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The Gamer's Table III: Return Of The Undead Dice of Horror and Evil
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is in perfect karmic alignment
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1. Druids are too danged powerful.

I fail to see the problem Wink
quote:
1. What broke the druid class was wildshape, which enabled a 98-pound weakling druid to transform into a dire bear AND still be able to cast spells, with the proper feats. In Pathfinder, the duration of wildshape was capped and instead of a literal change in form, the druid just gets some bonuses to their attributes commensurate with the form they're using. So, that 98-pound weakling transforms into a 250-pound hulk of a man instead of a direbear. Much more tolerable.

?!?! They broke my class!


On a more serious note, we found D&D so flawed we switched to World of Darkness.


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Blog: Room with a view.

~You are a *Taverner*.
Sometimes patrons want to go where everybody knows their names, though it helps when half of them are named John. When people want to celebrate, or commiserate, they gather to your establishment. You provide the atmosphere, the warmth, rum, and even an ear to bend. Did I mention the rum? Years before the language will be mangled with terms like facilitator and networking and interpersonal communication, you've overseen it all, and broken up a few bar fights, to boot.~
-Royko

 
Posts: 8667 | Location: Just north of Earth | Registered: July 02, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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They didn't break it, they balanced it. Druids are still plenty powerful, but at one point they were, by the numbers, almost three times as powerful as rogues and twice as powerful as fighters. So, yay for the druid players, but stinks for just about everyone else.

The new WoD system has its own issues, but it's a really good system. I like d20 gaming because it's familiar, it's abstract and it's fast, but I still want to start up a GURPS game some time.


__________
AJGraeme
"Why are there ghosts in the kitchen punching each other in the balls?" - Aidan, "Being Human"
"Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried."
- G.K. Chesterton

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Posts: 48705 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Lexis Nexus
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Originally posted by Furious:

Since I am someone who has no friends who is too busy to role play, could you describe the differences in Pathfinder and regular D&D and why you like playing it?


Pretty much what Dweller said. PF fixed a lot of issues with 3.5 that were either slowing the game down drastically (bull rush, trip, grapple, etc. are now all CMB vs. CMD and it's much simpler) or causing imbalances (druids' wildshape, higher level spells).

PF also introduces unlimited 0-level spells for most spellcasting classes, which means that low-level casters are not necessarily completely useless after about 2 rounds. Arcane spellcasters still kick ass at higher levels, but there is more of a balance (fighters get more feats, armor and weapon training, etc.).

Monsters have been redone as well (constructs and undead are no longer immune to critical hits, yay!)

In general I enjoy playing PF over D&D 3.5 because it is (slightly) easier, better balanced, and well put together. The books are gorgeous (I'm waiting on the Advanced Race Guide to see what they came up with for my beloved Tengu). There still are plenty of options to customize your character, but it's all relatively simple (class, archetype, feats).

I'm playing a 6th level dwarf fighter in our long-term campaign right now - lots of options to make him what I want to be, but all clearly presented.
My other current character is a half-orc Oracle of the Waves, who is a true beast. 18 STR, 18 CON, 18 CHA. I rolled really well. When using his Ice Armor oracle ability, his AC (also at lvl 6) is 29, and he has a +1 trident of frost for some nice cold damage.


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Adept of the Burning Chrome
 
Posts: 16372 | Registered: December 22, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Lexis Nexus
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Originally posted by Dweller in Darkness:
They didn't break it, they balanced it. Druids are still plenty powerful, but at one point they were, by the numbers, almost three times as powerful as rogues and twice as powerful as fighters. So, yay for the druid players, but stinks for just about everyone else.

The new WoD system has its own issues, but it's a really good system. I like d20 gaming because it's familiar, it's abstract and it's fast, but I still want to start up a GURPS game some time.


I like the WoD settings, but the old system just annoyed the hell out of me. I haven't tried the new one. d20 is just nice and easy, as well as versatile.

Dweller - have you seen the Ultimate Combat book? It's the only source book I'm missing, and I'm wondering whether to shell out the cash for it, considering I don't want gunpowder or Asian warriors in my game, and neither does the other GM.


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Adept of the Burning Chrome
 
Posts: 16372 | Registered: December 22, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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It's more miss than hit, unfortunately. Any of the cool stuff - archetypes and feats and such - is in the SRDs. You can definitely skip it. Honestly, the APG gives so many archetypes, feats and skill uses that you can pretty much just build off that if you're running a homebrew campaign.

I like the gunslinger class as a concept, but their firearms rules are genuinely bad. Not the worst I've seen for d20, but quite awful (6 gp a shot, but with a broken feat/class combo that means that you can generate an infinite amount of gunpowder). Someone bought it for me, for which I'm thankful, as I would not like to pay for it.

Do you have the bestiaries? Number three may be my favourite so far but, fair warning, there's quite a lot of Asian/Middle Eastern flair to it. Since that's the major focus of the last few Pathfinder APs, that's not surprising.


__________
AJGraeme
"Why are there ghosts in the kitchen punching each other in the balls?" - Aidan, "Being Human"
"Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried."
- G.K. Chesterton

My moderator voice is red.
 
Posts: 48705 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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current PF book count:
Core Rulebook
Advanced Player's Guide
Ultimate Magic
Bestiaries 1,2 and 3
Inner Sea Guide (for inspiration)
Advanced Race Guide on pre-order.

I don't mind the Asian/Eastern monsters, I can adapt that to my setting fairly easily. The northeastern part of the continent are the Ost- and West-Khanates, so some Asian-type monsters should find their home there, with more of a Genghis Khan twist than trad. Chinese/Japanese folklore. More mounted archers, less ninjas. Also, they're ruled by dragons.

Thanks for the tip on UC. That was the idea I had started to form. I don't want any (portable) gunpowder anyway, so no. Between my own books and the SRD, I'm all set.

Character concepts I'm keeping in the back of my head for the next time I need to make one quickly:

Fenn Ashbringer, half-elf alchemist with a predilection for blowing shit up.
Rufus Foggybottom IV, halfling cavalier, and Wild Bill, his boar mount.
As yet unnamed Tengu ranger linguist dual-wielding swords.

Also, Ulrik Olafson of the Bloodstone Clan (Mr. Drunken Dwarf Fighter) is using Cthulhu dice for this campaign.


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Adept of the Burning Chrome
 
Posts: 16372 | Registered: December 22, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Nice!

The current game is set in the same world I've been running since I was thirteen. I've known this world longer than I've known Christy and it's . . . messy. I don't know that I could sum it up more elegantly than an underground out of Lovecraft, a surface out of Vance, Tolkein, Final Fantasy and Zelazny and an otherworld out of . . . well, growing up Protestant and reading a lot of Dante.

The overall theme for the world, which will probably come to fruition some time in my late 50s, at this point, is killing God.


__________
AJGraeme
"Why are there ghosts in the kitchen punching each other in the balls?" - Aidan, "Being Human"
"Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried."
- G.K. Chesterton

My moderator voice is red.
 
Posts: 48705 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Your world sounds yes, messy, but also really interesting and eminently playable. This latest one of mine is definitely Lovecraftian in its underground as well (in D&D terms, the Abyss is a lot more active in the material plan than Hell). Surface is Tolkien/Warhammer Fantasy RPG grimdark/pseudohistory/goofy because I can never keep a straight face that long, hence the halflings with Spanish names.

I'm allowing a lot of the secondary playable races as well (Tengu, Fetchling, Undine, etc.), except for the fucking dhampir. No dhampirs in my game.


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Adept of the Burning Chrome
 
Posts: 16372 | Registered: December 22, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Woah, lot of hate for the half-vampires, huh?

The Abyss works better in campaigns, I find. Hell plans.

BTW, if you're interested in playing around with races, you might want to check out Green Ronin's Races of Renown: Bastards and Bloodlines. It has lots of pre-built half-races that are . . . odd (I'm particularly fond of the half-dwarf/half-roper and the half-halfling/half-harpy) and some really handy templates as well.


__________
AJGraeme
"Why are there ghosts in the kitchen punching each other in the balls?" - Aidan, "Being Human"
"Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried."
- G.K. Chesterton

My moderator voice is red.
 
Posts: 48705 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Yes, I am not overly fond of half-vampires. I might use one as NPC or villain, but they're one of the few playable races I won't allow for player characters. They just don't fit well with what I'm trying to get. Plus, I just plain don't like them, with no rational explanation. I'll allow Grippli and Catfolk and those crazy pseudo-Indian races before I let somebody play a Dhampir.

(My wife's character idea - Aasimar bear shaman).

I'm going to have to check that Green Ronin book, if only for entertainment value.

Let me pick your brain for the intro game, I need a good Abyss-worshipping monster in slimy tunnels. It's basically Pickman's Model, but he came back as a ghost and the PCs need to close a portal to the Abyss to put him to rest. His house is haunted by him, and there's a couple of soulbound dolls in there, then underneath tunnels leading to the portal. I have wererats in a tangentially related warehouse (it has ingredients for the portal-closing spell). Any good ideas? 4 PCs, 4th level.


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Adept of the Burning Chrome
 
Posts: 16372 | Registered: December 22, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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A couple of recommendations, depending on how you want to run things.

First of all, look at the ooze mephit. You'll have to alter a few things - increase the size and add a class level or two, for starters, and probably take away the flight and mephit summoning ability, but you can add just a few abilities in there and you have a cool, unique outsider. Aim for a monster of about CR 6 for your final build.

As a secondary option, rebuild your ooze mephit as suggested - removing the flight and summon ability should balance it out and keep it a CR 3 - and then round out the encounter with oozes. With a CR 6 encounter, you've got a budget of 2400 XP. Your mephit takes up 800 of that, leaving you with 1600. That's four giant amoeba, two gelatinous cubes or an ochre jelly.

If you want something that requires a little less building, you can look at a bodak with the young template and reduced or removed DR. That leaves you with a Small monster, but a rather memorable one.

If you had a more straightforward divine caster, I'd suggest a wraith, but that takes either someone who can do consistent positive energy damage, or a party with lots of magic attacks or magic weapons to overcome the incorporeal ability.

BTW, when I run an encounter with a solo boss monster, I typically double the critter's hp. I mean, say you build your ooze mephit by stacking on four levels or sorceror. That gives the 19 hp from the basic critter, and then the average 18 from the sorceror levels for a total of 37. That's pretty abyssmal. Might want to skip that for the bodak, since it'd still have a healthy 65 HP.

ETA: You might want to depower the bodak's death gaze attack to a drain of 1d2 or even just a single level. As it is, the gaze is a potential insta-kill, which is not fun.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Dweller in Darkness,


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AJGraeme
"Why are there ghosts in the kitchen punching each other in the balls?" - Aidan, "Being Human"
"Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried."
- G.K. Chesterton

My moderator voice is red.
 
Posts: 48705 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks. I like the ooze mephit idea. I'm going to avoid incorporeal undead as I think at this point my wife's bear shaman is the only significant caster in the group. I believe there will also be a ranger, an elf fighter, and an unknown fourth PC.

I looked at the Green Ronin book last night - some of those are pretty cool. Half-beholders!

Talking of building monsters, I'm working on some Mieville-inspired critters for a swamp adventure: anophelii, khepris, and scabmettlers.


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Adept of the Burning Chrome
 
Posts: 16372 | Registered: December 22, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Nice idea! There's an old dragon article that presents a few Mieville monsters, along with the sword from The Scar, but the monsters you mention are not among them.


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AJGraeme
"Why are there ghosts in the kitchen punching each other in the balls?" - Aidan, "Being Human"
"Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried."
- G.K. Chesterton

My moderator voice is red.
 
Posts: 48705 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by Dweller in Darkness:

First of all, look at the ooze mephit...


The fact that Dweller can say that and be completely serious impresses me.

And thanks for the Pathfinder/D&D comparison, guys.
 
Posts: 32705 | Location: The Island of Misfit USB Peripherals | Registered: June 25, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by Furious:
quote:
Originally posted by Dweller in Darkness:
First of all, look at the ooze mephit...

The fact that Dweller can say that and be completely serious impresses me.

And thanks for the Pathfinder/D&D comparison, guys.

Hey, an evil outsider with the earth subtype and only CR 3? Seriously AWESOME, you mean.

Oh, and a little commentary on the edition wars from Dungeon Bastard.


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AJGraeme
"Why are there ghosts in the kitchen punching each other in the balls?" - Aidan, "Being Human"
"Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried."
- G.K. Chesterton

My moderator voice is red.
 
Posts: 48705 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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The Shoggti Qlippoth might work well with my Lovecraftian theme too, if I nerf it down a bit.

I saw that Dragon article - if I remember right they had Cactacae, Vodyanoy, and Weavers, plus a couple of others. Interesting, but I'm making my guys a challenge for a lvl 4-6-ish party. There is an old "insect god" in a defiled moon temple under the swamp, it just woke up, and it's messing with the locals.
Anophelii will have a grab attack and do CON damage, Scabmettlers' AC will go up as they lose HP, and khepris will have a choice of a web attack or a cloud of acid.


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Adept of the Burning Chrome
 
Posts: 16372 | Registered: December 22, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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The shoggti's big stick is its mind-controlling spell abilities - if you reduce or eliminate the Wisdom drain on its attack and maybe pull the AC down, it'll work well. That'd work nicely.


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AJGraeme
"Why are there ghosts in the kitchen punching each other in the balls?" - Aidan, "Being Human"
"Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried."
- G.K. Chesterton

My moderator voice is red.
 
Posts: 48705 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by Dweller in Darkness:
That's the new D&D board game, right? What did she think?


Just saw this! I thought it was fun, but I wish there was less math, and more pretending to be a dwarf in a metal bustier who smashes things.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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Posts: 8062 | Location: On the 34th Floor | Registered: November 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I've internalized so much of the math, I do sometimes forget how involved it is - do Chris or any of his friends have non-D&D RPG games? Some of them, like Last Night on Earth and Elder Sign have very little math to them.


__________
AJGraeme
"Why are there ghosts in the kitchen punching each other in the balls?" - Aidan, "Being Human"
"Christianity has not been tried and found wanting; it has been found difficult and not tried."
- G.K. Chesterton

My moderator voice is red.
 
Posts: 48705 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I love pretending to be a dwarf smashing things. Not in a metal bustier, though. Hiding behind his beard and drunk on dwarven whiskey (fortified drinker trait!)


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Adept of the Burning Chrome
 
Posts: 16372 | Registered: December 22, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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