Prankster Illusionist

Piccolo Taphodarian's page

317 posts. Alias of Maddigan.


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I changed the treasure as well. I turned Gorum's Thorn into a bow. I thought the name sounded more like a bow. Since I'm converting the series to 5E, I used this as a chance to deliver some very nice magic items to the players given the low magic nature of 5E.

Steel_Wind wrote:
Piccolo Taphodarian wrote:

This module was the weakest in the path so far.

I am still digesting this volume of the AP after 4 read throughs; however, it is my favorite so far -- by a great margin. I also think it is Tim Hitchcok's best outing since Kingmaker Vol 1: Stolen Land.

The sandboxy nature and two set piece dungeons are wonderfully mixed in with a regional adventure hex crawl which has great promise, provides great opportunity to customize and to bring the setting -- and the villains -- to life. And it all hangs together, too.

As the nature of what the Giants are doing with the human tribute (Flash to indelible scene of Mom being eaten in Attack on Titan) the role of humans as food is underscored in this volume to a dark and pleasing degree. The politics here is outside of the borders of this Valley. Within it, with a few exceptions, you are Giants or you are food. That has a clarity and a singleness of moral purpose that I found refreshing. And finally, it was DARK and GRITTY.

An ogre is going nuts near tearing apart a Crofter's Cottage near Shinnerman's Fortune because she can't fit up the stairs to reach a crying human baby and the smell of it is driving her mad with hunger. LOVED IT.

Are we crystal clear on the motives of the party and the bad guys now?

Tim Hitchcock's signatures are contained throughout the module. The backstory to Stilgrit, the mother of Spiders, is classic Hitchcock. His villains always have reasons for what they do and who they are and his writing style has affected all the other Werecabbages when it comes to NPC backstories. Stilgrit's is a little over the top, but it's the effort he puts in that is noteworthy. Every GM and adventure author can learn something about NPC and story design by reading that.

The cracked femurs in the fire, the bodies stacked like cordwood, the cadavers hung from hooks in the butcher's lair, the nods to PCs that cast speak with dead and what they...

I have read ahead. I will simply repeat that I think this is the weakest module in the series. You could not use this module and run the series fine. It's not very well connected to the story or internally.

Stolen Lands was a much better module with a hook that made a great deal of sense and launched the module in a fashion that left the players with a goal to achieve after they had cleared the land of many dangers setting up their ascension to the throne.

There are parts to like. That can be said of any module in an Adventure Path. Mostly it seems like it isn't necessary. I plan to make it necessary rather than a side trek to a tomb with a loose reason to go further.

I found modules 4 and 5 more interesting. The villains, tie ins, and goals. Lots to play with in modules 4 and 5.

Yakman wrote:

It's pretty easy - the PCs get back from Adventure 2, and Trunau is either completing battling off a ogrish raiding party ("Hunt them down!) or dealing with a refugee crisis from the Mindspins ("Save the village!"). Either way, the PCs take off for the Mindspin Mountains.

I think the geode map is a bit much, esp. considering that Volstus is rallying a massive army at the Cathedral anyways.

This does not in anyway address the issue that the PC goals in Book 3 should not be goals the PCs should want accomplished. It does not change that the allies the PCs are supposed to work with in the module have goals the PCs should not want to accomplish. It's a bad bunch of motivations that makes no sense.

Joana wrote:

So the shadow rat swarm seems to exist specifically to screw over a party without a positive-energy channeler. No one in my group wants to play a cleric/life oracle (we have a warpriest, but he won't have channeling until he hits 4th level at the end of the book), and I can't figure out any way for them to defeat the encounter.

The normal anti-swarm arsenal doesn't work because incorporeal creatures are immune to alchemist's fire/acid/etc., and the normal anti-incorporeal arsenal of spells like magic missile can't target it because it's a swarm. Vermin repellent won't work because it's Tiny undead, not Fine vermin, and swarmbane clasp is unaffordable on 3rd-level wealth. The only magic weapon in play is Brinya's Love, and doing half-a-d4 damage per round is going to wear through 39 hit points a lot slower than 2d6 + 1d4 Str damage per round without having to roll to attack.

Does anyone have any ideas how a 3rd-level party can beat this thing without channeling?

EDIT: Holy water was just suggested on Mark Seifter's Ask thread. That's actually a really good resource, as it's niche-y enough for the party not to have used it all up in the fight against the orcs, like they may have with channeling and spell slots. Now I just have to figure out a way subtly to suggest the party load up on holy water during the battle. ;)

I threw out the shadow rats. They were a meaningless encounter with no purpose in the narrative. No idea why they were even included other than an unnecessary annoyance that hurt the party's ability to take on the important parts of the encounter area.

Book 3 is the weakest so far. The reason for the PCs involvement and the goals are weak. They have no reason to complete the goals or work with the allies offered in book 3. In fact, they have every reason to work against the giants and the goal of the module. I'm going to modify Adventure 3 to make the goals more in line with what they should be.

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This module was the weakest in the path so far. I can't understand why the PCs would choose to light the forge. Resize magic items at a forge they can't hold? It's a powerful forge. Once the big villain finds out it is lit, why wouldn't he secure it? It would never be safe for the PCs to continuously use. Once word of it being reignited got out, every giant and their kin would descend to take control of it. Not to mention the orcs would probably want to control it. The PCs have no nearby kingdom to provide armies to hold it. Why would they light such a powerful forge so deep in enemy territory? It makes little sense.

I'm going to have write a better reason for seeking the forge. I'll probably have the PCs destroy the forge. I think I'll make it a matter of beating the giants to the means to ignite it. Perhaps using the materials to destroy the forge or at least kill the oracle who knows how to ignite. I think that would be a stronger motivation for entering Minderhal's Forge than lighting it and using to resize giant magic items.

I'm converting this for 5E. So far I'm enjoying the story. I think the encounters are interesting. I'm changing them up to suit my group's tastes. I always like doing modules where the PCs get to go to war. It provides a better framework than the murderous thieving hobo reason that is usual for adventurers.

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

I'm going to take my leave. Thank you for allowing me to test the waters. I enjoyed the quality writing, but didn't realize the pace. I hadn't realized only one level had been gained in two years of role-playing. I'm ill suited for the pace and would become disruptive to the game as I attempted to accelerate it. Good luck with the campaign.

Not immune to daze. It's one of those rules that should have been closed a long time ago, but hasn't been to the detriment of every DM out there having to deal with Dazing Spell or other dazing effects.

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

"Being well mannered is a talent in and of itself that avoids a great deal of conflict. I always account the newly met as well met, unless of course they mean to do me harm. Then I would say ill met.", Piccolo chuckles. "My talents revolve around conversation. I am the newly hired procurer of talent for The Gold Goblin. To date I'm finding my duties involve more than what I had considered given my title. But there are mysteries afoot and danger about that we must gird ourselves against, importuning the gods to grant us a favorable end to a lurid conflict. We shall see if my talents are up to the challenge."

"By the by Phillip, what do you know of Cleg Zincher?"

Phillip Hargreaves wrote:
Phillip gives the gnome a neutral nod, and eyes him up and down as his left hand smooths out his mustache. The look is not aggressive... but it is clearly taking a measure "Met at least... I'll leave to your deliberations whether you demonstrate any talents beyond excessive politeness." said cautiously, but without malice.

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

"Yes, Piccolo I am called. Who I am is a much lengthier deliberation I will venture another time...Well met, Phillip. I must say that I enjoy not being the only one of smaller stature amongst these giants. Makes one feel almost normal to talk face to face with another."

He addresses Samiritha, "I will have to visit you at the Cypher Lodge. What wondrously interesting matters you will study. I cannot wait to hear of them."

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Piccolo arches an eyebrow, "I believe so. We met in Lubbertown." He smiles,"Sounds as though congratulations are in order. Something to celebrate over dinner. Where might you be apprenticing?"

Samaritha Beldusc wrote:
The half-elf enters the back corridor clearly so excited she can barely contain herself. "I got the apprenticeship!" she proclaims as soon as the door is opened. "I finally got someone to sponsor me! After months and months, I finally got the position! I...," she trails off as Piccolo closes the door behind her. "I don't know you. Do I?"

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Piccolo opens the door and ushers her in with gentlemanly grace, smiling he says "My apologies for my abrupt speech. I do not wish to deter the talent from the establishment. What would The Gold Goblin be without attractive ingénues to entertain the patrons? And your timing is excellent. You have arrived just in time for some supper. Gristav and Snake should be back shortly." He shuts and secures the door once she has entered.

Samaritha Beldusc wrote:
"It's Samaritha!" a woman's voice calls through the door. There's a hint of excited effervescence to her voice that percolates unabated through the thick slab of wood. Samaritha: The name is familiar. Piccolo matches it in his memory to the red-haired half-elf he met in Lubbertown yesterday, one of the hiring group from the Gold Goblin. Of course, her hair isn't really red, not like a gnome's might be, just the coppery-blonde tone that humans call red, for some reason.

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Piccolo stirs a bit of this, adds a little salt to some of that. He turns, looks at the door incredulously, You have to be kidding me? Another at the kitchen door.. He walks to the door, speaking loud enough to be heard through it, "State your name and business."

Gold Goblin wrote:
Back in the kitchen, Piccolo is keeping an eye on the stove to make sure supper doesn't boil over when there is a second knock at the back door.

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Hasn't Gristav known Snake long enough to determine his identity by his voice? Snake has a pretty distinct manner of speaking. I figure you would have some inkling of who it might be.

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Piccolo attempts to discern the gruff voice beyond the door. He is sure that thugs would not knock.

Perception1d20 + 8 ⇒ (8) + 8 = 16

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Well, I gave up. 100 point crits at 8th level for min-maxing characters is too much. Being able to cast any necessary spell as needed makes defense against attacks too easy for an organized party. Fleet Strike makes it too easy to close and get full attacks. With the crit inflation, the game is too hard to manage numerically. I'm deriving no pleasure from the insane time involved creating statistical creature blocks versus the time it takes my players to rip them apart. Rule system can't handle the number inflation well at all. All mythic did was take an already cumbersome system and make it more cumbersome.

The end monster in Sword of Valor is more annoying than fun. Sure, he can be hard to kill. He doesn't do near enough damage to keep up with party healing. Paladin cuts right through his DR. His most effective attack is to hide and summon shadows. He can do that all day. It's not fun and leads to an overlong, boring combat scenario. The party can just grab the item and run out to complete the win anyhow.

What an amazing miss by Paizo. Story was a great read though. I liked Wrath of the Righteous conceptually. Mythic rule set was awful. Mythic Adventures should have an entry at the start that says "Don't bother DMing it. Just play a character and put stuff on the map for the player's to kill. You'll have more fun that way."

Well, that was my last Pathfinder campaign for a while. I'm back to D&D after a long hiatus. They made the game fun again. It's not as detailed as Pathfinder, but it's a quality system, combat is fun and fluid, and the system is well designed for the type of story telling D&D thrives on. I'll probably still adapt Paizo modules because they're the best amongst RPGs in my opinion. I don't imagine Paizo and WotC will ever get along to the point Paizo will produce 5E modules (even though it would be great for D&D). Paizo still produces the highest quality adventures from the story content to the extras. I'll miss that for sure.

Thanks for all the info, magnuskn. I just couldn't do it. Mythic Adventures burned me out as a DM. Too much work for too little reward. The entire rule set seemed like big numbers for the sake of big numbers as though that is the only way to represent being epic. Pathfinder was already a big number game. Characters were already Herculean in nature as far as numbers went. Mythic made the numbers ridiculous and unwieldy.

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Piccolo removes himself to a shaded corner, silently sliding a well-polished rapier from its finely crafted scabbard. He holds it point down, wrist ready to flick into an en garde position.

Stealth1d20 + 9 ⇒ (17) + 9 = 26

Gold Goblin wrote:
Gristav has just set the stewpot atop the stove over his newly-kindled fire when he and Piccolo hear a knock at the back door.

Tangent101 wrote:

Here, Piccolo, the Simple Tough Mythic Template. It's a simple one but should help.

Multiply the monster's hit points by 20.
The monster has Fortification of 50% (50% of all criticals fail outright - you could just also rule every other critical hit fails to make it easy and not dependent on the whims of the dice).
In return the Monster is unable to do any form of critical hit.

The end result will be a tough monster that dishes out damage but is unable to do massive amounts of damage that would one-shot the PCs.

Did you read how I designed Soltengrebbe? Already added more to him than any of the available templates.

Seannoss wrote:
Your group is an outlier Piccolo from what you've said. However, your point is correct as we all know. And ya, it didn't get really pointless until book 4.

It's an outlier for most Pathfinder groups. It's the group I've always been able to run. I ran them through Kingmaker with five characters and four henchmen with rolled stats and artifact weapons. I had no problem creating challenging encounters with a reasonable amount of work. This is beyond anything I've had to do before in terms of writing encounters. They have too many options whether it's the casters able to pull out the perfect spell, the insane crits, and general number inflation that isn't compensated for.

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

"Verily! I don't place bets until I rig the game. Recall that I am a gnome. Patience is not necessarily a part of my character, yet my timelines are not like those of races with shorter lifespans. So it may seem I'm very patient."

"Discussions such as these wet my appetite," Piccolo pulls a tart and takes a bite. "Tasty."

Gristav wrote:

"You don't need to sell me on improvement of the lot of the common folk. Nor on violence against villains caught in the act. But an active campaign is not in the cards; too few jacks among the faces, or too many would-be kings. Still, we could win a hand or two, perhaps force a new deal? Be aware, the current deck is most deliberately stacked against. So, caution, and patience, and 'check' be our call, until we can call the ante?"

JohnnyfiveUnAlive wrote:
Spent many hours putting together a fight progression for the Ivory Sanctum since my players got their hands on a scroll of wish (I generate random settlement magic items and keep them on each cities Google Doc with Knowledge local DCs for finding them) and then wished themselves into Xanthir's presence. This was triggered by Xanthir's retrievers kidnapping Sosiel Vanic as he was giving the opening benedictions for an Ascendance Day festival in Drezen. They swaggered through the Vang + Jerribeth + mook demons fight where we ended. So I began counting squares and movement speeds for all the various minions and allies that were beating taloned feet towards Vang's chambers for what was going to be a drag out fight and I just... couldn't... do it anymore. I literally felt a sense of dread at the thought of another session, so I folded the campaign. It was just not fun anymore. It's technically on hiatus pending a deep rewrite of the mythic rules. I picked up Iron Gods and added a new character creation house rule to our wiki page: Mythic characters must first have their character sheets eaten by a GM. Within several hours, the character sheet will be returned and the player will be able to make a new character. This house rule is in effect pending a rewrite of the mythic rules.

I feel for you. The level 8 Swashbuckler in my group is doing 121 point crits at 8th level with a 15-20 crit range. The barbarian has over 200 hit points and can go to -60 or so. The archer has the Inquisitor Bane ability with Mythic Arcane Strike for one use of Mythic Power. Yet the monsters are held in check with the weak mythic templates that don't compare to the player options. Not to mention an entire party of mythic PCs against one, maybe two, mythic creatures is ridiculously imbalanced in favor of the PCs.

The amount of work I have had to put in to make these encounters even somewhat challenging is way, way too much. I'm getting burned out writing statistics trying to figure out where the line is. Mythic Adventures is an epic fail on a level I haven't seen from Pathfinder to date. I can usually handle most rules Paizo puts out. I haven't been able to handle mythic without feeling a deep sense of burnout.

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

"An aspect of sentient nature I have always found fascinating is their adaptability. Even the most heavy of burdens the sentient learn to bear to remain alive. Not all, mind you, but most. Those that cannot bear it often find themselves on the wrong end of a conflict. I'm quite sure that the High Boss has already laid to rest any that were over-burdened by his policies."

"Though I see the wisdom of your insight that some may enjoy returning to their home at an early hour, others are held within a boundary that limits their potential...or dare I posit...the potential of the entire city. I believe that is the intent of these bosses. Fewer wealthy personages competing within the city makes for an easier place to control. I have always found that tyrants find a cowed and impoverished populace dependent upon their capricious generosity to be more easily shepherded with a strong blade than one full of wealth and vigor brimming with a desire to better their lot in life."

"My weapon...any that I need use to win the day. Though I must assure you before you ask that I do not believe amoral acts to be necessary to a successful venture. I do not ever intend to involve those that do not willingly participate in the game. Should we win, the lives of Larur and thousand like him will be much improved. Of that, you can be sure."

Gristav wrote:
"I too have an intolerance for injustice. So often heroic stories of dragon slaying are told for the entertainment of the people, while they suffer under the cruel tyranny of monsters in their midst. Monsters that bear a likeness to themselves, yet these monsters walk in the open preying on their own. Why aren't there heroes willing to spend their time opposing these destroyers of sentient innovation and high-mindedness."

"I think such heroes are, but must needs be dressed for fowling, rather than parade. I've seen more justice done in shadows than in courts, with the rare exception of populist crown-polishing. We're provided with separate words for 'ruler' and 'leader', perforce."

"We see the bitter example of this behavior, yet we swallow it grimacing, but not attempting to remove the bad ingredient from what might be a better meal. For example, this ban on competition in the restaurant industry. Couldn't this high boss of

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

"You have a soft spot for Larur. Or perhaps for the injustice he has suffered."

"I too have an intolerance for injustice. So often heroic stories of dragon slaying are told for the entertainment of the people, while they suffer under the cruel tyranny of monsters in their midst. Monsters that bear a likeness to themselves, yet these monsters walk in the open preying on their own. Why aren't there heroes willing to spend their time opposing these destroyers of sentient innovation and high-mindedness."

"We see the bitter example of this behavior, yet we swallow it grimacing, but not attempting to remove the bad ingredient from what might be a better meal. For example, this ban on competition in the restaurant industry. Couldn't this high boss of Riddleport serve better food rather than forbid others from competing against his business? What is he afraid of? A little competition. I myself have never met a strong individual that feared competition. Cowards fear competition because they believe they might lose. These folk that run this city seem cowardly, stacking the deck in their favor so that no one else has a hand worth playing. If they should have a strong hand, they break the it. Fear of violence is no way to run a city."

"I've always been of the mind that prosperity breeds more prosperity. The more prosperous the people, the more prosperous each individual. I love gold and all that it buys. Yet I've always felt I could make more gold in a place where people are flush with it. When people are poor, everyone is fighting for a paucity of coins. That leads to situations like Riddleport. Too much wealth concentrated in too few hand with most of it spent on violence rather than competitive commerce. Thus does corruption bloom like a black weed watered by blood spreading its pollen until the city is an ugly land of weeds. Perhaps this city could use a gardener to get rid of the weeds and plant a few flowers. Wouldn't you say?"

Gristav wrote:

"In order? I very much like a good fight, as the sort of fight that even if I lose, I've gained something, just in the fighting. Now if you meant a strenuous sparring, I like that too. Or if you meant setting stands in the arena... rather less than the other two."

"I think you're asking after my motivations. You should not imagine I had any grand life or purpose, before discovering Larur'd been lied to, poisoned, doomed, and contracted to Saul. His purpose: to earn his share in his remaining time, for his clan in perpetuity. Mine: his hope and comfort."

"Meantime, a fey sensibility, or lack of sense, I'll stipulate to both, guides my steps, if not my path."

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Piccolo takes up the tarts, "I shall."

He walks quietly for a time, then says "You like a good fight, Gristav? You seem a man willing to play a dangerous game with life and death odds. The key question being what might be gained by winning such a game. Does gold drive your mastery of spell and staff? Or perhaps power?...Or something more existential or moral? What might inspire you to engage in a game of war for a city?"

Gristav wrote:

Dropping himself and his burden, to a knee and a thigh, respectively, Gristav lets a sudden shift of the stew do deliberately what he'd been trying to keep from doing accidentally - and the bundled tarts fall from the top of the wrapped tureen, toward, nearly onto, Piccolo.

"Be sure to traffic the tale, of the time you kept some tarts from a bad end in the street.", Gristav says, grinning.

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

"That bundle seems a difficult load for you, which means it would be a near impossible load for me. I do not often like to use my stature as an excuse to avoid work, but in this case it seems sensible. If you wish to separate the portion into a bundle I can manage, I will convey that portion to our destination. But I do not wish to wander the streets with a bundle larger than I am that might perhaps cause me to spill it dirtying tasty tarts meant to tantalize taste buds with sweetness rather than street grime."

Gristav wrote:
"Well, I attended to this same business earlier... but... you know, it could be? I had thought it dinner for the Goblin, but it could go to the chapel, either first or second... Second, I think, leaving time for a proper weighing of the day's events. I know there are... differing opinions. Here, could you take this bundle? It's been threatening to slip off for the last several blocks, and it's all tarts. You can tell the table you saw me overburdened, and took some tarts off my hands."

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Piccolo sidles up to Gristav falling into step with the over-burdened half-elf, "Seems you've been busy. Is that bundle something tied into the business you were attending to earlier?"

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Piccolo sets Will's items where he pointed. He will engage in polite small talk for a sufficiently long period of time, then return to The Gold Goblin.

If there is no substantial interaction with Will that will forward the story, I plan to return to The Gold Goblin to reunite with the group.

Gold Goblin wrote:
Will's flat would definitely be deemed a humble one by the taller races for its lack of headroom, but considered from the perspective of a Small person, it's quite spacious, stretching the length of two or three of the rooms leased out on lower floors; it's difficult to tell exactly how far Will's flat extends, as a partition divides it into at least one other room opposite the front door. The luxury of space is partly countered by the room's extreme untidiness: books, papers, and articles of clothing are scattered everywhere except for a drafting table, placed in the light from one of the dormer windows, with a sawed-off stool placed before it. Williplunnet nods Piccolo and his portfolio over to it.

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Piccolo enters Will's abode. He looks about the place, waiting for Will to instruct him where to place his property. Not what I was expecting. A humble residence. It does not appear Cleg pays much for art.

Perception1d20 + 8 ⇒ (5) + 8 = 13
Does he feel any ill intent? Sense Motive1d20 + 7 ⇒ (12) + 7 = 19

Gold Goblin wrote:

By the time the match is over, Will and Piccolo are already on the cobblestoned streets outside the arena, heading northeast into Leeward District. Williplunnet marches a half-step ahead, leading the way, while Piccolo carries the artist's kit and portfolio. They pass through Leeward Common, where both farmers from outside of town and local artisans sell their wares from booths and wagons. The business day being almost over, many people are beginning to pack up what will sell at a later date while offering steep discounts on perishable items.

Of the roads leading out of the marketplace, Will takes the main road which leads eventually through a pass in the ridge east of town known as the Boneyard Cut to the garbage...

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Piccolo will walk with Will to his destination making friendly small talk. Once Will is where he wishes to be, Piccolo will return to The Golden Goblin.

Williplunnet Swevenforey wrote:
Will grunts, seemingly mollified by the praise. "Blood, aye," he agrees, nodding to Piccolo to bring the portfolio as he exits the box, heading back into the tunnels toward the stairs to street level. "Some folk think they can just splash red paint around, but to capture the true effect, it takes study."

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

"I'm not much of a painter. I enjoy seeing a gnome artist of your skill work. It is a sight to behold. The amazing amount of detail creates an image that mirrors life as few others I have seen. I can see the sweat and blood dripping from the canvas."

Williplunnet Swevenforey wrote:
"Hey, hey?" Will asks a bit fiercely, focusing his eyes on Piccolo for the first time since they met, as if he's forgotten to whom he is speaking. "Aspiring artist yourself, are you? Looking for tips?"

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Piccolo carefully tucks them in the portfolio, "Will, you know your city better than I. I must thank you for a pleasant evening. No better view in the house than this one. I hope I can join you again sometime."

Williplunnet Swevenforey wrote:
"Weather, hey?" the other gnome snaps. "You worried about them fading from a heavy downpour of evening sunlight? But," he relents grudgingly, "don't want them blowing into the harbor with a stray gust of wind. Tuck them in here, boy, and be quick about it." He opens the opposite side of his portfolio where the pages can lie flat.

Why do they keep putting in more and more ridiculous stacking effects.

Aldarionn wrote:

It's from Champions of Purity.


Worldwound Walker

Your purity always remains a blessing, even when you’re surrounded by creatures that despise it.

Prerequisites: 5 or more Hit Dice, good alignment.

Benefit: You can alter the essence of your being to lessen the effects of spells designed to harm good creatures. When affected by spells and effects that behave differently according to alignment (such as unholy word or protection from good), you can choose whether you are considered good or neutral. This ability does not actually change your alignment or fool divinations, nor does it permit you to overcome alignment requirements for the use of magic items, class abilities, and so on.

Ostensibly a character with this feat is so used to surviving in an environment hostile to Good characters that he has learned ways to overcome certain abilities designed specifically to hurt Good. I don't exactly agree with it considering how much immunity it grants, but considering it's from the splat book directly related to the Worldwound I couldn't really justify banning it specifically. It's pretty clear what the intent is, and if the character has spent a lot of time in the Worldwound or fighting its denizens it definitely makes sense.

I made an equivalent feat for evil characters and handed it out. Same thing would apply with The Worldwound enemies fighting the force of good all the time. If one group develops a virtual immunity, why wouldn't the other? Marginalizes paladins and clerics both ways.

Personally, I don't think feats like this should exist. I certainly am not going to allow feats that give the PCs an advantage over the enemies that marginalizes encounters.

Gladior wrote:
Okay, first of all, I LOVE this adventure and am so excited to see how the rest of the AP will go. But, as I read through mine, the pages started detaching from the binding. I've only been subscribing since Rasputin Must Die, so I don't have a lot of background on product quality (in the physical integrity sense) for Paizo softcovers. Is this an anomaly or something to be expected in future AP releases?

First time I've had this happen with a Pathfinder module as well. The 1st and 3rd modules are fine. Sword of Valor's binding is breaking apart. Odd.

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Piccolo smiles, hops to his feet, gathers the sketches in an orderly fashion, "Shall I carry them or do you have a bag you wish them placed in to protect them from inclement weather?"

Williplunnet Swevenforey wrote:
In the private box beneath the stands, Will Swevenforey closes his portfolio decidedly. "Pick those up for me," he instructs Piccolo, waving his hand at the sketches on the floor around the foot of his stool as he replaces his stick of charcoal into its place in his kit.

Male Gnome Bard (Negotiator) 2

Piccolo maintains unless something occurs to cause him to do otherwise.

Williplunnet Swevenforey wrote:
Below, in the bowels of the arena, Piccolo divides his attention between the action on the sand and the artist in the box. Will is producing quick sketches in abundance, focusing largely on the fighters' grimaces and the positions of their bodies and weapons at the point of impact. He grumbles softly to himself as he lets his completed studies fall to the floor, "Bah... change that to a sword ... add a spray of blood. The angle's wrong for a piercing weapon, but a slash ought to follow the same trajectory...."

Here is the current version of my house ruled mythic subtype. I added abilities to improve survivability and lethality.

Mythic Subtype: A creature with this subtype is infused with mythic power and is capable of terrible and awe-inspiring feats. Creatures with the mythic subtype gain the following abilities.

Mythic Rank: A creature with the mythic subtype gains 1 to 10 mythic ranks, representing its overall mythic power. Its rank is generally equal to 1/2 its original CR.

Armor Bonus: Add the creature's mythic rank to all of its armor classes (base, touch, flat-footed).

Bonus Hit Points: A creature with d6 Hit Dice gains 6 hit points per mythic rank, a creature with d8 Hit Dice gains 8 hit points per rank, and a creature with d10 or d12 Hit Dice gains 10 hit points per rank. Note that this is the same number of bonus hit points the creature would gain if it had a mythic simple template.

Damage Reduction: A creature with 5 to 10 Hit Dice gains DR 5/epic. A creature with 11 or more Hit Dice gains DR 10/epic. Add a creature’s mythic rank to its DR.

If the creature already has damage reduction, it adds epic to the qualities needed to bypass that reduction. If the damage reduction granted from this subtype has a larger numerical value than the creature's original damage reduction, increase the creature's original damage reduction to the amount of the epic DR. For example, a monster with DR 5/bludgeoning that gains DR 10/epic from the mythic subtype gains DR 10/bludgeoning and epic.

Mythic Saves: Add rank to all saves. If save is made, effect has no effect even if normally reduced effect.

Mythic Attacks: Add rank to attack and damage rolls.

Mythic Special Attacks: Add half rank to DCs to resist all forms of special attacks. Add half rank to each die of damage for breath weapons, spell-like abilities, supernatural, and extraordinary abilities that do hit point damage based on number of dice. Add mythic rank to damage for special attacks such as constrict or rend.

Mythic Resilience: A mythic creature may spend one mythic surge to negate a critical hit, spell, or effect to shrug off the damage or debilitating effect.

Mythic Regeneration: Add a creature’s mythic rank to its regeneration. Increase regeneration by multiple of 1 for every PC over 3 (x2 for 4 PCs, x3 for 5 PCs, x4 for 6 PCs, x5 for 7 PCs, etc.)

Spell Resistance: If the creature has spell resistance, add its mythic rank to its spell resistance.

Mythic Power: The creature gains the mythic power and surge universal monster abilities.The monster's surge die depends on its rank, as summarized in the Mythic Subtype Abilities table.

Ability Bonus: At 2nd rank and every 2 ranks thereafter, the monster gains a permanent +2 bonus to an ability score. If it has multiple bonuses, it can apply them to the same ability score or to different ability scores.

Mythic Feats: At 1st rank and every 2 ranks thereafter, the monster gains a mythic feat. It must meet all of the prerequisites for this feat.

Additional Mythic Abilities: The monster gains a number of mythic abilities equal to its MR + 1. Such abilities can be drawn from the mythic path abilities for mythic heroes or the mythic abilities listed with the monsters in this section, or it can be a new ability you create by taking inspiration from those abilities. These abilities should be thematically appropriate for the creature.

Some new monster abilities are especially powerful; at the GM's discretion, they can count as two abilities toward this total. For example, the mythic fire giant's fire vortex ability could count as two mythic abilities.

In place of a mythic ability, the monster may gain a universal monster ability, such as rend or pounce, either from an existing Bestiary or from this section.

CR: When you're finished adding abilities to the monster, add 1/2 the monster's mythic rank to its CR to determine its new CR. Evaluate the monster at its new CR using the Monster Statistics by CR table to make sure it falls within the expected values for its new CR.

XP: Change the creature's XP award to match its new CR.

Mythic Brute Hit Points: Single, physically powerful creatures that rely solely on their ability to soak damage gain additional hit points equal to mythic rank x 10 for 1st to 10th level PCs, x25 for 11th to 15 level PCs, x100 for 16th to 20th level PCs. Multiply this by an additional one for every character over three (x2 for 4 PCs, x3 for 5 PCs, x4 for 6 PCs, x5 for 7 PCs, etc.) This replaces the normal bonus hit points for mythic creatures.

Universal Monster Abilities

Mythic Power (Su): The mythic monster can draw upon a wellspring of power to accomplish amazing deeds and cheat fate. Each day, it can expend a number of uses of mythic power equal to its mythic rank. This amount is its maximum amount of mythic power. If an ability allows it to regain mythic power, it can never gain more than this amount. The monster automatically has the surge ability, and can use this mythic power to activate it. It may have other abilities that rely on mythic power. Multiply this by an additional multiple of one for every character over three (x2 for 4 PCs, x3 for 5 PCs, x4 for 6 PCs, x5 for 7 PCs, etc.)

Format: mythic power (3/day, surge +1d6); Location: Special Attacks.

I rebuilt Soltengrebbe.

Rebuild rules:

1. Increased odd abilities to even rounding up. Added +4 to all ability scores. This accounts for the generous statistical generation method used.

2. Applied Advanced Template.

3. Applied house ruled mythic subtype including brute mythic bonus hit point house rule.

Soltengrebbe Advanced Chimera CR 10 XP 9,600 CE Large magical beast/Mythic Rank 4

Init +13/-7; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision, scent; Perception +20

Defense AC 33, touch 18, flat-footed 28 (+5 Dex, +15 natural, –1 size, +4 mythic)
hp 344 (9d10+72+200 mythic); Fort +18, Ref +15, Will +15
DR 9/cold iron and epic or good and epic; Immune electricity, poison; resistance Acid 10, cold 10, fire 10.

Offense Speed 30 ft., fly 50 ft. (poor)
Melee bite +24 (2d6+15/19-20 x 2), bite +24 (1d8+15/19-20 x2), gore +23 (1d8+15), 2 claws +23 (1d6+15)
Space 10 ft.; Reach 5 ft.
Special Attacks mythic breath weapon (usable every 1d4 rounds), mythic power (20 uses per day),

Statistics Str 32, Dex 20, Con 26, Int 12, Wis 22, Cha 18
Base Atk +9; CMB +14; CMD 25 (29 vs. trip)
Feats Ability Focus (Mythic Breath), Improved Critical (bite), Mythic Improved Initiative (mythic), Iron Will, Mythic Vital Strike (mythic/x2 damage), Weapon Focus (Bite).
Skills Fly +13, Perception +20, Stealth +13 (+17 in scrubland or brush); Racial Modifiers +2 Perception, +4 Stealth in scrubland or brush; Languages Draconic, Abyssal.

Special Abilities
Mythic Breath Weapon (Su) Soltengrebe’s breath weapon is enhanced from a normal chimera’s. It deals 6d8+12 cold damage and 2d8+4 piercing damage in a 40-foot cone of freezing wind and shards of jagged ice (Reflex save DC 28 half). His breath weapon is usable once every 1d4 rounds. The save DC is Constitution-based.

Mythic Saves: Add rank to all saves. If save is made, effect has no effect even if normally reduced effect.

Mythic Resilience: A mythic creature may spend one mythic surge to negate a critical hit, spell, or effect to shrug off the damage or debilitating effect.

Mythic Improved Initiative: The bonus on initiative checks granted by Improved Initiative increases by an amount equal to your tier. This bonus stacks with the bonus from Improved Initiative. In addition, instead of rolling initiative, you can expend one use of mythic power to treat your roll as a natural 20.

Coordinated Bites (Ex): If Soltengrebbe attacks a single target with both of its bite attacks, it treats that target as if the target were flat-footed against those attacks.

Crushing Jaws (Ex): If Soltengrebbe hits target with both bite attacks, it can expend one use of mythic power to savage its prey as a free action. This immediately causes 2d6+1d8+20 damage as it chews on the victim. In addition, the victim must succeed at DC 29 save to resist being staggered by the pain for 1d4 rounds.

Demonic (Ex): Soltengrebbe’s transformation has infused it with demonic abilities. It has demon immunities and resistances and has the demon subtype.

Dual Initiative (Ex): Soltengrebbe gets two turns each round, one on its initiative and one on its initiative count -20.

Matrix Dragon wrote:
Piccolo Taphodarian wrote:
magnuskn wrote:

Err, no. Using precision damage makes them very vulnerable to running into the plethora of conditions where said precision damage does not apply. Trust me, I played a Swashbuckler at level 15 for two months. Every second fight (at the very least), I ran into opponents in poor light conditions, with magical concealment, in fog and so on.

The Swashbuckler also suffers from his poor saves, which are only partially mitigated by the Charmed Life class feature. The Slayer at least is better in this regard and is overall the better class in terms of versatility.

Why can't they at some point consolidate rules. You have to look all over the damn book to find a specific ruling. The elimination of precision damage due to concealment is written in the environment section for darkness. Why not put it under every ability or at least under concealment.

That weakens them quite a bit as concealment is easy to come by at higher level. Glad they completely eliminated this rule in 5E D&D. Too many things to keep track of in the game now.

Can you link that to me? I've checked the concealment and vision sections, and neither of them mention anything about about precision damage.

EDIT: AH! Found it. The environmenal rules actually only say that creatures that are *blinded* lose their precision damage. Simple concealment doesn't stop it.

To me it is not blindness, it is a lack of ability to see what you are hitting. That leads me to believe concealment works against it. The entire idea behind precision damage is hitting a vital target on the opponent. That darkness ruling as well as the ruling that anything immune to sneak attack affects precision damage leads me to believe Precise Strike is affected by similar conditions.

I won't fault you for choosing to run it the other way given the lack of clarity by Paizo with them putting rulings all over the place to figure out how it works. It should be consolidated and written under a precision damage entry clearly stating what does and does not stop precision damage. Blur and similar concealment spells effectively make one immune to sneak attack. You could easily extrapolate that to mean it affects Precise Strike as well given the idea behind both are the same.

Can you really argue from a conceptual perspective that Precise Strike would work any differently than sneak attack?

magnuskn wrote:

Err, no. Using precision damage makes them very vulnerable to running into the plethora of conditions where said precision damage does not apply. Trust me, I played a Swashbuckler at level 15 for two months. Every second fight (at the very least), I ran into opponents in poor light conditions, with magical concealment, in fog and so on.

The Swashbuckler also suffers from his poor saves, which are only partially mitigated by the Charmed Life class feature. The Slayer at least is better in this regard and is overall the better class in terms of versatility.

Why can't they at some point consolidate rules. You have to look all over the damn book to find a specific ruling. The elimination of precision damage due to concealment is written in the environment section for darkness. Why not put it under every ability or at least under concealment.

That weakens them quite a bit as concealment is easy to come by at higher level. Glad they completely eliminated this rule in 5E D&D. Too many things to keep track of in the game now.

magnuskn wrote:

Hm, not to create a long off-topic thingy (although, OTOH, who cares?), but you really think that the ACG classes are better than the classes we already got? I mean, outside of the Arcanist. None (other than the Arcanist, who is top tier with Wizards and Sorcerers) of them stood out to me as being nearly as powerful as a Paladin or Inquisitor.

I imagine fortification can mess up the Slayer and Swashbuckler. Absent fortification, they are quite vicious damage dealers requiring no buff time that can't be countered with dispel magic. That makes them very powerful.

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Pathfinder designers need to spend some time on monster design. It hasn't kept up with player capabilities. If Pathfinder is going to continue, they need to sit down and come up with some books to help GMs run the game, specifically better monster design rules that take into account spike damage from critical hits, spell tactics, and other things monsters should be able to survive to have reached the level of power they have.

Book after book of player options to make them more powerful, yet no books to make monsters better at challenging PCs. Just more Bestiaries of weak monsters, easily killed by optimized PCs. Monster design needs to improve dramatically. I wish Paizo developers would take some time to commit to improving enemies the PCs fight on and how we rate challenges.

Ssalarn wrote:
Piccolo Taphodarian wrote:
Pathfinder jumped the shark for me with the release of Mythic Adventures and the Advanced Class Guide.

To be fair, Mythic Adventures was never really intended to be a part of every core game like the Ultimate books were. It was specifically meant for the kind of game where the characters are playing Beowulf, Hercules, Achilles, etc. where they're pretty much demigods even at low levels. They were kind of supposed to be crazy OP.

Advanced Class Guide is actually pretty solid. There's few things that are really OP (I think the Pummeling tree toes that line because of somewhat ambiguous wording; the feat for divine casters to add their CHA to saves is more annoying than OP), and lots of really solid material. The ACG's problem isn't overpowered options (there's more underpowered materials than anything), it's horrific editing and somewhat questionable development in the archetypes. From a balance perspective, it's actually a better balanced block of material than the CRB, with only two full casters, one of whom has a fairly limited spell list and the other with fewer spells per day at most levels than any of his peers combined with multiple class features that all want to feed on one limited resource pool.

That's 90% of Paizo books as far as weak options. They always release a few over-powered options that optimizes flock to that they either take ages to fix or never get fixed. The vast majority of feats in the Core Rulebook never get used.

I've never seen anyone make anything other than an Invulnerable Rager barbarian since that option was released. The only reason people don't use Beast Totem is when they're trying something else for fun. Come and Get me is the on brainer level 12 ability.

Swashbuckler, Arcanist, and Slayer are all ripe for abuse. Shaman is a better healer/caster with witch hex options. The entire book makes past classes inferior. Do you realize the following?

1. Swashbuckler has the equivalent of no crit smite with no real limits on use. A no save ability to stagger opponents, confuse them, and make them drop their weapon? Unlimited Improved Critical with an 18-20 crit weapon at level 5 with Inspired Blade archetype?

2. Do you realize the Arcanist can boost save DCs beyond any other class with a low cost arcane point? They have a variable metamagic feat they can change out daily at higher level, when metamagic becomes more prevalent. Their uses per day are nearly limitless with their ability to drain magic items disposable magic items?

3. The slayer is a +20 BAB class with the equivalent of half-favored enemy useable against anyone with sneak attack and rogue talents?

These classes are superior in every way to classes their hybrid options. I already have one slayer building an archer whose intent is to obtain Greater Sniper Goggles, so she can kill things from range with assassinate and full sneak attack from surprise. She's going to be able to do this easily and often.

ACG is another book upping the power to a level that makes DMs give up.

Insain Dragoon wrote:
I would like to point out that Sorcerors, Oracles, Magi, and various other classes are already anime level and that's one of the problems.

Magic has rules built in for slowing it down. It's very easy to increase SR or make a creature magic immune or immune to specific types of damage and effects. Though I do agree certain spells need to be removed, toned down, or given saves.

Martial capabilities don't have things to stop them other than avoid them. DR 5 or 15/whatever is nothing to a high level martial. They cut through that like a hot knife through butter. They made so many ways to bypass DR that it might as well not even be in the game.

At the current time against a DM that knows how to challenge casters, the best use of a casters capabilities is to help a martial hit what the bad guy. One round of hits will kill most casters and does more damage than a caster could hope to do.

swoosh wrote:
Piccolo Taphodarian wrote:
Pathfinder jumped the shark for me with the release of Mythic Adventures and the Advanced Class Guide. I can no longer take sifting each book for options that shouldn't even be in the game. The scaling has been bad practically since the beginning, it keeps getting worse and worse with each new book. Come and Get Me, Greater Blood Elemental, Slayer, Swashbuckler, Arcanist, and new spells and feats superior to old spells and feats combined with no support to make encounters strong enough to deal with all the player options. Stale monsters built using the old method, while damage and saves keep on rising for the PCs making monsters into cottony speed bumps easily beaten. I can't take it any more.

The odd thing here is that none of the things you listed are better than a core-only wizard.

Depends on how much time the wizard has to set up. Wizards can be dealt with quite easily with dispel magic, high SR, spell immunity, and immunity to magic in general. Their damage can be mitigated with resistance. Even their best defensive spells can be challenged with various monster abilities and magical means.

I can't dispel 600 hit points. I can't dispel barbarian rage with a less than 8th level spell with no save. I can't dispel Come and Get Me. I can't dispel the insane damage numbers from critical hits.

I don't have the trouble with wizards others do. I can find plenty of means to deal with them using the rules even if it is just high saving throws. I can't find plenty of ways each encounter to deal with the high melee damage numbers and stupid no save abilities like they just handed out to the Swashbuckler.

My group works together. If the Swashbuckler has to stab once a round to stagger an opponent giving them one action with no save and the barbarian gets to tee off, they will do it. I wonder why Paizo developers don't say to themselves "If the Swashbuckler can stab and stagger a creature with no save, what chance does it have?" The answer is none. Yet they still put that ability in the game. Why would they do that? Why would they do something so blatantly problematic in large encounters such as against dragons and the like? What would possess them to put in an ability that a group can exploit to make encounters a joke that has no reasonable defense within a group dynamic? They handed this ability out at level 7. Yes, level 7.

It's unreal to me how much the train has gone off the tracks.

I hear you. Between the new ACG classes, the barbarian and paladin, and the mythic number inflation, it's nearly impossible to create a challenge. I stopped running anything but mythic encounters in module 2. Non-mythic encounters are a waste of time.

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Probably wishful thinking.

Thanks guys. That will help. Now if only we could see some errata for Mythic Power Attack, Foe-Biter, and Mythic Vital Strike, I might feel better.

Tangent101 wrote:

They did do a minor modification to a couple Mythic rules. I don't recall where, but I do know the Mythic "cast any spell" for wizards was nerfed to be a Standard Action. The other one (cast any previously-memorized-or-known spell) is still a Swift action.

As for the Fleet Charge, my own suggestion makes it slightly less powerful but still damn useful: it is a Move Action. Thus you can get two attacks a round using it (and use Vital Strike with one of them).

I do not see that modification to Wild Arcana noted anywhere.

Taken from the Paizo site. If they made this modification, they did not update their site.

Wild Arcana (Su): As a swift action, you can expend one use of mythic power to cast any one arcane spell without expending a prepared spell or spell slot. The spell must be on one of your arcane class spell lists and must be of a level that you can cast with that arcane spellcasting class. You don't need to have the spell prepared, nor does it need to be on your list of spells known. When casting a spell in this way, you treat your caster level as 2 levels higher for the purpose of any effect dependent on level. You can apply any metamagic feats you know to this spell, but its total adjusted level can't be greater than that of the highest-level arcane spell you can cast from that spellcasting class.

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