In character sex change?


Pathfinder Society

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Silver Crusade

Is it PFS legal?
Would it cost prestige?
Would it cost gold?

(one of my characters is a worshiper of arshae, and they change gender and sex because they don't see either as being a limited factor to one's personal expression)


Not sure how you do this in Pathfinder in the first place...

There is at least one avenue with a belt in one adventure, but I can't recall which one.

Venture-Captain, Germany–Hannover aka Hayato Ken

Reign of winter it seems to be, possibly.

5/5

There is no way to "retrain" your character's gender, which is the only PfS legal way to change your character after level 1. Before level 2 you can do whatever you want, include change gender.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

I was all geared up to suggest the girdle of opposite gender, then realized this was a PFS thread. Does PFS allow cursed items? With a girdle and access to a steady supply of break enchantment or remove curse spells you can change gender more or less at will.


Ross Byers wrote:
I was all geared up to suggest the girdle of opposite gender, then realized this was a PFS thread. Does PFS allow cursed items? With a girdle and access to a steady supply of break enchantment or remove curse spells you can change gender more or less at will.

To my knowledge it doesn't allow cursed items usually, but there is a scenario with the girdle that you were allowed to use for your own purposes. I can't remember all the details for the life of me though.

Scarab Sages 5/5

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

The belt is question is found in..

Spoiler:
AP #44 Trial of the Beast


Here I go being all generous again...

Gender has no mechanical* benefit or penalty, really; it's as much a roleplaying detail as hair color or style of clothing. So - I'd say you could just declare it "changed" for role-playing reasons.

So: after so much devotion to Arshae, she grants the gender-change as a gift (or test?) to the PC.

I'm fine with it at my table!

*(I think maybe there is *one* feat which grants some small bonus to social checks versus opposite gender, but assuming absence of that feat, gender has no mechanical effect).

Shadow Lodge

David, normally I would agree, but this isn't just a personality trait or belief, this is a physical change well after character creation. Even hair colour or clothing can be feasably changed, but gender?

On top of that, there's an item in the game which has the exact intended affect (albeit a cursed one).

ioosef's probably got the best solution here.


ioosef wrote:

The belt is question is found in..

** spoiler omitted **

Spoiler:
I GM'd Carrion Crown a while back and recall no Girdle of Opposite Gender being in it. A search in the PDF for the words "girdle" or "gender" give no relevant results either. I believe you may be mistaken.
5/5 ⦵⦵⦵

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You could probably pull it off once, especially if you were wearing heavy armor the entire time.

Wait.. shamus isa GIRL!???


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Avatar-1 wrote:

David, normally I would agree, but this isn't just a personality trait or belief, this is a physical change well after character creation. Even hair colour or clothing can be feasably changed, but gender?

On top of that, there's an item in the game which has the exact intended affect (albeit a cursed one).

ioosef's probably got the best solution here.

It's a physical change with no (or minimal) mechanical effect. If you're not changing to exploit any mechanics, who cares?

If you're playing with a regular PFS group check with your GMs to see if they care. If you're not, just introduce the character as different sexes/genders at different sessions. It's a roleplaying detail.


Slight tangent on the original question. Asura-spawn tiefling are described as frequently being hermaphroditic. I built a character who worshipped Norgorber that I planned to be one of these and have a high disguise check. Every game I wanted to look like a different person, sometimes male and sometimes female. Is this legit for PFS? Would I be considered both genders for the purpose of the disguise check or neither?

5/5 ⦵⦵⦵

I think you're waaaaaay outside the rules and into table variation on that one sitri. I think I'd be worried if there WERE rules for that...

5/5

My Arshean has alter self as a spell-like ability for exactly this reason. I think Wrath of the Righteous has an NPC that indicates that such a spell is pretty expensive (she sold a valuable magic item to get it for her partner).


Mark Seifter wrote:
I think Wrath of the Righteous has an NPC that indicates that such a spell is pretty expensive

Really? It was a first level spell equivalent in that one 3rd edition 3pp I've never read or seen...

Edit: It might've been polymorph any object. But that seems pretty expensive for a really small thing like gender... Small being a non mechanical impact.

Grand Lodge 4/5

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and also in...

Spoiler:

Wrath of the Accursed

Dark Archive

Might I recommend wearing a hat of disguise? :P Should achieve the desired result... somewhat.

5/5

Or don't actually change genders, just have your character be specifically androgynous / gender indeterminate.

I hadn't planned it this way, but my wife and I have Arshea-worshipping elves that have ended up very gender-inspecific and omni-sexual. It happened at Paizocon 2012 when we were playing Quest for Perfection 2. One of the other players (playing a dwarf) made a point of constantly questioning which of us was male and which female. At one point I needed to hide a certain macguffin, and didn't want to hide it on myself. I told the GM I was hiding it in the dwarf's pants. He then turned to his buddy and said, "I've decided that's the female. Do NOT try to tell me different."

From that point forward, Nillon has been ... "Male. Female. Whatever. Does it really matter?"

Later in their careers they played in "Curse of the Lady's Light". It was quite amusing.

5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Finland—Tampere aka Rei

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Sex =/= gender. What your character has in their pants is nobody's business but their own - they can present their gender in any way they choose to, and change that presentation if they feel like it. Explore the possibilities beyond "male" and "female".

If you do want to change your character's physical sex, that might be more difficult. A talented doctor?


I will point out that in Shakespeare there are lots of cross-dressing shenanigans and so I would say that potentially you could say the character was someone trying to pass themselves off as the opposite sex. As a DM I would want to know this at the start though.

Dark Archive

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If you voluntarily change sex via a cursed item, is it a "condition" that needs to be cleared before the end of the scenario?

5/5 ⦵⦵⦵

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ZomB wrote:
If you voluntarily change sex via a cursed item, is it a "condition" that needs to be cleared before the end of the scenario?

You're now a woman so you're dead?

Who let Joss Whedon write a scenario!?

Sovereign Court 5/5

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
ZomB wrote:
If you voluntarily change sex via a cursed item, is it a "condition" that needs to be cleared before the end of the scenario?

No.

Guide, Page 22 wrote:
All conditions gained during an adventure, except for permanent negative levels, ability drain that does not reduce an ability score to 0, and conditions that provide no mechanical effect, must be resolved before the end of the session; if these are not resolved the character should be reported as ‘dead.’ Permanent negative levels, ability drain, and non-mechanical conditions being carried over to the next session should be recorded under the Notes section of the Chronicle sheet. An unplayable character should be marked as dead when reporting the session. See additional rules under Dealing with Afflictions in Chapter 7.

Dark Archive

BigNorseWolf wrote:
ZomB wrote:
If you voluntarily change sex via a cursed item, is it a "condition" that needs to be cleared before the end of the scenario?

You're now a woman so you're dead?

Who let Joss Whedon write a scenario!?

Michael Bay and Joss Whedon have begun working together; all our childhood memories shall be destroyed.


This is a serious issue, remember some NPC's do react differently to members of the opposite sex, and vice versa. The character should be clearly identified as one gender to the GM, and then if some other adjustments are made... the GM should know to have the NPC's react appropriately.

yes, this is a big ball of wax...

Grand Lodge

As gender is, for game purposes, largely a cosmetic issue, Id be perfectly fine with someone showing up at my table to say their character has a sex change, possibly with one minor snag.

There is at least one ability, dont remember what its called offhand, that gives you a bonus on social checks with characters who would be sexually attracted to you. Since changing your gender would likely change the gender that is generally attracted to you, that would need to be retrained, even if you were just taking it again.

Regardless of if you agree with my stance of the PFS-legality of this comment, I hope what I intended to say came through enough that it doesnt offend anyone, as that is not my intention.

5/5 ⦵⦵⦵

remember that in golarion "the npc is attracted to you" and "the npc is of the opposite gender" aren't the same thing. Since persusasion is "whatever the dm wants in the interest of his story unless listed otherwise" and "listed otherwise" is almost a null set, gendervery much approaches a relevancy of 0.

Grand Lodge

BigNorseWolf wrote:
remember that in golarion "the npc is attracted to you" and "the npc is of the opposite gender" aren't the same thing. Since persusasion is "whatever the dm wants in the interest of his story unless listed otherwise" and "listed otherwise" is almost a null set, gendervery much approaches a relevancy of 0.

Im not assuming it does, which was part of the 'I hope this comes across alright'. My point was basically that it should be fairly obvious that the majority of men are attracted to women and the majority of women are attracted to men. Thats what I meant by the 'generally attracted' part. :)


Seth Gipson wrote:
There is at least one ability, dont remember what its called offhand, that gives you a bonus on social checks with characters who would be sexually attracted to you.

It's the "Charming" social trait:

Quote:
You gain a +1 trait bonus when you use Bluff or Diplomacy on a character that is (or could be) sexually attracted to you, and a +1 trait bonus to the save DC of any language-dependent spell you cast on such characters or creatures.

5/5 ⦵⦵⦵

And my (slightly soap boxy in favor of the original posters favor) point was that in golarion there is no technical relation between gender and sexual attraction, so there's still no mechanical change to the trait.


will mike brock kick down my door if I change my character's eye color from brown to green

Grand Lodge

BigNorseWolf wrote:
And my (slightly soap boxy in favor of the original posters favor) point was that in golarion there is no technical relation between gender and sexual attraction, so there's still no mechanical change to the trait.

Ah, well I agree with the no technical relation, though I disagree that there is no mechanical change. Surely every GM is slightly different in the way they run NPCs, but the fact that the trait itself specifies its limited to those who 'are or could be' attracted to you limits it mechanically. And I dont think that is included so you dont get a +1 for trying to Diplomacize the Shambling Mound, but to limits which would translate over, more or less, to the real world.

That said, since it is a trait, you cant retrain it anyway, so I suppose my point of retraining it is moot. :P


Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Seth Gipson wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
And my (slightly soap boxy in favor of the original posters favor) point was that in golarion there is no technical relation between gender and sexual attraction, so there's still no mechanical change to the trait.

Ah, well I agree with the no technical relation, though I disagree that there is no mechanical change. Surely every GM is slightly different in the way they run NPCs, but the fact that the trait itself specifies its limited to those who 'are or could be' attracted to you limits it mechanically. And I dont think that is included so you dont get a +1 for trying to Diplomacize the Shambling Mound, but to limits which would translate over, more or less, to the real world.

That said, since it is a trait, you cant retrain it anyway, so I suppose my point of retraining it is moot. :P

Gender is as much a clue to sexual attraction as race is to alignment. If you guess that any member of the opposite sex might be attracted to you and any member of the same sex probably can't be attracted to you, you would be right at least 90% of the time, in the same way that you would be right most of the time if you guess that a randomly encountered orc is evil and a randomly encountered elf is good. The statistics should favor certain patterns if you want to be "realistic".

Grand Lodge

David knott 242 wrote:
Seth Gipson wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
And my (slightly soap boxy in favor of the original posters favor) point was that in golarion there is no technical relation between gender and sexual attraction, so there's still no mechanical change to the trait.

Ah, well I agree with the no technical relation, though I disagree that there is no mechanical change. Surely every GM is slightly different in the way they run NPCs, but the fact that the trait itself specifies its limited to those who 'are or could be' attracted to you limits it mechanically. And I dont think that is included so you dont get a +1 for trying to Diplomacize the Shambling Mound, but to limits which would translate over, more or less, to the real world.

That said, since it is a trait, you cant retrain it anyway, so I suppose my point of retraining it is moot. :P

Gender is as much a clue to sexual attraction as race is to alignment. If you guess that any member of the opposite sex might be attracted to you and any member of the same sex probably can't be attracted to you, you would be right at least 90% of the time, in the same way that you would be right most of the time if you guess that a randomly encountered orc is evil and a randomly encountered elf is good. The statistics should favor certain patterns if you want to be "realistic".

I cant tell if you are agreeing with me or not...

:P

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Lamontius wrote:
will mike brock kick down my door if I change my character's eye color from brown to green

Yes.

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Alter self should do it. It may not be permanent but there is an item -- greater hat of disguise -- that should be able to pull it off more or less permanently, with a small stat boost to boot.

Scarab Sages 5/5

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The Morphling wrote:
Lamontius wrote:
will mike brock kick down my door if I change my character's eye color from brown to green
Yes.

he doesn't need to kick down the door. It just crumbles to ash as he glares at it... yeah, I know it was an iron door.

The Exchange RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

This is not a straight-forward question. There is an item, the girdle of opposite gender, that effects this change. In my home campaign, I'd have someone who wanted to change his PC's gender simply track down such an item, seize or pay for it, and use it to transform.

Aside:
The game designates the girdle as a cursed item, I presume, because of the heritage of early editions of AD&D where, as the girdle of femininity, it turned the (default male) PC into a woman, and virtually everybody playing the game at the time pitied the character. I'm not comfortable with the idea that Pathfinder still considers "you're a girl!" to be a curse.

If there were a similar magic belt that permanently transformed the user into a gnome or a tiefling, would it be designated a cursed item?

In this Organized Play campaign, there's no way to buy a girdle of opposite gender. There's no way to get an NPC to cast a polymorph spell on your character, that lasts past the end of the adventure.

I'm not sure the rules allow it.

5/5

Quote:
In this Organized Play campaign, there's no way to buy a girdle of opposite gender. There's no way to get an NPC to cast a polymorph spell on your character, that lasts past the end of the adventure.

There is one scenario where you can specifically permanently gain the effects of this item, which are to be noted on the sheet as a "boon" of sorts. I've seen two gnomes swap genders the two times I encountered the scenario.

Shadow Lodge 5/5 Regional Venture-Coordinator, Northwest aka WalterGM

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Chris Mortika wrote:
Aside

RE: Aside:

Apologies in advance if I'm assuming too much. It sounds like the existence of the girdle as an item might offend you a bit. If this is not the case, then my response likely won't make much sense.

I think that Pathfinder considers having your gender switched without your knowledge or permission (as the girdle is always disguised as a different sort of magical belt) to be a curse. Just like any other curse.

It also doesn't specify "you're a girl" rather, "you're the other gender now!" as a curse. I don't think that's degrading, offensive, or sexist. It's just an effect. How it's received is entirely up to the people at the table.

Similarly, I also think if there were items that changed a character's race without the character's knowledge or permission, those items wouldn't be racist.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

Re, the aside:
I think suddenly finding yourself the wrong gender is a lot like finding yourself the subject of a baleful polymorph - You're in a body that is not your own and you want to be put back now, please. For the vast majority of people, that is a curse. (And yet people are expected to be okay with the outcome of reincarnation...)

The fact that some people would view it as removing a curse they were born with doesn't make it not cursed in a general sense, just as dust of coughing and sneezing being able to be used as a weapon doesn't make it not cursed in the general sense.

I do think cursed items should have a price, though, because not matter how useless a cursed item seems, there is someone who wants to use it: if not for themselves, then as a trap for others. Selling such an item might be unethical, but so is selling an unholy weapon. And it's way more ethical to sell a girdle of opposite gender with a warning of exactly what it is than to pretend it is a belt of strength and leave town before you're discovered.

MrSin wrote:
Edit: It might've been polymorph any object. But that seems pretty expensive for a really small thing like gender... Small being a non mechanical impact.

A potion of alter self would do it in the short term, but she needed a long-term, non dispel-able version (polymorph any object would leave a transmutation aura and can be dispelled, even borrowing a girdle would have a transmutation aura and can be removed by remove curse). Which makes it a unique effect with no obvious cost.

For the purposes of the original poster in this thread, finding a way to supply yourself with alter self spells might do the trick.

5/5 ⦵⦵⦵

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Hehehe.. fun with that item.

My first time DMing in highschool the wizard offered the party something from the "box o stuff i haven't gotten around to identifying" with about 8 things in it as a reward. One of the items was a girdle

Left the DMG open to the girdle of giant strength behind the screen, went to the bathroom. Came back, sure enough I came back the party was fighting over the girdle.

The minotaur won.

That was when there were no female minotaurs.

5/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Sydney aka lastblacknight

A girdle does make an appearance in PFS. I had a PC who tried it on!

It was cool - Argcrann chose to stay as a female until a successful spell removed the condition. He found it enlightening...

I don't have anything to offer than it wouldn't bother me if another PC's changed sex.

Venture-Captain, Germany–Hannover aka Hayato Ken

That girdle would be a cool thing in RL. Mandatory to wear for every person for one year hehehe. What an imagination^^

The Exchange RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

Aside:
So, I understand Walter and Ross to be suggesting that the cursed nature of the girdle is that it's a surprise. "My goodness. I certainly wasn't expecting that." But otherwise completely neutral. (Or maybe it's that 5% chance of turning the character into an asexual being?)

I'm not sure I buy that argument. Is a wand of wonder a cursed item? Every other cursed item in the game is absolutely and definitely a serious problem: -6 to an Attribute. A confusion effect. Blood turning to poison. (Some of these, Walter notes, can be weaponized by the PCs. But whether it's bad news for you or somebody else, it's still bad news.)

Now, under the First Edition AD&D rules, the girdle is a real problem. A girdle of femininity / masculinity looks like an object for fighters, almost all of whom have been guys, and nmany of whom have Extraordinary Strength. And turning into a woman runs up against the Strength cap. (Female halflings in AD&D have a maximum Strength of 14.) And, as I say, guys playing AD&D in the '70s and '80s had a reputation of misogyny. So "turning into a chick" was a curse on several levels.

And I am surprised to see that the girdle is still considered a cursed item in Pathfinder. I can think of all sorts of situations in Golarion where being able to switch sex would be valuable. The OP mentions Arshae. All the masters of disguise would find it useful, as well. (And of course, if it were not a cursed item, it could be found on the open magical markets, and used by a character who desires the effects.

Liberty's Edge

BigNorseWolf wrote:
I think you're waaaaaay outside the rules and into table variation on that one sitri. I think I'd be worried if there WERE rules for that...

WAT? There MUST be rules for everything,I say! ;-)

In other news, this reminds me of my home game cleric of Calistria, 'Lola Chablis'. Those of you that are familiar with the musical stylings of The Kinks and the film/book 'Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil' will get the dual reference.

Shadow Lodge

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Mystic_Snowfang wrote:
(one of my characters is a worshiper of arshae, and they change gender and sex because they don't see either as being a limited factor to one's personal expression)

I'd like to mention that no where in Arshea's entry in Chronicle of the Righteous does it mention that those who worship Arshea change sex. Instead, they dress and behave as members of the opposite sex, and eventually choose their own gender identity after years of experimentation. For some worshipers of Arshea, they may choose to change their physical sex, but the following line would lead me to believe that few do: Worshipers of Arshea believe that one’s gender and role in society are not tied to one’s physical form.

A physically male worshiper of Arshea may have a female gender identity, or even a gender identity of a third or fourth gender, but may have no desire to change their own physical sex, because if they did, they would be changing themselves physically so that their defined gender role fits with their physical form, thus seeming normal in society.

Arshea may not be chaotic, but here's another quote for you: Freedom matters most to the Spirit of Abandon, but not simply freedom of the body. Arshea espouses utter liberation of the soul and encourages mortals to abandon needlessly constraining beliefs.

The belief that you need to change your physical sex permanently to fit into others view of society is a needlessly constraining one, and will not liberate your soul. Potions of Alter Self, or a wand of Alter Self will fulfill the needs of most Arshean worshipers, and many would scoff at the need of such items, again seeing no reason why they cannot liberate their soul in their own form.

5/5 ⦵⦵⦵

I'm pretty sure it would still be seen as a curse, political corectness aside. (see order of the stick. Even though roy was happier getting his sword back than his "sword" neither is something you want to lose)

Grand Lodge

Chris, I think you are downplaying the kind of mental effect it would have on the person being affected. If they couldnt figure out how to reverse the situation, suddenly changing genders would likely have a much larger psycological impact than one PFS session can handle. The novelty of 'Well, this is an interesting development' would likely wear off pretty quick.

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