Olenjack Questions


Rules Questions and Gameplay Discussion


When I use his power to display allies to add to a check, do I get the bonus per ally I have displayed? Or per ally displayed in that use of the power? The power reads: "for each ally displayed, add 1 (□ 2) to the check."

Also do you get the bonus for allies displayed by their own power, such as the Position Ancestor?

If olenjack displayed the Ancestor for his power could he then use the Ally's "while displayed" power?

My thought is no, no, and no. But it's hard to tell with how it is written.


He only gets the bonus for the allies that he physically displays on his check to specifically activate this power.

He does not get a bonus for allies previously displayed, regardless of what caused the allies to be displayed.

That should cover your first two questions. I'm not sure about the third. My instinct says "no," but I can't really think of why at the moment.

Silver Crusade RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

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(You meant the Osirion Ancestor, right?)

I'm pretty sure, as long as the Osirion Ancestor is still displayed, you could make use of its power no matter how it's displayed. This is because of the general rule of "cards have no memory" so the Osirion Ancestor doesn't know that it was displayed by activating your character power instead of its own power.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

I think I'm on the other side of this. I think how you display the card determines whether you get the powers/effect on it. If you display Osirion Ancestor as "fuel" for Olenjack's power, you don't get to use the "while displayed" power on the Osirion Ancestor too.


What Hawkmoon says makes sense... but I don't see that in the rules.


See Mummy's Mask rulebook p.8 "Playing cards":

Quote:
If you play a card in such a way that it leaves your hand, that action can trigger only 1 power.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Yeah, the problem is, you aren't playing the card as Olenjack. You are using Olenjack's power. But the spirit of that is what leads me to my conclusion.

I generally think of the "display" play-action as if the card said "Display this card to gain the following power/effect: ..."

Silver Crusade RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

Hmm... given the rule that SimonB linked, I changed my mind. If you display a card for one power, it doesn't work for any other powers that would require displayed cards. This brings up the question of whether we need some sort of memory ability on displayed cards to remind players what they were played for, though, which is also contrary to the rules. :-S


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Hawkmoon269 wrote:

Yeah, the problem is, you aren't playing the card as Olenjack. You are using Olenjack's power. But the spirit of that is what leads me to my conclusion.

I generally think of the "display" play-action as if the card said "Display this card to gain the following power/effect: ..."

Hum with all due respect to the great Hawk, I'm not so sure.

Look at those two ideas:

A) Cards have no memory
So as much as "display that to to that in instantaneous
If a displayed card says "while displayed..." it happens whatever was the reason if was displayed in the first place

B) Cards that take into account the status of other cards do not care how they got in that status
I'm pretty sure Vic/Mike gave us one day an example looking like :
Player A encounters a bane
Player B has an ally card that when played adds +d6 to "your combat check"
Player B cannot use a merchant to send that card to player A because it would not directly affect the check
BUT
If player A previously revealed and discarded a weapon on that check that says "you may additionaly discard to add +1 to the check per card in your hand". A could then send (via Merchant) the ally to B (because directly affecting the check), and then B could play it (further affecting).
My point is: the weapon doesn't care where the card in your hand comes from or whether it was in your hand before the encounter or not. As long as the different powers/cards plays were sequentialy valid, it just calculates the bonus at the time the check is resolved.

For me if you follow that logic, as long as the displaying of cards was valid (through Olenjack power or not), Olenjack counts the displayed cards at the time the power is resolved, independently on where the displayed cards come from or when they where displayed.

Me wrong?


Um... but as Hawkmoon says, Olenjack is not playing the card he displays for his power.

Even when you do play the card you display - it is not the act of displaying that triggers the useful powers on the card. Displaying usually enacts the power "Display this card." A displayed card can have more than one power you can subsequently activate.

EDIT: Arg! Ninja'd again. I am responding to CMB.

Silver Crusade RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

This is definitely one of those things that could go either way, no question. I'm inclined to say that you shouldn't be able to "double-dip" even in this specific case of Olenjack's power, because of the rule that was mentioned previously, but there is obviously merit to the argument that you should be able to. I'm gonna defer to the developers to answer this one for us, hopefully.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

If you displayed the Ancestor for Olenjack's power, the intent is that you cannot use its own display power.

(I have no idea at the moment how we're going to make that happen...)


Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Super wacky idea: display face-up vs face-down. If a card is displayed face-up, all powers on it are active. If a card is displayed face-down, all powers on it are not active. Olenjack and similar powers could then be amended to say to display it face-down.

At first I was going to suggest a rule "Unless stated otherwise, powers on displayed cards only function if the card was displayed for its power." but then you'd have to modify a ton of cards that display things like curses next to you should you fail a check (been playing S&S recently, so Wishing Well and Gilbrok the Tongue come to mind).

Page 8 and maybe also page 16 (Active and Optional Powers sidebar) would probably need to be amended to account for this.


That is a wacky idea. And I think it could work.


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elcoderdude wrote:
That is a wacky idea. And I think it could work.

Pb is what happens to face down displayed cards.

How do you remember what to do with each of them?
Bad solution 1: keep track of every stack of cards displayed by playing different powers.
Bad solution 2: only allow in the game one power to display face down cards next to any given card/deck on the table.
Bad solution 3: make a generic rule that says "at the end of the turn, all face down displayed cards get discarded" for example. But that's restrictive. And how do you play Mavaro? Even if the cards are displayed for the character's power, you still need to be able to read them to see the skills or traifs involved.

Displaying the cards sideways rather than face down is a bit better but doesn't solve all issues.

Actually the best way could be to have another action than "display", like "consume". To use a character's power you would "consume" cards. Consumed cards would then not be "displayed" hence not triggering their own "when displayed" text. Then it's just a matter of using "consume" in the character's power text and finding a way to separate them on the table from the displayed ones.

But I'm sure not this Mike will find an even better solution.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
skizzerz wrote:
Super wacky idea: display face-up vs face-down. If a card is displayed face-up, all powers on it are active. If a card is displayed face-down, all powers on it are not active. Olenjack and similar powers could then be amended to say to display it face-down.

That very idea sprung to my mind while reading the threa. However, Frencois raises some valid points, and I agree with him that some new terminology would be needed (though I'd rather go with 'bank' or 'commit', or something, as opposed to 'consume').

Still, this doesn't solve the issue at all, if a character has several 'consuming' powers and/or other cards also make you 'consume' cards - you still have a pool of cards that don't 'remember' where they came from, so if an Item made you 'consume' 3 cards, and you 'consume' another 2 with Olenjack - it would still be unclear if you can benefit from both for purposes of powers that say "For each consumed card..."

The only way I see it working: powers that care for cards brought to a state X (displayed, consumed, whatever) by another power on the SAME card, should somehow get 'attached' to the card that has those powers. So maybe that's the mechanic that could work, and the new term would be 'attach' or 'bind'. Yet, this still doesn't solve the problem with Olenjack himself where, at present, there's still no adequate terminology to short-hand that he only adds to check *per ally displayed ON THIS CHECK* - so maybe we go back to something like a new term "Commit: Set the card aside; it counts as committed for a single use of the power that made you commit it. Return the card to you hand before resetting your hand."

... In all, all of the above seems rather complicated and unnecessary, and I'd rather don't see new terminology introduced unless the devs intend to make an extensive use of it (which, granted, may be called for, as at this point every card and their mother seem to have some displaying going on, and while many powers care only for cards displayed in particular fashion, this does clash with the fundamental idea that 'cards don't have memories')


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Vic Wertz wrote:

If you displayed the Ancestor for Olenjack's power, the intent is that you cannot use its own display power.

(I have no idea at the moment how we're going to make that happen...)

Hi Vic, if I may, if you are looking into these issues, please note that there are in fact 2:

Issue 1: - When someone plays a power that says something like "display X cards; for each cards diplayed...", how do you ensure (if it's indeed the intent) that you just count the cards displayed for that power, and not all the already displayed cards.

Issue 2: - When someone plays a power that says something like "display X cards to...", how do you ensure (since cards have no memory) that the "when displayed" text or the conditions to undisplay on the cards you just displayed won't be used later. Note that not all the text on the displayed cards is irrelevant (see Mavaro, the skills and traits on the displayed cards stays relevant until cards are undisplayed).

Hoping you'll find a good answer on both issues.


Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I still prefer the face-down display if we need to introduce new terminology, as introducing that is a lot less complex (rules-wise) than introducing a brand-new term. A face-down displayed card is still a displayed card, so all the rules and powers that work with displayed cards work with it. Introducing a new term like "consumed" means old powers don't work with it, and we'd need to add rules in a bunch of places to deal with this new type of using up a card -- rules to define what "consumed" means, rules on how to deal with those cards at the end of the game when packing things up, and possibly others. In all, it'd likely be paragraph or two of new rules text, whereas face-down display would require 1 sentence.

For Frencois's first issue, it could benefit from tighter wording and doesn't need a rule change or new mechanic: "Display any number of cards; for each card displayed this way...". This way refers back to the power that displayed them, so it wouldn't count any other displayed cards. Since cards don't have memories, they don't remember cards previously displayed by the same power, so that is covered as well. Note that such a change isn't actually needed, as the existing rules already prevent this from happening. Adding "this way" would just make the intent a bit more clear without changing anything.

For the second issue, face-down can still be used for that with the rule (that already exists) allowing you to look at your face-down displayed cards at any point in time. While cards don't have memories, players do, so they can remember what traits the face-down card has when they use Mavaro's power, and should they forget, they can look at the card to get a refresher. It's not perfect, but it isn't a show-stopper for face-down.

Sideways could also work, but this would be the only thing in the game that cares about card orientation (upright vs sideways), which seems odd. We'd need rules to define that the two are different card states, whereas such rules already exist for face-up vs face-down.

Rules changes for face-down (blue = added):
p8: Display: Place it faceup next to your deck, unless stated otherwise; the card’s powers function as long as it is displayed faceup, and do not function as long as it is displayed facedown. When a character displays a card, it is not part of that character’s hand, deck, or discard pile, but it still belongs to that character.

The back cover's reference sheet would need updating to add the same text, as it duplicates that section.

The rule "You can look through your displayed, discarded, and buried cards at any time." (p9) already covers being able to look at your facedown displayed cards, so I don't think any additional rule is needed to cover Mavaro's case.

There is no need to modify the sidebar on p16, the rule "Powers on cards on the table—including story cards, character cards, and displayed cards—are active whenever they are appropriate." already gives a carve-out for face-down displayed cards with "whenever they are appropriate." There is no contradiction between this rule and the addition on p8 that explicitly states that such cards' powers do not function, as that addition basically states that it is never* appropriate for such cards (*=unless some card overrides, in other words, I'm not using the rulebook definition of "never" here).

This could be resolved without any rulebook modifications, and just modifying card powers, but it would add a lot of words to already-crowded character power boxes to accommodate the fact the powers on the cards displayed by them don't work. As such, I believe a rulebook tweak with a new (well, spinoff) mechanic is likely best here. It requires adding the single word "facedown" to the powers box, which shouldn't cramp the cards, and it sidesteps the issues of introducing a brand-new way of playing/manipulating cards by being able to piggyback on all existing rules and powers that deal with displayed cards.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Frencois wrote:
Issue 1: - When someone plays a power that says something like "display X cards; for each cards diplayed...", how do you ensure (if it's indeed the intent) that you just count the cards displayed for that power, and not all the already displayed cards.

That one's fairly easy—we add language that ties the effect more directly to the cause. For example, Olenjack's power might end up saying "When you attempt a check, you may display any number of allies; for each of these, add 1 (□ 2) to the check. Return the displayed allies to your hand before you reset it."

Frencois wrote:
Issue 2: - When someone plays a power that says something like "display X cards to...", how do you ensure (since cards have no memory) that the "when displayed" text or the conditions to undisplay on the cards you just displayed won't be used later. Note that not all the text on the displayed cards is irrelevant (see Mavaro, the skills and traits on the displayed cards stays relevant until cards are undisplayed).

We have a possible solution there: a new rule that says "If you display a boon for any reason other than playing it, ignore its powers." Question is, does that break anything else?


Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Doesn't cover if you display a Cohort for some power other than its own since Cohorts aren't boons. Going to check through my cards tonight to see if I can spot other possible problem areas.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

We think this specifically needs to avoid applying to cohorts and non-boons, but if you see a circumstance where you think it should, let me know!


Thank you all so much for the detailed examination. It's validating to know that my group and I weren't crazy for seeing some of this as an issue.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Vic Wertz wrote:
We have a possible solution there: a new rule that says "If you display a boon for any reason other than playing it, ignore its powers." Question is, does that break anything else?

Added to FAQ.

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