PFS rule on bonding with then upgrading a magic weapon


Pathfinder Society Roleplaying Guild

Liberty's Edge ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka The Great Rinaldo!

This started in a thread I posted in PFS, but it got moved to Rules even though it was a PFS specific question. I am starting a new thread to make sure I have the correct PFS specific ruling for what I want to do.

My Arcane Duelist bard/cavalier just reached bard level 5, which grants an Arcane Bond with a weapon. The weapon I want to bond with is my MW Cold Iron Cestus. I am unsure on the order, and therefore the cost, of doing what I want to do, and need clarification.

The end result I am after is a bonded, +1 Glamered Cold Iron Cestus.

Character reason, if you care:
As a cavalier, he switches from lance to flail depending on combat circumstances, and as a bard often has no weapon out, so as to look less threatening. Since you must have your bonded item in hand to cast, a glamered cestus would allow him to have the appearance of being unarmed even while the cestus is on his hand.

Since the "free" item you get to bond with cannot be of a special material, I have to dump it and use the "re-bond" rules. The first question is whether I can bond with the cestus while it is masterwork, before enchanting it, or if it must be magical before bonding. The second question is whether, when getting the 50% discount for the first enchantment on a bonded item, does that discount apply to the cold iron penalty? Finally, does the discount only apply when taking a nonmagical item to its first +1, or does it apply to the first enchantment you give it after bonding?

If bonding can happen first, my possibilities are:
1. Bond with new item (200gp x caster level 5 = 1000gp)
2a. Enchant to +1 (2000gp + 2000gp for enchanting cold iron, halved for first enchantment to a bonded item = 2000gp)
2b. Enchant to +1 (2000gp, halved for first enchantment to a bonded item, + 2000gp for enchanting cold iron = 3000gp)
3. Enchant to Glamered (4000gp)
Total: 7000gp or 8000gp

If it must be enchanted first, it would go like this:
1. Enchant to +1 (2000gp + 2000gp for enchanting cold iron = 4000gp)
2. Bond with now enchanted item (200gp x caster level 5 = 1000gp)
3a. Enchant to Glamered (4000gp, halved for first enchantment to a bonded item = 2000gp)
3b. Enchant to Glamered (4000gp, no discount allowed)
Total: 7000gp or 9000gp

So my question is: by PFS campaign rules, does this effort cost me 7, 8, or 9 thousand gp?

Liberty's Edge *****

FAQ wrote:

Can an Arcane Bonded Item be upgraded?

A character with the arcane bond class feature may create a bond with any magical item they own, as long as it falls within the categories permitted by the arcane bond ability. If a caster selects a non-magical item as his arcane bond, and the player later wishes to upgrade it, he may do so for the cost (not price) of the final item as listed in the item's statblock.

For items which can be enchanted incrementally (such as weapons or a ring of protection), only the first step gets this discount. For example, a nonmagical bonded dagger can be enchanted to a +1 dagger for 1,000gp instead of the normal 2,000gp, but further upgrades are purchased as normal even if you save up and purchase several enhancements at once.

A bonded item that is enchanted must still conform to all the campaign rules for access to and upgrading of magical items. The final and total price of the item (not the cost) is used on the Fame chart to determine whether a caster can purchase such an enchantment on their bonded item.

Bond to the MW Cold Iron Cestus

Then enchant to +1 for (2,000gp + 2,000gp = 4,000gp divided by 2) for 2,000 gp

Then get the Glammer for an additional 6,000gp for a total of 8,000gp.

If you bond to your 4,000gp +1 cestus, you would not get a discount on the Glammer. So the cheapest you could expect is to bond to the MW version and then upgrade the +1 at half cost, then upgrade to Glammer at full cost.

For purposes of Fame, the item would be worth 10,000gp + the cost of a mw cold iron cestus. So you'd need roughly 27 Fame.

Liberty's Edge ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka The Great Rinaldo!

Andrew Christian wrote:

Bond to the MW Cold Iron Cestus

Then enchant to +1 for (2,000gp + 2,000gp = 4,000gp divided by 2) for 2,000 gp

Then get the Glammer for an additional 6,000gp for a total of 8,000gp.

UE has the price of Glamer on a weapon to be 4,000 - is there a reason you think it is 6,000, or was that just you misreading/mistyping?

Based on that, it would be bond for 1k, enchant for 2k, then glamer for 4k, total 7k expense. The value with masterwork and enchantments would be 8,310, requiring 24 fame. (He has 33, so that's a non-issue).

Now, after all of that, I look at the entry in UE for Cestus and I may have blown the whole thing:

UE wrote:
The cestus is a glove of leather or thick cloth that covers the wielder from mid-finger to mid-forearm. The close combat weapon is reinforced with metal plates over the fingers and often lined with wicked spikes along the backs of the hands and wrists.

In my mind it was a metal glove. Is there enough metal on a cestus to make from Cold Iron to begin with?

If not, the whole thing is moot. I just take my free masterwork cestus with the class feature, upgrade it to +1 for 1000gp and glamer it for 4000gp. Then get something else made of cold iron for my arsenal.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

The Great Rinaldo! wrote:
Is there enough metal on a cestus to make from Cold Iron to begin with?

Is there enough metal on an arrow?

Paizo Employee ** Developer

The Great Rinaldo! wrote:

If bonding can happen first, my possibilities are:

1. Bond with new item (200gp x caster level 5 = 1000gp)
2a. Enchant to +1 (2000gp + 2000gp for enchanting cold iron, halved for first enchantment to a bonded item = 2000gp)
2b. Enchant to +1 (2000gp, halved for first enchantment to a bonded item, + 2000gp for enchanting cold iron = 3000gp)
3. Enchant to Glamered (4000gp)
Total: 7000gp or 8000gp

If it must be enchanted first, it would go like this:
1. Enchant to +1 (2000gp + 2000gp for enchanting cold iron = 4000gp)
2. Bond with now enchanted item (200gp x caster level 5 = 1000gp)
3a. Enchant to Glamered (4000gp, halved for first enchantment to a bonded item = 2000gp)
3b. Enchant to Glamered (4000gp, no discount allowed)
Total: 7000gp or 9000gp

It's really up to you. Once you're bonding with a new item after 1st level (in your case, 5th level), you may select either a masterwork item or an existing magic item. So, if you choose a masterwork cold iron cestus, your cost to get it to a +1 glamered cold iron cestus would be as follows:

1. Bond with new item (200 gp x CL 5 + cost of masterwork item [310 gp] = 1,310 gp)
2b. Add +1 enhancement bonus (2,000 gp / 2 [crafting discount] + 2,000 cost of enhancing cold iron = 3,000 gp)
3. Add glamered magic weapon special ability (4,000 gp /2 [crafting discount] = 2,000 gp)

for a total of 6,310 gp.

If you bond with a +1 cold iron cestus, it costs you a bit more, as you would be paying:
1. Bond with new item (200 x CL 5 + cost of item [4,310 gp] = 5,310 gp
2. Add glamered magic weapon special ability (4,000 gp / 2 [crafting discount] = 2,000 gp)

for a total of 7,310 gp.

Clearly, you'll want to go with the former option as it saves you 1,000 gp. In general, the sooner in the process you start applying your 50% crafting discount when enhancing a bonded item, the less you pay overall.

You must still have a Fame score of at least the item's full price to upgrade it, so you can't do so until you have the Fame needed to get an 8,310 gp item.

Paizo Employee ** Developer

6 people marked this as a favorite.

Note that the FAQ is being adjusted to remove the restriction on enhancing bonded items to include all upgrades, as limiting it to a single upgrade affects the scaling of a class feature for the wizard class (or other caster with a bonded item).

Liberty's Edge *****

Mark Moreland wrote:

2b. Add +1 enhancement bonus (2,000 gp / 2 [crafting discount] + 2,000 cost of enhancing cold iron = 3,000 gp)

Interesting. So the double the 1st enhancement cost for cold iron wouldn't be halved in this situation?

*****

Mark Moreland wrote:
Note that the FAQ is being adjusted to remove the restriction on enhancing bonded items to include all upgrades, as limiting it to a single upgrade affects the scaling of a class feature for the wizard class (or other caster with a bonded item).

Cool! Is there an ETA for that? More importantly, could this be listed in the clarification collection until then, or do we have to wait until the FAQ is officially updated?

Grand Lodge **

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Mark Moreland wrote:
Note that the FAQ is being adjusted to remove the restriction on enhancing bonded items to include all upgrades, as limiting it to a single upgrade affects the scaling of a class feature for the wizard class (or other caster with a bonded item).

That's fantastic news!

Shadow Lodge

The Great Rinaldo! wrote:
UE has the price of Glamer on a weapon to be 4,000 - is there a reason you think it is 6,000, or was that just you misreading/mistyping?

I'm betting it's a misunderstanding of how cold iron works; the 2,000gp cost to enchant applies only to the FIRST enchantment cost (raising the total price by 2,000gp), but it sounds like he's applying it to ALL of the enchantment components individually.

Also, note this:

Quote:
Also, adding any magical enhancements to a cold iron weapon increases its price by 2,000 gp. This increase is applied the first time the item is enhanced, not once per ability added.

Quoted the second sentence to reinforce the last point, but what I'm getting at here is the FIRST sentence. "Price" refers to the total cost to BUY the item, not to MAKE it (which is referred to as "cost"), and since the COST is set at half of price (as per Craft Magic Arms and Armor), that would mean it'll only cost you an additional 1,000gp to enchant; final cost (using the updated PFS FAQ for Arcane Bond) 4,000gp for adding +1 glamered, total price of item is 8,310gp, meaning it (barely) requires 27+ fame to upgrade, on account of the masterwork cestus price.

Note that I didn't include the cost to bond to the item for the fame needed, because it's not actually part of the ITEM'S price; it's basically just a one-time material component cost.

Also, metal plates and spikes are TOTALLY enough to justify the metal special material.

Liberty's Edge *****

no, my mistake was I didn't realize that Glamor was a GP cost and not a +1 market value.

Liberty's Edge ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka The Great Rinaldo!

Mark Moreland wrote:
Note that the FAQ is being adjusted to remove the restriction on enhancing bonded items to include all upgrades, as limiting it to a single upgrade affects the scaling of a class feature for the wizard class (or other caster with a bonded item).

You just became my favorite Mark! ;-)

Based on your first reply to me, I take it I may use this rule now, before you update the FAQ? If so, I'll just print out this thread to for my character folder.

As for

Mark Moreland wrote:
1. Bond with new item (200 gp x CL 5 + cost of masterwork item [310 gp] = 1,310 gp)

I always understood the cost of the item to be there because you had to buy it; if I use the MW cold iron cestus I already have (bought it a couple of levels ago), that doesn't have to be added in, does it?

Grand Lodge **

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Nope, you just need to have it.

*

Mark Moreland wrote:
Note that the FAQ is being adjusted to remove the restriction on enhancing bonded items to include all upgrades, as limiting it to a single upgrade affects the scaling of a class feature for the wizard class (or other caster with a bonded item).

WOO!

Will the change be retroactive?

I didn't get a discount for +1 because I wasn't level 5, and the FAQ had not yet been updated eliminating the need to be the right level. I didn't get a discount for +2, because the FAQ said it was a one-time upgrade.

2,000 gp (+2 shield) isn't a lot in the grand scheme of things, and it'll be more than made up if I can ever scrape up enough for a +3, so please don't take this as a complaint!

Whenever you do adjust the FAQ, please be clear whether or not we need to meet the level prerequisites of the item creation feat (5th for arms & armor, 7th for ring, 9th for rod, etc.) as well as whether we need to make the appropriate spellcraft check (DC 5+item caster level).

*

The FAQ is updated! FAQ

It also answers the question about retroactivity (for me, perhaps not for others) since I don't meet the caster level requirements.

Thanks Mark and whoever else was behind this!

Grand Lodge **

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I will echo my thanks. Such speedy update too. Great work and great news for wizards who don't go the familiar route.

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