New book suggestion (oriental supplement)


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion

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I was thinking, and I wanted to know when you guys are going to release a book with classes or oriental style archetypes, like Shinobi, samurai and etc... it would be really cool to have these elements in our adventures.


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Could be a Tian Xia Lost Omens book. Maybe implement some of the unique weapons there (so long as they aren't balanced to be subpar Advanced weapons).

But I imagine a lot of those will be Uncommon options with maybe a Tian Xia Access entry.


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But what is a shinobi other than a Minkaian Rogue? There are few ninja things that you can already find in Rogue feats, especially with how 2e Rogue incorporated some 1e ninja abilities already. I mean, obviously you'd swap some common/uncommon access to weapons for a character from Tian Xia, and maybe you'd want some gunslinger archrtype stuff in there for authenticity...

Samurai might be a touch more work out thr gate because we don't really have a full mounted knight character outside of cavalier archetype, but otherwise that about covers it, starting from probably a Fighter.. plus your proficiency with all martial would allow you automatic proficiency in firearms, again for accuracy.

The thing is, making an archetype, or especially a class, for shinobi or samurai sets those things apart as "exotic", where if you simply played starting in Tian Xia you'd have to ask yourself why remove a base class like Rogue and replace it with the niche Ninja built on western stereotypes (or if not removing the Rogue, have to ask yourself what is the difference between these two)? At best the shinobi archetype would be about membership in some kind of Minkaian organization similar to the Hell Knights archetype or I don't remember if the Bright Lions have a 2e archetype yet... that might happen actually, if they establish a named organization of assassins and spies in Minkai and if they are renown for abilities not common to rogues general


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

"Oriental" isn't still ok to say, is it? That seems wrong. But yeah, basically what Sibelius said. Fighters would actually be great with a katana's deadly trait. The Duelist archetype can get you Quickdraw for some Iaido action and gets you a challenge mechanic, but you'll probably need Dual Handed Assault if you want to pivot your grip.


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“Oriental” is considered an offensive term nowadays; it’s best to steer clear of it.

These concepts are always fraught, IMO. A samurai is just a Fighter from Minkai, y’know? The idea that Asian people (or in this case, Fantasy Asian people) do everything SO differently that they need bespoke names and mechanics for stuff that’s largely just flavor had always been a messy one. OA and its like are part of a lengthy tradition in tabletop of primarily white dudes putting down their half-baked visions of Japan and China on the page and saying “that’s everything Asian!”

I would welcome a revisit to Tian Xia in the Lost Omens line, and a rulebook to pair with that would be welcome… but that rulebook shouldn’t just be “Asian stuff,” IMO. Heck, I’ve largely convinced myself that a Tian 2023 is in the cards based on our current rulebook offerings - Treasure Vault, the hoard of an imperial (“Eastern”) dragon, and Rage of Elements, which is drawing clear inspiration from Chinese wuxing - which both do a good job of getting at that flavor without just being a big heap of outsider-looking-in pop culture.


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ok i'm sorry guys i really didn't know this term was considered offensive i'm young and i'm still learning about these things but thanks for all your opinions


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

I think the treasure vault could include armors and weapons from many different earth cultures and contextualize them into the Golarion world.


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I had wrongly figured he came up with the term when a bunch of idiots got a product canceled for referring to "Asians", as though that term as offensive.


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The word Orient originally had a meaning of things East of Europe.

It has in todays culture fallen mostly out of use and is considered to be offensive by some people.

When referring to cultures in and around China and Japan I believe an acceptable catchall is East Asian, Southeast Asian, or Far East Asian. Depending on which groups you're trying to lump together.


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NiTTo wrote:
ok i'm sorry guys i really didn't know this term was considered offensive i'm young and i'm still learning about these things but thanks for all your opinions

Don't sweat it. On the plus side this means you can run an adventure in Tian Xia with very little need for overt homebrwing. The game includes a good variety of monsters inspired from Asian folklore, from the rakshasa of India, to oni and tengu (latter of which makes for excellent playable ancestry) and even a variety of youkai and several South East Asian monsters (I forget which ones but I've seen them!). Since you don't need to create bespoke ninja and samurai classes you can jump right in with calling your Minkaian rogues ninjas and your fighters and gunslingers samurai if that suits you.

There might be a bit of need to reskin a few weapons but there should be a good number of east Asian weapons already available, and only changing what is common or uncommon will do the trick. After that, the trickiest bit is probably looking out for the lore, since it's a bit sparse on this region and much of it is a little outdated. On the plus side that means with a little research you can probably make up your own unless you're planning to play a published adventure like the Ruby Phoenix martial arts tournament.


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I do love the Japanese and Chinese war culture and mythology. I'd be down for a well done book with ninja, samurai, the warrior codes, as well as some of the Chinese warriors like the Shaolin Monk and Wuxia warriors we see in film. You can do some of that with skills, but some dedicated archetypes or classes would be cool too. Though it certainly isn't hard to make those archetypes with the current rule set. A dedicated book would add more depth and flavor to class chassis and abilities.


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It’s frustrating that so many people seem to think China and Japan are all that exists in Asia.

The last few years of the indie tabletop scene have seen an explosion of incredible talent coming out of places like Malaysia and the Philippines, and Golarion has done a remarkably good job of presenting analogues to cultures we see less often in d20 fantasy (Korea, Thailand, Vietnam)… yet whenever this conversation comes up, it’s just ninjas and samurai.

Liberty's Edge

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Why is it frustrating? Those are two of the most well-known, technologically developed, and highly populated nations, both of whom either hold a place of fame or infamy among western audiences.

This is like being upset that popular music is well known and desirable by wide audiences while smaller bands appeal to a smaller niche... companies are almost always going to shoot for the ideas that resonate with the most people. Paizo has been doing a great job of adding diversity and representation to their products but regardless they still have to appeal to peoples wants and expectations.


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keftiu wrote:

It’s frustrating that so many people seem to think China and Japan are all that exists in Asia.

The last few years of the indie tabletop scene have seen an explosion of incredible talent coming out of places like Malaysia and the Philippines, and Golarion has done a remarkably good job of presenting analogues to cultures we see less often in d20 fantasy (Korea, Thailand, Vietnam)… yet whenever this conversation comes up, it’s just ninjas and samurai.

China and Japan are the easiest to turn into a game due to the depth and size of their war culture and mythology. Japan and China have a lot of easy to access films and history that makes their cultures easy to turn into expansive gamebooks and to visualize their game analogues.

Plenty of other cultures have interesting history and warrior traditions. Korea has a lot of cool martial arts and war history. You have Muay Thai in Thailand and a lot of the Buddhist and Native mythology. Escrima in The Phillipines. Pentjak Silat in Indonesia. They all have a war culture and mythology. But the media isn't as expansive as China and Japan put out, especially for fantasy gaming.

For modern gaming you have quite a few cool films that could provide inspiration. Both The Raid movies were amazing and showed the sheer brutality and ferocity of Pentjak Silat. Korea is putting out a lot of films, but for some reason they don't show off Tae Kwon Do, Hapkido, and there other art forms too well. Mostly just standard brutal movie martial arts and fighting. But the stories and acting is amazing.

For me it is hard to not want to play something like Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon or Hero, those movies are beautifully done fantasy movies. I've watched martials arts movies out of Hong Kong since was I a kid. The Five Deadly Venoms is one of my favorite early Shaw brothers movies. Of course I grew up watching Bruce Lee who started the martial arts culture and media in America.

I've been watching Japanese films since I was young too. Akiro Kurosawa is amazing. I loved Toshiro Mifune and Takashi Shimura. Then you also have some modern films like 13 Assassins by Takashia Miike. That dude makes amazing movies as well. I watched ever Shintaro Katsu Zatoichi film he made. I eat that stuff up.

Then toss in anime like Bleach, Claymore, Berserk, and so many more, how can you not have a massive inspiration to play around in Japanese mythology and war culture? Or Chinese for that matter?

The mythology, war culture, and media coming out of Japan and China is flat out amazing. Even watching a film like Rashomon is awesome. It's very easy to find inspiration to make a book for those areas and for players to view media that inspires them to play in those sandboxes.


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There's also the issue that a lot, a lot of East Asian cultures were deeply influenced by ancient Chinese culture. So many touch stones of ancient Chinese culture would also apply to many other East Asian cultures.

Heck, one of the original forms of writing in Japan was the adoption of Chinese characters (although many had their meaning changed). Many adopted Confucian teachings and ethics, especially within the royal courts.

I'll agree that we should do more to represent less represented cultures, but that applies to all less represented cultures. And I don't think it means that in the "fantasy Asia" setting we should get rid of the stuff that people are likely to expect and be familiar with already.


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Claxon wrote:
And I don't think it means that in the "fantasy Asia" setting we should get rid of the stuff that people are likely to expect and be familiar with already.

This isn’t something I ever asked for, so I’m a little confused by this sentiment.


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keftiu wrote:
Claxon wrote:
And I don't think it means that in the "fantasy Asia" setting we should get rid of the stuff that people are likely to expect and be familiar with already.
This isn’t something I ever asked for, so I’m a little confused by this sentiment.

Wouldn't be the first and I doubt it'll be the last time a cry for more and greater variety was heard as disdain or censure against the familiar


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Barring some ancestries found in Tian Xia but not in Avistan or the Mwangi Expanse, I don't really understand which "Asian expy" sorts of characters you couldn't make with what we have now.

That's not to say a Tian Xia book wouldn't be neat. But the Mwangi Expanse book wasn't full of mechanics for building new kinds of characters.

Sure, there are some characters from some Asian media you couldn't make with the current rules, but you would also struggle to make someone like Spider-Man or Guillermo from WWDITS. So the question is "does this kind of character match the kind of game this is."

Like a Samurai is just a fighter and a Ninja is just a rogue with different set dressing.

Dark Archive

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Granted, would be nice to have ninja racket for rogue with sort of ki ability flavor and proficiency for some ninja like weapons rogue can't already use.


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The only reason Japan and China occupy such an outsized place in Western culture is that they were never colonised by Europeans. China kind of a bit was, and it shows. Indonesia is larger than Japan, more diverse culturally, has tons of myths and is, for all practical purposes, a more interesting country, BUT they got shafted by the Dutch and so never got the chance to mesmerise Anglo-Saxon minds as the uncanny, unconquered Japan did.

Shifting the spotlight away from China and Japan is the right thing to do correct wrongs that allowed your western civilization to get filthy rich at expense of others.


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keftiu wrote:
Claxon wrote:
And I don't think it means that in the "fantasy Asia" setting we should get rid of the stuff that people are likely to expect and be familiar with already.
This isn’t something I ever asked for, so I’m a little confused by this sentiment.

Sorry, the way your post came across was "Don't show China and Japan show other stuff instead".

But based on the influence of Imperial China on the region it would seem like a fool's errand. But now I understand that is not what you intended.

Again, sorry for misunderstanding your statement.


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Totally Not Gorbacz wrote:

The only reason Japan and China occupy such an outsized place in Western culture is that they were never colonised by Europeans. China kind of a bit was, and it shows. Indonesia is larger than Japan, more diverse culturally, has tons of myths and is, for all practical purposes, a more interesting country, BUT they got shafted by the Dutch and so never got the chance to mesmerise Anglo-Saxon minds as the uncanny, unconquered Japan did.

Shifting the spotlight away from China and Japan is the right thing to do correct wrongs that allowed your western civilization to get filthy rich at expense of others.

I take issue with your statement, since (and I could be wrong) the popularity of Japan in Western culture only came to prominence after WW2. And I'm not sure that it's even particularly popular outside of the US (I genuinely don't know). But Paizo's products are written in America, with a primarily American audience in mind.

And describing it as "mesmerizing" Anglo-Saxon minds leaves out plenty of non-white non-English (as in the country) people.

And given the rise to prominence only occurred post WW2, I believe it to be partially driven by soldiers returning from the theater of war bringing back bits of Japanese culture with them. So while we can't say conquered, I believe it was Japan's defeat in WW2 that ultimately led to their being able to export their culture in what seems like an outsized way (to me as an American).


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Someone threw some bait out in a trap and someone else took a bite of the bait. Claxon you failed your Perception check against that trap. Make your Will save, buddy. Don't get locked in to that discussion, you can do it. I'm spending my action to help you make that Will save to avoid the pointless, unwinnable debate.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:

Barring some ancestries found in Tian Xia but not in Avistan or the Mwangi Expanse, I don't really understand which "Asian expy" sorts of characters you couldn't make with what we have now.

That's not to say a Tian Xia book wouldn't be neat. But the Mwangi Expanse book wasn't full of mechanics for building new kinds of characters.

Sure, there are some characters from some Asian media you couldn't make with the current rules, but you would also struggle to make someone like Spider-Man or Guillermo from WWDITS. So the question is "does this kind of character match the kind of game this is."

Like a Samurai is just a fighter and a Ninja is just a rogue with different set dressing.

What I'd like to see in a Tian Xia book is pretty much what we saw in Mwangi Expanse. The nations and cultures of the region, history, legends, points of interest, stuff like that.


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Deriven Firelion wrote:
Someone threw some bait out in a trap and someone else took a bite of the bait. Claxon you failed your Perception check against that trap. Make your Will save, buddy. Don't get locked in to that discussion, you can do it. I'm spending my action to help you make that Will save to avoid the pointless, unwinnable debate.

You may have a very good point there.


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Ed Reppert wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:

Barring some ancestries found in Tian Xia but not in Avistan or the Mwangi Expanse, I don't really understand which "Asian expy" sorts of characters you couldn't make with what we have now.

That's not to say a Tian Xia book wouldn't be neat. But the Mwangi Expanse book wasn't full of mechanics for building new kinds of characters.

Sure, there are some characters from some Asian media you couldn't make with the current rules, but you would also struggle to make someone like Spider-Man or Guillermo from WWDITS. So the question is "does this kind of character match the kind of game this is."

Like a Samurai is just a fighter and a Ninja is just a rogue with different set dressing.

What I'd like to see in a Tian Xia book is pretty much what we saw in Mwangi Expanse. The nations and cultures of the region, history, legends, points of interest, stuff like that.

Now this is something I believe everybody interested in Tian Xia would be very happy to have, especially if made with as much nuance and care.


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I think a good depiction of pre-colonial Filipino culture would be very interesting, as its Golarion counterpart would never have the degree of outside influence that the real world Phillipines does. I have always regretted that I know far more about the history and culture of China and Japan than the Philippines even though I know more Filipinos than people of the other two cultures.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Sibelius Eos Owm wrote:
But what is a shinobi other than a Minkaian Rogue?

The ninja class was distinctly more magical than the rogue can ever really be, which is a potentially compelling niche. To be honest, if I was looking at a lot of archetypal fantasy ninja tropes, I'd probably pick Monk, Thaumaturge, or Magus before I picked rogue.

Not saying Paizo would necessarily do it, but there's design space that could be explored there (much in the same way that people assumed swashbucklers and investigators were too redundant to ever be show up in PF2, but paizo carved out space for them regardless).

keftiu wrote:
These concepts are always fraught, IMO. A samurai is just a Fighter from Minkai, y’know? The idea that Asian people (or in this case, Fantasy Asian people) do everything SO differently that they need bespoke names and mechanics for stuff that’s largely just flavor had always been a messy one.

I totally get that, but again, there's mechanical and thematic space here that doesn't necessarily work well with existing classes.

Some of this could be addressed by feats or archetypes, but there's room here, if Paizo wanted, to build out new classes.

... I'd compare it more to that idea I've seen you talk about before re: shamans. It's not exoticism to want to make a distinct Shaman class, it's just acknowledging that there's mechanical and thematic design spaces that are not accomplished very well by existing divine options.

Granted I think the Shaman feels a more pressing/interesting design space, but I still think there's clearly room here to explore things that just aren't very facilitated by the game as-is.


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NiTTo wrote:
ok i'm sorry guys i really didn't know this term was considered offensive i'm young and i'm still learning about these things but thanks for all your opinions

It's the equivalent of using the word "colored." It's not the worst sin ever, but enough bad people have used it historically that you should avoid it using it now, especially if you're hoping to have a serious or educated conversation. Unless it's about rugs.

There's nothing in your posts to suggest anything but respect for the cultures. Good for you. I hope you got some good ideas on how to build the characters you want.

There are a few things (like those Chinese archers that supposedly pulled bows with their feet) that can't be adequately simulated with existing rules but a lot of stuff that can.

If there's one thing I feel is missing, it would be a "Dragons of Tian Xia" section, since Eastern Asian dragon mythology is pretty different from European dragon mythology.


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Squiggit wrote:
Sibelius Eos Owm wrote:
But what is a shinobi other than a Minkaian Rogue?

The ninja class was distinctly more magical than the rogue can ever really be, which is a potentially compelling niche.

Not saying Paizo would necessarily do it, but there's design space that could be explored there (much in the same way that people assumed swashbucklers and investigators were too redundant to ever be ported over, but paizo carved out space for them regardless).

I suppose it could be done.

But lacking specific support I think it could be also be simulated by picking up the right spell caster dedication.

Although a class with some specific focus spell I could see being a thing. Thinking of the shuriken burst type ability.

Dark Archive

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Ninja has more mechanical reason to be a thing in my opinion. Doesn't really matter whether its covered by monk feats, rogue racket or archetype, what really matters is ability to pull of stuff like the smoke bomb vanish trick, moving so fast people see doubles of you, substituting yourself with nearby objects, etc.

It does make sense as archetype in that a gunslinger could definitely be ninja and we need more portrayals of ninja who do the "they use ANY kind of weapon that does the job" thing

Samurai though doesn't really have lot of unique things to anything more than archetype at most. Samurai weren't really that different from cavalier in first place, so arguably you can still do them as fighter with cavalier archetype. But I guess if something that is missing from 1e that is flavorwise also relevant, it would be whole challenge thing because people do associate samurai with duels(but not duelist archetype style fighting)?

...But yeah, lot of things associated with samurai are things you can do already in 2e as fighter, so its bit of hard sell. I guess its still possible archetype just like how viking was though. Maybe archetype with heavy armor profiency, mount feats, challenge feats and some fighter feats so you could make horseback archer ranger samurai?


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I don't really see a Ninja as a thing that is inherently magical, any more than a Rogue is inherently magical or a Barbarian is inherently magical.

If we're going to do a ninja in 2e I would hope it (at least at low levels) clings closer to what a ninja was historically (and in pre-modern popular culture). Things like mirror duplicates, disappearing, and flash stepping are available to several classes already.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
I don't really see a Ninja as a thing that is inherently magical

I mean in reference to PF1, the ninja class got a ki pool at level 2. And in general ninjas in fantasy fiction tend to lean firmly into mysticism.

Quote:
or a Barbarian is inherently magical.

PF2 Barbarians are pretty magical though. Fury and Superstition are the only ones that aren't and both of those are kinda niche options.


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I mean, there's already a problem with the monk class being just "the clearinghouse of all wuxia fantasies" and I'd prefer not to see that reproduced with a ninja class. There's lots of different kinds of ninja (the only real uniting factor is "you're sneaky" which is a skill) so I'd prefer to be able to build lots of different classes as ninja rather than having a ninja class. This seems like a much better thing to do with an archetype than an actual class.

Like the archetype requires dex 14, trained in stealth, gives proficiency and proficiency pegging with a set of weapons. Later feats grant a sneak attack option and focus spells.


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David knott 242 wrote:


I think a good depiction of pre-colonial Filipino culture would be very interesting, as its Golarion counterpart would never have the degree of outside influence that the real world Philippines does. I have always regretted that I know far more about the history and culture of China and Japan than the Philippines even though I know more Filipinos than people of the other two cultures.

As mentioned above, there's been a real explosion of cool Filipino fantasy in the RPG scene over the last few years, with Gubat Banwa leading the charge and having a lush, well-detailed setting inspired by the entire span of the Philippines history. Musanghari is a really neat zine setting supplement for it.

A Thousand Thousand Islands is a series of brilliant, system-neutral Southeast Asian fantasy gazetteers, with (I believe) a focus on Malaysia but hitting on other areas in the region, too.

Lots of reason to be excited for a return to Tian Xia, and to see more of Minata and the Okaiyo Ocean.

Dark Archive

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Thing is though, if you want to do completely historic realistic ninja, you can already do so with rogue <_<

So I want my anime ninjas xP I don't see why we can't play those japanese pop culture "that is just straight up magic" ninjas


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It seems a bit difficult to present something historically accurate on a subject that has more legends and folklore centered around it than actual historical record.

In that regard, there are plenty legends and folklore, and even historically written manuals, that ascribe Ninja as having mystical abilities. So, there is some precedence for it. Much of many Asian cultures and legends are steeped in mysticism.

That would be the more direction I'd prefer it to go. Weather as a full Class or Archetype. It gives it more of an identity imo

----
I'm particularly interested in exploring the Shaguang Desert and flying city of Yjae; as well the Tian-Yae that call it home. They seem to possibly be inspired by those African people who, such as the Siddi and Kaffir (not to be confused with the racial slur used in South Africa). Mostly an assumption on my part, but their relation as decendants of the Shory, and the relation of the Siddi and Kaffir as decendants of the Bantu and Zanj people (who may have inspired the Bekyar and Zenj to a degree) leads me to believe that may be where the inspiration was drawn.

I would also love to see a bit of info on the Tian-Sing and their relation to the Taumata and Sarusan.

Overall, I just want it all. D:


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I liked how 5e did the Samurai. It was very busted but it worked thematically.


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I feel like "playing an anime ninja" is like "playing as spider-man". You can play that character, but it probably fits better in a different kind of game entirely.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
I feel like "playing an anime ninja" is like "playing as spider-man". You can play that character, but it probably fits better in a different kind of game entirely.

Eh, I'm not so sure I agree - especially when 2e Monks can literally go Super Saiyan. I do think that either some more Monk Focus Spells along that supernatural ninja theme or an Archetype with the same could sell the fantasy well enough, though; a Monk dipping into the Rogue Multiclass or vice versa gets 90% of the way there, as we are currently.

The Thaumaturge Mirror Implement also feels very ninja-y, IMO. I haven't quite found a character I want to build around that, but the idea's been rattling around in my brain for weeks now.


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I keep seeing this notion that anime and/or wuxia doesn't belong in D&D/Pathfinder and honestly... it's already here. It's been here for decades in some cases. You could play an Avatar-style bender since PF1 (finally), there were multiple Magical Girl-inspired choices, namely for Paladin and Vigilante, and, well, Monks have been a part of the game for a long time.

...Can't play Spider-Man yet, but I feel like that's more a product of a highly thematic powerset rather than because his powers are plain unsuited to the game. What does he do? He punches people, has enhanced reflexes vs. danger, climbs walls, and swings on silk. Only thing here a Monk can't do yet is the at-will grappling hook ability (though a true Climb speed would be more effective for representing the fantasy than relying on Monk wall-options).

Of course, there was a clear Spider-Man option in 1e Vigilante, so... But then this discussion may be starting to stray a little.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

There was a literal Hulk Vigilante with the Brute Archetype as well.

But agreed. Pathfinder specifically plays with anime tropes more than many other systems of similiar theme.

A magical Ninja in a fantasy game seems hardly a stretch. I'm all for the sneaky stabby. But in what way mechanical would it be any different from a Rogue if nothing is innovative on?


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I think the thing is that the Spider-Man vigilante in 1e didn't really fulfill the fantasy of "being Spider-Man" so much as "you can do some of the things that Spider-Man does"- "Spider-Man" is going to be cooler (in an uncool way) and more powerful than the game allows. Similarly the level of "how magical can your sneaky infiltrators be" is going to be a tricky needle to thread, since like "straight up Naruto-style Ninja Arts" are probably right out since you'd need the whole game to be balanced around that sort of thing.

It's like how Mutants and Masterminds was way better at letting you be Spider-Man or the Hulk than Pathfinder 1e was, even if Pathfinder 1e tried.


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I hardly see how developing a class centered around what would essentially be ki focus spells or spell-like abilities as needing to rebalance the system around.


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Well, there should be a class that devotes much of its budget to focus spells, absolutely. But should that class also be necessarily sneaky? I could see a wide variety of different versions of "really good at focus spells" (one of these was an option for the Magus).

But the other point is that a lot of anime ninja powers are outside the realm of what focus points can be relied on to do. You're not going to be teleporting constantly (you can only amp Warp Step at most 3 times per combat!)

Dark Archive

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Sibelius Eos Owm wrote:
I keep seeing this notion that anime and/or wuxia doesn't belong in D&D/Pathfinder and honestly... it's already here. It's been here for decades in some cases.

I'd argue its on some level been there ever since core rulebook ;P High level adventuring turns into anime combat flavorwise more or less


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If it has tools to readily available to regain Focus Points on a regular, as the Psychic does (albeit, at a limited pace), that could solve that. The idea I had in my head at one point was that Ninja were the masters of refocus and focus spells; being able to readily regain focus points within a given limit. Start them with 2 points like the Psychic, have them regain both points if used only for their focus spells, as the Psychic does if only using amps. Allow them Feats that enable regaining focus points through Actions and Reactions. Heck, give them abilities tied to regaining focus if they land a crit, or simply not having to spend the point if the ability used is a crit. There are plenty of ways around that, if that ends up being the focus of the class.

As far as does it need to be sneaky? No. But why wouldn't you make it sneaky? It's a Ninja.

I guess my thing is, why can't it be both? Why deny a thematically viable idea for little reason? It could easily have a traditional Ninja class path and the more mystical path.

If it did this, what are your ideas for how a traditional, historically accurate Ninja would function, that is in no way similiar to the Rogue or Assassin? Whether it be a Class, Archetype, of Racket for the Rogue.

EDIT: Another idea, make it similiar to the Kineticist. Having magical abilities that don't rely on Focus Points or Spell Slots, but Action Economy.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:

Well, there should be a class that devotes much of its budget to focus spells, absolutely. But should that class also be necessarily sneaky? I could see a wide variety of different versions of "really good at focus spells" (one of these was an option for the Magus).

But the other point is that a lot of anime ninja powers are outside the realm of what focus points can be relied on to do. You're not going to be teleporting constantly (you can only amp Warp Step at most 3 times per combat!)

I wouldn't call a Ninja a class to be "really good at focus spells," so suggesting that is the niche they should need to fulfill is quite limited in its scope. They weren't amazing in PF1 with their Ki Pool compared to any other class that had a similar mechanic, so already we have precedent for the class not being stellar with its focus powers.

In addition, "anime ninja powers" often relied on combination efforts that aren't feasible with PF2's action economy (and because it's a team game, their combination efforts relied solely on themselves a lot of the time), and some effects that were full-on spells (no, not focus spells, spells like summoning or mass teleportation), or rituals, neither of these things a PF2 Ninja could realistically expect to do. The anime ninjas were more like Dual Class characters, which is a power budget well beyond the assumed scope of PF2. I wouldn't even consider Free Archetype to be enough, either.

IMO, Ninja would probably be a great candidate for a Rogue Class Archetype, since as others point out, a lot (but not enough) of the framework for them is already present. Legendary Perception and Reflex Saves, Master Will Saves, and full Martial Proficiencies (though not with the right weapons). Make it able to choose Dexterity or Wisdom as its Ki Ability Scores (pun intended), and give it a Focus Pool with a basic relatively useful ability, and is Refocused by meditation for 10 minutes.

Added feats could be to give them the Refocus ones from the other classes, as well as some neat focus abilities, such as Shadow Clone, Flash Step, etc. as an example. Others can be Legendary Sneak as a class feat available early, ignoring pre-requisites, with bonuses if they already take/possess the Legendary Sneak feat (such as benefitting from cover and/or concealment for the purposes of Avoiding Notice, Hiding, or Sneaking).

Dark Archive

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Just to note though, when I say anime ninja, I didn't actually mean Naruto <_<


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CorvusMask wrote:
Just to note though, when I say anime ninja, I didn't actually mean Naruto <_<

Sure. But I can assure you, given its popularity, people would want to try to play such characters and bring them to life in Pathfinder, and certainly explains why, when you bring up "anime ninjas," it's the first thing to come to everyone's mind. It's just not feasible within the Pathfinder ruleset, even with Dual Class.

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