Why is Estra's ghostly husband Honaire classified as Loot?


Rules Questions and Gameplay Discussion


I know Estra's a con-artist, but she didn't "win" Honaire by defeating a scenario villain.

Honaire should be a Cohort, or if there's concern about banishments, an Ally. I would also accept an entirely new keyword like Familiar, Companion, etc.

Silver Crusade

Per Vic, the reason he's not a cohort is because if he were banished, he would be removed from the game.

I can't speak to why he's not simply an ally with the Owner mechanic. Perhaps just to call attention to him.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Personal theory: they just didn't want to introduce the Cohorts mechanic to the set for a single card only.

There is another small difference beside Banishment (which, at any rate, could've been circumvented for a Cohort by another *special* rule, similar to the one Estra now has on her Card List): starting Hand Size. Were Honaire a Cohort - Estra would've started with an extra card in hand (and effectively +1 deck size) and would possibly have a more sensible Favorite Card type, such as Spell.

For me, all those are arguments why Honaire *should've* been a Cohort (I'm not bothered that a Loot is not gained by killing a villain - there's precedent for that in WotR already)so, yeah, "let's just not bother with Cohorts" is the most plausible theory to me.

EDIT: ninja'd

Eliandra Giltessan wrote:
Per Vic, the reason he's not a cohort is because if he were banished, he would be removed from the game.

I should think a "If Honaire would be banished, bury it instead" would've been sufficient.

Even better, "Honaire cannot be banished" as currently he is a *free* banish-fodder for Estra (as she always retrieves it from the box afterwards).


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Eliandra Giltessan wrote:
I can't speak to why he's not simply an ally with the Owner mechanic. Perhaps just to call attention to him.

I would think so you couldn't encounter/acquire him as a non-Estra player. Though that doesn't stop you from grabbing him in AP3 and beyond.


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Yes, but the problem is Paizo/Lone Shark is already committed to this mechanic thanks to the tight coupling of the Class Decks with every possible base set for the Adventure Card game. Does this mean every class deck needs to be updated to call cohort-like cards "Loot"? What happens to the cards included in the Iconic Hero sets like Lini's pet? Alterations like this aren't as simple as it first seems.

It might be better to assign an updated definition to Cohort in the rulebook and/or FAQ. You certainly can't blame me as the customer because the word "Cohort" is used in Wrath of the Righteous.


As far as how such a rule could be written for "Cohorts":

- Cohorts specified by a scenario or adventure path can be banished and removed from the game.
- Cohorts specified by characters or abilities can't be be banished or removed from the game.

It's important to explicitly state this rule because the default order of precedence is scenario card trumps character card.

Redefining Cohort would solve the backwards-compatibility problem; although a new keyword along with a FAQ item (these cards should be [NEW WORD]) could also be desirable.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Cohorts are a different mechanic. They don't take up a space in your 15+cardfeats deck size, and they are added to your hand after your opening hand is drawn. Honaire is one of your allies, taking up a deck slot, and he counts as part of your hand. Therefore, he is not a cohort.

I'm with Autoduelist on the reason he's not a normal ally with the owner trait. If he was, he'd end up in the ally section of the game box. If Estra was being played, obviously, she'd have to take him in order to have a valid starting hand (see also the discussion about Ahmotep with no staff boons). However, if she wasn't being played, he could come up in a location, and be grabbed by just anyone. (Geeze, imagine Mavaro with a Blessing of the Elements displayed and Honaire in his hand...) He's a REALLY badass card, designed (I presume) specifically to balance Estra's crap physical skills.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

James has the key points here. Cohorts are a different mechanic and they didn't want to have to add a power in case of banishment, therefore he's an ally. Also, Honaire is required (on the back of the character card) so it takes up a slot in Estra's deck. However it has a special mechanic listed on her character card about starting with him in her starting hand.

And as a Loot card, it can't be taken by another character other than Estra.

So those are the reasons: he's not a cohort, he doesn't need the Owner trait, and why he's loot.


Another reason for making him loot over a normal ally is that he is automatically acquired should he end up in a location deck, just like cohorts. While that's easy to achieve on an ally as well, it's much more elegant this way.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I believe this mechanism is also designed that he can't be encountered or acquired from a location deck by anyone that isn't Estra.


To clarify: being Loot instead of Ally, he won't usually be in location decks. But if he was in a location deck, anyone encountering him would acquire him.

As has been said in this thread.


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The +1 hand size problem could be addressed by reducing the hero's total number of cards by one. If it's a mandatory card for the character, it's already part of the build, which should be taken into account when designing the hero in the first place.

Page 23 of the Mummy's Mask rulebook says

"Loot cards do not have a check to acquire; instead, you earn them as a reward for completing a scenario."

Honaire is definitely not "loot" since he wasn't a scenario reward.

I'm indifferent whether the definition of "Cohort" or "Loot" is changed, or if an entirely new keyword is invented that incorporates most of the qualities of "Loot"; but right now, neither Cohort or Loot's current definition fits the card.

What is the point of updating the rulebook every release if problems like this aren't being addressed correctly?


As far as other characters taking Honaire, heroes couldn't do that anyway because Honaire isn't specified as a cohort on the scenario cards, so there's no way for other heroes to add Honaire to their hand. I think arguments addressing how banishment is treated for cohorts vs. loot are more on target.

The problem with using loot is that loot represents a specific card type, in Honaire's case, he's an ally. If Honaire is truly loot, then other heroes can use him as an ally in games where Estra isn't being played as a hero. This is allowed because the definition of loot - a scenario reward - is already being broken because Honaire wasn't a scenario reward for Estra. Cards have no memories, so they wouldn't know that sometime before Mummy's Mask, Estra had a scenario encounter that produced a Honaire loot reward.

Now if you want to argue the Loot needs to be "earned" and since nothing awards this card to other heroes, then check page 13 of the rules. Dead characters' cards are not returned to the box, so what happens when Estra dies? There's nothing stopping someone from claiming the Honaire ally "Loot" card if Estra isn't selected as a replacement hero. You can't do this with cohorts because they're tied to scenarios.

The bottom line is that using "cohort" or "loot" requires altering the definition of how they work. Abusing objects can be bad in both OO programming and Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, which is why the definition of "Loot" or "Cohort" should be updated, or a new word like "Companion" used.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Or it works as is ... and you're making up stuff about loot that isn't necessary.

Is Honaire broken as a Loot Ally that only Estra gets? Nope.
Are they going to change Honaire to a Cohort or any of this other stuff? Nope.


I edited the post before you posted your reply Theryon. One loophole for "loot" is character death. The loot card could be claimed by another hero if Estra isn't selected as a replacement character.

As far as updating the rules goes, there's a PDF or a FAQ that Paizo could update. Also, issues like this are one are what's holding up the Skull & Shackles errata cards because "Oh Noes the Class Decks impact them too."


You don't need Estra to die to get Honaire into another character's deck as loot. Aren't loot cards valid choices for an AD-2 card feat or or banished card replacement? In deck 3 or above, a party without Estra could pull Honaire from the box in those circumstances.


That's a good observation. I always assumed the language of "must be earned as a scenario reward" for Loot trumped their quality of being an item, ally, etc. since loot cards were always called out as scenario rewards. I always thought getting rid of loot via banishment added them to the relevant decks (item, armor, blessing, etc.) So would refusing to keep a loot card in your deck when reconstructing it, which would make the loot available to someone who is building a new character from scratch because a hero died since they become part of the relevant boon decks of items, allies, etc. The idea of a "bank" for loot that can be checked-in/checked-out is something some PACG players use as a house-rule; but, it's not something official.

Intuitively you can see the thinking behind Honaire as loot

1.) Call it loot solves the banishment / remove from the game problem that cohorts have.
2.) Specifying it as a must-have for Estra's deck construction means she always gets the card vs. other characters taking it.
3.) Since Honaire doesn't appear as a scenario reward there's no other way to acquire Honaire as loot since it must be acquired and discarded....

Except for the case of character death. Even if you had no intentions of playing Estra - say you wanted to have Mavaro and Drelm party up - you'd take Estra first, have her discard her hand each turn and draw new cards until she dies, Mavaro does nothing on his turn, and then run out the Blessing deck. Mavaro takes Honaire as a card for his deck, and then you start your adventure with Drelm and Mavaro on the game's very first scenario.

The idea of a companion tied to specific characters been tried three times now: the Iconic Heroes, Wrath of the Righteous, and now Mummy's Mask - which is the fourth game in the series. It's not unreasonable to expect this would be sorted out by now. Every month or two a new character deck comes out with potentially new game altering effects that impact already released cards since they work with all sets. The flow-through issues and technical debt are adding up.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Hum. As far as as I know, both allies, cohorts and loots can be given by a character to anither one during or between games so I really don't see the point of the debate.
Could it be better (Honaire=cohort)? I would say yes from a roleplay point of view.
Is it broken from a rules point of view? No.
Don't change it.


elcoderdude wrote:
You don't need Estra to die to get Honaire into another character's deck as loot. Aren't loot cards valid choices for an AD-2 card feat or or banished card replacement? In deck 3 or above, a party without Estra could pull Honaire from the box in those circumstances.

Wait, what?

I don't think you can use loot as upgrades from the box once they are AD-2. We certainly never played it that way and I don't think the obsidian app lets you do that.
Feel free to prove me wrong on this, but I'd be really suprised if this was true.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Frencois wrote:

Could it be better (Honaire=cohort)? I would say yes from a roleplay point of view.

Is it broken from a rules point of view? No.
Don't change it.

Yeah, I tried to say this too, Frencois. It's not broken. Don't fix it.

Also, loot cards that have not been rewarded are not valid choices for card upgrades. Look at the rules for loot in the rulebook. Look at the next post by Zaister. Only Estra has been rewarded the use of Honaire. So if she dies, Honaire is not a valid card to put into someone else's deck.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Actually the definition for loot is

Mummy's Mask Rulebook wrote:
Loot: Loot cards are unique in a couple of ways. The other boons can be found by exploring locations, but loot cards are only given out as rewards for completing scenarios, except in very rare cases when other cards give them out. They are automatically acquired, and so they have no check to acquire. Also, loot cards list a type, such as “weapon”; apart from the way loot cards are acquired, loot cards behave just like other boons of that type and count as cards of that type rather than loot when played. If a loot card ends up in a location deck, you automatically acquire it when you encounter it.

Honaire obviously qualifies as the "very rare case" where it is given out by another card, in this case Estra's character card. No rule or definition is broken here.


Doppelschwert wrote:
elcoderdude wrote:
You don't need Estra to die to get Honaire into another character's deck as loot. Aren't loot cards valid choices for an AD-2 card feat or or banished card replacement? In deck 3 or above, a party without Estra could pull Honaire from the box in those circumstances.

Wait, what?

I don't think you can use loot as upgrades from the box once they are AD-2. We certainly never played it that way and I don't think the obsidian app lets you do that.
Feel free to prove me wrong on this, but I'd be really suprised if this was true.

Yeah, I fully expected someone to call me on that.

Vic saying you can do this.

The Obsidian app is not a foolproof arbiter of the rules for the card game.


elcoderdude wrote:
Aren't loot cards valid choices for an AD-2 card feat or or banished card replacement? In deck 3 or above, a party without Estra could pull Honaire from the box in those circumstances.
elcoderdude wrote:

Yeah, I fully expected someone to call me on that.

Well, you put it as a question rather than a statement, so being called on that is not very surprising. Not that it matters much - I would've asked for a source anyway, even if you just stated the fact.

Anyway, I appreciate that you brought it up in the first place.

elcoderdude wrote:

Vic saying you can do this.

The Obsidian app is not a foolproof arbiter of the rules for the card game.

Thanks for the link. I haven't actually verified how the app behaves with this regard (just being aware that it never explicitly showed me the loot cards as a choice). I'm aware it is not the end of all means, but it seemed the best available evidence, which I'm glad you refuted. So, lesson learned here, thanks again.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Isn't it possible for someone to get Honaire in the case where the party is short a card of a particular type and they're at an adventure high enough to draw B/C from the box to fill the void?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Calthaer wrote:
Isn't it possible for someone to get Honaire in the case where the party is short a card of a particular type and they're at an adventure high enough to draw B/C from the box to fill the void?

Not loot that hasn't been awarded in some way. Honaire gets awarded to Estra by her character card.


Calthaer wrote:
Isn't it possible for someone to get Honaire in the case where the party is short a card of a particular type and they're at an adventure high enough to draw B/C from the box to fill the void?

Yes. This is exactly what I posted a few posts above.


Thank you Zaister. That quote you had about loot answers my question, because the Mummy's Mask rulebook redefined what "loot" means to fit the new usage first revealed to me by Estra's character sheet. I'm okay with using the word "loot" if the definition was updated.

I did a pdf search for the word loot (with the ever slow search functionality) and didn't find the answer I was looking for, which is why I asked my question because of the potential problems with loot's old definition of being just a scenario reward.

Just to clarify some of the other comments about Loot, they are still scenario rewards in most cases; so they couldn't be used by newly constructed characters (the Adventure Deck Number - 2 rule), because they weren't "earned" by the newly constructed characters completing the necessary scenario. I think some of the confusion arises from this definition of how Loot is used in Deck construction:

Quote:
Your deck must end up meeting the Cards List requirements on your character card. Loot cards count as cards of their type. For example, if your character’s Cards List specifies 3 items, and you keep 1 loot card with the item type when you rebuild your deck, your deck must contain exactly 2 other items.

There are still a few wrinkles though. Characters may give a card to someone else on their turn, which could be a loot card, and it's allowed by the rules. I didn't have a problem with this.

Quote:
Give a Card: You may give 1 card from your hand to another player atyour location. (Other players cannot give you cards on your turn.)

There is also the death case I mentioned earlier, since surviving heroes may pilfer the corpse. This was the crux of my complaint, which has been addressed, and is still allowed under the rules. If Estra dies and isn't replaced, someone else can claim Honaire's ghost.

Quote:
The other characters may use the dead character’s cards when they rebuild their decks after the scenario; any cards they don’t keep are then returned to the box.

The other situation is banishment of a Loot card. I don't know if they go to the Loot section of the box, or the relevant card section they are like. I would assume they would go to the section belonging to the card they are like, since scenario rewards can only be earned once, and there would be no other way to get an opportunity to reacquire a banished loot card. Maybe that's the point though, since they're supposed to be uniquely valuable items.

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32

We've always played that Loot cards that are banished or returned to the box go back in the Loot section of the box, gone forever. It means if there's a Loot you get in adventure B or 1 that is mediocre when you get it, but great in adventure 5, that you must keep it in your deck to carry it that far.

That may be a bit harsh but that's how my groups play it.


I think these two practices:

[1] You can't use the AD-2 rule to take loot from the box, because the only way to get loot is by earning it as a scenario reward; and
[2] When a character banishes a loot card, it goes into the deck of the cards of the loot's type, not the loot cards

contradict each other. They're fine as house rules, but they're not the official rules.

Vic's quote above (from just last year) indicates you can use the AD-2 rule to pull loot cards from the box.

The passage quoted by Zaister indicates location decks should never be built using loot cards.


I can see the value of "loot" as a generic term. This release cycle the character-specific "loot" is something akin to an ally (Honaire); but in a future PACG set, if Seelah's Helmet became "Loot", the updated term would still fit unlike "Cohort", "Companion", or some other ally-like word.

Cohorts - as a card type from WOTR - have the disadvantage of being removed from the game, but they also couldn't be re-used by another hero when the scenario's over as part of deck construction unless Estra was part of the party and traded it away each time during the scenario. No deck has a "cohort" type, so if Estra wasn't present, the card would be gone because no scenario setup uses it.

I think Honaire could be claimed by other heroes in the event of Estra's death, provided the character replacing her wasn't another Estra. The dead Estra's cards go in a pile per the dying rules; it was already "earned" by her hero card and her character sheet only says she gets Honaire when constructing her deck, so it's available to everyone else for deck construction because the loot card would be treated like an ally.

Wording on the Honaire's card saying it's banished when Estra dies would solve the death problem, it could be FAQ'd, or clarification that character card loot "belongs" to a specific hero card and can't be traded or used by other hero cards would close the death loop hole.

Scarab Sages

For the sake of argument, if Estra was in the same location as another character, could she GIVE Honaire to that character? If so, what would happen to the card at the end of the scenario?


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Yes, if a card is in your hand you can give it to another character at your location during that part of your turn.

At the end of the scenario you'd decide with your friend what to do with it. Technically, someone else can have it in their deck, since it is an ally. However, if Estra doesn't have it then I think she can't have a valid starting hand, so she is unplayable.

Scarab Sages

Thanks, Hawkmoon. Your advice makes sense, and that's how we've decided to play it. So far, so good!


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Ah, I didn't want to open a can of worms, but since someone's resurrected this thread since I last looked closely...

I couldn't find anything about Loot cards in Organised Play in the Guild Guide. Am I correct in assuming that the following rule regarding picking up old cards...

elcoderdude wrote:

[...]

Vic's quote above (from just last year) indicates you can use the AD-2 rule to pull loot cards from the box.

[...]

...also applies to Class Decks in Organised Play? The only Class Deck I know of with Loot cards is, indeed, Occult Adventures Deck 1 (with a new version of Honaire), and it seems intuitive that the other characters can't just pick up Honaire and use him like a deck B ally. Loot cards are not a part of the standard pool of resources available to you, of course.

However, if you're able to take from the specific 'old loot' pile in normal gameplay with standard deckbuilding/replacement rules (as long as it's 2 adventure decks behind), as confirmed by Vic, does that also apply to Organised Play? If I'm playing Rivani through Tier 2, for example, and I need to fill an empty ally slot, can't I pick Honaire? Why/Why not?

Also, if you have more allies (say, through Card Feats) in your deck than there are basics in the Class Deck, and you've yet to upgrade/replace any allies, then you can include Honaire as soon as you run out of basics to fulfil, surely, as per the Hierarchy?

Adventure Card Guild Guide - Page 7 wrote:

1. Use cards that have the set indicator B and the

Basic trait.
2. Use cards that have the set indicator B without
the Basic trait.

Honaire has the set B indicator and no Basic trait, and I cannot find any reference referring to excluding Loot cards from the Hierarchy.

This also seems kind of significant, since Honaire is a rather powerful ally. You can't explore with him, but he can significantly support half of your skills (in addition to any combat check) and can act as a self-cure, marking him as of rather significant power level, that scales sufficiently that Estra really shouldn't feel bad about having to carry him even through Tier 6.

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