Taking 10: Immediate dangers and distractions


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I think this thread is rapidly devolving into hyperbole.

The sky probably is not actually falling.

Sure, there are bad GMs out there. But if your GM won't let you Take-10 to jump over a 5' rug in your home because he likes torturing you with drama, then you certainly have bigger problems with that GM anyway.

If your GM sees this FAQ as a "Haha, now you will NEVER use Take-10 again! Bwuhahahaha!" ruling, then you certainly have bigger problems with that GM anyway.

And several posters have commented about "GM whimsey", but if your GM is "whimsical" about ruling over Take-10, then the's probably just as whimsical about other, more important, things like monster CR, loot, DMPCs, fudged rolls, etc. - in other words, you certainly have bigger problems with that GM anyway.

The flip-side, of course, is that if you don't have bigger problems with your GM, then he probably won't seize this FAQ as the end--all, be-all deathtrap for all the fun in your game. Probably.

TL;dr Chill, dudes, your GM isn't that bad...


I'll See if i can dig up some post but over the years i have seen DM's complain about how T10 is too easy and that they wish that they could decide that more tension was needed. I n PFS especially that could go from a DC 12 climb that with gear everyone could have taken 10 on to possibly a character death because of failure at the top.


How is this even up for debate?

If you actually follow the DEV statement about drama changing laws of the universe, you are a bad GM who really should never have picked up the task . And yes that is an absolute statement and I will stand by it. I suppose I should have calmed down by now, but it just annoys the heck out of me that a game I once had a pretty damn fine opinion of has people working on it that I would not even consider gaming with for a one-shot.

It's not really the statement itself that has me so annoyed it is about what it implies.


Bigger Club wrote:

How is this even up for debate?

If you actually follow the DEV statement about drama changing laws of the universe, you are a bad GM who really should never have picked up the task . And yes that is an absolute statement and I will stand by it. I suppose I should have calmed down by now, but it just annoys the heck out of me that a game I once had a pretty damn fine opinion of has people working on it that I would not even consider gaming with for a one-shot.

It's not really the statement itself that has me so annoyed it is about what it implies.

Wow.

Who said "drama changes the laws of the universe?" I must have missed that DEV statement.

A law of the universe might be that climbers have a chance of falling. Another law of the universe might be that falling means gravity pulls you down, likely with some amount of pain and injury at the end of the fall.

But which die, or no die, we use at our game table to decide the fate of our imaginary adventurers in that imaginary world is not a "law of the universe" for our real world or for their imaginary one. It's merely a mechanic we can, or can't, use to resolve the outcome of our characters interacting with the laws of the universe.

At this point, I'd like to refer you to my previous posts, just a couple posts above yours...


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DM_Blake wrote:

I think this thread is rapidly devolving into hyperbole.

The sky probably is not actually falling.

Ironic juxtaposition of statements.

Pretending that there is no issue if the "sky is not actually falling" suggests a failure to grasp the negative impact of the last non-ruling. The real problem this post creates for those who read it, is that it breeds inconsistent and arbitrary GMing. That is never a positive for an RPG and certainly not for Pathfinder. One of the major advantages of rules proliferation that came with 3.x over AD&D is that the players got a higher level of consistent GMing. Despite the existing of Rule Zero, just the fact that you have a concrete rule invariably reduces the variation in how people will handle a situation.

One of the reasons I quit playing non-PFS Pathfinder was precisely because of GMs lacking consistency. If it was Tuesday, they might rule one-way. If it was June, they might rule another. If the player was all about roleplaying they'd rule completely different than if the player was more focused on mechanics. When the game becomes arbitrary and the rules are arbitrarily enforced, for me, it ceases to be Pathfinder and starts to becomes GM-X's-home-game-which-they-tricked-me-into-playing-by-calling-it-Pathfinde r.

Let's set aside the ethics of the PDT claiming there was no FAQ needed, but then completely falsifying the purpose of Take 10 and then unofficially trying to change its core mechanic. Instead, let's focus on the decision of the PDT to refuse to offer examples of when T10 is allowed. I find it unconscionable that the PDT, who is charged with providing guidance for the game, refuses to do so. If the members of the PDT can't provide a specific example of how a rule is suppose to work and when it is suppose to work, then they should not be part of the PDT. The very reason why they are on the PDT is to provide guidance to the players on how to interpret the rules of the game for which the PDT has taken ownership. It is mind numbing to me that they believe they are helping the game by refusing to answer specific questions. Nobody is asking them for a blanket response. We are asking for simple and straightforward examples which give solid instruction on when a player has the right to Take 10. If the current members of the PDT cannot provide a single example, then they are not qualified to be on the PDT and should resign their position to those who are willing to take a leadership role.

What is the point of having the PDT if they lack the conviction to tell us how the game is suppose to be played? They had no problem telling us the DC for jumping a 10' pit is 10. How is this fundamentally different? It's not. Take 10 is just another rule for shaping the game, as are all the rules.

Let me tell the PDT members who are reading that by refusing to answer specifics on this topic, you weaken the game. By attempting to subvert the purpose of Take 10 as a tool for pacing and tension, you've laid out kindling to start countless fires in PFS games and even home-brew. Nobody is benefited by the creation of ambiguity in the rules and empowering the GMs to be whimsical. I don't play Pathfinder because I believe in my GMs ability to manage pacing and tension. I play it because the rules of the game, when followed, create an enjoyable experience. The more you shift the burden to the GM and the more you undermine the consistency in how the game is played, the more people will be turned off from the game.

No game is benefited by whimsical rules enforcement.


Seriously 'take 10' is not such a large part of the game that not allowing it changes everything about the game. a wee bit of perspective might be needed.

The size of a pit is a hard rule. It is concrete. a 10' pit stays a 10' pit no matter if some-one is shooting at you, or it's pitch black or...any one of a thousand thing that won't change the fact that the pit is 10'.

Take 10 is an aid to streamlining the game in certain circumstances. Those circumstances can be varied and have a large number of competing factors. it is the very essence of a soft rule. It does not have a 'you can always...' element to it. The nature of the game is such that the GM really don't need their hands being tied.

I'm really sorry that some of you have had bad experiences with GM's and take 10, but that is likely more down to the GM than the rule.


The PDT answered by saying that the player NEVER has the RIGHT to Take 10. That the GM is in complete control of the take 10 options.

Quote:
The point of the Take 10 option is to allow the GM to control the pacing and tension of the game, avoiding having the game bog down with unnecessary and pointless checks, but still calling for checks when the chance of failure leads to tension or drama, as well as when a series of checks would have a nonsensical result if all outcomes were exactly the Take 10 result. To that end, it would be counterproductive to attempt to make a strict ruling on what counts as “immediate danger and distracted” because that’s going to vary based on the pacing and dramatic needs of the moment. The very soul of the Take 10 rule is in the GM’s discretion of when it applies, and tying the GM’s hands, forcing them to allow Take 10 in some cases and disallow it in others would run counter to the point of the rule’s inclusion in the game. The rule is currently flexible enough to allow this, and it should maintain that flexibility.

take 10 is for the GM. take 10 isn't for the players, it's a GM option to control pacing. Thus a jump may or may not be allowed to take 10 depending on if the GM thinks that the failure could lead to tension or drama. Doesn't matter if you did it your entire life, just yesterday, this morning, or 5 minutes ago.

So N N 959 it's different because it's a GM tool, and not a player right. Thus they don't want to tell GM's how to GM.

DM_Blake being allowed to take 10 is "on the whim of the GM" the GM could allow you to take ten one moment then not the next with no in game reasoning as to why you suddenly can't. For people who view this from an in game perspective it really is changing the laws of the universe.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I think those saying that it's false that taking 10 is intended to be a pacing/tension mechanism, I agree that the reason a player uses it isn't that. But the reason it exists very much is that. It's effectively a way of taking all those rolls off-screen.

I agree that consistency is a virtue, but it's not the only virtue. What we handle with full focus and what we handle off-screen depends on how important that thing is, how dangerous it is, how hard it is, and what else is going on at the same time. That's the way it works in movies, etc. and it's often the way it works in-game.

Don't think it's likely you can do it? We'll need to pay attention. That's why it's take 10, not auto-pass.

Think you might get hurt in the process? Better pay attention. Hence the danger.

You're already in combat? Then each minor fluctuation is important. Better pay attention. Likewise on distracted.


If the failure itself is enough to prevent the T10 then why have the rule at all? If I can't fail the check then I don't need T10. If its only for Non-threatening issues then why not just rule auto-pass on those checks?

Again I ask what is the point of the rule if its not to be used?


N N 959 wrote:
DM_Blake wrote:

I think this thread is rapidly devolving into hyperbole.

The sky probably is not actually falling.

Ironic juxtaposition of statements.

Nothing ironic at all. Some people on this thread are, IMO, overreacting. I'm telling them there is probably no reason to overreact. I see no irony there.

Other than maybe the irony of trying to reason with overreacting people which, IME, is a difficult chore indeed.

N N 959 wrote:
Pretending that there is no issue if the "sky is not actually falling" suggests a failure to grasp the negative impact of the last non-ruling.

Oh, I fully grasp the impact; I was one of the first posters to chastise the PDT for their avoidance of the issue.

N N 959 wrote:
The real problem this post creates for those who read it, is that it breeds inconsistent and arbitrary GMing.

No, GMs are not bred by the rules. GMs who are "bad" are going to be bad regardless of this non-FAQ, and GMs who are good will still be good. This changes nothing.

All the PDT did here was fail to give us guidelines that might have helped resolve a few arguments at a few game tables. Maybe, if the PDT had been more helpful, a few GMs (good, bad, or otherwise) who were fuzzy on this Take-10 issue could have gleaned insight and become slightly better than before.

But even if the PDT issued a 30-page FAQ answer and a GM studied it to a full, comprehensive mastery of the entire Take-10 rule, that GM will still be good, bad, or otherwise regarding 99.99% of the entire RAW.

In short, this FAQ or lack of it is not going to "breed" better or worse GMs because Take-10 is about 0.0001% of the Pathfinder rules.

N N 959 wrote:
That is never a positive for an RPG and certainly not for Pathfinder.

I agree. I prefer better rules too.

I just don't think this non-FAQ is pulling the sky down on our heads - at any game table anywhere.

N N 959 wrote:
One of the reasons I quit playing non-PFS Pathfinder was precisely because of GMs lacking consistency. If it was Tuesday, they might rule one-way. If it was June, they might rule another. If the player was all about roleplaying they'd rule completely different than if the player was more focused on mechanics. When the game becomes arbitrary and the rules are arbitrarily enforced, for me, it ceases to be Pathfinder and starts to becomes GM-X's-home-game-which-they-tricked-me-into-playing-by-calling-it-Pathfinde r.

Maybe you just needed to find a better GM.

But I suspect the whole "Tuesday" and "June" think is hyperbole, right? (Hmmmm, who was it who brought up "ironic"...)

N N 959 wrote:
Let's set aside the ethics of the PDT claiming there was no FAQ needed, but then completely falsifying the purpose of Take 10 and then unofficially trying to change its core mechanic.

What?

Ethics?

Wow...

It's their game. They felt that the rules are good enough as printed and that no FAQ is justified. I think they're wrong, but it's their game and their opinion. There is no ethics problem here.

Hyperbole again?

And they didn't falsify the purpose of Take-10. It's still the same purpose - when there is no danger, use it, but when there is danger, don't use it, and the GM decides whether there is enough danger to disallow it based on his dramatic interpretation of the situation.

Nothing has changed.

How can not making a FAQ be construed as falsifying anything when the PDT did not do anything - when does inaction turn into an action of falsification?

Hyperbole again?

And "changing the core mechanic"???

Unbelievable.

NOTHING HAS CHANGED!!!

Hyperbole again? And again? And again?

Relax.

The sky really is not falling.


DM_Blake wrote:
Bigger Club wrote:

How is this even up for debate?

If you actually follow the DEV statement about drama changing laws of the universe, you are a bad GM who really should never have picked up the task . And yes that is an absolute statement and I will stand by it. I suppose I should have calmed down by now, but it just annoys the heck out of me that a game I once had a pretty damn fine opinion of has people working on it that I would not even consider gaming with for a one-shot.

It's not really the statement itself that has me so annoyed it is about what it implies.

Wow.

Who said "drama changes the laws of the universe?" I must have missed that DEV statement.

A law of the universe might be that climbers have a chance of falling. Another law of the universe might be that falling means gravity pulls you down, likely with some amount of pain and injury at the end of the fall.

But which die, or no die, we use at our game table to decide the fate of our imaginary adventurers in that imaginary world is not a "law of the universe" for our real world or for their imaginary one. It's merely a mechanic we can, or can't, use to resolve the outcome of our characters interacting with the laws of the universe.

At this point, I'd like to refer you to my previous posts, just a couple posts above yours...

First of your previous posts have done nothing to convince me. Do not assume a person hasn't read them just because they have a different stance.

Laws of the universe in this, means how the world functions. The rules of the game are those laws of the universe. For example greatsword does 2d6/19-20/x2 while greataxe is 1d12/20/x3. From those rules we can determine how the two weapons act. Greatswords are more consitant weapon damage wise, while greataxe has lot more highs and lows, greatsword is twice as likely to connect with especially well based blow, where as the greataxes is much more dangerous one. If we compared the real world weapons, the differences would be a lot different. If as you put it it is just a story resolving mechanic instead of how that world works, well I am sorry but if that is the case for you, every single world of yours sucks in my opinion. Internal consistency is important.

Now in what kind of setting does it make any bloody sense for laws of the universe(aka when you can take 10) be dictated by sense of drama? At least short of divine intervention by god of theater or something.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

There are threats that matter and threats that don't matter. If you're keeping a 10th level character from climbing out of a 20 ft deep hole with a take 10 because it's dangerous, that's silly. If you're doing it to 1st level characters, I disagree but that distinction doesn't spoil the point of taking 10.


Bigger Club wrote:
DM_Blake wrote:
Bigger Club wrote:

How is this even up for debate?

If you actually follow the DEV statement about drama changing laws of the universe, you are a bad GM who really should never have picked up the task . And yes that is an absolute statement and I will stand by it. I suppose I should have calmed down by now, but it just annoys the heck out of me that a game I once had a pretty damn fine opinion of has people working on it that I would not even consider gaming with for a one-shot.

It's not really the statement itself that has me so annoyed it is about what it implies.

Wow.

Who said "drama changes the laws of the universe?" I must have missed that DEV statement.

A law of the universe might be that climbers have a chance of falling. Another law of the universe might be that falling means gravity pulls you down, likely with some amount of pain and injury at the end of the fall.

But which die, or no die, we use at our game table to decide the fate of our imaginary adventurers in that imaginary world is not a "law of the universe" for our real world or for their imaginary one. It's merely a mechanic we can, or can't, use to resolve the outcome of our characters interacting with the laws of the universe.

At this point, I'd like to refer you to my previous posts, just a couple posts above yours...

First of your previous posts have done nothing to convince me. Do not assume a person hasn't read them just because they have a different stance.

Laws of the universe in this, means how the world functions. The rules of the game are those laws of the universe. For example greatsword does 2d6/19-20/x2 while greataxe is 1d12/20/x3. From those rules we can determine how the two weapons act. Greatswords are more consitant weapon damage wise, while greataxe has lot more highs and lows, greatsword is twice as likely to connect with especially well based blow, where as the greataxes is much more dangerous one. If we compared the real world weapons, the differences...

Do the laws of the universe include such things as encounter design and WBL guidelines? Those are also set by dramatic concerns - providing interesting challenges and appropriate rewards. (Or for those of a more sandboxy bent, which encounters need to be surrounded with sufficient warning flags that PCs (and only PCs usually get the courtesy) can avoid them if they choose.)

What the FAQ tells you is that when you can Take 10 falls in that category, not in the Laws of the Universe category.


Bigger Club wrote:
Now in what kind of setting does it make any bloody sense for laws of the universe(aka when you can take 10) be dictated by sense of drama? At least short of divine intervention by god of theater or something.

That's not a law of the universe.

As I was trying to say previously, what you can climb, how fast you can climb, how much damage you take when you fall, these are all laws of the universe.

Whether you must roll a die to determine your success or whether you can pretend you rolled one and got an average value, that's not a law of any universe at all.

It's the same thing!

Roll a die and by random chance you get a 10. That's the same exact thing as choosing to Take-10. You climb just as high, you jump just as far, you bluff just as well, you remember just as much, whatever.

How you arrive at the value of the 10 does not change what happens to your character or the outcome of his skill use.

The difference is, in some safe situations you can just normalize the randomness to a safe, median value (10) and in other, less safe situations, you cannot - in those cases you have a wider variance with a chance for greater success and a commensurate chance for greater failure.

You know what?

That's what we already had. NOTHING HAS CHANGED. This is already printed in the Core Rulebook.

All the PDT did here was say that a GM should use his own judgment on how much danger is inherent in the current situation. If, in the GM's judgment, the situation has too much danger to use Take-10, then the player must roll.

You know what else?

That's ALSO what we already had. NOTHING HAS CHANGED. This is already printed in the Core Rulebook, TOO.

*********************************************************************

Before this thread existed, just from RAW alone, every time a player said "I want to Take-10", the GM had to use his judgment to decide whether to allow Take-10 or to deny it on the basis of too much danger or distraction.

Now that we have this thread, every time a player says "I want to Take-10", the GM has to use his judgment to decide whether to allow Take-10 or to deny it on the basis of too much danger or distraction.

NOTHING HAS CHANGED!!!!!!!

I still don't see any falling skies...


So bring this question back around "What percentage of my health constitutes being to scared of a fall to T10?"

50% 75% 80% Some other number.

Do we look at Min damage or max or average?

Do i have to be a certain height?

What if that first level character has a good acrobatics and can reasonably land without damage?

Does having Feather fall prepped or known allow me to T10 when climbing?


Talonhawke wrote:

If the failure itself is enough to prevent the T10 then why have the rule at all? If I can't fail the check then I don't need T10. If its only for Non-threatening issues then why not just rule auto-pass on those checks?

Again I ask what is the point of the rule if its not to be used?

The point of the "rule" is to allow the GM the option of saying the players can Take 10 instead of having to roll every check. It's a GM tool to allow them to go "Oh you have a +15 in that, lets skip the rolls and say you got it" and have a "rule" backing them up for doing so. To understand the PDT you need to stop viewing it as a player choice, if you are viewing it that way, and see it as a GM option, since that's how they referred to it in their post.


Talonhawke wrote:

So bring this question back around "What percentage of my health constitutes being to scared of a fall to T10?"

50% 75% 80% Some other number.

Do we look at Min damage or max or average?

Do i have to be a certain height?

What if that first level character has a good acrobatics and can reasonably land without damage?

Does having Feather fall prepped or known allow me to T10 when climbing?

The answer is whatever the GM feels like. You are NEVER able to take 10 without GM allowance, as it's a GM's tool and not a player tool.


N N 959 wrote:

Pretending that there is no issue if the "sky is not actually falling" suggests a failure to grasp the negative impact of the last non-ruling. The real problem this post creates for those who read it, is that it breeds inconsistent and arbitrary GMing. That is never a positive for an RPG and certainly not for Pathfinder. One of the major advantages of rules proliferation that came with 3.x over AD&D is that the players got a higher level of consistent GMing. Despite the existing of Rule Zero, just the fact that you have a concrete rule invariably reduces the variation in how people will handle a situation.

One of the reasons I quit playing non-PFS Pathfinder was precisely because of GMs lacking consistency. If it was Tuesday, they might rule one-way. If it was June, they might rule another. If the player was all about roleplaying they'd rule completely different than if the player was more focused on mechanics. When the game becomes arbitrary and the rules are arbitrarily enforced, for me, it ceases to be Pathfinder and starts to becomes GM-X's-home-game-which-they-tricked-me-into-playing-by-calling-it-Pathfinde r.

Outside of settings like PFS, table variation is a perfectly fine thing. People like different things. They play in different ways. Find GMs who runs in a way you like and stick to them. Even within strict RAW, there's enough variation in style that you're going to have to do that anyway.

Some run railroads, some completely plotless sandboxes, Some run wide open kitchen sink games, some carefully craft themes. Some run brutal grinding death marches, some have never killed a character. Some have nothing but combat, some barely roll dice in a session.
Most are somewhere in between all those extremes. And all of that can be done strictly RAW.
Which is why strict adherence to RAW is one of the last things I look for when playing with a new GM.

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber
Chess Pwn wrote:
To understand the PDT you need to stop viewing it as a player choice, if you are viewing it that way, and see it as a GM option, since that's how they referred to it in their post.

Which is precisely what people are complaining about. That's changing the rules, because in the CRB it is presented as a player choice.

Core Rulebook wrote:
In most cases, taking 10 is purely a safety measure—you know (or expect) that an average roll will succeed but fear that a poor roll might fail, so you elect to settle for the average roll (a 10). Taking 10 is especially useful in situations where a particularly high roll wouldn’t help.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Previous to this ruling, I would have said you can always take 10 when climbing. Now when I'm GMing I'll always allow people to take 10 when climbing (barring combat/storm/whatnot), but if someone else wanted to rule differently I would no longer argue with them.

For the "rules of the universe changing" perspective, forgive me for my flippancy, but this is similar to the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle. Essentially we have different quantum states - you make it or you don't. When it's measured (i.e. rolling a die) it collapses into one of those quantum states. When it's not (i.e. taking 10), we determine which state is more likely (with ties going to the fail) and act according to that one.

As for what constitutes "dangerous" and what doesn't, that's a good question. What kinds of combats do you play out and what kinds to you handwave? At some point you're not going to get out dice for a half-dozen normal goblins even though they could technically deal damage with a natural 20 on their thrown weapons. Likewise, when do you stop tracking normal arrows? Or rations?

Edit: my answer to the "dangerous" follow-ups: when the seriousness of the consequences stop outweighing the hassle of paying attention to it. So when the archer buys an efficient quiver, they're good. That kind of thing.


I don't agree with it nor like it. But this is the stance the PDT is saying and I'm just arguing their side.


Table variation in PFS is one of the problems of rules being a GM choice? Right now In PFS if 3 mostly identical partys with 3 GMs run the same scenario the players could reasonably have a talk about how it went with fairly no real changes in story.

Now lets add in a 80ft cliff DC 20 with no winds or enemies and a 3rd level party.

GM 1 runs take 10 as the task can't be the distraction. Guy with the highest climb can easily make it up and tie off a rope for everyone else everyone makes it even the 9 str wizard.

GM 2 decides that the fall would distract a climber after 60 feet so climb guy only has to make one check and is fairly confident he can do so party climbs the Dc 5 rope fairly easily since they only need one roll to succeed.

Gm 3 decides its too risky for anyone to T10. Climb guy probably makes it the other party members should make it but the wizard has a 25% of not moving each check and a 5% chance of falling and if its on the last check dieing.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

And now that they've said there's no hard and fast rule, if this is important enough to not want table variation in PFS, you go to Mike Brock and ask him for guidelines. Now that the PDT said they aren't going to make hard and fast rules, it opens it up for a PFS-specific ruling that won't be contradicted.


The wizard has a 20% chance of not moving each check.

Community & Digital Content Director

Locking.

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