Circlets are not headbands?


Rules Questions


5 people marked this as FAQ candidate.
Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

So while browsing the PRD today I noticed something that made me do a double-take:

PRD wrote:

Circlet of Persuasion

Slot: head
Description: This silver headband grants a +3 competence bonus on the wearer's Charisma-based checks.
Link: http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/magicItems/wondrousItems.html.

"That's not right," I thought, "was it always like that?" Then I looked in my 1st printing CRB and UE and was the same there. (In UE the description is longer, but it is still described as a headband.)

Now assuming this isn't a typo, then I can only conclude it's a well-intentioned change for purposes of maintaining game balance*. However, can we please get the fluff and crunch reconciled here? Ignoring the fact that I can just Rule 0 this, it just looks silly, and even worse, it's counter-intuitive.

*:
Game Balance: In 3.5, the enhancement bonus to Charisma was gained from a cloak, while the competence bonus to Charisma-based checks was still on the circlet. It would have effectively nerfed bards who were transitioned from 3.5 to Pathfinder if they had to give up one of these two magic items.

Suggested Fix wrote:

Coronet of Persuasion

Slot: head
Description: This small silver crown grants a +3 competence bonus on the wearer's Charisma-based checks.
Note: I've already checked the pagination in UE and CRB and such a change would not increase the space needed. In fact, UE's description is actually longer than that found in the CRB.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
PRD wrote:

Magic Items on the Body

Many magic items need to be donned by a character who wants to employ them or benefit from their abilities. It's possible for a creature with a humanoid-shaped body to wear as many as 15 magic items at the same time. However, each of those items must be worn on (or over) a particular part of the body, known as a “slot.”

A humanoid-shaped body can be decked out in magic gear consisting of one item from each of the following groups, keyed to which slot on the body the item is worn.

Armor: suits of armor.

Belts: belts and girdles.

Body: robes and vestments.

Chest: mantles, shirts, and vests.

Eyes: eyes, glasses, and goggles.

Feet: boots, shoes, and slippers.

Hands: gauntlets and gloves.

Head: circlets, crowns, hats, helms, and masks.

Headband: headbands and phylacteries.

Neck: amulets, brooches, medallions, necklaces, periapts, and scarabs.

Ring (up to two): rings.

Shield: shields.

Shoulders: capes and cloaks.

Wrist: bracelets and bracers.

Emphasis mine.

I think the only thing that needs to be amended is the word "headband" in the item description. Admittedly, having the Circlet and the Headband be two different classifications of magic items is a little odd, but I suppose you could make a case for a circlet being worn across the forehead whereas a headband is worn at the hairline.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Yes, I know what the slot description says, but it's still contrived and counter-intuitive.

I actually own a reproduction of Elrond's circlet from the LotR movies and wear it as part of my elven cosplays. Yet unlike Hugo Weaving, there is not a 3-inch difference between where my hairline ends and where my forehead begins. As such, wearing a headband and circlet as you have described would overlap.

Not to mention, these are Charisma-affecting items we are talking about. You know, items designed to improve your performance and reception in social settings. Given how ridiculous it would look to wear a headband and a circlet at the same time, I'd say it would be a self-defeating choice of accessories. ;)

Really, moving the slot from headband to head was a necessary fix for bards (i.e. no more cloaks of charisma). Still, it was a bit too hasty/incomplete of a fix in that they didn't reconcile the description with the mechanics. Understandable in a 576 page tome, but errors still get fixed with each printing, so there's no good reason not to call out such incongruities when we see them.

If we can get used to no longer having Cloaks of Charisma or Gauntlets of Ogre Power, I'm sure we can endure having Circlets of Persuasion renamed too.


Isn't the whole point of the "Headband" slot that it covers the items that could be worn with a helm like the phylacterie? Otherwise there was no real need for the two different slots. Why not just have them all as Head and let it be what it is. At least that is how I understood it. But then maybe I am wrong.


The way I read that, a headband is flat enough that something else (helm, crown, circlet) can be worn over it.

You can't wear a helm over a crown. You can, however, wear a sweatband on your head and put your helmet on over it. (Now I have aerobic instructor fighters in my head...)


It's worth noting that, in Pathfinder, the circlet of persuasion takes up the head slot, while the moon circlet takes up the headband slot.

-Matt


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Lovely, so not only is the circlet of persuasion counter-intuitive, but the circlets themselves are implemented inconsistently. :-\


Mattastrophic wrote:

It's worth noting that, in Pathfinder, the circlet of persuasion takes up the head slot, while the moon circlet takes up the headband slot.

-Matt

Seems like we could really use the "You can't explain that" meme right about now.


ANYONE losing their enchant bonuses to stats is badly hurt.

Why Paizo gave casters their own slot and used belts, but insisted on adding lots of new belt items, I will never know (this also hurts MAD classes, but another time).

Harrison wrote:
Mattastrophic wrote:

It's worth noting that, in Pathfinder, the circlet of persuasion takes up the head slot, while the moon circlet takes up the headband slot.

-Matt

Seems like we could really use the "You can't explain that" meme right about now.

Sure I can! It's moon logic!

The Exchange

The 'Dead Man's Headband' from Ultimate Equipment is basically a hatband for your Gunslinger's stetson... still headband slot though.

I can't imagine many GMs would have an issue changing the descriptions of items as long as the slot used remains the same. For that matter there (technically) aren't slot affinities any more, are there? So if you make (or comission) your own items then you can slot 'em anywhere... in theory...


I'm a little confused. What would be wrong with just changing it so that circlets are headbands, which is what they look like? Something to do with bards? I didn't understand.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

I mentioned it in the spoiler in the OP, but perhaps I should have made it more plain. Sorry about that, Fredrik.

Laithoron wrote:
Game Balance: In 3.5, the enhancement bonus to Charisma was gained from a cloak, while the competence bonus to Charisma-based checks was still on the circlet. It would have effectively nerfed bards who were transitioned from 3.5 to Pathfinder if they had to give up one of these two magic items.

In otherwords...

  • Pre-Pathfinder, a bard could count on getting a +3 competence bonus to Charisma-based checks from their headband-slot item, and a +X enhancement bonus to Charisma from the cloak-slot item.
  • In Pathfinder, however, the enhancement bonuses to stats were consolidated in either the headband slot (mental stats), or the belt slot (physical stats).
  • Since you cannot use two magic items in the same slot, this would mean that bards would either have to choose between using a Circlet of Persuasion OR a Headband of Alluring Charisma.
  • Presumably as a work-around, the Circlet of Persuasion was shifted to the head slot, even though a circlet is worn on the forehead or at the hairline (i.e. where common sense would dictate one wears something described as a headband).
  • In this way, backwards compatibility from a mechanics standpoint was preserved, but at the cost of the visual description no longer being accurate. (i.e. a counter-intuitive and inconsistent rule)
  • This is why I recommended renaming the Circlet of Persuasion to a Coronet of Persuasion since a crown, coronet, or tiara is actually worn atop the head as one would expect for a head-slot item. Also the word 'coronet' would keep this magic item's position in the printed books very close to where it is now. In the CRB, it would simply move to the opposite end of the cloak entries, in UE it would remain in exactly the same alphabetical order.

Does that make the problem clearer?


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Yes. Crystal, even. Thank you. :)


My character wears a Circlet of Persuasion and an Earring of Wisdom (it takes up the headband slot).


I agree, this is a small problem, but a troublesome one nonetheless.

It makes no sense for one circlet to be a headband item and one a head item.


It does make sense when you realize that a 'circlet' is by definition a type of crown.

Specifically one that has no cloth cap or arches that go across the top of the head. Circlets include anywhere from simple metal bands all the way to elaborate spiked affairs.

A tiara is a type of circlet, as are, technically, the paper crowns you can get at Burger King.

-j


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I absolutely love this change. It makes it so I don't have to give up as much just to have the Big Six necessary for basic survival.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

And still the phylactery of channeling uses the headband slot, which makes sure nobody ever uses it. If you're a cleric, would you wear this instead of a Wisdom-enhancing headband? I think this is a design error.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Zaister wrote:
And still the phylactery of channeling uses the headband slot, which makes sure nobody ever uses it. If you're a cleric, would you wear this instead of a Wisdom-enhancing headband? I think this is a design error.

Increasing your Wisdom will improve your Cleric spells; the phylactery of channeling will improve your channeling (which doesn't benefit from Wisdom at all, anyway).

Personally, I'd rather have better cleric spells and Will saves, but I can imagine a situation where someone would rather have +2d6 to all of their channels.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
spectrevk wrote:
Zaister wrote:
And still the phylactery of channeling uses the headband slot, which makes sure nobody ever uses it. If you're a cleric, would you wear this instead of a Wisdom-enhancing headband? I think this is a design error.

Increasing your Wisdom will improve your Cleric spells; the phylactery of channeling will improve your channeling (which doesn't benefit from Wisdom at all, anyway).

Personally, I'd rather have better cleric spells and Will saves, but I can imagine a situation where someone would rather have +2d6 to all of their channels.

Paladin/antipaladin? Although turning down the higher save bonuses and improved Smites with a Cha-boosting headband is tough.

It could also make sense for a multiclassed character with cleric as their secondary class (like fighter X/cleric 3). If the primary class doesn't cast spells (or is a minor spellcaster like a ranger), then the extra channel dice may be more beneficial than a Wis-boosting headband.

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder First Edition / Rules Questions / Circlets are not headbands? All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.