I'm looking at the sorcerer bloodlines and it got me wondering if there are any archetypes that grant a non-sorcerer a bloodline. I'm aware there is an arcanist archetype. I also know that any class can pick up some bloodline abilities with the Eldritch Heritage line of feats. Are there any other notable archetypes that get bloodline abilities?
Stack, thanks for responding. I really do appreciate the clarification. I guess I'll keep an eye out for a future Gladiator Handbook and I'll homebrew a feat in the meantime for my gishes. :)
My problem with granting options against "demoralized foes" is that "demoralized" isn't a condition. Demoralizing someone is an action that can be taken with the Intimidate skill that causes the shaken condition (by default).
I'm assuming that a creature "under the effects of/suffering from your demoralization" is a creature that you, the Gladiator user, have specifically used the Intimidation skill on to cause the shaken effect. That does however mean it doesn't play nicely with other forms of being really scary.
I mean, I think that a Magus that cloaks the field in darkness (Fearful Darkness) and then strikes at their fearful opponents (with Coward's Bane) or an Antipaladin who strikes their opponent with Nether Blasts to make their opponents falter and leave openings (Daunting) are both pretty cool concepts. But those characters didn't demoralize their opponents, they just caused the exact same condition at the end of the day.
I'm a GM making new Spheres capable monsters in this scenario. I know I can make the change super quick and easy. But when I see that specific wording, it makes me wonder if the design team saw this as a specific issue or if it cropped up during playtesting. I just kind of want to know if it's written that way because they were building the "Intimidate-user" sphere and it seemed common sense or if they had somebody during playtesting throw the Gladiator Sphere on everyone in the party, someone used Form of the Dragon III, and now everyone in the party is stomping the enemy with free counter attacks and rerolls.
GM Rednal wrote:
I think you're absolutely right. What I'm curious about is if that's what intended. If I have two giants that are both super intimidating whichever one does the intimidating gets all the benefits. If the first giant demoralizes an enemy fighter, and the enemy fighter attacks giant #2, Giant #2 doesn't get to use Daunting.
I mean, Daunting and Coward's Bane are really the only talents affected by this now that I'm looking at it again. It just means for my encounter building that only one opponent should really have Daunting or Coward's Bane. Because if you have a group of monsters that have those talents, one creature could potentially hit the entire party with Strike Fear and now no other creature can benefit from their talents until the shaken effect expires.
I was mainly curious if it was a conscious choice to have it only work for the originators effect. The more I think about it, I'm a little surprised it doesn't work against "targets suffering from a fear effect". If the Gladiator sphere is partially about "talents that take advantage of your opponents fear" it's a little disappointing that a dragon can't use their frightful presence to take advantage of Coward's Bane or Daunting.
Alright, I'm back with another rules question. I'm trying to clarify the intent behind some of the abilities of the Gladiator Sphere.
Several of the abilities from the sphere represent a target of "your demoralization". Does this mean that multiple creatures using the Gladiator sphere can't take advantage of each others demoralized targets? Is this the intention? My understanding of demoralizing is that a target can't be demoralized by multiple targets at the same time.
Since the effects are based off of suffering from demoralization, I'm assuming that a Warleader could use Rallying Speech to suppress the shaken condition and protect their compatriots from Gladiators as well.
Hydras are kind of weird. They either drop a player in a single round or go down without a fight. They also suffer from the action economy problem. You had a 5 v 1 fight. If most of the players win initiative, they're going to cream the single monster. For a party of 4, a CR 5 encounter would be considered a very difficult fight, but very doable if they have no other fights that day. If you also then pulled your punches, it's understandable the fight would feel underwhelming.
The big thing is your players feel good about it and you can adjust for the future.
I briefly mentioned the action economy above. The solution to your problem here is that it's better to use a larger number of weaker or average monsters than one large monster that is tougher than the party. The party has more actions or turns relative to a single monster, so it's easier to focus fire, control, and destroy the monster. If instead of one hydra you had two ogres, or 4 wolves, or 12 orcs, each of those would be a radically different encounter (in fact, I wouldn't be surprised if 12 orcs could tear apart a party of level 2 characters. They're pretty tough for their CR) even though each of those is a CR 5 encounter.
In my last campaign, I feel like my party didn't have any issues with the caster/martial disparity. It's a team game and if everyone is just focused on group success, it downplays the caster/martial disparity somewhat. With that being said, here are some notable observations from my Rise of the Runelords game:
Any single opponent encounter was almost always invalidated because I had a slumber witch. I just count my lucky stars that they hadn't optimized for it.
The party oracle was super optimized for healing. They approached me at level 7 to ask about having the Leadership feat so they could have another character because they had "fixed the getting hurt problem".
I mean, my martials did fine in combat otherwise. One was an archer and the other was a TWF fighter. Rise of the Runelords is pretty combat heavy, so most of the time there were no issues for the group. But on the whole, it was easier for the casters to invalidate encounters than it was for the martials. If there was a non-combat issue, it almost always fell on the casters to find the right spell, since most of the time the martials didn't have the appropriate skill.
I guess the closest thing would be back in high school I had a major NPC that was based on the first character concept I created. An elven ranger whose family had been killed by dragons and had grown up to become a dragon slayer and ruled an elven tree fortress. I only incorporated him into a campaign once and it went okay.
Me personally, or what I would expect from a player at my table...
Saving Space, Explanation:
The way I see it, is the low level wizard needs to conserve resources. I expect by the time they have level 3 spells, it's a backup if they aren't swinging the tide of battle and they can afford to use more spells in a fight. By the time they're looking at 5th levels spells, a nice level 1 at will isn't going to be there backup actions, additional buffs or spells are. They'll bust it out when they would usually bust out a magic missile.
The fighter will always enjoy having magic missile, because they never need to carry a backup ranged weapon. In most fights, they're going to want to swing their weapon (I'm assuming a sword and board or two-hander fighter) and they only need it against opponents they're ineffective against (either because they're incorporeal or at range). Once they have additional iteratives and it becomes much easier to fly or they have additional maneuverability, it really drops off in usefulness.
The Rogue can't sneak attack with it. So it's a nice thing to have if they aren't in sneak attack position, can't get into sneak attack position, have something else going on, whatever. I can't think of a point where the Rogue is so good at something else that throwing Magic Missile into the mix isn't a good bet.
I would advise against this. By extending every move, you're increasing the amount of time spent on combat not resolving the combat. It will move a bit slower because most players are adding additional description. If all of your players are good with it, it would be fine, but if any player doesn't like it, they're now waiting twice as long. Additionally, not every player is comfortable with flowery descriptions. Once again, if you float it to your group and they're all for it, go for it. But for a generic group I would recommend against it.
As for suggestions, I would suggest reading this. In summary, you want to keep combat moving fast and increase the feeling of urgency. Make it so that every action feels like the last if people don't do something RIGHT NOW. People will be more invested and feel more excited.
I like what you've done with your template. One possibility that maintains the feel of a solo monster while being similar to having multiple monsters is to make the solo monster actually be multiple monsters.
The Angry GM isn't for everyone, but he wrote some excellent articles on solo bosses for 4e and then later 5e, and the advice is applicable to Pathfinder (I've tried it).
You've basically identified a lot of the same issues he did: a solo monster doesn't have enough action economy, it's easy to focus fire it down, and status effects can end the fight immediately. His solution was to basically have what appears to be a single monster (a CR 11 Red Dragon, for example) is actually two or more monsters (it's actually two CR 9 dragons, but they have the same spot on the battle map). It may be worth checking out if you want to maintain the illusion of a solo boss.
Here is a rework I made of a creature from an AP using this system in Pathfinder (I also used some 3rd party stuff, but it's still pretty close to the original).
The 3rd party and the Paragon rules turned what would have been a quick fight against a lone monster that could only stab people into a slightly longer fight where the monster tried to fling people around while dragging others under water. But it was still about as difficult as it should have been.
Also, one more note as an aside and to be a killjoy, but the Lore skill description offers "Drow" as an example of not being specific enough to merit being a Lore skill option, and offers "Drow Matriarchs". By that logic, specific races may not be specific enough and your player may want "Storm Giant Leaders". Then again, after double checking, "Frost Giants" are acceptable and "Giants" aren't. That's useful.
It sounds like you're the GM and I absolutely encourage you to ignore that (I think it's dumb myself), but I felt like it was worth pointing out.
I'm going to preface this by saying that I haven't really had a lot of occasion to use the Lore skill a lot.
The way Knowledge and by extension Lore seem to work is that they rely on the GM to determine what a basic, easy, etc. question are. You should expect a lot of table variation, because the skills do not have a lot of examples for what constitutes different levels of a check.
I don't feel lore should be a straight out multiplier. In most cases, a GM should be able to just keep in mind that Knowledge is for generalists and Lore is for specialists. If you have a piece of info that is about elven history, it will be an easier question for a specialist to answer. The actual mechanical benefit of this would be to effectively reduce many DCs by 5 to 10 points.
An extended example: In Golarion, many questions related to the Runelords have high DCs. The DC to identify a specific Runelord by name might be a hard question (of DC 20 or 30). A character with Lore (runelords) likely knows the nature of the runelords as an easy answer and a specific name is pretty basic (DC 15).
To address your specific example of storm giants, I would not have lore be a multiplier for knowledge checks, it sets a new baseline. The baseline for Knowledge (local) to ID a storm giant is CR 23 and you get an additional piece of info beyond that. ID'ing a storm giant with Lore (storm giants) should be, you know, a really basic task (I would say DC 5 or 10, the kind of thing you could do on sight). So you would know an additional piece of monster lore for every 5 point after that. So mixing our examples, a check of 30 with Lore (storm giants) at DC 10 would give 5 pieces of information.
EDIT because I re-read what I wrote and oh boy could it use some cleaning up.
Slim Jim wrote:
I don't know what PC would want to use it, but that is an awesome magic item for a boss.
Also, this is just me, but sundering it is a reward for a party that has a character who can identify the item on the fly and relay that to a character who specializes in Sunder in order to activate Phase 2 of the boss fight immediately. I mean, RAW, sundering doesn't do a thing. It explicitly indicates the wearer activates the effect by willingly breaking the choker, sundering wouldn't do a thing.
EDIT: A boss with PC wealth though... an NPC who could afford this is not going to stress anyone out with a carnivorous blob.
I'm going to echo the above remarks and note that your GM has made a poor call, is not receptive to player feedback, and isn't even willing to offer concessions for a house rule that he sprung on the table. I would approach him again with the response suggested by J4RH34D:
Good Advice wrote:
If there are no changes, you should seriously consider leaving if you aren't having fun.
Since a lot of good advice is offered above, I'll also offer some bad advice for a change of pace!
Bad Advice wrote:
Next major encounter where it would be expected the spellcaster would pull their weight, declare that you're going to charge at the largest enemy and chest bump them. Get your wizard impaled on the enemy's weapon and then create a non-caster. Preferably one with SR.
I was hoping I could get some feedback on the below magic item, if its abilities were appropriate, and if it seemed balanced with the other magic items its comparable to.
Altar of Hanspur
I would argue that usually these abilities specify if you can only make one reroll. I personally disagree with your GM, but usually a random guy on the internet isn't enough to change someone's mind.
One place to ask may be the PFS specific forums. While there should be people with PFS experience in the Rules forum, you're definitely bound to find PFS GMs who can clarify how they run the ability in the PFS forums.
Bit of Luck wrote:
Bit of Luck (Sp): You can touch a willing creature as a standard action, giving it a bit of luck. For the next round, any time the target rolls a d20, he may roll twice and take the more favorable result. You can use this ability a number of times per day equal to 3 + your Wisdom modifier.
Emphasis mine. Unless PFS has ruled differently (which I can't speak to, I don't have any experience with it) the ability is very clear that it applies to every roll made in a round.
Yes, the bonus damage dice from Deadly Shot are intended to benefit from Uncanny Accuracy as well.
Excellent. Good to know.
This is great advice. I'm running an E8 game so I was trying to make comparisons at levels 1, 4, and 8. The conscript could keep up Sniping with Head Shot at levels 1 and 4, but starts to lag a bit at the higher end. I'm going to have to take a closer look at both of these, because the raw damage boost from Thunderous Blows or a Flashbang seem to be exactly what a Sniper needs if they're going to be playing the BOOM! headshot game.
I'm also incredibly amused by the idea of the Scholar likely winning the single shot challenge, but needing Great Focus means they aren't able to pull it off every round.
Actually, a couple more random questions while I'm here.
Does the Champion of the Spheres book currently in development have archetypes for Mageknight and Armorist to gain Might talents? What do those currently look like right now?
You mentioned using both Spheres of Might and Spheres of Power in the same game. What has been your experience with Spherecasters in your parties using all day effects? I guess by that I mean, does the party burn spell points and call a quick end to the adventuring day when they tap out? Do they try to keep going and stretch their points out and do significantly more than 4-5 encounters? How often do Might characters get to take advantage of their "all day" nature versus a Spherecasters "all day + resource management" mechanic?
Hey, I had another question and want to make sure I have the accurate interpretation.
Sniper Specialization, Uncanny Accuracy wrote:
At 8th level, whenever a conscript makes a successful attack while using the deadly shot ability, he treats any weapon damage dice roll of 1 or 2 as 3.
Vital Strike wrote:
When you use the attack action, you can make one attack at your highest base attack bonus that deals additional damage. Roll the weapon’s damage dice for the attack twice and add the results together before adding bonuses from Strength, weapon abilities (such as flaming), precision-based damage, and other damage bonuses. These extra weapon damage dice are not multiplied on a critical hit, but are added to the total.
Deadly Shot wrote:
Uncanny Accuracy lets your re-roll you increase your weapon damage dice (from say, a crossbow). Vital Strike dice are additional rolls for your weapon's damage dice and seem like they would be increased as well.
Do the bonus damage dice from Deadly Shot also benefit from this ability? They are not explicitly weapon damage dice, but it also seems weird that the ability specifies using deadly shot, and does not affect deadly shot dice. Deadly Shot also seems intended to be a Vital Strike equivalent that stacks with Vital Strike.
Appreciate your insight and help on this!
As an aside, I'm trying to build a single shot attacker that is as competitive as the absurd single shot Destruction caster one of my players put together.
I mean, I read through your list and my immediate response was "Spheres of Power" tweaked to the power level you need (don't allow Vancian, don't allow legendary talents, perhaps limit which classes are avaiable). EDIT: Is there any particular reason you want to use Vancian and Sphere magic together?
Automatic Bonus Progression would play nicely with that in order to cut out all of the items that are just small bonuses.
So, I generally find that it generally would break immersion. I am a fan of characters who are heavily inspired by some other form of media. The only time I can think of where I have deliberately lifted character a character and made a direct conversion was a character from Naruto. The amusing twist here is that the character one shot a huge Naruto fan during a surprise round and was upset, but then was immediately okay with it when I revealed which character did it ("Oh well. Yeah, that totally makes sense now, no wonder I got cut in two. That guy is awesome".)
So, some initial thoughts scanning through as I see them:
This PrC looks like it's based on the game Brutal Legend. That's cool.
Alignment: Interesting that you call out their less likely to be Chaotic or Evil, because having "of the Damned" in the name makes me think the opposite.
I think you need to take another look at the Prerequisites. Six skills is a lot and immediately makes me think that it's only a PrC for rogues. Most classes (even the Bard and Skald, the classes that I would expect to want to take this PrC) are going to have a really difficult time having all those skills.
8+Int for skills is way too much. Even if this is meant to be a PrC for rogues, it cuts into their niche. I would have no more than 6+Int modifier.
Well-Oiled Machine is interesting. If I'm reading it correctly, then your allies essentially get the benefit of whatever teamwork feat you have?
I found it odd that you get both a Boon of the Road and a Great Boon of the Road at level 4. It feels like it should be one or the other. I would actually move You Got This! to that level, it feels like a good ability at that level and spreads your class abilities around so it isn't front loaded in the first two levels.
This may just be me personally, but I don't like Magic of the Road. It seems like a lot to allow this class to increase its caster level, and gain bonus spells, and gain access to a new spell level. I think if you want this PrC to have it's own unique spell list and 4 levels of casting, you may want to consider expanding it into a 10 level PrC.
Hopefully all of that helps.
N. Jolly wrote:
Adam Meyers wrote:
Roger, thank you. I think with that I have the differences straight between attacks, attack actions, attacks of opportunity, and standard actions that grant attack like effects (such as Cleave).
One other thing to consider is that the specific point of having the teleport and overland travel type spells is not to remove the exploring factor, but they serve as measurable power upgrades that allow players to bypass the however long slog through encounters to get to the dungeon at the edge of explored territory.
That all depends on if its assumed each group starts at the same location or "resets".
However, E6 or E8 is a great way to deal with the problem. I'm planning something similar and it's what I would use.
I had a very short lived campaign idea that I would characterize as "monster of the week" or adventure of the week. It works well if your group has a limited amount of time and isn't particularly interested in an overarching story. Being able to round up each adventure in a session or two also allows you to do more diverse adventures if you aren't trying to follow a specific campaign theme.
If you're curious, the adventures I ran were homebrew, generally followed a "five room dungeon" template, and the two I managed to run were a haunted house that was actually occupied by gremlins and a gnome village that had come under attack by Werebadgers.
VM mercenario wrote:
Just jumping in again to say that this may be the best thing I've seen written on the internet in a long time.
TLDR: I would review Curbstomp Battle, End Sequence Theme, Final Secret Technique, and how theme song works mechanically both with and without Nakama.
Glancing back through it again, I think Curbstomp Battle jumped out (Touch the Untouchable seems fine). I guess I don't have that much experience with higher level, but it seems to be a bit much to completely ignore DR and resistances, since that's better than a fairly large combination of feats and other abilities. Also, when changing it, I would have it reflect HD and not CR, since I thought most abilities that were similar were figured that way.
I haven't messed around with Tome of War, but I did run multiple characters with 3.5's Tome of Battle as a GM. End Sequence Theme Song feels more like a capstone than Final Secret Technique does. Final Secret Technique seems extremely powerful (which it should be) and fits as a once per day ability. I'm not sure what's mean by "as the same action", which based on my limited experience implies either the boost's action (which is probably a swift, generally) or one of the strikes (a standard).
I feel like nakama should scale better. A 4 man group is covered at level 18. If you're playing with any pets or more than 4 people, can you imagine being told you aren't part of the nakama? That would be just terrible.
I feel in conjunction with the nakama, the theme song ability should scale differently. Possibly starting with a +2, and going up by +1 more frequently to reflect other classes boosting abilities. It may also be better as a rounds per day mechanic, similar to bard song or a barbarians rage. You could even then add additional "theme song" powers if you wanted to. The nakama would get half the protagonists bonus.
I was going to make a joke about how All According to Keikaku was misnamed and link to the Just as Planned meme. Then I learned that the anime *I* thought Just as Planned was from is different and that a fan translation had the According to Keikaku (Keikaku means plan) joke. So, kudos to you on that.
I should probably mention things that I really like. I like that there are three distinct pathways based on initiative modifier that change your available maneuvers. I love that you use the actual Trope names for powers. A lot of the tropes feel appropriate as well (although I'm not sure what the Inner Hollow feat is, unless it was just a joke reference to Bleach).
All of the abilities are really on theme and it actually feels like a real class. I think a lot of it just needs some tweaking, which you seem to be well aware of already.
So I apologize for the long ramble, but hopefully this has been helpful getting an opinion from someone who doesn't allow initiator characters in his game.
So, my first question is who created the dungeon and put the Magical Fire MacGuffin in it? A dungeon created by a god or gods has an automatic list to pull from: the gods servitors. If it was by a race than undead or somehow preserved members of that race are a good choice. Constructs are also a good option for any kind of "guard the thing" scenario.
Another question is what do you expect the overall level of this place to be? Are you making something in the vein of older dungeons where the deeper you go the deadlier things get? Because looking at your current list, CR 1/2 to CR 12 is a pretty big jump. Are you trying to assemble a list of monsters before determining how tough you want the place to be?
One other thing to consider is a lot of monsters can be modified to fit in a dungeon that has a Magical Fire MacGuffin with templates. Any cool monster can be affected with the Fiery Creature template if you want to stay first party, or the Fire Creature, Flame-Spawned Creature, or Element-Infused templates if you wanted to branch out to third party sources.
So, from my view, there are a few different types of cursed items:
The cursed item that screws you over (-1 sword).
The cursed item that can be made useful, but doesn't fit its intended usage (bag of devouring, dust of choking and sneezing).
"Gently cursed item": The item is genuinely useful, but has some kind of drawback that may limit use or require a hard choice (net of snaring, mace of blood).
Is there a very rough guess of what percentage of the items in the book are each type? Because I've actually been trying to brainstorm a lot of that third type.
I think the second idea makes more sense to me and allows for more fun roleplay actually, now that I think about it.
Togarin can't interact with Rozimus period. Togarin is aware through his studies that a Rozimus copy should exist somewhere in the sanctum and killing him would cause a paradox, but they are at different points of time. Togarin can't go find Rozimus, he isn't in the same part of the time stream. Imagine the fun roleplay opportunity of walking into Togarin's room with Rozimus. The PCs can interact with both (they "sit atop the time streams" as true outsiders or something") , but Rozimus and Togarin can't hear or interact with each other. The fun roleplaying opportunity is that if Togarin asks them to kill paradox Rozimus and a player says that, Rozimus could have a negative reaction. I don't know if this has enough "solidness" to fool perceptive players, but I know that when I'm exposed to time shenanigans, I chalk it up to time shenanigans.
Man, I just read through Thornkeep. I think you make a good point. My immediate solution would be
to chalk it up to the time shenanigans of the location. For whatever reason, as a "native" of the plane, Togarin cannot interact with Rozimus until Rozimus is dragged to the right "time". Basically, Togarin can't hunt down Rozimus' past self, because he's at a different point of time, but if Rozimus is scooped up and dragged around by the PCs, then he can interact with him. Or even better, Rozimus can walk around just fine. Togarin and Rozamus are on different "time levels" and can't interact with each other, but the PCs can interact with both of them. Togarin could still be aware of the possibility of a Rozimus "time echo", but may not be able to interact with it.
This would also help play up the weirdness of the time shenanigans involved.
I don't think it has been mentioned yet, but there is an example of an NPC from Rise of the Runelords who is specifically mentioned as using lesser restoration to avoid the consequences of sleeping.
Rise of the Runelords, pg 43:
Gogmurt, the goblin druid outside of Thistletop, has the following written outside of his statblock: "He hasn’t been sleeping lately, and has taken to casting lesser restoration daily to fight off fatigue."
This seems to imply that in Pathfinder you can greatly reduce or eliminate the need to sleep.