The straitjacket of Rarity in P2E


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Someone earlier (I think it was MaxAstro?) brought up that common in the setting and common options for a PC aren't necessarily the same thing. That's always been enough explanation for me, personally. PCs are pretty uncommon themselves, after all.

Silver Crusade

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Angel Hunter D wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:

I'm honestly baffled at how many people are fine with just saying "ask your GM."

Empowering the players was the *best* part of PF 1St edition, and it led to more consistent play. I used to leave a game if the GM ever said "I'm God, what I say goes," the rules let me say "not today, that normal Wolf can't jump 30 feet and trip me while in flying and make me die from the fall - it needs a 50 Acrobatics roll, you can't trip someone flying, and fall damage would only be 3d6" and actually play the game I signed up for.

I would too.

But thankfully I've never had to deal with a GM like that. Most GMs tend to be reasonable.

That's personal experience, you aren't "most people" and neither am I. But rules and even laws aren't for "most people" they're for "those people" and being intentionally Gray does everyone a disservice.

Okay kinda out there comparing bad GMs with criminals but anyhoo... no amount of rules will make a jerk GM not be a jerk GM.

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Ravingdork wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
When I might not get access even with a GM's permission, that to me feels like I'm having to jump through a lot of hoops.
The GM outranks the book, they say you have access to this Uncommon [thing], you have access to it.

Having access to is not necessarily the same as actually having.

I may have access to that fancy new gaming computer at the electronics store, but I don't have it until I pay money for it.

Whether or not I need to pay money for uncommon spells (or perhaps more money) is one of the things I'm trying to clear up.

You don’t pay for spells you pick during level up.

When using the Learn a Spell General Skill Action you pay to learn it.

Rarity is irrelevant.


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Rysky wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
When I might not get access even with a GM's permission, that to me feels like I'm having to jump through a lot of hoops.
The GM outranks the book, they say you have access to this Uncommon [thing], you have access to it.

Having access to is not necessarily the same as actually having.

I may have access to that fancy new gaming computer at the electronics store, but I don't have it until I pay money for it.

Whether or not I need to pay money for uncommon spells (or perhaps more money) is one of the things I'm trying to clear up.

You don’t pay for spells you pick during level up.

When using the Learn a Spell General Skill Action you pay to learn it.

Rarity is irrelevant.

Unless you're a sorcerer. The Learn a Spell downtime activity clearly states that you pay for it, then pick it up as one of your level up spells when you level up.

At first, this made me wonder if sorcerers had to pay for ALL of their spells. After some brief discussions with others online though, that didn't appear to be the case. However, since I can't get uncommon spells via leveling up, I've now been asking "Does a sorcerer need to pay via the Lean a Spell downtime activity to learn uncommon spells?"

So far, the only thing resembling an answer has been, "yes, if that's what your GM says."

There used to be an old adage in P1E that went something like this: Just because you're GM can fix the rule for your table, it doesn't mean that the rule itself isn't broke. Is it then really so hard to believe that some of us kind of see the "ask your GM bit" as something of a non-answer?


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Rysky wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:

I'm honestly baffled at how many people are fine with just saying "ask your GM."

Empowering the players was the *best* part of PF 1St edition, and it led to more consistent play. I used to leave a game if the GM ever said "I'm God, what I say goes," the rules let me say "not today, that normal Wolf can't jump 30 feet and trip me while in flying and make me die from the fall - it needs a 50 Acrobatics roll, you can't trip someone flying, and fall damage would only be 3d6" and actually play the game I signed up for.

I would too.

But thankfully I've never had to deal with a GM like that. Most GMs tend to be reasonable.

That's personal experience, you aren't "most people" and neither am I. But rules and even laws aren't for "most people" they're for "those people" and being intentionally Gray does everyone a disservice.
Okay kinda out there comparing bad GMs with criminals but anyhoo... no amount of rules will make a jerk GM not be a jerk GM.

If someone is running a game and committed to making something like that happen, system details don't really matter. The standard order of precedence still applies.

GM ruling > Errata and official clarifications > published form of rulebook > forum arguments

It doesn't mean that the rules should be ignored recklessly, because keeping things consistent so that players can have reasonable expectations about how things will or won't work is important to making sure the game is satisfying to play in. It doesn't mean that players should never remind the GM about rules they may have forgotten about (because we all have). It does mean the idea that the system would empower players to overturn GM rulings is completely incoherent.


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Angel Hunter D wrote:
Every time the book says "ask your GM" and doesn't have a system or rule, it's a failure. It's either lazy design, bad design, or simply unfinished - and every time someone tells me the bug is a feature I like the game less and less. Which is a shame, there's the bones of a good game in there, now we need to give it some muscles and skin.

My thoughts exactly. There could easily just be a rule. A GM can change a rule, but if it's already there, then most will use the existing rule. If it's not there, then literally every GM who runs the game will have to invent their own rules system, or find a homebrew one online, which leads to an unacceptable level of variance in base mechanics.

Also, as far as spell and formula rarity goes, on the off chance I'm ever a player in a game using these systems, I'll devote my character to assembling as many of them as possible and distributing them far and wide for free, to ensure that the knowledge is available to all.

Scarab Sages

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Rysky wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:

I'm honestly baffled at how many people are fine with just saying "ask your GM."

Empowering the players was the *best* part of PF 1St edition, and it led to more consistent play. I used to leave a game if the GM ever said "I'm God, what I say goes," the rules let me say "not today, that normal Wolf can't jump 30 feet and trip me while in flying and make me die from the fall - it needs a 50 Acrobatics roll, you can't trip someone flying, and fall damage would only be 3d6" and actually play the game I signed up for.

I would too.

But thankfully I've never had to deal with a GM like that. Most GMs tend to be reasonable.

That's personal experience, you aren't "most people" and neither am I. But rules and even laws aren't for "most people" they're for "those people" and being intentionally Gray does everyone a disservice.
Okay kinda out there comparing bad GMs with criminals but anyhoo... no amount of rules will make a jerk GM not be a jerk GM.

I'm not comparing them to criminals, calm down. I'm just saying a solid basis of expected rules makes things easier. It won't stop someone from being a jerk, but it can greatly facilitate a better play experience by forcing the GM to play by the same rules as the players, because I want to play pathfinder, not some-dude-finder.

sherlock1701 wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:
Every time the book says "ask your GM" and doesn't have a system or rule, it's a failure. It's either lazy design, bad design, or simply unfinished - and every time someone tells me the bug is a feature I like the game less and less. Which is a shame, there's the bones of a good game in there, now we need to give it some muscles and skin.
My thoughts exactly. There could easily just be a rule. A GM can change a rule, but if it's already there, then most will use the existing rule. If it's not there, then literally every GM who runs the game will have to invent their own rules system, or find a homebrew one online, which leads to an unacceptable level of variance in base mechanics.

I'm glad someone agrees with me, I really thought my experiences might have been unique and I play exclusively with the the scum of the hobby.

Silver Crusade

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Ravingdork wrote:
Unless you're a sorcerer. The Learn a Spell downtime activity clearly states that you pay for it, then pick it up as one of your level up spells when you level up.
When you add or swap spells, which occurs during level up and down time.
Quote:
At first, this made me wonder if sorcerers had to pay for ALL of their spells.
No.
Quote:
After some brief discussions with others online though, that didn't appear to be the case. However, since I can't get uncommon spells via leveling up,
You can get Uncommon spells during level up if you have access to them.
Quote:
I've now been asking "Does a sorcerer need to pay via the Lean a Spell downtime activity to learn uncommon spells?"
They need to pay for the Learn a Spell downtime for anything, the same as everyone else and which is completely different than getting a spell through level up.
Quote:
So far, the only thing resembling an answer has been, "yes, if that's what your GM says."
You pay for LaP, you do not pay for adding spells to your repertoire during level up.
Quote:
There used to be an old adage in P1E that went something like this: Just because you're GM can fix the rule for your table, it doesn't mean that the rule itself isn't broke. Is it then really so hard to believe that some of us kind of see the "ask your GM bit" as something of a non-answer?

Yes, because the rule isn't "broke", the rule is "ask your GM". That's the actual rule.


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Rysky wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
After some brief discussions with others online though, that didn't appear to be the case. However, since I can't get uncommon spells via leveling up,
You can get Uncommon spells during level up if you have access to them.

The only way to get access to an uncommon spell, however, is via the General Skill Action (equally applicable to Arcana, Nature, Occultism, and Religion) called Learn a Spell.

Learn a Spell, CRB 238 wrote:

Requirements You have a spellcasting class feature, and the spell you want to learn is on your magical tradition’s spell list.

You can gain access to a new spell of your tradition from someone who knows that spell or from magical writing like a spellbook or scroll. If you can cast spells of multiple traditions, you can Learn a Spell of any of those traditions, but you must use the corresponding skill to do so. For example, if you were a cleric with the bard multiclass archetype, you couldn’t use Religion to add an occult spell to your bardic spell repertoire.
To learn the spell, you must do the following:
• Spend 1 hour per level of the spell, during which you must remain in conversation with a person who knows the spell or have the magical writing in your possession.
Have materials with the Price indicated in Table 4–3.
• Attempt a skill check for the skill corresponding to your tradition (DC determined by the GM, often close to the DC on Table 4–3). Uncommon or rare spells have higher
DCs; full guidelines for the GM appear on page 503.
If you have a spellbook, Learning a Spell lets you add the spell to your spellbook; if you prepare spells from a list, it’s added to your list; if you have a spell repertoire, you can select it when you add or swap spells.

It's quite clear. You use this to gain access to a spell that you cannot freely access (i.e. it's not common; it if was, you'd learn it normally at level up and not need to gain access). You spend the time with your written source or teacher, you spend the money, and you attempt a skill check. If you do those things and succeed on the skill check, you can as a sorcerer add an uncommon spell to your spell repertoire at level up as a new addition or swap into your repertoire.

Prepared book casters, and only them, must also use this to translate common spells they find so that they can scribe them into their book. Free common spells at level up go into the book automatically, just like clerics/druids can prepare all common spells freely and sorcerers can select common spells freely upon level up.


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There are a couple of problems that I have with rarity.
First, it's one of many, many magic nerfs. Many spells that were staples in 3.x/PF1 (and other versions of DnD) and made the game high fantasy and basically magical are relegated to uncommon. I am personally not interested in playing Lord of the Rings with PF (there are several RPGs that are much more suitable), and this is another part that makes me feel like the PF2 CRB is saying that I was playing the game wrong.

Second reason is that it's so poorly explained.
This: "For instance, it might be more challenging to run a mystery adventure when a player can cast an uncommon spell such as detect evil." is the only example we have of why some spells were made uncommon. During the playtest there was already outcry of not giving explanations about "Why"s of uncommon things. We extrapolated and got a list in blog or dev posts iirc that said things like "breaks survival campaigns, breaks mystery campaigns, can trigger certain real world experiences (enchantments)" and maybe couple more. I really don't see the reason why this wasn't included in the sidebars about rarity. Giving new GMs reason why this tool was included in the CRB was much more important than a "reward" part of the sidebar. An herein lies my problem. New GMs won't know why are these things are seemingly excluded and many will just blanket ban everything uncommon.

I won't have the problem with this in my game, because if my GM of 10 years tries to say that I should ask him about uncommon things, I'll just hit him with a chair. We've been playing this game for basically 18 years. But it's a wrong-footed start for people who want to have new GMs and new groups (which is one of the things Paizo and everyone wants) who will just be unnecessarily penalized for having played the game before.

Silver Crusade

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Xenocrat wrote:
The only way to get access to an uncommon spell, however, is via the General Skill Action (equally applicable to Arcana, Nature, Occultism, and Religion) called Learn a Spell.

That's one way, not the only way.

Silver Crusade

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necromental wrote:
But it's a wrong-footed start for people who want to have new GMs and new groups (which is one of the things Paizo and everyone wants) who will just be unnecessarily penalized for having played the game before.

How are they penalized?


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Rysky wrote:
Xenocrat wrote:
The only way to get access to an uncommon spell, however, is via the General Skill Action (equally applicable to Arcana, Nature, Occultism, and Religion) called Learn a Spell.
That's one way, not the only way.

Let me guess. "ask your GM"?...

Silver Crusade

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graystone wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Xenocrat wrote:
The only way to get access to an uncommon spell, however, is via the General Skill Action (equally applicable to Arcana, Nature, Occultism, and Religion) called Learn a Spell.
That's one way, not the only way.
Let me guess. "ask your GM"?...

Mind reader :3

Rarity wrote:
Some elements of the game have a rarity to denote how often they're encountered in the game world. Rarity primarily applies to equipment and magic items, but spells, feats, and other rules elements also have a rarity. If no rarity appears in the traits of an item, spell, or other game element, it is of common rarity. Uncommon items are available only to those who have special training, grew up in a certain culture, or come from a particular part of the world. Rare items are almost impossible to find and are usually given out only by the GM, while unique ones are literally one-of-a-kind in the game. The GM might alter the way rarity works or change the rarity of individual items to suit the story they want to tell.

Also gaining them from your class.


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One more thing. I liked playing 3.x/PF1 because so many things were codified and clear to the player. Not necessarily clear in every case, but general assumption was that you could do things that the book said. In some (even many) things, PF2 is even more codified, but at the same time it opens many cans of worms that were never part of design philosophy of previous edition; like PF1 had paladin code and that stupid faq about take 10 (EDIT: which was clearly a step to PF2 since the take 10 rule wasn't clear and faq pushed it to "ask your GM"), and now we have anathemas in several classes, mother-may-I of rarity, and maybe other cases of GM-empowerment (EDIT: like skills vagueness in playtest, but that was pushed back iirc, still haven't gotten to skills) which are generally just additional workload for me as a GM and a player.

Rysky wrote:
necromental wrote:
But it's a wrong-footed start for people who want to have new GMs and new groups (which is one of the things Paizo and everyone wants) who will just be unnecessarily penalized for having played the game before.
How are they penalized?

In having spells and options that were in "you can take them if I don't say otherwise" relegated to "they are forbidden if I don't say otherwise".


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I would recommend people for whom "ask the GM" is not an option (this is far from my personal experience, but whatever) to just pay attention to what organized play does and see if that works for them.

Silver Crusade

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necromental wrote:
In having spells and options that were in "you can take them if I don't say otherwise" relegated to "they are forbidden if I don't say otherwise".

And how often did the former lead to things getting banned/tweaked mid-game/fight?


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Seems a little weird to me that people would be adverse to roleplaying their character learning/finding something new in a roleplaying game, but to each their own.


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Rysky wrote:
Also gaining them from your class.

What class gains an uncommon non-focus spell?

PossibleCabbage wrote:
I would recommend people for whom "ask the GM" is not an option (this is far from my personal experience, but whatever) to just pay attention to what organized play does and see if that works for them.

If the adventures put out so far are the norm, it seems like rarity is going to be adventure based: if you want a certain uncommon item/feat/ect, you just go out of your way to play the adventure that has it and get the sheet for it. Other games don't really get to 'pick your own' adventure like that.

Rysky wrote:
necromental wrote:
In having spells and options that were in "you can take them if I don't say otherwise" relegated to "they are forbidden if I don't say otherwise".
And how often did the former lead to things getting banned/tweaked mid-game/fight?

For me, maybe once or twice in 10 years and 100+ games. It's never really been an issue. I've had more 'paladin alignment' issues that this type of problem.


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Rysky wrote:
necromental wrote:
In having spells and options that were in "you can take them if I don't say otherwise" relegated to "they are forbidden if I don't say otherwise".
And how often did the former lead to things getting banned/tweaked mid-game/fight?

I frankly don't remember a single case in any campaign I played.

I think that rarity is a good tool, but not without explanations, I believe it should have had them NOW, not in some future book people will maybe read, maybe not, while everyone will read the CRB. I also think Paizo should have erred on the permissive side (with every explanation of certain types of uncommon things..."if you don't have a problem with this part you should make them common" or somesuch.


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Here's the reason, as a GM, I am broadly in favor of "ask the GM" as a paradigm for the game.

1. I'm not going to say no, barring a really good pre-existing reason.
2. I want to know what things my characters want to acquire so I can work them into the story organically, instead of relying on the magic mart or the teleportation network.

Knowing "so-and-so is a diviner wizard", means I can conclude they are going to want uncommon/rare divination spells, so if I put those in the loot pile it's going to be more exciting than something which is just going to be converted to gold. If they could just buy that stuff, this is less exciting.

I mean, I have always asked players to submit character sheets+backstories+rough plans before the campaign, not so I can veto characters 99% of the time (though I might say something like "hey, you're heavily invested in doing something that isn't going to feature much, [foo] might be a better choice"), but so I'm able to work these individual stories into the broader story better.

Silver Crusade

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graystone wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Also gaining them from your class.
What class gains an uncommon non-focus spell?
Clerics through their Deities can.
Quote:
Rysky wrote:
necromental wrote:
In having spells and options that were in "you can take them if I don't say otherwise" relegated to "they are forbidden if I don't say otherwise".
And how often did the former lead to things getting banned/tweaked mid-game/fight?
For me, maybe once or twice in 10 years and 100+ games. It's never really been an issue. I've had more 'paladin alignment' issues that this type of problem.

And for me it’s been much more than that, whereas I’ve pretty much never had a Paladin alignment scenario at my tables.

Sovereign Court

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I really like this new system. Seems harder to break/manipulate the system (which was common in PF1 in my experience) and leads to less Characters that do not make sense in the setting or GM's story.

And again like James as mentioned, nothing is set in stone and is up to the players to talk with the GM. (Which I also enjoy about 2e, more GM freedom and control)


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Hmm jokes aside, I don't see how "socially interact in this social game" is a bad rule.

That said, there is a rule.

Core Rulebook, page 488 wrote:
Unless you decide otherwise, the players can choose from any common options they qualify for, plus any uncommon options granted by their character choices - primarily their ancestry and class.

Silver Crusade

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Ravingdork wrote:
I'm going to write how I think it works based on what you and others have said. You let me know if I'm in the ballpark. [

Ya got it.


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Ravingdork, that is actually a really good example of how the rarity system could work (and maybe was intended to work). It shows a player and a GM talking about their desires, intentions, and expectations, and then the two maturely coming to an agreement that is fun for everyone.

Love or Hate the new Rarity system, I think most people can agree that the CRB would have benefitted if it had an example like that in a sidebar somewhere like the GM chapter.


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As both GM and player, I'm against this paradigm:

As a GM:
1. I want to empower my players
2. I generally study the system enough to know after just a few games what's too powerful and what's underpowered.
3. I can just make houserules for some things, so my players don't have to ask me for everything.
4. I ALREADY HAVE A LOT OF WORK; PLEASE DON'T ADD TO IT BY MAKING THEM COME TO ME FOR SO MANY THINGS!
5. I can just have my NPCs retaliate with strong effects, like ... proportionate response. They hit you, you hit back proportionately hard, and don't use the big stuff so other people don't get afraid of you using the big stuff and gang up on you.

Example, that actually happened: A PC sneaks into a mythic Archmage's house (with a little help from a Silver Dragon in disabling the wards) and slits his throat when he sleeps. The Archmage's buddies, also Archmages, promptly use Scry-and-Die to capture the PC. One powerful tactic against another.

As a player:
1. I want to be sure of my build without having to pend approval.
2. I show my characters to the GM in advance so they can voice their concerns and ask me to change things anyway.
3. I would rather see how society changes based on having these powers rather than simply have the powers be restricted away so we don't have to deviate too far from "standard medieval with fantasy added on top". Such as, how society would change if there was the option for someone to run a teleporting magic mart.

As both:
I like what this system COULD BE. But what it is... is apparently, as the title implies, an attempt at a straightjacket to keep things railroadable, when there is very little which should be railroaded in this genre.

I understand a lot of people like it as-is, and others hate the idea. I'm in the middle, and I see both points. I think this was actually CLOSE to a useful middle-ground, but missed its mark by banning not things that have an in-universe reason to be uncommon or rare but things that would make the setting something more real.

Scarab Sages

James014Aura I agree with you, and I think the idea of good systems is why the poor performance in parts stings so much.


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Rysky wrote:
graystone wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Also gaining them from your class.
What class gains an uncommon non-focus spell?
Clerics through their Deities can.

Ah, ok. I hadn't really looked through the higher level spells.

It does make me wonder why those spells are uncommon though, as some of those spells are 'problematic' spells like magnificent mansion, Shadow Walk and Tree Stride: if it's not 'game breaking' for one class to have those spells, how 'problematic' is it? If someone wanted to learn them, can't they go to a church of that god and buy a scroll of that spell to learn it?


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I mean, fundamentally why I think a system like rarity is a reasonable system is that a GM who doesn't like it can safely ignore it- rarity can be completely or partially excised from the game with virtually no effort. But for people who want to use it- it's there. It's going to be a lot easier to use or adapt the rarity system that's already there than it is to build one from scratch.

So people who don't like it should scrap it (or more conservatively ignore "uncommon" but keep unique and rare), and people who do like it should use it however they like.

But the call here on "how to use rarity" should belong to the GM.


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graystone wrote:
Rysky wrote:
graystone wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Also gaining them from your class.
What class gains an uncommon non-focus spell?
Clerics through their Deities can.

Ah, ok. I hadn't really looked through the higher level spells.

It does make me wonder why those spells are uncommon though, as some of those spells are 'problematic' spells like magnificent mansion, Shadow Walk and Tree Stride: if it's not 'game breaking' for one class to have those spells, how 'problematic' is it? If someone wanted to learn them, can't they go to a church of that god and buy a scroll of that spell to learn it?

From a gameplay perspective I would say that they either do things that could be game-breaking or are close relatives to gamebreaking spells. From a story perspective you could say that the followers of certain gods were the first to create/practice those specific spells and therefore see them as sacred and are very restrictive about who they share the knowledge with. Perhaps if a PC were to do a favor that church or at least prove their morality is in line with their gods, the church will freely share the knowledge of their sacred spells.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
So people who don't like it should scrap it (or more conservatively ignore "uncommon" but keep unique and rare), and people who do like it should use it however they like.

When you say "people", you actually mean DM right?


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PossibleCabbage wrote:

I mean, fundamentally why I think a system like rarity is a reasonable system is that a GM who doesn't like it can safely ignore it- rarity can be completely or partially excised from the game with virtually no effort. But for people who want to use it- it's there. It's going to be a lot easier to use or adapt the rarity system that's already there than it is to build one from scratch.

So people who don't like it should scrap it (or more conservatively ignore "uncommon" but keep unique and rare), and people who do like it should use it however they like.

But the call here on "how to use rarity" should belong to the GM.

If it were presented as an extra optional rule then I would 100% agree with you.


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graystone wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
So people who don't like it should scrap it (or more conservatively ignore "uncommon" but keep unique and rare), and people who do like it should use it however they like.
When you say "people", you actually mean DM right?

Yes, the GM should make the decision about "what items are available" (i.e. how to use rarity) just like they make the decisions about where the game is set, who the antagonists are, what events occur. People who have strong feelings about any of those things are encouraged to start GMing in order to convince others about the correctness of their vision by running excellent games.

As a GM I would view a suggestion from a player about "let's not use rarity" as I would a suggestion about "let's not do a campaign in Ustalav and let's not fight vampires." It's like "would you rather be GMing? I'm happy to step aside, but I want to run the stuff I have put time into preparing if I'm going to be GMing."

Excaliburproxy wrote:
If it were presented as an extra optional rule then I would 100% agree with you.

All rules are optional rules if you're the GM. This is literally what rule zero means. Normally the consideration is "what else changes if I change this one rule" but when it comes to rarity the answer is "basically nothing."


PossibleCabbage wrote:
graystone wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
So people who don't like it should scrap it (or more conservatively ignore "uncommon" but keep unique and rare), and people who do like it should use it however they like.
When you say "people", you actually mean DM right?

Yes, the GM should make the decision about "what items are available" (i.e. how to use rarity) just like they make the decisions about where the game is set, who the antagonists are, what events occur. People who have strong feelings about any of those things are encouraged to start GMing in order to convince others about the correctness of their vision by running excellent games.

As a GM I would view a suggestion from a player about "let's not use rarity" as I would a suggestion about "let's not do a campaign in Ustalav and let's not fight vampires." It's like "would you rather be GMing? I'm happy to step aside, but I want to run the stuff I have put time into preparing if I'm going to be GMing."

I can understand that 100% from the point of view of someone that has a home group and sits down before a game to network thoughts on a game/setting.

For me though, the DM sets up the game BEFORE looking for players: at best I can look for games that opt out of rarity or beg for a change and neither is a very good option IMO. As far as DMing myself, I covered that already [it's not really a possibility for various reasons].


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As straitjackets go "You have baseline access to Common options and Uncommons that your build choices have unlocked, plus more if your GM gives the okay" seem fairly loose...

If you want to build lots of characters without access to a GM, then you use Commons, and Uncommons you've gained access to via Feat choices. It's not that complicated. The fact that Learn a Spell might allow you to learn Uncommons is irrelevant, because without GM to say what Uncommons you could learn using it there are none available for you to learn.

The Rarity system is good because Blood Money was a stupid spell that was supposed to only be available to people who had a specific spellbook, but if you didn't run that campaign you weren't likely to know that. And besides automatically making it obvious a similar spell in the future isn't available to everyone, the Rarity System also takes the pressure to say no off the GM, so he doesn't always have to be the a*~**#* telling his players they can't do something.


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graystone wrote:


For me though, the DM sets up the game BEFORE looking for players: at best I can look for games that opt out of rarity or beg for a change and neither is a very good option IMO. As far as DMing myself, I covered that already [it's not really a possibility for various reasons].

If you're looking to join games that are already defined, presumably through PbP or r20, then you already have an expectation of what the DM is going to do.

Looking for a DM who's going to be able to accommodate your needs on rarity seems similar to looking for a DM who's allowing the options you like when looking for a PF1 game too.

I'm not seeing this radical shift we're talking about.


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
PossibleCabbage wrote:
People who have strong feelings about any of those things are encouraged to start GMing in order to convince others about the correctness of their vision by running excellent games.

Hahaha. I LIKE that idea!

Evilgm wrote:
If you want to build lots of characters without access to a GM, then you use Commons, and Uncommons you've gained access to via Feat choices. It's not that complicated.

What feat gives me access to magic aura?


graystone wrote:

For me though, the DM sets up the game BEFORE looking for players: at best I can look for games that opt out of rarity or beg for a change and neither is a very good option IMO. As far as DMing myself, I covered that already [it's not really a possibility for various reasons].

I'm not sure if you've mentioned earlier, but when you play games do you mainly play online or in-person? If online do you mainly use sites like Roll20 or Fantasy Grounds, or play-by-post in forums. If in-person, do you usually go to games organized at your FLGS or do you hear about games from acquaintances? Do you partake in organized play like the Pathfinder Society?

I don't mean to get all personal. I just feel like if I got a better idea where you're coming from experience wise, there is a slim chance I could offer some half-decent advice. You're entitled to your privacy and you shouldn't feel pressured to answer me if you would rather not.


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swoosh wrote:
I'm not seeing this radical shift we're talking about.

The most common 'rule' is 'use the default rules' when looking for games. As such, looking for a specific [and not officially defined] houserule makes it much, much harder to find a game. Then, as we're already talking about a houseruled game, I then have to buy in to every other houserule there is or pass on the game. So, yes it's a "radical shift" as I can't join a 'use anything legal that's online' game like I could with PF1. Heck, even if I did join a 'default rules' game, I have to go over each and every 'ask the DM' rule to see what I should expect: something I didn't have to do when the rules had actual expected results.

Once the gamemastery guide comes out with optional rules, I hope it'll be dramatically easier to find games as there is an actual rule to look for that's understood by both parties. Optional rules are SO much better, IMO, that random houserules to sort and understand.

theelcorspectre wrote:
I'm not sure if you've mentioned earlier, but when you play games do you mainly play online or in-person?

I have before, but I don't recall if I did in this thread: I play PbP, no PFS. My location, my health and family issues combine to make going to a home game/FLGS [or DMing] untenable.

theelcorspectre wrote:
You're entitled to your privacy and you shouldn't feel pressured to answer me if you would rather not.

No problem at all, ask away. I welcome honest dialog and questions to understand points of view. ;)

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