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Amazing Initiative Alternatives


Player Feedback

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Paizo Employee Lead Designer

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Hey there all,

I have been feeling for a while now that Amazing Initiative (pg 6) is perhaps too good in its current form, and can lead to some problems when it comes to tracking initiative. I wanted to float some alternative systems out there to the assembled playtesters to gather some feedback. Take a look through these suggestions and tell me what you think.

1. As the existing ability, but activating the power that grants you an extra turn requires you to expend 2 uses of your mythic power.

2. The bonus to your initiative changes to an amount equal to your mythic tier. In addition, you can spend one use of your mythic power to gain an extra standard action on your turn.

3. You can spend one use of your mythic power to gain a +20 bonus to your initiative check. At any one time during the combat, you can decide to take an additional standard action on your turn. After you do so, you initiative changes to what it would be without the +20 (you do not get an additional turn that round, your initiative just moves).

4. As option 3, but the bonus you gain to your initiative is +10 and your spot does not move after you spend your one free bonus standard action.

I've got a few other options floating around, but these are some of the most concrete. I am willing to entertain other options, but please keep them simple. If you need more than three sentences to explain the concept, its probably too complex.

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer


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I like 1 and 2 and think either option is solid. I think 2x mythic tier in bonus for option 2 might be more reasonable. I'm not sold on 3 as I think it is far too cumbersome. 4 seems to be much more reasonable than the current Amazing Initiative, but I'd like to see other opinions, or even have someone float a combat or 3 with that rule before judging.

Edit: Upon further reflection, I have a preference towards option 2 with my above-mentioned alteration.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I currently like 3 the most. It's an interesting resource management trick, and having to choose to either keep your awesome initiative or pull a clutch standard action is pretty exciting.


I like 1 and 2 also. 2 is also the only one that does away with the bookkeeping problem, and would probably get my vote. 1 would be acceptable also, though.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I like 1 the most. Keeps it awesome, makes it harder to spam.


I'd go with 2.

Otherwise i would suggest this:

At 2nd tier, you gain a +8 mythic bonus on Initiative checks, you can also expend one use of mythic power to treat your initiative roll as if you had rolled a 20. In addition, you can spend one use of mythic power each round to take an additional standard action during your turn. Using this ability is a free action that must be decided at the start of your turn.


1 I think the whole extra turn maybe a game killer, It could cost 4 MP and I could see people using all the time.

2 I think is the best. It is Super powered but not over powered and has growth potential as Tiers get Higher.

3 Very Clunky but looks like it will work

4 Not as Clunky as 3 that is the reason I would take that one over 3

I am going to test it at my next game in two weeks and leave more feed back then.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

In order: 3, 2, 4, 1, existing

I think going from full round-> standard might shift the advantage a little towards spellcasters.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

If 2 becomes the ability, I hope monsters will also get to add their mythic rank to their initiative scores.

Taldor

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'm kind of sad that we will lose the extra rounds for the monsters (from a DM point of view)

But the ability is too powerful for the players, I do agree about that... so

1) Good try, it can work well if you send a lot of challenge in a single day to your players, but most of the time... you will not spend half of your mythic point in a single day, so i would say (sadly for the Big Bad Boss who would benefit a lot from such a boost) No.

2) It's interesting, but with so many powers that let you make an extra attack as a swift action, it seems kind of redundant. You can get an extra standard action or make a standard action as a swift action, both powers needing one mythic point... So for the weapon-dudes, the ability doesn't seem that good, for the spellcasters, it's great since you can cast 2 spell in a single turn.

3) Probably my favorite but is kind of hard to track... and once again, the spellcaster might have a bit of an edge over others

4) well it's my favorite without the hard part to track!

So in order of preference, i guess it would be: 4,2,3,1


1. As the existing ability, but activating the power that grants you an extra turn requires you to expend 2 uses of your mythic power.

2. The bonus to your initiative changes to an amount equal to your mythic tier. In addition, you can spend one use of your mythic power to gain an extra standard action on your turn.

3. You can spend one use of your mythic power to gain a +20 bonus to your initiative check. At any one time during the combat, you can decide to take an additional standard action on your turn. After you do so, you initiative changes to what it would be without the +20 (you do not get an additional turn that round, your initiative just moves).

4. As option 3, but the bonus you gain to your initiative is +10 and your spot does not move after you spend your one free bonus standard action.

1. Definitely a step in the right direction.

2. My only problem is that then unfairly benefits casters because it takes away the ability to perform a full attack. But, it does cut down on bookkeeping. Maybe you could change it so that the extra standard action spellcasters get can only be used to cast a spell 2 levels below their maximum?

3. Kind of confusing and fiddling with initiative is not really fun.

4. The main problem with 3 and 4 is that you have to decide if you want to use the ability before the combat starts. Ideally, it should be something you can activate if something unexpected happens.

My suggestion:

You may spend two uses of mythic power as a free action to change your position in the initiative to the last in the round. You take your turn as normal, take another turn at the end of the round, and take your turn last on every following round.

Easy to track, still incredibly powerful, but a bit more expensive and not something you can spam even with points to burn.


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I'm starting to think the standard action is unfairly favorable towards casters, so 1 is probably the best choice. Metis's suggestion s interesting too, and worth thinking more about.

Grand Lodge

Is the extra action feature a necessity? Initiative alone will factor hugely in combat and vs other Mythic characters it all comes out in the wash.

Running with Metis's suggestion (in terms of working within the initiative mechanic):
You can spend one use of your mythic power to gain a +20 bonus to your initiative check. In addition, once per round (excluding the surprise round) you can expend one use of Mythic power as a free action to gain +20 on your initiative count. This bonus comes into effect after your current turn ends.

This very slightly decreases the advantage of winning initiative in a mythic vs mythic combat, and could add some tactical fun involving delaying.


Option 4 seems to be the simplest -- it does not require keeping track of your initiative number after combat begins.

One problem with any approach that changes your initiative number is that it is not automatically clear where a mythic character's initiative would fall if it moves to the same number as that of another combatant. A combatant who deliberately delays his turn could further confuse matters.

Grand Lodge

Initiative should always be tracked so effects and actions occur and are concluded in the proper sequence. Modifiers trump as usual for equal initiative counts. Where would the problem lie with delaying?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Cards, Maps Subscriber

I like the 3: you get a boon that you can expand for an advantage.
after that the 2 seems better then plain +20, which is indeed a lot for a T2 (it means that no one non-mythic will ever beat you).

you can even go for both : +20 to init, if you take the extra action, the bonus reduces to 2xTier (yes, Tier one will not loose anything, but hey, it's the max tier)


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The standard action does seem to favour casters. 2 also looks incredibly unimpressive compared with other options. It just doesn't have the same punch.
For me, the ability to go twice in one round is one of the very coolest things about mythic. I'm yet to play it, but that, to me, looks like the stand-out thing. I've even used it to explain the idea to friends.
"This is the difference between mythic and normal heroes. Mythic characters can get away with this sort of nonsense."

Options 3 and 4 both look OK, but I'd much prefer an extra turn, even if that means the price goes up to 2 power.


Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I currently am looking at option 2 (even if it favors casters), but I'll know more after I game on monday.

Taldor

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Hmmm, after a quick session of gaming combat I tend to say that I'm not really sure about those possibilities too.

Having an extra standard action is quite great... and the problem is, why shouldn't you take it on your first round?
A combat at mid or high-level (I'd say that mid level is around lvl7) doesn't last that long...

My players just all went: "We take the extra standard action now!".

I think the right now is that the "extra round" or "extra action" is either once every combat, or uses the same ressources that you use for mythic spells and other mythic abilities. And if you have to chose between an extra standard action (for 1 point) or to cast a mythic spell (1-5 points...), is there really a choice? You might take the mythic spell for some reason, but those would be "utilitarian spells" or use them in a non-conventional way (which is perfectly cool with me), but in a combat...

Taking an extra standard action is really really better than most of the other abilities, and once per combat is a lot.

Maybe we should try to find another way.

Every Mythic character could maybe get a number of extra standard action it can takes per day equal to half his tier? And limit the number of extra standard action to one per round?

Andoran

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

New option to tip it in the favor melee of types:

You gain +20 to your initiative. You may spend 1 use of your Mythic Power as a free action to treat a full-round action or a spell with a 1 round casting time as a standard action.


I prefer option 2.

In its current form, a party of mythic characters (tier 2+) would all be going first before any other (non-mythic) creatures which to me, seems a bit boring. I'd like to see a bonus but not a guaranteed 'going first' rule.

I also don't think amazing initiative should be given to all mythic characters, I think it would be better off being an ability one would need to select (doesn't seem right that a DEX 8 wizard who is old and slow suddenly able to act before the goblin ninjas without a bit of luck)


I see the advantage to spell casters, but this will make burn thru their spells per day more quickly. This one is going to be a hard one to blance out. Cause we need to face that fact, extra standard action is almost to good to pass up. A whole turn is over kill no matter how it is looked at. As it is wizards can do this (just small sample higher level spell are going to be a lot worse.)

quicken fire ball
Fire ball
wizard turn two
repeat
quicken fireball
fire ball
Fight is over.

at least with Standard action
it only one quicken fireball
Fire ball
fireball
Fight is still mostly likely over.

only other mythic creatures are going to live through a mythic spell caster. They are going to have to be Teir 5 to have a chance because of Mythic Saves. If there is a Mthyic creature left standing it clean up for the fighters, spell caster is done. he got rid of eveything in the way but mythic monsters. Most fights are going to have 1 maybe 2 mythic creature and the rest will be non mythic.

For the melee lose the extra full attack. but it is still a big boost. You can still vital strike, and preform a bullrush, grapple or other combat standard action. that your normal would not get with the extra attack that the other mythic ablity give you for 1 point.

this is a hard one to blance I am really glad I am not Jason. Just a flat bonus based on teir, and point to force roll to natual 20 is the way to go on this. While it not as uber as a lot of you want. It is still powerful and useful and Mythic

Taldor

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
KainPen wrote:
I see the advantage to spell casters, but this will make burn thru their spells per day more quickly. This one is going to be a hard one to blance out.

Do not forget Recuperation, for a single use of Mythic Power, a spellcaster car recharge all of its spells for the day...


Yeah I just got to reading that today. I keep skiming over it and looking at it more and more every time I read all the rules. Because I know I miss things every time I read it. Good thing GM has control of Greater Trials. If it was just like xp the it could quickly spiral out of control. The fact that this power can be tempory is a Huge + and give the the gm the ablity to bring his game back if it does go to far. Mythic rules are diffently require a firm GM and one that plans his games and encoutners well. I am really looking forward to useing this for NPC and Monster more then PCS

I am really thinking +X bonus per Teir is the way to go with spend a point to take a 20 for roll. If none of us knew about the possiably of extra turn or standard action. I am sure we still would have thought this as mythic ablity worth useing from time to time. As it stand now it is too good to be true, and this is why we have the is thread.


Friend wrote:

Initiative should always be tracked so effects and actions occur and are concluded in the proper sequence. Modifiers trump as usual for equal initiative counts. Where would the problem lie with delaying?

It is just more to keep track of. If you move a character's place in the initiative order for any reason other than the player delaying his turn, you have the issue of the game bogging down slightly as you figure out his new location in the initiative order. If enough players have delayed or otherwise changed their places in the initiative order, it could be a real pain to determine (for example) just where in the order a combatant with initiative count 16 is supposed to go. In a standard game, you only need to keep track of the order of play -- the actual initiative count is irrelevant once that order is determined.

Grand Lodge

David knott 242, keeping track of the count is crucial. Can I delay my wizard's second turn so his buffs last 1 turn longer for other party members? Can my slowed fighter delay his turn until after the count where the effect wears off? Tracking initiative by count is necessary and is part of the Core mechanics (see readied and delayed actions).

My option was intended to represent Mythic characters seizing the initiative.

Extra actions will unbalance Mythic tier 2.


We always went with the 4E rule that delaying has the most unfavorable possible effect on durations that end on your turn (although it should be noted that Pathfinder has fewer of those than 4E does). So if an effect is desirable, it ends immediately when your turn comes and you say "I delay", but if the effect is undesirable, it continues until you actually take your turn.

Shadow Lodge

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Reckless wrote:

New option to tip it in the favor melee of types:

You gain +20 to your initiative. You may spend 1 use of your Mythic Power as a free action to treat a full-round action or a spell with a 1 round casting time as a standard action.

THIS. THIS. THIS.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

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Based on my experience playing other 3.5/PF characters with abilities that grant extra standard actions, when faced with a challenging fight, I will always spam any ability which grants extra standard actions as much as the rules allow, including any of the four listed in the OP.

That being said, given the number of swift and immediate actions showing up in the mythic rules, I think mythic characters really need something like this:

Swift Initiative (Ex): You gain a +10 bonus on initiative checks, and can take one additional swift action each turn. This additional swift action must be taken during your turn and cannot be used to cast a spell.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Orthos wrote:
Reckless wrote:

New option to tip it in the favor melee of types:

You gain +20 to your initiative. You may spend 1 use of your Mythic Power as a free action to treat a full-round action or a spell with a 1 round casting time as a standard action.

THIS. THIS. THIS.

Yeah, this is pretty awesome.


Starsunder wrote:
Orthos wrote:
Reckless wrote:

New option to tip it in the favor melee of types:

You gain +20 to your initiative. You may spend 1 use of your Mythic Power as a free action to treat a full-round action or a spell with a 1 round casting time as a standard action.

THIS. THIS. THIS.
Yeah, this is pretty awesome.

If you stop to think on it for 10 straight second you will realize that this is nothing different than gaining an extra move action. I don't think is that awesome when champion already can move and full attack or move and attack with a single mithyc point.


Epic Meepo wrote:

Based on my experience playing other 3.5/PF characters with abilities that grant extra standard actions, when faced with a challenging fight, I will always spam any ability which grants extra standard actions as much as the rules allow, including any of the four listed in the OP.

That being said, given the number of swift and immediate actions showing up in the mythic rules, I think mythic characters really need something like this:

Swift Initiative (Ex): You gain a +10 bonus on initiative checks, and can take one additional swift action each turn. This additional swift action must be taken during your turn and cannot be used to cast a spell.

I'm liking this one. The +10 to initiative isn't too insane, but will still put mythic characters above non-mythic in the initiative count in most cases, and the additional swift action is very useful with the new abilities in this book.

From a DM standpoint, I'm gonna keep Amazing Initiative as is for monsters and enemy NPCs that might have it. (maybe with the +10 instead of +20). I like the idea of enemies being able to do more, especially solo fights. It's always irked me when a party (even when I'm a player) just mows through the BBEG in a round or two and they don't get to do much.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
MalignantMind wrote:
Epic Meepo wrote:

Based on my experience playing other 3.5/PF characters with abilities that grant extra standard actions, when faced with a challenging fight, I will always spam any ability which grants extra standard actions as much as the rules allow, including any of the four listed in the OP.

That being said, given the number of swift and immediate actions showing up in the mythic rules, I think mythic characters really need something like this:

Swift Initiative (Ex): You gain a +10 bonus on initiative checks, and can take one additional swift action each turn. This additional swift action must be taken during your turn and cannot be used to cast a spell.

I'm liking this one. The +10 to initiative isn't too insane, but will still put mythic characters above non-mythic in the initiative count in most cases, and the additional swift action is very useful with the new abilities in this book.

From a DM standpoint, I'm gonna keep Amazing Initiative as is for monsters and enemy NPCs that might have it. (maybe with the +10 instead of +20). I like the idea of enemies being able to do more, especially solo fights. It's always irked me when a party (even when I'm a player) just mows through the BBEG in a round or two and they don't get to do much.

And that's really the thing isn't it; one of the great things from the get go with Mythic was that monsters would finally have a chance to balance out the action economy, even if only a little. I really hope whatever rules make it into the final book don't backpedal on this aspect.


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I vote that in the final release, monsters retain the original ability (possibly with a re-worked initiative bonus), while players gain something that doesn't allow them to meatgrinder everything in the first round of combat. All in favor?


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Mythic Monstrous feats alongside the Mythic feats for non-monsters?

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I think the whole initiative thing is pretty heavy. This would mean that players go first in nearly every encounter. Perhaps some mythic supermonsters and villains can counter that, but else most other encounters could be ended before they beginn. For example with an controller caster, or some caster dishing out so much damage, it´s even good for rogues and the like.

I think 2 is good.


My vote is for Epic Meepo's Swift Initiative ability, though I like the idea of the initiative bonus growing with your Mythic Tier like some of the other suggestions.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Dekalinder wrote:
Starsunder wrote:
Orthos wrote:
Reckless wrote:

New option to tip it in the favor melee of types:

You gain +20 to your initiative. You may spend 1 use of your Mythic Power as a free action to treat a full-round action or a spell with a 1 round casting time as a standard action.

THIS. THIS. THIS.
Yeah, this is pretty awesome.
If you stop to think on it for 10 straight second you will realize that this is nothing different than gaining an extra move action. I don't think is that awesome when champion already can move and full attack or move and attack with a single mithyc point.

Actually, it allows you to:

Full attack
Charge
Deliver coup de grace
Escape from a net
Extinguish flames
Light a torch
Load a heavy or repeating crossbow
Lock or unlock weapon in locked gauntlet
Prepare to throw splash weapon
Run
Use skill that takes 1 round
Use a touch spell on up to six friends
Withdraw

as a Standard action.

Plus, it allows you the benefits of still having 1 move action, 1 swift action, and any other free actions.


But what equates to is full round+move action. It's really kind of lame.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Jackissocool wrote:
But what equates to is full round+move action. It's really kind of lame.

You see lame, others see awesome. Sounds like I struck some kind of balance. As in not "must use" but "I think that'll be useful this round."


I think +20 init at tier two is honestly a bit much. +10 or so should be plenty. As far as the extra turn goes, it should definitely cost more than one MP, but being so inherently overpowered, limit it to being used only once per day? Even then, bumping this up to a higher tier may be called for.


Epic Meepo wrote:

Based on my experience playing other 3.5/PF characters with abilities that grant extra standard actions, when faced with a challenging fight, I will always spam any ability which grants extra standard actions as much as the rules allow, including any of the four listed in the OP.

That being said, given the number of swift and immediate actions showing up in the mythic rules, I think mythic characters really need something like this:

Swift Initiative (Ex): You gain a +10 bonus on initiative checks, and can take one additional swift action each turn. This additional swift action must be taken during your turn and cannot be used to cast a spell.

This to me is the most palatable. Mainly because not only does it do away with the bookkeeping problem but it does make all the "swift action" mythic abilities much more interesting. Given how you have classes like paladins and cavaliers whod rather spend that swift action smiting ratehr than anything or other characters that want to do things like use bardic performance this right here is highly appealing to me.


But seriously, it's just another move action... The end result is no different.


The initiative worried me as well, but I had not tested it. I like 2 and 4.

With #2 I would probably adjust it be twice your tier (yes eventually +20) or better yet you get to add your mythic power die roll to it, because who doesn't like rolling dice!

Are you interested in having us playtest these ideas? Or just spitballing?

Silver Crusade

Jason Bulmahn wrote:

Hey there all,

I have been feeling for a while now that Amazing Initiative (pg 6) is perhaps too good in its current form, and can lead to some problems when it comes to tracking initiative. I wanted to float some alternative systems out there to the assembled playtesters to gather some feedback. Take a look through these suggestions and tell me what you think.

1. As the existing ability, but activating the power that grants you an extra turn requires you to expend 2 uses of your mythic power.

2. The bonus to your initiative changes to an amount equal to your mythic tier. In addition, you can spend one use of your mythic power to gain an extra standard action on your turn.

3. You can spend one use of your mythic power to gain a +20 bonus to your initiative check. At any one time during the combat, you can decide to take an additional standard action on your turn. After you do so, you initiative changes to what it would be without the +20 (you do not get an additional turn that round, your initiative just moves).

4. As option 3, but the bonus you gain to your initiative is +10 and your spot does not move after you spend your one free bonus standard action.

Jason,

In my opinion, I think that the initiative bonus shouldn't be a static figure that everyone gets. It would be different if some players got it and others didn't, but is there really much difference between players with a +4 and +8 initiative and players with a +24 and +28 Int?

For that reason, I'm not a fan of the current power nor options 1.

Option 2 seriously tones back the initiative bonus, and while it's still somewhat static, I think it being reduced helps. However, I don't know about purchasing standard actions with mythic power.

I like what the 3rd option does in terms of giving players a choice and adding another source to burn mythic power on. However, I worry that +20 to initiative is too good to be a real "Choice" and I think that managing a shifting imitative order will slow combat.

For those reason, I like option 4. I think +10 to your initiative is a great bonus, but not so much that it becomes a mandatory math fix, and I like the fact that players can take advantage of their free standard action without shifting in initiative.


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What about....

Amazing Initiative (Ex): You gain a bonus equal to twice your Mythic Tier on your initiative. In addition, a number times per day equal to your Mythic Tier, you may spend 1 point of Mythic Power to go again in the initiative order at half your rolled initiative.

My reason why I suggest the above is that being able to go twice is a very attractive ability for me both as a player and GM, but more so as a GM. Being able to get an extra attack routine out for Mythic Monsters is important to me, because it really lets those monsters feel terrifying and powerful, without having huge numbers. The +20 to initiative has always bugged me because you move from something like +6 to +26 at the drop of a hat. I like seeing the bonus grow organically as the player grows in power. It also limits how often the Mythic creature can take advantage of going twice, forcing him or her to really make a choice as whether or not those goblins are worth it.


I'd go for option 2.
Amazing Initiative is what makes me do not want to go beyond 1st mythic tier... it's too strong for just a second tier ability.


Full round action as a standard means you can do a a full round and a move in a single turn.
Now what if you had an extra move in a turn?
You could, like, combine a move and a standard to make a full round. And still have a move left. Sounds familiar?
Actually having an extra move is better since it allows the flexibility of taking two moves and a standard instad of a full round and a move when you want to.


that is What i was thinking:

Amazing Iniative (Ex): You gain a bonus equal to your Mythic Tier to Initiative rolls. In addition, you can spend two uses of your Mythic Power to gain an extra standard, move or swift action on your turn.

or maybe just a move and swift action...

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Tels wrote:

What about....

Amazing Initiative (Ex): You gain a bonus equal to twice your Mythic Tier on your initiative. In addition, a number times per day equal to your Mythic Tier, you may spend 1 point of Mythic Power to go again in the initiative order at half your rolled initiative.

My reason why I suggest the above is that being able to go twice is a very attractive ability for me both as a player and GM, but more so as a GM. Being able to get an extra attack routine out for Mythic Monsters is important to me, because it really lets those monsters feel terrifying and powerful, without having huge numbers. The +20 to initiative has always bugged me because you move from something like +6 to +26 at the drop of a hat. I like seeing the bonus grow organically as the player grows in power. It also limits how often the Mythic creature can take advantage of going twice, forcing him or her to really make a choice as whether or not those goblins are worth it.

I like this one (even more than mine). Retains the original flavor and awesome while limiting the spam.

I'll likely keep cycle cycle through some of these options as I run my campaign with the mythic playtest. (Get to start on Monday, yay!)

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