Okay, I think we can work our way around to crafting those scarabs, with a bit of research, and bumping our cleric to level 9. We also have a character with a "make one will-save free" card, so fitting him with a Ring of Fear Reflection sounds like it might be fun, assuming we can debuff her saves a bit. If nothing else, it might turn Weird into a pyrrhic victory, instead of a TPK.
Isn't there a feat that lets Paladin spread their fear immunity? I remember seeing that at some point, but can't find it now.
Okay, so, my GM may be an ass. So here's the setup...
Epic-8 campaign (For those unfamiliar, level-capped at 8, continuing XP grants one extra feat per "eLevel")
Final boss of the campaign? The NORN. See previous statement about the GM being an ass.
There is a silver lining here. We have huge amounts of resources (we have a kingdom behind us), 9 months to plan, and full knowledge of her abilities. We may also have a bit of plot assistance negating an ability or two (like that +10 insight bonus if we can blind her view of fate), but the big issue here is how to keep her from killing us all, since Death Ward got nerfed into oblivion in Pathfinder.
Any recommendations on horribly cheap/broken/etc things we might be able to get our hands on? Immunity to death effects would be the priority here, but I can't find ANYTHING in Pathfinder that grants this, even temporarily.
Edit: Party would be Summoner, Ninja, Inquisitor, Cavalier, Cleric; with access to support from Sorcerer, Witch, Paladin, and Gunslinger.
We may also be able to cheat the level cap up to 10 if that would make a significant difference...
You know... all this RP-common-sense discussion is fascinating, and all, but nobody supporting the mask in this thread has even tried to address the comparison to the one-use, 10-minuteHoneytongue Elixir, which was mentioned and then ignored back at the start of the discussion.
1) wizardry is an inborn talent that is only moderately common, but is heavily encouraged by a well-organized magical college.
2) The school supports the students (no tuition, they accept anyone with talent), which is paid back by taking the majority of profit from the magical crafting of apprentice wizards. Like student loans, but less formalized, I suppose.
3) Magic beyond 6th level is literally unheard of (legends only), but lower level spells are rather common.
4) Wizards that graduate the college have the option to stay on, or seek out employment elsewhere, often hiring out to nobility.
What would "elite craftsman" take as wages?
On the note that it's much cheaper to ask a wizard to cast a spell than risk his life, I'd agree. I've always thought that the 10*c.level*s.level was utterly absurd. No wizard would ever go adventuring.
I'm not terribly worried about my players trying to abuse rules. I've got a group I trust not to powergame terribly (the kind of players that regularly nerf themselves in the name of RP character concepts). I'm just wanting to make the economy function in my head, even if I don't have to keep strict books.
Edit: Patronage is a good point, and it'll probably suffice for a lot of situations.
I'm doing some background for a fairly magic-rich setting, and trying to determine what formula to use for non-PCs who want to keep wizards permanently on staff. This is for jobs like personal casters to nobles, ships' wizards on sailing/air ships, etc. The only suggestions I've found involve ludicrous prices of a thousand or more gold per day for even a moderately-leveled wizard, using rules that seem mostly designed to discourage PCs from hiring other PC class characters to join them.
How would you determine a flat full-time salary for various level casters in a situation like this? Assume we're talking about generally non-hazardous work, and not adventuring.