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Occam's razor


Suggestions/House Rules/Homebrew

Andoran

Instead of listing things we want, for a change let's list things that you would remove from the game, or rules you would revert back to the 3.5, or pre-errata/playtest version.

Just off the top of my head, to get the ball rolling I would remove (or at least increase in price)

Most metamagic rods
Pearls of power.
Antagonize

I would revert

Sunder to pre-errata.

Go!

Silver Crusade

Reach weapons back to 3.5.

Rapid Shot and Manyshot back to 3.5.


Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Reinstate ACP is doubled for swim checks.

Silver Crusade

If the definition of 'attack action' (such as it is!) has changed, then change it back. If it hasn't changed, then make that clear.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Save or die spells.
I want the light and darkness spells from 2nd edition!
Tired of this various degrees of shadowy illumination.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber

I want 3e haste
2e THAC0
1e skill system

Andoran

Gorbacz wrote:

I want 3e haste

2e THAC0
1e skill system

Saw the name, expected amusing snark, was not disappointed :)

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber

Well, I'd feel really bad if I failed to live your expectations, old buddy :)


I'd remove feats, reset the Hit Dice & HP rules to something more like AD&D (slow gains to a trickle after 10th level), and probably toss out quite a few skills and just lower the related DCs so that they could be done as ability checks successfully enough to feel like you had put some ranks in them (climb, swim, acrobatics, and a few others)

I would also revert most spells to having the built in limitations they had prior to 3rd edition.

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

These threads always amuse me because somebody always comes up with changes soooo drastic that it becomes an entirely different game. Which is fine but I always wonder why they even bother being here if they don't like playing this game...


Kieviel wrote:
These threads always amuse me because somebody always comes up with changes soooo drastic that it becomes an entirely different game. Which is fine but I always wonder why they even bother being here if they don't like playing this game...

I'm glad to answer that wonder, for myself at least.

It's very simple: my play group contains more people than just me, so we compromise on what games we play.

I'd love to have all 4 of the sessions we have every week dedicated to playing the same Dungeon Crawl Classics campaign, and the group would dig that for at least a couple months... but someone (most likely me, honestly) is going to start craving some variety, so instead we do the following:

1) A Pathfinder game that focuses on a story that we really couldn't do with DCC - specifically students at an academy of wizardry.
2) A Shadowrun game because it's my second favorite game.
3) One DCC game to introduce a campaign setting that I want to start using as our default to my players in a favorable light.
4) A different DCC game that we are using as a testing bed for home-brewed rules materials.

So I play Pathfinder as-is, even though I would strip it down to its component parts and use it to re-build 2nd edition with a stronger frame if my players wouldn't object.


Henry David Thoreau wrote:
Our life is frittered away by detail. Simplify, simplify, simplify! I say, let your affairs be as two or three, and not a hundred or a thousand; instead of a million count half a dozen, and keep your accounts on your thumb-nail.

If I were designing a "Pathfinder Next", I'd scale back the complexity to something near D&D 3rd Edition was when it was new. One of the reasons 3.0 was successful was because it gave you enough to chew on, without choking you.

When all we had was the 3.0 PHB, level 1 characters got a feat and probably a special ability or two. By level 5, one would have one or two more feats and probably one more special ability. Some race and class combinations were more or less complicated, but in general, a level or two would go by without changing how much work it is to run the character at the game table.

Then the splatbooks happened. Then 3.5. And the Complete series.

Pathfinder moved from ramping things up every two or three levels to ramping things up every level. And the widgets you get, more and more, track uses per day. This means my level 9 cleric needs a spreadsheet and I can't really do without one. Personally, I'm a software engineer; this doesn't scare me. But what does scare me is how busy I am. I'm not sure I have time for this wonderful hobby any more.

When 3.0 was new, one of the amazing things about it was that it established unity and relative simplicity from all the chaos. Most characters most of the time got spellcasting, feats, or a few special powers and abilities. Some classes were more complicated, but one didn't have to play them. Now there is no simple class, there is only complex and very complex.

Some of Pathfinder's biggest victories are the places where it made things simpler and more consisent, unified combat maneuvers for instance. Why can't we have more of that?

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
AaronOfBarbaria wrote:
Kieviel wrote:
These threads always amuse me because somebody always comes up with changes soooo drastic that it becomes an entirely different game. Which is fine but I always wonder why they even bother being here if they don't like playing this game...

I'm glad to answer that wonder, for myself at least.

It's very simple: my play group contains more people than just me, so we compromise on what games we play.

I'd love to have all 4 of the sessions we have every week dedicated to playing the same Dungeon Crawl Classics campaign, and the group would dig that for at least a couple months... but someone (most likely me, honestly) is going to start craving some variety, so instead we do the following:

1) A Pathfinder game that focuses on a story that we really couldn't do with DCC - specifically students at an academy of wizardry.
2) A Shadowrun game because it's my second favorite game.
3) One DCC game to introduce a campaign setting that I want to start using as our default to my players in a favorable light.
4) A different DCC game that we are using as a testing bed for home-brewed rules materials.

So I play Pathfinder as-is, even though I would strip it down to its component parts and use it to re-build 2nd edition with a stronger frame if my players wouldn't object.

Wow, that actually sounds like a good group of gaming folks. Thanks for the explanation :-)


I would change the DR system back to something like 3.5, but not quite. That also includes the Paladin's Smite Evil ability: I don't see why it should bypass DR x/adamantine, x/epic, x/-, and a few others.

The Dragon Disciple prestige class is a nightmare to administer, as it changes the Sorcerer's access to various abilities/spells. Plus it favours the Draconic bloodlines above all the others.

I do miss the utter darkness that came with the Darkness spell in previous editions.

Otherwise, I'm generally happy with the reduced skill list, extra feats, etc. In particular, I like that concentration is no longer a skill and harder to pull off when casting defensively.

Oh, yeah, those type and environment icons in the Bestiaries ... they don't work for me at all. Possibly because they are too small/unclear? The concept is good, but it needs different icons in my opinion.

And clean up some vague wording. "Attack action" has already been mentioned above.

Andoran

Adding...

- Gunslinger (to be replaced with something that doesn't use the fighter as a chassis...they need martial weapon proficiency why exactly?)
- Ninja (to be replaced with something that isn't basically a better rogue than the rogue, rather than something separate that is an actual ninja)
- Full arcane sorcerers go back to d4.
- Fly speed goes back to based on player speed, not a set speed from spell.


ciretose wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:

I want 3e haste

2e THAC0
1e skill system
Saw the name, expected amusing snark, was not disappointed :)

It wasn't amusing. It was old.

Andoran

Drejk wrote:
ciretose wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:

I want 3e haste

2e THAC0
1e skill system
Saw the name, expected amusing snark, was not disappointed :)
It wasn't amusing. It was old.

It can be both. Like Betty White :)

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber

COME AT ME, 2E FANBOYS!

Crap, wrong forum.

Andoran

Gorbacz wrote:

COME AT ME, 2E FANBOYS!

Crap, wrong forum.

You wanna piece of me, bagboy? I'll spork your ass!


Kieviel wrote:
These threads always amuse me because somebody always comes up with changes soooo drastic that it becomes an entirely different game. Which is fine but I always wonder why they even bother being here if they don't like playing this game...

Pathfinder is closest to what they want to play.

Also, when I sudjested homebrew on Hasbro D&D's boards they threatened to ban me. I banned them from my computer.
Pathfinder has some flexability, so lets get as much as in the old box sets, where you homebrewed everything that hadn't been spelled out yet.
I'm talking about Dolphins and Foxes having high intelligence because that's how the GM wrote up the ones in their gameworld. If you need to challenge your character, have another type of troll that every large chunk regenerates into a complete, hungry, troll. Primordial Trolls are not written up in an official book, so they have no say.

Andoran

Goth Guru wrote:
These threads always amuse me because somebody always comes up with changes soooo drastic that it becomes an entirely different game. Which is fine but I always wonder why they even bother being here if they don't like playing this game...

True, but I think when you make it a simple removal thing, it is less about changing anything and more about addressing what shouldn't be there in the first place.

But yeah, it usually gets silly.


ciretose wrote:
Drejk wrote:
ciretose wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:

I want 3e haste

2e THAC0
1e skill system
Saw the name, expected amusing snark, was not disappointed :)
It wasn't amusing. It was old.
It can be both. Like Betty White :)

whose betty white?


Everything back to 3.5e, and then given a certain houserule set called Tome...

...no, not Tome of Battle. A different Tome, made at another forum by fans of 3.5e / 3.0e.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Bring back the Use Rope Skill. It would take care of a lot of loose ends...


Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Thomas Long 175 wrote:
whose betty white?

WHO IS Betty White ?

The amateur football player ?

Oh, you probably mean this Betty White ?


We should revert monster stat blocks back to 2E so I could just put them out on the table without my players being able to read them. You had to learn how to decode those things.


SlimGauge wrote:
Thomas Long 175 wrote:
whose betty white?

WHO IS Betty White ?

The amateur football player ?

Oh, you probably mean this Betty White ?

LOL Thats quite humerous. I like that commercial.

And since I'm here I'd remove CMD, though I'd be fine keeping CMB


If you dominate person someone, they are your b@+&+ for awhile. Period. None of this "resave if they do something they might not normally do" garbage- which pretty much causes arguments every time the stupid spell is used.

"But my character doesn't normally LIKE grape jelly! Resave!"


ciretose wrote:

Instead of listing things we want, for a change let's list things that you would remove from the game, or rules you would revert back to the 3.5, or pre-errata/playtest version.

First I have to say that I like most of what you had on your list.

What I don't like is that you can't put personal spell into potions.
With this rule brew potion just isn't worth it.
With the exception of healing potion nobody uses this stuff anyway.

Out of combat you can just ask your caster buddy to use a scroll on you and in combat you got better things to do.

Another thing I don't like is that I often get the impression that everything seems to be balanced around high level "end-game" while at the same time all those cool APs don't even reach that point.
One example is the Stonelord paladin'S stone servant. When you get it at level 5 its useless. But you can't change it easily because if you make it stronger its too strong at the high levels, which it is balanced for.


Traits. Characters didn't need another free thing at 1st level and they get used as feats, but they're even smaller and thus more numerous. I get that they're handy for starting campaigns, but why not give characters single, campaign-specific boons without bothering to balance them against those from other campaigns?

Very High Levels. I don't know exactly where I'd cut them off, but they rarely get used, content that can't be used until you reach them takes up a ton of space, play gets unwieldy, balance is worse and the rules are more complex. I'd relegate high-level play to an expansion book or bring in an epic or mythic style system to replace it.

Lots of Feats. There are plenty of terrible options in the core book alone, there's a lot of stuff that doesn't need to exist to make anybody's concept build-able or effective, and the list is so big that you can't find anything unless you're experienced with the game.

Weak Archetypes. Some archetypes aren't just accidentally a little far behind the curve, they were destined to be duds from the beginning.
I've seen the vow of poverty monk being defended with the argument that replacing worldly possessions with new abilities of equal value would defeat the point in giving them up. But guess what? Players could ALREADY give up their worldly possessions without a fair trade. You don't need rules for that.
Some other options, like the cloistered cleric and the holy gun, seem to be almost identical to the base class but with less everything.

Class Alignment Restrictions. Any alignment can make sense for any class, if you count the paladin and anti-paladin as one class. I suppose you'd need to add options for lawful/chaotic aligned mounts, smite law/chaos and so on, but that's ok and mostly very obvious.

The Paladin's Code. This is a divisive piece setting fluff masquerading as a mechanic. All you need is the rule that you fall if you commit an act of the alignment you smite.

Choices Between Cool Fluff and Practicality. Never ask anybody to choose between eternal youth and a metamagic feat. I'd rather just lose the youth option entirely.
Charging for being cool discourages being cool. Just give out the fun but impractical stuff for free, if it really enhances the game.

Lethal Exotic Weapons. There's no point in almost all of these.
All double weapons could be replaced by a single feat which allowed dual-wielding one-handed weapons with the penalties for light weapons. This would remove an entire sub-system and a big chunk of table.
Hand-and-a-half weapons are really not exotic at all. They're martial two-handed weapons, but there's a feat which allows you to wield them one handed. They never use the normal exotic weapon proficiency/non-proficiency mechanic.
Most of the rest are only good enough to be simple, or even identical to existing simple weapons. Cut or downgrade as appropriate.
The few weapons that remain, like the elven curve-blade, are seldom the best option. There end up being about 4 total. Nerf them, ditch them outright or turn them into feats which modify the way you use normal weapons.
Once this is done, the weapons table has shrunk dramatically and nothing of value has been lost.
Weapons designed to capture foes are all that's left after the above have been dealt with and they're not worth a feat each. I say characters should get all of them at once with a Capturing Weapons Proficiency feat.

Some Outsider Families. There are just so many! So. Many.

Irrelevant Feat Prerequisites. If using it doesn't make it easier to use the feat and the feat doesn't replace it, I don't want to see it on the list. Period.

Little Tiny Setting-Related Race Features. So dwarves hate giants in every pathfinder game ever? Silly.
Why would a gnome pacifist scholar be trained to kill kobolds if gnomes and kobolds live on different continents? That kind of stuff should never be part of the default mechanics of a core race and it's mostly too specific to bother with anyway. Even when it actually suits your character, it comes under charging for fluff.

Flavourless Multiclass Prestige Classes. For the most part, these are just really awkward rules patches to cover for the fact that the multiclass system is almost completely incompatible with spells.
I'd much prefer a simple, systemic rule like this:
"Your effective class level for spellcasting in each of your classes increases by 1 for every two levels you have in other classes. Your effective level for spellcasting cannot be greater than double your actual class levels."
These pseudo-gestalt prestige classes do have a handful of unique features, but they could easily be turned into feats.

Ability Damage. Players don't like receiving it, it shuts low level characters down for days at a time and taking it modifies every number on your sheet. It's messy.

Those Vampires. There should be vampires of some sort, but I don't think the monster in the bestiary fits anybody's idea of what vampires are like. Certainly doesn't fit mine, and mine is extremely broad.

Some Dragons. Ok, so I wouldn't remove any true dragons from the line entirely, but there's so many pages of dragons in the bestiary. We don't need that many kinds from the get go. I say put the least iconic chromatics and metallics in expansion books.

Experience Points. I'm really not convinced these add much. I'd be happy to forget about them.


I agree insomuch that swordchucks might as well be two separate swords.
If double weapons could require just one feat to be treated as a single weapon, it would be worthwhile.


I've posted on this board a couple of times before saying that there should be a feat which allows you to wield bigger weapons in your off-hand anyway, and that double weapons could just be any two normal weapons stuck together, using their usual proficiency rules.
The advantage of double weapons would be the ability to switch at-will between two-handing one end for standard attacks and two-weapon fighting for full attacks. As an added benefit, the GM can make up weird weapons and the fighter can pick them up and use them.

Here are some more things I'd remove (as though my previous post wasn't too long already):

Non-Lethal Damage. The entire system could be easily replaced by a weapon property which knocks people out instead of reducing them to negative hit-points. Far simpler, just as effective. The Strain/Injury rule from this very forum does this.

Hitpoint Recovery Rates. These are mostly irrelevant book keeping. That said, you do need a patch to make the game work without. The strain injury rule does this too.
When I play with it, nobody notices the difference. I consider that proof that the recovery rates weren't adding anything.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

With the exception of Traits and High-Level Play, I agree with nearly everything Mortuum said. Especially about the number of useless feats/prerequisites and weak archetypes (really, many of them could be reduced to a feat or two, especially Rogue archetypes!).

I'd even expand the "allignment restriction" option to make it so allignment has no mechanical impact whatsoever. All allignment does is restrict character's choices. It adds nothing positive to the game.

I'd also like to remove the assumption that spontaneous casting is so powerful that it needs to lag behind in spell-level, metamagic and number of spells known (limited spells knowns is fair, learning ONE new spell of your highest level is annoying).

Most of all, kill the "martials can't have nice things" mentality. If an epic wizard can create new planes of existence and turn grass into people, an epic fighter should be able to move 30ft and full attack and/or do some cinematic stuff that defies realism, like tripping giants and slashing swarms!


Thanks man!

If you remove the mechanical impact of alignment and all restrictions on alignment, you've effectively removed alignment completely. Not that that's a bad thing.

I don't think you can remove a lack of something. Taking away "no nice things for fighters" is just adding a bunch of unspecified stuff :p

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