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The silly thing about comparing Toughness and Dodge is that there is an actual mathematical answer that I've posted twice now. As far as that goes, the discussion should be about which side of the bubble you will land on in actual play.
Is Toughness the best feat at any given level? I would guess maybe at level 1, since characters are so fragile at that level and Toughness is worth more, but probably not at higher levels. IMO dodge is not that great unless you already get hit pretty rarely, which seems unlikely given that the DM picks the monsters.
There are two main possible problems with the big 6. I'm not saying they are problems or not since I haven't run the numbers:
2. The CR system breaks down because either the big 6 are assumed and not taken or not assumed and are taken.
Again, it depends. The cross over point depends on how often you are getting hit.
If you get hit on (N/20) rolls and you have(N-1)HP/Level, then Toughness is equivalent to Dodge. If you have less than (N-1) HP/Level then Toughness is the better choice. Ignoring criticals...
This is a hard question to answer because it depends on so many other factors. Basically you want to be able to survive long enough to kill all the monsters, preferably with as large a margin as possible.
Toughness gets better as:
Just looking at Dodge and Toughness is a bit easier:
If you normally get hit on an 16+ (5/20) then dodge means you get hit on a 17+ (4/20) which means your HP is effectively 25% higher (5/4). For toughness to be a better option you'd have to normally get <4HP/level.
A thing that I've noticed in this thread... people keep noting the excessively high stat array, but they ignore the part about lv.5 and a +str/wis item. That makes the stat array more like
Ignore, or didn't notice, because I just didn't notice since the stat array is posted seperately from that information. Honestly I wish people would clearly post what is going on in the OP rather than give important information out piece meal.
That array doesn't sound too unreasonable and I could see it being more common with the multiple rerolls Kalantra's DM was allowing. Now I wonder what the chances are that you'd get a 22 point array...
A few comments:
2. You should have better resolution, right now you have every "hybrid" class halfway between the core classes when some of them are much closer to one or the other (ie Cavalier is not halfway between a Fighter and a Cleric).
3. You should only have PF material in there if this is meant for people new to pathfinder.
4. Class selection never really seems to be a problem until you take archetypes into consideration. I would love to see a chart like this with archetypes included.
5. Don't be a jerk to people who are giving you feedback.
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Yes, it is very similar to rolling two natural 20's in a row. It certainly does happen, but this is a tricky comparison since it has inherent confirmation bias (you remember that time you rolled 2x 20's a lot more than all the times you didn't).
Now consider that the OP has said that someone else rolled even higher stats. Again, it isn't impossible but it is very unlikely that they are using a standard 4d6 drop the lowest.
I simulated the rolls (generating ~1.5M stat arrays) because it very easy for me to make mistakes when calculating statistics like this directly.
If you view building a character as a game in its own right then I think it makes a lot of sense that there are so many options and trap options. The game is all about sorting through this interconnected mess of options and finding the gems.
IMO the character building game is fine, but there should be an option for people who just want to play in sessions and not have a terrible character. Fortunately the class guides take care of this.
Now I could definitely see tweaking things to make more builds competitive. I think the method is basically:
This is more or less how CCG design works, and I think there are a lot of similarities between character design and deck design. In fact I wonder if there isn't a way to convert some of the CCG formats into character design formats (ie draft)...
I think it is very likely that the rolling system was more generous than 4d6 drop the lowest. The chance of rolling a 55 point buy using that rolling system is about 0.2%, yes that decimal is in the right place.
FYI: I am valuing rolls less than 7 at -4 points since they are off the chart and this is the best reasonable assumption for getting a high point buy. Rolls of 6 or less only happen about 2.8% of the time anyway.
Everyone else rolled "at least a 22 point buy," the monk's minimum point buy is;
That is a 55 point buy (57 if human), which is nuts.
Even if the Paladin rolled a higher point buy, which may not even be true, it still doesn't mean the 22 point guys aren't at a huge disadvantage. The Paladin rolled "3 base 18's after racial mod's", which is 37-42 points and right up there with the 40 points on STR,DEX,WIS in the example above.
If the monk has high AC but low HP he may not actually be that far away from the other front line fighters even with +8AC.
For instance, if a monster hits the monk on a 10+ (11/20)and the fighter on a 2+ (19/20) and the fighter has 1.73X HP (19/11) then they actually have the same survivability (more or less) against that monster. That said, the monk also has 16CON apparently so it is unlikely that the other front line fighter can get high enough for this to balance well.
As others have mentioned, I think your problem is that you rolled too well. This is exactly why I prefer point buy or array for character building. If you really want some randomness I would assign a number to each array and then roll to see which array you use.
pH unbalanced wrote:
Buildings are often designed with square walls, which makes a square grid ideal. I've tried hexes inside buildings and it doesn't work as well IMO. I think natural areas lend themselves well to hexes, but squares aren't too bad so I tend to stick with squares so that everything is consistent.
Conversion to hexes isn't too bad, mainly you need to figure out the shape of templates (ie blast template, large monsters, etc.) and how to move off axis on a hex (which still happens). However, you will also miss out on flip maps, dungeon tiles, etc. that can make your job easier.
A difference of 8 AC can be pretty rough to deal with as a GM, what does your HP look like compared to the fighter? I assume you are both front line fighters?
As others have mentioned, you might try and figure out how you can be the tank so that others can focus more on damage. This is a discussion to have with the DM and group since PF does not really have a system for managing "aggro."
I don't think you can end your move in another creature's square unless it is helpless...
In any case provoking is not such a bad thing as long as you don't get hit since it soaks up AOO that may be used on other team members otherwise. You get a large AC bonus for being tiny and you could look into getting Mobility to help some more.
I am doubtful that you are actually doing truckloads of damage with a tiny (-4 STR, tiny weapon), TWF build.
You are describing a setting that you don't like, I assure that the 4e ruleset does not require the existence of magical dinosaur riding merchants anymore than PF does. They both assume that the party gets certain item bonuses for their respective encounter systems, and either can be run as "low magic" with some tweaking to the encounter system or the description of said items. In fact, I would say that 4e has the advantage in the magical item department since it is at least clear what item bonuses are expected at each level to use their encounter system.
Ciaran Barnes wrote:
Right, so if you are following wealth by level the AC boosts don't really start until 6th level and then you get about +1AC per level after that. By level 15 you get about +9 to AC, which is a lot compared to the guy that is not going after the Big 6. Up to level 5 it is cheaper to just get better mundane armor.
@ Lou Diamond
Also, Martials are not confined to +2 arms and armor, they will get to +3 arms and armor at level 11 or so following the WBL guidelines. You claim that the Big 6 are over priced, do you have an example of a better value item for that level?
The big 6 only matter for:
2. Encounter balance, if the encounter level is designed with the expectation that the party is significantly stronger than it is then that is a problem. This is less of a problem for experienced DM's who can just adjust the encounter on the fly.
I expect that casters only really "need" the item of primary stat and maybe a cloak of resistance. Front line fighters, on the other hand, are more likely to need the Big 6 to stay competitive with other front line fighters and monsters.
Grrr, hyperbolic numbers in a thread about balancing numbers is not appreciated (even though it is common). A difference of 3 AC is very easy to work with, a difference of 20 is almost impossible. I agree there is no actual problem here.
It may or may not average out, if the AC's wer actually 20 points apart I would expect the two PC's to have pretty different survivability even against a spread of monsters. For a 3 AC spread you are absolutely right.
PF has few "aggro" mechanics, so who the monsters attack varies from table to table. If monk's AC were 20 points higher than the next guy he would probably be a very good tank, assuming he can get aggro.
If the monk is 20AC ahead of the other front line fighter then this most likely will cause balance issues. If a monster attacks at +19-20 the monk has an effective HP multiplier of 20 to the fighter's 1.05. The two get equal effective HP multipliers only when the monster's attack bonus is 39 or greater or less than 1.
It would be helpful to know your HP total, the monk's HP total, and your average party level. It is possible, though unlikely, that there is a large enough difference in HP that your survivability can be balanced by the GM's choice of monster (i.e. high damage/low accuracy versus high accuracy/low damage).
It could be that the monk will need to tank and you will need to provide damage, which means you need a way to keep the monsters focused on the monk while you murder them.
@ The OP, even if rangers are the worst archers (and I'm not saying they are), that doesn't mean they aren't good enough for PFS play. Archery at its face is already more effective than melee in most games simply because you can full attack most of the time and often terrain is lacking (which favors the archer). Just watch out for certain spells, such as Wind Wall, which basically shut the character down.
I deff. suggest taking the animal companion, but im not so sure about the horse. Alot(as in the majority), of pfs modules are set in some kind of indoors where a horse companion would not be able to go... Maybe try a wolf or a cheetah for tripping abilties.. Treantmonks guide goes over the animal companions really well..
I'm not sure what you mean by that;1. Monsters are often equal in size or bigger than a PC mount and rider, how do they get around?
2. Most animal companions would not be welcome in someone's real world house, particularly once they get larger. In a fantasy setting things seem to be different on what is acceptable indoors.
3. You don't have to ride a horse, it could be a different animal.
4. You don't have to ride as big of an animal if you pick a small PC.
The check for controlling your mount in combat (DC 20) is for non-combat trained mounts and the cavalier's mount is always considered combat trained (per his class feature). The check for guiding with your knees is DC5, which he should autopass if he has put any points into riding. The cavalier should not be rolling to move his mount at all.
Even the check to have your mount attack is only DC10, which the cavalier should be able to autopass pretty quickly.
Being able to charge is all about how good the player is at tactics and if there are open places to charge from. I find it very surprising that all of your combat has been in such tight quarters. Even in a dungeon there could be some large chambers, and there probably should be to allow the player to use the character they've made and to keep combat varied.
The core idea seems a little ambiguous, and the suggested implementation would have a major impact on class and encounter balance (as Dabbler points out).
First the current system assumes that criticals will only happen some fraction of the critical threat range, so always confirming is already really strong particularly against high AC targets... I mean this is stronger than a 19th level class feature of the Lore Warden. This has a consequence of making all the critical feats much better.
Second, you will be doing a lot more damage than is currently balanced in the system. I think easiest solution will be to universally increase HP, depending on how your rule is implemented with monsters.
Third, you will have to determine how your rule interacts with the many class features, feats, spells, etc that mess with the chance to confirm critical. You will likely need to rebalance a lot of those classes since currently messing with critical confirmation is pretty strong.
What do you mean by putting critical chances in the hands of the character? The character can already pick their critical chances by making appropriate weapon choices. Do you want to tie the critical mechanic to class progression (it seems that way since you are using BAB)?
You could also tie this mechanic more closely to feats, or skills, or attributes all of which are class independent (sort of). You could tie critical threat to DEX and critical multiplier to STR, for instance.
Another way to speed things up is to share NPC's AC with the players, this is one less piece of information that has to go back and forth between you and the players.
Attack Power Bonus = [Attack Bonus]*[Average Damage] + [Crit Range]*[Crit Multiplier]*20
Hit Pool = [Armor Class]*[Hit Points]
Whenever you attack someone you subtract your attack power bonus from their hit pool until they die. For attacks that do not target AC (i.e. saves) I would just specify if a monster is "weak" or "strong" in that area and apply double or half damage as appropriate.
I am sure you will want a die roll, I'm still working on what a good spread would be. Basically you can divide both numbers by whatever you want and then subtract the average of whatever dice you want to roll from the Attack Power Bonus. Then when you go to do damage you roll some dice and subtract those from the hit pool (along with the modified attack power bonus). I would also tie critical based effects to the value of this die roll, again I just haven't gotten around to it yet.
I think this keeps people alive for a similar amount of time to the current rules, with things dying somewhat faster at lower levels. Feel free to check if this feels right, basically things of equal CR should die in about 3.5 attacks.
Some thoughts, I haven't actually used these...
For changing how many dice you roll, every two dice average to the size of the die +1. So if you have 10d6, that would be 5(2d6)=5(7)=35. You may want to precalculate these values.
I would look at reducing the variability in effects, part of the reason that spells take so long for me is that you have to read a paragraph to figure out what they do. IMO an easier way would be to come up with maybe 4-5 mechanical effects and then re-fluff them as appropriate.
Duration effects can be changed into die rolls at the start of each round so you don't have to track turns. An easy way to do this is to select a die whose size is equal to the duration (in rounds) of the effect. At the start of the round you roll the die and on a "1" the effect ends.
For initiative, if you group the players and monsters this can be a huge time savings (as mentioned earlier). If you are having a problem with the players going on and on about their order, just get rid of the option to hold your turn. I would still allow readying an action, but maybe only allow them to react to opponent/environment triggers.
Set a turn timer, if you don't act in time then you go on full defense and take no other action. My group started doing this while boardgaming and it has made a huge difference on cutting down "analysis paralysis." Last night it was a 5 minute timer for Illuminati, it probably shaved 30-60 minutes off the play time.
There is the "character building" minigame in pathfinder that isn't fun unless there is variation in the power of different builds. This is the same reason that characters are so convoluted to make in PF, because if character building weren't a game unto itself then I would say that 3.5/PF is one of the worst character building systems around.
In general, you can limit the power spread by more tightly controlling player options. For instance, you could have all premade characters. You could achieve perfect balance if you only have one premade character to choose from...
IMO if you want good character balance in D&D style combat, then you should seriously take a look at 4e core.
Wait, since when does Kensai not grant spell combat?
Magus gives you spell combat, but it is not a feature of the Kensai archetype. When someone talks about "Kensai abilities" I think of the features granted by the archetype, not the features of the base class.
It was just a miss-communication with the OP, if you are a Kensai then you will have spell combat.
Ah, your edit is unclear since neither Sword Saint nor Kensai grant spell combat. I also don't see anything about a penalty...
Is he specifically letting you use the ECB one handed? I ask because Crane Wing will also not work without a free hand. I also wonder how that works with Power Attack, which is generally amazing with two handed weapons. Kensai with ECB and spell combat seems pretty nuts.
***Other non-RAW parts of your build****
You do not qualify for Crane Riposte at level 11, due to your 3 level dip into monk your BAB is only +7 at that point. You also don't qualify for Combat Style Master for the same reason.
You have not listed your Magus Arcana choices, traits, skills, favored class bonus, spells...
Mage Armor is not on the Magus spell list and Shield is 1 min/level, which means you will need to be ready for a fight to use it. Also remember that you only get 5 level 1 spells per day at level 14, and True Strike and Shocking Grasp are level 1 as well.
I would also be a little worried about hitting. Magus is basically full BAB when he can keep his weapon energized with his Arcane Pool. Your arcane pool is smaller than usual since you are bladebound, splitting items with WIS, and have fewer spells (so you are more likely to need spell recall). Basically you only get 7 minutes of full BAB per day at level 14, assuming you aren't spending those points on something else. You apparently are not increasing your primary attack stat (DEX), which starts high but is not being increased. Starting at level 7 you are presumably taking -2 on your attacks so you can use Crane Wing.
I'm not sure why you would want Dimensional Agility since you can only cast Dimensional Door once per day at that level given your INT and Kensai.
If he doesn't draw his weapon he will lose almost all benefits from both Bladebound and Kensai archetypes, I'm not sure why he would do that...
Also I don't think you can use spell combat with an Elven Curved Blade since it is two handed and you must have an empty hand for spell combat.
I don't know what you are trying to do, it looks like you are going for high defense but I don't see why the monsters would target you to begin with.
Pretty cool, but I wonder if it would come up often enough to be a standard manouver. This sounds similar to how I would run a skill challenge in 4e.
What happens if a character has a climb speed (i.e. using the ninja trick)? Normally they could climb much faster than normal, would they still be limited to moving between adjacent locations? If a creature is particularly large it seems like it would take longer to move around than if the creature were smaller.
IMO the paladin should play this as if the sorcerer did not know there were people in the web (which is partially true anyway). Perhaps you can console the sorcerer because he must be simply racked with guilt for something he had little control over... depending on how serious you all are about the game you could run around as the clueless paladin, or bring up the issue with the other player.
In any case, this is not a paladin only problem. Many groups I have played with have banned evil characters because many people have a hard time playing such a character and keeping the group going. I think this is a very similar problem to keeping the paladin code while partying with characters that are not also lawful good.
This is like a sorcerer that trades spells known for higher level spells.
IMO SLA's are better than spells:
I'll have to look at the non-combat feat selection to determine if the feat progression puts the class over the top.
Why don't you allow spells to be switched out? This basically means that he will suck at early levels or not have enough useful spells at later levels (IMO).
In that case I would argue that "good" and "evil" are very misleading labels. I can see your point though.
Given the understanding that individual dieties determin right and wrong for their followers, I could see where deities with the same alignment could have different ideas about what is right and wrong.
If good and evil are objective descriptions, would you care to define them?
In modern terms, we decide (more or less) collectively what is "good" and "evil" but this accepts a level of ambiguity that some have suggested does not exist in the PF universe.
R_Chance has said that Golarion does not have this level of ambiguity because some supreme being sets the standard. My point is that the PF world does not have a single supreme being to set the standard but rather a pantheon. That means there is still no clear authority to judge "good" and "evil."
...People in a D&D / PF universe don't have that freedom. Some being is telling them what "good" and "evil" are and is definitely judging their actions. Can they go against the grain? Yes. You have free will, but you also have the knowledge of sure and certain consequences for your actions.
Sure, but which being is telling you what is "good" and "evil"?Who decides which gods are "good" and "evil"?
This arguement would make more sense to me if Golarion had only one god, or even if it had two opposing gods (although you'd have to figure out which is "good" and which "evil").
It is important not to help some people too much or they become reliant on you. I have a friend that I boardgame with who is smart but very lazy when it comes to paying attention to the game, he would often ask for "advice" on all the options available to him on his turn which caused a huge slow down. Now we just tell him to choose for himself and instead of telling him a rule, tell him to go find the answer himself. As a result the game goes much more smoothly because he actually knows the rules and thinks about his options without bugging the rest of us (most of the time).
As an archer you want a high str, certainly you want dex more but wthout str you will do less damage. Finesse switch hitter is inferior both in melee and wth ranged weapons.
While having a high STR will help your DPR, it is difficult to accomplish without hurting your HP and saves. Archers already do a lot of damage in PF, so doing even more damage at the cost of survivability seems unwise.
The OP build is obviously possible to do, and is probably competitive in many groups. It is not the optimal switch hitter build since that is strength based, but it is probably good enough.
You will still want some strength for a composite longbow, so you should use Power Attack rather than Pirahna Strike.
Even if you choose to drop strength bellow 13 (again, probably a bad idea), you should still take Power Attack via the Two-Handed Weapon style.
Also, here is the Finesse guide link.