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Does anyone else wonder why Rogue talents are so mediocre?


Pathfinder RPG General Discussion

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Essentially the above, I was posting on the Rogue combat trick post about using a loophole to get an extra combat feat off of the ninja list and I couldn't help but wonder why exactly are all of those Rogue talents so mediocre that people want to cheese out an extra feat instead of taking them? Shouldn't they be unique and particularly useful abilities that only Rogues get access to?

Did the devs think the Rogue had so much going for them that making the talents kinda sucky was important for balance?

What do you guys think, could the Rogue talents use an upgrade?

Liberty's Edge Star Voter 2015

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Several Rogue Talents are really cool actually, they're just mostly not combat focused...which some people are sorta focused on.

Off the top of my head, Trap Spotter, Fast Stealth, and Offensive Defense are all pretty damn good, just for example.


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Offensive Defense I agree pretty darn good. Trap spotter and fast stealth really ought to just be class features in my opinion same with quick disable and fast picks. Some of the others just shouldn't exist I mean really Hold Breath?

EDIT: And I mean class features like built into the first three levels or something I wouldn't even mind if they were just straight level one bonuses because those are things Rogues should do better than everyone else.


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Well, I don't like most of the ones that allow rerolls since they tend to cap at 1/day and don't scale with level...

There's enough I find useful, but I did prefer 3.x where you could just substitute feats

Star Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Not that normal rogue talents existed in 3.x...

Liberty's Edge Star Voter 2015

Well, if we're starting to talk fixes, here's my Rogue fix, from my House Rules document:

Rogue:
Trapfinding explicitly allows the Rogue to find and disable spells that are left in place, such as Magic Mouth or Sepia’s Snake Sigil. The DC to find a spell not listed as a trap is 20+Caster Level, and the DC to disable is 25+Caster Level. No XP is inherently received for disarming such spells.
The Save DC on Master Strike is based on Dexterity, not Intelligence.
The Ki Pool Rogue Trick grants a full, Ninja-sized, Charisma-based, Ki Pool with all the appropriate uses. On the other hand, Ninjas may buy Evasion as a normal Ninja Trick, not an advanced one, and Rogue and Ninja tricks are more or less interchangeable (as are the advanced versions).
The Swashbuckler Archetype receives any one Combat Feat instead of only being limited to Martial Weapon Proficiency.

It tends to result in Rogues with a Ki Pool and Ninjas with Evasion, but I'm pretty much cool with that, honestly.


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Basically boils down to "noncasters can't have nice things" / "noncasters can't have anything that seems unrealistic or physics-breaking."

And a bit of "crappy mechanics but good fluff = proper roleplaying."

Remember PF was written for folks that didn't like 4E, which made Fighters and such much more inherently magical than before. As well as appealing to grognards of older editions who thought 3rd edition went too far in that direction!

While myself and others disliked 4E for more acute reasons, it certainly maks sense for them to have equated this as the desires of their fan base. Indeed, they were correct. Folks like me that want anime / high fantasy and mythology / wire-fu level stunts by noncasters are the extreme minority. So it's only sensible that the PF rogue would end up with a bunch of cutsie 1/day situational +4 skill bonus crap instead of things that will actually let the class do something cool or helpful.

Ninja was an experiment to see how people would handle a more magical/anime rogue that could actually do stuff. And, the fans failed that test spectacularly with their blood cries of rage. So expect things to stay the same for years to come. :(

Dedicated Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Tales Subscriber
StreamOfTheSky wrote:
...Ninja was an experiment to see how people would handle a more magical/anime rogue that could actually do stuff...

QFT!

My Rogue fix:

Give Ninja Trapfinding, reflavor Ki to Grit, call Ninja Rogue.

Liberty's Edge Star Voter 2015

2 people marked this as a favorite.
StreamOfTheSky wrote:
Ninja was an experiment to see how people would handle a more magical/anime rogue that could actually do stuff. And, the fans failed that test spectacularly with their blood cries of rage. So expect things to stay the same for years to come. :(

In fairness, most of the complaining I've seen has to do with it being flat-out more effective than the Rogue mechanicaly. Which is factually true, so I doubt it really says much about anybody.

MicMan wrote:

My Rogue fix:

Give Ninja Trapfinding, call it Rogue.

Note that this differs from mine mainly semantically. :)

Though I do give them both Ki Pool and Evasion, powering them up slighly even over the base Ninja, and leave enough differences that Ninja still qualifies as an Archetype, if not a full alternate class.

The Exchange Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

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Many of the rogue tricks are so bad I would give them for free as a GM. And the good ones are almost required.

Or more likely just buff sneak attack to do min damage when it does not apply. Since they are a good class skill wise and don't really need a skill buff.


GeneticDrift wrote:

Many of the rogue tricks are so bad I would give them for free as a GM. And the good ones are almost required.

Or more likely just buff sneak attack to do min damage when it does not apply. Since they are a good class skill wise and don't really need a skill buff.

This was essentially what I was thinking well the first part although I did think that alot of the replacements for sneak attack talents were kind of mediocre I would have rather they were additive bonuses so you sneak attack for damage and cause an effect and that they could stack at least somewhat(maybe divide them into offense and defense and allow one of each per round when sneak attacking or maybe one per attack to a max of 1 each so more attacks = more effects)

Shadow Lodge

Rogues don't get nice things.


Ah I see so nobody wonders why because everyone knows that Rogues are jerks and nobody loves them ... poor Rogues.


I love rogues. That's why I'm upset. If I didn't care about them, I'd be far less troubled by them sucking so badly.

Liberty's Edge Star Voter 2015

gnomersy wrote:
Ah I see so nobody wonders why because everyone knows that Rogues are jerks and nobody loves them ... poor Rogues.

I love them! Rogues and Bards are the only character classes I've ever actually played more than one of in Pathfinder! I want to hug them and squeeze them and call them George!

Damn it!

Hence, House Rules. :)


By no one I meant the devs but yeah I dunno I love the feel of Rogues thematically they're awesome but why can't they just be better so I don't feel like going pure rogue is just worse than Rogue/Fighter?

Liberty's Edge Star Voter 2015

gnomersy wrote:
By no one I meant the devs but yeah I dunno I love the feel of Rogues thematically they're awesome but why can't they just be better so I don't feel like going pure rogue is just worse than Rogue/Fighter?

Yeah, I know how you feel. Talk to your GM about adapting Ninja stuff (I think many would be amenable to trading Evasion for Ki Pool and using the Ninja Tricks list). That makes it a lot more worth it, potentially anyway.


gnomersy wrote:
Offensive Defense I agree pretty darn good. Trap spotter and fast stealth really ought to just be class features in my opinion same with quick disable and fast picks. Some of the others just shouldn't exist I mean really Hold Breath?

You do realise that there is a pirate archetype. Taking Hold Breath for a pirate is a very logic choice and depending on you play the pirate, this may be important. If you spend your entire life on/near water, not drowning probably is high on your survival list.

And before you start saying, but nobody ever plays a pirate, Skull & Shackles seems to play right into the card of the pirate and I'm quite sure there are many campaigns that have encountered a pirate of some sort.

I agree that +2 rounds is a bit underwhelming though we would be having the same discussion with +4 or maybe even +6 rounds.


arioreo wrote:
gnomersy wrote:
Offensive Defense I agree pretty darn good. Trap spotter and fast stealth really ought to just be class features in my opinion same with quick disable and fast picks. Some of the others just shouldn't exist I mean really Hold Breath?

You do realise that there is a pirate archetype. Taking Hold Breath for a pirate is a very logic choice and depending on you play the pirate, this may be important. If you spend your entire life on/near water, not drowning probably is high on your survival list.

And before you start saying, but nobody ever plays a pirate, Skull & Shackles seems to play right into the card of the pirate and I'm quite sure there are many campaigns that have encountered a pirate of some sort.

I agree that +2 rounds is a bit underwhelming though we would be having the same discussion with +4 or maybe even +6 rounds.

It's a very fluffy choice yes but you're also right that +2 rounds is so piddly that it isn't worth what is the equivalent of a feat slot. Heck if it made it impossible for you to drown it would just barely be worth it for any normal character.


Rogue talents are like feats: some of them are pretty good, and lots of them are pretty lousy.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Modules Subscriber
Pirate Rob wrote:
Not that normal rogue talents existed in 3.x...

That's the answer. Right there. Look no further.

They only exist to fill the formerly dead levels. The goal wasn't to power up the system but to make it so every level for every class got something, even if it wasn't dramatic or powerful. At the same time, mechanical fixes were made, but that's about it.

Sczarni

Here's a question-- why are rogue talents so underwhelming but barbarian rage powers aren't? Is it because rage powers can only be used while raging and thus have a built-in drawback that lets the devs make them more powerful? Or is it because barbarians in general are more highly valued than rogues?

I also noticed that a lot of the rogue talents seemed grouped towards specific tactics. There's a few that benefit your Bluff, Diplomacy, and Sleight of Hand skills. There's a few that grant you a specific feat (and one that grants any combat feat, plus an advanced one that grants any feat). There's surprisingly enough, a few for Climb checks and two that involve being prone. But unlike feats, they're not organized into trees. There are basic and advanced talents, and a few talents have other talents as prereqs, but there aren't any "talent trees" nearly as deep as feat trees, meaning your average rogue is going to have to pick up a little of everything instead of getting really good at one thing. Likely the only aspect of a rogue with a decent number of talents that benefit it is sneak attacks, and all those talents don't stack, so you might as well just pick the one you like the most and not bother with the rest.


Silent Saturn wrote:
Here's a question-- why are rogue talents so underwhelming but barbarian rage powers aren't?

I'm not sure what you mean; I can think of quite a few underwhelming rage powers.

Liberty's Edge Star Voter 2015

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hogarth wrote:


I'm not sure what you mean; I can think of quite a few underwhelming rage powers.

Yeah. There seem to be more good Rage Powers than Rogue Talents, but that strikes me as much as a matter of luck as anything else.


gnomersy wrote:
It's a very fluffy choice yes but you're also right that +2 rounds is so piddly that it isn't worth what is the equivalent of a feat slot. Heck if it made it impossible for you to drown it would just barely be worth it for any normal character.

Keep in mind the last two words you wrote.

Not fit for a normal character is an important notion here.

The rogue as a class is already situational. Rogues aren't like wizards how are always godlike in any campaign. A few conditions have to be met before a rogue shines like a rogue should.

A rogue with Hold breath has just made himself more situational. If you never come near water or suffocating gas, Hold breath is useless (and for most campaigns, this will be the case). This however doesn't mean there aren't situation where it can be important. A pirate campaign being one of them.

Think of it as some of the wizard spells. I'm quite sure most people don't prepare Detect Poison and only write it in their spell books when they get it for free.
This however doesn't mean there aren't situation where it can be useful. Forinstance, why trying to prevent an assassin from poisoning a king.


Silent Saturn wrote:
Here's a question-- why are rogue talents so underwhelming but barbarian rage powers aren't? Is it because rage powers can only be used while raging and thus have a built-in drawback that lets the devs make them more powerful? Or is it because barbarians in general are more highly valued than rogues?

I'd say the biggest difference is the universal resource pool. With limited rage rounds, stronger options can be made available. It also opens the door to stuff like "Spend 3 rounds of rage" feats or "1/rage" abilities. Rogues talents, meanwhile, need to be limited in other ways. Unfortunately, this often means making them excessively situational or 1/day. Given the other restrictions of the class (no magic, 3/4 BaB, reliance on Sneak Attack), it is just too much.

For comparison, look at the Ninja. Thanks to its ki pool, it can offer much, much stronger tricks than baseline Rogue talents. New tricks can add more options, without making the Ninja overpowered. Sure, Vanishing Trick is strong, but you have to choose between it, and an extra attack, and a bomb, and all your other options. I dream of a similar situation for the Rogue, deciding between using up a panache point to use Assault Leader or saving it in case I need Defensive Roll again today. Alas, I don't think that will be happening outside of Pathfinder 2.0.

EDIT:

arioreo wrote:

Think of it as some of the wizard spells. I'm quite sure most people don't prepare Detect Poison and only write it in their spell books when they get it for free.

This however doesn't mean there aren't situation where it can be useful. Forinstance, why trying to prevent an assassin from poisoning a king.

The difference, of course, being that the Wizard can easily switch out his spells. He also gets a lot more of them, leaving room for a few weird options without sacrificing utility. Rogues, on the other hand, end up sacrificing general utility for situational abilities that aren't even that strong in their situation. I could see Hold Breath being almost passable if strengthened and combined with Strong Stroke, but as is I wouldn't take it even in a campaign set in the middle of the ocean.


arioreo wrote:
gnomersy wrote:
Offensive Defense I agree pretty darn good. Trap spotter and fast stealth really ought to just be class features in my opinion same with quick disable and fast picks. Some of the others just shouldn't exist I mean really Hold Breath?

You do realise that there is a pirate archetype. Taking Hold Breath for a pirate is a very logic choice and depending on you play the pirate, this may be important. If you spend your entire life on/near water, not drowning probably is high on your survival list.

And before you start saying, but nobody ever plays a pirate, Skull & Shackles seems to play right into the card of the pirate and I'm quite sure there are many campaigns that have encountered a pirate of some sort.

I agree that +2 rounds is a bit underwhelming though we would be having the same discussion with +4 or maybe even +6 rounds.

Alchemists do this better.


arioreo wrote:

Keep in mind the last two words you wrote.
Not fit for a normal character is an important notion here.

The rogue as a class is already situational. Rogues aren't like wizards how are always godlike in any campaign. A few conditions have to be met before a rogue shines like a rogue should.

A rogue with Hold breath has just made himself more situational. If you never come near water or suffocating gas, Hold breath is useless (and for most campaigns, this will be the case). This however doesn't mean there aren't situation where it can be important. A pirate campaign being one of them.

Think of it as some of the wizard spells. I'm quite sure most people don't prepare Detect Poison and only write it in their spell books when they get it for free.
This however doesn't mean there aren't situation where it can be useful. Forinstance, why trying to prevent an assassin from poisoning a king.

Oh I agree which is why I included the two lines but it's better to make a class work in general and then mold itself to the specific aka a wizard who has normal spells and when he sees the need can whip out detect poison or the like than it is to have a class that can't manage in general but can manage the specific.

I suppose my thing is I don't want the Rogue to be situational I want him to be an equal option like a fighter or a wizard or a cleric somebody who can be useful in enough ways to manage in most situations instead of sticking him in a corner where he can play.


gnomersy wrote:
arioreo wrote:

Keep in mind the last two words you wrote.
Not fit for a normal character is an important notion here.

The rogue as a class is already situational. Rogues aren't like wizards how are always godlike in any campaign. A few conditions have to be met before a rogue shines like a rogue should.

A rogue with Hold breath has just made himself more situational. If you never come near water or suffocating gas, Hold breath is useless (and for most campaigns, this will be the case). This however doesn't mean there aren't situation where it can be important. A pirate campaign being one of them.

Think of it as some of the wizard spells. I'm quite sure most people don't prepare Detect Poison and only write it in their spell books when they get it for free.
This however doesn't mean there aren't situation where it can be useful. Forinstance, why trying to prevent an assassin from poisoning a king.

Oh I agree which is why I included the two lines but it's better to make a class work in general and then mold itself to the specific aka a wizard who has normal spells and when he sees the need can whip out detect poison or the like than it is to have a class that can't manage in general but can manage the specific.

I suppose my thing is I don't want the Rogue to be situational I want him to be an equal option like a fighter or a wizard or a cleric somebody who can be useful in enough ways to manage in most situations instead of sticking him in a corner where he can play.

Sure, making the rogue less situation would make it a more interesting class. It's not always easy/possible to predict a campaign path close enough to make a rogue work to it's fullest capabilities.

I however don't think delete the rogue or deleting Hold Breath is going to get us anywhere.
Deleting Hold Breath would only worsen the situation. If you delete Hold Breath, you are potentially losing a corner where the rogue can play.

Shadow Lodge

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Deadmanwalking wrote:
hogarth wrote:


I'm not sure what you mean; I can think of quite a few underwhelming rage powers.
Yeah. There seem to be more good Rage Powers than Rogue Talents, but that strikes me as much as a matter of luck as anything else.

So much for 'roguish luck'.

Silver Crusade

I think one thing people need to look at is the fact that some people find out what kind of campaign the DM is going to run before they decide what class, let alone options, they are going to choose.

If the DM says he is going to run a high seas game and everything takes place on or in the sea then Hold Breath becomes a lot less situational.

If your DM says he is going to run a general sandbox style game then you might want to take talents that are less situational.


arioreo wrote:


Sure, making the rogue less situation would make it a more interesting class. It's not always easy/possible to predict a campaign path close enough to make a rogue work to it's fullest capabilities.

I however don't think delete the rogue or deleting Hold Breath is going to get us anywhere.
Deleting Hold Breath would only worsen the situation. If you delete Hold Breath, you are potentially losing a corner where the rogue can play.

I agree but I did say it was something that shouldn't have existed not something to delete I think what should have happened or should still happen is for paizo to toss some big rooms into the talent list instead of corners for the rogue to play in and accept that this will completely bork most of the old talents but that's fine because they weren't good to begin with.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014, Star Voter 2015

I do want to point out that there are a few gems among the rogue talents (and ninja tricks - remember that rogues can pick from that list too, if UC is allowed).

Wall Climber (ninja trick) grants a 20ft climb speed on vertical climbs.

Strong Swimmer lets you roll twice and take the better on every swim check you make.

Rogue Crawl lets you 5ft step while prone, which is (to my knowledge) completely unique in the game.

Stand Up lets you stand as a free action, which again is (to my knowledge) completely unique.

Yeah, lots of them don't measure up, but there are some goodies out there.

Sczarni

Jiggy wrote:

I do want to point out that there are a few gems among the rogue talents (and ninja tricks - remember that rogues can pick from that list too, if UC is allowed).

Wall Climber (ninja trick) grants a 20ft climb speed on vertical climbs.

Strong Swimmer lets you roll twice and take the better on every swim check you make.

Rogue Crawl lets you 5ft step while prone, which is (to my knowledge) completely unique in the game.

Stand Up lets you stand as a free action, which again is (to my knowledge) completely unique.

Yeah, lots of them don't measure up, but there are some goodies out there.

I thought Rogue Crawl and Stand Up made a good combo, but that was because I thought being prone granted a stealth bonus. I was imagining a crossbow sniper build. Upon further inspection, being prone does nothing to aid stealth, so unless you plan to get tripped a lot or aim wands of grease at your own feet, those two are still pretty bad.

I'd also like to point out that most of the talents you pointed out are terrain-dependent. If you never find yourself near a vertical climbing surface, a body of water, or needing to crawl around, then these talents are just not useful. How often does your GM put you in those situations?

Silver Crusade

Silent Saturn wrote:
Jiggy wrote:

I do want to point out that there are a few gems among the rogue talents (and ninja tricks - remember that rogues can pick from that list too, if UC is allowed).

Wall Climber (ninja trick) grants a 20ft climb speed on vertical climbs.

Strong Swimmer lets you roll twice and take the better on every swim check you make.

Rogue Crawl lets you 5ft step while prone, which is (to my knowledge) completely unique in the game.

Stand Up lets you stand as a free action, which again is (to my knowledge) completely unique.

Yeah, lots of them don't measure up, but there are some goodies out there.

I thought Rogue Crawl and Stand Up made a good combo, but that was because I thought being prone granted a stealth bonus. I was imagining a crossbow sniper build. Upon further inspection, being prone does nothing to aid stealth, so unless you plan to get tripped a lot or aim wands of grease at your own feet, those two are still pretty bad.

I'd also like to point out that most of the talents you pointed out are terrain-dependent. If you never find yourself near a vertical climbing surface, a body of water, or needing to crawl around, then these talents are just not useful. How often does your GM put you in those situations?

You have to be careful in your examples as well. Talking about Hold Breath while in a desert campaign does make the talent seem dumb.

You talk about certain situations and it really boils down to each person's game. You talk about terrain-dependent being a restriction, it is actually, but it's no different than say the Ranger's Favored enemy. Undead Favored Enemy isn't very nice when you aren't fighting any undead.

It helps to actually sit down with your DM and explain what types of abilities you posses and see if he can add those in to his campaign or find out what his campaign involves and then you choose your abilities based on that.

Star Voter 2013

Silent Saturn wrote:


I'd also like to point out that most of the talents you pointed out are terrain-dependent. If you never find yourself near a vertical climbing surface, a body of water, or needing to crawl around, then these talents are just not useful. How often does your GM put you in those situations?

I suppose rogue have the tendency of putting themselves in those situations, triying to use the terrain to your advantage is vital for a rogue becouse they lack the raw power of other classes.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014, Star Voter 2015

Silent Saturn wrote:
I thought Rogue Crawl and Stand Up made a good combo, but that was because I thought being prone granted a stealth bonus. I was imagining a crossbow sniper build. Upon further inspection, being prone does nothing to aid stealth, so unless you plan to get tripped a lot or aim wands of grease at your own feet, those two are still pretty bad.

They could be good if there are lots of wolves in the campaign. ;)

Quote:
I'd also like to point out that most of the talents you pointed out are terrain-dependent. If you never find yourself near a vertical climbing surface, a body of water, or needing to crawl around, then these talents are just not useful. How often does your GM put you in those situations?

Yeah, they're terrain-dependent. I play in PFS, so the terrain varies a lot. I've had to swim several times, and my 2nd level rogue with Wall Climber once climbed a 150ft cliff, then climbed back down while being fly-by attacked by a pair of harpies... and made it.

If you're creative, Wall Climber can get downright silly. For instance, take my aforementioned level 2 rogue. With that climb speed, he can take 10 even while threatened and get a 26 on his climb check. That's enough to bare-hand a brick wall (DC 25). Common dungeon walls are even easier. Also, the climb skill states that although climbing requires both hands, once you're in place, you can cling with one hand and attack (or cast spells, or whatever) with the other.

So you could perch yourself above the door and knock on it to get the someone to open up and come out looking for you, then drop down, 5ft step through the door, close it, and still have a move action left.

Alternatively, you could climb up over someone to get a +1 elevation bonus on your attacks (probably with a cestus or something) just because they're near a wall.

Climbing: it's for more than just getting to Point B! :)

Star Voter 2013

Jiggy wrote:
Silent Saturn wrote:
I thought Rogue Crawl and Stand Up made a good combo, but that was because I thought being prone granted a stealth bonus. I was imagining a crossbow sniper build. Upon further inspection, being prone does nothing to aid stealth, so unless you plan to get tripped a lot or aim wands of grease at your own feet, those two are still pretty bad.

They could be good if there are lots of wolves in the campaign. ;)

Quote:
I'd also like to point out that most of the talents you pointed out are terrain-dependent. If you never find yourself near a vertical climbing surface, a body of water, or needing to crawl around, then these talents are just not useful. How often does your GM put you in those situations?

Yeah, they're terrain-dependent. I play in PFS, so the terrain varies a lot. I've had to swim several times, and my 2nd level rogue with Wall Climber once climbed a 150ft cliff, then climbed back down while being fly-by attacked by a pair of harpies... and made it.

If you're creative, Wall Climber can get downright silly. For instance, take my aforementioned level 2 rogue. With that climb speed, he can take 10 even while threatened and get a 26 on his climb check. That's enough to bare-hand a brick wall (DC 25). Common dungeon walls are even easier. Also, the climb skill states that although climbing requires both hands, once you're in place, you can cling with one hand and attack (or cast spells, or whatever) with the other.

So you could perch yourself above the door and knock on it to get the someone to open up and come out looking for you, then drop down, 5ft step through the door, close it, and still have a move action left.

Alternatively, you could climb up over someone to get a +1 elevation bonus on your attacks (probably with a cestus or something) just because they're near a wall.

Climbing: it's for more than just getting to Point B! :)

In the right circumstances is like levitate, wich (i suppose nobody would argue) is a good thing.


Rather often, honestly. Cities, for example, are full of vertical surfaces to climb. There are monsters who can trip (wolves, werewolves), and NPCs who might use that tactic. There are also times where you fall off of something.

Being prone might not come up all of the time, but when it does, being able to five-foot step and stand up and attack/drink a potion/whatever could save your life. /shrug/

EDIT: ha, ninja'd all over!


I would love to see a monk/rogue combo class that shores up the problems with both of them. Ninja is a step in the right direction, but not quite there yet.


Jiggy wrote:
Silent Saturn wrote:
I thought Rogue Crawl and Stand Up made a good combo, but that was because I thought being prone granted a stealth bonus. I was imagining a crossbow sniper build. Upon further inspection, being prone does nothing to aid stealth, so unless you plan to get tripped a lot or aim wands of grease at your own feet, those two are still pretty bad.

They could be good if there are lots of wolves in the campaign. ;)

Quote:
I'd also like to point out that most of the talents you pointed out are terrain-dependent. If you never find yourself near a vertical climbing surface, a body of water, or needing to crawl around, then these talents are just not useful. How often does your GM put you in those situations?

Yeah, they're terrain-dependent. I play in PFS, so the terrain varies a lot. I've had to swim several times, and my 2nd level rogue with Wall Climber once climbed a 150ft cliff, then climbed back down while being fly-by attacked by a pair of harpies... and made it.

If you're creative, Wall Climber can get downright silly. For instance, take my aforementioned level 2 rogue. With that climb speed, he can take 10 even while threatened and get a 26 on his climb check. That's enough to bare-hand a brick wall (DC 25). Common dungeon walls are even easier. Also, the climb skill states that although climbing requires both hands, once you're in place, you can cling with one hand and attack (or cast spells, or whatever) with the other.

So you could perch yourself above the door and knock on it to get the someone to open up and come out looking for you, then drop down, 5ft step through the door, close it, and still have a move action left.

Alternatively, you could climb up over someone to get a +1 elevation bonus on your attacks (probably with a cestus or something) just because they're near a wall.

Climbing: it's for more than just getting to Point B! :)

Good points there! Funny enough I just wanted to post the example about wolves myself ;-P

The strengths of rogues are many. I particularly like that their abilities are (with some exceptions) always available. And I sometimes get the impression that the skills section seems to be one of the most rarely read ones in the whole rulebook. You can do so much with them, for example identify a potion entirely without magic just with perception...
Skills is one of the areas where the rogues shine. Bards have made some good inroads there, but they do not get the bonus to skills that rogues can get.
And although sneak attack arguably isn't the most powerful ability of all, the rogue talents modifying it and some good buddies (like the bard casting greater invisibility on the rogue and inspiring courage) make it quite effective. Also archetypes like scout allow you to reliably get it.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014, Star Voter 2015

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Sangalor wrote:
I sometimes get the impression that the skills section seems to be one of the most rarely read ones in the whole rulebook.

Heh, yeah, most power-level/balance complaints in this game (over or under; doesn't matter) are based almost entirely on not knowing how the rules work.

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