I'm of the opinion that you don't need to codify every little combat action you can in the rules take as a nonmagic character. There are circumstance bonuses, flavoring, creativity in description and lots of player/GM overrides in my games, but YMMV. I also play home games so the freedom allowed by a less codified martial system is a big deal to me. I guess it's different for PFS regulars.
You can't do that with spells, because spells are extremely specific magical effects that alter the world in specific ways. They aren't flavored as easily beyond 'my spell looks like this' because they have a lot more tags attached to them in terms of what they actually do.
I know deeds are martial spells, and that was kind of my point. I don't want those for my martial characters, because I like that they play differently are require less bookkeeping.
It could be some nice gravy but it leaves a sour taste in my mouth.
I like my martials being able to do everything they can do all day long.
Martials do need work in terms of power level, but I'd like to see a Complete Warrior-style book, with lots of *really powerful* always-on feats and options (including stuff like the old Tactical Feats), a couple of PrCs and archetypes, and maybe only a smattering of deeds/panache/arcana/ki. I think there are other ways for a fighter to get on the caster's level (,bro).
I've always liked the fact that martials play differently from casters in 3.x. It's one of the reasons 4E felt a little samey to me.
And I'm not sure about requiring every martial to need Int, Wis or Cha. It leaves no room for the classic powerhouse soldier-type without wits, reason or a dashing smile, but with a lot of battlefield experience. That would further the power divide between martials and SAD casters.
Christopher LaHaise wrote:
A wisdom of 9 is not average, it's below average. Enough to give them a -1 modifier. This means they have mediocre to poor common sense and intuition. Would they perform competently and not do anything insanely stupid? Probably.
But would they have any substantial knowledge of battlefield tactics or clever positioning? I doubt it. I'd have them shoot a few times, get pissed, and then rush in and clobber away. Believe it or not, but it takes a warrior with some nerve to keep reloading his weapon when enemies twice his size are approaching rather than drawing a weapon and shield and covering his own ass.
In other words, drawing an arrow, knocking the bow, taking careful aim and shooting requires more mental steps than using a modern semi-automatic pistol. Even more so with the slow-to-fire crossbow. When the PCs get close enough you're gonna drop that bow because your hands are shaking due to a bunch of giants coming down on you, grab your melee weapons and start poking away. If you are a level 1 goofball with Wis 9, that is. And goblins are.
This is how my group house rules it.
Combat Expertise (Combat)
EDIT: We also cut the Combat Expertise prereq and Int prereq for any Improved/Greater combat maneuver feats. It makes the core feat worthwhile for some builds as a standalone option and makes it easier on disarm/trip builds.
When I saw the hunter's class features my jaw dropped.
A class name should intuitively point to what the class actually does. When I think of hunter, the last thing I think of is the ability to supernaturally take on the forms of animals and cast spells. I was so hoping for the ultimate spell-less ranger variant.
The fact that its a stronger spellcaster than the ranger and just...The combo of Druid/Ranger being called 'hunter'...Ugh.
I'm a little sick of the d8 3/4 BAB classes, a few instant classics in the last few years notwithstanding.
I would love to see a prepared divine caster with no armor and 1/2 BAB. If anything, it's a niche that has never been filled and it would be a worthwhile challenge to design IMO.
Excuse my laziness but I don't have time to pour over 17 pages of posts.
Lemme just jump in with a quick question:
Do the swashbuckler's class abilities stack with all the duelist's? I can see swashbuckler/duelist being a fun combo to work with, though you'd have to forgo the buckler to make it work.
More bartitsu please!
I'm talking about talents that let you throw your cape to entangle an enemy, lock limbs and trip them (or just grant bonuses to maneuvers) with your cane, discombobulate as in the Sherlock Holmes film, or maybe enter an altered state of intellectual perception where you view combat as happening at a slower pace to plan out and anticipate moves.
I also think throwing rogues a bone in the ACG would be a good idea in the form of allowing them to take investigator talents (Ex only).
Exactly what it says on the tin.
According to the rules, "a vehicle has a base Armor Class based on its size and other defenses the vehicle has."
What are these other defenses? Why, for example, does a Steam Giant only have an AC of 6? Wouldn't a giant cauldron of iron count as having an armor bonus of some kind?
So, anyone know how Paizo calculates a vehicle's AC? This has been bugging me because I've been working on vehicle stats for a futuristic OGL modification of Pathfinder and I like the vehicle rules from Ultimate Combat.
@Harald: Considered your next suggestions and I agree with a lot of it. I do think Frenzy and Counterattack are situational and require some setup, but I agreed they needed to be toned down.
I'll be posted the first of the archetypes soon (magehunter). Let me know what you guys think!
Haha, thanks Da'ath. I can't help but slip pop culture references into my stuff every now and then.
When I first conceptualized the class I knew making it open-ended was a priority. To me, a slayer uses the tricks he's picked up thwacking his nemeses and learns to apply them to all areas of combat, as opposed to the ranger, who gets really good at grinding specific monster types into a paste.
Harald and Wolf made good points about the Tricks and I'm currently working on such a path mechanic. I'm also paring down the list of bonus feats to be more tightly focused.
Thanks for the feedback!
I'll definitely consider rolling tricks into paths. I can see its use for simplicity's sake. I just like the idea of being able to customize a bit more, maybe broaden the types of enemies you counter, etc. I'm sure there's a happy medium to be reached.
Will have to respectfully disagree about the special attacks. A martial that has quite a few options each round rather than a hyperfocused go-to routine (a 2H fighter just full attacks, a maneuver fighter trips every round, etc) is appealing to me.
Good Will reflects their unshakable determination and fearlessness, not any sense of magic/spirituality. Bad Fort reflects their reckless disregard for their well-being. Also don't think there's a pure martial class with bad Fort and I thought it would be an interesting twist.
The wording of Reap states it is 'in place of an attack', the same as the wording for weapon-based combat maneuvers like Trip, Disarm, etc. It can be used as part of an attack or full-attack action. Pretty much anytime you would be able to Trip, you can Reap. Of course, using it during a full-attack can be risky if you down the opponent before being able to use it and so on.
I agree with the temporary HP consideration, definitely changing that.
As for Death Mark, I want a way for the enemy to have a chance to shake it off. Will think about a more elegant solution than a contested roll. I disagree about uses per day though. It's only usable on one monster at a time, has a chance of being shaken off, and is pretty core to the class.
Edit: Nerfed Reap's temporary HP bonus to be more in line with Vampiric Touch.
@ Icyshadow: Amended Vampire Slayer trick to enable Death Mark on undead creatures. And good to hear there could be a place for the slayer in your world.
@ Oceanshieldwolf: Thanks for the prompt feedback!
I'm thinking of amending one of the undead-focused Tricks of the Trade to grant the ability to remove the mind-affecting restriction from Death Mark. Just realized that's a major trap for zombie hunters and the like considering how important an active Death Mark is to some of the slayer's later features.
I'll be gone for a while but I'll respond to all feedback when I'm back.
Player sounds like he doesn't realize it's pretty hard to hit the desired target when the bad dude and the ally are assumed to be dodging blows, dancing around each other within their five foot squares, ducking, swinging and otherwise making aiming difficult.
Play some Chivalry: Medieval Warfare as the archer class. I guarantee you'll accidentally headshot an allied knight engaging an enemy a few times... And he will probably ragevote to kick you.
This is my first-ever attempt at creating a new base class and throwing it to the wolves to pore over.
Before I say anything, the Slayer class is a very, very complex one. Players who enjoy playing casters and using situational, limited-use abilities will get a kick out of it. Those used to playing more straightforward martials might be scared away.
The Slayer is a full BAB, completely nonmagic class with good Reflex and Will saves. It is inspired by "carry" heroes from MOBA games (specifically DOTA 2's "Axe"), the TERA class of the same name, and pop culture characters like Van Helsing and Castlevania's Simon Belmont.
The Slayer requires a lot of bookkeeping and will be of more use in campaigns with longer combats as opposed to highly optimized rocket tag battles. My intention was to create a martial class that requires careful play and setup in battle, but has the potential to be a beast in specific situations. I also felt there was an unexplored niche in Pathfinder for characters that start off unexceptional in combat and gradually become powerful toward the end, helping to carry their team.
It will take a while to fully pore over this class and consider its balance, so I understand if it falls in the TLDR camp for some. If you do take the plunge, however:
What, if anything, entices you to play this class? What works and doesn't work for you? How would you rebalance potentially overpowered or underpowered features you find? How might this class perform in a standard optimized party? Which archetypes intrigue you based on their descriptions? Finally, is the class presented with clarity or do you find it hard to understand?
In return, I'll gladly offer commentary and constructive criticism on homebrew content of your choice if you post a link to it.
As an aspiring future freelance game content creator, your advice is very much appreciated.
Thanks in advance!
- The Red Mage
Disclaimer: This class makes reference to homebrew feats and options and lore from my group's original campaign setting. Any homebrew you don't recognize can be safely ignored when analyzing the class.
The rules are laid out similarly to 3.5's PH in the interest of staying true to it. I've found that new players are often intimidated by the way the rules are presented or laid out compared to other systems they're coming from that are just as complex. That tells me space could have been saved that could be used to spice up the fluff in several areas. I suppose we'll have to agree to disagree on this.
Lumiere Dawnbringer wrote:
Haramaki and silken ceremonial have no arcane spell failure chance. It's power creep for full casters who really don't need more nice things. And they invalidate the armored kilt.
Do maru and horn lamellar is just better than scale mail. And kikko armor is just better than that.
Four-mirror armor is just better than chainmail by price, and steel lamellar by max dex bonus.
Stone coat is just better than half-plate by price.
And of course, you can save money using a tatami-do if you have a Dex of 14 or higher vs. buying full plate.
Whether or not any of these examples of power creep are competitive for optimizers doesn't matter. I still don't like it when new options literally invalidate older options.
And cheating proficiencies with special materials really falls outside of the realm of this argument. This is about the base armor stats.
Then the mechanics should be laid out in the simplest, most efficient terms possible to provide more room for flavor that will get people into the spirit of the thing. Many of the mechanics in the CRB are presented in a longwinded, confusing way, at least according to a lot of people I've talked to that haven't played older editions of DnD or PF yet.
There are also some redundancies that can be done away with. Two sentences of flavor text for primary equipment isn't going to overfill the books.
The problem I have with some Eastern weapons being "just better" is that they're either heavily restricted based on campaign setting (making them only situationally available and a waste of book space for many) for fluffier games, or, for more refluffy games, just plain power creep.
I disagree with a lot of the sentiment in this thread about the OP's question.
Better descriptions are better. They help visualize the objects in which you entrust your life as an adventurer. If you hate the fluff of more detailed descriptions, you're free to change it. But providing a little bit of inspiration- even another sentence in the flavor text of equipment, is always welcome to me and I tend to like good flavor text in the stuff I design as well.
A lot of the fun I get out of Pathfinder (as opposed to a mostly fluff-free system) is the verisimilitude of the fluff matching the mechanics. When two people are using a warhammer, I want that warhammer to be the same mechnically. It makes it easy to visualize weapons, feats, races, classes and so on when they are consistent within the physics of the game rules.
Of course, this isn't always possible with truly bad options, and I usually let people refluff things within reason- common sense has the final say. I also slightly refluff things myself.
But the closer the fluff is to the mechanics, the better. That's why I frequently houserule poor mechanics with cool fluff with better mechanics.
I'll never play a gnome, include a friendly gnome NPC in any game I run, or present gnomes as anything more than despicable fae xenos that must be purged. Preferably by badass half-orc inquisitors with the Gnome Genocide inquisition.
I don't like the flavor or ki abilities or ninjas because I feel like it steps on the monk's toes. I houserule rogues to be more effective when I run games instead. I don't like samurai very much, but I guess I'll eventually play one for completion's sake. I despise summoners. Eternity in an isocube for all of them.
I'll play pretty much anything else.
Scratch that. Wayangs creep me out on a cosmic level.
In the case of a druid trying to wear mechanically prohibited armor, I would just handle it by reskinning dragonhide for that particular piece. He could pay double to make armor made of some sort of alchemically treated hardwood and call it a day. But that's a corner case, and I was more referring to reskinning within reason.
I disagree about chain shirts being too good and I'm really not sure why +4 is over the top, especially considering the fact that it's a much-needed asset for characters who want to move fast and might not want to dip for armor training/fast movement or something like that.
I'm also not sure how well this achieves your goal of allowing for variation in armor choices. Light armor users are going to choose fortified 90% of the time. It clearly offers the best blend of armor bonus and dexterity bonus to AC.
Really I'm mostly opposed to the idea that all armor/dex configurations need add up to +9. Why shouldn't there be a "last armor" for each category? Part of the fun of advancing at low levels is finally grabbing the best mundane armor you can get. Seeing your numbers go up is a good thing.
It's a good effort, but I'm not seeing the need for flatter armor mechanics just because players tend to eventually grab the mechanically strong ones.
I get your beef with that, but this seems more like a job for simple reskinning. I don't think any reasonable DM is going to lay down the hammer of justice if a player wants to call his breastplate a hauberk in a home game. PF doesn't account for how different armor styles hold up vs different damage types, which is a bit lame, but that makes it pretty easy to reskin as needed.
Shuriken Nekogami wrote:
Don't forget that the backstory of the fanboy's go-to-character is the epic saga, and your campaign is just the sequel. Also, you'd best not entertain thoughts of killing off that character, because he's DM'ing next and his character is the central NPC.
In my group, you don't need to choose an archetype at first level, but once you've gained a class feature, it's "locked in" for that character. Whether you consider this a bit tricksy or not is up to you, but you could always just say you were on the scout + knife master path the whole time. You won't gain anything from scout until 4th level anyway.
A few sessions ago we played bull rush pinball with a Derro, disarming it and then bouncing it back and forth between my character standing on a table and our fighter, who then slammed it against a wall, knocking it prone onto a grease trap. Our ranger/rogue took the opportunity for sneak attack bait and finished it off. No damage to the PCs.
That same session, we were faced with two enemy wizards, two alchemists, a horde of zombies and a greatsword fighter. The ranger/rogue tossed a fuse grenade at the two wizards, the largest threats, and I immediately yelled for our savage warrior/barbarian to use her acid breath. The breath melted the time-release casing on the grenade, causing it to immediately detonate rather than waiting for it to explode, and nuked the wizards into oblivion. I kept the greatsword guy on disarm lockdown for the rest of the fight and the others made short work of the rest.
Normal character build: Game mechanics, whether weak or strong, that support an initial or evolving character concept divorced from the game mechanics
Optimized cheese: A roleplaying persona and backstory shoehorned in to support broken or unusually strong mechanical synergy
The cheesiness of a build is something I can usually peg upon the genesis of a character's creation. It's the intention that matters more to me, not the result. If a player is gaming the system rather than playing a role, that annoys me. I have no problem at all with optimizing a character to suit that character's concept. We all do it to some extent. It's when the desire to optimize a sheet of mechanics outweighs the desire to mechanically represent an idea that the cheese factor comes in for me. Because at that point, players will start compromising or altering their initial creative concept to better suit game mechanics.
I can't stand shoehorning. That's also why I'm in favor of house ruling or reasonable reskinning of certain options. I prefer world mechanical consistency though, so it's a last resort.
Definitely talk to him out of game, but make sure he knows you're not the only one annoyed with him. If he knows that this is causing problems for everyone, he's more likely to turn over a new leaf. If he responds with hostility, boot him, but if he does seem sincere, give him a last strike to shape up. I know how that goes, though. This is definitely not easy to deal with. Good luck.
For gluttony: screw with the party's level of hunger, which is so often handwaved in campaigns. Maybe have them fall prey to hunger and fatigue, requiring a much increased ration intake- or the desire to eat the flesh of the enemies they fight. And the more they succumb to this sin, the worse off they'll be (slowed down, sickened if feasting on demon-flesh, etc).