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Scaling enhancement bonuses built into the system. WBL only exists because the game assumes that you have X Enhancement bonus to your AC, Saves, etc. I'm currently working on my homebrew house rules, and they're getting ditched. Magic items would be so much cooler, and less restrictive, without WBL being required.
Take 2 levels of Eldritch Guardian fighter.
Yeah, you lose out on two levels of druid spellcasting. That sucks.
But you give ALL of your combat feats to your Leshy buddy. Exotic Weapon Proficiency: Fauchard? Nice. Combat Reflexes? Sweet. It really only gets better from there, and if you're planning on doing melee combat, the spellcasting progression won't hurt that much.
That's only an issue if you believe that some good acts are greater than others.
Paladins are always capable of good deeds. Their powers don't grant them the ability to do good; they grant them the ability to do the impossible, in the name of goodness.
This game is easily salvageable. First, against an optimized party, at CR encounters will be too easy. Up the CR of standard encounters to APL+2. That itself should make combat more interesting. Mix monster types, and always use more than one, unless it's CR is FAR higher than the party (just don't make it an auto-TPK). Try to also have more encounters per game day, due to the excess of spellcasting. Also, remember that you can play enemies intelligently. Flanks, surprise attacks, disabling spells/stuns are all good ways of reminding your players how dangerous adventuring can be.
Sorry. I shouldn't have overreacted. I did something wrong, EVEN IF I DIDN'T KNOW IT AT THE TIME.
/fixes up the table and gets everyone a drink
If you're willing to grab 2 levels of Kineticist, you could pick up their Kinetic Defense ability. If you grab Water as your element, you get a shield bonus that doesn't actually require you to use a shield, as well as a ranged touch attack (which you can actually make pretty decent by taking the Elemental Annihilator archetype).
The only downside is that, as a Paladin, your Constitution probably won't be great (Charisma is better for you overall anyways), but it's still a solid choice, and adds a good bit of flavor to your character, as well as an additional attack option that doesn't require much monetary investment, and can be used when disarmed. Heck, you could even smite/annihilate.
1) Sneak Attack damage from multiple sources stack, so a 3rd level Slayer/Rogue gets 3d6 Sneak Attack.
2) Unfortunately, yes.
4) They overlap, but do not stack. So a character with DR 5/Evil and DR 3/- would take 5 less damage from most attacks, and 3 less damage from evil attacks.
Actually, it doesn't. Bloodrealm had the right of it. Emphasis on "A LOT" of roleplaying.
Thanks for all of the advice, everyone. I know making mistakes is part of learning, I just didn't expect it from such an "experienced" group, I suppose.
But see, there's the kicker: They all enjoy combat. They get bored when there's a lot of roleplaying. So we get to a combat encounter, and the spellcasters are catching allies inside their AoE damage spells that hit multiple allies and a single enemy, or cut allies off from each other to get appropriate aid, and characters are hitting for 1d4+1... at level 7, if they decide to actually take an action on their turn. It's not that they don't like combat: they want way more of it, but they're just mind-blowingly bad.
Well, what I really enjoy playing is support characters, but support characters don't work when the party doesn't actually function like a normal party. I'm playing at this point because I really like our DM, and despite their tomfoolery I actually really like my fellow players. They're just terrible at the game. The adventure we're going through is also interesting, and I'm enjoying the setting.
My main problem isn't that they aren't invested in their characters: They're enjoying the roleplaying aspect of the game. The issue is that they've been making TERRIBLE combat decisions that have not only resulted in the deaths of two party members before (one of which was mine), but would have resulted in several other character deaths if not for the poor luck of the DM.
My desire to carry the group doesn't arise because I care about the game, but from the fact that I want to enjoy doing something on my turn, and helping them in almost any capacity through support/debuffing has, thus far, been a complete waste of time. Therefore, I just want a character that can, himself, survive and be productive without the need for the others.
We're almost 8th level.
Trust me, the campaign is filled with too many creatures immune to sleep for me to do the slumber hex thing. And, believe it or not, a majority of my allies couldn't hit regularly even if I went super buffer/debuffer, and even if they did hit they deal such paltry amounts of damage that my buffs were basically inconsequential.
I know, it sounds crazy. Just trust me. Support will not work for these guys. Any group that routinely decides to take no action for absolutely no reason will not benefit from buffs.
So, I'm playing in a group that, despite having generous stats rolled, have not only built their characters somewhat poorly, but also have exceedingly poor system mastery, as well as almost no understanding of character abilities or even remotely good combat tactics.
Try as I may to teach them, they also all happen to be really opposed to help, trusting in what, so far, has been DM unluck to get through the encounters we've faced, despite several close encounters.
So, here's my question: What kind of character an I make that can carry the party? I wouldn't normally ask this question, and so far I've focused on trying to improve the group through buffing/debuffing/combat maneuvers. But support only works when the support given is used well, and mine never has been. So... thoughts?
Here's the real question: How does your group feel about it? If your DM is the only one with an issue, then he's likely overattached to his encounters and combatants. The primary goal of the DM is to ensure that the group is having fun, and 9/10 times, if he does this, he'll have fun, too. Talk to him about it, talk to your group members, and if he keeps it up, tell him to SUCK IT UP as you slumber his precious minions into their doom.
It's like everyone completely skipped over adding the Throwing enchantment to the lance. C'mon, guys, this is the Paizo rule forum. I expect better. :P
By RAW it works, and I like it. If you spend the tons of mounted combat feats, throwing feats, and ranged feats, on being able to chuck a volley of lances off of the back of a horse, you should get to, even if it's utterly ridiculous.
Charon's Little Helper wrote:
The biggest problem with combat maneuvers is that there's this kinda lie that game perpetrates by giving you this scaling CMD and CMB that says "Hey! You've got this bonus thing you're not using! You should use it!", but unless you play a character that actually devotes a majority of their resources to combat maneuvers, you can't really do it terribly well.
I mean, what character is going to devote two feats just to perform a single combat maneuver WITHOUT PROVOKING AOOs? Some martials might consider the ones that require power attack, but most of them aren't even that great. The two best ones in a majority of situations (trip & dirty trick) require feats most characters don't want to take, so they're just not going to. Sure, you get an extra +2 bonus, but unless you're planning on taking future feats, or increasing your CMB by some other means, you just won't be getting that much out of it.
So, to build a character that uses combat maneuvers well, you NEED to specialize, and I do mean hyper-specialize. This is because you can't just pick a single combat maneuver with which to be a specialist, because when it doesn't work (most combat maneuvers are situational), you need a backup plan. So you end up taking double the combat maneuver feats, the ones that give you bonus attacks and better action economy, and all of a sudden you've spent your mountain of feats as a fighter, or you're 11th level and wondering where all your feats went.
And, of course, to make sure your CMB/CMD stays competitive, you need to take classes that grant you scaling bonuses. The Flowing Monk and Bounty Hunter slayer are both examples of this, and of course the Lore Warden fighter, though several martial classes can be decent with weapon-based maneuvers if they possess a scaling bonus to attack rolls. But let's be honest: You're going to pick a character that can do it exceptionally well, and that means you're pretty dang limited in your choices.
That being said, maneuver specialists are a heck of a lot of fun. I just wish more classes got to enjoy them, and that it didn't require such a big feat investment.
The thing is, a well-rounded party often has a means of debilitating an enemy to the point that boosting your AC that high isn't entirely necessary. For example, I'm currently playing a combat-maneuver oriented fighter in one of my groups. Between knocking enemies prone, blinding them, and entangling them, my buddies don't get hit terribly often, even though their defenses aren't great. This means they get to focus on being offensive, and our enemies still have a hard time. If we had something like a witch or a God wizard in our group, this would only be compounded.
Being tanky is nice, but it only really matters when you don't have the means to disable or debilitate your enemies. Even then, I've got a backup shield and Combat Expertise if I ever need to really go on the defensive.
See Invisibility does last a good bit longer. However, it only affects you, and you have to constantly be telling your allies the new locations of enemies, and if you ever become incapacitated, blinded, etc., your spell stops working. I'm not saying it isn't useful, but if Glitterdust leaves concealment, then it works similarly to See Invisibility, but with a blinding AoE rider for rounds per level. This seems relatively balanced to me given the similarity between the spells.
I don't think my understanding of Glitterdust is a nerf, and I happen to disagree with the lead designer on this one. Glitterdust has a lot of useful applications as my understanding of the rules gives it, and it becomes more balanced next to a spell like See Invisibility, an equal level spell that PALES in comparison for a vast majority of situations, especially if you think that Glitterdust completely counters Invisibility.
At least if the enemies retain concealment, Glitterdust becomes helpful (the effects are party-wide, and there's a blind tacked onto it), but remains roughly balanced with an equal level spell with a similar effect.
You're not there to please anyone. If you like playing with them, play what you want. If you don't, then don't. My current group was LIVID when I changed out my channel-focused aasimar cleric for a Gnoll fighter, but he's proven himself invaluable time and time again, because he's way more fun to play, and he's a combat maneuver specialist, so he manages to support and defend the party without actually tossing heal spells. The druid typically handles post-combat heals with a wand.
Long story short, just play whatever you want. Let them deal with it. :P
As for classes, consider the Occultist archetype Arcanist. Decent spells, spontaneous prepared spellcasting, and bonus summons to serve as meat shields/support/damage when you need it. If you like spellcasting, that's the one for you.
Mark Seifter wrote:
Sorry. The extent of my involvement in the playtest was: "Ooo! Playtest! Let's download the PDF and look at it because I'll never find a group to play it in." :P Not much reason to check the forums after that, hehe.
Still, I wish they had unlimited out-of-combat healing. We could finally put that Wand of Cure Light Wounds to rest.
Quintin Verassi wrote:
I get the concept. It's awesome. I just want things to work in a simple, unified way. If you bring the 1 attack interpretation, you don't get to pick and choose what gets added to the damage. It's not treated like a critical hit, because there are rules for what happens when you roll a critical hit. Either you add all appropriate damage modifiers, or you don't. There is not a single situation I can think of (barring odd spells w/ sneak attack) where a character doesn't qualify for appropriate damage modifiers because of the means by which his attack was executed. The only thing that comes close to this is something like Clustered Shots. I will admit that Pummeling Style is an odd feat due to its wording, but it should be consistent with general combat rules, not this nonsense about "Well, everyone gets precision damage, except sneak attack, because it's not the same, even if it kinda is, and some bonuses apply, but not others, and this one applies to all damage rolls even though it says only the first roll, because there's only one attack, but you still get to use your strength on everything, and probably enhancement bonuses, but that might only apply once because it's one attack..."
It boggles the mind.
I was asking my questions rhetorically. For simplicity's sake, Pummeling style should either be considered multiple attacks, or a single attack in reference to all effects. It doesn't make sense to say "Well, it counts as multiple effects for this type of damage, but as a single effect for this type of damage" when the game never makes a distinction between them.
Chess Pwn wrote:
So how does that work on a charge? What about dragon style? Also, if it's only one attack, why do you even make multiple attacks? Why not just make a single attack and multiply it? That'd make all of this much simpler (even if it would be a tad OP). What if I manage to snag Precise Strike, or take levels in Investigator?
I could agree to your interpretation, but let's at least make it internally consistent (unlike those silly sneak attack/volley rules).
Edit: Also, why would your Strength modifier be added to each attack if it's only one attack?
As written, I feel sneak attack should apply to each hit. Each roll is an attack roll, and attacks that qualify for sneak attack damage get said damage. If this is the case, then feats that affect specific attack rolls should work on the appropriate rolls. It nerfs the mounted charge/pummel trick, but is the most consistent ruling I can see.
I made a homebrew class called the Warden I was pretty pleased with. You can still find it on the boards. Made quite a few adjustments in thread, though. It ended up being a paladin-style chassis, but replaced LoH and other stuff with Cavalier-esque magic schools and other nifty things. I should go back and revisit it.
Technically, the Order of the Dragon ability doesn't modify the bonus that Aid Another grants, it adds to it. I've seen most DM's allow it to work that way, though I can understand concern. I'm currently playing a character built around Aid Another, and I was pointed to the [/url=http://www.d20pfsrd.com/magic-items/rings/ring-of-tactical-precision]Ring of Tactical Precision[/url]. That plus Gloves of Arcane Striking is about as good as it gets... unless you can grab the Harrying Partners teamwork feat to share with Tactician, because the only thing better than giving your ally a +8 to hit, is giving him a +8 to hit on ALL of his attacks.