Magma Dragon

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How did people run the maps for Cell Block J? I'm reading over the descriptions and having a hard time reconciling them with the map. B12 and 13 especially since it seems there is a wall and circular desk dividing each of these but nothing in the description mentions these. Presumably it's not terribly high as they both have a control room overlooking the area. The flavor text also makes it seem like you can see the whole room when you enter. So did you just make it an empty room aside from the parts actually listed in the text, or if you included the wall how did you have them set up?


So looking at how stats increase drastically every 5 levels seems really odd to me. I would think it would be more rewarding to spread that out more so you don't see a big power spike at lvl 5. I can kind of get that you probably don't want players dumping all their bonuses on one ability score, but you can add in a line preventing that.

So basically this is how I'm thinking of running the ability score increase in my game:

* Every 5 levels is a tier.
* You gain an ability score increase each level except when going up a tier
* You can only increase an individual ability once each tier
* Ability score increases are the same as normal (16 or below +2, 17 or above +1)

I am curious though- is there any real issue to doing things this way? The end result at every 5 levels is the same, but it makes most levels a little more rewarding for the players. I suppose rewriting any effects of those bonuses may be a little tedious to do each level, but maybe less so than doing it for 4 different abilities at the same time.


I feel I get the gist of rarity for most things, except I'm not sure how it is supposed to work with Clerics. If I'm reading it right Clerics still get their full spell list to choose from when preparing spells. So how would you restrict rarity?

The first thing that comes to mind is by the deity they serve. So clerics of Sarenrae and Pharasma who have the Healing domain would likely get it as common. Maybe some others like Desna, and Shelyn that might have it in their domains or be likely to grant it more freely. But then any other would have to make an argument to their god why they should provide the spell to that cleric, or perhaps perform a task to earn that spell.

What are your thoughts?


Bardarok wrote:

I don't think it's bad to have things held back to be fighter only. My only worry is that if those things are must haves than everyone will feel the need to multiclass to get those options.

Do barbarians need power attack in PF2? They can get it by taking the fighter archetype and if every barbarian ends up doing that then that is a problem. But if only some do and others are just as viable focusing on barbarian feats only then I don't see a problem with that specific trick being fighter only.

Similarly anyone can dual wield and get a minor benefit. First strike with a high damage non-agile weapon and follow up strike(s) with a lower damage agile weapon for better accuracy. dual slice is better but is it so good that every two weapon fighting character will feel the need to multi class fighter (or ranger in the future) to get it?

I can definitely see Barbarians wanting Power Attack. It's the iconic smash style attack. I can see every ranger that wants to focus on Ranged attacks needing Fighter just so they can get Double Shot and then Triple Shot (and they still won't be able to take some ranged feats due to lvl/2 capping you at 10th lvl feats).

I don't necessarily mind using fighter as a way to turn most casters into pseudo-martials, or use it as a base for martial-casters. However it seems ridiculous that I have to multiclass with another martial to be good at something iconic to my class.


I think I'm seriously going to need to rewrite the entire weapon and armor list at some point, if the current state is any indication.


David knott 242 wrote:
Wolfgang Hype wrote:

The problem with Archetypes vs General feats is Archtypes lock you into them for 5 levels since the current set-up requires you to take 3 Archetype feats before you can take a new one. General feats are something you can just say 'I'd like to be a bit better at X' without requiring as much bloat as an archetype for each of them would require.

Now if they adjust the archetype system so it's more flexible perhaps this could work. Alternatively they could work on making the general feats more interesting.

You aren't locked into an archetype for 5 levels -- you can abandon further progress in it at any time if you have no interest in taking any other archetype.

You are locked into a particular archetype for a minimum of 5 levels (at least for all current archetypes) because you need to take the dedication and two other feats. If you want only one archetype and only the dedication or one other feat, that's fine, but you are still locked into that archetype until you take a third feat.

My point being trading general feats, which are one off and you go on your way, for something that locks down your options for a minimum of a quarter of your levels is not ideal.


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Zaister wrote:
But then, if everybody could get the fighter's cool toys, why would you want to play a fighter?

I think they should probably give the Fighter some form of feat bundles, like the styles from 1st edition ranger. Give him weapon versatility so he can be equally good with a bow and a sword. Or two weapons and sword and board. Etc.

The fighter should definitely be the best at what he does, but that should be because he's focused on that, not because he's hiding everything from the other classes.


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The way each class has their own feats is interesting, however I don't think that the Fighter should have their own feats. Looking at their list they basically stole all the combat feats and are hiding them in their room from the other classes. Sure some classes get their own versions, like Paladin gets Attack of Opportunity and Ranger gets some two weapon feats, but others say hidden in the fighter list- like Power Attack which they refuse to share with the Barbarian.

So no, I don't think the fighter should have feats, he should have means of getting more combat feats than others, not be a gatekeeper to the cool toys.


I mentioned this in another thread, but I think it'd might be interesting to see Crossbows move towards an ambush/sniper weapon. One of it's main benefits is you don't have to hold it taunt to keep it ready to shoot. This also means you need much less movement to shoot from hiding, as well as being able to shoot from a prone position.

So I'd probably give them a larger damage die and then give them a "steady" trait that gives a bonus for spending an action aiming. You can then boost that up with quality and/or feats.

I don't think crossbows will ever be truly competitive with bows for direct damage, so why not give them something different they can be good at.


The problem with Archetypes vs General feats is Archtypes lock you into them for 5 levels since the current set-up requires you to take 3 Archetype feats before you can take a new one. General feats are something you can just say 'I'd like to be a bit better at X' without requiring as much bloat as an archetype for each of them would require.

Now if they adjust the archetype system so it's more flexible perhaps this could work. Alternatively they could work on making the general feats more interesting.


I think they just wanted to see how many traits they can add in for people to ignore- Clumsy, volley, fragile... I'm just going to pretend these don't exist.


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Igor Horvat wrote:
Skrzynek wrote:

The volley trait is absolutely disgusting. I sure hope they see this thread and kick that arbitrary nerf out of the game.

But in regards to realism - how the hell do crossbows have longer range than longbows? Why is nobody here talking about it?

Well, they saw: reload time, must give something...hmm...range?

As someone who practiced HEMA and archery, seeing this weapon table makes me want to bash my head into a wall.

Yeah, using logic on the equipment lists is a little painful. You could make the argument that it's easier to aim with a crossbow. I don't shoot bows or crossbows myself but my understanding is that it's fairly hard to hold and aim with a bow while the crossbow has the advantage of not requiring any effort keep ready while you aim.

Could actually use that to give crossbows a niche. Likely not a terribly great one, but still having them be the sniper style weapons is something. I would still probably give them a base damage increase.


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wraithstrike wrote:
I would like it better if you can attack from stealth like PF1. Since invis no longer gives crazy bonuses to stealth it shouldn't be an issue. I only glanced through the book, but I dont see a lot of modifiers to make you almost impossible to detect either. Unless someone still finds a way to abuse I don't see an issue.

To paraphrase one of the designers- someone's always going to find a way to abuse it. Except he then goes on to talk about making things interesting for newer players, which I must say this doesn't seem to be the case. Needing 5 feats to make "I sneak up and shank the guy" viable is not exactly new player friendly.


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Apparently they don't like longbows seeing use at all. When I played an archer in 1st ed I don't think I EVER shot at anything more than 50ft away.

Edit: I think the better solution would be to give the short-bow agile so you trade damage die for more attacks.


Reading over the stealth skill was so disappointing. It feels like there is far too much rules oversight there.


Something that came up in game today: does Telekinetic Charge have to be a straight line? We were debating this. The only thing that specifies one way or another is being able to lift your target over attacks. Personally I view it as lifting and launching the character, but I was curious if there was anything that indicated this was more than GM's choice.


I did do a search, but mostly got side stuff like would the enhancement bonus on armor still take effect with Mage Armor. Maybe I needed to revise my search.


So, something I saw brought up was certain Eastern Armors that have 0% arcane spell failure and 0 armor check penalty. The discussion was about if you could basically wear this with no drawbacks as an arcane caster. Consensus said yes but Mage Armor was generally better. This got me to thinking about if you could use the armor to gain some Ability bonuses but use Mage Armor for the actual armor bonus.

For example: You have a Spell Storing Haramaki +1 (so +2 armor bonus) and Mage Armor (+4 Armor Bonus). You now have a +4 Armor bonus and take a hit. Could the stored spell go off?

I know Bracers of Armor would specifically say no, but that's also a specific magic item and I'm reluctant to take a rule based solely on the functioning of one magic item. I looked at the section for magic armor and didn't notice a similar rule mentioned there or in the Mage Armor entry.


Going by what others have told me it sounds like mentioning it'll be a decently undead heavy campaign could be helpful. The first book in particular seems very heavily reliant on them having some means of inflicting positive energy damage, which could get expensive with just wands and holy water.

Also, I think I'll make use of the carriage as well. I was planning on having a prep session to finish up characters and maybe have a bit of in character introduction to get my new players into it and this sounds perfect for that.


Alright then, I know I'm wary of rolling for stats since that can vary wildly, but seems to end up generally higher than point buy. Plus my last rolling attempt had a few optimizers in it and it kinda wrecked any challenge in the AP.

On the otherhand, I've got a few newbies, one potential optimizer, and a player that's played the system but more of a roleplay than an optimizer. So I'm worried about over compensating too much from my last group and not giving them enough stuff to work with.

I'm probably going to be running with the Harrow system in place of hero points, though I might modify it a bit for last ditch death evasion.


I'm curious what, if any build rules you guys used for this and if you felt it made your players stronger or weaker than intended for the module.


Alright, that's good to know. I was looking at a monk using double-chained kama, but since Monks can flurry with just one side (as I understand it) I figured I could save money on enchanting costs by only really enchanting one side and maybe throwing a situational enchantment on the off hand later on.


Is this a thing you can do? I did a search and it seemed to be up for debate in the threads I found. I just dug out my book and this is what I found:

CRB wrote:
Creating magic double-headed weapons is treated as creating two weapons when determining cost, time, and special abilities.

That last bit about special abilities makes me lean towards the answer being yes, but I'd like some additional input.


Are these counted as a poison effect? I've run into this a few times and I wasn't sure how to handle it. It doesn't say anything about being a poison so I ruled it wasn't but I wasn't quite sure about that.

Also since it's a paralytic secretion would someone with poison use be able to theoretically harvest it and coat it on a weapon?


Well let's see +16 BAB (using the augmented version) +6 strength (presuming raging is factored in already) +2 Greater Weapon Focus, +4 for Ovinrbaane (+3 and Aid), +1 for Weapon Training. That gives us an attack of 29. -3 for Power Attack presumably and we get +26.

Damage wise +9 for strength, +1 for Weapon Training, +2 Weapon Specialization, +3 Ovinrbaane enhancement, +6 for Power attack. That gives us +21 for damage.


The benefit of Serpent Lash is more for the Greater version. It says anytime you make a successful trip/disarm you get to make another within reach. Make one trip attempt and suddenly everyone in range is on the ground and disarmed. Kinda crazy. The downside is you need Finesse and if you don't go for Dex then it's just raw feat tax. Of course, if you do go Dex, then you need another feat or the Agile enhancement to get your damage back up.

Something to note about the Brawler is that you can basically get Improved Disarm/Trip or any other handy combat feat for a minute with just a move action. So until you can actually get those feats you can still make use of them. Though Lore Warden gives you a feat earlier and outright gives you Combat Expertise instead of just letting you qualify.

Trying to figure out an ability set-up that would work well. I'm likely to do PFS so it's 20 point buy. Going human for the extra feat gets me a +2 wherever. My thoughts are:

Str: 14+2
Dex: 12
Con: 12
Int: 10
Wis: 9
Cha: 16

Could leave the Wis at 10 and drop the Dex or Con down to 11, but the low Wis seems appropriate. Could perhaps drop the Dex to 13+2 and then bump it up at lvl4 as well. I could also switch the +2 to Cha for more Luck and better UMD (another skill that seems appropriate).


I'm looking at a fairly feat intensive build making use of rogue talents and something that occurred to me was perhaps being able to "shuffle" my feats and talents to get better use out of them. Admittedly I might end up just wasting gold but here's a full explanation:

Basically using the Archaeologist bard archetype to build a whip focused character. Whip Mastery requires +2 and Weapon Focus, Focus requires +1 and I don't start with +1. So basic plan was simply retrain lvl 1 feat at lvl 2 so I have all the requirements for Whip Mastery at lvl 3. However at lvl 4 I finally get a Rogue Talent.

Now while Combat Trick would work fine here, it might be more useful for something else down the road (as my understanding is you can only take it once). My thought was to retrain my Weapon Focus into something new, and take the Weapon Training talent instead. However I could see some potential issues.

An alternative, if more expensive method would be retraining both Weapon Focus and Whip Mastery, taking the Weapon Training talent then retraining the feats back in. I don't think I'd be running into issues with legality. The downside being it's four times as expensive.


Huh, well I feel silly now. I've not done anything with Bards before so I wasn't aware they got whips or had an Archaeologist archetype. A dip into Fighter for a feat still sounds tempting, so does Magus for spell combat (I can skip wand wielder if all I'm using magus for is True Strike). Though I'd probably only go one or the other. Alternatively there's still UMD wand and use two rounds.


I've been thinking about trying to make a combat maneuver focused character for a bit and thought it might be interesting to try to make something similar to Indian Jones using a whip. The thing is I'm not sure what would be a good route to take. I suppose I could go straight up fighter to help with all the feats I'd want to get a whip to a reliable weapon. One downside to that IMO is a lack of skills, which I think might be nice to have (knowledge history is a must).

A few alternatives I've come up with are:

  • Slayer using the Whip based combat style (though since I'm likely to attempt this in PFS I'm not sure that's legal). Has a nice increase in skill points while still able to take a decent number of feats. Sneak attack is handy for once I can get Improved Whip Mastery and threaten or just an secondary to move in and flank with after tripping.

  • Swashbuckler- gets feats and can actually use an extra one: Slashing Grace to use the whip for swashbuckler abilities. Unless I take Mysterious Avenger, which gives me whip proficiency and lets me use them with Swashbuckler abilities, at the cost of a feat and several AC bonuses.

  • Rogue- Lower BAB which means lower CMB, but plenty of skills and free Finesse if I go Unchained. Can get a few extra feats with Rogue Talents but I believe you can only take Combat Trick once. The trapfinding stuff is thematically appropriate as well. On the other hand I've already got a rogue character I'm playing and would like a bit of variety.

  • Gunslinger- Just occurred to me as I was making this list but Indie did carry a pistol. I've not looked much at Gunslingers to know what all they do but I would likely lose out on feats they want if I wanted to increase my chances with my trip/disarm checks.

Anyway, that's all I've really come up with, what are your thoughts on this sort of thing? I get the feeling the whip isn't going to be optimal no matter how I slice it, but I'd like to make something that can still be of some use in a fight.


I've been experimenting with adding class levels to monsters recently in my Kingmaker game and my general understanding was that it was basically the same as multi-classing. You add the class levels on top of the racial HD and add what benefits you'd get from those levels. However, I then came across Ngara.

She appears to be getting the benefit of a full lvl 10 Sorcerer instead of just the 3 bonus levels. Specifically access to all the bloodline bonuses. Is this the correct way of doing this? Should I be treating, for example, the Hill Giants I gave 2 Barbarian levels as being level 9 Barbarians? And would this only apply to key classes or to any classes added?


Dariel Stormbringer wrote:

So, how I plan to handle this when my group gets to this part of the AP is as follows:

** spoiler omitted **

Hope this helps.

Basically what I did with it. I think the party's current plan is to try to find the black dragon so that they can convince the Silver Dragon to become their kingdom's treasurer.


Yeah, that's the simple stuff, the annoying and confusing bit is what happens after the first turn.

Grab allows you to deal damage with the attack used to initiate the grab on a successful check to maintain the grapple. The question is does that apply if you don't have constrict (you get constrict damage as well), does that force you to use the damage grapple option or is this damage just inherent in you holding them?

The wording on that portion of the rule is absolutely terrible and I can easily see all the interpretations as being correct. So I'd really like to know what the INTENT was when writing it because RAW is not clear.


I've looked around a few times but I don't think I ever found a definitive answer for how the Grab monster ability works. I've seen pages of people discussing it but I haven't found an official ruling. So I just figured I'd ask to see if I simply missed it somewhere. I don't really want this to turn into another discussion, because I've seen a dozen different interpretations of the rules. I just would like to know if there's an official way it works, with and without constrict.


A bit late to this but to clarify: You're mixing the specific magic item rules and general magic item rules. For a specific magic item you just remove the gold price equivalent to it's enhancement bonus, so you get Milo's answer. Seems to me this would end up making specific magic items a little more expensive than their generic equivalents.

However, in the case of a generic Full Plate with Medium Fortification you get the 10,650 cost as you are only paying for a +3 bonus instead of a +4.

It'd be important to remember also that at lvl 13 they're only at a +2 armor attunement bonus, which means they wouldn't have anything left after they subtract the enhancement bonus of Medium Fortification (but won't inflict a penalty).