Abilities of characters that typically, but not always, apply to a wider setting than simply combat.

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Skill Proficiency vs. Character Backstory

I have found myself in a position, as a DM, that is causing me some discomfort. What do I do when, in a specific situation, a PC's back-story and skill proficiency do not match? This has occurred to ...
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4answers
674 views

Our ranger has too many skill ranks for his skills

My group is fairly small (3 characters including my own), and ranks in skills seem to be a bit off for us. We are calculating skill ranks properly for each of our characters, but our ranger seems to ...
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2answers
1k views

Does every specialization of Craft you take get the class skill bonus, or just the first?

Suppose I'm playing a character with Craft as a class skill. I put 1 rank in it, select Weaponsmith to fit my background and end up with Craft (Weapons) +4. Now, if I later decide I want to be able to ...
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1answer
212 views

Where are a monster's skills?

If you grab a goblin for example, and the goblin test to escape it says to have it make an acrobatics or athletics check but I can't seem to find where it says there skills? Any help?
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2answers
2k views

Putting more focus on knowledge skills

Knowledge skills are the cinderella of the skill set. Nobody really puts grades in Knowledge (local), Knowledge (Nature) or Knowledge (Royalty). If you have a bard in the group, all these knowledge ...
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1answer
331 views

Can PCs learn skill, proficiencies, or spells from other PCs?

Can PCs learn skills, tool proficiencies, or spells from other players' characters in the game? In our game the rogue and ranger spend a lot of time scouting and working together. The rogue wanted to ...
9
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2answers
847 views

How to manage character arguments / conflict?

I'm a new DM and have just started a 4e game as Play by Post. The game has started with one character (Bob) recruiting in a pub and the first response was from another character (Al) wanting to ...
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1answer
330 views

Can a creature use an Immediate Interrupt (Trigger: Enemy Movement) against his own forced Move Action?

If a creature has an Immediate Interrupt action with a Trigger: Enemy Movement - can the creature use an ability that forcefully pulls the target - then immediately after pulling the target, invoke ...
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2answers
280 views

Does Teamwork make you give up your action?

Both Fate Core and Fate Accelerated Edition have rules by which one player makes a roll and the others assist him without passing him free invocations or spending Fate points. In FAE this is called ...
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5answers
3k views

What classes other than Rogue can initially train in Thievery?

My gaming buddies and I are about to start up a second group to play D&D 4e with, and I'm looking for a class to replace the rogue to freshen things up a little. The only problem is that Thievery ...
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4answers
363 views

Will a house-rule for trained skills work?

I've been using a house rule for a while now. If you have a trained skill, and you are making a knowledge check it's free. For example, if you are trained in nature, and fighting natural beasts; you ...
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6answers
1k views

Are there rules for skinning animals and making leather armor with the hide?

Recently I was DMing a game, and my players ran into a giant lizard. After they defeated it, they asked if they could skin the lizard and make it into armor. I basically just made it up on the fly; ...
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3answers
915 views

Using Intimidate and/or Diplomacy to kill enemies

This question came up during another question regarding the use of cursed items as offensive weapons; however, I think there's a more general question that's otherwise identical: If a PC X succeeds ...
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4answers
840 views

Dark Sun 4E: Is Religion a useless skill?

1. Is Religion a useless skill in 4E Dark Sun? I know the Divine Power classes are out (aside from house rules) and was thinking that Religion as a knowledge class is of limited or virtually no ...
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2answers
519 views

Can Intimidate be used to cause fear of other forces?

In Pathfinder, can the Intimidate skill be used to cause fear of and act on fear of third party forces? For example, my veteran Dwarven soldier walks up to a civilian, and says "I've seen the terrors ...
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1answer
2k views

Why do some classes mention the same skill in both Trained and Class skills?

Consider this example from the Rogue class traits: Trained Skills: Stealth and Thievery. From the class skills list below, choose four more trained skills at 1st level. ...
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2answers
316 views

Can circumstances change a skill's key ability score?

Can you use a different key ability for a skill check when it would make more sense for the situation? I think that I've read of this being done. I know there are feats and other abilities that let ...
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3answers
2k views

Intimidation in D&D 4e - What can it be used for and what are the consequences for doing so?

I'm a Halfling Warlock with a +17 to my rolls in Intimidation. As such I want to be able to make use of this as much as I can. So far I've only really used it to force bloodied targets to surrender. ...
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6answers
514 views

Are there any systems featuring skill atrophy?

I was thinking the other day about skill atrophy - the opposite of advancement. What I mean precisely is a system that takes a use-it-or-lose-it approach to even maintaining skill proficiency. I was ...
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1answer
1k views

How does a shadowdancer use nearby shadows to hide in plain sight?

In pathfinder; a shadowdancer acquires the ability to hide while being observed. A shadowdancer can use the Stealth skill even while being observed. As long as she is within 10 feet of an area ...
8
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1answer
362 views

Which skills are lost first if Intelligence drops? Can I choose?

As per this question, permanent increases to Intelligence retroactively grant new skill points in Pathfinder. If I lose my Intelligence bonus, is there a rule for which skill I lose first? Can I ...
8
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4answers
374 views

Can a spellcraft check reveal the target of a spell?

You can use spellcraft to identify a spell as it is being cast. But does this check let you know the target of the spell? As an example of when this could matter quite a lot, Dominate allows you to ...
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1answer
933 views

When are characters restricted from using Untrained Skills in 4e?

There is a large volume of information on using skills in 4e D&D. The basic assumption is that the character using the skill is trained and the rules reflect this. My question is, what about ...
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1answer
285 views

Can you take 10 on Aid Another?

I've only seen the "take 10" specifically disabled for ritual checks (PH1, p. 300). Are they allowed for Aid Another?
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3answers
1k views

What kind of check would it be to identify meat?

If the characters were presented with some cubes of cooked meat, what kind of check would be necessary for them to make in order to determine what kind of animal or creature it came from. For ...
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1answer
540 views

“If I have 3 or more ranks…” What does that mean?

In some skills, it is written that if you have three or more ranks in the skill, something will happen, such as the Acrobatics skill: If you have 3 or more ranks in Acrobatics, you gain a +3 dodge ...
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643 views

Does the game break if a character can't fail Appraise skill checks?

I'm homebrewing a class, and at about character level 14 I'm considering granting the class the following special ability: Appraise Anything (Ex): The creature's Appraise skill check result always ...
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2answers
806 views

How broken is Aid Another to individual skill checks?

So I've got a party of 6 who regularly will jump in automatically to 'Aid Another' when someone makes an individual, out-of-comabt skill check. Perception the room for traps? Aid Another. History or ...
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3answers
788 views

Difference between Athletics and Acrobatics?

What are the differences between Athletics and Acrobatics (aside from the stats they are based on) and is there anything interchangeable?When should one be used over the other? When I see these two ...
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5answers
964 views

Wild Reaper (druid variant) skill priorities

I am playing in a campaign as a wild reaper, which is a druid variant. One of the wild reaper disadvantages compared to a normal druid is that I only get 2 + Int bonus skill points per level, and I ...
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2answers
486 views

Do shield and armor check modifiers stack?

If I wear Hide armor (Check -1) and use a Heavy Shield (Check -2) is my check -2 or -3? In other words, do the checks stack or do I use the highest negative?
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2answers
869 views

Failing to use acrobatics to move through threatened squares in Pathfinder

As a rogue I want to start making better use of the Acrobatics skill to move through threatened squares to get better positioning. However, I have been holding back because I am a little unclear on ...
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2answers
277 views

What skills would a DFRPG PC roll when playing a video game?

In an upcoming session, one of the PCs will be babysitting a pre-teen video gamer. I expect that we'll be modeling a PvP scenario and want to roll some dice; whether as a conflict or a contest I don't ...
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4answers
711 views

When is each skill used when searching for hidden objects like traps?

This actually a number of questions that conform to the title question, and which all stem from a bit of rules confusion. Let's start with the rules confusion. On pg 178, under the skill ...
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1answer
432 views

What does the skill “Knowledge (any)” mean?

In Dungeons and Dragons, my character is a Bard Elf. I have the Bard Starting Package, which includes four starting skills (I can only choose 4 due to modifiers) But after "Knowledge", in parentheses ...
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4answers
588 views

What systems do use-based skill upgrades well? [closed]

By "use-based skill upgrades," I mean skills are increased as they're used. At some point, everyone questions the sense in killing just enough Orcs that you get better at sneaking. This sort of ...
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5answers
494 views

Does the DM tell the players when a skill check can be used in a conversation?

Often times in adventures the players can make a skill check during conversation to learn some important information. Does the DM tell the players or otherwise give them a hint that a particular ...
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1answer
882 views

Buttering up the Brainless — Social checks on unintelligent npcs?

Does Pathfinder have options for using Diplomacy to befriend or interact mindless creatures, such as oozes, zombies, golems or plants? What about Intimidate checks for instructing these sorts? If it ...
7
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1answer
451 views

Beginner DM questions: Exploration and skill-checks

A group of friends and I have started playing the Red Box(4e), which we are enjoying a lot. I am the DM for this and probably the next adventure and our DM will change every few adventures to keep ...
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3answers
204 views

Is making a skill check in place of another check still considered the original skill?

I have an ability that allows me to make a "Use the Force" check in place of a "Stealth" check for the purposes of avoiding detection. Is it still considered a "stealth check" and i am just using my ...
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4answers
414 views

How can I use a Conspiracy X Influence system in GUMSHOE?

One of Conspiracy X's greatest innovations was influence and pulling strings to represent the important and influential “day jobs” players come from. These day jobs range from the FBI, to the DEA, to ...
7
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1answer
145 views

What guidelines, if any, exist to guide the DM in establishing difficulty level for skill/ability checks?

Reading through the basic set there is a DC Check difficulty table found on page. 58, but aside from the basic description of what a check is and the basic mechanics (d20 + mod/skill + any situational ...
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1answer
236 views

Do check bonuses apply to passive checks?

The Warlord Class Feature Canny Leader grants a "+2 bonus to Insight checks and Perception checks" to you and allies within 10 squares. Does this also apply to checks against Passive Perception and ...
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1answer
131 views

How can you model giving skills in Kerberos Club FATE?

So, I'm planning out a Misfits-style game using the rules from the Kerberos Club in Fate. Misfits is about a bunch of young offenders who get super powers. And the part of Kerberos Club I'm using is ...
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7answers
424 views

Balancing character intelligence against players wits

This might be a broad topic, so let me focus on one scenario, where I would like to hear which actions and methods fellow GMs use. A fantasy campaign runs along. BLUE plays a character who is dumb as ...
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7answers
667 views

Are there any good alternatives to the Move Silently skill, preferably magic or spell based?

I want to create a spellcaster who specializes in stealth. I know that I can substitute spells like Invisibility for the Hide skill, and I can use either the Mindsight feat or the Tremorsense spell to ...
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2answers
430 views

Can non-psionic classes use the Autohypnosis skill?

The Autohypnosis skill was added by Ultimate Psionics, published by Dreamscarred Press*. On this page it says: Presented are new psionics-related skills and existing skills that are used in new ...
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3answers
6k views

Class skill +3, when you have 1 rank in that skill

"If you select a level in a new class, all of its class skills are automatically added to your list of class skills, and you gain a +3 bonus on these skills if you have ranks in them." I'm confused ...
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3answers
701 views

What use is Skill Beyond Your Years?

In low-level D&D variant E6, you max out at level 6 and only gain feats every 5,000XP thereafter. There is a feat as follows: Skill Beyond Your Years Prerequisite: Level 6 Pick a skill. ...
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3answers
3k views

How to roll perception checks for characters who aren't actively looking?

This applies to all d20 systems, but with an example from the from the Pathfinder PRD (emphasis mine): Stonecunning: Dwarves receive a +2 bonus on Perception checks to potentially notice unusual ...