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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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In my experience, the degree of slog is directly proportional to the number of rooms that don't contain any monsters and/or treasure.

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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.

I've started many adventure paths as a player (and a few as a GM), but I've never finished one. The closest I've gotten is midway through adventure 10 (out of 12) in "Age of Worms" -- super-high-level play is not my favourite and I was not looking forward to 2+ more adventures of the same thing.

My usual experience is 2 or 3 installments, followed by GM burnout.

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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.

TOZ wrote:
Age of Worms.

I also vote for Age of Worms, with Savage Tide in second place.

noble peasant wrote:
So the "special" thing is telling me that a kitsune can select this feat when she gains a feat. Who would've thought? What's the point of this or is there something I'm not getting here?

My guess is that it's supposed to clarify that you don't have to take it at level 1; some racial feats have a caveat saying "you must take this at level 1" or the equivalent.

I agree it's mostly pointless.

Steelfiredragon wrote:

the clouded vision one is countered by blind fight and a blindfold.

rely on blind sense and blind sight

The blind oracle in one of my games fell off of a ship in the middle of the ocean (without anyone noticing).

"Okay, you see water for 30' in every direction. What do you do?"

rabindranath72 wrote:

There's Wheel of Time (which is a hell of a game in itself!)
There's the Slaine RPG (though it required the PHB.)
d20 Call of Cthulhu was 3.0 as well.
The first Star Wars d20.
Rokugan and Oriental Adventures.
Not sure about other stuff.

This is probably too late to be helpful, but d20 Modern is based on 3.0 I believe.

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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.

Dragonchess Player wrote:

2) As the adventure path installments spanned the D&D 3.0 to 3.5 transition, there was a lot of emphasis on dungeons (many of which are very large and require days' or possibly even weeks' worth of exploration). Also, as the first adventure path, pacing and transitions were not always as well thought out as they could/should be.

I don't think it has much to do with 3.0 vs. 3.5; it's more related to the desire to make each installment try to work as a stand-alone adventure (with its own dungeon portion of the adventure).

As you note, it was the first adventure path (although not the first multi-part adventure) in Dungeon so they were concerned about customers complaining about adventures that required too much knowledge of previous installments. By the time they published Savage Tide, they realised that wasn't a big concern.

I agree that (1) the first bunch of adventures are pretty loosely connected and (2) there are way too many dungeon crawls for my taste.

Age of Worms and Savage Tide are definitely improvements, in my opinion (although Age of Worms still has issues with some of the adventures being only loosely connected). Shackled City is nice in the sense that most of it takes place in the same area, though.

For what it's worth, James Jacobs has suggested a +1 bane weapon should be able to bypass silver/cold iron DR. This sounds like it was fall in the same category.

Bane Weapon vs. Damage Reduction

Black Tom is at the top of my list.

Harleequin wrote:
Random encounters aplenty!!!

Having lots of random encounters encourages people to rest even more frequently because you have to conserve extra resources to defend against attacks in the middle of the night.

Johnnycat93 wrote:
A monk can only barely afford three 14's without dumping anything at 15 pts. They will be hard pressed to perform at that level.

And with 20 pts, the same guy could barely afford one 16 and two 14s. An extra +1 to some stuff does not change the hardness of the pressing, in my experience.

Johnnycat93 wrote:
15 pt-buy mandates optimization to survive.

The difference between a 15 pt buy and a 20 pt buy is often a +1 bonus on one or two types of checks. That is not a large difference in my book.

I have a question about the Spirit Dancer archtype too. Does the spirit dancer follow the same rules about favored locations? If so, it might be hard to find a location that fits two or three spirits at once, let alone all six of them.

Scott Wilhelm wrote:
I don't recall seeing in the grapple rules or in the description of the Expert Captor Order Ability where you have to have the rope in your hands or that having it in your hands imposes a -4.

I agree that it doesn't say you have to have a rope/chain in your hands, but that makes sense to me. As for having a hand free...

"Humanoid creatures without two free hands attempting to grapple a foe take a –4 penalty on the combat maneuver roll."

(I looked into the rules when I had the idea to create a grappling, roping PC and I tried to stay with relatively conservative interpretations of the rules.)

I also weigh in on the side that believes that you can only "maintain" the grapple once a round after the first round. YMMV.

Also, don't forget that at some point the grappler likely has to be holding a chain in one of his/her hands, which may cause a penalty based on one-handed grappling.

The most handy low-level skill boost I can think of is the level 2 bard spell Gallant Inspiration (+2d4 to a failed skill check retroactively). It's obviously not a long duration spell, but it has the enormous advantages that (a) you never have to cast it beforehand and (b) it's much, much less likely to be wasted (consider this -- casting a spell for a +2 bonus to a skill check in advance is going to be a waste 18 times out of 20).

Unfortunately, I have no PCs to contribute to this thread; I guess I must have a mysterious ability to avoid abilities that are slated for errata down the road.

Wait, that's not quite true. I have a monk that was flurrying with a 2-handed weapon; I have no idea whether that's supposed to be possible or not at this point.


1 No prep

2 No Arcane/Divine
3 Would be called spell caster
4 Whenever you cast a spell it deals x nonlethal damage (ex. More powerful spells deal more Nonlethal damage
5 No spell levels

You could also take a look at the 3.5E Midnight campaign setting. Spellcasting is broken into feats that anyone can take (although the spellcaster class gets them as bonus feats). You can cast a few spells "for free", but after that you start to take Con damage.

Some of the OGL content is posted at this site.

pauljathome wrote:
As well as ontariopathfinders.com you might want to try TAG (Toronto Area Gamers on meetup).

I was going to recommend this as well, but Paul beat me to it.

GM - Corey wrote:
The 50% miss chance still proved to be tough but between a round spent knocking Amiri unconscious and two rounds getting tripped by the druids pet, the Bard and Druid and pet finally defeated the Stalker.

Did anyone get hurt by the Dark Stalker's explosion when he went down?

Letting the party have at least one round without Deeper Darkness up was nice.

Usual Suspect wrote:
The disadvantage to both oracle and sorcerer is the slightly slow spell progression.

In my experience, the low number of spells known is more painful than the one level lag in getting new spell levels. Also, I found that the oracle is even worse off than the sorcerer in the sense that there are more flashy arcane spells that are fun to cast over and over again than there are flashy divine spells that are fun to spam in combat.

On the other hand, the various oracle revelations vary wildly in terms of usefulness; if you cherry-pick the powerful revelations, you can end up with a powerful character.

I have seen players try to browbeat a GM into allowing something a few times in my life, but luckily it has been pretty rare.

As long as you were clear on your rules before character creation started, I don't see what grounds he has for complaining. He had the chance to pass on the campaign from the get-go.

Ganryu wrote:

So I'm thinking the only scenario when you can actually use the spell is when you know for sure the monster is of a higher HD than any member in your party... That seems extremely limited.

The spell says you can only target low or high HD... Extremely imprecise.

You can also tell the difference between living creatures and intelligent undead, so there's another source of targets.

In our Age of Worms campaign, my alchemist had her tumour familiar drink an extract of Magic Jar and told it to possess anything (a) stronger than the party or (b) any intelligent undead. It didn't work very well, but the idea is kind of neat in practice (hey, the familiar wasn't doing much otherwise).

Abraham spalding wrote:
So I started up a Home etiquette section.

I look forward to reading your views on milk drinking.

In my experience, you're bound to have a few people drop out and/or rarely show up right from the start, so maybe the problem will solve itself.

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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?

The weak link from Shackled City is definitely Strike on Shatterhorn. "Hey, remember that epic battle against the organization you've been fighting for the past ten adventures? Well, you missed a few of them!"

Although, come to think of it, Drakthar's Way was kind of a dud, too. Not surprising, considering it's filler that was added afterwards.

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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.)

I think most E6 games don't have resurrection (outside of epic magic of some kind). Of course, it helps that level 1-6 isn't really the "rocket launcher tag" range.

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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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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!

My favourite adventure path in terms of having a coherent plot from beginning to end is Savage Tide. Admittedly, our game fell apart after Tides of Dread, but I think the progression from "set up a colony" to "save the colony" to "save the world" is pretty smooth.

snickersimba wrote:
Wow.... Wizards of the coast aren't very good at making people interested in D&D. At all. That sucks. Thanks mate, but they really screwed themselves out of more players by not doing what paizo does.

They really screwed themselves out of more players for a product they don't sell any more?

Naming a group is pretty rare in my experience, but I can think of two examples.

In our "Age of Worms" game, we needed a team name for the gladiator competition, so we came up with Valgrim's Vanguard (Valgrim being our unofficial team leader).

In our "Savage Tide" game, there's an allied NPC adventuring group called the Jade Ravens. So to keep with the cryptic bird theme, we called ourselves the Millenium Falcons. :-)

Deidre Tiriel wrote:

I would not do this if the players were not expecting it - i.e they came prepared mentally as well as equipment. If they are used to a 15 minute adventure day, and the GM throws this, they may cry foul. If they are hardcore dungeon crawlers, then by all means, this sounds fun.

As a player, I'd be upset if this was thrown in the middle of a Pathfinder AP, though, esp. without warning.

Yes, I'd probably categorize this under "Ideas only a GM could love", although there are probably some players who would be into it.

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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.

Kobold Cleaver wrote:
We shouldn't instead halt things so we can question his/her judgement. :P

To be clear, I wasn't questioning his judgement. But I believe that "the players aren't having fun because the encounters are too easy" and "the GM isn't having fun because the encounters are too easy" are two separate problems with possibly different solutions. For instance, for the former, I'd suggest beefing up the existing bad guys and for the latter I'd suggest a larger encounter with bad guys who are still relatively weak.

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Are the players having fun?

One problem with doing fixed damage is that it can be annoying knowing that you can never bypass DR greater than your damage amount. At least, that's what I remember from playing the old-timey Marvel Super Heroes Roleplaying Game.

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