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Advanced Race Guide - Discussion

jkason

First Post
One thing I think we should do is rule against traditionally-evil races as being approved for PC use. So:
I also think the (new?) Strix fit this bill as well.

Been going back and forth on this one. The write-up in ARG is pretty thin, but the SRD has a more expanded take which points to Strix and their 'human hatred' as being more that of encroached-on native inhabitants than an inherent evil.

It's a Golarion-specific flavor, but I think something similar could work well for E'n. The Seithr need more than just the dwarves, anyway, and I'm kind of digging the idea of Strix Aeries high up where humans aren't comfortable, perhaps with a Strix/dwarven affinity, since the 'diggers' don't threaten their preferred territory.

Mind you, my enjoying the fluff doesn't change the fact that I'm not keen on an automatic 60 ft. fly speed at first level. If there isn't fluff-based objection to the race, I was thinking a good compromise would be to require PC Strix to take the Wing-Clipped racial alt.
 

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Qik

First Post
I'm glad you pointed to the SRD entry on the Strix; I agree that it seems significantly less xenophobic than the paragraph in the ARG suggested to me. I like the idea of them fitting into the Seithr, and having an oddly-affable relationship with the dwarves given their mutually exclusive territories.

I'd prefer others to weigh in on their view of the power of a flight speed. I would certainly be against allowing them without the Wing-Clipped trait, but it seems like that, plus the less lucrative stat bonuses, might balance the scales. Again, I'd prefer to hear others' opinions on a flight speed, even one with poor maneuverability. Given that PF seems to avoid access to flight before level 5, it could still be a bit unbalancing for lower-level play, which is notable since LPF focuses so much on those lower levels (which may of course change in time).
 

Maidhc O Casain

Na Bith Mo Riocht Tá!
I like the Strix, and agree that they'd be a good fit in the Seithr. Pseudo-allies of the dwarves, and with a strained (at best) relationship with the human barbarian tribes of those mountains.

I think the limitation of requiring the Clipped Wings trait will be sufficient, when coupled with the reduced stat adjustments (+0 balance). I'd also like to point out that not only is the fly speed reduced, it's a DC 30 fly check to fly upward . . . how often are they actually going to even get off the ground at lower levels?

They could gain the flight ability back at the cost of two feats by level 3, presuming they've put up the points to buy a 13 strength. I think this is sufficient "payment" to get the ability earlier than 5th level.
 


jkason

First Post
I think the limitation of requiring the Clipped Wings trait will be sufficient, when coupled with the reduced stat adjustments (+0 balance). I'd also like to point out that not only is the fly speed reduced, it's a DC 30 fly check to fly upward . . . how often are they actually going to even get off the ground at lower levels?

They could gain the flight ability back at the cost of two feats by level 3, presuming they've put up the points to buy a 13 strength. I think this is sufficient "payment" to get the ability earlier than 5th level.

This was essentially where my head was on it. Until 3rd level, Strix 'flight' is really more of a glorified glide / feather fall, which is far more circumstantial. And 3rd level flight comes at a pretty steep cost. Others' mileage may vary, of course.
 

sunshadow21

First Post
On the flight speed, poor maneuverability is a pretty significant drawback. Considering it would take feats to get anything better, it's a fair trade. Perhaps add a feat (or possibly a series of feats) of our own with a requirement of a higher level that would allow them access to the full flight speed and maneuverability of the normal race. It would still cost a feat and we could control the level that it's available, so it could be balanced. They do seem like an interesting race, and could definitely be fun to play, especially if we developed some kind of connection to the tengu as well; could be good, could be bad, could be something in between, but as similar races, they could easily have interacted in the past, and the interaction would likely be fairly memorable to both.
 

Maidhc O Casain

Na Bith Mo Riocht Tá!
Perhaps add a feat (or possibly a series of feats) of our own with a requirement of a higher level that would allow them access to the full flight speed and maneuverability of the normal race. It would still cost a feat and we could control the level that it's available, so it could be balanced.

See, and I think the existing requirements to get to full racial flight and maneuverability are well balanced already, especially when combined with the reduced attribute bonuses. In order to get to their full flight abilities before 5th level, a Strix character will have to devote their first level feat to Skill Focus (Fly) - zero benefit to a first (or really even to a second level character) - and three attribute buy points to STR. Those attribute points are gonna be precious to a Strix character because they start out behind the curve on attirbutes. Then their third level feat has to go to Stretched Wings. If they don't do it that way, it'll be at least 5th level before they get full flight anyway.

They do seem like an interesting race, and could definitely be fun to play, especially if we developed some kind of connection to the tengu as well; could be good, could be bad, could be something in between, but as similar races, they could easily have interacted in the past, and the interaction would likely be fairly memorable to both.

I hadn't thought about their relations with the Tengu, but that could also be a nice well of fluff! Even though the tengu are "bird-like," far fewer of them will actually be able to fly than will the Strix. Could lead to a little racial tension. Or, given the right history, the Strix could feel protective of the Tengu; possibly even have a desire to help the Tengu regain their ability to fly.
 
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sunshadow21

First Post
See, and I think the existing requirements to get to full racial flight and maneuverability are well balanced already, especially when combined with the reduced attribute bonuses. In order to get to their full flight abilities before 5th level, a Strix character will have to devote their first level feat to Skill Focus (Fly) - zero benefit to a first (or really even to a second level character) - and three attribute buy points to STR. Those attribute points are gonna be precious to a Strix character because they start out behind the curve on attirbutes. Then their third level feat has to go to Stretched Wings. If they don't do it that way, it'll be at least 5th level before they get full flight anyway.

I haven't fully read up on them, so I don't know what they already have in place to deal with that. If they already have something, even better than us having to come up with it on our own.
 

sunshadow21

First Post
I hadn't thought about their relations with the Tengu, but that could also be a nice well of fluff! Even though the tengu are "bird-like," far fewer of them will actually be able to fly than will the Strix. Could lead to a little racial tension. Or, given the right history, the Strix could feel protective of the Tengu; possibly even have a desire to help the Tengu regain their ability to fly.

It could be both. The Strix feel they are being helpful and protective, while the tengu don't feel they need protecting, and are a bit annoyed by the unwanted "help" for the most part.
 



Satin Knights

First Post
Okay, here's a question. How close do you have to be to the race to use the racial equipment?

Tasanto, when Nysys is summoned, is for all intents and purposes, catfolk. See, they are already here!! The softpaw boots and claw blades both fit the character design well. If he didn't spend his gold on a wand, Tasanto could have afforded the magical Daredevil Softpaw boots. And yes, he eventually wants some, although he may need two sets.

Are we going strict racial requirement? Logically reasonable?
It is reasonable to commission the crafting of Daredevil Softpaw boots as a quad set instead of a pair?

PS. Gragnor wants them too.
 

Qik

First Post
The argument against doing so is, of course, the slippery slope argument. At least some of these feats and archetypes could be argued to work with other races. I see no reason why the Wild Caller couldn't work with gnomes (makes more sense than half-elves to me, in fact). Why is the Deadly Courtesan restricted to Vishkanya? Etc.

Now, am I against opening this door? Not entirely. Does racially-restricted equipment make sense? In some instances, but definitely not all - there's no good reason why claw blades be restricted to Catfolk, for example. But, anytime someone raises the idea of bending RAW, I start to wonder about how far we bend.

I think the best argument for removing racial restrictions on equipment on at least a limited basis is that we likely won't be approving even a majority of the races added by the ARG. It'd be nice to still have access to some of the new content associated with those races, or, conversely, to feel like we can decide whether to add a race based on itself, removed from its unique mechanics such as archetypes, equipment, etc. But again, if we start down this path, I wonder why we can't go further. I'd personally like to see many less racial restrictions on some of the archetypes and feats in this book, which is, of course, in direct contrast to the ARG's spirit.

Just some initial thoughts. Also - anytime SK suggests a ruling against RAW, it makes me inherently nervous. Because he's generally such a stickler for them. :p
 

Satin Knights

First Post
I am not actually going against RAW on either of those items. The claw blades are useable only by catfolk that have natural weapon (claws) that does d4 damage. Well, other races have natural weapon (claws) too.

The boots, well, they are boots built for feline feet. Unlike the Cat's Eye Crown, the crafter of the item that does not even have to be a catfolk. The wearer doesn't need to be catfolk either, just have feline feet.


Given, "The following options are available to catfolk. At the GM’s discretion, other appropriate races may make use of some of these new rules." It is the general case of "are we going to go strict with races, or go with logically compatible?" Paizo loves to leave things open-ended and up to the GM discretion. Well, that falls to us judges.

It is messy, but I am leaning towards logically compatible.


And, I think the decision should be separated out by areas as well.
Equipment: mundane, big yes
Equipment: magical, highly likely yes, haven't read everything.
Spells: leaning towards an arbitrary no.
Feats: Already no by RAW. Well, the feats list the race as a prereq, no. If it doesn't specify a race, yes it can be open.
Archetypes: No. That's the purpose of the book.
 

sunshadow21

First Post
The big thing I see with equipment is if the races are assumed to be present as NPCs or not. If they are, the equipment would technically be available to any who could use it if one could find the right supplier, and it's safe to assume that the Pearl could. If not, then we would need some kind of reason of why it's available and who came up up with it.

Spells, I'd say allow the ones for the races we approve, but not the others. They are too specific for the headaches it would cause if we allowed them.

Feats, same as the spells, with the caveat that any have only non-racial pre-reqs could be allowed without any real problems that I can see.
 

Qik

First Post
Yeah, what I wrote above had a strict RAW interpretation of "Race X has access to the following items." I do agree that there is logical transfer-ability, but as I said, I think that exists in regards to areas as well.

I'd love to have the Fire Brand alchemist discovery available for any race, not just Goblins. There's no more reason for this discovery to be restricted to Goblins than there is for claw blades to be restricted to Catfolk. At the very least, Gnomes with the Pyromancer trait should be able to take it, but again, even this restriction doesn't make sense to me. I think there are a notable handful of archetypes and class abilities to which this statement applies.

I'm not convinced that you can fluff your eidolon for the purposes of qualifying for racially restricted equipment. I interpret the spirit of those restrictions to remain specific to that race (setting aside the potential for GM discretion).

That said, that's just me being a Grumpy Gus. I'm fine with messy, but I think my above slippery slope point is a valid one. Personally, I'd be fine traveling further along that slope than the equipment (such as in the alchemist's discovery example), and, in fact, would prefer to do so once that door gets opened. But I our opening of the door itself needs to be considered.
 

jkason

First Post
I sort of think any PC-race equipment should be available for all, with non-PC race equipment restricted / on a per-proposal basis, but I don't have a particularly cogent reason for that other than not wanting the headache of trying to keep track of which race has access to which equipment. It's either in, or it's out, and no one has to go digging around to figure out if something is on the halfling list or the gnome list or whatever.

I'd be inclined to ask for proposals on opening up specific archetypes or feats, myself, probably for similarly selfish reasons.

Mind you, having said that, I've been toying with (when the time comes to fully propose races) suggesting we add a modified Suli race to PCs in lieu of four separate races to cover the elementals, something like this:

* PC Suli's must take the Energy Strike alternate racial trait. Depending on the element she chooses, a Suli gains access to racial archetypes and feats as follows: Fire=Ifrit, Cold=Undine, Acid=Oread, Electricity=Sylph.

Basically, it solved two problems for me. Firstly, it's hard to add one element without adding the others, but four fully 'distinct' races which are basically all variations on the elemental theme seems a bit excessive to me. On the other hand, the base Suli ability (four resistances and on-the-fly variable energy damage) seems overpowered to me, as well.

Essentially, the modified Suli would work in Illi Esse's planar intersection stuff, allow for elemental flavors of choice, but condense it into a single 'had an elemental parent' race with more limited-to-theme abilities.
 

Qik

First Post
While I completely see the logic behind your suggestion, jk, I would probably end up arguing against it.

I've been really taken by some of the elemental races in the ARG (much to my surprise, I'll add - for some reason, they've always struck me as gimmicky until now), and would hate to see them get replaced/genericized. There's just so much that is unique and interesting to them which reflects their distinct origins that I'd hate to see that go in favor of a blanket "resistance against X energy, ability to use X energy," etc. I like that Ifrits are fiery, charismatic, dexterous, and inclined towards foolishness, and I like that Oreads are socially awkward but stout and wise. I think the elemental races offer something really unique to the game, and to LPF, and would hate to see them lose some of that uniqueness.

Just my initial reaction, for what it's worth. I totally see the practical benefits of your suggestion, jk, but nevertheless, the impractical-ness in me has hopes for including the elemental races in LPF.
 
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sunshadow21

First Post
I, too, would rather see the individual elemental races allowed rather than one white washed generic one. They really are distinct from each other in ways that no single race would ever manage to cover.
 

Maidhc O Casain

Na Bith Mo Riocht Tá!
I've really become enamored of the Strix - I'm likely jumping the gun a little, but I've got some ideas for a treatment for them that I've started to put together into a (hopefully) coherent whole.
 

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