Ignoring Magic Item Prereqs


Rules Questions

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Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Ughbash wrote:

This is why I find people saying "I would allow someoen to take a 10 if they had all the prerequisites to be less then kind" If they had all the prerequisites in the old rules it was AUTOMATIC, they sometimes come across as complaing that something that was automatic on the old rules is too easy now.

The old rules exacted a stiff price that kept most people from going into item crafting in the first place... the cost of experience points for every item made.

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

Matthias_DM wrote:

Druids would know the relative stakes to create items of his level... and therefore should choose to have a decent INT for this reason or to offset it with a single feat. A Level 3 Druid would have this modifier.

+3 Skills
+3 Class Skill
vs a DC of 18.
So... yes... at this point, it's their choice, if they want to craft, to make sure they get a +2 to Intelligence. 15+CL means that a person can make a BAD crafter.

5+CL means that you cannot make a bad crafter. Someone who has 0 Spellcraft Skill, an intelligence of 6 (-2 modifier),can still take 10 to create your Bag of Tricks(Grey).

So yes... if you want to have a crafter "not suck" make sure he is intelligent enough, or make sure you have Magical Aptitude, or skill focus spellcraft.

Yeah, that's my point. With CL + 15, a Druid with above average Intelligence and max ranks in Spellcraft is a 'Bad Crafter'!

With CL + 5, to be a bad crafter you need to neglect Spellcraft. Your Int 6, no Spellcraft chap for example. Yeah, he can make a bag of tricks (gray) when he first starts out (an Int 6, no Spellcraft Druid in 3.5 could do the same), but later on can he make a periapt of health? Not by taking a 10. Can he make a druid's vestement? Barely, he'll need to roll a 17. Can he make an orb of storms? Nope, not even at 20th level. In 3.5, a Druid who could meet the prereqs for those items could craft all of them--Int 6 no Spellcraft--no problem.

As for whether 12 is a reasonable Int for a Druid, consider that an NPC Druid is going to be using the Elite Array (15, 14, 13, 12, 10, 8). To get any higher than a 12 in Int, you're going to be neglecting Wis, Dex, or Con--all important stats for Druids. Melee-wildshape types have it worse off, they need Str in addition to the three other stats I mentioned.

Since a Druid should be able to focus on being a Druid first and worry about and item crafting second, a 12 is a reasonable Int score.


Benchak the Nightstalker wrote:

Yeah, that's my point. With CL + 15, a Druid with above average Intelligence and max ranks in Spellcraft is a 'Bad Crafter'!

With CL + 5, to be a bad crafter you need to neglect Spellcraft. Your Int 6, no Spellcraft chap for example. Yeah, he can make a bag of tricks (gray) when he first starts out (an Int 6, no Spellcraft Druid in 3.5 could do the same), but later on can he make a periapt of health? Not by taking a 10. Can he make a druid's vestement? Barely, he'll need to roll a 17. Can he make an orb of storms? Nope, not even at 20th level. In 3.5, a Druid who could meet the prereqs for those items could craft all of them--Int 6 no Spellcraft--no problem.

As for whether 12 is a reasonable Int for a Druid, consider that an NPC Druid is going to be using the Elite Array (15, 14, 13, 12, 10, 8). To get any higher than a 12 in Int, you're going to be neglecting Wis, Dex, or Con--all important stats for Druids. Melee-wildshape types have it worse off, they need Str in addition to the three other stats I mentioned.

Since a Druid should be able to focus on being a Druid first and worry about and item crafting second, a 12 is a reasonable Int score.

Your 12 Int score druid can still take 10 and craft stuff he meets the CL/prereq for if it's a target number of 10+ICL, though, right?

Since 10+ICL is actually referenced elsewhere in the book, this DC makes more sense to me. It seems closer to the developer's stated intent than 5+ICL, while still letting your dumpstatINT druid make stuff his level provided he's not also dumping spellcraft.


Benchak the Nightstalker wrote:


Yeah, that's my point. With CL + 15, a Druid with above average Intelligence and max ranks in Spellcraft is a 'Bad Crafter'!

The above statement is false:

CL + 15 for Bag of Tricks (grey) = DC 18 Check to create.

Druid with above average intelligence (+2 mod)
and max ranks:
+3 Ranks
+3 Class Skill
+2 Intelligence
= +8 = 18 when taking 10.

This druid can create anything at his level fail free as long as he meets the prerequisites. So NO, he is not a BAD crafter. He is a balanced and normal crafter.

Quote:

Since a Druid should be able to focus on being a Druid first and worry about and item crafting second, a 12 is a reasonable Int score.

10-12 is a low Int score in PF unles you are playing cut-throat style. Besides, if you aren't going to concentrate on a "crafting druid" then don't make one!

This complaint sounds like this to me "I really want to craft stuff but I don't want to spend points into intelligence...*stomps up and down* Why can't I have it alllll?"


Sorry, wrong topic.


Look guys, the devs have FAQ'd on crafting. They realize that the 10 5 number discrepency is there, and have said that the real number is 5. If you want to "interpret" 5 or 10 as 15 instead, take it to home brew, because that's what you're doing.


BigNorseWolf wrote:
Look guys, the devs have FAQ'd on crafting. They realize that the 10 5 number discrepency is there, and have said that the real number is 5. If you want to "interpret" 5 or 10 as 15 instead, take it to home brew, because that's what you're doing.

Can you point me to this? The only reference to the 10/5 discrepancy I've seen so far was one which said "Oh, yeah, that's a discrepancy, let me get back with you guys about that."

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

Matthias_DM wrote:


The above statement is false:
CL + 15 for Bag of Tricks (grey) = DC 18 Check to create.

Druid with above average intelligence (+2 mod)
and max ranks:
+3 Ranks
+3 Class Skill
+2 Intelligence
= +8 = 18 when taking 10.

This druid can create anything at his level fail free as long as he meets the prerequisites. So NO, he is not a BAD crafter. He is a balanced and normal crafter.

Quote:

Since a Druid should be able to focus on being a Druid first and worry about and item crafting second, a 12 is a reasonable Int score.

10-12 is a low Int score in PF unles you are playing cut-throat style. Besides, if you aren't going to concentrate on a "crafting druid" then don't make one!

The game assumes that 10 is the average score in any ability. So yes, 12 is above average. 14 is borderline genius-level intelligence.

You're also ignoring my point about NPCs. When you're working with a stat array, putting a 14 or higher in Int means dropping one of your other, more important scores. Should an NPC Druid crafter have to suck at being a Druid just to be barely competent at item crafting?

Matthias_DM wrote:


This complaint sounds like this to me "I really want to craft stuff but I don't want to spend points into intelligence...*stomps up and down* Why can't I have it alllll?"

Look, I respect that you disagree with me, but if you're just going to interpret my arguments as whining and stick childish words into my mouth like this, there's not much point in continuing this discussion. I've felt like we've been civil up until this point, can we please continue to do so?

beej67 wrote:


Can you point me to this? The only reference to the 10/5 discrepancy I've seen so far was one which said "Oh, yeah, that's a discrepancy, let me get back with you guys about that."

Jason Bulmahn's answer was specifically "I believe the Magic Items chapter is correct and the DC should be 5 + caster level, but I am still looking into the issue. Either way, this will be corrected.", so until he comes back and says otherwise, 5 + CL is what we've got. Since you asked though, I don't think 10 + CL is unreasonable.

Regardless, BigNorseWolf is right. 5 or 10 can be argued from RAW. 15 is pure houserule.


Benchak the Nightstalker wrote:

Jason Bulmahn's answer was specifically "I believe the Magic Items chapter is correct and the DC should be 5 + caster level, but I am still looking into the issue. Either way, this will be corrected.", so until he comes back and says otherwise, 5 + CL is what we've got. Since you asked though, I don't think 10 + CL is unreasonable.

Regardless, BigNorseWolf is right. 5 or 10 can be argued from RAW. 15 is pure houserule.

That's how I understood it. Doesn't sound like a ringing endorsement. And yes, 15 would be purely house rule. A "better" house rule would be 10 and make the CL a bypassable prereq, because you still get the "punch" of 15 when you're crafting over your head and still get the "ease" of 10 when you're crafting stuff at your relative level.

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

beej67 wrote:


That's how I understood it. Doesn't sound like a ringing endorsement. And yes, 15 would be purely house rule. A "better" house rule would be 10 and make the CL a bypassable prereq, because you still get the "punch" of 15 when you're crafting over your head and still get the "ease" of 10 when you're crafting stuff at your relative level.

Not a glowing endorsement, no, but an endorsement nonetheless.

I still don't think making CL a prereq is the way to go though. If you really want to keep the punch of 15 + CL around in some way, I gotta go back to my suggestion from before to scale the modifier based on item category.

Minor 5 + CL
Moderate 10 + CL
Major 15 + CL

That way the DC gets bumped based on the items actual power level, as opposed to it's CL (which, like I pointed out before, often doesn't actually represent how good the item is).


Benchak the Nightstalker wrote:
Not a glowing endorsement, no, but an endorsement nonetheless.

I must of course begrudgingly agree. :)

Benchak the Nightstalker wrote:

I still don't think making CL a prereq is the way to go though. If you really want to keep the punch of 15 + CL around in some way, I gotta go back to my suggestion from before to scale the modifier based on item category.

Minor 5 + CL
Moderate 10 + CL
Major 15 + CL

That way the DC gets bumped based on the items actual power level, as opposed to it's CL (which, like I pointed out before, often doesn't actually represent how good the item is).

Have you run the numbers on high level crafters, and whether access to powerful items is stripped from them "taking 10," as many have complained about above with the Bag of Weasels?

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

beej67 wrote:
Have you run the numbers on high level crafters, and whether access to powerful items is stripped from them "taking 10," as many have complained about above with the Bag of Weasels?

I haven't really run the numbers on it, but I think it's safe to assume you'll still need at least a +2 Int mod (or some other way to add 2 to your spellcraft check) and max spellcraft ranks to make major items items at your CL.

It just seems to me that if you're going to boost the DC to craft any items, major items are the ones to do it with.

That way when you hit 11th level, you may not be able to craft the 120,000 gp CL 11 robe of eyes, but you'll probably be able to craft one of the 21,000 gp CL 11 ivory goat figurines of wondrous power. Meanwhile, you'll have been able to craft the 3,000 gp CL 11 chime of opening for quite some time, which makes sense since it's better suited for lower-level play.


beej67 wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Look guys, the devs have FAQ'd on crafting. They realize that the 10 5 number discrepency is there, and have said that the real number is 5. If you want to "interpret" 5 or 10 as 15 instead, take it to home brew, because that's what you're doing.

Can you point me to this? The only reference to the 10/5 discrepancy I've seen so far was one which said "Oh, yeah, that's a discrepancy, let me get back with you guys about that."

Q: In Chapter 4: Feats (pg. 112), the DC to craft a magic item is 10 + the item's caster level. In Chapter 15: Magic Items (pg. 548), the DC is listed as 5 + the item's caster level. Which is correct?

A: (Jason Bulmahn) I believe the Magic Items chapter is correct and the DC should be 5 + caster level, but I am still looking into the issue. Either way, this will be corrected. [Source]

So its 5 until further notice. Casters other than wizards get to make things, and wizards get to make insane stuff.

I get the impression that the designers didn't account for the rather permissive take 10 rules.


It's 5+ normally, then 10+ if a non caster makes it.
It's 5 more if they attempt it without the class.

Contributor

Removed a post. Please keep your responses civil.


A 14 intelligence is easy to accomplish without making a character suck!:
My point stands. The way I am reading your complaint, you are basically saying that it you don't want to increase your intelligence score because there are "more important" stats you could spend it on.

Rolf Balkan
Human Druid
Str 8, Dex 14, Con 12, Int 14, Wis 16, Cha 10

This is a very apt stat block for a crafting Druid, he doesn't suck! He's got crossbow capabilities, spell capabilities (especially if he spends his stat increases into Wis), and crafting ability.

If you'd prefer a straight up caster druid...
Str 8, Dex 10, Con 12, Int 14, Wis 18, Cha 10

So, the main point to take away here is : It's not that hard to stretch a 14!!! The above was created with the Standard Fantasy 15 Point buy!

A DC 15 + CL balances everything while still leaving room for expert crafters to bend the rules through feats:
15 + CL for the DC of crafting skills seems very, very appropriate, pretty much right on the money where it comes to crafting... and as we've shown above, a 14 is NOT that hard to stretch into the equation especially for someone who wants to be a crafter.

Furthermore, it's not even necessary to do stat out a 14 intelligence. Simply spend a Skill Focus Feat! This may be an even better option, as you will get a +6 to Spellcraft at 10th level (when you put 10 ranks in). Take into account Magical aptitude and the possibility of Int Bonuses and you've created an awesome crafter that can stretch and bend the rules... and he deserves it.


Why a DC 10 + CL of item doesn't work?:

How AWESOME is the game balance of 15 + CL to the DC of crafting?
It solves these problems:
- Being able to ignore prerequisites for wondrous items without consequences.
- Being able to create items waaaay above your level without consequences.

10 + CL only accomplishes the second of these. Otherwise, it's pretty decent. However, I don't think it was intended that item prerequisites be ignored AND the roll still be an auto success.

"That is intentional--as long as they're picking items for which they meet all the prereqs, they should have no chance of failure. "- SKR

In other words, 10 + CL doesn't fullfill these intentions by the developers.


I sorry if I upset anyone.
10+ for non casters, or +15 for everyone without additional conditional modifiers, are all workable ways to run the game.

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

Matthias_DM wrote:
** spoiler omitted **

I'll admit, using the word 'suck' was probably hyperbole, but I stand by my argument, which is that requiring a high Int to craft puts a strain on building NPCs. NPCs (generally) don't use point buy. They use an array of pregenerated stats (15, 14, 13, 12, 10, 8), and if you need to put your 14 or 15 (or your racial bonus, if you're human) into Intelligence, that's going to necessitate skimping on Wisdom or Dex.

I don't think you should need to do that to craft (and it's not about me wanting an ubercharacter, remember, we're still talking about NPCs here). I think an Int of 12 is pretty high for an NPC, at least a non-Int-based caster anyway. That's why I think 15 + CL is too difficult a check. It gets even worse for Adepts, who use the crappier NPC array (13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8) and will probably want to put their 13 and/or racial bonus towards their casting stat, Wisdom.

Honestly though, my primary issue was with the couple times you said up thread that you thought 5 + CL may have been a typo. You seemed to be suggesting that you thought they just accidentally dropped the 1 and really meant for the rule to be 15. Not only have they explicitly said otherwise, but I just don't see how that meshes with the line from Sean you often quote, "That is intentional--as long as they're picking items for which they meet all the prereqs, they should have no chance of failure." Whether or not you agree that 12 is a reasonable Int score for a Druid, you cannot deny that my example Druid "met all the prerequisites" for the item he was crafting, and yet still had a chance to fail. (As an aside, that quote from Sean was a response to someone pointing out that item crafting is ridiculously easy in PF. Using it to support your idea that item crafting should be harder or was meant to be harder doesn't really make sense, contextually. He says it right there, its easy, and "This is intentional").

As for the problems 15 + CL solves

Spoiler:

It seems like part of the disconnect between us is coming from the fact that I don't think characters making items "way above their level" is an issue.

Item CL is really not a reliable indicator of an item's 'power level'. If you want proof of that, just take a look at feather tokens. The anchor one especially. It's hardly a game breaking item. All it does is keep your boat still for a day. It only costs 50 gp, most characters can afford that with their starting gold at 1st level.

Yet feather tokens are CL 12 items. That's a DC 27 check to craft one with your method, 32 if you don't meet the prerequisite (and you won't, unless you're a 9th level+ wizard). Practically no 3rd level character is going to be able to make that craft DC, but you cannot tell me the lowly anchor feather token is overpowered for 3rd level.

Now, you might say that that's just one case, one item with a poorly chosen CL and/or prereq, and that really each feather should have its own CL and craft requirements. Maybe that's the case, but the feather token isn't alone. The core rules are littered with cheap, modestly powered high CL items and expensive, powerful, low CL items. Look at that robe of eyes I mentioned earlier. Even under your system an 11th level wizard would be able to craft one, despite it being worth 1.5 times his suggested wealth by level. Or sovereign glue! There are only 3 CL 20 wondrous items in the game, iron flask (170,000 gp), mantle of faith (76,000 gp), and yep, you guessed it, sovereign glue (2,400 gp).

Now of some these items have low level spells as prereqs, so you can craft them at lower CLs than their default, but consider for a moment what it means to have the default CL for sovereign glue be so high. Any time you buy or find a bottle of the stuff, some 20th level guy must have made it. Who exactly is making all that glue in Golarion (or whatever campaign world you play in)? Did Tar-Baphon, the Whispering Tyrant, fund his campaign of terror by selling adhesives? Did the Knights of Ozem crusade against him because he was cutting into 3M's profits? Doesn't it make so much more sense for a 6th or 7th level wizard to have made it?

TL;DR - CL just doesn't do a good job of limiting PCs to level appropriate items.


Benchack Quote:
Honestly though, my primary issue was with the couple times you said up thread that you thought 5 + CL may have been a typo. You seemed to be suggesting that you thought they just accidentally dropped the 1 and really meant for the rule to be 15. Not only have they explicitly said otherwise, but I just don't see how that meshes with the line from Sean you often quote, "That is intentional--as long as they're picking items for which they meet all the prereqs, they should have no chance of failure." Whether or not you agree that 12 is a reasonable Int score for a Druid, you cannot deny that my example Druid "met all the prerequisites" for the item he was crafting, and yet still had a chance to fail. (As an aside, that quote from Sean was a response to someone pointing out that item crafting is ridiculously easy in PF. Using it to support your idea that item crafting should be harder or was meant to be harder doesn't really make sense, contextually. He says it right there, its easy, and "This is intentional").

He then goes on to add, it's intentional... creating Items should be automatic as long as you meet all prerequisites. (paraphrased)

This implies that items shouldn't be automatic if you have none of the prerequisites.

For instance, take baking: You should automatically succeed at baking as long as you follow a recipe. In other words, not following the recipe gives you a chance at failure.

At 5 + CL, you have ZERO chance at failure, even if you don't follow the recipe (prerequisites).

5 Base + 10 (Skipping 2 prerequisites) + CL Level = 15 + CL

10 (Taking 10 on Craft Roll) + Level (In other words your ranks) + 3 (Class Skill) + 2 (A LOW PC Intelligence modifier) = 15 + Level

The above means that you can create any Item at your CL having missed 2 of it's prerequisites, Automatically. No chance of failure. Futhermore, as most items have only 1 prerequisite, A character can create something 5 levels above himself while skipping that prereq and still auto succeed.

10 + CL aint that bad, but it still allows you to skip item prereqs at your level, which seems to go against the above statement still. (doubly so for those that believe CL is an implied requirement, where as it once was a RAW requirement.)

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