It just is. The mix of adventuring goals and community concerns has lead to several bizzare events during our campaign.
The kidnapped boy Tig Tiggerson was not rescued for six months due to failed tracking roles. When returned, he displayed sociopath tendancies and a disturbing interest in the practice of torture. With a mix of guilt and opportunitism, the council trained and installed Tig as the new Royal Assassin. (Apparently creepy trumps unrest!)
Upon the investigation of a local conspiracy, the marshal discovered one of his deputies had turned traitor. The deputy claimed she'd turned because of the hostile work enviroment among the deputy marshals. Enraged, the marshal put the entire conspiracy out on a brutal road gang, but salved his conscience by paying them top craftsmans wages.
After having to capture so many suspects alive, the marshal took the proactive step of buying a masterwork sap. When challenged to explain the 300 gp expense for the item, he explained that the sap was "a perfectly balanced sap filled with gold dust and wrapped in rich Corinthian leather."
The DMs tendancy to target mounts led to the proposal that flag be changed to "a dead horse, supine before a mound of dead horses, on a field of dead horses motif." This proposal died in council, but funds were set aside to build a royal stable in all cities in the barony.
As more and more attempts at recruiting and diplomacy ended in brutal homicides, the council began to fear they were drifting from their intention to build a "lawful" state. The problem was solved by adding an amendment to the charter stating that "The refusal to answer questions or communicate with members of the council is punishable by death." All nice and legal!
Last night in battle with the cultists of Razmir, a fight breaks out:
Druid: All religions are like this - these guys could be assassins from Abadar...
Cleric of Abadar: What?! No they aren't, shut up tree hugger!
Druid: C'mon, you guys will do anything for gold...
Cleric: Look, first of all, have you SEEN me operate a crossbow??
<Party murmurs assent>
Druid: Yeah, you suck, but the church could hire...
Cleric: Dammit, everybody worth stabbing we insure!!
Yes, indeed, particularly if you also point out possible character background ideas from the material. I find in my group that the part we struggle with most is coming up with viable backgrounds for the settings. (and, of course, NAMES.)
You guys do good interviews, but honestly what keeps me coming back is your round table analysis!
That's My Deity! - Discussion on each deity, including which characters should worship - could tie in with the upcoming book.
Companions and Cohorts: Builds that won't cause your DM to put a hit out on you and effectively managing them. Stuff I'd ask:
I'd also like to endorse James Thomas's idea of a "Know your game" segment. PF is so like 3.5 that a lot gets lost in the transition. Things I'd love discussion of:
A short "State of the Pathfinder Society" report for each show.
Finally, not really a Companion thing, but I've been enjoying your Adventure Path episodes and was wondering if you guys would be willing to take a look at the "obsolete" paths - particularly Legacy of Fire, Crimson Throne, and the problematic Second Darkness. These paths have great fun in them, but require heavy selling to get players interested. Your podcast did a great job of this for CoT, perhaps you'd be willing to do it for the early paths?
Thanks for a terrific podcast and keep up the good work!
Agreed - this should probably be a mid-level ability, though.
Skinning Strike - The magus sacrifices a prepared spell. His next successful strike lowers the targets spell resistance by the level of the sacrificed spell for 1 hour. The magus cannot stack this effect with multiple strikes, but it will stack with the strikes of other maguses.
Fast Shot - When engaging in spell combat, the magus may take a concentration check to make a ranged touch attack as part of a spell without incurring attacks of opportunity. If the check fails, the spell is lost. (Perhaps an improved version that allows this for spell trigger items?)
Spell on the Run- As a full round action, you may take a single move and cast a spell at any point during that move.
I think the pregens are necessary in at least the first volume of an AP and in the standalone modules - they've saved our bacon a couple times when we had drop-in players.
Personally, I would be sorry to see the pregens go. They're one of the first things I turn to when I get the AP, because they give me a moderate benchmark on where a PC should be at that level and ideas for character design(This has become much more important with the release of the new core rules.) In fact, the pregens are the only real way to check a PCs equipment loadout - not just the pluses on the swords, but also the number and power level of the wonderous items and consumables.
I also owe the iconics a debt - they've been a constant, gentle reminder that a character does not have to be optimised to be fun to play. I doubt I'd have tried to play a cleric of Abadar without their examples, and I'm having a blast with it.
I would like to point out that if the pregens are removed, then it would be wise for Paizo to find another use for the iconics. Let's face it, you spent a lot of time and money developing these characters backstories and visuals - once you drop the pregens, they become "the guys who always show up in the art." Seems a waste.
Given that this is a contentious topic, I should be upfront about my reasons for posting the thread:
I think crossbows look badass, and dwarves with crossbows look even cooler. There's a good reason Mr. Reynolds threw that spanner into the iconic works, and a generation of miniature modelers have not hesitated to back his play.
So here's my solution. Hang on tight, this gets complicated.
Make the repeating crossbow a martial weapon.
... okay, that seemed longer in my head. Take a long lunch.
Seriously, I think this squares the circle. The repeating crossbow was made an exotic weapon in order (I assume) to keep them less desirable than the longbow and thus more rare (there's only so much steampunk a fantasy setting can take). But there are already two very good reasons to choose a longbow over a repeater that don't screw up character generation like that feat does:
1) Weight. A repeating crossbow weighs 4 lbs. more than an equivalent crossbow, which is impressive, considering longbows weigh less than 4 lbs. altogether. Characters attempting to sidestep STR penalties will learn the error of their ways without paying a feat penalty.
2) Cost. Good gracious. A heavy repeating crossbow is four times the cost of a composite longbow. Which means, if you think about it, that you could buy a +3 STR bow for the same money and wipe out the damage difference with a stroke.
And now, three reasons I want repeaters as martial weapons:
1) The Rapid Reload feat is stupid. Seriously, it's just ridiculous. "Historically, the crossbow was a slow weapon, but take this feat and you can fire it five times a round!" So it's a feat that applies only to two weapons on the entire list and exists only to keep PCs interested in those weapons after level 10? Give me some of that!
2) A repeating crossbow is not an exotic weapon. "Exotic" in Pathfinderspeak means "More likely to kill the wielder than the enemy". There's no way a repeater takes the same level of training a double weapon or spiked chain requires. Hard to maintain? That I buy, but that still should be within the powers of a well trained (martially trained, hint, hint) soldier.
3) These things should exist. They should be seen holstered on the saddles of rich nobles, waved significantly by the Captain of the city guard, and gripped in the shaking hands of grizzled tunnelfighters inching their way towards ambush. Or, yes, in the hands of PCs. As it is, by the time a crossbow enthusiast finally manages to save the money for a repeater they find they can't bear to pay the feat cost as well. (Yes, I'm probably projecting there.)
That's my arguement. I take full responsibility for any flamewars that break out, but I swear I did it only for the dream.
A dream of a dwarf running, laughing, over a shining green field...
...firing constantly at the panicked goblins before him...
...empting that repeater. Bringing that Dakka.
Vital Strike's language is unnecessarily complex in my opinion.
Agreed, though my personal peeve is the use of "attack action" rather than "standard action". There are so many single-attack actions that might plausibly be combined with Vital Strike: Spring Attack, Deadly Stroke, and charges, to name a few. The way it's left open is liable to cause a lot of arguements at the table.
Still, I'm grateful for Vital Strike. Many's the time, I begged for a feat like this while wailling on a resistant foe or chasing down a clever thief in 3.5!
We've been running RotR for a year and a half now. Currently, our party is wandering aimlessly though the streets of Xin.
Xabat, Barbarian turned Fighter: Runaway from the Shoanti equivalent of the Manson Family, he's attempting to go civilized, with mixed results. Has been obsessed with killing Karzog ever since his wife’s branding by MokMorian's giants. Due to a severe drug reaction, he is convinced that the clan hawk totem is stalking him, causing him to forswear all contact with giant raptors.
Shammy, Gnome Sorceror. Specializes in horrifying electrical spells. Is always spoiling and endangering her morose but loyal riding dog familiar Tersie. A legendary grudge holder, she recently ended a ten-level cat-and-mouse game with the druid of Thistletop, earning the title "Demigod of Goblin Death."
Kelmer, Tattooed Monk. Learned the way of the Tat from the owner of the Meditation Center in exchange for dedicating his life to Ioroi. Is "totally gonna get around to that soon." Recently discovered his spendthrift wife was in fact a rakshasa casually enslaving the Sandpoint citizenry, forcing the party to annul the marriage “with extreme prejudice.”
Delder , Dwarven Cleric and Ordained Champion (aka CoDzilla) of Iomadae. Formerly designated successor of Sandpoint’s village priest, now engaged in popularity battle with new arrival from the Church of Asmodeus. Prefers the prayers that explode. Had alignment flipped for 3 levels due to curse; neither PCs nor Iomadae noticed.
Fujuka , Humble Traveler from Cheliax. (“Ninja? No such thing.”) Cousin of Rusty Dragon Proprietor. Currently being hunted by pajama-wearing House Thrune assassins; hasn’t worn his real face for eight levels. Master of vanishing – often does it right in the middle of an adventure, to the party’s dismay.
Camora, Varisian Bard and Cloaked Dancer. Born in the wagon of a Varisian show, currently dancing for the money they throw. Possesses the most powerful weapon in the group: a dancing bladed scarf inhabited by her nagging grandmother. Dedicated Thessolonian otaku attempting to earn Pathfinder Society membership. (If she survives Xin, she’s a total lock!)
The party has recently gained a new recruit, a druid who undoubtedly has a name of some sort. His dire bear companion is looking to form a support group with Shammy’s familiar.
The group was given a bonus feat from the companion, a respec at 6th level, and uses action points.
But is there a reason your wisdom is so high? I would probably drop it for a better strength, particularly since you rae apparently not going weapon finese despite having a better dex then strength.
It takes 10 points to get 14 Str after the penalty. Bitter experience has taught me to jack the Will save when I can.
It occurs to me that I've been overlooking a strength of the Gnome - it's charisma bonus! Intimidate doesn't take a penalty from size or strength, and those feats are just sitting there...
This is with the hooked hammer:
STR 13 (7)
Might work better without the 2WF, but I like the free double weapon. Do we know if you can Vital Strike doing the Deadly Blow's single attack?
Meabolex's build is solid, but a little passive for my taste. I think I'd prefer to play the double-weapon "buzzsaw" build and trade the trip feats for Double Slice and TW Defense.
Moving in heavy armor sucks -- but at least those penalties go away at 7th level.
I'd forgotten all about this! Score one for the Pathfinder fighter!
It's just a -2 penalty (-1 str mod + size mod), isn't it?
My problem with it is that the tripper build forces you to put points in INT, costs 2 feats to begin, and you can only trip Medium or smaller creatures. There's also the fact that if you fail the trip by 10 (remember that penalty?) you are forced to drop your weapon or fall prone yourself - and both choices suck.
Oh, man, another small race loyalist (halfling man, myself). Come, let us sit on the ground and tell sad stories...
There is no good build for a small fighter. We've been hosed since 3.5 released, and while Pathfinder didn't make things worse, it didn't make things any better. Any melee build you can think of will be struggling against the gnome's intractable strength, CM, and speed penalties (especially in heavy armor). You suck before you even start.
That said, the hooked hammer is a pretty good idea. It's not a great weapon, but the TWF style helps a small character a lot and you'll save a bunch of feats and concentrate your weapon training properly. But for the love, do not bother with the trip property, it's a waste of time with your CM penalty.
I would also like to see more two-weapon feats, particularly an expanded defense tree, a charge feat, and the option to use a non-light off-hand weapon at reduced penalty.
An expansion of the Improved Familiar list would be appreciated. (Specifically, riding dog familiars are very popular with my group.)
A feat lowering the penalty for using over/under size weapons would be nice. Think of Amiri!
Some feats would be appreciated for the crossbow and sling, to make them more competitive with the bow group. (I miss Harsk's old feat...)
Boring, but what I want most to see are more Mass versions of the regular buffing spells. It drives me crazy that in every new edition of D&D, Mass Resist Energy turns up in splatbooks, but never makes it to the next corebook. Ridiculous! Without the Masses, preparing spellcasters are forced to sullenly pack their heads with redundant spells. We need help here!
Some more masses I'd like to see:
Fly (at the minimum!)
I like the new fighter, but one of it's new abilities does bother me: the feat swapping ability.
At 4th level and every 4 after, the fighter can swap out one of his bonus feats for a new bonus feat, if it is not a prerequisite for another feat, etc.
Which is good! Much needed flexibility!
Also bad! Because you can only swap out one feat, and you have to have chosen it as a bonus feat.
The best swap is obviously the one at 4th level, which gives one last chance to change your mind about your main weapon before Weapon Training locks you down. (Oh, you chose an exotic weapon? Well, you're hosed then, ain't ya?) At the higher levels, this ability starts to require a level of planning equal to a sorceror's spells known or Versatile Performance.
I think this ability needs a power-up to make thing easier on us poor muddle-headed fighter players. Possible changes in order of increasing severity:
* Fighter may switch out any one combat feat.
* Fighter may instead change the (parenthesis) in a weapon feat chain over to another weapon.
*Fighter may swap out a feat chain.
Which do you like, or is there a better way? And hey, those who like it as is, how do you take advantage of it?
I also would like a Monster PC sourcebook - I've been dreaming about running an all-monster campaign ever since Savage Species broke my heart.
I second the "variant rules" book as well - this would be a great way to show off new ideas without impacting backwards compatibility.
A softcover or "pocket" guide would be very popular with my semi-impoverished group.
But most of all...
The 3.5 product I loved most was the Deluxe Character Sheet pack. A big 11 x 17 character sheet specifically tailored to each character class that could be folded into a sweet four-page booklet. Add in the spell list pages and animal companion character sheets, and you've got one of the ultimate game aids. I would kill for a PFRPG version of this, especially if it included the advanced classes.
As a player, I am not especially taken with the new base classes in their current form - they'll need a lot more tweaking before they'll fit in with the Big 11.
But as written, these are KICKASS evil NPC classes! The cavalier is the perfect foil for your party's snotty paladin, and a great way to design Hellknights for Pathfinder campaigns.
The inquisitor would make a great recurring baddie. Imagine him as the evil cult fanatic leading an unsavory posse, relentlessly chasing the PCs across the countryside! Those tactical feats would make him great at leveraging minions.
Everytime I try to picture an alchemist PC, I get a horrible vision of a schumuck covered in sloshing glass. But stick him and the PCs in a flaming lab, and you've got a boss fight for the ages!
The summoner's the best of the lot - it's one of the few classes I've seen that could pull off a solo spellcaster encounter with the PCs under the PFRPG's tougher spellcasting rules.
The oracle? Spice up your temple fight! Witch? The perfect evil mastermind!
Anyway, I'm just writing to ask that the designers include lots of options for evil characters in the finished product. I'm sure that once the shakedown is done, these classes will even better options for the DM!
This is one of those things that drove me crazy when I was reading the previews and later, the PFRPG - all these excellent new abilities the classes are promised after 16th level. If Paizo won't be creating adventures at that level, what is the point? What a waste of precious design time! (Don't even get me started on the whole 'balanced capstone ability' thing.)
Sorry, that was way too grumpy. =) But I have to tell you, when hardened game designers balk at doing high-level adventures in the PFRPG, there isn't much incentive for the amateurs to try. I hope Mr. Jacobs and the others find a cost-effective way to do more high -level adventures (perhaps the Pathfinder Society could help?) I really believe the PFRPG is a big step toward a game playable at all 20 levels, but first it needs a long, hard 20-step shakedown cruise.
I probably just missed this...
The spellcasting classes list several spell-like abilities as part of the 1st level of domains/bloodlines/schools (Example: artificer's touch from the Artifice domain.) I cannot find mention of what their spell level would be for the purposes making of concentration checks.
Each new version of D&D comes with its own quirks of gameplay. What changes do you see coming with the PFRPG? Post your guesses, and we'll see how right you are!
Barbarians emerge as the new Kings of the Flank! The class's superior hit die, speed, and armor class makes it perfect for attempting the new higher-risk tumble check, especially as newly cautious rogues begin to adopt a slower "novocaine" approach that takes advantage of their mastery of the 5' step.
What do you think, sirs?
I have a real problem with Versatile at the higher levels. I mean, really, in 3.5 how many bards took 4 perform skills at peak level? Two, yes, absolutely, especially with the new emphasis on visual and audio, but a bard is going to need the use of those other 28 skill points - he can't afford to bank them in the hopes of being awesome at 14th.
There's another problem too: it's very unlikely that you will gain 8 unrelated skills. Looking at the list, Bluff and Diplomacy crop up four times each in a nine item list. It's gonna be hard to dodge overlap. (And remember: there's no such thing as a van in a D&D world. Better not dump stat Str or the harpsicord stays at home.)
This may get solved later with the development of new performs (I'm trying to develop stage magic, but I can't figure out what to call it!) but in the meantime? I wish I had the option to substitute bonus feats...
I think everybody had one ridiculously hopeless thing they hoped would be fixed in the PFRPG. Mine? Small fighters. I LOVE playing halflings, but ever since The Shrinking of The Weapons in 3.5, I could only play casters and thieves; I couldn't propose playing a halfing barbarian to my group for fear that they'd knock me prone and begin threatening opportunity attacks.
When I heard about PFRPG, my heart leapt -- but I knew it was hopeless. But somewhere in Paizo HQ, someone felt my pain. And they responded -- by making halflings suck at range too.
Oh, losing the thrown/sling attack bonus wasn't so bad, I guess - I mean, all the races had to make sacrifices, right? (Pity those poor elves weeping over their spell penetration bonuses...) Besides, halflings got their own racial martial weapon, the halfling sling staff! True, the only way halfings can use it is by taking a level IN A MELEE CLASS, but never mind!
No, what's bugging me is the new Rapid Reload feat. It bugs me because it has been transformed, for no apparent reason, into the Rapid Crossbow Reload feat. In 3.5 the feat allowed slings to be reloaded at speed, but in the PFRPG anyone using the spanking new sling staff has no way to up their firing rate, forcing them to toss it aside at the mid-levels. Seriously, why create a racial weapon only to nerf it three chapters on?
Oh, don't worry, I WILL houserule this, but the question stands: Why would someone mess with this at all? Did kenders screw up your campaign world? Ewoks blow up your generators? What gives??
See this concept I don't get, where does the Hellknight get pegged as blackguards. Yeah they wear creepy armour, and yes they can be prone to corruption. But there's nothing inherently evil about the organization. In fact Paizo staff have even commented that it's possible to have a paladin hellknight.
True, but that's why I'm excited to see this hypothetical new blackguard!
The Hellknights weren't necessarily evil, but devils supplied much of their power (equipment anyway). The new blackguard might be like the 4E warlock - selling their souls to evil for the power to adventure!
Okay, follow along with me here.
Jason said they created four new classes due to the existance of conceptual and mechanical niches for them.
If you assume that the PFRPG exists to support Paizo's published adventures (HUGE asumption there), then these new base classes might be necessary to support concepts in the Pathfinder Campaign Setting.
Assuming this, Blackguard is a perfect new base; A world with Hellknights in it requires a 20 level "anti-paladin" class.
Plausible? And if it is, what other kinds of classes does the PFCS demand?
D'oh, that's right, you can only have the highest enhancement bonus. Thanks Zark!
Ooh, here's a question: in his gear, our monk has an oil of g. magic fang +3. If he applies it, are his fists still firey? Or does the oil bonus replace the amulet's property?
I also urge that magic fang oil be replaced with a magic fang lotion - get magic bonuses and prevent dryness and cracking! (I suppose we could do a toothbrush of magic fang...but good luck applying it!)
My group has two female players out of the eight.
(We also have two female non-players - a two year-old daughter of two of our players, and a 13 year-old daughter of another player, recruited to babysit the three year-old; the singing was getting distracting.)
The DM's wife plays a Gnome sorcerer with a riding dog familiar (we nicknamed her the Goblin's God of Death.) They're both long-term, hardcore D&D players.
The player's wife is currently playing a Varisian Dancing Bard to the hilt. She likes playing with us, but prefers her other character in a 1st edition Ravenloft game. (which starts at 11 pm!!)
My main worry with the bard is combat effectiveness. The changes in the class center on it's ability to buff or baffle others and it's tremendous non-combat abilities. This is essential stuff - especially when doing adventure paths! - but it isn't SEXY, not like damage bonuses or combat feats or extra spell-like abilities. I fear that this class will be a much tougher sell than the others for my combat-happy party.
Oh, and would it be possible to have the concentration check bonus included in the stat blocks from now on? I know the calculation isn't difficult, but it would make the use of a NPC spellcaster just a little easier.