The thing abut hobbies is that you do them for fun. It is fun to scrap book, paint, garden, play bridge, play sports, and play role playing games. And if something is fun, you don’t have to be good or great at it. Now some hobbies involve something competitive, so there is an urge to get better, if only so you can play more or longer. But that is if the hobby is competitive, and not all of them are. Role playing games by their nature are not inherently competitive, you can be competitive, but the measuring stick is so subjective that it is difficult to prove someone is the best. But that does not mean that someone who plays these games cannot strive to get better. This week I plan to write about some things that I work on or think about in my quest to be better at role playing games.
Today I want to talk about my Denver Pathfinder group. About the characters. What they can each do. And how to best maximize their roles within a given encounter. I did the same thing last week for the boys campaign group. But this will be a little different because of the system and campaign style.
Two Clerics, a Snake Shaman, a Paladin and a Sorcerer walk into a bar.
Ellie: A Paladin of Iomadae. Ellie is just about the baddest foe of Evil you will find on two legs. She has a high armor class, good hit points, and the ability to perform self healing every turn. So it takes some work to knock her down and out of any combat. And with her ability to Smite Evil and a high Charisma score just about any Big Bad Evil doer out there had best stay as far away from her as possible.
Ellie does not have any effective ranged combat abilities. So she counts on being able to get into melee to do her damage. While she is a great slayer of Evil, if she is confronted with a neutral foe she becomes extremely limited.
Ellie needs to be the first in the door with a rush to combat in order to maximize her abilities. She should be in the middle of the line, the rock that the battle is centered on. And be prepared because she is going to have a massive target painted on her for the bad guys to use.
Ellie is a Paladin, with all that implies in social interactions. While she is no Saint, she is still Lawful Good and has to maintain some sense of honor and follow a Code. Her sword, Marisol, insures she does not stray too far from this code.
Mickey: The Cleric of Desnae the wanderer. Mickey is the group healer first and foremost. He has a large amount of channels to fall back on for healing, or to wreak damage on Undead. He has good armor and hit points. And also has a good number of support spells to help prepare the party in advance.
Mickey also has limited ranged combat abilities. And is not the most fearsome foe that can be found in any close combat, unless he is facing Undead.
Because he is the healer, and support, Mickey should be directly behind Ellie in any line. Ready to prop up the line with healing and banishments.
Mickey is the group diplomat, with the high Charisma and flexibility to interact with any group. And the knowledge from his travels to keep an open mind when negotiating.
Qualiki: Fey Sorcerer. Qualiki is the artillery weapon of the party. Her area of effect spells are powerful, capable of dealing damage or hampering the enemies ability to attack. She also possesses the ability to summon multiple creatures that can be of great use in the combat line. And last she has some ability to shield the party and enhance their combat abilities.
Qualiki is the weakest member of the party in terms of armor and hit points. She needs to be sheltered and protected in combat so she can be at her most effective without worrying about those who will seek her out to counter her abilities.
If possible Qualiki should be above the line or in a hidden flank. Kept as far away from the muddle of close combat as possible, so she can maximize her spells.
Qualiki is the merchant, always with an eye on the bottom line. A very tough negotiator. And with the blessing of Iomadae and Fey ancestry few can withstand her charms.
Thorvald: Cleric of Thor. Thorvald seeks to emulate the God Thor. He wields the mighty hammer Grimthunder with terrible consequences. Thorvald has good armor and hit points so can step into the melee. But with Grimthunder he can be just as effective at ranged targets provided they are not at long ranges.
Thorvald is still a Cleric, and so does not have the same ability to withstand damage as Ellie, nor does he prefer the heavy armor favored by the Paladin. So he does take damage.
Thorvald can step to the line next to Ellie if necessary, but is far better used on a flank, knocking out opponents who would try to flank or circle Ellie.
As befits the god he worships Thorvald is blunt, honest and forthright. While adhering to a sense of honor and a vikings view of his place in the world.
Viper: Viper is a Serpent Shaman, with Ranger training. Viper is the groups sniper, the ranged combat specialist. And is the best suited for infiltration and scouting duties as well. Viper, having been a Ranger, has good armor and hit points so is capable of surviving in a melee combat if necessary.
Viper does not deal terrific damage, has no way to make huge inroads on any enemy. Therefore if the enemy has any form of damage resistance his abilities are limited.
Viper is best on a flank or behind the line. Thinning out the herd of weaker enemies, preventing anyone from surrounding the front line. He is also capable of hiding on the perimeter of the fight and taking the battle to the enemies rear.
Viper is a dark figure, a Half Orc who favors operating from hiding or intimidating those he must deal with. He is not at home in cities, preferring nature and time with animals. As befits a snake he will avoid interaction unless it is on his own terms.