Shebeleth Regidin

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First level characters?

And what's the list of 'campaign traits'?


Do we want a coherent theme for the group, or do we just want to find a way?

(That is, figure something out after?)


I need to read up on the world. When I bought PF and got up to speed with it ~2 years ago, I paid almost 0 attention to the world (since I never use worlds as-written). Hmm.

I've had this character idea of a halfling ranger with Favored Enemy: Vermin, because it occurred to me one day... what would you do if you lived in a world where the pantry might contain a spider the size of a car?

I'd never sleep with a light off again, and I'd want them dead.


So, how about my thri-kreen ranger?

No?


Hey there, Will here. I'm not terribly familiar with all these modules, just the core game stuff. I'll go with whatever folks feel strongly about, though the idea of Kingmaker fascinates me (I like tinkering).


Evil Lincoln: Never going to happen, sure, but neither is the rest of this. ;)

If we're going to write-up pipedreams of ideal reorganization of magic, though, may as well go for broke.


I've disliked Necromancy being the school of unlife for a while, because that's NOT WHAT IT MEANS.

Necromancy is divination.


You know what might be good? Remove necromancy utterly, add Profane and Sacred as schools (and maybe lump two other schools)

Spells that do nicey-nice things are Sacred, spells that do really twisted stuff are Profane. Some subset of these spells are actually Good or Evil, but many aren't.

I would just make Necromancy a rare subtype of Divination, like it's SUPPOSED TO BE. (IE: Speak with Dead)


Have you taken a look at Incantations, from Unearthed Arcana?

It's sort of my go-to for nontraditional ritual magic in D20.


I think the big problem with multiclassing is that it makes it a lot easier to not get what you think you're getting.

Which is another way of saying 'system mastery,' and is a problem people will potentially run into all over the place.

Backing up, this is the problem a lot of people have with monks: they expect a tough, deadly guy whose weapons are his hands. KAPOW! Bruce Lee knocks your freakin' head off.

But that's not really what a monk is. A monk is a more versatile, battlefield-manipulating dude who can run up to the big bad, grab his staff of Uberness, and run off going 'ha ha ha suck it' or start beating the big bad with his own staff. He can pull arrows out of the air, stun with a touch, and blip around the place like a badly lagging MMO.

So new folks get very frustrated, fast, because what they want doesn't fit.

Multiclassing is a lot like that; a lot of the options are very good, and you can make even some of the awkward ones work if you have the right goals.

Eldritch Knight is GOOD. But he's not a better fighter than a fighter and he's not a better wizard than a wizard -- why would he be? He's a decent fighter with a lot of tricks up his sleeve, he's a decent wizard with durability and some nice combat training (Improved Critical: ray. Sickening Critical: ray. ZOMG)

But if you don't appreciate or get the nuances of the rules, it's going to seem weak, because it's not 'about' the things you are probably looking for.


If my character has three legs, why can't my Eidolon?

(ba DUM dum)


Personally, I'd make Athletics = Jump + Climb + Swim

Edit: In other words, I agree, and who cares who stole the 'thunder.'

I'm also inclined to put Fly into Acrobatics.


Basically, think of it as the brewer is casting the spell on the drinker, through the potion.

If the brewer can cast a spell on someone else, he can make a potion for someone else.


I think someone else mentioned it, but part of Lawful is 'respecting legitimate authority.' And there is mileage out of 'do we agree on this person being a legitimate authority?'

Kingdom A might see kingdom B's new king as not the legitimate king of B. Moreover, as their royal lines are related, they feel obligated to get involved, invade, and straighten things out.

Kingdom B, obviously, disagrees, and repulses the invaders.

The two folks may very well know that folks and leaders on the other side are LG, too. It's just... they're wrong.

And divination might not help; it tells you what your god thinks. If the two kingdoms worship different gods... well.


This is one reason I like the idea of E6 games (short form: stop leveling at level 6, gain an additional feat every 5000 xp).

Level 6 characters, level 6 characters with extra feats, are heroes without being demigods.


I like what Lord of the Rings Online did: hit points was essentially your will to fight.

As you got banged up, your courage faltered. 'Healers' would be minstrels or leaders, who would inspire those around them to rise to the challenge.

Finally, your will would fail and you would fall, to be dragged away and roused later.

It's a beautiful way to avoid some of the head scratching with normal hit points, though it requires a certain cinematic element; you aren't actually bleeding or having your arm ripped off and checking ticks off a box, you are NEARLY having your arm ripped off and getting bruised up.


Thinking about it, I think the cleanest way to do it would be to treat firearms as ranged touch attacks and ballistic armor as bonus to touch attacks when shot at.

So:
AC: 16, touch: 14, FF: 12 (leather +2, Dex +4)
Ballistic: 18 (ballistic plates/armor +4)


I dunno, people deal with ranged touch vs. regular ranged attacks already.

And, as Xorial points out, armor in a modern game generally WILL be resistant to bullets. So, 99% of the time, AC = normal.

In a modern game there should be more provision for dodge bonuses primarily because modern games will typically be a lot less accepting of folks wandering around in body armor. (With the exception of war or post-holocaust scenarios)


My thoughts:
medieval armor doesn't work against firearms (or provides, maybe, DR 1)

Classes have bonuses to Dex for the purposes of AC; that is, you don't want to wear cumbersome armor even more, and you have a scaling bonus against threats.

But, hey, if you're going to be in a knife fight, maybe that chainmail will help ya!


Remember that LG does not mean 'brilliant,' or even 'particularly smart.'

Or that a LG nation knows that another nation is LG.

Or considers vast issues of alignment, rather than reacting to desires.

So, for example, 'the dwarves are encroaching on our northern border, violating border agreements and threatening our farmsteaders there,' the answer might be military engagement which snowballs because the humans don't particularly trust dwarven stories of a mine collapse and refugees, and the dwarves are too proud to necessarily even explain that in the first place.


I'm not questioning your experience, you were questioning mine.

As for dragons, I've seen a fair number of 'lieutenant' level dragons in campaigns; that is, they aren't foot soldiers, but not necessarily the big end boss.

And I'd argue that the importance of enemies is more significant than numbers; if I face 5 scrub encounters of guys with no SR and one climactic battle with a bunch of guys with SR, I think it's fair to say SR is important.


I don't know how doable it is in D&D, but some widespread disaster or collapse, that translates to: 'we each have X number of people. There is enough food/resources to barely feed X people.'

So, either we starve half our people, or we fight over the resource to see which of us starves.

It's not Good so much as 'sometimes you have to decide which innocents to help.' And, being Lawful, they are committed to THEIR people/nation.


Brodiggan Gale wrote:

As for SR... well, for certain fights that matters, yes, but SR isn't nearly as common as most people seem to think. With the exception of Dragons, Demons and Devils (who tend to show up rarely in most campaigns) and the various good outsiders (who, in most games, are almost never going to be engaging the players in combat), there really aren't that many foes with SR. (Golems of course, but their SR is effectively infinite, so level drain doesn't matter).

I think it due to actual experience, rather than looking at bestiary listing. For one thing, bestiary listing doesn't show advanced versions of lower CR creatures.

Which reminds me of another D... drow. There are some modules entirely filled with 'em, at every CR.

As for dragons, demons, and devils... it's Dungeons and Dragons!! More seriously, I see demons and devils in campaigns all the time, up there with undead and random class-leveled guys in common threats, if not more commonly.

Speaking of undead, there's Nightshades, which have pretty hefy SR.

So, I have no idea what kind of weird campaigns you've been running in, but I'd wager money that 'many enemies have SR by CR 8, most of the important enemies after CR 10' is the norm.


Given how common SR is in mid to high level scenarios, I think a caster level hit is PLENTY hard.

I can't think of any dangerous no-SR, fixed damage spells... anyone think of a good example?


Yes. Easier and more consistent to say 'negative levels diminish the strength of everything you do' rather than pick and choose access to this or that.

It's also thematically coherent: the touch of the wight weakens my soul. My every action is palsied and more difficult, the power of what I do has been drained.


Remco Sommeling wrote:
A wand with spectral hand might be a bit easier, the DC is 20 instead of 23 and you get a +2 bonus for having activated the wand at least once before.

+2 bonus? What?


I wouldn't do the -1 Con, since it has effects on both Hit Points and Fort, which are already being penalized.


Let's convince him negative levels change your character's race one entry up in the index!


Except that still doesn't fix the basic problem that 'time to make' and 'cost' have absolutely nothing to do with each other.


Caineach:
Aaah... some of the stuff is accurate, much of it isn't?
What's the point of that statement? Honest question. I mean, if I made up a random system, it would have a reasonable chance of happening to be right here and there, but not sure that ... means anything.

Man in black:
Simple.
'It takes a reasonable amount of time to make stuff. Unless the timing is really important, assume you make stuff in a week to a month of downtime, if you can take 10. If you have to take 20, it's going to take a long time.
You can only sell mundane goods to NPCs at cost.'

Done.


Caineach, how about the realism problem with craft time of longbows and composite longbows? Care to comment on it?


There is nothing in the trip rules specifically, but the trip weapon description DOES suggest it, as has been mentioned before.

And it wouldn't be the first time that you had to look in a side-related rule description to get information on how stuff works.


Well, regardless, the devs said flat-out 'no, half-orcs don't have light sensitivity.'

And also claim the orc subtype rule doesn't say half-orcs have light sensitivity.

While I don't agree with the logic of that claim and think the 'orc subtype' rather clearly DOES say 'half-orcs have light sensitivity,' I'm perfectly happy going by what the devs say they meant rather than what the text says.


The way I see it, monsters will start with, say, 'basic claws.'

If you want to reflect the monster having an innate advantage with claws, perhaps they have terrifying claws that are bumped up a degree across the board.

Someone can take that monster and, with advancement, decide it has trained Improved Natural Attack (claw), being even better than most members of the species.

In deciding a given species has extra-good claws, you work that into the basic balance of the creature.

Like, for instance, Tyrannosaurs are gargantuan. Normally, bite attacks should be 2d8, but T-rexes have MASSIVE jaws, so they are bumped up a degree to 4d6. Not only that, they have a special 'powerful bite' power.

If you wanted, an advanced T-rex could then take Improved Natural Attack (Bite) to bump it up even further (shudder).

But this is somewhat balanced by the fact T-rexes only have one attack, their ACs are kinda meh for CR 9 (like most animals), and so on; they only HAVE a bite (and swallow).


Caineach wrote:
Um, most of the costs are "sane and realistic,"

Care to defend this point?


I think that's totally fair.


I think the RAW means half-orcs have light sensitivity, but the devs have made it very clear that's not at all what they meant.


Look, sling stones are ammunition and they are also governed by the same rules.

Shuriken should, too.


Mynameisjake:
Try that with MW full plate:
'Ok, so 7 months later...'

Try that with adamantine full plate:
'Ok, so 5 1/2 years later...'


Well, you run into the big problem that by 10th level you really want to make a lot of stuff that's higher level than 3rd. And you're sitting there going 'ugh, why'd I go with potion insted of CWI?'

I'm wondering if it would 'break' anything to move all elixirs and oils to brew potion and remove the cap. It's priced the same way wondrous items are.

I'd keep the cap with wands, though; they're already priced ultracheap, and CLW Pez dispensers are useful forever, really.


I found it annoying to spot all the Elixirs of X in the Wondrous Item list... I think Wondrous items is being a jerk and hoarding all the cool items.

Personally, I think nearly all consumable one-shot, anyone use items should fall under brew potion. I think you'd see more people taking it for silversheen and elixirs and such.


Studpuffin wrote:
I still don't see the lack of fun or balance, sorry to say,

Lack of fun, lack of balance:

'I'd like to craft my own suit of adamantine full plate. It will take years? I suppose that might be character building...'
"Oh cool, I finished making my MW full plate into +3 light fortification!"
'Wait, doesn't that cost more than adamantine full plate?'
"Yep"
'How long did it take you??'
"Oh, I bought MW full plate last month, and took three weeks to enchant it."
'... Well, I'm sure adamantine full plate will be better than +3 light fortification full plate, right?'
"Not really."
'... sigh.'

Lack of fun: crafting mundane stuff because it's cool for my character involves huge annoyances, headaches, and inconveniences for myself and everyone around me.

Lack of balance: crafting mundane stuff because it's cool for my character is much more difficult, much less effective and useful than either just buying it or crafting magic stuff, even when prices are comparable.

Studpuffin wrote:
but lack of realism can get annoying. Of course, many of the items in question don't actually exist, (i'm looking at you Dragon Bile). You have to suspend believability from the get go, but try to truck along to a solution. For me, the times in question do seem pretty close to the mark.

Again, easy example:

Longbow vs. composite longbow.
This is a case where the craft system is actually wrong in a nice way, because composite longbows take anywhere between 4x to 7x (depending on whether you add in the drying time or not) as long to make as regular longbows in reality.
In D&D, composite longbows are 1 1/3 x the cost of regular longbows, so take ~1.3x as long to make.

Then the other example that gets quoted a bunch:
Exquisite torque made of iron.
Exquisite torque made of gold.

Despite gold being a softer metal and easier to work with, it will take possibly 100x as long to make a gold torque as an iron one.

Technically it takes at least a day to make a single arrow (I assumed there was a rule for making arrows 50 at a time or something, but I haven't seen it).

You don't have to resort to playing guessing games with made up stuff to decide the times are unrealistic, there are plenty of, well, real things to look at.


I don't mind the lack of realism, I mind the lack of fun or balance.

(Or, more accurately, I first grump at a lack of fun or balance, and then get annoyed to find it's also wildly unrealistic, too)


Caineach wrote:
The rules are realistic for the most part. Sure, there are some flaws, but for MOST things the time is accurate.

Almost forgot this one... not really. The rules miss reality in a bunch of ways, including: in RL it takes a week to make composite bows and a month to let them dry, it takes a day to make regular bows and a week to let them dry (fail), in RL you can make more than one item a day, and sometimes many many items.

Value and time needed to craft are not strongly correlated at all in RL.

Historic house prices weren't anywhere NEAR what they are in D&D. (This isn't terribly important, but I feel bad for anyone who wants a house for flavor reasons and has a DM who doesn't want to houserule)


Caineach wrote:
Really? I would have added the mundane crafting time onto the magical crafting time, as the magical part is to apply the enchantment, not create the item.

Sure. Except then it takes incredibly long to make even small constructs.

An iron golem takes almost 3 months to enchant, 80,000 gp. That's a long time, but hey, that's reasonable.

If you have +20 Craft (armor) and take 10, it takes 3 years to sculpt the iron body you are going to enchant (worth 10,000 gp). Not reasonable. (And if you somehow manage +30 Craft, it's over 2 years, still)


It'd be one thing if the rules were bad because they were too simple. Then you could at least argue 'eh, it's not important, if you want extra rules, go nuts.'

The fact that the rules are bad and really complex, more complex than any other skill in the game, boggles me.

Amusingly, I was working out some ideas for constructs and realized that it took far far far more time to, say, build a 200 gp construct framework (mundane crafting) than it took to craft the 10,000 gp construct (craft construct).

At that point I threw up my hands and just dropped the mundane part as absurd.


If you have a reliable source of greater magic weapon and/or flame arrow, the shuriken might be worth it.


Transformation would make the dog fairly scary, particularly combined with, oh, stoneskin or something.


Jreyst:
If you have any interest in my anarchic/axiomatic template idea from above, feel free to plop it on d20pfsrd.com. (posting on a forum is pretty OGC. :)


Any solution that doesn't either put mundane crafting on the same scale as magic crafting, or address the 'iron ring, gold ring' value problem doesn't really work for me.

But I've suggested my houserule. ;)

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