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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BPorter 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.

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.

The reason isn't level. The reason is growing your skills from untrained to legendary with seemingly countless hours of training, near endless trial and error, and the inevitable success and gained "proficiency" that follows the aforementioned regiment. The reason is literally practice and dedication, in a setting where Irori exists, a man that became a god thru practice and dedication.

The expectation that there has to be an otherworldly solution or a specific word to hand waive impossibilities is the exact reason why Martials have drooled and casters have rooled for so long.

I know. It's weird. The path to being legendary sometimes requires working hard, but hey, some of us like the idea of being a self-made badass. No special blood. No ancient prophecy. No super, duper, blooper weapon. No curses and revelations. No praying for a miracle or wishing upon a star. No magic to literally hand waive reality. Nope. Just hard work, courage, conviction, and belief in one's self; to eventually break one's own limits, surpass yourself, and perhaps eventually even humanity itself.

Wait, why is that bad again? It just seems human and inspiring to me.


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What? No mention of Legendary Seduce?! How in the nine levels of hell does a Bard even function in this edition?

Great stuff.


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Although I like the "superhero landing" feat, all the other legendary skills seem too ridiculous to me. Robbing someone of their full-plate is something that I can only imagine Loki doing (mythology Loki, not Tom Hiddleston), and it seems it could be totally abused. I'm glad it can be easily removed from the game, but that still doesn't seem like the ideal solution, I would like at least an in-world explanation like mythic has. Mundane skills should not equal magic.

I would also like some clarification, how do I progress my skills from Trained to Expert and so? Does it happen automatically at set levels for all the skills I took at first level? Is trading skill feats for the Skill Training feat the only way to get extra skills after first level? Whether or not that last question is true, when I get the Skill Training feat with a new skill, does it progress to Expert, Master, and Legendary in the same way as the skills I selected at first level? If the answer to that is yes, then when I get Skill Training at a sufficiently high enough level, does it automatically become Expert or Master?

Last, but not least: so Ancestry Feats, Background Feats, and Skill Feats all come from different "pools" of feats that you get at different progressions? That would be great, it would be lovely not to have to choose between a type of feat over another like in 1st ed. Also, do class feats and general feats also come from different pools?


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I like the legendary skill stuff, it is something the game needed.

Paizo Employee Designer

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thflame wrote:

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?

You don't roll, so that won't happen.


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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
NetoD20 wrote:

Although I like the "superhero landing" feat, all the other legendary skills seem too ridiculous to me. Robbing someone of their full-plate is something that I can only imagine Loki doing (mythology Loki, not Tom Hiddleston), and it seems it could be totally abused. I'm glad it can be easily removed from the game, but that still doesn't seem like the ideal solution, I would like at least an in-world explanation like mythic has. Mundane skills should not equal magic.

I would also like some clarification, how do I progress my skills from Trained to Expert and so? Does it happen automatically at set levels for all the skills I took at first level? Is trading skill feats for the Skill Training feat the only way to get extra skills after first level? Whether or not that last question is true, when I get the Skill Training feat with a new skill, does it progress to Expert, Master, and Legendary in the same way as the skills I selected at first level? If the answer to that is yes, then when I get Skill Training at a sufficiently high enough level, does it automatically become Expert or Master?

Last, but not least: so Ancestry Feats, Background Feats, and Skill Feats all come from different "pools" of feats that you get at different progressions? That would be great, it would be lovely not to have to choose between a type of feat over another like in 1st ed. Also, do class feats and general feats also come from different pools?

On the clothes stealing thing, it's a case of reality being unrealistic, as stealing people's clothes off their back is surprisingly doable and I've even helped someone do it for a practical joke once( I played the distraction so the one with deft hands could actually pull it off).

For increasing skill ranks, you have free choice in what skill you increase (one rank at a time). You get an increase every odd level as a nonrogue, with proficiency maximum gated by level.

All feats come from separate pools with some minor exceptions, such as humans being able to pull a general feat as a racial feat, and you could take skill feats with a general feat. Otherwise each pool is separate unless something tells you otherwise.


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I like the fact that Cat Fall has synergy with class features that reduce falling damage, as the distance reduction could be cumulative.

My biggest concern would be exactly that – that Skill Feats either don't play well with competing class features or that they eventually cancel themselves out...

Like Cat Fall would with any "Slow Fall" type feature.

For example, if my Monk has a Slow Fall, Cat Fall sounds like it would boost it – up to Legendary, where it cancels itself out.

This is obviously not a major concern, but something to consider.


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MusicAddict wrote:
NetoD20 wrote:

Although I like the "superhero landing" feat, all the other legendary skills seem too ridiculous to me. Robbing someone of their full-plate is something that I can only imagine Loki doing (mythology Loki, not Tom Hiddleston), and it seems it could be totally abused. I'm glad it can be easily removed from the game, but that still doesn't seem like the ideal solution, I would like at least an in-world explanation like mythic has. Mundane skills should not equal magic.

I would also like some clarification, how do I progress my skills from Trained to Expert and so? Does it happen automatically at set levels for all the skills I took at first level? Is trading skill feats for the Skill Training feat the only way to get extra skills after first level? Whether or not that last question is true, when I get the Skill Training feat with a new skill, does it progress to Expert, Master, and Legendary in the same way as the skills I selected at first level? If the answer to that is yes, then when I get Skill Training at a sufficiently high enough level, does it automatically become Expert or Master?

Last, but not least: so Ancestry Feats, Background Feats, and Skill Feats all come from different "pools" of feats that you get at different progressions? That would be great, it would be lovely not to have to choose between a type of feat over another like in 1st ed. Also, do class feats and general feats also come from different pools?

On the clothes stealing thing, it's a case of reality being unrealistic, as stealing people's clothes off their back is surprisingly doable and I've even helped someone do it for a practical joke once( I played the distraction so the one with deft hands could actually pull it off).

I'm actually really curious as to how? Like, I see no way you can steal someone's shirt/pants without them noticing. Shoes/socks maybe, if they're sitting down, but if they're standing I just don't see it.

The legendary feat is just codifying the silly stuff you can do in videogames (and they better have a reverse pickpocket feat if this one made it in), which is good if you like silly stuff and not good if you don't/


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I'm glad at least someone brought up how Irori fought the universe and won. That usually seems to be lost in these types of discussions.

There exist precedent for the seemingly impossible and that is good enough for me.


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Dragon78 wrote:
I like the legendary skill stuff, it is something the game needed.

Indeed. If we're going to run around with magical folks who can reshape reality itself, grant wishes, and bring back the dead I want to at least be able to do a passable version of Beowulf, Cú Chulainn, Hanuman, Enkidu, Odysseus, or Batman as a person with no intrinsic magic who is nonetheless legendarily competent.

I can see there wanting to be a game where "mere mortals" can't do things the things that are impossible in real life, even if they are common in movies and books and the like, but that game should also have really strict restrictions on magic too.

If I was going to cut off legendary skills via house rule, I think I would also have to eliminate all spells above 6th level or something like that.

TheFinish wrote:
I'm actually really curious as to how? Like, I see no way you can steal someone's shirt/pants without them noticing. Shoes/socks maybe, if they're sitting down, but if they're standing I just don't see it.

I personally find that asking a player to describe how exactly they accomplish something where the mechanics clearly indicate you can do that but narratively how it happens is less clear, and then accepting literally any earnest attempt as explaining it is a really good way to bring some fun ad-libbing into one's game. I guarantee to you if I gained a level that let me gain that legendary pants-stealing ability at the end of a session I'm going to spend a lot of time between sessions thinking of different ways I can steal pants.


Quandary wrote:
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. ;-)

Don’t worry. We know that the book should be roughly as thick as the PF1 CRB. My players can attest that the hardback version of that book has held up for years worth beatings! :D

You softback owners may be out of luck though.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
I can see there wanting to be a game where "mere mortals" can't do things the things that are impossible in real life, even if they are common in movies and books and the like, but that game should also have really strict restrictions on magic too.

Yeah, my take on concerns of that nature is: don't play to 20th level. If you don't hit 15th level (?) you won't have Legendary to worry about. Sounds like all of this stuff will be doled out slow and steady, and if 10th level is where your sweet spot for power peak is, then why advance beyond that?

Liberty's Edge

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PossibleCabbage wrote:
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.

I've gone through this a few times, but I think it's pretty simple really.

At character creation, you get one Lore Skill from your Background, and then X+Int Mod from Class. X for a Druid is 4, so a Druid with Int 12 gets 6 Trained Skills at 1st level (one of them a Lore skill selected by their Background).

At 2nd level, the Druid gets a Skill Feat. This can be used to get a Trained Skill, but not to raise an existing skill beyond the first rank. They get another one of these every even level.

At 3rd level, the Druid now gets a Skill Rank. This works exactly like a skill rank in PF1: You put it in a skill and the skill goes up a level (say, from Trained to Expert). You get another one of these every odd level hereafter, and may use them to raise skills as high as Master starting at 7th level, and as high as Legendary at 15th level.

That's really all there is to it.


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Frosty Ace wrote:
BPorter 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.

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.

The reason isn't level. The reason is growing your skills from untrained to legendary with seemingly countless hours of training, near endless trial and error, and the inevitable success and gained "proficiency" that follows the aforementioned regiment. The reason is literally practice and dedication, in a setting where Irori exists, a man that became a god thru practice and dedication.

The expectation that there has to be an otherworldly solution or a specific word to hand waive impossibilities is the exact reason why Martials have drooled and casters have rooled for so long.

I know. It's weird. The path to being legendary sometimes requires working hard, but hey, some of us like the idea of being a self-made badass. No special blood. No ancient prophecy. No super, duper, blooper weapon. No curses and revelations. No praying for a miracle or wishing upon a star. No magic to literally hand waive reality. Nope. Just hard work, courage, conviction, and belief in one's self; to eventually break one's own limits, surpass yourself, and perhaps eventually even humanity itself.

Wait, why is that bad again? It just seems human and inspiring to me.

It seems ridiculous to me, not inspiring, why have magic in a setting at all if one can break reality without it? It diminishes magic. At least in mythology we know that Odysseus or Loki can do what they do because there's a supernatural explanation. No, I do not like the idea that a regular mortal that just trained hard in a mundane way can do those things. Not without first becoming something more than mortal or getting access to supernatural resources. I don't think it's inspiring; courage, conviction, and hard work are not features that register that way with me. Either there's power or there isn't, you can't bend reality just because you really want it.

It's the same ridiculous trope as that of making Batman be better than the whole Justice League just because the writer and the fans want it to. No matter how hard he works, how good he is in human standards, Batman is just a mortal, he can deal with tough situations, but he's still susceptible to getting squashed by an alien. People say the endearing quality about the character is that he faces it all without powers, but at the same time they applaud when the writer bends the script just so that he can win arbitrarily, which is the same as giving Batman powers, which in turn nullifies his initial endearing quality, but it's even worse, because we don't even get an explanation. "Batman is just that good!" Well, screw that.

If anything the quotes above made me like it even less. I was on board with the super hero landing, even if I didn't like the other legendary feats. Now even the landing sounds bad to me.


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Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Imagine that, people don’t want martial characters to break physical laws in a world steeped in magic, where wizards and clerics can wave a hand and do the same thing. As a person whose favorite characters for decades have been clerics, I say Welcome to the martials! It’s time overdue.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
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.

To quote Yoda, "you must unlearn what you have learned."

From P1, we learned that ranks mean a +1 to the skill you get each level.
In P2 Rank is the rank in the skill. Think like your rank in the military. Trained = Sargent, Expert = Captain, Master = Commander, etc.

Also I would like to point out that after Monday's blog all anyone could do was complain about how legendary medic was SOOO under powered and should allow me to raise the dead. Today, all the legendary feats are WAY too strong and should all be nerfed!!


PossibleCabbage wrote:
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.

I think we’ve got almost everything we need via various blogs and replies on forums.

A fighter at first level can choose 3 skills + Int mod to be trained in.
At 2nd level and every even level after you gain skill feat which are what are described here. You may, instead of taking one of these feats instead take a skill from untrained to trained (but not further).
From 3rd level and every even level you can increase one skill up one level so you can make one of your existing skills expert or choose another skill to go untrained to trained. There are level restrictions like legendary skill increases require lvl15 so you can only make 3 skills legandary (lvl15,17,19). The other requirement is that to rank a skill into a master (and therefore legendary) it has to be a class skill or something similar.

That’s just for a fighter, but most classes work the same they just start with a different number of skills. Rogues are the exception as they gain skill feats AND increases every time they level up rather then just odds and even. So they can have 6 legendary skills.


ENHenry wrote:
Imagine that, people don’t want martial characters to break physical laws in a world steeped in magic, where wizards and clerics can wave a hand and do the same thing. As a person whose favorite characters for decades have been clerics, I say Welcome to the martials! It’s time overdue.

Well, then at least give me a good in-world explanation for it. Not this determination, and hard training nonsense.


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Deadmanwalking wrote:
At 3rd level, the Druid now gets a Skill Rank. This works exactly like a skill rank in PF1: You put it in a skill and the skill goes up a level (say, from Trained to Expert).

I don't think it's helpful to tell people skill ranks work exactly like they did in P1E.

Liberty's Edge

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Quandary wrote:
I don't think it's helpful to tell people skill ranks work exactly like they did in P1E.

Fair enough, I suppose. I just meant they directly increase your rank in the skill by one level. It's very straightforward.


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NetoD20 wrote:
Well, then at least give me a good in-world explanation for it. Not this determination, and hard training nonsense.

What about Beowulf? I don't remember his birth being all that supernatural, yet he did insane things.


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I keep seeing complaints that some don't want martials to have cool powers. That is fine. Don't use them at your tables.

Some of us would prefer to be more Thor than Conan or Aragorn. I'm all for more stuff. I'd appreciate it if you quit trying to dissuade Paizo from including stuff you don't like when the simple answer is to not use it if you and your table don't want it.


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First impression; "...thanks goodness scaling feats still exist."

And stuff with legendary skill feats mentioned... So falling from orbit unscathed, some sort of a makeshift xenoglossy, effectively regenerating lost eyeballs, or a war-ending speech does look good somewhat, though others will have to wait for evaluation later if it's worth the action.

Anyways, if I get to run a PF2 game ever, I'l always allow legendary feats, because non-magicals must have nice things too to be fair game with spells (and try houseruling them with more skill ranks/feats); an adjusted choice between a lot of "less sure at-will" VS few dozens of "much sure limited-per-day" in-universe functions.


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Before I saw this, I thought that it would represent some kind of impressive pseudo-skill-unlock thing.

What I'm seeing now is that it's an overall weakening of the power level of PCs.

We've seen three Legendary feats so far: Cat Fall (does what a 2000gp item or first-level Pathfinder spell does), Legendary Medic (does what a night's rest, a visit to a temple, and a small amount of gold does) and Legendary Impersonator (does what an 1800gp item or first-level spell does).

All of these are situational, and really feel like a pointless feat.

I am hoping that this is not the case, but I am yet to see evidence to the contrary.

Grand Lodge

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NetoD20 wrote:
ENHenry wrote:
Imagine that, people don’t want martial characters to break physical laws in a world steeped in magic, where wizards and clerics can wave a hand and do the same thing. As a person whose favorite characters for decades have been clerics, I say Welcome to the martials! It’s time overdue.
Well, then at least give me a good in-world explanation for it. Not this determination, and hard training nonsense.

A man named Irori literally ascended to Godhood using that "nonsense" and has been part of the game and setting since it's launch.


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NetoD20 wrote:
ENHenry wrote:
Imagine that, people don’t want martial characters to break physical laws in a world steeped in magic, where wizards and clerics can wave a hand and do the same thing. As a person whose favorite characters for decades have been clerics, I say Welcome to the martials! It’s time overdue.
Well, then at least give me a good in-world explanation for it. Not this determination, and hard training nonsense.

Nornal humans can become gods with hard work in Pathfinder. What sense does it then make for normal humans to not be able to become superhuman?

You literally have to ignore in game canon to justify disallowing the mundane to become more from just trying hard.

Grand Lodge

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Personally, I've loved almost everything coming out of this playtest, but this might be my very favourite thing. I love how we're focusing on versatility without necessarily having to sacrifice power (though you can shift the balance on that too which is great).

As to the whole mere mortals discussion... I've always seen Golarion as a world and Pathfinder as a game system where hard work and dedication can pull of truly fantastic feats of power and skill. Right from first level, Barbarians could become ridiculously strong at will through sheer anger far beyond anything adrenaline could justify for that length of time. At the more incredible end of the spectrum, the setting has at least one god who attained true divinity through sheer physical and mental training, conditioning and force of will.

I understand that many people don't want to play in that world, but with this system you don't have to. You just don't play to the levels where that becomes an issue, or remove it from your game. I personally love how we're getting a system where extraordinary means just that.

I want to be able to play heroes who have the swordsmanship of Inigo Montoya or the master-plans of Havelock Vetinari, who can wrestle like Beowulf, think like Sherlock Holmes, shoot like Roland Deschain... In a fantasy setting like this one, humans and their ilk are not necessarily bound by the same laws and restrictions as they are here.

And if you don't want to play that... this system also allows you not to. I respect your opinion as well, and I only ask that you respect mine.


How badly would omitting these affect system cohesiveness?

Grand Lodge

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Crayon wrote:
How badly would omitting these affect system cohesiveness?

According to the developers, not too badly! Which I approve of. I like playing the legendary game, but the option should always be there not to.


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Easy recipe to become legendary with every skill:
100 Push-Ups!
100 Sit-Ups!
100 Squats!
10KM Running!
Every! Single! Day!


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Nitro~Nina wrote:

I want to be able to play heroes who have the swordsmanship of Inigo Montoya or the master-plans of Havelock Vetinari, who can wrestle like Beowulf, think like Sherlock Holmes, shoot like Roland Deschain... In a fantasy setting like this one, humans and their ilk are not necessarily bound by the same laws and restrictions as they are here.

Statements like these remind me of why I love RPGs so much, and how I so hate any form of a "wrongbadfun" mentality.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Mark Seifter wrote:

Assurance is unlikely to trivialize traps.

For magic items, the basic criterion for having a spell requirement is "Does this item cast this spell so it would be bizarre to not include the spell." If yes, then it has the spell as a requirement, like a wand or scroll. If no, then we don't add spells on there that are thematically similar.

Good to hear for traps. Rogues trivializing those encounters which are supposed to give equivalent XP to monster encounters always frustrated me.

As for magic crafting, I get that a maximum time of four days of crafting means that you can substitute spells requirements from consumables. But if a magic item requires a high level spell (7th-9th level), getting four scrolls alone might add another 25-50% to the item cost. I think it would be fair to spontaneous caster classes to allow spell substitution by increasing the crafting DC. Otherwise they are in danger of becoming second class citizens compared to prepared caster classes, at least in this part of the game.

Liberty's Edge

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I'm gonna quote myself in a previous thread:

Deadmanwalking wrote:

The abilities of high level martials in PF2 are only magical inasmuch as Batman or Iron Man have super powers.

Both Batman and Iron Man do things fairly regularly that are not actually possible in the real world, but that doesn't mean that they have super powers in-universe, it means that the universes they operate in operate by somewhat different rules wherein the abilities they demonstrate are possible for exceptional people even without the need for super powers. Likewise, just because an action movie hero survives something nobody in the real world could, doesn't mean he's using magic in-universe, just that the world rules are different.

Peak non-magical human capabilities are simply at a much higher level in Golarion than they are in the real world.

That's pretty much my opinion on the subject of martials having 'unrealistic' abilities. They're unrealistic in our world, sure, but not necessarily in a fictional world where human capabilities can be more impressive.


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NetoD20 wrote:
ENHenry wrote:
Imagine that, people don’t want martial characters to break physical laws in a world steeped in magic, where wizards and clerics can wave a hand and do the same thing. As a person whose favorite characters for decades have been clerics, I say Welcome to the martials! It’s time overdue.
Well, then at least give me a good in-world explanation for it. Not this determination, and hard training nonsense.

Just curious, but you wouldn’t happen to be an anime villain, would you?


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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
TheFinish wrote:
MusicAddict wrote:
NetoD20 wrote:

Although I like the "superhero landing" feat, all the other legendary skills seem too ridiculous to me. Robbing someone of their full-plate is something that I can only imagine Loki doing (mythology Loki, not Tom Hiddleston), and it seems it could be totally abused. I'm glad it can be easily removed from the game, but that still doesn't seem like the ideal solution, I would like at least an in-world explanation like mythic has. Mundane skills should not equal magic.

I would also like some clarification, how do I progress my skills from Trained to Expert and so? Does it happen automatically at set levels for all the skills I took at first level? Is trading skill feats for the Skill Training feat the only way to get extra skills after first level? Whether or not that last question is true, when I get the Skill Training feat with a new skill, does it progress to Expert, Master, and Legendary in the same way as the skills I selected at first level? If the answer to that is yes, then when I get Skill Training at a sufficiently high enough level, does it automatically become Expert or Master?

Last, but not least: so Ancestry Feats, Background Feats, and Skill Feats all come from different "pools" of feats that you get at different progressions? That would be great, it would be lovely not to have to choose between a type of feat over another like in 1st ed. Also, do class feats and general feats also come from different pools?

On the clothes stealing thing, it's a case of reality being unrealistic, as stealing people's clothes off their back is surprisingly doable and I've even helped someone do it for a practical joke once( I played the distraction so the one with deft hands could actually pull it off).

I'm actually really curious as to how? Like, I see no way you can steal someone's shirt/pants without them noticing. Shoes/socks maybe, if they're sitting down, but if they're standing I just don't see it.

The legendary feat is just...

The answer is that in real life sleight of hand, misdirection and distraction is key. You need someone deft and highly skilled to pull off the physical part, but if you can't keep them distracted well enough it's over immeadiately. But in fact with sleight of hand in real life you are almost always more likely to be caught by an onlooker than your mark.

Shoes are actually remarkably hard iirc, and pants aren't too bad, the deft guy needs to make sure that they won't trip on them when you move the mark . Jackets and button shirts are supposed to be the easiest when it comes to clothing iirc, with gloves being the hardest.

Most of sleight of hand is knowing psychology more than anything, though dexterity is still important. I'm super clumsy myself so I could never pick pocket someone or take off a piece of clothing, I can still take objects from people's hands or put something in their hands without making them notice, and move them across a building before they realize it. Just look into it and things like real life studies on perception, and you realize just how little we actually notice regularly.


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I wonder how many of these people not wanting martial characters to have Legendary abilities will happily allow spells of 8th-level plus (and probably in the very same party, too).


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BTW, Dubious Knowledge sounds fun, although IMHO something like this should be rolled into normal Knowledge checks (although a feat then enhancing it is fine). Like "you think this is a dragon of some kind" (except it's not).

Relatedly, hope there is better treatment of recognizing general classes of things, like "OK this is probably Undead, but some kind you're not familiar with". Skeletons of a T-Rex being unidentifiable while Skeletons of a Halfling being recognized to the Nth degree is silly, maybe you can't ID the T-Rex origin but you should still recognize a skeleton for a skeleton.


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One thing I really like about legendary skills and PF2's focus on "skills do cool things" is that it now seems like a party consisting of an Alchemist, a Fighter, a Rogue, and a Monk can do well into high levels without a single spell to be found in the party.

While this would be an incredibly weak party in PF1, it does seem like one could easily tell a lot of stories about this particular band of adventurers so it should be something that is possible to play and have fun with.


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The problem I have with batman and this short of comic book characters in general is that their powers and abilities aren't really consistent. When being with his JLA friends batman becomes essentially superhuman but when ambushed from some thugs in gotham he actually faces the danger of getting knocked out. Contrary to that dnd pc's are pretty consistent in what they can do.
I believe the new rules do require some short of explanation for pc's higher than 7th level. At the very least you can say their constant struggle against monsters and use of magic equipment is rubbing of on them and pushing the beyond their human limits. For pc's higher than 15 level you can say they are awakened to fundamental and essential nature of reality and conciousness within them which allows them to perform tasks clearly impossible to mortal men. This can be different from your typical arcane magic since its something much more fundamental.

Another option could be to say they only get their level bonuses above 6th level to attack, ac and saves if they have an appropriate armor or weapon. You could say only if the have at least a +4 armor or weapon can they enjoy the full 20th level bonus. Though this makes them more dependant on their equipement, its also essentially makes them awesome human beings that can perform godlike tasks only because of the excellence with which they use their powerful magic items.


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Here's a concrete example of what I think Skill progression will look like for my 10 Int Paladin:

Level 1: I choose the Warrior Background, and Paladin Class. I get Lore (Warfare) as trained from Background, and perhaps another skill due to the skill feat Quick Repair. (I believe it'll be something other than a skill unlock...) From my class I find out that I can choose 4+Int skills (this is an educated guess) to upgrade to trained. I look at my class and find out that the Paladin has 4 signature skills, (these are skills that I can upgrade beyond trained, I can spend feats to attain other signature skills) they are Athletics, Diplomacy, Medicine, and Religion. I choose these skills. I now am trained in Athletics, Diplomacy, Lore (Warfare), Medicine, and Religion.

Level 2: I get a skill feat. I can either decide to 'upgrade' a skill I didn't choose to trained (say Athletics) or I can spend a skill feat to enhance a skill I have. I choose to spend it on improving Diplomacy for flavour reasons...

Level 3: I get a skill increase. I choose to upgrade Diplomacy to Expert.

....

Level 9: I increase Diplomacy to Master.

Level 10: I spend the feat on Master level Diplomacy feat.

...

Level 15: I increase Diplomacy to Legendary.

Level 16: I take the Legendary Diplomacy feat. I can now stop a war in the middle of a battlefield!

I focused on Diplomacy specifically, but I would choose three in total to upgrade to legendary (probably Athletics and Religion) Then I would upgrade them in sequence Diplomacy, Athletics, then Religion. This is how I would do it, but there are many ways to skin a cat as they say...


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John John wrote:

The problem I have with batman and this short of comic book characters in general is that their powers and abilities aren't really consistent. When being with his JLA friends batman becomes essentially superhuman but when ambushed from some thugs in gotham he actually faces the danger of getting knocked out. Contrary to that dnd pc's are pretty consistent in what they can do.

I believe the new rules do require some short of explanation for pc's higher than 7th level. At the very least you can say their constant struggle against monsters and use of magic equipment is rubbing of on them and pushing the beyond their human limits. For pc's higher than 15 level you can say they are awakened to fundamental and essential nature of reality and conciousness within them which allows them to perform tasks clearly impossible to mortal men. This can be different from your typical arcane magic since its something much more fundamental.

Another option could be to say they only get their level bonuses above 6th level to attack, ac and saves if they have an appropriate armor or weapon. You could say only if the have at least a +4 armor or weapon can they enjoy the full 20th level bonus. Though this makes them more dependant on their equipement, its also essentially makes them awesome human beings that can perform godlike tasks only because of the excellence with which they use their powerful magic items.

I don't think it's that tricky.

Falling from stratosphere as an Acrobat, while absolutely naked? Provided they have a way to dealing with suffocation/shock from such a fall, describe how they ride the air currents, slink into hot air pockets to reduce their velocity, slide off the back of passing giant albatross, etc.

It doesn't have to be "you just do it".

Liberty's Edge

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Indiana Jones demonstratably has the Catfall Skill Feat and Legendary Acrobatics, to provide a concrete 'down to earth' example.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
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.

Okay, now I'm MORE confused. Don't worry, I got woken up after three hours of sleep by the dog barking at things and had troubles getting back to sleep afterward so it is probably me not parsing things properly.

Let us say that a character at level 1 has six Trained skills.

Let us assume further that Skill Feats are *only* used to purchase the various things like Cat Fall and Magical Crafter.

Do the Trained Skills automatically become Expert Skills and then Master Skills (and finally Legendary), meaning that a Level 18 character would, in this scenario, have six Legendary skills?

-------------

If this is the case, what happens if, after someone is at an Expert skill level, they train a previously Untrained skill up to Trained using a Skill Feat. Would it jump automatically to Expert or Master (or Legendary if that level 18 character used a Skill Feat to Train an Untrained skill)?


Combat Monster wrote:

I keep seeing complaints that some don't want martials to have cool powers. That is fine. Don't use them at your tables.

Some of us would prefer to be more Thor than Conan or Aragorn. I'm all for more stuff. I'd appreciate it if you quit trying to dissuade Paizo from including stuff you don't like when the simple answer is to not use it if you and your table don't want it.

So, you'd appreciate it if your likes are met and mine are discarded? So you're opinion is more valid/valuable than mine? Got it.

Here is your membership card to the "You're doing it wrong, having bad/wrongfun Enforcer Club."

Additionally...No. As almost every game can show, it's easier to add to a game than subtract from it.

And on general principle of your "do it my way or shut up", eff no.

Liberty's Edge

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Tangent101 wrote:
Do the Trained Skills automatically become Expert Skills and then Master Skills (and finally Legendary), meaning that a Level 18 character would, in this scenario, have six Legendary skills?

No. At 3rd level, you get a Skill Rank. You can spend it to make one of those 6 skills Expert, then at 5th you could make a different one Expert. At 7th, you could take one of those two to Master or pick a third to make Expert, and so on and so forth, upping one skill every two levels.


For the "you could do it PF1 crowd", Irori is the exception not the rule. As was Iomedae and Cayden.

So, now we no longer need to pass the Test of the Starstone to achieve godhood, we just have to advance to legendary. Got it.

As noted previously, I also haven't read a Pathfinder Tales that emulated scenarios closer to Beowulf than Conan.

And I think I've discovered the reason for the Gap in Starfinder. PF2 enabled all high-level adventurers to become demigods without an in-universe explanation and the resulting campaign-breaking paradox required Golarion to be retconned out of existence.

Booyah!

Additionally, there are other games out there that have non-nerfed spellcasters interacting with heroic, but mortal martials. I sometimes play those games, but PF is my preference, it has more content, and is easier to find players to game with. So, the "take your ball and go home stuff" isn't really convincing or compelling.

Seriously, if anyone is gaga about Legendary stuff, good on ya. Just because some of us aren't, doesn't make us "wrong" and you "right".


Do we have an estimate for "how many total legendary skills can one have by the end"?

Like I had a PF1 vigilante who by the end of their story would likely have been Legendary in Society, Deception, Stealth, and Diplomacy. Can I still do something like that?


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BPorter wrote:
As almost every game can show, it's easier to add to a game than subtract from it.

As Mark Seifter wrote, it is already part of game that you can spend ranks on boosting other skills and never need to progress any to Legendary.

No addition/subtraction required.


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BPorter wrote:

For the "you could do it PF1 crowd", Irori is the exception not the rule. As was Iomedae and Cayden.

So, now we no longer need to pass the Test of the Starstone to achieve godhood, we just have to advance to legendary. Got it.

As noted previously, I also haven't read a Pathfinder Tales that emulated scenarios closer to Beowulf than Conan.

And I think I've discovered the reason for the Gap in Starfinder. PF2 enabled all high-level adventurers to become demigods without an in-universe explanation and the resulting campaign-breaking paradox required Golarion to be retconned out of existence.

Booyah!

Additionally, there are other games out there that have non-nerfed spellcasters interacting with heroic, but mortal martials. I sometimes play those games, but PF is my preference, it has more content, and is easier to find players to game with. So, the "take your ball and go home stuff" isn't really convincing or compelling.

Seriously, if anyone is gaga about Legendary stuff, good on ya. Just because some of us aren't, doesn't make us "wrong" and you "right".

No what makes you wrong is wanting them removed from PF2 for everyone and then getting mad when others say "we like them why don't you just not use them" and you come back with whining about "wrong bad fun"


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BPorter wrote:

For the "you could do it PF1 crowd", Irori is the exception not the rule. As was Iomedae and Cayden.

So, now we no longer need to pass the Test of the Starstone to achieve godhood, we just have to advance to legendary. Got it.

As noted previously, I also haven't read a Pathfinder Tales that emulated scenarios closer to Beowulf than Conan.

And I think I've discovered the reason for the Gap in Starfinder. PF2 enabled all high-level adventurers to become demigods without an in-universe explanation and the resulting campaign-breaking paradox required Golarion to be retconned out of existence.

Booyah!

Additionally, there are other games out there that have non-nerfed spellcasters interacting with heroic, but mortal martials. I sometimes play those games, but PF is my preference, it has more content, and is easier to find players to game with. So, the "take your ball and go home stuff" isn't really convincing or compelling.

Seriously, if anyone is gaga about Legendary stuff, good on ya. Just because some of us aren't, doesn't make us "wrong" and you "right".

Assuming you're not opposed to a Legendary tier in general, what kind of abilities do you personally expect from such a tier for non-magical characters?

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