Intellect Devourer

Takasi's page

Goblin Squad Member. Organized Play Member. 1,024 posts (1,102 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 1 Organized Play character. 2 aliases.

1 to 50 of 133 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>
Goblin Squad Member

If you have the materials feel free to contact me for pickup in Rathglen. Will also provide for Tier 2 recipes.

Goblin Squad Member

Has anyone seen Proficiency 2 training? Anyone attached to a settlement beyond 8 finding it anywhere? I see people are using Tier 2 equipment, isn't proficiency 2 required to benefit from it?

From the upcoming patch notes:

'Changed level 4-6 attack requirements so the appropriate weapon proficiency is required for the level 4 of the attack rather than level 5 and increased the attack bonus requirements by one at each level.'

If there are any developers on will we be able to buy the appropriate weapon proficiency with the new build? Can you confirm that it was not available in Alpha 11?

I'm debating if I should buy those level 4's now while I still can.

(Yes, I know it's just Alpha.)

Goblin Squad Member

For a couple hondos of xp you too can heal yourself. PvP is easy to test, so let's rack up those player killer achievements. Make sure you got good resistances, attack til you're half dead, switch to self healin' til you're back to full then go back on the offensive!

So why haven't you trained in a divine focus yet?

I challenge anyone who can't heal right now to bring it!

Goblin Squad Member

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Swiss Mercenary wrote:

1) Do NOT spend any xp unless you are absolutely sure you need the skill/feat/profession etc.

After the first few days of playing I also felt like this, but looking back after six weeks of xp spending a few thousand here or there on anything can be helpful.

All training is tied to gear. If you gather something and you spent a few xp on gemcutter 2 that you regret no worries. When you're a few months in and it takes tens or hundreds of thousands of xp to boost a rank in something you'll be going back to relatively 'cheap' upgrades to see more progress in your character even if it doesn't fit your original 'concept'.

This game doesn't really reward pure optimization, IMO. The player who can swap out gear and has lots of feats to reward them will do quite well if not better than a specialist. Even someone who can refine basic +0 or +1 resources they're gathering can save some time and help influence the economy.

No matter how you spend your experience you will get the satisfaction of improvement. I lamented spending so many feats on armor to boost my cleric's Con because pre-Alpha 10 that was a prerequisite. Even though I don't need this training it's still helpful. I have the versatility of benefitting from a wider pool of items being developed.

What is the 'worst' xp choice you made and why do you feel it's bad?

Goblin Squad Member

This weekend I switched to using my PS4 controller and Pinnacle to play PFO. I'm enjoying my big screen tv and plopping on the couch with my wireless keyboard w/touchpad for 'backup'. The gameplay is very responsive and smooth. I find I play longer and have more enjoyment in a more lounged state, and the UI isn't so complex that I need to responsively activate more options than what I can with the buttons on my controller. There's also a tactile weight of a gamepad that makes the control of my character feel like it has more physical substance.

I created a Pinnacle profile if anyone is interested. I could have used xpadder but I also play Neverwinter and have seen problems with it.

Pinnacle PFO Alpha 9.1 Profile Download

Does anyone else use a controller?

Goblin Squad Member

Ain't I a stinker?

Chapter 1
A Duel Endeavor

Vencarlo watched the nobles spar with one another. Years ago he opened the Orisini Academy at the heart of Old Korvosa, but only recently had it drawn the interest of so many of the young scions of the city.

Wearing meshed-wire masks, members of all of the houses taunted and ribbed one another in heated faux battles. Dressed in padded white outfits from head to toe, embroidered family crests helped distinguish the nobles from the commoners (and one another). Vencarlo watched as two matching hippogriff symbols, the sign of House Endrin, approached another couple, one bearing the lion insignia of House Leroung and the other a rook symbolizing House Jeggare.

"Show us what Gasta is marrying into, and we shall show you what she is about to lose," taunted Dervis, the younger of the two Endrin brothers.

"And let me show you what Leroung is about to gain!" cried Rosa Jeggare to her partner and fiancé.

As Rosa fought with Cecil Leroung, the rapiers of the two Endrin brothers met. Before long, Cecil had defeated his future wife and Jericho his younger brother. Jericho taunted, "Leroung can have you, Rosa, but let's see how he does against me." Before long, the Endrin cadet had the better of naturalist.

"He cheats!" complained Dervis of his older brother. "He spends his 'free time' practicing with the Sable Company!"

"And these taverns you frequent don't provide you with the same opportunities, brother?" The nobles removed their masks as Denargo, the senior student, announced the day's training complete.

In the ramshackle streets outside the Academy doors, a towering Shoanti guard played cards with another man no larger than one of the Shoanti's arms.

"Hit me," smiled the halfling.

"Cade, if you keep saying it that way I will." Abel dealt the halfling another card.

"Yes! I got a Black Jack! So do I win your money now?" he smiled.

"No, you need more than just a black jack for a blackjack."

Felin, a heavily armored guard for House Arkona, watched as he stood attention alongside guards from the other houses. "Blackjack, bah, a good thing the real Blackjack is far rarer."

"No love for the infamous 'Hero of the Downtrodden'?" asked the halfling.

Another guard, a young man wearing prestigious uniform of an Acadamae graduate, glared at the halfling. "Perhaps he's considered a hero by the likes of the self-proclaimed 'college' of Theumanexus, but for House Ornelos and any true wizard he's a simple troublemaker at best and a traitor at worse."

The halfling put his hand brushed his hand near his spell component pouch for a moment and then grabbed a piece of candy instead. "Ha! For someone so 'simple', he's evaded the likes of even the Acadamae's 'self-proclaimed' specialists in divination since the Cousin's War!"

The doors to Orisini's soon opened and the halfling and Shoanti slowly stood up as the other guards bowed to their nobles. Dervis approached Abel and patted him on the back. "Cecil's little friend didn't take all of your money today did he? He's quite a card player from what I've heard."

Abel looked confused for a moment and finally shrugged. "I was just passing the time until we could pound a few drinks."

The halfling greeted Cecil. "What will it be today, Master Leroung? Orange blossoms? Jasmine? Violets?"

Cecil looked at his bride to be. "Roses, thank you Cade." The halfling cast a spell and soon the young couple was clean from head to toe, leaving a subtle flowery scent.

"You may have to speak your arcane words again after we hear what Abel has to say," Dervis remarked as he turned to the Shoanti. "Tonight we shop! What places do you have in store for us?"

"There's a few places nearby. The Sticky Mermaid's great for fightin'. The Traveling Man is always packed on Oathday when they prepare the Feeding, but any other day it's near empty. There's the Eel's End..."

"We are NOT going to Eel's End," interrupts Cecil.

"...probably isn't for sale anyway. Then there's Jeggare's Jug."

Dervis laughs. "Jeggare's? Sounds like our job is already done, just ask your father to hand over the keys Rosa."

"I've never even heard of that place," replied Rosa. "I may not be as familiar with Old Korvosa as Dervis, but I'm sure my father would have mentioned it if it belonged to our house."

Cecil added "I'm not sure why we need to pick a place in Old Korvosa anyway. It's too close to the Arkonans for my comfort, and it's almost as dangerous as the Varisian camps outside the city walls."

"Yes, it suits my brother perfectly," remarked Jericho.

"Let's give the Sticky Mermaid a try first," Dervis said, following Abel deeper into the slums of the city.

A few minutes later the party arrived at the docks along the eastern end of the Isle of Old Korvosa. They approached a filthy, ramshackle building bearing the sign of a lewd half-woman, half-fish only to find the tavern was closed.

"Was lively a few days ago. Place gets shut down a lot though." The Shoanti banged on the door before the nobles could respond.

An old sea dog opened the door. "What is it? I told 'em I'd have the money at the Church of Abadar in the morning."

Dervis replied, "We're not here to collect for the Guard. We were thinking about..."

A horrible stench rolled over the party, and nearly everyone became nauseated. As others held their noses, Cecil and Rosa began sniffing the odor to determine its nature. "Salmon eggs perhaps?" Cecil asked of Rosa.

"I'm not sure," she replied, "but it is fermented and most foul. I don't like the smell or location. Can we please leave?"

Dervis frowned for a moment and then replied. "Yes, I was hoping to celebrate our purchase, but you can't do that with a closed shop. How about Jeggare's?" The nobles ignored the sea dog as he cursed and closed the door behind him.

Although still a few blocks away, music and cheering could already be heard from the Jug. The oldest surviving tavern in Korvosa, its sign displayed a jug on fire. Inside the temperature rose considerable, the loud noise and very crowded area making it nearly impossible to communicate. While Rosa and Cecil seemed very uncomfortable, the rest of the party simply seemed cautious. Dervis threw caution to the wind, however, and abandoned his friends immediately to step onto the stage. He joined in the chorus of a song about backwater Varisians and a devilish horse who tormented them.

With Cade not far behind him, Abel approached the tavern. Despite his booming voice, the barkeep couldn't understand a word from the Shoanti. He put up six fingers, hoping for an equal number of drinks. The barkeep's eyes lit up, and he put down a wooden cup and poured in something from a bottle. Putting on gloves, he reached underneath the bar and brought out six peppers and placed them into the cup. Several people watched the Shoanti and his drink, including Dervis and Jericho who had sidled next to him.

As the barbarian knocked back the concoction, his eyes began to water and his checks began to twitch. With all nearby eyes now on him he let loose a fiery belch. Flames shot from his gullet and he nearly scorching the locks of the Endrin brothers. The barkeep yelloed out 'Bucket Brigade!'. A bell rang and several patrons threw buckets of wet slop onto the two incognito nobles. The bar had a good laugh, including Dervis and Jericho.

The night went by with more drinking and merry making. As the noise died down, the party eventually had a private discussion with the bartender.

"I had no idea of your identities my lords. Please forgive me!" The bartender began to sweat, bearing the face of someone caught committing murder.

Rosa reassured the man of his safety. "My father, Tourin Jeggare has entrusted us with looking into local business opportunities. Could you tell us more about your tavern?"

The owner introduced himself as Parwin Smit, the owner of the Jug for the last twenty years. He claimed it was the first drinking establishment in Korvosa, surviving the Great Fire relatively unscathed. It was named after one of the founding patrons of the city, Montlarion Juggare, for his frequent stops to purchase Chelaxian fire whiskey.

"Interesting, we'll need to add a bottle for the Museum," Rosa says skeptically.

Dervis, now very intoxicated, confirmed the story with a tune called the Jug's Jeggy Jig, and shames Rosa for not knowing the history of her own House. He then gave the barkeep a hard pat on the back. "Gentlemen, I think we've found the right place!"

Chapter 2
Not Playing with a Full Dock

A month passed, the party now owners of a busy tavern in Old Korvosa. News that the Jeggares had formally taken ownership of the Jug quickly spread throughout the city nearly before it hit the ears of Rosa's brother Pelt Jeggare. The soon-to-be brother-in-law to the young Endrins, Pelt met the party at the tavern to view their new 'hobby'. "I'm not sure I like this. This is where you wanted to put our money? I see little future here."

"But it's so much fun, and it's a great place to mingle with the hard workers. They know how to have a good time!" replied Dervis.

"If our houses are to work together, Dervis, you're going to need to clean up your act," his brother said. "I don't think the rest of our company has set foot in this place since you purchased it. It's a dive."

Pelt agreed. "My father isn't the only one with money. I'm interested in expanding our company, giving it a formal name and investing in something...a bit more prestigious."

Cecil turned to Pelt. "You studied shipbuilding at the University, perhaps investing in a shipyard?"

Pelt thought for a moment. "Yes, our cousin Morise runs the Twin House Shipbuilding Company. We could invest in that as partial owners."

Jericho smiled. "It's an obvious choice. Leroung's halfling labor and Endrin's naval contracts with the Sable Company have kept both of our families wealthy for years Pelt."

Dervis laughed. "I may not know much about shipbuilding, but I do know about rumors. After making the distant voyage to Vudra, the Arkonans are earning many of our father's former contracts amongst the lesser dock families. They even have the ear of King Eodred. Word is that his gold-digging wife, the young Queen Illeosa, wants to spare no expense on Arabasti ships."

Cade bit his tongue. Though he never met his father, he knew he worked on a Leroung ship. Abandoned at a young and forced to work for a cruel dock tyrant, Cade has dreamt of one day meeting his father. "We do use up less food and water, but the Queen probably thinks of our kind as 'bargain labor'."

"Well the old king's sweet young trophy doesn't know a thing about sailing then," said Pelt. "Halflings are very dexterous, and the luckiest sailors I've ever seen."

"They're also less likely to mutiny," says Cecil. "No offense Cade."

"None taken," replied the halfling wizard.

Jericho continued to entertain the new opportunity. "Let's check the shipyard."

The party planned a date to meet at the shipyard. At an earlier time Morise Jeggare introduced Pelt to Pirano, foreman at the Twin House Shipyard. "I heard from Lord Tourn Jeggare that you may be investing in our yard. We are working on several ship contracts right now, but times are pretty slow this week. It's the Riverwind Festival."

"Giving the boys some time off to party?" asked Dervis. "They can always go on a journey to the Jug!"

"Sorta," explained Pirano. "When the winds change for the week of the Riverwind, strange things happen and it spooks the men. They may not admit it, but I can sense it. Jittery fingers can turn into lives lost in this line of work, so we pick this week to give the men fewer hours."

"What type of strange things?" asked Jericho.

"Have you heard of the Shoanti Princess?" asked Pirano. "She's a ghostly apparition that's been sighted a few times at night, but only during the Riverwind."

All eyes turned to Abel. Rare in Korvosa, Shoanti are usually shunned by most of the populace for their violent history with the city. Abel shrugs.

Dervis, "If I may...." Dervis began to spin the tale of a young Shoanti servant girl who was killed during the early Shoanti Invasion. Also known as the Great Fire, this event caused a backlash against many innocent Shoanti previously living in the city.

"This is probably just a superstition," said Jericho, "but if there is any truth to the matter I'd like to investigate. "

Dervis laughed. "I supposed it is a 'naval threat', eh Sable Company cadet? But it sounds like a good story to me. If we see nothing, we can inspire courage amongst the workers, laying this myth to rest. Harder workers, better boats, more money eh?"

Cecil added "This would be an interesting endeavor. Camping along our dock during the Riverwind. Rosa and I have always wanted to examine the nocturnal habits of Korvosan marine life up close. "

"I could collect a few samples for the Museum, if you'd like to write a paper for the University, dear," Rosa replied.

Each night the company met at the docks and waited up all night for signs of an otherworldly spirit. Dervis spent most of his time dueling with his brother (and drinking), Abel and Cade played cards and the engaged couple explored what little sea life they could safely find. Pelt remained nearby, doing what little work he could around the dock.

On the fourth night Jericho spotted her. Wearing torn servant clothing, a ghostly Shoanti woman hovered just beyond the dock, over the water. She floated closer, looking down at the water and the dock.

Instinctively, Jericho took up his bow to defend his homeland. The arrow flew through the ghost. The party huddled together as Dervis sang a soothing ballad of peace. It had the opposite effect on the ghost however, and in a rage she floated towards Jericho and nearly frightened him beyond his years. Finally, Abel called out to the former woman, asking her for peace. The ghost looked confused, and reached out to Abel.

"Father, you have finally come back, but now only to destroy!" The ghost touches Abel, and soon the large Shoanti nearly slumps to the ground as his strength is drained.

Jericho tumbles behind the ghost and brandishes a strange weapon that no one has seen before: a saber with jagged edges along the blade. He sawed and sliced at the ghost, who had now turned towards the ranger and screamed in a high pitch.

The halfling finished waving his hands in the air and threw a shimmering silver bolt at the ghost. It hit unerringly and caused her to dissipate.

"Why did you fire on her!?!" cried Cecil.

"That was my reaction. She was an undead menace and now she is gone," he replied.

"For now," said Rosa as she held Cecil for comfort.

The party continued to watch over the dock for the night, and finally for the week. Word quickly spread to the dockworkers, and their praise and thanks returned to the ears of the party.

Over at, we're doing a playtest of the Alpha rules. I created my own version of Ezren, and a few items caught my eye.

The first thing is Hand of the Apprentice. Humans get a free weapon proficiency, so he took bastard sword. (I couldn't figure out if you can use that ability on two handed weapons, so I took that just to be safe.) So I have a mage who, at will, can do +5 to hit with 1d10+5 at range 30 with no cover or melee penalties. That's very impressive.

The next thing that received my attention was the Arcane Bond. This give Ezren the equivalent of Craft Magical Arms and Armor for his bastard sword, which normally isn't available until 5th level.

I need to clarify this sentence: "A bonded object can be used once per day to cast any one spell that the wizard knows, just as if the wizard had cast it." It doesn't say whether this is restricted to the wizard, or if someone else can pick up the weapon and cast the spell. Also, it's any spell in his spellbook, so this effectively gives him an extra spontaneous spell. Again, pretty potent.

I'm also concerned about the spell like abilities. They do not require components or have an XP cost, so at 18th Ezren will be casting free wishes every day.

Has anyone else worked on retooling the iconics? How do they look?

There's a forum for movies, a forum for television and even a forum for comics. Can we please have a forum for video/PC games?

I am seeing a certain pattern in posts regarding Paizo's AP design philoseophy so I wanted to start a new thread.

James Jacobs wrote:
Of course... if you have players who HATE being railroaded almost as much as they HATE the mere concept that they MIGHT be railroaded... you probably shouldn't be running pre-made adventures for them anyway.

Dungeons are usually in modules, not 'big fat campaign settings', and yet they don't need to be presented as 'railroads' at all. The type of assumed railroading James Jacobs frequently mentions on the boards IMO applies primarily to event based encounters. Site based encounters rarely feel like a railroad. For example, I found much more sandbox value in encounters written in Hollow's Last Hope and Conquest of Bloodsworn Vale than many of the encounters in modules like Edge of Anarchy and the Skinsaw Murders.

If we wanted pretty art and a good story we could pick up a novel and some collectible trading cards (or combine them together and watch a movie). It sometimes feels like Paizo is treating gamers looking for simulationism as if we're red headed step children.

I'm sure there are a lot of people who will reply in support of more event based, cohesive, linear modules for groups that just 'go with the flow'. I'm guessing these types of gamers gravitate towards Paizo because of this style. However, if you play in campaigns where players choose RPGS for their freedom of exploration, and you're looking for site (or organization) based encounters to salvage from the adventure paths and standalone modules, please use this thread to make your voice heard too. If there are only a few of us out then we could use the solidarity.

Pathlosers, sound off!

13 people marked this as a favorite.

With the Guie to Korvosa and the primarily urban setting in Curse of the Crimson Throne (for the first ten levels 'There is no world outside the walls of Korvosa'), I was very much hoping to use Paizo's material to create a narrative campaign filled with intrigue.

I was hoping for encounters that:

1.) Do not need to be played in an exact linear order
2.) Increase or decrease power in various organizations
3.) Do not need to end in violence
4.) Are more than 'dungeon crawls in an urban backdrop'

These encounters can paint an interesting story, and the end result is a plot that is more adventure module than setting sourcebook.

Edge of Anarchy did a good job with #1 and #3, but IMO are somewhat lacking on #2 and #4. I don't have PF8 yet, but I'm reading that it is more 'cohesive', which I'm guessing means it's a linear plot that demands PC attention.

Granted, I'm already running Crimson Throne unconventionally, so the purpose of this thread isn't to simply tell Paizo how disappointed (and please) I am. I'm looking for help, and I'm also presenting my methods of making the game what I want it to be.

The first issue is the Guide to Korvosa. It is missing a few key features that make it a good reference source: lists. If my PCs ask 'Where's a good place to buy a weapon?' or 'Where do we want to stay for the night?', it's tough to answer these questions without reading through the entire book, making notes and having a good memory.

I've broken down all of the locations by purpose and included proper names if they were presented. I may have missed a few, and unfortunately there's no way to go back and edit this list so I may report it as a revision in the future:

- Jeggare Museum, Heights, Mercival Jeggare (female human)

- Gemshare Jewelry, Midland
- Bank of Abadar, North Point, Darb Tuttle (male human)

- Gold Market (everything), Midland, Sagitar Tiguan
- High Bridge Haberdashery (clothing), Midland
- Kep's (fishing), Midland, Kep (male human)
- Fair-Fished Baitshop (fishing), Midland
- Pinking Shears (barbershop), Midland, Hooktooth (male half-orc)
- Smoked Foods (groceries), Midland
- Time Stop (clocks), Midland
- Pestico's Dolls and Figurines (toys), Midland
- Reefclaw Run Market (seafood), Old Korvosa
- Hessim, Newby and Sage Paint Manufactory, Old Korvosa
- Orkatto's Feathers and Furs (pets), South Shore, Orkatto (old male halfling)
- Green Market (everything), South Shore, Zeeva Foxglove

- Three Rings Tavern, North Point, Theandra Darklight (female human pathfinder)

- Eel's End, Old Korvosa, Devargo Barvasi (male human)

Criminal Purposes
- Dock Trade, North Point
- Eel's End, Old Korvosa, Devargo Barvasi (male human)

- Shoreline Drinkhall, East Shore
- Jittery Quill, Heights
- Crested Falcon, Heights
- Overlook, Heights, Asa Hemrich (male human)
- Bailer's Retreat, Midland
- Aram's Crown, Midland
- Creaky Hammock, Midland, Destin Smish (male human)
- Three Rings Tavern, North Point, Theandra Darklight (female human pathfinder)
- Sticky Mermaid, Old Korvosa,
- Jeggare's Jug, Old Korvosa
- Eel's End, Old Korvosa, Devargo Barvasi (male human)
- The Travelling Man, Old Korvosa
- Jade Circle, South Shore
- Twitchers, Shingles, Ramthos (male human)

- Acadamae
- Theumanexus College, East Shore, Tempest Geezlebottle (gnome wizard)
- Great Tower, Heights, Endrin Military Academy for Sable Company
- University of Korvosa, Heights
- Orisini Academy, Old Korvosa, Denargo (male human)
- Endrin's Military Academy, Old Korvosa

- Great Tower, Heights, Sable Company
- Citadel Volshynek, Midland, Korvosan Guard
- Copper Beater Hall, Old Korvosa
- Ironworks, Old Korvosa

- Marbledome, Heights, Touran Palastus (male human)
- Kendall Amphitheater, Heights
- Eel's End, Old Korvosa, Devargo Barvasi (male human)
- Exemplary Execrables, Old Korvosa, Pilts Swastel (male human)
- Bard's End, South Shore

Exotic Services
- Doom and Gloom (fortune telling), Midland

- Grand Cathedral of Pharasma, Gray, Bishop Keppira d'Bear (female human cleric)
- Temple of Sarenrae, Heights

Legal Aid
- Great Tower, Heights, Sable Company
- Citadel Volshynek, Midland, Korvosan Guard
- Five Corners Ward, North Point
- Longacre Building, North Point (execution)
- City Hall, North Point

Magic Items
- Acadamae
- Theumanexus College, East Shore, Tempest Geezlebottle (gnome wizard)
- Great Tower (weapons), Heights, Bottom Floor Armory
- Crested Falcon (potions), Heights
- Gold Market (everything), Midland, Sagitar Tiguan
- Hedge Wizardry, Midland, Phaeton Skoda (female human)
- Slicing Dicers (weapons), Midland
- Trapper's Hole (weapons), Midland, Jope Chanstmo (male human), Sable Company
- Pestico's Dolls and Figurines (constructs), Midland

Pilgrimage Destinations
- Eodred's Square, Midland

Places to Stay
- Leftover's, East Shore, Portenus Gaskelinni (one armed retired human soldier)
- Upslope House, Heights
- Frisky Unicorn, Heights
- Wise Dragon Inn, Heights
- Tenna's, Heights
- Laughing Wave Inn, North Point
- Whitecaps, North Point
- Posh and Turtle, North Point, Thaviun Rigulus (male human wizard),
- Eel's End, Old Korvosa, Devargo Barvasi (male human)
- Bard's End, South Shore

- Acadamae
- Theumanexus College, East Shore, Tempest Geezlebottle (gnome wizard)
- Gilded Orrery, Heights, Gasta Weagra (female human)
- Jeggare Museum, Heights, Mercival Jeggare
- University of Korvosa, Heights
- Bookmaker, Midland, Costa Serimus (male human)
- Basha's, Midland, Basha (male human)
- Hedge Wizardry, Midland, Phaeton Skoda (female human)
- Pestico's Dolls and Figurines (constructs), Midland
- Three Rings Tavern, North Point, Theandra Darklight (female human pathfinder)

- Acadamae
- Theumanexus College, East Shore, Tempest Geezlebottle (gnome wizard)
- Crested Falcon, Heights
- Hedge Wizardry, Midland, Phaeton Skoda (female human)
- Pestico's Dolls and Figurines (constructs), Midland
- Posh and Turtle, North Point, Thaviun Rigulus (male human wizard),

- Horse Shop, East Shore
- Galloping Ghost, Midland, Patch

- Grand Cathedral of Pharasma, Gray, Bishop Keppira d'Bear (female human cleric)
- Temple of Asmodeus, Heights
- Temple of Sarenrae, Heights
- Bank of Abadar, North Point
- Sanctuary of Shelyn, North Point
- Temple of Aroden, Old Korvosa
- Pantheon of Many, South Shore

In addition to the locations, I also listed all of the organizations involved:

- Arbiters
- Commandant of the Sable Company
- Field Marshal of the Korvosan Guard
- Lictor of the Order of the Nail
- Magistrates (Commerce, Expenditures, Regulation)
- Monarch
- Seneschal
- Peerage Review

- Korvosan Guard
- Order of the Nail
- Sable Company

Prominent Families
- Arabasti
- Arkona
- Bromathan
- Endrin
- Jeggare
- Leroung
- Ornelos
- Porphyria
- Zenderholm

- Cerulean Society
- Catsdew Lofties
- Dusters
- Rat's Teat
- Scarzni

- Death Cultists
- Urgathoa Clerics
- Darklight Sisterhood
- Ironsoots
- Red Mantis

For my campaign, I want the majority of the players to belong to one or two Houses. Here are all of the houses listed in the Guide, along with some notes on what they do:

Prominent Families
- Arabasti: Monarchy, Mercantile
- *Arkona: Jailers, Landlords, Drugs, Fort (Old) Korvosa
- Bromathan: Military, Sarenrae, Guard
- Endrin: Military, Sable Company, Shoreline Drinkhall
- *Jeggare: Docks, Finance, Museum, Marbledome
- *Leroung: University, Imported Otyoughs, Hired Halfling Sailors
- *Ornelos: Acadamae, Gilded Orrery, Tenna's (manor in Heights at Citadel Crest)
- Porphyria: Mercantile (outcast)
- *Zenderholm: Government
- Kroft: Minor Military House
- Fordyce: Breaching Festival Winnings
- Galdur: Theumaxus College (outcast)
- Viamio: (outcast)
- Thrune: Cheliax (outcast)
- Peltherianon: Impoverished House

(* Peerage Review Member)

In my camppaign, I am requiring the majority of the PCs to be noble scions. They need to pick from the following houses:

PC Houses
- Jeggare
- Leroung
- Zenderholm

I asked James Jacobs last night in chat, and he said he would check the boards and possibly reply due to spoilers. What happens to these houses, if anything, during the Adventure Path? Can you give us a brief overview of how all of the Houses may change?

I have also compiled a list of all of the plot hooks given in the Guide. The biggest problem I have with all of them is they don't seem to have any impact on any of the Houses. What I'd like to do is tie the majority of properties listed above to each of the Houses listed above. I also plan to have the party members start out at Orisini's, hobnobbing with all of the nobles. By exploring the city before the AP starts and finishing the problems listed below, the PCs will gain prestige amongst the other Houses.

I listed the positive influences, but I could use help explaining the extent and reasoning, as well as possible negative influences from these (or new) hooks.



- Basha sells a map to a buried treasure deep in the Vaults.
- Brewmaster Rogehres Tarlo of Magnimar hires a group of druids to entangle the patrons of the Pesh and Turtle and free Old Tom.
- During a wrestling match at the Kendall Amphitheater, a horde of ankeg escape.

- During the Riverwind Festival, the Barbarian Princess returns to the Laughing Wave Inn.
- On Oathday, the Korvosan Guards feed the otyoughs under the Travelling Man tavern.

- Find out who kidnapped one of Pestico's constructs, and if it's related to recent murders.
- Costa is looking for ghostbusters to exorcise the Bookmaker.
- The PCs become involved in a gang war between the imps of the Wise Dragon Inn and the Imps of the Shingles.

- An undead bullette rampages the Smoked Foods.
- A fight breaks out at the Sticky Mermaid.
- The party meets a woman who was sacrificed at the opening of the Temple of Asmodeus.

- Whitecaps, Korvosa's oldest surviving inn and known for its excellent security, has reported burglaries.
- A prisoner who was to be executed at the Longacre Building has reappeared after accounted missing years ago.
- A faux murder play at the Exemplary Execrables contains an audience of Red Mantis members waiting for someone to 'intervene'.

- A Cheliaxian artist wishes to steal Breaking the Siege, the most famous painting in Korvosa.
- A patron of the Crested Falcon who was forced pay off a debt now seeks revenge.
- Derro below Upslope House are abducting guests.

- Strange noises are reported above the roof of the Black Hall of the University.
- Orkatto is looking for dream spiders and other exotic creatures for the Feathers and Fur.

- Ramthos, the bartender at Twitchers, regularly intoxicates victims to feed the chokers that plague him.
- The Dock Trade begs a group of exiled pseudodragons to get rid of their rat problem.

PC House
- A stranger hears of an adventurer's talent and challenges him to a duel at Orsini's.

I want my players to be spoiled, to be fat and happy and successful before all hell breaks lose. That's what, IMO, made Game of Thrones such a good story. Throwing the group immediately into this AP is great for a traditional everyman hero saves the day scenario, but it's not very good for courtly intrigue, IMO.

Please ship all of my sidecart items that are available to ship now:

• Pathfinder Chronicles: Classic Monsters Revisited (OGL)
Paizo Publishing, LLC
• Almuric (Trade Paperback)
• Lord of the Spiders (aka Blades of Mars) (Trade Paperback)
• Pathfinder #8—Curse of the Crimson Throne Chapter 2: "Seven Days to the Grave" (OGL) Print Edition
• GameMastery Module W2: River into Darkness (OGL) Print Edition
• GameMastery Module D3: The Demon Within (OGL) Print Edition

Please ship my Pathfinder Chronicles sub (Gazetteer) as its own separate shipment.

If D3 hasn't arrived yet, then put that in with the Gazetteer. I would like PF8 as soon as possible, if possible please.

Does Paizo worry about any future legal battles with WotC?

The OGL allows for the use of existing open gaming content. If you write adventures I think you're OK.

However, in a new, aggressive age of WotC IP control, I would not be surprised at all if lawsuits were used as a way to prevent small businesses from creating new innovations into the OGL. Their case? The new material copies or patterns material that is outside of the OGL.

It may be a shaky case, but is Paizo prepared to defend themselves? They already dropped the 'Adventure Path' trademark issue; I wouldn't be surprised if WotC started using that term in the future.

I think the safest route is to keep the RPG as close to the existing OGL as possible. Some of the things I'm seeing are already very similar to the ideas presented in the 4E previews.

Scarab Sages


I can't think this is a good move on their part if true.

WotC is touting 4th edition's E-Tools, but we already have an excellent way to play online: MapTool!

We are looking for players who are interested in DMing or playing in online Pathfinder RPG groups. Please be sure to stop by here:

Pathfinder Playtest Group

Also, if you are playing online somewhere else, whether it's real time using mapping software or if it's through play by email/post, please share your experiences in this thread.

Every 3.5 table I've seen will check out new races, classes, feats, spells and other 'improvements' to the game. These are additions that do not attempt to replace the mechanics of their game.

I'm seeing a lot of basic game replacements in Pathfinder RPG, and the feedback so far has been to keep increasing the differences.

When 3.5 came out, several publishers were upset. Suddenly many of their products were viewed as outdated. In response to this, some went their own way and made their own OGL game:

Arcana Evolved
Castles and Crusades
Game of Thrones
Iron Heroes
World of Warcraft

The list goes on. Some of these did ok and some failed, but our table didn't play any of these. Why? Because they fell into a 'too same, too different' category. If our table wanted something different we'd find something new, and if we wanted the same we'd stick with what we had. When you start messing with hit points, grapple rules, skills, basic feats, the combat system, etc, then the changes should at least be different enough that it warrants a new system.

If you stay too close, you run the risk of competing against past OGL games. A new player who sees Pathfinder and learns about d20 for the first time will have literally thousands of new and used books to choose from. Why purchase Pathfinder at all? Think of all the Dungeon modules they've missed out on!

It seems like a difficult balancing act, and I wish Paizo the best of luck with it. I hope they can succeed where others have tried before them.

In the latest Paizo newsletter, James Jacobs dropped hints on upcoming APs:

AP 4:

After that, in February of 2009, we'll be starting up the fourth Pathfinder Adventure Path (which, at the time I'm writing this, will quite likely be moving out of Varisia and into devil-haunted Cheliax, and just might involve a bit of good old-fashioned "tame the wilderness" stuff), which will also use the 3.5 rules.

5, 6, 7, 8 (Schlemeel, Schlemazel, Hasenfeffer Incorporated!)

I've already got lots of ideas bumping around in my head about what that Adventure Path is going to be about...Will it focus on the destruction brought to Golarion by the advent of the genie wars? Will your PCs get hired by Ameiko to go on an expedition from Sandpoint over the north pole and down into Tian Xia? What nation would be the best one to hit with the Polymorph Plague? Will it be our first direct sequel to a prior Adventure Path—could we see the Return of the Runelords?

Awesome stuff. Which one do you want to see?

My personal favorite is the first, hinted at for #4. Something like Conquest of Bloodsworn Vale, but HUGE. Help build towns, forts, missions, bridges, etc, while several forces gather to thwart your attempts.

I also really like the trek over the North Pole, but the Polymorph Plague is EXACTLY what I was looking for. I've always wanted a game that involved an outbreak of lycanthropy (weird creatures, like were rabbits and jellyfish and such), but polymorph is even better.

How about an AP about defeating one of each chromatic dragon? What ideas do other people have?

Any update on the backorders?

More and more items are moving to backorder. Are the books I ordered physically held until the backorders are filled? If not, can you please break up my order into multiple shipments?

I'm trying to figure out where the Pathfinder RPG will fit on this Threefold Model.

Would any Paizo folks like to tell me where they fit? I'm thinking it will end up leaning very heavily on the Pretentious side.

I'm hearing from many people that 4th edition D&D is very different from d20/OGL, so I have a few questions:

1.) If a third party company had developed the same rules that are in 4th edition, would the rules have been different enough to fall outside of the existing OGL?

2.) Given the following medieval fantasy RPG systems:

7th Sea
Ars Magica
d6 Fantasy
Dark Ages
Lejendary Adventures
Lord of the Rings
Palladium Fantasy
Warhammer FRPG

Please pick the system(s) that is (are) most like 4th edition for each of the following RPG elements:

a.) Implements (Dice, Cards)
b.) Units of Measurement (Time, Distance)
c.) Raw Abilities
d.) Learned Skills
e.) Extraordinary/Supernatural Powers (Feats, Magic)
f.) Equipment
g.) Economics
h.) Combat Adjudication
i.) Story Control
j.) Environment Creation

I personally feel like 4th edition, as presented so far, is very close to d20 OGL in all of these respects. The departure from standard d20 rules are along the same variance as other systems published under the OGL license (WoW, True20, Conan, etc).

However, I very much look forward to seeing the logic behind other conclusions.

A friend and I were talking about social contracts, and he came up with a list of questions that he feels every table should address in their social contract. How have you answered these for your campaign, and are there any others to add?

Are there any alignment intolerances? If the party is primarily good, an assassin may be frowned upon as NPCs see birds of a feather. Alternatively, a more chaotic party may not want a paladin hamstringing their freedom of choice.

Level of character optimization? Some people feel at a double disadvantage if they want to play a character who overcomes handicaps and disabilities, only to find everyone else at the table is a superhero.

Static or nomadic? If someone wants to start a shop, get married, or have close contacts with a lot NPCs they may want a stable base of operations. Other characters may want to have the freedom to leave town when things get boring or opportunities arrive elsewhere.

Racial diversity? Is the party generally homogenous (let's all play elves). Sometimes someone might want to play an outcast in the group, only to find that everyone's some strange outcast (defeating his intent).

Communal or individual treasure division? Will the cleric pay for all of the party's wands and buffs, or will the party pitch in for these items? Who pays for resurrections? Are items given to players who could use them even if they can't afford them yet?

Does Paizo make any assumptions about the typical social contract, and how does this influence their adventure path design?

For each Adventure Path our table tries something a little 'different'.

In Shackled City, we played in the Warhammer universe.

In Age of Worms, we used action points and placed it in Eberron.

In Savage Tide, we tried running each module as marathon sessions, sometimes with up to 12 players (and encounters cranked up to '11').

In Rise of the Runelords (current at the last fight in PF4), we hooked a laptop to a big monitor and used MapTool and laser pointers.

I'm starting Curse of the Crimson Throne next week, and I'm thinking of trying something a little different once again. This time, I just want a small group of three players sitting around the table while I deal them cards. (Or what I call, 'downtown', where you can walk around the city and play D&D.)

How do you accomplish this? Hybrid d20/True20 combat rules and a lot of fast and loose rules interpretations.

Let's start with character generation. Pick your race and class and story.

For stats, using the equivalent of 40 point buy all characters start with a stat array of 16, 16, 14, 14, 12, 12. These are setup as 16, 14, 12 for physical and 16, 14, 12 for mental. So players just need to remember high and low for mental and physical. For example, we have a bard who is high str / low con and high cha / low wis. It's even easier to think of it in terms of +3 str, +2 dex, +1 con (like True20).

Instead of hit points, we'll have condition tracking (hurt, wounded, disabled, dying, dead) using True20 damage and toughness rules.

Saves, AC and to hit are all easy enough to extrapolate on the fly; we've been playing long enough to do that.

Skills need to be memorized. If you want to play a bard, for example, remember your skills. For simplicity, all skills are max rank.

Spells also need to be memorized. This is difficult, but possible. As a DM this will make my job very challenging indeed.

Rules intepretations will be fast and loose. I have a lot of experience adjudicating the game, but if players trust that I'm not being a rat bastard who's out to get them and trust that I'm just doing what I think is fair then we should be OK. And sometimes I may make mistakes, but that's the nature of uncertainty. Spells may also not make sense or follow the letter of the books sometimes, but that adds in some way to the mystery of magic.

Equipment, including magic items is done entirely through equipment cards.

Playing without maps is not what I'm used to, but that's exactly why I want to do it.

Finally, we have a change in rolling. Instead of rolling a d20, we'll be drawing 2 cards from shuffled decks and adding up the values. Aces are 1s, but you can occasionally use a 'fortune/fate/action' point to turn it into an 11. Pulling a Jack or Joker is equal to a natural 20 result, and pulling a King or Queen is equal to a natural 1.

Any thoughts or suggestions?

I changed my payment method recently and wanted to verify that this won't delay my shipment. I've seen that others already have the pdf. Any estimate on when I'll get mine? My players are impatiently waiting for me to start this campaign.

In chat we were discussing whether 4th edition is an increase or decrease in overall player power. What do you think?

Nerf Evidence:

-Increase in hit points without increase in damage makes monsters more difficult to defeat before alarms are raised
-Two Handed Power Attack Removed
-Instantaneous Save or Die Spells Removed
-Magic Missile is not Auto-Hit
-Darkvision removed
-Rangers can't cast spells
-Mirror Image is 10th level, Fly and Invisibility are 16th
-No buffs to ability scores (Guantlets of Ogre Power, for example)
-Skill points are removed
-Sneak attack damage reduced significantly
-Baseline sneak attack, saves and hit points reduce min-max options
-Iterative Attacks Removed

Creep Evidence:
-Minor amount of self healing
-Battlefield manipulation powers
-Daily powers produce more damage
-No negative racial score modifiers

Overall I'm leaning towards nerf, and a general idea of 'balance' that could make it harder to munchkinize and imbalance the game than it was in 3.5. Thoughts?

Please check order #884765. I put in my order the minute the Bastion Press stuff went on sale. Why is my stuff on backorder now?

Did anyone defeat the black dragon at D&D XP? How did you do it?

With everything said about positioning in 4th edition, I would think there is no way the pregen party could defeat the black dragon.

I'm going to assume the cave he's in is at least 15 feet high. Why? Because dragons aren't stupid, and if he's going to be able to defend himself well he's going to want a lair he can at least fly in. Or better yet, climb up to and cling onto the cave wall and unleash his breath weapon.

(Alternatively, to give the flavor of a black dragon the area should have water - preferably acidic water - and an ability for the dragon to swim away from the party in between breaths.)

From there the dragon just has to wait a few rounds to get his breath weapon 'recharged' and then blast the party until they're dead. He can do this by flying around the room or as mentioned earlier by clinging to the cave walls.

Factoring in the recharge and probability of hitting, I'm guessing the dragon will have about 5 damage per round from his acid per target he can hit. Even with healing surges, each character has roughly six rounds to survive each.

The dragon has 280 hit points and 24 AC (21 reflex). Even the best ranged attacker (the ranger) needs a 14 or better to hit, or will hit 1/3 of the time. His average damage is 1d10+1d8+3, or 12, which is 4. Other characters aren't going to be nearly this good. The wizard needs a 16 or better to hit with magic missile, hitting 1/4 of the time, and doing only 9 points, so about 2 average damage per round. The fighter doesn't have a ranged weapon, but assuming he can get one he'll need at least an 18 or so to hit (hitting about 1/8 of the time), and even if he had 1d10+5 (or 10 average) that's again only 2 points of damage. The warlock, fighter and paladin are also about 2 points per round ranged. So with all six fighting, that's about 14 (let's say 15 to make it easier) average damage per round.

At least until round 6 when one of the party members fall. The dragon should be at around 180 hit points by then, and if he's smart he'll target the ranger first. The party's average drops to 10, giving the dragon another 18 rounds to finish everyone off.

And if you're a simulationist, you should give the dragon a healing surge at some point to give him another 70 hit points.

I think it's extremely unlikely that a party could kill a smart flying dragon. I don't see why a DM would run the dragon on the ground, or why a dragon would choose a lair he can't fly around in.

If you beat the dragon, how did the DM run it? What was the overall result?

The internet is great. We get to read and hear about information compiled together probably faster than people who are at D&D XP. Our one drawback is that while we can talk about the game they're actually playing it!

Will anyone be running some combats this weekend using the new character sheets, primer and kobolds and whatever other monsters are leaked from DoD2?

I might try something on my Sunday face to face game. I also setup an online game:

If anyone plays D&D Online, there's a mission where you defend a keep against a wave of 200 kobolds. I may give that a try using waves of 3.5 first level kobolds followed by a small party of the new 4th edition ones.

There are some character sheets posted now (, and it looks like a lot of people read the rogue class from a "3E" mindset.

When it says starting hp 12 + con, they mean the actual stat, not the modifier!

In the examples shown, a warlock (which is classified as a Skirmish class in 4E) has 28 hit points at 1st level. The character has a 16 con, so that's 12 + con (Rogues are also Skirmish).

The dwarf fighter listed has 33 hit points, also at first level. He has an 18 con, so that's 15 + con.

The wizard has 20 hit points at first level, with a 10 con (10 + con).

So it will probably be controller is 10, skirmish and leader 12 and defender 15.

In addition, characters get healing surges. The warlock, for example, gets 9 surges per 'day' and heals 1/4 of her hit points (7) on each surge. You can only do this once per encounter though and it takes a standard action to do it. (If you're wondering about how long an encounter is, it says you have to take a 5 minute rest in the game world in order to use another encounter power, regardless of the number of enemies or scenarios you fight in.)

And here's one some of you might not like: when you take an 'extended rest' (6 hours) you get all of your hit points back and get all of your per day abilities back (even if hasn't been 24 hours).

I personally like it, and here's why: it severs what I label 'physical healing' from hit point healing altogether. Someone in the chat said "So if a commoner is mauled by a bear, he can just rest for 6 hours and be all better?" My response is "A commoner can never actually be 'mauled' by a bear in any edition of D&D. Hit points do not break legs, cause scars, or impede functionality in any physical or even mental form. I think it's wrong to apply common sense of physical healing to a mechanic that does not mimic the common sense of phyical injury. When you lose hit points it is purely about the resolve to continue fighting, and does not represent physical wounds that require long term care."

I don't know the rules yet, but here are my first thoughts to make the game grittier: ability score damage. Maybe on crits (or reintroduce confirmed crits), maybe through some type of called shot system (pick an ability score and roll a d6), I'm not sure how much damage but I'm sure it's possible. The point though is that physical wounds that take time to naturally heal should have some impact on your character's performance. What do you think?

I have a friend who is, IMO, a little paranoid about the design of 4th edition. One analogy he frequently makes is that 4th edition will be to 3rd edition what 2nd edition was to 1st.

My friend did not like 2nd edition. There were many reasons mechanically, and the point of this thread really isn't to go into them.

What I'd like to look at is the leadership and actual people who designed 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th.

1st, 2nd and 3rd edition were essentially controlled and developed by entirely different lead designers and brand managers.

4th edition, on the other hand, has the same Director in charge: Bill Slavicsek. Mike Mearls, one of the lead designers, was chosen by Monte Cook as the designer of one of his leading systems after he left WotC. Most of the designers have been on the team for years making a living off of designing 3.5 material.

Do you think there is any comfort in the fact that in 4th edition the torch is actually being passed, whereas in previous editions the torch was either dropped and picked up or taken forcefully by someone else?


Races & Classes and Worlds & Monsters aren't just fluff previews of 4th edition. They're previews of presentation quality in 4th edition.

Looking back at the original 3rd edition adventure path (Sunless Citadel, etc) the presentation wasn't nearly as good. Scourge of the Howling Horde is similar. Black and white pages (including maps), a small quantity of mediocre quality art and poorly drawn maps stapled together.

The H (Hero) series will be 96 pages each, the same size as the two preview books. From the press releases, WotC has said they want to go with a 'magazine presentation' style with glossy, full color pages.

Dungeon magazine started this trend long ago, but like all D&D modules these were presented with a primarily gamist design. They're modular and focus on presenting a balanced challenge to the players. Unlike a sourcebook, they provide almost no supplemental support for going 'off the rails', be it to simulate the surrounding world or to flowchart different narrative possibilities. Challenging maps and encounters were the centerpiece, with a little flavor thrown in to accentuate the two (and excellent flavor in many cases, but it was the sizzle, not the steak).

DMs with very little prep time (and have a table that understands the DM's situation) will run canned modules off the shelf. How do they pick which one they want to run? Sometimes it's for a shared experience. Like the classics, they want to run something they can go to a message board and talk about years later. They want to 'capture the moment' in game. Dungeon magazine offered so many adventures that it was difficult to capture this 'shared experience'.

Running just one module is too gamist for most tables to stomach (except maybe in the RPGA), so most DMs will build a campaign to tie various modules together. Again, with so many modules out there it's tough to get that 'shared experience', and in many cases tying the small adventures together can be more work than prepping your own campaign material.

Adventure Paths provide this solution, and from what I've read they're much more successful than stand alone adventures. They are a common shared experience that can be run as an entire campaign with a very gamist "outwit, outplay, outlast" mentality from start to finish.

I think many people want a big magazine style gamist module they can start and end their campaigns with. Paizo is doing this with Pathfinder. WotC is following their lead with the Hero (H) series, followed by the Paragon (P) series and finally the Epic (E) series. The total amount of material to go from 1st to 30th would be 864 pages of adventure.

And in some ways, I see it as a tribute to Paizo's work with Dungeon magazine and now with Pathfinder. Imitation is the sincerest of flattery. Everyone should thank the staff of Paizo for raising the bar and helping WotC produce better adventures. If 4th edition is successful it will IMO be in large part because of Paizo.

It's interesting what a little caffeine and a visit to the chat rooms can inspire.

Yesterday we were discussing how over the top Devil May Cry is. The named desert eagles and the loner bad ass that is Dante. (I've never played the game before, but it sounded fun.) The words 'over the top' were mentioned at least half a dozen times.

I had a pretty fun Runelords session last night (just finished HMM), but I noticed something about the other table in our group (running Shackled City). There was a lot of out of character chatter. Like a peanut gallery, everything the DM said had some type of comment or chatter.

My group will do that on occasion. On my Sunday game (currently running Bloodsworn) we'll start Crimson Throne in a few weeks, and so I started thinking of ways to make the game more immersive. How do you control out of character chat?

I run MapTool games online and I've heard comments that they are very immersive for roleplaying. I think this is because you can very easily tell what's in character and what's out, and players have to make a conscious effort to speak out of character (I ask them to mark their text if it's out of character). How do we do this at the tabletop though?

Enter Over the Top. Inspired by the classic 1987 Sylvester Stallone flick, I'm going to try using small signs made of folded up index cards. On one side the player writes down the name of his character; on the other side, his name. If he wants to speak out of character he has to turn that card to his name and when he speaks in character he has to turn it to his character's name. He doesn't have to make a big production about it, but he does have to do it.

To add a bonus incentive, you could also keep track of every time he turns the card around (put a check next to his name on a list). Announce an 'immersion bonus pool' of xp (pick an appropriate amount) and every switch subtracts one (or two or three or whatever) percent of that pool.

You could also use baseball caps. :P

Does anyone else have any hints? James Jacobs has said a lot of xp from Crimson Throne will come from roleplaying.

I just can't fathom taking 90 minutes to build one NPC in 3.5, even at high level.

One of the selling points for 4th edition is fast NPC generation. Why aren't designers using the PHB 2? I've found it extremely useful not only for people at my table (my 12 year old son builds high level PCs all the time) but also for me when making NPCs.

Here's a breakdown of how long it takes me. Why does it take anyone any longer to do this?

1.) Choose Class - 1 minute: This decision is more like a part of writing the adventure, not NPC generation. I generally choose this for story or simulation.

2.) Determine Ability Scores - 1 minute. Arrays are already there.

3.) Pick Race - 3 minutes: See #1 for the selection process, but you also have to copy and paste any racial/monster abilities.

4.) Pick Skills - 3 minutes. You can cut down a LOT of time on this by putting max ranks in each skill and going down the priority list in the PHB 2.

5.) Pick Feats - 1 minute. Use the roles listed.

6.) Equipment - 2 minutes. Just copy the equipment listed for classes in the PHB 2.

7.) Spells - 2 minutes. Again, use the PHB 2 lists.

8.) Put it all together - 2 minutes. Apply all modifiers and synergies and double check the stat block.

Start to finish - 15 minutes.

There is a LOT of variety to be made from picking different monstrous races and adding class levels. And if you want two different types of fighters or duskblades or bards, the solution is variance in the existing lists in the PHB 2. Add tables for random equipment, skill and spell priorities, and create more feat lists. This is just as valuable as a complete overhaul of the system, and I would EXPECT the designers to have these available.

I just cannot imagine spending more than half an hour on ANY NPC, let alone NINETY MINUTES. What the hell is he doing in that amount of time?

And this is for a full on stat block, not "I think a +8 sounds good to hit". Am I the only one who baulks at the amount of time designers claim it takes them to build high level NPCs in 3.5?

Paizo and writers, how long does it take you?

I only received PF6 in order #870465. No receipt, no catalog, inserts at all. Can someone look into this? I was billed for both PF6 and Hangman's Noose.

A large percentage of the Player's Handbook in every edition of D&D contains information on spells. In the past only a few classes were able to cast spells. In 4th edition, every class will have some type of 'power' similar to spells.

I'm wondering if the new Martial Powers sourcebook is more like a 'Power Compendium' than a traditional 'Complete' base/prestige class book. If so, does anyone else fear that the Player's Handbook may intentionally have an underbalanced number of powers for all classes? There is also rumor that the a Spell Compendium type book will be available by the end of 2008.

We've heard of the Tome of Treasures. Now we've got Blood and Fist or Complete Warrior for 4th edition:

Martial Power

If you want to live in a world where D&D only has the core rulebooks there's a very short window to play. One advantage to being an 'early adopter' I guess.

There's been some discussion on other boards about 4E and simulationism and I wanted to see what the people and fans of Paizo thought about this.

For purposes of this discussion, simulationism is not about realism. It's a specific method as defined by the GDS (Gamist-Dramatist-Simulationist) model.

There is another model known as GNS (Gamist-Narrativist-Simulationist). I don't understand GNS well enough to explain the difference between the two, but if someone has the time and understand, or knows a good link, I would love to read it.

Here is Wikipedia's overview of GDS:

"In its most formal sense, the threefold model claims that any single GM decision (about the resolution of in-game events) can be made in order to further the goals of Drama, or Simulation, or Game. By extension, a series of decisions may be described as tending towards one or two of the three goals, to a greater or lesser extent. This can be visualised as an equilateral triangle, with a goal at each vertex, and the points between them representing different weightings of the different goals."

"Simulation is concerned solely with the events that unfold in the gameworld, and ensuring that they are only caused by in-game factors - that is, reducing metagame concerns (such as drama and game). It should be noted that simulation isn't necessarily concerned with simulating reality; it could be a simulation of any fictional world, cosmology or scenario, according to its own rules."

Note that this model describes how a campaign is run by a DM and not how a ruleset is developed by a game designer.

A DM choosing to run a game where the rules say a character must be x to activate item y can make as many simulationist decisions as another DM using rules where characters don't even have x and item y doesn't exist at all.

Regardless of the intent of the game designers, it's the DM who actually runs the game. One of the most basic decisions that determines if a game leans towards the simulationist side has nothing to do with the ruleset at all: are encounters tailored or are they a part of the status quo? Are heroes just as likely to run into an encounter that is too high or too low for them as an encounter that's "just right"?

Theoretically, IMO you could run a Golarion campaign using the D&D Miniatures rules for combat (which was designed specifically for balance) that leans much more towards simulationism than most campaigns that use the 3.5 RPG rules. Consider the following questions:

1.) When it rains, is it for mood or did the DM use a weather pattern table?

2.) If a character dies in the middle of the wilderness, does the party look for a replacement or does the new PC find the party?

3.) Do the PCs receive income from non-combat sources, including investments in property such as strongholds, farms, caravans, etc?

4.) How did you determine if PCs have friends and relatives? How were the friends' and relatives' locations determined? How are events in their lives generated?

5.) If a character is accused of stealing from an ancestral burial ground, how is law enforcement resolved? (And more importantly how do you determine if he is accused in the first place?)

6.) If a caravan is encountered on the road, how do you determine the number of wagons and what's in them?

7.) If there is a thieves guild in a town (again, how is that determined), who is their leader? Are they willing to sell arson and assination services? How do you determine which businesses are under their protection?

You'll have a very tough time finding skirmish combat rules (which is 90% of the RPG core rules) to answer these questions. Yet it's the method that the DM uses to answer these questions that determine if a campaign is gamist/dramatist/simulationist. Does he just make up whatever story sounds cool for his group? Does he tailor things to make an interesting puzzle or scenario for the group? Or does he look for additional, non-combat rules to help him generate a world that's less subjective and biased towards the characters in game and the players at the table?

IMO, whether a DM uses tables and non-combat rules made by third parties (or older WotC supplements) will determine if a 4th edition game is simulationist or not. Specifically, I would like to see Golarion supplements that aide in 4th edition simulationist campaigns.

This thread is for discussion of Prelude to the Fall.

GREAT stuff by the way. Can't wait!

Regardless of what changes in D&D, I think there are always going to be players who do not want ANY change at all. They've spent so much time and energy studying a certain game that occasionally playing something different just isn't an option anymore.

In some cases you have rules lawyers. They have spent countless hours reading errata on the scout's skirmish ability, memorizing the damage penalty for moving through a wall of thorns and pointing out umpteen times on forums about when you can and can't take an attack of opportunity. They are the masters of the ins and outs of THE system (as long as that system does not change).

In other cases you have the canon grognards. These players find it preposterous that Nerull is mentioned in an article about the Old Faith and will scream if a demon lord is presented with anything fewer than thirty hit dice. They may also find it is obsurd to ever consider playing a halfling cobbler let alone anything like (*gasp*) an undead necromancer.

What do these two groups have in common? In mosts cases, they are old and jaded. If you had a dime for every one of their complaints, you could probably buy the rights to the "most popular roleplaying game" out there and make Munchkins a race and spikey hair a feat out of spite.

Is your tolerance to try something new fading? Is the D&D logo on your hand flashing away? Are you a runner? If so, will you find Sanctuary?

(This rant was brought to you by the letter I, as in the phrase 'I wish to sound important as if my words meant anything to anyone.')

4th edition D&D Miniatures rules released today at WotC.

Haven't finished reading through it, but some observers on EN World have pointed out that there is no longer a penalty for diagonal movement, there is good and evil but no lawful or chaotic, and there is no sign of damage reduction.

Some new things: Bloodied. Opportunity attacks. Shift (5' step). Follow ups (Multiple attacks are now called followups and they only get a followup if they hit with the first one).

When reading it, remember that DDM in 3.5 was much different than D&D. (Reroll init every round, hp in increments of 5, etc)

From EN World:

EN World member Wartorn has posted the table of contents from Wizards Presents: Worlds & Monsters:

D&D and the Birth of a New Edition (2 pages)
The Process of Re-Creation (4 pages) - reimagining monsters for 4e
The Setting of D&D (4 pages) - the Points of Light setting, and how it came about
The New Cosmology (2 pages) - an overview of the new cosmology and the end of the great wheel
The World (8 pages) - Includes sections Fallen Empires, Locations of Note, The End of Human Dominion
Dragons (6 pages)
Giants (2 pages)
The Underdark (4 pages)
The Feywild (8 pages)
The ShadowFell (8 pages)
Art Gallery (1 page)
The Elemental Chaos (12 pages) - Elementals, Locations of Note, and the Abyss
The Astral Sea (10 pages) - includes The Gods, Angels, Devils
The Far Realm (6 pages) - includes Aberrant Creatures and Mind Flayers
Staff Thoughts on 4th Edition (13 pages) - sections about... lots of things
The Next Word (1 page) - a few words about what's coming

He also mentions a little about the Far Realm:

Here's a rundown on the Far Realm (which I jumped to because I'd never heard of it)

In summary, based on the fluff, it is definitely Lovecraftian but more on the 'outside and bizarre reality' side than the 'outer space' side.

The Far Realm is formally acknowledged in the cosmology, and 'is responsible for monstrosities that haunt the universe'. Specifcally, all aberrations are linked to it.

A Far Realm specific reason is suggested as a source of the conflict between the illithid and aboleth.

Perhaps taking a cue from WFRP, the Far Realm is said to 'seep in' sometimes, overlaying the landscape with an unnerving sense of dread, even distorting it, and tainting the flora and fauna. Strange new creatures emerge from this 'polluted reality' and insane practitioners sometimes 'willfully merge the natural and the obscene'

Also mentioned is that aberration is not a type. Type is now distinct from Origin - so you have Humanoids (type) with an Origin of fey (eladrin) , aberration (mind flayer), elemental (archon) , natural (man)

Finally there's a page and a half or so on the mind flayer: in short: they are essentially the same as in the previous edition just with fewer powers (taken from the set of those that most define them) that are easier and clearer to run. There are a few mechanical tidbits about mind blast and dominate each being a 'renewable power - useable once per encounter', whereas tentacle lash and grab are basic attacks backed up by situational powers 'bore into brain', 'thrall' and 'interpose thrall'

So far the book seems to be pretty close to Races and Classes in terms of value - and for me it is having the same effect: reinforcing my faith in the designers, making some things clearer in a positive way, increasing my enthusiasm for 4e. If you enjoyed R&C I'd recommend it.

And yet more details! They just keep coming!

The Temple of Elemental Evil is mentioned as a Location of Note. This section is said to contain 'future adventuring locales'...


Bunches of stuff here, the highlights include:
The different colors of Dragon have different monster roles - in other words, some are artillery (blue), some are brutes (white), some are soldiers (red) and so on
Dragons are solo monsters who 'get to do more on their turn than most monsters do' and also 'get to do a lot when it's not their turn' (like the tail slap we already knew about, but also mentioned is the green dragon's ability to poison you if you get too close)
Dragons have fewer abilities, focused on the most iconic ones (continuing the theme). For example, the oldest black dragon is said to have only five possible standard actions, with unique magical abilities taking the place of spells simply taken from the wizard's lists.
Dragons aren't forced into specific 'alignments'. Their motives can vary from a baseline - chromatic are wild, metallic like to be in control but good and evil manifests in each.
There are two new flavours of metallic dragon which displace bronze and brass from the core group. The new metallics are Iron and Adamantine.
Chromatic dragons grow in raw elemental power as they age which manifests as unique new powers related to the appropriate element. An ancient red's breath weapon, for example, can 'scour the fire resistance right off you'
An all new look and set of powers for the green dragon; they are back to breathing poison!


There are Huge versions of the standard giants called Titans - these are more closely tied to the elements and have greater power
Giants in general are more elemental in nature, and there is greater variety between the standard types
The Giant type is specifically for Giants. Trolls, ogres, ettins don't 'necessarily' have the Giant 'type'


Now considered easier to get to
Mentioned are Drow, Troglodytes, Mind Flayers, Kuo-Toas (aboleth servant/worshippers), aboleths, myconids
Vault of the Drow is mentioned as an Underdark Location of Note


Mentioned inhabitants include hags, yeth hounds, centaurs, eladrins, treants, fomorians, unicorns, elves, firbolgs, the Wild Hunt, red caps, quicklings, will-o'wisps, dark ones, pixies
There is a fey reflection of the underdark, ruled over by fomorians
The Isle of Dread is mentioned as a Location of Note
Gnomes are a possible fey-dwelling race
Pixies, well, don't want to ruin the surprise


Merges Negative Energy Plane and Plane of Shadow, removing the irritating bits that make these places a pain to visit
Shadow is a power source. Involved with stealth, illusion, dread, 'devastating enemies' and 'necrotic energy'
They've re-concepted the undead, adding the animus, providing 'vitality and mobility', as a companion to the soul and the body.
Very interesting descriptions of how different varieties of undead are now explained. Shadow are the animus freed of body and soul, for example.
Lots of details about how the new cosmology explains resurrection and reincarnation
Shadowfell is inhabited by ... the Shadar-kai.

From Goodman Games:

By now you've probably all seen the announcement on EN World: the 4th edition open game license is officially announced! Goodman Games is excited to be on board, and we will be part of 4E from the launch.

It will all start with Free RPG Day, the event that Goodman Games created and which Wizards of the Coast is heavily sponsoring this year. Look for another free DCC -- this time 4th edition -- on June 21 from participating stores.

After that it's going to be a very big Gen Con, for a number of reasons. First, it will be the fifth anniversary of our DCC Open Tournament, and we're making it special. The module is already being crafted and it's a real challenge. The bar for competition will rise as we add more tables and more players than ever before. And of course there will be the fun fact that most people will only have a few months of experience with the game, which will level the playing field.

The second big aspect of Gen Con will be our releases. Of course Dungeon Crawl Classics will be well represented in the first wave of 4E releases. We are having some fun with the concept, and the presentation of the DCC series will change a little. I like to joke that we're upgrading from a 1E look to a 2E look. The same basic concepts will be there, and the adventures will be designed by the same talented writers, but you will be immediately able to distinguish a 4E DCC from a 3E DCC. And I think you'll like the new look.

Aside from the DCC series, we'll have some other fun products, too, but those details will be forthcoming in the future. Many of you know that I often prefer to post about a product only when I have something to show off, so we'll be announcing more details as we get the great cover designs polished up.

Clark Peterson of Necromancer Games (and the RPG Superstar Contest) has posted the following information on planned 4th edition 3rd party products:

Clark Peterson wrote:

1. Tome of Horrors 4E: if WotC leaves monsters out of the offial rules, we will put them back in (cant say which ones cause we dont have the rules yet). Plus all the classics from the original Tome that you want in your 4E game will be back.

2. Advanced Player's Guide: To be designed in part by industry insider Ari Marmell, if they left classes and races out, we put them back in (Of course, we can't say if bards or druids or barbarians or gnomes or half-orc are or arent in 4th edition, but we know some stuff has been cut, and whatever is missing we will create for you with work by respected designer Ari Marmell.)

3. Tegel Manor. A 4E version of the 1E Judges Guild classic.

4. Winter's Tomb. A free, downloadable PDF along the lines of Wizard's Amulet, Necro's Ennie-winning introductory adventure, that will help jump start your 4E campaign.

My question to you all is this: to what extent will the use of 3rd party material that harkens back to 1st edition influence your decision to create a 4E campaign?

And a question for Paizo: will you be using any of this material in Pathfinder/GameMastery?

James Jacobs wrote:
I suspect that we may make this plot synopsis available as a free PDF to check out as well...

Despite the title of the thread, I'd like to open this up to discussion. I'm a current subscriber and will receive the plot synopsis in PF6. I have no need for a free plot synopsis.

I can understand that if someone who subscribes once PF7 comes out and doesn't have PF6 would want to receive a copy of this synopsis.

However, I'm concerned that if it's free for anyone to download then potential players will read the synopsis. I'm not sure how big the spoilers are, but if players read a four page synopsis for other APs I think it could significantly change their view of the campaign.

It sounds like Paizo hasn't made a decision yet, so I'd like to give feedback now.

In 3.5, spells were divided into two sources: arcane and divine. A core wizard could learn to cast pretty much any arcane spell. Some classes, like a bard, had the same spells (perhaps with a small list to choose from) and some spells might be a higher or lower spell level. Still other classes had a slower progression; spells a wizard could cast at 7th might take another class their entire progression to achieve.

There are few ways, using this system, to differentiate one caster from another.

In 4E, I'm hearing some people say that wizards won't be as versatile because previous schools like enchantments, illusions and necromancy are being 'reserved' for other classes. What exactly does this mean? Wizards can't cast these spells?

One change I've heard of is giving powers per day, per encounter and per round (at will). I think this will allow an incredible amount of variety in the development of new types of spellcasters while allowing traditional mages to remain versatile.

I'm only guessing here (thinking of how I would do things) but let's take a spell like charm person. Let's say a wizard gets to cast that spell once per day. Eventually they will get to cast it once per encounter and then at some point near the end of their career at will.

Now let's say you want to make a new class, like a bard. The bard starts out casting this spell once per encounter.

Another class, like a necromancer, might have to wait until further in their career before they can even cast charm person on a per day basis. However, they can summon undead per round much sooner before a wizard, and a bard might never be able to do that.

This design philosophy doesn't just apply to traditional wizard spells. A monk, for example, might be able to do a stunning fist like effect per encounter sooner than a paladin ever would.

Has there been any real word on whether a wizard just won't ever be able to cast certain spells (traditional enchantments, for example)? I'm reading a lot of comments saying that wizards are turning into 'evocation only' casters, and I'm wondering where this is coming from.

When I talk with some of the grognards in our group about the 'way things used to be', they very fondly recall what I like to call the "Mystery of the Absolute Setting." The reason for these whisps of nostalgia generally fall into one of two categories: the search for the Unknown (the mystery) and a single Known World (an Absolute Setting).

Today there are many different campaign settings, but 'back in the day' there was really only one set of popular published canon and it all took place in the known world. Reading the Monster Manual, there were assumptions about the world the creatures lived in. This is still true today in 3E and 4E, but back then there was no legacy. The closest thing you had to 'tradition' and 'roots' was a hodgepodge collection of myths from dozens of real-world and fictional cultures. As adventures were published, names of cities and heroes and backstories were revealed slowly. There was only one assumed world, and it was presented like the inside out method in the DMG.

Like original D&D, Golarion and the new Points of Light setting are also doing this:

"Start with a small area and build outward. Don't even worry about what the whole world looks like, or even the kingdom. Concentrate first on a single village or town, preferably with a dungeon or other adventure site nearby."

Other settings, like Eberron and the 3rd edition 'Default World' of Greyhawk, have been presented outside in.

"Start with a big picture - [view] a map of an entire continent or portion could start with a grand [understanding of] how a number of kingdoms and nations interact..."

By drawing new players and DMs into a default world that is already filled out (like Greyhawk, or even FR or Eberron), you are not presenting D&D as it was originally.

What do you think? Do you like Golarion's presentation? So far there have been TWELVE adventures, nearly a thousand pages of material between what's been printed and snippets of dialog from the developers online. It's a 'slow reveal', presented almost exactly as Greyhawk was originally.

If you enjoy this, what is your opinion of using a new 'Points of Light' Known World as the default assumption for D&D?

In our gaming group, we have a DM who runs everything in Greyhawk. To him, and probably to many others, if the rules make it nearly impossible to run D&D in Greyhawk then it really isn't D&D anymore.

When 3rd edition came out, people who ran games like Dark Sun had an extremely difficult time if they wanted to use the new ruleset. My friend fears that this may happen to his beloved Greyhawk when 4E is released, but he's waiting to see.

So what new things have failed the Greyhawk Litmus Test? Things like 'Dragonborn' are simply new races that can be tossed aside. What about the magic system though? Will the changes in 4E alter the view of Tensor, Mordenkainen, Bigby, etc?

What type of rules changes do you fear might fail a 'Greyhawk Litmus Test'?

There have been a couple of elf threads already, but I sent this to my group and wanted to share it on Christmas. Let me know if I missed anything. Happy Holidays!

Ability Scores:
1st and 2nd Editions: +1 Dex, -1 Con
3rd Edition: +2 Dex, -2 Con
4th Edition: +2 Dex, +2 Wis

Class Restrictions:
1st Edition: fighter 7th, magic-user 11th, assassin 10th, rogue (no limit), Multi-class restrictions: only fighter/magic-user, fighter/thief, magic-user/thief
2nd Edition: cleric, fighter, mage, thief, ranger, Multi-class restrictions: fighter/mage, fighter/thief, fighter/mage/thief, mage/thief
3rd Edition: Favored Class: Wizard. A multiclass elf’s wizard class does not count when determining whether she takes an experience point penalty for multiclassing.
4th Edition: None.

1st and 2nd Editions: 12 Movement Rate
3rd Edition: 30 feet.
4th Edition: 7 squares, Wild Step: You ignore difficult terrain when you shift (even if you have a power that allows you to shift multiple squares).

Sleep and Charm:
1st and 2nd Editions: Resist 90% sleep and charm spells
3rd Edition: Immunity to magic sleep effects, and a +2 racial saving throw bonus against enchantment spells or effects.
4th Edition: None. (+2 Wisdom?)

1st and 2nd Editions: +1 attack with shortsword, longsword, longbow or shortbow
3rd Edition: Elves receive the Martial Weapon Proficiency feats for the longsword, rapier, longbow (including composite longbow), and shortbow (including composite shortbow) as bonus feats.
4th Edition: Elven Weapon Training: You gain proficiency with the longbow and the shortbow. Elven Accuracy: You can use elven accuracy as an encounter power.

Vision and Detect Secret Doors:
1st and 2nd Edition: Infravision, see in Darkness 60 ft., Detect secret doors (1/6 or 16 2/3 % chance)
3rd Edition: +2 racial bonus on Listen, Search, and Spot checks. An elf who merely passes within 5 feet of a secret or concealed door is entitled to a Search check to notice it as if she were actively looking for it. Low-Light Vision: An elf can see twice as far as a human in starlight, moonlight, torchlight, and similar conditions of poor illumination. She retains the ability to distinguish color and detail under these conditions.
4th Edition: +2 Perception (+2 Wisdom?), Low-Light, Group Awareness: You grant non-elf allies within 5 squares a +1 racial bonus to Perception checks

1st Edition: Move Silently for surprise (1-4 on a d6) when alone and not in armor
2nd Edition: Move Silently for surprise (enemies take -4 on surprise rolls) when alone and not in metal armor, with other halflings or elves without metal armor or 90 feet from the party
3rd Edition: None (having high spot and listen helps with surprise?)
4th Edition: None (maybe having Nature helps with covering tracks, which in some way might help with surprise???)

1st Edition: Elvish, Gnome, Halfling, Goblin, Hobgoblin, Orcish, Gnoll, Common
2nd Edition: Common, Halfling, Goblin, Hobgoblin, Orc, Gnoll
3rd Edition: Automatic Languages: Common and Elven. Bonus Languages: Draconic, Gnoll, Gnome, Goblin, Orc, and Sylvan
4th Edition: Common, Elven

Today on WotC's site they published the 4E PHB elf entry. One thing that stood out:

"Elves mature at about the same rate as humans but show few effects of age past adulthood."

This seems to conflict with Merisiel's backstory. It's just flavor though, but what does Paizo think?

My second question is related to aging. Will you include Aging Effects for Ezren in his stat block?

Also, do you normally include aging effects in NPC stats? If so, I haven't noticed. If not, why not?

1 to 50 of 133 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>