Does the Racial Heritage feat, combined with a feat that improves an inherent feature (claws, poison, etc) grant you that feature?


Rules Questions

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thaX, please remember the most important rule:
thaX wrote:
Tacticslion wrote:
stuff...

My dear, he was referring to the point that humaniod creatures, such like humans, have two arms, two legs, head, hair, nose, two ears, a mouth and so on...

What is not listed is a tail, poison in the veins (For the example refered to in the title of the thread, wings, and so on...

Statistics are more than just numbers and such.

It appears that you either missed a large portion of what I posted, or ignored it in haste in order to take a condescending tone, ala use of the word "My dear" - generally considered patronizing when not referring to someone you are genuinely familiar with. Please do not.

Statistics is "Statistics is the study of the collection, organization, analysis, interpretation and presentation of data. It deals with all aspects of data including the planning of data collection in terms of the design of surveys and experiments."

After taking the collection of data (in this case both numbers and the other elements that were being discussed), again, real life does not determine whether or not something is average or even acceptable in PF as a character.

Words+bat guano+arm movements+"magic" -> 40-foot non-expansive/compression-creating heat "explosion" (that doesn't actually follow that word's meaning) of heat-damage.

I would be far more sympathetic to the side of the debate saying, "it's not possible" if that side would, in general, simply stop being so obnoxiously condescending.

And before it comes up, condescending and patronizing.

Quote:
The most important rule: Don't be a jerk. We want our messageboards to be a fun and friendly place.

Stop arguing human norms. It doesn't hold in PF in general populations (more specifically the statistics that el cuervo was trying to show me), much less in player characters which, you know, are pretty much up to the players (within the codified limits that were quoted and linked at me be el cuervo).

EDIT:

Just in case it wasn't clear, I know what he was trying to discuss, but he didn't - he was instead very explicitly discussing something else entirely, which was made abundantly clear by both linking a page that clearly outlined what it was talking about and quoting that page itself.


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Just to note: you cannot be left-handed in pathfinder. All characters are ambidextrous.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Ah.

Apologizes. I think.

To be sure, the stats and descriptions in the PF universe does not include them having tails. There was a couple trying to discount that by bringing RL examples that really had no merit on the discussion, as you said.

Perhaps I misunderstood the underlining discussion.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Durngrun, thank you. It was something that changed between 3.0 and 3.5, a pairing down of a couple of feats.


Durngrun Stonebreaker wrote:
Just to note: you cannot be left-handed in pathfinder. All characters are ambidextrous.

Excellent point!

thaX wrote:

Ah.

Apologizes. I think.

To be sure, the stats and descriptions in the PF universe does not include them having tails. There was a couple trying to discount that by bringing RL examples that really had no merit on the discussion, as you said.

Perhaps I misunderstood the underlining discussion.

the discussion:
Perhaps. My point was always that Real Life has little bearing on the "norms" of humanity.

el cuervo responded by citing one page (the one he linked) which did not hold any bearing on that discussion. The only things the rule he quoted applied to were number statistics, which were the only elements that bore discussion... and when compared to Real Life human norms (one of the elements of the discussion in which he noted those possessing said tails were outliers and thus a GM effectively needed to enforce such rarity), they did not hold up.

Regardless, it's dropped - in fact I know I've done the same more than once.

I'm perfectly okay with being proven incorrect by rules and citations, (and RAI, now that Stephen has weighed in) but that was not this case.

Designer

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Tacticslion wrote:
Actually, Stephen, a tail is not in the prerequisites. Being a kobold is. Thus you can take the feat by RAW (though, since you've weighed in this is clearly not RAI). If you wish to make it more air-tight, please change the prerequisites.

Yes, you can take the feat, but it does no good, unless you have a tail. If you are human (no tail) and take the feat, there are ways in which you could gain a tail (including GM fiat) get a tail, hence it is not part of the prerequisites.

As a matter of design principle, I'm not sympathetic to making rules always as air-tight as you suggest. While the game may not seem to act like it sometimes, the rule of Pathfinder are not a strict code. Rather it is a matrix using our natural language with some game jargon to create a narrative, relative ease of play, and enough space to deal with complicate circumstance; a narrative, adjudicated and can be played with by a GM both to tell her tale and to create fun.

Logic will eventually have to suffice. If the feat allows you to do something with your tail, and you have no tail, the assumption that it grants you a tail is stretching. At the same time any home GM can easily come in and say that you have a tail, if it fits your character concept and her story.

As some of you have pointed out, PFS has to take a harder tact on this, and I agree. But I believe they have the tools to do so. If you are a human, who takes the Racial Heritage, you can take the feat, but it does not grant you anything if you don't have a tail. Humans do not have tails, ergo, your tail is nonexistent and can't be augment. In other words it is foolish to take the feat expecting it allows you to grow a tail. Neither feat says you grow a tail.

In other words, I have no idea how rules as written say you grow a tail. That seems purely outside the rules as written. The same could be said for a magic item of feat that augments darkvision. If it said your darkvision improves by 20 feet, but you don't have darkvision that does not mean that it grants you darkvision of 20 feet, because you cannot improve what you don't have. It could be possible (due to the prerequisites or the available item slot) to take the feat or wear the item. It is even possible with some of racial trait swaps to take an item designed to augment the core traits or morphology of the race, but since you have swapped out of that option, it is possible for you to take it, but for you it does nothing. It is also possible though some strange item, encounter, or monster, or GM fiat to lose a tail if you were a kobold, but that doesn't mean the act of having this feat would allow you to regrow such a tail.

In summary, when we write the rules, we do intend a level of reason and even common sense. We have to, because instead of making things "air-tight." Personally I believe, and have always believed, that one of the benefits of tabletop RPGs is to allow the mind and the imagination to breathe. Often we don't feel we need to codify such things in rules, because the logic is (we suppose) easily apprehended by the mind and the common sense of it is pleasing to the imagination.

Scarab Sages

Torbyne wrote:
Forseti wrote:
Of course bane and favored enemy will work with it. They are pretty straightforwardly effects related to race. Or cause such effects, if you will.
Wait, what? You cant have it both ways; your statement requires you to re-interpet the clearly written rules alrady out there for Bane and Favored Enemy. Both abilities require a check against Type and Sub Type. They dont care if you are half-elf, drow, Elf or any other flavour of tree hugging hippy, all they look for is Type: Humanoid (Elf). Even your previously quoted spell allows you to pretend a creature has a different Type so your Favored Enemy bonus can apply. If you hold that Racial Heritage does include counting as if you have a different sub type than i need no supporting comment from a developer, just look at the existing rules on how these abilities work.

Please try to look at it like this: Half Elves have a racial trait called Elf Blood. This means they count as both humanoid (human) and humanoid (elf) for any effects related to race. This does not give them a (human) or (elf) subtype. They are just considered to have them. There is no (half elf) subtype. They get the best and the worst of both world.

Likewise Half Orcs have an ability called Orc Blood. This allows them to count as both humans and orcs for any effect related to race.

Now....

While it is not implicitly stated (and people are probably going to jump all over this) the Racial Heritage feat essentialy grant a "other race Blood" racial trait to the human (or Half Elf, Half Orc, Aasimar who took the Scion of Humanity alternate racial trait). So a human with Racial Heritage: Orc would essentialy receive Orc Blooded. A Human with Racial Heritage: Elf would receive Elf Blooded (or Dwarf Blooded for a Human with Racial Heritage Dwarf etc).

The Racial Heritage feat does not say it gives this (other race) Blood ability but the description is exactly the same.

Something else to bear in mind is this. Racial traits (stuff in the race's stat block, not race traits from the traits section, those are something different and a case of unfortunately similar names for two very different things) are not an effect related to race. They are inherent traits. Facts. Things that are.

An effect is something that happens. Something that is applied. An effect is an event or temporary condition. Favoured enemy is an effect, bane is an effect. The spell Dwarven Veil (which grants bonuses to social skill checks made involving dwarfs) is an effect.


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
In other words, I have no idea how rules as written say you grow a tail.

An argument that keeps popping up is that "effects related to race" as mentioned in the Racial Heritage feat ("You count as both human and that race for any effects related to race.") includes appearance and anatomy.


thaX wrote:

I am not sure about the Long Nose form. The half races already have something that does something similar, and the human is turning into human to disguise the fact that he is human... with a short nose to a form of a human with a Snape nose.

The other things that go with it, that may be worth seeing if one could still take it. I see what you mean, though, it is something to hide a beak with, and humans don't have a beak.... hmmmmm...

Yeah, I can easily imagine it as a war-form looking like a monstrous human. Bonus strength, scent and isn't there a thing about being immune to polymorphism while already under a polymorph effect? There is no beak to hide so it's ambiguous :/ probably another no.

Designer

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Forseti wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
In other words, I have no idea how rules as written say you grow a tail.
An argument that keeps popping up is that "effects related to race" as mentioned in the Racial Heritage feat ("You count as both human and that race for any effects related to race.") includes appearance and anatomy.

Morphology is not an effect related to race in game terms. Feat prerequisites are. Favored enemy is (hence there is not half-elf subtype, half elf has both the elf and the human subtype).

When you take Racial Heritage (kobold) your size does not change, the number of digits does not change, you do not gain scales, you do not gain access to natural armor, or the crafty ability, interestingly enough you do not even gain the reptilian subtype in this case. What you gain is an access to a handful of feats, one of which is useless if you don't have a tail, the other you can't get because you don't have scales.

Assuming of course, your GM says it is okay because she decides that your Racial Heritage manifests in a way not describe in the feat, but interesting either to your character concept or her story.


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Thanks for that. I've been arguing along those lines all over this thread, and my post you responded to was actually a devious ploy (villain laugh) to get a designer to chip in on that topic. :)


Balgin wrote:
Torbyne wrote:
Forseti wrote:
Of course bane and favored enemy will work with it. They are pretty straightforwardly effects related to race. Or cause such effects, if you will.
Wait, what? You cant have it both ways; your statement requires you to re-interpet the clearly written rules alrady out there for Bane and Favored Enemy. Both abilities require a check against Type and Sub Type. They dont care if you are half-elf, drow, Elf or any other flavour of tree hugging hippy, all they look for is Type: Humanoid (Elf). Even your previously quoted spell allows you to pretend a creature has a different Type so your Favored Enemy bonus can apply. If you hold that Racial Heritage does include counting as if you have a different sub type than i need no supporting comment from a developer, just look at the existing rules on how these abilities work.

Please try to look at it like this: Half Elves have a racial trait called Elf Blood. This means they count as both humanoid (human) and humanoid (elf) for any effects related to race. This does not give them a (human) or (elf) subtype. They are just considered to have them. There is no (half elf) subtype. They get the best and the worst of both world.

Likewise Half Orcs have an ability called Orc Blood. This allows them to count as both humans and orcs for any effect related to race.

Now....

While it is not implicitly stated (and people are probably going to jump all over this) the Racial Heritage feat essentialy grant a "other race Blood" racial trait to the human (or Half Elf, Half Orc, Aasimar who took the Scion of Humanity alternate racial trait). So a human with Racial Heritage: Orc would essentialy receive Orc Blooded. A Human with Racial Heritage: Elf would receive Elf Blooded (or Dwarf Blooded for a Human with Racial Heritage Dwarf etc).

The Racial Heritage feat does not say it gives this (other race) Blood ability but the description is exactly the same.

Something else to bear in mind is this. Racial traits (stuff in...

This was my original assumption but that other race blood comes with that other race sub type. Everything I am seeing here points to Racial Heritage being much weaker than other race blood type of effects. Especially with the implied quash to halving any physical signs of other race showing.

Never mind, Dream Slayer's post up there came in when I was typing. So favored enemy does apply and any feat that refers to Racial appearance does not. :/ big hit to the cool factor of Racial Heritage.


Oh Happy Day!

Scarab Sages

Yeah, I know, right? I was planning on creating an aasimar with the scion of humanity alternate racial trait and the racial heritage: Dwarf feat. He would be a slightly tall dwarf (around 5' tall) and look very heroic and noble. He would act like a paragon of dwarven culture (possibly even going so far as to take racial heritage at 3rd level so he could take revered guidance: dwarf at 1st since it's a 1st level only feat but that combination is hard to justify).

Is that a power build? Not in the least. Is it a sub optimal build? Quite probably. Is it a cool funky character concept? A way of reskinning the aasimar to be more dwarven? Absolutely (although that was not neccessarily the intent).

Would it give him the dwarven slow & steady movement speed? Absolutely not because that is a racial trait (and not an effect related to race). Would taking the Adopted trait allow him to gain the slow and setady racial trait? Again no. Adopted allows a race trait, not a racial trait. It would allow him to take Glory of Old (+1 to saves against spells, spell like abilities & poisons) because Glory of Old does not require the Hardy racial trait from the dwarf stat block. It would allow him to be a different kind of dwarf or a very dwarfy aasimar. Kind of like a saint or messiah or something.

Effect is a key word when it comes to the rules which is unfortunately not very clearly defined as it has a very broad interpretation.


Balgin wrote:

Yeah, I know, right? I was planning on creating an aasimar with the scion of humanity alternate racial trait and the racial heritage: Dwarf feat. He would be a slightly tall dwarf (around 5' tall) and look very heroic and noble. He would act like a paragon of dwarven culture (possibly even going so far as to take racial heritage at 3rd level so he could take revered guidance: dwarf at 1st since it's a 1st level only feat but that combination is hard to justify).

Is that a power build? Not in the least. Is it a sub optimal build? Quite probably. Is it a cool funky character concept? A way of reskinning the aasimar to be more dwarven? Absolutely (although that was not neccessarily the intent).

Would it give him the dwarven slow & steady movement speed? Absolutely not because that is a racial trait (and not an effect related to race). Would taking the Adopted trait allow him to gain the slow and setady racial trait? Again no. Adopted allows a race trait, not a racial trait. It would allow him to take Glory of Old (+1 to saves against spells, spell like abilities & poisons) because Glory of Old does not require the Hardy racial trait from the dwarf stat block. It would allow him to be a different kind of dwarf or a very dwarfy aasimar. Kind of like a saint or messiah or something.

Effect is a key word when it comes to the rules which is unfortunately not very clearly defined as it has a very broad interpretation.

Har har har.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Tacticslion wrote:
Actually, Stephen, a tail is not in the prerequisites. Being a kobold is. Thus you can take the feat by RAW (though, since you've weighed in this is clearly not RAI). If you wish to make it more air-tight, please change the prerequisites.
Yes, you can take the feat, but it does no good, unless you have a tail.

Thank you. I have been saying this since day one, in the original thread. I had even suggested that a character in a home game could have a mechanical tail made that would be a part of one's armor. Perhaps with the new AP in Numbera this would be possible.


Again, what about a Kobold-Aasamar? They are mechanically identical to a Human-Aasamar.

Can a Kobold Aasamar use Scion of Humanity to qualify for Racial Heritage and Tail Terror?

Would a Kobold-Aasimar not have a tail?

Would a Kobold Aasimar not be able to take Scion of Humanity?

Could they instead take Scion of Kobold-anity (and thus save a feat in the process of getting a tail?


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A non-human based aasimar taking Scion of Humanity 'as is' (i.e. counting as humanoid (human) and being able to pass for human) but still having extensive features of the non-human base race, that's just very weird and paradoxical.

RAW, it seems to be possible, but it just doesn't make any sense at all. No one is going to look at a very little guy with scales, slitted eyes and a tail, and figure he's human. I assume many GMs would reject such a character. I would be one of them.


Forseti wrote:

A non-human based aasimar taking Scion of Humanity 'as is' (i.e. counting as humanoid (human) and being able to pass for human) but still having extensive features of the non-human base race, that's just very weird and paradoxical.

RAW, it seems to be possible, but it just doesn't make any sense at all. No one is going to look at a very little guy with scales, slitted eyes and a tail, and figure he's human. I assume many GMs would reject such a character. I would be one of them.

That's already a problem with racial heritage. No one will ever look at you and figure you are part whatever. Unless your a ranger, they automatically know.


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Why would a ranger character know he's getting bonuses? Those bonuses are just calculations made by the player.

The way I see Favored Enemy, a ranger specialized in acting against 'Creature X' has a certain poise and a set of mannerisms that just work better against creatures that qualify as 'Creature X'. No manner of clairvoyance needed to explain it.


If your fighting and doing good you would know, if your doing really good and find yourself using the techniques you perfected against "x" you'd know. Plus all of those bonuses to skills because... you know.

But the ranger doesn't know from poise or mannerisms, there are none to act as a tell. Rangers are kind of like the Layla Miller of pathfinder, they just know stuff.


Mr. Radney-MacFarland, I'm about to do a lot of talking. It's what I do.

Please be aware that, regardless of my position with or against your words, I hold you and the other designers at Paizo in the deepest respect. This is not for the purpose of anger or arguing, but to clarify with you. If you wish this to be PM-territory instead, I'll be glad to discuss that with you through that track. If you wish this to be a different thread, I'll move it there.

The long moderately-off-topic discussion:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Tacticslion wrote:
Actually, Stephen, a tail is not in the prerequisites. Being a kobold is. Thus you can take the feat by RAW (though, since you've weighed in this is clearly not RAI). If you wish to make it more air-tight, please change the prerequisites.
Yes, you can take the feat, but it does no good, unless you have a tail. If you are human (no tail) and take the feat, there are ways in which you could gain a tail (including GM fiat) get a tail, hence it is not part of the prerequisites.

That's fine. Mostly that's not what I took away from your wording which was why I corrected you. I was not arguing that you had written it such that should get a tail slap, however - mostly I was clarifying based on the perceived meanings of your wording.

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
As a matter of design principle, I'm not sympathetic to making rules always as air-tight as you suggest. While the game may not seem to act like it sometimes, the rule of Pathfinder are not a strict code. Rather it is a matrix using our natural language with some game jargon to create a narrative, relative ease of play, and enough space to deal with complicate circumstance; a narrative, adjudicated and can be played with by a GM both to tell her tale and to create fun.

That's an interesting take to the rules design, and one I agree with in principal, however it doesn't seem to mesh with the general coda of this particular sub-form - i.e. "only what is written and not what is intended" and that which is written, when struck from that which is intended, can have multiple meanings.

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Logic will eventually have to suffice. If the feat allows you to do something with your tail, and you have no tail, the assumption that it grants you a tail is stretching. At the same time any home GM can easily come in and say that you have a tail, if it fits your character concept and her story.

I agree that logic will have to suffice. But this thread has demonstrated that your logic personally (and my logic personally, and anyone's logic personally) is not everyone's logic personally. That stretch is, in fact, a form of logic.

Logic, in wikipedia, is defined in two ways. You use it closer to the second, while others tend toward the first. Similarly reasoning (although it's recursive in the sense that it relates back to logic).

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
As some of you have pointed out, PFS has to take a harder tact on this, and I agree. But I believe they have the tools to do so. If you are a human, who takes the Racial Heritage, you can take the feat, but it does not grant you anything if you don't have a tail. Humans do not have tails, ergo, your tail is nonexistent and can't be augment. In other words it is foolish to take the feat expecting it allows you to grow a tail. Neither feat says you grow a tail.

It was me who pointed this out (though someone else might have as well and I've forgotten). The problem, sir, is that you don't clarify this.

You state it's foolish, but the fact that so many people have read it differently undermine your position, even as a designer.

Your intent is made clear, and I entirely support you on that. I accept it. However because of what does (and does not) exist in real life, and within the larger structure of the game, you cannot deem this confusion foolish.

Your position, "No the rules don't mean that for certain." does not mesh with your position, "The rules aren't as ironclad as they'd otherwise need to be to make such a precise ruling."

These are contradictory and, when blended with the policy of this sub-forum create a very bad scenario for coming to conclusions.

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
In other words, I have no idea how rules as written say you grow a tail. That seems purely outside the rules as written. The same could be said for a magic item of feat that augments darkvision. If it said your darkvision improves by 20 feet, but you don't have darkvision that does not mean that it grants you darkvision of 20 feet, because you cannot improve what you don't have. It could be possible (due to the prerequisites or the available item slot) to take the feat or wear the item. It is even possible with some of racial trait swaps to take an item designed to augment the core traits or morphology of the race, but since you have swapped out of that option, it is possible for you to take it, but for you it does nothing. It is also possible though some strange item, encounter, or monster, or GM fiat to lose a tail if you were a kobold, but that doesn't mean the act of having this feat would allow you to regrow such a tail.

That's... and interesting thing to bring up. I have always treated darkvision much like natural armor - humans don't have natural armor (or if they do, I don't know where it's specified - others have informed me that it's "+0", but that's not in their racial description, so I'd love a citation), but they can have an enhancement bonus to natural armor. Thus an increase to darkvision is treated in the same manner.

I am ready to be proven wrong, here, though.

What, then, is your position on a goblin with the fire tamer feat not gain the scars referenced within the feat?

Goblins are not described with scars at all. I understand there are Society Boons that allow goblins (though I could be wrong - again, feel free to correct me), so what scars are being described there?

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
In summary, when we write the rules, we do intend a level of reason and even common sense. We have to, because instead of making things "air-tight." Personally I believe, and have always believed, that one of the benefits of tabletop RPGs is to allow the mind and the imagination to breathe. Often we don't feel we need to codify such things in rules, because the logic is (we suppose) easily apprehended by the mind and the common sense of it is pleasing to the imagination.

I tend to agree for the most part. I just disagree with you that such a thing is all that "common". "Common sense is not common as the saying goes.

I don't really feel that you should codify the rules as tightly as I proposed - however, if you do make rulings such as the one you did here - in other words, if you strongly intended that, say, a feat can only function under "X" conditions - it should be specified that those are the conditions.

If, on the other hand, you're okay with the RAW being taken as more open-ended, than there really is no problem, and those who wanted the feat to function differently have a leg to stand on - one that's not built from standard English, but one that's built from English nonetheless.

I understand your position as a developer is a tough one. It's really hard to please everyone. I get that. I'm okay with your RAI, and my suggestion was entirely born out of a desire to help you communicate that better in the future.

This would literally never have come up at my table with any player I've ever played with. It's just not a thing for any of them and wouldn't be. Thus my purpose here is little more than to a) gain insight and increased rules mastery myself, and b) help others acquire the same.

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Morphology is not an effect related to race in game terms. Feat prerequisites are. Favored enemy is (hence there is not half-elf subtype, half elf has both the elf and the human subtype).

This actually makes me question: what, if any, is the acceptable limit of basic description based on racial parameters? Or should that be set entirely at the whim of the GM (which I tend to agree with)? If it's the latter, how does this impact Society play? What about those who seek a RAW game?

If you don't wish to answer these questions in this venue - that's fine. Believe it or not (and it's really hard to communicate tone over the 'net, so I can understand if it's hard to believe) I'm not trying to call you out. However, I know that I'm not the first poster to disagree with you on some of these points. The weight of the designer's opinion and intent is important, and whatever can be done to clarify that is helpful toward the health of the boards in general.

Thus my suggestion. Please take it from that track, and not from, "You should do this, or bad designer." because that is not my intent. Funny thing, words and intent.


Doomed Hero wrote:

Again, what about a Kobold-Aasamar? They are mechanically identical to a Human-Aasamar.

Can a Kobold Aasamar use Scion of Humanity to qualify for Racial Heritage and Tail Terror?

Would a Kobold-Aasimar not have a tail?

Would a Kobold Aasimar not be able to take Scion of Humanity?

Could they instead take Scion of Kobold-anity (and thus save a feat in the process of getting a tail?

They are identical in terms of statistics, barring size. However, a race's physiology, as Mr. Stephen pointed out, is not an effect related to race. It also says that they don't use any of the racial abilities of the base race in question (which is the Kobold).

One could extend that to mean that any racial abilities related to Kobolds aren't applicable; including feats dependent upon race. But I'm not going to be that guy, since it makes no sense. The obvious intent is that any of the standard traits selectable from that race do not apply, meaning no statistical adjustments or racial traits from Kobolds, except for being Small Sized.

Since they would otherwise take the physiology of the base race (non-human Aasimars are only akin to human Aasimars in terms of statistics), the obvious answer is that a Kobold-Aasimar would most definitely have a tail.

As for them taking Scion of Humanity, that's a tough one. Statistics range from ability scores and racial traits, and non-human Aasimars share that with the average human Aasimar. But the real question is if (sub)type is a part of that. Though you then run into the problem of being Humanoid (Reptile), Humanoid (Human), and Outsider (Native) all at once, which I highly doubt is the intent.

To keep it simple, I'd say since you're choosing a non-human race in association to the Aasimar, that's the (sub)type you run with, since you can't be Human and Kobold and Aasimar all at once. You're either a Human Aasimar or a Non-Human Aasimar; you can't be both.

I believe my answer above would supersede the need to houserule a "Scion of Kobold-anity" racial trait.

Hopefully Stephen can come in again and clear up whether my take is how it should be ran or not.


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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
el cuervo wrote:

That some humans are left-handed is an accepted paradigm. It's not abnormal or weird to be left handed. Having a 10% chance to be left handed? Totally feasible. Roll 1d10 - did you get a 1? Congratulations, you're left handed.

Are you born with a tail? No, because the odds are astronomical. Quite literally, a 0.0000000002% chance of it. ....

If we are talking about Real Life... Ok let's not pretend we are in a world where a man can wave his hand and create a ball of fire to throw at his enemies (that's fireball) or a Trade Princess can move in an instant from one side of the world to the other with a phrase (teleport).

We have angels, demons and dragons walking the earth and you are worried because some human whose ancestor was a kobold, might inherit a tail.

Thank you to Stephen Radney-MacFarland for taking the time to respond in the thread and put the issue to rest.

...Logic will eventually have to suffice. If the feat allows you to do something with your tail, and you have no tail, the assumption that it grants you a tail is stretching. At the same time any home GM can easily come in and say that you have a tail, if it fits your character concept and her story.

In summary, when we write the rules, we do intend a level of reason and even common sense. We have to, because instead of making things "air-tight." Personally I believe, and have always believed, that one of the benefits of tabletop RPGs is to allow the mind and the imagination to breathe. Often we don't feel we need to codify such things in rules, because the logic is (we suppose) easily apprehended by the mind and the common sense of it is pleasing to the imagination.

The only difficulty being in organised play is that PFS GM's don't have the luxury of assumption - we work within a rigid ruleset (this isn't a complaint, it's a necessity i.e. Awaken isn't allowed etc...)

Players sit down at a table for a number of reasons; as long as we recognise the gap or 'stretching' in the rules, some players will cling to it until it's removed from PFSOP.


Balgin wrote:
Effect is a key word when it comes to the rules which is unfortunately not very clearly defined as it has a very broad interpretation.

It's not clearly defined as a game term, this much is true. However, general context would take it to mean that it's a listed benefit that has a cited game term source.

For your example, the Racial Trait Slow & Steady actually is an effect related to race, since Racial Trait is defined as a game term, and gives a listed benefit. That 20 movement speed (but not encumbered by armor)? That's the effect of the Racial Trait. And since the Trait is conditional based upon which Race you chose...The only issue is that you can't just switch racial traits out; once you have your racial traits chosen from the pool which your original race was, it's set in stone.

What about Race Traits? Race Traits are a sub-section of Traits [Character Traits, to be more technically accurate about the situation], which too is a defined game term with a listed benefit. These too are dependant upon race, and therefore Racial Heritage would apply to the race chosen.

In addition, consider Favored Enemy, another effect that's dependant upon a race, or to be more specific, an ability related to race, which covers what the "and so on" would encompass.


Torbyne wrote:

If your fighting and doing good you would know, if your doing really good and find yourself using the techniques you perfected against "x" you'd know. Plus all of those bonuses to skills because... you know.

But the ranger doesn't know from poise or mannerisms, there are none to act as a tell. Rangers are kind of like the Layla Miller of pathfinder, they just know stuff.

Why would they know? Hits are determined as much by luck as by skill in challenging encounters, which means they have streaks of many hits ('doing good') against non-favored enemies at times too. Damage is abstract, numerical skill check results are abstract, bonuses are abstract. All those thing are not entities with an actual presence in the setting. The character cannot know about them. He can wonder why he's having such an amazingly easy time dealing with a not-so-obvious member of the species, and that's where the (perhaps untrained) knowledge check (with bonus!) to identify the subject comes in.

And I was talking about the ranger having the poise and the mannerisms, not his enemies. A ranger just develops a fighting style that happens to work better against 'Creature X', and he uses that style all the time, not just against 'Creature X'. It just works better against 'Creature X', because he's fought 'Creature X' often. And if he gains a new favored enemy, let's call it 'Critter Y', his style just develops to include a few moves that work really well against 'Critter Y'.

When a ranger intimidates someone, why would he somehow have to sense the bonus? Does he never succeed against non-favored enemies? Isn't the whole point of intimidating someone to see them shrink in fear? Do favored enemies suffer a worse result? No. There's no reason to assume that a successful intimidate attempt reveals the subject's hidden racial identity. An intimidated non-favored enemy is just as intimidated as a favored enemy. An unrecognised favored enemy just suffers from being more easily intimidated by this ranger, because something about this guy just pulls at his heartstrings for some reason. Even the subject doesn't have to realize why.

I can go on and on about this, tackling every aspect of the Favored Enemy ability, but I won't, because it's not worth my time. This "the ranger automatically knows" attitude is just an example of people struggling to find reasons why rules don't work.

It's a lot more productive trying to come up with justifications for perfectly clear rules than trying to find reasons why they're at fault. The latter is just pointless, practically every rule can be made to look 'unrealistic' if you pick at it long enough. Why bother?


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I'm going to start out saying I don't disagree with the ruling itself because I easily saw it able to go either way.

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Yes, you can take the feat, but it does no good, unless you have a tail. If you are human (no tail) and take the feat, there are ways in which you could gain a tail (including GM fiat) get a tail, hence it is not part of the prerequisites.

This being a thing is just bad.. Having feats that you can take that dont let you do something is just terrible on several levels. I understand that these feats in particular were probably never considered to interact but anything that leads to Ivory Tower style game design should be rooted out, and in my opinion preferably set on fire.

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
As a matter of design principle, I'm not sympathetic to making rules always as air-tight as you suggest. While the game may not seem to act like it sometimes, the rule of Pathfinder are not a strict code. Rather it is a matrix using our natural language with some game jargon to create a narrative, relative ease of play, and enough space to deal with complicate circumstance; a narrative, adjudicated and can be played with by a GM both to tell her tale and to create fun.

But this time your still going to male a call for specificity rather then just saying the GM can interpret it as he sees fit.

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Logic will eventually have to suffice. If the feat allows you to do something with your tail, and you have no tail, the assumption that it grants you a tail is stretching. At the same time any home GM can easily come in and say that you have a tail, if it fits your character concept and her story.

Okay.. No.. This part *really* keeps bothering me. You cant apply consistent logic to a game like this so stop appealing to it. One group thinks its logical that you need a tail to make a tail attack. One group thinks its logical that taking a feat gives you an effect so you get a tail attack. Another group thinks its logical game designers wont let players take feats that don't work. All are logical you just agree with one being right and not the others. Given the other anatomical wonders that Racial heritage allows humans to grow it could be argues gaining a tail attack is in fact less logical, though since the feat does not specifically call out growing a tail.. Use that as your reasoning and don't try to pass it off as obvious logic.

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
As some of you have pointed out, PFS has to take a harder tact on this, and I agree. But I believe they have the tools to do so. If you are a human, who takes the Racial Heritage, you can take the feat, but it does not grant you anything if you don't have a tail. Humans do not have tails, ergo, your tail is nonexistent and can't be augment. In other words it is foolish to take the feat expecting it allows you to grow a tail. Neither feat says you grow a tail.

As I said earlier. Letting people take useless feats is not a good thing.

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
In other words, I have no idea how rules as written say you grow a tail. That seems purely outside the rules as written. The same could be said for a magic item of feat that augments darkvision. If it said your darkvision improves by 20 feet, but you don't have darkvision that does not mean that it grants you darkvision of 20 feet, because you cannot improve what you don't have. It could be possible (due to the prerequisites or the available item slot) to take the feat or wear the item. It is even possible with some of racial trait swaps to take an item designed to augment the core traits or morphology of the race, but since you have swapped out of that option, it is possible for you to take it, but for you it does nothing. It is also possible though some strange item, encounter, or monster, or GM fiat to lose a tail if you were a kobold, but that doesn't mean the act of having this feat would allow you to regrow such a tail.

The *rules* don't say anything about kobolds having tails any more then humans do, at least not outside of feats that make use of tails. If you're saying the parts of the race breakdowns that happen outside of the race trait mechanics are part of the rules, boy oh boy, do you open up a whole can of awkward worms. Like every dwarf who ever shaved his beard being deranged.

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
In summary, when we write the rules, we do intend a level of reason and even common sense. We have to, because instead of making things "air-tight." Personally I believe, and have always believed, that one of the benefits of tabletop RPGs is to allow the mind and the imagination to breathe. Often we don't feel we need to codify such things in rules, because the logic is (we suppose) easily apprehended by the mind and the common sense of it is pleasing to the imagination

Common sense and fantasy are if not mutually exclusive at least bad guests to invite to the same dinner party. Instead of logic and common sense maybe you should shoot for internal consistency and erring on the side of clarity with phrases such as 'If you have a tail you may make a tail attack' rather then 'with your tail.'


lastblacknight wrote:
el cuervo wrote:

That some humans are left-handed is an accepted paradigm. It's not abnormal or weird to be left handed. Having a 10% chance to be left handed? Totally feasible. Roll 1d10 - did you get a 1? Congratulations, you're left handed.

Are you born with a tail? No, because the odds are astronomical. Quite literally, a 0.0000000002% chance of it. ....

If we are talking about Real Life... Ok let's not pretend we are in a world where a man can wave his hand and create a ball of fire to throw at his enemies (that's fireball) or a Trade Princess can move in an instant from one side of the world to the other with a phrase (teleport).

I agree that we shouldn't use the real world as a model for how things work in Pathfinder. I put it into that context because the argument was presented to me that way. To paraphrase: "In the real world, some humans are born with tails, so you can't say it's not allowed in Pathfinder; that's normalist and immoral."

It's an absurd argument to make on multiple levels; I was just trying to demonstrate the absurdity by putting it into context. Given that I (and others) have been backed by a game designer on this particular issue, I feel two things:

A) I was justified in my arguing against humans having tails and about the feat combination in general
B) Your nitpicking of my post (which I have justified as being in response to the "real world" scenario) is some sort of last hurrah argument because you just need to be right about something in this thread. Man, just let it go.

Designer

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VargrBoartusk wrote:
Common sense and fantasy are if not mutually exclusive at least bad guests to invite to the same dinner party. Instead of logic and common sense maybe you should shoot for internal consistency and erring on the side of clarity with phrases such as 'If you have a tail you may make a tail attack' rather then 'with your tail.'

I don't know what to tell you. But we do use this construction all the time and noncontroversially. We also give you the ability to take feats that you can't use all the time either situationally or because you lack an ability or some other key component. You can take Combat Casting (it has no prerequisites) even if you don't have any spells or spell-like abilities. Logic assumes you will not if it is no use to you. Just because you have Deadly Aim, we don't assume you always have the ability to make ranged attacks.

The only difference between "if you have a tail attack" and "with your tail" is the number of words. "With your tail" assumes you have a tail, because it is a kobold feat, and kobolds typically have tails. There are circumstances where kobolds don't have tails, or creatures who do not have tails might take this feat (specifically if they have an effect that allows them to "count as that race for any effects related to race.") But it gives neither creature a tail. Nothing in the RAW of this feat says you gain a tail. Noting in the RAW of the Racial Heritage feat says you gain a tail.

On a side note about this subject. I've entered this discussion to answer a question, and I have done so. I'm not going to enter into side conversations about design philosophy (I think I've contributed enough to that conversation about this issue). I have a books to design and develop, but thought since the issue has raged for nearly 1,000 posts, it deserved some feedback from the rules team.

Have a great day everyone, and good gaming!


Fair enough, sir, and thank you much for your time and input! God bless you and be with you with all that work! I know it's a lot!

Shadow Lodge

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Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
VargrBoartusk wrote:
Common sense and fantasy are if not mutually exclusive at least bad guests to invite to the same dinner party. Instead of logic and common sense maybe you should shoot for internal consistency and erring on the side of clarity with phrases such as 'If you have a tail you may make a tail attack' rather then 'with your tail.'

I don't know what to tell you. But we do use this construction all the time and noncontroversially. We also give you the ability to take feats that you can't use all the time either situationally or because you lack an ability or some other key component. You can take Combat Casting (it has no prerequisites) even if you don't have any spells or spell-like abilities. Logic assumes you will not if it is no use to you. Just because you have Deadly Aim, we don't assume you always have the ability to make ranged attacks.

The only difference between "if you have a tail attack" and "with your tail" is the number of words. "With your tail" assumes you have a tail, because it is a kobold feat, and kobolds typically have tails. There are circumstances where kobolds don't have tails, or creatures who do not have tails might take this feat (specifically if they have an effect that allows them to "count as that race for any effects related to race.") But it gives neither creature a tail. Nothing in the RAW of this feat says you gain a tail. Noting in the RAW of the Racial Heritage feat says you gain a tail.

On a side note about this subject. I've entered this discussion to answer a question, and I have done so. I'm not going to enter into side conversations about design philosophy (I think I've contributed enough to that conversation about this issue). I have a books to design and develop, but thought since the issue has raged for nearly 1,000 posts, it deserved some feedback from the rules team.

Have a great day everyone, and good gaming!

Stephen, thank you for taking some time to post some answers for us here. Also a big thanks to you and all the devs for the work you do in bringing us a great game!


I notice I still haven't gotten a developer response to the Kobold-Aasimar issue. :/


Forseti wrote:
Torbyne wrote:

If your fighting and doing good you would know, if your doing really good and find yourself using the techniques you perfected against "x" you'd know. Plus all of those bonuses to skills because... you know.

But the ranger doesn't know from poise or mannerisms, there are none to act as a tell. Rangers are kind of like the Layla Miller of pathfinder, they just know stuff.

Why would they know? Hits are determined as much by luck as by skill in challenging encounters, which means they have streaks of many hits ('doing good') against non-favored enemies at times too. Damage is abstract, numerical skill check results are abstract, bonuses are abstract. All those thing are not entities with an actual presence in the setting. The character cannot know about them. He can wonder why he's having such an amazingly easy time dealing with a not-so-obvious member of the species, and that's where the (perhaps untrained) knowledge check (with bonus!) to identify the subject comes in.

And I was talking about the ranger having the poise and the mannerisms, not his enemies. A ranger just develops a fighting style that happens to work better against 'Creature X', and he uses that style all the time, not just against 'Creature X'. It just works better against 'Creature X', because he's fought 'Creature X' often. And if he gains a new favored enemy, let's call it 'Critter Y', his style just develops to include a few moves that work really well against 'Critter Y'.

When a ranger intimidates someone, why would he somehow have to sense the bonus? Does he never succeed against non-favored enemies? Isn't the whole point of intimidating someone to see them shrink in fear? Do favored enemies suffer a worse result? No. There's no reason to assume that a successful intimidate attempt reveals the subject's hidden racial identity. An intimidated non-favored enemy is just as intimidated as a favored enemy. An unrecognised favored enemy just suffers from being more easily intimidated by this ranger,...

Honestly? Its immersion breaking. It is not spelled out, sure, but favored enemy comes across as a result of extensive training or personnal experiance. It made sense to me when i thought Racial Heritage manifested in physical signs. Now that its just trace genetics (I know i am breaking my own request to keep real life out of this but how else to describe it?) how does anything less than a magical effect activate off it? Its not so much of an issue now though, I had a few build ideas that used RH and all of them are kaput now. Time to gen up ragepouncebarbarian #47 and his backup, Battlesnake MK II.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

You don't need a response for the Kobold-Aasimar issue. It says right in the blurb that was shown to me that those that choose different races to be from for their character losses all human qualities in favor of the new race. The Rule as Written, you would not be able to take the Scion of Humanity because the race you are from is not human.

Hence, why I suggested if a DM allows such a change (It is one of those DM allow sorta things), it can be said that the Scion trait can be for the race used instead of human. Sub type Kobold for the Kobold descended Aasimar for example.

This would also negate the need to take Racial Heritage, as one would already count at a Kobold.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

To add to what Stephen has said, I had the example of the Bludgeoner feat for a long while now. You need a bludgeoning weapon to make use of it, but it doesn't automatically give you one. You have to buy it yourself, even if it is a 0 cost quarterstaff.

Still don't know why this was discounted and disregarded as something not in synch with another attack feat simply because of a difference between manufactured weapon verses having a tail.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
thaX wrote:

To add to what Stephen has said, I had the example of the Bludgeoner feat for a long while now. You need a bludgeoning weapon to make use of it, but it doesn't automatically give you one. You have to buy it yourself, even if it is a 0 cost quarterstaff.

Still don't know why this was discounted and disregarded as something not in synch with another attack feat simply because of a difference between manufactured weapon verses having a tail.

Well it's simple, if your father/mother has a sap and you inherit it, then you have it (just like Heirloom Weapon). Then when you take the feat 'Bludgeoner' this feat allows you to use your family heirloom more effectively.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Are you talking the weapon, or the character's little brother?

The Exchange Owner - D20 Hobbies

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Nothing in the RAW of this feat says you gain a tail. Noting in the RAW of the Racial Heritage feat says you gain a tail.

Thank you

Shadow Lodge

Doomed Hero wrote:
I notice I still haven't gotten a developer response to the Kobold-Aasimar issue. :/

The quote about non-human aasimars comes from the d20PFSRD.com which is not itself an official source. It is blocked here at work and my phone is wonky so I can see the page but can't read the entire box of text to be 100% sure if they reference an offical source for the information or not but I don't think they do.

Nothing in the PRD (http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/advancedRaceGuide/featuredRaces/aasimar s.html) mentions anything about non-human aasimars.

So no, no kobold aasimars.


So something I'd like to point out, though this has been argued back and forth extensively and I doubt it will change many minds.

Take a look at the Agile Tongue feat. The benefit actually explicitly states that it gives you a tongue with a range of 10 feat that can perform a limited list of tasks. Racial Heritage (grippli) and this feat work, because the feat explicitly gives you the tongue.

Tail Terror does not give you a tail. It gives you a tail slap attack. They are not the same thing.

/$0.02


Brotato wrote:

So something I'd like to point out, though this has been argued back and forth extensively and I doubt it will change many minds.

Take a look at the Agile Tongue feat. The benefit actually explicitly states that it gives you a tongue with a range of 10 feat that can perform a limited list of tasks. Racial Heritage (grippli) and this feat work, because the feat explicitly gives you the tongue.

Tail Terror does not give you a tail. It gives you a tail slap attack. They are not the same thing.

/$0.02

You are correct, but we've already got a Paizo designer who stated the same; no need to sway any opinions, we've got an actual answer. :)


PatientWolf wrote:
Doomed Hero wrote:
I notice I still haven't gotten a developer response to the Kobold-Aasimar issue. :/

The quote about non-human aasimars comes from the d20PFSRD.com which is not itself an official source. It is blocked here at work and my phone is wonky so I can see the page but can't read the entire box of text to be 100% sure if they reference an offical source for the information or not but I don't think they do.

Nothing in the PRD (http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/advancedRaceGuide/featuredRaces/aasimar s.html) mentions anything about non-human aasimars.

So no, no kobold aasimars.

The sidebar comes from "The Blood of Angels" though i dont have a copy on hand to cite page number.

Shadow Lodge

Torbyne wrote:
PatientWolf wrote:
Doomed Hero wrote:
I notice I still haven't gotten a developer response to the Kobold-Aasimar issue. :/

The quote about non-human aasimars comes from the d20PFSRD.com which is not itself an official source. It is blocked here at work and my phone is wonky so I can see the page but can't read the entire box of text to be 100% sure if they reference an offical source for the information or not but I don't think they do.

Nothing in the PRD (http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/advancedRaceGuide/featuredRaces/aasimar s.html) mentions anything about non-human aasimars.

So no, no kobold aasimars.

The sidebar comes from "The Blood of Angels" though i dont have a copy on hand to cite page number.

Yep I was able to find that at home over lunch and look at the entirety of the text.

Blood of Angels wrote:

Non-human aasimars have the same statistics as human aasimars with the exception of size. Thus a halfling aasimar

is Small but otherwise possesses the same statistics and
abilities as a human aasimar-the difference is purely
cosmetic. Non-human aasimars do not possess any of the
racial abilities of their base race. However, they are usually
raised in the same cultural context as other members of
their base race, and thus generally adopt the sa me fighting
style as their peers, use the same types of weapons and
armor, and study the same skills.

By RAW the only thing that actually has a game impact is Size. Everything else of the race is explicitly spelled out as being cosmetic in this instance. So sure you could make a Kobold/Aasimar that has a purely cosmetic tail but as has been repeatedly stated cosmetic features can never have a mechanical effect which means no Tail Terror which requires an actual functional tail.


Doomed Hero wrote:
I notice I still haven't gotten a developer response to the Kobold-Aasimar issue. :/

A kobold-aasimar could make use of Tail Terror. As written, they'd need Scion of Humanity, Racial Heritage, and Tail Terror to do so.

Of course, this itself requires an FAQ or errata in my opinion. A kobold-aasimar should be gaining status as a kobold and humanoid (reptilian) through the Scion of X feat, not status as a human.

What do you expect a developer to say, anyway? That certain aasimar can use Tail Terror?

Shadow Lodge

Bizbag wrote:
Doomed Hero wrote:
I notice I still haven't gotten a developer response to the Kobold-Aasimar issue. :/

A kobold-aasimar could make use of Tail Terror. As written, they'd need Scion of Humanity, Racial Heritage, and Tail Terror to do so.

Of course, this itself requires an FAQ or errata in my opinion. A kobold-aasimar should be gaining status as a kobold and humanoid (reptilian) through the Scion of X feat, not status as a human.

What do you expect a developer to say, anyway? That certain aasimar can use Tail Terror?

No a Kobold-Aasimar could not use Tail Terror even with Scion of Humanity and Racial Heritage. For all mechanical purposes a kobold-aasimar doesn't have a tail.


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PatientWolf wrote:
Bizbag wrote:
Doomed Hero wrote:
I notice I still haven't gotten a developer response to the Kobold-Aasimar issue. :/

A kobold-aasimar could make use of Tail Terror. As written, they'd need Scion of Humanity, Racial Heritage, and Tail Terror to do so.

Of course, this itself requires an FAQ or errata in my opinion. A kobold-aasimar should be gaining status as a kobold and humanoid (reptilian) through the Scion of X feat, not status as a human.

What do you expect a developer to say, anyway? That certain aasimar can use Tail Terror?

No a Kobold-Aasimar could not use Tail Terror even with Scion of Humanity and Racial Heritage. For all mechanical purposes a kobold-aasimar doesn't have a tail.

As Stephen Radney-MacFarland mentions above, a certain level of common sense is expected to be applied. The block of text that allows for alternate-race aasimar indicates that, to the untrained eye of the common player races, they may be indistinguishable from standard members of the race. A lack of a tail would be pretty distinguishable on a kobold, troglodyte, or lizardfolk.

Tails are not an item listed in a statistics block, so we fall to the descriptive text to provide information. Kobolds, as we know, are described as possessing them, and the block of text for alternate aasimar describes such characters as being visually identical except for minor differences.

This creates a situation where, if one were attempting to maximize one's mechanical advantages, choosing to be a kobold aasimar could be a more optimal choice over a halfling. This is acceptable to me, because it requires the character to be, essentially, a kobold. PRG is a roleplaying game, not a Tactical Combat Simulator that shifts immediately from one fight to the next, and a GM should take a player's (apparent) race into account during their character's life.

In addition, as I mention in a previous post, I believe there is cause for an FAQ or similar developer input re: Scion of Humanity when combined with alternate aasimar. I think the simple adjudication that the Scion feat would map to your chosen race instead of just Human is preferable.

Shadow Lodge

Bizbag wrote:
PatientWolf wrote:
Bizbag wrote:
Doomed Hero wrote:
I notice I still haven't gotten a developer response to the Kobold-Aasimar issue. :/

A kobold-aasimar could make use of Tail Terror. As written, they'd need Scion of Humanity, Racial Heritage, and Tail Terror to do so.

Of course, this itself requires an FAQ or errata in my opinion. A kobold-aasimar should be gaining status as a kobold and humanoid (reptilian) through the Scion of X feat, not status as a human.

What do you expect a developer to say, anyway? That certain aasimar can use Tail Terror?

No a Kobold-Aasimar could not use Tail Terror even with Scion of Humanity and Racial Heritage. For all mechanical purposes a kobold-aasimar doesn't have a tail.

As Stephen Radney-MacFarland mentions above, a certain level of common sense is expected to be applied. The block of text that allows for alternate-race aasimar indicates that, to the untrained eye of the common player races, they may be indistinguishable from standard members of the race. A lack of a tail would be pretty distinguishable on a kobold, troglodyte, or lizardfolk.

Tails are not an item listed in a statistics block, so we fall to the descriptive text to provide information. Kobolds, as we know, are described as possessing them, and the block of text for alternate aasimar describes such characters as being visually identical except for minor differences.

This creates a situation where, if one were attempting to maximize one's mechanical advantages, choosing to be a kobold aasimar could be a more optimal choice over a halfling. This is acceptable to me, because it requires the character to be, essentially, a kobold. PRG is a roleplaying game, not a Tactical Combat Simulator that shifts immediately from one fight to the next, and a GM should take a player's (apparent) race into account during their character's life.

In addition, as I mention in a previous post, I believe there is cause for an FAQ or similar developer input re: Scion of...

The text that says they are indistinguishable from other races also states explicitly that this appearance, except for size, is 100% cosmetic. So a kobold/aasimar may indeed appear to have a perfectly normal tail to others but the tail is completely cosmetic by RAW. This isn't interpretation, common sense, or implication. It is explicitly stated in the text.


Facepalm.

So now we've gone from "no tail, no tail terror" to "Well that's a way to have a tail, but it doesn't work."

I give up. I'm going to wait for an actual FAQ, and if this ever comes up in a game I run I'm going to say "sure, why not."

Shadow Lodge

Doomed Hero wrote:
Facepalm.

I agree. Pages and pages of arguing with you guys that Racial Heritage does only what it says it does and nothing else. That possessing a tail is absolutely required for Tail Terror by RAW. A dev finally shows up and completely agrees with both of those statements but you guys just can't accept that you lost the argument. You have to go and drum up this kobold-aasimar argument which uses the exact same faulty reasoning that led to your incorrect conclusions about Racial Heritage/Tail Terror.

Doomed Hero wrote:
if this ever comes up in a game I run I'm going to say "sure, why not."

Which no one has denied your right to do.


PatientWolf wrote:
Doomed Hero wrote:
Facepalm.

I agree. Pages and pages of arguing with you guys that Racial Heritage does only what it says it does and nothing else. That possessing a tail is absolutely required for Tail Terror by RAW. A dev finally shows up and completely agrees with both of those statements but you guys just can't accept that you lost the argument. You have to go and drum up this kobold-aasimar argument which uses the exact same faulty reasoning that led to your incorrect conclusions about Racial Heritage/Tail Terror.

Doomed Hero wrote:
if this ever comes up in a game I run I'm going to say "sure, why not."
Which no one has denied your right to do.

But the arguement against is based on humans not having tails and nothing ever granting them one. A pure Kobold's tail is only mentioned in its descriptive text, we take that as the RAW proof that Kobolds have tails. Now we look at the Asimar-Kobold, they have some lee way but otherwise look just like other Kobolds, meaning their descriptive text should follow the mold of a baseline Kobold. That means a tail is now expected rather than just possible. It has the exact same anchor in RAW as any other Kobold. By RAW you still need Scion Of Humanity and Racial Heritage to count as a Kobold for the feat but just for being the variant Aasimar you have the exact same kind of tail and useage of that tail once you take the feat. (As a side point, i'd go for a metalic scaled Kobold with a halo to drive home the "Not evil mook" thing to the unwise.)

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