Rogues gained class features in PF, but lost out because their core identity got sucked away.
1) They were the skill monkeys. This has arguably moved over to bards, who can get multiple skills based on Performance, plus a hefty bonus to all skills, especially Knowledge.
2) They were the skill monkeys. Now, the skills have been consolidated. Tumble and Jump are together. Search and Spot are together. Open Lock and Disable Device are together. Move Silently and Hide in Shadows are together.
3) The penalty for cross-classing skill ranks were removed, both the max limit and the total cost. This means everyone feels pretty free to grab cross-class skills, which were onerous to do in 3.5. So, they grab STealth and Perception, and are at worst only +3 ranks worse then the Rogue, and instead of blowing 8 skill points on four out of class skills, they blow 2.
4) Trapfinding became available to multiple classes with better side features. The last unique thing about the rogue was handed away. (Sneak Attack being given away is not unique, assassins have it).
These are the issues the rogue faces in PF. Sneak Attack is actually rather better here, since not as many creatures are outright immune to it. All other issues, saves, etc, are carryovers.
Let's be clear on something. If you want serfs and dirt poverty you need two things:
1) A totalitarian LE government enforcing a societal caste system that does not let people rise above their station, so they can force people to stay serfs
2) You need tax and tithe rates that amount to 90%+ of a serf's income, accomplished by monopolizing key elements of society and charging the hell out of your own populace to use them.
This system is why medieval serfs were dirt poor.
This is not Pathfinder, except possibly in parts of Cheliax where slavery is legal and they treat their people like crap.
The vast majority of the Pathfinder world, and the assumed campaigns, is that free farmers and a strong merchant class vie with any nobility and will use money, power, blades and magic to prevent themselves from being stepped on by hereditary rulers. The grinding people into the dust tactic isn't going to work, and not just because of Catching Fire.
There are entire, and popular Churches, devoted to the betterment of the common man, notably Erastil and Cayden Callidean. They have very distinct martial edges.
Tyrants get what is coming to them. How much you want to bet that once the Worldwound problem is resolved that Iomadae's church is going to start taking a good, hard look at Cheliax? Karma is a B$$$h when it comes calling.
Hey, I played 1 and 2E, where you didn't get to just buy Rings of Sustenance. You can indeed get by just fine without them.
You also get ambushed in the night and the DM snickers because now you've got more time delay before you can memorize spells.
Rings of Sustenance solve the problems of getting ambushed at night, adequate rest, and needing food and water. They buy peace of mind. They also force the DM to not rely on old tropes to challenge parties with access to 1250 gp and some common sense.
Once the party has Rings of Sustenance, getting attacked at night was suicide for that random encounter, and dumping us into the middle of the desert with no water was just a minor irritation, instead of a life threatening situation.
Yes, are reading it correctly...PARTICULARLY for the melee set. Spellcasters aren't quite as bad.
You can't reach a +40 to hit without magical gear. You can't reach a 40 AC without magical gear. Most classes can't hit +20 on a save without magical gear (and none of them on a weak save, except perhaps the barb using Superstitious).
Meanwhile, Monsters are getting stronger and stronger, with more and more armor, and higher and higher HD and Con bonuses. Such things are escalating faster then the ability of the PC's to keep up. They are DESIGNED with the Christmas tree effect in mind.
Seriously, you can go look at the CR creation guidelines. A monster at x level should be hitting at +y, doing +z damage, and should have a save mod on its spell likes of Spell Level +A, with general saves and defenses in the B C and D range.
Start dropping off the offense and defense numbers for the PC's, and things get out of whack fairly quickly.
A quick example: If, at 10th level, a Melee is expected to have a +3 sword and +4 Str enhancer, that's +5 TH and dmg he doesn't have. That means his primary attack is now at what his iterative was. It means that Power Attack is likely not going to be used, because it lowers the hit chance still further. The combination can easily halve the damage of a melee combatant.
Meanwhile, the monster still has 95 hp to chew through. The fighter is going to have lost probably 5-7 pts of AC from lack of magical armor, rings and amulets, meaning it is hitting with more, if not all, of its attacks, and so doing even more damage to someone who now has fewer HP because he also doesn't have a Con booster.
So, it takes twice as long to kill the monster, and the monster's damage output per round might have doubled.
And let's not even get into what failing saving throws all the time will do to you. A monster at CR 10 will probably be throwing DC 19-22 saves at you. In FOrt, the fighter MIGHT have a +8 without magic. He'll miss his BEST save more then half the time. His weak saves will be at +3 to +5, and he'll miss them 75-80% of the time.
He'll be slaughtered.
Seriously, go run the standard monster CR's against a melee with no magic, and watch him get owned. A Paladin MIGHT be able to live with a Smite, a Ranger against his best FE, and a Barb could endure longer then the others if he goes with defensive rage powers...but they are all going to get owned repeatedly.
Nobody has a Mr. Trapfinder? A heavy wooden ball your friendly Unseen Servant or mage hand pushes down a corridor to look for traps?
His friend Trapspringer is usually found hanging around outside in the form of a dead tree that fell over. Chop off a chunk for use as a battering ram and throwing down the hall or into the room in front of you.
My personal purchase is always the Ring of Sustenance and something to Endure Elements. Never needs food or shelter, Maslowe's lowest hierarchy taken care of.
Agree with TOZ.
You should have justified your research with knowledge checks. The DM would have had nothing to complain about.
A Gather information check to a local story-teller or old warrior could have turned up some old stories on dropping it in a pit or the stone wall methodology.
That you compounded this error in judgment by Summoning Lawful outsiders as a Chaotic cleric only makes me wince more.
The fact remains, you could have defeated it, you didn't know how. You found out how and didnt' justify it in game, and then defeated it illegally.
Take your wet noodle lashings. Actually, ask your DM that you didn't actually defeat it, you're going to do things properly, and replay the fight.
Then drop the damn golem in a hole or circle him with a wall of stone, and watch his jaw drop.
After you make the appropriate checks. I assume your arcane caster has his Knowledge (arcane) high enough to know the weaknesses of golems, and you know your spell list.
Correct. Tell me what Craft Skill you roll and the DC to determine success, and you have an argument.
It's not a snap of the fingers and done. It's "I know what to do and accomplish it instantly." Not "I can make what no mundane person can make with this spell, AND do it instantly!"
Since no mundane crafter can make a diamond out of diamond dust, neither can you. There's no skill and no DC for it.
It's really not all that different. if you can't buy them, you don't sell them because you never know when you might need it in the future, or you can give it to another character. So you just collect hoards of unusable stuff, so it works out pretty much the same.
As I remember it from our highest level adventuring party, the groups portable hole after the GDQ series had something like 42 +1 swords in it. Useless to us, but we never got rid of them.
This sounds like LN using laws that are beyond human comprehension or so bizarre that all actions seem chaotic from our viewpoint.
Imagine if your moral and legal code was defined by what minute of the day it was. You'd be extremely lawful, bound to outside forms, but from the viewpoint of anyone else, you'd be incomprehensibly erratic.
That's what this sounds like.
This is probably a lot like the rules the Fey and the Mythos operate under.
The argument is more easily solved by what happens when you remove the offending party.
How does the game change when you remove the wizard? The cleric?
What happens when you remove fighters and rogues?
That right there shows the power of spellcasters.
As for a 1v 1, come on. THe wizard can optimize his load out against any one foe. The fighter brings the same thing to every fight, except potions.
Tome of 9 Swords: This had a ton of anti-caster options, in the form of the 'I always make the save' Diamond Mind concentration check for saves techniques. Slap on a Concentration Modifier toy, and your +39 to the check (and a 1 does NOT FAIL on a skill check, remember) always wins. At later levels, you got the +level to ALL SAVES as a backup, if you had to make the same save twice in a row.
In short, Tome of 9 Swords allowed you to play without a caster and not really miss them. With defenses against magic so high, it had a more 1E feel, where casters in melee got less and less effective with the fancy spells, because the monsters got more and more effective saving against them, not less.
As for the 'don't nerf' argument, that is NOn-EXISTENT. Remember, 1E wizards were considerably more limited then 3.5E Wizards, but the iconic PC of the early game was not a fighter. It was arguably Mordenkainen, who was definitely a wizard.
In 1E, vs 3.5:
And yet, people still played casters. If you brought all those limits back, people would STILL play casters, because spellcasting is simply THAT STRONG, and enjoys that much narrative power.
And lets not forget the ability to acquire any skill on demand via a +2 Headband.
Melee characters, unless they have the ability to full attack on a charge, are better off going second/last in initiative. The simple reason for this is that if you charge the enemy, you get ONE ATTACK and are unlikely to significantly hurt/kill them.
They, in return, can now full attack you. That's mathematically bad news.
Melee characters should either full attack with ranged weapons, or wait for the enemy to charge THEM. When they do, the melees get to full attack the bad guys, as opposed to being full attacked themselves.
That's just tactics. THe reason why you want spellcasters to go first is so the archers do NOT kill them at range, so the monsters CANNOT charge them, so summons can't be dropped on them, and so your casters don't have to play duck and roll, the enemy casters do.
That's optimal tactics, and that's why serious casters want to go first.
(Caveat: All the tricks for high init are easily duplicated by NPC casters, since they are all feats, traits, class abilities, not wealth. This is one of the reasons why NPC casters are so much more dangerous then NPC Melees...Melees get 20-40% of their combat effectiveness from their gear, and NPC Casters get maybe 5-10%.
It does not, however, mean that the problems are not there and should be ignored.
The argument is more along the lines of:
THe wizard can do wizard stuff and doesn't really need the fighter (although he's useful).
The fighter can do fighter stuff and really, really needs the wizard (or other spellcasters) and really has nothing to stand out on his own.
Um, you're totally missing out of combat utility.
A fighter swings a sword in combat. Out of combat, he doesn't swing a sword, and doesn't find the skill useful.
In combat, a paladin can cast many spells, heal, remove conditions. Out of combat, he can cast spells, heal, remove conditions...and make magic items, among other things.
Charisma is a power stat for paladins, not a dump stat. And Diplomacy is a class skill.
Toughness is not a combat feat. Fighters can't take it any more easily then any other class. It's funny how fighters can buy, um, +1 to CMD vs combat manuvers, and paladins can buy Energy Resistance, and Barbarians +1/3 to all svs vs magic. Yeah, balanced.
Barbarian rage powers enhance their stats. They can learn to cleave through spells. The two extra skill points makes it easier to invest in survival. Hey, they get acrobatics, and fighters don't. They can Strength Surge and rip open hillsides. They can eventually fly as a class ability.
Rangers are like paladins, except they can train their animal companion to help them flank and aid them in fighting, too. Oh, and they get 6 skill points and knowledge skills, woot woot.
There is nothing in the fighter CLASS that is applicable as a boost outside of combat, Even his bonus feats must be all combat feats. Ugh. Any argument made by race or general feats is invalid on its face ...none of that is part of the fighter class. It's like arguing casters aren't powerful because you can take UMD, a silly argument.
Armor Training is decent on its face, until you realize that it just means the fighter needs high STATS. Without a high Dex, armor training is useless. ANd yes, it can be replaced with both Celestial Armor and Mithral armor for basically pocket change.
Barbs, now, barbs can blow rage powers and get an easy +10 to AC from class abilities!
The fighter will never move as fast as the barbarian, even with three levels of armor training. The barb will be faster from level 1 and always.
The barb can blow one Rage pOwer, and get a better scaling bonus in melee, or from enhanced natural armor, or against missiles...or all three. Yes, one feat is better then four different levels of class abilities of the fighter. ANd doesn't require a 20 Dex to max out, either!
He can't pick pockets, he's not a contortionist, he can't pick locks and he can't disarm traps.
He can climb extremely well, he's very sneaky (esp in natural terrain), has good reflexes and notices the enemy. He's a no-spell ranger through and through. I'd give him uncanny dodge instead of animal companion to represent his reflexes is about it.
That, and his starting 18 in most of his stats carry him along.
Blasters are 'not good' because, unlike a controller build, you MUST have the requisite build in place.
Let me put it this way: ANYONE can be a buffer/controller. Buffers and controllers frequently don't have to mess with Spell Resistance, Elemental Resistance/Immunity, or even saving throws. They drop in creatures, walls, cast buffs, move stuff here and there.
Their power is in the SPELLS. A 'God' Wizard needs only the right spells and playstyle, and literally can have NO FEATS and do his job just dandy.
a Blaster MUST have the right feats. You simply can't make direct damage work without increases in damage, increases in caster level, and the ability to switch elements.
BFOBAR: Metamagic'd spells are considered spells of the higher level when using Rods. So you can't use an Intensified Empowered Fireball with a lesser quicken Rod, it's considered a 6th level spell (you have to use the slot it's cast from as the qualifier for the Rod). This was a new FAQ ruling to cut down on Metamagic abuse.
Blasters are HARD TO BUILD - they eat every precious feat that you have.
But guess what?
A blaster wizard can turn around and change his load out, and guess what? He can play 'god'. All he needs is the spells to play god.
No God Wizard can turn around and be an effective blaster. They don't have the build to do it.
And you know something? The best way to control a battlefield is to make all the enemy suddenly and abruptly dead. And the Blaster is definitely the wizard for that.
Rogues aren't martial, but aren't magical, and are a combat class.
Clerics have the advantage of being just as good in martial combat as all of these, AND being primary spellcasters.
As for anti-paladins...only there because people were clamoring for them, and since they came out in 1E, that's fine. They are totally optional and not core.
And a lot of extremely good optimizers will tell you that an anti-paladin is actually better in a party then a paladin. That Aura that lowers enemy saves is incredibly powerful in alliance with other casters.
And the fact he can lie, cheat, betray, use poison, burn down villages, etc, is just extra icing on the cake.
Agreed, that entire description of 'favored of the God' describes the Priest to a T. Functionaries are Adepts.
Paladins are the exemplars of the LG alignment. In core rules, they don't need a god. In PF, yes, they do, but they are still LG exemplars.
The represent the power of purity, NOT the power of a deity. By restricting their moral and ethical choices, they gain a strength above and beyond that of other men.
Which, you know, has been the ideal of purity for ages.
Evil people don't believe in purity. They believe in lying, cheating, murder, rape, looting, pillaging, tyranny, slavery - they believe in whatever is easiest and most expeditious to do. Efficiency is everything.
The idea of sacrificing for some lame ideal? Evil sacrifices others, they don't sacrifice of themselves. The fact that Good people, and LG people, won't resort to these methods is the power of Evil.
Evil's greatest strength is that it has no inhibitions and precious few limitations. It can do anything it wants to, for any reason it wants to.
Good, and particularly Lawful Good, can't do that. Because their actions are restricted, those who hear the Paladin's Call and abide by their code are empowered beyond other men.
That's what a Paladin means to many, many people, at the heart of it. They aren't holy warriors of God X. They are representatives of what it means to be a LG Hero. The idea of cheapening them by making them clones for any alignment immediately sours many, many people. They simply don't share your 'warrior of deity X' view, that's what the cleric is for.
Start with Catholicism as a model.
Introduce 'Orders of the Church' based on the domains of the God. One order serves Good/Knowledge, the Order of Enlightenment. One serves Good/War, the Order of Chivalry. One serves Knowledge/War, the Order of Engineers.
Pick the domains, make an Order for each of them, sit back and start on the politics. With just four domains you can make a complete circle of allied and rival Order with no difficulty, and have different parts of the church.
An LG God with Law, Good, Knowledge and War probably has an intense rivalry between the Law/War paladin wanna-bes and the Good/Knowledge pacifist archivists. If you start the Deity as neutral and encompassing all domains, then any order with two domains probably monopolizes the domains and is effectively serving an aspect of the deity like any other cleric, and would be very different from a cleric with other domains.
In summary, use the domains you give the god as guidelines to orders, and let the religion flow from there.
Monsters had no con bonus for HP in 1 and 2E. Thus, 1/2 to 1/3 the hit points. (the most powerful dragon had 88 hp in 1E!)
+12 Storm Giant Str is more akin to a +30 Str bonus to damage in PF.
The lower To hit was because AC's were lower. The absolute highest AC in the 1E game was Lolth from the Fiend Folio at -8, or 28 in 3.5 terms.
IN 2E, Gold Dragons got to -11 or -12 (31 or 32), but that's still very low for high level fighters.
You didn't need the TH bonuses as much, so they didn't hand them out.
Aaaaand since you posted all those cool pics of BECMI stuff, note that the Girdle of Giant Strength doubled base weapon dmg in BECMI, and didn't provide a bonus to str at all.
This grossly favors big weapons, of course, but the Weapon Mastery skills of BECMI didn't provide fixed damage bonuses, they increased the dice type and size of your weapons...and the Girdle doubled the end result.
So the BECMI Girdle could end up being the strongest of them all, without allowing you to lift a tank!
I don't have the original sets, except for Warlords. I was going to start collecting them, and then they came out with the Cyclopedia, which basically condensed BECM into one book, so I just bought that.
I still would love to see someone go back and REALLY write up Test of the Warlords as an AP! Heh.
The current Guinness World Record distance of an object thrown with a sling stands at 477.0 m, set by David Engvall in 1992 using a metal dart. Larry Bray held the previous world record (1982), in which a 52 g stone was thrown 437.1 m.
The absolute unlimited record is 1854 metres, shot with a footbow like this one by Harry Drake. The record for a recurve bow is 1222 metres by Don Brown. The record for a compound bow is 1207 metres by Kevin Strother. All of these records were set with custom made bows and arrows.
Late medieval composite Mongol warbows were capable of sending war arrows around 550 metres or so. A Turkish composite bow purpose built for distance (and presumably using specialized arrows) is said to have recorded 845m.
A good, modern off the shelf 70# compound bow will send a high quality target arrow about 400-450 metres.
Really makes me wonder the distance the English longbowmen could get?
The English longbows found on the Mary Rose ranged between 120 and 180 pounds in draw weight with most between 135-155. Those bows could fire period arrows about 340 metres.
I.e. something stank about the sling outranging longbows.
Someone tossing a small lead shot 500 meters is probably using a very long sling with extended whipping motion to build up velocity, and probably no more accurate then someone tossing an Olympic Hammer using much the same motion. The best direct comparison would be using a footbow.
And some kid using a 35 lb bow sent a flight arrow 500 meters. Try to reconcile that with 'sling outranges bow.'
Keep in mind one other thing: the Age of Darkness basically slammed the entire world back to barbarism, resulted in almost the complete loss of arcane magic, subjugation by the orcs, mass superstition, etc.
And there are a lot of entities which would like to have kept it that way!
We don't have to put up with that kind of counter-advancing force in the real world. Gunpowder has been known for generations, and yet despite all those fantastically intelligent people, still isn't widely used. Rovagug spits up spawn that eat ENTIRE NATIONS. Tar-Baphon comes out and basically subjugates half a continent with his undead. The Runelords controlled giants and basically consolidated knowledge and power to themselves and their immediate followers, and drove everyone else basically into serfdom, and kept it that way! Because it was to their advantage to do so!...and now you have a wide open gate to the Abyss up in the north, and the demons are on the move!...
In short, there are active forces of stagnation and corruption at work in Golarion that we don't have to put up with here. Geniuses and inventors are targeted by other forces to be resisted or outright eliminated. Plans of evil outsiders cross millennia, and unleash devastation when they come to fruition. When such things, as well as aberrants, fey, shapechangers, undead, and the like are infiltrating your society and hamstringing your attempts to improve your standing, it's no wonder at all why Golarion hasn't advanced further then it has. Indeed, it's probably only due to the counter-efforts of the Good powers out there that Golarion hasn't backslid into savagery once again under all the hostile forces coming at them from all directions.
Mythic +10 Artifact Toaster wrote:
And I called out Strength BONUS, not strength. He's a 2h Fighter, and gets 2x his Str, not 1.5, and -1/4 PA scaling, not 1/3.
Yes, I did read your counter. You need to read mine! ;)
And if the Rogue is flanking, why then the fighter gets to flank, too, and is again ahead on to hit. Strange how that works.
Teleport - the ability to render an area impassable by teleportation, i.e. Interdict an area. Perhaps an aural effect. Your internal power is so high and pure it simply seals the area around you from dimensional tampering.
Fly - prodigious jumping, ground speed, the ability to run up walls and ceilings, across water, on blades of grass and forest twigs. i.e. Lightfoot.
Wish - The ability to nullify the wish. To make true friends who counter it for you.
Summon Monster - The ability to dispel them with a blow, the ability to train real animals to be tougher then any Summons.
Raise Dead - The ability to will yourself back from the dead.
Restoration - the ability to surge your internal energy and purify your body of hostile outside effects.
Heal - Any form of self-healing ability combined with the ability to purge disease and hostile effects. Iron Heart Surge did this for both disease and energy drain effects. Even 1 hp/rd of fast heal is basically the same thing. A Heal check so high you're basically working miracles.
Dominate - A high enough Intimidate skill, Diplomancy, or likewise. Watch anime. A high level warrior can basically stop a monster from attacking, or make it do his will, with a glare. COnqueror's Haki, as Luffy might say.
Comprehend Languages - Your brain works so fast and sure, you can polyglot up a language in almost no time at all once you know enough of them. It's actually an Epic Feat.
Water Breathing - Hold your breath for hours. Really a minor thing, water breathing magic is a common trope.
Scrying - Extremely acute vision at range; perception skills off the wall; the ability to damage beings scrying on you and instantly notice them doing so.
Baleful Polymorph - You turn them into lizards, I turn them into fertilizer.
True Seeing - This is nothing more then spiritual awareness and visual acuity, the ability to perceive the world as it 'really is', unobscured by magical tampering.
Gaseous Form - A combination of stealth and motion. Sure, I can't go through cracks. But I can slide right behind the back of the Shogun's guards and he can't see me, pick that lock with my pinkie while not breaking stride, and I'm through the door as fast as you.
Flesh to Stone: You make them rock. I make them inert dead meat. Being able to undo being petrified by pure force of will is much the same.
alternatively, you make the melee incredibly resistant to the type of attack, so using it is not a 'cure all'. The melee simply DEFIES whatever you are attempting to do, and reverts things back to zero.
If feats are the only thing you are going to change, then feats should change FOR FIGHTERS.
Other classes already have feats tailored to their classes (rage feats, SA feats, FE feats, lay on hands feats).
The reason a fighter feels so vanilla is that they can all take his good stuff, and he can't take theirs.
Simply have feats auto-scale FOR FIGHTERS, and you get versatility and power for the class that needs it (okay, maybe rogues, too).
Weapon focus would give other classes +1, but would eventually give fighters the spec tree.
Improved Grab gives other classes +2, but for fighters auto scales up the chain with their BAB.
Iron Will and the other saves give others +2, but for a fighter improve by their Bravery, also.
Etc. You don't necessarily need to condense the feats down, you need to insure the fighter gets more out of them then other classes.
This gives fighters access to the top of the chain, and really makes those feats the equivalent of class abilities.
The Spaniards 'feared' the slings of the Aztecs and the Incas because every single other weapon the natives had totally sucked and were useless against their armor.
Thrown rocks that got past shields and managed a direct hit on someone's head could be dangerous. Wooden swords inset with obsidian that broke against steel breastplates? Not so much.
And you don't really think a sling bullet moves faster then an arrow or crossbow bolt, do you? An average arrow hits 200 fps (and can go higher), a good crossbow bolt around 300 fps (and can go MUCH higher).
A sling bullet averages around 100 fps, moving up to 200 fps with a lighter rock and 'full rounds' spent building up speed. Yeah, that's it!
The reason the sling bullet looks faster is because it is smaller and round in cross-section, minimizing area, where bolts and arrows are long and easier to follow from the side (but certainly not from in front!)
So, why do I want to reward him for using an inferior weapon?
Why do I want to punish the bow user by having someone with a lousier weapon be just as good as him?
ah, and then there's the 'I keep spell slots free so I will insta-memorize the proper spell I need on demand'. And naturally I've spent the 180k or whatever it is to know all the arcane spells on the wizard list!!!
Or the 'I have this ridiculously convulouted defense against anti-wizard tactics that always works' argument. Uh-huh.
Yeah, but keep in mind that shield bonus to AC is very easy to manipulate.
You can two hand on your turn and then use a Ring of Force Shield to get your shield AC, for example.
Also, it's a STRAIGHT BONUS. IT doesn't rely on Dex...which is cool, because the Dex to AC is the msot worthless part of Armor Training. Between mithral armor and celestial armor, a fighter will likely never fail to use his Dex bonus without usinig his class features.
i.e. A viking should have the best AC of any Fighter Archetype, and that's before dipping into Barbarian Dodge and Natural AC bonuses on top of it!
Yes, the whole 'memorization' meme is very tiring.
The Wizard doesn't memorize his spells. He prepares them. he Pre-casts them. he pre-loads the magical ammunition and has his little finger on the button to unleash it. When he presses that button by using the appropriate V S or M components, the spell discharges.
Now, he's out of ammunition, and has to go stock up. He then has to stick the bullets in the clip, disassemble the barrel, clean the assembly, check the firing pin, readjust the sights, reassemble it, and now the spell is prepared and ready for him to pull the trigger again.
At higher levels, he's got dozens of different guns he can prepare, just ready to go. But when they are out of ammo, so is he, and he has to start the process over.
The sorceror doesn't have as many guns as the wizard, but the advantage to his is he has the same ammunition types for all of them, .111 Caliber Prestidigitai Classic to .999 Archmage Magnums. All his guns of the same caliber use the same ammo, so he can swap between them.
But like the wizard, when he's out of ammo, his guns go silent.
Does that really sound like memorization to you?
Conan is a multiclass fighter/rogue in the books. He leans more barbarian in the movies. He is a cultural barbarian not a D&D class one.
Conan is actually pretty much a straight no-spell feat Ranger with FE: Human and Animals. He doesn't do ANY theifly stuff, like pick locks or find traps or stuff (he works with pros who do that stuff). He does a lot of sneaking and climbing and fighting, and not the backstabby type.
In 1E, he was a fighter/thief, because Rangers were anti-giant class, and that certainly wasn't him...they also got magical powers, like Aragorn. In PF, he's pretty much a straight ranger. Heck, he even has preferred terrain (hills and forests, urban later) if you read the later books...he can out-stealth the Picts in their own homeland. Just look at the way he survives, lives off the land, tracks stuff down, is both sneaky and brutal without going berserk...he's an iconic ranger!
Also, he wore the heaviest armor he could find whenever he went onto a battlefield. That included full plate once he was king. However, when he was pulling border duty, oiled chain was the heaviest he used, and that was STILL heavier then all the other borderguards, who made do with leathers.
He's not a PF barbarian, because he doesn't go berserk on a whim...and FE: Human is far stronger, anyways. He probably has a residual level of it, given his stamina and upbringing, but even so, he's a ranger by pretty much every standard. He probably rages to get his 18/00 Str to inhuman levels for all them strength contests, but otherwise, FE does all the work for him.
you can use Alternate Racial FC bonuses for Fast Learner. So you can pick up the extra hit points AND, say, extra Spells known (starting at level 4, of course), instead of just hp and skill points.
Also note...Fast Learner STACKS with Toughness...really, it's just an 'extra' toughness feat, if you think about it.
Oh, and realize for the Ring of Spell Knowledge...it explicitly allows you to use NOn-SORCEROR spells! That Cure Light Wounds might take a Sorc/2 slot, but if you want to, with a scroll and a spellcraft check, you can be a healer!
The demons aren't trying to kill everyone for the sake of their children.
YOU...are their children. After you've been led into a life of corruption, your soul and those of all your descendents fattened with sin to create more and more demons, yesssss.
Kill you? Think of the children!
Here's versatility for you:
The surface of this delicate-looking blue silk robe is adorned with tiny embossed runes across its entire surface.If the wearer is a spontaneous caster, once per day she may use a spell slot to cast a spell from a written source (such as a scroll or spellbook) as if she knew that spell. The spell must be on her spell list, the same spell level or lower than the expended spell slot, and the same type of spell (arcane or divine) as the spell slot expended. The caster must also understand the written source (such as using Decipher Script (Editor’s Note: This should probably be Spellcraft.) or read magic) and be carrying it. Activating the robe is not an action, but casting the spell otherwise works as normal, including casting time, providing components or foci, and so on. Using a mnemonic vestment’s properties does not consume the written source.
Ring of Spell Knowledge:
This ring comes in four types: ring of spell knowledge I, ring of spell knowledge II, ring of spell knowledge III, and ring of spell knowledge IV. All of them are useful only to spontaneous arcane spellcasters.Through study, the wearer can gain the knowledge of a single spell in addition to those allotted by her class and level. A ring of spell knowledge I can hold 1st-level spells only, a ring of spell knowledge II 1st- or 2nd-level spells, a ring of spell knowledge III spells of 3rd level or lower, and a ring of spell knowledge IV up to 4th-level spells.A ring of spell knowledge is only a storage space; the wearer must still encounter a written, active, or cast version of the spell and succeed at a DC 20 Spellcraft check to teach the spell to the ring. Thereafter, the arcane spellcaster may cast the spell as though she knew the spell and it appeared on her class’ spell list.Arcane spells that do not appear on the wearer’s class list are treated as one level higher for all purposes (storage and casting).
And of course, Pages of Spell Knowledge, which advance your spells known.
Human Favored Class bonus, increasing spells known. Half-elves, getting Paragon surge, and able to dip into human or elven things.
Create Wondrous Item: A vital feat, because you're going to need Rods of Maximize to truly do good Hit point damage with your spells. Happily, Meta'ing up an Empowered Intensified Fireball is still only a level 3 spell and takes a cheap Lesser Rod.
You build a Blaster with feats, you build a versatile caster with spell slection and the ability to get needed spells. The one feat and the magic items provide all the versatility you need. Thus, you just need to build to blast.
i.e. your necromancer not believing they are evil doesn't change the fact that they ARE EVIL. He's just deluding himself in order to have access to a convenient weapon, which means he's sliding down that slippery slope of ends justify the means, and he's definitely justifying here.
Why are the LG Paladins the paragons of 'Good'? Same reason we've always attached to core beliefs and expansions.
LG Paladin is like playing core rules only.
L(n) G is like using PF in Society play. Some expansion rules, not all.
NG is like playing PF with full PF supplements. yay, PF!
N(c)G is like playing PF with almost total 3.5 port-overs.
CG is like playing PF with lots of 3rd party supplements, and tons of house rules. REAL in-the-trenches PF, fixing what 'doesn't work'.
Now, which one of these variants is Pathfinder?
Answer, they all are.
Which one is CORE Pathfinder?
First one, and many will argue, the 'true' Pathfinder. Everything else is 'an expansion of the core rules.'
And that is why LG gets the nod as the 'true champions of Good.' Because they represent the core, and everyone else represents expansions/changes of that baseline belief.
But, it's all Good. Sucks to be the center sometimes.
You will find it VERY hard to make a case against the 'core' rules, it applies to every system of belief in the real world, including modern religions. As soon as 'canon' and 'word of god' start getting bandied about, lines get drawn between core and non-core.
Paladins are the exact same thing.
(Had to get this off my chest, seeing as we're dealing with multi-alignment Paladins...that aren't multi-alignment since there's no L or C here)
Real Advice On Epic Levels
1) If you're playing Epic, then there are Epic PrC's, not just Epic Classes. If you are using 3.5.
2) Little bit of difference at Epic - Melees have save or die attacks.
3)When you hit level 21, you get a MASSIVE WBL boost. You should immediately go out and purchase/make a DISMaL Ring of AC (+5 Deflection, Insight, Sacred, Morale and Luck bonus) for +25 to your AC. It comes in at about 350k, but doesn't trip the Epic Magic item rules because it's a combo item, similar to a Staff of Power.
4) You should then get a SIMPLR Cloak of boosting your saves (+5 Sacred, Insight, Morale, Profane, Luck and Resistance) for +30 to all your saving throws. Why? Because Epic is replete with saves at 30+, and if you fail them, you are dead. Again, about 300k, but priceless.
5) Items that provide immunities are extraordinarily nice. Resistances to stuff tend to be overwhelmed or ignored. Immunities at least provide half protection (the other half of many Epic attacks is often divine/profane/pure elemental energy).
6) Get bonuses from as many cheap sources as possible before you start spending 1 million gp on Epic items. You don't need a +6 shield, you need as many alternate sources of AC, hopefully touch AC, as you can scare up.
7) While PF set the standard for 'Epic' DR much lower, the original definition was a +11 Weapon in toto, OR a weapon with a +6 or higher Enhancement bonus. Generally, it's not that hard to get the latter...you can have 10 +5 Bane X weapons for the price of 1 +6 Weapon.
Also, a +5 Sun Sword is +7 against all Evil creatures, which covers a LOT of ground.
8) As a character, you MUST have heavy fortification. Note that MOST EPIC CREATURES DO NOT HAVE THIS. Any Epic NPC's, however, will. So crit builds work just fine...as long as you aren't fighting people.
9) IF you don't have a Brilliant Weapon available, you're an idiot. At Epic levels, this becomes a +30 to hit weapon against NPC's and PC's. It's insane.
10) Evasion and mettle become priceless. Escaping with NO effects for making any save? No residual effects at Epic are priceless.
11) Pre-Epic bonuses on skills are +30. Post Epic, the sky is the limit. The reason why Spellcraft checks can hit 200 is because you can blow a million gp on a +100 Spellcraft toy. Or, you know, make an Epic Spell that does it for you.
12) Epic Magic is broken and extremely abusable. If your DM allows it, any fairly clever player looking to abuse the system can run roughshod over the campaign. You will enjoy the game more if Epic Magic is either severely restricted or not used, and you stick with level 10+ spell slots and metamagic instead.
13) Likewise, Epic Leadership and the like, while basically giving you a kingdom, are also hugely abusable, especially with Epic Magic ritual-casting.
You're moving goal posts. I'm calling out 'options to trapfind', and there are MANY. Then you're saying 'because these aren't full classes, they don't count', and then you dismiss them because of 'archetypes', when 'core rogue' is ALSO an archetype.
And going through AP's, yes, most of the magical traps are indeed damage based...sometimes a LOT of damage, but still. There are other effects, but a CLW wand is overall the best option if you don't have a trapfinder around.
If you're talking professional soldiers, do you know that the U.S. Army actually has a Reading List that soldiers are encouraged to study, especially the officer corps?
There's some very heavy stuff there, philosophies of war, histories, the whole works. I can't see where ANY professional killer of dangerous things would NOT make a concerted effort to find out all he could about the things he'd be fighting. To do otherwise is stupidity, bordering on downright foolhardy insanity. He doesn't have to be a Ranger, but he should know what he's going up against and how it's going to try to make hash out of him.
I mean, seriously, professional soldiers have to basically learn a second language (Initialese); a blizzard of regalia for their own and hostile militaries; to identify all sorts of military equipment from weaponry to vehicles; maintenance and care of increasingly complex personal gear; possibly foreign languages if deployed overseas; and then whatever their primary and secondary MOS might be.