflash: They're already doing this. Rule Zero isn't there to force what you want onto players. It's for situations that Paizo didn't think of. You're an impartial adjudicator of the world for your players. You may not technically be wrong, but if the other people are your table aren't also enjoying themselves then you're not really right either.

Create Demiplane, Lesser wrote:
As a standard action, you may eject a creature from your demiplane. The creature may resist with a Will saving throw. An ejected creature goes to the closest plane to your demiplane (usually the Astral Plane or the Ethereal Plane, but if you cast this spell on the Material Plane, the creature is sent to the Material Plane).

Bolded for emphasis. You don't go back to where you cast the spell from. You go to the plane where the spell was cast. That's pretty much set down in black and white.

Where specifically on that plane? No idea. Maybe you need to map the demiplane to the plane it's ejecting to and draw logical spatial conclusions. Maybe I also don't have time to figure out how to map a finite three dimensional space to an infinite one during game play (or ever, really). It's going to be a rule zero kind of situation. I vote for the random teleportation results though. That seems like good fun.

Important thing people tend to forget about the Deck of Many things. It's not a deck of cards. Every time you draw a card you randomly determine it's effect from all of the possible effects. Just because you have a card in your hand doesn't mean you can't draw it again. Artifacts aren't subject to your petty "physics" and "logic".

If you opt to believe that Augury can predict the behavior of an artifact (which a a bullet point worthy of it's own debate), then the odds remain against you. There's also the simple question of what is a "good" result and what's a "bad" one. (Skull seems bad, but if you can defeat a Dread Wraith in single combat then it's probably a decent chunk of XP, which is good.) There is only one correct answer to a Deck of Many things. I'm going to freely quote another message board to explain what it is.

Mishara wrote:

Let me explain to you the difference or why your GM is a comic book villain.

They have to monologue.

It works like this. As a PC, you're in it for the loot, the progression, the story, and the conflict. These things are all encompassing. The xp and the loot are the carrots, but the conflict and the villains are the stick. You want to achieve ultimate power for two reasons. The first is that we're all corrupt as hell, and the second is that if you don't, the bad guys burn your house down/destroy the world/win the Pokemon championship or what have you.

GMs have half of that. They have infinite power and loot, and as such it's meaningless. If you've ever had a GM drop a lvl 15 dragon on a group of lvl 2 adventurers, you get this. It isn't plot or conflict; it's just instant death or running away. There's no fun in that. So the GM only has one set of carrots, and those are plot and conflict.

Gremlin, you're talking about hitting a newbie group of PCs with a DoMT. That isn't conflict. That's the lvl 15 dragon. But the thing is, it doesn't matter yet. It's just a riddle. Can they come up with a scheme or wish that's better than yours? If so, cool. If not, boo. But no one's really going to care. It's just a riddle, and the only investment is the character creation time.

Zudz' GM, now, that's a different story. That GM has put time into this. He's got schemes and plots. He's built NPCs you like, hate, and laugh at. He's milking the PCs for all the emotion that he can, like a writer, and that's crack to a GM. His game is progressing. If he drops a horror on them that's too extreme, he ruins his own game. He ruins his master plan, and every GM can tell you how much thought and energy goes into that master plan. He ruins the subplots he thought up in a moment of insomnia, he ruins the character development he's been amused to watch the PCs go through, and he ruins every bit of scheming, manipulation, and cool ideas he's had going on in the background.

Like a comic book villain, he needs the PCs to discover his master plan. Because he's doing this to elicit awe, appreciation, laughter, or what have you. That's the carrot of GMing. And the DoMT is too powerful. If he uses it to anywhere near its full potential, his ongoing plot is shot. His Big Bad and henchmen are lost. He doesn't get to monologue the PCs through the great reveal, and then no one appreciates things.

In short, all his work is ruined for no payoff, and his game disappears like a TV show cancelled too early. And that's why he won't do it. He doesn't have the balls. Because if he wasn't invested in getting that payoff, he wouldn't be running the game.

Now Gremlin, you're talking about bringing a group of PCs together and hitting them with the horror. That's fine. You see, you haven't done any work yet. You'll do it. You'll pull that nightmarish sh*t out of nowhere and Cthulhu it up.

Zudz' GM won't, and that's where the power shifts back to the PCs. If the game is afoot and interesting, he won't shoot you any more quickly than you'll shoot him. And so, as a PC, it is your gift, your moment, nay, your FSM-given duty to f*ck with him. You need to make that bastard pay in agony for all the glorious ruin he wants to rain down upon you and can at any moment....if he abandons all his work up until that moment.

But it has to be bad. Zudz needs to ratchet up the stakes so high, that any retaliation at all is nuclear. If he wishes for waffles and gets face checked with a tennis racket, that's doable. That doesn't burn things. The PCs need to pull the pins out of the grenades, sit on top of a pile of nitro, and start talking mad-bear sh*t. He needs to hold the plot hostage right back.

That's why the Joker explains things to Batman instead of just shooting him. That's why Batman and the PCs always win. Give him hell, Zudz.

Okay, did you suffer through that? It's really quite clever. Here's the answer to a Deck of Many Things. Draw all the cards. A Deck theoretically contains 22 cards. but (as noted previously) physics doesn't apply. So depending on your GM you either say "I will draw 22 cards." or you say "I will draw all of the cards." (Though there's no reason you couldn't draw ten thousand cards, most GMs will balk at this.)

(Hats off to the forums for providing me with this fantastic post.)

Insain Dragoon wrote:

Guys he said he wanted to be viable. A rogue with CHA and INT as his two highest stats is a lost cause for viability.

What he needs is a Bard, Lore Oracle, Sorceror/Wizard, Summoner, or possibly a Paladin.

Also what's OPs Point Buy?

He hasn't said what his point buy is.

Also, I managed to completely forget about Bards. That is a good choice for a skill monkey if you're specifically emphasizing Int and Cha.

What's the rest of the party look like? Str + Con, Dex + Wis? I might like Con + Wis, but that leaves Str + Dex together. Maybe that's okay. Not sure which I'd like better if I were in this game.

I'm in a game with a Holy Gun. The party has been consistently floored by how terrible his gun is. Part of the problem has been that he misfires a bunch. But he's also not getting any real boost to his damage by going up levels. (He did get gun smite, but he's limited by grit so it's unreliable.) Deadly Aim helped, but he's never consistently hit anything and the penalty doesn't help. (+5 Dex mod, full BAB, can't hit the broad side of a barn's touch AC. Yeah, I dunno.)

What I'm saying is that Spellslinger is neat, but I've come to consider guns a liability. Our paladin would have blown himself up one less time (and been bereft of his class features and weapon less frequently) if he had just not taken the archetype and used a bow instead. I wouldn't recommend trading an asset (four schools of magic) for a liability (the gun). Do basically anything else. Make wands with triggers if it makes you happy, just don't use a gun.

Blaster Sorcerer is an option. Skill Monkey Rogue/Ninja could work as well. Also, consider Summoner.

What're your build limitations? Your stats rolled / point allotment can drastically alter what this character looks like.

I'd be tempted to go Master Summoner. You get casts of Summon Monster (scaling by level) off of your CHA, and the monsters last 1 minute/level instead of 1 round/level. Master Summoner in particular let you have as many summons out at once as you please (unless you use your eidolon, so ... don't) and nets you Augment Summoning.

First round: Summon a thing.
Second round: Buff someone. Probably your thing.
Third round: ... ready an action to summon a thing when your current thing dies?

It's probably a build that would benefit from UMD and cure wands. Unless you actually need to burn a bunch of summons all at once to build yourself an army.

All that said, I'm a big fan of Ninja recently. At level 2 you can take Vanishing Trick to turn invisible as a swift action. You spend ki to do it, and ki comes from your CHA. Not being able to boost your DEX and / or STR could be pretty painful in the long run though. Still, skill monkey rogue is a time honored tradition. You could make it work with a little effort.

aceDiamond wrote:
And here I was hoping Disney World...

And from now on, in games I run, it will be.

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