Mask of the Mantis

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One foot of stone isn't unexpected for some walls, and if a villain had the resources I'd expect them to line thin doors/walls with lead to block divinations.

If you have a fight in the middle of the battle, one thing you could do is make a table you can roll for random events each round (volley of arrows, stray spells, reinforcements, etc.) or for how the battle progress in different areas.

I played the first few books of Skulls & Shackles, Druid's are very useful in that setting - ESPECIALLY in the first book, if you're just starting.

I played a lizardman dinosaur shaman and he was one of my favorite characters ever - mostly for RP reasons, but the druid class is very versatile.

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Mathmuse wrote:
Badaxes are respected enough to name a city after them: Bad Axe, Michigan.

I was going to point this out! Grew up twenty minutes from there. :)


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Should probably be in the PFS forum, but I'll say that you mostly want to be prepared for almost anything. Have ways to deal with DR of all kinds (silver, cold iron, DR/good, etc), swarms, mindless creatures, a source of flight/climb and some light to counter darkness effects (oil of Daylight is good at this).

I'm sure others can be more helpful as I've been out of the game for a while.

Spellslinger lets you add weapon enhancement bonus to spell DCs, IIRC.

You could probably find a few pics of kappa that would work.

Wonderstell wrote:

I love it, definitely gotta remember that one.

Also never thought of that. I think the simplest answer, and one that many GMs might be tempted to adopt, is that it's simply a special modification of the spell or ability that doesn't let you take anyone along for the ride. Not really a satisfying answer though.

I'm playing a druid in Serpent's Skull, and it's a blast! You get so many useful utility spells, and wild shape is quite versatile. Huge dino for killing? Check. Tiny flyer for scouting? Quite. Elementals for passing through walls and private conversations on the wing (not to mention carrying your while party long distances)? Loads of fun. :)

Had a friend who played a treesinger with a treant companion named "Rustle Rustle." He mostly cast spells from atop it and turned into various mushroom forms to spread poison, I think. (The biologist in me winced at the idea of calling fungus plants every time, but that's Pathfinder for you!) I don't know specific forms, but there are some okay ones if you look.

I played a gnome spellslinger in Dragon's Demand once. Ended up creating a cult that worshipped my pistol. Good times.

It's a terrible archetype, but fun to play. Our game was pretty non-serious though, probably helped.

Take a look at some of the Eldest (Fey gods, essentially). I know some of them are LG or close to it, though I'm don't recall any specifics.

I was going to say Frostbite, but I see you said "caster" druid. Do druids get the snowball spells? If not, I'm not sure how many cold spells you can access early on, that element is typically a bit higher-level.

It sounds like a lot of this depends on perception. You see the woman as kind and doing the best she can - did your players pick up on this? You've mentioned how she followed downcast behind her son, which has a certain meaning for you, but it's easy for players to misunderstand cues. In someone's imagination, she may simply be following respectfully and showing commitment. One interpretation makes her seem much more wicked.

I've generally found it helpful to be explicit about my intended meaning, both when role-playing with NPCs and describing events as a GM. I've had many misunderstandings that were cleared up by simply explaining what I had been trying to imply. I like to give the players a bit of fluff description, followed by any specific impressions their characters would have, especially if they're engaging and using sense motive (your players may not have). A simple change from "She walks behind, looking at the ground" to "She trods along as if resigned to her fate."

Anyway, I don't know what your interactions are like, so this may or may not be helpful. In any case, that's my advice.

Polymorphic Pouch would get the item within reach at least, whatever that means for a hippo. Using a rod would be trickier though, I think you'd just have to ask your GM.

Indeed, adding hordes of underlings would probably be fun for the players at least. Just be mindful of AoEs.

I have a friend in PFS and a few home games that enjoys massively overpowered characters. His father is one of our top GMs, and often slips in extra monsters to give the paladin their own fight, so to say, while the rest of the party fights the rest of the battle. You could have a badass demon challenge your player to a duel to the death while the other players fight the remaining enemies. Try playing to his ego or something.

Hi all,

I recently moved to the area, and I'm looking to get back into playing Pathfinder with a group of relatively mature like-minded individuals (I already miss my gaming buddies up north!).

I can play in the Barstow/Fort Irwin area, or can travel a bit farther if you're willing to play on the weekends. I value roleplaying, intelligent play/characters, and fun people to hang with.

Hit me up if you know any opportunities! :)

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He could probably keep attacking, assuming he wasn't using a two-handed weapon or the like. Though he may still be able to switch to a smaller/natural weapon.

Best case, you get him to punch you a few times and possibly provoke. :)

Dalindra wrote:
Blackwaltzomega wrote:
Vampires being able to nonlethally feed on animals is usually only a thing if the setting specifically allows it to be. Most of the time it's dragging someone into a dark place and then cracking them open like a red bull, which is kind of different from you and the orc family down the street both enjoying bacon for breakfast.

I have revised the Vampire template and I don't see any rule that states they have to kill anybody. Quite the opposite, their feeding just deals 1d4 CON damage. That would hardly be able to kill someone. Plus:

Blood of the Night wrote:
A vampire who refuses to feed on intelligent beings is relegated to the dull taste of animal blood out of necessity.

There's an intriguing implication there. Animal blood might do the job, but human blood is just so... invigorating.

I'm surprised this hasn't been mentioned yet.

Glitterdust could easily be "Blinded by the Light." :P

Luckily, we encountered a crazy hermit-priest of gozreh during our travel, I figure my druid chatted with him for a while, at least.

I'm thinking I might go with some kind of torpor for a day. Maybe less, like being unable to wake for guard duty one night. And I'll use that dream idea, meet my scaled god or something.

I suppose it'd be much easier to play it as a gradual shift if I hadn't traded the totem transformation (I asked the GM to allow the natural armor bonus to stack, and we ended up with just boosting my natural armor by 1) :p

Thanks for the suggestions!

Hi all,

I'm currently playing a lizardman saurian druid in a Serpent's Skull game (great fun so far, just starting book 2). I'm on the cusp of gaining wildshape next level, and I'm trying to imagine ways that my character would go about practicing how to change forms before fully learning how. Unfortunately, I've hit a bit of a mental block. Any suggestions that might help fuel my creativity?

Thanks in advance!


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I don't remember the exact scenario, but we recently encountered a water elemental (or genie maybe?) that we needed something from. The particular character I was playing frequently makes crass attempts at flirting, and early on gave a compliment on her "frothy ripples."

Honestly it didn't sound so dirty until it left my mouth. XD

That FAQ/rule always made me sad that most animal-shaman druids don't have any forms (of certain sizes) to turn into of their given animal type.


I don't think I've ever played a PC below 12 CON in PFS. I have a tengu ranger that softens up targets with arrows before moving into melee, and that works well enough for the most part. I added +2 CON to my strength belt when I could, and try to keep his AC up. Sadly, they changed the Amatuer Swashbuckler feat, so no more parry without giving up a level. =/

I wouldn't recommend frontlining unless you had some other defenses, like a reliable means of blur or something, or a swashbuckler with really high AC.

Don't forget saves, too.

Regardless of moral implications, it certainly does seem like a pretty interesting character concept. Maybe needs a bit of polish, though.

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This is a silly question. Use common sense like the developers have said (multiple times) and realize it's just a variation on sneak attack.

HibikiSatsuo wrote:

I think you're extracting a lot from the ability summary. Uncanny Dodge specifies exactly how "rogues can react to danger before their senses allow her to do so", they aren't considered flat-footed before they act in combat or even before they're aware combat has begun. Their dodge is uncanny because they're dodging attacks they were unaware of. However they certainly can be unaware, which is a game term defined under determining surprise not an arbitrary phrase. Uncanny Dodge mentions nothing about surprise or awareness, it only mentions flat-footedness and the ability to add Dex to AC. Because hidden strike only cares about awareness and not flat-footedness it can be used on rogues who don't know a threat exists even though they still get dex to AC.

It would be odd for Uncanny Dodge to mention "unawareness" specifically since it was only recently defined.

HibikiSatsuo wrote:
Hidden strike isn't sneak attack. Hidden strike applies in all ways that sneak attack does dealing d4s of damage. It also applies in two ways that sneak attack doesn't. It applies when the target considers the vigilante a friend and when the target is unaware of the striker. In these cases it does d8s of damage. In addition to all this and to solidify that Hidden strike is definitely a new thing it also applies against targets with concealment. So yes Pathfinder did change that.

A rogue attacking an unaware target (I.e. a failed perception check) would still get sneak attack. They could also get sneak attack if they attack a supposed "ally," though it would probably require a bluff check.

Both of these work for the same reason: they effectively make the target flat-footed.

dragonhunterq wrote:

I don't think you can.

you can only retrain specific class features, that list does not include weapon and armour proficiencies

I would extend this FAQ to apply to weapon proficiencies gained by the 'weapon and armour proficiency' feature. There is no real logic in treating them differently.

That's a reference to a fighter (for example) training away martial weapons or heavy armor proficiency for another feat. I think a kensai, who has to choose a single weapon to specialize in, is a bit of a different animal.

Paulicus wrote:

The old Shadow Conjuration/evocation guides had some good flavoring for disbelieving your own illusions, though that's more about how to fluff it after deciding if it's mechanically possible.

Couldn't find the link with a quick search, hopefully it's still out there. =s

Just to follow up (flavor/discussion starts on page 7).

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The old Shadow Conjuration/evocation guides had some good flavoring for disbelieving your own illusions, though that's more about how to fluff it after deciding if it's mechanically possible.

Couldn't find the link with a quick search, hopefully it's still out there. =s

Seems rather obvious that a racial trait giving +10 to all skills is very powerful, and (now confirmed) not intended.

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Anonymous Warrior wrote:
GM 1990 wrote:

I was thinking CHA for UMD also seemed a little "off". figuring out how to use the device sounds a lot more like INT - IE solving a Rubik cube, than force of personality.
As for UMD, it's not figuring out how to make an item work, but rather making it work through force of will. You do have to make the check each time you go to use the wand/item/etc, and a natural 1 is always a failure, which isn't in keeping with having it all figured out. Further, the reason you can't use spellcraft to 'fake out' a wand or staff is because spellcraft is "getting" the item and understanding whether or not you have the power to legitimately use the item.

(Emphasis mine).

Just a quick clarification: a natural 1 isn't auto-fail for any skill checks, including UMD. There are just penalties if you roll a 1 on UMD and fail (if you succeed on a 1 you're in the clear).

On topic, I personally like the idea of subbing in different attributes for skills in specific situations. I thought there were other systems that called this out (D&D 4 or 5e, maybe?). I think L5R was another system that had 'typical' attributes for skills, but allowed switching them if the situation called for it.

As others have said, it's especially damaging for a witch. In the interest of personal feelings and keeping players interesting in the game, targeting a familiar/spellbook should be rare, and there should be a good reason to do so.

It also helps if your players know that you aren't out to screw them by wasting their money destroying their spellbooks (or witch's familar). Little reminds at the start of campaigns like, "FYI, sundering/stealing items are free game tactics in my world, but as a GM I'll make sure that you are appropriately/evenly equipped for you levels and challenges you are intended to face." Or something similar.


It'd be similar to allowing guidance to boost day job checks.

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They use the minimum ability modifier, like a scroll.

If they're range touch they should still require touching of some sort, whether wand or hand.

There are two relevant spells that are easy to confuse:

* "Command Undead" is lower-level, and is more like a Charm effect.

* "Control Undead" is higher-level, and more like Dominate

The undead channel feat uses the high-level spell effect (I.e. Dominate).

Command Undead feat emulates the Control Undead spell. Confusing wording :p

That's why you always buy a dagger.

Also good for cutting rope, fish, and steak. :P

I had a similar character (spell slinger is so bad, but fun!) that wanted to animate a wicked trap that we found and disabled. The pricing for animated objects is weird though, and can give multiple answers depending on how you do it.

I think I ended up using a permanent animate objects (and shrink item so I could carry it around).

That said, it wouldn't be a terrible idea to allow a darkness effect in a home game. Maybe a second discovery to make it Deeper Darkness.

Order of operations doesn't seem to matter (except in the case of a near-miss to pop an image).

The real question being asked is "do the mirror images also benefit from blur/displacement?" I think the answer is yes, given reasons provided above.

Energy resistance on the target of Life Link would work.


A friend of mine came up with an interesting idea during a discussion we were having. To be clear, we haven't seen this come up during play.

Would Life Bubble provide immunity to Suffocation? The main suggestion is that Life Bubble allows the subject to "breathe freely." Would it work? Is it intended?

For consideration, I also brought up the effects of Chokehold and a called shot to the neck in relation to Life Bubble and whether one so afflicted would still be able to breathe. Additionally, I just thought of a cave in as another example to consider where breathing might be difficult.

What are your thoughts, rules forum?

I think camoflauge meets would be a good reference for this idea. Maybe not strict RAW, but clever.

Finding another deity seems like a fun idea. Maybe one of vengeance so he can make the PC's pay for their meddling.

A torch vs swarm is a classic fantasy trope. And it's only 1 damage, there's no reason to disallow it.

The same reasoning applies to flaming weapons. Let the fighter do something besides ask his wizard buddy to help.

If it was a blanket deathward-like effect it would cost more than +1 armor bonus. That'd be a really strong ability.

Bracers/mage armor is an armor bonus. Shield spell is a shield bonus. Neither of those apply to CMD. That was his point.

Force effects apply to touch AC under certain circumstances (incorpereal creatures) but not always.

Edit: bah, semi-ninjas.

Semantics. It doesn't really matter which direction drain works, Con drain will kill you anyway.

Colloquial English, not technical writing.

I don't know if ranged weapons ever get a 1 or 2-handed designation. Still, I don't think many GMs would allow it.

I've never seen it run that way, effectively giving casters a free spring attack w/ AoO with a touch spell (ignoring magus and spellstrike).

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