Taking Rules to Their Illogical Extremes


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion


The peasant rail gun. The bag of rats. The absurdity of minimalist disguises.

No sensible GM would allow this malarkey at a real table, but I've always always found great joy in taking rules to their illogical extremes. We've got a mature system on our hands, and there must be some obscure stuff out there. What other "there's no explicit rule against it" type of shenanigans can you pull off?


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The Dead condition doesn't prevent anyone from acting. Now Dead people usually trip Unconscious and other such conditions but given things like Ferocity that let you ignore those things, you can technically carry on Dead without issue*.

*Not counting the GM making you walk over a carpet of d4s on your way out of the place of gaming


Back before the CMB and CMD, you'd take all your hirelings you have to form your peasant rail gun and have them start a grapple with each other. On each of their turns, they attempt to move half their speed. Everyone in the grapple willingly fails their opposing rolls to resist being moved. So now you have a ball of two thousand people moving 2,000×15=30,000ft every 6 seconds or roughly 3,409 miles per hour. A fairly efficient way of getting around.

On a slightly less absurd note, I had always found that the Book of Exalted Deeds lead to some absolutely absurd characters without even trying to break the game that hard.
Take Sacred Vow, Vow of Nonviolence and Vow of Peace. Aside from the third feat giving you a constant PLUS SIX to AC, it forced any weapon that struck to to make a Fortitude save or be destroyed (which meant you took no damage). And since unattended objects do not get saving throws, you are suddenly immune to avalanches, most traps, and possibly all ammunition and thrown weapons, depending on how incompetent your DM is.
But that's not all. The Vow of Peace also gave you a 20ft. aura of Calm Emotions. With none of that 24 hour-immunity that usurycomes with such things. So, instead of spending resources like a chump, you can do the Pacifism Tango: walk toward an enemy until they're within range of your aura. See if they make their save (Will DC10+1/2 your level+your Wisdom mod+4). If they do, back up until they're outside of your aura, then towards them again. Repeat as needed.


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One I've heard before and liked is that no one should be able to see the sun. Distance is a stacking penalty, while being bright and large are one time applied bonuses only, meaning that trying to notice a massive ball of fire millions of miles away has a negative modifier in the millions.

One I've noticed lately though involves Knowledge checks. More specifically that they're trained only, so a rank is needed in each to even try to use them.

What information is supposed to be locked behind these, pray tell?

Knowing any recent or historical event (Knowledge: History)
Knowing laws, rulers, or popular locations (Local)
Identifying a common plant or animal (Nature)
Recognizing the holy symbols or obvious followers of a well known deity (Religion)

So an average person -- a level 1 commoner with two skill points per level and a neutral Int modifier -- May possibly know where the bar is in his town and who governs said town, but does not know what a dog is if so. Or he could know about dogs and Iomedae, but not a single law enforced in the place he's lived all his life. And this is if this commoner has dedicated all of his skills to being knowledgeable, it's much more likely to find someone who knows one or none of these categories.

Long story short: In an average town Gather Information checks should be hard to impossible, because the villagers you're asking should probably require a Handle Animal check instead.


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Vow of Peace does nothing to stop an avalanche since the feat specifies "a manufactured weapon" and avalanches aren't weapons, manufactured or otherwise.

Not being able to see the sun is silly because we have no stats for what sort of penalties to Hide/Stealth the sun has - that could easily be in the many millions as well.

As for the Knowledge checks, why aren't all the examples you listed DC 10 (or even less)?
It is perfectly possible for most people to manage to get by in game life by taking 10, since a DC 10 check covers a lot and and doesn't require any skill points invested to know.

Now if you want to argue that the Knowledge rules don't take into account locality, I am in total agreement.

Drown healing.
If you can't stop someone bleeding out, start drowning them. When they fail their save to hold their breath, they start drowning and are unconscious (0 hp) and unless rescued fall to negatives on the following round. So drown them one round then stop, because once your HP total increases you stop bleeding out.


Bjørn Røyrvik wrote:

As for the Knowledge checks, why aren't all the examples you listed DC 10 (or even less)?

It is perfectly possible for most people to manage to get by in game life by taking 10, since a DC 10 check covers a lot and and doesn't require any skill points invested to know.

I used the lowest as examples because even those are supposedly beyond someone who does not have a rank in the related skill, because all Knowledge skills are Trained Only. As in, they cannot be attempted without at least one rank in the skill. You apparently cannot know what a dog is without Knowledge: Nature any more than you could decipher a spell without Spellcraft or make a forgery without Linguistics. The villagers cannot take tens on skills they are blocked off from using entirely.


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In the PFS DPR Olympics thread, Wonderstell ginned up an inifinite-damage feedback loop utilizing Crashing Wave Fist and the Repositioning weapon enhancement. (Crashing Wave Fist is still legal in PFS, btw.)


SirDudesalot wrote:
Bjørn Røyrvik wrote:

As for the Knowledge checks, why aren't all the examples you listed DC 10 (or even less)?

It is perfectly possible for most people to manage to get by in game life by taking 10, since a DC 10 check covers a lot and and doesn't require any skill points invested to know.
I used the lowest as examples because even those are supposedly beyond someone who does not have a rank in the related skill, because all Knowledge skills are Trained Only. As in, they cannot be attempted without at least one rank in the skill. You apparently cannot know what a dog is without Knowledge: Nature any more than you could decipher a spell without Spellcraft or make a forgery without Linguistics. The villagers cannot take tens on skills they are blocked off from using entirely.

"Supposedly" in your post, but not in the actual rules. Dogs are common animals, so the DC to identify a ordinary dog is 5. As has already been pointed out once in this thread, that is well within the range of knowledge checks that can be made untrained.

There are plenty of oddities in the knowledge-skill system, like DC being tied to CR meaning that horses are harder to identify than dogs, and older versions of the same dragon are harder to ID than youger dragons. But your example is not one of them.

_
glass.


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SirDudesalot wrote:
One I've heard before and liked is that no one should be able to see the sun. Distance is a stacking penalty, while being bright and large are one time applied bonuses only, meaning that trying to notice a massive ball of fire millions of miles away has a negative modifier in the millions.

You can't see the sun. In addition to the distance factor, there is that blindingly bright light that it gives off. You can see the light that the sun gives off, but not the sun itself. ;)


SirDudesalot wrote:
Bjørn Røyrvik wrote:

As for the Knowledge checks, why aren't all the examples you listed DC 10 (or even less)?

It is perfectly possible for most people to manage to get by in game life by taking 10, since a DC 10 check covers a lot and and doesn't require any skill points invested to know.
I used the lowest as examples because even those are supposedly beyond someone who does not have a rank in the related skill, because all Knowledge skills are Trained Only. As in, they cannot be attempted without at least one rank in the skill. You apparently cannot know what a dog is without Knowledge: Nature any more than you could decipher a spell without Spellcraft or make a forgery without Linguistics. The villagers cannot take tens on skills they are blocked off from using entirely.

They aren't blocked from using it:

Knowledge wrote:
You cannot make an untrained Knowledge check with a DC higher than 10. If you have access to an extensive library that covers a specific skill, this limit is removed. The time to make checks using a library, however, increases to 1d4 hours. Particularly complete libraries might even grant a bonus on Knowledge checks in the fields that they cover.

Emphasis mine.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
SirDudesalot wrote:
because all Knowledge skills are Trained Only. As in, they cannot be attempted without at least one rank in the skill. You apparently cannot know what a dog is without Knowledge: Nature any more than you could decipher a spell without Spellcraft or make a forgery without Linguistics. The villagers cannot take tens on skills they are blocked off from using entirely.

Not quite correct:

Knowledge
"Untrained: You cannot make an untrained Knowledge check with a DC higher than 10. If you have access to an extensive library that covers a specific skill, this limit is removed. The time to make checks using a library, however, increases to 1d4 hours. Particularly complete libraries might even grant a bonus on Knowledge checks in the fields that they cover."

So, anybody with an average intelligence, going through life Taking 10 can identify any Comon creature up to CR5, and any non-uncommon CR0 creatures. Or better if they choose to look them up in a book.


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Of course, the correction exposes the flip side: Literally everybody with 10 or more Intelligence knows everything there is to know with a DC of 10 or less if they simply take 10. That's rather strange.


Ah, 3.0 D&D. So much wrong never felt so right. One of my favorite 'tricks' from the 3.0 days that was much joked about but never used was the "Market Day Teleport".

Back in 3.0 Greater Cleave let you take a 5' step if you killed an opponent with your cleave. Cleave let you make a melee attack if you killed an opponent. So naturally if you were in a major city and you absolutely positively needed to be somewhere now you could great cleave you way through crowds of 0 level NPCs at the same speed as a teleport and you didn't even need to have ever visited or seen the destination.

And this could be combined with a bag of rats to help you get past gaps in the crowd.


Meirril wrote:
Back in 3.0 Greater Cleave let you take a 5' step if you killed an opponent with your cleave

I'm rather confident that this was not the case, even back in 3rd. There was a special ability called Supreme Cleave that allowed you to take a single 5ft-step each turn between cleaves (from the samurai prestige class, I think?), but that may have been 3.5


Quixote wrote:
Meirril wrote:
Back in 3.0 Greater Cleave let you take a 5' step if you killed an opponent with your cleave
I'm rather confident that this was not the case, even back in 3rd. There was a special ability called Supreme Cleave that allowed you to take a single 5ft-step each turn between cleaves (from the samurai prestige class, I think?), but that may have been 3.5

Eeeeeh it's not entirely clear. Great Cleave gave you unlimited cleaves in a round but no movement.

Supreme Cleave, a class ability for the Master Samurai PRC from Sword and Fist (3.0):
Supreme Cleave wrote:
Supreme Cleave: At 2nd level, the master samurai gains the ability to take a 5-foot step before making a Cleave or Great Cleave attack.

Now you can argue that the ability doesn't give you any more 5' steps in a round than you normally would, just that you can use your step between cleaves (that's my impression of RAI). It doesn't explicitly state this, but it doesn't explicitly give you more 5' steps either.

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There's the idea that a spell component pouch contains infinite supplies of every single possible inexpensive spell component listed for every spell for any class. Quite a few nifty things in that little bag.


ryric wrote:
There's the idea that a spell component pouch contains infinite supplies of every single possible inexpensive spell component listed for every spell for any class. Quite a few nifty things in that little bag.

Including all the food you could ever want! An infinite supply of tiny tarts and butter.


Bjørn Røyrvik wrote:
Eeeeeh it's not entirely clear. Great Cleave gave you unlimited cleaves in a round but no movement.

Given that you can't make multiple moves and multiple attacks in one turn, I think it's pretty clear that Great Cleave never worked that way.

Bjørn Røyrvik wrote:
It doesn't explicitly state this, but it doesn't explicitly give you more 5' steps either.

Permissive rules system, blah blah blah.

The basic rules told us: one 5ft-step per turn. Nothing in Great/Supreme Cleave gives us permission to ignore that.
Anyone who tried to argue otherwise might as well claim their character can fly while raging and is invisible when sleeping, because the rules don't "explicitly say" otherwise.

3rd was full of crazy shenanigans without creating more.

I was always curious to see the math for the leadership army. The character has,leadership. The character's cohort has leadership. The cohort'cohort's cohort, etc.
Then they're all casters who animate dead/create undead, the latter of which all have class levels in classes that animate dead/create undead and have leadership, with cohorts who have leadership...


I seem to remember some people arguing that Press Against the Wall could be applied to the section of floor the person was standing on, as it could be considered a "wall". People were not arguing that if you were flying above the target, or there was some weird positioning.


Slim Jim wrote:
In the PFS DPR Olympics thread, Wonderstell ginned up an inifinite-damage feedback loop utilizing Crashing Wave Fist and the Repositioning weapon enhancement. (Crashing Wave Fist is still legal in PFS, btw.)

And on the other side of the coin we have the Specialized Healer's Satchel that always brings you up to 0 HP no matter what your negative total is. Really useful if you have a way to postpone death by HP dmg, like Deathless Frenzy, Greater Cult Totem, or Unkillable.

I'd love to see both builds face off in a tournament.
Infinite damage, meet infinite healing!


Wonderstell wrote:
Slim Jim wrote:
In the PFS DPR Olympics thread, Wonderstell ginned up an inifinite-damage feedback loop utilizing Crashing Wave Fist and the Repositioning weapon enhancement. (Crashing Wave Fist is still legal in PFS, btw.)

And on the other side of the coin we have the Specialized Healer's Satchel that always brings you up to 0 HP no matter what your negative total is. Really useful if you have a way to postpone death by HP dmg, like Deathless Frenzy, Greater Cult Totem, or Unkillable.

I'd love to see both builds face off in a tournament.
Infinite damage, meet infinite healing!

Mr, Infinite Damage Guy would win because his turn never ends (unless he wants it to for some reason); he simply unspools an endless string of attacks into a pureed puddle of goo on the floor until a bored GM finally gets around to proposing a massive-damage/coup-de-grace saving-throw of infinity-DC (nat20 only possible chance of success). The satchel is mainly an OoC item; using it in combat would take a standard-action as well as grant OoOs. So, if Mr. Puddle of Goo tries to use it, he's immediately AoO'd. Even if it works, he dealt no damage, the satchel is depleted of 2 of its 10 daily charges, meaning that in best of circumstances it'll only work another four times before being exhausted.


Slim Jim wrote:
The satchel is mainly an OoC item; using it in combat would take a standard-action as well as grant OoOs. So, if Mr. Puddle of Goo tries to use it, he's immediately AoO'd. Even if it works, he dealt no damage, the satchel is depleted of 2 of its 10 daily charges, meaning that in best of circumstances it'll only work another four times before being exhausted.

Unless Mr Goo has a Shimmmerwing Dragonfly familiar, which has a 60ft fly speed and the Flyby Attack feat.

Quote:
Benefit: When flying, the creature can take a move action and another standard action at any point during the move. The creature cannot take a second move action during a round when it makes a flyby attack.

Then it could fly up to Mr Goo, heal them back up to 0 HP, and fly back to relative safety. Soft cover prevents AoOs, and if you make it a Valet familiar you can also give it the Combat Medic feat to prevent it from provoking if it is threatened while providing first aid.

Of course, Mr Infinite could have flexed into Improved Sunder with their brawler level to strip down Mr. Goo to their essentials when they realized damage doesn't cut it. Making it a pretty drawn-out battle which probably ends in the favor of Mr Goo.


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The GM house-rules that the quarter-inch-deep puddle of goo doesn't grant soft-cover, and, because he's a macabre sort, that being healed wouldn't knit its minced bones back together without an appropriate period of unimpeded T1000-style regeneration. It'll just be alive. Horribly alive, with a fully-functioning nervous system....

"Can you hear the puddle scream in pain?! It tries, piteously, and strangles, because it doesn't have a fully-formed mouth! Gore splatters everywhere, some getting on you, where it quivers and slithers! What Rovagug abomination is this? Your mind recoils! EVERYBODY MAKE A WILL-SAVE!"

Shadow Lodge

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You can break anything with the chairbreaker feat as long as you can pick up and you do it over someone's head.


gnoams wrote:
You can break anything with the chairbreaker feat as long as you can pick up and you do it over someone's head.

Chairbreaker + Body Bludgeon?


gnoams wrote:
You can break anything with the chairbreaker feat as long as you can pick up and you do it over someone's head.

Now I want a size large PC breaking pianos on people.


ryric wrote:
There's the idea that a spell component pouch contains infinite supplies of every single possible inexpensive spell component listed for every spell for any class. Quite a few nifty things in that little bag.

One could argue that the component pouch "coincisentally" "only" has the material components needed for the spells the caster has prepared, BUT...

1- That's still a lot of stuff.
2- It gets really funny when we remember there are spells like Ice Armor, whose material component is 5 gallons of water.


MaUC wrote:
ryric wrote:
There's the idea that a spell component pouch contains infinite supplies of every single possible inexpensive spell component listed for every spell for any class. Quite a few nifty things in that little bag.

One could argue that the component pouch "coincisentally" "only" has the material components needed for the spells the caster has prepared, BUT...

1- That's still a lot of stuff.
2- It gets really funny when we remember there are spells like Ice Armor, whose material component is 5 gallons of water.

TIL they actually covered that one:

Pouch, spell component wrote:
A spellcaster with a spell component pouch is assumed to have all the material components and focuses needed for spellcasting, except for components that have a specific cost, divine focuses, and focuses that wouldn’t fit in a pouch. Most spell component pouches are waterproof and can be strung onto a belt or bandolier.


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Does that mean it appears on the pouch when the Cleric casts Enlarge Person on himself? ^^


Quixote wrote:

Back before the CMB and CMD, you'd take all your hirelings you have to form your peasant rail gun and have them start a grapple with each other. On each of their turns, they attempt to move half their speed. Everyone in the grapple willingly fails their opposing rolls to resist being moved. So now you have a ball of two thousand people moving 2,000×15=30,000ft every 6 seconds or roughly 3,409 miles per hour. A fairly efficient way of getting around.

Semi-related: my players wills sometimes try to pull one another out of danger. That feels like a CMB check, but damned if I can find anything about "willingly lowering CMD." Since you pointed out the similar sillines sin 3.5, I thought I check and see if you know of the equivalent in Pathfinder.


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MaUC wrote:
Does that mean it appears on the pouch when the Cleric casts Enlarge Person on himself? ^^

Now we're on-topic! : D


DRD1812 wrote:


Semi-related: my players wills sometimes try to pull one another out of danger. That feels like a CMB check, but damned if I can find anything about "willingly lowering CMD." Since you pointed out the similar sillines sin 3.5, I thought I check and see if you know of the equivalent in Pathfinder.

That's a feat, actually: Cut Your Losses. It also increases your carry capacity in general (not just when carrying people with the feat's effect), so that's nice. Otherwise, you'd need a Drag or Reposition Combat Maneuver.


even after they nerfed the 3 fiend-worshiper prc (diabolist, Demoniac and souldrinker were pushed from entry after 5th level to entry after 7th level via skill rank minimum) the souldrinker can still craft items for free (or close to it) once he's at 2nd level. (so at level 9)
he get 2/day enervation (deal 1d4 neg levels .temp won't last 24 hours) and gain soul pool of 1 soul per negative level.
you might argue that he only get 1 point per use of the sla no matter how many negative levels are inflicted in one use. still minimum of 2 per day. each soul point is worth 500 gp so 2 is 1000 gp. base crafting for a day(unless using higher dc\cop crafting feats etc).

so buy 2 house Centipede (house) (1 cp each) and get to craft 1000 gp item for 2 cp a day . or invest in 2 animals with 5+ hd, that way they wont die even if you roll a 4 on the sla's 1d4 , and you don't need to dispose of piles of dead Centipedes...

(technically you can also summon creatures and save cash, but my gm claimed that once they are gone so is the energy that was sapped)


^edit : pretty sure he can also use it on his cacodaemon familiar it's immune to death effects. but i think negative levels work on it.

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