can you choose to let a character remain cursed?


Pathfinder Society


Without getting to spoilery there is a scenario where you can receive an item which is cursed but gives you a very big benefit. The item is on the chronicle sheet where it is clearly labeled as cursed. The Guide to Organized Play clearly says a character cannot stay cursed but if the character cannot stay cursed the item is useless. I've checked for an FAQ or anything else on this. There doesn't seem to be anything.

Scarab Sages 4/5

If it's the item I'm thinking of, you can keep it, but

Spoiler:
If your alignment shifts to evil or to one that is not legal for you (can no longer worship your deity or can no longer be a paladin), then you'll need an atonement.

I believe the scenario in question provides some guidelines for the GM that spell out that you may keep the item as long as the requirements are met.


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I had that item on a paladin not knowing that's where this particular "cursed item" is found. Yes, I paid for the atonement and I kept it. RP wise, I took a philosophy that its time spent hovering around my good-aligned aura would neutralize it. Of course, this also led to some interesting conflicts when NPCs used alignment detection abilities on me as I registered both good and evil.

That probably started more conflicts than I would've liked, but it was very enjoyable to contend with.

Scarab Sages 4/5

I foolishly declined to activate the item, out of fear of an NPC encountered earlier in the scenario. That was completely out of character for my osirion sorcerer who was there to collect artifacts. The earlier encounter did lead to one of my favorite PFS moments, though.

Spoiler:
When the powerful good outsider asked "Are you tomb robbers?" And I quietly slid my character sheet over to the GM and pointed out my Tomb Raider trait.

Scarab Sages 5/5

Ferious Thune wrote:

I foolishly declined to activate the item, out of fear of an NPC encountered earlier in the scenario. That was completely out of character for my osirion sorcerer who was there to collect artifacts. The earlier encounter did lead to one of my favorite PFS moments, though.

** spoiler omitted **

yeah, I know what you mean:

or try playing it with a PC whose CLASS is Crypt Braker (Alchemist)

Sczarni 5/5 5/55/5

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Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber
Jessex wrote:
Without getting too spoilery there is a scenario where you can receive an item which is cursed but gives you a very big benefit.

Yes, if you put the girdle on, and fail your Fort save, you can remain the opposite sex if you desire.

It was a difficult decision for my character when it happened.


Ferious Thune wrote:

The earlier encounter did lead to one of my favorite PFS moments, though.

** spoiler omitted **

We simply pointed out that the site wasn't a tomb but a temple to an evil god. I tried to down play the part about my character being a scarab sage tomb robber.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Premier Event Coordinator

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I think the technical answer may be that "curse" is not a condition itself, but carries a related effect that could be considered a condition. If you have an ongoing condition you must, by rule, get it fixed immediately upon the completion of the scenario.

However, something like a permanent gender change may not be classified as a condition and thus would not be required to be "fixed."


Actually what the guide says is this:

Quote:

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.’

The curse in question does certainly cause a mechanical effect.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Nevada—Las Vegas aka kinevon

Yes, but it not one that renders the PC unplayable, and is actually annotated on the chronicle itself.


kinevon wrote:
Yes, but it not one that renders the PC unplayable, and is actually annotated on the chronicle itself.

Such a character would be rendered unplayable if the following conditions were met:

The Conditions:

1) The shift in alignment made a character evil.
2) The player either chose not to or was unable to afford the remedy

To be fair, we are talking about a 7-11 scenario. Seeing someone purposefully choose to remain that way seems a little strange. Not being able to afford the resources needed for the remedy seems unlikely, but it could happen. Of course, it wouldn't seem farfetched to have the table pool their efforts together to help another player out. At this tier, the remedy is easily affordable with several people pitching in.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Nevada—Las Vegas aka kinevon

Tsriel wrote:
kinevon wrote:
Yes, but it not one that renders the PC unplayable, and is actually annotated on the chronicle itself.

Such a character would be rendered unplayable if the following conditions were met:

** spoiler omitted **

To be fair, we are talking about a 7-11 scenario. Seeing someone purposefully choose to remain that way seems a little strange. Not being able to afford the resources needed for the remedy seems unlikely, but it could happen. Of course, it wouldn't seem farfetched to have the table pool their efforts together to help another player out. At this tier, the remedy is easily affordable with several people pitching in.

Spoiler:
Sorry, I forgot about needing an atonement, mainly because, by this level, that amount of gold or PP is not much more than a minor bump in the road. Unless you need the major form, for a Paladin or Cleric, rather than the minor form for most anyone else.

For the other effect, no, it doesn't render a PC unplayable.

Silver Crusade

I've had a player choose not to interact with said item mainly due to his characters beliefs and ideals which I respected.


I played a scenario that gave me a cursed sword that made me rage in combat. I was a Bloodrager. The GM made me buy it off due to possible out of combat complications. According to the guide you do have to get rid of those conditions.

Without knowing exactly what you are referring to there are plenty of other items that the chronicle sheets give that are not useful to everyone. So the usefulness of an item does not seem to be a major factor in the chronicle sheets.

Grand Lodge 2/5

Jessex wrote:

Actually what the guide says is this:

Quote:

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.’
The curse in question does certainly cause a mechanical effect.

It says "resolved" it doesn't say "removed" or "cured". GM asks "do you want to get this curse removed"? I say "nope". Boom--it's resolved.

5/5 5/55/55/5

claudekennilol wrote:
Jessex wrote:

Actually what the guide says is this:

Quote:

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.’
The curse in question does certainly cause a mechanical effect.
It says "resolved" it doesn't say "removed" or "cured". GM asks "do you want to get this curse removed"? I say "nope". Boom--it's resolved.

Now accepting a law degree from the church of asmodeous...

Yeah, no. Thats not what resolved means. And its doubly dangerous because even if you can convince 1 DM that thats ok, you're going to show up with it marked on your chronicle sheets, and they're going to mark you dead retroactively.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Premier Event Coordinator

Jessex wrote:
The curse in question does certainly cause a mechanical effect.

Assuming we are talking about the Gender changing belt, are you saying that there is a mechanical difference between male and female PCs? There are a few mechanics, such as the charming trait that refer to "opposite gender," but it would effect male/female the same so it would be comparable and not a mechanical effect. There is no game mechanic that I am aware of that favors characters based on gender.

Its also important to note that the Guide specifies "conditions." I'm not sure a permanent gender change qualifies as a condition, at least not in the same way as shaken, nauseated, diseased, etc.

5/5 5/55/55/5

They mean a different item than the belt

Spoiler:
Its the cookie that turns you one step towards evil. Delicious, delicious evil. With sprinkles

I believe that item has specific language on it allowing you to keep the effect unless certain things happen, which would trump the more general PFS rules.

Sczarni 5/5 5/55/5

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Gender is something we do, anyways, like a verb. It's not really a condition (and especially not in the Pathfinder sense).

It bugs me that the text of the item interchanges sex and gender as though they were the same thing, though, but that's getting a bit off topic.

5/5 5/55/55/5

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Eyes ten foot pole. Shakes head. Hands it to nefreet

Sczarni 5/5 5/55/5

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Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

*breaks it in two pieces and makes stilts*

Shadow Lodge 4/5

There are two cursed items whose effects you may keep:

A girdle of opposite gender

A cursed ioun stone tied to season 4

The first one has this note added in the scenario "Characters who wear the girdle and fail (or forgo) their saving throws change gender; note this on their Chronicle sheet under “Conditions Gained.”" The second has a similar note inside the scenario and all the relevant rules on the chronicle sheet.

For the cursed khopesh of berserking, it is part of a pharaoh's hoard and kept by the Society after the scenario.

Shadow Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Nefreet wrote:

Gender is something we do, anyways, like a verb. It's not really a condition (and especially not in the Pathfinder sense).

It bugs me that the text of the item interchanges sex and gender as though they were the same thing, though, but that's getting a bit off topic.

That item's a relic from the old days of D&D. Pathfinder has a newer one - the elixir of sex shift, which makes the correct determination between gender and sex.

Is there actually a girdle of opposite gender in a real PFS scenario?

5/5 Venture-Agent, California—San Francisco Bay Area North & East aka Pirate Rob

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Is there actually a girdle of opposite gender in a real PFS scenario?:
Yes

Sovereign Court 5/5

Nefreet wrote:

Gender is something we do, anyways, like a verb. It's not really a condition (and especially not in the Pathfinder sense).

It bugs me that the text of the item interchanges sex and gender as though they were the same thing, though, but that's getting a bit off topic.

I agree with your dislike of these terms being used interchangeably when they are not interchangeable.

It seems too many people are unaware that gender refers to ones social identity and sex refers to ones biology and that they are not always the same thing. This is a problem in many areas with the use of the word gender when referring to sex, not just in RPGs.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Premier Event Coordinator

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Technical writing aside, many people were brought up using gender and sex interchangeably. A quick search seem to reveal as many references to them being interchangeable in many context as there are specifying a difference. But IMHO, that argument is not germane to the topic of the belt. We know what it does, and I would hate this to turn into a cultural/linguistics argument. No once is making disparaging arguments, lets try to keep it that way.
EDIT--Its also important to note that Paizo is very sensitive to social issues such as this and treat them great respect. The table on p538 of the CRB lists "character's gender changes" which can only refer to their biology since changing your social identity should not be considered a curse, something that needs to be "fixed," nor would it require a item, cursed or otherwise

Sczarni 5/5 5/55/5

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber
The Morphling wrote:

That item's a relic from the old days of D&D. Pathfinder has a newer one - the elixir of sex shift, which makes the correct determination between gender and sex.

Is there actually a girdle of opposite gender in a real PFS scenario?

Girdle of Opposite Gender.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Premier Event Coordinator

BigNorseWolf wrote:

They mean a different item than the belt

** spoiler omitted **

I believe that item has specific language on it allowing you to keep the effect unless certain things happen, which would trump the more general PFS rules.

Ahhh, yes there are rules for dealing with the item and seem to indicate you can keep the effect. However, it also includes language the effect only lasts for one year

Grand Lodge 4/5

Bob, I would like to remind you of a discussion you were involved in where it was ruled you can change your character's gender for free if you feel like it.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Premier Event Coordinator

Jeff Merola wrote:
Bob, I would like to remind you of a discussion you were involved in where it was ruled you can change your character's gender for free if you feel like it.

Umm, okay. Are you agreeing with me or misunderstanding me? That thread died soon after my inquiry which went unanswered, but AFAIK, gender = sex for the purposes of this discussion and is NOT a condition that requires fixing. So the recipient of the "curse" from a Girdle of Opposite Gender is not compelled to change back or become invalid.

It is also interesting to note that based on Compton's post, at the end of the scenario you can just choose to switch your gender anyway so the cursed item just becomes a scenario specific "condition" to deal with.

Grand Lodge 4/5

Misunderstanding! Also agreeing, now that I reread your posts.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Captain, California—Sacramento aka FLite

There is also a season 5 curse that gives you either a blessing or a curse depending on your class that is ongoing until cured. In fact if you have the right class, the curse effectively cripples your character 1/4 of the time. (I so very badly wanted to keep that curse. But I couldn't because it really would have rendered the character unplayable.)

Grand Lodge 5/5

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Did someone call for an Asmodean Lawyer? Would have been here sooner but you would not believe the traffic between Hell and the Grand Lodge in Absalom.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Nevada—Las Vegas aka kinevon

Bob Jonquet wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:

They mean a different item than the belt

** spoiler omitted **

I believe that item has specific language on it allowing you to keep the effect unless certain things happen, which would trump the more general PFS rules.

Ahhh, yes there are rules for dealing with the item and seem to indicate you can keep the effect. However, it also includes language the effect only lasts for one year

Same series of scenarios, but a different item.

Spoiler:
You are referring to the actual cookie that gives a +2 to the stat of your choice for one year. And, yes, that one also requires an atonement as it changes yoru alignment toward Evil.

The other one being referred to, I believe, is the Ocher Rhomboid Ioun stone, which is a cursed item, moving the person who uses it one step toward Evil, potentially requiring an atonement, but also gives the user a free extra feat. That one has no time limit.

IIRC, there are actually several effects or items that can be garnered during the series of scenarios, each of them moving the recipient one step toward Evil (at some point, even if you start out Good, you will start needing atonements to remain playable, and each one is different.

Cookie: +2 stat
Ioun stone: +1 feat
Tattoo: choosable effect, IIRC, including being able to gain temporary hit points once per day.
I think there was a fourth one, and the final scenario in the series could turn the effects from these things bad.

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