I may have lost the game


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Kaisoku wrote:

Something I'm seeing a lot of in this thread is the mixing of the terms "D&D" and "d20" (or, at least that's what I suspect).

I'm not sure if I'd ever go out of my way to play a system other than d20, because:

1. I'm familiar with it. There's something to be said about playing a different base system.. it's like using centimeters instead of feet/inches for my height. Feels awkward.

2. d20 is versatile enough to do anything I want. So I don't feel the need to go out of my way to play a different system.

D20 can do almost "anything" but not everything equally well. D20 is an evolution of minatures wargaming. It's philosophy is derived from figures and hexmaps and that's something that's not left behind in any of its incarnations. You can make omelets with a hammer if you work hard enough, but that does not mean the hammer is a good tool for the job.

Playing a cinematic system like Storyteller or a systemless game like Amber isn't just about using different dice or different measures. The modality of a system imposes a certain mindset on it's players.

Until you've spent a significant time AWAY from d20 like I did, you simply can't appreciate what it's like playing a different type of gaming system which isn't as hooked up on number crunching.


Optimization vs. Roleplaying:
1) One may appear inversely related to the other, but that may be due to a correlation relationship instead of a causation relationship. What I mean is that focusing on roleplaying instead of optimization may have more to do with the individual person's natural abilities and personal interest than the actual time spend on developing the roleplaying of the character. It is not that roleplaying focus causes you to be poor at optimizing, it may instead be that if you more interested in roleplaying you may also be less interested in optimizing.

2)Why are people more comfortable admitting to be poor optimizers than being poor roleplayers? I'll respond with a question, why are people more comfortable saying they can't do math than saying they are functionally illiterate?

Liberty's Edge

The problem with optimization isn't what it does to the character.

It's what optimization does to the player. Specifically, it sucks up a lot of time, generates a lot of anxiety, and forces the players to become experts in a game.


pres man wrote:

Thank you.

Though, I do find your memory of the description interesting. About the arrow we have:
[quote=]..., till all his arrows but one were spent. ...
"Arrow!" said the bowman. "Black arrow! I have saved you to the last. You have never failed me and always I have recovered you. I had you from my father and he from of old. If ever you came from the forges of the true king under the Mountain, go now and speed well!"
... The black arrow sped straight from the string, straight for the hollow by the left breast where the foreleg was flung wide. In it smote and vanished, barb, shaft and feather, so fierce was its flight.

That is the totality of the description given about the black arrow.

What about Bard? Here is a part, probably the most important in the book, though there is more later when dealing with town's survivors and Thorin, Bilbo, and such before, during, and after the War of Five Armies.
[quote=]..."Which King?" said another with a grim voice. "As like as not it is the marauding fire of the Dragon, the only king under the Mountain we have ever known."
...But the grim-voiced fellow ran hotfoot to the Master, "The dragon is coming or I am a fool!" he cried. "Cut the bridges! To arms! to arms!"
... A hail of dark arrows leaped up and snapped and rattled on his scales and jewels, and their shafts fell back kindled by his breath burning and hissing into the lake. ... No one had dared to give battle to him for many an age nor would they have dared now, if it had not been the grim-voiced man (Bard was his name), who ran to and fro cheering on the archers and urging the Master to order them to fight to the last arrow.
...
But there was still a company of archers that held their ground among the burning houses. Their captain was Bard, grim-voiced and grim-faced, whose friends had accused him of prophesying floods and poisoned fish, though they knew his worth and courage. He was a descendant in long line of Girion, Lord of Dale, whose wife and child had escaped down the Running River from...

LOL, My "interesting" memory as you put it seems to me to have been dead on. How many arrows are given a paragraph of description in LOTR? How many characters are given a paragraph of description? And what qualities of Bard are described? His bravery under fire. Pretty much exactly what I said.

How you get "special ops" out of that is a mystery to me.

He was a soldier. He was from a royal line, and yes that was important to Tolkien, but that doesn't make you a "special ops" guy.

I suspect you can search through all of "The Hobbit" and "LOTR" and not find another comparable description of any other arrow. But ex Lords and royalty are a dime a dozen.


Lyrax wrote:

The problem with optimization isn't what it does to the character.

It's what optimization does to the player. Specifically, it sucks up a lot of time, generates a lot of anxiety, and forces the players to become experts in a game.

I'm a pretty hardcore role player and I have mentioned that I "optimize" my characters for role playing purposes.

But I think this is pretty much the "Stormwind fallacy" in essence right here. Or at least a corollary of the fallacy.

As a GM I devote a lot of time to this game. I spend hours working on my campaign world, making terrain, creating NPCs, building geopolitical interactions, making up monsters... whatever.

But I still have plenty of time to create interesting and unique characters which I have believe are compelling role playing characters.

Of course it helps that I don't watch much TV...

Liberty's Edge

Right. And there's a lot of people who don't want to spend that much time making decisions about feats, hit points, and weapon abilities. Or for whom the process takes longer and is therefore much more frustrating. Or they just hate spending time on the game outside of the game.

For these people, Pathfinder looks like work, not like fun.


Lyrax wrote:

Right. And there's a lot of people who don't want to spend that much time making decisions about feats, hit points, and weapon abilities. Or for whom the process takes longer and is therefore much more frustrating. Or they just hate spending time on the game outside of the game.

For these people, Pathfinder looks like work, not like fun.

Well, I hear you, and I've encountered folks who find the process of creating characters to be a chore. I don't understand that, but I respect it. One of my main group members is that way and for years we've mostly helped him roll up characters and manage most of the number crunching for him. It's all good. And his characters don't end up "gimping" the game even though he doesn't obsess on how to maximize his tactical synergies (like I do, for example). We just play. He currently is playing a rogue. He deals with traps, searches for loot, opens locks, etc. Sure we have to occasionally say "that's a perception check" or something similar and may even have to point to his sheet and say "initiative modifier is right there."

But the game goes on, he contributes and enjoys it and we all seem to have a good time together.

I used to hyper-optimize my characters, but I got tired of that and I finally realized that there are limited numbers of ways to make a character maximize their combat output, but there are nearly infinite ways to make a character interesting to play.

My witch is a drug addict and gambler. He sometimes fails a self-imposed will save while on watch and sneaks his drugs. When he's on drugs he takes penalties to his abilities. This means he sometimes does not perform brilliantly in combat. In fact once it meant that he failed to perform his watch duties.

So far, at least, everyone in the group has expressed great interest and appreciation for his quirks and realistic reactions to his temptations. One of the group said the best moment of our last campaign session was when he realized that I was rolling will saves to see if my character took drugs when he was supposed to be on watch. He thought that was uber awesome. And he's a pretty solid optimizer himself.

I just like the game to be interesting and fun. And as much as I love combat, I have come to enjoy the out of combat part of the game at least as much as the combat.


Lyrax wrote:
For these people, Pathfinder looks like work, not like fun.

Let the people who don't want invest time in a hobby not spend time at the hobby and do something else I'd say. I'm tired of all my hobbies being dumbed down because they 'need a different target audience' according to marketers.

I want my game complex and time-investment heavy, and the guys who don't want that out.


PF works just fine as long as the GM and Players are on the same page.

Setting up clear expectations about what the campaign is going to be about lets the players position themselves to build accordingly.

We don't have the dumpstatting badwrongfun stuff from the OP's post at our table, so can't say I agree with them.

For the record I have played a lot of freeform/LARP/rules limited systems so am not just coming from a D20 perspective.

The GM sets the tone; the fish rots from the head down.


JrK wrote:
Lyrax wrote:
For these people, Pathfinder looks like work, not like fun.

Let the people who don't want invest time in a hobby not spend time at the hobby and do something else I'd say. I'm tired of all my hobbies being dumbed down because they 'need a different target audience' according to marketers.

I want my game complex and time-investment heavy, and the guys who don't want that out.

I really don't see this as a mutually exclusive set of options. As I said above, in our group, our optimizers and our casual players seem to get along just fine. How is the game "dumbed down" if someone is not fully optimized? Are you saying that if the GM tailors an encounter to be appropriate for your group, that you feel cheated if that means an encounter of CR +2 instead of CR +3?

If the encounter is appropriate for your group, your optimized character still has the same challenge. Sure he/she may be providing more than "their share" of the combat, but isn't that just an opportunity for you to shine?

I'm truly perplexed by this sort of comment. No matter who you play with, someone's going to be the "weak link", and that means the encounter is going to be "dumbed down" at some level no matter what.

BTW, if you are in a group and look around and don't see a "weak link" I might have some unpleasant news for you.... :)


brassbaboon wrote:
How is the game "dumbed down" if someone is not fully optimized?

Didn't say that. I'm however not going to pander my GM time to people who refuse to learn the game. That doesn't mean they need optimized characters (I'm more leaning against optimization in this debate anyway), but I'm not going to spend time on people who after the 5th session still don't know hot to roll a critical hit.

Besides, you need to spend time on feats, skills and everything to avoid being a BAD character and to learn how they work. If players can't even afford to do that then they are out.

Quote:

I'm truly perplexed by this sort of comment. No matter who you play with, someone's going to be the "weak link", and that means the encounter is going to be "dumbed down" at some level no matter what.

BTW, if you are in a group and look around and don't see a "weak link" I might have some unpleasant news for you.... :)

You misunderstood my comment. "dumbed down" =! non-optimized. I'm not talking about optimization but about time spent with the game. If a player can't even be bothered to think about what feats, skills etc. fit his character, which I read as "game is too complex!", then they can get out of my hobby and do something else. In that way I agree with you more than the person I quoted, because optimization really doesn't take any more time than people building characters that aren't familiar enough with the system to optimize anyway.

It's already happened to me in pc gaming. I'm a bitter person. :P


JrK wrote:
Lyrax wrote:
For these people, Pathfinder looks like work, not like fun.

Let the people who don't want invest time in a hobby not spend time at the hobby and do something else I'd say. I'm tired of all my hobbies being dumbed down because they 'need a different target audience' according to marketers.

I want my game complex and time-investment heavy, and the guys who don't want that out.

I suppose one solution to unemployment is to make your games your new "job."


ProfessorCirno wrote:
I suppose one solution to unemployment is to make your games your new "job."

Already on it! :brofist:


JrK wrote:
ProfessorCirno wrote:
I suppose one solution to unemployment is to make your games your new "job."
Already on it! :brofist:

Yeah, don't brofist me. I have a social life and a career. Games are games. Not a job.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
ProfessorCirno wrote:
JrK wrote:
ProfessorCirno wrote:
I suppose one solution to unemployment is to make your games your new "job."
Already on it! :brofist:
Yeah, don't brofist me. I have a social life and a career. Games are games. Not a job.

I'm calling BS on the social life part ;-)


ProfessorCirno wrote:

That's not what I meant.

An optimized sorcerer doesn't specialize in one thing. They don't get four different types of fireball, and likely doesn't take fireball at all. What an optimized sorcerer does is get transformation or summoning spells - spells with a lot of built in utility that can handle multiple situations.

Sorcerers take spells with high versatility, rather then very limited, niche, or specialized spells.

How is something optimized to not be optimized? When optimizing hinders your potential. For instance, a bard is a good example of a class that can do a little of everything. Forcing a bard to do something specific is possible, but you neglect a vast amount of class functionality. A bard is optimized by maximizing what it is good at -- that means, maximize a little of everything.

A core sorcerer gets one bloodline. That bloodline typically affects the sorcerer's spells in a dramatic way. Those spells are now more optimized. Those spells tend to be grouped into a concept (blasting, summoning, etc) or some idea (spells that are enhanced by metamagic for arcane). While increasing versatility is always a good thing, the class is optimized by focusing on the spells enhanced by the bloodline. Focusing on being as versatile as possible is a job for the bard or perhaps the wizard.

In 3.X, a sorcerer was a lot harder to optimize because you had to "create" the path of spell/feat selection that fit a specific idea. If you didn't really think it out, the class was pretty difficult to optimize. PF made it a lot easier.

Quote:

Not everyone has infinite time.

I'm about to start teaching. That's going to take up a lot of time! That means I can't wake up at 5am and do hours of work on a game. And for that matter, even if I still lived at home and was unemployed, I wouldn't want to.

I don't see why this is bizarre of controversial. This game is not my life. It is a game. I have neither the desire nor ability to spend hours and hours and hours on it. It's not laziness, it's simply priorities.

That's fine -- as long as you don't complain that the game doesn't do what you want it to do. If it does what you want, fine. If it doesn't do what you want it to do, you need to spend more time on it.


ProfessorCirno wrote:
JrK wrote:
ProfessorCirno wrote:
I suppose one solution to unemployment is to make your games your new "job."
Already on it! :brofist:
Yeah, don't brofist me. I have a social life and a career. Games are games. Not a job.

Don't fist me bro!


ProfessorCirno wrote:
Lots of interesting stuff, some of which I even agree with.

You have some good points, but you still come down to making an argument that the developers have specifically rejected time and time again, that the game was designed to be played in one way and one way only, followed quickly by the argument that if I don't like all aspects of that I should be playing something else. The game system has certainly evolved over the years, in some good ways, and some not-so-good ways, in my opinion. Certainly, it has become more codified and GM discretion to create a significantly different game experience has been chipped away at, no doubt. That GM discretion is still, though weakened, one of the cornerstones of the whole system. If and when they do decide to chop that and make it so that there is only one way to play the game, that will be the day I do indeed walk away and play something else (not that I haven't played a lot of other systems, but D&D/PF is "home" and has been for 33 years.)


pres man wrote:

Optimization vs. Roleplaying:

2)Why are people more comfortable admitting to be poor optimizers than being poor roleplayers? I'll respond with a question, why are people more comfortable saying they can't do math than saying they are functionally illiterate?

Good analogy. The answer is that it is socially acceptable, in our society. to be poor at math, but not to be illiterate. If your analogy holds, and I think it does, then the follow-on question is: Why is it considered more socially acceptable in the gaming community to be poor at optimizing than to be poor at roleplaying? Just theorizing, but perhaps it is because roleplaying is viewed as an integral part of the experience (thus the name Pathfinder Roleplaying Game) whereas optimization is optional (I know some people would argue that, and I'll concede that it probably isn't really optional at some tables)?


Brian Bachman wrote:
pres man wrote:

Optimization vs. Roleplaying:

2)Why are people more comfortable admitting to be poor optimizers than being poor roleplayers? I'll respond with a question, why are people more comfortable saying they can't do math than saying they are functionally illiterate?

Good analogy. The answer is that it is socially acceptable, in our society. to be poor at math, but not to be illiterate. If your analogy holds, and I think it does, then the follow-on question is: Why is it considered more socially acceptable in the gaming community to be poor at optimizing than to be poor at roleplaying? Just theorizing, but perhaps it is because roleplaying is viewed as an integral part of the experience (thus the name Pathfinder Roleplaying Game) whereas optimization is optional (I know some people would argue that, and I'll concede that it probably isn't really optional at some tables)?

It's more likely that gaming is a very social thing and serious role-players, as evidenced EVERYWHERE just on these forums, are more likely to look down upon and exclude you for being a poor role-player.


JrK wrote:
brassbaboon wrote:
How is the game "dumbed down" if someone is not fully optimized?

Didn't say that. I'm however not going to pander my GM time to people who refuse to learn the game. That doesn't mean they need optimized characters (I'm more leaning against optimization in this debate anyway), but I'm not going to spend time on people who after the 5th session still don't know hot to roll a critical hit.

Besides, you need to spend time on feats, skills and everything to avoid being a BAD character and to learn how they work. If players can't even afford to do that then they are out.

Quote:

I'm truly perplexed by this sort of comment. No matter who you play with, someone's going to be the "weak link", and that means the encounter is going to be "dumbed down" at some level no matter what.

BTW, if you are in a group and look around and don't see a "weak link" I might have some unpleasant news for you.... :)

You misunderstood my comment. "dumbed down" =! non-optimized. I'm not talking about optimization but about time spent with the game. If a player can't even be bothered to think about what feats, skills etc. fit his character, which I read as "game is too complex!", then they can get out of my hobby and do something else. In that way I agree with you more than the person I quoted, because optimization really doesn't take any more time than people building characters that aren't familiar enough with the system to optimize anyway.

It's already happened to me in pc gaming. I'm a bitter person. :P

You do realize that the logical extension of your argument will have the hobby shrinking eternally until it played by just a few diehards? Rather than booting all these people out of "your" hobby, perhaps you can just let them play the way they want and you play the way you want? The system gives you the flexibility to do that. Does every player fit at every table? Of course not. Finding a good fit is important. But wanting to kick everybody out of the entire hobby because they play differently than you do is kind of harsh, dude.


Cartigan wrote:
Brian Bachman wrote:
pres man wrote:

Optimization vs. Roleplaying:

2)Why are people more comfortable admitting to be poor optimizers than being poor roleplayers? I'll respond with a question, why are people more comfortable saying they can't do math than saying they are functionally illiterate?

Good analogy. The answer is that it is socially acceptable, in our society. to be poor at math, but not to be illiterate. If your analogy holds, and I think it does, then the follow-on question is: Why is it considered more socially acceptable in the gaming community to be poor at optimizing than to be poor at roleplaying? Just theorizing, but perhaps it is because roleplaying is viewed as an integral part of the experience (thus the name Pathfinder Roleplaying Game) whereas optimization is optional (I know some people would argue that, and I'll concede that it probably isn't really optional at some tables)?

It's more likely that gaming is a very social thing and serious role-players, as evidenced EVERYWHERE just on these forums, are more likely to look down upon and exclude you for being a poor role-player.

I won't grant you "EVERYWHERE on these forums" but I will concede that some of the champions of roleplaying have indeed maxed out their skill ranks in Condescension.

To be fair, however, there is a fair amount of heat coming in the other direction to. See frequent references to "storytime", "Mother May I", "gimped" or "deadweight" characters, etc. Not to mention the neverending mantra that if you aren't optimizing you're doing it wrong.


Regardless of how well role-played, characters that can't hold their own in the game through no fault of poor game design are the latter three.

Shadow Lodge

Cartigan wrote:
Regardless of how well role-played, characters that can't hold their own in the game through no fault of poor game design are the latter three.

Thanks for illustrating Brian's point so amazingly well.


Kthulhu wrote:
Cartigan wrote:
Regardless of how well role-played, characters that can't hold their own in the game through no fault of poor game design are the latter three.
Thanks for illustrating Brian's point so amazingly well.

I appreciate your ignoring mine.

Should I also go into how playing a one-legged, drunken, obese pig farmer in group of people who go out fighting dragons and dungeon delving is BAD role-playing? Or how you aren't unique or a good role-palyer because you play a [stereotypical evil race] as a good character due to [being raised by humans, elves, wolves, owlbears]/[suddenly having a change of heart]?

Shadow Lodge

You seem to have an inability to concieve of a character that falls into a happy medium between completely optimized twinked-out munchkin and a self-hamstrung paraplegic retard.


Cartigan wrote:
It's more likely that gaming is a very social thing and serious role-players, as evidenced EVERYWHERE just on these forums, are more likely to look down upon and exclude you for being a poor role-player.

I"m beginning to believe the evidence you are pointing at is in major part made of your own posts telling us there is evidence out there... :-P


Kthulhu wrote:
You seem to have an inability to concieve of a character that falls into a happy medium between completely optimized twinked-out munchkin and a self-hamstrung paraplegic retard.

You seem to have an inability to conceive a difference between a simply capable party member and a "completely optimized twinked-out munchkin."


Cartigan wrote:
Kthulhu wrote:
You seem to have an inability to concieve of a character that falls into a happy medium between completely optimized twinked-out munchkin and a self-hamstrung paraplegic retard.
You seem to have an inability to conceive a difference between a simply capable party member and a "completely optimized twinked-out munchkin."

I believe on the internet they call this agreement.


meabolex wrote:


How is something optimized to not be optimized? When optimizing hinders your potential. For instance, a bard is a good example of a class that can do a little of everything. Forcing a bard to do something specific is possible, but you neglect a vast amount of class functionality. A bard is optimized by maximizing what it is good at -- that means, maximize a little of everything.

A core sorcerer gets one bloodline. That bloodline typically affects the sorcerer's spells in a dramatic way. Those spells are now more optimized. Those spells tend to be grouped into a concept (blasting, summoning, etc) or some idea (spells that are enhanced by metamagic for arcane). While increasing versatility is always a good thing, the class is optimized by focusing on the spells enhanced by the bloodline.

No and no.

First, only the bloodline bonuses tend to be negligible or apply to a very small subset of spells in most cases.

Ok, let's focus on spells enhanced by the bloodline. I'm an Abyssal Sorcerer, that means I want summoning spells! Ok, I memorize the Summon Monster line.

...Now what about my every spell other then the first for each level?

Bad example? Ok, I'm Draconic. I chose Black as my color, so I want acid spells. That's...well, not a whole lot of spells actually!

Hmm. Let's try a third time. Alright, I'm efreeti. I can change damage spells to fire, the most resisted damage type in the game! Wait, what?

Secondly, this is still meaningless. Let go back to the Draconic and let's say I take every acid spell I can. So level 4, that's four different spells that do acid damage. Radical, right? No. I'm a spontaneous caster. I don't have to choose which ones I memorize each morning. I can cast one acid spell as much as I want for those spell slots.

Let's go back to the draconic one and use my example of grabbing four different types of fireball. Why do I need four? I'm spontaneous! I can grab one and use that as much as I want!

Quote:
That's fine -- as long as you don't complain that the game doesn't do what you want it to do. If it does what you want, fine. If it doesn't do what you want it to do, you need to spend more time on it.

Or I find a different game.

Or I appeal to the developers to change their game.

Those both sound like way better options then "Live in mom's basement."

What are you worried about, that filthy FunHavers are going to invade your hobby and, god forbid, enjoy themselves?


Brian Bachman wrote:
You have some good points, but you still come down to making an argument that the developers have specifically rejected time and time again, that the game was designed to be played in one way and one way only, followed quickly by the argument that if I don't like all aspects of that I should be playing something else. The game system has certainly evolved over the years, in some good ways, and some not-so-good ways, in my opinion. Certainly, it has become more codified and GM discretion to create a significantly different game experience has been chipped away at, no doubt. That GM discretion is still, though weakened, one of the cornerstones of the whole system. If and when they do decide to chop that and make it so that there is only one way to play the game, that will be the day I do indeed walk away and play something else (not that I haven't played a lot of other systems, but D&D/PF is "home" and has been for 33 years.)

The developers can claim the game can be played multiple ways as much as they want.

They are incorrect.

I cannot play Shadowrun using Pathfinder. I can't. The amount of houseruling that would require makes it a nonargument. It is not something people can - or would - do.

I cannot play Eclipse Phase using Pathfinder.

I cannot play Changeling: the Lost using Pathfinder.

But even the games I could play on Pathfinder with a lot of house ruling - do I want to? Do I want to play Legend of the Five Rings on Pathfinder? Or do I want to play it on Legend of the Five Rings? Do I want to play REIGN on Pathfinder? Or do I want to play it using REIGN? Do I want to play AFMBE in Pathfinder? Or do I want to play it using AFMBE?

There are two types of systems for tabletop games. There are the modular and/or generic ones. Basic Roleplaying. GURPS. Risus. ORE. These are games specifically designed to be versatile and fit multiple avenues of gameplay.

Then there are specialized games. Shadowrun. Changeling: the Lost. Eclipse Phase. Legend of the Five Rings. Certainly these games can have leeway - you can play a gritty samurai drama with L5R, or you can play a somewhat over the top legendary animu style game with L5R. But the leeway doesn't change the main focus of the game - anime or drama, your L5R game is still going to have samurai and shugenja.

Pathfinder is a specialized game. I cannot - and would not - play a cyberpunk futuristic criminals game using Pathfinder. I cannot, and would not, play a transhumanist horror game using Pathfinder. I cannot, and would not, play a dramatic game about surviving abuse and horrifying, maddening "magic." And I'd be far better off using a different system for gritty samurai drama. And I'd be far better off using a different system for large scale political shenanigans. And I'd be far better off using a different system for low scale zombie horde horror.

Pathfinder is made for heroic fantasy. The more you try to pull it out of that, the more it crumbles in on itself.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

So when I take the Ultimate Combat firearms rules (or any firearms rules made for d20) and run as post-apo low-tech game with Gunslingers, Trapsmith Rangers and Rogues only, am I doing it wrong? There will be medikits that function as Cure Something Potions, no magic on both sides. Ooops that's not heroic fantasy. And ooops, the amount of houseruling is negligible. It's about on the same level as the amount of house rules every one of us is using in his/her homegame.

Or even less, I believe that such game would be closer to the kosher rule set than what TOZ and Kirth are playing.

Cirno, stop telling people what kind of game they should play. You're getting boring. I'm yet to see a post of yours that's not about what other people should and shouldn't do.

You're less productive than Cartigan, and that's quite an achievement.


Gorbacz wrote:
So when I take the Ultimate Combat firearms rules (or any firearms rules made for d20) and run as post-apo low-tech game with Gunslingers, Trapsmith Rangers and Rogues only, am I doing it wrong? There will be medikits that function as Cure Something Potions, no magic on both sides. Ooops that's not heroic fantasy. And ooops, the amount of houseruling is negligible. It's about on the same level as the amount of house rules every one of us is using in his/her homegame.

You really, really, really seem to be misinterpreting what I'm saying.

Yes, certainly, you can play like that. And god bless you, you seem to be enjoying it.

BUT.

Is Pathfinder better at being Deadlands then Deadlands is?

I would say: "No."

Quote:
Cirno, stop telling people what kind of game they should play. You're getting boring. I'm yet to see a post of yours that's not about what other people should and shouldn't do.

I've yet to tell anyone what to play.

You just seem to be upset that I enjoy things that aren't Pathfinder and that I encourage others to enjoy things outside of Pathfinder.

Us filthy FunHavers.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
ProfessorCirno wrote:

And how high level do you go?

Ah, a new goalpost! How predictable.

I guess that mid-levels because the d20 cranks at higher level but ooops, so it does in heroic fantasy so yeah there we go.

Actually, my post-apo game will be less problematic in this regard, because one of the most problematic aspects (spellcasters!) will be out of the window.

ProfessorCirno wrote:

You just seem to be upset that I enjoy things that aren't Pathfinder and that I encourage others to enjoy things outside of Pathfinder.

I'm not upset about that. I'm just slightly disappointed that such an intelligent person can be so awfully counter-productive. Imagine what wonders could you achieve if you actually tried to make something instead of just running around in a pink tutu :)


Gorbacz wrote:

Ah, a new goalpost! How predictable.

I guess that mid-levels because the d20 cranks at higher level but ooops, so it does in heroic fantasy so yeah there we go.

Actually, my post-apo game will be less problematic in this regard, because one of the most problematic aspects (spellcasters!) will be out of the window.

Literally I do not know what you're talking about. You seem to be complaining about invisible goal posts (they are invisible because they do not exist, that is not an argument, you see)

Quote:

I'm not upset about that. I'm just slightly disappointed that such an intelligent person can be so awfully counter-productive. Imagine what wonders could you achieve if you actually tried to make something instead of just running around in a pink tutu :)

Once again, I have no idea what you are saying.

My point, to be as concise as possible, is this: Pathfinder does not, and most likely in my opinion as I feel etc, etc, etc, should not be used to run every type of game.

There is a wide gamut of systems outside of D20 alone, not even going into the wide variety of D20 systems there are that are often radically different, be it Spycraft or Mutants and Masterminds. These games are often built specifically to be good at their style of game. Thus, I recommend them instead of trying to kitbash Pathfinder into it.

Where, exactly, is your beef with this?

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
ProfessorCirno wrote:


Literally I do not know what you're talking about. You seem to be complaining about invisible goal posts (they are invisible because they do not exist, that is not an argument, you see)

Let's pick this one apart, shall we?

You say "PF isn't for every type of game. It's for heroic fantasy. People who want to play something else should change their game."

I say "Hey, I can play magicless postapo guns and grit Mad Max game, which is five miles away from heroic fantasy, just fine, with minimum amount of changes."

You say "Yeah at what levels?"

Was your initial argument about levels at any rate? No. Is it now? Yes. Goalpost ahoy.

ProfessorCirno wrote:


Once again, I have no idea what you are saying.

My point, to be as concise as possible, is this: Pathfinder does not, and most likely in my opinion as I feel etc, etc, etc, should not be used to run every type of game.

There is a wide gamut of systems outside of D20 alone, not even going into the wide variety of D20 systems there are that are often radically different, be it Spycraft or Mutants and Masterminds. These games are often built specifically to be good at their style of game. Thus, I recommend them instead of trying to kitbash Pathfinder into it.

Where, exactly, is your beef with this?

Simple, the d20 ruleset can accommodate for far greater variety of game styles than you think it can. There are hundreds of OGL 3PP supplements out there made to specifically address this and plug them into 3.5, and therefore into PF. Guns, horror, scifi, postapo, magicless, politics, whatever floats your boat.

Sure, there are quite a few genres that the 3.5 ruleset won't be able to handle. Amber springs to mind, or HoL, or Paranoia or bloody Dogs in the Vineyard.


Gorbacz wrote:
You say "Yeah at what levels?"

I did?

Incidentally, it's still a fairly valid question. If you aren't utilizing most of the monsters in Pathfinder or most of the rules in Pathfinder or most of the classes in Pathfinder or most of the levels in Pathfinder, it's as close to be "Pathfinder" as Backgammon is to Chess.

Incidentally, I would not use Backgammon to play Chess.

Quote:
Sure, there are quite a few genres that the 3.5 ruleset won't be able to handle. Amber springs to mind, or HoL, or Paranoia or bloody Dogs in the Vineyard.

Then we agree. The end.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
ProfessorCirno wrote:


I did?

Yes, in your initial reply to my post, now edited. Tsk tsk.

ProfessorCirno wrote:


Incidentally, it's still a fairly valid question. If you aren't utilizing most of the monsters in Pathfinder or most of the rules in Pathfinder or most of the classes in Pathfinder or most of the levels in Pathfinder, it's as close to be "Pathfinder" as Backgammon is to Chess.

Incidentally, I would not use Backgammon to play Chess.

Literally I don't know what are you talking about.

Making Chess into Backgammon is impossible. Making my postapo game is about as easy as making any houesrule set, something that everybody does. Heck, my game would be in some aspects closer to vanilla 3.5/PF than PFS OP ruleset is!

ProfessorCirno wrote:

Then we agree. The end.

Let me move the goalpost for you - we agree that there are some things that 3.5/PF can't handle.

We don't agree on the amount of things it can.


Looks like I opened the box of Pandora...

Yes, of course the D20 system (in almost all of its indisputably various incarnations - and I call it D20 to steer the discussion away from the edition war trap) is VERY versatile.
It can simulate a lot of things, yes, but not everything! And no one says so, at least not to my knowledge. And the things it can simulate vary in degree of perfection.

But, and this has been my impression ever since 3e hit the shelves and I started playing D&D, it is best in simulating tactical combat, it is less well adept at simulating the application of (social) skills.

I cannot even disagree that the system does not reward roleplaying, nor does it penalise it. I do not agree that skills are useless.
I don't say that optimization (as opposed to power-gaming) and role-playing were mutually exclusive, they are not.
But! When you say that a BAB of +10 is better than on of +2, then a skill X at +10 IS better than one at +2. You have a 5% chance to hit/succeed despite your skill - by sheer, blind chance, but in the remaining 95% of cases a difference in BAB/skill/save level is of consequence.
So a character with a high skill in diplomacy is better with words than one with a low score. And a character with a high attribute will have a better chance at succeeding in a task than one with a low attribute - no matter what the attribute is. It is a bonus or malus to any task (skill/attack/etc). And it is my opinion that the relative value of an attribute/skill/save should be reflected in role-playing.
It is up to the player to define by what deficite a low score is reflected in the characters behaviour, bearing or appearance, but reflected it should be or the whole system having any value in anything is void.

Be that as it may, I am not telling anyone how he or she should play, or what to like. I don't say that any style is superior to any other. But I may like a different style than someone else and I am entitled to do so, as is everybody else.

I don't like the way D&D (D20) handles skills. I see how it handles tactical combat situations, it does so in an abstract that does appeal to me in a lesser fashion than do other abstract ways in which other systems handle tactical combat situations. I am not judging except for my own personal taste.

So I will move to a different system for a time, maybe I will return to PF or I may not. No harm done...


Simcha wrote:
So I will move to a different system for a time, maybe I will return to PF or I may not. No harm done...

That's what is important. I hope you find systems that enable you to get at what you want.

If not, make your own!


Gorbacz wrote:


You're less productive than Cartigan, and that's quite an achievement.

I post you are both being equally useless.


ProfessorCirno wrote:
First, only the bloodline bonuses tend to be negligible or apply to a very small subset of spells in most cases.

A +2 bonus on DCs for a large range of spells is negligible? Really? Making summons significantly tougher is negligible? Are we playing the same game at all?

Quote:
Ok, let's focus on spells enhanced by the bloodline. I'm an Abyssal Sorcerer, that means I want summoning spells! Ok, I memorize the Summon Monster line.

No, that's completely suboptimal and totally evasive of the point. You don't have all the summons spells known. You have usually 1 spell at highest level and 1 spell at the second highest level. You have possibly zero spells (traded out) at earlier levels. You're still focusing on the concept by making those few spells optimized.

Quote:
Bad example? Ok, I'm Draconic. I chose Black as my color, so I want acid spells. That's...well, not a whole lot of spells actually!

If we're speaking about a purely core argument, yes there are less spells available with the acid descriptor. But even in the narrow core-only case, metamagic can provide a sufficient answer to the problem. Including non-core material (spells outside the PF core rulebook) completely solves this problem.

Quote:
Hmm. Let's try a third time. Alright, I'm efreeti. I can change damage spells to fire, the most resisted damage type in the game! Wait, what?

Not every bloodline (or variation of a bloodline) is a winner from an optimization standpoint. I think this is primarily a case where a bloodline's flavor overrides the optimizing potential. Some bloodlines (like the draconic you mentioned) are better at optimization than others.


ProfessorCirno wrote:


I do not recommend GURPS. If 3e can be MATH OVERLOAD, GURPS is MATH HEAT DEATH. Also I just sorta personally dislike GURPS which colors my opinion, admittingly.

I would disagree with this statement. I love Pathfinder and Gurps, but Pathfinder is much more numbers heavy from my experience....thus far.


ShinHakkaider wrote:
ProfessorCirno wrote:
Umbral Reaver wrote:
ProfessorCirno wrote:
I do not recommend GURPS. If 3e can be MATH OVERLOAD, GURPS is MATH HEAT DEATH. Also I just sorta personally dislike GURPS which colors my opinion, admittingly.
There's that epiphanic moment when you're playing GURPS and just realised that you asked the group if someone has a graphing calculator with them.
GURPS: Vehicles more like GURPS: Porn For Engineers boosh
Holy Crap you beat me to my comment about GURPS Vehicles. I made an attempt to try and build a modified lightly armored tank many, many years ago. I still dont think that I've recovered the sanity that I lost in that attempt.

You guys define the whole Gurps experience by one sourcebook (out of hundreds)? Crazy.


What a system can do and what a system is ideally suited to do are not quite the same, and I think that's the source of disagreement.

For instance, Hit Points really kind of suck for fire-arms heavy games. It's not that you can't do it, it is that I really feel that other systems do it better.

Now, I play Pathfinder more than anything, because it is very well-suited to the types of game I'm playing: adventure paths, mostly, and modules. In MapTool, so it is a very map-based game-play style. When I deviate from that format, I always consider whether another game engine might be better suited to the game. Always. It's nothing against Pathfinder, it's about the right tool for the right job.


meabolex wrote:
No, that's completely suboptimal and totally evasive of the point. You don't have all the summons spells known. You have usually 1 spell at highest level and 1 spell at the second highest level. You have possibly zero spells (traded out) at earlier levels. You're still focusing on the concept by making those few spells optimized.

Then we agree. DONE!

DGRM44 wrote:
ShinHakkaider wrote:
ProfessorCirno wrote:
Umbral Reaver wrote:
ProfessorCirno wrote:
I do not recommend GURPS. If 3e can be MATH OVERLOAD, GURPS is MATH HEAT DEATH. Also I just sorta personally dislike GURPS which colors my opinion, admittingly.
There's that epiphanic moment when you're playing GURPS and just realised that you asked the group if someone has a graphing calculator with them.
GURPS: Vehicles more like GURPS: Porn For Engineers boosh
Holy Crap you beat me to my comment about GURPS Vehicles. I made an attempt to try and build a modified lightly armored tank many, many years ago. I still dont think that I've recovered the sanity that I lost in that attempt.
You guys define the whole Gurps experience by one sourcebook (out of hundreds)? Crazy.

No, we made a joke about one GURPS sourcebook.

Lighten up, man.


Evil Lincoln wrote:
What a system can do and what a system is ideally suited to do are not quite the same, and I think that's the source of disagreement.

Thank you


ProfessorCirno wrote:


No, we made a joke about one GURPS sourcebook.

Lighten up, man.

I only intended to point out that Gurps is not math heavy compared to Pathfinder, however the Vehicle Sourcebook for 3e Gurps is as your jokes alluded to. That book is no longer in print btw.


ProfessorCirno wrote:
Brian Bachman wrote:
You have some good points, but you still come down to making an argument that the developers have specifically rejected time and time again, that the game was designed to be played in one way and one way only, followed quickly by the argument that if I don't like all aspects of that I should be playing something else. The game system has certainly evolved over the years, in some good ways, and some not-so-good ways, in my opinion. Certainly, it has become more codified and GM discretion to create a significantly different game experience has been chipped away at, no doubt. That GM discretion is still, though weakened, one of the cornerstones of the whole system. If and when they do decide to chop that and make it so that there is only one way to play the game, that will be the day I do indeed walk away and play something else (not that I haven't played a lot of other systems, but D&D/PF is "home" and has been for 33 years.)

The developers can claim the game can be played multiple ways as much as they want.

They are incorrect.

I cannot play Shadowrun using Pathfinder. I can't. The amount of houseruling that would require makes it a nonargument. It is not something people can - or would - do.

I cannot play Eclipse Phase using Pathfinder.

I cannot play Changeling: the Lost using Pathfinder.

But even the games I could play on Pathfinder with a lot of house ruling - do I want to? Do I want to play Legend of the Five Rings on Pathfinder? Or do I want to play it on Legend of the Five Rings? Do I want to play REIGN on Pathfinder? Or do I want to play it using REIGN? Do I want to play AFMBE in Pathfinder? Or do I want to play it using AFMBE?

There are two types of systems for tabletop games. There are the modular and/or generic ones. Basic Roleplaying. GURPS. Risus. ORE. These are games specifically designed to be versatile and fit multiple avenues of gameplay.

Then there are specialized games. Shadowrun. Changeling: the Lost....

I think you were missing my point. I wasn't referrring to different genres. I was just referring to different playstyles within the fantasy genre. That said, the d20 vehicle has been apllied with varying success, to a lot of different genres.

Back on point. Let's look at the genre as you describe it: "Heroic Fantasy". Two words, each of which have pretty broad efinitions, which I won't bore you with as I know you're a smart guy. Sufice ti to say that what any one person defines as "heroic" might differ significantly from what any other person does. For example, I don;t find superpowered characters who rely on their marvelous inherent capabilities to curbstomp less genetically blessed individuals to be terribly heroic, but others do. As for "fantasy", well just llok through the shelves of your local bookstore and see the wide variety of stuff in the fantasy/SF section and you should get my point.

Which is simply that the PF ruleset was designed to and can easily support a wide variety of playstyles within the fantasy genre.


Brian Bachman wrote:
Which is simply that the PF ruleset was designed to and can easily support a wide variety of playstyles within the fantasy genre.

In the friendliest spirit possible, I would like to contest that, Brian.

It all depends on what you mean by playstyle. Certainly, Pathfinder supports a few — but low magic? Not really... unless you have a different definition of "support" than I do.

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