Feats of Skill

Friday, June 08, 2018

Now that Stephen has explained Pathfinder Second Edition's skills and how they work, it's time to look at the goodies you can earn as you level up: skill feats! Every character gets at least 10 skill feats, one at every even-numbered level, though rogues get 20, and you can always take a skill feat instead of a general feat. At their most basic level, skill feats allow you to customize how you use skills in the game, from combat tricks to social exploits, from risk-averse failure prevention to high-risk heroism. If you'd ever rather just have more trained skills than special techniques with the skills you already have, you can always take the Skill Training skill feat to do just that. Otherwise, you're in for a ride full of options, depending on your proficiency rank.

Assurance and Other Shared Feats

Some skill feats are shared across multiple skills. One that will stand out to risk-averse players is Assurance, which allows you to achieve a result of 10, 15, 20, or even 30, depending on your proficiency rank, without rolling. Are you taking a huge penalty or being forced to roll multiple times and use the lowest result? Doesn't matter—with Assurance, you always get the listed result. It's perfect for when you want to be able to automatically succeed at certain tasks, and the kinds of things you can achieve with an automatic 30 are pretty significant, worthy of legendary proficiency.

The other shared skill feats tend to be shared between Arcana, Nature, Occultism, Religion, and sometimes Society and Lore. This is because many of them are based on magic, like Trick Magic Item (allowing you to use an item not meant for you, like a fighter using a wand) and Quick Identification, which lets you identify magic items faster depending on your proficiency rank, eventually requiring only 3 rounds of glancing at an item. The rest of the shared skill feats are based on the Recall Knowledge action, including my favorite, Dubious Knowledge, which gives you information even on a failed check—except some of it is accurate, and some of it is wrong!

Scaling Feats

You might have noticed that Assurance scales based on your proficiency rank in the skill. In fact, many skill feats do, granting truly outstanding results at legendary. For instance, let's look at the Cat Fall skill feat of Acrobatics:

CAT FALL FEAT 1

Prerequisites trained in Acrobatics

Your catlike aerial acrobatics allow you to cushion your fall. Treat all falls as if you fell 10 fewer feet. If you're an expert in Acrobatics, treat falls as 25 feet shorter. If you're a master in Acrobatics, treat them as 50 feet shorter. If you're legendary in Acrobatics, you always land on your feet and don't take damage, regardless of the distance of the fall.

As you can see above, Cat Fall lets you treat all falls as 10 feet shorter, 25 feet shorter if you're an expert, or 50 feet shorter if you're a master. If you're legendary? Yeah, you can fall an unlimited distance and land on your feet, taking no damage. Similarly, a legendary performer can fascinate an unlimited number of people with a Fascinating Performance, scaling up from one person at the start. And these are just a few of the scaling skill feats.

Wondrous Crafters

Want to make a magic item? Great, take Magical Crafting and you can make any magic item—doesn't matter which kind.

MAGICAL CRAFTING FEAT 2

Prerequisites expert in Crafting

You can use the Craft activity to create magic items in addition to mundane ones. Many magic items have special crafting requirements, such as access to certain spells, as listed in the item entry in Chapter 11.

Similarly, there's a skill feat to make alchemical items, and even one to create quick-to-build improvised traps called snares!

Legendary!

Legendary characters can do all sorts of impressive things with their skills, not just using scaling skill feats but also using inherently legendary skill feats. If you're legendary, you can swim like a fish, survive indefinitely in the void of space, steal a suit of full plate off a guard (see Legendary Thief below), constantly sneak everywhere at full speed while performing other tasks (Legendary Sneak, from Monday's blog), give a speech that stops a war in the middle of the battlefield, remove an affliction or permanent condition with a medical miracle (Legendary Medic, also from Monday's blog), speak to any creature with a language instantly through an instinctual pidgin language, completely change your appearance and costume in seconds (see Legendary Impersonator below), squeeze through a hole the size of your head at your full walking speed, decipher codes with only a skim, and more!

[[A]][[A]][[A]]LEGENDARY IMPERSONATOR FEAT 15

Prerequisites legendary in Deception, Quick Disguise

You set up a full disguise with which you can Impersonate someone with incredible speed.

LEGENDARY THIEF FEAT 15

Prerequisites legendary in Thievery, Pickpocket

Your ability to steal items defies belief. You can attempt to Steal an Object that is actively wielded or that would be extremely noticeable or time-consuming to remove (like worn shoes or armor). You must do so slowly and carefully, spending at least 1 minute and significantly longer for items that are normally time-consuming to remove (like armor). Throughout this duration you must have some means of staying hidden, whether under cover of darkness or in a bustling crowd, for example. You take a -5 penalty to your Thievery check. Even if you succeed, if the item is extremely prominent, like a suit of full plate armor, onlookers will quickly notice it's gone after you steal it.

So what sorts of feats are you most excited to perform with your skills? Let me know in the comments section!

Mark Seifter
Designer

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Grand Lodge

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If you wouldn't want a 'Legendary' style game, your campaigns wouldn't go above level 15 anyhow in Pathfinder 1.


Shinigami02 wrote:
Stone Dog wrote:

Funny thing about my groups, in all the time I've played D20 games, the only time I can remember people wanting g to take ten is after a bad roll. Nobody ever did it proactively. "Could I take ten?" You could have, but you didn't. My last mythic game a character even had that power that let's you take ten and twenty all the time and she still never did.

I hope the option is still there for everybody, but Assurance seems like an upgrade. You don't have to be concerned with situation or time involved, you are just ... Well, assured.

Taking 10 happens all the time in my group. Almost any time we can use it at that.

I have the feeling that with the tighter maths, "taking 10" wouldn't be as "good" as in PF1. In PF1, there is a time when you have so much static bonuses to your skills that rolling the dice is actually detrimental.


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Varun Creed wrote:
If you wouldn't want a 'Legendary' style game, your campaigns wouldn't go above level 15 anyhow in Pathfinder 1.

Yeah, it seems level 15 is when Skills get the option to go Legendary.

Seems the earliest other stuff can go Legendary is 13, like the Fighter with one weapon group of his choice (all weapons go Legendary proficiency at 19).


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Varun Creed wrote:

If you wouldn't want a 'Legendary' style game, your campaigns wouldn't go above level 15 anyhow in Pathfinder 1.

In PF1 once people start slinging around wish and opening new dimensions and some of those crazy spells a thief who is really good at stealing pants does not seem to be that far fetched.


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Mark Seifter wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:
"Many magic items have special crafting requirements, such as access to certain spells, as listed in the item entry in Chapter 11." So... you can't actually be an item crafter unless you're a spellcaster. :/
From previous comments, it sounds like this is mostly restricted to things like Wands that actually allow you to cast spells (ie: spell trigger and spell completion items). A Fighter could make magic weapons and armor, as well as many other things, just fine.
Correct. It means "Many items have prerequisites. Access to a spell is one example of a prerequisite." Not "Many items have prerequisites of access to a spell." I do see how it could give that impression though now that Arachnofiend mentions it.

If the spell restriction is just magic items that exactly mimic a spell being cast then I'm more okay with it. My main concern is if a bunch of wondrous items have that restriction; something I'll be looking out for and making a topic about if that happens to be the case in the playtest, for sure.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Class Deck, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

My two cents on the Legendary subject... from what I have read, and what seems to have been said by developers, barring Legendary across the board from your tables should be one of the easiest and least-labor-intensive changes one might make to the rules for home game consumption. About the /only/ thing I am seeing that an anti-Legendary GM (not a slight on any with such thoughts) is MAYBE needing to have an alternate way for Legendary level magic items/weapons/armor to exist in your campaign, assuming that you actually want what they turn out to represent in your world. It appears to me, at least, that they've done a good job of fencing off the Legendary part of the whole system such that it can be left out without any real pain. Not so true of other levels of proficiency, mind, any changes there are going to cascade onwards, but this part looks like it will turn out to be easy to say no to. And in a way that doesn't 'rub the wrong way' simply because it's Core but you're not allowing it... Many did that with Leadership out of the PF1 Core and the rest of the rules suffered not at all for its exclusion.

Paizo Employee Designer

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BPorter wrote:

Yeah, Legendary is officially getting hit with the ban-hammer in any PF2 campaigns I would run. I really hope the ability to customize is in the CRB. If Legendary can't be easily excised from the game without breaking other systems, I may have to skip PF2 despite being very optimistic about everything else.

Thus far, Legendary isn't High Fantasy, it's Mythic on steroids but without the in-world explanation. This blog unfortunately shifts me out of the "very excited" column to "on the fence", with respect to PF2 which sucks.

Note: if Legendary floats your boat, good for you. It kills enthusiasm for me, however, so I really don't need the "then you must of have been playing PF1 wrong" crap.

I know Paizo can't please everyone. I'm a diehard Paizo and PF1 fan. My excitement for PF2 had been steadily building. Now, much less so. YMMV

To be fair, many of the abilities were available to nonmagical classes as class features (vigilante talent to avoid all falling damage, rogue talent to make a quick disguise).

That said, the necessary houserule to avoid them is easy to employ and doesn't even penalize the PCs compared to a more well-rounded build: Just tell them they can't raise a skill to legendary rank, even when they hit 15th. They can still use the skill rank increases to get another master skill and another expert instead, and then the whole group wins if they aren't into legendary skill feats :)


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I feel like taking Assurance in something you plan on being legendarily competent at is sensible, since "take 30" is pretty good.

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

This blog has made me fear greatly for my favorite class - Bards. The fact that we keep hearing about Rogues getting 20 skill feats and that they get the most makes me think that Bards are either A - getting more than everyone else but less than Rogues or B - they're getting the same as everyone else.

I was OK with that until you revealed Fascinating Performance... which sounds like anyone can now do the magical coolness that was previously Bard territory. Then I thought, well maybe Bards will get all skills as trained. But that presents a new problem directly tied to the issue with proficiency making the difference between untrained and legendary 5.

... I'm trying to withhold judgement, but this blog has me terrified. PLEASE TELL US ABOUT BARDS!!!


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There are 2 great things here:
- The focus is moved away from the numbers ("I have +22 in Stealth", yawn) to the actual cool things you can do. Like Stone Dog said, the rogue is now the one with the most tricks not the most skills. And the team has done a great deal of work to imagine cool new things to do.
- We're entering the real of things which are arguably supernatural, or would have been labeled such in PF1 terminology. This means a much better chance to reduce the caster vs non caster disparity.

I totally understand why one would reject the concept of legendary feats out of hand, especially for groups that prefer relatively low levels of magic in their world. This isn't for everyone, but it sure is for me, because, well, it sounds like a ton of fun.

Now for some skill feats I'd like to see:
- Rhetorical genius: Use Performance or Diplomacy to win an argument or turn a crowd against someone.
- Confessor: Use Diplomacy to force someone to tell the truth.
- Fast reader: Use Arcana to read a spellbook in minutes.
- Enthralling play: Use Performance to give a condition to a crowd (fall asleep, rage, confusion, fatigue...)
- Impossible burglar: Use Acrobatics to move through a door or window without opening it.
- Fervor: Use Religion to get a favor from a deity. Now the difficulty is how to make this clearly different from a spell, but hey, I'll leave such puny details to those who design feats for a living :-)


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Mark Seifter wrote:
BPorter wrote:

Yeah, Legendary is officially getting hit with the ban-hammer in any PF2 campaigns I would run. I really hope the ability to customize is in the CRB. If Legendary can't be easily excised from the game without breaking other systems, I may have to skip PF2 despite being very optimistic about everything else.

Thus far, Legendary isn't High Fantasy, it's Mythic on steroids but without the in-world explanation. This blog unfortunately shifts me out of the "very excited" column to "on the fence", with respect to PF2 which sucks.

Note: if Legendary floats your boat, good for you. It kills enthusiasm for me, however, so I really don't need the "then you must of have been playing PF1 wrong" crap.

I know Paizo can't please everyone. I'm a diehard Paizo and PF1 fan. My excitement for PF2 had been steadily building. Now, much less so. YMMV

To be fair, many of the abilities were available to nonmagical classes as class features (vigilante talent to avoid all falling damage, rogue talent to make a quick disguise).

That said, the necessary houserule to avoid them is easy to employ and doesn't even penalize the PCs compared to a more well-rounded build: Just tell them they can't raise a skill to legendary rank, even when they hit 15th. They can still use the skill rank increases to get another master skill and another expert instead, and then the whole group wins if they aren't into legendary skill feats :)

I feel it should be mentioned that the guy who likes this houserule the most is gonna be the Wizard player...

Paizo Employee Designer

17 people marked this as a favorite.
Shinigami02 wrote:
Stone Dog wrote:

Funny thing about my groups, in all the time I've played D20 games, the only time I can remember people wanting g to take ten is after a bad roll. Nobody ever did it proactively. "Could I take ten?" You could have, but you didn't. My last mythic game a character even had that power that let's you take ten and twenty all the time and she still never did.

I hope the option is still there for everybody, but Assurance seems like an upgrade. You don't have to be concerned with situation or time involved, you are just ... Well, assured.

Taking 10 happens all the time in my group. Almost any time we can use it at that.

I've seen it both ways, for sure. Take 20 is an important rule to save time (we call it a thorough check). From a rules system perspective, Assurance is an upgrade because it allows more certainty for the characters without creating the same baleful side effect of Take 10 (incidentally, even without taking Assurance, there is a mechanism to skip rolling checks of a certain DC, but Assurance gives you a much better rate than the normal mechanism): Take 10 is meant to help the group skip uneventful or unimportant rolls bogging down the game and focus on the important or interesting stuff, but in practice, it meant that it was impossible to have a skill check in the game with a greater than 50% but not 100% chance of success, which left you with the unfun situation of "The only things you don't autosucceed at you probably fail." Assurance (and the non-Assurance mechanisms) have all of the game-smoothing advantages of Take 10 and none of its forced-to-make-the-PCs-likely-to-fail weaknesses.


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Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Stone Dog wrote:
Legendary Catfall. "Hero landing! She's going to do a hero landing!"

...And THAT, Ladies and Gentlemen, is how you make martials awesome. :)

If more feats are like that, we're gonna have the Fighter who takes a 500-foot dive off of a cliff, grabs the Wyvern on the way down, and body-slams him for extra damage. :)

The Skill Feat Blog wrote:
Your ability to steal items defies belief. You can attempt to Steal an Object that is actively wielded or that would be extremely noticeable or time-consuming to remove (like worn shoes or armor). You must do so slowly and carefully, spending at least 1 minute and significantly longer for items that are normally time-consuming to remove (like armor). Throughout this duration you must have some means of staying hidden, whether under cover of darkness or in a bustling crowd, for example. You take a -5 penalty to your Thievery check. Even if you succeed, if the item is extremely prominent, like a suit of full plate armor, onlookers will quickly notice it's gone after you steal it.

This makes me think of the first Gamers movie.

"I want to steal... his Trousers that he's wearing!"

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Quote:
Every character gets at least 10 skill feats, one at every even-numbered level, though rogues get 20

Does a fighter 1/wizard 1 have 1 skill feat (from being level 2) or 0 because the individual class levels are not even?


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
BPorter wrote:

Yeah, Legendary is officially getting hit with the ban-hammer in any PF2 campaigns I would run. I really hope the ability to customize is in the CRB. If Legendary can't be easily excised from the game without breaking other systems, I may have to skip PF2 despite being very optimistic about everything else.

Thus far, Legendary isn't High Fantasy, it's Mythic on steroids but without the in-world explanation. This blog unfortunately shifts me out of the "very excited" column to "on the fence", with respect to PF2 which sucks.

This seems really easy to fix in your games, while still giving players nice stuff. Skill feats with legendary as a prerequisite are banned, and legendary proficiency doesn't grant any changes to the skill (you still can't stealth while doing other things, etc.). However, scaling feats still scale. So you can always get a good result with Assurance, you can fascinate an area, and so on. That still leaves new things for players, without giving characters supernatural abilities.


I was hoping for some more low-level examples (you know stuff that will actually get played and used) instead of the focus on Legendary stuff, which likely will never see play at most tables.

PossibleCabbage wrote: "I feel like taking Assurance in something you plan on being legendarily competent at is sensible, since "take 30" is pretty good."

As long as it doesn't take 30 times as long to perform the check like taking 20 in P1e took 20 times as long.

Paizo Employee Designer

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Arachnofiend wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:
"Many magic items have special crafting requirements, such as access to certain spells, as listed in the item entry in Chapter 11." So... you can't actually be an item crafter unless you're a spellcaster. :/
From previous comments, it sounds like this is mostly restricted to things like Wands that actually allow you to cast spells (ie: spell trigger and spell completion items). A Fighter could make magic weapons and armor, as well as many other things, just fine.
Correct. It means "Many items have prerequisites. Access to a spell is one example of a prerequisite." Not "Many items have prerequisites of access to a spell." I do see how it could give that impression though now that Arachnofiend mentions it.
If the spell restriction is just magic items that exactly mimic a spell being cast then I'm more okay with it. My main concern is if a bunch of wondrous items have that restriction; something I'll be looking out for and making a topic about if that happens to be the case in the playtest, for sure.

In PF1, items nearly universally found some sort of "similar" spell to stick on as a prerequisite. This is not the case in the playtest, and that drastically reduces the spell requirements. Also, since turnabout on the wizard is fair play, there are trinkets that require the creator to have a martial feat or ability to make.


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kaid wrote:
Varun Creed wrote:

If you wouldn't want a 'Legendary' style game, your campaigns wouldn't go above level 15 anyhow in Pathfinder 1.

In PF1 once people start slinging around wish and opening new dimensions and some of those crazy spells a thief who is really good at stealing pants does not seem to be that far fetched.

In PF1, one doesn't survive the vacuum of space without magic or a magical or technological item, i.e. an in-game explanation. Having access to reality altering magic as a high level spellcaster = an in-game explanation.

Surviving in a vacuum in PF2? "I'm just that skilled/good at Survival that the environmental effects of vacuum no longer apply." In other words, my knowledge and training is so good, the laws of the in-game universe cease to apply to me. WTF?

PF2 character - I can survive a fall from ANY height without being the offspring of a god, being a spellcaster, or possessing a magic item that provides that ability. "I'm just that skilled/good that gravity causes me to fall like any other object but momentum doesn't exist when I land." Again, WTF?

In game explanations of the fantastic I can get behind. It's one of the appealing facets of fantasy games. However, saying "I can now break the realities of the game solely on the basis of 'I leveled high enough'" is way past the line of internal consistency. I'd hate it in a video game and I sure as hell hate it in my tabletop RPGs.

Even the superhero genre and its associated RPGs require that a fantastic power has a source/in-world explanation. That has not be presented or even hinted at with respect to PF2's Legendary tier.


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kaid wrote:
Varun Creed wrote:

If you wouldn't want a 'Legendary' style game, your campaigns wouldn't go above level 15 anyhow in Pathfinder 1.

In PF1 once people start slinging around wish and opening new dimensions and some of those crazy spells a thief who is really good at stealing pants does not seem to be that far fetched.

I have literally watched someone steal a person's pants without the victim being aware of it, with my own eyes. Which means it's something which can happen in real life so shouldn't even be legendary. Master at most.

Paizo Employee Designer

8 people marked this as a favorite.
Arachnofiend wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
BPorter wrote:

Yeah, Legendary is officially getting hit with the ban-hammer in any PF2 campaigns I would run. I really hope the ability to customize is in the CRB. If Legendary can't be easily excised from the game without breaking other systems, I may have to skip PF2 despite being very optimistic about everything else.

Thus far, Legendary isn't High Fantasy, it's Mythic on steroids but without the in-world explanation. This blog unfortunately shifts me out of the "very excited" column to "on the fence", with respect to PF2 which sucks.

Note: if Legendary floats your boat, good for you. It kills enthusiasm for me, however, so I really don't need the "then you must of have been playing PF1 wrong" crap.

I know Paizo can't please everyone. I'm a diehard Paizo and PF1 fan. My excitement for PF2 had been steadily building. Now, much less so. YMMV

To be fair, many of the abilities were available to nonmagical classes as class features (vigilante talent to avoid all falling damage, rogue talent to make a quick disguise).

That said, the necessary houserule to avoid them is easy to employ and doesn't even penalize the PCs compared to a more well-rounded build: Just tell them they can't raise a skill to legendary rank, even when they hit 15th. They can still use the skill rank increases to get another master skill and another expert instead, and then the whole group wins if they aren't into legendary skill feats :)

I feel it should be mentioned that the guy who likes this houserule the most is gonna be the Wizard player...

The main beneficiaries are probably skilled monsters/NPCs that have baked in legendary proficiency and are now 1 better than the PCs in their best skills than they would have been before. Other than that, while the legendary abilities are very flashy and awesome, arguably you can still find some very useful things to do with your wider pool of master skill feats; spreading out is available as a build in the normal system after all, even if I would personally not build a character that way very often.

Dark Archive

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ODST = Orbital Drop Shock Troopers. They fly around on carpets and in Magic cloud ships. Dropping in to attack.


Fuzzypaws wrote:
I have literally watched someone steal a person's pants without the victim being aware of it, with my own eyes. Which means it's something which can happen in real life so shouldn't even be legendary. Master at most.

Yes, this relates to that guy that saw the 9-legged blue tiger, and so did his wife.

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Fuzzypaws wrote:
kaid wrote:
Varun Creed wrote:

If you wouldn't want a 'Legendary' style game, your campaigns wouldn't go above level 15 anyhow in Pathfinder 1.

In PF1 once people start slinging around wish and opening new dimensions and some of those crazy spells a thief who is really good at stealing pants does not seem to be that far fetched.
I have literally watched someone steal a person's pants without the victim being aware of it, with my own eyes. Which means it's something which can happen in real life so shouldn't even be legendary. Master at most.

OMG I was going to say the same thing. In my fraternity days there was a guy who was highly skilled at this.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Okay. It does sound like Skill Feats are required to raise a skill from Trained to Expert or Master (or Legendary).

So essentially unless you want to spend General Feats (or are a Rogue) you're going to have Trained a half dozen skills or so, and have a couple skills that you specialize in and can do really neat things with.

Outside of spending a Skill Feat, are there other methods of increasing a Skill level to Expert, Master, or Legendary? For instance, do some classes provide Skill Level Increases for Class-specific Skills? (For instance, Clerics might have Religion or Occultism as Class Skills and might further boost one of those skills further as an aspect of their class outside of Skill Feats?)

Paizo Employee Designer

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Tangent101 wrote:

Okay. It does sound like Skill Feats are required to raise a skill from Trained to Expert or Master (or Legendary).

No, skill rank increases are what you use to increase your skill rank.

Dark Archive

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Loving the new Skill Feats system, but reading about Fascinating Performance just makes me want to hear about the new Bard more! What's up with them?


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BPorter wrote:


In game explanations of the fantastic I can get behind. It's one of the appealing facets of fantasy games. However, saying "I can now break the realities of the game solely on the basis of 'I leveled high enough'" is way past the line of internal consistency. I'd hate it in a video game and I sure as hell hate it in my tabletop RPGs.

I'm with BPorter on this one. The idea of providing abilities that violate internal consistency without a magical explanation (cue arguments that the fact that the world contains magic at all solves the inconsistency) isn't particularly appealing within my group. It looks like my restriction list for PF2E may end up being a lot higher than it was for PF1.

Concept-wise, this has some potential, and gives a much-needed boost to skills and skill-oriented characters.

However, I suspect regular pants-stealing opportunities for Rogues will make public games really annoying.

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

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Maybe just pretend all these Legendary abilities have (Su) next to them?


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wizzardman wrote:
BPorter wrote:


In game explanations of the fantastic I can get behind. It's one of the appealing facets of fantasy games. However, saying "I can now break the realities of the game solely on the basis of 'I leveled high enough'" is way past the line of internal consistency. I'd hate it in a video game and I sure as hell hate it in my tabletop RPGs.
I'm with BPorter on this one. The idea of providing abilities that violate internal consistency without a magical explanation (cue arguments that the fact that the world contains magic at all solves the inconsistency) isn't particularly appealing within my group. It looks like my restriction list for PF2E may end up being a lot higher than it was for PF1.

You can always house-rule that legendary skills are you drawing on ambient magic. The only crunch difference I see this making is that they'll fail in an AMF.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Mark Seifter wrote:
BPorter wrote:

Yeah, Legendary is officially getting hit with the ban-hammer in any PF2 campaigns I would run. I really hope the ability to customize is in the CRB. If Legendary can't be easily excised from the game without breaking other systems, I may have to skip PF2 despite being very optimistic about everything else.

Thus far, Legendary isn't High Fantasy, it's Mythic on steroids but without the in-world explanation. This blog unfortunately shifts me out of the "very excited" column to "on the fence", with respect to PF2 which sucks.

Note: if Legendary floats your boat, good for you. It kills enthusiasm for me, however, so I really don't need the "then you must of have been playing PF1 wrong" crap.

I know Paizo can't please everyone. I'm a diehard Paizo and PF1 fan. My excitement for PF2 had been steadily building. Now, much less so. YMMV

To be fair, many of the abilities were available to nonmagical classes as class features (vigilante talent to avoid all falling damage, rogue talent to make a quick disguise).

That said, the necessary houserule to avoid them is easy to employ and doesn't even penalize the PCs compared to a more well-rounded build: Just tell them they can't raise a skill to legendary rank, even when they hit 15th. They can still use the skill rank increases to get another master skill and another expert instead, and then the whole group wins if they aren't into legendary skill feats :)

So this is interesting. You could do do some very interesting limits just by preventing access to Legendary Proficiency or even Master if you wanted to do PF2e on Hard Mode.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32, 2011 Top 16

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I'm with BPorter also. I don't want non magical abilities to become magical when you become legendary in them. Saying they're supernatural doesn't make it better, it just makes it more explicit that someone who's non magical inexplicably became magical.

There's a difference between playing a superhero game and a fantasy game where some are magical and some aren't. I want to play a character like Conan because he's awesome at being a kick ass barbarian fighter rogue without magic. If I wanted magical powers I'd pick a magical class or use magic items to get access.


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Benchak/Fuzzy-Wuzzy: I guess? Both of those are valid explanations, but they strike a bit too close to "you were a spellcaster all along" for comfort.

It might just be easier to stick that (Su) next to the blatantly weird abilities, and then declare that if a player is going to take them, they need to explain where they came from. That way a Tengu player can still take it and claim he figured out how to right himself on the way down, while the human that *doesn't* take it can claim to be the adventurer equivalent of Batman (i.e. an especially experienced normal dude -- only clearly without the preptime needed for a potion of Feather Fall) without clashing.

At least that saves me from having to describe it.


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Are there any skill feats that let me sunder space and time with my weapon to dimension door around?


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BPorter wrote:

PF2 character - I can survive a fall from ANY height without being the offspring of a god, being a spellcaster, or possessing a magic item that provides that ability. "I'm just that skilled/good that gravity causes me to fall like any other object but momentum doesn't exist when I land." Again, WTF?

You mean they can survive a fall from any distance like PF1 characters that have more than 120hp? Or a monk within an arm's reach of a wall?


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Nightwhisper wrote:
You mean they can survive a fall from any distance like PF1 characters that have more than 120hp? Or a monk within an arm's reach of a wall?

In the former case, the character in question was at least theoretically injured in the fall. In the latter, monks are supernatural creatures with blatantly supernatural class traits.

Grand Lodge

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Fuzzy-Wuzzy wrote:
wizzardman wrote:
BPorter wrote:


In game explanations of the fantastic I can get behind. It's one of the appealing facets of fantasy games. However, saying "I can now break the realities of the game solely on the basis of 'I leveled high enough'" is way past the line of internal consistency. I'd hate it in a video game and I sure as hell hate it in my tabletop RPGs.
I'm with BPorter on this one. The idea of providing abilities that violate internal consistency without a magical explanation (cue arguments that the fact that the world contains magic at all solves the inconsistency) isn't particularly appealing within my group. It looks like my restriction list for PF2E may end up being a lot higher than it was for PF1.
You can always house-rule that legendary skills are you drawing on ambient magic. The only crunch difference I see this making is that they'll fail in an AMF.

yeah that's the option I would take, magic is every where and you use it to do legendary things. Means magic free zones are a real problem for all classes! But by that level I'll probably not care, it's just going for the awesome. When I want to play a gritty more realistic game, pathfinder would never be my choice anyway


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JoelF847 wrote:

I'm with BPorter also. I don't want non magical abilities to become magical when you become legendary in them. Saying they're supernatural doesn't make it better, it just makes it more explicit that someone who's non magical inexplicably became magical.

There's a difference between playing a superhero game and a fantasy game where some are magical and some aren't. I want to play a character like Conan because he's awesome at being a kick ass barbarian fighter rogue without magic. If I wanted magical powers I'd pick a magical class or use magic items to get access.

It makes me think of heroes of Legend, who were almost magical even if they didn't cast spells. Like when Beowulf spent days swimming and fighting sea monsters for a race in full armor.

Legendary is just that: Legendary. You're hitting the point of true Heroes, virtual demigods.

You can always end a game before that point or houserule such feats out...but it's a damn shame really. Magic users always got over Martials due to their insane power. Skills like these give Martials the chance to shine on that level in their own way.

Besides, if Wizards can have their 10th Level Spells, let my Monk piledrive the final villain from his floating sky city into the nearest mountain, and brush the dust off his shoulder afterwards.


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wizzardman wrote:

Benchak/Fuzzy-Wuzzy: I guess? Both of those are valid explanations, but they strike a bit too close to "you were a spellcaster all along" for comfort.

It might just be easier to stick that (Su) next to the blatantly weird abilities, and then declare that if a player is going to take them, they need to explain where they came from. That way a Tengu player can still take it and claim he figured out how to right himself on the way down, while the human that *doesn't* take it can claim to be the adventurer equivalent of Batman (i.e. an especially experienced normal dude -- only clearly without the preptime needed for a potion of Feather Fall) without clashing.

At least that saves me from having to describe it.

Easiest solution: Everyone wears a cape!

(I mean, in PF1, most people already did mechanically because of Cloaks of Resistance.)


Seems to list in a way, a lot of what can be done in a fantasy game, so coded.


Mark Seifter wrote:
Tangent101 wrote:

Okay. It does sound like Skill Feats are required to raise a skill from Trained to Expert or Master (or Legendary).

No, skill rank increases are what you use to increase your skill rank.

Could you explain this in more detail, please? This:

Quote:
If you'd ever rather just have more trained skills than special techniques with the skills you already have, you can always take the Skill Training skill feat to do just that.

implies that it does what Skill Ranks supposedly do.

Could you explain the difference between the feat and Skill Rank increases?

Also, as an aside, what happens if I roll a 1 on a skill with Assurance? Do I still get one degree of failure worse than my Assurance result?

Overall, I REALLY like what I see in this blog post. I'm still iffy on the +level and the character generation stuff, but this I like.

Shadow Lodge

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Blog wrote:
So what sorts of feats are you most excited to perform with your skills? Let me know in the comments section!

Toxicology time!

I'm excited for any sorts of feats that will let me heal, harm, buff, or debuff others using herbs, poisons, and any other chemical substances.

Do such skill feats exist? Well, I know they do for healing, but what about the others?

Is poison use and chemical alterations a skill line a character can choose? Or are they regulated to class feats, only?


ElSilverWind wrote:
(I mean, in PF1, most people already did mechanically because of Cloaks of Resistance.)

How lame is that, IMO.


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BPorter wrote:

Yeah, Legendary is officially getting hit with the ban-hammer in any PF2 campaigns I would run. I really hope the ability to customize is in the CRB. If Legendary can't be easily excised from the game without breaking other systems, I may have to skip PF2 despite being very optimistic about everything else.

Thus far, Legendary isn't High Fantasy, it's Mythic on steroids but without the in-world explanation. This blog unfortunately shifts me out of the "very excited" column to "on the fence", with respect to PF2 which sucks.

Note: if Legendary floats your boat, good for you. It kills enthusiasm for me, however, so I really don't need the "then you must of have been playing PF1 wrong" crap.

I know Paizo can't please everyone. I'm a diehard Paizo and PF1 fan. My excitement for PF2 had been steadily building. Now, much less so. YMMV

I agree with you here. I can't figure out how any of the Legendary feats described fit Golarion or any other D&D-derived world/setting. The tone of the PF tales and other setting materials has been fairly gritty/normal except for actual spell casting- no naked space walks, swan diving off volcanoes or stripping people nude in the streets in 6 seconds or less without anyone noticing. Even with magical assistance the heroes have non-instant recovery times, twisted ankles and a need to breathe air.

On the other hand, it doesn't matter for most games, as it looks like high level junk that won't really come up in actual play (or get play tested much, if past behavior is any indication), so... whatever

Mostly I'm on the fence because I don't like the business model all these feats (and racial,class, general and whatever feats) imply. Just book after book churned out packed with yet more power feats and reams of throw away feats. Because let's be honest, the quality control of feats in PF1 was really awful. A handful of power feats, a bunch of build specific must haves and Lots and lots of junk that wasn't worth taking at all. Some of which didn't even do anything at all. Starfinder turned out much the same. What is going to keep PF2 from going the same way, especially with yet more feats and feat types as the core mechanic of character building (and buying back base abilities, as we've seen in the race and alchemist previews)?


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For people concerned about legendary abilities, don't think of them as magical. Think of them as cinematic action and spy movie heroes. It's not so much breaking reality as breaking human limits. What they do may not be strictly possible in our world without technological assistance, they just have to seem /plausible/ for an exceptional individual to be able to pull off.

In other words: Master is what a real world person in the top few percent for skill could actually do on their own. Legendary is what that same person could do in real life with technological assistance or a few specialized sidekicks helping them, but they're just /so good/ they don't even need the help.

Silver Crusade

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I honestly like concept of legendary skill feats, so far. For me it will always be down to the fact that I want the divide of martials Vs casters to smaller. Martials were always outclassed in what they could provide to the party, and things often would come down to how are you going to solve this solution wizard? However with out actually see thing in play who knows if this will actually be able to close up the gap between martials and casters.


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Fuzzypaws wrote:

For people concerned about legendary abilities, don't think of them as magical. Think of them as cinematic action and spy movie heroes. It's not so much breaking reality as breaking human limits. What they do may not be strictly possible in our world without technological assistance, they just have to seem /plausible/ for an exceptional individual to be able to pull off.

In other words: Master is what a real world person in the top few percent for skill could actually do on their own. Legendary is what that same person could do in real life with technological assistance or a few specialized sidekicks helping them, but they're just /so good/ they don't even need the help.

I'll also add that the only way to have "balance" between martials and casters is if we either nerf casters down to cheap parlor tricks and science projects or we allow non-magical characters to do "legendary" stuff.

By the sound of it, casters are probably STILL going to be out performing legendary skill checks with spells. (Feather Fall vs Cat Fall, Alter Self vs Legendary Impersonator)


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I hope the book has a reinforced corner to handle the amount of times players will need to be beat over the head in order to re-learn what "skill rank" refers to. ;-)

Liking the refocus away from boring numbers to more unique skill applications via Feat. Obviously this is an area where more Feats can be expected to be printed in future products.

I liked what Mark wrote re: Assurance (re: Take 10 autopass dynamics) and it looks like what they did with it will be stronger or weaker depending on the situation, which should see alot of change in how it is used vs 3.x/P1E Take 10. Will probably affect how Paizo designs skill check modifiers, given Assurance will effectively bypass check penalties (but not DC increases). 3.x/P1E seemed to designate check penalties and DC increases pretty arbitrarily but in P2E that distinction will matter alot.


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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Mark Seifter wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
Arachnofiend wrote:
"Many magic items have special crafting requirements, such as access to certain spells, as listed in the item entry in Chapter 11." So... you can't actually be an item crafter unless you're a spellcaster. :/
From previous comments, it sounds like this is mostly restricted to things like Wands that actually allow you to cast spells (ie: spell trigger and spell completion items). A Fighter could make magic weapons and armor, as well as many other things, just fine.
Correct. It means "Many items have prerequisites. Access to a spell is one example of a prerequisite." Not "Many items have prerequisites of access to a spell." I do see how it could give that impression though now that Arachnofiend mentions it.
If the spell restriction is just magic items that exactly mimic a spell being cast then I'm more okay with it. My main concern is if a bunch of wondrous items have that restriction; something I'll be looking out for and making a topic about if that happens to be the case in the playtest, for sure.
In PF1, items nearly universally found some sort of "similar" spell to stick on as a prerequisite. This is not the case in the playtest, and that drastically reduces the spell requirements. Also, since turnabout on the wizard is fair play, there are trinkets that require the creator to have a martial feat or ability to make.

Slightly off-topic, but for people who have followed PF2 info more closely: is this a new feat category that I have missed? It would make sense to have a shared pool of feats that "martial" classes could choose from for class feats, but I haven't heard of this term before. Or is this just a standard adjective, not keyword use of martial?


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Mark Seifter wrote:
No, skill rank increases are what you use to increase your skill rank.

Is this going to be the sort of thing where we're going to need to read the actual playtest document in order to get a good understanding of?

Since right now I kinda wish I knew how many skill ranks I start with, how these advance, and how these are spent, and what intelligence actually does but I imagine it might not be something that can be done succinctly.

Since I feel kind of lost in this skill stuff since I don't really have a handle on "how many things can I be good at and how good can I be at them." I do foresee a lot of rogues in my future though.

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