A spellcaster can become immune to probably the most overall useful maneuver, trip, just by flying.
Grapple DC is insanely high for casting, though the grappler still has to get to the caster, get past any magical defenses like miss chance or mirror image he has, and beat the CMD, which IME is pretty decent even for "feeble arcanists" due to pumping touch AC up and thus also boosting CMD as a result.
Then you have to assume the caster did absolutely nothing to plan for getting hugged. Which seems unlikely. Whether he's a Teleport Conjuror and just plain doesn't care; contingent dimension door or teleport; buys a ring of freedom of movement; has his familiar pull out a scroll of dimension door to Use Magic Device on...
Does this statement include casters that happen to melee? (i.e. Druids/battle oracles/clericzillas)
It includes casters whose best / most powerful schtick is melee combat related.
It does not include a Paragon Surge abusing Oracle, who also happens to have the Battle mystery and tends to fight in melee a lot, for example.
I'm actually more amazed that he's looking at the Balor as first and foremost a melee threat. Instead of all those luscious spell-like abilities.
I'd say they suffer from limited spell list more than sorcerer. Sorc/Wiz list is chock full of very powerful, very versatile, spammable spells.
Cleric/Oracle list is largely filled with situationally important spells you want to be able to access when they're needed (or within 24 hours), but really have no use for in regular day-to-day adventuring.
1. I said melee build, I never even mentioned archers. I definitely am positive advanced guns can easily break the game, at the very least.
2. I said lance chargers or pouncers, not the combination of lance-pounce, though adding the two together causes no harm as noted. Doing triple damage and then *also* getting another three attacks is still quite nifty.
3. Barbarians, sure. How is Fighter getting pounce? There is an archetype to give up your best attack to "pounce," and there is the Mounted Skirmisher feat, that's...about it for Fighter. Monk gets Dimensional Dervish at level SEVENTEEN, it's a completely impractical build, and runs through your ki stupidly fast. Eldritch Knight, Magus (not that he needs it when he has Bladed Dash and Force Hook Charge), Horizon Walker all do it much better and earlier.
IMO, an Oracle with the LIFE mystery should rightfully have more claim to the schtick than a cleric, who has much much MUCH more versatility in his spells prepared than oracle has in his spells known and gets two domain choices, neither of which likely affect channel energy at all, versus the one mystery an Oracle is tied to.
I agree with you on rogue, though.
I really hate when they do crap like that. Obviously a class will be better suited to some things than others, and you should if anything reward them for playing to their strength, not nerf them to try and keep it "in line with the others."
Example of the former: Bards getting a bunch of enchantment spells at reduced level
Example of the latter: Qingong Monk getting a 3rd level spell that uses unarmed for its damage roll at level SIXTEEN or above for iirc 3 ki points; gods forbid the monk guy is at all good at something based on unarmed, gotta keep him fair n' square with the wizard!
Oracles inexplicably getting 1 + cha mod instead of 3 + cha just because they're charisma casters is likewise BS. You don't see PF stripping clerics of their good base will save because "it's unfair to the oracle since you're a wis-based caster already."
Other than possibly the lance chargers or pouncers that deal hundreds upo hundreds of points of damage in one turn *and* can reliably charge despite the myriad things that can prevent a charge, no melee build should ever be on a "broken builds" list. Unless broken is to include underpowered/nonfunctional as well as overpowered, since both extremes are right to consider "broken."
Start summoning celestial animals with pounce to smite the hell out of whatever you're fighting?
Or just cast Summon Eidolon if the effect does nothing to keep you from getting it back the same day.
(Blasphemy, etc... have that nasty clause; happened to our [non-synthesist] summoner's eidolon... player spent a round whining about being useless, then I suggested summoning in some celestial tigers and the 3 obtained proceeded to completely destroy the BBEG the next 2 rounds, doing more damage in those rounds than the entire rest of the party *and the eidolon for the time it had been present* COMBINED)
But PF cannibalizes names 3E used all of the time, and they often steal exact mechanics of other 3E material but change the name and/or pre-reqs (example: Come and Get Me rage power vs. 3E's Robilar's Gambit feat).
"Give natural weapons an alignment component" is a pretty generic ability, they could just name it differently and be fine.
If PF has no intention of ever re-producing the 3E spell, then why did they keep this text?
Align Weapon wrote:
You can't cast this spell on a natural weapon, such as an unarmed strike. When you make a weapon chaotic, evil, good, or lawful, align weapon is a chaotic, evil, good, or lawful spell, respectively.
Also...since when is an unarmed strike strictly a "natural weapon"? Last I knew, it was either both manufactured AND natural, or "up for debate." I guess that was a rule change for PF, as in 3E unarmed strike was a manufactured weapon but for a monk also a natural weapon. Apparently in PF...
Magic Weapon wrote:
You can't cast this spell on a natural weapon, such as an unarmed strike (instead, see magic fang). A monk's unarmed strike is considered a weapon, and thus it can be enhanced by this spell.
It's the opposite; unarmed is a natural weapon (except when it'd benefit them, as with Improved Natural Attack or the 1.5x str to damage if you have a single natural weapon rule...), but for monks it's also manufactured. So...I guess they can get Align Weapon cast on them?
Well, ultimately I'd just like to know about the thread topic. I might have to make new threads for those side rants, though...
Sorc and Oracles using Paragon Surge to spont. cast the entire sorc/wiz spell list and the entire cleric/oracle *AND* sorc/wiz spell lists, respectively. Both use the spell to gain Expanded Arcana for access to their own entire spell list. Oracles can further take Eldritch Heritage (arcane bloodline) so that with the spell they can take Imp. Eldritch Heritage. The 9th level bloodline power of arcane bloodline is to gain spell(s) from the sorc/wiz spell list to your list of spells known...
Using Samsaran's Mystic Past Life to nab spells for 9-level casters at up to 3 spell levels early from the 6-level caster lists, especially summoner.
Anything involving Mystic Past Life, actually...
A beautiful synergy of various overpowered feats, the geysermancer.
I really dislike the size mods in PF, how they grow exponentially from a nearly pointless +/- 1 up to 8 by 1-->2-->4-->8.
It'd be much more sensible and balanced if it was an even progression of 2-->4-->6-->8. And 3E, with its bigger size numbers (capping at +/- 16!) still followed a linear progression so don't act like scaling it evenly is some absurd new concept.
But yeah, I've ALWAYS hated the size cap on maneuvers*, it's always been stupid. That one issue actually is pretty much single-handedly the reason the entire setting sun discipline in Tome of Battle is a complete and utter failure of mechanics matching fluff (that and the size mods still applying as normal), which is a shame, because all the stories about the Halfling defeating giants by using their size against them was really cool, it'd be nice if that was *actually* emulated.
*Lemmy, it's the same in PF as 3E, the only change was removing it entirely from grapple. Which I will credit PF for doing, good on them. Shame they didn't do that for all the maneuvers. (Some maneuvers like disarm never had size restrictions in 3E, either).
Note that Coup de Grace is a full round action so the opposition would have a chance to wake him up before the PCs killed him
That's why you don't use it until an ally is already in melee with the enemy.
Or, ready to use it when the foe moves into melee with someone, thus robbing him of his attack/action *and* leaving him ripe for the picking by whoever he was trying to go attack.
Reverse that for Reduce Person. It's a debuff for strength based melee types, but the dex and AC bonuses make it a buff worth having for everyone else.
I don't agree with that at all... Reduce is good for spellcasters and thrown weapon users (what few there are), sure. And probably gun users, too, especially w/ gunslinger's dex to damage...
For any melee character it's always a bad idea, though, even dex-based ones. Especially small dex-based ones, who no longer threaten spaces at all if reduced and have to enter enemies' squares.
For archers it's also not worth the damage loss usually; and you need the Adaptive property (you probably have it anyway, of course) or else you eat a -2 attack penalty for the insufficient strength which wipes out the attack bonus from the spell.
Well, in my current group, we have three melee people, basically.
1. A Halfling Cavalier who can no longer ride his mount if he becomes medium sized to do massive 2H lance charge damage.
2. A druid who is wildshaped and just plain can't be affected by size changing magic while in her combat forms.
3. Me, a dex-based goblin claw/bite alchemist, who would take attack and AC penalties, see no increase in damage nor reach, and have a harder time using Roll With It.
Our group no-likey Enlarge Person. DM had an NPC wizard join us at one point and he started casting Enlarge Person, ended his turn. We asked curiously WHO he was enlarging. DM said my character, I said he better not dare or I'll go smack him just to disrupt the casting. DM then said the Cav, he said, no way in hell is he dismounting. Over to the druid. Not a valid target.
Actually Vital Strike is only good for eidolons, druids, and anyone else that can get obscenely high base weapon damage, usually through the use of a twinked out natural weapon w/ strongjaw spell and being a very big size.
I made a fixed version a long time ago that simply added BAB and capped at certain amounts of BAB, with the latter feats extending the cap and giving x2 and x3 BAB to damage, respectively (iirc, VS capped at +10 damage (BAB 10), Imp. VS at +30 (BAB 15) and Greater VS at +60 (BAB 20)). As well as explicitly allowing one to use the VS feats with Spring Attack. That way VS at least would work like you expect it to; better the more martially skilled you are, doing enough damage to actually matter, and being good on a skirmisher build.
The suggestion was promptly ignored. :(
That's why I dislike wall of iron. It may be stronger, but its much less shapeable than the stone.
Again with disintegrate, you should mainly use it for "blasting" against undead and constructs since they tend to have poor fortitude saves (but hardly ever need to roll them) and otherwise use it to say... create your own doorway into a room or the like. Using it on cubes of inanimate objects/material doesn't give a save to greatly nerf the damage, it just works. Also handy to escape walls/prisons/spheres of force quickly.
Mass Suggestion is not just out of combat. I use suggestion effects in combat frequently, if you put a modicum of effort into the suggestion, you can at the very least remove a foe from the combat for hour/level or until the party goes to fight him individually after offing all his allies.
Contingency is great to use either as a free extra spell per day or for an emergency. Having one to dimension door you out of harm/grapple is common, for example. Or one to teleport your body and gear back to the temple of your deity should you die. It depends on your CL of course, since that limits your max spell level to pick from. My high level wizard has a contingency to cast Mage's Lucubration when she declares, "I came re-prepared for this!" That way if she should cast some level 1-5 spell and suddenly find the party desperately needs it again, right now, she has it.
I could see it being interpreted that way, OP. But I think between being deathwatch and the references to "seeing" the condition of creatures, it is intended that you need to actually view a creature to determine its status.
Besides, it is already decent for what it does, also acting as blindsense is too powerful.
Are those the only options? Definitely SM VI and I guess the black pudding, then.
Transformation is a trap; you are not a fighter, and that spell does not make you one. Chain Lightning is better than most direct damage, but still a subpar option. Form of the Dragon: What benefits would you actually benefit from significantly? Planar Binding I've never been a fan of, it's costly and can backfire on you. Wall of Stone is generally better BFC than wall of iron; wall of iron is mostly good for producing large quantities of iron to sell or craft into things.
Other options to look at: Greater Dispel Magic, Battlemind Link, Mass Suggestion, Sirocco, Disintigrate (especially great vs. undead, constructs, and to "interior decorate" with), Flesh to Stone, and Mage's Lucubration.
Also, having Contingency to use on days you're not adventuring is a good idea.
Yeah, I'd like to know where it says it works on objects, far as I know it's unclear/unsettled whether it does or not.
If it does not, undead and constructs are immune.
You definitely want Ice Tomb or Retribution. I dislike Agony, it's very poor. The other Major Hexes kinda suck, it is by far the least impressive grouping of hexes out of the 3.
Waxen Image (created before combat of all your allies) can be useful for those times giving an ally a move action is worth giving up your own standard action. Those times will be very very rare, though.
EDIT: If failure is your concern, you should've grabbed Accursed Hex long ago. ;)
With all that said, I do think that (for their purpose) the suggestions you've made are sensible and well-balanced. I just wouldn't use them because I don't really like the overall idea. :)
Goth Guru wrote:
Specifically to screw over the Alchemist? Say if your game has recurring foes or their forces, who know your character and intensely dislike him/her.
I'd like JJ to actually say what constitutes "use" before I feel reassured by all these people telling me smashing it or stealing it counts as "use" or by some other rationale lets the alchemist re-fill the slot the next day. By basic English language comprehension, I can't actually get behind any of those assurances, and I know for damn sure my current DM in the game I do have an Alchemist would not, either.
our PFS GM would always have some baddie nearby or going poison to damage their guys, or some other bs rational to negate sleep like (he fell due to suddenly falling asleep while standing and takes 1d6 damage, he's awake now... but hey he's prone!)
...Did you ever happen to report this to the people who run the local group? Seems blatantly against the rules and really dickish.
Also, as I once said of the Fighter:
By being dull and uninteresting, but passable, a product can become the most sold/"popular." Not because it is the best, but because no one has particularly strong feelings against it, but everyone is able to at least tolerate it.
And apparently people seemed to take this mentioning as some sort of statement that I hate Paizo, or they are lazy, or that I want to take them out back like Old Yeller. I was trying to figure out what on earth got everyone so riled up and begin insulting everyone who writes anything that isn't Paizo. Bad form it is.
It's how things work around here, sadly.
StreamOfTheSky, page 1 wrote:
This has been pointed out for many years now, right from the start. But instead of addressing it, paizo and its defenders just shouted back and turtled up like they were besieged.
There is no criticism. Just "attacks."
I'd love to live in this fantasy land where being the most skilled or gifted at a craft meant you were the most successful and "best" at it.
Maybe in that world, Justin Beiber is not the greatest singer of our times.
Since how good someone is can only be measured by commercial success and all.
Ive seen some hideously broken Gunslingers for instance (I was a mage casting a 6D6 fireball, the Gunslinger was using alchemic rounds or something and douing about twice my max damage - per shot), Magus who somehow got more HP than the Barbarian in the party at the time -.-
Yeah, guns are extremely unbalanced. How good or weak they are depends on "tech level" and wealth far far more than any other combat style or weapon, and the random misfire chances are completely arbitrary and aren't felt if they never happen.
Being able to full attack touch attack and deadly aim it is just insane.
And for the barbarian...I've seen a 3E Sorc (ie, d4 HD) have more hp than the barbarian in the party. That's what happens when you roll for hp and the sorc has a higher con score thanks to not being multiple ability dependent. It's why I never DM w/o giving at least 3/4 the HD in fixed hp if not outright full HD, to ensure those d10's and d12's actually mean something.
It's actually superior to Snap Shot in that respect.
And yet by RAW you still have to spend feats on the completely and utterly worthless Rapid Shot and Snap Shot in order to get Improved Snap Shot, despite already having a better version of Snap Shot, and waiting longer than the fighter, ranger, etc... to do it due to BAB +9 pre-req.
All full casters are broken.
A Witch stands out because he trades the massive versatility and higher slots per day of the wizard's spell list and specialization for the ability to spam Su (ie, no spell resistance) save or dies all day long. Since a wizard can also easily save or die enemies, it isn't really more powerful it's just more jarring because the witch's offensive hexes and spell list are all built around that one single-minded purpose, while as a wizard can do many other things, too.
Well, PF did nerf Imbue Arrows, the major draw of the class.
In return for only losing 1 CL instead of 2 with the 2 level dip, Imbue Arrows is also weaker now. In 3E, using it was ALWAYS a standard action. So you could say... shoot an arrow in the villain's lair and all of a sudden it's blanketed by your guards and wards (normally a 30 min. cast time, iirc) spell!
What is the need for a distinction?
On both levels, it's a pretty crappy way to treat the people around you.
The most amusing was a psionic character who did nothing but use his powers to buff his own AC to insane levels and avoid the conflict, maybe occasionally flinging some ranged offense but only rarely.
Anytime the tide seemed to be against us, or if he just plain failed to identify the creature attacking, he would immediately teleport the party away to safety.
We were greatly annoyed, but at the same time it was kind of funny and at least he wasn't leaving US to die, so we tolerated it for months before the game ended.
If the game will actually get that high and continue playing past it for a while, it is a fine build. Not losing any more CL than absolutely necessary and getting Imbue Arrows + Anti-magic Field about as early as is possible.
Just don't go past AA 4th level...
And don't think of Imbue Arrow as a good way to "deal damage." All the direct damage area spells already tend to have very good ranges. It's best with AMF, color spray, etc...
It is too bad melee fighters aren't allowed to carry ranged weapons. Why don't they fix that?
Sometimes it seems like other people play games where you only ever fight armed humanoids, and the other 95% of the bestiary doesn't exist...
In any case, if the foes do have ranged weapons and are stopping to shoot, slowing themselves down, the escapees are likely to get away unless said ranged attackers are actually skilled with their bows beyond "I have one, and I'm proficient."
Speaking of falty assumptions...
1. Maybe if the skirmishers fought nearly as well as the "lots of damage" guys, they wouldn't *need* to run.
2. You can do a lot of damage without losing mobility to heavy armor just fine.
3. Not every DM is just going to deus ex machina a win for you, IME most will let a TPK happen just fine.
4. Unless you are in barren, flat, wide open terrain or the enemy out-reaches you, you can actually pretty reliably get away just using the Withdraw action. That lets you double move w/o provoking from the space you leave. The enemy can double move to pursue you, but he can't do that and attack. He can double move and attack by charging, but...unlike withdraw, that has to be unhindered in a straight line. So in most cases, to chase you down AND kill you, the enemy needs to have at least twice your speed.
5. Running away is not the only way to evade an encounter. You could hide. The mage could teleport the party away. You could use diplomacy to negotiate an end to the conflict.
I've played with plenty of people who think like you, that it's more important to be able to escape and live than to fight well. They tend to get other characters killed due to not contributing enough in a fight and being quick to bail out. Those people tend to not be welcome back in the group after such occurrences.
Lord Snow wrote:
Actualy, some fighter archtypes allow for pretty interesting builds - see the archer from the APG, for example. Being able to disarm or trip opponents from a distance is super solid, and there's also a feat the increase ranged damage with intelligence, allowing anyone to create a fighter with high INT score without feeling guilty about it!
Except in 3E there were just feats for that which anyone could take and often gain them at a lower level than the Archer gets access to his ranged maneuvers to do that stuff. Like I said in my first post...
As for the int to damage feat, that requires a single standard action attack that doesn't even stack w/ Vital Strike or Shot on the Run. Not to mention the whole appeal of archery is always full attacking -- the incentive has to be a lot higher than Int to damage to make any other form of archery anywhere near competitive.
I have a goblin dex-based Viv. Beastmorph alchemist, using claws and bite (via feral mutagen; I use a gauntlet covered hand for unarmed when not in mutagen, and now I can use Undead Anatomy for backup claws/bite). It works well now, it would have sucked at level 1 (I got to come in at level 4, iirc, and DM let me blow half my wealth on the amulet). But it is quite possible if you aren't at low levels for too long.
Well yes, that's the issue. The pouncers, archers, etc.. are strong, viable builds, albeit boring as hell. But the problem isn't them being too strong. It's "walk and strike" - the skirmisher type builds -- being incredibly pathetic and weak.
That's why the tumble nerf, lack of Tome of Battle or other source of powerful single attack options, etc... is the heart of the issue. Nearly every martial combat change in PF has been to the detriment of the skirmisher guy. And any buffs to the martials have almost all been in the form of bigger #'s to hit and damage with.
This has been pointed out for many years now, right from the start. But instead of addressing it, paizo and its defenders just shouted back and turtled up like they were besieged.
Tome of Battle was great for that. Gave a ton of standard action strike maneuvers to skirmish with that had potent effects for their levels.
Of course, PF also instituted the "full attack stand still-fest" by making tumble suicidally hard. Perhaps if it was still flat DC 15, people would move around more.
Or perhaps if Spring Attack stacked with....freaking anything else.
EDIT: Wow, you ninja'd my reply to your own post!
The name should come with any success. On top of that (since it's a quite useless bit of info on its own), success and then each increment of 5 you win by should give you useful, combat relevant information.
What creature type and subtype it is. What special attacks it has. What resistances or immunities it has. Any vulnerabilities it may have. What saves might be its strongest and weakest. Its movement modes if not visually obvious.
Stuff like that. Knowing its ecology and favorite foods is cool and all (and you can include that stuff as well if you want), but when you're in a fight with it, the party members do not give a s*** about that stuff. Of course, if such fluff information is useful to a party member (say... a Horizon Walker who'd like to know if the monster is already from one of his dominant terrains so he doesn't need to use his wand of Instant Enemy on it), then for that group it is combat-relevant information.
What tidbits come at which increments is up to you, but as a general guideline, beating the check by 20 should basically be, "here's the monster's statblock," and you should try and roughly evenly divide the info up among DC, DC +5, DC +10, DC +15, and DC +20. This guidance for winning by 20 = you know all about the monster came from the latter half of D&D 3.5, where they'd actually print info gained on a monster for a given knowledge check result on a little table for each monster. It was super helpful, shame PF didn't keep up that innovation.