Reincarnated as a bugbear -- what to do about Level Adjustment?


Rules Questions

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Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

So one of my players has decided he no longer wants to be a halfling and arranged to have himself killed and then reincarnated by a druid. So far, so good.

Then he rolls a 1 on the race table (I let him roll it so as not to show any bias towards rolling a "100"!) and a bugbear forms out of the dust and stones at the feet of the druid, the PC's soul moving to inhabit said body.

This was a good roll IMO, with bonuses to all three physical stats. However, the Clr7 is now in the body of a 3HD/+1LA bugbear. What do I do about the level difference?

The spell says that the creature retains its hit points and all class-related features. It gains the modifiers to the physical ability scores and any racial features like natural armor. Since the new body has the same hit points, I'm guessing that the 3HD should just be ignored. If that's the case, then the Clr7 is still a Clr7. But what about the ability score increases? Surely that's worth quite a bit, right? We're talking +4 Str and +2 Dex/Con! I would think those are worth the +1 LA all by themselves.

Spoiler:
A secondary question for those running a CotCT campaign: how should the bugbear be treated inside Korvosa? The players are coming up on the end of chapter 3 (Escape from Old Korvosa).

Dark Archive

In 3.5 when a player began play as a race with racial hit dice that numbered more than one, and were stuck at first level, the suggestion was to have them "level up" in their race before they could progress as their class again. This could be taken as the character getting acclimated to his new body. The other thing you could do, is have the player simply skip their next level up, for the +1 LA then continue on as normal, forgoing all the benefits of the racial hit dice, but inform them that they can take those racial hit dice as levels, should they wish to.

Paizo Employee Franchise Manager

+1 LA isn't a huge detriment at lvl 7. It can suck at lower levels. Technically, he should get his 3 additional HD and the skill points, ability adjustments, feats, etc. to go along with it, as these account for some of the LA. How this will play out in Pathfinder will rely on what the Bestiary says. But I believe that LA has just been removed, replaced by a table of PC-equivalent races and a few more tables of different power levels. I would have the PC level up somewhere around half-way between the rest of the party getting 8th and when they get 9th, about a third of the way after they hit 9th, and a quarter after they hit 10th. By 11th level, I'd just even it out. Sure, he's a little more powerful than the other players, but he took a big chance by leaving it up to the dice as part of a Reincarnate. If the other players want to use a Deck of Many Things or their own Reincarnate spell, let them see if fate favors them the same way.


azhrei_fje wrote:

Then he rolls a 1 on the race table (I let him roll it so as not to show any bias towards rolling a "100"!) and a bugbear forms out of the dust and stones at the feet of the druid, the PC's soul moving to inhabit said body.

This was a good roll IMO, with bonuses to all three physical stats. However, the Clr7 is now in the body of a 3HD/+1LA bugbear. What do I do about the level difference?

7th level? I would deduct 1 level worth of experience points from the character. You can check the Unearthed Arcana rules for buying back LA.

So likely 1000 Exp for LA +1.

As for how people in Khovosa would treat him... he's a monster. People tell stories about creatures like him to scare their children. They are literal canibals who feast on human flesh and well known as such. Most people would run away in terror. It would be nearly impossible for him to do routine things like shopping or even just


I have copied what I believe are the relevant sections of the spell here.
From the PRD (Reincarnate spell)

"It retains any class abilities, feats, or skill ranks it formerly possessed. Its class, base attack bonus, base save bonuses, and hit points are unchanged. Strength, Dexterity, and Constitution scores depend partly on the new body. First eliminate the subject's racial adjustments (since it is no longer necessarily of his previous race) and then apply the adjustments found below to its remaining ability scores."

and (towards the end of the spell description)

"The reincarnated creature gains all abilities associated with its new form, including forms of movement and speeds, natural armor, natural attacks, extraordinary abilities, and the like, but it doesn't automatically speak the language of the new form."

I don't think that the reincarnated character gets the additional hit dice / monster class levels. However, he/she gets just about everything else. The new form affects ability scores and everything mentioned in the second section section I quoted.

Edit: I see that I probably misinterpreted what some of the other posters were saying. With regards to level adjustment or experience point modifying, I think that being unacceptable company in any civilized setting balances out any benefits acquired from being a Bugbear. Bugbears are really not like Wookies, unless there are very evil Wookies that I don't know about.


Dennis da Ogre wrote:

7th level? I would deduct 1 level worth of experience points from the character. You can check the Unearthed Arcana rules for buying back LA.

So likely 1000 Exp for LA +1.

As for how people in Khovosa would treat him... he's a monster. People tell stories about creatures like him to scare their children. They are literal canibals who feast on human flesh and well known as such. Most people would run away in terror. It would be nearly impossible for him to do routine things like shopping or even just

I'd go with "Welcome to your new level." To me (and it's not my game, of course), I'd give him all the bugbear adjustments and say that when he hits 9th level, he's now a bugbear with 8 levels of cleric who can't walk into a typical town without scaring the locals and perhaps inciting a huge fight. The party is going to have a hard time walking into a tavern, even in a town full of bugbears. Unless the character already knows Goblin, he won't be able to deal well with them, either. He's also in for a short lifespan, IIRC.

On the plus side, he got his wish. He sure ain't a halfling any more! XD I can see how this development is amusing for you!

The Exchange RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

An interesting note about Reincarnate in Pathfinder. In 3rd Edition, the spell read "The spell cannot bring back a creature who has died of old age.". In Pathfinder, it can. The Thuvian elixir of youth is no longer quite the hot commodity.


Well, I'd space the additional HD out over the course of his next level, arranging it so that as he hit 8th level in total XP, he'd have all the bonuses of the +1 LA Bugbear.

If the character becomes a problem, unbalancing the game as a whole, there are plenty of avenues for bringing him back in line. Angry/suspicious townsfolk, aggressive adventurers, or even possibly attention from the outer planes. There are, after all, a certain set of Lawful Neutral entities that might decide this...

azhrei_fje wrote:
So one of my players has decided he no longer wants to be a halfling and arranged to have himself killed and then reincarnated by a druid. So far, so good.

... is the sort of casual defiance of death they find particularly offensive (Inevitables, specifically, Maruts). While I wouldn't say this is enough to get the player actively hunted by the Maruts, he'd certainly have their attention, and the attention of any extraplanar entity can be troublesome at best.


azhrei_fje wrote:

So one of my players has decided he no longer wants to be a halfling and arranged to have himself killed and then reincarnated by a druid. So far, so good.

Then he rolls a 1 on the race table (I let him roll it so as not to show any bias towards rolling a "100"!) and a bugbear forms out of the dust and stones at the feet of the druid, the PC's soul moving to inhabit said body.

This was a good roll IMO, with bonuses to all three physical stats. However, the Clr7 is now in the body of a 3HD/+1LA bugbear. What do I do about the level difference?

The spell says that the creature retains its hit points and all class-related features. It gains the modifiers to the physical ability scores and any racial features like natural armor. Since the new body has the same hit points, I'm guessing that the 3HD should just be ignored. If that's the case, then the Clr7 is still a Clr7. But what about the ability score increases? Surely that's worth quite a bit, right? We're talking +4 Str and +2 Dex/Con! I would think those are worth the +1 LA all by themselves.

** spoiler omitted **

he loses a level for the reincarnate

he doesnt get the bugbear HD but does gain a big stat enhancement- though he loses all the halfling racial abilities. A 7th level halfling cleric is probably about the same as a 6th level bugbear cleric (if you dont get racial levels). So i would just treat him as +1 level for levelling up purposes.

As for how he goes in society well bugbears are creepy evil murderers who like to scare people before they kill them just to watch them die afraid. I reckon the authorities would want to kill him on sight- being a monster will be very tough in a non wilderness campaign.

The Exchange RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

Werecorpse wrote:

he loses a level for the reincarnate.

Not in Pathfinder. He gains a negative level, which he can remove the same way as any other negative level.


Chris Mortika wrote:
Werecorpse wrote:

he loses a level for the reincarnate.

Not in Pathfinder. He gains a negative level, which he can remove the same way as any other negative level.

yep I forgot Pathfinder is 'soft on death'- my bad


yoda8myhead wrote:
+1 LA isn't a huge detriment at lvl 7. It can suck at lower levels. Technically, he should get his 3 additional HD and the skill points, ability adjustments, feats, etc. to go along with it, as these account for some of the LA.

The level adjustment in 3.5e is used to determine the value of abilities and bonuses beyond those granted by the hit dice. Hit Dice themselves count as +1 each when determining effective character level modifier. It's hitdice + level adjustment. So a 3 HD bugbear with +1 LA would be ECL +4 on top of class levels. The hitdice count separately from the level adjustment. Applying full bugbear benefits to a level 7 cleric in 3.5e would make it a effective level 11 character, not effective level 8.

Since Bestiary isn't out with that information yet, no idea about how Pathfinder will do it.


Gonna have to throw in with the group saying the spell does not grant the extra HD. If it did so it would say so in the spell text. But it does not.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Lost Omens Subscriber

I would grant him the ability adjustments, none of the racial HD, and have him earn more XP or deduct some of his current XP to reach the next level, so he has to pay for his advantage. Or use the next slower advancement table for the next level. If he wants the racial HD, welcome to the warrior class, which is the best approximation of humanoid or goblinoid racial HD IMO.
Of course, the roleplaying consequences of being a monster should be in place, as mentioned above.

Stefan


Grant full racial bonuses and HD with no penalties. First, punishing PCs for their luck is bad. Second, bugbear's racial bonuses aren't even that significant by level 7. Melee beatstick clerics aren't strong enough without DMM Persistent Spell, to break the game by getting extra +4 to attack, +2 to damage, +3 to AC, +1 HP per level and some extra HP from racial HDs (and with DMM Persistent Spell you rule the game anyway and such numbers are barely noticeable). And bugbear's bonuses aren't useful for much besides melee.

If you still think that above-mentioned bonuses are way overpowered, grant racial ability adjustments and other bonuses, but no HD.


Wolf Munroe wrote:


The level adjustment in 3.5e is used to arbitrarily punish players for picking monster characters.

I've corrected your misspelling. Anyone who actually cares about balance should always use CR to determine how many character levels a monster package is worth. This approach is not perfect (bugbear racial package is worth less than two competently-picked levels, thanks to sh|t feats; puzzle monsters, like ghosts or lycantropes are stronger as PCs than their CR indicates, because most opponents have hard time harming them), but its results are at least somewhat close to reality. Official HD+LA system produces horrible gimps and downright unplayable characters almost without fail.


Also: who cares about what townsfolk think about your appearance when you're level 7? Even though Golarion, like most 3.X setting is chock-full of characters with virtual levels (by virtual levels I mean levels used solely for confrontations with PCs), a 7-th level party still can plunder average towns, like Sandpoint. For sport. If commoners do not freeze in fear upon seeing PCs already, then PCs are probably known as great heroes, who obviously know better with whom to travel. And if you really care about not scaring people, a hat of disguise isn't exactly that expensive by this point.

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

I thought the HD did count, so a Bugbear (2 RHD +1 LA) is a 3rd level character?

My advice? either a) make him buy those 3 levels off, or b) he's now a 10th level character in a 7th level party, and his advancement will be stunted accordingly.

Either way, the loss of three caster levels is enough of a punishment for his casual attitude about dealth.


Matthew Morris wrote:
I thought the HD did count, so a Bugbear (2 RHD +1 LA) is a 3rd level character?

Ah woops, you are correct, I think I saw everyone else saying +1 level and I just mentally flipped over to thinking about Hobgoblins (who do happen to be +1 ECL in 3.5) instead of Bugbears.


FatR wrote:
Grant full racial bonuses and HD with no penalties.

I'd say allow the racial bonuses (but no racial HD, which is mostly an unnecessary complication and is not mentioned in the spell description) with no penalty. The guy got lucky; why punish him for it?


I'd give him the racial modifiers and lose the Hit Dice. The level he would otherwise have lost as a Halfling Clr 7 would be permanently exchanged for the +1 LA, letting him become a (HD-less) Bugbear Clr 6, without any further loss of XP or reduced levelling capacity.

Sovereign Court

Um hello? is everyone forgetting that time and time again the developers and staff have said that a +1 LA can be played as is without worrying about adjusting for LA because of the boost to the base races.

Don't apply racial HD, just apply the racial modifiers and since the LA was +1 ignore that too as the designers have said time and time again that you don't have to worry about a +1 LA any more.


lastknightleft wrote:

Um hello? is everyone forgetting that time and time again the developers and staff have said that a +1 LA can be played as is without worrying about adjusting for LA because of the boost to the base races.

Don't apply racial HD, just apply the racial modifiers and since the LA was +1 ignore that too as the designers have said time and time again that you don't have to worry about a +1 LA any more.

I think I probably will worry about it anyways.


FatR wrote:

Grant full racial bonuses and HD with no penalties. First, punishing PCs for their luck is bad. Second, bugbear's racial bonuses aren't even that significant by level 7. Melee beatstick clerics aren't strong enough without DMM Persistent Spell, to break the game by getting extra +4 to attack, +2 to damage, +3 to AC, +1 HP per level and some extra HP from racial HDs (and with DMM Persistent Spell you rule the game anyway and such numbers are barely noticeable). And bugbear's bonuses aren't useful for much besides melee.

If you still think that above-mentioned bonuses are way overpowered, grant racial ability adjustments and other bonuses, but no HD.

I agree that 'punishing' a player for bad luck is poor GMing (though we do it all the time when we rely on dice). On the other hand, having the player deal with the consequences of a IMO poor RPing decision (Suicide/ reincarnate for a crap shoot at a racial upgrade) is perfectly reasonable GMing. This isn't a player who was handed a raw deal, this is someone who made a conscious choice to put his race onto the reincarnation table. He did this with eyes wide open and should have to deal with the full consequences.

If you think +3 NA, +4 STR, +2 CON/ DEX isn't very useful for a cleric then you play with a different group than I do.

As for the person who suggested the party could destroy towns, sure, but when people see them they don't see an 8' tall monster who is an integral part of their childhood horror stories. They don't see a giant creature who is racially adapted to cannibalism. Regardless of reputation the first reaction people are going to have to him is fear. Perhaps he is the 'friendly' monster, but when it comes to monsters people run first and figure out friend from foe later.

I can also see enemies of the group starting rumors about the party. "Sure they helped the mayor drive off those goblins, but he feeds them children to keep their monster complacent"


lastknightleft wrote:

Um hello? is everyone forgetting that time and time again the developers and staff have said that a +1 LA can be played as is without worrying about adjusting for LA because of the boost to the base races.

Don't apply racial HD, just apply the racial modifiers and since the LA was +1 ignore that too as the designers have said time and time again that you don't have to worry about a +1 LA any more.

Except the Bugbear's LA is combined with Racial Levels and designed as a package. Those bonuses are not your typical +1 LA creature. Even for a I kind of like someone's suggestion that the character be given enough exp to put him at 10th level+1 exp and given the racial HD. The rest of the party will eventually catch up to him.


Dennis da Ogre wrote:

I agree that 'punishing' a player for bad luck is poor GMing (though we do it all the time when we rely on dice). On the other hand, having the player deal with the consequences of a IMO poor RPing decision (Suicide/ reincarnate for a crap shoot at a racial upgrade) is perfectly reasonable GMing. This isn't a player who was handed a raw deal, this is someone who made a conscious choice to put his race onto the reincarnation table. He did this with eyes wide open and should have to deal with the full consequences.

I agree that is a poor RPing decision. I don't see lines of Buddhists or followers Hinduism getting themselves killed because next time around they might be better off.

So now he is a bugbear with all the baggage that comes with it. Rangers with FE, Paladins wanting to rid evil and first level parties looking for their first kill would all be interested. A quick trip into town with the rest of the party would be out unless magical disguise is used.
So the bugbear gets diseased or gains negative levels or ability drain or even dies, what good cleric would cast that curing spell on a monster?
There is more disadvantage than advantage and it should be played out so.

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

Dennis da Ogre wrote:
I can also see enemies of the group starting rumors about the party. "Sure they helped the mayor drive off those goblins, but he feeds them children to keep their monster complacent"

That is full of win.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Wow, I didn't expect 27 posts in just a few hours! Thank you everyone for your input!

Dennis da Ogre wrote:
Except the Bugbear's LA is combined with Racial Levels and designed as a package. Those bonuses are not your typical +1 LA creature. Even for a I kind of like someone's suggestion that the character be given enough exp to put him at 10th level+1 exp and given the racial HD. The rest of the party will eventually catch up to him.

And this is the stickler for me. The bugbear is a nice package, what with natural armor and bonuses to all three of the physical stats!? That strikes me as more than LA +1 to be honest, but I've not had to deal with LA except with starting characters. Bringing an LA creature into the game after 6-7 levels is a new one for me.

In any case, I plan to ignore the racial HD (the spell description says "same hit points" so it wouldn't be fair for the PC to keep the same hit points but be considered as having +2HD).

(Before we go further I should say that I'm not using the PF restoration spell as a "cure all" for negative levels. Instead, death of a PC imposes a negative level that ONLY goes away when the PC earns the next class level via the XP progression. This is essentially Andy Collins' house rule. It's at andycollins.net, IIRC. And yes, this house rule was published before the players built their original 1st level characters so it's well known. This means there is still a little bit of bite to dying, but only for one level's worth of time. My house rules document is at http://www.eeconsulting.net/cotct/ for those that might be interested.)

My plan for the XP progression is to treat him as an 8th level PC with 28,805 XP. So when he reaches 34k (fast progression) he'll lose the negative level (as desxcribed above) but other gain no class features or advancement. When he reaches 50k he will advance one level and can choose to continue as a cleric or choose a different class.

I'm still interested in the opinions of others, but the player rolled his bugbear creature last night and tonight we play a game, so once we get started tonight, anything major will probably not be changed. Since they're 5k away from leveling up anyway, I expect I'll have another week or two to finish working out any kinks in the plan.

Oh, btw. His deity was Pharasma! He didn't like the fact that she was upset when he created undead (using the Death domain ability) so his dying and coming back was to give him a "fresh start". I also am allowing him to change his deity to a philosophy and pick new domains (Strength and Healing) but he's staying a cleric. I haven't decided how Pharasma will respond to such insolence, but I'm sure it will be spectacular. ;)


Dennis da Ogre wrote:


I agree that 'punishing' a player for bad luck is poor GMing (though we do it all the time when we rely on dice). On the other hand, having the player deal with the consequences of a IMO poor RPing decision (Suicide/ reincarnate for a crap shoot at a racial upgrade) is perfectly reasonable GMing. This isn't a player who was handed a raw deal, this is someone who made a conscious choice to put his race onto the reincarnation table. He did this with eyes wide open and should have to deal with the full consequences.

If you think +3 NA, +4 STR, +2 CON/ DEX isn't very useful for a cleric then you play with a different group than I do.

It is quite useful of course. But not "OMG, broken". I, personally, wouldn't have allowed Reincarnation without level loss in the first place, but what's done is done. It's better to give other players some loot that's custom-built for them, or them compensate in some other way. Such powerups aren't going to push the party more than one point up on CR scale.

Dennis da Ogre wrote:

As for the person who suggested the party could destroy towns, sure, but when people see them they don't see an 8' tall monster who is an integral part of their childhood horror stories. They don't see a giant creature who is racially adapted to cannibalism. Regardless of reputation the first reaction people are going to have to him is fear. Perhaps he is the 'friendly' monster, but when it comes to monsters people run first and figure out friend from foe later.

I can also see enemies of the group starting rumors about the party. "Sure they helped the mayor drive off those goblins, but he feeds them children to keep their monster complacent"

I must clarify, that I'm not against roleplaying consequences, such as slander campaigns and attempts to sic Lawful Stupid adventurers on the party. It is just that by level 7+ society, as a rule, is much more dependent on PCs than vice versa. I mean, look at Paizo APs: by the time you get to the third installment, and sometimes even earlier, places where adventures happen are very likely to be totally screwed without PCs intervention. It would be nice if more adventures and DMs acknowledged that PCs above level 6 are major badasses and made the world react accordingly (whether this reaction is friendly or hostile). The fact that this is often ignored is somewhat of a sore spot for me.


FatR wrote:
Dennis da Ogre wrote:


I agree that 'punishing' a player for bad luck is poor GMing (though we do it all the time when we rely on dice). On the other hand, having the player deal with the consequences of a IMO poor RPing decision (Suicide/ reincarnate for a crap shoot at a racial upgrade) is perfectly reasonable GMing. This isn't a player who was handed a raw deal, this is someone who made a conscious choice to put his race onto the reincarnation table. He did this with eyes wide open and should have to deal with the full consequences.

If you think +3 NA, +4 STR, +2 CON/ DEX isn't very useful for a cleric then you play with a different group than I do.

It is quite useful of course. But not "OMG, broken". I, personally, wouldn't have allowed Reincarnation without level loss in the first place, but what's done is done. It's better to give other players some loot that's custom-built for them, or them compensate in some other way. Such powerups aren't going to push the party more than one point up on CR scale.

To be honest I kind of think this is the best solution at this point and was just about to suggest something similar. Let the bugbear player ride and quietly pull him aside and say "Hey you got lucky, to balance things out some good things are coming for the rest of the group too, don't get greedy." Then just handwave the +LA issues away.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

My suggestion would be to apply the stat modifiers and all bugbear powers but NOT to grant the racial HD. The stat mods themselves are pretty nice, but if the PC had lower stats to begin with (assuming your party randomly rolled them) that might be fine.

Whatever you choose to do, make DAMN sure to not forget the fact that, as a bugbear, most civilized folks will shoot first and ask questions later. Being a bugbear is a really bad thing in most Golarion campaigns, where you're assumed to be able to interact with society on a non-violent level. :-)


FatR wrote:
I must clarify, that I'm not against roleplaying consequences, such as slander campaigns and attempts to sic Lawful Stupid adventurers on the party. It is just that by level 7+ society, as a rule, is much more dependent on PCs than vice versa. I mean, look at Paizo APs: by the time you get to the third installment, and sometimes even earlier, places where adventures happen are very likely to be totally screwed without PCs intervention. It would be nice if more adventures and DMs acknowledged that PCs above level 6 are major badasses and made the world react accordingly (whether this reaction is friendly or hostile). The fact that this is often ignored is somewhat of a sore spot for me.

In most APs the party does get props when they stay local. In Sandpoint they are sort of town celebrities. In Second Darkness there is quite a bit of discussion about the effect the character successes have and the local crimelords act appropriately. As they get higher level they generally wind up going elsewhere for various reasons and have to prove themselves in new venues. I agree that even as low as 3-4th level the characters should generally by pretty well known and have a reputation.

How this would work with one of the players showing up as an 8' tall baby eating monster is an interesting puzzle. To some extent they will understand but there should definitely be ongoing ramifications and if they leave the local area where their reputation is so strong it would be even worse.


azhrei_fje wrote:

W

And this is the stickler for me. The bugbear is a nice package, what with natural armor and bonuses to all three of the physical stats!? That strikes me as more than LA +1 to be honest, but I've not had to deal with LA except with starting characters.

No. Just no. There are very few things in 3.X that are worth even LA+1 on top of normal character levels. Feral template, half-ogre... cannot think of anything else off the top of my head. LA on top of crappy monster HD? That's just sadism.

To elaborate a bit, any written LA automatically gimps casters for obvious reasons (there are a few things that probably can justify sacrificing a caster level, but racial bonuses of LA +1 races aren't among them). While they can remain effective due to their inherent awesomeness, they will be signficantly behind non-LA races. Therefore LA can only be worth it for physical combatants. This already means that taking a LA race pigeonholes you into a less-powerful niche. And the pile of bonuses it provides must be really massive to offset being set back a level. Not only you are more fragile than usual at lower levels, you also take a level longer to build your feat/class ability combos. This is quite a setback, considering, that past low levels, when having one HD less stops being noticeable, melee characters must struggle to keep up with monsters. You very rarely can see even "LA +1 on top of class levels" races in optimized builds, as a result. LA more than +1 or racial HD (other than dragon HDs)? Always or almost always suboptimal, even if you manage to make such character effective by getting power somewhere else.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
FatR wrote:
This already means that taking a LA race pigeonholes you into a less-powerful niche.

And that's the choice that the player made when he decided to kill himself (hari-kari on a dagger, I think) in the presence of a Drd7 who had been prepaid to cast reincarnate.

I'm sorry, but lots of sensitivity and pity for the results of a conscious choice made by a player are just not my ball of wax.

Did the player get unlucky with his roll? Yep. The player has owned up to the result, however, and has decided to try to make it work. It should be an interesting character building exercise (pun intended) to see how he deals with the problems.

The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies

azhrei_fje wrote:
Clr7 is now in the body of a 3HD/+1LA bugbear. What do I do about the level difference?

He is now an ECL 11 in your game.

3 Bugbear HD, 7 Cleric HD, and 1 LA.

At least until there is a line in Reincarnate saying otherwise.

The Exchange

James Risner wrote:
azhrei_fje wrote:
Clr7 is now in the body of a 3HD/+1LA bugbear. What do I do about the level difference?

He is now an ECL 11 in your game.

3 Bugbear HD, 7 Cleric HD, and 1 LA.

At least until there is a line in Reincarnate saying otherwise.

In 3.5 yes, in PRPG no. In PRPG he doesn't gain racial HD and the +1 LA goes away(per the designers stating that LA+1 races can be played on an even basis with standard PRPG races). Per the spell, the cleric loses the racial bonuses and special abilities from halfling and gains the racial bonuses and abilities from bugbear. He is still ECL 7 per PRPG if this is a PRPG game.

Don't forget about the 2 permanent negative levels, and %50 chance of losing each prepped spell or slot.
Question, how do you remove permanent negative levels in PRPG?

The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies

Fake Healer wrote:
In 3.5 yes, in PRPG no. In PRPG he doesn't gain racial HD and the +1 LA goes away

Is this in errata that I missed? Yes I saw JJ above saying the HD don't apply, but the book doesn't discuss them in Reincarnate (just as they were not discussed in 3.5 Reincarnate) therefore they still apply (HD and LA) in PRPG. Again, unless I'm missing an errata my book doesn't have.

Now, in my mind, the fatal flaw WotC made was not making the FAQ "errata." Many of these odd interpretations could be solved in a FAQ when they would require significant text to resolve in the books as rules. If Paizo would publish a FAQ and put at the top of the FAQ a line to the effect of "this is considered official errata to the published books" or something that makes it clear that deviating from the FAQ is a house rule, then most of the problems with interpretations would go away.

Without "errata", these problems will persist.

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

*thud*

I agree with James on all points. This is a sign of the end times.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Fake Healer wrote:


Question, how do you remove permanent negative levels in PRPG?

Have restoration, or it may be greater restoration cast on you. Neg levels go bye bye.

One other detail.... those negative levels stack with any gained from monsters that inflict them. So if you're in combat with such a creature, you're already on a head start to death.


lastknightleft wrote:
Um hello? is everyone forgetting that time and time again the developers and staff have said that a +1 LA can be played as is without worrying about adjusting for LA because of the boost to the base races.

Developers never said that. Lots of *other* people have said that, and they have said that *some* +1 LA races probably don't need to be worried about. They've also removed LA from the Bestiary as a mechanic (but retained it as a suggestion). However they have also put suggestions into the Council of Thieves player's guide for how to *reduce* a tiefling (considered one of the softest +1 LA races) down slightly to match.

Dennis da Ogre wrote:
I kind of like someone's suggestion that the character be given enough exp to put him at 10th level+1 exp and given the racial HD. The rest of the party will eventually catch up to him.

My suggestion would be somewhat the opposite of this: Give him the Racial HD, call him 10th level (or 11th if you include the LA), and don't give him *any* XP (why would he suddenly be more experienced after all?). He'll then need to reach 11th level (or 12th) XP before he levels again, same as the rest of his party.

That or offer him *either* +1 LA (still no xp) or the 3 HD (with +3 ECL).

The Exchange

James Risner wrote:
Fake Healer wrote:
In 3.5 yes, in PRPG no. In PRPG he doesn't gain racial HD and the +1 LA goes away

Is this in errata that I missed? Yes I saw JJ above saying the HD don't apply, but the book doesn't discuss them in Reincarnate (just as they were not discussed in 3.5 Reincarnate) therefore they still apply (HD and LA) in PRPG. Again, unless I'm missing an errata my book doesn't have.

Now, in my mind, the fatal flaw WotC made was not making the FAQ "errata." Many of these odd interpretations could be solved in a FAQ when they would require significant text to resolve in the books as rules. If Paizo would publish a FAQ and put at the top of the FAQ a line to the effect of "this is considered official errata to the published books" or something that makes it clear that deviating from the FAQ is a house rule, then most of the problems with interpretations would go away.

Without "errata", these problems will persist.

From PRG wrote:

A reincarnated creature recalls the majority of its former life and form. It retains any class abilities, feats, or skill ranks it formerly possessed. Its class, base attack bonus, base save bonuses, and hit points are unchanged. Strength, Dexterity, and Constitution scores depend partly on the new body. First eliminate the subject's racial adjustments (since it is no longer necessarily of his previous race) and then apply the adjustments found below to its remaining ability scores. The subject of the spell gains two permanent negative levels when it is reincarnated. If the subject is 1st level, it takes 2 points of Constitution drain instead (if this would reduce its Con to 0 or less, it can't be reincarnated). A character who died with spells prepared has a 50% chance of losing any given spell upon being reincarnated. A spellcasting creature that doesn't prepare spells (such as a sorcerer) has a 50% chance of losing any given unused spell slot as if it had been used to cast a spell.

.....Here is the table of humanoid adjustments that lists the changes to Str, Dex, and Con....

The reincarnated creature gains all abilities associated with its new form, including forms of movement and speeds, natural armor, natural attacks, extraordinary abilities, and the like, but it doesn't automatically speak the language of the new form.

Nowhere in the body of the reincarnate spell does it say to apply racial HD.

Step 1- remove prior racial modifiers.
Step 2- apply adjustments from the chart for STR, DEX, and CON for the new race.
Step 3- subject gains 2 permanent negative levels or -2 to CON if a first level.
Step 4- roll for possible prepped spells lost.
Step 5- add all abilities for the new form, movement forms, speeds, natural armor, natural attacks, Ex abilities, but not language.

It states nowhere that LA, racial HD, XP penalties, or other similar stuff are applied. If it doesn't state it in the spell description then why would one assume you should do that? The only real confusion is why there is any confusion with this spell either from PRPG or 3.5. Perhaps WOTC back then errata-ed something IN about racial HD, LA, or XP penalties and screwed up a fairly clear spell with some add-on confusion but to me it seem pretty simple. The spell clearly doesn't talk about adding racial HD, LA or any other factors into the equation so why toss in errata for a non-existent problem?


I am in agreement with fake healer here. No where does the spell state you gain the HD, there for you do not. The spell is very clear on what you do gain, and HD are not in there

RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32

seekerofshadowlight wrote:
I am in agreement with fake healer here. No where does the spell state you gain the HD, there for you do not. The spell is very clear on what you do gain, and HD are not in there

I concur. You don't lose HD if you are reincarneted into something that has less HD than you did, so you would not gain either.


azhrei_fje wrote:


And that's the choice that the player made when he decided to kill himself (hari-kari on a dagger, I think) in the presence of a Drd7 who had been prepaid to cast reincarnate.

I'm sorry, but lots of sensitivity and pity for the results of a conscious choice made by a player are just not my ball of wax.

Did the player get unlucky with his roll? Yep. The player has owned up to the result, however, and has decided to try to make it work. It should be an interesting character building exercise (pun intended) to see how he deals with the problems.

So, basically, you've allowed the player to take an action while intending to screw him over if he accidentally gets one of the results hope for which probably was the reason for taking the action?

And the fact that offical LAs serve as a tool for unfairly punishing players has nothing to do with my opinion about choices of your PCs, anyway.


Just wanted to re-mention that LA no longer exists. There is no longer a concept of LA+1 or LA+2. There will be no LA listings in the Bestiary, new monster listings will not have LA. Bestiary has not been released yet but you can look at all the stat locks and LA is gone the way of the Tyranasaur. I know I mentioned it above but I was wrong.

If you guys want to slice and dice Pure RAW then the correct answer is that the player becomes a bugbear plain and simple. There is no Exp issues either way according to RAW. Nor is there any mention of gaining racial HD in the reincarnate spell.

That all taken care of the rules are not written to be interpreted blindly. What bugs most of us is that the player pulled a serious meta-gaming move because he didn't like the way his character was built and it bugs a lot of us that he is going to get some fairly solid mechanical bonuses. It's likely to cause some envy amoungst his fellow players also. IMO It's entirely appropriate for the GM to do some thing to bring the party back to equity even though there is nothing in the RAW to support this.

FWIW:
Permanent Negative levels require casting Restoration twice. Material component for restoration is 1000GP in diamond per casting.

Scarab Sages

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber

I don't know if this is cannon, and please excuse me if this has been mentioned or if this is a Society game, but here's what I did recently when the dwarven Rogue rolled "Lizardfolk" (94). I believe this is how it's mentioned in the Savage Species from 3.5, but I may be wrong on that too.

First off, I don't use level loss for reincarnate. So he was fine there. If you do use the rules correctly, he'd lose his 2 levels or 2 CON here.

Second, he lost levels of rogue equal to the HD and the Level Adjustment. These were his most recent levels, including hit dice, feats, skills that he gained for those levels.

Third, he lost all racial abilities he had.

Fourth, he then gained the racial hit dice levels of the class, as well as the level adjustment, as well as the racial abilities of the new race.

While this may not be exactly in the rules, it kept the party at the same level, and stopped him from getting a bonus from dying. If you'd prefer to keep a balanced party and not have two levels or 2 con loss, you could give them those two levels in whatever racial hd or LA they got, and then start taking more levels later.

The rogue is pretty cool now, though he misses his beard and isn't too welcome in normal society these days. That and the fact he was a frat boy dwarf named "Axebeard" confuses those he meets.


I had noticed that everyone was ignoring the 2 negtive levels (as I'm facing a reincarnate m'self) but I normally fear rules battles online

<props to Fake healer>


Amardolem wrote:
I had noticed that everyone was ignoring the 2 negtive levels (as I'm facing a reincarnate m'self) but I normally fear rules battles online

2 negative levels == 2000GP I would assume that was part of the characters planning process.


I'll be honest, I've not read every post in the thread, but I don't understand what all the fuss is about. Yes, he got a big boost on a lucky roll. Would you have given him a bonus had he rolled a kobold? If not, then leave him alone and let him have to mask his form everywhere he goes.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
FatR wrote:
azhrei_fje wrote:
And that's the choice that the player made when he decided to kill himself (hari-kari on a dagger, I think) in the presence of a Drd7 who had been prepaid to cast reincarnate.
So, basically, you've allowed the player to take an action while intending to screw him over if he accidentally gets one of the results hope for which probably was the reason for taking the action?

Huh? You've got quite a chip on your shoulder there if you think you can read my mind when it comes to how I run my game. I'd like an apology for the implied insult, please.

First, I'm not the one who decided to take this route. Perhaps you should go back and reread the introductory portion of the thread; you seemed to have missed it.

Second, I don't allow my players to take actions that are clearly allowed by the rules. My only job is to adjudicate what happens as a result of the actions they take, not allow or disallow them. (If you do that in your game, remind me never to be a player in your campaign.)

Third, my intention is to be fair to the other players when random chance rewarded a character whose player metagamed his way to a solution instead of staying in-character.

Fourth, the player didn't accidentally choose to use the reincarnate spell -- it was a conscious decision on his part.

Fifth, he wanted a lizardfolk and not a bugbear. He said so as much right after rolling.

As I said, the player has sucked it up and is going to play using the bugbear, even with all of the social disadvantages he'll be experiencing. I'm impressed with that, as the downsides will be many among the civilized world.

Quote:
And the fact that offical LAs serve as a tool for unfairly punishing players has nothing to do with my opinion about choices of your PCs, anyway.

Wow, that's a lot of vitriol from someone with no clue about the circumstances of the game or a rundown on our campaign's "house rules" (I'll bet you didn't bother to read the rules document I linked to, right?). So where is the "Ignore" button on these forums...

I appreciate that you don't agree with how I've decided to rule this situation. I've read your previous posts and I understand your point of view (and agree with parts of it, but granting him extra hp for the additional HD is clearly against the rules as the spell specifically overrides it). But your attitude above is entirely uncalled for, and quite frankly, rude.

To everyone else that has provided their opinion on how to handle this situation and has done so courteously, I greatly appreciate the help. The player and I have already come to an agreement and we're moving on. Thanks again!

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