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The Monk - Is It Better To Just Dump Wisdom and Wear Armor?


Advice

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If you know how to properly equip the barbarian, then he can easily outdo the fighter as an unarmed striker.

To be perfectly fair, Raging Brutality would probably be enough to do it on its own (the feat lets me add my FULL Con to all my attacks: off-hand and secondary natural attacks). Keep in mind that barbarian's also have access to pounce (increasing action economy).

I will admit, its actually a tough call between the barbarian and the fighter to determine who will win. Personally though, I will say that the barbarian probably will win, and be more versatile in the process (basically a barbarian has a better skill set then the standard fighter, and can also gain a lot of powerful defensive qualities as well).

(On a side note, my fighter build does not need to take 'extra traits'. The build is only using 2 to begin. I don't need to take more)

I don't know why everyone keeps 'insisting' on posting a build: I gave stats, race, feats, traits, and gear. Think of it like a baker who says 'hey, here are all the ingredients; mix them all together and tell me what you find'.

Sczarni

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Because you're not posting stats race feats and gear, you're posting parts of all those, and taking parts and calling it a whole picture.

When you look at your feats we see you have greater two weapon fighting, greater weapon specialization, and two weapon rend, which means you have to do the retraining option, and it becomes a bit of a juggle.

You mention the stats being the same, but they clearly won't as the monk doesn't need or care about dex for this, but you must have a dex of 19 to get your greater two weapon fighting...

Until you actually try and build it, you're hand waving what you can do, and it's adding up to several assumptions that can't be actually analyzed until you do it.

I've at least posted a build that was able to be broke down and looked at, as have some others.

Dropping the weapon specialization, and focusing on the four winds, I'll try and finish that out after my lunch break, but I think the 10 potential attacks will beat that debate down, even with the cheesed 3 natural attacks you've added in.

The only thing that's keeping the monk close is the itemization issue, which I never realised was this bad for pure damage with monks until exploring it.

Sczarni

Assuming all 10 attacks triggered and hit.

since we're not factoring criticals in this argument, we can drop it and go with hammer the gap like you did, and the damage for all 10 attacks looks like this

we'll take four off from my previous number due to only being able to buy the aomf +2 and not having weapon specilization in this build.
min/max damage comes out 20-160(2d8) + 30-180(3d6) + Dragon style +3 1st strike, 130 (ferocity) + 20 AoMF = 50 + 153 or 340+153.

at level 12 this of course only leaves 2 more elemental fist attacks, but but still.

-edit- forgot hammer the gap would add an extra 45 damage. so we have a min damage of 248 and a max of 538


lantzkev wrote:
you still need to at least pick up the feat then for extra racial traits, due to needing three traits =P

no, no you dont. did you pay attention to the post at all. bite is from TRAIT. claws are from FEATURE. you know, like half-elves getting two favored classes. or the orc ferocity you've pointed out repeatedly for half-orcs. feature =/= trait. please pay attention.

lantzkev wrote:

But yeah I was thinking of toothy.

And no I wouldn't dismiss it by having different priorities in attributes.

with your post there's just no way for the fighter to really get the Dex and Str he needs for the feats and damage/to hit.

he gets the 19 dex required for the feats, and 18 str is completely serviceable, but i can meet it i think.

lantzkev wrote:

I used 20pts because it's what PFS uses. And the rules for Acquiring gear as well, and the money from the core book for it's suggested wealth by level.

I'm used to generally building a class from lvl 1 and just working from there, so I'm not familiar with the "gold restriction" on purchase of max 25% or what nots.

I guess with the PFS restrictions we should be looking at a max item cost of 23k Which will inherently force the monk to become a bit more well rounded than otherwise.

i was working under assumption of 15pb because of... nekogami(?)'s post, which may have been sarcastic. my apologies.

shouldn't be too difficult to move the stats around for better bonuses on the fighter.

lantzkev wrote:

of course this also means the max bonus we can get is a +4 to any specific attribute, and then we have clashes in slots from that point.

So with these standard restrictions the monk can focus on strength and wisdom (two different slots for +4 to each attribute) while the fighter will be stuck choosing +2 for str and dex or +4 to just one, and then a +2 from a ioun stone.

Offhand, except for a Human giving up their skill points and bonus feat, I don't know of any race with a racial bonus to str and dex that's PFS legal.

dunno either, i'll be on the lookout for one. so far the only one's i've found for that are lapith and obitu, which are both 3rd party (not allowed).

lantzkev wrote:

If the fighter focuses Dex enough to get Greater right at lvl 11, he becomes lower in strength then otherwise. The only thing the fighter is able to do to pull ahead is to use three natural attacks in part of a flurry.

Assuming these restrictions :

Monk Fighter
strength: 24 Strength: 24
Wisdom: 22 Dex: 19

belt of giant +4 (wait)(16k) Belt of Giant +4 (waist)(16k)
Wisdom headband +4 (head)(16k) Ioun stone dex +2 (slotless)(8k)
AoMF +2 (neck) 20k AoMF (neck) 20k.

So I guess the question is what gear is available to max the monks dps under this scenario, the...

the fighter's aomf is listed for the same price as the monk's there but isn't +2, but I will chalk that up to a typo and give you the benefit of the doubt. also, any particular reason we aiming for 24 str, specifically? or is it an extension of the "i'm here so you need to be here as well." idea, which i can work with.

quick inferrence on your stat spread real quick:
str (16 base (10 points), +2 racial, +4 belt, +2 level up points?)
wis (16 base (10 points), +2 racial, +4 headband)
leaves you at 10 in dex, con, int, and cha (cha having a -2 racial so it's actually an 8)

you could also dump the int and cha by 3 each and setting them to con and dex would set your spread to:
str 24, dex 13, con 13, int 7, wis 22, cha 5 (the possibility to drop dex or con to 11 to increase the other to 14 and using the third level stat increase to raise it to 12) if you wanted.

if not required to match your wisdom (because they dont quite need it), fighter spread could be:
str 18 (17 points), dex 16 (10 points), con 12 (2 points, really this can go anywhere), int 7, wis 7, cha 7

for a total of:
str 24 (18 base, +2 racial, +2 level up points, +2 belt)
dex 19 (16 base, +1 level up point, +2 ioun stone)
con 12
int 7
wis 7
cha 5 (7 base, -2 racial)

as soon as he gets the stone (sometime after 4th level) he'd have the dex prereq filled to qualify for greater twf.

spent 12000g on stat items (8k for stone, 4k for belt), leaving 96k for the other gear. oddly, this is cheaper than purchasing a +2 str/dex belt.
15k for dueling gloves leaves 81k
16k for monk's robe, leaving 65k
~5200g for +1 brawling light armor, leaving ~59.8k
+2 AoMF is 20k, leaving ~39.8k

having nearly 40 grand to spend on other gear is pretty good i'd feel.
maybe pick up a headband to mitigate those mental dumps somewhat, dunno.


pardon the doublepost, but I shall be away for a few hours whilst I do some housework.


AndIMustMask wrote:


if not required to match your wisdom (because they dont quite need it), fighter spread could be: str 18 (17 points), dex 16 (10 points), con 12 (2 points, really this can go anywhere), int 7, wis 7, cha 7

Why try making 2 different classes match stats in the first place? Seems a bit silly, fighters and monks run off different stats. And why would you drop wis to 7? Fighters may not need loads, but I don't see how taking a -2 penalty to your will saves is going to help you in adventuring, especially on the low end.

I'd love to post the guy I have, but I get the feeling it would be rather disruptive, as he got made for a 20th level game and outside of his char sheet, I don't have the scratch paper I built him on anymore.


*stares blankly at the screen*

...why this debate is even continuing is beyond me.

Alright, seeing as how the point has been overlooked, I shall explain again:

1) I have already conceded that a monk can 'potentially' out-damage a fighter if ALL of the conditions are met (in other words, you flurry, spend ki, and achieve medusa's wrath).

2) However, after conceding the above statement, I also noted that a fighter can do more 'consistent' damage and has a much higher damage ratio. This can be proven by two things: a) a fighter does not rely on variable damage as much as the monk does (variable damage = damage from rolls). b) a fighter also does not need 'conditions' or ki points to achieve his maximum number of full attacks.

3) Therefore, because a fighter CAN 'consistently' achieve 9 attacks on a full-round action, a monk must be able to 'consistently' match that in some way in order to be competitive. If a monk can only achieve 5 attacks on his flurry (which is what he can 'normally' do), then he cannot compete against 9 attacks from a fighter.

4) Thus, it follows that a monk needs to increase his number of attacks. Now, if we use the above mentioned 'Four Winds' monk, we can see that by spending 7 ki points and achieving medusa's wrath, a monk CAN achieve 10 attacks (and when combined with their strength and a half to all strikes, then yes, they shall easily out damage a fighter).

5) Please keep in mind that I have ALREADY stated that a monk 'can' out-damage a fighter. What I am arguing is that a fighter can do more 'consistent' damage and that a fighter's damage ratio is much higher.

6) This can be explained (without even needing to post a build) for two reasons: a fighter has a higher BAB, and when combined with the correct feats, a higher amount of raw damage (in other words, damage that is NOT rolled by dice). In addition, a fighter WILL HAVE more accuracy than a monk.

7) In conclusion, it is clear that a monk CANNOT consistently achieve medusa's wrath or make 10 attacks every time they full-round. However, a fighter CAN achieve this, and does NOT rely on variable damage as much as the monk does.

8) It then follows that my previous statements are correct: a fighter WILL produce more consistent damage and a higher damage ratio, while a monk can 'potentially' out-damage a fighter if all conditions are met.

9) Posting a build is NOT required to prove this. All you have to do is look at the monk's abilities and say 'hey, can a monk 'consistently' achieve these attacks?'

If you're answer is 'no', then a monk's average damage ratio is reduced, and their damage thus becomes more 'inconsistent' then the fighters.


Duskblade wrote:

*stares blankly at the screen*

...why this debate is even continuing is beyond me.

Because some folks want to see how much the difference really is. Or even if its enough to bother with. You make an assertion in an environment where things can be mathematically proven or disproven, you might want to actually do the math.

Otherwise it comes across a whole lot like "because I said so." Which really doesn't prove any points very well.


Interesting thread. I would have thought [hoped] that by page 5 lantzkev might have grown up a little but alass I fear I've just "handwaved" by not detailing his shortcomings.

To the OP. You've opened up an interesting debate about the Monk, I think you're right, the monk isn't even best at being the monk, which adds weight to the general opinion that the monk sucks.


a monk's normal flurry grants 5 attacks (not because "I say so" but because the RULES say so)

the medusa's wrath feat is based on conditions, and the extra attacks for a monk depend on ki points (not because "I say so" but because the RULES say so).

The fighter build I suggested has 6 unarmed strikes and 3 natural attacks (Not because "I say so" but because the RULES say so)

A fighter can consistently achieve 9 attacks in a full round action (not because "I say so" but because the RULES say so)

A monk CANNOT consistently achieve the same number of attacks on every full round (again...not because "I say so" but because the RULES say so)

[Yes, before anyone points it out, irritation levels are rising]

I have already made numerous posts regarding the math of 'consistent' and 'inconsistent' damage. If anyone is STILL hung up on the idea, please feel free to log into hero lab, build a monk and a fighter with the previously mentioned builds, and see for yourself.

As I have said, I am satisfied with my results, and no post thus far has given me a reason to think that a monk is a superior unarmed striker when compared to a fighter (much less a barbarian).

Sczarni

you originally contended that the fighter and the barbarian both would blow the monk out of the water.

Quote:
a two-weapon fighter is the superior unarmed striker in every respect
Quote:
Basically, if you want to be an unarmed striker, don't go monk. Other classes really just do it better.
Quote:
if you wanna do unarmed strike damage, you're probably better off going elsewhere.
Then you'd also say things like
Quote:
but I'm not really in the mood to see 'who would do better'. So instead, I'll just do it like this..

As far as your original assertation, specifically in combination with all your posts here.

Why do monks worry about not wearing armor? Because they want to be monks, because otherwise you're just a worst unarmed fighter than alot of other classes. The only way to be better or cooler or more versatile than other unarmed strikers, is to not wear armor and get your monk abilities going.


*nails on a chalkboard...seriously...NAILS on a chalkboard*

You do understand what 'damage ratio' is correct?

I'm assuming you also understand what 'consistent damage' is, correct?

If both of these things are in favor of the fighter (or the barbarian), and they are not in favor of the monk, it follows that the monk is inferior in unarmed striking when compared to other martial classes that specialize in the 'unarmed striking' department.

This post (AGAIN) was meant to show what all you would lose if you decided to wear armor on your monk. Certain archetypes actually don't even USE some of the skills that most monk's get. My thread basically showed how wearing armor for a monk WASN'T really a horrible idea.

It gives you access to the brawling property, you can still achieve the same AC, if you're using an archetype that already eliminates certain monk abilities, it wouldn't really even matter to begin with.

the statement of 'not really in the mood to see who would do better' is an assertion of my lack of desire to post an ENTIRE BUILD when I don't need to post an ENTIRE BUILD to prove my original point.

If we are wanting to make an unarmed striker, then Strength is the only attribute that matters (and dex in the case of my fighter). If our gold is the same, and our level is the same, then posting a build is POINTLESS if ALL we are TRYING to determine is who can unleash a more powerful array of attacks.....

*slams head against chalkboard and starts to wonder if he's even speaking English at this point*


Duskblade wrote:

a monk's normal flurry grants 5 attacks (not because "I say so" but because the RULES say so)

the medusa's wrath feat is based on conditions, and the extra attacks for a monk depend on ki points (not because "I say so" but because the RULES say so).

The fighter build I suggested has 6 unarmed strikes and 3 natural attacks (Not because "I say so" but because the RULES say so)

A fighter can consistently achieve 9 attacks in a full round action (not because "I say so" but because the RULES say so)

A monk CANNOT consistently achieve the same number of attacks on every full round (again...not because "I say so" but because the RULES say so)

[Yes, before anyone points it out, irritation levels are rising]

I have already made numerous posts regarding the math of 'consistent' and 'inconsistent' damage. If anyone is STILL hung up on the idea, please feel free to log into hero lab, build a monk and a fighter with the previously mentioned builds, and see for yourself.

As I have said, I am satisfied with my results, and no post thus far has given me a reason to think that a monk is a superior unarmed striker when compared to a fighter (much less a barbarian).

Well, if your satisfied, why does it matter so much to you then? Its obviously still of interest to others.


I think it would matter to any writer that their work is properly understood and interpreted. If someone can't figure out what I am doing, or how I'm reaching my conclusions, I'd like to try to explain it to them.

After all, this is called the 'advice' forum for a reason ya know ;)


Its also the internet. In case you hadn't noticed, the thread deviated. It happens. So folks started looking at/for specific builds. Sure, some of its about the build outline you brought up, but not all of it.

You pretty much made your case a couple pages back. Folks are either gonna agree, disagree, or like have a mixed opinion. Its not something you can control, so why worry, and for sure why get upset?


In the words of Admiral Ackbar - IT'S A TRAP!

Yea, not gonna get into a moral debate over why someone should or should not give out helpful advice on the net, so lets just end the conversation here.

Sczarni

I understand everything you're talking about. I also understand that your build will have points of being "behind" and points of being "ahead' at various points. At lvl 20, the monk pulls completely ahead of the fighter.

at lvl 10, the monk is ahead or close enough. at lvl 15 they reach parity again.

The only thing that gives you advantage in these debates are the natural attacks. Without them your whole theory is sunk, and the argument is about unarmed strikes, to which you counter unarmed with natural attacks mixed in. It's a great combo for maximizing attacks, but if your point is damage why even go unarmed on the fighter?

Your original point which was "Monk - is it better to just dump wisdom and wear armor" was just plainly flawed. You drop wisdom you drop your movement, your flurry, and your ac bonus. In exchange for improving AC... You've dumped the wisdom, so now your stunning fist is nerfed, and your ki pool is smaller...

In short, if you don't want to play a monk, you should put armor on your monk and be gimped on all monk fronts... your original point quickly strayed because it had no real merit to it.

You proceeded to back this up with "fighter and barbarian can do this unarmed Ha look monk can't!"

The reality is that monk can if he focuses on that exclusively, again, that's not entirely what being a monk is about though. I've shown you though proof that regardless of how silly you build your fighter and focus his melee, a monk can still beat it.

Sczarni

If you had referenced this with the hobgoblin ironskin monk archetype, you could potentially have a point, as then all you'd be losing out on are ki pool points and flurry with your original point (which again though goes to why play a monk, when other archetypes will do it at that point just as well)

As a stand alone point (and I mentioned this earlier that you should of mentioned the ironskin monk with it) it's ridiculous and not a good point at all. It only works with one monk archetype, and it's for a race that's not even legal at most tables and PFS tables.


Point 1: My fighter will never be behind in with these attacks in any regard. At 1st level, I will already have 2 natural attacks (both made with my full BAB and full Strength damage). Your monk, even with flurry, will already be suffering from more penalties than my fighter.

Point 2: I think you confuse 'unarmed striker' with 'unarmed attacks'. A natural attack is an 'unarmed attack' (please, I don't wanna debate semantics, so lets not go there).

Point 3: I never said 'don't play a monk'. I said: don't play a monk for unarmed strike damage. (please don't twist my words or take them out of context)

Point 4: My 'advantage' of natural attacks is consistent. Your ki points and medusa's wrath are NOT (which are the ONLY things keeping monk in line with my fighter's damage output).

Point 5: I still have more accuracy than your monk (which AGAIN tips the damage ratio in my favor and further away from your own).

Point 6: I will say it again: I do NOT need a build to prove that my BAB is higher than yours, and that medusa's wrath and ki points are all conditional.

Point 7: What if I wanted to play a monk archetype that gives up flurry, or how about a monk that doesn't concern himself with stunning fist? (gee, I guess that would mean that this thread was somewhat useful...baring the four pages of debate which should have ended 2 pages ago)

Point 8: There are other archetypes for monks (aside from ironskin monk) that can benefit from wearing armor. I even mention that such archetypes already give up some of the monk benefits that would otherwise be lost if they wore armor anyway. Therefore, please stop insisting that I SHOULD have referenced ironskin monk to begin with. It gives no weight to your argument to say that I am not allowed to make a post regarding the pros of cons of monks wearing armor.


AndIMustMask wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:
I think the reason the monk does not get armor is that the idea was to create an unarmed combatant, who just beat things down with his fist. He was not supposed to need manufactured weapons or armor.

'thought the whole point of the fighter build above was to show that you can play someone who beats people down with his fist and doesn't have to shoot themselves in the foot in the attempt to survive doing so.

I was just answering a specific question someone asked. :)

Sczarni

1) incorrect at level 15, you have one whole attack ahead, and you're at 1d8 vs 2d10.

2) Guess we could include summoners, magic, etc, since they aren't wielding a weapon as well?

3) you said

Quote:
A monk is perfectly capable of wearing medium mithral armor without incurring any penalty to attacks, skills, speed, etc, so long as he can reduce the armor check penalty to zero.

you advocated dumping wisdom, which you then proceeded to ignore it's impact on ki pool and monk abilities keyed to wisdom...

4) without ki points, the monk at lvl 15, if we can assume he can get a medusa's wrath off, is only 1 attack behind.

5) accuracy hasn't actually been proven yet by you. Although I will admit freely that you probably can get more accurate.

point 6) you do know flurry is factored as if the BAB was a fighters right? dazed, flat-footed, paralyzed, staggered, stunned, or unconscious are all things commonly incurred, and monks have a nifty ability to cause that to happen. Again, assuming you don't dump wisdom like you advocated. I'll counter your accuracy with "I can ignore difficult terrain, I can reduce their ac dramatically, I can ignore their DR completely, I am immune to more things than you are"

7) Like I said, and you failed to mention in your initial point, there's only one archetype that can really benefit from this kind of thought, and even then it still loses out. All it gains from it is a straight up ability to add a armor enhancement or two, and ac. But loses out on added ki, and flurry.

8) If you are addressing a specific situation (iron skin monk) but you make no reference, and use broad sweeping generalizations about monks in general, you get this kind of thing happening.

Sczarni

When you start straying from the "fighters/barbarians unarmed strike better than a monk" and start factoring in situational, it gets muddy quick.

Your unarmed fighter has no tricks at all for anything else, likewise the barbarian. My monk? Even focused on unarmed strike he does anything else better just about.


Quote wrote:
1) incorrect at level 15, you have one whole attack ahead, and you're at 1d8 vs 2d10.

This statement above clear shows me that you do not understand the value of raw damage vs variable damage.

Quote wrote:
2) Guess we could include summoners, magic, etc, since they aren't wielding a weapon as well?

Now you're just getting off topic.

Quote wrote:
you advocated dumping wisdom, which you then proceeded to ignore it's impact on ki pool and monk abilities keyed to wisdom...

Again, you are picking and choosing what I say and using it out of context. I have already stated on numerous occasions what a monk will lose if he wears armor. Please stop taking my words and statements out of context.

Quote wrote:
4) without ki points, the monk at lvl 15, if we can assume he can get a medusa's wrath off, is only 1 attack behind.

You do realize that medusa's wrath is NOT an automatic thing that a monk can do, correct? In order to activate it, you MUST trigger the condition. For the sake of argument, I have politely 'granted' the idea that your monk can trigger it. You do realize that if you cannot Consistently trigger medusa's wrath, the monk loses this argument (if you don't understand why this is so, please go and look up what 'damage ratio' and 'average damage' amounts to)

Your point about ignoring difficult terrain is moot (featherstep slippers or flying achieve same results), and the'versatility' of your class is completely off topic (again, the debate is focused on superior damage with unarmed strikes)

Ya know, I think I'm just gonna let this argument drop because I'm now thoroughly convinced that you don't know what damage ratio is, or what I mean when I talk about raw or consistent damage.

I have been kind enough to humor the idea that you can consistently achieve all your extra attacks from medusa's wrath, but the truth of the matter is...you can't do that. You cannot say that you can 'consistently' achieve medusa's wrath, so therefore this argument is concluded.

Sorry, but until you can show me that you understand what raw and consistent damage is, and also that you understand how to calculate damage ratio, I'm afraid that I'm not going to continue this conversation any longer.


Duskblade wrote:

In the words of Admiral Ackbar - IT'S A TRAP!

Yea, not gonna get into a moral debate over why someone should or should not give out helpful advice on the net, so lets just end the conversation here.

nonsense! i'm positive we can have a wonderful debate that leaves everyone satisfied. what could possibly go wrong?

(mostly im just popping back in to adjust the items/stats in the fighter spread above.

drop base str from 18 to 16 (frees up 7 points), bump wis back to 10, con to 14, and int to 8 (cha is basically a lost cause here)
trade up +2 str belt to +4 (costs an additional 12000g, leaving ~27.8k remaining)
grab +4 wis headband for the hell of it (16k, leaving ~11.8k, brings wis up to 14)

new spread totals at:
str 24, dex 19, con 14, int 8, wis 14, cha 5

spend the remaining ~11800g on cloaks, rings, etc.

i'm pretty much done messing with the thing though, so i'll bow out now.

Sczarni

yes my min damage is 2, yours is 1 in that situation, max 8 vs 20, average 4-5 vs 10.

When you talk about accuracy the difference there is only in the weapon training and potentially focus depending on which archetype we're using.

When it comes to superior damage and accuracy, you've yet to show a build and conclusively prove anything.

For quite awhile you've been advocating we were using the same stats, despite a dex of 10.

The "situational" abilities you're decrying lets look at lvl 20. A good fort save for a single CR 20 monster is 22. a monk at that lvl has a save DC of without a wisdom, 20. Getting the DC of stunning fist to a reasonable point is not hard, specifically with dragon style any successful stun keeps them dazed (triggers medusa's wrath for 1d4+1 rounds)

we're all in agreement that both the monk and fighter will fairly consistently hit anything they are twp/flurrying at when they are using their higher bonuses. The monk will also consistently get a stunning first off (again we're using BBEG examples really other encounters where they are more numerous will be easier to hit)

It is not unreasonable to assume a monk will expend 2 stun attempts and will actually stun his opponent (and thus also daze is for 1d4+1 rounds. and thus able to execute medusa's wrath for at least two turns)


ahem...your dragon style does NOT daze...it gives them the 'shaken' condition which does not benefit from medusa's wrath.

when I say that our stats are the same, I am referring to our Strength stat (I figured this was pretty much implied since we were talking about damage from unarmed strikes, but if I must specifically point this out, then here it is). Our wisdom and other stats will not be the same (obviously because I need my dex, but again, I was fairly certain I didn't have to explain this because my build OBVIOUSLY wouldn't work if I didn't have the dex requirement).

also, you do realize that making a DC 28 fortitude save is VERY easy to do for a CR 20 (A balor can make it automatically so long as he doesn't roll a 1).


lantzkev wrote:

stunned will give you more -2ac and loss of dex, loss of items, loss holding things in hand.

sure, but it's largely dependant on the For Save. Stunning a wizard is easy pie, stunning a dragon not so much. Stunning a Lich wizard is simply impossible. You need to find the average Fort save before adding that to the calculation. That said: yes, the monk have more tricks in his sleeve than the fighter. Nobody has denied that. They can dimension door, slow fall, stun with fists, heal... But on average raw brute force damage, they are weaker. Mainly because of the to hit ratio of fighters: weapon training is so much better than increasing average damage with unarmed strike...

Also, to be able to stun, you have to raise your Wis. That means you have lower STR, widening the gap in pure raw damage.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Just walk away, some people just can't let it go!

Sczarni

sorry was looking at the dazzling display, shattered defenses and was thinking of how that'd work with dragon style when I was typing that up.

When you compare a single strike with monk, no one else hits harder. Your balor you gave as an example, barring AoMF letting you bypass the DR, you'll be stuck at -15dmg every hit.

Martial artist, except for the weapon training keeps abreast of the fighter, and basically gets a free +2 to hit and ignore DR...

so with your dueling gloves and weapon training you end up a whole +4 to hit and damage ahead of the martial artist.


lantzkev wrote:

If the fighter focuses Dex enough to get Greater right at lvl 11, he becomes lower in strength then otherwise. The only thing the fighter is able to do to pull ahead is to use three natural attacks in part of a flurry.

Assuming these restrictions :

Monk Fighter
strength: 24 Strength: 24
Wisdom: 22 Dex: 19

belt of giant +4 (wait)(16k) Belt of Giant +4 (waist)(16k)
Wisdom headband +4 (head)(16k) Ioun stone dex +2 (slotless)(8k)
AoMF +2 (neck) 20k AoMF (neck) 20k.

So I guess the question is what gear is available to max the monks dps under this scenario

A few things:

A human fighter can give up the feat and the skill point, to get +2 to 2 stats. That makes it pretty easy to have the str and dex.

Assuming +2 to two stats, ioun stone, and +4 str belt, that means you can have:
24 str, 20 dex, 14 Con, and INT 10 Wis 10 and Cha 8 with 20 point buy, at level 12 with 3 level bumps. 15 points is doable too, if you dump heavier. 24 str 19 dex 14 con Int 9 Wis 10 Cha 7.

Now let's go to the purchases. IF the fighter forgets about AoMF, they can buy Cestus +3 for 18.355g. That makes for an extra +1 to hit and damage, free. You can ignore the Monk's Robe as a fighter, and save an extra 13k, that you can use in boots of haste, for example. Also, the fighter can buy a +1 Brawling light armor. All in all, that means the fighter gets, from equipment alone, +4 to hit and +3 to damage, and one extra attack (+1 haste, +2 brawl, +1 extra enhancement in cestus), and he can crit with 19+, or 17+ with improved critical.

The main adventage of brawling fighters, is that they *can* go ahead and use cestus, spike gauntlets, and all that stuff. Ignoring the AoMF saves a TON of gold in the long run. And frees up a slot for Natural Armor too.


lantzkev wrote:

sorry was looking at the dazzling display, shattered defenses and was thinking of how that'd work with dragon style when I was typing that up.

When you compare a single strike with monk, no one else hits harder. Your balor you gave as an example, barring AoMF letting you bypass the DR, you'll be stuck at -15dmg every hit.

Martial artist, except for the weapon training keeps abreast of the fighter, and basically gets a free +2 to hit and ignore DR...

so with your dueling gloves and weapon training you end up a whole +4 to hit and damage ahead of the martial artist.

You are aware of the feats 'Penetrating strike' and greater penetrating strike, right?

Seriously, lets just drop this issue. I'm tired of going back and forth with it since the point has already been proven. I have conceded (a while ago...a very...very....long time ago) that you can out-damage a fighter, but your damage ratio and consistency of damage doesn't compare to a fighter, yet you still want to argue that.

The fact is, you can't.

You can't consistently get your attacks, or achieve medusa's wrath every single time.

Unless you can do that, you will NEVER match a fighter's damage ratio or consistent damage.

So please, stop trying to post to the contrary.

(In a nutshell: short-term damage goes to the monk/long term damage goes to the fighter...I have literally been saying that for almost 2 pages now,and am really tired of repeating myself)

*goes back to that bloody chalkboard*


Hrm... Armored dragon-slaying monk wrestler?

I'll need to look into that.

My only question that i haven't seen covered is what are the penalties for wearing armor your not proficient with? I know the negatives are not fun but they might not be all that bad.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Xerxes Black wrote:

Hrm... Armored dragon-slaying monk wrestler?

I'll need to look into that.

My only question that i haven't seen covered is what are the penalties for wearing armor your not proficient with? I know the negatives are not fun but they might not be all that bad.

Try page one.


stuart haffenden wrote:
Xerxes Black wrote:

Hrm... Armored dragon-slaying monk wrestler?

I'll need to look into that.

My only question that i haven't seen covered is what are the penalties for wearing armor your not proficient with? I know the negatives are not fun but they might not be all that bad.

Try page one.

Really? dang I was just there too but I must have missed it. Sorry about that, it's kinda early and I'm just skimming over these threads before I start walking to class.

Sorry to be a bother, hope this all works out.

Shadow Lodge

shatter defenses mixed with maneuver master and medusa's strike will net 8 attacks (normal attacks, twf chain, and medusa's wrath for 2 extra attacks) its is a very functional build and will consistantly pump out 8 attacks per round, then add in trip greater trip vicious stomp on top of it.

you can easily hit the cmb of a target using dirty trick mainly because most enemies dont have defenses against it.

i just added that to toss in a monkey wrench into the "you cant get medusa's wrath consistantly".


sweet! so assuming you can score a crit (or successfully stun them), and that the creature in question is even susceptible to fear effects...hooray! By tenth level, you can finally achieve 'somewhat' consistent attacks for medusa's wrath.

Oh...but wait...what's that...you mean that this still doesn't change that a monk has lower accuracy or that the damage ratio is still lower.

Well...darn...looks like all da previously established logic still stands.

[the chalkboard people...dat bloody chalkboard]

Shadow Lodge

Duskblade wrote:

sweet! so assuming you can score a crit (or successfully stun them), and that the creature in question is even susceptible to fear effects...hooray! By tenth level, you can finally achieve 'somewhat' consistent attacks for medusa's wrath.

Oh...but wait...what's that...you mean that this still doesn't change that a monk has lower accuracy or that the damage ratio is still lower.

Well...darn...looks like all da previously established logic still stands.

[the chalkboard people...dat bloody chalkboard]

huh? crit? stun? all i need to do is hit them with a maneuver (dirty trick) with a massive modifier to cmb, causing the sickened condition on the target, assuming its living, to gain a -2 to ac, then they are treated as flat footed, netting another 2-4 off their ac, then get a free trip as party of a flurry of maneuvers, assuming they can be tripped, for an aditional -4 to ac, then hit them for 6 attacks at -2 bab + modifiers which really equates to a +6 to attack on my primary attacks, not counting haste.

+6 at tenth level, over bab + feats + attack stat. is actually better then a fighter would have at that same level. it takes a very focused build, and a hittable cmd for it to function in its optimal state, but you can get medusa's to hit every round that way.


You do realize that a 'dirty trick' is a standard action correct? And if you decide to go that route, you then become feat starved by having to go down the dirty trick feat tree.

Also, you realize that sickening an opponent doesn't trigger medusa's wrath. The only effect that works with medusa's wrath through a dirty trick is the 'shaken' condition.

So again, you're still in the same boat.

In addition, you are also now sacrificing another attack to make this entire thing work (which now puts you behind in action economy)


This is funny. There's at least two distinct conversations going on here. Anyway...

When it comes to raw damage, simply put, yes, the fighter out damages the monk. Hi DPR is what the fighter does. Its his schtick if you will. He has the best toolbox for doing consistent reliable solid damage in any situation for a vastly extended period of time due minimal reliance on expendable resources. Even using brawling weapons/unarmed attacks they will equal up to a monk.

However, the game isn't all about DPR and there is where a monk starts to outclass the fighter. He has a bigger toolbox for non DPR related tricks. Moving fast, ki abilities, better skill set, innate immunities and saves, that's where a monk starts to shine. Yes, unlike a fighter its probably better to arch type your monk than just play a vanilla monk, but that's really a design issue with the monk more than anything else. Its one that, at least IMO, Paizo patched to some degree with the arch types (qigong monk in particular.)

And by the way, nothing at all prevents a monk from using a cestus. And yes, believe it or not, its not a horrid option. At higher levels even. Level 20 a monks unarmed strike does 2d10, for an average of 11ish points of damage per hit, +aomf. A +5 cestus does on average 7.5 damage per hit, plus the same +5 you can stack on an aomf, except you can have two of them for quite a nifty load out. And they don't lose flurry to use a cestus. And yes, in the real world, the monks our monk is loosely based off of were not stupid. They fought with weapons when appropriate, like...heavy combat.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Seems that using armor with Master of Many Style wouldn't be so bad. You don't have Flurry so no loss there. Dump Wisdom for higher Strength and you lose just the the fast movement. Any medium armor you have will beat any AC bonus you might get. Mitheral Breast +5 is 11 AC and 5 max dex.

Getting that mitheral breast plate will have to wait as it's cost 4200 GP. That's around 4th level at the earliest but 6th is more reasonable. Until then Studded leather works well enough. +3 AC is better than +1 AC from Wisdom which is what I typically have on Monk with 15 pt build.


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I must say, I find this whole thing a bit... weird. I don't think it's fair to say "monks are not good at hitting people unarmed" and then to prove others are better have to go mix up one specific race with alternate racial features, use a rule loophole to get a trait based on biology through being adopted, and using a lot of not unarmed attacks to outdamage the monk.

I mean, this is kinda ridiculous. Even if you can outcheese a monk (and yes, using an _adopted_ trait to get _orcish tusks_ is extremely cheesy) and use non-unarmed attacks to get higher dpr than the monk, what's the relevance?

This whole thing is like saying rangers are awful archers because a high-level blaster wizard with a splash of dual-blooded orc/dragon sorcerer with spell perfection and a lot of feats can cast Scorching Rays that deal more damage and thus are better archers.


stringburka wrote:

I must say, I find this whole thing a bit... weird. I don't think it's fair to say "monks are not good at hitting people unarmed" and then to prove others are better have to go mix up one specific race with alternate racial features, use a rule loophole to get a trait based on biology through being adopted, and using a lot of not unarmed attacks to outdamage the monk.

I mean, this is kinda ridiculous. Even if you can outcheese a monk (and yes, using an _adopted_ trait to get _orcish tusks_ is extremely cheesy) and use non-unarmed attacks to get higher dpr than the monk, what's the relevance?

This whole thing is like saying rangers are awful archers because a high-level blaster wizard with a splash of dual-blooded orc/dragon sorcerer with spell perfection and a lot of feats can cast Scorching Rays that deal more damage and thus are better archers.

As already stated, a regular human using magic cestus do more damage than a monk too. Fact is, most versatile and efficient stuff for unarmed combat is not valid for monks: cestus, brawling armor quality, the new bandages in the cest from Ultimate equipment... Those are fighter (and barbarian) only, because monks can't use them, unless they sacrifice a lot.


stringburka wrote:

I must say, I find this whole thing a bit... weird. I don't think it's fair to say "monks are not good at hitting people unarmed" and then to prove others are better have to go mix up one specific race with alternate racial features, use a rule loophole to get a trait based on biology through being adopted, and using a lot of not unarmed attacks to outdamage the monk.

I mean, this is kinda ridiculous. Even if you can outcheese a monk (and yes, using an _adopted_ trait to get _orcish tusks_ is extremely cheesy) and use non-unarmed attacks to get higher dpr than the monk, what's the relevance?

This whole thing is like saying rangers are awful archers because a high-level blaster wizard with a splash of dual-blooded orc/dragon sorcerer with spell perfection and a lot of feats can cast Scorching Rays that deal more damage and thus are better archers.

If you are going to criticize, please take the time to read all the aspects of the thread before making judgments about 'cheesy'.

Off the top of my head, there are 4 different races who can all get claw attacks, and as I said before, a ring of rat fang can get you a bite attack (which is an item that ANYONE can get). Don't complain about 'loopholes' and 'cheese' just because someone knows how to optimize a character.


stringburka wrote:

I must say, I find this whole thing a bit... weird. I don't think it's fair to say "monks are not good at hitting people unarmed" and then to prove others are better have to go mix up one specific race with alternate racial features, use a rule loophole to get a trait based on biology through being adopted, and using a lot of not unarmed attacks to outdamage the monk.

I mean, this is kinda ridiculous. Even if you can outcheese a monk (and yes, using an _adopted_ trait to get _orcish tusks_ is extremely cheesy) and use non-unarmed attacks to get higher dpr than the monk, what's the relevance?

This whole thing is like saying rangers are awful archers because a high-level blaster wizard with a splash of dual-blooded orc/dragon sorcerer with spell perfection and a lot of feats can cast Scorching Rays that deal more damage and thus are better archers.

That's why several of us have pointed out other, less 'cheesy' ways to do this. While some options such as Dusk blades are fine in some games, in others it would be considered poor form ( sorry Duskblade but in some games that build of yours would be considered poor form, rules legal or not) hence why other options have been put forth.

The original point of the thread was to show that armor was an option, and for certain kinds of monks it certainly is. Then like most monk threads it derailed into dpr. Even without adding natural attacks, fighters and barbarians can do more damage unarmed/brawling than a monk, I guess for some its a question of either how much more or trying to prove that statement wrong.


Duskblade wrote:

If you are going to criticize, please take the time to read all the aspects of the thread before making judgments about 'cheesy'.

Off the top of my head, there are 4 different races who can all get claw attacks, and as I said before, a ring of rat fang can get you a bite attack (which is an item that ANYONE can get). Don't complain about 'loopholes' and 'cheese' just because someone knows how to optimize a character.

Well, since you where the one using the loopholes as an example it's a perfectly valid complain. Whether there are less cheesy ways isn't really relevant when it's the cheesy way you keep touting throughout the thread.

I know there are other ways. You can also be a druid and polymorph into a t-rex, or you can simply be a fighter with a greatsword. It's irrelevant since you're not attacking unarmed, so it isn't a comparision of unarmed combat ability

gustavo iglesias wrote:
As already stated, a regular human using magic cestus do more damage than a monk too. Fact is, most versatile and efficient stuff for unarmed combat is not valid for monks: cestus, brawling armor quality, the new bandages in the cest from Ultimate equipment... Those are fighter (and barbarian) only, because monks can't use them, unless they sacrifice a lot.

Agreed. I know the monk has issues and it will probably be outdamaged even by completely unarmed fighters without using cheese, it's still a weird comparision though. To take it back to the ranger example, it's saying ranger archers suck because fighters can deal more damage. It's a completely valid claim, but that's not what the thread focuses on; the comparision made here is more equal to "ranger archers suck because wizards with a dip in dualblooded orc/dragon sorcerer with 13 specific feats are better archers since their scorching ray deals more damage".

I'm not saying it's bad to compare gala apples to honeycrisp apples and stating that one is better than the other, I'm saying right now people are comparing gala apples to coconuts. And it's an unusually nutty one (the build, not the people advocating it).


stringburka wrote:
It's irrelevant since you're not attacking unarmed, so it isn't a comparision of unarmed combat ability

If your intent to argue the semantics over what an 'unarmed strike' actually is, please don't bother. I have stated once that I won't get into that pointless argument, so please take such a debate elsewhere.

Also, seeing as how you still feel that your 'complaint' is valid even after I gave you my response clearly indicates that you have no intention of listening to what I have to say either. Therefore, my suggestion is this: if you have any REAL complaints (other than crying 'FOUL! You are using an unfair loopholes in rules to achieve a large number of unarmed strikes combined with natural attacks!') please feel free to post them or PM me instead.


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Duskblade wrote:
stringburka wrote:
It's irrelevant since you're not attacking unarmed, so it isn't a comparision of unarmed combat ability

If your intent to argue the semantics over what an 'unarmed strike' actually is, please don't bother. I have stated once that I won't get into that pointless argument, so please take such a debate elsewhere.

I won't press you on the cheese matter - it's not relevant to the discussion as long as you don't keep using it as the prime example.

But what is and what is not an unarmed combatant is VERY relevant. It's only a pointless argument in that there isn't really an argument. A claw isn't an unarmed attack from a mechanical standpoint, and if you want to go for the flavor of an unarmed combatant you more likely think Bruce Lee than a Tyrannosaurus.

And since this is on optimization, I assume mechanics are more important than flavor anyway. In which case they are not unarmed attacks.

EDIT: If the only requirement is that the character deals damage without using any manufactured weapons, it would be interesting to see how both the monk and mongrel fighter compares to an orc bloodline sorcerer. A combo of maximized empowered boneshatter and maximized intensified empowered quickened shocking grasp has an average damage of 225 and a max damage of 328, at level 12.


Duskblade wrote:
stringburka wrote:
It's irrelevant since you're not attacking unarmed, so it isn't a comparision of unarmed combat ability

If your intent to argue the semantics over what an 'unarmed strike' actually is, please don't bother. I have stated once that I won't get into that pointless argument, so please take such a debate elsewhere.

I think his is a valid point. If natural weapons count as unarmed strikes to determine which character does more damage unarmed, I think a druid wildshaped into a huge tyrannosaur, with greater vital strike, can do some decent damage. Specially if he has a quickened Harm touch attack to add.

Sczarni

krigare it didn't really derail, he started the very first post off saying

Quote:
Brawling armor + Monk's Robes + weapon training (natural) + all those crazy feats that increase damage = .....yea...a fighter is hands down a better unarmed striker than the monk.

With the ability to add in the natural attacks, the fighter wins as long as he is a tiefling or some other race with 2x natural attacks.

It's amusing that the only way his claim is valid is similar to his other claim of a monk can dump wisdom and not worry about flurry, fast movement, and wisdom/level bonus to ac and wear armor...

It's only valid in a very small set of scenarios.

So in short duskblade has argued the following:

Drop wisdom, wear armor, lose flurry, lose movement, lose ac bonuses, have lower amounts of ki. In exchange you get higher ac... profit???

then to add a insult to it all everyone can do unarmed damage better than a monk.

Follow thread through with a refusal to build and prove his points, alot of handwavium... then we finally get to a full detailed explanation of how adding two different racial traits together, taking a monster feat, can let a warrior pull ahead in damage, and only if you discount medusas wrath and make a warrior that's incredibly one dimensional.

Shadow Lodge

Duskblade wrote:

You do realize that a 'dirty trick' is a standard action correct? And if you decide to go that route, you then become feat starved by having to go down the dirty trick feat tree.

Also, you realize that sickening an opponent doesn't trigger medusa's wrath. The only effect that works with medusa's wrath through a dirty trick is the 'shaken' condition.

So again, you're still in the same boat.

In addition, you are also now sacrificing another attack to make this entire thing work (which now puts you behind in action economy)

so whats it like to not know what youre talking about?

here i will repost what i posted before so you can see how wrong you are.

"shatter defenses mixed with maneuver master and medusa's strike "

shatter defenses:
"Any shaken, frightened, or panicked opponent hit by you this round is flat-footed to your attacks until the end of your next turn. This includes any additional attacks you make this round."

dirty trick:
"If your attack is successful, the target takes a penalty. The penalty is limited to one of the following conditions:

blinded, dazzled, deafened, entangled, shaken, or sickened."

medusa's strike:
" Whenever you use the full-attack action and make at least one unarmed strike, you can make two additional unarmed strikes at your highest base attack bonus. These bonus attacks must be made against a dazed, flat-footed, paralyzed, staggered, stunned, or unconscious foe"

maneuver master:
"In addition to normal monk bonus feats, a maneuver master may select any Improved combat maneuver feat (such as Improved Overrun) as a bonus feat."

and

"At 1st level, as part of a full-attack action, a maneuver master can make one additional combat maneuver, regardless of whether the maneuver normally replaces a melee attack or requires a standard action"

and

"At 4th level, as a swift action, a maneuver master may spend 1 point from his ki pool before attempting a combat maneuver. He can roll his combat maneuver check for that maneuver twice and use the better result"

this ^ pretty much means you win that manever check. like i said you can consistantly get medusas strike out of a monk.

LAWYERED!!

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