DM needing advice on Campaign Traits from other Campaigns


Advice


TLDR: Can a player choose the Additional Traits feat for an Eidolon to gain the Trap Finder trait to gain the Trap Finding ability?

So I'm running Curse of the Crimson Throne. We're in Chapter 3: Escape from Old Korvosa. One of my players is a Summoner who took the Shadow Summoner archetype and has really played up the idea that his Eidolon is his shadow, even to the point where his shadow is an actual Shadow creature that's lost its powers (some backstory I've been working with him on). So his Ediolon is built as basically a sneaky skill monkey. He's taken Dampen Presence and Skill Evolutions for Stealth, Disable Device, etc.

Now here's my question. He wants his Eidolon to take the feat "Additional Traits" and take the trait "Trap Finder" from Mummy's Mask campaign. I have two issues with this.

First, can non-player characters have traits? I had never seen any rules on this or examples in other games so it seemed like traits were always a special PC thing.

Second, I'm not terribly keen on players picking traits from other campaigns with the exception that its a campaign that we as a group had at least tried to play in the past (which Mummy's Mask is not).

So the other relevant detail is that there are no Rogues in the party, which is his main argument and really the only reason I'm considering this. On one hand I understand its a niche not being filled at the moment and that building his Shadow this way is an effort to fill this roll. On the other hand my players know they may change characters between chapters or in the case of a character death. This player in particular already changed from a Rogue to a Summoner. So I feel that allowing the Shadow to gain Trap Finding does take away a special incentive for anyone to choose a Rogue if they wanted to.

I know according to Pathfinder Society rules he would not be able to take it, and I know since its a home game I can change the rules as needed. I'm just a bit on the fence about it, leaning towards saying no, but would appreciate some advice. What does everyone else think?


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Campaign traits are specific to a campaign, a campaign trait published for an AP is not a campaign trait for any other campaign, essentially it doesn't exist. Of course, as you note, the GM can make a campaign trait published elsewhere as either a campaign trait or another type of trait for their game.

I think it is questionable whether a non-character without traits can gain a trait through the additional traits feature. It is written with the assumption that anyone who could take it would already have traits (either the campaign uses traits or it doesn't, if it doesn't additional traits would not be available as feat) so it doesn't have any prerequisites. Of course I have seen many people do exactly what your player wants to do, and there isn't any strict wording that requires you to already have traits to take the additional traits feat.

My personal solution would probably be to meet him in the middle, I'd allow him to have trapfinding, but it would take an entire feat, not be just one of two traits that he could get for a feat.


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Mostly going to parrot the esteemed Mr. Justus, with the addition that I would allow a Shadow Eidolon to get this for an evolution as well.


I find myself more in the why not camp, trapfinding has never been a super exciting ability (in my opinion)

It's not like other players will be crying OP! When they slot a trap, I say let them have their fun :D

It is of course up to you, but as long as everyone is enjoying themselves, and it doesn't prove disruptive to your campaign, why not :)


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Thanks for the advice so far.

@Geruvurrda: I certainly see this side of things, and that's part of why I'm on the fence about it. I don't think anyone would really cry OP in our group either. The main issue I take in the much bigger picture is how much less appealing playing a Rogue tends to be when one of their main niches is reduced to just a feat that anyone can have.

Without this one specific campaign trait I've found that gaining Trapfinding is actually pretty difficult and usually involves taking at least a one level dip into another class if not 2 or 3. To compound this I feel like it's even more out of line that the player's Eidolon gets the ability without the character even to have to burn a feat to gain Trapfinding.

@Everyone: The last thing I'm thinking about is how this will affect the overall game. I kinda think there is a certain amount of opportunity cost that players pay when they pick which classes they want to play. If for instance everyone wanted to play some kind of marital character, and no one picked a spellcaster then around level 10 or so, overland travel is going to generally be harder. Maybe not gamebreaking or anything, but it will be a problem they have to solve. Where as with a Wizard in the party it would literally just be a one night rest and they potentially have the problem solved for almost no cost.

If a group decides to go without a Rogue or Sandman Bard or something then Traps become a somewhat more difficult challenge that will force them to think of alternative solutions because they don't have that one character who can walk up and make potentially a single roll to overcome the challenge.

In the end I realize it's probably not going to be that impactful either way. Not counting Trapfinding's Disable Device bonus, it just allows the ability to disable magic traps. They already can disable normal traps with a good Disable Device and magic traps can be dealt with a Dispel Magic spell or in a number of other ways. It seems to me that Trapfinding ends up just being a sudo at will Dispel Magic that is specific to magic traps.


As others have said, Campaign Traits are for specific campaigns, and typically for a reason.
Also, they're often a little better than other traits. (I assume this is to have them appeal more to players in the campaign they're for so that the players are more likely to take them and have a better connection to the story.)

Example of Campaign Traits being a little better: The Trait "Criminal" gives you trap finder as a class skill with a +1 bonus but, unlike "Trap Finding," doesn't allow you to disarm magical traps.
(There's also a few region traits that give you trap finding, if you'd rather be from somewhere specific rather than a criminal.)

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