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Designer

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Gordrenn Higgler wrote:

What happens to a familiar's gear from a kineticist talent if it's unmanifested, does it keep it or just drop ?

Would the Sage (Familiar Archtype) be appropriate for the Elemental Whispers familiar ?

If the kineticist is high enough that the familiar would have Speak with Master would the kineticist have to vocalize any conversations or could it be internalized like telepathy (when unmanifested)

Does the familiar share the kineticist' senses when unmanifested (such as if the kineticist is blinded would the familiar be as well) ?

Would any spells that can be made permanent with permancency be used on a kineticist familiar ?

Is there any way for a kineticist to use the Scry of Familiar ability with just the first Elemental Whispers talent ?

Gear would drop.

Sage would actually be extra cool for a non-skilled kineticist, sort of a font of lore about planar stuff.

I think as written it's vocalized, but the internal conversation when it's in the kineticist's head is pretty cool too.

It wouldn't normally be able to see through your senses when unmanifested since it's just a whisper in your mind.

I'd allow permanent spells.

I think it would require weird action economy shenanigans to use scry on familiar in that way.

Designer

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Plausible Pseudonym wrote:
Would you ask Logan his opinion of this question?

Logan says it would instantaneously give you the 3rd round info at the time of casting. Since it's instantaneous, they'd need to notice you at the time of casting.

Designer

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Mizuno Qenido wrote:

(Also asking James Jacobs' opinion on his thread because my GM prefers thoroughness)

The "Bit of Luck" domain power, which lets you roll twice and take the better result for 1 round (2 with the Headband of Fortune's Favor). Is that meant to only apply to actions that take 1 round or less time? Or can it be applied to longer tasks like disabling a machine, writing a forgery, hunting, or a day's worth of crafting? Basically, are you literally being blessed with luck for 6 seconds, or is it more of an abstract and meant to apply to a whole task (or atleast a short portion of a larger task)? Thanks

I'd say in general that if you have up a bonus or other benefit that doesn't last for the full completion of the action, you shouldn't apply it to that action. The rules aren't clear on that though.

Designer

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FiddlersGreen wrote:

Hi Mark, would you be able to shed some light on how possession-type spells work in pathfinder in relation to magic items and spells?

For my specific circumstances, if I'm wearing a headband of charisma and a belt of fortitude, and I cast Familiar melding :
1. Does the CHA bonus from the headband transfer with my consciousness? If not, do I get it if my familiar puts on that headband?
2. Is my familiar's HP (this being the familiar whose body I am in) based on my hp with the belt's bonus or without? (Assume I've worn the belt for over 24 hours.)
3. If I cast shield other on the familiar before casting familiar melding, would half the damage I take whilst in my familiar's body still transfer to my real body?(edited)

More generally, do on-going spells remain with the body or transfer with the soul/consciousness? What about bonuses from magic items?

This is a difficult conundrum that I had to answer with my new Karzoug tactics earlier in this thread. Considering how powerful the tactic was, I decided that the spells that weren't soul-affecting or mind-affecting stayed on the body, so K had to either pre-buff on the return body (which he did for some essential spells) or use his time stops to put spells back up whenever the PCs switched to a new "phase" of the fight.

Designer

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KingOfAnything wrote:

How would you rule on this interesting rules interaction?

Summary: If a rogue takes the Up Close and Personal vigilante talent using the Stalker Talent advanced rogue talent, how much damage can they do?

Answered in thread!

Designer

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Renkosuke wrote:

Random question about Kinetic Blade and Kinetic Whip (mostly about blade):

Kinetic Blade states that it remains active until the end of your current turn, whereas Kinetic Whip says that remains until the start of your next turn, thus allowing you to make attacks of opportunity using the whip. Would this imply that if you were given a chance to make an AOO during your own turn, that you could use a kinetic blade to make that AOO, or are you entirely incapable of using your kinetic blade in that fashion?

An easy example of this would be when you use your kinetic blade and greater trip to trip an opponent. A rarer example might be if an opponent triggers an attack of opportunity against you during your turn by taking a readied action that provokes AOOs. A weird example would be when you have greater trip and use the bowling infusion on your kinetic blade to knock down your opponent after the attack resolves. The weirdest example might involve all three (with the opponent using a readied action to stand up after being tripped, somehow predicting he would fall down, and then you spending an iterative to knock him down again. Why you're making a trip attack when you've already infused your blade with bowling infusion is beyond me).

Shanks as always!

While I can see both sides as you present them, I'd tend to allow AoOs with the blade that occur on your own turn.

Designer

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Zhangar wrote:
Who wrote the Brutal Slavers section of the Villains Codex?

Dale McCoy wrote them, and I was the main designer on point during it's development. They were pretty cool; did you like them in particular?


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Mark Seifter wrote:
FiddlersGreen wrote:

Hi Mark, would you be able to shed some light on how possession-type spells work in pathfinder in relation to magic items and spells?

For my specific circumstances, if I'm wearing a headband of charisma and a belt of fortitude, and I cast Familiar melding :
1. Does the CHA bonus from the headband transfer with my consciousness? If not, do I get it if my familiar puts on that headband?
2. Is my familiar's HP (this being the familiar whose body I am in) based on my hp with the belt's bonus or without? (Assume I've worn the belt for over 24 hours.)
3. If I cast shield other on the familiar before casting familiar melding, would half the damage I take whilst in my familiar's body still transfer to my real body?

More generally, do on-going spells remain with the body or transfer with the soul/consciousness? What about bonuses from magic items?

This is a difficult conundrum that I had to answer with my new Karzoug tactics earlier in this thread. Considering how powerful the tactic was, I decided that the spells that weren't soul-affecting or mind-affecting stayed on the body, so K had to either pre-buff on the return body (which he did for some essential spells) or use his time stops to put spells back up whenever the PCs switched to a new "phase" of the fight.

Thanks Mark. I guess that answers question 3. =)

How would this apply to questions 1 and 2?

Designer

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Lou Diamond wrote:

Mark, I have a magic item design question. Why d

Do rings, most helms head bands neck items have only one power?

What would you think of rings that functioned like meta magic rods
Meta magic rods just do not work for Magus's.

How would you price a gem that when used restored 5 points to the Magus's arcane pool' once a day like a pearl of power?

They don't always have one power.

Metamagic rings could work, though you might want to have them require both Forge Ring and Craft Rod to avoid crowding out rod's niche.

5 seems like a lot for the baseline. Given that the magus can clearly use the arcane pool points to get 10 levels of spell slots (via improved spell recall) as well as for a variety of other things by the time they can afford the item, it should be more expensive than a 70k Pearl of Power (two spells) from the CRB.


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Mark Seifter wrote:
Lou Diamond wrote:

...

How would you price a gem that when used restored 5 points to the Magus's arcane pool' once a day like a pearl of power?

...

5 seems like a lot for the baseline. Given that the magus can clearly use the arcane pool points to get 10 levels of spell slots (via improved spell recall) as well as for a variety of other things by the time they can afford the item, it should be more expensive than a 70k Pearl of Power (two spells) from the CRB.

Interesting. I would have compared the price to a Wyroot weapon which probably would have resulted in a much cheaper item. I wonder if under-pricing is the reason Wyroot isn't PFS legal.


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Mark Seifter wrote:
Zhangar wrote:
Who wrote the Brutal Slavers section of the Villains Codex?
Dale McCoy wrote them, and I was the main designer on point during it's development. They were pretty cool; did you like them in particular?

The Order of the Whip was great, the rest of the mechanics were good.

Dark Archive

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andreww wrote:
GhostwheelX wrote:

The Improved Spell Sharing feat requires an animal companion, eidolon, familiar, or special mount. However, the Spiritualist does not gain any of the above, instead gaining a phantom.

Does the phantom count as the above for the purpose of the feat?

Even if it did it doesn't work as the companion cannot qualify to take it. You need a way to give your companion your teamwork feats such as hunter or inquisitor abilities.

And if you multiclass into inquisitor (or some other class that allows you to grant teamwork feats to allies)? In that case would they be viable for the Improved Spell Sharing feat?


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I was hoping to get your personal opinion on a question about a Wizard school power. There are a bunch of powers worded roughly something like the Core's Enchantment School's Aura of Despair. (Elemental Manipulation, Aura of Banishment, Foretell, Shape Emotions, and Bedeviling Aura are the others)

PRD wrote:
Aura of Despair (Su): At 8th level, you can emit a 30-foot aura of despair for a number of rounds per day equal to your wizard level. Enemies within this aura take a –2 penalty on ability checks, attack rolls, damage rolls, saving throws, and skill checks. These rounds do not need to be consecutive. This is a mind-affecting effect.

I've looked around and it seems quite clear that to activate a supernatural power is a standard action.

PRD wrote:
Supernatural Abilities (Su): Using a supernatural ability is usually a standard action (unless defined otherwise by the ability's description). Its use cannot be disrupted, does not require concentration, and does not provoke attacks of opportunity.

My question is how long do these powers last after activation? Do they last one round and require another standard action subsequent rounds to remain active? Or do you just need to use a free action to maintain them similar to the Bard?

And bonus question. What about Paladin Auras? If a Paladin is knocked out in combat, once they regain consciousness do they need to spend a standard action to use their Auras?

Designer

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Ashram wrote:
Speaking of Kineticist stuff Mark, I dunno if this has been asked before but does the Ability Focus feat apply to any of the kineticist's abilities?

To be perfectly honest, as Sean once told me as a fan at Paizocon, several of those math-based monster feats in the back of the Bestiary mainly exist as a kluge to get the math to work out when advancing monsters (or in Ability Focus's case, when designing new monsters but locked into the 10 + 1/2 HD + ability mod when that math comes out to something way too low). To that end, in the interest of having roughly reasonable DCs, it's really not a good idea to use them on PCs or class-leveled NPCs.

Designer

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Lou Diamond wrote:
Mark, why could a high strength character, 20+ strength not use a 2 handed weapon in on hand w/o any penalty. 2 handed weapons are just large versions of one handed weapons designed to inflict greater damage when they hit.

It's because the math of how much damage weapons do is balanced around some awkward conjunctions of handedness and size category. If you want to keep balance but allow your suggestion for story purposes, you could just say something like "Sword: 19-20 critical; if you buy it as a light weapon, it does 1d6 damage, 1d8 if you buy it as one-handed, 2d6 if you buy it as two-handed" and then just allow you to describe how big the weapon is based on character preference, or something like that.

Designer

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Chess Pwn wrote:

Do you think we'll see any FAQs before next year? It's already been a long time without FAQs, the most recent being Oct 21st I believe.

Have FAQs dropped in priority? I feel they were already near the bottom, but you managed to get it in most weeks. But since like Pathcon, the flow seems to have steadily decreased. Any particular reason or has it really been just a string of bad luck?

I would say no because hindsight is 20/20.

Designer

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Ofunu wrote:

So sad, Mark didn't answer my question :'( Guess I will just have to ask again then.

Ofunu wrote:
Back to the Kineticist questions. If I have the Expanded Metakinesis, choosing the Disruptive Spell option, how would it interact with a Mobile Blast? How would a Mobile Blast interact with the Metakinesis Twice, for that matter?

The damage from the mobile blast should disrupt them, like a disruptive spell flaming sphere. Twice would probably give you two of them, though that would take lots of actions to control; I could also see the ruling that the restriction of one mobile blast at once would mean that it gives you two but the second replaces the first and thus it isn't a good choice.


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He's on a marathon folks!! Support him with hydration! *Offers Mark liquid goodness*

Designer

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Cubed wrote:

Mark,

I am having trouble finding your response to
this question regarding the range of the Oceans subdomain and its Surge ability. What is the range?

Thanks.

Quote:
Surge (Su): As a standard action, you can cause a mighty wave to appear that pushes or pulls a single creature. Make a combat maneuver check against the target, using your cleric level + your Wisdom modifier as your CMB. If successful, you may pull or push the creature as if using the bull rush or drag combat maneuver. You can use this ability a number of times per day equal to 3 + your Wisdom modifier.

Since it isn't listed, I would assume the normal range for those combat maneuvers (so whatever your reach is). Seems like it could be an oversight though because the imagery suggests that a wave wouldn't necessarily have to appear from your area.

Designer

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Faelyn wrote:

Hey Mark, I've got a question regarding a certain alternate Racial Trait for genie-kin; Mostly Human. (Spoiler'ed below to keep things tidy.)

** spoiler omitted **

Does this also change the geniekin's starting age? Would you then utilize the human's age categories? Or do you use the standard geniekin age categories?

I'm inclined to believe it would be the human's, because how could someone not realize that are something more than a human if they don't reach physical maturity until well after their great, great nephews and nieces have already died...

I would probably use the human starting age, or perhaps the human age for adulthood and then the geniekin ages for everything past that. These are already outliers with physiology that works differently than normal, so whichever works best in your game or for that character's story!

Designer

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Shadowlord wrote:
I have a question about your blog post Illuminating the Darkness.

Yeah, "actual light" vs "perceived light" is pretty annoying, particularly for features that rely on the exact position of "shadows". I would tend to agree that anything that depends on the absolute light level of an area should just use the way it works for normal vision; the existence of a creature with darkvision shouldn't negate the shadowdancer's ability to shadow jump, for instance (or else the poor thing would never be able to do it, since she gains darkvision).

Designer

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Snowblind wrote:

Hey Mark.

In the "Necromantic Servant" Occultist Focus power, it says the following:

Necromantic Servant (Sp) wrote:

As a standard action, you can expend 1 point of mental focus to raise a single human skeleton or human zombie from the ground to serve you for 10 minutes per occultist level you possess or until it is destroyed, whichever comes first. This servant has a number of hit points equal to 1/2 your maximum hit point total (not adjusted for temporary hit points or other temporary increases). It also uses your base attack bonus and gains a bonus on damage rolls equal to 1/2 your occultist level. At 5th level, whenever the necromantic servant would be destroyed, if you are within medium range (100 feet + 10 feet per level) of the servant, you can expend 1 point of mental focus as an immediate action to cause the servant to return to full hit points. At 9th level, you can choose to give the servant the bloody or burning simple template (if it's a skeleton) or the fast simple template (if it's a zombie). At 13th level, when you take an immediate action to restore your servant, it splits into two servants. You can have a maximum number of servants in existence equal to 1/2 your occultist level. At 17th level, the servant gains a teamwork feat of your choice.

Can you "summon" more than 1 servant at a time before level 13? On the one hand that sentence and the one before are separate and thus IIRC shouldn't be implicitly linked, and there isn't anything explicitly prohibiting making multiple servants. On the other hand they logically follow on from each other, and the servant cap is 0 at level 1, breaking the ability if the cap applies from level 1 onwards (and if it only applies at level 13 then an ability getting worse at higher levels is just weird).

That's a good question, and though I added the buffs to it like the splitting, Jason originally wrote the power and handled the final wording, so I'm not sure. My guess for how it was intended to work is that the limit is 1 summoned, starting at level 1 but then you can split them out to half level at 13th.

Designer

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Ralph Cauthorn wrote:

The Sphere Singer prestige class from Paths of the Righteous has a capstone that says:

Tapestry Traveler (Ex, Sp): At 10th level, the sphere
singer transcends mortality like a butterfly emerging
from its chrysalis, her essence infused with stardust and
unearthly energies. Her type changes to fey, and she grows
large butterfly wings, gaining a fly speed of 50 feet (good).
In addition, she becomes immune to cold and gains the no
breath universal monster ability.

Does "transcends mortality" mean that she becomes immortal, in the sense that she stops aging and will no longer die of old age? Is that by virtue of her becoming a fey creature, and if yes, does this mean that all fey creatures are immortal?

I'd agree with Isabelle that it should do whatever being fey would normally do in that regard, which could also depend on what setting you play in (and even what plane, as the Golarion setting has a very interesting metaphysical post-death situation for fey on the First World).

Designer

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Squiggit wrote:

Do you see any problem with houseruling Slashing/Fencing Grace to work more like Dervish Dance and only de-activate if you're using a weapon or shield rather than whenever your offhand is occupied?

Because I understand that you don't want sword and board or TWF benefiting here, but it strikes me as a bit strange that a Swashbuckler's damage suddenly goes down the toilet because they're holding a torch or swinging from a rope, which is like the most swashbuckler thing to do ever.

I know Two-Weapon Grace lets you do this, but it seems a bit punishing to require someone to burn two extra feats just to be able to carry a lantern with them.

You'd want to still make sure it doesn't work with other styles that explicitly give benefits balanced around keeping that other hand empty or essentially TWFing (like magus spell combat and flurry), but the rope thing seems like it shouldn't be an issue.

Designer

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Renkosuke wrote:
Hey Mark, are you a poodle or a chihuahua kind of guy?

My family had a miniature poodle starting when I was in 8th grade or so until a few years back, so I guess probably poodle for that reason. She was a bit of a bizarre dog.

Designer

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Rysky wrote:

Hello Designer Eidolon, I haz a question!

I'm curious what effect, if any, Cold/Fire Resistance has against environmental effects that don't specifically deal elemental damage, for example how in Extreme Heat (like being in a volcano) you have to make a Fortitude save or became Fatigued>Exhausted and take non-typed heat damage.

What are your thoughts?

This came up recently at work. They'd be nonlethal fire damage and nonlethal cold damage (and you might ask, as someone did, are there any other examples of that existing in the CRB, and the answer is brown mold, which does nonlethal cold damage).


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Mark Seifter wrote:
Faelyn wrote:

Hey Mark, I've got a question regarding a certain alternate Racial Trait for genie-kin; Mostly Human. (Spoiler'ed below to keep things tidy.)

** spoiler omitted **

Does this also change the geniekin's starting age? Would you then utilize the human's age categories? Or do you use the standard geniekin age categories?

I'm inclined to believe it would be the human's, because how could someone not realize that are something more than a human if they don't reach physical maturity until well after their great, great nephews and nieces have already died...

I would probably use the human starting age, or perhaps the human age for adulthood and then the geniekin ages for everything past that. These are already outliers with physiology that works differently than normal, so whichever works best in your game or for that character's story!

Thanks, Mark!


Belltrap wrote:

Hi Mark!

You mentioned that part of your Karzoug tactics involved using undead anatomy IV to assume the form of an incoporeal undead. Which undead do you favor taking the form of when using undead anatomy IV?

Humorously, I was looking through your thread, for... reasons... and I came across this question with no noted answer.

So...? ;D

Silver Crusade

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Mark Seifter wrote:
Rysky wrote:

Hello Designer Eidolon, I haz a question!

I'm curious what effect, if any, Cold/Fire Resistance has against environmental effects that don't specifically deal elemental damage, for example how in Extreme Heat (like being in a volcano) you have to make a Fortitude save or became Fatigued>Exhausted and take non-typed heat damage.

What are your thoughts?

This came up recently at work. They'd be nonlethal fire damage and nonlethal cold damage (and you might ask, as someone did, are there any other examples of that existing in the CRB, and the answer is brown mold, which does nonlethal cold damage).

Cool, thankies :3

What about the saves vs Fatigue/Exhaustion for being in those environments for long periods of time, about how much Resistance do you think you would need before you wouldn't need to make the saves anymore?


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Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Okay, this is something that's been bothering me a little...burst of adrenaline says you get the bonus for that roll, but if you use it to boost an attack roll, does that mean it doesn't apply to the damage roll? Because thematically, it feels like the attack and the damage are the same action, even if they're different rolls, so it's a weird mental image...indeed, until I read it carefully I took it for granted that it did apply to both...

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber

It says you use it before making a d20 roll, so unless you have a very unusual weapon it can never apply to your damage.


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TriOmegaZero wrote:
It says you use it before making a d20 roll, so unless you have a very unusual weapon it can never apply to your damage.

Hmm. takes notes


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Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
TriOmegaZero wrote:
It says you use it before making a d20 roll, so unless you have a very unusual weapon it can never apply to your damage.

...which is why I asked about an attack roll, which is, in fact, a d20 roll.

Silver Crusade

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Luthorne wrote:
Okay, this is something that's been bothering me a little...burst of adrenaline says you get the bonus for that roll, but if you use it to boost an attack roll, does that mean it doesn't apply to the damage roll? Because thematically, it feels like the attack and the damage are the same action, even if they're different rolls, so it's a weird mental image...indeed, until I read it carefully I took it for granted that it did apply to both...

Something else to think about, if it ends after the attack roll are you Fatigued for the damage roll?


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TriOmegaZero wrote:
It says you use it before making a d20 roll, so unless you have a very unusual weapon it can never apply to your damage.

Found it!


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Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Rysky wrote:
Luthorne wrote:
Okay, this is something that's been bothering me a little...burst of adrenaline says you get the bonus for that roll, but if you use it to boost an attack roll, does that mean it doesn't apply to the damage roll? Because thematically, it feels like the attack and the damage are the same action, even if they're different rolls, so it's a weird mental image...indeed, until I read it carefully I took it for granted that it did apply to both...
Something else to think about, if it ends after the attack roll are you Fatigued for the damage roll?

Yeah, it's just kind of weird...you're stronger when hitting them, but not when actually hitting them...? I mean, if it was just a straight +4 insight bonus to a relevant check, I wouldn't question it, but being stronger for a single roll but not for the entire action that roll represents gives me a headache trying to envision. With a strict reading, though, I think you're right, you'd be fatigued for the damage.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber
Luthorne wrote:


...which is why I asked about an attack roll, which is, in fact, a d20 roll.

And it only applies to one roll, despite the attack being a single action. Not the best course, since you'd take the fatigue penalty on damage.

Sovereign Court

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Probably best used to break out of rope bonds, smash through a locked door, break/escape out of a grapple or when making Fort and Reflex saves then...


Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
TriOmegaZero wrote:
Luthorne wrote:


...which is why I asked about an attack roll, which is, in fact, a d20 roll.
And it only applies to one roll, despite the attack being a single action. Not the best course, since you'd take the fatigue penalty on damage.

...I'm trying not to be rude here, but I was asking for how Mark Seifter's thoughts on the matter because, as-written, it's weird and doesn't seem to make any sense outside of pure game mechanics. As I said - both in my initial post and in the one responding to Rysky - I'm aware that, as-written, that seems to be how it works, but I would also like Mark's opinion as someone who worked on the book as to how he would resolve that apparent bit of oddness, and if it's as-intended. I apologize for apparently phrasing my question in a way that led you to believe my question was focused on a different intent.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber
Luthorne wrote:
...I'm trying not to be rude here...

Nor am I, but if you're not getting anything out of my comments, you aren't obligated to respond.


Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
TriOmegaZero wrote:
Luthorne wrote:
...I'm trying not to be rude here...
Nor am I, but if you're not getting anything out of my comments, you aren't obligated to respond.

Well, I personally disagree on that. It's one thing to ignore a free-floating comment not particularly addressed to anyone, or addressed to a group you might be a part of, but still not specifically to you, but one directly addressed to you should at least merit a response explaining why you aren't going to respond, I think.

Regardless, though, this is the thread for asking Mark Seifter questions, so this has gone on an entirely too-long tangent, so I hope you'll pardon me if I don't respond further.


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FAQ Request: Yes or no, is the answer to this FAQ Request no?

Silver Crusade

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Gisher wrote:
FAQ Request: Yes or no, is the answer to this FAQ Request no?

Please tell me you actually started a thread for this :3

Designer

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Gisher wrote:
FAQ Request: Yes or no, is the answer to this FAQ Request no?

#

# is used to denote a truth-value gap, such as those caused by false presuppositions in the Fregian analysis of the sentence "The current king of France is bald" since France doesn't have a king to begin with.

Designer

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So, you may have wondered why the site is acting up. Looks like we're doing another Humble Bundle with cool stuff for the Worldscape tie-in. Check it out here. Also, this time around, I'll be playing on the twitch livestream, so be sure to tune in at 5 PST (8 EST) to the Paizo twitch channel. I will be playing Dark Yoon, an alternate reality Yoon who found a way to suppress and channel the dark flame curse rather than a way to remove it, also using an as-yet unreleased option or two from future books

Designer

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Dragon78 wrote:
Does the energy resistance gained from heat/cold adaptation kineticist utility wild talents stack with racial energy resistance of the same type?

Technically no, and I definitely wouldn't allow it to stack with magical energy resistance from spells and items and such, but it could be kind of cool to allow it to stack with energy resistance 5 from elemental-kin races only.

Designer

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Dragon78 wrote:
Does the elemental strike feat(ISR) work with kinetic blade/whip?

Isabelle's got it.


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Mark Seifter wrote:
So, you may have wondered why the site is acting up. Looks like we're doing another Humble Bundle with cool stuff for the Worldscape tie-in. Check it out here. Also, this time around, I'll be playing on the twitch livestream, so be sure to tune in at 5 PST (8 EST) to the Paizo twitch channel. I will be playing Dark Yoon, an alternate reality Yoon who found a way to suppress and channel the dark flame curse rather than a way to remove it, also using an as-yet unreleased option or two from future books

... the sumo wrestler on ice skates is an interesting character...

Designer

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swoosh wrote:

So I know you're more a rules guy than a fluff guy, but I'm curious.

What do Lawful and Chaotic mean to you? I thought I had a good handle on what these alignments meant, but then I read the Villain Codex and I'm just not so sure.

I used to associate Law with tenants like honor, trustworthiness, reliability and tradition (and on the flip side, close minded and overly rigid)... and in turn Chaos with tenants like freedom and adaptability (and on the flip side, potentially untrustworthy/unreliable or reckless)

But going by those sorts of tenants the most Lawful organization in the book would be the Demon Knights because of their fairly rigid social structure, along with their dedication and fairly predictable behavior (in fact one of their potential plot hooks was them acting out of their normal routine and the PCs trying to figure out why). Reading the description at the start of their entry and I sincerely thought it would be sort of a little joke that they were Lawful Evil even though they styled themselves after demons.

On the flip side, the Corrupt Guard, Diabolic Church and Fang Monastery are all called lawful (or at least, nearly all their members are), yet seem entirely defined by duplicity and deceit: lying cheating and stealing their way to more power and money for themselves at the cost of anything else, with all the more honorable or honest facets of the Guard and Church being pretty much just fronts and one of the Fang's story hooks involving them poisoning rivals in order to rig a competition. All of which seems kind of anathema to any sort of 'lawful' ideology and as far away from trustworthy, reliable and orderly as you could get.

Now I realize Evil inherently means a lot of negative traits sort of by definition, because they're evil, which means they're going to eschew some of the more positive traits associated with the alignment, but at times it really seems like they don't have much to do at all with their alignment, except that the those three are Lawful because...

The only group of those that I worked on for flavor is the Corrupt Guard, and they seem like a pretty lawful organization to me. They're exploiting the existing power structure and hierarchy for their own advantage.

The way I tend to divide it (when dealing with people, not weird outsiders that embody one of those alignments) is that lawful characters value consistency, stability, and predictability over flexibility. They have a set system in life, whether it’s meticulously planning day-to-day activities, codifying a set of laws, or strictly adhering to a code of honor. On the other hand, chaotic characters value flexibility, creativity, and spontaneity over consistency. That doesn’t mean they decides life by choosing randomly with a roll of the dice; strictly following a code like that is actually lawful. Chaotic characters tend to see their way as best, as they believe that lawful characters are too inflexible to judge each situation by its own merits or take advantage of opportunities, while lawful characters see their way as best, as they believe that chaotic characters are irresponsible and flighty.

In some ways, it's a little like the Judgmental/Perceptive division in the highly-horoscopy Meyers Briggs Type Indicator tests, so you could always take one of those things for a character as an amusing way to see if it matches. As a related but somewhat tangential aside, I've never found a "what is your alignment" style test that I liked. There was one in 3.5 in one of the side books, but it had a weird setup where it rated one of my characters as True Neutral, but when I retook it and chose blatantly evil and chaotic orphan-killing options on a few key questions and changed nothing else, it rated her as Lawful Good. How is this possible? The way it worked is that it tallied up your Good, Neutral, and Evil points (and your Lawful, Neutral, and Chaotic points on the other axis) separately and then took the max of those three without considering where you stood on the other two, with questions that had blatantly evil options giving you either Neutral or Evil points, but never Good, just tons of Neutral points if you picked the least Evil option, so like 19 Good, 20 Neutral, 0 Evil (numbers aren't exact, but roughly, a character who chose all the most good options in the Neutral vs Evil questions and then chose all but one of the most good options in the Good vs Neutral questions, choosing one of the answers there that was still Good but gave 1 Good point instead of 2) would be Neutral but 19 Good, 2 Neutral, 18 Evil was Good.

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GhostwheelX wrote:

The Improved Spell Sharing feat requires an animal companion, eidolon, familiar, or special mount. However, the Spiritualist does not gain any of the above, instead gaining a phantom.

Does the phantom count as the above for the purpose of the feat?

It isn't any of the above, so it wouldn't work. Incidentally, this is also why OA had a few feats that worked similarly to summoner/eidolon feats but worked for spiritualists and phantoms.

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