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Commoner with a +5 in a profession is already well to do someone with training and a steady job not your average peasant with no job skills doing odd jobs to make a living.
Also where did you get 300gp? You went from 30gp -> 300sp -> $300 -> 300gp. 4*(1d20+5)/2 = 4*(10.5+5)/2 = 4(15.5)/2 = 62/2 = 31 gold per month average.
Totem Warrior Barbarian:
Issue: The archetype is literally worthless. It does nothing whatsoever and actually just wastes space and makes people think it should do something.
Fix: The archetype should be centered around Totem powers to that end some abilities should be replaced to increase that aspect of the archetype.
Level 2 - Replace Uncanny Dodge with Totemic Attunement - Every Totem Warrior creates their own symbolic Totems, by spending 1 hour focusing upon a totem the Barbarian can change which Totem powers which he has taken that he has access to during his rage. A Totem Warrior may take rage powers from any amount of Totem groups. This Attunement time becomes 1 minute at level 6, a Standard Action at level 9, and a Swift Action at level 12.
Replace Trap Sense with Totemic Synergy - A Totemic Warrior may add 1 additional effect of a lesser totem rage power he knows to his Attuned Powers this is increased by an additional 1 lesser power every 3 levels thereafter.
Replace Improved Uncanny Dodge with Improved Totemic Synergy - A Totem warrior may add 1 second tier Totem power to his attuned powers. Increase this by 1 power at level 12.
Replace Indomitable Will with Greater Totemic Synergy - A Totemic Warrior may add 1 Greater Totem power he knows to his attuned powers when starting to Rage.
Replace Mighty Rage with Totem Master - The Totem Warrior is always attuned with all of his totemic Rage Powers.
I'm not convinced this isn't overpowered since I traded out some garbage for good things but at the same time since it's self limiting until around level 12, I figured it probably wouldn't be too busted also none of the rage powers other than Beast Totem are all that fantastic. Let me know if you'd pick this over Invulnerable Rager normally or if it would only be a flavor pick.
Naive Wolf Joshua wrote:
To be fair Crane Wing was never so bad if you assume that the Master of Many Styles doesn't exist.
James Risner wrote:
In general, some of the changes were due to unclear rules. All of the "must be worn for 24 hours" is a way to individually fix the "same source" blocking of using an item. Mostly because I guess they fear a sweeping "you can't swap out an item for another for an effect" general rule.
I'd assert that, that is not in fact an error but a case of something working as intended but getting reduced in power by making slotted magic items less versatile.
But honestly I've never had a problem with that I never liked the idea of a guy carrying around a stack of spare shirts to get extra move actions or scroll uses and only used one anyways.
For things like the Mnemonic Vestment, where that was the only real change, I'm still happy to use the item. I don't think it needed the nerf but the item still functions, is useful, and priced reasonably that would be an example of a decent change. In comparison for the Jingasa I literally can't think of a situation ever where I'd buy one now and that includes if I was told I could take any items I wanted below 10k for each slot.
James Risner wrote:
It's a good thing all the changes people are complaining about are poorly written or unclear rules issues ... oh wait ... no the rules that were written for most of these complaints were completely reasonable and easy to understand and most of the rules fixes were just straight hard power nerfs and not at all rules fixes. This was the computer game equivalent of a patch full of nerfs except it's much more inconvenient to keep track of in a tabletop game so there's that.
Man that is sad TOZ but also very understandable.
Eh speaking as the guy who did designated loot tracking for over 3 years because I had a computer and was the most attentive person, nobody is perfect. Mistakes happen even when you have a dedicated loot person who is trying to pay attention it's worse when the DM is mumbling or was drunk that night and decides to retcon stuff or when you're gone that week and nobody else does it.
It's definitely unreasonable to assume you've found everything in an adventure but it's also extremely unreasonable to assume nobody makes a mistake when tracking loot and we still don't know what the list was for or if it was meant to be an inventory because the OP never responded about that.
TLDR: I wouldn't advocate pre-reading the APs and in fact neither did Johnnycat but if you're GMing properly I'd say it's not that big a deal and I don't think it's a problem if somebody wants to do so.
From what I read he just said he wouldn't call this cheating and that he doesn't consider meta knowledge to be all that big an issue. Johnycat is right for several reasons. You shouldn't expect that your players will be honest. You should hope that they are, but you should assume that they aren't, because this is the real world and people will lie to you. If you plan for it with the assumption that they were lying it won't be a big deal if they were in which case why should we really care if they do this to begin with?
And like he says, often times meta knowledge is not an issue even when you ignore it because there are people who can play it properly. If you want to prevent all meta knowledge you legitimately need to write a brand new game system yourself not teach the players the rules and force them to play it while you make all the rolls which is not fun for anyone except maybe the DM.
So yeah meta knowledge is always out there just accept it and have fun, only punish people for it when it has become a problem not before then.
And maybe I am impatient maybe it's been a month and a half since the last time we played and if I start playing or reading something else I'm about 10 minutes from just being like ehhhhh why bother coming back to this game that I no longer have any interest in because I'm now interested in the new hotness ___? Reading the same adventure keeps me invested in that story which makes it easier to come back to said story later and roleplay in that story. Reading something else is more likely to detract from my level of investment than it is to help me stay involved. I don't do this but if a DM okayed it I might. Because I have stopped playing video games because of a loss of interest and I've come back from a month long break IRL and my character has suddenly had a huge attitude shift or I'm just totally not invested in whatever was going on and just want to wrap it up. It happens because staying in RP mode is hard when you don't have resources to help you do that. What I usually do is write side stories for my characters but that only helps so much.
1) Who said to be dishonest about having read the module or AP because there were no posts that I saw that advocated that? I did say that if you are going to cheat then don't tell people. That's just a fact the same way you shouldn't video tape and put on youtube instances of you cheating in a game it's just cheating badly. I'd opt to not cheat if given the choice but if you're going to cheat it's assumed you're trying to cheat well.
2) People enjoy different things, some people love jump scares, and surprises, and cliffhangers, and some people abhor them. Let people enjoy the game however they want to enjoy it as long as they don't ruin it for everyone else. If they have more fun by reading the APs to get in the mood for RP or whatever that's fine. Besides in a game that meet once or twice a month there's an awful lot of empty non RP time between sessions which can really make you feel out of the story your characters are in which kinda sucks.
3) As far as supporting pre-reading adventures eh I don't do it but if someone does I'm not going to support someone else trying to shame them and tell them they're playing the game wrong because I'm not an a*$@&*$. Well I'm not always an a#*~+%~.
4) In regards to walkthroughs, synopses, etc. Who cares? If you don't like to play games or read books or watch movies like that then good for you do what makes you happy but if you see somebody look at the last page of the book and then read the rest of it or read a walkthrough then play a game do you run up to them and berate them and tell them they're ruining the experience? If you do I'm very happy I don't know you.
The Sword wrote:
Who cares? If the issue is he has knowledge of the story the question is whether or not he uses that knowledge to ruin the game for the other players. If he's not ruining the game then it's fine. If somebody wants to see the same story twice why not let them?
And frankly if the person was inclined to cheat in this fashion to gain a benefit from it they would never tell you or show you an indication that they're cheating like an itemized list of loot drops which they claim that you said was okay. The only logical assumption is either this player is a complete idiot when it comes to cheating or more likely that he did believe that the DM allowed it.
Deighton Thrane wrote:
And then we decide to call it cheating when a player has experience. Because what else could it be when you tell him a creature is huge he uses a spell on a ref. save because he knows that often huge creatures have weaker ref. saves, and he uses fort saves on wizards because likewise, and he doesn't use mundane weapons on ghosts, and he can't keep a bow or potions or wands of healing. Because well when you were a complete newbie you wouldn't have done that! And not taking skill focus basketweaving is clearly cheating.
Just accept it people will have knowledge about the game if you aren't changing things. That's just life, if you are working around this assumption this type of "cheating" laid out by the OP is negligible.
Lincoln Hills wrote:
Eh we honestly have no idea what's going on based on the OP's statements the player made a loot list including all the loot from the AP and claims it was permitted but we don't necessarily know what that list was for. For example this could have easily been a preliminary step to printing out loot flashcards so that the DM could hand them out whenever they were found. Alternatively he could have been trying to check to see what the players had found vs what they had bought because of how the party dealt with loot splitting when they sell items. This issue could have much more to it than we know based on the tiny bit of information we received.
Was this his personal inventory list that magically sprouted new items they never found or is the cheating in question just him having foreknowledge of the AP because he looked through the AP to write up a loot list?
Mind you, you still run into the guy having read the AP issue but that's not really a huge deal since there are plenty of times you have a player who's either played or GM'd an AP before and knows more than they ought to.
As far as how you deal with it I personally think that just following an AP straight out of the book is always a bad call. It's the easiest way to GM but it means the encounters are always balanced wrong for your party, the loot may or may not be any good for them, there could be roleplaying problems that shouldn't come up if you built the encounters, and you run into cheating/knowledge issues like this.
James Risner wrote:
This is the worst argument. I'm sorry but logically your statement equates to "Everything should be designed so that even when you make choices, you don't."
If someone puts all their eggs in the AC basket they should be hard to hit that's fine that's what meaningful design allows, if someone puts all their eggs into grappling they should do it well, if someone puts all their eggs into stealth they should be impossible to detect, etc. etc. etc.
If somebody is trying very hard to be good at something let them be good at it that's the f!$~ing point of what they want. If you fail to provide that, that isn't good design it's 5e.
Interesting point of view. I'd accept that while a 3k consumable hat which prevented one crit would be reasonable for some characters any deflection bonus which does not scale is inherently worthless, for a spell caster the +1 deflection bonus is too low to make a notable difference in their overall AC for any martial the fact that it doesn't scale means that you almost certainly have a Ring of Protection +2 at roughly the same point in the character's life in which case the Hat is just double charging you for an effect which you can't use.
Had the effect remained a luck bonus and the crit negation become a 1 time deal I could see your point because +1 AC is worth 2.5k in a slot-5k slotless and a one shot crit negation is too rich for my blood at 3k but still usable. As is the item might as well not have the deflection bonus because it isn't a stacking bonus and it doesn't scale, it's just tacked on to inflate the price for no good reason.
In fairness the comparison for how much brawling should cost was probably measured against the gloves of dueling of course it does still ignore the fact that you need to buy armor upgrades afterwards if you intend to not die which makes it notably worse and as such pretty much unusable to anyone who has both of those as an option.
If this statement was true then yes. But on the other hand you have 98 items not worth wasting gold on and 1 item that is worth it for a slot but you always have 6 excellent choices that literally must exist because you can't maintain game balance without them. Nerfing the 1 worth while item will not result in people spending money on the 98 garbage ones, people will use that gold on a different item that is worth buying either from the 6 necessary items or the 1-3 items that are decent in any given slot which you were already planning on getting.
If the problem is that every character is buying the same thing in the same slot, then make more than one thing that people want to put in that slot.
Let's be honest 99% of what goes in the head slot is not worth taking. Even if the Jingasa didn't exist you would see most people just not taking head slot items is that really better for item diversity? If you wanted more diversity just include more situationaly valuable items that would result in people actually wanting those items.
Okay and did he step backwards away from the the enemy after casting instead or did he just stand still? Because if he backed away it makes some sense if he stands still not so much.
@ MageHunter - Says who? "The best battle is a battle I win. If I die, I can no longer fight. I will fight fairly when the fight is fair, and I will strike quickly and without mercy when it is not." From Faiths of Purity part of the Paladin's Code for Sarenrae. Just because you're good doesn't mean you don't kill people when you feel like the situation warrants it.
Someone up thread said that in the situation there is a reason the women are attacking the PCs but the OP hasn't told us if the characters know that reason yet. As such all they know is that these people have jumped them before and tried to kill them, they're enemies there isn't any reason to keep them alive unless you want to interrogate them.
The OP also said that the party told the sneaky person to "go deal with them" "deal with them" is very commonly used as a euphemism to kill somebody, without further explanation it would be reasonable for the character to assume they wanted the potential threat dead.
*sigh* Well that certainly sounds like the player is playing an evil character with complete disregard for the lives of his allies.
However, if you look at the layout I changed above, a 5ft step to avoid the Tank would allow for two enemies to attack the caster via their own 5ft steps, staying where he was would only allow one enemy to do so. Alternatively if he cast flaming hands where he was and 5ft stepped backwards he could avoid any 5ft steps and attacks from his enemies.
It's entirely possible that a character values his own life above that of his allies and that's understandable, a little evil but understandable.
Lay out the positioning this statement doesn't help at all.
O's being empty spaces X's being enemies T being your Tank and E being your so called evil party member. Was this roughly the scenario?
Eh his argument was pretty lack luster but if you find an unarmed woman sleeping in a dungeon full of female thieves who you've been attacked by it's a reasonable conclusion to reach that she is one of said thieves and as such an enemy it's still pretty s@&&ty to not check but you could justify it. Also when you ask someone to "deal" with an enemy what do you think is going to happen?
Was there a reason he didn't 5ft step? He'd have to be casting in threat, or he'd hit fewer enemies, or he'd be in a more dangerous position? If not, is there a valid reason he'd want to in character kill the tank?
Now that being said simply acting in an evil manner occasionally is not a reason for an alignment shift. A chaotic neutral character will act evilly and goodly over the course of his life. Just like a fundamentally good person will have done something scummy over his life either on accident or on purpose. And even a fundamentally evil person is liable to do something good at some point in their lives. It sounds like a few isolated incidents so far and one of which is justifiable if it becomes a constant thing he might have to be alignment shifted but that's up to your DM.
Freehold DM wrote:
You're right saying that "every butterfly collector I have met so far has been a dick." Is not bigoted or wrong, it can be a simple factual statement. However, if you don't intend to generalize that to "Butterfly collectors are generally dicks" the entire statement is pointless, just like saying I've never died in a car crash is a pointless statement sure it's true but the anecdotal evidence can't be used to prove the general statement that car accidents don't kill people, just like it can't be used to prove that butterfly collectors are dicks, or that optimizers are a$!$#s.
If you had a sufficiently large sample size you could make the statement that there appears to be a correlation between people who are butterfly collectors and those who are dicks but given that your knowledge of people who satisfy these conditions likely amounts to less than a hundred out of a population of thousands if not millions I'd say you're nowhere near having a statistically relevant sample size.
As far as wanting your stats to be pi ... sure that's not random, that's idiocy.
For something a bit different, you might consider an oracle with the streets mystery or a shaman with the slums spirit. It's definitely different from a rogue or slayer, but it can help to fill the magic niche if your group's lacking it and gives some really neat flavor.
Hmm interesting streets mystery seems alright slums spirit seems weak but I've never tried to make a Shaman so I have no idea how that pans out.
Honestly if I end up playing a divine caster I'm hoping my GM would let me play a Tiefling Outer Rifts mystery Oracle although that would depend on if they fit the campaign.
Definitely and if I felt like the character just screamed at me to be an inquisitor I'd run it anyways and find an excuse for why he ended up an inquisitor without all the training.
But for me that kind of character would have much deeper ties to religion or at least an ideal than this common cuttpurse has.
I mean we're talking a kid who stole to feed himself and because he had nobody to fall back on and no real skills and just ended up on the wrong side of the law.
I mean I could work in a story to make him an Inquisitor but I'd be stretching the character and it might just be better to change it entirely so that while I'd fill the same mechanical role I wouldn't have the same roleplaying roots, yknow?
Hmm I suppose. I've always assumed Inquisitors are at least associated and affiliated with the Church even though they aren't in the hierarchy. And as such I expect that there would be more of a training period mastering the psalms, memorizing the code of conduct, learning the laws of the church, tenets of your god, and then some arms training. This is at least possibly supported by the fact that on the random starting ages chart they fall under the trained category which is the oldest of the three.
There is also the possibility of cramming in at least 5 levels of Bolt Ace into one of the builds. Don't know if that would be worth while but it would give the character a good ranged option and that might work with the Slayer if I built it on Dex.
I like Half Orcs and there are definitely some advantages in them. The Strength style build fits them thematically although amusingly I think maxing out the Sacred Tattoo bonus fits best into the Dex build since the fighter levels give you enough feats to feel okay with spending one just to get Fate's Favored. I don't know if it would fit as well into one of the other two options.
Sanctified Slayer Inquisitor I dunno I don't hate the idea in general but it seems awkward on a street kid character unless I fast forward a lot and/or mess with the story.
Eldritch Scoundrel seems more likely I might see if that would work with my GM although the prepared spell casting with a spell book seems awkward in this case.
Investigator hmmm I don't really like it for the base character for the same reason as the above it would make more sense later on but the Psychic Detective definitely sounds much more promising particularly if psychic powers are more native and sorcerer-esque than alchemy.
EDIT: I suppose I didn't mention the possibility of a Ninja so that's also a possibility although I don't know if that's better than an Unchained Rogue and I'd have to refluff ki to something less eastern.
Hi everyone. I believe we're almost done with our current campaign and we might end up rolling up a new one at a low level probably 1-3.
I would like to be prepared to fill any roll we might need although not all in one character.
I know at least one of my friends was hoping to play a pirate so in the interest of something that could fit into that I'm hoping to play a street rat of sorts. I have a couple of ideas but I figured I'd see the general response before writing up anything all the way out to 20. Ideally the character is young 13-15 although statted up as an adult for simplicity often a thief sometimes a cuttpurse but resorts to cutting throats in a pinch. Maybe freed by aforementioned pirate from slave life rowing on a royal ship?
Build guide wise we have 20 points for point buy, all standard races, all classes in the normal book line(not necessarily stuff from the companion series but I could ask), no free traits (but you can take the feat for them). And starting at level 1.
So option 1 - Unchained Rogue - Built off of Dex at least up to 3 levels maybe splashing into Fighter(Lorewarden or Mutation Warrior) afterwards.
Option 2 - Slayer - probably strength based maybe going into the two weapon fighting ranger tree via talents. Kind of a flavor fail because your average street rat isn't benching 300lbs but seems effective overall.
Option 3 - Urban Ranger/ Trapper Ranger - Either one could be going into TWF and has the same issues as the Slayer thematically both can be strong although the Trapper ability is way worse than spells and the Urban Ranger communities ability seems way worse than favored terrain imo.
Anybody got ideas on this, feel free to offer up alternatives in terms of classes if you think of them but no Bards(I'm aware of the Archaeologist but this isn't what I'm looking for for this character). Race wise I assumed human but if another race is superior let me know your reasoning and maybe I'll swap.
Chess Pwn wrote:
Are the stacking stat. Ioun stones legal in PFS? Because that would be a more expensive option if you really really wanted to get it.
Adrian Parker 563 wrote:
A light shield is what you would think of when you look at a normal round shield strapped to the arm think Captain America's shield. A buckler is a small 8-15 inch round Shield held in the hand with a boss(a round depression where the hand is to allow for more room also useful as a punching weapon) technically but in game terms it is also strapped the arm. A heavy shield would be a kite shield or a larger round shield roughly, larger strapped to the arm on one end and held by a strap in the hand on the other. These would be 15 inches across or larger much more unwieldy.
Light shields are separated into wooden and steel, think Viking shields for traditional wooden varieties and again Captain America's for the steel variety.
The game doesn't really specify the aesthetic of the shield though so keep the classifications in mind and make up your own.
Adrian Parker 563 wrote:
*shrug* Life isn't perfect and neither are the rules, deal with it.
But seriously the vanilla Rogue in Pathfinder was a hold over from 3rd ed with all the loopholes which made it situationally powerful removed from the game. It does very little well at all and almost none of that is better than some alternative choice.
For example: the Unchained Rogue(like the vanilla Rogue but actually has the ability to fight and gets dex to damage for free at level 3), the Slayer (see above minus the dex thing), Archeologist Bard(Rogue but with 6 levels of spell casting and a consistent self buff instead of the inconsistent sneak attack), Urban Ranger(Rogue-ish but with spell casting and city based bonuses), Trapper Ranger(Pretty much a Rogue but better in combat and with better saves and mostly better abilities but trades out spell casting for making traps which kinda suck and doesn't have sneak attack), Vivisectionist(weird murder alchemist I don't know about this one personally but I've heard people pick it instead of Rogue), Investigator(Smarter, spell having Rogue).
So on and so forth. There are way too many classes and archetypes that have a Rogue-ish element to them but are just functionally more useful to a party than having a Rogue in them for me to ever suggest that someone should play a vanilla Rogue.
Adrian Parker 563 wrote:
The concern isn't with the skills you chose it's the fact that skills are the weakest of all abilities.
Let's look at two hypothetical characters one is a Rogue with 8 ranks of stealth and a 20 Dex said Rogue has 8 Ranks +3 because it's a Class skill +5 Dex = +16 Stealth, not bad right?
Now consider another character say a Wizard or Bard with 0 Ranks in stealth 10 Dex and the Invisibility spell tossed onto themselves because they can cast it. Suddenly they have +20 Stealth or +40 if they're just hiding in a room.
Now lets look at that same Bard with a 16 Dex and a 16 Cha and 8 Ranks in the Perform Skill that lines up with Stealth via versatile performance 8 Ranks + 3 Class skill + 3 for Cha = +14 to Stealth and then if he needs to he tacks on Invis. for a +34 or +54. Now neither of these characters really put in any crazy effort in fact they could both be trying much harder to max out these skills but that's not really the point.
And then there's the fact that in combat that bard is being at least 2 times more useful than the Rogue even if the vanilla Rogue is built optimally. If that Rogue is built with the idea of not being a combat character, the Bard is easily pushing 3 maybe even 4 times the effectiveness because he's giving a party wide 10-15% damage buff on attacks just by using Inspire. Tag on the fact that said bard can also cast a buff like Heroism or Haste and can still be a pretty solid archer and you're talking 25%+ increase in combat power party wide.
Most other character options have their own ways of overshadowing the vanilla Rogue.
Adrian Parker 563 wrote:
Pay attention. Look at the archetypes specifically the ones listed like Archeologist they're all on that website.
Furthermore just because a class gains the ability to perform doesn't mean it has to do so. In fact even without performance a Bard is a better non combat focused character than a Rogue.
And there's also the fact that your "performance" can be one of many things: Inspiring speeches in combat (Perform Oratory), a blade dance(Perform: Dance), an inspiring song/poetry(Perform Sing), or playing an instrument.
When did he say that? I mean at least from my interpretation of what he said he would have a paladin fall for any outright lie. And as such if the question were phrased differently he could be put into a situation where he would have to answer with the objective truth. Then again a paladin doesn't have to answer any question asked of him. In the case of the societal standards of beauty question he could reply, "True beauty is not derived from the frail mortal shell but from the soul within, you are beautiful." Not a lie but not necessarily the answer that she was looking for. He could also simply refuse to answer.
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
You call it an attempt at ego-boosting. I call it an expression of honest opinions. For my part, I believe the onus is in equal parts on highly unreasonable players and some understandable but major errors on the GM's side of the screen. Your point about the twenty monsters, for instance, is a good one.
Let's be honest though we can't control the DM's players none of them are here asking if there is something they could do to improve their game. Telling the OP he's doing fine really can't help. If doing what he's doing was going to fix the problem, it would have already.
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
I agree and disagree.
Consistency is truly the best thing you can do as a DM it makes things seem less arbitrary and allows for players to understand the game they are playing and play in that framework.
As far as PC abilities and bonuses I'm 50/50 on that. Some people said up thread that they roll all the PCs rolls for them including attacks and saves, if you're taking the rolls from the players it has officially become your problem to deal with the modifiers on those rolls too doing it any other way is even more inefficient. But my policy is pretty much always the person who is making the roll at any given time they should take into account any and all modifiers to that roll. Don't be afraid to ask if you're not sure something is up but unless you're in the habit of calling out the unmodified number and then doing any modifiers out loud it's pretty much assumed that you're taking care of what affects you.
@Ciaran As for getting the players' attention I don't think the only issue is taking control, but also if random other conversations are going on or there's a lull(because the dm is fiddling with tech or terrain or drawing) and particularly if the DM is involved in them as well sometimes people are really tuned out. The key to getting their attention is to have a notable cue for when it's serious time, either DM voice(a particular tone you use when DMing or using voice acting for characters) a gavel or clapping or snapping your fingers or a shift in lighting. Pretty much everything a teacher would do to get a classroom of elementary or middle school kids back under control is useful for this.
Right because the normal PCs can't bust wbl with crafting already, oh wait .... yeah crafting is busted cohorts don't change that the only thing they do is give martials equivalent access to crafting as a caster.
You really don't have to give anything up to be a blaster wizard. You could literally devote every character selection to blasting, and you would still have a character who can cast from the entire wizard spell list and can carry around a stack of scrolls. The idea that a blaster wizard is not also a useful team member doesn't hold up.
Not really true you give up save or die/suck spells pretty much because your spell focus feats etc won't be in the right schools to make them viable and then there's the question of cost effectiveness. Plus you lose traits and feats which could be providing you with other benefits like crafting or metamagic effects that are pertinent to sod/sos spells. Sure you're probably not much worse than 15 or 20% less likely to succeed but that's pretty bad when the difference is winning immediately or doing nothing.
Mind you a wizard who's a blaster can still be a competent save caster, buffer, debuffer, and battlefield controller. But he certainly won't be the equivalent of a specialist in those roles and that's assuming that he even wants to memorize those spells and in my experience that's often not the case.
So for the OP it's not that they're not good it's just that they're less good relative to other wizard builds so when a guide tries to rate the best ways to build a character they aren't super high up there. That being said a blaster can shine in certain types of fights as well.
I tried playing through Skype for about a year. There were some nice elements but on the whole I wouldn't recommend it.
Here are the problems I had:
Now these aren't game breaking mostly and some of them can be fixed by using an online tabletop like on roll20 in conjunction with a more reliable chat service like teamspeak but the negatives are definitely there.
Personally I find the experience overall to be much worse than normal play. It's less comfortable the social experience is lacking and people getting distracted really sucks and takes you out of the experience much more so than normal.
Not having an expectation that someone will release something good or at least decent based on the fact that their name is on the game means you should seriously reconsider what you're doing buying from them at all. And frankly I didn't say Paizo should get a free pass then again their track record for not releasing content that completely breaks the game is decent, and most of the problem content has been fixed by now and usually was on sketchy rules footing to begin with.
Additionally if you can't identify the difference between a fun story telling activity involving your friends and sitting down reading rules by yourself trying to identify pitfalls then I don't even know what to tell you please elucidate me on how all different uses of time are exactly the same.
And you're right it doesn't take much time to look at one thing. Now lets say each player wants 2 things, now lets say they want 4 things, now lets say they want a class, now they want a custom race, now what if each of them want to combine that with 3 things from the last time you let them use things? It's a constantly increasing investment of time to evaluate all of the possible permutations and running through each person's character on a 1 by 1 basis and banhammering things is just asking for hurt feelings on the basis of favoritism.
I said expectation not assurance and I noted that this was also why splat books often got banned. And on the plus side at least FAQs and Erratas happen I hate most of them too but hey at least they try.
As for 3pp with good balancing and good quality control yes they exist but without reading through the books in their entirety you're not going to know which is which. Particularly because there is variance between their books as well and just the act of adding extra content increases the chance for both confusion and something particularly busted sneaking into the game.
It in no way should be a surprise that some DMs don't want to waste their free time doing all this to let you use 3pp content.
For what it's worth that isn't necessarily a bad design choice.
Paizo has stated that one of it's design goals in Pathfinder was to limit the value of dipping so really the poor design choice came in the original Paladin and the Emp. Knight was in fact a better designed archetype even if it is less objectively powerful when evaluated at certain levels.
Also not every piece of an archetype needs to be equivalently powerful to the original, in fact doing so is just shy of impossible, but the whole thing added up together should be in the same ballpark. Not every archetype needs to play the same and have the same power spikes and strong levels in fact the entire point of Archetypes is that, that shouldn't happen.
An example of another archetype that does this is Lorewarden Fighter it trades 2 skill points per level in Int centric skills for Medium armor heavy armor and Shield Prof. is that a reasonable trade? Of course not but overall the archetype is considered one of the better fighter options because the rest of the kit is worth it.
The reason DMs don't use this stuff is usually because the process of refinement used by many 3pps is sloppy and creates problems the DM couldn't foresee.
It's the same reason many DMs limit the use of splat books because Feat 1 is fine on it's own and Feat 2 is okay but when combined with Feat 3056 from Awesomepants for Fighters it's completely broken.
At the very least when you get material from Paizo you have a certain expectation that they know their own material well enough to limit these interactions and if they become an issue sometimes they will be Faq'd or Errata'd. 3pp have no reason to do this and only hold the right to change a fraction of the rules which limits options even if they wanted to.
Also the design space many 3pp choose to occupy is vastly different than the standard some like crazy and broken combos some want wizards with spells that warp reality like wood left in the rain and some want to simulate hapless commoners beginning their adventure into the great unknown as level 0 characters.
These ideas don't always work together which means the DM has to read the entirety of each of the 3pp books you want to use and decide if allowing this could have some consequences. And the consequences aren't just for your character but for any character because it looks real s&~#ty when he lets you get a feat or a class but has to refuse Bob access to it because his character would break the game with it.
If you don't understand why the DM might not want to deal with that clusterf~!! then please feel free to DM and include whatever you like but I certainly don't hold it against my DM when he chooses not to.
In my experience in homegames all 3pp are banned by default and may be used by petitioning the DM on a case by case basis. In PFS they are outright banned. Generally speaking if a build requires a 3pp to work I won't even bother because it's not worth the trouble.
When did I say I allowed a 5ft step? I full attacked, I could have 5ft stepped and did not. I then shifted.
It says your only movement during the action is a 5 ft step now stop. It goes on to say that you can do that before during or after the action stop again. It goes on to say that you can use free or swift actions.
I want to use the full attack action. Stab, Stab, Stab. Full attack is completed. Do I have free actions? Yes. Do I have Swift Actions? Yes. Does the rule tell me I can't move outside of during my full attack action? No. Great let me use Shift to move.
"you can take DURING a full-round" Read your own quoted rules text Gauss
Seems like a reasonable baseline to me. Not hyper optimized but built in an intelligent manner and taking the must take feats. I might actually assert that this AC is slightly higher than baseline because Dodge and +3 Shields aren't super common but it's a relatively minor qualm.
Edit: Only other complaint is no save bonuses or skills given.