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RPG General Discussion / D&D Setting Riff: 25 Words or less
« Last post by Particle_Man on September 23, 2017, 05:36:16 pm »
Setting riff . . .

In the OTL, you are one of a band of heroes that worked your way up from humble beginnings to end up saving the world . . . almost.

At the end, you failed to defeat the BBEG.  The world is lost, but there is an artefact that lets you cast Sending through time to reach your 1st level self to warn your earlier incarnation about what to do and what not to do.  Tragically there is a limitation of 25 words or less.

This will destroy your own timeline and replace it with a new one; hopefully, one in which the BBEG can be defeated.

What message do you send to your earlier self?
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Current/New Campaigns / Re: Esoterrorists interest check
« Last post by GitS on September 07, 2017, 07:23:57 pm »
I'm in
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Current/New Campaigns / Esoterrorists interest check
« Last post by Espie on August 25, 2017, 05:25:56 pm »
beep boop.

Just seeing who is around I guess?
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RPG General Discussion / Re: A character I probably won't get to play
« Last post by Particle_Man on August 10, 2017, 11:22:05 pm »
Not sure if I will play this one, but probably not.  Anyhow for Pathfinder - a bard with the archaeologist archetype, taking fate's favoured as a trait to boost the luck.  Also halfling race with the adaptive luck and swift footed switch outs.  After 5 levels, go into the assassin prestige class.  So very little sneak attack, but a better chance to hit with the death attack.  Btw, take the undetectable alignment spell at bard level 1 and cast it every single morning - not sense in advertising one's evil nature to the world, is there?

For feats, well weapon finesse is likely to be useful, and lingering performance helps stretch out the archaeologist abilities.  Go unnoticed is great for assassins that go invisible quickly (another bard spell - two actually with vanish and invisibility at spell levels 1 and 2).  Maybe eventually go for the childlike and pass for human feats too.  Arcane Strike might be ok after lingering performance, as it is a free +1/+2 damage for 2 out of 3 rounds, but there are probably better feats.

Anyhow, just an idea.  I'm not sure I want to play an evil character so it may never happen.
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Current/New Campaigns / Re: thursday 7th sea
« Last post by Floogal on August 02, 2017, 03:14:48 pm »
I will not be showing Thursday, August 3 due to work.
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RPG General Discussion / Acid and Earth - should they break up?
« Last post by Particle_Man on July 10, 2017, 04:54:20 pm »
I noticed that there is a loose association with Acid and Earth in Pathfinder (Earth domain clerics get Acid Dart, Stone Oracles can get acid resistance, earth school elementalist wizards get acid cloud, the Oread race gets acid resistance).  But this is not always the case (deep earth sorcerers and geokineticists have no association with acid, AFAICT, and earth elementals are not particularly associated with acid).

Now I can see the Pathfinder urge for symmetry (4 cardinal elements, 4 energy types to go with them) but maybe that symmetry is not necessary.  I mean going the other way I don't think there is a Sonic elemental, nor a plane of Sound.  And Pathfinder has an acid quasi-elemental, so it doesn't need to ground an energy type in Earth.  And Earth is not, to my mind, associated with energy.  More like solidity, really.  Black dragons, that breath acid, are associated with water, not earth, for an example of another break between earth and acid.

What do you think?  Should there be a strong (or weak) tie between acid and earth?  Or is such a tie unnecessary?
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RPG General Discussion / Re: A character I probably won't get to play
« Last post by Particle_Man on July 07, 2017, 02:00:31 pm »
I guess I should add some thoughts on what I didn't take and why:

Weapon Finesse would be a good feat, but I don't see the character as a primary or even secondary melee character so much as an emergency one.

Similarly, for that reason, I didn't take Kinetic Whip or Kinetic Form, for extra reach, although I could see a build going that way.

Not having any other defensive talents (since I didn't branch out of Earth), there is no good reason to take expanded defense.

Pushing infusion and Bowling infusion both are ok, but there were better options, especially as a medium BAB into my CMB makes it harder and harder for them to work.

Jagged flesh is far too situational, and I don't think I like the aesthetics.

Earth Meld (from Ultimate Intrigue) was outside of the books I wanted to look at for a first pass at the class.  Also, it duplicates a spell that makes its user vulnerable to multiple "Save or Die" spells that are only "Save or Die" because one is using Earth Meld.  I've been there with an illusionist using phantasmal killer a lot and getting it bounced back on me via a helm of intellect - I see no need to repeat the experience.

Draining Infusion and Elemental Grip are very narrow in their target group.

Kinetic Fist is far too low on damage and requires a feat to boot.  Flurry of blasts is also too low on damage.

Mobile Blast and Spark of Life both pretty much require a "move action tax" to be useful.  But you are already likely using move actions to gather power.  That said, there is a neat synergy between these and draining infusion if one wants a permanent mobile blast hanging around (but they are noisy!).

The one feat I almost bent on taking was Iron Will, since will is the low save for this class.  Hopefully the traits and being a dwarf (good save bonus plus wis stat bonus) compensate for not taking that feat.
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Current/New Campaigns / Re: thursday 7th sea
« Last post by GitS on July 06, 2017, 12:23:16 pm »
Hello all,

Just need to let everyone know that there is no game today Thursday July 6, 2017  due to unforeseen circumstances.  that is all see you all next week
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RPG General Discussion / Re: A character I probably won't get to play
« Last post by Particle_Man on July 04, 2017, 03:54:57 pm »
Well, my friends warned me it would be complex, but I am going to try to make a kineticist, Pathfinder's answer to the warlock.

Since it is a "Try to grok the character" build, I will refrain from using too many books for it - so I will use traits from the advanced players' guide (because *everybody* uses those these days in Pathfinder games) but otherwise stick to the core and occult adventures.

So one thing one does with the character is pick a primary element.  In occult adventures that means Earth, Air, Fire, Water or Heart (no wait, that is Captain Planet) I mean Aether, the element of telekinesis.  Interestingly, Earth has nothing to do with acid in this class's abilities, which is a departure from the standard.  Also, there is no "Sonic" equivalent - at least not yet.

Now there is a provision later (7th or 15th level) to branch out a bit into more than one element, but I think I will try Earth all the way, and see what that gets me.  That means that when I pick wild talents I choose from either the Earth list or the Universal list.

So, a geokineticist.  Race, dwarf (they get a bonus with overflow damage as their favoured class ability and a con bonus which is good for this class, and besides, dwarf and earth go together like cookies and milk).  Also, a dwarf can use a battle axe at 1st level so I don' t need kinetic blade at 1st, even if things get suddenly melee on me.

The main feature of this character is an "Earth Blast", a basic blast that goes 30 feet as a ranged attack (this is a physical attack - if I had chosen an element with an energy attack I would be doing touch attacks but for less damage).  Con bonus is added to the damage.  So some obvious feats would be point blank shot and precise shot, and toughness isn't a bad idea either (there is something called burn, related to non-lethal damage that can't be removed, so more hp is good).

Now the basic blast can be modified according to four things: form infusions (maximum 1), substance infusions (maximum 1), and at higher level, element composition (the blast can become a metal blast at level 7 for more damage) and metakinesis (basically adding the equivalent of metamagic feats - for example, empower blast at level 5).  All of these cost "burn" and every point of burn makes me take my level in nonlethal damage, with no possibility of healing until I rest.  How much burn I could take per round is limited (so maximum 1 per round at level 1) and how much I can carry around during the day is also limited (con bonus  + 3).  At low levels, it would be good to avoid burn.

Fortunately, there are ways to avoid burn: at level 1 you can spend actions (move or full round) to "gather" the power which will help if one blasts by the end of one's next turn.  At higher levels, one can get a "burn discount" on infusion costs, and at much higher levels a slight discount on element composition costs and on metakinesis costs.  So, I suspect that this is the complicated part. 

In addition to blasts, there are other ways to get burn (such as using a "souped up" version of certain utility or defence powers).  Until 6th level, one would just suck up the burn, but after that one can take burn beforehand to store energy in a buffer that one could draw on later to reduce the burn costs of blasts or of utility or defence powers).

All of these (infusions and utility powers and so forth) are called wild talents.  They make the class more interesting.  Roughly speaking, you get an infusion every odd level and a utility power every even level (well I get a sort of mage hand with earth thing at 1st level).  At 7th and 15th levels I would not get an infusion if I were branching out from Earth into another element, but I am, so no worries.  After I get pb shot, precise shot and toughness, I will continually take "extra wild talent" as a feat to get more infusions and utility powers. 

All of these powers have levels, like spell levels.  Except for 1st powers, which I could always take, I can only take a talent if my class level is at least double the talent's level.  With the feat, it is even worse, as I can only use that feat to take a talent that is two talent levels lower than the highest talent level I have (this is where branching out would have been better, but oh well).

Ok, so LG dwarf, god Torag, traits: Courageous and Birthmark.  Taken together they give me a poor person's version of iron will, and will is this class's bad save. 

There is a "trade talents for other talents" function similar to how sorcerers do that for spells, but I will ignore it - I think it is better for those who branch out, as you can only get a talent of equal or lower level for what you trade away.

Oh, I should mention that overflow - it gives bonuses to attack, damage, and physical stats based on how much burn one has taken.  Dwarves get more of a damage bonus when overflow is on.  It is nice, but too much burn means I would go unconscious that much sooner.

Omnikinesis is a capstone power: for a burn, I could blast any element and trade out my earth powers for other element's powers for 24 hours.  But it is at 20th level, and it is complicated enough to keep track of the earth powers, so I will ignore that too.

Oh, I will say that class skills are sweet!  They include Acrobatics, Perception, Stealth, and Use Magic Device.  My element adds Climb and Knowledge (Dungeoneering) to that.  4 skill points/level.

Talents and Feats:

1: Point Blank Shot
1: Extended Range (for 1 burn shoot 120' - form infusion)
2: Defense: Earth to Stone (free Dr/adamantine = 1/2 level, can pump up with burn)
2: Earth Walk (always on - ignore difficult earth/stone/rubble terrain, harder to be moved if overflow on)
3: Precise Shot
3: Kinetic Blade (makes melee weapon out of blast - a little less damage (no overflow or con bonus) and no Aoos, I can coup de grace with it - 1 burn form infusion)
4: Earth Climb (hey a climb speed!)
5: Toughness
5: Entangling Infusion (a 2 burn substance infusion - if you hit someone twice with it, then  they are stuck to the floor!)
6: Tremorsense (poor people's detect invisible - either free but doesn't last, or 1 burn for a decent duration).
7: Composite blast: Metal (more damage, needed for some substance infusions, but costs 2 burn!)
7: Rare Metal Blast (change blast to any metal type to beat any material DR!  You already have a choice of bludgeoning, piercing or slashing (you had that with Earth blast too)- only alignment or mythic DR can cause problems now).  Substance infusion, 2 burn and must be metal.
7: Kinetic cover (from WT feat - makes a flimsy cover but nice if you have time to set these up).
8: Shift Earth (move 5' block of earth or unworked stone - Bob the Builder would kill for this ability).
9: Magnetic Blast (if you hit, then everyone using metal weapons or blasts gets +4 to hit victim until the end of next round!)  Substance infusion, 2 burn and must be metal.
9: feat - Skilled Kineticist (get bonuses to climb and know (dungeoneering) and can use later to identify earth elementals (though they are pretty easy to spot anyhow).
10: Earth Glide (burrow like an Earth elemental!  But I have to hold my breath for it, so not for too long at a time).
11: Wall (not solid but provides cover to those you put the wall on, as well as those trying to cross the wall).  Form infusion, 3 burn).
11: feat - Impale (a 30' line and if you keep penetrating the line keeps going up to the end.  Might go through some objects too).  Form infusion, 2 burn.
12: Ride the Blast (you get to travel to next to your blast's target!  Nice way to cross a battlefield).  Free, too.
13: Deadly Earth (area effect, but victims have to be standing on earth or stone (or if you use the composite blast, on metal).  Form infusion, 4 burn.
13: feat - Skilled Kineticist, Greater.  Get a bonus to a class skill (perception, of course) and add knowledge (planes) to class skills.
14: Shift Earth, Greater: You can basically cast Move Earth at will.  Bob the Builder would love this even more!
15: Fragmentation - Hit one guy, and then those around him save for collateral damage.  Form infusion, 4 burn.
15: feat: Stone Sculptor - Get Stone Shape at will - Ok, I am Bob the Builder.  I accept this.
16: Reverse Shift - Get Ethereal Jaunt.  Limited duration but nice - closest I will get to a fly speed.
17: Grappling Infusion - Tentacles that grapple - substance infusion with burn 3, but since it must be used with wall or deadly earth, this one is expensive!
17: feat - Snake (can sneak around cover to hit enemies you cannot see - useful if you have a wall or kinetic cover up previously).  Form infusion, 2 burn.
18: Seismic Master - Earthquake at will.  Because after you become Bob the Builder you sometimes need to become Bob the Destroyer of Cities.
19: Extreme Range - can shoot blast 480'.  Works nicely with Ride the Blast.  Form infusion, burn 2.
19: feat - Enduring Earth (doubles the duration of my earth talents if they are longer than one round - so Reverse Shift, Wall, Deadly Earth, the souped up Tremor Sense, Entangling infusion and maybe Magnetic Infusion (I think that going from "middle of your turn" to "end of your next turn" could count as more than one round, but others might not agree).
19: Choose on metakinesis power to get a 1 point discount.  If I choose the cheapest  (Empower) then it is free on all of my blasts, so yeah, why not?.  Especially since per the errata the empower modifies the total damage so gives more than maximize.
20: Tremor sense, greater - basically commune with nature but only in natural underground settings, and you can't detect woodland creatures or powerful unnatural creatures. Very situational, but it is thematic and frankly I am running out of things to take (anyhow, I get Omnikinesis at this level to technically I have access to all talents of all elements).  Since it is at will, I could see uses for it.

So how complicated is this character at 20th level?  Well, when blasting (assuming I don't use Omnikinesis) I need to choose Earth of Metal (the latter costs 1 burn with the discount), a form infusion and substance infusion (luckily my infusion discount is up to 6, so only Grappling Deadly Earth costs 1 burn), and how much metakinesis to put in (while empower is free, I could pay 2, 3 or 4 burn for maximize, quicken or double blasts - these call all be used together but the burn cost would be prohibitive).  I have a buffer of up to 3, but can only access that 1/talent.  Mainly I would gather power (move action 2, full round action 3, can do both for 5 if there is time).  I could accept up to 6 burn per round (+1 from the buffer) so that is a limit.  My total burn I could accept is still 3 + con bonus.  If I want to fill my buffer later, and want the maximum overflow bonus, I probably want a con of at least 24 (easily doable by level 20).  A high dex would be good too, as I want to actually hit opponents with non-area blasts.

I think the key is to see how far the discounts don't get you, even at level 20: Metal costs 1 burn, Maximize costs 2 burn, Quicken costs 3, and double blast costs 4.  Grappling Deadly Earth costs 1.  The buffer might mitigate the total cost by 1 but I can only do that 3 times before the buffer empties.  So if I want to use this stuff, I need to spend actions to gather power.  If my buffer is empty and I don't have time to gather power, however, I could still do empowered earth blasts (grappling wall or entangling with any form infusion) all days long.  That said, metal is great for damage so I would probably be at least using move actions to gather power for metal blasts once the buffer runs out).  And of course, most of the non-blast talents are free (I think tremor sense costs if I want duration, and flesh of stone could be increased for burn).
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1) All living creatures have innate, at-will telekinesis, to a range of 30 feet.
2) There is no form of resurrection or bringing living creatures back to life.
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