Pathfinder RPG, derived from Dungeons & Dragons v3.5, published in 2009.

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Why is the soft level-cap set at level 20, specifically?

I've been wondering lately if there is any sort of precedence or context for the soft level-cap of level 20 in various D20 style tabletop games. I say soft cap because I'd like to, for the purposes of ...
18
votes
1answer
12k views

What can I do in one round?

I'm still little confused about actions in Pathfinder. There are standard actions, move actions, full round actions, free actions, etc. I need to know which combinations of these actions I can use in ...
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3answers
1k views

Is possible to Chain-Activate Pearls of Power?

I will start a campaing in a few days and my players are on the "Character Building" mode for this week, and they are asking me a lot of really creative questions regarding possible builds. That's ...
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5answers
3k views

How to reduce minis dependence in d20-based games?

In Pathfinder and similar versions of D&D, there is a lot more miniatures/tactical map dependence than in earlier versions (and in most other RPGs). I am interested in reducing the dependence on ...
18
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3answers
1k views

Do you remember what happened during Dominate Person?

My character was affected by the dominate person spell (and failed the will save) and was given some orders. Does he have any recollection or memory of the orders after the duration of the effect ...
18
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1answer
958 views

Dispel Magic vs multiple summons

Dispel magic says: If you target an object or creature that is the effect of an ongoing spell (such as a monster summoned by summon monster), you make a dispel check to end the spell that ...
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3answers
1k views

What information do creatures passively gain from constant “Detect” spells?

Consider the Night Hag. The Night Hag has "constant detect chaos, detect evil, detect good, detect law, and detect magic." However, each spell reveals additional information for each round "you study ...
18
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2answers
3k views

Are there any resources for diseases or plagues in D&D 3.5 or Pathfinder?

In creating an adventure, there will be a major meterological event causing massive damage to the town's infrastructure. In the aftermath, there will be a pretty significant outbreak of at least one ...
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4answers
3k views

Cursed items are being Identified too easily

Spellcraft in Pathfinder lets you ID magical/cursed items, and the Identify spell adds 10 to your Spellcraft skill. One of my PCs — in this case a level 8 wizard — has a stupidly high INT, ...
17
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2answers
12k views

How does time work in 3.5/Pathfinder?

I am wondering about preparing spells per day. How long is a day? One session? Also some spells last 15 minutes. How long is that during a combat encounter?
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11answers
2k views

What variant rules can promote a less kick-in-the-door mindset?

My group has long had a very kick-in-the-door attitude towards combat. Characters were min-maxed for DPS, and there was very little strategy to any combat. Characters would charge in, hit it till it ...
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9answers
1k views

Any GM headaches or canon reasons not to let resurrected PCs fight their reanimated corpses?

Given that, a character can be dissolved in acid and resurrected A body isn't necessary for resurrection. Also, given that, a dark cleric/necromancer can raise a dead body to fight It seems ...
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7answers
20k views

Is two-weapon fighting only as a full-round action balanced versus fighting with a two-handed weapon?

One of the players in a Pathfinder game in which I am playing is arguing that characters should be able to get the additional attack for fighting with two weapons when attacking as a standard action, ...
17
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3answers
1k views

How do you choose treasure for encounters with creatures that drop treasure?

In the past, I generally try to send the PCs off on a quest "yadda yadda yadda, kill this and I'll give you 200 gold!" However, this time, my PCs went off without any quest and entered a cave. I ...
17
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7answers
734 views

How should a GM handle novice players?

In our game, we have 5 players - two are completely new to roleplaying, and one is new to the system we're playing (Pathfinder). At the moment, the GM grants the new players no leeway - if the player ...
17
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6answers
531 views

Good Mutiny Rules?

I am currently GMing a pirate game (running since 2009) where the PCs have become the command crew of a pirate ship. Their crew is they typical mix of pirates from other ships they've overcome (join ...
17
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2answers
4k views

Lower spells in higher spell slots

Can you place a lower level spell in a higher spell slot? In other words, can you place magic missile in a 4th level slot if you want to, without a metamagic feat? This came up in our Pathfinder game ...
17
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2answers
2k views

In Pathfinder, does the summoner or the GM control the eidolon?

I'm starting up a summoner character in a Pathfinder campaign, but we're a little unsure of the rules for eidolons. While I know the summoner is the one who tells her eidolon what to do, I'm wondering ...
17
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3answers
1k views

Is Knowledge (Local) Tied to a Specific Region?

For a long time, one of the DMs in my usual group has claimed that Knowledge (Local) has to be tied to a specific region. For example, you could take Knowledge (Restov). So, we've always just played ...
17
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1answer
21k views

Amount of Ability Score on level up in Pathfinder?

First of all, I'm really new to RPGs, and I cannot find in the core rules or online how many ability score to give a character at level 4,8,12,16,20. The manual says "and possibly an ability score ...
17
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2answers
2k views

If I turn into an earth elemental, how blind am I?

Suppose that I'm a druid, and I Wildshape into the form of a medium earth elemental (functionally the same as casting Elemental Body II). What senses do I have available to me? Polymorph spells have ...
16
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7answers
6k views

Rules lawyers and how to deal with them

I've been running a Pathfinder campaign set in my own world for close to three years now. We play using a VTT system (d20pro) since all of my players aren't in the same state. Since the beginning I'd ...
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9answers
2k views

New players missing the big picture?

Ok so I've just started my two daughters on their first ever Pathfinder campaign using the pre-built TC1 "Into the Haunted Forest". It's going ok, they are having fun, but they seem to be overlooking ...
16
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5answers
956 views

Memory After Death

A recent campaign started with the death of the party and reincarnation of the party with the premise of "we brought you back to find those who killed you". One player was concerned that these people ...
16
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7answers
548 views

How can I use a frame story and keep a sense of danger and mystery?

I am planning a campaign that I would like to present as a frame story: the heroes are recounting their adventures in a tavern in exchange for drinks (and then picking up the last leg of the adventure ...
16
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3answers
3k views

Can the Druid Wood Shape and Ironwood spells be used to create armor?

A player in my group is trying to figure out the logistics of creating armor by using a combination of Wood Shape and Ironwood. Is it possible the he could create a Darkwood Breastplate out of a ...
16
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9answers
3k views

Can you intentionally fail a skill check?

This comes up to me in the context of the 3.x/PF/d20 Fly skill, even when I simply read about it: Can you intentionally fail a Fly skill check, or any other skill check for that matter, if you, or ...
16
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2answers
2k views

If an enemy moves and provokes an opportunity attack, where are they when the AoO happens?

I was surprised to find no mention of this in the Opportunity Attack rules on d20pfsrd or on the Paizo SRD: if an enemy moves from tile A to tile B and provokes an opportunity attack from me in doing ...
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5answers
3k views

The fastest Elf in the West (at initiative anyway)

They called him Ernie, the fastest Elf in the West. Ahem. I'm trying to improve the initiative of an Elf Wizard. At the moment it's at a respectable: +15 +4 Dex (Base) +4 Improved Initiative ...
16
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3answers
2k views

What is all the backstory in an Adventure Path for if the players never see it?

I'm new to tabletop RPGs (although I have been interested for a long time, just had difficulty finding like-minded companions, and the funds required to get some of the stuff). When I was finally ...
16
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4answers
2k views

Pathfinder: can a ghost wear armor?

According to the universal monster rules, incorporeal creatures (read: ghosts) have no Strength score: [An incorporeal creature] has no Strength score, so its Dexterity modifier applies to its ...
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5answers
5k views

Can a character take free action out of her turn?

Free actionsD20PFSRD in Pathfinder take almost no time. But can they be performed outside of one's turn or in response to some trigger? Scenario 1: Can a Barbarian enter rage in response to taking ...
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4answers
16k views

How do I manage my Druid's wildshapes?

My druid picked up the wildshape ability a few levels back, but hasn't had a chance to use it yet. The wide-open nature of the ability (and the labyrinthine rules) has left me reluctant to bog down ...
16
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5answers
619 views

How can I mechanistically empower a prophecy or fortune without railroading the plot?

I am interested in the idea of incorporating fate (via prophecy or fortunes told) in my campaign. I would like to come up with a set of rules/mechanics to make a prophecy or fortune teller's ...
16
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6answers
6k views

Any good steampunk material for d20?

The DM of my current Friday night game is running a steampunk-setting, using the Pathfinder rules system. We have two artificers in the party, but my feeling is that all of our material is fantasy and ...
16
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4answers
2k views

Why can you only craft one magic item per day?

Most magical items of any significant power will take far longer than one day to create. Given the crafting rate of 1 day per 1,000 gold, it seems unlikely there will be any serious balance concerns ...
16
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1answer
805 views

Do Half-elves count as Humans for the Favored Enemy class feature?

I have Favored Enemy (Humans). Do half-elves count as humans too?
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4answers
2k views

Rewarding a PC who educates himself?

One of the PCs in the group I am hosting likes to read books about various arcana stuff in the library of the city at night. (He only needs to sleep for 2 hours.) Should I reward the PC somehow with ...
16
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5answers
4k views

How real are illusions?

The PCs this week tried to do something that stumped me this week, though I am sure this question has been asked before. Caught between a rock and a hard place, the PCs decided that they would cast an ...
16
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4answers
2k views

Do enemies have the same rules for death as PCs?

Once an enemy is lowered to 0 HP, are they dead or just knocked out? Do you have to reduce them to their negative Con score or is that mechanic strictly reserved for players?
16
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2answers
5k views

What types of damage are affected by the lance special rule?

When using a lance while charging on a mount, the rules say that it deals double damage. My question is, what all damage is doubled? From what I can find, the die roll and strength bonus are doubled, ...
16
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1answer
6k views

Firing into close combat in Pathfinder

If I am using a bow against an enemy who is in melee combat with an ally of mine, I get a -4 on my attack roll, unless I have the precise shot feat. (See page 184 in the Core Rules. Do I suffer the ...
16
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3answers
2k views

How do I help my players get more engaged in the story?

I play in a group where we routinely switch out GMs. When I GM I tend to prefer story-based games with lots of character building and descriptive role play. We tend to run Paizo's Adventure Paths ...
16
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2answers
475 views

How can a DM brighten the mood?

Sometimes a story can turn away from its original direction and take on a darker tone, what is a good approach to lightening the mood? As a new DM, I started a Pathfinder campaign a year ago with a ...
16
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6answers
2k views

Character Build - “Bad Luck” Theme

I'm trying to build a character who suffers a strange and inexplicable stigma that attracts misfortune to all the people around him. (In South America it's called "mufa"; in colloquial language, ...
16
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3answers
215 views

Are there rules for identifying class abilities?

Are there rules for PCs making checks to identify class abilities of NPCs? For example, if a Monk uses Slow Fall, or a Druid uses Woodland Stride, or a Paladin uses Lay On Hands, can nearby PCs ...
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11answers
5k views

Creating an easily-defeatable dragon

For the group I am GMing I am in need of a blue dragon which should be defeatable by a group of six PCs having levels 3-4. The classes of my PCs are barbarian, bard, cleric, fighter, rogue and witch. ...
15
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6answers
2k views

How do you handle combat in Pathfinder when there are too many foes to even count?

I have offered to take a turn at running a game for our group. I have a story that I think they will find interesting, mechanics to cope with the fact that some players sometimes just don't show up ...
15
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5answers
6k views

Can a spellcaster use spell slots above their normal limit if their ability scores allow bonus spells of that level?

This question is inspired by discussion here, about how Heighten Spell works with Reserve Feats. The question that I am asking here deals with whether or not players can cast spells using spell slots ...
15
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5answers
3k views

How to handle player weapon modification

In a game it got brought up that a frost creature is vulnerable to fire. Me being GM they ask if they can quote "drip their arrows in oil and light them on fire" to produce more damage against someone ...