Thursday, September 15, 2005

Zen in da hood

after a short break (due to massive work) uncle zenstar is back with another question to answer:

"Yo Zenstar

I been kicking around San Andreas for a few weeks now. Doing
Drive-Bys, Jacking cars and helping out with my peeps down on Grove
Street. I have some decent strap and a pimped out ride. But man, hows
a brother gonna get a decent pad and fill it up with some fine ass
bitches if he cant make any decent paper. Where`s the real money at

-Big Pappa G and the Cape Town Massive.

ps: Officer Tenpiggy is a punk ass bitch."

dear OG (original garrick)
you need the feddy man.
ain't gonna get no betty without the feddy!
i suggest getting one of the sweet street bikes and touring around ramping over stuff. this won't get you any cash, but it's real fun!
you can gamble fo' mo' cash (just find a horse bettin' place), but more often than not you'll end up with nothin'.
the secret to cash is this: other people have your cash. you just need to take it back.

get ahold of the robbery van and break into some rich houses late at night. those peeps have insurance and like 7 tvs... they won't miss 6 of them, and insurance will replace them with new tvs.
do not break into houses in rival gang slums. as you know gansta's don't sleep and they may just be chillin' at home watching that tv you wanna steal, and they'll take exception to you pitchin' up in their livin' room wearin' yo green bandanas an shit.
with some practice you'll be rakin' in the feddy by night after fencin' off the stuff... but this can get borin'.

a mo' fun way of gettin' cash is with a baseball bat / golf club. find someone who looks like they got some feddy and knock 'em down (or sneak up from behind and slashy slashy with the knife). while they be lying down waitin' fo' the paramedics you can go through their pockets and take their cash.
jus' be carefull as the pigs do not like this behaviour and get all riled up. unless you got a deathwish you ain't gonna want to collect stars.

but if you really want to make a big score you need to stick to the hood dog.
get a couple of yo' boyz together and stop a car. throw out the driver and pile in before driving to a rival gang's hood. once there take out yo' nines and start blastin' the fools (you'll need to get out and move round the hood on foot at this point. yo' boyz can't hit shit while shooting from a car. also you need to collect the cash). ganstas need to carry the feddy else they don't get no bettys so you'll often find them droppin' big scores when they go down.
course if you got 4 / 5 boyz with you, you can take on a lot of punk-ass fools and make a lot of cash (since you're leading, you get to keep the cash).
you also get to stock up your ammo supplies as a gangsta's only as good as his gun (just find a fool armed with a knife and blast him if you need proof of this).
this racks up the cash fast, but remember to spend a little on pizza to keep you healthy. i often take a lunch break in the middle of the mayhem and go to the pizza joint. nothing like a slice of pepperoni goodness after you've taken a bullet.

with the above 3 solutions you probably gonna run into the pigs at some point. remember that all gangstas look the same to the pigs, so go home and change yo clothes to get rid of yo wanted rating ('less you done somethin' real bad... then you may have to find other means of getting them off yo' back)...
stupid pig: "you in the green shirt and combat pants, freeze!"
you: *quickly duck into changing room at trendy clothing store* "screw you porker!" *quickly change shirt and swap combat pants for jeans*
stupid pig: " come on out with your hands up! i need a doughnut!"
you: "hey man... what's up? you got the wrong guy... ain't no-one else here."
stupid pig: *confused* "umm.. sorry sir. i thought you were wearing a green shirt and some combat pants..." *looks into stall to see if anyone else is there* "my mistake... um... move along, nothing to see here."

course if there's some sort of plot twist an' you end up not bein' able trust yo' gang then there's only a couple of real ways to make decent cash: racin' and workin', and sometimes there just ain't no racin'.
pick up the odd job ferryin' stuff from a to b, or taking out hits on people, or being the car man for a couple of robberies.
all pay well, and if you do good they often ask you to come back.

yeah tenpenny's a pain in the ass man, but it could be worse... least he ain't cornholing you...

keepin' it real
uncle zenstar

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

fogged up faeries

conner the bare druid (or is that druid with a bear?) asked the following:


I am a druid and I have been contemplating the various Divine Magics available to me. I came across Faerie Fire and Fog Cloud, which look like they might have some form of interesting synergy, but I'm not sure on the rulings. Basically, they work like this:
Faerie Fire negates all concealment bonuses afforded by darkness.
Fog Cloud grants a 20% miss chance conceal bonus at 5ft, and a 50% total concealment bonus anywhere past that, and you can't use sight to locate targets.
Okay, so the way I see it is this. Fog Cloud is obviously not a dark effect, but flavour-wise it seems that a glowing outline would help in fog just as much as in dark. Obviously I'm not looking for Faerie Fire to negate the 10+ft bonus from Fog Cloud, since that makes no sense.

On a related note, how does Sneak Attack work in conjunction with Concealment? I have some Rogue friends who are obviously very interested in keeping their bonus. I've heard that all Sneak Attack bonuses are negated by any form of Concealment, but what counts as Concealment? Pitch black, obviously, but how light can it be before the Sneak Attack kicks back in? Full moonlight? Campfire? Dusk?

Yours in Nature
Connor and Baldur "

yours in nature?
man... get some pants! i think your acorns are showing...
anyway. the answer to your questions are simple:

you can do whatever your dm will let you get away with. if you ply your dm with alchohols and/or foods he'll probably let you see through fogclouds, have raving disco faerie fire, and backstab using a seige ballista while in perfect dark at a range of several small countries.
however, if your dm is a shrewd man who eats before arriving at the game and has a high alchohol tolarence, you may find you need to play a bit closer to the actual rules so i'll detail them a bit for you.

faerie fire halos the target with something equivalent to a candle flame. this means that your target is nicely outlined should they try to conceal themselves in a shadow, along a darkened hallway, in the bath with the bathroom light off while your wife insists that theres no-one else here and that she often does aerobic exercise in the nude.
fog cloud does exactly what it says... it creates a cloud of fog. this cloud is unusually dense and blocks all sight, including darkvision, beyond 5 ft.
i once knew a druid who could do this spell on command (especially if we had beans the night before) but he also had the feat "pass without trace" so we could never prove it was him!
the combination of these two spells does this: within the first 5 ft of cloud, the target is distinguishable by a faint outline and may be struck as normal. he loses the concealment bonus given by fogcloud. beyond that 5 ft... you'll never know because you cannot see. if you step into the cloud you cannot see more than 5 ft so if you're hunting someone with faerie fire on them you won't know where they are until you stand on them... then you may strike them normally, until they do a 5 foot step and disappear again. there may be some glowing visible from outside the cloud but you will not be able to pinpoint where its emenating from. (ever driven in the fog with your headlights on? same thing).
now if you get a group of goblins together, cast different colours of faerie fire on different goblins, get them to chase each other around (tell them the other is keeping money from them) and then cast fog cloud on the dance floor you have an instant rave.
i once knew a hippie who could cast fog cloud... it smelt a bit suspect and he was the only one blinded, but he swears there were goblins involved, man...

now as for your next query.... you planning on replacing the bear or something?
if i were your bear i'd stick to the shadows / stay in the bath with the bathroom light off (ah... i see why you want to know now...).
according to the greatest wizards of all... the wizards who produce tomes upon tomes of knowledge... the wizards of the coast: "Sneak attacks aren't possible when the target has any concealment whatsoever."
in other word no!
basically if they get a concealment bonus there is no backstab allowed. if it is kinda dusky and they get a concealment bonus at 30 ft, try sneak a little closer... not surprisingly, unless its as dark as an unlight bathroom, you should be able to negate the cover bonus due to low light by getting right up to your target... especially if you're carrying a torch... in fact why not backstab them with a torch? fur goes up a treat!
but remember: if your dm is drunk he'll forget such things as concealment, time of day, and his name.

hope this helps answer your concerns.
remember: always check the bathroom first!

uncle zenstar