Some people know all of the rules to the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, but many, many more do not. Here’s a list of the things we screwed up in our never-ending search for Pathfinder perfection…
Thanks to listeners Rowan (and friends) and Patrick for getting back to us immediately after Episode 48 dropped to let us know that we’d broken a secret rule of the druids – and you never want to mess with druids.
In the episode, Skid explains that Gelabrous can understand the druidic writing over the entrance to the Vault of Thorns because after finding out the details of our mission, he spent some time in the Trunau Library (we can only assume it wasn’t burnt to the ground in the siege of the city) learning the ancient language of the druids. This was just flavor of course. The real gaming reason that he was able to learn a language was that, on level up, he invested a point in the Linguistics skill. For those unfamiliar with Pathfinder (like Troy), putting a point in Linguistics allows you to learn a bonus language for free. Hopefully you have a story reason for doing so, but in the mechanics of the game, clever storytelling is not a prerequisite. By Pathfinder rules, anyone can be Neo plugged into the software of the Nebuchadnezzar. Gelabrous suddenly wakes, and in his best Keanu Reeves impression, faces Lorc with glossed-over eyes, and says, “I know Druidic.”
Well, Skid tried to do the right thing with the whole “library” flavor. I know I appreciated it. You know who didn’t? Rowan (and friends) and Patrick.
It turns out that written right into the Pathfinder Core Rulebook is the fact that druidic is a secret language and that druids are forbidden to teach it to anyone! It is, to quote Patrick, “Definitely not learned in a library.” In fact, to take it a step further, if a druid does break this sacred code and teach a non-druid the language, they would lose all of their powers and druid abilities. That’s a steep price to pay to allow Gelabrous to understand the wording over a door we’re walking through no matter what.
I’ll take responsibility here. I consider myself to be a bit of a rules guy and for the better part of two years, I’ve played a druid in another Pathfinder Adventure Path – Troy’s Jade Regent campaign. Problem is, I’ve never come across another druid or have even remembered once that I speak the language. That’s probably the GM’s fault (isn’t everything?) Perhaps this would be a good opportunity for some cross-AP programming. Maybe my druid is the one who ends up, as an old man, teaching the language to Gelabrous and giving up all of his druid powers!
Regardless, we’ll have to find some way to change the backstory because we’re sure as shit not un-teaching Gelabrous druidic! He knows a secret language, man! That’s badass!
Thanks again to our attentive audience for reminding us that We Are Stupid. Be sure to tune into next week’s episode, when Gelabrous joins the Illuminati.
Tá mè amach!