All About Actions

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

One of the most important aspects of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game is combat. Monsters and villains are a very real threat that adventurers have to deal with on a daily basis, and quiet negotiation is rarely the answer. When talking fails, swords are drawn and combat is joined. In Pathfinder First Edition, combat could become rather bogged down just by the weight of options available. Time and time again, we heard new players talk about the complexity of the action system, how it made the game slow down as players looked to eke the most out of their turns.

Basically, the previous system was a barrier, and so it should come as no surprise that we are looking at ways that we can simplify it to make the game run more smoothly and intuitively. The hard part was making sure that the versatility of the old system was still present, while cleaning up the overall experience. We want your turn in combat to be exciting and full of interesting choices. We want you to be elated by coming up with just the right combination of actions to win the day. We just don't want those choices to be hedged in by a number of complex categories.

Seven Types

Before I explain the new way of doing things, it might be good to look back to find some perspective. The previous edition of Pathfinder featured seven distinct action types: free, full-round, immediate, move, standard, swift, and a nebulously defined “other” category. These helped to curb what a character could do and encouraged varied tactics to get the most out of your round. In particular, the immediate action was of interest because it was something you could do outside your turn.

This approach has served us well over the years, but we have long looked for better ways to accomplish some of the same goals with a more intuitive system.

Three Actions

It's your turn. You get to take three actions. That's it. You want to move three times? Done. Instead you want to move once, draw your sword, and attack? No problem. How about attack three times? Go ahead (but you'll take an increasing penalty for each additional attack). With only a few notable exceptions, most things in the game now take one action to accomplish. Opening a door, drawing a weapon, reloading a crossbow, moving up to your speed, raising your shield, taking a guarded step, swinging your greataxe—all of these and much more take just one action to perform.

There are, of course, some exceptions. A few things don't take an action at all, like talking or dropping a weapon. Conversely, most of the spells in the game take two actions to cast, although some can be cast quickly, such as a heal spell that targets yourself. Many of the classes can teach you specific activities that take two more actions to perform. The fighter, for example, has a feat that you can select called Sudden Charge, which costs two actions but lets you to move twice your speed and attack once, allowing fighters to get right into the fray!

One Reaction

One aspect of Pathfinder First Edition that was important to us was the ability to occasionally, if the circumstances were right, act outside your turn. While this was most often a simple attack of opportunity, we saw this as a way to add a whole new dimension to the game.

So now, all characters get one reaction they can take when the conditions are right.

Reactions always come with a trigger that must occur before the reaction can be taken. Let's say you're playing a paladin with a shield and you have spent an action to defend yourself with that shield. Not only does this boost your Armor Class; it also allows you to take a special reaction if you are hit by an attack. This shield block reduces the damage taken by an amount up to the shield's hardness!

Not everybody will have a reaction they can use during combat, but you can always ready an action that allows you prepare a special action that you can take later if the conditions you specify are met. You might ready an action to attack the first orc that walks around the corner, allowing you to make a strike if that happens before your next turn.

Finally, some monsters have reactions they can take as well. While some have simple reactions that allow them to attack those who drop their guard while adjacent to them, others have wildly different abilities. An earth elemental, for example, can spend its reaction after being hit to crumble into a pile of rocks, burrowing down into the ground for safety.

The New System in Practice

The three-action-and-a-reaction system really has done a lot for gameplay around the office. Turns are quite a bit more dynamic. The breadth of options now compete with each other, not based upon what action type they are, but instead on their merits in the current combat situation. Concentrating on a spell might be vital, but not if you need to move away, draw a potion, and drink it. Maybe you could wait to drink it until your next turn to keep the spell going, or maybe you could not move and hope the monster does not eat you.

Most importantly, taking your turn in Pathfinder is now filled with a wide variety of possibilities, allowing you to get the most out of your time in the spotlight, while still keeping the game moving and engaging.

Well, that about wraps up our in-depth look at the new action system for Pathfinder. Come back on Friday for a blog post looking into all of the spoilers from the first part of the Glass Cannon Network's podcast of their playtest of the game. In addition, if you want to see the game yourself, and maybe even get a chance to play, stop by Gary Con this weekend, where we will be running a number of Pathfinder charity games, raising money for the Wounded Warrior Project!

Jason Bulmahn
Director of Game Design

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Kain Gallant wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:


I think it will encourage way more exciting fights from martials. Yeah making that third attack is hard, which is why you might actually try something more dynamic like attempting to trip them up first, or leverage skills like Intimidate more mid fight. That to me is way better tactically, way better for combat dynamics and way better for introducing cinematic and roleplaying mid combat. Sounds like they are reducing the ridiculous barriers the doing all the other martial stuff that isn't just hitting folks. Full attacking every round every combat is just dull.
That sounds great, in theory. But historically, those options have never been easily available (locking behind feat chains) nor successful (ridiculous CMB/CMD progression + the iterative penalty). Until they outline what else martial characters can do and how easily they can accomplish these, I remain skeptical that martial characters can be equally effective in performing non-attack actions vs. simply attacking, and am sticking to my plan to houseruling that penalty out.

Seems like they have completely removed all the b~+%$*%% surrounding combat manouvres. No CMD, no feat taxes etc.

Liberty's Edge

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Kain Gallant wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:


I think it will encourage way more exciting fights from martials. Yeah making that third attack is hard, which is why you might actually try something more dynamic like attempting to trip them up first, or leverage skills like Intimidate more mid fight. That to me is way better tactically, way better for combat dynamics and way better for introducing cinematic and roleplaying mid combat. Sounds like they are reducing the ridiculous barriers the doing all the other martial stuff that isn't just hitting folks. Full attacking every round every combat is just dull.
That sounds great, in theory. But historically, those options have never been easily available (locking behind feat chains) nor successful (ridiculous CMB/CMD progression + the iterative penalty). Until they outline what else martial characters can do and how easily they can accomplish these, I remain skeptical that martial characters can be equally effective in performing non-attack actions vs. simply attacking, and am sticking to my plan to houseruling that penalty out.

In the podcast, they showed that combat maneuvers are now just Skill Check vs. 10 + Resistance (either a skill bonus or save bonus), no attack of opportunity or any other "gate" to be able to use it. Trained in Athletics? You're good at grappling people, done. I'm not sure how many maneuvers are tied to what skills, but that's the basic system they seem to be using.

From what I've seen so far (like with "charging" using 3 actions to move, move, attack vs. the Fighter's "Sudden Charge" allowing them to do the same in 2 actions), it looks to me like the philosophy for PF2 is "Anybody can try basic stuff, but people who focus can do it faster/better/more awesomely."


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Malk_Content wrote:

Seems like they have completely removed all the b@#%+%%# surrounding combat manouvres. No CMD, no feat taxes etc.

JRutterbush wrote:

In the podcast, they showed that combat maneuvers are now just Skill Check vs. 10 + Resistance (either a skill bonus or save bonus), no attack of opportunity or any other "gate" to be able to use it. Trained in Athletics? You're good at grappling people, done. I'm not sure how many maneuvers are tied to what skills, but that's the basic system they seem to be using.

From what I've seen so far (like with "charging" using 3 actions to move, move, attack vs. the Fighter's "Sudden Charge" allowing them to do the same in 2 actions), it looks to me like the philosophy for PF2 is "Anybody can try basic stuff, but people who focus can do it faster/better/more awesomely."

Ok, now that's encouraging to hear. I guess now my only objection is the additional math involved at applying the penalty. Well, I also still dislike the idea of arbitrarily imposing a penalty on a martial's primary option.

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

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I love the potential for this to apply to archer characters. For example, you could do a "Rapid Shot" type turn where you make 3 attacks at increasing penalties. Or you could have an "Aim" action that gives, say, +2 to attack.

So the same character could let fly a volley of arrows at, say, +2/-3/-8, or spend two actions lining up a single, precise shot at +6!

(All numbers are made up, but you get the idea.)

Silver Crusade

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thflame wrote:
Let me get this straight. If I want to be able to stop a guy from drinking a potion or casting a spell right next to me, I either have to have special training to react to this situation, or I have to devote part of my turn to preparing to interrupt the action?

Wait

Wait

WAIT

Plllllllllleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaassssse tell me there's a Reaction to smack the bottom of the bottle when they go to drink so it goes up their nostrils and into their eyes instead :3


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Volkard Abendroth wrote:

Tactical combat is a huge part of the reason I play Pathfinder.

I already have plenty of games that don't require tactical movement, and do not choose to play them anywhere near as often.

So you're anxiously looking forward to the new system, I take it? Because without a "full attack or be useless" action system, tacticial movement is geatly emphasised.

For instance, I remember someone writing about the unchained system that when fighting a Hydra, a player came up with the idea to move towards it, attack, and move away again, eating only one AoO instead of the Hydra's five attacks the next turn. That is a show of how the new system supports both system mastery and tactical movement.

­

Friendly Rogue wrote:
Renraku wrote:
I think we would all rather have the rules in hand now, but given that the only other options are giving us a vague heads up with nothing or just dropping it on us like a load of bricks in August... The slow roll out of information is better.
Not to mention, with the slow roll out approach, it enables them to gauge opinions on separate mechanics one at a time so they can take it into consideration accordingly

I think letting the "The sky is falling! This is the. Worst. Possible. Thing!" crowd cry themselves dry now might reduce the amount of useless whining we'll get once the actual playtest comes out.

Silver Crusade

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LuniasM brought them up, put me down as another one wanting an Intercept Attack style Reaction. I love playing a Bodygaurd type.

  • Another Reaction/Readied Action would be if they miss (or hit) and get their weapon lodged you can yank it from them/snap it.
  • Leave an opening so they want to atatck but it leaves them open to a counter.
  • For against spear wielders if they miss being able to grab the haft and yank them close.
  • CATCH ARROWS/BULLETS/THROWING AXES
  • For characters using heavy Two-handers and/or the Power Attack(?) feat, they wind up for a heavy blow and you're able to get a quick one in against them.


  • My beef with the Unchained Action Economy was that it puts many swift action in a weird spot (especially the Monk's extra attack from spending ki - at best, it's turned from a bonus attack to an accuracy boost, at worst it doesn't do anything). With the classes being designed around the new system, that shouldn't be a problem.

    So thank you Mark, Logan (my new favourite guy at Paizo), and whoever was involved in that decision, for this - even though I (and many others) totally expected it for PF2. I especially like how shield are turned from tiny bonus AC (and thus only being used when the class prevents one from attacking with both hands) to a much closer represantation of how they were used in actual combat.

    Mark Seifter wrote:
    what about spellcasters possibly having "counterspell" reactions?
    My magic 8-ball says "Outcome seems likely."

    I'm back, baby!

    Silver Crusade

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    I do like how this reminds me of Final Fantasy Tactics where you assigned Reaction abilities to characters and certain classes had specific ones they could learn ^w^


    thflame wrote:

    In PF1, if you take a 5 foot step, you can't move with your move action. It penalizes you for being in a disadvantageous situation (as it should).

    (bunch of stuff)

    You missed my point. You were saying that being able to "stay there and not being attacked" was somehow unrealistic.

    However, you seem not to worry about the time bubbles every character produce every time they start their turn, with everyone else frozen in place unable to do anything.

    My point is not if 5foot steps are too powerful or not. My point is that your brain choses that some mildly unrealistic stuff (such as requiring special training to do a reflex attack) is too unrealistic, while totally impossible things (such as freezing entire rooms in time stasis because "it is your turn") do not bother you, just because you are so used to the totally unrealistic stuff that you don't care anymore.

    You will get used to the mildly unrealistic stuff, just like you got used to the totally unrealistic stuff.


    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber

    Yeah Rysky, but I doubt will ever see "damage split";)


    What I would love clarification for, though I guess we all will have to wait until the playtest, is if you can selectively choose which trigger to use your reaction for each turn. For example: If combat styles were still a thing and you had something similar to Panther Style active could you choose to ignore the preemptive AoO against one particular enemy you provoke but use it on another in the same turn? I would hate to be forced to use my reaction if something triggers it and I do not wish to use it at that moment. It would be similar I guess to if multiple enemies moved through your threatened area during a round ... would you have to use your reaction on the first that provokes or could you choose? I would assume that there might be some feat like Combat Reflexes that increases the number of reactions you get per turn in order to perform AoOs.


    I know that I've posted this previously in the first blog post, but PLEASE Paizo, consider releasing the CRB play test pdf earlier so we can get the most out of this window.

    I'm liking the sounds of the new action-economy, but I really need to be hands-on to judge it fairly for myself. :)


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    I can imagine a whole slew of different options under this system:
    -Power Attack (whether a feat or just a combat option) might be using one action point to make next attack stronger. Or Aim as mentioned before.
    -Or debuffs. It was awkward before to choose between a cool but brief debuff vs. an attack, w/ attacks nearly always better (or debuffs which caused an AoO). This way they can both occur.
    -Bodyguard actions as reactions, there could be a set of these. Maybe Animal Companions can join in this.
    -Rogues stepping away as a reaction when foe attacks somebody else.
    -Casters casting as a reaction, perhaps as an AoO even!
    -Spell options, like mentioned for Magic Missile, can offer some extra utility for some other spells. Use one action point for a lesser-version of True Strike and you can still move and attack. Use two or three points, then you have the huge bonus like in PF1.

    Quick question though: How will Haste work with this? It seems even giving an extra action point would lead to casters with two offensive spells per round.

    I already like that some of those caster buffs like "Shield" appear to be 1 action point to cast. Goodbye to scenarios where casters have tactics to defensively buff first.

    Liberty's Edge

    Castilliano wrote:
    Quick question though: How will Haste work with this? It seems even giving an extra action point would lead to casters with two offensive spells per round.

    I can see haste simply allowing you to take an action as a reaction. That really sells the haste part of haste, that you're moving so fast you can act on other people's turns, and since it's not part of your normal turn (apparently you can't take reactions on your own turn now), you can't combine it with your normal actions to cast two two-action spells. I might even have it allow you to move a small amount (5 to 10 feet) as part of each action you take instead of increasing your speed. That way, a hasted creature is just a blur on the battlefield, just everywhere at once.

    But this is without seeing how the rest of the game is balanced overall, so it's just a spitball idea.


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    Some of us have since Unchained embraced some of the Alternate rules past the classes. My favorites were the consolidated skills and the new action economy so most of this isn't new for me. I see a lot of concerns that we haven't really seen. Sure some problems occur when translating old routines exactly on the same amount of turns, but I think this action economy is the smartest move for 2e.


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    Derklord wrote:
    I think letting the "The sky is falling! This is the. Worst. Possible. Thing!" crowd cry themselves dry now might reduce the amount of useless whining we'll get once the actual playtest comes out.

    man, this is golden. i love you, you're absolutely right. make it sound bad, and BAM, when it comes out "hey, this is actually better than what we imagined"

    but seriously though, i really like the idea of the new edition. i'm excited. thanks, everyone at paizo, keep up the good work, i'm fan of 1st edition(my first pnp campaign) and think i'll be the fan of 2nd too. don't be discouraged by the criticism (eventhough i know you won't), i think most have their own reason, it's not overly unreasonable.

    Silver Crusade

    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
    Dragon78 wrote:
    Yeah Rysky, but I doubt will ever see "damage split";)

    ?


    Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
    Derklord wrote:
    My beef with the Unchained Action Economy was that it puts many swift action in a weird spot (especially the Monk's extra attack from spending ki - at best, it's turned from a bonus attack to an accuracy boost, at worst it doesn't do anything). With the classes being designed around the new system, that shouldn't be a problem.

    Yeah, swift action dependent classes (Swashbuckler, Inquisitor, Warpriest, to a lesser degree Sorcerer/Wizard, Monk, etc) were screwed by the three action system. But I'm sure Mark and the others are on that when re-designing the classes. <arches eyebrow>

    Silver Crusade

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    DoubleAAaron wrote:
    What I would love clarification for, though I guess we all will have to wait until the playtest, is if you can selectively choose which trigger to use your reaction for each turn. For example: If combat styles were still a thing and you had something similar to Panther Style active could you choose to ignore the preemptive AoO against one particular enemy you provoke but use it on another in the same turn? I would hate to be forced to use my reaction if something triggers it and I do not wish to use it at that moment. It would be similar I guess to if multiple enemies moved through your threatened area during a round ... would you have to use your reaction on the first that provokes or could you choose? I would assume that there might be some feat like Combat Reflexes that increases the number of reactions you get per turn in order to perform AoOs.

    Just like in Pathfinder, I'm gonna put my money on the notion that you're not forced to take a Reaction, you choose to do so.


    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
    Malwing wrote:
    Some of us have since Unchained embraced some of the Alternate rules past the classes. My favorites were the consolidated skills and the new action economy so most of this isn't new for me. I see a lot of concerns that we haven't really seen. Sure some problems occur when translating old routines exactly on the same amount of turns, but I think this action economy is the smartest move for 2e.

    I still remember my initial reaction to Consolidated Skills: "Neat idea, but it clearly needs a complete reworking of the game to be of any practical use." Sure enough, it looks like that section just might have been a preview of things to come.


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    Three action + one reaction, such an elegant solution, very simple and yet more flexible and with more tactical options, kudos to Paizo Dev team


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    Consolidated skills are majorly ugh.


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    Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber
    Cat-thulhu wrote:
    QuidEst wrote:
    seekerofshadowlight wrote:
    Over all this sounds nice, but can't say I am the fan for a penalty for extra attacks.

    If all attacks are at full bonus, then all actions are equally important. Combat becomes move up, full attack repeatedly.

    If your later attacks aren't worth much, instead of full attacking, you can attack twice and defend, heal, intimidate, or feint. It's a little more interesting. And, in some circumstances, you might just do one attack so you can fit in a regular spell or defending and healing.

    I would have thought the idea is to make all actions equally important, making each choice equally valid? Even with no penalty the “best” option is probably move up and attack twice, three times if the opponent stays there. Of course you could still move, attack and defend; heal, move, attack? If I think my second or third attack are worthwhile will I rethink my defence to try and take out my foe? Will I delay that little bit of healing for that third attack? Remember the new system won’t have a “full attack” option by the look of it so the move, full attack is really not an option. I think you might be able to do the sp dial charge action to move double and attack, then follow with another attack - but would you rather defend just in case?

    The benefit of a lack of penalty is it makes the multiple attack option viable, because otherwise the penalised attacks really aren’t worth much.

    Making all actions equally important and equally valid isn’t feasible. If there’s no attack penalties, then any time “attack once” is the answer, then “do nothing but attack until it’s dead” is the answer. That’s not very interesting. If there’s a scaling opportunity cost, then other actions can be worse than your best attack, but better than your third attack. Now there’s variety.

    Removing penalties doesn’t just make “do nothing but attack” viable, it makes it necessary.


    I hope most, if not all, combat maneuvers are not considered attacks and therefore do not stack with the attack penalty. Giving up my -10 attack in exchange for a disarm is a not great/not terrible option. They lose an action and the use of that weapon for any reactions in the meantime. If it’s at the same -10 as my attack would be, it’s just as unappealing as it is now.


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    The real answer to the penalties is that multiple attacks at the same attack bonus inflates the numbers on armor and hp and the standard across RPGs is that multiple actions in a single turn gets less likely to succeed.

    Another bonus is design space for avoiding the penalties


    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

    However, taking that 3rd swing still needs to be appealing enough to be useful, because with the penalties as-is I just don't see the practicality of even having the option to attack more than once a turn. Those extra actions are better off doing anything else, even nothing.


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    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
    Kain Gallant wrote:
    However, taking that 3rd swing still needs to be appealing enough to be useful, because with the penalties as-is I just don't see the practicality of even having the option to attack more than once a turn.

    Not at first level, maybe. But the penalties are exactly what they are for iteratives right now, so at higher levels tactics might dictate you attempt more attacks than at low levels. After all, people take that third swing at -10 at 11th level in P1e right now.

    In P2e, they'll at least have the option of taking two swings at -0/-5 and then doing something else with their last action instead of taking an attack at -10.


    Tamago wrote:

    I love the potential for this to apply to archer characters. For example, you could do a "Rapid Shot" type turn where you make 3 attacks at increasing penalties. Or you could have an "Aim" action that gives, say, +2 to attack.

    So the same character could let fly a volley of arrows at, say, +2/-3/-8, or spend two actions lining up a single, precise shot at +6!

    (All numbers are made up, but you get the idea.)

    Even better, your aimed shot that took 3 actions to perform would have a MUCH higher chance to crit than your rapid fire shots because of the new crit system. Line it up for that headshot!


    Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber
    Kain Gallant wrote:
    However, taking that 3rd swing still needs to be appealing enough to be useful, because with the penalties as-is I just don't see the practicality of even having the option to attack more than once a turn. Those extra actions are better off doing anything else, even nothing.

    Attacks don’t have crit fumbles, so it’s only worse-than-nothing against duelist-type enemies with reactions against terrible attack rolls.

    I can see sword-and-board being very popular at low levels for something to do with the third action once engaged in melee.


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    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber

    Rysky, you don't remember damage split from FF tactics? It was a reaction ability that when you took damage (high % chance) that if the damage didn't kill you it would be halved and the enemy would take the other half.


    QuidEst wrote:
    Kain Gallant wrote:
    However, taking that 3rd swing still needs to be appealing enough to be useful, because with the penalties as-is I just don't see the practicality of even having the option to attack more than once a turn. Those extra actions are better off doing anything else, even nothing.

    Attacks don’t have crit fumbles, so it’s only worse-than-nothing against duelist-type enemies with reactions against terrible attack rolls.

    I can see sword-and-board being very popular at low levels for something to do with the third action once engaged in melee.

    Given the emphasis they're putting on reactions, I'm guessing those types of enemies won't be all that rare.


    Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
    Bloodrealm wrote:
    QuidEst wrote:
    Kain Gallant wrote:
    However, taking that 3rd swing still needs to be appealing enough to be useful, because with the penalties as-is I just don't see the practicality of even having the option to attack more than once a turn. Those extra actions are better off doing anything else, even nothing.

    Attacks don’t have crit fumbles, so it’s only worse-than-nothing against duelist-type enemies with reactions against terrible attack rolls.

    I can see sword-and-board being very popular at low levels for something to do with the third action once engaged in melee.

    Given the emphasis they're putting on reactions, I'm guessing those types of enemies won't be all that rare.

    Which is fine. So long as there are some situations where the third attack is a good idea its existence isn't a problem.


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    Bloodrealm wrote:
    QuidEst wrote:
    Kain Gallant wrote:
    However, taking that 3rd swing still needs to be appealing enough to be useful, because with the penalties as-is I just don't see the practicality of even having the option to attack more than once a turn. Those extra actions are better off doing anything else, even nothing.

    Attacks don’t have crit fumbles, so it’s only worse-than-nothing against duelist-type enemies with reactions against terrible attack rolls.

    I can see sword-and-board being very popular at low levels for something to do with the third action once engaged in melee.

    Given the emphasis they're putting on reactions, I'm guessing those types of enemies won't be all that rare.

    Best make sure you have a knowledge monkey in the party to watch out for those types of enemies, then!


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    syll wrote:

    Why does it take 3 actions to accomplish what you could do in 1 in 1E? (Draw weapon, move, leap)

    That doesn't sound like "giving me the most out of my time" at all.

    Why are fighters the only ones able to make an AoO?

    Training probably. It sounds like everybody gets something they can do with their reaction, just not all the same thing. Frankly a fair number of classes in the current system might go their entire adventuring career without making an AoO, so giving them something else to do could be quite cool.


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    D_GENNEXT wrote:
    PLEASE Paizo, consider releasing the CRB play test pdf earlier so we can get the most out of this window.

    Senior staff have already said that is not going to happen.

    Paizo Employee Designer

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    Bloodrealm wrote:
    QuidEst wrote:
    Kain Gallant wrote:
    However, taking that 3rd swing still needs to be appealing enough to be useful, because with the penalties as-is I just don't see the practicality of even having the option to attack more than once a turn. Those extra actions are better off doing anything else, even nothing.

    Attacks don’t have crit fumbles, so it’s only worse-than-nothing against duelist-type enemies with reactions against terrible attack rolls.

    I can see sword-and-board being very popular at low levels for something to do with the third action once engaged in melee.

    Given the emphasis they're putting on reactions, I'm guessing those types of enemies won't be all that rare.

    I'm not aware of any enemies who have that reaction right now other than NPCs (since the one I'm thinking of is a PC reaction, and NPCs use PC abilities of their class).

    Silver Crusade

    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
    Dragon78 wrote:
    Rysky, you don't remember damage split from FF tactics? It was a reaction ability that when you took damage (high % chance) that if the damage didn't kill you it would be halved and the enemy would take the other half.

    The name didn't immediately pop but now I do lol


    In Pathfinder the third attack is appealing because of how crits worked and attack bonuses wildly outpacing AC. In PF2e the numbers are supposed to be flatter so I'm actually curious about this question.


    Theyn and Mitsouko wrote:

    Hi There,

    You mention concentrating on spells. Do you intend to ramp up the number of spells that require concentration (like another game we could mention) or will most spells still have duration allowing you to cast and forget?

    I never saw an answer to this question.

    Also the blog specifically says: "Concentrating on a spell might be vital, but not if you need to move away, draw a potion, and drink it. Maybe you could wait to drink it until your next turn to keep the spell going, or maybe you could not move and hope the monster does not eat you." I'm sorry if someone else brought this up, I did not wade through the 10 pages of posts before posting.

    That language makes it sound, very much, like continuing concentration on a spell requires at least one of your actions each round to maintain it. Is that the intention?


    gustavo iglesias wrote:
    thflame wrote:

    In PF1, if you take a 5 foot step, you can't move with your move action. It penalizes you for being in a disadvantageous situation (as it should).

    (bunch of stuff)

    You missed my point. You were saying that being able to "stay there and not being attacked" was somehow unrealistic.

    However, you seem not to worry about the time bubbles every character produce every time they start their turn, with everyone else frozen in place unable to do anything.

    My point is not if 5foot steps are too powerful or not. My point is that your brain choses that some mildly unrealistic stuff (such as requiring special training to do a reflex attack) is too unrealistic, while totally impossible things (such as freezing entire rooms in time stasis because "it is your turn") do not bother you, just because you are so used to the totally unrealistic stuff that you don't care anymore.

    You will get used to the mildly unrealistic stuff, just like you got used to the totally unrealistic stuff.

    The point was that I wasn't talking about that in the first place, but since you insist, I will chime in on this specific topic.

    You are NOT frozen in time stop on your turn, because you can take immediate actions, such as an attack of opportunity, on your turn to react to stuff that makes sense to be able to react to.

    Yes, it appears that you can still do this in PF2, but my issue is with WHO gets to do WHAT actions. I feel like an AoO is something ANYONE should be able to do to immediately react to someone doing something defenseless.

    I believe your initial example was an archer barely missing out on initiative vs a melee fighter and being charged before they could react?

    The simple solution is that the difference in their Initiative wasn't that small, even though mechanically, it was. The archer was caught slightly off guard and by the time they managed to react, the fighter had closed the gap and attacked. While the fighter was recovering from their reckless attack, the archer manages to make space and shoot.

    Now, as for my issue, why can't I hit someone with my sword that is casting a spell or drinking a potion or doing something similar that no person in their sane mind would let happen? There is a reaction mechanic, and AoOs should be an option for that mechanic for all characters without requiring special training.

    Ultimately, there are going to be inconsistencies in turn based combat that we will have to accept because the alternative is extremely complex.

    My point is that PF1 has a neat solution to this, and PF2 appears to be stripping this solution from certain characters, so that the characters that manage to keep this option feel special.

    Your argument is like saying, "who cares if your car doesn't have tires, it already can't fly". My car used to have tires. Its tires were taken away on my sedan because someone decided that tires should be the explicit domain of trucks. Now I have to buy a truck if I want tires, or spend extra on tires, when tires should come standard on all vehicles.

    TL;DR, I know turn based has flaws that are necessary, stripping AoOs from characters has absolutely nothing to do with this and breaks immersion for no good reason, other than to make fighters feel special, which is lazy game design.

    P.S. I am actually liking most of the changes I have heard about PF2, taking away options from characters that they should logically have by default (and making them spend feats/skills/etc. to get them back) is a pet peeve of mine and should not happen.


    If they feel they must keep the stupid penalties for iterative attacks, I can only hope it's implemented something like rapid shot is where the penalty is the same across all three attacks instead of the silly +0/-5/-10 that practically make the last roll pointless unless its a nat. 20


    Diffan wrote:
    If they feel they must keep the stupid penalties for iterative attacks, I can only hope it's implemented something like rapid shot is where the penalty is the same across all three attacks instead of the silly +0/-5/-10 that practically make the last roll pointless unless its a nat. 20

    This is probably something you could already playtest. Give your characters full BAB on all attacks and see what happens.

    My guess is that it ends up being too powerful, but I don't know.

    From a simplicity standpoint, I would like it if their weren't iterative attack penalties.


    thflame wrote:
    Diffan wrote:
    If they feel they must keep the stupid penalties for iterative attacks, I can only hope it's implemented something like rapid shot is where the penalty is the same across all three attacks instead of the silly +0/-5/-10 that practically make the last roll pointless unless its a nat. 20

    This is probably something you could already playtest. Give your characters full BAB on all attacks and see what happens.

    My guess is that it ends up being too powerful, but I don't know.

    From a simplicity standpoint, I would like it if their weren't iterative attack penalties.

    I have tried similar with -2 to swing twice or -3 to swing 3 times.

    Does not break the game.


    thflame wrote:
    Diffan wrote:
    If they feel they must keep the stupid penalties for iterative attacks, I can only hope it's implemented something like rapid shot is where the penalty is the same across all three attacks instead of the silly +0/-5/-10 that practically make the last roll pointless unless its a nat. 20

    This is probably something you could already playtest. Give your characters full BAB on all attacks and see what happens.

    My guess is that it ends up being too powerful, but I don't know.

    From a simplicity standpoint, I would like it if their weren't iterative attack penalties.

    100% agree with you. For simplicity sake it's easier with no penalties and all the modifiers are the same. If they need penalties (despite a simplier solution and one that makes more narrative sense) then a single penalty across the board is better. I like rolling dice at once for all attacks and in AD&D, 4E, and 5E there's no problem...but 3e/PF means different colored d20s and I have to match them up every turn. It just takes longer for zero gain.


    2 people marked this as a favorite.

    That pretty much requires declaring your entire set of actions at once. It’s not the end of the world, but it locks things up somewhat awkwardly. If I move and attack, I have to know ahead of time whether my attack will drop the target and I can move to the next target, or if I need to use a second attack.


    Sir Antony wrote:
    That pretty much requires declaring your entire set of actions at once. It’s not the end of the world, but it locks things up somewhat awkwardly. If I move and attack, I have to know ahead of time whether my attack will drop the target and I can move to the next target, or if I need to use a second attack.

    You raise a valid point, so I propose a compromise.

    A -2 penalty to each additional swing beyond the first.

    Second swing is -2, third is -4, fourth (such as by feat or class feature or whatnot) is -6


    kyrt-ryder wrote:
    Sir Antony wrote:
    That pretty much requires declaring your entire set of actions at once. It’s not the end of the world, but it locks things up somewhat awkwardly. If I move and attack, I have to know ahead of time whether my attack will drop the target and I can move to the next target, or if I need to use a second attack.

    You raise a valid point, so I propose a compromise.

    A -2 penalty to each additional swing beyond the first.

    Second swing is -2, third is -4, fourth (such as by feat or class feature or whatnot) is -6

    Or how about simply a base -2 penalty on each subsequent attack? Its easier and doesn't penalize characters at doing what their designed to do?


    How are wands going to work since most spells cost 2 actions?

    Will wands be a single action to use or will they take multiple?


    wands took 2 actions to activate in Unchained I think. I bet will be the same.

    That's assuming Wands stay as "spell batteries". It might not be the case.

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