Deception, Impersonate Action and Close Match


Skills, Feats, Equipment & Spells

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

This was brought to my attention elsewhere.

Looking over the Skill Feat section there’s a feat called Close Match, Requires: Trained in Deception.

According to the text of this feat, it makes you appear younger, older, more like another race or androgynous. Humans could get this feat at level 1, other characters wait until 2nd for their first skill feat.

First: The problem with requiring “Trained Deception” to play an androgynous character is a problem. There are more than enough gigabytes of digital ink spilled about associating androgyny, gender fluidity and trans experience with deception, disguise and impersonation. This feat’s wording and existence needs another sensitivity pass.

Second: It doesn’t actually do anything. Nothing in the Impersonate activity mentions penalties for disguising as a different gender, race, age or even size. The only thing that comes close is opposed Perception checks gaining a secret GM determined bonus.

So not only have you printed a feat that’s hurtful for members of the community, it doesn’t actually doesn’t even do anything.

Please revise the feat (or remove it entirely), androgyny or non binary gender choices are best left as flavor choices, applying game rules to them is at best silly, and at worst deeply offensive. This will make for better more welcoming tables.

Silver Crusade

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

This was brought to my attention elsewhere.

Looking over the Skill Feat section there’s a feat called Close Match, Requires: Trained in Deception.

According to the text of this feat, it makes you appear younger, older, more like another race or androgynous. Humans could get this feat at level 1, other characters wait until 2nd for their first skill feat.

First: The problem with requiring “Trained Deception” to play an androgynous character is a problem. There are more than enough gigabytes of digital ink spilled about associating androgyny, gender fluidity and trans experience with deception, disguise and impersonation. This feat’s wording and existence needs another sensitivity pass.

Second: It doesn’t actually do anything. Nothing in the Impersonate activity mentions penalties for disguising as a different gender, race, age or even size. The only thing that comes close is opposed Perception checks gaining a secret GM determined bonus.

So not only have you printed a feat that’s hurtful for members of the community, it doesn’t actually doesn’t even do anything.

Please revise the feat (or remove it entirely), androgyny or non binary gender choices are best left as flavor choices, applying game rules to them is at best silly, and at worst deeply offensive. This will make for better more welcoming tables.

Agreed on all counts.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

I was taken aback by this feat as well. I understand the intent, but it's actively harmful to trans and nonbinary folks and thus runs counter to the book's assertion that "Pathfinder is for everyone."


1 person marked this as a favorite.
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

This was brought to my attention elsewhere.

Looking over the Skill Feat section there’s a feat called Close Match, Requires: Trained in Deception.

According to the text of this feat, it makes you appear younger, older, more like another race or androgynous. Humans could get this feat at level 1, other characters wait until 2nd for their first skill feat.

First: The problem with requiring “Trained Deception” to play an androgynous character is a problem. There are more than enough gigabytes of digital ink spilled about associating androgyny, gender fluidity and trans experience with deception, disguise and impersonation. This feat’s wording and existence needs another sensitivity pass.

Second: It doesn’t actually do anything. Nothing in the Impersonate activity mentions penalties for disguising as a different gender, race, age or even size. The only thing that comes close is opposed Perception checks gaining a secret GM determined bonus.

So not only have you printed a feat that’s hurtful for members of the community, it doesn’t actually doesn’t even do anything.

Please revise the feat (or remove it entirely), androgyny or non binary gender choices are best left as flavor choices, applying game rules to them is at best silly, and at worst deeply offensive. This will make for better more welcoming tables.

^^^ This! While having a completely voluntary trait that amounts to 'this character has any easier time convincing people that they're being dumb when misgendering said character' is kinda cool, having a feat that only provides bonuses to deception is ignorant at best and deliberately malicious at worst. Hopefully the devs will get this fixed since I'm fairly certain it was just a lapse in judgement on the writers part.

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