GM_DBH's Shattered Star. (Closed recruitment)


Recruitment

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This is the place to talk over your new characters among yourselves.

20pt buy.
Max HP & Gold at 1st level. Roll or half +1 after that.
No VMC or 3PP.
Two traits. One from the players guide.
Background skills are in.

I have one or two other players from my other games that I'm considering, they may be joining the discussion.

Anything I've forgotten?


What about traits from the player's guide? Are those available? They're called "Pathfinder Society traits" and they're on page 5. There are a couple there that are pretty neat.


Those "Pathfinder Society traits" are there for the taking. :)


Cool. Thanks!


Hi guys!

Alright, first of all Imma read the AP's PG and see what's all about.

Anyone got a character idea already? I'm probably making a Desna guy with Desna's shooting star, but only if that is appropiate to the AP (hence reading the PG :P).


Okay, here's what I was thinking. I was thinking about making a guy that is Mr. Knowledge Man.

Having said that, I'm NOT a fan of arcane. I mean, I've played arcane a time or two in my day but it is my least favorite. And most arcane types have all knowledge skills. But I was more leaning toward a Cloistered cleric.

Now here's the thing: The way I've got him set up is to be Knowbot/Healbot. But that's it. He's not going to give this group anything when it comes to combat. And his spell selection is going to be so limited, any type of buffs are also out of the question. His AC is going to be garbage and his Fort and Reflex saves will be equally as garbage.

But he'll be REALLY good at knowing things and keeping the party alive!

So, I'm not sure if that'll actually work so that's why I figured I'd throw it out there to get y'all's take on it.

I stole this one from Cedric: Angelfire Apostle

And I'm going with this as mentioned previous: Cloistered Cleric

And also going with the Restoration subdomain

Anyway, that's my initial thought. He's practically useless outside of healing and knowing. And I'm not sure how he would survive to be honest. I don't know. This guy would completely be out of my comfort zone because I love the thick of battle, but this kind of guy struck me as interesting AND challenging when DBH mentioned a Knowbot would be very handy. And I do love a good challenge. It's just fun for me. :)

On top of that, he would need some help with a few of the knowledges. It's just impossible to be good at all of them. There's just too many and there's not enough skill points to go around. I would still make him to where he's at least somewhat decent at all of them though. He will still be solid in several just not all of them.

Now having said ALL THAT... I am looking at this class as well: Bard(Archaeologist) which could serve as the rogue as well. I know I said I'm not a huge arcane fan but this is one instance I believe I'd be willing to bend. But then somebody else would have to take up the healing slack.

So they would both have a dual purpose in their own way.

Anyway, that's where I'm at. I'm actually somewhat torn between the two.

But when it comes to combat, neither will be any good in that regard. So I don't know if that's too much of a hindrance to the party or what.

I welcome any and all thoughts.


The Archeologist Bard sounds like the better option. Speaking as someone who has played through Shattered star the fights are tough and tricky.

Our Rogue took some Barbarian levels to make him tougher for the combat. My Arcanist has been below 0hp more times than I care to remember.

I don't think a non-combatant will last in this campaign. That may be why they gave you the NPC expert to cover that role if you needed a Know-bot.


You know, that's kind of what I was wondering and afraid of.

So if we can't quite manage the Know skills, would we be able to use the NPC in that regard?

Or I guess if we ALL focused on various and differing skills so as to be able to cover them all as a group, we might could pull it off that way if the NPC is not an option.


Covering all the skills works best with the party. My Arcanist has all the Knowledge skills at a high level. Except she's put only a few points into Dungeoneering, Local & Religion. The Rogue and the Cleric cover those.

It is a good campaign for an Academic based character. Which was why I suggested the Bard would work well. Some buffing and lots of Knowledges.

Up until Book 5 the campaign is also a mix of Urban and dungeon crawling for more character building ideas. Book 5 has some wilderness at the start, but soon heads back into the dungeon.

In my opinion.

A damage dealing combat type is essential. As is an Arcane caster with lots of knowledges and skill points. A Healer is important, but can be covered by Clerics, Oracles & Shamans easily.

Skill monkey is easy, Bards, Rogues or Alchemists can handle that side.

I'm looking at bring in another two players to make a party of 5. So you can be flexible with your character ideas. It's just from experience this is not a campaign you can stumble through.


Personally I do lean toward "damage dealing type". That's my bread and butter. :) But I do like to venture out from time to time for the challenge of it. It's just fun.

If I do roll with the Archeologist Bard, it actually loses Performance. The only buffing it would do would be spell-wise. So there is that. But there's no "inspire courage" or any of that.

So while I contemplate that, will also ponder possible melee types and see what might work in that regard. And thanks for the overview. That'll come in handy.

I'm really curious to see what the others are thinking about rolling with.


I'm playing currently a Chronicler of Worlds bard in another campaign. I can tell you it's quite a knowledge monster, and doesn't have to give up bardic performance, which is his contribution in combat. Of course, you'll have to deal with arcane casting, but so would be also with the Archaeologist. And you will have plenty of skill points between the basic 6 and your Int bonus.

On the other hand, if you choose the Archaeologist, I don't see how can you not be good at combat. You have an Inspire Courage on crack only for you, which can be boosted with Fate's Favored (and that could be a combat monster of there's other bard in the group playing actual Inspire Courage). And you can always pick Desna's Shooting Star, or grab two Paladin levels and be utterly immune to anything allowing a save.

As for me, well, I'm also more comfortable dealing damage, but we'll see. I'm still trying to put together the throwing weapon guy, but if I feel it doesn't contribute enough I'll change (man, those Fighters and Warpriests have waaaaay too few skills...).


Even when I make a martial character, if they're human I give them intelligence 13 for the Fast learner feat. +1 hp & +1 skill point a level adds up.


I use Fast Learner to get +1 skill point and the special class FCB. For +1 HP is easier to buy Toughness, since it doesn't require Int 13.


Hey, thanks for the feedback. I can definitely use it because I am not knowledgeable enough in all the feats/classes/archetypes to know what works well and what won't.

Will have to check those out. And I'm open to any more feedback as to what will make it work.

Thanks!


Javell. If you wish to play someone who is a damage dealer, and has the Knowledge skills have you thought of a Skald?

A player is running one in another game of mine and it's a strong class. Good at combat, social and knowledge.


Yeah I'm actually in a game with a Skald. I gotta confess, they are pretty cool. Man they can do a lot of stuff. It's the first time I've ever dealt with a Skald and I tripped out when the raging abilities of a Skald can GO TO THE OTHER PC'S! I'm like: Whaaaaat?!

I'm playing a dwarf paladin that can rage! Man that's just crazy to think about.

You know, I'll take a look at that one. I haven't looked at it in depth at all but I'll check it out.


I can't find this one so Imma ask here in case your Google-Fu is better than mine:

Is there a way to be a Paladin and worship Desna (i.e. being NG-CG-CN)?


Not that I know of?

You don't have to follow a particular god to be a Paladin though. It's the code more than the god.

Sarenrae & Shelyn both have Paladins.


Okay, I looked and I nowhere did *I* find that you couldn't.
Check this out:

This is what is it says under Cleric:
Alignment: A cleric's alignment must be within one step of her deity's, along either the law/chaos axis or the good/evil axis (see Additional Rules).

But IT DOES NOT say that under paladin. It simply says "Lawful Good".

But there could also be something in some book somewhere that could easily dispute that.

But that's what I got.

And for what it's worth, herolabs doesn't seem to have a problem with it. It's allowed as far as they are concerned. Obviously herolabs is not the be all/end all, but, grain of salt and all that business.


Thank you for your effort, guys, though that wasn't what I was asking :P

In any case, I am starting to notice we're the only ones around... am I right?


Yup. Our prospective 3rd player hasn't responded to any of my PM's.

So I'll be inviting a few more players to join us. Players I've run and played with so I know they can be an asset to the game.

Either of you have any idea of what you're playing yet?


This weekend I can actually spend some time going over various options. I've only had 1 day off over the past 12 days and that's not enough for this old cat. :P

Will finally have some time to look over some things tonight and this weekend. I'm hoping to know something more concrete by Sunday at the latest.


So with Fast learner do I get both the +1 hp and skill point?

Okay, what happens if I select a totally different FCB? Do I still get the +1 hp/skill point?

Or do I select one(hp or skill point) and then the other one is granted to me?

I'm trying to figure out how it works and herolabs sure isn't helping. I take the feat and it registers neither of them. And if I do pick skill or hit point, I don't get the other one.

Also, I'm thinking of rolling with a half-orc by the way. It says the prereq is human but half-orcs are considered half human, right? Maybe that's why it's not working. It's allowing me to choose it though. Usually if a feat isn't allowed it's grayed out.


Half-orcs are humans and orcs, and also half-orcs. So yes, you can pick FCB features from all three.

Fast Learner is poorly written indeed, but the way I've always done it and seen it done is you get 2 benefits from a favoured class, chosen from extra hp, extra skill or special race benefit.

It seems to read that you can EITHER get skill and hp OR the special benefit, but that seems kinda nonsense - you can already pick the special benefit, and picking extra skill and the Toughness feat would grant the same benefit without the need of being a human with Int 13.

I don't do HeroLab, I'm an old fashioned southern viking and do all my characters vintage style, so I can't help you with that, sorry.


Hi all, DBH invited me to join, and I happily said yes. I'm actually already in campaigns with both Javell (this is Ty!) and Jereru (this is Relzak [although we *just* started, so maybe that name doesn't mean anything to you yet]!).

I'm happy to play any role. If we need arcane, it's been a long time since I played a sorcerer, so I might lean towards that. A warpriest is also calling to me. I'll read the Player's Guide this weekend and see what inspires me, but I'm happy to fill any role.


Yeah I use to do mine old school style but MAN that is a beating. I don't see how you do it.

For the most part herolabs is solid when it comes to help creating character sheets. I still have to rejigger my whole profile to make it clear but at least the main work is done for me.

But from what I've seen for PF2, there's no way I'm getting herolabs for that(especially considering I don't want to pay for it). The downside is it takes me FOR-EV-OR to get it done. Like... 5 or 6 hours. I kid you not. It's a freaking absolute beating.

I'm very meticulous when it comes to my character sheet. I HAVE to have it to where it's understandable for the reader. I use the standard of: "If I can't understand something about the mechanics, then I need to fix it to where I can." I figure if I can get it to the point to where I can understand it, then anyone can. :P

I'm a big time micromanager. Civilization IV is one of my favorite games of all time. It's fun! but equally as exhausting. :P


Things I'm considering:

-Human Warpriest of Desna (Throwing Starknife).

-Half-Orc Bloodrager (2-H melee beast).

-Human Arcanist (Magic Missile + Toppling/Dazing Spell).

Still skimming through ideas.


What's up, Andostre?!

You mean THIS is one of the replacements you were talking about, DBH? Oh man, we're in trouble now. I swear, they just let any ol' riff-raff in, don't they? ;)


Well I'm certainly an old riff-raff and here I am ain't I...


Lol!

I'm leaning more and more toward the Skald. Half-orc skald.

But if one of you are going toward arcane, I may roll in a different direction.


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Two half-orcs, a Skald and a Bloodrager, going on adventures together... Isn't it romantic? <3


What about Drawbacks?

Or Elephant in the Room feat taxes? (I would gather "no" due to that seeming to be the more common preference among DM's I've noticed but I figured I'd ask anyway). In my opinion I feel they're actually handy far more than overpowered, but, that's just my 2 cents. Take it and give the rest to charity. :)

Also, I'm curious about something. Why do you not like VMC? (For the record, I've never used VMC and don't plan to. I just have no desire to swap out a feat(s). They're hard enough to come by as is). I'm simply wondering what the schtick is that makes them avoidable.


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Jereru wrote:
Two half-orcs, a Skald and a Bloodrager, going on adventures together... Isn't it romantic? <3

Lol!

Actually, it sounds quite... angry. ;)

I will say this, the synergy between the two could prove to be quite freaking cool.


I don't have much familiarity with the Elephant in the room system. My problems with VMC are the same. I'm running a few games with what I know rather than trying to add more. :)

I've looked through the VMC rules once or twice. I'll study them a little more.


Ooohhh okay. Well that makes sense. That's exactly why I don't use VMC either. I know they cost a feat - in which I mentioned that I don't like - but I don't get for the life of me of how it works overall.

The fact that they cost feats is what keeps me from even taking any real time to learn about them to be honest. :P


Okay, I read through the Player's Guide, and it hasn't changed my preference of what I want to play. Again, I'm more than happy to play any role, but it sounds like we've got melee covered. So, my top pick at this point, is an arcane caster, an Arcane bloodline Sorcerer. Possibly with the Tattooed Sorcerer bloodline. I don't think that a Sorcerer is redundant with a Bloodrager, Javell, so play what you want.

If someone else wants to play that role, my next pick is a divine caster, so Cleric or Oracle. Not a Druid this time around, I think. I haven't put much thought into this other than that I'd probably want an off-beat deity.

We could still use a skill monkey, especially if we don't have any high-Int PCs, but that's my least favorite pick because I've played a number of PCs for that role recently.

How many PCs are we thinking? If we need a buffer, I've always wanted to play a Mesmerist, but I'll have to take another look and see how much they actually contribute to combat.

And just for completeness' sake, if I were to build a melee PC, I think I'd go Shifter. But that's probably not too relevant.


I actually am NOW looking at a Fighter(Lore Warden). That's starting to pique my interest.

Per PC's: I believe DBH is looking at 5. So we still got 2 more folks to round up.

I'm still looking at a Bard(archeologists). That's a great skill monkey type if no one takes the monkey role.

I also like Skald - in which I've mention previously - but I'm having a tough time putting it together. I'm just torn.

I'll slap all three together and see what I come up with. See which one could prove more all around useful and one that I can be content with.


I play with a guy who loves VMC, so I've looked at it more than once, and I'm playing a Paladin/VMC Barbarian to try it out. But this friend is another level above me in character builds, so his VMC use is usually one part of a build that has a lot of different components that he's able to envision as a whole. (DBH, I'm talking about Valera.)

Conceptually, VMC is simple. Instead of the feats you'd get at 3rd, 7th, 11th, 15th, and 19th levels, you get a class ability based on select class abilities. But the classes are not equal, to be honest. Sure it depends how the abilities pair with your base class (you don't want rage if you're a wizard, for example), but some of the classes abilities are much weaker than others. One example is the Witch's ability versus the Wizard's. Instead of the 7th level feat, a PC going VMC Witch can choose a hex, but with the stipulation that the hex operates at caster level 1. The DCs for that hex will quickly become outstripped at higher challenge ratings. Compare this to a Wizard who gets a school power at 7th level, but the wording let's the school power advance as the PC does.

Somme of the options are pretty great. A PC that VMCs Rogue can gain trapfinding, which is great if the party doesn't have that ability. Other gained abilities don't come online until it's far too late for a PC to get much use out of it, or just aren't worth the cost of a feat. It's a lot of different options to consider, and personally, I would rather get the feats instead of being locked into a lot of different class abilities. But sometimes it can be fun way to get a familiar or other unusual class ability.


Yeah, that's a LOT of feats to be sacrificing. The payoff would have to be pretty outstanding for me to roll with VMC.

Once you select a VMC, is it mandatory to keep going all the way through? Or as an example can you just take the trapfinding - as you mentioned - and stop there?

Ultimately VMC is totally not for me but I am curious.


GM_DBH wrote:
I don't have much familiarity with the Elephant in the room system. My problems with VMC are the same. I'm running a few games with what I know rather than trying to add more. :)

As far as Elephant goes, what it is, is, basically eliminating the tax of those feats that EVERYBODY pretty much gets.

Power attack, Deadly Aim, Combat Expertise(Although, nobody picks this one. Only if it comes with the class).

Anyway, you basically get all those three feats when you hit Base Attack +1. They are basically a "free" feat.

Wheel of Fortune reference:

I look at it like this: Now I don't know how old you cats are but I use to watch Wheel of Fortune back in the 80's(the 80's rocked! Best decade ever) when I was a kid.

And EVERY SINGLE TIME during the bonus round - you know when Sajak would say, "Give me 5 consonants and 1 vowel" - the person playing would always pick: R S T L N and E. EVERY SINGLE TIME.

Well these days they AUTOMATICALLY give them those letters now - and have been for a fairly long time - and then are asked for 3 more consonants and 1 more vowel.

So that's my take on it. And that's kind of what this dude did who came up with this. Instead of "buying the same letters" he basically just gives those away for free and you pick some other letters. :)

Here's a gist of what Elephant boils down to(spoilered for space):

1: Power attack, Deadly Aim, Combat Expertise are free at BA +1. (Of course, not sure how that works for classes that get CE for free but I digress)

2: Point blank shot is now subsumed into Precise Shot. You still have to take Precise Shot as a feat but you get PBS to go with it.

3: There are several combat maneuver feats now rolled into 1 feat. You've actually got, like, 2 different feats with each of them carrying multiple CMB feats within them. But they are all wrapped up within the 2 feats.

4: Mobility is now subsumed into Dodge. If you take Dodge as a feat you get Mobility as well.

5: Weapon Finesse can be used by anyone.

6: Agile Maneuvers is gone. You simply add your dexterity to the CMB if your wielding a finesse weapon and their strength is used otherwise. (Let's be honest, how many pc's EVER use maneuvers. I've seen VERY few in my day. Some of them are pretty handy but most don't want to burn feats for them).

7: Improved Two weapon fighting is subsumed into GTWF. You can take the latter at BA +6 but it still acts like ITWF. You get that 3rd off-hand attack at BA +11 just like normal. It doesn't change the mechanics of it, it just does away without having to burn 3 feats for it.

Ultimately it all just make things a bit more "feat friendly" - if you will. I'm in a few games that allow it and let me tell you, it is NOT in the least bit overpowering by any means. I'm still getting the crap kicked out of me in all of them. Doesn't do squat for your AC let me tell ya. ;)

They're just handy and it lets you customize your pc in a not so "same ol', same ol'" manner.

Just thought I'd give a quick synopsis of it all. No worries if it's of no interest.

But I at least had to ask. :)


Javell DeLeon wrote:
Once you select a VMC, is it mandatory to keep going all the way through?

Yep.

Javell DeLeon wrote:

** spoiler omitted **

So that's my take on it. And that's kind of what this dude did who came up with this. Instead of "buying the same letters" he basically just gives those away for free and you pick some other letters. :)

I liked your Wheel of Fortune analogy! And I'm 45. :)


VMC can offer quite some nice combinations for classes that have the feats to spare. Sometimes you have a goal feat but it has so many requirements that, in the end, paying the cost of a VMC is better or, at least, equivalent. Of course, sometimes it's not, and that's that, and truly there are some VMCs way better than other ones.

For example, if you truly want a Knowledge monster, try an Investigator VMC bard. Or, if you want to improve your melee combat and you've got excess feats (Fighter) or you won't get too much from your feats (Rogue), VMC Magus can be a blast. Many spellcasters that don't have to take dozens of Metamagic feats can invest in VMC sorcerer for some bloodline powers or VMS wizard for some school powers.

Feat taxes, on the other hand, are a real thing: some feat chains or requirements are clearly poorly designed, and the guy tries to soothe the pain a bit, which is something to be greateful about. Combt Expertise is the better example: prerequisite for a lot of feat chains, having itself a tough prerequisite (Int 13), it is really a pain in the derrière.

But well, it's up to any GM. I'm fine as we are, if you ask me, though as a GM I always like to give the players more options.


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I've downloaded the Elephant in the room PDF and looked through it a little. It does seem to smooth the feat taxes a lot.

As someone who is always very conscious of feats when building a character I do think it works.

So for this AP I'm willing to try it out.

Yes that means you can use the Elephant in the room feat rules to build your characters.


So, is this accurate? I adapted the build rules from our KM game.

*********

20 point buy.
All Paizo classes and races are accepted. Though if it's really exotic or out of place you are going to have to sell it to me.
No 3PP.
No Evil alignments.
Maximum HP's and gold for your class at 1st level, roll once for hps for every level after that, if it's no good take the average.
2 traits, you don't need to take a campaign trait at this stage, but you can if you want. No drawbacks!
Elephant in the Room feat rules allowed


Mostly, I guess except from we actually having to pick a campaign trait.

I'm totally sold on the Bloodrager; the Bloodrager's Society offered me a 1-year membership with a 50% cut and a free Varisian landscapes connect-the-dots book. I couldn't reject!

I'll start building it up asap.


GM_DBH wrote:

I've downloaded the Elephant in the room PDF and looked through it a little. It does seem to smooth the feat taxes a lot.

As someone who is always very conscious of feats when building a character I do think it works.

So for this AP I'm willing to try it out.

Yes that means you can use the Elephant in the room feat rules to build your characters.

Cool! Thanks!

And on a pc side note, I've got to choose something so I think I will ultimately roll with the Skald. It's something different that I've never tried so I'm going to give it a whirl. What the hey? I guess what attracts me to it is that it's something that can help the party as a whole. And they can also be fairly effective in combat. So that's cool.

I REALLY wanted to roll with that cleric I threw out there. The healing would have been phenomenal. Especially at higher levels when you can use channel energy to restore negative levels, restore ability damage, and so many other cool things. Man that would've been awesome!

But it's annoying that I can't really do much else with him. I can't just flat out have him DO NOTHING in combat. That would just bug me too much. And he'd be a sitting freaking duck and that would also be annoying. The negatives outweigh the positives.


Andostre wrote:
I liked your Wheel of Fortune analogy! And I'm 45. :)

Lol! That's awesome. And thanks! Yeah I'm going to be pushing 49 this year. My gosh where does the time go? *shakes head*

Jereru wrote:

VMC can offer quite some nice combinations for classes that have the feats to spare. Sometimes you have a goal feat but it has so many requirements that, in the end, paying the cost of a VMC is better or, at least, equivalent. Of course, sometimes it's not, and that's that, and truly there are some VMCs way better than other ones.

For example, if you truly want a Knowledge monster, try an Investigator VMC bard. Or, if you want to improve your melee combat and you've got excess feats (Fighter) or you won't get too much from your feats (Rogue), VMC Magus can be a blast. Many spellcasters that don't have to take dozens of Metamagic feats can invest in VMC sorcerer for some bloodline powers or VMS wizard for some school powers.

Feat taxes, on the other hand, are a real thing: some feat chains or requirements are clearly poorly designed, and the guy tries to soothe the pain a bit, which is something to be greateful about. Combt Expertise is the better example: prerequisite for a lot of feat chains, having itself a tough prerequisite (Int 13), it is really a pain in the derrière.

But well, it's up to any GM. I'm fine as we are, if you ask me, though as a GM I always like to give the players more options.

Yeah I would definitely have to say that it would require a build that either eats feats for breakfast(fighter) or a build that you look at and say, "You know, there's really not a lot of feats out there that interest me for this class." That would really be the only way I would even consider VMC.


Jereru wrote:

Mostly, I guess except from we actually having to pick a campaign trait.

I'm totally sold on the Bloodrager; the Bloodrager's Society offered me a 1-year membership with a 50% cut and a free Varisian landscapes connect-the-dots book. I couldn't reject!

I'll start building it up asap.

Lol!

You know, I really don't see how you could pass up such a deal either. I mean, c'mon, the 'Varisian landscapes connect-the-dots book'?! Who in their right mind would pass that up?! That's an absolute no-brainer. You'd have to be insane! (Lol! 'Connect-the-dots' book. Classic) :D


Okay, I got a couple of questions.

1: Can you play an instrument and attack? There's no way that's possible, right? You either have to do one or the other?

2: Also, if I were to take the Fast learner feat, do I divide it as Jereu said? I could select a special favored class bonus and then choose either the hit point or skill point?

Because if you don't get either of them by selecting a different FCB(in which I'm going to be taking "extend raging song by 1 round" for the most part) then there's really no point in me taking it.

(Aside: They also have the option of selecting +1 Spell known too. THAT'S freaking cool. I'll be using that at higher levels for sure because the spell you choose has to be a level lower than your highest spell level. That'll be super handy when you see multiple spells you like and can only choose one).

So it's all good to me with however you wish roll with the feat, DBH. At least I'll know one way or the other and can plan accordingly.


1. No. That's why I use Perform Oratory or Dance when using a Bard. I know it says you start Raging song as a Standard action, then maintain it as a Free action. But doing anything while drumming or playing a horn is not going to work, especially combat.

2. Yes you can divide it that way.

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