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I've seen several people arguing over the rules on here and a common idea I see is that people who don't like a new rule point to 1st edition and how it works "better" there while people who like a rule say something along the lines of "this is a new edition, there is no point in comparing it to the previous one".

So, when you think of a new edition of something being released, what do you expect that to mean? And where do you draw the line between "new edition" and "new game"?

The reason I stick with a system is because I enjoy how it works, and if I wanted something radically different I would just move to a different game in the same genre. As such in my mind when you sell something as the Xth edition, what you are telling me is it is the same game I already like, but with bugs fixed and a few additions that hadn't been considered during the creation of a previous edition.


Grimcleaver wrote:
No, and here's why: if I don't know a certain weird language, it's not because I failed as a player... It ceases to be my job to anticipate the GM, I get to just flesh out my character with options that make sense with his background.
Grimcleaver wrote:
My big problem with the Europe example folks keep coming back to is that those people organically got to learn those languages they know because they knew they'd come in contact with them all the time. The trouble in first edition Pathfinder was that you just had to read the GM and try to guess what languages would be good to know, only to find out in game that they were all a complete waste.

If you had to read your GM than you were playing with a bad group. Any reasonable GM should be able to provide you with that information before the game in one way or another. Easiest scenario is if you are playing in a Paizo published campaign then each one comes with a XXXXXX; otherwise you should be able to ask your GM for a bit of details about the region their game is taking place in and what options are reasonable for residents of the area to have (languages, ranger favoured enemies/terrains...). If your GM isn't willing to give you that information than the problem squarely lies with the GM (and if that is the case there is nothing stopping them from intentionally choose languages non of the characters speak just to screw you over).


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ENHenry wrote:
I honestly feel like it's a very corner-case thing; it also happens so rarely (maybe once or twice a game, at max?) that it shouldn't even need much adjudicating. It happened to us in our first game, and I let the other player go first.

Frequency isn't the point. There is absolutely no good reason to have two (or more) different rules to cover the exact situation depending on whether PCs or NPCs are involved. There should be one rule that applies to everyone equally, that is simpler and more elegant.


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Cat-thulhu wrote:
PvP? Why? Does this happen often in your experience? I've found PvP experiences tend to undermine the game.

Frequency is irrelevant, it is a non-zero possibility that literally only requires simplifying down to *1* rule on how initiative works instead of having two different rules.

And yes, I've seen PvP happen for multiple reasons. In the university gaming group it happened because there were a few players who hated each other, and I will agree that undermines a game. But I've seen both a player retain control of their character when they got mind controlled unknown to the rest of the party (which made the betrayal actually surprising and fun), and I've had two players trying to role play their characters as faithfully as possible look on in horror as a their characters refused to listen to them and got into a fight (that one was... interesting. Moral is if you are running a game with multiple heavy role players make sure to learn enough about their characters so as not to throw in a choice their characters have differing views on and willing to risk their lives for.).


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Isaac Zephyr wrote:
Ironwedge wrote:
what page is that on?

Page 304, in the later part of Step 1: Roll Initiative. The final paragraph is as follows.

"If your initiative roll result is tied with an opponent’s result, that opponent goes first. If your initiative roll result is tied with another player character’s result, you can decide between yourselves who goes first when you reach that place in the initiative order. Once you’ve resolved who goes first, your places in the initiative order usually don’t change during the encounter."

Seriously? That is how they decided to "solve" it? Rules need to be written in such a way that it doesn't matter whether participants are PCs or NPCs. In this case, how do you handle PVP? They're both players, so they should decide between them, but since they're trying to kill each other neither has any reason to let the other go first; Since they are both opponents, they both go last.


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If half-elves and half-orcs are not being kept as their own ancestry but being converted into an ancestry feat then I agree that this needs to be expanded to be a standardised system accessible by all ancestries. One of the things that had always bothered me about those races in D&D/Pathfinder was they assumed all half elves and orcs had a human parent*; when I saw the sidebar about taking a feat to play a half-orc or half-elf I was excited thinking that problem was going to be fixed. If Paizo chooses to keep hybrids as an heritage feat instead of as their own separate ancestry, I would like them to create a common set of half-X feats for each of the core ancestries (and orcs) that are accessible to any ancestry.
One possible solution would be by breaking each ancestry down into a major (the ancestry) and minor (new class of feat) component (base hp, ability boosts and flaws, speed, and special abilities). At character creation in addition to the current feats all characters would be required to take one of the new class of feats (if you want to play a straight X you just choose both the X ancestry and the half-X feat giving you the full set of stats the current ancestry provides). Additionally this would get rid of the feat tax currently existing for half elves and half orcs, and would allow for a bit more variation.

*As far as I can tell the only rational ever for adding half elves and half orcs as races, but ignoring half dwarves or half hobbits (early editions of D&D did refer to them as such before legal issues got brought up, and through AD&D 2E the description remained that of hobbits) is explicitly because of Lord of the Rings: the Numenorean kings were half elves, and the squint eyed traveler in Bree was likely a half orc bred by Saruman, and in both cases they were half human. No other half-races are mentioned in Lord of the Rings, so no others show up in D&D and its decedents.

**Going back to Lord of the Rings and Tolkien, while the first Numenorean king was a half elf in the style of (A)D&D/Pathfinder, his half-elven brother Elrond is nothing like the half elves of earlier editions. By breaking the current ancestry system into a major/minor component it would allow for the creation of both types of characters.


Kobold Cleaver wrote:
"Dwarfs" generally refers to people with dwarfism. Or, to be precise, "dwarves" is explicitly the fantasy creature, while "dwarfs" is more vague. For Pathfinder, I recommend using "dwarves".

"Dwarfs" used to be the standard plural of "dwarf", but Tolkien invented "dwarves" based either on Old English or Old Norse rules (same with elfs and elves). Since then it has been common practice first among fantasy authors and now in the common usage that the high fantasy races are pluralised -"[v]es". I believe the "-[f]s" plural is still technically acceptable.


Neal Litherland wrote:
johnnythexxxiv wrote:

*preps a bag of well thought out and flame-war free popcorn*

As far as other phrases go, can't forget LFQW. That's burned down enough threads that you may as well say goodbye to the whole tunic.
I must have been doing time in different trenches. What does LFQW stand for?

I think that stand for Linear Fighters, Quadratic Wizards.


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As everyone keeps saying, options. I love the number of classes available. I love the options each class has (for example what is the source of your sorcerer's power). I love the huge variety of archetypes available. I love the fact that I can give the exact same character to five different players and have them level it and I will get five different characters.

If we ignore the rules, I love the business model. Paizo seems to have gone back to what I believe TSR had been doing. Their product is the campaign setting, not the rules. The first two editions of AD&D each ran for about 11 years. When WotC acquired TSR/(A)D&D they started focusing on rules over setting, and in the process have managed to go through three editions in the 15 years they've had it. As far as I'm concerned if the core system works, there is no need to "fix" it by updating it, and the difference between each edition should be smaller and smaller as the developers zero in on something balanced that fits the desires of the players.


Please please please have a magic system similar to the one in 3E's Epic Level Handbook. The Words of Power are a nice attempt, but they can't be used to recreate every spell in the core rules.


I'm really confused as to what this supposed to be. Some descriptions make it sound like it is a beginner's guide which holds your hand through making a character, others make it sound like it is a concise set of character generation/leveling rules.

I really hope it is the latter, because that is what I need. I much prefer the D&D break up of the rules into a PHB and DMG instead of smushing them together the way the Core Rulebook does. Most of my players refuse to buy the corebook (they've bought the pdf, but prefer using the physical book) because all they really want/need is the Race, Class, Feats, Skills and Spells chapters.


Thanks. I have the pdf versions, but as I've been running the game I've found myself wishing for a hard copy, and was trying to decide how to buy Escape from Old Korvosa. Thanks for explaining the situation.


For example, here are two different covers of Seven Days to the Grave:
Red cover
White cover


I'm seeing two different covers for the adventures online. The Paizo website has images of red covers, while Amazon has white covers. I was wondering if there was a difference between the two, and if it was possibly a 3.5 and Pathfinder edition.


I'd go with they come back to life after a set amount of time. Maybe set a will save they need to pass, and they get one attempt every hour (DC 40, +1 to their roll for every hour that has passed since they "died").

This could make an interesting mechanic, especially if you allow their enemies the same benefits.


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kmal2t wrote:

But really. Is this an argument of player creativity and concept or of GAME MECHANICS?

...
So really. Is this an issue of not being allowed to express yourself or you just want the cool mechanical aspects of certain classes? I await some pretty sophist and silly answers in response to this...

Both. If you look through this thread you will see several people mentioning they banned gunslingers (and other classes) for being broken mechanically. You will also see several people mention they have banned classes (paladins, samurai, ninja) because the fluff didn't fit into their world.

If you ban a class/race for mechanics reasons, and I want to play it for fluff reasons I would appreciate you sitting down with me to come up with a solution that gives me the fluff I want and doesn't have the mechanics you want to avoid. There is also the possibility the problems with the mechanics are only problems in the hands of certain players and instead of having a general ban it might be better to have bans for those players. Just because Tom tries pick pocketing everyone he encounters (including the other players) when he plays a rogue it doesn't mean there is a problem with the rogue class or that they should be banned, just that Tom should be banned from playing rogues.

If you ban a class/race for fluff reasons, and I want to play it for mechanics reasons I would also appreciate you sitting down with me to come up with a solution that gives me the mechanics and keeps the offending fluff out of your world. While the Japanese Samurai may not fit into your campaign, the rules appear to be pretty much similar to the Cavalier, so why not use the the samurai class, but call him a cavalier in game?


Vincent Takeda wrote:
I agree. I'm not saying that there arent a few things I'd like to avoid in my campaigns... I've never been a fan of 'psionics' in any version of D&D. (I'm fine with them in palladium...) And my lack of skill working with psionics never gets better because I never try. I'm only lucky that nobody in my D&D/pathfinder games ever wants to be psionic, but if it happens then it'll be time for me to imbrace the insanity and get familiar with it.

The only reason I like psionics (at least 3E ones as there is no official Pathfinder version) is that the spell point system seems more natural to me then the Vancian spell slots. Though my ideal spell system would be a combo of spell points with the epic level casting WotC had (spell seeds and factors) which allowed you to create custom spells on the fly (sort of like Words of Power, but much more flexible) and then based on the combo used the spellcraft ability to cast it.

But that is horribly off tangent.


SnowHeart wrote:
(I still think setting restrictions with new players, until that trust builds, is not unreasonable, but with an established table and mutual trust and respect... well, damn if some compromise ain't in order.)

I wouldn't call that a ban on anything, I would call it (pardon my evil-modern-MMO terms) an unlockable achievement. If you explain it right you might even get the player excited about the idea.


Scott Betts wrote:

I'll break it down for you:

A bad GM sees this fundamental power imbalance and thinks, "Hey, this means that I can impose all kinds of rules on my players, and they'll put up with a lot before they leave because they know it'll be tough to find another GM!"

A good GM sees this fundamental power imbalance and thinks, "Hey, it would really suck for my players to have to find a new GM, and they'll probably put up with a lot of things they'd rather not before leaving, so I should probably do my best to make sure I'm giving them the sort of game experience they really want to have, rather than one they'll simply tolerate. You know, because they're my friends and all."

Well said.


magnuskn wrote:
Yeah, well. I hate hypocrisy...

That was the whole reason I started this thread. Based on the threads I had been seeing lately there is a lot of hypocrisy (at least on the boards) with a DM-can-do-no-wrong, Any-player-who-disagrees-with-the-DM-is-an-entitled-jerk.

To Everyone While I haven't been responding much, I want to thank everyone who has been participating because it has been an interesting read. I'm almost caught up to it... I think.


Arssanguinus wrote:
But if the Player can't adapt a half-paragraph idea to fit something a dm wants to fit into his world then I believe the Player is the one being a poor sport.

You're right, I should have phrased it differently. They're both being bad sports.


RDM42 wrote:
Face it. A well designed campaign world is the gms character, and WAY more work goes into that than to any individual character. And if a player can't just adapt and either pitch his concept in a manner that doesn't violate his dms campaign restrictions or just actually bite the bullet and try something different then he's being a poor sport. If I'm plqying in someone ese's campaign world I consider it just plain good manners to respect his boundaries. You can't always ger what you want, but if you try, sometimes, you might find, you can get what you need ...

My opinion on this is heavily biased by the fact that in every game I've been in, none of the (home brewed) campaign settings sprang forth fully grown as Athena from Zues' head. Yes, through the course of many games the world became developed and things that may imply restrictions may have formed. But if the DM can't adapt a half-paragraph idea to fit something a player wants to play then I believe the DM is the one being a poor sport (unless like Adamantine Dragon's example in another thread which had no dwarves but the concept seems to have been "all the dwarves have been murdered and you are going to restore them").


Duskrunner1 wrote:
This conversation makes me wonder about campaign worlds that have limitation imposed on them, and if players feel that they should have what they want due to it being in any official source book. The example I am using is the Dark Sun world (not the 4e version as I do not know what changes have taken place).

I'm going to quickly step aside to make a minorly related comment.

Spoiler:
For me there is a very direct correlation between the expected length of the game and the amount of restrictions I'm fine with. If I'm sitting down at a convention or a store's games day I'm perfectly fine with the DM handing me any pregen (even for a class/concept I dislike) because I will only deal with that character for a couple of hours. If the group of people I'm playing is sitting down for a game that will run for a month and end when this new game/campaign-setting/whatever is released, I'm perfectly fine with being told I can't play that character concept I want to play. But if we are sitting down to play a game with no intended end date, and the possibility of playing it for several years then I want to be able to have free choice of hat exactly I am going to play.

On the topic of campaign settings with restrictions, in general I am fine with them. My problem isn't so much the restrictions as it is the way those restrictions are handled I guess. Some examples I'm fine with are:

Spoiler:
If you come to me and say "Hey, I'm thinking of starting a Dark Sun, want to join in?" I am fine with that. I don't think the DM is being a tyrant in this case. But I expect to be allowed to say "You know, I'm not really a fan of Dark Sun, any chance you'd be interested in running a Golarion game instead?" without automatically being labeled a "entitled player".

Spoiler:
If you come to your friends and say "Hey, I want to run a Pathfinder game, is anyone interested in any specific settings?"

Spoiler:
In both of the previous examples players had input on the restrictions in advance. I'm even fine with the situation of there being a long running game with restrictions to which you invite a new player because switching settings would essentially destroy everyone else's work.


kmal2t wrote:

lol its a function of the game??

So is the banker in Monopoly a tyrant too for holding the money and not letting everyone else handle the money?

Is the referee in football or basketball a tyrant?

Is the guy who flips the little hourglass thing in games then tells you your time is up a tyrant too for lording over the other players and telling you how to play?

Actually, they have the potential to be. I'm not a big sports fan, but I just want to point to NFL game which had Lingerie Football League refs as replacement refs. Normally this doesn't happen in those games because there are also rules the restrict what those refs/bankers/hourglass-flippers can and can't do and no one out there will say they can make arbitrary decisions just because they are the ref/banker/hourglass-flipper.


SunKing wrote:
But that doesn't mean that I can't criticize these latter two as silly and/or dysfunctional also - when the lowest XP prize in the game is basically 200 xp, there is no need for that not to simply be a "2" instead - these inflated values are a holdover from when 1 gp gave you 1 xp.

They might be able to rework the values of XP, just dividing it by 100 doesn't work as 2 xp divided by say 6 party members.


Abraham spalding wrote:
Um... it doesn't need fixed, read the link I provided, the system works just fine.

It does, as there are technically two sets of rules that contradict each other. I read the links you provided and will agree that the math you did is accurate and consistent. The problems arise when you also take into account that the prices for trade/barter goods and hiring people are also provided. The core rule book state that a trained hireling is 3 sp/day and an untrained is 1 sp/day. While the examples of trained and untrained hirelings doesn't include farmer, we can assume a farmer would make money somewhere between a porter and a blacksmith. This is significantly more then the 1.29 gp/day your calculations provide. This suggests that there is a hole *somewhere* in the rules because a full gold piece appears out of nowhere every single day a person gets hired to do something.

You started with the rules provided for PCs to make money and went on from there. If you work in the other direction as I did above figuring out how many acres of land the average mediaeval peasant farmed, how much wheat that produced, and then how much they could sell it for you get 2.1 sp/day which fits very nicely between the two ranges for untrained and trained labour. At this wage they can't afford the 10 gp/month of an average cost of living, but they definitely can afford the 3 gp/month of a poor lifestyle
Core Rulebook, p405 wrote:
Poor (3 gp/month): The PC lives in common rooms of taverns, with his parents, or in some other communal situation—this is the lifestyle of most untrained laborers and commoners. He need not track purchases of meals or taxes that cost 1 sp or less.

Emphasis is mine.

EDIT: Actually I think you even posted the answer to this discrepency in the other thread.
Abraham spalding wrote:
The difference isn't the level of skill or quality of work, it's much more time, place, and circumstances -- things that afflict many people the world over even to this day

The profession checks give the maximum the farmer could earn given unlimited land to farm, and the cost/day of hirelings is the actual amount the farmer earns based on land available.</edit>

On a side note, in the thread you linked to you said

Abraham spalding wrote:
This fails at the level we have an 'average' living cost in the game and the average NPCs as presented and what actually works out in the system -- but it is almost close... if you ignore everything else I presented. If the majority of your people aren't at that point it isn't average.

I would argue that the names of the different types of lifestyle are based around PCs and not NPCs, so the "average" lifestyle of the "average" person in the world may be "poor", but the "average" lifestyle of the adventurer is "average".


My first thought when thinking "monk" isn't an eastern martial artist but a western style monk like Cadfael or Friar Tuck (though Tuck is a Friar and not a monk).


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Duskrunner1 wrote:

No I am interested in telling a story. I offer and present that story and set the boundaries. If someone takes issue with the boundaries I am willing to hear them out and present their argument. If afterwards their argument doesn't make sense then of course I will not allow it.

I have made exceptions to allow things in, against my better judgment, and in turn from my experience it destroyed the overall story and led to nobody having fun with the exception of the one who wanted special favors. On the other hand letting some things in had created a better overall story.

Two questions, when you decided what story you were going to tell, did you ask what story the players wanted to play in? After you made those exceptions, did you adjust your story to help fit in the changes or did you stick to the original story exactly?

If you didn't do either of those things, I think the blame lies mostly on you for the games not being enjoyable. Why is it ok for a DM to run a type of game without finding out if that is the game their players want, but not ok for a player to run a character without finding out if that is a type of character the DM wants? And why is a player who only wants to play one type of character a bad player, but a DM who only wants to run one type of game not a bad DM?


Vod Canockers wrote:
There are some exceptions to that. The peasant needs to keep 1/3 of that grain to plant the following year, and the noble is going to take 1/3 to 1/2 of the crop as "taxes," and the peasant is going to be eating most of the rest.

That was actually already accounted for. 75 gp/year gross income. 36 gp/year poor living costs (includes food, housing and taxes), which still leaves 39 gp worth of grain unaccounted for (1/3 of 75 is ~23), leaving the peasant with 16 gp/year of disposable income.

Vod Canockers wrote:


The other problem is that medieval farms are tiny compared to what the farmer could have farmed. They have been divided and subdivided so many times that they are down to the smallest possible to support a family.

That could be one way of accounting for why they make significantly less then what an untrained take 10 on profession would give them.


Ashiel wrote:
...the vast majority of the prices in the equipment lists and trade goods are rather arbitrary...

Yeah, I have noticed that. The prices is one of the things I really wish would get properly reworked.

Ashiel wrote:
Plus the price of wheat and/or crops may be influenced by things like magic (plant growth can affect a mile-wide radius and increase crop productions by 30%).

This I didn't think about, I shall need to consider that in figuring out the production of the community now.

Ashiel wrote:
There's also considering that farmers do more than grow single crops. They often spread out their time and efforts because it is safer and more productive. Farms with fields, goats, cows, pigs, oxen, whatever. But all of it is abstracted to Profession. :)

As I understand that is only partially true. The peasants would have their own vegetable gardens, chickens for eggs and cows for milk that they would be raising as their main source of food, but the fields they were tending which were used to pay their rents/taxes/tithes and make some extra money to buy necessities they couldn't grow/make themselves would most likely be one crop/animal.

Ashiel wrote:
Just to give you another example of stupid pricing. A single piece of charcoal costs 5 silver pieces. You can buy 20 pounds of wood for 1 copper pieces. Charcoal is made by burning firewood and heating firewood until it becomes incredibly dry, dark and brittle. As it is right now the secret to amassing huge...

Actually the process of making charcoal (in period) is building a giant pile of wood, covering it enough dirt to prevent air from getting in and leaving a few openings which allow air to get in. Once that is done you light it on fire and sit and guard it for about a day or so making sure enough air is getting in to carbonize the wood, but not too much is getting in to destroy it. Then once the process is finished all the holes need to be closed to stop the burning, and then once that has happened you need to wait for it all to cool down and then dig it all up. So I would argue the price of charcoal vs wood is not odd (though I'm not sure what the cost of charcoal is in period and I don't feel like looking that up).


Aranna wrote:
Ah an internet troll reveals himself. Because obviously a friendly helpful GM to friendly helpful players is a dictator when she stops problem players in their tracks.

There is a significant difference between "no Tom, you can't play an X because you have played them before and every time shown that you shouldn't be allowed to play X", and "no one can play an X because I don't like them".


Aratrok wrote:
Someone who is perfectly average and untrained would earn 5 gp/week using the Profession and Craft rules...
That is actually the only problem with the calculations I made last night.
Aratrok wrote:
... and your average set of clothes costs between 1 sp and 10 gp

A peasant's outfit is 1 sp. At 75 gp/year, assuming 36 gp goes for food, housing and taxes (poor cost of living is 3 gp/month), means that the peasant can still afford several sets of clothing.


Ashiel wrote:

I would suggest reading an article I wrote: Economics of a D&D and Pathfinder World. It might give you a good starting point.

In general an average Intelligence or Wisdom commoner should make about 5 gp per week untrained, or 20 gp per month (240 gp/year). Professionals (1 rank, +3 class skill) will make about 28 gp per month (336 gp/year). Essentially +0.5 gold pieces for every +1 they have over +0 and -0.5 for every -1 they have under +0 in their Craft or Profession.

The average cost of living for an individual is 10 gp/month which includes housing and taxes. It's fair to assume half of it goes to taxes (so the local lord probably accumulates about 5 gp per citizen in his domain if he or she is taxing fairly). Leaving most civilians with a fair lifestyle (though most communities in D&D are at constant risk of things like bandit raiders trying to steal their stuff).

I'll discuss some more in my next post.

Thanks, that actually helped me as I had forgotten about the cost of living rules.

Part of the reason I ask is that I did some research last night and got that a peasant would farm ~15 acres of land, which produced ~9 bushels of wheat/acre, which by modern counting methods is 60 lbs/bushel, which sells for 1 cp/lb according to the very beginning of the equipment chapter for a total of ~76.5 gp/year. This is a little over 2 sp/day which actually fits almost perfectly with the 1 sp/day the DMG stated.


Doug's Workshop wrote:

Out of curiosity, why?

I mean this as a sincere question. Many feudal nobles had holdings spread out all over (in part because this meant he couldn't maintain one large force as a threat to his lord). So if you needed him to have more money, he has a small interest in a mine that's off the map to the northwest, or a small fief several days' ride south.

Well, this is for a noble of the lowest level, so he only has a manor and a village. My character is the 6th child of a minor noble. The DM decided that part of the adventure was taking back to my home and asked me to build out the town/family instead of just saying "yeah, I have some family, we're nobility, but I have enough older siblings that I get no inheritance".


I'm currently building a village and am trying to figure out how much a peasant farmer should make a year. This is mostly to try and calculate how large a village needs to be to provide an income for the noble who owns it.

Also, does anyone know of a good source for specific prices for specific hirelings? The noble needs to be able to provide for a small garrison of guards, cooks, and other household staff.


Wow, I loged on today to over a hundred new posts, I'm trying to read through everything, but in case it hasn't been said already I wanted to add something.

shallowsoul wrote:

Why do you need to ask me again to find out information on preferences when I have already told you?

Okay lads, I'm running a campaign and im not going to allow XYZ.

DM, can I play X?

No, I already informed you what isn't allowed.

But why? I need to know so I won't ask again in the future.

*smiles* Seriously? Are you really saying his?

Where did you get a "screw you" from? Are you one of those people that take no personally?

No, if you say you aren't allowing "XYZ" (lets pretend gunslinger, ninja and samurai), I will ask why you don't allow them. If you say you don't like the rules for them, I can still play a gun wielding fighter, a eastern flavoured rogue, or a cavalier named Takeda Musashi who weilds a katana. If you say you don't like the theme, I will ask if I can play a "gun"slinger and swap out every reference of "gun" to "crossbow", a specialised "rogue", or a "cavalier" with the Order of the Warrior.

If you say "because" and leave it at that there is a possibility I will make a character who fits all the rules you said, but you still won't allow into the game.


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NobodysHome wrote:
Since I specifically used the term "Problem Child", and another person asked, "Why not just let him be a noble?", I'll elaborate.

I used "problem child" in my statement because I have seen that used several times, by different people in different posts and was not directly targeted at you.

NobodysHome wrote:

Since I specifically used the term "Problem Child", and another person asked, "Why not just let him be a noble?", I'll elaborate.

He wants Knowledge: Local, Knowledge: Nobility, and Knowledge: Geography for free as untrained skill checks as part of his 'character backstory'. He doesn't ever want to have to roll a die for them; he just wants to 'know such things'. And he feels he should know them better than any of the PCs who are non-local who put skill points into the skills. If I ask him to pay skill points, I'm 'suppressing him'.

I'm not saying a DM isn't allowed to say "No", I'm just against that being a DM's first reaction instead of "Alright, I would rather you not, but please explain why you want to play/do that and I will either consider it or we can try and think of a compromise that works for both of us." And it seems very few of the DMs who post about "player entitlement" are willing to do that.


Arssanguinus wrote:
So why is "you place your interests above my world" not just as bad?

It is just as bad. But there are more people on these boards that will say a player who says "my interests are more important then your world/story" is a "problem child" or is suffering from "player entitlement", but won't say the same things about a DM who says "My world/story is more important then you playing the character you want". The whole point of this thread I started was wondering why this hypocrisy exists.

One of the many threads I've been reading recently had someone post something that pretty much summed up to "As GM I'm telling a story, and players aren't allowed to do anything that would get in the way of telling that story". In the page or so of comments following that not a single person seemed to call them out as being an "entitled player" which bothered me. To paraphrase Vincent Takeda earlier in this thread, why are people like that even DMing instead of writing a book and trying to sell it?


Pendagast wrote:
In a game of robotech 20 years ago, I ruled a 'destroid' did not have the same arm/hand agility as a veritech 'battloid' based on 1) the animated series and footage thereof and 2) the vertiech technology was of a higher grade and 'newer' and more advanced.

That is a small ruling that doesn't really change much, and neither of you should have made a big deal about it (not sure if you did or not).

Pendagast wrote:
I already out lined above the possibility of a character 'inventing' a revolver. (and that goes for magic items or other gear)

And that is what I think DMs should do, and as a player I would be happy with the answer "no, that isn't possible right now, but here is a way you can do that".


RadiantSophia wrote:
I SEE THE PROBLEM. The group I play with currently represents 6 (out of 7 current players) of the 9 who have developed this setting. I CAN NOT allow someone to come in and overrule that majority just because I am the GM.

I'm not sure what you mean by developing the setting. Did you all sit down and write out the setting as if you were preparing it for publication, or did you come up with a settings and then play in it and bring life to it? Either way, why can't you allow a gunslinger (or anything else) into the world? Does absolutely nothing change? Is the world you are playing in exactly the same as it was 20 years ago when you started, or has it changed based on those 20 years of gaming? If it has changed through the actions of 20 years of playing in it, why is that ok, but changing it to allow a new technology to start emerging, or a new race to appear, or any other thing the players may want, not ok?

And if you are so against these changes happening to that setting, and everyone in the group is about to create new characters at 1st level (or whatever level they start at), why not consider running a game in a different setting?


Lord Mhoram wrote:

For me the GM and the world are the rules. The RAW is the tools to make the game, not the game itself. If my world doesn't have Elves and Dwarves, no you cannot play one.

Now I tend for gonzo everything is permitted kind of games, so that really doesn't come up. But when I pitch a campaign to the group, I set up what limits there are, what I want allowed, what I am planning to disallow, the tone and such. If the group wants to play, then we go ahead.

If the group doesn't want to play, then we don't. If 1 person doesn't want to play and everyone else does we talk about why. They are free to not play in that campaign, or come up with one of their own to GM.

Emphasis mine. Those things you said there, they are really important in my opinion. You give the players a choice, you don't say "Do as I say or leave", and if the players don't like the choices you are willing to discuss it with them.


tribeof1 wrote:
An RPG is like playing Cops and Robbers, except everyone involved has agreed to appoint an arbiter (the GM) to create a plot and adjudicate the rules. Player entitlement is one player arguing - after everyone agreed to play Cops and Robbers - that they should be able to play a dinosaur.

That is part of the problem I'm having. In the conversations about player entitlement the situation rarely goes that way. The way it normally goes is everyone agrees to play a game, one person says they must play cops and robbers and another one wants to play dinosaurs. At no point did everyone sit down and decide to play cops and robbers, but the kid who said they were playing cops and robbers tells the kid who wants to play dinosaurs to either play cops and robbers or get lost.

If everyone sits down and decides they want to play Pathfinder, someone volunteers to be the DM, and then says "Hey, I really don't like Gunslingers, is everyone cool with saying they don't exist" and then everyone agrees to this, that is fine. If after the whole group agrees no gunslingers a player argues they should be able to play a gunslinger because it is in the books, that is player entitlement, and that is a problem.


Everyone who is arguing that DMs have the right to do anything they want because they are DMing and the only one putting any effort in between games, that really depends on the group. If as a DM you just buy APs all you need to do is read through it between games, maybe slightly adjust things to fit the characters. In my group one of the players loves painting minis and is the one who pretty much provides all the minis for the game and another player loves writing so they take notes during the game and write up a character journal for both the DM and players to use as a reference in the future.

I in no way advocate that players should use the rulebooks as a hammer to beat their poor DM senseless to get everything they want. It just seems any time a situation where what the DM wants and what a player wants arises on the forums the majority of the people on the board yell "player entitlement" and say that the player must bow to the wishes of the DM or leave the game. Very few people seem to advocate for the two to sit down and come up with a solution that both DM and player are happy with.


RadiantSophia wrote:
Because my world has 20 years of history, through 7 different RPGs. If what you want to play cannot exist by the natural laws of my world, there is no way I'm going to let you play it.

Of all the reasons I have seen on the boards on the topic, this is probably the only acceptable reason I have seen so far.

And even then, is not "I will only run games in my setting" just as obstinate as "I will only play this one race/class/weapon combo"? (Of course this doesn't apply if you are already running the game and either a new player is joining or an existing player is rolling up a new character).


thejeff wrote:
So worlds with hard limitations are out? Not acceptable even for home campaigns?

Pretty much. I'm fine with hard limitations in in-store games or conventions where it is impossible to sit down with the players in advance, there will only be one session or different people will be DMing so having hard limitations significantly simplifies things. But for games at home with a constant set of people that will be may be running for a long time hard limitations are a bad thing.

thejeff wrote:
The GM must adapt his idea of the world and campaign to whatever the players come up with?
Why is it acceptable to make the players adapt to what the DM comes up with, but not ok to make the DM adapt to what the players come up with?
thejeff wrote:
No guns/gunslingers is a common one. Some classes can be fluffed around as you suggest. Some can't. Races are generally harder. AD's campaign world with no dwarves? GM entitlement? Or cool premise?...Does this apply retroactively too? If the game started before Ultimate Combat came out and a PC dies and the player (or new player) wants a gunslinger, do there have to have retroactively been guns in the world all along?

GM entitlement, yes definitely. Cool premise, also a yes. If you will look over what I said, what I advocated was having the DM and player sit down and discuss the character and come up with a solution together that works for both of them. In the case of AD's no dwarf campaign as DM I would have started the conversation as "there are currently no dwarves in the world as they have all been killed. Part of the campaign shall be trying to restore them. Once you succeed at restoring them, I will allow you to roll up a dwarf of the same level you, does that work for you?"

In regards to the gunslinger and retconing, there is no need to retcon. In the real world there were no firearms until they appeared. If you are not opposed to firearms being in the game you can just start introducing them slowly coming in from distant lands. If you don't want firearms in the game, find out why they want to play a gunslinger. No matter what, sit down and try coming to an agreement that works for both the player and the DM.


Why is it that a player saying "X is in the official rules, so I can play X" is considered "player entitlement", but the statement "You can't do/play Y because of Z" from the DM is not seen as "player entitlement"? In both cases it is one person at the table trying to dictate how the game will be played to all the other people at the table, so why does almost everyone on these boards perfectly fine with that happening if the person is a DM, but completely against it when it is anyone else?


Ravingdork wrote:
The GM should not dictate player creation, he should guide it. This is a cooperative game, and the relationship between the players and the GM is no exception.

This. I agree with this completely. I feel that "No, there are no X in my world, so you can't play an X" is just as much "player entitlement" as "X is in the official book, so you must allow me to play it".

As to the original post, the role of the DM during character generation is to provide assistance. The only thing the DM should make a hard decission on that players can't go against is how stats are generated, and if the players are rolling then the DM should also witness the rolls (no matter how improbable it is still possible to roll six 18s and it would suck if I wasn't allowed to keep that because there is no proof I didn't cheat). Once that is done, the DM should help clear up any confusion players have about the rules (Sorcerers know a max of X spells, but wizards can prep any spells in their spell book, but what about clerics?) and help prevent bad choices (this is going to be a nautical campaign, so choosing the cavalier will weaken you character significantly). Any time the DM's vision of their world doesn't line up with a player's desire for their character, they should sit down and try and come up with a solution to make the player's character fit into the world instead of flat out refusing it (My game is set in 13th Century England which doesn't have eastern style monasteries that have martial arts wielding monks, why do you want to play a monk, and is there another class that could do the same thing or is there a way to reskin the fluff of the monk to fit the setting but keep the rules you want?). The last thing the DM should do is make rulings on any special things that players might want that doesn't follow the rules (no, you can't let your monk use his flurry of blows with a great axe and call himself a berserker, but yes it is acceptable for you to swap out your Knowledge(local) for Knowledge(nobility) since you character grew up in the royal court).


I'm not exactly sure how that becomes important. If a person is closely related enough that being related causes problems for the noble, that fact is probably well known enough (sibling, parent, child, aunt or uncle of the noble in question). If the two people in question are not that closely related then, considering a medieval type setting, the character is most likely equally related to a majority of other nobles, including the "black mailer"*.

*I'm assuming the black mailer is a noble as any commoner would be quickly silenced before this became enough of a problem.


Has anyone heard why magic items need to be masterwork items? On the one hand it makes sense that if you are crafting something of that sort you would try to use the best materials available to you. On the other hand things like the Holy Grail from Indiana Jones are most definitely not masterwork items, and I could see wanting to use a normal item intentionally to "camaflauge" an item (without access to a detect magic, who is going to try stealing that stick that looks like it the was picked off the side of the road by the old man).

Mechanics-wise, I can't see the extra 100-300gp making that much of a difference for anything but the most simple and cheap items so it doesn't seem to be a way of balancing the system.


DragonBringerX wrote:
Our concept of leveling seems to be heavily influenced by modern (or old school) video games. But Pathfinder is not a video game. Its a simulation of something more. So, once a character (or party) has earned enough Xp to level up, when does that moment of accession occur?

While I will agree leveling in pen and paper and video games is very similar, you have the connection backwards. The video games took the way leveling works from D&D. Other more modern games treat XP more as a currency which use use to buy character abilities (in D&D terms it would be like spending XP to get an additional HD, buy a rank in a skill, buy feat, buy a class ability or something else) which creates a more organic leveling system.

In terms of when characters level in groups I've played in, that has generally been between games (instantaneous in game if one session ends in a cliff hanger). The main reason for this is it just speeds up game play by calculating xp only once at the end of the game instead of after every single encounter, and secondly because leveling takes time. For the short amount of time I played 2nd Ed we leveled in the middle of games, but that was because all leveling involved was rolling your new HP and updating THAC0. Now leveling means you need to choose a feat or an ability score to boost, choose skills, possibly make a choice in class abilities (rogue talents, ranger favoured enemies and so on) which means unless you know exactly what you want in advance it may take a while to update everything to the new level.

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