Santito the Great Deductor's page

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Based on my experience, players rarely choose feats giving +2 bonus to two themed skills over really useful feats like Improved Initiative or Dodge (or just check out the new Pathfinder version of Toughness!)...

We solved this problem using only one feat, named Talented, where you can allocate +5 bonus skill points between two freely chosen skills...
this usually gives you a +1/+4 or +2/+3 combo and for the price of one feat, your character can really shine in certain situations where your specialty skill is needed...

lose the feats like Acrobatic, Alertness, Athletic, Deceitful, Deft Hands, Persuasive, Stealthy and replace them with only one really useful named Talented: (whatever you would like to call it to have some flavor).

James Jacobs wrote:
Jub-Jub wrote:
Is this anything like the Three Dragon Ante Character Creation Article featured in one of the Dragons?
Not really... it's more like the way the Taroka deck was used in Ravenloft.

Ooooh, I was still young and innocent when the Taroka deck was published at that time for Ravenloft, so I must have this one before it becomes out of print too...

Thanks Lisa and Lilith! It was really a very entertaining and informative interview!

Clark Peterson wrote:

Hi everyone!

The submissions are flooding in and we love it!

Here is a little tip. I cleared it with Erik to tell you guys this:

Please make sure you are designing a wondrous item. A wand is not a wondrous item. Neither is a suit of armor. Review the SRD if you are confused about the categories (i love

One of the big things that an actual designer has to do is turn in content on time and to specification. Ability to follow instructions is one of the tests here. If you submitted the best sword ever created by man or beast, that isnt following instructions.

If you have a question, ask. Erik has been pretty good about helping. Like he said, he is the Paula Abdul so he will be nice. I'm more like Simon. :)

Good luck everyone and have fun with this!


Thanks for the tip, Clark!

I would just like to point out that sometimes the categories are a little bit blurred, like in the case of the Maul of Titans which can be perceived as an enchanted weapon, too.
Of course we all trust in your fair judgment, so I don't worry at all... :)

I don't think they'll put up much effort in Dragon/Dungeon until 4th ed is released, because really, 4th ed is in the scope, not some
e-zine material.
Now they are working virtually for free, so don't expect them to raise the bar anytime soon, and only thanks to the freelancer writers there are some materials on the site (which are great stuff by the way)...

I'm sure it would take some massive changes to the AP and I just don't think it will worth it.
Anyways, if you are willing to sacrifice an awful amount of your free time for it, I recommend using the Black Company Campaign Setting's variant rules for a Hyborian grim-and-gritty campaign...

Here is my take on the Flight of the Red Raven:

1. What is the object that vanished and why is it important to retrieve it?

The story revolves around the stolen manuscript of the recipe of a famous red ale, called the Red Raven, invented by a mad dwarven monk, Severus. The creation process of this ale is one of the most guarded secret of a human community living in the Fog Peak Mountains, mostly because of a dark secret tied to its ingredients, secondly because it is their most valuable exported good to the outside world.

3. Who took the object and why?

Surprisingly, the thief is Septentius, one of the monks of the monastery where the Red Raven is brewed , basically stealing back the manuscript from the spy of a merchant house. This spy spent years as a newly initiated monk inside the monastery walls to find a way to get his hands on the manuscript. He succeeded, but found out the horrible secret of the ale and his goal became the rescue of the villagers living around the monastery.

The secret is this: the monks struck a bargain with dark powers to send them the souls of those passing away in the nearby villages while they give them the extreme unction. In exchange, their ale is possessing a power to act as a longevity potion which is why it is really sought after (when selling it, the monks weaken its potency, but it is strong enough to give 5 more years to live to the rich and old merchant/noble buyers).

4. What will the final showdown with the culprit look like?

There is no way to catch the fleeing monk before him reaching the monastery, so the final showdown takes place in the monastery, specifically in its brewery against the unaging, several hundred years old monks and one of their demon masters whose task is to supervise the ongoings around the monastery.

Evidently, this spell was created to take out of the picture the lowest level cannonfodder enemies, kobolds, goblins, commoners and the like because these are the targets who are likely to fail a Will save vs
a DC 11 + ability bonus...

if they save once in a while, what the hell, send the warrior-type characters to hack them down...

so yes, it's pretty useless on higher levels, but you still have Deep Slumber if you want to spare their life or just get in somewhere without alerting the guards...

oh, and there is always the option of researching a spell to satisfy your needs, isn't there?

I got the email yesterday. No problems with downloading the pdf, so I could have a peek on the first Pathfinder.

Shiny, I'll wait for the physical thing though, I hate to read pdfs, just using them to print out parts of the adventures for ease of reference...

Oh, yeah, and I'm living in Hungary.

tdewitt274 wrote:
Santito the Great Deductor wrote:

By any chance don't you have a backdoor to

I'd really like to apply for the 4th ed playtester job...
No back door for that. However, as above (I did an edit on the original post), click on the link in the upper right corner of the "Main Page" and it will bring you to to sign up for a Message Board ID. It has all the GleeMax disclosures so if you have one, I think you're in. Not a bad idea to try it anyway.

All done. Thanks for the info again.

However, I haven't found yet the right thread on the forum to sign up as a playtester...

By any chance don't you have a backdoor to
I'd really like to apply for the 4th ed playtester job...

Hey, tdewitt274, thanks for all this info!
I was upset not to be able to access the Wizards site, but courtesy of you solved the problem at once...

As to reflect to the ideas popping up before:

1. I don't have anything against using bits from here and there (Dragon, Complete series, etc.), multiclassing and taking prestige classes, but ultimately it will slip out of control of the player, not to mention the DM who needs to know what each character is capable of.
If there is a complicated and different matrix of feats, skills, special abilities for every character, how is the DM supposed to scale the adventures and enemies they are going to face?

2. Bumping up the skill points, number of class skills, armor options, hit dice and so on, that's a nice thing to do to differentiate one cleric from another, but it's not really fair towards the other classes, who in return get nothing...

My take on the whole skill points and class skills problem would be to give 2 extra skill points to every class and overrule the 2 skill points for 1 rank of a cross-class skill for a 1-on-1 basis, but not touching the maximum rank rule to diffrentiate class and cross-class skills.

Each race can choose two (three in case of humans) class skills in addition to the ones given by their chosen class, representing their gifts and talents they were born with.

Voila, no more Fighters who can only Jump, Climb and Swim around and welcome clerics who choose the God of Trickery because they are good at Bluff, Hide and Move Silently to begin with...
And as someone already noted before, said cleric doesn't need to wear heavy armor to cling around just because he can: he can get light armors to better sneak around...

As to granted divine powers to set apart the clerics of different deities, check out my proposition in the Gods of Pathfinder thread..

Yep, you are both right, I've seen variants for this theme too, it's just they all require you to give up one of your precious feats...

so why not build this thing into the mechanics of being a priest of a given god? it would be more about flavor than crunch, because how cool is a priest of a god of creation who can cast Mending and Make Whole any time it's needed (assuming he is not out of spells)...

Karui Kage wrote:
I've heard of DMs (myself included in a couple campaigns) allowing player's to substitute a domain of the clerics to spontaneously cast from, instead of cure/inflicts. So a cleric of Wee Jas could spontaneously cast Death domain spells (if he took the domain) instead of cure/inflicts, etc.

Yeah, I know it's not the most original invention since the sliced bread in the supermarket, but, hey, it would be nice to see something like that in an official, professional product...

James Jacobs wrote:

That's more or less the direction I was thinking, although I'd certainly give the deities with access to the War domain a divine feat as well. I'd also be wary of duplicating the effects of existing feats beyond Martial Weapon Proficiency, really. In fact, in several cases, I'd probalby end up designing entirley new feat abilities to go hand in hand with the weapon proficiency granted.

For now, though, the simplest way to handle it is to just let Kyra have her Martial Weapon Proficiency (scimitar) feat.

In our home-brew campaign we use a game mechanic similar to the idea of the clerical domains to spice up the special priests of the gods vs. the clerics who serve in the religion's bureaucracy...

the specialists have one spell for each spell level up to 5th spell level which they can spontaneously cast like the core cleric class can do with cure/inflict spells. These are not combat spells to avoid abuse, their function is to show the god's influence on things in their portfolio and give some more flavor to their priests...

there are some wizard/sorcerer/druid spells thrown in the mix, but usually as a spell one level higher regarding its accessibility...

in practice it should work like this:

Granted spells by the goddess of death:

1st spell level: Deathwatch
2nd spell level: Gentle Repose
3rd spell level: Speak with Dead
4th spell level: Deathward
5th spell level: Hallow

Granted spells by the god of farming, hunting, family:

1st spell level: True Strike
2nd spell level: Calm Animals
3rd spell level: Animal Messenger
4th spell level: Plant Growth
5th spell level: Secure Shelter

Granted spells by the god of travel, fate, dreams:

1st spell level: Endure Elements
2nd spell level: Longstrider
3rd spell level: Water Walk
4th spell level: Freedom of Movement
5th spell level: Dream

I don't know where are you all now with the foundation of Pathfinder's pantheon, but maybe this sparks some interesting ideas, though probably you have already plenty of them in your mind, being game designer... :)

Mike McArtor wrote:
NSpicer wrote:
Mike McArtor wrote:

Okay, here’s probably enough information for a player to get a good idea of Shelyn....I hope that helps! :)

Indeed. :)

I'm speechless at the moment. Give me time to digest this and share it with my player. I'll likely have feedback or questions later. But a heartfelt thanks for sharing this much material in advance.


Um, yeah... I got a little carried away. There's more I want to say, of course, but I'd better leave something for her eventual writeup. :D

Hey Mike,

great write-up, I just would like to throw in an idea taken from a Hungarian RPG's fantasy setting which had an interesting twist in the concept of the goddess of Love...

in the ranks of the Order serve the Daughters of Pleasure who, for the right amount of donation to the temple, offer wordly and spiritual pleasure to those who seek them, similar to the highly skilled geishas in Japan or the Guild of Companions in Firefly...
meaning it isn't only about the pleasures of the flesh, but a performance of art, music or maybe a witty and entertaining conversation...

fathers take their sons to the temple of the Love Goddess to experience sexual initiation, because it's safe, legal and the best choice over the lecture with the flowers and bees...
burnt out artists turn to the Daughters for new inspiration, mourners for hope that life still has it's reasons to live it, high-ranking clerks receive a visit to the Temple as a reward and so on...

the Daughters have the right to turn down any offer without the need to explain it, so it is an honour to anyone to see the inner sanctum (in all of its meaning)...
which means a donation really is a donation, because you don't know in advance if you'll be receiving the pleasures you are hoping for...

I know that Shelyn is your "love child", and probably the write-up of the goddess is already in print, just wanted to give an idea to toy with if you like it in future installments...

Certainly not the best Kevin Smith movie, but the "interspecies erotica" scene was just hilarious and the end really settled the life of Randall and Dante...
who are, in my opinion, the second best two characters of the ViewAskew Universe...

Mike McArtor wrote:
Krisztian Nagy wrote:
But, back to the point, don't just bury your delusions yet, they can be true in some of the cases...
If I ever make it to Hungary (and that would be neat) you get a cookie. :)

I'd welcome the opportunity to introduce you to the pacalpörkölt, the palinka and the sights of Budapest... :)

Mike McArtor wrote:
The widespread use of English will likely outlive America's time in the sun, just as it outlived Britain's. I suspect, though, if China ever stops being insular (sure, let's buck 3000 years of tradition!) Mandarin might become nearly as universal. Joss Wedon seems to think so, anyway. :D

Yep, the Firefly is one of the most refreshing sci-fi shows

ever which paints a very possible future to come...

Mike McArtor wrote:
Bocklin wrote:
I think that the average European population is as ignorant of geography or culture as the rest of the world.


Yet another of my romantic delusions comes crashing down around me in the face of reality. WHY? Oh why?!?!?!


I would like to defend your "delusion" if you don't mind...

I'm living in Hungary and although the quality level of education is dropping alarmingly (among others the motivation of the teachers is just crushed under the pression of their ridiculously low salary which means about a net 450-500 USD PER MONTH!!!), I can tell you that the average high-school student knows by heart the verses written in hexameters on the grave of the fallen Spartans (and thanks to the 300, I now know it in English,too!), due to the simple fact that it's in the history books.

This Prussian type of education consists basically on absorbing facts, dates and a lot of never to be used knowledge, but has a drawback when it comes to creativity and self-expression (the French use a method somewhat opposite of this, I can tell you that based on my experiences in a bilingual Hungarian-French high-school)...

The average European knows a lot of things probably because of their rich past (which roots in ancient Greece and the Roman Empire for example) and the fact (which was already pointed out by someone in this thread) that they are surrounded by several other countries and it's just natural they must know something about them.

Hungary, especially, being a tiny country compared to the US (only 10 millions of people) and having a difficult language not spoken in any other part of the world is really forced to learn the language, history and geography of other nations.

I'm not saying that Europeans are superior in anything compared to other nations (because it's not true), just need to learn more about the world due to several reasons, which are different in each and every case. And then again, not everyone loves to learn and for them it just doesn't matter if they live in Europe or in the US...

But, back to the point, don't just bury your delusions yet, they can be true in some of the cases...

Vic Wertz wrote:

Just curious—how many Firefly fans watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer?

I think Buffy was one of the best shows ever (although I refused to watch it for the first three years or so because I hated the name). The way Buffy evolved over the first four seasons suggest to me that what we saw of Firefly was just Joss establishing setting and character so that he could really make things interesting in future seasons.

I really appreciate humorous takes on the whole vampire theme (Polanski, Leslie Nielsen, etc.), but Buffy and Angel just let me down, although, I admit, I've seen only a couple of episodes...

but those just didn't convince me to give it another chance...

on the other hand, Firefly just blew my mind, I'm a huge fan, even purchased a dvd set of the series on Amazon, because here in Hungary only the movie is available...

Hojas wrote:
Someone on these boards made a great encounter around the soldiers in Blackwall. I think it might even be mentioned in "the best of the AoW threads".

Yep, it was Peter Fuesz as I mentioned that in the title of the thread, and Renshaw even pointed out where to find the original idea...

Hi fellow DMs,

reading through the various and interesting ideas in these threads to spice up the AoW AP (already incorporated Rexx's stuff about the three cults' perish empowering the rise of the Ebon Aspect), it occurred to me that a one session, stand-alone story of the soldiers' confrontation in the Blackwall Keep garrison with the first Spawn of Kyuss, using the system of the All Flesh Must Be Eaten RPG, would freshen up the players after the dungeon-crawling style of the TFoE...

maybe this experience would add up to their characters' first encounter with their first Spawn...

on the top of that, I think there IS a fantasy/slash-and-hack supplement for AFMBE....

what do you think guys, is it worth to give it a shot?

In my campaign Ellival is one of the major villains although he is not related to the main plot of the AP. As a several hundred years old wizard originated from Aerenal, he is after the part of the Rod of the Seven Parts found in the Whispering Cavern . He spent nearly half a decade researching for the location of the cavern in which the relic is entombed with the Wind Duke and there is nothing to stop him to get the object of his obsession.

In our game, after learning about the fact that the player characters are heading to the cavern in question, he had taken hostage the companion/servant of one of the characters, then sent them a letter along with the poor girl's little finger blackmailing them to retrieve the relic and hand it over to him.

After clearing out the tomb, the players (with the help of the scrying device of the monastery), found out where the servant was held and freed her, but learned only some clues about the villain because the girl was blinded magically while tortured for information: he is a male, speaks Brelish with an accent and wears a perfume made of a rare orchid...
they haven't met yet with Ellival personally, so for the moment these clues are meaningless for them...

One of the defeated hired muscles was a psion who contacted his boss through a psionic crystal and informed him about the ambush, so the following night two summoned babaus attacked them trying to force the part of the rod out of their hands. Naturally they fled, using clever escape plans, but now they are aware of the fact that their enemy is indeed very powerful...

silenttimo wrote:
Fatespinner wrote:
I don't speak a lick of French, but I would just like to say that seeing a thread like this in our community is AWESOME! Gamers are such diverse and resourceful people. Game on!

Thanks Fatespinner !

By reading threads like "Dungeon # in Europe", it's nice to see there are gamers in Sweden, Finland, UK, Czech republic, Hungary, Germany, Spain, Italy and many more...

Indeed, even if RPG were much more popular in France in the mid 80's to mid 90's, there is still a good RPG community here, and as far as I am concerned, I think that Dungeon magazine is one of the very best D&D products that can be found !

Thanks to James, Erik and the usual contributors (Steve, Richard, Wolfgang...), and to the "very high quality" gaming community on these boards !

Yep, there are some Hungarians too lurking on the messageboards :)

Et comme par hasard, je parle un peu en francais aussi... ;)