I think what you are seeing is a shift in cultural approach to magic. Full casting may simply not be as advantageous as have a connection to sometime of universal theme or truth (or to having it be an inherent and integrated aspect of manipulating technology).
Even in Pathfinder, there were forms of magic long forgotten or barely retained and then only to a small isolated few from what the current understanding of magic was offering and had available. It is possible that those traditions of pure arcane might have been abandoned or forgotten over time just like things are abandoned or forgotten overtime in the real world.
There are people who're going to come from more nature-centric worlds that focus more on organic technology; technically we have that, too, in Castrovel, but I don't feel that we have any classes to adequately represent a lot of what's going on there, magically speaking. Playing a khizar, for instance, as anything other than a xenodruid would feel a little off to me, personally, and there aren't really options for playing a lashunta who's bonded themselves to one of those alien dinosaurs which, if I'm not mistaken, they still do. What I'm saying here is that assessment assumes that one way of progression is the only way of doing it while another alien culture may progress in a way that's doesn't involve technology completely overtaking magic, and diversity of culture is one of the draws of space opera.
Actually I think if you build a wild warden soldier with the phrenic adept archetype and connection inkling feat, you could pull off a half decent ranger impersonator. (of course without an animal companion). But I am sure we will eventually see some of that. They really just started developing Starfinder and they have a much slower production cycle on it then they did pathfinder.
Point being that while I appreciate and really enjoy that Starfinder is Science Fantasy, and I think that thru-line needs to continue, I also think that if there are going to be more classes - which as I stated, I think there should be - then at least a handful of them should play more heavily to the Fantasy part than the Science part. Not all of them, not a majority of them, but a couple of them.
I'm not opposed to some more fantasy aligned classes then what is already available although in truth I would like to see them present as either new and additional class options or new archetypes then straight up just new classes. However, with that said I'm gonna disagree that there isn't already plenty of fantasy influence and options in the game. Most people think of traditional "high fantasy" when they think of fantasy. I think that high fantasy starts to break down when several of its staples and constants are exported into other fiction approaches.
it all boils down to the thematic shift. Pathfinder is high fantasy at its very core, Starfinder is 50% sci-fi at its core (as a large swath of science fantasy is). Paladins don't work as well in science fantasy or sci-fi.
as far as setting wise....it could probably just be the shift in culture over time. The same reason why the catholic church isn't really producing a bunch of crusaders and inquisitors these days. That s!%! just doesn't really fit in to today's world. There are things about some knight orders and religious orders that are lost to history at this point. We know enough to give a basic outline but any specifics like rituals or vows are lost. In a fantasy setting turned science fantasy, technology that is able to produce effects that are similar in nature to magical effects or at least put the common person at a competitive level with magic means that some of the old traditions of magic and magical/supernatural power are less appealing. Especially if it comes at the cost of living a very strict ethical and moral code.
A person can follow Iomedae and still be a rat bastard. I mean there are plenty of real world examples of "pious people" being anything but pious.
With the reduction in number of feats and the design model being aimed at reducing feat chains needed for later feats, I haven't encountered this problem at all. I have a fighter (phrenic adept) in a dead suns game. Currently level 4 and played from level 1. Haven't noticed any issues along the way at all. This may change as additional options are added to the game but currently I don't think it is an issue at all
I've never encountered this or at least I am unaware of it when I have. Inherent flaws are a part of any character. The only way I can think of this being an issue is if you intentionally make more character build choices.
Example: Playing a soldier but focusing highly on building a decent CHA for one or two social skills while reducing relevant combat related ability scores and by extension the ability to be combat effective.
it could also be that I don't care if someone builds an ineffective character in my party. They add to action economy for my side and even if only 25% mechanically effective in any given situation, it is better then being a party member short in most cases.
1. A book for vehicles and starships: expanding the rules for both construction and combat related to both (with squadron based rules for starship combat). Also I would like some rules on what exactly happens if a larger ship gets stuck in the gravity well of celestial body or what happens on a planet (destruction wise) if a huge or larger ship wrecks through the atmosphere and smashes into the surface.
2. an "ultimate technology" book which focuses heavily on straight technological options in the game (I'm ok if it doesn't offer a new base class but it should have plenty of new class options and archetypes)
3. an "ultimate magic" book which focuses heavily on straight magical options in the game (Again, I'm ok if it doesn't offer a new base class but it should have plenty of new class options and archetypes. I think that the modular nature of the base classes already allow for easy injection of new class options instead of creating a completely new base class that is ultimately only slightly different then an existing class.)
5. Setting books further detailing the Veskarium, the ASE, and the Swarm.
6. more alien archive books, that offers a bit more "animal" life for various pact world locations as well as supplemental options to use for the creature/npc creation rules.
I would like archetypes or class options that allow me to create more of a space monk, space ranger, or space barbarian.
A solarian which instead of manifesting weapons and armor, uses the power of the stars to enhance their own physical abilities the way a monk advances...maybe empowering his unarmed strike to act as if it is not archaic....or an operative who specializes in unarmed combat to the same effect.
A soldier or operative class that gains unique advancement with a certain class of weapons and/or special class features against certain classes of enemies (or even a studied target system similar to slayer and investigator from pathfinder)....bounty hunter fighting style or something along those lines.
A soldier fighting style which gives you temporary boost to toughness and damage at the expense of finesse and AC with lasting draw backs that can only be managed/negated with a resolve point rest
It seems that there are a lot of complaints or new posts about purchased PDFs not being available for download in the users digital content (My downloads) area.
Many people including myself are reporting that the transaction is sitting in a "Pending" status.
Is there word as to what is going on with these transactions or when we will have access to the digital content/PDF?
My bank statement has already reflected the purchase so I am curious when we will get answers as these complaints/new posts seem to be the only ones not getting responses from customer support staff.....
Order 4744476 is my order number for reference
This echoes something I have never understood when I hear it. I have heard a lot of people say that 3.5e and by extension Pathfinder is too combat orientated or to skill check based and that there should be more "Role Playing" but I've never gotten n understanding of that.
IMO, there are pen and paper RPGs that either have good combat rules or poor combat rules. There are pen and paper RPGs that have comprehensive skill rules or vague skill rules (or somewhere in between). And there are rules that allow for ease of Theater of the Mind style play and rules that make it challenging....But how anything is used is up to the GM and players.
I have never been a fan of rule systems that punish a players inability to be an actor or do impromptu interactions from the perspective of someone they are not. Skill checks allow people who aren't good at talking to people be socialites and silver-tongued. Structured combat rules let someone who wants to be combat focused utilize their character to the fullest. I like to give players bonuses for attempting to role play out their character or situation and encourage it at my tables but I'm glad that the actual rules for Pathfinder and Starfinder don't punish a player for not being good at pretending to be something they are not in a world they may or may not know a lot about. I think that theater of the mind games tend to lend themselves to combat light interactions anyways because things can get tricky with too many individuals involved in a combat if everyone has to keep track of what is going on as things change through out combat.
With that said, statements that insinuate that rules systems are somehow responsible for the amount of role play present in a game always remind me of an argument one of my home game groups got in about World of Darkness. One player argued that the rules were not set up for combat and that in the game combat was only used as a last resort because of how vague and unfinished the combat rules were. There argument was that everything about the game was set up for social interaction and political maneuvering. A large chunk of other players disagreed citing a game in which we were basically drug dealing vampires that pulled off drive-bys, started (and finished) gang wars, and ran a bunch of fronts for various rackets (including the shady nightclub with a mix reputation and a lot of rumors surrounding it). We had plenty of social role playing situations but things got bloody often enough that the combat rules (which are fine by the way) were tested thoroughly.
My understanding is that the DC's were changed because the scaling didn't make sense, and actually punished players for levelling up their ship. (I personally have no problem with the revised DC's, it seems to me most of the described actions should be routine excepting mishaps or extreme circumstances.) Presumably going back to the old DC's would reintroduce the scaling problem to your game, so it would depend on whether you're okay with that.
Agreed. With the base assumption in the rules seeming to indicate how wide spread starship use and access is, it doesn't make sense for starship anything to be as challenging as it was in the original math.
Hitting another starship in combat still averages out at about the same rate that hitting and missing in normal combat does which works well considering that shooting at a moving target while moving would be the most difficult part outside of piloting the ship itself. But an engineer or science officer to be so inherently unable to do their role makes absolutely no sense.
An actual pilot would be able to do most of those things if they were certified to fly so regularly failing at piloting checks also doesn't make sense.
I have found that most of the tension comes from an enemy doing damage to the player's ship, the same as normal combat. Tension because there are enemies sounds like a role playing problem and not a problem with the changed math for the mechanics. The math is easier for the enemy too so if the enemy is attempting to do what is most optimal, there should be plenty of damage trading and interesting encounters
This is what I do. If someone can give me a description of how they are using a skill I give them circumstance bonuses. Its a role playing game, not a roll playing game. I feel that there are plenty of games that are strictly about rolling dice which are better suited for combat then any pen and paper RPG to satisfy those who only want to destroy minis on a map with their minis on a map..so anything that lends depth is normally rewarded at my tables.
If you are playing the dull witted, rush in and smash barbarian, great but if you want to attempt an acrobatics to avoid an AoO and say even something as basic as "I try to juke him and fake him out as I dodge around him", I'm gonna give you a circumstance bonus just because it makes your character more then a page full of numbers.
Any game is going to hit a certain amount of bloat after a period of time and a game that doesn't is going to stagnate.
5e is having the stagnation problem. While a growing number of people seem to be finally getting around to picking up 5e, the majority of complaints that I am hearing are all related to a lack of existing options and the slow release of new PC related material. I know a few of the people in my area who dropped pathfinder to switch to 5e when wizards switched the way they run their organized play campaign to be closer to the way Paizo runs theirs and are already looking or considering other options.
I also know several other people who only play Starfinder at this point because it isn't suffering from rules bloat and power creep yet (and to a degree many are tired of high fantasy RPGS).
Pathfinder has been going strong for long time and what options are actually left for them to develop are definitely going to hit the balance dynamics like a brick hitting glass. (not that things have been particularly balanced in a long time)
There is a fine line between releasing too much material and not releasing enough material for todays market. There are just so many options you can release before rules bloat and power creep simply become an inherent part of anything new you can offer.
I don't think that Pathfinder 2nd edition is beyond the consideration of Paizo although I doubt we will see it before 2020 if even by then. Any new venture has to have the cost of development and production weighed against current profit margins and projected profit margins.
I also think that the general belief that Starfinder is in some ways an attempt or experiment in further refining and testing 3.x math based rules for consideration for future games is a belief that at least makes logical sense if even unsupportive by hard evidence. If it is some sort of rules experiment/attempt at refinement, then I assume that they would want plenty of data to use and criticism to steer development before making any announcements or releasing any products with a Pathfinder 2nd edition tag.
Luckily there are plenty of other really good table top, pen and paper based RPGs out there that are worth playing around with and experimenting with for short periods of time. Some of them are even worth running extended campaigns in.
Huh... most other editions / spinoffs of D&D end up addressing this in their poison/disease rules section, but there's nothing on the matter in the Afflictions section. So by RAW, it appears so, since it doesn't seem to say anything about it that I can find. For what it's worth though, most other versions of D&D have had a rule that if you were able to completely prevent damage from a damaging attack by any means then any secondary effects of the attack would also be stopped. I'd just roll with that.
I would also agree with this but I would need to know what the source of damage is and what the actual nature of the effect is.
weapons with the injection special property indicate they automatically deliver their poison on a successful attack. (pg 181)
The rules for damage reduction indicate that whenever damage from an attack is completely negated from an attack that the special effect of the attack such as injury based disease or injury based poison are also negated but that contact poisons would still inherently work (pg 263) I understand that damage reduction is a different set of rules but I post it to help establish a pattern of thought about afflictions and secondary effects
Contact and injury based poisons can both be put in a weapon with the injection special property but the contact poison acts like an injury based (poison) affliction except that it targets EAC and not KAC like standard injury based (poison)afflictions do. Injury based (poison) afflictions only produce their effect if damage is dealt (pg 417)
Damage dealt to a target wearing a force field is dealt to the force field itself before being applied to the target (pg 206).
I would say that if the secondary effect is related to disease or poison that the answer is no since no actual damage occurred to the target and was done completely to the shield itself instead and therefore doesn't damage the target which is a necessary condition for the effect to work
if you roll a natural 20 to hit you automatically do a critical hit (unless your total result is not numerically high enough to hit the EAC or KAC you are rolling against, in which case it does not count as a critical hit but still hits) (pg 245)
if an attack has a critical effect it is applied when you score a critical hit (pg 182)
However, Shields do not inherently protect against critical effects (pg 206) so if the effect was coming from a critical effect I would say that the answer is yes, you still take the special/secondary effect as actual damage to the target does not seem to be a specifier for critical effect to take effect.
However, The critical effect for "Injection" simply increases the Save DC by 2. So you would still have to deliver damage via the rules that govern injury based (poison) afflictions. So the answer for the one would be, again, no.
If this question is in relation to some magical effect, I would definitely need to know more
Starfinder currently has that problem but with them already announcing 2 solid sounding products for this year, I suspect by summer us Starfinder players will have a lot of good options and variety with only more to look forward to.
Even then, some of the options that are being labeled as "not as good" in Starfinder are proving to be more viable then initially thought during theory crafting when put into actual play
Action economy is a bigger indicator of challenge then anything else. You should focus on EL over CR and attempt to shoot for EL that is about 1 higher then average character level for normal fights, and 2 or 3 higher for challenging encounters, and 4 or 5 higher for "boss battles".....hmmm EL equal to average character level or 1 lower for easy battles.
With that said, if the CR of any creature involved is 4 or 5 CR higher then the average character level you risk it being something akin to the bad guy showing up to a gun fight with a rocket launcher. On the flip of that, if the CR of the creatures in an encounter are 4 to 5 CR lower the average character level, you risk it going down like a group of black belts fighting full out, no restrictions, against a group of kindergarteners.
I'll star things off with one of my own
Valkyrie Class Troop Dropship
Valkyrie Class Troop Dropships are designed for one thing and one thing only; When a ground assault must occur regardless of starship support, air support, or ground support (including any ground based anti-spacecraft weapons), the Valkyrie can get the job done. Being cost prohibitive for most established militaries, the Valkyrie is normally reserved for special forces teams or command personnel and almost always flown within the midst of cheaper and more common troop carrying shuttlecraft. Fast and well defended both in armor and in electronic counter measures, the real strength of the Valkyrie shines through in its somewhat controversial heavy shields. Able to weather a direct hit from all but the fiercest heavy naval weapons, the Valkyrie can weather even the most vicious enemy assaults long enough to deliver its package. The cost of such heavy shields and the power core required to power it, along with its other systems is seen by a waste by many military and political leaders, especially considering that the Valkyrie has no functional Drift/FTL drive and is dependent on larger ships for travel between interstellar destinations. However, time and time again a Valkyrie has proven to be the difference between a successful deployment of essential personnel and operational disaster.
Tier 7 (179/180BP)
The Mechanic is a solid class. They are widely popular where I play most often. They have good skills and class theme focused bumps, their exocortex makes them viable combat options, and I have witnessed several Mechanic Drones being used more the efficiently. The operative has some strong mechanical advantages though so I won't argue against that
A group of 4 operatives would do just fine and I think that lack of spell casting wouldn't really hurt them all that bad. The fact that you can gain access to a variety of energy types through weapons pretty much puts them on par with what is currently available via casters in the game. There are plenty of grenades that hand out status effects on top of class abilities and feats. I don't see a lack of magic being a real problem unless they find themselves in a overly specific situations
They are pretty strong at low level for what they are but the ability to pull off their trick attack isn't really all that guaranteed until later levels.
They also have a poor fortitude and while you will most likely bump Con, the added bonus you get to Fort doesn't guarantee that they are going to pass Fort saves with any real regularity. The class abilities they have with regards to Fort are not nearly as useful (only against poisons and disease) by the time you get them. There are plenty of other fortitude attacking spells and abilities that aren't related to either of those and have more immediate consequences anyways
The fact that they are going to be fairly close (basic melee or small arms to utilize trick attack) means that they are going to be easier to target. (well until they get a Sniper rifle worth anything and can trick attack through the sniper rifle but it still isn't as wild as it sounds when you look at the math and actual mechanics for the game.
I also think you are not fully considering how good at skills Envoys are. I don't think that either is better to be honest. They both get unique bonuses they can use to boost skill checks, have a good selection of skills with plenty of skill points to distribute, and can for the most part can get a handful of their skill boosting bonuses to a variety of skills. Neither is inherently INT based.
Thanks mswbear, changing PCU would in my opinion not change that much. I don't think I can justify a PCU increase of more than 10 points and given the considerable amount of unused PCUs in the ship I don't think that would really decrease the superiority of the coilgun
PCU tends to be fairly abundant but at a certain point you start trading hard for PCU and BP. One always falls short when there is still enough to do something with in the other (usually having extra PCU). You eventually start trading things for another....yes you have the ability to do more damage down range but you are easier to hit in return, your missile countermeasures are not that great, your shields are weak, speed suboptimal, sensors are mediocre, computer not giving you decent bonuses or more then one bonus each round.
That's why I think a bit of an increase in each PCU and BP is justifiable to some level.
but a stable creature can still die unless he gets some type of healing, even a stable creature who is conscious. Is then denying healing an evil act?
I've encountered this a number of times myself and it always infuriates me. If I have an evil fighter and they surrender I am going to remove their weapons and bind them.
When I take off the constraints, they are still unarmed and unless they are a master of unarmed combat, their effectiveness in combat is greatly reduced but a spell caster, who's fingers are basically their weapons somehow shouldn't be disarmed because their weapons are inherently a part of their body?
I never understood that. Their fingers will heal, they may heal enough so that they can even do spells again but they will at least heal enough to do basic things in order to care for themselves. But if the constraints come off, they are suddenly fully armed again and not just in a way that someone with a weapon is (limited by moving and attacking one person a round or full attacking multiple people but still being limited by number of attack, closeness of enemies, feats that grant you free attacks against enemies under certain conditions, etc.) but they are armed with the ability to drop giant piles of damage in large areas to inflict maximum damage against innocent people.....but breaking their fingers so they can't do that is somehow evil because "torture".....ok, sure....let's role with that.
my -1 has a ton of alignment infractions but no shift. Probably because they haven't all happened under the same GM or at the same time and no GM was fully aware of how much I danced on that Neutral/Evil razor's edge. Some of the local players are still surprised I never got a forced alignment shift but the secret is to never do anything so evil that it forces an alignment shift. Also killing a sentient creature when attacked by it is not inherently evil. A fighter is basically a soldier and a soldier would be trained to kill enemy combatants once combat with the enemy is engaged. If the troglodyte didn't surrender then there was no real reason to show mercy.
While in modern times "leaving them there" wounded may be more common then thought and killing wounded enemy soldiers may be frowned upon(read also illegal), back in Medieval and Renaissance times "mercy killing" was common practice and was actually endorsed in many circumstances. Not just for the enemy but for allied combatants that were unlikely to survive their wounds (although not always). It actually wasn't all that uncommon for squires and other support troops of the "victorious" army to basically go through the battlefield and flag/drag anyone on their side that could be saved off the battlefield while stabbing in the heart or head those that couldn't. Nor was it uncommon for them to kill outright wounded enemy soldiers in order to save army resources by not having to care for POWs, letting enemy soldiers go so they could join another battle on another day, or in an attempt to shorten their suffering from wounds that would likely result in a slow and painful death.
A creature being so wounded that it is "dying" without a strong concept of "it can stabilize and live if it rolls high enough to do so and then heal naturally to regain consciousness eventually" is a level of knowledge that is both super meta and (even if presented in in-game terms) requires a level of medical knowledge likely beyond most characters.
A creature from a more often then not inherently evil race that was in a local tavern attacking innocent commoners. A creature likely to continue to do evil deeds should it recover from its wounds and is likely to die from its wounds anyways (at least to my untrained heal check and character non-meta-knowledge) but in a slow and painful way as opposed to the quick and at least shorter lived pain you could offer it......well that's enough justification and reason for me to not consider it evil but that's just me.
I mean we can apply modern day moral standards to our games all we want and that is fine and dandy but adding a little historical context here and there is also with merit.
Sounds like this is self imposed when seen together. I have plenty of characters who are total dog s~@! with social skills.....yet they RP like they are total masters.....usually unsuccessfully but it makes the game enjoyable.
Making a character who can't combat doesn't make sense for the game and theme of organized play. You don't have to be an outrageous damage dealer or a huge box of hit points to be effective in combat so I'm not even really sure what you are on about with some of these arguments outside of your perception is obviously different then mine or your definition of what is "fun" is far more restrictive then mine....or maybe your definition of fun is better suited for a different game system....
The guide to organized play specifically states that GMs should allow for creative solutions if at all possible. GMs that railroad their players into combats regardless of player action aren't very good GMs, and organized play doesn't have anything to do with that. But players whose only goal is to derail an adventure just for the sake of derailing adventures with the flimsy excuse of "because that is what my character would do" are the worst sort of player. Especially if they fall in line and take expected actions in a homebrew but are hyper disruptive in a organized game because they "don't like to be railroaded"
Robert Gooding wrote:
The NPC creations rules are actually pretty quick at all CRs. They take a while to get the hang of but once they are grasped fairly firmly, you can bust out a handful of different NPC encounters in short order.
I've never been particularly quick at making PCs and when making NPCs in the pathfinder system (basically making a PC with reduced wealth and ability scores), I am only marginally faster. The reduced rules for making monsters in Pathfinder were always easier in some ways for me to go through.
I think that being forced to basically learn monster creation rules to make PCs is jarring for some GMs but as stated there is nothing really stopping a GM from using PC creation rules to make their NPCs if they so choose. I like that I can make a fairly effective CR 15 soldier NPC nearly as quickly as I could make a CR 2 soldier using the NPC creation rules. But if I was making the NPC from scratch, it would be a more significant disparity in time.
I'm good if the math works out the same way on the practical end which from the experiments I have run, is the case. The NPC Soldier using the NPC creation rules which are basically monster creation rules spits out a soldier of similar capability that one created using PC creation rules does for the target CR. Outside of "having to" learn the monster creation rules, it really isn't that immersion breaking. PCs aren't making monsters/NPCs (in general) and what I run as GM is all words on paper and personal presentation anyways.
I'm gonna disagree with this.
1. It has the same number of base races
2. Themes replace traits with traits not being present in the CRB for Pathfinder but already offering additional level of complexity for Starfinder.
3. While there are 11 base classes in Pathfinder, with the exception of a small handful, each class really only has a small selection of options which end up with any (insert name of base class here) playing nearly identical to every other "unique build" of the same class to a great deal when limited to just the CRB. Starfinder has 7 base classes but
a. The Mystic arguably has the ability to play at least 3 to 4 complete different play styles of full caster depending on which connection they choose (see with the exception of a small handful when referencing Pathfinder earlier because I am aware the same can be said of many Pathfinder full casters)
4. If you go through and eliminate about 90% of basically useless prerequisite feats from the Pathfinder CRB, the number of feats that remain really wouldn't be that different from what is present in the Starfinder CRB
5. I'm not sure what rules seem confusing to people (outside of starship combat, see below), although I have heard this argument a number of times which never seem to be well articulated or at least seem to be overly specific in nature. I've been playing in a home game and in organized play fairly regularly since release and I have yet to personally come across any rules that seemed to not make any sense or be counter intuitive.
6. Starship combat gets a lot of hate and I am not sure why. It has been causing a lot of problems in the organized play games in my area even after the math change. The original math was awful but since then, it seems pretty within an acceptable difficulty curve when I play or run it. I'm not speaking on the OP's games or play experiences as I haven't seen them first hand and any description would only be partially useful in my understanding but from what I have encountered in the local organized play, nearly all problems in starship combat come from one or more of the following sources:
a. The GM is not familiar enough with Starship rules and is confused about what they are able to do or what the party is able to do
My home group just hasn't been experiencing the same frustrations with starship combat. We have a firm grasp of the rules, don't attempt to do things outside of the rules present, meet consensus on what we need to do each round/phase with little argument but with any disagreements that do occur being ended quickly with options being presented and majority vote winning, and all efforts crew wide being made with the intent of putting down enemy ships unless shields are looking rough.
I mean I don't think it says anywhere was does and doesn't work. Any distinction would have to basically be homebrew and individual GM determined until an official rule is published in a future rule book. Super popular Sci-Fis all around pretty much abandon anything that gets in the way of good story telling. It doesn't really surprise me that Starfinder (which is a science fantasy and also has magic) isn't afraid to just simply let some things be without explanation.
I would home rule anything that makes any sort of sense to you but explain it to players. Players don't live in your world and only have access to the rulebooks and therefor can only make assumptions based on the rules presented. Their characters however do live in your world and would know what does and doesn't work in vacuum. With star travel being such a normative part of travel in the Starfinder rule set, what does and doesn't work in vacuum is likely covered in basic gun training. Unless you are using a homebrew setting that doesn't have wide spread space travel.....then it is probably more of a matter of what they are and what their background is.
I'm hoping that there is more detail on the Veskarium. As Part of an alliance with the Pact Worlds, I just want a bit more information. I know the main focus will be the official Pact Worlds solar system but still....more info would be great.
Also a little bit more information on boarder tensions with none Pact World governments or independent powers. A little bit more information on the Azlanti Star Empire for these purposes would be wonderful. Just something that lets people know there government structure and culture so that they can be used as antagonists
Matrix Dragon wrote:
It is mainly an inconvenience for GMs as designing an NPC requires understanding of a different creation system then creating a PC.
At least from the experiments that I have run and what I have heard from others, NPCs run effectively the same as PCs as far as mechanics go. I didn't do a lot of fiddling around with the system so I would have to ask people who I know did a lot more in-depth creation what their thoughts are currently. I know that number of skills and such are a bit diminished for NPCs but I think that the few things I did had NPCs tracking relatively close to PCs in ability and numbers with PCs obviously being more powerful (just like it was in Pathfinder using their NPC creation rules).
They fact that it is a different system doesn't mean it is a completely different set of "Laws". All the number seem to track and the number are all that really influence game play outside of flavor and interaction based on individual GM role playing style.
I always thought it was weird in Pathfinder that they would have detailed NPCs in the book with skills and feats that are literally never going to come up unless the party goes straight murder hobo on everything that moves in front of them.....Just seemed like an arbitrary thing to know that the lvl 2 expert shop keeper has a +5 to escape artist.
from my experience most of the headache comes from people assuming things because the vast majority of rules are the same or at least function the same but things are different enough that making assumptions leads to situations not working well together.
The same thing happened to a lesser degree when people switched from 3.5 to pathfinder but it wasn't as many things and happened so long ago that it doesn't stand out in anyone's mind. I'm finding most things work smoothly and quickly when people can keep with the rules without getting mixed up on how things work because they are remembering something from pathfinder instead. Especially since they fixed the math with starship combat
I'm not saying the skill thing is bad per se although, I do feel like it is an odd limiting factor considering some of their class abilities and the flavor of the class.
And yes Solarians can compete in combat as top contenders but I would argue that they are significantly more difficult to build and maintain to be and stay competitive then any other class in the game. As many of the other classes are not as MAD and far more forgiving in attribute point distribution.
6 ranks would fit the skill curve the other classes have a lot better, but it's not the end of the world either way.
Oh I'm not saying it is the end of the world, it just really bothers me. Flavor wise and somewhat mechanic wise there seems to be this leaning towards "skills and learning and blah, blah, blah" but then the foundation mechanics of the class (skills points available or something that let them use train only skills untrained or something) just falls flat
Could you elaborate on your argument?
there are 20 skills in total in the game so overall it is easier to gain a decent collection of skills in Star finder then it was in Pathfinder. however, out of those 20 skills, 9 of them can't be used untrained, so in order to benefit from them or even roll a check for them above 10, you have to have at least 1 rank in them.
Solarians have 10 base skills on their class list with a class ability that while granting them no bonuses does allow them to count 2 skills of their choice not on their class skill list as class skills, giving them a grand total of access to 12 skills. of the 10 skills remaining after the base 10 skills the Solarian class grants, 6 of them are trained only skills. Meaning the 2 free skills you get to pick are going to be a hard pick unless you are focusing on a specific set of skills to the detriment of any others.
They later gain an ability to meditate for a 1 minute in order to bump one of their skills with a 1d6 for a period of time until certain conditions are met. However, this ability does not let them use ability untrained. 3 of the skills they can choose from are trained only skills meaning that if they want to take advantage of this class ability for those skills they have to have put ranks in it.
Now Solarians run on Charisma but realistically, your Cha isn't going to be much higher then 14 if even that high and that's if you are playing a race that grants a Cha bonus. The fact that you are inherently a front line fighter means that you will have to contribute a certain level of attribute points to Strength, dexterity, and constitution. The solarian in combat is going to function a lot like a pathfinder melee monk or inquisitor where you are capable of doing damage and taking (some) damage but you are also going to feel every single fight you get into and in all likelihood are going to end a number of fights unconscious/dying.
Because of this, your actual ability to run Cha based skills are going to run short of any Envoy you cross paths with. Other skills are going to be hampered by a lack of INT or WIS because attribute points are so important to place elsewhere. Skills that are not STR, DEX, or CHA based are traps basically. You have so few skill points that you are talking about a hyper focusing of skills that at best, you are going to be mediocre at. While your combat abilities are capable of tracking with other classes, you are not going to excel at them. The Envoy and Operative far outpace you in skill monkey abilities, which is fine except that you have 2 dedicated class abilities aimed towards skills. One of those abilities is aimed at granting more access to skills.
There is nothing in your class description of the point buy system that makes improving intelligence a wise choice over a physical attribute or Cha. Because you only get effectively 4 (5 if you are human) skill points each level, you basically gain impressive access with no way to really make it count. You also only really gain a minor boost to a single skill at a time at later levels.
I just feel like the Solarian should of at least had 2 more skill points per level or a class feature that basically gave them skill focus in any skill they had ranks in in order to make sense with what class features are present and the theme/flavor text of the class description.....
There are a lot of threads about solarians in combat with a lot of differencing opinions, math, and comparisons but one of the things that seems to be really missing from anyone's notice is the weirdness of how their skills and skill related class abilities work.
Am I the only one that has noticed that the solarian has a lot of skills and skill based class abilities but only have a 4+int mod for skill points?
Am I the only one that thinks this makes these class features DOA? or at least really hard to capitalize on?
Has anyone found a way to increase the efficiency of these class features while not ignoring how MAD this class is?
No, there is nothing in RAW that forbids is and I have never encountered a GM that wouldn't allow it.
Kineticist seem super powerful but when you track their average damage next to a dedicated blaster caster they track pretty even if not just slightly behind the curve of what a dedicated full caster can do. They lack the versatility of most casters and while they have a lot of hit points and can wear armor, they are trading full rounds and/or other actions for their power boosts or nonlethal damage that only goes away with 8 hours of rest which can make them deceptively fragile come a difficult fight.
Alicorn Sage, the reason that people prepare so much is that they are not just trying to run a fun game, they are trying to run the specific adventure/story that players signed up for. We are also talking about PFS games here, so GMs are required to run 'as written.' To use your example of a DC, the GM has to use the DC that is written in the adventure, not what they think is reasonable. They can give a +2 or -2 circumstance bonus based on what players do or say, but that's the limit to flexibility. If you have to run a game as written, you need to thoroughly understand what is written.
This isn't really true and is not stated in the current guide to organized play or to my knowledge the guide to organized play of season 5, 6, 7, or 8 (I started in season 5 so don't have ease of access to earlier editions of the guide to organized play).
"Run as written" is more about the story and the encounters (or how the encounters are run should there be a combat). Coming up with a creative out-side-the-box solution is totally acceptable. The CRB indicates that circumstance bonuses for good role play are totally a thing. As does the guide to organized play, it states nowhere that this circumstance bonus is limited to +2 or -2.
Certain encounters are going to result in combat 99.9% of the time but if there is a creative way to by pass it and the party is all about it, then I think it is the responsibility of the GM to roll with it and still consider it a victory and successful resolution.
Example: There is a ship chase with an anticipated "getting caught" and facing a "boss fight" during the Quest for Perfection 3-part story in season 3. My druid did not allow this to happen. The GM tried to basically plan B through E a way for this to happen and my Druid was more then able to shut this down each and every time. Instead of accepting defeat and calling the adventure, the GM literally came up with a "just because it is written" situation and we somehow ended up in this "boss fight" anyways. My resources and spells were still expended mind you but all of a sudden we still had to fight a "boss". This was unfair to the party (which had encouraged me to go all out in stopping the pursuing ship) and me (for listening, thinking creatively, and using a lot of resources which worked by RAW). The need for the GM to "run as written" went too far and destroyed what had been up until that point a marvelous adventure full of fun, cheers, and laughter. The GM did run as written up until the point that I used RAW to shut down the chase completely. Over all great GM, especially since they have grown as a GM, and still remember the over all adventure line favorable but it was/is a sore point for me towards organized play.
That's just the most notable example but there are others I have been witnessed or been a part of.
"Running as Written" only goes so far. It should be "run as written unless character action literally does not allow you to and then attempt to recover back to the written material when and if able to at the next logical section of text"
It just sounds like you are plying in an area without very creative GMs. There are people who have a very hard time going off script or allowing things not considered in the scenario to be a viable solution unless the mechanics/math are directly spelled out in way that would have to work in the given situation RAW (which is rarely gonna happen).
At my local PFS Chapter, I would say that the majority of GMs are comfortable going with the flow for creative solutions and that at least 50% of our players actually kind of go for creative solutions on a regular basis.
We have a few GMs that are less flexible with this stuff which has generally annoyed me when I'm at a table of creative players and we are constantly smashing against the stone wall of GM stubbornness but to be honest your statements on your experience don't surprise me nor does your gross overgeneralization of P&P RPGs or organized play in general.
I have encountered far more ridged GM thinking at Cons when at a table of an unfamiliar GM. A lot of places seem to foster the idea of sticking to the scenario to the letter or at least as close to the letter as humanly possible.
I think the real thing is, why even bother posting about this and then continuing to basically argue or refute anything and everything that is said to you. I haven't seen you agree with one things stated by anyone else which is a strong indicator that you are actually here for an argument and not an intelligent discussion.
If organized play isn't your style, my suggestion is to find another way to spend your time. I think that if I lived in your area and the GMs basically shot down totally legitimate solutions on a semi-regular basis I would be finding other activities to occupy my time.
If its a social thing, there are other ways to get in your socializing.
If its a wanting to play P&P RPGs there are plenty of others to choose from.
If it is a matter of only being able to find a gaming group through organized play, I would attempt to recruit some regulars you get along with for a home game or find an online game to join. There are a number of P&P discord groups that run things in a number of ways using online features when and where applicable.
I've never really understood the people who spend all their time doing something they never stop complaining about and basically go on and on about how their time would be better spent doing something else but then spend all of their time playing the thing they hate or complaining about it online....
TL;DR: sounds like you have uncreative and unskilled GMs, you should find another way to spend your time.
Druids are a powerful class but aren't necessarily more powerful then an other full caster.....and if you are using other full casters as the measure then they certainly aren't overpowered regardless of spell selection.
As far as if they "should"....It would depend on how you view them gaining spells. Druids get their spells from nature and through communing with nature. It doesn't indicate anywhere that anything would be preventing them from having those spells but as a GM, you certainly get to set limits as you see fit.
If a druid communes with nature in the desert would they gain a bunch of ice spells?
One could argue that they would since nature encompasses all ecosystems and environments so regardless of where they do their communing they would have access to all of what nature is able to provide.
However, one could argue that spells could be regionally locked in some way. Gaining an abundance of ice spells in the desert doesn't make sense as that part of nature is fairly if not totally unfamiliar with ice and the natural properties of ice and therefor cannot grant ice spells.....of course doing this greatly hinders the effectiveness of the druid in a way that no other class would be hindered by and is unsupported by the rules as written.
If you don't want spells from a certain source just ban anything from that source at your game. If you are only banning some things from it be prepared to justify with more then "because I'm GM and I say so".
What makes Pathfinder great is the wide array of content and options but it is also something that takes away from the game in a number of ways.
I don't ever feel the need to understand how every character class or character option works. Players are expected to understand how their character works. If something seems off or feels funny to me then I inquire. Same goes for things that are totally stomping a scenario that I thought would be challenging. If the player can't provide me the rules so that I can read them and see how things work together I don't allow it to be used until those rules can be provided for me. If things check out, I get over it and continue to run the scenario to the best of my ability while following what the scenario calls for in tactics as written. If it doesn't check out then I let them know. If there is a disagreement I defer to the VC or VL and let them make a call.
With the excepting of deferring to a VC or VL, I operate this way in home games as well. I don't know to know how everything works ahead of time, I just need a general idea of how what I am doing/running works. The rest will sort itself out.
My biggest complain with other systems is the lack of options to be honest. Bloat gets old but feeling restricted in what I can do at all annoys me enough to turn down an experience/game all together. This is one of my complaints with the current edition of D&D. I feel like it doesn't offer nearly enough options and out of those options nearly all of them are traditional high fantasy/classic D&D troupes. I don't like that concept restriction enough that I don't play D&D which is a shame because they way they handle a few things is really nice and balanced.
Its also why I don't like game systems like savage worlds (on top of others). Savage worlds has just enough options to trick you into thinking there are a lot of options but not enough to actually give you options outside of a handful of stereotypical troupes.
In addition, it looks like the miniatures are going to be expensive; $10 for a medium:(
Where are people getting this idea that $10 is expensive for a mini??
Outside of Reaper's Bones line of minis, most standard 28mm -32mm "medium sized" humanoid shaped miniature is anywhere from $8 to $14 for metal. Buying a single plastic model is difficult to even find if not pre-assembled and on eBay or something similar. Resin models tend to be about $2 to $5 more then their equivalently sized metal
This is one of the reasons I love the infinity line, yes they sell things in units for the most part but what you get is cheap per mini by comparison to a lot of other companies. Especially if you get them through sites that have regular discounts and sales like Miniature Market. Privateer press used to be close but their stuff has gone up in price since release and is closer to the industry standard mentioned above.
As an aside, I tend to stay away from Resin for creature models, Resin is more fragile then metal and tends to break where plastic bends (if only a little before inevitability breaking itself). They are also a nightmare to fix. Resin also chips sometimes which will ruin the aesthetic of your mini at the very least. If I have to get a resin model, I tend to go with something that is fairly bulky and solid without skinny(ish) protrusions, especially if they have a heaver part at either end (I'm looking at you most weapons and extended arms, holding weapons). I hate policing a mini on the table so the recklessness of others doesn't ruin/destroy them.
Matthew Downie wrote:
This is where fantasy destiny real life normative belief in free will butt heads.
If you look at either argument (destiny vs free will) then it ultimately doesn't matter.....This is why existentialism exists.
I think it is also a matter of character concept and backstory not meeting well with mechanics. I think that some of the iconic characters for pathfinder materials fall into this trap (some not all).
You have these level 1 PC class characters with backstories of them completing or accomplishing things that would be hard by even the standards of a level 3 or 4 character (sometimes higher). Then all of a sudden they start actually getting played and they are a joke compared to what they have done in their back story.
Realistically, whenever a player comes up with a character concept they should be thinking that this person was a adept/commoner/warrior 1 before achieving their PC class lvl 1. What they could and couldn't do was basic at best. Grand accomplishments from the past should be framed more as oddities of fate or luck and not so much as character skill and ability. Any level 1 character is probably within the first year of achieving their first level in a PC class.
Its also a matter of player expectation. A lot of players I know basically want medium difficulty enemies that are bags of hit points and not anything that is an actual challenge or threat. I have seen a lot of people get upset because they felt like their character was not overly effective in a large number of encounters or even in "boss fights". This also has to do with how a character defines "effective". I've seen players dish out heal, battlefield control, party boosts, and hinder with status effects all in one combat but b&+*# that they are not effective because their ide of effective is basically damage related. I'm not immune to wanting to feel like a badass and be an unstoppable force but I try to check myself and stay in the game.
I mean most adventures never make it to hero status and end up dying long the way. Even then, what qualifies as "this should be challenging" vs "this should be a cake walk". My group just finished up Strange Aeons, the last fight was difficult and we felt like we might lose for a lot of the combat (we didn't) but stepping outside my head and the fact that I wanted a guaranteed win, allowed me to enjoy the fight for the epic nonsense that it was and the real fact that if we lost the end of the world would have happened.....which would have been a good story in its own right.
The operative keeps popping up as being OP and when you look at it, it is hard to argue that it is not.
1)It is the only class that gets 4 attacks eventually and also the only class that gets additional full action attacks with no additional penalty. It is still just -4 to attacks. The Solarian and the Soldier at full BAB characters that each get a third attack as a full action eventually but at a -6, with no 4th attack. Additionally the multi-weapon fighting only applies to operative weapons and small arms. So the operative is the only class that can achieve -3/-3/-3/-3.
2) Tons of skill points and skill bonuses. I get that the operative is a skill monkey but after all of the skill points it already gets 8+int, it gets a free skill point in 2 skills each level because of it's specialization and gets mountains of insight bonuses to skills across the board.
3) The same general bonus that gets applied to all skills is applied to initiative. As a Dex based class, that basically means that the Operative will have the highest initiative by far compared to any other class, with the same level of Initiative being unreachable by other classes in higher level play.
4)Its also the only class that gets evasion and improved evasion as well as abilities that improve fort and will saves, making it the only class to have class abilities giving it a bonus/benefit to each of the three saves.
5)It basically uses magic, many of its abilities are on par with some of the most useful and best utility spells in the game.
I get that the operative is supposed to be a bad mother, ninja, monk, rogue, inquisitor, ranger type but it is over tuned in nearly everyway outside of not having full BAB(not that it matters with all of the other buffs). The soldier might be able to deal more damage in a round over all but the operative is a close second and is at the very top of the skill game (unlike the solarian who has all these abilities giving access to skills but no real bonuses and has a pathetic amount of skill points available so it can't even take advantage of all the free skill access it has. While already being the most MAD class in the system).
I'm not normally in favor of nerfing things but I seriously think the operative needs a date with the nerf bat. (I also think the Solarian needs 8+Int for skill points. You don't write a truck load about learning/unlocking/studying the secrets of the universe and then kick the class in the balls with a negligible amount of skill points)
Rysky the Dark Solarion wrote:
I'm gonna be honest, I think that mechanically some of the predictive math is done with pathfinder being the basis but there is enough mechanical differences that pathfinder numbers make a poor baseline. Its like when Pathfinder first came out and everyone was still using 3.5 stuff as a baseline and in their home games to find out that pathfinder stuff was more powerful then 3.5 stuff and thought all the math was broken until pathfinder got away from mixing with 3.5 and viewed only within it's own context. (note: the math of pathfinder is still broken but it is less broken when only viewed with other pathfinder stuff and not in conjunction with 3.5 stuff.)
Is there any good mechanical reason for a solarian to *not* have their first level be in soldier (blitz)?
Being less good at something then someone else doesn't make you a poor character. Solarian and Envoy both have their place and are fine classes, they are less optimized then other options but that doesn't mean they are totally worthless. I've seen a lot of argument that the Solarian and Envoy are nonfunctional but the only evidence that is offered in support is that other classes do damage or skills better. That doesn't mean that the Solarian and Envoy can't do anything or can't do anything effectively, just that there are classes that will be swinging harder or Diplomancing better.
The real question is, is there any reason the OP needs some type of personal validation in posing the question when it is fairly obvious that dipping soldier helps both these classes?
....Also, I say "build suboptimal characters, forget being the most powerful thing at the table. As long as you can be marginally effective and are playing what you want and are having fun do what you want". You may counter point that you want to play an Envoy or Solarian that is more effective but then you can level dip and not worry about it so I fail to see the point in splitting hairs.