If the DM is allowing villians, maybe he/she is going no holds barred... if so check out:
Cool animate targets:
Mastadon or larger dinasaur skeleton, build scaffolding inside ribcage for mobile base. Bullette skeleton for burrowing APC. (Barding on both for improved cover)
I'm sorry, but I know you're asking for Spell Perfection access, but you started with the subject of Undead Army.
I want to say retrain Juju Oracle.
Half elf for Paragon Surge for versatility.
Experimental Spellcaster (undead word) for free animate dead.
Charnel Soldiers (combined with paragon surge to give cool teamwork feats like Stealth Synergy).
Profession, craft or Alchemy checks to make a profit during downtime. (Opposable thumb helps: brownie, imp, quasit. Earth Mephits outsider type and homunculus construct type, don't need sleep so can work 3 shifts per day)
Monstrous spiders farming silk. (Profession weaver on master)
Pigs, chickens, goats, helping herd animals and adding to breeding stock. (Profession farmer on master)
Cats, hawks and falcons on pest control. (Survival foragers too, like said above. But pest control mainly)
IIRC, there's no familiar with burrow (like the animal companion badger)... or I'd say fast ditch digger / soil tiller.
Tell the PCs if they can explain blockchain without referencing google, you'll let them try a computers check to hack something that doesn't have well defined game mechanics to hack. (epic DC)
Alternatively, an attempt could draw attention of professional cyber security watchdogs that fight back by counterhacking the PC's computer.
Here's another take on the food part: Thanks to the "economy of scale" I can't craft anything cheaper than the cost of the trade goods that went into making it.
Craft (cooking) then doesn't save me any more money than eating at the Vend'o'matic. I hate those damned crafting rules! grrrrrr.
Also, if poor meals are nutritious <or> delicious, and good meals are both... then the difference between the two could be a good Craft (cooking) check (the "service" cost of eating out).
Hithesius, good call though on the long-term rates. I missed that part of the Lodgings description.
<stands on soapbox> "If you make Zombie Lord your commander in chief, I promise to build Free Battery chargers. And we'll make those space goblins and street gangs pay for it! You will be so happy with what I do with Absalom Station, believe you me. You watch. Folks will say they are so glad Zombie Lord is in charge."
(edit: I thought it funny to note that my first character bought a Clear Spindle Aeon Stone. 245 credits later and my Android Technomancer can ignore those annoying bodily functions from the very beginning.)
Ade, good call on the equip and clothing! I forgot about those.
Tools and clothing each would take less than 3 weeks to pay off. Definitely within reason for the average citizen.
It is interesting though, that they both specify "Profession" checks to earn a living. By RAW, that wouldn't work when using other skills to earn a living, but I think it is within the RAI. A bonus to earning a living doesn't impact combat directly, and allowing their bonuses to be used with other skills is in-line with the option to use other skills described in the Profession skill description.
I agree Scrapper, the modified min/max with tools/clothes are:
Mighty Khan, I agree that in the real world, there are other options. But the rules as written give us a template that describes the baseline for the world around us. PC's can shine, assuming they succeed in encounters. But how that success is measured, is by comparing it to the baseline. What is the PC's life like before adventure came and hit them in the face?
d'Eon, the NPC I described is average (10) in stats, but actually very skilled otherwise (max ranks, skill focus, class skill bonus). Even if the average NPC were very (18) smart, wise or charismatic, (and have the bonuses Ade points out) I don't think their salary is impressive:
Looking at lodgings and meals:
Sleep pod: 1/night (7/week)
Efficiency: 3/night (21/week)
Suite (per bed): 5/night (35/week)
Note: Field rations are the cheapest meal, at 1 credit per week (instead of per meal). however, if you survive for weeks on nothing but field rations, it's described as "not a pleasant experience".
"Earn a Living" (credits = 2x skill check result)
Considering the "Average Jane", starting with a 10 in their attribute score (putting +2 each 5 levels), class skill bonus (+3), skill focus feat (+3), max skill ranks per level, and taking 10 (or avg. roll):
Level / skill check / credits per week
1 / 17 / 34
So the average person (ability score 10), could use field rations for occasional meals like the quick breakfast while running to work.
Specialty tools (masterwork) might not be on the average person's wishlist. costing 445, and giving a +2 to a check (translating to +4 credits per week), would take over 2 years to pay itself off. Note:
Likewise, average folks are probably not buying augments. (too expensive to pay off)
So, are most "average" people in Starfinder considered poor? (unable to afford common meals all day and an efficiency lodging?
If you vote Zombie Lord for supreme overlord, I vow to bring back the dream of the middle class. Together, we can make Absalom Station great again!
The only roles that can only have one person, are the Pilot and
You can have multiple Engineers. One can work on restoring shields, others can repair damaged systems.
You can have multiple Science Officers. One can transfer shield points to the arc closest to the enemy, while others continue gathering additional info or target enemy systems.
You can have multiple Gunners (only limited to one per weapon system). Just put max ranks in Pilot skill to replace the lower BAB. Even casters can benefit from higher Dexterity scores.
They are only twiddling their thumbs if they chose to.
Page 146, 2 paragraphs before "Earning a Living": "A Profession skill should not overlap with existing skills. For example, if you want to play a scientist, you should put ranks into Life Science or Physical Science rather than create a Profession (scientist) skill."
From the Earning a Living paragraph: "At the GM's discretion, you can use other skills (such as Computers or Engineering) to earn a living following the same guidelines."
I think it's kind of wonky to say you shouldn't make a profession that is redundant with an existing knowledge or craft... then two paragraphs later say it is GM's discretion. Granted, all rules are subject to rule zero...
I've used something similar for warforged: the character was initially designated "General Unit number 10" but it was abreviated with roman numerals and somehow stamped or engraved on his chestplate.
For short, folks call him Gux. Longer names start with it.
My android technomancer woke on Absolam Station with a note from his previous incarnation. He saw the glowing circuitry under his chest saying GUX, and chose "Guxunfado" as his name.
I don't see it as creating something out of nothing. Sure you need access to types of unrefined matter, but not an equivalent value of trade goods.
Like in Pathfinder; profession lumberjack needing a forest, profession miner needing a mine, fisher needing a body of water. Professions fed mats to crafters, that then made the finished goods.
I'd agree that if you're trapped somewhere with zero access to matter, then yeah, no crafting anything (gear or UBP).
I was thinking more along the lines of salvaging or recycling scrap materials (broken down starships or equipment you didn't care to sell).
At the end of the day, whether your skill check to "Earn a Living" (pg 146) comes from providing a service or from creating some kind of trade good, I don't think there's a game mechanic difference.
Do you guys/gals think UPB can be created using the Engineering skill at a rate equivallent to your check for "Earning a Living"?
They're trade goods. Mechanically, it's no different than earning a salary and turning around and purchasing them.
Some skill must be used to craft them.
Maybe my Engineering toolkit includes a small 3D printer and they require constant fine tuning (skill check)...
Jürgen Hubert wrote:
good call on this one!
That reminds me of a scene in the Starship's Mage series of books. (Good read btw)
Make up whatever flavor text floats your boat. The cost to craft equaling market value is just for game balance.
If you feel your behind the WBL power curve, and you have a stash of goods, you can use that as flavor text for making profession or craft checks to "Earn a Living".
For earning a salary, it doesn't matter if your basket weaving, buying and selling second hand gear, recylcling-scavenging, or babysitting.
Just don't be surprised if adventure hunts you down when the market value of all your gear plus the salary you earned puts you in the WBL bracket for the next character level.
Other game systems that use starship combat have used roles that include a Captain position. That has always bugged me.
Sure, combat has assumed roles (tank, healer, dps), but usually there can be some overlap and none are the defacto leader.
I'm used to parties that are democratic, or an oligarchy if we have hirelings or other minions.
Instead of giving a title of authority to our party's bard analog, I'll propose my party uses a different title to describe the actions performed:
Am I the only one bugged by this? Anyone have other ideas for synonyms the Captian role that doesn't imply higher rank?
Triune is the most frightening monster in this setting imho... slowly convincing others to destroy their planes of existence. The book assigns her/him a Neutral alignment, but I think it should have been NE. Even if it didn't consider the planar effects of drift engines as a bad thing, the long term effects can't be good. (Negligible in a mortal's lifetime, but accelerating with population growth and noticable over a god's lifetime)
Biology is focused on your own species. Xenobiology focuses on alien species.
I believe this is the intent of the writers (RAI)... but funny to note that it is not the meaning of xeno in reality.
Xenobiology is creating synthetic life to better understand biology and the origin of life.
Astrobiology or Exobiology applies to alien life.
You could use botony for tofu.. or bacteria vat protein extraction... yummie.
I agree with GeneticDrift; the +1 bonus applies to any use of the skill. The specialization just lowers the DC to recall knowledge by 5.
I think biology should help to identify creatures. A DM could limit that to animals, or those native to your region.
There is only one weapon with more than 100 capacity. I'd prefer to say it can slot 2 clips, but a DM could say it has 1 clip and an internal battery.
Passive sensors just show what is visible to the naked eye, what is unhidden.
Scanning as a crew action to learn details about the ship requies active sensors.
I find myself wanting almost all armor upgrades, but only a few weapon fusions (I think that's odd. I'm less impressed by the weapon stuff compared to the armor stuff).
Whatever isn't used by my android slot, I'll try to squeeze into armor.
I'll probably go with Backup Generator until 5th level technomancer class feature to charge batteries with spell slots.
Instead of selling it back, I'll try to convince my DM to allow me to engineer it into a new device powered by a simple motor... or a 120volt outlet adapter, or something.
I agree with Stone Dog.
Once we see the write-up for undead, we'll see what their default settings are.
If the mindless types target your opponents like summoned monsters, it wouldn't be any worse than evocations.
If they stay in murder-death-kill mode when not commanded... then it would be a different story.
They do this because "power = survival" and "money = power" within the rules of the game.
I agree with this 100% (or 10% if my opinion could be sold).
It's basic economics too. Money buys stuff. Stuff is useful.
At 10%, we would need to carry 5x the loot than we did in pathfinder to have the same value (or make 5x the trips to our cargo holds).
This section of the book also tossed around the word "assume" too much imho. I also think the assumption was wrong. I think this will cause more of the behavior they hoped to curb.
Knowing I'll get less in return, I'll have to scavenge even more. Having timed events would be the only thing to limit extreme scavenging.
Androids can have 1 armor upgrade, that takes only 1 slot and can be in light armor...
(page 205) TENSILE REINFORCEMENT: When calculating your armor’s hardness and Hit Points (see page 409), treat it as if its item level were 5 higher.
Do you guys think this could apply to the Android's HP? (probably not, but I thought it looked fun)
LOL, I just had a mental image of an Android with the Backup Generator mod applied, charging weapon clips in a marsupial-like pouch.
I'm totally going to do that.... until I can afford the Force Field armor upgrade that is...
(EDIT: ah crud, all force fields take 2 upgrade slots, and androids only have 1)
...or skeleton/zombie on a treadmill. seriously though, the size of the armor mod should be an indication of how small a charging unit could be. The Backup Generator armor upgrade only costs 2,100 to craft/buy (page 205).
The recharge spell is for Technomancers, not Mystics, and it destroys your battery 20% of the time.
Again, I'm ok with paying for NPC services... but if you have a Technomancer in the party, you're not paying.
It would be reasonable for power plants to have 20 year's worth of fuel like a submarine or aircraft carrier. Or they could use a ram-scoop and grab hydrogen from gas giants. Or have a magical fuel source that takes spell slots from downtime.
(page 234) Recharging Stations: At the GM’s discretion, some larger starships might have onboard recharging stations. These might offer recharging at low or no cost, but they typically take 1 minute per charge to recharge a battery or power cell.
(page 299) Power Core Housing: An expansion bay can be set aside for an additional power core (which must be purchased separately) and the associated wiring and safety apparatuses. A power core housing can be installed on only a Medium or larger starship.
Cleaning and repairing gear is easy (through magic or mundane skills).
If a piece of equipment (armor, computers, tools, and yes: weapons) carries a major manufacturer's brand name, then the "reputation" of the manufacturer should still be worth something.
A used car still has some brand name reputation recognition. Toyota's are reliable... Yugo, Ford Pinto or Chevy Vega.... meehhhh, not so much.
Warranties are also meaningless without game mechanics saying what a vendor's return policy looks like. There's no game mechanics difference between buying from a brand name outlet store, and mom and pop corner shop.
In a game where there are no game mechanics for brand new equipment stats vs. used equipment, there is no in-game reason to charge differently for them. If it were an option, I'd look for the pawn shop selling used gear for 20% of market value.
I agree that depreciation is a thing. I was ok with Pathfinder and previous versions of D&D only offering 50% of market value... but that was balance by 50% to craft magic items.
How about this: there is no cost reduction for crafting, so raw materials cost = the finished item's market value. Salvage gear then, and break them down to the raw materials, and sell the raw materials as Trade Goods at full value. Go Recycling! That would be a great positive message to save the environment. ;-)
I don't think it should cost so much to charge batteries. Sure it should cost something if hiring that service from an NPC, but I don't think it should cost anything if you have a source of power.
Power plants of larger ships (may) be able to have stations to charge batteries. That limit seems absurd to me. Crafting a small charger unit should be easier imho, or diverting power from even the smallest power plant during periods of low demand should be easier for someone with the Engineer skill.
The Recharge spell having a 20% chance to destroy a battery also sounds silly to me. Who is going to risk throwing away the money spent on batteries?
I like that crafting feats are not required. I even like that crafting does not reduce the cost. It makes it fair and preserves game balance.
I don't like that selling back items only gets you 10% of the market value. That's going to bug the heck out of me.
If there's no cost savings to crafting, because of the "economy of scale", then market values should be very close to the raw material costs.
I could accept selling gear being closer to 90%. The middle man gets to make a profit.
If selling back items is 10%, then crafting should only cost 10% imho.
If crafting costs full market value, then selling back items should be closer to full market value imho.
This is going to be a thorn or itch in my brain every time I play now.
Let's say you start off as a Human, then are changed into a Juju Zombie.
You have the undead creature type, and do not breathe, eat, or sleep.
You then have Polymorph any Object cast upon you to "Assume the Form" of a Human.
Polymorph any Object: This spell functions like greater polymorph, except that it changes one object or creature into another.
Greater Polymorph: If the form is that of a humanoid, the spell functions as alter self.
Alter Self: When you cast this spell, you can assume the form of any Small or Medium creature of the humanoid type.
Polymorph doesn't change your actual creature type, but instead gives you specific bonuses and abilities based upon the specific spell being cast.
So, if you have the Undead creature type, but a Humanoid "form" from PaO, do you still not need to breathe, eat, or sleep? Can you be affected by drugs or alcohol? Can you breed with humanoids?