Talk:Epic Path

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medium fire elementals are about twice as strong as normal mobs for their CR. Need to taper them down a bit (and all other fire elementals).
should consider, if all monsters can never have more than one status condition at a time, whether the condition resistance of some roles can be scaled back or not.
  • printable character sheet, with worksheets to calculate everything.
  • need to talk about action economy of metamagic feats applied to spells which are faster than a standard action (do they become full round actions? what about spells which are immediates and only work as an interrupt?)
  • example: Bungle
  • add some notes to the Spells page, regarding GM's adjudicating 'fluff' vs 'crunch'.
  • Specific examples are direct damage (crunch) vs. illusions (fluff).
  • Rules for bonuses from fluff which give general 'not to exceed' values.
  • plus for caster level (+1 to +3), and plus for creativity (+1 to +2).

Things to Update (3/24)

  • V,S,M spells - Immediate, Move, Standard
  • review metamagic feats in relation to this
  • racial abilities - normalize what levels you (might) improve your racial abilities, and add it into the class tables
  • legendary skills as super-powers

Highest Priority Things To Do

  • create new monsters for CR's 18 through 25
  • spells pass - rebalance / retool all spells; cut out really terrible / useless spells
  • Add Linguistics skill use for 'Identify Accent' to determine ethnicity or origin of a speaker.
  • create a bunch of magic items that are useful for pure caster classes, to give them something to spend money on.
  • extend duration of spell
  • remove level cap on damage of spell (doesn't change scaling)
  • increase # of targets for spell
  • change shape of AoE of spell (or add an AoE to a spell)
  • consider fixing the pricing models for the magic item creation sub-pages.
  • review equipment bonuses to skills: e.g. masterwork tools, thieves' tools
  • Add definition of triggered free action
  • review 'breaking objects' page, in light of changes to vehicle combat and removal of abstract encounters rules
  • siege weapons - how do they work with the vehicle combat rules?
    • unless we want siege weapons to continue to be cumulative forces, though it seems like people hated all the dice rolling of the abstract encounters
    • right now, vehicles will never penetrate heavy defenses and fortifications; the target DC's are way too high, as are many of the durabilities
  • add weights for all doors and such on the 'breaking objects' page, for purposes of the Might skill.
  • Make traps more interesting/fun
  • Redo analysis pass for all character classes
  • I'd like to revisit the Brawler's restriction on magic weapons (e.g. Amulet of Mighty Fists). Why? (I forgot)
  • feats:
    • Warlord - more formation dice
    • Ranger - more quarry dice
    • Ranger - better traps (better action economy, use against an occupied space)
    • Prowler - improve save DC for encroaching jolt?
    • add a feat to allow "deny saving throw" under Heal to be non-provoking, and take only a move action (no bonus to check)
    • Update/Remove any feats which apply to abstract encounters
    • Review barbarian feats again
    • Fighter - able to challenge one additional target each round (epic?)
    • agile runner - able to make a single turn during a run movement (scale w/level? require the Runner (Feat)?)
  • Add feats per Jeff to boost Dispel Magic, similar to Dimension Door, Lightning Bolt, etc.
  • Counterspell Feedback - When you counter and enemy's magical effect with a counterspell, you gain an effect based on the type of spell used. Effects last to the beginning ot the opponent's next turn unless otherwise specified.
  • abjuration - gain a +2 to save and AC against the opponent
  • conjuration - move the enemy 5 ft per spell level used
  • divination - enemy insight - gain knowldge of the enemy as if you made a challenging check
  • enchantment - opponent is distracted
  • evocation - do 1d6 damage per spell level
  • illusion - fog senses - everything beyond 5 ft from the opponent has concealment
  • necromancy - unsettled - opponent is shaken
  • transmutation - opponent is slowed
  • change death checks to fort save, dc equal to negative hit point total.
  • three failed saves equals death
  • create a dr type for ‘mundane/non-magic’
  • update spells page:
  • when we update bonus types, many sections, but in particular the 'stacking effects' section, will need updated
  • descriptor section - should probably be simplified. Monsters don't use many descriptors (we may change this, but for now, it's not widely used, which is a nerf to many abilities which rely on a particular descriptor being present).
  • consider calling out a "Rogues Cheat!" class feature for rogues, which spells out that they always do at least half damage against creatures immune or hardened to precision damage, and they can always flank creatures, even if they cannot normally be flanked.
  • Perform: performance complexity - clarify to setting the CR of the song
    • same for entertaining an audience
  • converting ammo into templates (necessary?)
  • converting magic properties - implements / armor / shields into templates
  • defining equipment
  • magic item crafting rules are only halfway re-written
    • need to update rules for magic enchantment of projectile weapons, but not ammo
  • continue writing Cosmology of Creation page
  • need a page for bonus types, to allow all those broken links to point somewhere.
  • need to update / create page for monster types and subtypes.
    • need to review any broken links to subtypes that we don't actually want to define (e.g. azata)

blood magic

  • blood magic - a form of deep magic (true dweomers?) which, in addition to requiring a high level spell slot to cast, also requires a significant hit point cost from its caster. However, this hit point cost can also be paid from the blood of nearby recently-dead creatures, helpless creatures, or willing creatures.

Stateless Time

IF we decide to go this route, we need to do a full pass to add 'short rest' and 'long rest' mechanics. The long rest is easy, but we'd need to add stuff to most classes. For example, short rest to remove fatigue for a barbarian, short rest to recharge ranger quarry pool, short rest to allow use of smite again, short rest to do a lot of features.

or we could just worry about stateless time for spells, to start, and implement it as needed for any class features which seem to encourage the "how long has it been" behavior.  I don't feel like any of the examples you gave actually do this (except maybe the barbarian's fatigue); they all explicitly state "during combat" or "at the end of the encounter" or "at the start of an encounter".  These are clear delineations, and I'm not convinced we need to make any further distinctions than that.

correct! sorry, I was unclear. the point I'm trying to make is that we would want to add such mechanics to classes (or racial features, or whatever) so we don't introduce a 'short rest' that only a few people even care about. there should be a reason for most players to be interested in a short rest. maybe you have to take a short rest before you can get an action point for the next encounter, maybe a short rest is required to clear conditions that currently end at the end of the encounter (which we'd have to clarify with an edit pass), maybe a short rest adds temp hitpoints equal to your Con mod if you're a full BAB class, maybe a short rest restores one spell if you are not a 'full tilt' spellcaster, etc, etc, etc. If we're going to have the mechanic, then it should be useful to a wide variety of folks, so its a natural and useful part of the gameplay.

So, I agree that this approach would integrate the concept of a short rest into the game in a compelling enough way to make players care about it (instead of having an orphaned mechanic that only a couple of classes care about).  However, I guess my question is, do we actually want to add this mechanic throughout the game? I thought we didn't, unless it was strictly necessary... My suggestion is we could find another way to approach this without creating / integrating a short rest mechanic.  For example, the Fatigued condition is ended by sitting or lying down for 15 minutes.  This is identical to the idea of a short rest, but doesn't actually create a mechanic for a short rest.

Stolen Ideas Worth Contemplating

Flat-Footed

  • get rid of flat-footed AC, and just make it a condition that inflicts a static penalty to your AC. This would harm hi-dex characters, and help lo-dex characters, but mostly balance out, I think.
  • also, have flanking cause the flat-footed condition. this is simple, and makes for consistency in rules (rogues need flat-footed to sneak attack, instead of flat-footed or flanking).
  • tying flanking to flat-footed would also mean a mob can't be both flat-footed AND flanked. reducing types of stacking bonuses and penalties will simplify combat, which is a good thing.
  • PF2 suggests flat-footed is always a -2 to AC, replacing the +2 to-hit from flanking. Note that the Flat-Footed condition is a weak in our game, so -2 isn't necessarily too small, since it also affects a bunch of other things (man off and man def, can't make AOO's, susceptible to sneak attacks).

Monkeying with AOO's

  • AOO's require the use of your immediate action. They are no longer separate.
  • combat reflexes would still give bonus AOO's as free actions usable outside your turn.
  • only martial classes get AOO's, but every class gets something to do with their immediate action.
  • non-martial classes might get a bonus to their next action, if an enemy provokes and they burn their immediate (instead of an AOO), or some movement, or whatever.
  • fighter's challenge bonus attack, currently an immediate, would be better than a normal AOO. Fighters would still be able to do a normal AOO's with their immediate against unmarked enemies that provoke.
  • the goal would be to make movement during combat more attractive, without also making it too easy for combatants to simply run away all the time.

Spell Action Costs

  • I love the notion of PF2's spell casting action economy - a spell requiring a verbal and somatic component requires two actions to cast. A spell which is VSM requires 3 actions. I like that it makes those components relevant.
  • this could be translated into EP, and merged with the action economy of metamagic to do some neat things.
  • essentially, metamagic becomes a deliberate act of increasing spell casting time to get a greater result from the spell.
  • conversely, some metamagic reduces the action to cast the spell. (Quicken, Still, Silent).

Full Attacks

  • starting at level 1, all classes get two attacks when making a full attack. The total number of attacks at higher levels doesn't change, we just front-load it.
  • (optional) instead of an iterative -5 to each attack after the first, all attacks suffer a -5 penalty to hit when making a full attack.
  • on average, this would not change the to-hit numbers for any characters except full bab characters, after they get their 4th attack.
  • on average, this would lower to-hit numbers for characters that make use of haste, cleave, or other bonus attack methods, used during a full attack.
  • as a result, I don't think this change would require any changes to monster AC's, or feats. It should just 'work'.

Shields

  • AC bonus from shield isn't applied unless you spend an action to bring your shield to bear.
  • probably a swift? maybe a move? definitely not a standard.
  • could give different AC's depending on what action type you use
  • in addition, when wearing a shield, you can use an immediate action to reduce a single attack's damage as an immediate action
  • amount of damage reduction based on shield size, but would need to be enough to be 'worth' an immediate action
  • 3 + 1/2 level for buckler, 3 + level for lt shield, 3 + double level for hvy shield (?)
  • shield focus feat would grant a bonus immediate action for the shield block, allowing user to keep their normal immediate action
  • could shield block more than once per round, but see 'monkeying with AOO's' above for other uses of immediates.

Non-Lethal Damage

  • Instead of tracking it separately, only the killing blow to a creature (the one which reduces it to 0 hit points or fewer) counts towards lethal/non-lethal. If a creature's hit points are reduced to 0 or fewer by a non-lethal attack, they are KO'ed instead of killed. In all other cases, non-lethal damage behaves exactly like damage, and is tracked exactly like damage.
  • this would mean healing would become somewhat weaker in fights where non-lethal is used against players, since it wouldn't be a separate healing stack from regular damage.
  • however, it would greatly simplify the hit point tracking in the game.

Skills

  • Replace Skill Focus (Feat), and Skill Focus, Epic (Feat) with Skill Expert (Feat), Skill Specialist (Feat), and Skill Prodigy (Feat).
  • Skill Expert (Feat): +2 bonus to skill, crit on 19-20 (+5 to result), no longer critically fail on a 1
  • Skill Specialist (Feat): +2 bonus to skill, crit on 18-20 (+7 to result), new skill uses available (current epic skill uses)
  • Skill Prodigy (Feat): +1 bonus to skill, crit on 17-20 (+10 on result), new skill uses available (champions level super-hero stuff)

Pets

  • use one or more of their owner's attacks in order to act (one or more times)
  • would allow secondary/tertiary attacks to go as pet's full bab/secondary bab
  • makes balancing pet damage much easier, since it directly subtracts actions/damage from the owner

Haversacks and Cubic Feet Limits

  • suggest allowing haversacks to hold anything, as long as the item(s) don't exceed the haversack's weight limit; ignore bulkiness.
  • we could have more than one model of haversack, since they are basically mandatory magic items anyway; interesting choices.
  • we could say that no character can ever have more than one haversack, or we could just make them expensive enough that having more than one is a bit painful.
  • 'normal' haversack - good weight capacity, low actual weight (5 lbs, regardless of what's in it), only a 3' diameter opening -- nothing bigger than 3' in any dimension can be shoved into it.
  • 'wide-mouthed' haversack - slightly less weight capacity, higher actual weight (10 lbs, regardless of what's in it), no limit to size of things you can shove into it, as long as it doesn't exceed weight capacity of bag.
  • 'quick-draw' haversack - x times per day, draw an item from the sack as a free action (instead of swift). lower weight capacity, but otherwise same as 'normal' haversack.
  • 'kidnapper's' haversack - can keep willing (or helpless) living things in the sack, in a state of stasis. 30 lbs actual weight.
  • 'smuggler's haversack - looks like a shirt, takes up chest slot (isn't slotless). 1 lbs actual weight, but less the capacity than a normal one (half?).
  • I realize this steps on portable holes and potentially bags of holding.
  • never liked portable holes anyway.
  • bags of holding could still be auxiliary storage, and we could add a consumable trait to them, allowing them to be permanently merged with a haversack to increase it's storage capacity somewhat.
  • this increase would (maybe) get blown away if/when the haversack gets upgraded, so it's a short-term means of bridging the gap to the next haversack model.
  • would need to make it more expensive to tack on enough bags of holding to bring the haversack up to the next equivalent weight class.

Energy Damage Types

question for Todd: do we need more than 18 energy types? I know you wanted to leave this door open, but having an undefined, infinite list makes ER x/- the 'no-brainer' option, and that's bad game design. Having a limited list makes single energy type, and single class ER much more viable.
alternatively, we might say that 'ER x/fire' is equivalent in usefulness to 'ER x/fundament' or 'ER x/rudament'.  This would mean it would take 8 different ER types to equal ER x/-, but it would also mean there could be an infinite, undefined number of fundament and rudament ER types.
  • element (common energies)
  • fire
  • ice (water)
  • lightning (air)
  • acid (earth)
  • sonic
  • poison [ toxin ]
  • fundament (uncommon energies)
  • necrosis (death)
  • radiance (light)
  • nascent [ vital | germinal | élan ] (life)
  • quiescence (stillness)
  • desiccation (dehydration)
  • psychic
  • rudiment (exotic energies)
  • force
  • void
  • soul [ spirit | anima ]
  • stellar [ solar | lunar ]
  • tenebrous [ umbral | shadow ] (darkness)
  • eldritch [ aura | anagogue ]
  • primal (creation energies)
  • irresistible damage type - always bypasses DR and ER.

scaling:

  • ER vs. single energy types: scales to grant 80% resistance to damage from that energy type.
  • ER vs. a class (element, fundament, rudiment): scales to grant 60% resistance to damage from those types.
  • ER vs. all non-primal energy (ER x/-): scales to grant 40% resistance to all non-primal energy damage.
  • this will encourage single energy-type resistances, while still making communal resistances attractive.

Bonus Types

There are 29 bonus types:

  • Untyped Bonus
  • Alchemical Bonus
  • Armor Bonus
  • Armor Enhancement Bonus
  • Circumstance Bonus
  • Competence Bonus
  • Deflection Bonus
  • Dodge Bonus
  • Enhancement Bonus
  • Feat Bonus
  • Inherent Bonus
  • Insight Bonus
  • Integral Bonus
  • Level Bonus
  • Luck Bonus
  • Martial Bonus
  • Material Bonus
  • Morale Bonus
  • Natural Armor Bonus
  • Profane Bonus
  • Racial Bonus
  • Resistance Bonus
  • Retraining Bonus
  • Sacred Bonus
  • Shield Bonus
  • Shield Enhancement Bonus
  • Size Bonus
  • Training Bonus
  • Weapon Bonus

Based on current plan for magic redo, the following bonus types might be eliminated:

  • Alchemical Bonus
  • Competence Bonus (?) - does a bard's performance count as a "charge"?
  • Insight Bonus
  • Luck Bonus
  • Martial Bonus (?) - does a warlord's battle standard count as a "charge"?
  • Morale Bonus
  • Profane Bonus
  • Sacred Bonus

to be replaced with:

  • arcane bonus
  • divine bonus
  • vital bonus (both arcane & divine)

Item Activation

All command word items can still be activated by a standard action. OR, they may be activated, once per round, by a swift action and by expending hit points equal to 5+ the CL of the item.

(RD) the more I think about this, the more I think it should be a feat, or class feature, or something. It's too powerful, even with the HP loss.  It's effectively the Quicken Spell feat for magic items.

slotless notes

  • get rid of synergy bonus for multiple enchants on single items.
    • instead, first enchant is normal cost, any additional enchants cost double.
  • slotless items which are only available as slotless items (e.g. handy haversack, flying carpet, etc.) are normally priced
    • items which are normally "slotted" items but are converted to slotless cost triple normal price.

multi-classing / dual-classing

  • if you choose to multi-class or dual-class, you permanently give up the use of action points.
  • multi-classing: commit to no fewer than 5 levels of any class. If you have at least 5 levels in a class, you may choose to start gaining levels in a different class instead, committing to that new class for a minimum of 5 levels.
  • dual classing: pick two classes at character creation. You level up in an alternating pattern, gain 1 level in one, then gain 1 level in the other. You cannot deviate from this pattern, nor can you choose to multi-class until you have at least 5 levels in BOTH classes.

Things to consider for multi-classing / dual-classing

  • Feat Support: We will need to create a fair number of new feats for each character class akin to the Shaping Focus (Feat).

magic weapons notes

  • remove ability to enchant ammo; only projectile weapon can be enchanted
    • update limitless quiver to allow other ammo types, but non-magical.
    • ammo also cannot have dweomermetals — dweomermetal effects are instead conferred by the projectile weapon shooting the ammo.
  • create some non-magical ways of adding +to-hit and +damage to weapons/shields/armor/implements
    • will not stack with magic, but cannot be suppressed by anti-magic/dispel, etc.
    • instead of costing more, I think they just shouldn't go as high as +9
    • no properties? (we could, but it would be a lot of work that we don't really need to do right now)
      • quenches of oil, water, brine, blood for +to-hit
      • tempers of single, triple, and seven-fold for +base damage

Siegemetal Alloys

  • like a dweomermetal - any enhancement bonus or magic properties on weapon (or armor?) become extraordinary instead of magic-based.
  • Tempered Siegemetal - max absolute bonus of +5 (12-10)
  • Annealed Siegemetal - max absolute bonus of +10 (20-10)
  • Quenched Siegemetal - max absolute bonus of +14 (28-10)
  • Forged Siegemetal - max absolute bonus of +18 (35-10)
  • DR x/magic works against this weapon, since it is not magic.

Skill Challenges

  • use initiative as a means of controlling who acts when
  • require more skill checks each round than there are players -- make the players decide which parts of the challenge they care about most
  • determine what happens if each of the checks isn't made -- consequences are fun. Use the consequences to trigger the event of the next round
  • the first round should simply lay out the challenge, and let people know what skill checks exist
    • may also want to include mystery checks -- players who don't want to do any of the 'mandatory' checks can try something different
    • set the scene -- make sure there's lots of gimmicks, treats, odds & ends to interact with
    • determine the timer -- there should be a clearly defined timer -- "if the foe gains ground at least three times, they escape".
  • the second round should add a complication or twist, or perhaps a boon (if the players did really well)
  • skill challenges should probably be timed to last about 3-4 rounds, just like combat. This would allow traps to become skill challenges, for example, but also weird things like poisons and disease. Chase scenes, bar brawls, verbal sparring, contests, etc. are all also good examples of skill challenges.
  • abstract encounters re-tool -- exceptional success rewards a d6 (or even 2d6) which can be applied to anyone's future checks during the skill challenge. Bonus dice are additive, and as many as you want can be applied to a single roll. However, any roll which has bonus dice applied to it cannot gain bonus dice itself. If you want to accumulate bonus dice, don't get help.
  • need to work out how xp and treasure would be awarded for skill challenges, especially when they are taking place in the middle of a fight (traps, poisons, contests). The challenge itself would ideally represent one or more monsters of the same CR as the encounter, but the math seems a little fuzzy.
  • common skill challenges (bar brawls, chase scenes) might have a random table of complications for the GM to roll. Complications don't occur right away -- the players are notified that the complication might occur if they don't take action to prevent it, and are given a round to deal with it (in addition to dealing with all the other skill checks required).
    • each complication should have a few variants of outcomes, depending on how well the players mitigated it, ranging from "made it worse", to "not as bad", to "didn't happen at all".

character sheet changes

  • include might skill modifiers to encumbrance
  • bailiwick skill ranks granted to associated knowledge skill
  • add button functions from Rick's sheet
  • start listing out the possible moving parts relevant to combat in the buffs and debuffs tab

Lower Priority Things To Do

  • templates:
    • consider redoing rogue talents pages into a template
    • consider moving fighter tactics into templates/separate pages
    • consider moving equipment pages into templates (to pull their data into the master tables)
  • Epic Bloodline (archaic bloodline) writeups
  • Sorcerer Bloodlines page
  • Cleric Domains page
  • Auramancy
  • True Dweomers

Character Classes

  • Sharp (was Gambler) - buff/controller class
  • Pariah (was Warlock) - striker/caster
  • Physical Adept class (Fleshcrafter?) - arcane-powered melee, re-tool eidolon-style abilities as self-buffs
  • Mentat Warsage Storm Knight class - intelligence-based melee and thrown weapons user.
  • Fanatic class - divine melee/unarmed, low heals, light armor, no spells. Lay on Hands that does damage; touch attacks.
  • Toxotes - high damage ranged attacks, trick shots (possibly just create via new rogue talents?)
  • Galvanist
  • Seeker
  • Templar
  • Effigy (Artifact? Vestige?)
  • the character is an actual artifact, which is intelligent. The actual artifact is /somewhere/, though even the player may not know where. They have extended their consciousness into a remote effigy (moppet?) with which they interact with the world.
  • they can use their experience to augment their effigy, giving it better abilities
  • like a summoner or pet class, except that the master isn't present on the battlefield

Interesting Links