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The wizard is one of the weakest classes at low levels. At high levels is still made of glass compared to other classes. So if the wizard is not super powerful at high level (quadratic) why will someone play wizards if you virtually will be worse than the other classes? Even if it is as good as the other at high level why should I be worst at first just to be the same at the end?
Wizards in 4E are great, and, with the right build, they are super powerful at high levels. The pyromancer I built for my gf has an (at-will) scorching burst with 1d6+24 dmg (+27 if more than 2 creatures are hit) at level 13. The encounters and dailies are even better, and wizard utility powers are some of the most versatile.
There are just so many options for wizards: Almost every book and supplement has some new powers and feats for them: Arcane power, Essentials, Shadowfell, Feywild ...
Of course, it being 4E, the difference in power levels are not as absurd as in 3.5 or PF, but still: wizards in 4E are amazing.
I remember reading or hearing somwhere that one of the big storylines with Drizz't in the new stories was "the elf outside of his time" concept. That would certainly imply some kind of time jump. I could be remembering wrong, as it was a while ago, but I definitely remember that whatever it was they did, it just sounded forced and contrived to me, and it wasn't simply aging naturally.
So you have no idea what actually happened in the story, but you know it's bad?
If that's the case, why didn't they just let him age naturally instead of throwing in some time warp for the duration of the time jump?
Doesn't really matter, does it? Most FR novels are very light on character development and personality, and focus on action and battle scenes. So why burden the hero with growing older, internal change, .. ?
And that's ok, I think the target audience doesn't really care. In german, there's a nice word for books like the FR or PF novels: "Trivialliteratur". The books sell quite well, so they seem to fulfill the requirements as far as their fans are concerned.
Melissa Litwin wrote:
Let me begin this by saying I think wizards and casters in general are very powerful. I don't think they're weak and they definitely don't need any buffs. Baseline, wizards are the most powerful class in the game, but they suffer when it comes to customization.
Wait - what?
Customization is one of the strengths of a wizard - every day, he can prepare different spells and adapt easily to changing environments.
Melee characters can't. So what if you're a specialized tripper and fight monsters where you'll have a 20% of tripping them? Or weapon-specialized fighter on slashing weapons and fight against undead with x/bludgeoning? Yes, you can still attack them, but you cannot play to your build. A wizard can simply prepare different spells the next day...
Melissa Litwin wrote:
All wizards have basically the same power suite, whereas other classes can customize themselves to be very powerful in different ways.
Yes, but this power suite contains everything from teleport, flying, invisibility, opening locks, summoning monsters, weakening/debuffing enemies, save or dies, save or sucks, environment control, charming/mind control, ....
While a fighter can customize himself to be slightly better at tripping. But a wizard has grease. Or to have a 1d10 hit dice for his single handed weapon instead of 1d8. But a wizard has scorching ray.....
I can buy someone is evil, but 'suicidally evil and capable of destroying the world' ... nah. Why would they want to? What do they gain by that?
You should read the Haunted Lands trilogy by Richard Lee Byers. Not only does Szass Tam have good reasons for wanting to destroy the world (the realms), he actually manages to convince others of the necessity. In addition, it's contains some great battle scenes that show that the author knows the 3.5 ruleset very well.
Interesting. I would like to know more about this. How did you fix the lack of options of higher-level (7+) non-casters?
My biggest difficulty with 4E was that the individual subsystems seemed really well done for the most part, but they just didn't seem to mesh well with each other, so the flow and feel of the overall game just wasn't there for me. Maybe it's just because I've never really played consistently with the same DM, but it seemed way to fluky and swingy to me. It looks great on paper, but it really takes the right DM and the right group composition to make it work as intended, whereas with 3.x/PF, you could get by with less than perfect groups just fine.
I agree, Pathfinder works well for it's target audience. As does 4E.
That's the biggest concern I have with Next as well. They seem to doing a good, or at least decent, job with the individual components, though I'm still a little dubious on their design goals for the classes, but until I can see them working with each other, the individual design doesn't mean a whole lot.
Here, I really disagree. The main problem in 4E was that without house rules or with a bad DM, it can become a grind.
And for 5e, they want to use hit points as main scaling mechanic? No monster that is not a deity, dragon or tarrasque should have 100+ hit points when the average damage of a character is something around 10-20. Two average hits should kill anything but a Solo monster.
That's also what I really like about 3.5 - a level 1 orc has 5hp.
Seems like a reasonable idea in theory, but so did many of the ideas being thrown about at 4E's release. I'd have to wait and see actual implementation before making judgment. While it does seem to solve some problems, it could potentially create other problems just as annoying as those that were solved.
Indeed. I'm afraid it's going to turn out like Pathfinder. Lots of marketing speak before the release, a playtest with some momentum...and then nothing. The many known problems aren't fixed, there's a lot of handwaving, and the ruleset is released as broken as it ever was except for some cosmetic minor changes.
I would assume if someone buys a book with the name of Ultimate Magic, they would like to use the options for their magical characters. Same with Ultimate Combat and melee combatants.
Of course, we know that in practice most DMs will not allow the broken material from those books, or at least not all of it. Still, until the moment a DM explicitly disallows it (or mentions a Core-Only-Policy), it's reasonable for a player to assume he can use the additional options in such a book.
Of course, third party material is usually of lesser quality, and many DMs do not allow third-party material. But splatbooks produced by the original publisher should have a higher standard. But I agree, some splatbooks produced by WotC already contained very questionable material, and with Pathfinder, the situation is even worse.
Despite this, I think it's wrong to blame a player for wanting to build a character with options that reflect his backstory and the idea of the character, even if those options come from splatbooks.
Of course it's reasonable. Player's need to accept responsibility for their actions. If you build a character and continue to play it all-out even though you know that is spoiling the enjoyment of everybody else at the table, that's your fault. Trying to say "Don't blame me - it's Paizo's fault for writing rules that can be abused this way!" is just selfishness when you know very well that you're deliberately ruining everybody else's day by playing that way.
First off, spoiling the enjoyment of everybody else at the table has nothing to do with this. I don't even know why you mention this. We were talking about options, and players using those from the books they own for their character. Please stay on topic.
I say it's the fault of the creators if they publish broken material. You seem to say it's not, that people should not be able to use the material they paid for, and that they are at fault if they do. Why?
Wait - do you really think it's a player's fault for using the options in the books he bought?
Weird. Shouldn't you rather blame WotC/Paizo/whoever for selling broken stuff in the first place?
Because the 'good stuff' in the PF rule set is simply the 3.5 rule set. They have that already.
Count Buggula wrote:
Crushing despair is a cone area of effect, while Deep Slumber will only affect one opponent (players were level 7) and is a full round casting time. On top of that, Crushing Despair is DC 18 vs DC 14 for Deep Slumber.
The 3x/d Sp) has a DC 20 (see the links you posted above).
Count Buggula wrote:
Lucretia did hit one of the players later on with Deep Slumber, but in the AP it specifically says that she prefers to shift to her true form at the beginning of combat and fight with her rapier and dagger (she gets 6 attacks per round in a full-round attack, and came very near to killing 2 players using that alone). And trust me, she was making good use of her wisdom drain ability as well.
A problem with the Paizo APs is that the NPCs aren't built very well, and the advice on how to play them is often .. not so good.
Why wouldn't she touch at least one of them while shifted? She 'prefers' to die?
Count Buggula wrote:
If you run them as suggested by the AP, well, yes. That's a problem. One explanation I can think of for the state of the NPCs might be that Paizo doesn't want inexperienced DMs or Partys to TPK and therefore nerfs their enemies to some level they can expect even a uncoordinated and unoptimized party to defeat them.
Count Buggula wrote:
It was a difficult battle, and one of the PCs was in negative HP at one point, but I didn't kill anyone, and certainly didn't end it up as a TPK, as would be expected by the "optimal" tactics used.
Why would you use Crushing Despair instead of Deep Slumber? -2 is much less of a penalty than ... being unconscious. And what about her major image? But anyway, a sorcerer who chooses lightning bolt as their only L3 spell...well. Lucretia has a wisdom drain Su) that requires only a touch attack. She can shapeshift. She has access to cleric spells.
So, yes. Maybe that wasn't that optimal after all.
Robert Hawkshaw wrote:
Well, their own rules don't sell nearly as well, but the modified 3.5 SRD (PF Core) still sells amazingly, especially with the great art by WAR. Do you really think any of the Ultimate books (which often contain new rules and options) selling anything close to that?
I am going to have to disagree. Of course I could be lucky enough that players realize the consequences of their actions.
I have never once seen players that do not try to improve their chances of survival if they can. But yeah, maybe if you play 1e style with throwaway characters, it doesn't matter. I know that my players fight for every advantage they can get (and they have to, as I am an evil DM :) ).
I will also that at high levels there are spells like Mage's Magnificent Mansion to allow the caster to rest without being bothered most of the time. At lower levels there is rope trick.
Yes, that's why I mentioned it's a low level problem. At higher levels, caster are going to dominate no matter what.
That doesn't matter. The critical difference is that you can have three summons die in a combat and no one cares. You don't have to get the cleric close to the summons to cure it, and you can let them block a passage until they die, or whatever. It's perfectly ok to waste their hit points as they are gone in a few rounds anyway.
Yes, lower level summons might not be as good as a melee PC - but their hit points are free, some of them can even cast some spells, and you can summon creatures with just the right resistances and spell-like abilities etc.
I was playing in a runelords campaign, and I played an optimized summoner wizard for a few sessions. I retired the character because the summons were too powerful and made the paladin and the fighter feel useless.
Steve Geddes wrote:
Please no. Dear god no. No 4e layout, no way.
Not layout, production values - I'd like to see high quality, hardcover, colour books with clear diagrams and wording, decent indexes and decent art.
I found the 4E rulebooks too textbooky for me and the Pathfinder rulebooks too densely written. The production values for both are exceptional though.
I actually like the 4E book style. All the player rule text and game information is nicely color-coded, the crunch is separated from the fluff. This is way better than the unformatted and badly structured walls of text that 3.5/PF offer.
I don't think DE was saying no rest should be allowed ever, but "resting on demand" should not be something that is assumed to happen, and even though in theory a caster can do everyone's job, and steal the show in practice it does not happen as much.
A wizard is rarely out of spells before the cleric is out of cure x wounds, and once that happens, you can be pretty sure that the whole party will try to find a way to rest.
While a DM can withhold resting once or twice for story purposes, most DMs who generally disallows resting will have players complaining.
In short that is not the reality. It is the theorycraft since it is not the norm.
That has not been my experience. In 3.5/PF game I participated that went on for more than a few sessions, the full casters dominated. And why not, when you can summon monsters that are almost as good or better than the melee's but whose hit points don't matter.
An intelligent magic-user cannot count on there being anywhere within a "dungeon" to rest and recoup spells. If such an opportunity presents itself, fine, but that should never be a given. So an intelligent magic-user in such a situation isn't going to blow his top hitting spells on a band of wandering orcs; he's going to wait for something bigger...
In reality, it comes down to this:
Either the DM allows the party to rest, or allows purchase/crafting of scrolls, wands, staves in the downtime, in which case the full casters can easily overshadow the rest of the party. In addition, the other players usually support the caster wanting to rest, as they also profit from his grease/glitterdusts/...
Or the DM does not allow resting, crafting and buying, in which case the full casters will plink away with their crossbow (levels 1-5) and their players will be bored and complain to the DM, or the full casters have enough spell slots that they can still dominate everything easily (level 6+).
Practically, most DMs want their players to have fun, and will hesitate to limit resting too much, simply because it makes the game not-fun for certain classes if they do.
I think the balance here in pathfinder (3.75) is pretty solid and should be more or less kept this way.
Wait - are you serious?
I have used all my spells and only a few in various encounters. I had a fighter tonight hit and do over 60 points of damage in one round (without a crit) and watched the wizard cast an 8th level spell and only do 48.
Well, obviously. If you use your wizard to do hit-point damage, you are not playing it to his strength.
Each class has its role and abilities and for the most part I find the core classes to have been well balanced. Its the supplemental classes that were often unbalancing and poorly designed.
That has not been my experience. +1 to BAB and a feat is strictly less powerful than getting two new highest-level spells. If your wizard uses it's valuable spell slots for bolt of lightning or cone of cold, that doesn't mean the wizard is balanced, it simply means that you do not take advantage of the potential the class has.
There is nothing to fix about the wizard in "5th edition" and there was nothing to fix about it in 4th edition.
DMs and players who have experienced well-built wizards in play tend to think that there is something to fix - namely the huge power imbalance between the wizards and the pure melee classes. 4e did try to fix that problem, but they didn't really. While the power disparities are way smaller than in 3.5/PF, the wizard is still one of the best classes. PF unfortunately fixed this in the wrong direction, by making wizards even stronger. Oh well...
Irnk, Dead-Eye's Prodigal wrote:
I would consider Malaclypse comments an indication of not being familiar with different RPG design philosophies from D&D/Pathfinder
That's not true. The system is bad, it's not that I lack experience or knowledge. But thanks for the insinuation.
bad experience with other players/GM's using Burning Wheel. Unfortunately, that happens in any system.
Actually, the opposite is true. The sessions I played were with a good DM and cool people, it's just that the system got in the way again and again.
I just think a system that leads to an mechanically optimal strategy that includes failing as often as possible is bad. A system that is so messy that e.g the text about beliefs in the three editions contradicts each other - this important part of the system has been rewritten completely, multiple times. Now which version should you use? The printed one? The wiki one? And lets not get to the duel of wits or the combat.. yuck.
I played the original version, and my impression is that it is pretty horrible.
Not only that the beliefs mentioned in the post above are broken in a way that warranted a complete rewrite, contradicting the text in the original book, even before the gold version was out...
No, the system actually incorporates mechanics that
- focus each scene on one or two characters, while the rest have to sit around and wait
- The system contains a magic system that does not work without DM fiat. That is, you might be a mage, but if your spells actually do something is the almost completely the DMs decision. As D&D player, I like to have some basic rules for that.
- The rules are actually making it harder to properly play out your character. You should act out beliefs at all times, yet even when acting out a belief, the DM might actually decide that you are not, and you have to convince the DM that you are actually acting out a belief. Horrible.
- Fights take a long time to resolve, but are not tactically interesting.
All in all, it's one of the worst RPG systems that I know. I cannot recommend it to anyone. There are so many great smaller systems out there - try those instead. I actually had a serious discussion with the other players if the Burning Wheel rules are just a giant attempt at trolling role-players. The system is bad for people who like 'role-playing' and bad for people who like 'roll-playing.' It's needlessy complicated, which is made worse by a very bad presentation. I hope that they at least cleaned up that part in the gold version, but .. I doubt the system can be salvaged.
I think the article has a point. 4th edition really made fighters the most one dimensional they've ever been.
Funny. That's not what the article says at all.
Specialization into a single group of weapons is ok as long as fighters still have the same amount of options in- and outside of combat as the other classes.
But nice try to stir the flames of edition war.
Yes, I do subscribe, and I'm happy with my subscription. I will most likely extend or renew my subscription for D&D Next.
I use the monster builder, the character builder, the compendium and the magazines. I really like that the release all the art used in the books and magazines as jpgs.
I feel that I'm getting much more out of DDI than I ever did with my PF AP subscription...
Thanks again. BTW has anyone read the Dark Sun graphic novel? I was thinking of getting it to get me in the mood?
I'd rather read the original prism pentad books. The graphic novel is not bad, but rather generic and .. well. I cannot really recommend it.
But the prism pentad series was written by the author of the setting, and you can get used copies of the books for a few cents... so I can second (or third, or .. ) the recommendation to read at least The Verdant Passage, the first novel in the series.
The more transcrips I read, the less enthusiastic I become.
I wouldn't take any statements they make now too serious. They contradict themselves and said "we'd like to" and "wouldn't it be great if ... " that i'm convinced now they don't have a real mechanical representation of the game yet. They have the high-level concepts and some point decisions like the fireball 5d6 thing, but everything else is still undecided, undefined and undesigned.
Steve Geddes wrote:
Has anyone heard anything about this? It seems that Dungeon output has stalled somewhat in the last few weeks. I presume the rest of the Giant series remake is still coming out and hasnt been rescinded?
It's supposed to come out in the next few days, afaik. It's listed in grey on the Dungeon page, and the art they released today features stone giants, so...
4E's WOW factor was ease of DMing and p. 42 table allowing ad-hoc action judication well within the rules. Powers were a major part of the game when it comes to the amount of pages taken, but really the game could have worked without them IMO.
Even if they only keep the improved language (shift instead of 5ft step, combat advantage instead of dexterity bonus if ... blabla, ... ) and the simple and easy to use monster blocks, it's already a win, and an improvement over both 3.5 and PF.
What about if everyone (or most) people are running essential style classes? Has anyone noticed if that speeds up combat a bit or is it about the same?
It definitely does speed up combat, but it's not a solution for everyone. Some people like the additional complexity of the full 4e classes. I think the best mix are the psionic classes, which trade encounter powers for augmentable at-wills. In my dark sun campaign, I allowed only psionic classes and essential classes. The three people interested in game mechanics chose psionics, the two more interested in fluff and story essential (melee) chars.
Anyone who has bought this book capable of telling me what you thought of it? Hows the flavor/crunch?
I liked it. For fluff, it has lots of short fairy-tale like stories all through the book, and they have a kind of choose your own adventure in the last few pages of the book to make a nice background for your char.
As for the races, we have the male-only satyr, a female-only Hamadryad, and of course the pixie. They are ok, but not quite my thing.
The new classes are more interesting - I like Berserker(Barbarian) and the Skald(Bard), and the Protector(Druid) and the Witch (Wizard) seem nice. Note that the new classes use the 4E, not the essentials system, so they are fully equipped with At-Wills/Encounter/Daily/Utility powers as those in PHB1.
While I haven't read everything yet, from what I have seen yet, I can recommend it. Would buy it again.
Some of the adventures in KQ seem decent (don't know enough about 4e - haven't played since right after it came out - to really judge), but from what I've heard, the WotC adventures are a little "meh".
The Open Design 4e adventures are really cool, too. Courts of the Shadow Fey is simply amazing, better than even what Paizo is doing (IMO), and Lost City is on-par with some of the better Paizo APs.
Can I copy and paste out of it as text, or is it locked into being a bit map or some flash based or locked down format?
You can copy-paste it, or export it as XML, but what I usually to is print-to-pdf and then use those on the iPad. I like the colored monster format of 4e, don't want to go back to the ugly wall of stats-and-text version of 3e.