Horror Adventures Sanity Rules


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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I also forgot to reply how I would handle it in my game.

I would describe the new rule prominently in the hand out I give the players and I might also do some test examples with the players at the table so they get a feel on just how the rule is going to deviate the game from the normal rule set.

Note: I have played in the type of game above in which specific rules were altered to adjust the feel of the game and there was one player who just kept making the same type of PC even though he kept on dieing. He was also most against the rule changes in the first place so we came to the decision he was just trying to prove his point even though the rest of us enjoyed the various rule changes and how it altered how we had to play the game.

MDC

Dark Archive

Dumping strength as caster does mean you can't carry anything heavy by yourself though so you either have to have someone else do that or use one of your spellslots for ant haul's type of spells. That or have a donkey

Liberty's Edge

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CorvusMask wrote:
Dumping strength as caster does mean you can't carry anything heavy by yourself though so you either have to have someone else do that or use one of your spellslots for ant haul's type of spells. That or have a donkey

So, consequences for dumping STR are both far less dire than dumping WIS and far easier to circumvent ...


Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Hardly anybody even tracks encumbrance, and there are tons of ways to get around it. Mules, handy haversacks, strong partymembers, to name a few.

Conversely, martials rarely need to worry about mental stuff or casting stuff. With all the buffs, conditional removals, auras, and so on, a martial rarely needs strong mental abilities in any kind of balanced party. If items (e.g. handy haversacks) can make up for casters deficiencies, then the same argument should also have equal weight for martials using items which almost completely levels the playing field. The resulting saves and totals will be a bit different but you'll still have bonuses, rerolls, ability score improvements, x/day negating effects, and so on.


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Buri Reborn wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Hardly anybody even tracks encumbrance, and there are tons of ways to get around it. Mules, handy haversacks, strong partymembers, to name a few.
Conversely, martials rarely need to worry about mental stuff or casting stuff. With all the buffs, conditional removals, auras, and so on, a martial rarely needs strong mental abilities in any kind of balanced party. If items (e.g. handy haversacks) can make up for casters deficiencies, then the same argument should also have equal weight for martials using items which almost completely levels the playing field. The resulting saves and totals will be a bit different but you'll still have bonuses, rerolls, ability score improvements, x/day negating effects, and so on.

ONly if those items combined cost the same of a handy haversack and doesn't compete with other items the martials needs to do their job.

Dark Archive

The Raven Black wrote:
CorvusMask wrote:
Dumping strength as caster does mean you can't carry anything heavy by yourself though so you either have to have someone else do that or use one of your spellslots for ant haul's type of spells. That or have a donkey
So, consequences for dumping STR are both far less dire than dumping WIS and far easier to circumvent ...

Well, yeah, just like how dumping con is direst thing to do xP

I'm not exactly sure what is your point, dumping strength means less melee damage and encumbarance being pain, dexterity means low ac and crap ranged attacks, con means you are dead, int means a really boring character, wisdom means you are mind control magnet/fear and charisma means you are really bad at convincing people.

So basically charisma is easiest stat to dump if you want to have talking things done completely by bard or something :P Which is pretty boring, but I guess if you want to play as someone who just fights and leaves talking to someone else, you can do that.


Personally, I almost always try to avoid dumping stats. XD I don't like being in the negatives for anything. The only time I really did that was when I was making a character who was younger than normal, and I figured that low strength was actually appropriate for them because they were physically weak. XD


Nicos wrote:
ONly [sic] if those items combined cost the same of a handy haversack and doesn't compete with other items the martials needs to do their job.

No, not only. That's not a reasonable restriction. Do you really expect a reasonable cap to be 2,000 gp? What's the value of a "caster party member" since strong party members were also the opposite stand in? Capping the cost comparable to a handy haversack alone just doesn't fly in any kind of fair comparison.


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Buri Reborn wrote:
Nicos wrote:
ONly [sic] if those items combined cost the same of a handy haversack and doesn't compete with other items the martials needs to do their job.
No, not only. That's not a reasonable restriction. Do you really expect a reasonable cap to be 2,000 gp? What's the value of a "caster party member" since strong party members were also the opposite stand in? Capping the cost comparable to a handy haversack alone just doesn't fly in any kind of fair comparison.

Of course it's fair. Unfair is to compare the 2000 gp that cost to remove the penalty of low strength cost with the dozens of thousands that cost for a martial to have all the things you mentioned and pretend they are on the same ground.

Liberty's Edge

Also Martials tend to be more MAD than casters ;-)


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MMCJawa wrote:
silverrey wrote:
MMCJawa wrote:
The book in general really doesn't have a lot of support for straight martial classes, when compared to other classes. I would guess that the devs probably think straight martials are less appropriate for straight up horror type campaigns.
Which is funny because most horror fiction heroes are rogues or something similar. :/
most main characters in horror novels/books are commoners and experts :)

You guys said the same thing :P


Nicos wrote:
Of course it's fair. Unfair is to compare the 2000 gp that cost to remove the penalty of low strength cost with the dozens of thousands that cost for a martial to have all the things you mentioned and pretend they are on the same ground.

It's not just a penalty to low strength. I've seen caster dump dex and con too and need gear like any martial would making up for caster deficiencies for protective gear and gear that gives concealment and whatnot. It's hardly a "martial only" problem. Folks are simply being a bit selective in their examples here.


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Buri Reborn wrote:
Nicos wrote:
Of course it's fair. Unfair is to compare the 2000 gp that cost to remove the penalty of low strength cost with the dozens of thousands that cost for a martial to have all the things you mentioned and pretend they are on the same ground.
It's not just a penalty to low strength. I've seen caster dump dex and con too and need gear like any martial would making up for caster deficiencies for protective gear and gear that gives concealment and whatnot. It's hardly a "martial only" problem. Folks are simply being a bit selective in their examples here.

I've also seen terrible builds, yet I don't see what that have to be with the fact that the penalty for low strength is almost a joke for wizards or sorcerers unlike the limitation for martial that can be circumvented that easily.


Nicos wrote:
I've also seen terrible builds, yet I don't see what that have to be with the fact that the penalty for low strength is almost a joke for wizards or sorcerers unlike the limitation for martial that can be circumvented that easily.

Then there's the whole "dump stats need not apply" argument which is one I particularly agree with. I don't see the need for any dump stats even with a 15 pt. buy. The system math and doing some spreading of love is rather easy to keep a character generally useful and capable regardless of their class.


I don't understand what you try to say. True, A wizard doesn't need to dump str, yet he can do it without major consequences.

In the context of this thread the full-casters are rewarded for the way the already worked while most martials (wiht the exception of the paladin it seems) will have a harder time.


It means full bab classes aren't ability starved at all. BAB and a +5 weapon at level 20 keeps you close to a 50/50 chance of hitting a CR appropriate opponent. That's with 10 strength. So, the systems supports a ton of possibilities there. The game itself doesn't require massive ability scores at all except, oddly, for casters since spells do need certain minimum scores.


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Well you could go full CoC and have casting spells cost Sanity. Kinda makes casters a dangerous choice.

I'd say a GM in a horror campaign it would probably be advisable to expose casters to more chances for Sanity lose. Reading forbidden tomes, researching unnatural beings, negotiating with maddening creatures, etc. The resistance provided by high mental stats would mean the caster isn't going to have a meltdown every time something bad happens, but when they do breakdown they totally snap as they would have lower overall sanity.


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Buri Reborn wrote:
It means full bab classes aren't ability starved at all. BAB and a +5 weapon at level 20 keeps you close to a 50/50 chance of hitting a CR appropriate opponent. That's with 10 strength. So, the systems supports a ton of possibilities there. The game itself doesn't require massive ability scores at all except, oddly, for casters since spells do need certain minimum scores.

The problem is more having a foe with effectively 50% DR against your attacks before other forms of mitigation isn't desirable in the least. And that's for your first attack only You lose 25% hit chance per strike after the first.

I don't know about You but dealing 1d8 + 5 x 4 vs something with upwards of 310 hp a round 50% (or less) of the time does not sound effective or fun.

If as a physical damage dealer you're less effective at doing damage than a summon, then what value do you add? So yes you have a massive incentive to pump your strength and combat effectiveness because if you aren't the best at the one thing you're supposed to contribute you're in a pretty bad spot.


Firewarrior44 wrote:

The problem is more having a foe with effectively 50% DR against your attacks before other forms of mitigation isn't desirable in the least. And that's for your first attack only You lose 25% hit chance per strike after the first.

I don't know about You but dealing 1d8 + 5 x 4 vs something with upwards of 310 hp a round 50% (or less) of the time does not sound effective or fun.

If as a physical damage dealer you're less effective at doing damage than a summon, then what value do you add? So yes you have a massive incentive to pump your strength and combat effectiveness because if you aren't the best at the one thing you're supposed to contribute you're in a pretty bad spot.

That's not the point. Getting a minimum level of viability is built in simply by virtue of the class. No feats, no ability scores, no other class features. Just BAB and a very reasonable to have item gets you 80% of the way there. You get an entire career to build how you want to use that viability. Ability scores are no where near the only or even optimal way to achieve that. Thus, ability scores are not the problem for martials. Thus, dump stats are a bit of a non sequitur since they're only an aspect to being effective and not the only way to be effective.

As an addendum, compare this to casters. They either need to continually improve their ability scores as they level and do so more quickly than every 4 levels and more than only 1 point or they need to start their ability scores high to reach an absolute minimum of 19 for full casters. Further, a CR 20 monster's good save is +22. At that minimum ability score of 19, that caster's DC will be 23. This means a monster can only fail a save by critical failure. A 2 lets them save. BAB and that +5 weapon gives a martial an attack of +25 compared to CR AC 36. You need an 11 to hit. The gap that casters have to make up for is much more wide than what martials have to deal with.

The trade off then is that casters get a leg up on the mental side of things, but this doesn't make martials any kind of strapped compared to before. They have some wiggle room that casters don't even though casters are naturally predisposed to more naturally inclined to mentally oriented mechanics.


This thread reminds me of the terrible "Xmen Days of Future Past" movie.
Because Wolverine has to be the main character, we have to shoehorn a way for him to handle the mental trauma of projecting himself into the past. So the writers decided that by "rip your mind apart", they meant physically, and that his amazing healing factor could overcome it (rather than treat it like insanity).


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Quote:
As an addendum, compare this to casters. They either need to continually improve their ability scores as they level and do so more quickly than every 4 levels and more than only 1 point or they need to start their ability scores high to reach an absolute minimum of 19 for full casters. Further, a CR 20 monster's good save is +22. at that minimum ability score of 19, that caster's DC will be 23. This means a monster can only fail a save by critical failure. A 2 lets them save. BAB and that +5 weapon gives a martial an attack of +25 compared to CR AC 36. You need an 11 to hit. The gap that casters have to make up for is much more wide than what martials have to deal with.

This is assuming a caster only casts spells that offer saves. When more likely a caster with a low primary score is going to pick spells that, well... don't.

Also your supposedly viable martial is averaging like 5 damage per round against an enemy with 370 HP.


Squiggit wrote:
Also your supposedly viable martial is averaging like 5 damage per round against an enemy with 370 HP.

And? You can hit it. What you want to do when you hit is decided by all the other decisions you make about your character. The point is ability scores aren't required to hit and in the case of martials, the ability or inability to hit is the line of "am I even worth being in the game?" The way most people here purport the C/MD is that martials are sooo behind the curve then to why even bother when that's not anywhere near the case. Horror Adventures didn't change that or sideline martials in the slightest. They can, in fact, have good mental stats letting them exist comfortably in a Horror game right along side any caster.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Buri Reborn wrote:


And? You can hit it.

Rarely and, again, without particularly impressive results. Even less impressive if you look at a 3/4 BAB class.

Quote:
Horror Adventures didn't change that or sideline martials in the slightest.

No, but it's another caster biased subsystem in an already caster biased game. It's pretty understandable why some people would roll their eyes at that.

Quote:
They can, in fact, have good mental stats letting them exist comfortably in a Horror game right along side any caster.

I don't think anyone ever said martials could never have decent mental stats. Only that they have to sacrifice much more than other classes for it and still end up behind the curve even with significantly more investment.

It's not that martials are useless or unplayable, it's that they almost always have to make concessions to the system when stuff like this gets published while their counterparts almost never have to give up anything. Consistently.


Squiggit wrote:
It's not that martials are useless or unplayable, it's that they almost always have to make concessions to the system when stuff like this gets published while their counterparts almost never have to give up anything. Consistently.

I'm saying there is a longer view of the system that says this is incorrect. Either you're not seeing it (or refusing to), or I'm not explaining it correctly. I'm not saying there aren't differences or relative power imbalances. The exchange earlier about dump stats is simply unneeded, and I would wager that almost any martial character who didn't use dump stats that currently exists in a game could be plopped into a Horror Adventures game and do reasonably well.


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Buri Reborn wrote:
Firewarrior44 wrote:

The problem is more having a foe with effectively 50% DR against your attacks before other forms of mitigation isn't desirable in the least. And that's for your first attack only You lose 25% hit chance per strike after the first.

I don't know about You but dealing 1d8 + 5 x 4 vs something with upwards of 310 hp a round 50% (or less) of the time does not sound effective or fun.

If as a physical damage dealer you're less effective at doing damage than a summon, then what value do you add? So yes you have a massive incentive to pump your strength and combat effectiveness because if you aren't the best at the one thing you're supposed to contribute you're in a pretty bad spot.

That's not the point. Getting a minimum level of viability is built in simply by virtue of the class. No feats, no ability scores, no other class features. Just BAB and a very reasonable to have item gets you 80% of the way there. You get an entire career to build how you want to use that viability. Ability scores are no where near the only or even optimal way to achieve that. Thus, ability scores are not the problem for martials. Thus, dump stats are a bit of a non sequitur since they're only an aspect to being effective and not the only way to be effective.

As an addendum, compare this to casters. They either need to continually improve their ability scores as they level and do so more quickly than every 4 levels and more than only 1 point or they need to start their ability scores high to reach an absolute minimum of 19 for full casters. Further, a CR 20 monster's good save is +22. At that minimum ability score of 19, that caster's DC will be 23. This means a monster can only fail a save by critical failure. A 2 lets them save. BAB and that +5 weapon gives a martial an attack of +25 compared to CR AC 36. You need an 11 to hit. The gap that casters have to make up for is much more wide than what martials have to deal with.

The trade off then is that casters get a leg up on the...

Granted, usually those saving throws are something you only have to fail once for the fight to get very, very easy at level 20, and some casters, such as the Arcanist, are built around "Save DC: Unreasonably High."

The theoretical ten-strength martial might be able to get a 50% chance to hit a CR-appropriate enemy, with his first attack, anyway, but given the HP, Fast Healing/Regen, and DR at that level, it would also need to hit said monster literally hundreds of times before 2d6+5 or so is even making a dent in the 400+ HP he's hacking at. That's an average of what, 11 damage per attack?

That said, I still feel like it doesn't have the proper "feel" when the moron that goes a-paddlin' with the occult in the first place is less likely to fall victim to going crazy than the sensible person that has no truck with that kinda thing.

Or that the wizards, who have often lived lives in cushy ivory towers before they started adventuring, are somehow more inured against scenes of death and carnage than the fighters and barbarians they're traveling with, most of whom have seen quite a few battlefields by the time the campaign begins.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Buri Reborn wrote:


I'm saying there is a longer view of the system that says this is incorrect. Either you're not seeing it (or refusing to), or I'm not explaining it correctly.

I think you're doing a good job explaining yourself. I just don't agree.

Quote:
I'm not saying there aren't differences or relative power imbalances. The exchange earlier about dump stats is simply unneeded, and I would wager that almost any martial character who didn't use dump stats that currently exists in a game could be plopped into a Horror Adventures game and do reasonably well.

I'm personally not a fan of dump stats either outside very low PB (my 0PB wizard has two 7s, for instance, but outside that most of my characters don't unless it's thematically appropriate), so I can really sympathize and agree that they're overvalued.

But I don't think that necessarily refutes the core frustration that this is a mechanic one type of class is going to handle much more effectively than the other and that it's really hard to find any equal and opposite advantage the other direction.

And of course, that's just sticking to the mechanics of it. There's also thematic concerns, which are my primary frustration with this mechanic and others.


swoosh wrote:
I mean, heroes with no special magical powers but boundless grit, determination and an iron will? Who's ever heard of that.

Courage, determination and iron will are things related to Wisdom and Charisma, so...

I'm aware some people play their characters as if their mental stats weren't even written, but in case we're talking about reasonable players... if you dumped a 7 on those stats, don't play like you're the big leader and fearless hero (well, unless you're fearless because you have 1 Wis and don't understand danger at all), and don't assume you should be protected by what you lack.


Vidmaster7 wrote:


wait wait wait theirs no penalty for dumping dex and con? and if i ever catch one of my players with a 7 str you better belief i'm using ray of enfeeblement on them. whats that you have a 2 str now OK well your robes are to much weight for you better go nude. ...oo stiff breeze sorry on the ground you go...

Not how Ray of Enfeeblement work anymore. :P

Phantom wrote:
Haversacks aren't THAT cheap... 2000g takes a few level to get too... and by then there are usually other ways to deal with those obstacles you needed that equiptment for in the first place. Barely any cheaper then a bag of holding for that matter.

The handy haversack is pretty easy to acquire once you hit the mid-low levels. Before then, the mule isn't a perfect substitute, but it works.

phantom wrote:
Stronger party members?? They usually have their own stuff to carry. Especially if you have real stickler of a DM wondering how he's carrying 4 backpacks completely loaded with gear... on one back. Admittedly I haven't dealt with that... but I've heard stories. Regardless, counting on other people to carry your stuff... means it goes with him. If he falls, or drowns your stuff is gone. If he drops, you have to figure out a way to drag him AND your stuff to safety... it pushes the problem to the side, it's not a solution to it.

Sure, but that problem exists no matter who carries it. And it and the mule both only need to work temporarily—as soon as you have a spare 2k, you can just get a handy haversack and forget all about your Strength score. Or 1k, if you have Craft Wondrous Item.


Well, I'm going through the Classes and seeing what abilities for each class I'd allow to be applied to Sanity rules. I've only gone through Barbarian Core Rule options, but it doesn't appear as though a Barbarian should have to many problems with Sanity especially given how many Will Save boosting abilities they have access to.

I'll post a more complete list with my thoughts later.


Squiggit wrote:
I think you're doing a good job explaining yourself. I just don't agree.

That's fair.


All the build stat analysis is good but also if the rule changes the game to an extent then the adventure writers, GM's creating their own adventures also need to realize that a change is necessary when writing adventures. If they do not change or alter there adventure writing style then it can lead to total TPK quickly.
IMHO communication and understanding just what the rule possibly could/can change is key.

MDC


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Astral Wanderer wrote:
swoosh wrote:
I mean, heroes with no special magical powers but boundless grit, determination and an iron will? Who's ever heard of that.

Courage, determination and iron will are things related to Wisdom and Charisma, so...

I'm aware some people play their characters as if their mental stats weren't even written, but in case we're talking about reasonable players... if you dumped a 7 on those stats, don't play like you're the big leader and fearless hero (well, unless you're fearless because you have 1 Wis and don't understand danger at all), and don't assume you should be protected by what you lack.

^ This


Astral Wanderer wrote:
swoosh wrote:
I mean, heroes with no special magical powers but boundless grit, determination and an iron will? Who's ever heard of that.

Courage, determination and iron will are things related to Wisdom and Charisma, so...

I'm aware some people play their characters as if their mental stats weren't even written, but in case we're talking about reasonable players... if you dumped a 7 on those stats, don't play like you're the big leader and fearless hero (well, unless you're fearless because you have 1 Wis and don't understand danger at all), and don't assume you should be protected by what you lack.

This comes across as more than a little hypocritical as an assumption by the system, as a rogue who has decent intelligence, wisdom, AND charisma is still usually going to be far more vulnerable to insanity effects than the wizard who dumped both wisdom and charisma but has far more intelligence than anyone would normally need.


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JonGarrett wrote:
The mindset with the leading developers is just...not right for horror, especially mental horror.

To be honest, the entire mechanical system of pathfinder is unsuited to horror. Horror is about the feeling of powerlessness (explored in a safe OOC environment). Pathfinder is a power fantasy - more stuff, more weapons, more spells, more feats, more numbers! Bigger, better, more. They're totally at odds.

I mean, you could hack it: a low-level game set in an unescapable location, where your feats and abilities don't directly solve problems, and you're gradually running out of resources...

Or you could play a horror game written for the purpose. Which would be easier.


Astral Wanderer wrote:
swoosh wrote:
I mean, heroes with no special magical powers but boundless grit, determination and an iron will? Who's ever heard of that.

Courage, determination and iron will are things related to Wisdom and Charisma, so...

I'm aware some people play their characters as if their mental stats weren't even written, but in case we're talking about reasonable players... if you dumped a 7 on those stats, don't play like you're the big leader and fearless hero (well, unless you're fearless because you have 1 Wis and don't understand danger at all), and don't assume you should be protected by what you lack.

The thing about this is that most don't dump Wisdom. They dump Int or Charisma (or both). Even accounting for that there are real world and in game (both fluff and mechanical) examples of people who would be considered to at most have 10 in their Int but were tactical monsters on the battlefield, or utterly unremarkable (low Charisma) people who are unbreakable when tortured. The stat system is great for showing generalized traits but in both fiction and nonfiction people don't fit the general. They are masters of what they do but don't know up from down when they are outside their field.


Blackwaltzomega wrote:
Astral Wanderer wrote:
swoosh wrote:
I mean, heroes with no special magical powers but boundless grit, determination and an iron will? Who's ever heard of that.

Courage, determination and iron will are things related to Wisdom and Charisma, so...

I'm aware some people play their characters as if their mental stats weren't even written, but in case we're talking about reasonable players... if you dumped a 7 on those stats, don't play like you're the big leader and fearless hero (well, unless you're fearless because you have 1 Wis and don't understand danger at all), and don't assume you should be protected by what you lack.

This comes across as more than a little hypocritical as an assumption by the system, as a rogue who has decent intelligence, wisdom, AND charisma is still usually going to be far more vulnerable to insanity effects than the wizard who dumped both wisdom and charisma but has far more intelligence than anyone would normally need.

This isn't true. At level 20, the rogue's will save will be +6 and the wizard's will be +12. If that wizard dumps wisdom to the lowest it can on a pt. buy, 5 (-3), that makes it a +9. But "aha!" you might say. Well, that rogue started at level 1 with +0 while the wizard started at -1. That wizard is likely having a very, very bad time.


Buri Reborn wrote:
Nicos wrote:
I've also seen terrible builds, yet I don't see what that have to be with the fact that the penalty for low strength is almost a joke for wizards or sorcerers unlike the limitation for martial that can be circumvented that easily.
Then there's the whole "dump stats need not apply" argument which is one I particularly agree with. I don't see the need for any dump stats even with a 15 pt. buy. The system math and doing some spreading of love is rather easy to keep a character generally useful and capable regardless of their class.

How low does an ability score need to be for you to consider it a "dump"?

There was one thread I saw where someone said their PC had suffered 16 strength damage at once and was immobilized as a result. Someone else responded "that's what you get for being a stat-dumping munchkin. If there was no downside to dumping stats, everyone would do it."
So apparently at least one person considered an ability score of 16 in Pathfinder to be a "dump stat."
Meanwhile, I've seen other people whine about a 16 being way too high for a starting ability score.

So, if you are going to make a big fuss about what you call "dump stats," you might want to be a little more clear as to what you consider to be "dumping."


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Hardly anybody even tracks encumbrance, and there are tons of ways to get around it. Mules, handy haversacks, strong partymembers, to name a few.

I track it. I often play light-armour semi-martials, Str 10-14 depending, and it's important there.

I've not found it important on pure casters though, they don't seem to
need to carry so many heavy things.

So, yeah, I'm in the "this hits specifically martial dumpstats far harder than caster dumpstats ever get hit" camp. Though, I'm never going to use it, so I'm not really bothered.


137ben wrote:

How low does an ability score need to be for you to consider it a "dump"?

There was one thread I saw where someone said their PC had suffered 16 strength damage at once and was immobilized as a result. Someone else responded "that's what you get for being a stat-dumping munchkin. If there was no downside to dumping stats, everyone would do it."
So apparently at least one person considered an ability score of 16 in Pathfinder to be a "dump stat."
Meanwhile, I've seen other people whine about a 16 being way too high for a starting ability score.

So, if you are going to make a big fuss about what you call "dump stats," you might want to be a little more clear as to what you consider to be "dumping."

Going into negative modifiers


Lucy_Valentine wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Hardly anybody even tracks encumbrance, and there are tons of ways to get around it. Mules, handy haversacks, strong partymembers, to name a few.

I track it. I often play light-armour semi-martials, Str 10-14 depending, and it's important there.

I've not found it important on pure casters though, they don't seem to
need to carry so many heavy things.

So, yeah, I'm in the "this hits specifically martial dumpstats far harder than caster dumpstats ever get hit" camp. Though, I'm never going to use it, so I'm not really bothered.

I'll add my voice as another who tracks it.

I still struggle with my casters. Then again, I like buying whole kits so I can not think about things.


Astral Wanderer wrote:

Courage, determination and iron will are things related to Wisdom and Charisma, so...

I'm aware some people play their characters as if their mental stats weren't even written, but in case we're talking about reasonable players... if you dumped a 7 on those stats, don't play like you're the big leader and fearless hero (well, unless you're fearless because you have 1 Wis and don't understand danger at all), and don't assume you should be protected by what you lack.

That's fair, but a rogue with 14 wis and iron will is only marginally ahead of a 12 int wizard for part of the game despite investing quite a bit comparatively. The wizard is going to have a much higher total sanity too because of their large intellect.

I find that last part kind of amusing just because I remember in CoC rolling well on your Know checks actually made you more likely to go insane.


swoosh wrote:
Astral Wanderer wrote:

Courage, determination and iron will are things related to Wisdom and Charisma, so...

I'm aware some people play their characters as if their mental stats weren't even written, but in case we're talking about reasonable players... if you dumped a 7 on those stats, don't play like you're the big leader and fearless hero (well, unless you're fearless because you have 1 Wis and don't understand danger at all), and don't assume you should be protected by what you lack.

That's fair, but a rogue with 14 wis and iron will is only marginally ahead of a 12 int wizard for part of the game despite investing quite a bit comparatively. The wizard is going to have a much higher total sanity too because of their large intellect.

I find that last part kind of amusing just because I remember in CoC rolling well on your Know checks actually made you more likely to go insane.

In that case the Wizard is still in more danger because even if he has a higher will or sanity it will require a bigger number of saving throws than the Rogue


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A lot of people are piling on the "hardly anyone tracks encumbrance" comment. Guys, I wasn't saying nobody tracks it. But it's basically an optional ruleset. I wouldn't bring it up in the same breath as rules like skill points and HP as a "balancing force". Even if it wasn't super easy to bypass (and most everyone has acknowledged that it is), a lot of people just find it tiresome to keep track of. :P

Also, bear in mind that the "courage/determination/iron will" setup being strictly attached to mental stats means that no martial will ever be allowed to possess those traits in any great supply. No hardened veterans. No tough-as-nails, seen-it-all warriors. Guys, they're really limited in resources. They can't afford to put more than maybe a 13 in one or two mental stats, and even that's a sacrifice they can't afford if they're struggling in a 15 Point Buy.

The rules make it impossible for a martial to invest heavily in a mental stats without sacrificing their ability to do their one job. I mean, a fighter is already going to be put to shame in melee by the druid's housecat. Wanting to "punish" fighters for not investing in Charisma and Wisdom—even more than the system already punishes them, I mean—is not remotely fair.

Bottom line is, Point Buy forces martials to neglect* stats. If you don't like stat dumping, don't use Point Buy.

*Bear in mind, a martial who just stays at a flat 10-12-10 for mental stats, no dumping required, will still be well below the wizard with the 20-12-10 for these sanity rules. And that's not even accounting for the nearly inevitable Will save gap! So we might as well stop talking about "dumping" at all. No reasonably-built martial with a 20 PB is going to come close to matching a wizard's resilience to mental stress.


edduardco wrote:
swoosh wrote:
I find that last part kind of amusing just because I remember in CoC rolling well on your Know checks actually made you more likely to go insane.
In that case the Wizard is still in more danger because even if he has a higher will or sanity it will require a bigger number of saving throws than the Rogue

But Pathfinder is not Call of Cthulhu. I think Swoosh is saying that they wished Pathfinder used more rules like that. :P


Actually, can I take stock of this argument real quick? How strongly do we disagree? Are we essentially arguing semantics, or is there a really strong divergence of opinion here?

I don't think this is the end of the world, but I do feel like Paizo should have gone with Constitution, or a hybrid of mental and physical scores, or some solution that would have prevented such a clear disparity. I hate the idea of the martials losing their minds while the casters get things done. That's already a problem with the Will save gap. This choice made things a bit worse. Even ignoring the possibility of dump stats, there's really clearly a type of class that's favored and a type that's disadvantaged here. I intend to modify the system if/when I use it.

I find myself thinking of that famously poorly-named system from HoH, Taint. What I like a lot about that system is it presented two types of Taint to watch out for: Depravity (which was basically stress) and Corruption (which was physical manifestations of evil). One was Will-based, the other Con-based. It gave a feeling of balance that this system sorely lacks.

Hell, in this system, Corruptions are Will-based, too! And that only kind of makes sense! "Hey, let's make all three of the major systems we're implementing for players Will-based. I can't imagine any problems this could cause." Were the designers just not talking to each other here?


Kobold Cleaver wrote:

Actually, can I take stock of this argument real quick? How strongly do we disagree? Are we essentially arguing semantics, or is there a really strong divergence of opinion here?

I don't think this is the end of the world, but I do feel like Paizo should have gone with Constitution, or a hybrid of mental and physical scores, or some solution that would have prevented such a clear disparity. I hate the idea of the martials losing their minds while the casters get things done. That's already a problem with the Will save gap. This choice made things a bit worse. Even ignoring the possibility of dump stats, there's really clearly a type of class that's favored and a type that's disadvantaged here. I intend to modify the system if/when I use it.

I find myself thinking of that famously poorly-named system from HoH, Taint. What I like a lot about that system is it presented two types of Taint to watch out for: Depravity (which was basically stress) and Corruption (which was physical manifestations of evil). One was Will-based, the other Con-based. It gave a feeling of balance that this system sorely lacks.

Hell, in this system, Corruptions are Will-based, too! And that only kind of makes sense! "Hey, let's make all three of the major systems we're implementing for players Will-based. I can't imagine any problems this could cause." Were the designers just not talking to each other here?

I think it is less that people are arguing over the sanity issue (a symptom) at this point and more airing grievances about the feeling of being dismissed if not a mage (the disease). I could be wrong but I truly doubt anyone expects the issue to even be officially acknowledged, let alone worked on, at this point. The sanity system is just a nice direct example of the problem so it is where the voices are.


Kobold Cleaver wrote:

Actually, can I take stock of this argument real quick? How strongly do we disagree? Are we essentially arguing semantics, or is there a really strong divergence of opinion here?

I don't think this is the end of the world, but I do feel like Paizo should have gone with Constitution, or a hybrid of mental and physical scores, or some solution that would have prevented such a clear disparity. I hate the idea of the martials losing their minds while the casters get things done. That's already a problem with the Will save gap. This choice made things a bit worse. Even ignoring the possibility of dump stats, there's really clearly a type of class that's favored and a type that's not here. I intend to modify the system if/when I use it.

Constitution (or any other physical stat for that matter) makes no sense to me for a sanity/madness system, and having done so just to martials can continue dumping mental stats would have break any sense of versimilitud


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We really need to stop looking at mental stat dumping as something that needs to be "punished". Again, if you feel uncomfortable with stat dumping, stop using Point Buy.

As for it "not making sense", mental health is linked to physical health. Someone who doesn't take care of their body is likely to be more vulnerable to mental strain. If you went with a combination of Will saves and Constitution (or Fortitude saves and Charisma), you would actually encompass both factors.


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Kobold Cleaver wrote:

We really need to stop looking at mental stat dumping as something that needs to be "punished". Again, if you feel uncomfortable with stat dumping, stop using Point Buy.

As for it "not making sense", mental health is linked to physical health. Someone who doesn't take care of their body is likely to be more vulnerable to mental strain. If you went with a combination of Will saves and Constitution (or Fortitude saves and Charisma), you would actually encompass both factors.

But if you dump STR you get punished by having to buy a cheap magic item that you were going to buy anyway! I mean the weight is heavy, but full casters must bear that cross of gold...


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In fairness, casters have a lot more gold to spare than most martials. That's a lot of extra weight to carry.

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