We Are Stupid – Episodes 12-22

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…

It’s been a long time since we’ve had a good, juicy We Are Stupid column. To be honest, it’s because we haven’t made any mistakes in quite a while. Correction. We haven’t made any mistakes that we’re aware of. That is until this week.

Now, we just released Episode 31 and you’ll notice that the subject of this post is not about Episode 31. No, this article points back nearly 20 episodes, to a simpler time before we were ‘Trunau’s Heroes,’ out gallivanting on a riverboat casino and eating potatoes so delicious that even a wolverine can’t keep his claws off them. This goes back to Episode 12 (ironically, the week I first announced the We Are Stupid series) where we made a massive, massive misread of a rule that would have changed the game entirely, and by we, I of course mean Troy.

This correction comes to us from listener and fan Richard who was kind enough to take the time to write into us and point out an error that we had been making and would have continued to make had he not brought it to our attention.

So, basically, to put it as simply as Richard: “Ferocity =/= Orc Ferocity”. Ferocity, as it turns out, is not the same thing as Orc Ferocity.

Since our first combat encounter with full-on orcs (in Episode 12, during the opening moments of Skreed’s attack on Trunau), we have been applying their Ferocity ability in the same way as we apply Orc Ferocity to Lorc (and any other half-orc that has come into the picture). That’s just plain stupid. Frankly, it’s embarrassing.

Ferocity is an ability that full orcs have that allows them to fight on when they are below zero, in a weakened state mind you (staggered to be technical), but fight on nonetheless, round after round after round until they reach a negative hit point total equal to their Constitution score (aka permanent death). We were treating this ability as Orc Ferocity which is a watered down version of the ability granted to half-orcs. This ability, as mentioned in a previous We Are Stupid post, allows a half-orc to fight on for one round after being brought below zero, followed by the creature falling unconscious. You are probably familiar with this situation as you’ve witnessed Lorc falling unconscious and dying on a monthly basis at this point. Remember every time we had an orc throw one final javelin, and then fall unconscious or move to attack Barron, and then fall unconscious? Every time, they should not have fallen unconscious. They should have lived on to fight until true, final, death.

If you’re an orc and you’re below zero hit points, you fight round after round until you’re fully dead. It’s what you do!

The fact that they chose to call it Ferocity for full orcs and ORC FEROCITY for half-orcs, seems deliberately confusing to me, but that’s neither here nor there.

What is relevant here is that, had every orc we fought, (including the ones in the burning house where Sara Morninghawk was dying, the ones in Carl’s house where Lorc dangerously crit himself to near death, or the 16 or so that stormed the barricade at the inner quarter) everyone single one of them, should have been alive for at least another round or two in most cases. To me, that just means certain death for at least one, if not more, of the party members. If it seemed to some of you like we came out of that battle a little too lucky, you weren’t wrong. Apparently, we had the whole adventure set to “novice” mode.

Well, our sincere apologies, and lesson learned for the future. Let’s be honest, though. Who would you rather have alive? The levitating, spider-vomiting, Gormlaith and the gunslinging, whiskey-slugging Barron, or some no-name loser ORC that drinks black sludge and smells like urine? It’s no contest, but I agree, we shouldn’t cheat to get there.

Thanks to Richard for clarifying this point for us and please follow his example. Write in when you catch a mistake. We love it! (We’re nerds like that). Happy New Year, everyone!

Ben. BEN! Put down that potato! Ugh, I gotta go.

-Joe

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