Antagonize: Can it really do that?


Rules Questions

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Umbranus wrote:
Mikaze wrote:

Because antagonize is the one that makes him change his personality of his own free will.

I asked before in this thread and nobody could quote the part of the rules text that states that it is his own free will.

Yeah pretty much this. A giant argument based on a baseless assumption that is based on fluff. On the rules forum no less.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
Mikaze wrote:


I'll do it in two.

There are two adventurers in a party that are deeply connected by love. It could be familial or romantic. End result is that are deeply devoted to each other down to the core of their being, be they siblings, spouces, or whatever else.

During a battle, one of them is knocked into unconsciousness.

One of the enemies present moves up to perform a coup-de-grace their next turn.

The other party member deeply devoted to the unconscious adventurer is planning to charge in and prevent their loved one from being killed on their turn.

That character gets Antagonized away from their loved one.

It's not that it's a TPK-machine. It's that it is a character concept destroyer.

Antagonized character, provoked and desperate, flings his sword at the antagonist then turns and moves to stand over or by his loved one's prostrate form, drawing his secondary weapon. Character concept not destroyed.

Mechanically, the likelihood he needs to take a charge action is low since he probably can get to his loved one's side with a single move. If this is such a loved one, he's unlikely to let her get that far away in a fight - if he did, he's already weakening his concept.
If he's now adjacent to the coup de grace-planning opponent, he gets his free attack when that action starts - which probably won't happen unless the GM (or player if these are NPCs) is a bit too focused on the metagame rather the in-character perspective.


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Quote:
2) Nothing should be able to remove or suppress player agency except Magic (or something Magic-equivalent)

I didn't take this in account. Yeah, that seems to be the reason for all the hate. In my larping games there are many players which take various skills to protect them from domination becuase they don't want to be commanded by another player. Mostly because they feel it would bite them in the a**.

*Free Will*

The word is "must" in the feat description. Just a quick question from a germanguy who almost failed in his english classes (and taking italian and latin as an alternative): "Must" clashes with "free will", does it not? You have literally no free will, if you are forced to do something...

As an person who had the experience of insult-induced rage in schools, I can assure you that the raging person is not very clear on the sorroundings any more. Even loved ones or family can be the (very momentary) target of such a rage. Thats why such things are so tragic if they happen in real life.

Shadow Lodge

Bill Dunn wrote:


Mechanically, the likelihood he needs to take a charge action is low since he probably can get to his loved one's side with a single move. If this is such a loved one, he's unlikely to let her get that far away in a fight - if he did, he's already weakening his concept.
If he's now adjacent to the coup de grace-planning opponent, he gets his free attack when that action starts - which probably won't happen unless the GM (or player if these are NPCs) is a bit too focused on the metagame rather the in-character perspective.

The likelihood that any of the scenarios given would occur is ridiculously small. Even in those scenarios, as you point out, there are things that can mitigate the situation.

As Redward pointed out it all comes down to the argument that only magic should be able to make a character behave contrary to their nature or interests. It also seems that many have a problem with the fact that it is the GM rolling the dice, i.e. the skill check, instead of the player rolling the dice, i.e. a saving throw, to determine if it is effective.

I've watched in real life as a woman that I know to normally be a good, loving mother jump out of her car in a parking lot without putting it in park to attack another driver in a fit of road rage leaving her infant child in the now driverless moving vehicle. If it wasn't for a bystander the car would have rolled back out into traffic. She later said she had no idea what she was doing and it was all indistinct and dreamlike. This is exactly what antagonize does.


Just some innocent comments from the side lines...

Is it just me, or is the ruling still... considerably less than logical? Perceived balance issues, no-defense discussions and the like aside, the current wording of the feat requires a melee or ranged attack or spell.

RAW-Wise, this means that channeling negative energy at the perpetrator, or using my trusty spell-like ability of Meteor Swarm to blast that pesky annoyance to kingdom come are both pretty much out of the question, since neither of them is a melee or ranged attack, or spell.

Anyone who'd like to care to explain the logic behind that one?

Then, tying the whole shebang into Intimidate just makes next to no sense when looking at some of the modifiers for that skill. So, the large, burly, threatening guy (with intimidating Prowess, to boot); someone I should be afraid of, actually has a far easier time when trying to get me to attack him? Being larger than myself gives you an advantage in pushing my buttons? Hello? Come again?

Shadow Lodge

Midnight_Angel wrote:

Just some innocent comments from the side lines...

Is it just me, or is the ruling still... considerably less than logical? Perceived balance issues, no-defense discussions and the like aside, the current wording of the feat requires a melee or ranged attack or spell.

RAW-Wise, this means that channeling negative energy at the perpetrator, or using my trusty spell-like ability of Meteor Swarm to blast that pesky annoyance to kingdom come are both pretty much out of the question, since neither of them is a melee or ranged attack, or spell.

Anyone who'd like to care to explain the logic behind that one?

Then, tying the whole shebang into Intimidate just makes next to no sense when looking at some of the modifiers for that skill. So, the large, burly, threatening guy (with intimidating Prowess, to boot); someone I should be afraid of, actually has a far easier time when trying to get me to attack him? Being larger than myself gives you an advantage in pushing my buttons? Hello? Come again?

Now this I agree with. My witch can cast a spell on the antagonizer but Agony or Ice Tomb hexing the sucker is out of the question?


Dunno - if it breaks invisibility it should satisfy the antagony. (Is that a word?)


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
Midnight_Angel wrote:


Is it just me, or is the ruling still... considerably less than logical? Perceived balance issues, no-defense discussions and the like aside, the current wording of the feat requires a melee or ranged attack or spell.

RAW-Wise, this means that channeling negative energy at the perpetrator, or using my trusty spell-like ability of Meteor Swarm to blast that pesky annoyance to kingdom come are both pretty much out of the question, since neither of them is a melee or ranged attack, or spell.

Anyone who'd like to care to explain the logic behind that one?

I think you have to remember that this is a refereed game and that referee can and should take the intent of the rule and allow you to use similar powers or abilities. A spell-like ability is certainly close enough to a spell that it should be allowed, same with most supernatural attacks. The important element is that you are provoked into attacking the antagonist via method you're not disinclined to use. Forcing an archer or wizard into melee would be too much of a stretch - the attack should be idiomatic.

Midnight_Angel wrote:
Then, tying the whole shebang into Intimidate just makes next to no sense when looking at some of the modifiers for that skill. So, the large, burly, threatening guy (with intimidating Prowess, to boot); someone I should be afraid of, actually has a far easier time when trying to get me to attack him? Being larger than myself gives you an advantage in pushing my buttons? Hello? Come again?

That basically means the antagonist is more effective at intimidating the target into doing what he wants - in this case draw attacks to himself. As I said above, think of it as tripping the flight or fight response - in this case - fight.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

It would be less broken if it required the target of the antagonize to actually be hostile toward you, which would get rid of non-combat use at the very least.


I think that the form of attack from the target of Antagonize would depend on the situation. If used during combat, I would expect the target to use some effective form of attack.

If used in social situations, a ranged attack of spitting might be appropriate. Or a glove slap to the face accompanied with a challenge to a duel.


What is with people and this claim of "MY character would never do that"?

First off, as described, it's not a choice to begin with. It is just as out-of-your-control as being dominated.

But even if it wasn't, you don't get to decide that your character can never become enraged. That violates your "character concept"? Well my character concept is that he fell from Krypton as a baby and it really hurts that concept when a commoner rolls a nat 20 with a stick and deals him 2 damage. Clearly this NEEDS to be fixed.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
Thac20 wrote:

I think that the form of attack from the target of Antagonize would depend on the situation. If used during combat, I would expect the target to use some effective form of attack.

If used in social situations, a ranged attack of spitting might be appropriate. Or a glove slap to the face accompanied with a challenge to a duel.

There's no restriction on what the attack really has to be and I think that's a good thing because it keeps it from being too limited or impossible to fulfill. Antagonize the barmaid and she'll slap your face off, maybe knee you in the groin. Antagonize the drunk Ulfen barfly and he'll headbutt you. Antagonize the king and he gets up, cuffs you with his glove, and you'll be facing the king's champion in a trial by duel. Antagonize the Iraqi reporter and he'll throw his shoes at you.


Magic:

Dominate person/animal/monster: ...any subject forced to take actions against its nature receives a new saving throw. (per Mr Jacob's clarification, it should apply to animal/monster/person at the same level)

Hold person: Save on cast, save again on its turn (though the action is still lost).

Charm: Save on cast, opposed charisma check to actually make someone DO anything.

I'm sure this isn't exhaustive, but it suggests that the bar on mind-affecting abilities is a bit higher than the bar on just regular action-stealers (flesh to stone, for example)

Reading antagonize, I don't see that the bar is upheld. You have a mind affecting ability that uses a passive target that looks fairly easy to beat if you're making a targetted build (skill focus, skill items, etc) with no fallback. Seems pretty bad mechanically to me.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
"Jeremias wrote:
As an person who had the experience of insult-induced rage in schools, I can assure you that the raging person is not very clear on the sorroundings any more. Even loved ones or family can be the (very momentary) target of such a rage. Thats why such things are so tragic if they happen in real life.

You were put into a rage by someone you meet for the first time in less than 6 seconds?

Or instead you were put into a rage in six seconds by people that had trained you to react to their barb in years of torments?
Unless people suffer from mental problems or has suffered from a specific kind of abuse for years and the Anagonizer push exactly that button they don’t fly into a rage in 6 seconds.

Drakkiel wrote:
@Diego Rossi: it already is a mind-affecting effect, and acts alot like an (ex) ability, but to make everyone happy yes...make it a ST and there ya go

Yes that was changed in the last version, before that it would have worked on a golem.

A ST with a DC based on the normal progression for abilities (10+1/2 user HD + appropriate characteristic) was proposed up thread by ryric and Coriat, none of the guy speaking in favor of the feat ever replied.

- * -

You guys are asking for a “real” scenario. A few AP scenarios where use of Antagonize would have completely changed the game (just for the record, these are the 3 AP that I have played or GM so far).
Before starting I remember again to you all that, unless you have some very specific archetype ability, it is not possible to conceal spellcasting. People will see it and probably recognize it as spellcasting even if they have no idea of what spell was cast.
Hiding spellcasting require to complete hide the caster and even then you will generally hear the vocal part of the spell.

Let’s start with the less disruptive examples.

Curse of Crimson Throne spoiler:

In Edge of Anarchy there is a chase scene with the PC chasing Trinia on the roofs of the city. The chase his hard with difficult maneuvers and checks made to see who gain or lose terrain. If one of the chasers had Antagonize, with a easy check (Trinia is a 4th level bard with wisdom 8, so the DC is 13) he would have forced the fleeing NPC to stop , draw her only dagger and throw it. 1 standard action, still retaining his movement action, to stop her on his track for a full round while she is fleeing in terror for her life.
Scared into attacking.
- *-
Later in the same module there is a cinematic scene where Trinia is saved from beheading.
The city hero, Blackjack stop the execution pinning and executioner hand and fleeing away with Trinia. Blackjack has his and Trinia escape route preplanned and make an easy getaway.
Enter a couple of PC or guards with antagonize. Blackjack start his getaway, the guard call “I break you in two” to him. He stop and throw a dagger. The guards get nearer.
He resume his escape. The guard call the unarmed Trinia, that stop and reverse to attack the guard with her bare fists …. Trinia get beheaded and probably even Blackjack if he don’t abandon her.

Kingmaker 2nd module:

Second module of Kingmaker. There is an agent provocateur sent by a rival kingdom to harass the player kingdom. If the players try to confront him about his slanders it become a public debate in the middle of the city square. It is a hard scenario if the PC don’t have a good face as the agent is a bard.
Reduced statblock
Male human bard 6 CN Medium humanoid Speed 30 ft.
Melee +1 rapier +7 (1d6+1/18–20) Ranged shortbow +6 (1d6/×3)
Special Attacks bardic performance (8 rounds/day, standard action), countersong, distraction, fascinate, inspire competence +2, inspire courage +2, suggestion)
Bard Spells Known (CL 6th; concentration +10)
2nd (4/day)—calm emotions (DC 16), detect thoughts (DC 16), enthrall (DC 16), invisibility
1st (5/day)—charm person (DC 15), expeditious retreat, grease (DC 15), hideous laughter (DC 15)
0 (at will)—dancing lights, daze (DC 14), detect magic, ghost sound (DC 14), lullaby (DC 14), read magic
Statistics
Str 10, Dex 14, Con 12, Int 13, Wis 8, Cha 18
Base Atk +4; CMB +4; CMD 17
Feats Dodge, Skill Focus (Perform [Oratory]), Toughness, Weapon Finesse
Skills Disguise +13, Escape Artist +10, Knowledge (local) +13, Perception +8, Perform (Comedy) +13, Perform (Oratory) +13, Sense Motive +8, Stealth +10
Languages Common, Hallit
SQ bardic knowledge +3, lore master 1/day, versatile performance (oratory, comedy), well-versed

Kingmaker is from 2010, so it was written well before antagonize.
Versatile performance allow him to use Comedy as his Intimidate skill. Nice +13.
Replace Weapon finesse with Antagonize.
Grigori and the party face start debating .
Grigori is losing? Antagonize the face, with a +13 against a PC level of 5-6 he will succeed with a 3+. Something like “This will destroy your kingdom” is sufficient, nothing that justify an attack.
The face attack Grigori before all onlookers, showing that the PC are thuggish brutes that use violence, unrest increase and Grigori has done what he was meant to do.
Reverse scenario, the face is losing. A PC with antagonize menace him. Grigori with his 8 wisdom probably fall and attack the PC. Now Grigori has lost and showed his “true colors”.
What should have been a RPG sessions become a race to see who is the first at using antagonize, resolved by a single die roll with a lousy DC.

Kingmaker 5nd module:

5th module, the PC are guest at a tourney together with several high anking dignitaries of the River Kingdoms that can be their friends, allies, adversaries or neutral bystanders. The tourney organizer want to start a war with them, but don’t want to battle their allies too.
Take one of Pitax heralds, 6th level bard, remove 2 of the combat feats and replace them with skill focus intimidate and Antagonize. The original skills are: Acrobatics +10, Bluff +12, Intimidate +12, Knowledge (local) +13, Perception +9, Perform (Oratory) +12, Perform (Wind) +12, Stealth +10
So with the change Intimidate become a +15, against a 13th level character it function with 8+. During some public event he take 10 for an automatic success against a PC that is known to have a moderate wisdom (he can do it, he is not in combat or distracted). Out of the blue, for some heavy handed comment the guest try to murder a herald. In plain sight of the other guests.
The host guards have all the reason to try to kill or capture him and lawful PC will have a hard time to save him and maintain their alignment.
Even without that saving him would mean attacking the host guards.
Guess what would happen to the PC alliances or the reactions of those that are simply neutral to them?
Probably the host would get a lot of support in his just war against the murderers that started a fight at his joust, especially if some of the high ranking diplomats was wounded during the clash.

You feel that is not possible to take 10 on a intimidate check? Fine, change the scenario a bit. It is the host that make the antagonize check. He is a bard with +20 to his intimidate check (low for his level). Against a target of 23 he succeed with 3+. With him and his guards ready for combat and the PC unready it would be easy for him to defeat or force to flee them.
Even if the GM don’t make it a TPK it mean that the PC have attacked a fellow king in his reign.
Great diplomatic move. Say bye bye to the PC alliances.

Carrion Crown2nd module:

I am playing this one, so be light with the spoilers, thanks.
The PC are defending the Beast of Lepistadt in a trial. They can debunk the charges during the process.
Let’s say that the prosecutor don’t want to lose.
He get a decent level agent provocateur in the crowd assisting to the trial. He use antagonize while a PC is speaking before the court. The PC go into a murdering rage, pick something and throw it to the crowd or even better cast a spell.
End of the trial, the Beast is burned and the PC, if lucky, will pay a heavy fine and get a time in jail, if unlucky he will burn beside the beast.

Example from the a film: Ladyhawke
We have Philippe Gaston, "The Mouse", fleeing from the city guards to avoid his execution. He is unarmed.
1 guard with antagonize and the fleeing, small thief, would be forced to reverse his movement and attack the guards with his bare fists.
End of a very short film with Philippe impaled on the guard weapon.


Diego Rossi wrote:
A ST with a DC based on the normal progression for abilities (10+1/2 user HD + appropriate characteristic) was proposed up thread by ryric and Coriat, none of the guy speaking in favor of the feat ever replied.

I'm not commenting on mechanical fixes, because, as I said, I think that's premature. Tweaking the DCs or adding STs doesn't help if the non-magical nature of the Feat is a dealbreaker.

Diego Rossi wrote:
You guys are asking for a “real” scenario.

Speaking only for myself, I am talking about actual scenarios that actually happened in the past where someone had the Antagonize Feat and used it. Not hypothetical scenarios, or scenarios that happened but might have been different if someone had Antagonize.

I know that's a pretty specific request, but the hypotheticals don't really mean anything. I didn't read your spoilers, but in the last example, you've got a guard using Antagonize. Why does a city guard have Antagonize? Is he kind of a hot-head jerk who likes to pick fights in bars? Okay, but who is giving this kind of detailed background for a city guard? Does the other guard have Skill Focus (Craft: Dollhouse Furniture) to represent his beloved hobby? Honestly.

The only reason a GM would give an NPC the Antagonize feat is to perpetrate one of the abuses you all keep bringing up. And if the GM is going to do that, he doesn't need Antagonize. He can use magic. Or alien spores. Or drop a rock on your head. Literally anything he wants. Because he's the GM. Banning this feat won't save you.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Bill Dunn wrote:
Thac20 wrote:

I think that the form of attack from the target of Antagonize would depend on the situation. If used during combat, I would expect the target to use some effective form of attack.

If used in social situations, a ranged attack of spitting might be appropriate. Or a glove slap to the face accompanied with a challenge to a duel.

There's no restriction on what the attack really has to be and I think that's a good thing because it keeps it from being too limited or impossible to fulfill. Antagonize the barmaid and she'll slap your face off, maybe knee you in the groin. Antagonize the drunk Ulfen barfly and he'll headbutt you. Antagonize the king and he gets up, cuffs you with his glove, and you'll be facing the king's champion in a trial by duel. Antagonize the Iraqi reporter and he'll throw his shoes at you.
PRD wrote:
On its next turn, the target must attempt to make a melee attack against you, make a ranged attack against you, target you with a spell, or include you in the area of a spell.

Slap your face - not a melee attack.

cuffs you with his glove - not a melee attack.
throw his shoes - not a ranged attack.

So really for you antagonize is not broken as you think it is possible to twist it into "you get mildly annoyed by the antagonizer and show your disdain in him"?
So your solution is emasculating the feat?


Diego Rossi wrote:
Bill Dunn wrote:
Thac20 wrote:

I think that the form of attack from the target of Antagonize would depend on the situation. If used during combat, I would expect the target to use some effective form of attack.

If used in social situations, a ranged attack of spitting might be appropriate. Or a glove slap to the face accompanied with a challenge to a duel.

There's no restriction on what the attack really has to be and I think that's a good thing because it keeps it from being too limited or impossible to fulfill. Antagonize the barmaid and she'll slap your face off, maybe knee you in the groin. Antagonize the drunk Ulfen barfly and he'll headbutt you. Antagonize the king and he gets up, cuffs you with his glove, and you'll be facing the king's champion in a trial by duel. Antagonize the Iraqi reporter and he'll throw his shoes at you.
PRD wrote:
On its next turn, the target must attempt to make a melee attack against you, make a ranged attack against you, target you with a spell, or include you in the area of a spell.

Slap your face - not a melee attack.

cuffs you with his glove - not a melee attack.
throw his shoes - not a ranged attack.

So really for you antagonize is not broken as you think it is possible to twist it into "you get mildly annoyed by the antagonizer and show your disdain in him"?
So your solution is emasculating the feat?

How is that an emasculation of the feat? Mechanically it's simply spend your standard, to make them waste their standard. The price is that it might hurt. If they want to use their attack to do something ineffectual at hurting me, that's BETTER for me, not worse.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
redward wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:
A ST with a DC based on the normal progression for abilities (10+1/2 user HD + appropriate characteristic) was proposed up thread by ryric and Coriat, none of the guy speaking in favor of the feat ever replied.
I'm not commenting on mechanical fixes, because, as I said, I think that's premature. Tweaking the DCs or adding STs doesn't help if the non-magical nature of the Feat is a dealbreaker.

Stop hiding behind a finger. The problem of the feat are the mechanics, not that it exist.

I am not against it existing if it:
- worked as a typical mind affecting ability and not as a skill;
- it was possible to defend from it as you do for normal mind affecting effects.

redward wrote:

Speaking only for myself, I am talking about actual scenarios that actually happened in the past where someone had the Antagonize Feat and used it. Not hypothetical scenarios, or scenarios that happened but might have been different if someone had Antagonize.

Again you hide behind a facade of neutrality but show your position, making absurd demands or refusing any reasonable example.

I fairly sure that if someone cam here with a FPS true story your reply would be "the player was a jerk, so he don't count."

redward wrote:
I didn't read your spoilers, but in the last example, you've got a guard using Antagonize. Why does a city guard have Antagonize? Is he kind of a hot-head jerk who likes to pick fights in bars? Okay, but who is giving this kind of detailed background for a city guard? Does the other guard have Skill Focus (Craft: Dollhouse Furniture) to represent his beloved hobby? Honestly.

Ever seen that film? several of the guards are jerks. Even without that if antagonize can stop a fleeing thief it should be a mandatory feat for any guard.


Diego Rossi wrote:

Ever seen that film? several of the guards are jerks. Even without that if antagonize can stop a fleeing thief it should be a mandatory feat for any guard.

Sigh. Why have a chase scene at all if you intentionally give the guards a way to subvert that scene? You could also claim it's mandatory that every guard be able to cast the spell Create Pit. Trapping runners in a pit, or opening several pits around a runner will stop them much more assuredly.

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32

redward wrote:


I know that's a pretty specific request, but the hypotheticals don't really mean anything. I didn't read your spoilers, but in the last example, you've got a guard using Antagonize. Why does a city guard have Antagonize? Is he kind of a hot-head jerk who likes to pick fights in bars? Okay, but who is giving this kind of detailed background for a city guard? Does the other guard have Skill Focus (Craft: Dollhouse Furniture) to represent his beloved hobby? Honestly.

In a world where Antagonize is an option, why wouldn't nearly every city guard have it? It stops people from running away. It lets the guard do his/her job much better than many other 1st level feat choices like Toughness or Weapon Focus. Heck if this existed in real life every SWAT team would have a group of guys whose entire job was to sit behind cover and pin down the bad guys with repeated insults.

That's really one of the core issues with the feat - it's very existence implies a game world where anyone, anywhere can instigate deadly violence from complete strangers with a casual insult. That's really my flavor issue with it - not that it's nonmagical mind control, but that it's nonmagical mind control that's trivially easy and available to everyone.

No other 1st level feat has to be carefully portioned to NPCs by the GM to prevent abuse. I can give all the NPCs in the world Toughness or Dodge or Power Attack and there are no game balance issues. But assign Antagonize to a horde of NPCs and suddenly there are big problems - this is a big indicator of brokenness.


Diego Rossi wrote:

Stop hiding behind a finger. The problem of the feat are the mechanics, not that it exist.

I am not against it existing if it:
- worked as a typical mind affecting ability and not as a skill;
- it was possible to defend from it as you do for normal mind affecting effects.

You are not the only person arguing here. There are many whose problem is not with the numbers, but with the fact that this feat can affect one's behavior through non-magical means. That is a fundamental difference of opinion. Adjusting the DC is or adding a ST is a simple fix (in fact, Paizo already did it once).

Diego Rossi wrote:

Again you hide behind a facade of neutrality but show your position, making absurd demands or refusing any reasonable example.

I fairly sure that if someone cam here with a FPS true story your reply would be "the player was a jerk, so he don't count."

I have made my request clear from the beginning, without moving the goal posts: one example where Antagonize was actually used in an abusive manner in an actual game. I am arguing in good faith. If you can't return the favor, I suggest we agree to disagree and leave it at that.

Diego Rossi wrote:
Ever seen that film? several of the guards are jerks. Even without that if antagonize can stop a fleeing thief it should be a mandatory feat for any guard.

I have not. It is entirely plausible that a guard is a jerk. It is slightly less plausible that he has spent a significant part of his life and resources into training to be the best jerk he can be. It is even less plausible that the training regimen for city guard revolves around inciting citizens into attacking you.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

OK, let's play analyze the examples:

Diego Rossi wrote:
Let’s start with the less disruptive examples.

CT spoiler 1:
In Edge of Anarchy there is a chase scene with the PC chasing Trinia on the roofs of the city. The chase his hard with difficult maneuvers and checks made to see who gain or lose terrain. If one of the chasers had Antagonize, with a easy check (Trinia is a 4th level bard with wisdom 8, so the DC is 13) he would have forced the fleeing NPC to stop , draw her only dagger and throw it. 1 standard action, still retaining his movement action, to stop her on his track for a full round while she is fleeing in terror for her life.

Scared into attacking.

CT spoiler 1 response:
Simple enough. She just does what she's keyed to do - she uses her wand of daze on the antagonizing PC. Even if she throws a dagger, she still can still do what she's keyed to do most of the time - move 1 space forward on the track.

CT spoiler 2:
Later in the same module there is a cinematic scene where Trinia is saved from beheading.
The city hero, Blackjack stop the execution pinning and executioner hand and fleeing away with Trinia. Blackjack has his and Trinia escape route preplanned and make an easy getaway.
Enter a couple of PC or guards with antagonize. Blackjack start his getaway, the guard call “I break you in two” to him. He stop and throw a dagger. The guards get nearer.
He resume his escape. The guard call the unarmed Trinia, that stop and reverse to attack the guard with her bare fists …. Trinia get beheaded and probably even Blackjack if he don’t abandon her.

CT spoiler 2 response:
Since it's a cinematic scene, any attempt by the guards to use antagonize can be ruled a failure (certainly likely given Blackjack's 9HD). Or PCs could use it to distract a guard, enabling Blackjack to get away with Trinia.

Kingmaker spoiler 1:
Second module of Kingmaker. There is an agent provocateur sent by a rival kingdom to harass the player kingdom. If the players try to confront him about his slanders it become a public debate in the middle of the city square. It is a hard scenario if the PC don’t have a good face as the agent is a bard.

<snip>
Grigori and the party face start debating .
Grigori is losing? Antagonize the face, with a +13 against a PC level of 5-6 he will succeed with a 3+. Something like “This will destroy your kingdom” is sufficient, nothing that justify an attack.
The face attack Grigori before all onlookers, showing that the PC are thuggish brutes that use violence, unrest increase and Grigori has done what he was meant to do.
Reverse scenario, the face is losing. A PC with antagonize menace him. Grigori with his 8 wisdom probably fall and attack the PC. Now Grigori has lost and showed his “true colors”.
What should have been a RPG sessions become a race to see who is the first at using antagonize, resolved by a single die roll with a lousy DC.

Kingmaker spoiler 1 response:
Don't forget that in either outcome, the locals witnessed the antagonism as well. They may conclude (or be convinced with good oratory) that the antagonist had it coming to him. Plus, don't forget the attack doesn't have to be trying to run him through. You could just punch him or grapple him so you can shove him head-first in a rain barrel, and spin the event in a postive way.

Kingmaker spoiler 2:
5th module, the PC are guest at a tourney together with several high anking dignitaries of the River Kingdoms that can be their friends, allies, adversaries or neutral bystanders. The tourney organizer want to start a war with them, but don’t want to battle their allies too.
Take one of Pitax heralds, 6th level bard, remove 2 of the combat feats and replace them with skill focus intimidate and Antagonize. The original skills are: Acrobatics +10, Bluff +12, Intimidate +12, Knowledge (local) +13, Perception +9, Perform (Oratory) +12, Perform (Wind) +12, Stealth +10
So with the change Intimidate become a +15, against a 13th level character it function with 8+. During some public event he take 10 for an automatic success against a PC that is known to have a moderate wisdom (he can do it, he is not in combat or distracted). Out of the blue, for some heavy handed comment the guest try to murder a herald. In plain sight of the other guests.
The host guards have all the reason to try to kill or capture him and lawful PC will have a hard time to save him and maintain their alignment.
Even without that saving him would mean attacking the host guards.
Guess what would happen to the PC alliances or the reactions of those that are simply neutral to them?
Probably the host would get a lot of support in his just war against the murderers that started a fight at his joust, especially if some of the high ranking diplomats was wounded during the clash.
You feel that is not possible to take 10 on a intimidate check? Fine, change the scenario a bit. It is the host that make the antagonize check. He is a bard with +20 to his intimidate check (low for his level). Against a target of 23 he succeed with 3+. With him and his guards ready for combat and the PC unready it would be easy for him to defeat or force to flee them.
Even if the GM don’t make it a TPK it mean that the PC have attacked a fellow king in his reign.
Great diplomatic move. Say bye bye to the PC alliances.

Kingmaker spoiler 2 response:
I don't know why people have to keep bringing it up, but antagonize doesn't mean the PC has to try to murder the herald. Punching him meets the conditions of the feat.
And if a PC takes a shot at Irovetti, great! Let him try to use that as his pretext for invading their kingdom with the other diplomats. Of course, when they figure out that the armies already had to be on the move throughout the tournament, the truth will come out. And it may even encourage them to believe the PC had it in the right to strike at Irrovetti at the tournament. Were I playing a PC, I'd work on that diplomatic angle.

Carrion Crown spoiler:
I am playing this one, so be light with the spoilers, thanks.
The PC are defending the Beast of Lepistadt in a trial. They can debunk the charges during the process.
Let’s say that the prosecutor don’t want to lose.
He get a decent level agent provocateur in the crowd assisting to the trial. He use antagonize while a PC is speaking before the court. The PC go into a murdering rage, pick something and throw it to the crowd or even better cast a spell.
End of the trial, the Beast is burned and the PC, if lucky, will pay a heavy fine and get a time in jail, if unlucky he will burn beside the beast.

Carrion Crown spoiler response:
Is the judge a painting or something? Does he not witness the antagonist and have him bodily thrown from the court or imprisoned? The PC may be chastised for responding to the insult, but everyone witnessed the antagonism as well. So why should it end the trial?

Shadow Lodge

Diego Rossi wrote:


Let’s start with the less disruptive examples.
** spoiler omitted **...

Example #1: It clearly states that you must be able to understand you for the antagonize to be effective. It is unlikely that a fleeing individual in a crowded city is going to be paying enough attention to what you are saying to understand the content and be antagonized. This is a matter of GM decision not a problem with the feat. Also I'm not familiar with this module so is that chase scene handled in combat turns or just a series of skill checks? If it isn't round by round combat then the antagonized individual doesn't have a next "turn" on which to be forced to act.

Example #2: Notice that you have to work around specific feats to make this as egregious as you want it to be. If the GM does this it is because it is the outcome he desires. Second you characterize the antagonize as being some benign statement like "This will destroy your kingdom". That is your characterization not the description. According to the feat it is an insult or slur so heinous it causes a rage not just some small statement and everyone present would hear it. Yes the PCs may use it against him as well and it may result in him loosing (although again all present would hear the PCs provoke him to the attack). Apparently you think that the PCs should not be able to use skills and abilities to influence the situation and should be railroaded along the prewritten script of the module.

Example #3:Here again you had to have the specifically exact stats on the part of the NPCs to make this feasible. If the GM does that it is because he wants that result to happen. Second the antagonized PC does not have to attempt to "murder" the antagonizer. A non-lethal unarmed attack, i.e. a punch to the nose would fulfill the requirements. Third this is not in combat so there are no "turns". So the requirement that the PC attack on his next "turn" is null and void since there is no turn to trigger the act. Also it seems that since this could be an intense RPG scene you think the players and NPCs alike should be railroaded into it. Heaven forbid the PCs be able to do something that goes off script from the scene as written.

Example #4: A court trial is not handled in "turns" there is no "next turn" for the PC to be forced to attack on. Second again you are dictating that the PC would go into a murdering rage and attack the crowd or throw a spell but the PC could just punch the prosecutor in the nose. Also again the prosecutor would have to utter a horrendously provocative slur or insult to produce this reaction that would be heard by all including the judge.

Example #5: Again the thief is probably not going to be paying enough attention to understand any insults being hurled. Also as noted above the chase scene is probably not in turn by turn combat rounds so there is no "next turn" for him to be forced to act on.

Not one of the examples you give is ruined by the use of this feat even in the few instances you correctly determine it could be used.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
ryric wrote:


In a world where Antagonize is an option, why wouldn't nearly every city guard have it? It stops people from running away. It lets the guard do his/her job much better than many other 1st level feat choices like Toughness or Weapon Focus. Heck if this existed in real life every SWAT team would have a group of guys whose entire job was to sit behind cover and pin down the bad guys with repeated insults.

Why not use it all the time? Because it sometimes gets them killed, that's why. It's all well and good to start fights, but one of the guardsman's best defenses is safety in numbers. Antagonize makes the antagonizing guardsman the target. Numbers are a lot less helpful in that situation since, as the provoking guardsman, you may have been killed by the guy you provoked.


ryric wrote:
In a world where Antagonize is an option, why wouldn't nearly every city guard have it? It stops people from running away. It lets the guard do his/her job much better than many other 1st level feat choices like Toughness or Weapon Focus. Heck if this existed in real life every SWAT team would have a group of guys whose entire job was to sit behind cover and pin down the bad guys with repeated insults.

You want to talk realism? Realistically, how well do you think the keepers of the peace would do if their chief peace-keeping tool was inciting citizens into violence? That sounds like a recipe for mob rule.

ryric wrote:
No other 1st level feat has to be carefully portioned to NPCs by the GM to prevent abuse. I can give all the NPCs in the world Toughness or Dodge or Power Attack and there are no game balance issues. But assign Antagonize to a horde of NPCs and suddenly there are big problems - this is a big indicator of brokenness.

The game is not meant to be idiot-proof. If assigning Antagonize to a horde of NPCs causes big problems...maybe don't assign Antagonize to a horde of NPCs? Do you really need Paizo to protect you from yourself lest you abuse this dangerous Feat?

And just so we're all crystal clear here: I am not saying the Feat is fine as is. I am saying that before we unilaterally ban it, before we even try to fix it, let's figure out what exactly is wrong with it. Not what might be done with it in a carefully orchestrated hypothetical scenario. Not what might happen if you give it to a horde of NPCs. What is wrong with the Feat as written.

Is that really so unreasonable?


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

One thing to keep in mind is that most NPCs are not suicidal. For that reason, Antagonize is not a feat that is suitable for a 1st level commoner even if he qualifies for it -- virtually everyone he could use it on is likely to kill him when he does. At the very least, the feat should only be assigned to NPCs who can survive attacks from the people they intend to use it on.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
Diego Rossi wrote:


Slap your face - not a melee attack.
cuffs you with his glove - not a melee attack.
throw his shoes - not a ranged attack.

So really for you antagonize is not broken as you think it is possible to twist it into "you get mildly annoyed by the antagonizer and show your disdain in him"?
So your solution is emasculating the feat?

You're going to have to demonstrate why any of those are not appropriate attacks since they all may have significant consequences, all force the loss of standard action, may represent the most immediate method of attacking the antagonist, and may be in character for the target of the antagonism. They all represent a significant loss of cool and are appropriate for situations that are, otherwise, not deadly violent.

I might ask why are you giving the feat more power than it needs?

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
PatientWolf wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:


Let’s start with the less disruptive examples.
** spoiler omitted **...
Example #1: It clearly states that you must be able to understand you for the antagonize to be effective. It is unlikely that a fleeing individual in a crowded city is going to be paying enough attention to what you are saying to understand the content and be antagonized. This is a matter of GM decision not a problem with the feat. Also I'm not familiar with this module so is that chase scene handled in combat turns or just a series of skill checks? If it isn't round by round combat then the antagonized individual doesn't have a next "turn" on which to be forced to act.

Flee on the rooftops, so no crowd there, and the chare rules work round by round.

PatientWolf wrote:


Example #2: Notice that you have to work around specific feats to make this as egregious as you want it to be. If the GM does this it is because it is the outcome he desires. Second you characterize the antagonize as being some benign statement like "This will destroy your kingdom". That is your characterization not the description. According to the feat it is an insult or slur so heinous it causes a rage not just some small statement and everyone present would hear it. Yes the PCs may use it against him as well and it may result in him loosing (although again all present would hear the PCs provoke him to the attack). Apparently you think that the PCs should not be able to use skills and abilities to influence the situation and should be railroaded along the prewritten script of the module.

1) as I pointed out,the module was written before the antagonize feat.

For the character taking antagonize instead of weapon finesse is doing his job. It is the only change I made in the statblock, versatile performance is a class ability and he has comedy as one of his versatiel performances, so he has intimidate.

2) Feat text:
"Antagonize
Whether with biting remarks or hurtful words, you are adept at making creatures angry with you."

Point to me where it say anything about "an insult or slur so heinous it causes a rage". Against a the right person, if you know his buttons, a apparently innocuous comment can cause a rage.
The problem is that in real life you need to know what buttons you need to push.

3) Explain to me your final remark, as I fail to see how you have got that idea, beside trying to win a debate picturing your opponent as being a badwrongfu gamer.
A good attempt at antagonizing if that was what you were doing.

PatientWolf wrote:


Example #3:Here again you had to have the specifically exact stats on the part of the NPCs to make this feasible. If the GM does that it is because he wants that result to happen. Second the antagonized PC does not have to attempt to "murder" the antagonizer. A non-lethal unarmed attack, i.e. a punch to the nose would fulfill the requirements. Third this is not in combat so there are no "turns". So the requirement that the PC attack on his next "turn" is null and void since there is no turn to trigger the act. Also it seems that since this could be an intense RPG scene you think the players and NPCs alike should be railroaded into it. Heaven forbid the PCs be able to do something that goes off script from the scene as written.

LOL, the "turn" excuse is one of the more feeble I have seen. So I suppose you never have a combat, because there aren't turns before the combat, so it is not possible to do action that are measured in turns and start a combat.

Sorry to burst your bubble, but the moment in which someone use an offensive ability on you you start using turns.

And again you are using the bdawrongfu GM as a way to win a discussion. Nice.

PatientWolf wrote:


Example #4: A court trial is not handled in "turns" there is no "next turn" for the PC to be forced to attack on. Second again you are dictating that the PC would go into a murdering rage and attack the crowd or throw a spell but the PC could just punch the prosecutor in the nose. Also again the prosecutor would have to utter a horrendously provocative slur or insult to produce this reaction that would be heard by all including the judge.

Again the turn excuse ^-^

And maybe you should read better the example. It is a hired goon in the crowd making the antagonizing.
And the feat say "the target must attempt to make a melee attack against you, make a ranged attack against you, target you with a spell, or include you in the area of a spell."
It can be non lethal, but the nice witness that was speaking a second ago go into a rage when someone in the crow cry "Burn him with the beast" and either charge the crowd to punch the antagonizer, pick the judge mallet and throw it or cast a spell. Nice way to lose a trial.

Again the "utter horrendous slur" that is not required by the feat.

PatientWolf wrote:


Example #5: Again the thief is probably not going to be paying enough attention to understand any insults being hurled. Also as noted above the chase scene is probably not in turn by turn combat rounds so there is no "next turn" for him to be forced to act on.

Considering that Philippe is making remarks about the guard during the chase and they hear him, the opposite should eb true too.

And again the turn thing. You really play in adifferent way.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Bill Dunn wrote:
ryric wrote:


In a world where Antagonize is an option, why wouldn't nearly every city guard have it? It stops people from running away. It lets the guard do his/her job much better than many other 1st level feat choices like Toughness or Weapon Focus. Heck if this existed in real life every SWAT team would have a group of guys whose entire job was to sit behind cover and pin down the bad guys with repeated insults.
Why not use it all the time? Because it sometimes gets them killed, that's why. It's all well and good to start fights, but one of the guardsman's best defenses is safety in numbers. Antagonize makes the antagonizing guardsman the target. Numbers are a lot less helpful in that situation since, as the provoking guardsman, you may have been killed by the guy you provoked.

The trick is to use it on the fleeing shoplifter or the pickpocket, not on the burly barbarian that is wreaking the bar.

It would stop the fleeing characters and get them to turn back to be beaten into submission.

It is the perfect feat for the typical city guards in a lot of settings: strong and useful against weaker opponents, not to be used against stronger opponents that most guards will avoid challenging.


Mikaze wrote:
Umbranus wrote:

There are tons of other abilities that could keep the cleric from using breath of life. I really really do not understand (I try it and fail) why all those abilities are ok but antagonize is not.

Example 1: the antagonizer could ready his action to move up to the cleric and hit him once he starts casting. To do that he would not need the feat, he would not need those ranks in intimidate etc.
Example 2: the antagonizer could just move up and hit the dead guy one more. An attack that nearly auto-succeeds and might well bring the target too far below 0 to be brought up.
Example 3: the antagonizer could hit the cleric with a stun or daze or with a silence spell.
Example 4: He could cast a wall of iron spell between cleric and dead loved one.
Example 5: He could dominate the cleric.

Everything of this might be successful in keeping the cleric from using breath of life on his lover. (or party member). Why is only antagonize broken?

Because antagonize is the one that makes him change his personality of his own free will.

Taking a break from this one, Antagonize makes me that mad.

It doesn't, Antagonize creates a moment of madness (where he acts out of character) rather than changing his personality. Moments of madness are actually quite common (at least in terms of crime) in reality where people just lose it and act in ways they never normally would. Now you can argue that your pacifistic paladin would never lose his cool no matter what and that making him do so destroys his personality but then again your paladin is still human (flawed,emotional,complex) and so capable of error or acting out of character.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Bill Dunn wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:


Slap your face - not a melee attack.
cuffs you with his glove - not a melee attack.
throw his shoes - not a ranged attack.

So really for you antagonize is not broken as you think it is possible to twist it into "you get mildly annoyed by the antagonizer and show your disdain in him"?
So your solution is emasculating the feat?

You're going to have to demonstrate why any of those are not appropriate attacks since they all may have significant consequences, all force the loss of standard action, may represent the most immediate method of attacking the antagonist, and may be in character for the target of the antagonism. They all represent a significant loss of cool and are appropriate for situations that are, otherwise, not deadly violent.

I might ask why are you giving the feat more power than it needs?

Again! From the top!

PRD wrote:


On its next turn, the target must attempt to make a melee attack against you, make a ranged attack against you, target you with a spell, or include you in the area of a spell.

No mention of consequences or forcing the loss of standard actions. What matter is that you make a melee or ranged attack or cast a spell against the target.

As written a caster could cast haste or cure disease on the target and fulfill the conditions of the feat.

What is a melee attack?

PRD wrote:


Attack
Making an attack is a standard action.
Melee Attacks: With a normal melee weapon, you can strike any opponent within 5 feet. (Opponents within 5 feet are considered adjacent to you.) Some melee weapons have reach, as indicated in their descriptions. With a typical reach weapon, you can strike opponents 10 feet away, but you can't strike adjacent foes (those within 5 feet).
Unarmed Attacks: Striking for damage with punches, kicks, and head butts is much like attacking with a melee weapon, except for the following:

With a stretch you can put a slap in that list, not a cuff with a glove.

Ranged attack?

PRD wrote:


Ranged Attacks: With a ranged weapon, you can shoot or throw at any target that is within the weapon's maximum range and in line of sight. The maximum range for a thrown weapon is five range increments. For projectile weapons, it is 10 range increments. Some ranged weapons have shorter maximum ranges, as specified in their descriptions.

Again, with a stretch you can put removing a shoe and throwing it in that list, as an improvised weapon.

You have proved that stretching the meaning of melee or ranged attack it is possible to nerf the feat. Great result.
We return to your position "the feat isn't broken as it can be nerfed into uselessness".


"We return to your position "the feat isn't broken as it can be nerfed into uselessness"."

Again, why is a character using his standard to attack me with a shoe instead of using his standard to attack me with a bow, worse for ME?

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
slade867 wrote:

"We return to your position "the feat isn't broken as it can be nerfed into uselessness"."

Again, why is a character using his standard to attack me with a shoe instead of using his standard to attack me with a bow, worse for ME?

Because half of the goal of the feat is to incite the other guy into violence while retaining plausible deniability.

And another good crunch of the feat is getting someone that hasn't a ranged attack or spell available to come into melee. Or force someone to expend his spells against the wrong target.

If throwing a harmless object can fulfill the feat requirement you nerf it.


I don't see that line about plausible deniability anywhere in the feat description...safe to say that you saying that is no different than someone saying that it is actually a heinous remark not just "hey I don't like you"

Saying anything can be used to qualify for an attack is not a stretch...its in the rules themselves...they have rules for improvised weapons...and unarmed strike is listed as a weapon so can be used for the feat without any STRETCH of the rules at all...they are using the rules themselves

You as a PC never know what kind of weapons or abilities your enemies have since they are humanoids, as all the scenarios basically have to be human of some subtype since this is a mind-affecting effect which a TON of things are immune to, so using antagonize on the wrong person could be the last thing you do. As for NPC's the same applies, your GM knows what PC's can do but that knowledge is not NPC knowledge and they might just antagonize the halfling in the group only to find out he's a Barbarian that then rages and repaints the room with the NPCs blood

You keep saying its a "stretch" but none of it is, as for your examples I will go with you on the "there are no rounds" argument...I agree, if someone uses Antagonize then that should start combat...at the start of combat everyone rolls initiative yes? What if the PC fails and goes last...everyone else goes first are they just going to do nothing though...or attempt to talk to the guy that is obviously pissed off now and ask him what to do?

For everyone situation that has been brought up in this argument about the feat there are 1,000 others where the feat would be useless or would actually end up working counter productive to the user

And as for people saying its against their charcter, anger is a natural human emotion, so unless your character is Ghandi then you have the capability to get angry

Walk into a police station, say "COPS ARE RETARDED, YOU CAN ALL SUCK MY (insert whatever you want)!!!" much less than six seconds required to say that...see how many of them get angry.


ryric wrote:
That's really one of the core issues with the feat - it's very existence implies a game world where anyone, anywhere can instigate deadly violence from complete strangers with a casual insult.

Who said anything about deadly force? You could try to grab them, you could throw a copper piece (or a shoe) at them, you could cast Daze on them. You could cast Message on them and softly whisper "that wasn't very nice". The noble that was mentioned earlier could slap someone with a glove.

I agree with a sentiment that was expressed earlier - you cannot say "my character wouldn't do that" any more than you can say "my character wouldn't get hit by an arrow". If your character concept is being unflappable, invest in wisdom.

I do agree that bonuses to your Will save should give you a bonus. Probably the easiest thing to do would be to give it a Will save vs DC 10+Intimidate modifier. I would also make it a Compulsion effect.

Shadow Lodge

Diego Rossi wrote:
PatientWolf wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:


Let’s start with the less disruptive examples.
** spoiler omitted **...
Example #1: It clearly states that you must be able to understand you for the antagonize to be effective. It is unlikely that a fleeing individual in a crowded city is going to be paying enough attention to what you are saying to understand the content and be antagonized. This is a matter of GM decision not a problem with the feat. Also I'm not familiar with this module so is that chase scene handled in combat turns or just a series of skill checks? If it isn't round by round combat then the antagonized individual doesn't have a next "turn" on which to be forced to act.

Flee on the rooftops, so no crowd there, and the chare rules work round by round.

PatientWolf wrote:


Example #2: Notice that you have to work around specific feats to make this as egregious as you want it to be. If the GM does this it is because it is the outcome he desires. Second you characterize the antagonize as being some benign statement like "This will destroy your kingdom". That is your characterization not the description. According to the feat it is an insult or slur so heinous it causes a rage not just some small statement and everyone present would hear it. Yes the PCs may use it against him as well and it may result in him loosing (although again all present would hear the PCs provoke him to the attack). Apparently you think that the PCs should not be able to use skills and abilities to influence the situation and should be railroaded along the prewritten script of the module.

1) as I pointed out,the module was written before the antagonize feat.

For the character taking antagonize instead of weapon finesse is doing his job. It is the only change I made in the statblock, versatile performance is a class ability and he has comedy as one of his versatiel performances, so he has intimidate.

2) Feat text:
"Antagonize
Whether with biting remarks or hurtful words, you...

I can't believe you are sticking to the claim that just a simple normal phrase that no one in a court room or social situation would think out of the ordinary constitutes "biting remarks or hurtful words" sufficient to induce a rage. The idea that you can just slip the use of this feat in disguised as normal conversation is ludicrous and in no way supported by the actual text.

As for your dismissal of the "turn" argument. Just recently in our game we were in an inn in which a bard and our barbarian got into a heated argument. The bard used his facinate ability and suggestion to make the barbarian do the "I'm a little tea pot dance". According to your argument as soon as he used facinate it should have gone into combat rounds, which would have instantly bogged down what turned out to be a fun and hilarious role playing scene. It is up to the GM to decide when to call for initiative which begins the combat rounds and turn by turn actions.

As for how I got the idea that you think the players should be railroaded into the prewritten script. Your very arguments were that because antagonize would allow deviation from what was written and allow the story to go off script it should not be allowed. In every one of those examples that was your argument. That the scene as written would not work if antagonize was allowed. If that applies to antagonize then that applies to any PC skill, feat or spell. No off script allowed.

You are deliberately interpreting this feat beyond what is written to twist it into something that is broken when it is not.

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32

Wait, it's twisting the intent of the feat to allow "biting remarks" to be spoken in a calm, quiet manner - but not twisting it to have the "attack in a rage" be a buff spell or harmless throw of a coin or shoe?

Really, i think my problems with the feat can be broken down into 3 things:

1. Tabletop games with a live GM do not need an "aggro" mechanic. If you want to make yourself the target of attacks do it by making yourself the best target to attack.

2. The feat basically autosucceeds if you build for it at all. (2a-Intimidate is a poor choice for insults anyway, Bluff would probably be better)

3. The feat constitutes nonmagical "mind control", and it's as easy to learn to do as Toughness or Improved Initiative, so why wouldn't much of the world learn this valuable and useful skill?

Shadow Lodge

ryric wrote:

Wait, it's twisting the intent of the feat to allow "biting remarks" to be spoken in a calm, quiet manner - but not twisting it to have the "attack in a rage" be a buff spell or harmless throw of a coin or shoe?

Really, i think my problems with the feat can be broken down into 3 things:

1. Tabletop games with a live GM do not need an "aggro" mechanic. If you want to make yourself the target of attacks do it by making yourself the best target to attack.

2. The feat basically autosucceeds if you build for it at all. (2a-Intimidate is a poor choice for insults anyway, Bluff would probably be better)

3. The feat constitutes nonmagical "mind control", and it's as easy to learn to do as Toughness or Improved Initiative, so why wouldn't much of the world learn this valuable and useful skill?

First off I have not made the argument that you can just throw a harmless object or cast a buff spell on the antagonizer. I have argued that you can punch the person in the nose, kick the person in the groin, throw dishes at him, or use other less than lethal attacks.

Also no one is arguing the words can't be spoke in a calm manner only that they are biting and hurtful words. You can't antagonize by walking up and saying "Nice weather we're having" which is pretty much what a previous poster was arguing.


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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
ryric wrote:

Wait, it's twisting the intent of the feat to allow "biting remarks" to be spoken in a calm, quiet manner - but not twisting it to have the "attack in a rage" be a buff spell or harmless throw of a coin or shoe?

Really, i think my problems with the feat can be broken down into 3 things:

1. Tabletop games with a live GM do not need an "aggro" mechanic. If you want to make yourself the target of attacks do it by making yourself the best target to attack.

2. The feat basically autosucceeds if you build for it at all. (2a-Intimidate is a poor choice for insults anyway, Bluff would probably be better)

3. The feat constitutes nonmagical "mind control", and it's as easy to learn to do as Toughness or Improved Initiative, so why wouldn't much of the world learn this valuable and useful skill?

I agree that a biting remark doesn't constitute an attack, though message, by the RAW, does. That could stand a revision or reinterpretation to indicate that it must be an attack spell of some kind or at least can't have the harmless tag.

1. Generally, I agree that refereed games shouldn't need an aggro mechanic, in theory. But I've read too many posts on the internet that suggest this may not be true in practice. I can live with certain kinds of aggro-based mechanics, particularly ones that require player agency to invoke.

2. The mechanic is in a bit of a tough bind between being an easy check vs capturing how differently characters might be built. It could be based on the antagonist's level like a spell-like ability would be but then they wouldn't really have to invest in diplomacy or intimidate to drive their ability with the tactic. Or you could roll the intimidate check, check a table, and derive a Will Save DC from that.
I don't think I would give the ability to the Bluff skill. It already has a combat application - adding another might make it too useful as an investment.

3. I don't have a problem with non-magical mind control, particularly for short duration. It can be seen as more analogous to triggering reflexes and reflexive behavior.
And why doesn't everybody take it? Same reasons not everybody takes toughness or improved initiative - got other things to take that are higher priorities. Your average commoner on the farm probably does better taking profession (farmer) than antagonize and pumping his intimidate because he'd rather have a good harvest than get himself attacked. The whole element of drawing an attack to yourself should be a good weeding consideration. Not everyone wants to paint a target on themselves and that's exactly what antagonize does. Sure, it might make it easier for comrades to take out your antagonized targets, but how many of those targets might get in the lucky shot that significantly hurts or kills you?


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Bill Dunn wrote:


1. Generally, I agree that refereed games shouldn't need an aggro mechanic, in theory. But I've read too many posts on the internet that suggest this may not be true in practice. I can live with certain kinds of aggro-based mechanics, particularly ones that require player agency to invoke.

So, it's a feat that only PCs should be able to take? A PC should never be the victim of this feat?

Bill Dunn wrote:


3. I don't have a problem with non-magical mind control, particularly for short duration. It can be seen as more analogous to triggering reflexes and reflexive behavior.
And why doesn't everybody take it? Same reasons not everybody takes toughness or improved initiative - got other things to take that are higher priorities. Your average commoner on the farm probably does better taking profession (farmer) than antagonize and pumping his intimidate because he'd rather have a good harvest than get himself attacked. The whole element of drawing an attack to yourself should be a good weeding consideration. Not everyone wants to paint a target on themselves and that's exactly what antagonize does. Sure, it might make it easier for comrades to take out your antagonized targets, but how many of those targets might get in the lucky shot that significantly hurts or kills you?

1) Do you have no problem with the fact that unlike every other mechanic in the game that takes control of your character, it has no agency for additional saves if you are doing something against character?

2) Do you have no problem with the fact that it provokes an emotional response in sentient beings that don't have emotional responses (androids for example).
3) Do you have no problem with the fact that it affects, for example, an outsider that is a pacifist? Invoking them to rage?
4) Nobody has said the average farmer takes it, that's a bogus argument. You might just as well say you don't think it's something the average dolphin should take, it's just as nonsensical. The argument is that it is absolutely something that a lot of mercenaries, city guards, army members, thieves guild members, assassins guild members, bounty hunters, adventurers, murderers, and other people who generally go around getting involved in violent situations should learn, because it's just that da** useful!.


mdt wrote:
1) Do you have no problem with the fact that unlike every other mechanic in the game that takes control of your character, it has no agency for additional saves if you are doing something against character?

Murderous Command would like to have a word with you.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
redward wrote:
mdt wrote:
1) Do you have no problem with the fact that unlike every other mechanic in the game that takes control of your character, it has no agency for additional saves if you are doing something against character?
Murderous Command would like to have a word with you.

Get's a will save, get's spell resistance, only lasts a round, is a compulsion mind affecting spell, and is badly written since it also doesn't have the agency for additional saves and was put in via a splat book.

Your argument is, there's a broken spell that is easier to avoid than the feat, so that makes the broken feat ok.

Sorry, not buying it.

Shadow Lodge

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mdt wrote:


1) Do you have no problem with the fact that unlike every other mechanic in the game that takes control of your character, it has no agency for additional saves if you are doing something against character?

This feat doesn't make you behave out of character. It just makes you decide how your character would react within their nature if enraged beyond reason. If a pacifist this might mean casting a daze, entangle or web or some other non-harmful means of disabling the antagonizer within the limits of the feat. You might have to get creative to figure out what your character would legitimately do to remain true to his nature and stay within the limitations of the feat but your character doesn't have to act contrary to his nature.

mdt wrote:
2) Do you have no problem with the fact that it provokes an emotional response in sentient beings that don't have emotional responses (androids for example).

You have androids in your fantasy game? Wouldn't those be constructs and therefore immune to mind affects. Pretty much any mindless, emotionless entity such as mindless undead and constructs are immune to mind effects and thus would be immune.

mdt wrote:
3) Do you have no problem with the fact that it affects, for example, an outsider that is a pacifist? Invoking them to rage?

Even a pacifist can get angry. You just have to get creative to how they will meet the requirements of this feat yet remain a pacifist.

mdt wrote:
4) Nobody has said the average farmer takes it, that's a bogus argument. You might just as well say you don't think it's something the average dolphin should take, it's just as...

ryric did:

ryric wrote:
3. The feat constitutes nonmagical "mind control", and it's as easy to learn to do as Toughness or Improved Initiative, so why wouldn't much of the world learn this valuable and useful skill?

So yes, someone has argued that much of the world, which includes farmers, housewives, and town drunks, should have learned this valuable and useful skill.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
PatientWolf wrote:
mdt wrote:


1) Do you have no problem with the fact that unlike every other mechanic in the game that takes control of your character, it has no agency for additional saves if you are doing something against character?

This feat doesn't make you behave out of character. It just makes you decide how your character would react within their nature if enraged beyond reason. If a pacifist this might mean casting a daze, entangle or web or some other non-harmful means of disabling the antagonizer within the limits of the feat. You might have to get creative to figure out what your character would legitimately do to remain true to his nature and stay within the limitations of the feat but your character doesn't have to act contrary to his nature.

And if you don't have any of those spells? Or aren't even a spell caster? The feat is pretty specific, you have to attack with melee, ranged attack, or spell. That's your three options. Spitting on someone is not an attack. Throwing a shoe at them is not an attack, unless you use the improvised weapon rules, in which case, the shoe does damage like a dagger (1d4 bludgeoning) and you have violated your pacifist tenants over 6 seconds of words. Slapping is not an attack unless you can do HP damage. In which case, it's an unarmed strike doing non-lethal damage (but it's still a hostile action which negates your tenants again). That's my biggest issue, as you say, it makes you choose to attack in some way, even if you wouldn't. It doesn't force you to attack, it makes you decide to attack, as you state. That's a huge piece of barf to me.

PatientWolf wrote:


mdt wrote:
2) Do you have no problem with the fact that it provokes an emotional response in sentient beings that don't have emotional responses (androids for example).
You have androids in your fantasy game? Wouldn't those be constructs and therefore immune to mind affects. Pretty much any mindless, emotionless entity such as mindless undead and constructs are immune to mind effects and thus would be immune.

Androids are part of the Golarian world, and have a racial penalty that they can't get morale bonuses or penalties because they do not have emotions. They are not immune to mind effects, they have minds, they do not have emotions.

PatientWolf wrote:


mdt wrote:
3) Do you have no problem with the fact that it affects, for example, an outsider that is a pacifist? Invoking them to rage?

Even a pacifist can get angry. You just have to get creative to how they will meet the requirements of this feat yet remain a pacifist.

No, I don't, because the feat says you must attack melee, ranged, or with a spell. If you aren't making an attack roll, you aren't attacking. And if you don't have a spell, you are down to a ranged attack or a melee attack. Even if you go for non-lethal means, you have made an attack and by the feat you decided to do it.

PatientWolf wrote:


mdt wrote:
4) Nobody has said the average farmer takes it, that's a bogus argument. You might just as well say you don't think it's something the average dolphin should take, it's just as...

ryric wrote:

Ryric wrote:


3. The feat constitutes nonmagical "mind control", and it's as easy to learn to do as Toughness or Improved Initiative, so why wouldn't much of the world learn this valuable and useful skill?
So yes, someone has argued that much of the world, which includes farmers, housewives, and town drunks, should have learned this valuable and useful skill.

Wrong, he did not. You are twisting words. He said, and I refer to your quote, 'It's as easy to learn to do as Toughness or Improved Initiative'. Flat statement. It's a feat, it's just as easy to learn as those, absolute truth.

'So why wouldn't much of the world learn this valuable and useful skill?'. Much of the world speaks German. Is that a majority of the world? Is that all farmers? No, it's not. You are making things up.

Much of the world would find it useful and learn it. Who would find it useful?

MDT wrote:


The argument is that it is absolutely something that a lot of mercenaries, city guards, army members, thieves guild members, assassins guild members, bounty hunters, adventurers, murderers, and other people who generally go around getting involved in violent situations should learn, because it's just that da** useful!.

Oh look, much of the world are mercenaries, city guards, army members, thieves guild members, assassins guild members, bounty hunters, adventurers, murderers, and other people who generally go around getting involved in violent situations. Is that the majority of the world? No. Is it a large minority? Yes. Is that Much of the world? Yes. Is it every farmer and tavernkeeper as you claim was said? No.

If you want to argue, do it. Don't make up things other people said, and if you do, don't quote them to prove you made it up.


mdt wrote:
redward wrote:
mdt wrote:
1) Do you have no problem with the fact that unlike every other mechanic in the game that takes control of your character, it has no agency for additional saves if you are doing something against character?
Murderous Command would like to have a word with you.

Get's a will save, get's spell resistance, only lasts a round, is a compulsion mind affecting spell, and is badly written since it also doesn't have the agency for additional saves and was put in via a splat book.

Your argument is, there's a broken spell that is easier to avoid than the feat, so that makes the broken feat ok.

Sorry, not buying it.

I'm pretty sure it doesn't get the opportunity for additional saves because it only lasts a round. As does Antagonize.

If you're going to make sweeping generalizations like "every other mechanic in the game" it would be helpful to know your pet exceptions prior to formulating a response.

Digital Products Assistant

Removed some off-topic posts.

Liberty's Edge

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If you're discounting theorycrafting, don't.

Theorycrafting is what should have been done prior to this being published. I understand the fact that some of you feel strongly about this not being broken in its current incarnation, but please realize: the fact that there are a significant amount of people that see this as extremely objectionable means that, by definition, it is a kind of a bad feat. Not objectively bad. Subjectively bad. A feat that half the playerbase strenuously objects to on the grounds that it distorts conventional and widely-accepted game mechanics, contains too many loopholes and corner cases, and violates their agency over their characters is less than good. That's not the reaction that feats are supposed to receive, period.

It's OK for some people at some tables. That doesn't make it OK. It (my humble opinion) shouldn't have been published, and all the passionate arguments for and against it are so much dust in the wind.

It's been fixed about as far as it can be. It just never should have been published.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
redward wrote:


I'm pretty sure it doesn't get the opportunity for additional saves because it only lasts a round. As does Antagonize.

If you're going to make sweeping generalizations like "every other mechanic in the game" it would be helpful to know your pet exceptions prior to formulating a response.

My apologies, I honestly didn't even know what the spell was until you mentioned it. I actually do, despite all rumors to the contrary, have a life. So I don't have the entirety of the rule set memorized and at the tip of my tongue. However, I stand by the statement that 'every other mind controling effect in the game has this' and just add the caveat of 'other than broken spells and feats' on to it, thus covering Murderous Command.

BTW: That's also banned in my games, use dominate or something if you want to make people do things they don't want to do.

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