hogarth's page

Organized Play Member. 13,162 posts (19,195 including aliases). 4 reviews. 1 list. No wishlists. 5 Organized Play characters. 37 aliases.

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Whoever heard of a pear-soup fog?

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I looked at the thread title and I thought "that would be a nice feature". But now I see I already expressed that sentiment seven years ago.

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Zarius wrote:
I'm of the opinion that if this stuff ignores heavy plate, it SHOULD ignore thick skin.

But if it ignores thick skin, shouldn't it ignore flesh altogether and hence do no damage to fleshy targets?

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It's probably too late for this now, but one interesting way I've seen to show that a bad guy is super-tough is to let the players play the roles of the NPCs who get massacred. That way, it's still in-game information but they can really see for themselves how damage and spells just bounce off the enemy without having to suffer through a PC TPK.

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TOZ wrote:
How can I discourage my players from going to fight a monster that is very likely to TPK them?
You can't.

Actually, it's pretty simple to discourage them by telling them out-of-character "It's a CR 23 monster".

In character, it might be hard to discourage them though.

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thorin001 wrote:
I have fond memories of the DC 15 to jump a 10' pit argument.

I keep flipping back and forth in my mind between "that's dumb" and "that makes sense".

On a similar note, I remember someone arguing that a druid wild shaped into a Large manta ray:

(1) should be able to swim through 2' deep water because manta rays are flat, and

(2) should also be able to bite a creature flying 10' off the ground because a Large creature occupies a 10' x 10' x 10' cube.

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Latrecis wrote:
Yea, very important for Runelords (don't have enough experience with them to speak to other AP's) - if your players are not heroic you're going to have problems. By heroic, I mean the pc's should react to Bad Things Happening to Good People with a desire to directly intervene without a lot of other (financial) motivation.

It's not necessarily just compensation. In some modules I ask myself "Why are random passersby supposed to solve this problem instead of the local town watch/feudal lord/other people who have a much higher investment in helping out the locals?"

For instance, in the Age of Worms adventure Three Faces of Evil, there's an evil cult beneath the town of Diamond Lake...and nobody cares except the heroes? Umm...okay?

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I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream

The GM has fond memories of fights where the heroes just barely escape total destruction and defeat the bad guys at the last second, so he makes every fight end up that way! The campaign is a non-stop grind of fighting incredibly difficult enemies who turn into creampuffs once the party is about to have a TPK. Or maybe it's a powerful NPC who swoops in just before the TPK in order to save the day. It doesn't matter -- the near-TPK is the "fun" part!

(Bonus points if the PCs can't even try to get themselves killed successfully.)

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Rambone wrote:
If it were that great an option everyone would be doing it.

You must have a very low opinion of humanity's capacity for good taste and/or self-control.

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DM Under The Bridge wrote:
Mikaze wrote:

Personally, early D&D was The Bad Old Days, for numerous reasons.

In no hurry whatsoever to be dragged back. I've got my game, people that want old school have theirs.(several, in fact) And the hobby is big enough that we don't have to fight for space.

The bad old days? You didn't have a good time?

I enjoyed watching TV back when my family only had two channels, but that doesn't mean that I want to go back to that situation.

Likewise, I have no desire to go back to 1E AD&D from 3E/Pathfinder.

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Female Elf Alchemist (preservationist) 18

Feel free to recruit a new player for Vug!

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graystone wrote:
On early entry, before the old FAQ did you see anyone use prestige classes? If so, I can see how you might think of it as a loophole. If not, did you think making them more viable brought more interest in playing them?

An elegant solution to a crappy Mystic Theurge class would be to either (a) fix the Mystic Theurge class or (b) create a new class that blends the divine and arcane spells lists (like the Witch).

An inelegant solution would be to take an existing rule and say "if you squint hard and put common sense aside, then you can finesse the existing rules into allowing early entry".

I'm glad the inelegant solution is gone.

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Nearyn wrote:
#4 Players sometimes forget that running away is an option

#4.5 GMs sometimes forget that the players don't always have all the facts.

For instance, it might be obvious to the GM that a monster is too tough to fight, but often the players don't find out how tough an opponent is until it's too late to run (e.g. one or more party members are already knocked unconscious).

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Nearyn wrote:
#13 A well-prepared, or clever, group can beat challenges that far exceed their APL. This is a good thing.

13(a): Even if the players enjoy facing very difficult challenges 10% of the time, it does not necessarily follow that they will have 10 times the enjoyment facing very difficult challenges 100% of the time!

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Ascalaphus wrote:
@sunshadow: I think there's a feedback between the actual characters people play and the rules.

At the very least, I find there's a feedback between having a map and making interesting moves.

In a game with a map, I'm more likely to say "I take THIS ROUTE to go to THIS PLACE and attack THIS ENEMY". In a game without a map, I'm much more likely to say "I attack whichever enemy is close to me and injured" (which I could probably keep repeating mindlessly until the fight is over while surfing the internet on my smartphone, if I had a smartphone).

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RumpinRufus wrote:

I prefer maps - I hate having to start my turn with 20 questions: "How far am I from the wall?" "Can I see the troll from where I'm standing?" "Can I hit all three enemies with a Color Spray?" Etc. etc. etc.

I like already knowing what I'm going to do before my turn starts. I find that next to impossible without a map.

Exactly. In my experience, "playing without a map" is really "playing with a map that only exists in the GM's head and the players have to guess what it looks like". Sometimes it works fine, other times it's confusing.

For myself, I at least like to have a quick sketch of what the battlefield looks like. Tokens are definitely optional, though.

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Are the players having fun?

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My favourites:

-Age of Worms (played up to level 17 so far; most adventures were pretty good; the idea of killing a god is awesome)
-Savage Tide (played up to level 9, the story line is very strong; it's very linear but for me that's a feature instead of a bug; the idea of killing a demon lord is awesome)
-Carrion Crown (played up to level 7; liked the first adventure very much; some nice touches in terms of horror atmosphere)

Ones I liked, but didn't love:

-Rise of the Runelords (played up to level 6; the adventures were pretty good but not as tightly connected as I like)
-Serpent's Skull (played up to level 5; adventures were fine but I was indifferent to the concept of different factions looking for a hidden city)
-Legacy of Fire (played up to level 5; again the adventures were fine but I was indifferent to the concept)
-Cure of the Crimson Throne (played up to level 3; the first adventure was pretty good but the game died soon after)
-Shackled City (GMed a game up to level 4 or 5; I like that the adventures center around a single city, but there's too much dungeon-crawling for my taste)
-War of the Burning Sky (played up to level 2 and subsequently read all of the adventures; I like the high concept premise of a world war, but a few of the adventures are clunkers)

My least favourites:

-Council of Thieves (played on and off until level 5; the idea of a rebellion in a city is cool, but the execution was clunky IMO)
-Second Darkness (played until level 2; what's up with the casino bit in the beginning? it seemed like it belonged in a different adventure path)
-Kingmaker (played until almost level 3; I had no interest in hex-crawling and random encounters -- YMMV)

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My least favourite spell is probably Clairaudience/Clairvoyance. The problem is that it takes 10 minutes to cast, but the range is only a few hundred feet and the duration is only a few minutes.

If the casting time were 1 round it would be okay, but the casting time really ruins it as a reconnaissance tool.

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I like to dip 17 levels of cleric so that I can cast Miracle.

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For Pathfinder Society, I kind of get stuck in a loop:

(1) I enjoy playing a new character.
(2) I play a scenario that leaves a bad taste in my mouth because it required some very specific ability that our party didn't have.
(3) I make a new character that has most of the good parts of my previous character, plus the new specific ability.
(4) GOTO 1.

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I have mixed feelings about it. The atmosphere was too modern for me in parts (trains don't belong in my D&D) and I was indifferent to the world war setup.

But there were many parts I thought were brilliant:
* The PCs are expected to be the high-level badasses of the setting, not Elminster or Mordenkainen.
* High level enemies are separated from the beginning countries by long distances or imprisonment so that they can be phased in at the appropriate time.
* The action point system works great; you get plenty of them and they don't carry over so there's no incentive to hoard them.
* They did a good job at sticking to the principle "anything in D&D has a place in Eberron" (e.g. psionics).

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I was leafing through a copy of the North York Post yesterday (a free community newspaper) and there was an article about board game cafes in Toronto ("Snakes & Lattes" and "For The Win Cafe").

They asked the cafe owners "What is your all-time favourite board game?" and Pat Chung of For The Win Cafe answered:

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game. It's a dungeon-crawling role-playing game.

So you have at least one fan out there who's spreading the word!

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thejeff wrote:
Abraham spalding wrote:
5. Players deserve to know if 'fair encounters' are not the norm. The game tends to assume that you will overcome your violent encounters. If there is a regular chance that the encounters will not be fair the players should know this going in. It ties into number 1 as this is a deviation from the norms -- but not the rules.
Even more, though it might be an unstated assumption - If there's a regular chance that the encounters will not be fair, the players/characters need to be able to fairly reliably gauge the level of risk, at least in time to escape if not to avoid entirely.

Well put. In general, I think that players are entitled to one important thing -- they're entitled to be on the same page in terms of the GM's vision of the campaign so that they can intelligently choose whether to join the game or not.

I don't believe a GM should have the right to waste some of my limited free time by misleading me into starting a campaign I should have known in advance that I wouldn't enjoy.

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LazarX wrote:
DrDeth wrote:

Quality isn't slipping (from what I have actually played with), but the response time on the FAQ and other errata is getting unacceptable.

And that's from *ME*, who is usually called one of those "most staunch Paizo fanboys".

Even today, you're getting a hell of a lot more responses than you did from WOTC in it's heydey. It's plain that people have gotten spoiled by the riches they have received as far as staff response on these boards.

TSR was complaining about being swamped by D&D rule questions as early as 1980.

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Kthulhu wrote:

Could this decline in quality have something to do with the fact that, in addition to the RPG and related product lines, they're also trying to keep all of the following plates spinning:

Pathfinder Tales
Adventure Card Game
Pathfinder Comics
Pathfinder Online MMORPG
Pathfinder Legends
Paizo Game Space
Pathfinder (Obsidian) Video Games
[probably more stuff that's slipped my mind]

Not to mention the fact that the increased the page count for the Module line and upped the frequency of the Player's Companion line to monthly.

Is Paizo trying to juggle too many balls at once?

I give them credit for trying something other than "find a captive market of a few thousand people, churn out a long series of splatbooks until your sales start to flag, then reboot and start over again with a new edition".

Of course, they could just stop printing splatbooks and start laying off employees; that's another option.

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I have a money loophole that I use in real life:

  • I go to a place called "work" and I type at a computer for 8 hours a day.
  • Every two weeks, I receive a paycheque.
  • Repeat ad nauseam for INFINITE MONEY!

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    Jiggy wrote:
    Drogon wrote:

    Like so many who started playing D&D in the 80s... a halfling thief was my first character. ...

    So, I have a soft spot for players of true thieves.
    I can't help chuckling at this. :)

    I thought it was interesting that Drogon, a real-life shopkeeper, seems to have a soft spot for people who steal from shopkeepers. ;-)

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    Galnörag wrote:
    So, to quit my rambling, is asking players to "colour inside the line" GM hubris, or a reasonable request? and corollary is it ever okay for a GM, or a gaming group by mutual accent to install an electric fence on a few of those lines to enforce compliance? And how can it be done without hard feelings.

    I think it's good to get all the players and the GM on the same page when it comes to the tone of the campaign, and this seems to be the purpose of that.

    In the past when I've run adventure paths, I usually prefaced it with a comment like: "This is an adventure path, so it runs primarily in one direction. So it's up to you folks to create characters who want to move in that one direction as a cooperating party, and I'll work with you to make that as smooth as possible. If you think that's too restrictive, then this may not be the right game for you."

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    CRobledo wrote:
    Instead, how about you take the problem player aside and explain to him that it is bad gaming sportsmanship to overpower encounters to the point that other players do not feel they are having fun.

    I highly recommend that the other players should talk to Player A, not the GM. Why? Because the other players are much better judges over whether they're actually having fun or not than the GM is!

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    My suggestions:

    If you're unhappy when Player A pulls his grappling trick against lone casters, let someone else GM the scenarios which feature lone casters.

    If other players are unhappy when Player A pulls his trick, they should tell him so.

    If nobody is unhappy when Player A pulls his trick (which is quite possibly the case), nothing needs to be done.

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    Adam Mogyorodi wrote:
    You can't call a horse or a pony a lion, for previously stated reasons.

    I would amend this to say "You can't call a horse or a pony a lion out loud". What you call your horse and/or pony in your own mind is up to you; there aren't any PFS Thought Police to worry about. :-)

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    Lord Foul II wrote:
    then why is making undead evil in a way that leaves: craft construct, inflict spells, and raise dead NOT evil?

    (a) Because desecrating the dead is icky.

    (b) Because you're messing with someone's soul against their will (e.g. an undead creature can't be brought back to life with Raise Dead, so there must be some kind of soul shenanigans going on).

    I'm just glad you didn't ask "why are vibrators legal, but necrophilia isn't?"

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    I think 99% of homebrewed campaigns suck, and if you don't think that applies to you, it probably applies double.

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    Don't give your bad guys Color Spray and Sleep unless you want people to get knocked unconscious or asleep.

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    I have no desire to go back to AD&D. I think the vast majority of changes with 3E/Pathfinder were for the better.

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    Hadesblade wrote:
    Really miss the 80's when game content wasn't about making political statements or "inclusion".

    And we used to eat deviled eggs and drive around like speed demons -- excuse me, I mean baatezued eggs and speed tanar'ris.

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    In 1980, my dad went on a business trip and brought us back a copy of the D&D Basic box set. I was 6 and my brother was 8. Best present ever!

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    In my experience, "roll initiative" is not synonymous with "there's no point in talking, kill everyone".

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    Adamantine Dragon wrote:
    Was my role playing too much?

    Not at all, since you politely put it in an email so you wouldn't be monopolizing game time. And there was nothing wrong with the other players' reactions either; they're not morally obligated to be interested in the stuff that you find interesting about the game.

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    Helaman wrote:

    My fav was

    Mission "Recover this egg - be careful not to break it".
    Me on finding egg "I use mage hand"
    GM "Nope - has to be disable device or sleight of hand"
    Me "Levitation then pack it? Unseen Servant?"
    GM "No, has to do with one of those skills... I suppose its as much as packing the egg etc as picking it up... I think... Anyways thats what the book says".

    Or another favourite

    Mission "Bring back a drawing of the cage used"
    Me "No need. I'll bring back the whole actual cage. Its right here after all and I have a boat to put it on and everything"
    GM "That doesn't work - need Knowledge: Engineering to sketch it or you fail"

    Good news! Even if faction missions are going away, we can still use those valuable techniques with the main or secondary scenario mission. ;-)

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    Lemure pornography aficionados

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    I don't like the term "casual player". I prefer to categorize players as "hardcore" and "not hardcore".

    What's my definition of a hardcore PFS player? Anyone who has ever complain-o-bragged more than once about how easy PFS scenarios are is a hardcore player in my book.

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    The oddest table I've been in was three bards and two wizards, I think.

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    karkon wrote:
    TL;DR: Depending on the organization of the dungeon and the relationships between the different factions resting in the dungeon can be easy or not.

    Again, it's obviously campaign dependent, but that's usually the kind of information that's obvious to the GM, but not necessarily obvious to the PCs (at least at first) unless the GM is having pity on them.

    Now I can certainly believe that there are some parties out there who do all kinds of scouting and picking up rumours and who know everything about the lay of the land before they even start their dungeon delving, but that never came up in any of my campaigns. If we ever slept a dungeon, we just hoped that the GM would take it easy on us.

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    I don't know. To me "bestial qualities such as dragon scales, fish scales, fur, manes, or talons" sounds more on the Sara Jessica Parker end of the horsiness scale than My Little Pony.

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    Philip Dhollander wrote:
    In our case, it was about the game and the fact that it was too much (two days basically), the fact that she did not have a real hobby and was stuck at home and the fact that she finds it a 'silly hobby'.

    That's basically my wife's attitude: why should I want to waste so much time out of the house when I could be at home, entertaining her? We've settled on one night every two weeks being a happy medium, however. (Although there was that one time when she was griping that my one game every two weeks was interfering with her going to the gym every night! Gimme a break...)

    Slaunyeh wrote:
    But it's a waste of time! You could be mowing the lawn or fix the door to the basement instead. You know, be a real man rather than playing some stupid game once every few weeks.

    Ha! My wife occasionally comments: "Why don't you get a hobby that MAKES money? Like, instead of playing games, you could write games!"

    And yet she never finds it funny when I suggest: "Why don't you learn to make shoes instead of going shopping for shoes?" Odd how that works...

    ;-) (If you're reading this, I love you, honey!)

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    Neongelion wrote:
    I'm going to run a Pathfinder adventure path very soon (Reign of Winter) for these same people, ie players that prefer detail-oriented, "realistic" kinds of games. I'm fairly well read on the rules but I certainly don't have them mastered, so I want to ask you folks: can Pathfinder handle games that aren't very mechanically crunchy?

    I think I'm missing something here. It almost sounds like your players like a mechanically crunchy game, so you're trying to trick them into a game that's not mechanically crunchy.

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    You put your down down. You thrust your pelvis -- UNGH! You thrust your pelvis -- UNGH! You thrust your pelvis -- UNGH!

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    If you don't mind 3.5E, I'd also vote for Age of Worms or Savage Tide.

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