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    Pathfinder 1E Protips for IRL Deception

    When you’re living the neutral life, it pays to keep your moral ambiguity hidden from the party. This is how the evil alignments of the multiverse can get on partying with the good. There’s a rub though. Our old friend metagaming loves to crash the party, and that can spell all kinds of...
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    D&D 5E How long are you willing to wait for a build to "turn on?"

    Some complex builds only seem to do their thing at mid levels. If you're going for a complicated multiclass or holding out for a specific weapon, it my be level 6 or 7 before you finally get to do your mechanical thing. So like it says in the title: What’s the longest you’re willing to wait...
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    D&D General What is the most ludicrous multiclassed monstrosity that you've actually played?

    And not just multiclass, but thematically weird or mechanically convoluted in general. For my part, I still have a soft spot for a goblin cabin boy named Terrence Gilliam back in 3.5. He was a master at pistol-based ranged sneak attacks while mounted. And from a thematic standpoint, sapping...
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    D&D 5E Take the time to (re)explain your abilities.

    As a player character, your domain of expertise is non-obvious. This can cause problems at the table. When we play these games for years at a time, we tend to build up system mastery as we go. In the midst of that process, however, it’s easy to forget that “the way my dude works” is far from...
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    Pathfinder 1E What is the most creative (and legal) use you've seen for prestidigitation?

    My group has taken to calling it "least wish." If you've got a permissive GM and creative thinky-parts, you can get away with murder with this humble little "fluff spell." So how about it folks? What is the most creative (and legal) use you've seen for prestidigitation? (Comic for illustrative...
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    D&D 5E Which of dice is the most special? Why?

    How do you approach dice collecting? Do you like to keep a proper dice hoard, or do you have a Master Set that you use for every game? Perhaps a most special icosahedron inherited from your forebears? If you've got a most special die, what makes it special? (Comic for illustrative purposes.)
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    Pathfinder 1E As a player, how do you argue your rules interpretation 1) successfully and 2) without being obnoxious?

    Here's my take: If accommodating quirky ideas in the name of creative play is best practice for GMs, there's an important corollary for players. Make your case, sure. But once your GM has made the call, don't be the guy at the table who grinds things to a halt to argue your side. And so, here's...
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    D&D 5E Unfair Scrying

    If you’re the victim of scrying, there’s a feeling of powerlessness that comes with the experience. When a BBEG points their magic mirror your way, they suddenly know where you are, what your plans are, and (most likely) how to defeat you. That’s not a good feeling. It engenders paranoia...
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    Pathfinder 1E Bell Curve Losses

    Not sure who needs to hear this, but I'll often see new GMs getting bent out of shape over the party's unexpected success: “Yeah man. They absolutely blew through an encounter that was, like, 5 CR higher than it should have been. I thought they were going to get TPK’d, but they wound up walking...
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    D&D 5E Gimme your best villain one-liner!

    What is the single best one-liner you’ve ever heard a villain use? And if you don’t have any, imagine an encounter with the current BBEG of your campaign. What is the one thing they could they say to piss off your character? (Comic for illustrative purposes.)
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    Pathfinder 1E Reflavoring

    For those of you who haven’t stumbled across the term before, I’m using “reflavoring” to denote the re-fluffing of game mechanics. Instead of rage my barbarian gets possessed by ancestor spirits. Instead of a sword my fighter uses a macuahuitl. Instead of a bow that shoots enchanted arrows my...
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    D&D 5E Name a technique or design choice that your group enjoys, but that is generally unpopular.

    If you've dwelt long in the gaming forums strewn across the web, you've no doubt heard phrases like these: “There’s no wrong way to game,” or, “If you’re having fun, you’re doing it right.” That can get a bit reductive, but I do think it's a generally useful reminder. Every group is unique, and...
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    D&D General If you’ve been knocked out and wake up without your kit, how do you go about MacGyvering an escape?

    I started thinking about this question on account of my Pathfinder 1e Occulitst. If you’re not familiar, the class is all about attuning to “implements,” items that allow you to focus your power and produce psychic effects. I enjoyed the adaptability of the class, but I get all manner of...
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    Pathfinder 1E Implausible Vigilante Disguises

    I don't know how many blue tieflings there are running around Korvosa. All I know is that one of them is in my game, and the dude is a vigilante. Seems to me that a vibrant azure hue is a pretty strong hint towards the ol' secret identity. How do you justify this mess? Is it really just...
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    D&D 5E Wasting 20s

    A single d20 only has so many natural 20s in it. You might have a powerful die or a weak one, but any seasoned adventurer will tell you that there’s a limited supply of luck inside each and every icosahedron. According to widely-accepted theory, if you waste those rolls persuading beggars or...
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    Pathfinder 1E As a GM, have you ever struggled against “easy magical solutions?"

    Tell me if you've ever run into this one. You're in a murder mystery game, and you've got a corpse on your hands. And happily, since you're the luckiest mage in Golarion, you've got speak with dead prepped and ready to go. That's when your GM starts to get sweaty and nervous-looking. "The jaw...
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    D&D 5E Philosophy of Greataxe vs. Greatsword

    Philosophy the first: Look, it’s a straightforward optimization question. In 5e D&D a greatsword swings with 2d6 for an average of 7 damage. A greataxe has that impressive 1d12 damage die, but that’s only 6.5 average damage. Over the life of a campaign, you’re just straight up dealing more...
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    Starfinder When players ask "leading questions" rather than just saying what they want to do.

    When you ask your GM leading questions, you’re probably not going to get the answer you want. That’s due to the simple fact that GMs aren’t psychic. Sometimes we don’t know what you’re getting at, and so we inadvertently shut down your plans before they can get off the ground. In other words...
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    D&D 5E "Partly True" Rumors

    I love me some rabdom rumor tables. And even though the “true” and “false” quest hooks can be interesting in their own right, I have a special soft spot for those oh-so-interesting “partly true” rumors. They’re some of my favorites for RP purposes. I’m talking about those in-game urban legends...
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    Pathfinder 1E When the min-maxer tries to build your character for you.

    There’s nothing worse than unsolicited personal advice. There you are minding your own business, just trying to be the best you that you can be, when some jackhole decides to chime in with their naughty word hot take. “Yeah dude, you really ought to go half-elf with that build.” “Who doesn’t take...