Final thoughts: mythic time stop


Mythic Adventures Playtest General Discussion

Owner - House of Books and Games LLC

We had our final playtests on 1/4 and 1/11, using the updates to the rules as requested by Jason.

This post comments only on mythic time stop.

I think any mythic spells in the system should be closely examined for how they affect play at the table. I'm going to pick on mythic time stop because of my experience with it, but in general I would be extremely careful with any spell that messes with action economy.

While the effect of mythic time stop sounds cool on paper, in practice it quite badly destroys flow of play at the table.

After all, only creatures within a short distance of the caster are affected, leaving some players out of the game for a long time. I had a caster using a greater maximize rod to dump a 5-round time stop on the members of the part who were close enough [and a second one as soon as that one finished]. One player got to sit around for close to an hour of real time while the remaining 5 members of of the party took 5 turns apiece followed immediately by another five rounds apiece.

As I mention in my post about Amazing Initiative, the rules need to be very, very aware of what slows down gameplay, and having part of a game table able to act while others are not really puts a damper on the fun. I know that technically it's the same as having a character paralyzed, or unconscious, etc., but in practice it's not - virtually every such condition is fixable, but being left out of a mythic time stop is just a thumb at the nose for whoever is unfortunate enough to be out of it.

Note that this includes the GM. I'm a player too. Like most GMs, I put a lot of work into making sure it's fun for everyone (including me), and an ability that gives me a big 'ol raspberry while everyone else at the table gets to play their character and have fun and I'm just there to take whatever abuse they can think of dishing out with literally zero options for doing anything about it.

Sure, this is an issue for regular time stop too, but the big difference in that case is it's one character, not an entire table, and their options are quite limited. An entire party has many more options and can do a heck of a lot with 5 (or 10) uninterruptable turns.

I'm just glad he didn't cast a maximized greater mythic time stop.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Mythic Time Stop takes only about a minute or so to do. It's not a big problem in my experience.

Owner - House of Books and Games LLC

On what planet does it take only a minute? Unless, of course, you're talking about in game time. I'm talking about real world sitting at the table watching the clock time.

I ran a combat with 6 annihilator robots, 7 PCs, plus a host of other smaller robots.

The wizard cast a maximized mythic time stop, then on round 5 a second one.

All of the party but 1 was included in the effect. That's 10 rounds of actions for 6 players, a total of 60 actions.

You're saying that would take 1 minute at your table? That means that each player took about a second per turn. I have a hard time believing that to be the case; I've never seen a player be that quick unless they're doing nothing or delaying :)

edit: Actually, it was 7 PCs, not 6. Corrected.


I have not used this yet gbonehead, but I can certainly see how it could slow things down but it is called Time stop after all. I was never a fan of the spell even in 2nd edition because it did this.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

All you have to do is have your actions planned out already. It's not like you can actually do anything to anybody, so all you've got is positioning and buff spells. It doesn't take that long to do.

Owner - House of Books and Games LLC

Talynonyx wrote:
All you have to do is have your actions planned out already. It's not like you can actually do anything to anybody, so all you've got is positioning and buff spells. It doesn't take that long to do.

Are you speaking from experience or theorycrafting?

Because I cannot imagine any table at which, when a wizard unexpectedly drops a maximized mythic time stop in round 3 of a giant combat spanning two flip mats where the wizard's player and 5 other players would burn through 60 actions in a minute of real time.

I'm sure such a thing is possible in theory, I just have my doubts that you've seen it in practice.

From practical, in-game experience, I can state that it was no fun for me as GM (an important consideration) and no fun for the character left out of the time stop (also an important consideration) and it took considerably longer than a minute. But sure, it was powerful as all hell.


One of the problems with the time stop Spell I've notice Even back in 1st and even 2d ed, is that mobs would think should acculy be immune to time stop like GODs, Demigod Gr Devils or deamon's arnt imune to the effect. Now in pathfinder this should realy be addresded, even more so with these Mythic rules.

Request: plese incude in some for Monsters or a list of monsters (In some form) that are eather immune to or that time stops(Mythic and or normal) has limited effect.

Suggetion: Incude Feat, ablity or power (monster only or otherwise) that would give Timestop immunity or limmited imumunity (mythic or otherwise)

Segetion 2: include immunity limited or otherwise in some NPC Mythic templets


If I may offer another mitigating thought with timestop, mythic or otherwise.

Your supposed to have 6 seconds to a round.

Except in the case of the uber mythic hours/level version you have 30 seconds MAX of time to perform all your actions in. You don't have hours to deliberate about what the most effective tactic is and what is going to happen if you do X, Y and Z and co-ordinate between your team members. You have 30 seconds before the axes start swinging again. Assuming you actually want to do something with your mouth in that 30 seconds other than talk (like say, cast a spell) you have even less than that to talk and communicate in.

The key being there that
a) Your time is NOT an infinite resource in that spell. Have 30 minute theological (or tactical) discussions shouldn't happen in a 5 round span. It shouldn't feel like you can.
b) Completely agree that it's just plain boring for the people not in it.

I'd put it back on the GM in such instances to control things, especially if some people are left out. First thought is along the lines of everyone has 1 minute of real time per round to say what they are doing. OUTCOMES of actions may take more than a minute (eg. Making a knowledge check as a standard action to ID some of the baddies might take the GM more than a minute to explain to you), but the decision and action itself, allocate a minute for.

Or to put it another way.... if the players go into detailed plans of attack and what they are going to move to and where while this time stop is going, and it took them 30 minutes of back and forth and conversation and planning to come up with those plans.... as the GM, I'd rule that coming up with that plan took them the 30 seconds that they gained from timestop and they drop out of the timestop without taking any 'actions' per say occurring.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

This is not a problem with time stop, but with the combat resolution taking too long.


Virgil wrote:
This is not a problem with time stop, but with the combat resolution taking too long.

If mythic time stop is causing combat to take much longer to resolve, and results in multiple players sitting out long periods of time, then the problem is with mythic time stop.

Combat takes a long time to resolve in the 3.X/PF system, especially at high levels.


I agree with Ecaterina Ducaird mostly. If my table dropped a 10 round timestop I would start a timer and give them say 5-10 minutes to have everything they wanted to do done. Then ready or not time would start flowing normally again.

If they spent an hour discussing strategy that is just pure unadulterated meta-gaming and I would not allow it.

A few quick ideas/orders should be shouted out between the affected members then a few castings and place yourself in the desired location and go!


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

This...may be off topic, in that it's only related to the time dilation effect of certain abilities being discussed here, but it is related, so here we go.

A little while back, I came up with a half-baked mechanic for dealing with this sort of thing. I've run into many, many instances of players taking way too long planning out every nuance of their actions and slowing play to a crawl - and yes, I'm guilty of this myself.

To combat this, I instituted a timer lasting about a minute per person, as suggested above. If they went over, their character ended up doing nothing for the turn, or continued with whatever they'd already been up to (in melee combat, etc.). This ticked off a few of my players with more complicated characters, and after some consideration, this seemed reasonable to me. So, I came up with a thing I've been calling the Player Shot Clock.

Using a fairly loose calculation based on character's Int, Wis, Dex, and total level, I give each player thirty seconds plus ten or so for every point of attribute mod, and slightly longer for every character level (or in this case, mythic tier). This is more complicated than a lot of people want to play with, and that's understandable, but it's been working pretty well for us. I just have a little list of how long each person gets to make their decisions (rolling dice, providing information and otherwise figuring out the outcome doesn't count, it's only the player choices that must be over with), and start the timer for each of them. This seems to keep the game flowing, at least for us.

The main trick with any tactic of this sort is sticking to it. Don't listen to, "Just one more second!", because if you do, then they learn not to stick to it. If they have fear of the clock, then people plan out their actions as much as they can ahead of time, because they know they'll pay for it if they don't.

Just my thoughts on the subject. Like I said, only peripherally on topic, but it's a thing that I find helps with any high-powered game where people start getting bogged down in the options.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Rulebook Subscriber
Granfather wrote:

One of the problems with the time stop Spell I've notice Even back in 1st and even 2d ed, is that mobs would think should acculy be immune to time stop like GODs, Demigod Gr Devils or deamon's arnt imune to the effect. Now in pathfinder this should realy be addresded, even more so with these Mythic rules.

Request: plese incude in some for Monsters or a list of monsters (In some form) that are eather immune to or that time stops(Mythic and or normal) has limited effect.

Suggetion: Incude Feat, ablity or power (monster only or otherwise) that would give Timestop immunity or limmited imumunity (mythic or otherwise)

Segetion 2: include immunity limited or otherwise in some NPC Mythic templets

There is one creature in a the Inner Sea World Guide who has a particularly effective counter to Time Stop.

Silver Crusade

Not a huge fan of mystic time stop, my main problem is, that if you get this at Wizard 17/Archmage2 it's a huge increase in power for the whole group. Maybe if spells like dispel magic of holy word get mythic versions that give the caster a chance to reverse some of the mess the caster has created.


Viscount K wrote:

This...may be off topic, in that it's only related to the time dilation effect of certain abilities being discussed here, but it is related, so here we go.

A little while back, I came up with a half-baked mechanic for dealing with this sort of thing. I've run into many, many instances of players taking way too long planning out every nuance of their actions and slowing play to a crawl - and yes, I'm guilty of this myself.

To combat this, I instituted a timer lasting about a minute per person, as suggested above.

And with the players having 60 rounds of stuff. . .that say half a minute per person becomes Half an Hour.

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