Well, if I were SKR or Buhlman, I would say "Play as it was played previously until further notice" and be done with it for now. They oked the Sohei and Zen Archer archetypes, why are they going to slam on those archetypes after we've already paid for the book? That will further create an aura of distrust between the customer and company. Why would Paizo want that? I pay $30 for Ultimate Combat and Advanced Player's Guide to have SKR and Buhlman issue a ruling that flies in the face of products their company signed off on? Is that a wise way to run a company? I don't think it is.
If they adjust the way the monk flurry works, they will screw every sohei and zen archer player out there. Why do that when they are doing no more damage than other similar classes?
A specialized fighter archer can fire up to 6 times per round doing more damage with with the addition of double specialization and weapon training. They also get to perform ranged combat maneuvers, which is extraordinarily powerful.
Sohei still doesn't do more damage with a polearm than a two-weapon fighter since Flurry is inherently limited straight strength no matter how you wield the weapon.
There's just no need for a change. I thought the same thing SKR was thinking when I played a Two-weapon fighter and my friend played a monk in the same group. I thought the monk would eventually outdamage my two-weapon fighter given I had to spend so much to get my weapons up to snuff. But it never worked out that way because of feats and ability focus up to lvl 14. It only got worse for the monk and more in favor of the two-weapon fighter.
Once my two-weapon fighter got his dex up via magic item, he never had to worry about it again and pumped up strength. I had a much easier time tricking out weapons with special abilities to add to damage. And the biggest advantage was my crit range and crit feats. I had a wider crit range and with that number of attacks I critted far more often. With critical feats or even feats like Stunning Assault and Penetrating Strike, I had less problem with damage reduction and often crushed enemies by stunning them to death, especially lesser enemies. It worked out to no contest with my fighter doing far more damage than the monk as we rose in level. Every smart two-weapon fighter makes sure to get to the point where he's using the same weapon in both hands thus gaining all the benefits of his feats.
Monk unarmed strike is inferior to a tricked out weapon. They don't get anywhere near as many feats focused on making you better with your weapon. And if they take a weapon, they're still vastly inferior due to feats and more limited weapon selection. Speaking from experience, there is no need for the concern. I'd just leave the whole thing alone. It's nothing more than an inconvenience, which is why it is irritating. Having to remember how many attacks I do with each fist or how many were weapon and how many were fist would be unnecessary bookkeeping that would lead to more headaches at the table for the DM who is already overwhelmed. And open up player error and accusations of cheating for a reason that did not have any great game impact.
In reading posts and guides I have noticed that many pcs do not reach level 20. I was wondering what might be the greatest cause of this?
It takes a huge amount of preparation to challenge level 20 characters for very little return as a DM. Characters are so powerful at lvl 20 that they make monsters into a joke. Unless you are willing to argue with your players constantly denying them access to magic items they want, spells, and the like, the game becomes so much in favor of the players that it is pretty much a joke to run the game. Most DMs get so fed up with it, they either quit running the game or go way overboard and kill the characters. I've seen both many times.
A single great wyrm red dragon against a lvl 20 party is pretty much dead meat fairly quickly if you stat it and run it as the book recommends. It's breath weapon is defeated by fire resistance and powerful cleric healing. It's spells are beaten by the same. It's melee attacks pale in comparison to what the fighter, barbarian, or other melee class deals. It really has very little chance of lasting more than a few rounds against a lvl 20 party. A CR 23 Red Dragon becomes like an ogre against a lvl 2 party.
It's a very unrewarding game to DM at high level. Unless you have a DM and players that committed to some greater story that is still interesting to both sides, why give yourself a headache trying to run a high level game stacked heavily in favor of your players?
If Paizo quietly let this issue die and stay as it is, I would be perfectly happy. Why waste time trying to fix something that wasn't broken and wasn't an issue when they have so many more important items to work on. It was just something that came up in a recent discussion sparked by one major game designers interpretation of the rules that snowballed into something bigger as more people chimed in. If I were Buhlman and SKR, I would shrug, run it the way I want in my own games, and let the issue disappear like it never happened. They have so much else on their plate that addressing this issue is like asking for someone to club them in the head with a hammer to give them a headache they don't need or want.
This really, really irritates me. It is reaching dealbreaker status for Pathfinder for me along with the other problems I've been having lately.
I can name so many martial arts movies where the monk-type character attacks with the same weapon multiple times at speeds unequaled to a regular fighter it isn't even funny. You can look at endless stream of Honk Kong martial arts movies to see how we all assumed Flurry of Blows worked. Was the monk designed to emulate a fantasy martial artist or not?
How many sources can we come up with where a martial arts type attacks multiple times with the same weapon.
1. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon: Single sword, definitely reaching an insane number of attacks.
2. Polearm and spear fighting in various movies from The Shaw Brothers. They are spear and polearm specialists who attack with supernatural speed.
3. Superkick fighting styles where a guy uses his strong leg to attack someone over and over again with the same leg.
4. Sword styles period: How many martial arts movies have you seen a monk use more than one sword? Usually a sword style involves attacking with one sword over and over again.
I'm not sure what SKR and Buhlman are talking about. Maybe neither of them want the monk in the game because they don't seem to have watched many martial arts movies. I was assuming the person that designed the monk had, which is why they made sure to simulate several different fighting styles when they expanded monk weapons and the like.
I play Pathfinder because it simulates the fantasy classes better than 4E did. If they are going to start focusing too much on rules balance rather than on proper simulation like worrying about the two-weapon fighter having to use two weapons while the monk only has to buy one, then the game is shifting more to balance and away from proper simulation.
The martial arts types definitely can attack at supernatural speeds with a single weapon over and over and over again. And usually it is their best weapon be it a sword, superkick, venom fist, or any other special attack they utilize to simulate their style. It's a part of the martial arts fantasy genre to be able to do this. Even Samurai did this in the Japanese Samurai movies. Zatoichi or Yojimbo were definitely monk/fighers using one sword over and over again at supernatural speeds.
And the reason it is a dealbreaker is because they are making a change that no one asked for, no one was complaining about, hasn't been a game balance issue, and is being applied to a class already known for offensive weakness. When you start to make changes your customers don't ask for and aren't necessary to make the game more balanced or playable, you start to make mistakes in game design that damage your game.
I ask for Buhlman, SKR, and any other Paizo officials to ask yourself the following questions:
1. Does this make your game better?
2. Does this make your customers happy?
3. Was anyone complaining about this issue from a game balance perspective?
4. Is the monk a class on these forums that you have ever seen brought up as overpowered, unbalanced, or in anyway in need of a change to make them offensively weaker?
The monk already suffers from Multiple Ability Disorder which inherently limits their offensive capabilities. I think that balances the fact the fighter might have to spend a little more on an off-hand weapon. They get to focus on a couple of stats, max BAB, and have tons of feats to make up for the slight advantage the monk has in two-weapon fighting by getting feats like Penetrating Strike, Double Specialization, Crit Feats so their attacks have effects, and the like. There is no way anyone at Paizo can paint the two-weapon fighter as offensively weaker than the two-weapon-based monk.
I played a two-weapon fighter in the same group as a monk. I far outdamaged the monk. My crit damage was higher and I had more crit effects which completely neutralized my enemy. My damage output due to Weapon Spec, Weapon Training Equivalent, Power Attack, and my limited focus on Str once my dex was high enough made me a much more lethal fighter than a monk. I also hit more often.
I once again advise Paizo not to make an issue where there was none. Not good for your game and not good for your business.
I am still wondering why the game designers even opened this can of worms. What was the point? You think we're going to believe in anyway they intended Flurry of Blows to operate like Two-weapon Fighting when they're making archetypes like the Zen Archer and Sohei? Their own designers believed Flurry of Blows worked as we all believed it work. A Sohei can use Flurry of Blows with a bow, polearm, or spear and a Zen Archer with a bow. SKR or Buhlman can't spin this for a single second as anything other than them attempting to change something for reasons I cannot fathom.
This has to be one of the most ridiculous rule changes I have ever seen posted on this board by a game designer. If someone has power or oversight down there at Paizo and just good old fashioned sense, that person should slap SKR's hand and whoever else decided to open this can of worms, withdraw the comment, and quietly let this go away as though it never happened. Because Flurry of Blows has not been an issue in any game I have yet ran and why it is being made an issue now is beyond me.
I don't much care what SKR says on this issue. It's total rubbish that he is attempting to redefine and overcomplicate a simple rule. A monk flurrying can use whatever attacks he wants in whatever combination he wants to use them. If he wants to punch with the same fist seven times or strike with this Temple Sword seven times, that's how I'm playing it.
They should never even of opened a can of worms by making it hard to make unarmed strikes magical to begin with. It's a huge pain to make creatures with unarmed strikes have magical attacks and overly expensive. They should simplify that part of the equation rather than complicating how flurry is adjudicated. I hate it when they start doing this kind of rule changing with games, especially to classes that are already offensively weak.
Damn. Forgot about this. A lot going on right now. Sorry to miss it as I enjoy your campaigns, Dreaming Warforged.
Enjoy those who haven't gamed with DW. He's one of the best online GMs I've played with. Great use of online tools. Nice pace of advancement and plenty of combat with enough roleplaying to develop your character.
I think we did quite a bit of interaction given the circumstances. But there wasn't much to talk to each other about. Maybe that might have become different after a few sessions or adventures together, but at this point we were focused on the task. Nothing we can do about that with each other.
Oh well. Happens to quite a few campaigns. In general people want a post a day or every two days at the most. I don't think a campaign will survive with less.
No. I don't care. Like I said, holy water is fairly powerful at level 1 and 2 when fighting things like skeletons and zombies. It is fairly useless at higher level past 4 or 5. Even at 3-4 your often better off swinging a weapon. It's highest impact is as a splash weapon at low level. The only danger is the commerce part which I don't think Shanoa will be abusing.
It is 25 gold per casting.
Maybe Paizo made it over half-price to keep it from being too abundant for low level characters when it is most powerful. At low level it is fairly effective against skeletons, zombies, and other low level undead. It's an AoE weapon on top of the 1d6 to the main target with a touch attack. Pretty potent at our level, but almost worthless when it easily affordable.
You could ask Scarogoth if you can adjust your spell list. I'm sure he wouldn't mind. He seems like an easy going guy. Bless Water is expensive. It's probably another one of those balance issues with money generation over power. They didn't want some clever player making tons of holy water and selling it. Even at half price, they could make a killing if they didn't put a pricing restriction on it. I think that's what made them include the expensive component that made it the same price as purchasing holy water from a merchant.
One of the guards should either go forward and talk to the caravan or at least move to protect whoever talks to the other caravan. Not many of us are apparently suited for social interaction since no one is approaching to talk to the other group. I know Raith with his gruff, introverted demeanor (Cha 8) isn't best suited for chatting with another caravan. Maybe Pavel is, though he stutters. I would think Izumi would most likely be best suited to interact with the other caravan.
When you're working up the angle for flurrying, can you work it so that Raith can obtain some Samurai levels? I was thinking it would be pretty cool if Raith became a Samurai/Monk in service to Ameiko. She would be his lord and master. He learns how to serve her as his sworn oath.
The Celestial Bureaucracy wrote:
What do you mean two-hand flurry? From what I understand it's more of a descriptive difference than a mechanical difference. I can't gain the 1.5 strength bonus using a one-handed weapon with two hands or with a two-handed weapon while using flurry. There is a line under the ability that says I do full strength bonus whether using an off-hand weapon or a weapon two-handed. My friend pointed it out to me when I was thinking of using a polearm with a Sohei. You can get the two-handed Power Attack bonus, but not strength. But it's not something I would do given that I use Crane Style, which always requires one free hand. So no worries there. I'll always have a hand free as its part of my style.
I want the weapons for damage variety. The nunchaku for when I get Improved Disarm. The Temple Sword because I've always liked the idea of a monk with a sword like Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon or Zatoichi. Though Zatoichi might be more of a samurai, though what I've seen him do seems more like a sword fighting monk/fighter. I was a little unhappy when I saw the Katana or Wakizashi couldn't be used as a monk weapon. I've wanted to make Zatoichi for so long.
Sorcerer (Cross-blooded draconic silver/orc) 20
Feats: Spell Focus (Conjuration), Greater Spell Focus (Conjuration), Empower Spell, Elemental Spell (Cold), Quicken Spell,
Traits: Magical Lineage (Caustic Eruption).
25 points (Human)
I prefer Con in a group for survivability.
Lvl 20 your main spell is caustic eruption, preferably as a cold spell.
Empowered Elemental (Cold) Caustic Eruption. 20d6 x 1.5 =105 +40 =145 cold damage in 30 foot radius.
Next round: same.
290 + 72 =362 cold damage in 2 rounds.
This generally kills about anything you'll ever fight. Save DC with headband, inherent bonus, and ability points from level is usually +12 (Cha 34) +4 (double Spell Focus for Perfection) +7 spell = DC 33 Reflex save.
You have roughly 21 spell slots to use to cast this with lvl 7,8, and 9 spell slots. Damage continues to compound. Very little can withstand that much damage. The next round they will take another 142 without you even casting for a total of 504 damage from two spells. Almost anything is dead from that, especially groups of things. With your party also hitting the creature, not much lives.
That's the build I'm using right now. Pretty much destroys what we're facing before they have a chance to retaliate unless they are immune to cold. Even resistance only provides moderate protection.
I'm sure GM Fireclaw will let the ability go for a while and see how it works. May be no problem at all. I'm the DM for most of our material world campaigns. I lean toward the conservative in class abilities. As long as it doesn't screw up my role-playing, I'm good with it. After reading the ability and getting clarification, I see what it is for. Will be interesting to see how much it affects combat.
Just as your character as humorous, my character takes himself very seriously. It would mess up the role-playing if he were that easy to cow into silence. He is a man that didn't go silent on threat of death. It would be real hard to role-play him as a man silenced by some rough language.
We'll get along fine. I don't want attacks launched at me that I don't know the rules for and that seem to give one character such an extreme advantage over another as to make role-playing pointless.
Your ability seems to be an at will abilty standard action with an easy DC to do the damage. I don't quite understand why GM Fireclaw wants so many of his encounters to be ended in such a fashion, but he is the GM. So it his choice. Your character appears to use Diplomacy to hit. His Diplomacy is +10 right now. There appears to be no defense against the attack other than not being able to hear or see you. A fighter with a 20 strength couldn't get a +10 to hit at first level using standard rules without charging. I'm not sure the DC for the Diplomacy check is higher than what most ACs would be. Seems overpowered to me.
I certainly won't much enjoy myself if I have to deal with such an ability when it affects how I want to roleplay my character without so much as a save. I could have countered with Intimidate considering the ease of use of that skill. I don't care for Intimidate mechanics either. I prefer to let each person speak and choose the manner of their character's interactions.
We'll see how it goes. My character is staying to hear what Elrint Jobe has to say. I may have no interest whatsoever in his mission and may go it alone. At the moment we are merely prisoners of circumstance waiting to see what GM Fireclaw has planned for a mission.
Thanks for the clarification, GM Fireclaw. I would still like to see more when you get the chance. Now I see Pravus misused the ability. I certainly wasn't attacking him and thus didn't need to be "talked down".
I appreciate your openness, GM Fireclaw. I don't mean to be a pain. But I'm careful what campaigns I jump into. I don't want to deal with surprises that completely destroy my character concept with rules.
If Pravus wants to have a battle of wits, great. We can do that with our words. As far as using character abilities to attack other characters because you have some ridiculous ability that allows you to simulate an attack from insults, that I'm not dealing with. That is nothing more than abuse of an ability by a player. The entire exchange wasn't even clever to begin with. Calling someone a sphincter is not my idea of a witty noble insult. I certainly couldn't at all picture Vandrake being cowed by an insult of that kind.
I understand how the ability is supposed to work. What I'm not much going to deal with is no save and a skill check that can be beefed up with feats and the like. My character could care less about insults. If this damage keeps getting higher and higher and can be done like Channel (which has a save), why should I deal with that for a character I in no way envision being bothered by someone insulting him. He dealt with years of physical and mental torture. Some guy saying harsh words is going to bother someone who dealt with that? I think not.
GM Fireclaw wrote:
Basically, the noble is all about talking. Can do stuff like deal "morale" (non-lethal) damage, add cha bonus to damage. They're really good at using the social skills (bluff, diplomacy, intimidate). It's under the OGC so I might put it up on the PFSRD. I'm finally home! Expect to see lots of updates within the next 3 days.
This class can knock you out by talking to you? And that is what Talk-down does? Pravus attacked my character for non-lethal damage with a skill check? This is a class you allowed in the game, GM Fireclaw?
No other class can deal non-lethal damage in that fashion that I know of. I would like to see this class. I'm not sure I want to be in game with a class like that. That will be rather annoying for him to be able to make a skill check and do damage at will with no save. Until I see this class, I'm going to withhold interacting in the game. I want to see the mechanics work with this class. I don't know that I want to be in a game with it. I'm not for example going to be in a game with a class that can deal damage at will by talking while the rest of us with abilities of a similar kind have limited uses per day.
Nice amount of work you put in. But if you're allowing side classes like this in the game without informing the players of what they are and giving advance notice of what they do, I don't much care for that.
I would find it rather not enjoyable to:
2. Have this able to knock me, a person with an extremely high will save and force of personality, unconcious by some other character talking to me. You may find that amusing GM Fireclaw for one of your characters, I would not.
This is why I avoid third party material and campaigns based on them. You get little surprises like ridiculous powers that can deal damage through a skill check with no save against one of your characters that certainly would not be at all affected by some other character insulting him. I'll see if you post this class so I can decide if I want to be in a campaign with said class.
Thanks for your time, GM Fireclaw.
It does sound like a messed up scenario where the DM might have been trying to kill you. Sending a Rakshasa at a group that is too low level is a very deadly encounter. I'm surprised you didn't have someone with spells that bypass DR or buff spells like versatile weapon and align weapon. That allows you to get penetrate DR like the Rakshasa's.
If the Raksasha had said with the force of a suggestion, "Throw your bow over the side and I will let you all live", then you would have been screwed. He's making a very reasonable, believable suggestion. If all he said was "Throw your bow off the side". That's not reasonable and would be considered suicidal. I wouldn't make a suggestion so blunt and poorly worded.
Given the relative weakness of monks as combatants, I'll probably let them have the extra attack with haste. Fighters, barbs, paladins, and rangers do so much more damage than monks it seems fairly punitive to take something like this away. Even with the flurry, the monk usually can't keep with the damage output of the +20 BAB classes or even the properly positioned rogue.
I just want to disagree about the army of two handed fighters. A one hand shot - d8 + 3, will probably kill a soldier. If they have a + 3 to strike, and you assume fighting defensivelly, a shield doesn't just reduce the damage by 10%, it reduces it by as much as two thirds. Sword and shield is much better when a one handed attack will kill the enemy, and the enemy almost needs a 20 to hit you.
How would the character almost need a 20?
Heavy Shield and let's be generous, chain shirt. Most small armies can't even afford that. Versus chain shirt.
15 point buy
Str 16 10 pts
AC 16 for shield guy
Average hps: 7 for both
Hit roll: +4 for both
Average damage: Longsword: 7
Two-hander hits: 12 or better
One hit two-hander equals dead soldier
Let's take 10 soldiers:
That leaves five one-handers left that disable 3 two-handers leaving 10 two-handers against five one handers.
Next round, they kill the last five with three going into negative. End of battle two-handers win with seven men standing.
Let's say one handers win:
They disable 6 of the ten two-handers.
Two-handers still counter-attack killing five of the ten one-handers and downing six of the ten two-handers.
Five one-handers attack disabling two of the remaining one-handers.
Four two-handers attack killing two of the remaining five one handers with two two-handers going into negative.
Three one-handers attack disabling the two-remaining one handers.
One handers attack killing two of the one handers but falling themselves.
If the two-handers win initiative, you have seven two-handers standing unscathed.
So if the one-handers win inititive, you have one one-hander fighter remaining.
You're still better off building a two-hander fighting force using D&D rules. This difference becomes even more pronounced as hit points, feats, and abilities get worked into the mix.
Goblins Eighty-Five wrote:
Thanks for the offer. I do like to work with the other people in a group. People who have relationships working together has always seem more reasonable. I have an idea for a character I want to run if this is going to be individually scripted adventures. I'm going to run that by GM Fireclaw.
Ok. If this is the case and my own desires can drive the character, I'm going to assume the following:
1. The adventures will be individually tailored to the characters. Thus we may not even be together much of the time. My goals certainly won't necessarily coincide with the other PCs.
2. I will be able to take the Leadership feat and have a henchmen that does do as I like if I feel like it.
But if I make the character I want to make, I hope not to get screwed or be forced into an adventure I don't want to participate in. I do have some self-directed concepts, but they are not kind. I'm going to see if you're really up for some hardcore roleplaying GM Fireclaw. The character I want to play in this type of situation is one I've wanted to play for a long while, but I haven't found a GM willing to run it past a certain point. We'll see if you're willing.
Can you drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
I'll need to flesh this out with you over email.
I can't much settle on a character concept. I have no idea what we're going to be doing, thus I have no idea what kind of character I should build. Be pointless to be combat oriented if we're going to be making tons of skills checks around political affairs. Be pointless to make a skill guy if we're going to go on standard adventures. Not my play style to make a character just to try something. I have to know what I'm going to be doing and what type of character would fit in with what we're going to be doing or I feel completely lost. Hopefully once you get some of that worked out I'll be able to come up with a character.
Just as I suspected. All three non-compound shortbows. Read up on the expedition of Richard the Lion-hearted versus mounted archer's from Saladin's army. Those bows couldn't even penetrate the Crusader's armor. They used their mobility advantage to launch large volley's against unprotected animals and hoped to hit the unarmored areas of European warriors because their bows were so weak they couldn't penetrate the armor.
The English longbow was made to counteract European armor. You could not fire one in the fashion you see in these videos. You could also not fire a compound strengthened-longbow like the archers in these videos.
I've done some archery with 70 to 80 lb. pull compound hunting bows. Still closer to shortbows by D&D standards, but the pull was immense. It took all your strength and concentration to maintain the pull and aim. You would not be able to fire like this with a heavy pull bow. So this provides proof of nothing.
I will only reiterate that D&D is not realistic. No version of it. Not E6. Not any of the editions. Applying realism is ridiculous. My preference is making the game as playable as possible. My version of balance is more concerned with making combats interesting and viable, not realistic or long.
I don't like it when the group goes against a dragon and crushes it in two rounds because the martials do far more damage than the creature can handle, the healer can heal the dragons damage in one round with minor resource expenditure, and the mage can mitigate the dragon's mobility and attack advantage with a minor expenditure of resources thus turning an entire combat against a dragon into a fairly routine and trivial affair. And that is what happens in high level play.
I'd rather not take the opposite extreme. Maybe they have some system for this to work in E6. But no 6th level character stands a chance against higher end monsters. So either they must not be fighting them at all or they must be so severely modifying such creatures as to make E6 an entirely different game from D&D.
The extra attack from the Ki pool is not a haste-like effect. That line references the extra attack from Speed weapons.
What exactly are they doing if not speeding themselves up?
Think about what a Ki Point allows you to do.
+4 Dodge bonus AC
All of this involves a haste like speed boost. I think you could make a very well-supported argument that using a ki point is like a haste effect. It gives similar bonuses to haste. And you could envision it as using your ki to give yourself a small boost of supernatural speed.
Hmm. Thanks for pointing that out. It could be argued that spending an extra ki point to obtain an extra attack is the monk speeding himself up for a round. I did not interpret it that way and only applied a similar effect to other spells or magic item enhancements based on spells. I think I'll go with this.
With four levels of fighter, you can get Weapon Specialization and still +2 from weapon groups. The Zen Archer does allow a wisdom-focused character, which is advantageous for monks. But if you build around Snap Shot, dex-based is better for the AoOs. For sheer damage output the Sohei would be better.
This is another thing D&D doesn't capture. A shortbow can be fired faster than an English longbow. But in D&D everyone uses the equivalent of an English longbow for greater damage and range.
Mounted combat was with shortbows. Not the heavy pull English longbow. But because D&D doesn't take these types of things into account, everyone goes with the better damage weapon.
For example, using D&D rules you would have entire armies of heavily muscled guys wielding two-handed weapons because at low level the damage advantage is much greater than the AC advantage of a sword and shield wielder or a light-armored dextrous fighter.
But that isn't reality in any way. Two-handed weapon wielders would be destroyed on the field of battle as they were because wielding a two-handed weapon is so disadvtangeous as to be unheard of. A trained shield user with a one-handed weapon can kill a two-hander fighter with considerable ease. So could a light one-handed fighter. But you wouldn't know that the way D&D does combat. So why even try to apply realism to it. D&D isn't about realism. It's fantasy in every way.