The Druid debate: is metal natural?


Pathfinder RPG General Discussion

1 to 50 of 148 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Because I thought I should stop derailing every time it gets mentioned elsewhere.

My most recent post on the subject

I do not think the Druid should be restricted from wearing metal armour.


Metal? Pfft! Purest hogwash. Stuff doesn't even exist.


7 people marked this as a favorite.

On a slightly more helpful note, druids of Gorum get to wear metal armor. They can't cast spells while in it and it doesn't wildshape with them, but they don't lose their class abilities forever because of it. So, there are kind of options? I don't know.

The thing about druidic proscriptions is that they accurately reflect a lot of religious taboos--don't make a lot of sense, but danged if you're in trouble if you don't follow them. I mean, why know how to wield a scimitar but not a longsword? Because nature says so. *shrugs*

EDIT: In fact, one could make the argument that it is precisely the lack of rational sense that makes the prohibition so valuable. All of the explanations cover up the fact that, when you get right down to it, the taboo is absurd and serves no purpose. Which, paradoxically, is what gives it its value and purpose.

I mean, one could make such an argument. I certainly wouldn't, but then, I'm not a druid.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
The Sideromancer wrote:

I bring up native elements and alloys not because they are practical (though brass, bronze, and pewter stretch this), but because they exist and are subject to the restrictions.

** spoiler omitted **, and the metal is common enough in its native state for methods that only search for native gold (e.g. panning) are practical. Worked gold looks and acts like unworked gold because its the same material, where even stoneplate is expressly modified:
AoN, stoneplate wrote:
This armor is crafted by dwarven stonesmiths from alchemically strengthened plates of basalt.

I already explained the unworked gold... no one USES unworked gold. Gold armor is never stated as 100% pure and it a final product that's "Magically strengthened" and that can't happen unworked as even simple rings can't keep their shapes when made of pure gold.

As to the stone, it's just strengthening it [much like strengthening the gold]. Clearly the gods of nature magic don't see such things as altering it basic composition.

The Sideromancer wrote:
graystone wrote:
And JUST to be clear, there are 100% natural ways to tan leather and can happen without any human activity involved...
Can I get a citation on this? I can't seem to find it anywhere.

I already did but I'll repeat. Bogs: highly acidic water, low temperature, and a lack of oxygen, combine to preserve and tan the skin of bog bodies. it's the reason the Cashel Man, who dates to 2000 BCE during the Bronze Age, was able to be pulled out of a bog after 3000+ years.

The Sideromancer wrote:
I find "it's magic, it needs no explanation" to be insufficient. I am okay with fantasy having different rules than reality, but all magical systems of matter I know of (including that of PF) place metal equal to or greater than wood in purity. Thus, it's not only an error in real science, it's also an error in magical science.

All I can say is that you're going to have a bad time with any fantasy/scifi game as more often than not, that's what it boils down to. For druids, metal DOESN'T follow those magic systems you speak of, and goes with 'refined metal' isn't natural. And before you go 'well gold', unrefined metal is either stone [ore] or unfit for practical use.

You're basically arguing with the gods that their rules don't follow a logical, reason based, scientific cause and effect. That's a fight you aren't going to win.


The class is great. If the armor restriction were lifted it wouldn't change much. It would make more sense perhaps, but the difference is at most a few thousand gold to get glamoured dragon hide so it as the aesthetic you want. If the restriction is not lifted it is still a great class with a silly and easily circumvented restriction.


Alright, lets drop the real-life examples and use a different metal than gold. In much the same way as meteoric iron/nickel alloys exist on earth, there's a nice cache of metals in PF where the largest source is these extraterrestrial deposits of native metal. Would the use of adamantine or horacalcum meet your standards for "must be of practical use"?

Search "naturally occurring leather": nothing of use
Search "bog leather": nothing of use
Nobody seems to have made workable leather out of bogs, preserving isn't hardening. I'm still unconvinced that acquiring the base components for leather are less unnatural than the rock and heat source of choice needed for smelting.

I don't disagree, it's an uphill fight for both self-consistency and for inorganic equality (it's why I felt focusing on metals was a unique enough identifier to start my username with "The"), but I actually find fantasy and sci-fi less disruptive to my immersion than more "realistic" genres. If realism is attempted, any failure to match up to science is damning. It takes something that breaks both the real equivalent and any substitute rules in place (such as magic systems) with no satisfactory explanation. In fact, putting metal by the wayside is pretty much the only way to get me to question any given magic system that doesn't expressly contradict itself, because I have yet to see a good answer to why.

There are fantasy precedents for metal being magically important, and while JJ can do whatever he wants with Golarion (and I will accept or reject that at my liesure), The primarily setting-neutral CRB should not have this restriction. To return to Oricalcum and renamings thereof, the most frequent reason why its in a fantasy setting is its one of the best conductors of magic around. Even if it's an alloy (sometimes but not always true), all you need to make alloys is a pot and a heat source.


16 people marked this as a favorite.

Druids can't wear metal armor or use metal shields for the same reason that in the real world Orthodox Jews can't mix meat and milk in the same meal, or real world Catholics can't eat meat on Fridays during Lent, or real world Hindus don't eat the flesh of cows.

It's a religious restriction. It's not based on science. It's not based on "metal is less pure than leather." It's not based on anything other than "The Gods of Nature demand this. They grant me the spells and other powers that are a class feature of being a Druid. Therefore, I follow those demands or lose my class features."

And that's ok.


Paradozen wrote:
The class is great. If the armor restriction were lifted it wouldn't change much. It would make more sense perhaps, but the difference is at most a few thousand gold to get glamoured dragon hide so it as the aesthetic you want. If the restriction is not lifted it is still a great class with a silly and easily circumvented restriction.

I've tried to make the class. I've tried glamours, character-specific handwaves, massive cheese to crank up what little Gorum gives, everything I can think of. Every time, I stop halfway through thinking "This isn't enough, I should be able to do it perfectly." It's stopped being a reason to prefer a setting less, and a challenge to why I like gaming in the first place: to work through a niche problem in interesting ways. If I had found an adequate solution, I would have used it with the same frequency people use Unchained Rogue over Core. This thread wouldn't have needed to exist, because I would have found no major issues.


AaronUnicorn wrote:

Druids can't wear metal armor or use metal shields for the same reason that in the real world Orthodox Jews can't mix meat and milk in the same meal, or real world Catholics can't eat meat on Fridays during Lent, or real world Hindus don't eat the flesh of cows.

It's a religious restriction. It's not based on science. It's not based on "metal is less pure than leather." It's not based on anything other than "The Gods of Nature demand this. They grant me the spells and other powers that are a class feature of being a Druid. Therefore, I follow those demands or lose my class features."

And that's ok.

And if there were alternative choices for a religious restriction, that would be fine. But given the diversity of druid-legal deities (i.e. all of them), it's the equivalent of Orthodox Jews, Catholics, Protestants, Hindus, Bhuddists, Muslims, Taoists, and that guy who never gave up on Zeus all not eating beef. Imagine trying to buy a cheeseburger in that world.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

What are you trying to actually achieve? For all of your home games, great, druids can wear metal armor now. Otherwise, the rule is very clear and doesn't have to "make sense".

It isn't an issue of being "natural", it is more of a "it once was alive" thing. Its been a druid thing for a long time, and it probably existed originally to add balance and flavor. However, that balance was undone anyway through the use of special materials. It used to be a great milestone to done your first suit of dragonhide platemail or scalemail as a druid...


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Druids can't wear metal armor for the same reason a longsword costs 8 gold.

That's the way it's always been.

That's it. Gygax thought it was cool. It hasn't changed since.


justaworm wrote:

What are you trying to actually achieve? For all of your home games, great, druids can wear metal armor now. Otherwise, the rule is very clear and doesn't have to "make sense".

It isn't an issue of being "natural", it is more of a "it once was alive" thing. Its been a druid thing for a long time, and it probably existed originally to add balance and flavor. However, that balance was undone anyway through the use of special materials. It used to be a great milestone to done your first suit of dragonhide platemail or scalemail as a druid...

And if I was willing to only play my own homegames, there would not be an issue. I want to be able to play other campaigns, but this issue is so all-consuming that I can barely think of a character that isn't a jab towards it. To use a computer analogy, a bugged header glitches/crashes the program before it even starts main().

As to the second point, there are several counterexamples. Firstly, stoneplate. Secondly, given the high-fantasy nature of the environment, what is stopping ironclad creatures from existing and why can't druids wear their pelts when they can wear armour made from other highly magical creatures?


2 people marked this as a favorite.
The Sideromancer wrote:
AaronUnicorn wrote:

Druids can't wear metal armor or use metal shields for the same reason that in the real world Orthodox Jews can't mix meat and milk in the same meal, or real world Catholics can't eat meat on Fridays during Lent, or real world Hindus don't eat the flesh of cows.

It's a religious restriction. It's not based on science. It's not based on "metal is less pure than leather." It's not based on anything other than "The Gods of Nature demand this. They grant me the spells and other powers that are a class feature of being a Druid. Therefore, I follow those demands or lose my class features."

And that's ok.

And if there were alternative choices for a religious restriction, that would be fine. But given the diversity of druid-legal deities (i.e. all of them), it's the equivalent of Orthodox Jews, Catholics, Protestants, Hindus, Bhuddists, Muslims, Taoists, and that guy who never gave up on Zeus all not eating beef. Imagine trying to buy a cheeseburger in that world.

Druids don't get their powers from a Deity. There is no alternative.


Ataraxias wrote:
The Sideromancer wrote:
AaronUnicorn wrote:

Druids can't wear metal armor or use metal shields for the same reason that in the real world Orthodox Jews can't mix meat and milk in the same meal, or real world Catholics can't eat meat on Fridays during Lent, or real world Hindus don't eat the flesh of cows.

It's a religious restriction. It's not based on science. It's not based on "metal is less pure than leather." It's not based on anything other than "The Gods of Nature demand this. They grant me the spells and other powers that are a class feature of being a Druid. Therefore, I follow those demands or lose my class features."

And that's ok.

And if there were alternative choices for a religious restriction, that would be fine. But given the diversity of druid-legal deities (i.e. all of them), it's the equivalent of Orthodox Jews, Catholics, Protestants, Hindus, Bhuddists, Muslims, Taoists, and that guy who never gave up on Zeus all not eating beef. Imagine trying to buy a cheeseburger in that world.
Druids don't get their powers from a Deity. There is no alternative.
False.
AoN, Druid wrote:
A druid can't cast spells of an alignment opposed to her own or her deity's (if she has one).

Additionally, several deities have specific interactions with druids they provide spells to.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

I mean, I think this is a strange hill to die on.

Druid's can't wear metal armor or shields. That's the rule. It's been the rule for many moons.

You can houserule it. You can find other classes to play.

Starting an argument about it on the Paizo forums isn't going to convince them to change it in Pathfinder. And based on the popularity of the class, I don't think you'll find a lot of people who agree with you on the whole idea that it's unworkable.

But hey, have at.


Yeah, but I'd already resolved to die on it before I came here. I've been slow-burning my ire every time it came up before, but I figured I should stop derailing generally useful threads with my personal crusade.

Shadow Lodge

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Personally I like the flavour of the restriction. Among other things it helps encourage a slightly wider range of armour choices in characters, which otherwise widely boil down to chain shirt / breastplate / full plate, generally mithral or celestial at high levels.

I do see the point that it's unnecessary to enforce that flavour in the CRB. It would have been nice to instead include a short list of possible druidic taboos and require the player to choose at least one. These taboos could include not using metal armour, not using manufactured weapons, not eating anything you didn't harvest yourself, vegetarianism, etc.

At minimum I feel like a metallic druid archetype would be appropriate.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
The Sideromancer wrote:
Ataraxias wrote:
The Sideromancer wrote:
AaronUnicorn wrote:

Druids can't wear metal armor or use metal shields for the same reason that in the real world Orthodox Jews can't mix meat and milk in the same meal, or real world Catholics can't eat meat on Fridays during Lent, or real world Hindus don't eat the flesh of cows.

It's a religious restriction. It's not based on science. It's not based on "metal is less pure than leather." It's not based on anything other than "The Gods of Nature demand this. They grant me the spells and other powers that are a class feature of being a Druid. Therefore, I follow those demands or lose my class features."

And that's ok.

And if there were alternative choices for a religious restriction, that would be fine. But given the diversity of druid-legal deities (i.e. all of them), it's the equivalent of Orthodox Jews, Catholics, Protestants, Hindus, Bhuddists, Muslims, Taoists, and that guy who never gave up on Zeus all not eating beef. Imagine trying to buy a cheeseburger in that world.
Druids don't get their powers from a Deity. There is no alternative.
False.
AoN, Druid wrote:
A druid can't cast spells of an alignment opposed to her own or her deity's (if she has one).
Additionally, several deities have specific interactions with druids they provide spells to.

Keyword is if. Druids function just fine without any deities, such as those of the Green Faith. It's not the deities that dictate the will of nature. The druid could be a total heretic against their deity and still have the regular druid spell list.


"Ataraxias wrote:
Keyword is if. Druids function just fine without any deities, such as those of the Green Faith. It's not the deities that dictate the will of nature. The druid could be a total heretic against their deity and still have the regular druid spell list.

Okay, so what about metal (including metal bound to life)is so unnatural when other minerals (stoneplate) and extradimensional materials (angelskin) are accepted.


Druids should only be able to use metal. It seems wrong they are running around wearing the corpses and body parts of those their sworn to protect. I'll save you, hope you don't mind me doing it while wearing your dead mother's flesh all over my body.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
The Sideromancer wrote:
"Ataraxias wrote:
Keyword is if. Druids function just fine without any deities, such as those of the Green Faith. It's not the deities that dictate the will of nature. The druid could be a total heretic against their deity and still have the regular druid spell list.
Okay, so what about metal (including metal bound to life)is so unnatural when other minerals (stoneplate) and extradimensional materials (angelskin) are accepted.

As I've said before Pathfinder is a blend of several fantasy tropes and non-fantasy tropes. One trope is nature vs civilization. With druids being the nature guy, they chose metal armor as the anti-nature thing. They likely would have done the the same with metal weapons, but they wanted to make sure the class was not too restrictive. As written the class is still playable, and one of the more powerful classes in the game. The "Gaia's Vengeance" thing reminds of druids.

Could they have not had the metal restriction? Sure.

Part of it is just the designer's idea about how the "nature guy" would work.

Some of it may have been based on bad information also, but we dont know everything that went into the discussion.

Are you trying to understand why the rule exist or trying to convince people that it should be changed?

Most of us have accepted it as part of the class's flavor, and the limitation is small enough that we see no reason to change it.

Also its not about using minerals or even Angelskin. It's 100% on metal. Those other things are not metal so the rules allow them.

It seems you have your mind 100% made up on this so this discussion seems to be pointless.

If not what would it take to make you change your mind?


It's druids and scimitars that bug me! Bit of a cultural mish-mash.

I always figured the only reason they're proficient with the scimitar is that Mr Gygax couldn't be bothered to stat the sickle (which didn't appear on the weapons list until 3rd ed).


7 people marked this as a favorite.

Isn't 'the prescription against encasing oneself in metal largely because druidic magic is connected to the Fae/the First World? Those folks are famously not fond of metal, iron in particular, which is why I figure Druids have a weaker form of that aversion.


PossibleCabbage wrote:
Isn't 'the prescription against encasing oneself in metal largely because fluidic magic is connected to the Fae/the First World? Those folks are famously not fond of metal, iron in particular, which is why I figure Druids have a weaker form of that aversion.

Fae vary very much by culture so the guys who created D&D could have found something that mentioned them being anti-metal.


Personally, I see no logical reason for Druids not being able to wear metal armor. All the posts saying “that’s just how it is; the rules have always been that way” are missing the point. This is the general discussion board, not the rules board. If it doesn’t make sense from an IN-UNIVERSE perspective, then no argument is going to validate it, not even “that’s just what the rule is”. Because the game is supposed to be a roleplaying game, set in the pseudo general age when scientists had already disproven a lot of false assumptions about the world.

How can you justify roleplaying in a world where they never sat down and thought “metal armor is more natural than leather armor, because you don’t have to alter the materials to make it”, but they already sat down and came to the conclusion that Golarion exists in a multiverse? Even the real world, with it’s highly more advanced technology, still hasn’t confirmed that we exist in a multiverse, with 100% certainty yet.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
The Sideromancer wrote:
"Ataraxias wrote:
Keyword is if. Druids function just fine without any deities, such as those of the Green Faith. It's not the deities that dictate the will of nature. The druid could be a total heretic against their deity and still have the regular druid spell list.
Okay, so what about metal (including metal bound to life)is so unnatural when other minerals (stoneplate) and extradimensional materials (angelskin) are accepted.

What about mixing meat and milk is so horrible that Orthodox Jews are not allowed to do it?

Seriously, there is literally no reason that this has to make sense.


5 people marked this as a favorite.
wraithstrike wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
Isn't 'the prescription against encasing oneself in metal largely because fluidic magic is connected to the Fae/the First World? Those folks are famously not fond of metal, iron in particular, which is why I figure Druids have a weaker form of that aversion.
Fae vary very much by culture so the guys who created D&D could have found something that mentioned them being anti-metal.

Northern Germanic and Celtic fairies don't like metal, specifically iron. This dates back to at least the 8th century BC (I refuse to use BCE since all they did was change the name without changing the reference point, rendering the change meaningless), and continued all the way through more modern versions of legends in recent centuries. It even rubbed off onto Christian beliefs, such as the ringing of the old iron church bells being able to scare off evil spirits.

Reksew_Trebla wrote:
How can you justify roleplaying in a world where they never sat down and thought “metal armor is more natural than leather armor, because you don’t have to alter the materials to make it”, but they already sat down and came to the conclusion that Golarion exists in a multiverse? Even the real world, with it’s highly more advanced technology, still hasn’t confirmed that we exist in a multiverse, with 100% certainty yet.

Why do you think that a Golarion philosopher arguing that point with the forces of nature is going to win the argument and change their rules?

This is how the world works. It's not going to change due to a philosopher's or scientist's arguments, just like the Earth isn't going to suddenly turn flat because someone makes an argument for it.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

That rule was an attempt to make sense of the second half of Exodus 34:26: "You shall not boil a kid in its mother’s milk."


1 person marked this as a favorite.
David knott 242 wrote:
That rule was an attempt to make sense of the second half of Exodus 34:26: "You shall not boil a kid in its mother’s milk."

Exactly; it's purely based on religious commandment, with no rational explanation for why.

Same as Druids in metal armor.


Saldiven wrote:

Why do you think that a Golarion philosopher arguing that point with the forces of nature is going to win the argument and change their rules?

This is how the world works. It's not going to change due to a philosopher's or scientist's arguments, just like the Earth isn't going to suddenly turn flat because someone makes an argument for it.

This is a strawman and you know it. The Earth isn’t going to become flat because the laws of physics would have to change for arguments to make it flat. Meanwhile, the world would already have known that metal is just as natural as animal hide, BEFORE Druids were even a thing, because it’s common sense to know that. And even if the world didn’t know that when Druids became a thing, what makes you think they are idiots? Their casting stat is literally Wisdom. If they are presented sound logic through science, they would have no reason to ignore it.

“BUT IT’S A RELIGION!”

No, it isn’t. If it was, they’d be forced to worship a deity. They can be deityless. They follow nature. And nature says that metal armor is more natural than leather armor.


8 people marked this as a favorite.

The druid restrictions on armor are more for the flavor of being primitive and separate from civilization than the actual material the armor is made from. You're all making this more complicated than it needs to be, lol.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

...you know, it just might be as simple as metals disrupt the connection druids have with the Force. I mean, you don't see Jedi wearing armor do you?

Or it might be for safety reasons...druids don't have *lightning bolt* on their spell lists, they have *call lightning". Imagine being out in the wilderness during a storm, and you are wearing metal armor while you're calling a bolt down from the heavens. Yikes.

And hey, wizards and sorcerers don't wear ANY armor...at least not without a chance of spell failure.

Clerics can wear armor because, duh, their power isn't earthly, even with some gods having Animal and Plant domains. Gods say, "yeah, work miracles in my name, and I will free you from the constraints other spell workers must function under! Everyone will be CLERIC!" Of course, the deities have strict rules clerics have to function under, so there's a tradeoff cause you know, druids can just say "for nature" and do whatever the hell they want.

Bards wear armor and cast spells, but allegedly it's all based on sound, and they still could run a chance of failure.

Bloodragers, paladins, and rangers all wear armor, but their power at higher levels doesn't exceed a certain point.

Dude, I just think it's tradition and feel. Every spellcaster has some sort of compensation for the ability to alter game play at a distance and automatically succeed at producing an effect barring a save from the target. You're pushing against almost thirty years of indoctrination for GMs and players alike. I myself wouldn't feel right playing a druid who wears metal armor. I like my druids barbaric and uncivilized enough not to want to wear armor. But good luck anyway in convincing your GMs to lift the metal ban.


Matrix Dragon wrote:
The druid restrictions on armor are more for the flavor of being primitive and separate from civilization than the actual material the armor is made from. You're all making this more complicated than it needs to be, lol.

This is the best f***ing argument I have ever seen on this topic. Bravo dude. I’m out now, as I’ve been satisfied with a logical answer.


Matrix Dragon wrote:
The druid restrictions on armor are more for the flavor of being primitive and separate from civilization than the actual material the armor is made from. You're all making this more complicated than it needs to be, lol.

That's the game-design reason, but from the perspective of a student of magic living in a PF universe it doesn't make much sense. No other divine spellcaster is subject to such a restriction. If the druid, why not the ranger or hunter?


Starfinder Superscriber

I've always interpreted the druids aversion to armor and most metal weapons having more to do with Fey and less to do with the manufacturing. Some of the druids abilities specifically come from a fey heritage, and mythically speaking metal (normally specifically iron and by extension steel) are poisonous and power draining to fey creatures.

For example, Puck, Oberon and Titania are often rendered almost completely powerless by simple iron chains or manacles when their abilities are near godly in some depictions.

Yes, Bronze armor is a thing, but really it is probably easier to just say no metal. You're unlikely to find enchanted bronze armor, and by the time the druid could afford to find someone to make it from scratch, he could probably just get the wooden stuff. And regular bronze armor would likely just shatter from the first impact with a steel warhammer.

Adamantine is a later add on after the class had been set in place. And the few metal weapons a druid can use tend to have bare wooden hafts (meaning no metal is actually touching the druid).

Another theory would be that leather, wool and wood all have cells. These cells, though dormant/dead, are easily integrating into the druid when wild shaping and don't act as a barrier to his fey energies. Metal is not cellular and thus cannot be "absorbed" into his morphed form.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Then again mining does also cause some really bad pollution and say silt up streams.

If in a home game any of my players tried to use a decanter of endless water for hydralic mining I would have a bunch of druids come after them.


D&D/Pathfinder is a mix of various fantasy lore and tropes.

One bit of lore is that fey are anti-metal, and druids with their connection to nature could logically not be able to draw from that.

I don't know if that is the connection or if someone just said metal is against nature so no metal armor for druids.

The core book doesn't tell us why. It just tells us what the rule is, and we don't have the 3.5 devs here to ask them why, but they also dont explain a lot of things they draw inspiration from.

In addition: Even those who said "it's the rule" often gave other reasons.


Reksew_Trebla wrote:
Matrix Dragon wrote:
The druid restrictions on armor are more for the flavor of being primitive and separate from civilization than the actual material the armor is made from. You're all making this more complicated than it needs to be, lol.
This is the best f***ing argument I have ever seen on this topic. Bravo dude. I’m out now, as I’ve been satisfied with a logical answer.

It's not really a good argument because then you have to account for weapons they can use as well as other things.


5 people marked this as a favorite.

Metal armor => mine ore, cut trees to make charcoal and or dig coal out to the ground, smelt metal, burn more wood/charcoal/coal to forge the raw metal to armor.

Leather armor => Thank you animal for giving your life to feed me and my family. I will in your honor use all of your body for a useful purpose which can include tanning your hide to make leather and armor.

Seems to make sense to me......


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Druidic Magic is divine magic. It doesn't come from a god though. (Yes, some druids worship gods, and some gods have some sort of relationship with the "Unknown Supplier of Druidic Magic" that modfies how it works in some ways) but at the core it is divine magic doesn't come from a god..

It isn't exactly a religion, but it isn't exactly not one either. And it has some rules.

One of those rules is "Thou Shalt Not Wear Armor of Metal".

Why? Who knows. The "Unknown Supplier of Druidic Magic" hasn't said.

Maybe it has a beef with smiths and wants to take away business from them. Maybe it just thinks metal armor smells bad. Maybe it hates dragons and wants to pump up the dragonskin armor market. Maybe it thinks Druids should show their faith in it by not wearing metal armor. Maybe it just thinks it is funny. Maybe it just wants to piss off the Sideromancer.

If you are a druid, the why doesn't matter. You either follow the rule and get magic, or you don't and you don't.

(Note I believe that the "Unknown Supplier of Druidic Magic" is actually a committee, and this is just the sort of thing one would expect to get from a committee.)


Part of this might be how I view nature as a whole. Nature is opportunistic. It only gets somewhere by trying everything it can and seeing what works. In that sense, a rigid limitation is possibly the least natural thing around, because nature is going to bang its head against it until it breaks. Just look at some organisms IRL: We have predatory sponges, trees that deliberately attempt forest fires, and bacteria that eat uranium. Magic should only increase the variability. In other words, Oras, not Gozreh. Ecological arguments are subject to this as well, remember that a major mass extinction was the result of the first plant-like organisms rising to prominence (also, leather is a trash heap environmentally at the moment)

The "primitive feel" is setting dependant, and thus shouldn't be a consideration within pure rules text. Would a group bioengineering plants for their primary materials be more primitive than a tribe banging shape into a meteoric deposit? I'd say no.

As for the fey, I don't really consider them natural either. They're more extraplanar than shadow plane natives, and I've made countless comments to the effect of "if your so opposed to metal, what colour is your blood?" (Basically every pigment in life is the result of needing a metal's chemical expertise) If the "defender of nature" really is tied to these imposters, why doesn't the decidedly anti-fey Defender of the True World archetype waive the restriction?


Reksew_Trebla wrote:
Saldiven wrote:

Why do you think that a Golarion philosopher arguing that point with the forces of nature is going to win the argument and change their rules?

This is how the world works. It's not going to change due to a philosopher's or scientist's arguments, just like the Earth isn't going to suddenly turn flat because someone makes an argument for it.

This is a strawman and you know it. The Earth isn’t going to become flat because the laws of physics would have to change for arguments to make it flat. Meanwhile, the world would already have known that metal is just as natural as animal hide, BEFORE Druids were even a thing, because it’s common sense to know that. And even if the world didn’t know that when Druids became a thing, what makes you think they are idiots? Their casting stat is literally Wisdom. If they are presented sound logic through science, they would have no reason to ignore it.

“BUT IT’S A RELIGION!”

No, it isn’t. If it was, they’d be forced to worship a deity. They can be deityless. They follow nature. And nature says that metal armor is more natural than leather armor.

Religions don't require a deity. Look at Druma.


In my campaign's divine cosmology the gods negotiate with each other rather than battle.

Druids are a newer class than clerics. Ten thousand years ago, when the Earthfall of the Starstone caused a thousand years of darkness, the gods were worried about the collapse of the ecology. Many gods wanted to create a new class, druids, to preserve the forests. Other gods objected at adding a new divine class, because the clerics maintained a balance of power between the various alignments. After several deals and compromises, the reluctant gods agreed.

The lack of metal armor could be one of those compromises. The pro-druid gods would have agreed to it because a druid out in the forest would have little access to metal armor.

By the way, Michigan's upper peninsula has naturally occuring native copper metal found in nuggets. It was traded by Native Americans all over North America. I have some on my mantlepiece right now, a memento of when I lived in the Upper Peninsula.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

On a related note; where's the outrage over druidic then? No one else immediately loses their powers teaching someone else a language.


8 people marked this as a favorite.

It was a typo. An ancient council of druid elders passed a rule against metal armoires after helping a friend move. Unfortunately, all druidic laws are written on oak bark, and the runes got kinda smudged. A few centuries later, and *bam* tradition.


Ataraxias wrote:
On a related note; where's the outrage over druidic then? No one else immediately loses their powers teaching someone else a language.

Considering effort was made to have Sylvan as a universal tongue, it seems pretty evident Druidic is intended for cryptographic use. I can question why they felt the need to have a class-only secure communication, but not punishment for breaking that security.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
The Sideromancer wrote:
Ataraxias wrote:
On a related note; where's the outrage over druidic then? No one else immediately loses their powers teaching someone else a language.
Considering effort was made to have Sylvan as a universal tongue, it seems pretty evident Druidic is intended for cryptographic use. I can question why they felt the need to have a class-only secure communication, but not punishment for breaking that security.

"Don't teach anyone that language or the squirrels will shun you forever more."

"Can I speak it around my 1st level wizard friend who can cast comprehend languages?"
"The squirrels say yes, that is acceptable."


2 people marked this as a favorite.
The Sideromancer wrote:
Ataraxias wrote:
On a related note; where's the outrage over druidic then? No one else immediately loses their powers teaching someone else a language.
Considering effort was made to have Sylvan as a universal tongue, it seems pretty evident Druidic is intended for cryptographic use. I can question why they felt the need to have a class-only secure communication, but not punishment for breaking that security.

This only leads us back to the answer of the will of nature does what it feels like. It's not like some other druid discovers you betrayed them and shows up to expel you from the order, it's an immediate omnipresent event.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Dave Justus wrote:


(Note I believe that the "Unknown Supplier of Druidic Magic" is actually a committee, and this is just the sort of thing one would expect to get from a committee.)

It is probably a sub-committee of the CFB Playoff committee.


wraithstrike wrote:
Reksew_Trebla wrote:
Matrix Dragon wrote:
The druid restrictions on armor are more for the flavor of being primitive and separate from civilization than the actual material the armor is made from. You're all making this more complicated than it needs to be, lol.
This is the best f***ing argument I have ever seen on this topic. Bravo dude. I’m out now, as I’ve been satisfied with a logical answer.
It's not really a good argument because then you have to account for weapons they can use as well as other things.

Great. Now I’m back to not understanding why Druids don’t use metal armor. Sigh. I really don't care too much about this issue though, so I’ll let this one slide and watch the topic from the sidelines from here on out.

1 to 50 of 148 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder RPG / General Discussion / The Druid debate: is metal natural? All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.