Are You Proficient?

Friday, March 16, 2018

The term "proficiency" has been a part of the Pathfinder rules since the very beginning, but in the Pathfinder Playtest Rulebook, we've expanded the concept to cover more than just weapons and armor. In the new proficiency system, your proficiency matters for just about every check you attempt and DC you have. You don't just have proficiency in weapons, which helps when you swing a sword, or proficiency in armor, which protects you when you try to avoid a blow—instead, proficiency covers everything from axes to spells, from Acrobatics to Thievery, and from Perception to Will saves. Your proficiency in Fortitude saves can allow you to shake off virulent poisons in an instant, and your proficiency in Diplomacy might help you stop a fight before it begins. There are five different ranks of proficiency.

Untrained

An untrained character lacks even basic proficiency. He adjusts his checks and DCs by –2 and sometimes flat-out can't attempt certain things. For instance, someone who is untrained in Thievery might be able to try to steal from someone but isn't skilled enough to pick a lock, no matter how high level he is.

Illustration by Wayne Reynolds

Trained

A trained character has put in enough work that she's able to perform effectively. She can even start taking skill feats to achieve new and special effects with her skills. Many skill feats grow more and more powerful as your proficiency rank increases.

Expert

An expert is particularly accomplished in a particular field, adjusting her checks and DCs by +1, and gains access to more powerful features requiring expertise.

Master

A master is extremely skilled in an area, and she can achieve incredible results. In addition to adjusting her checks and DCs by +2, she may unlock powerful perks like master-level skill feats for skills, or the ability to dodge fireballs completely for Reflex saves. Other than a few classes like fighters, with their incredible command of weapons, characters can't become masters until level 7 at the earliest, and sometimes much later.

Legendary

A legendary character is world-class, and in addition to adjusting checks and DCs by +3, can routinely produce results that defy real-world explanation, even if they're not a spellcaster. For instance, a character who is legendary in Survival could learn to survive without food, water, or air in a featureless void, a character legendary in Thievery might be able to steal the armor off a guard, and a character with a legendary Will save might have a mind so strong that no mental intrusion can fully affect him. Most characters can't hope to become legendary until level 15 at the earliest, and even the mightiest fighters reach these heights with their weapons only at level 13. Most characters become legendary in only a few skills and one or two other statistics.

Proficiency Modifier

Your proficiency modifier is based partly on your rank and partly on your level—you add your level to the modifier from your rank to determine your proficiency modifier. For instance, a level 20 rogue who is legendary at Stealth might have a +23 proficiency modifier, while a level 1 paladin who is untrained at Stealth might have a –1 proficiency modifier. But does that mean that your level 20 untrained and magic-hating barbarian knows more about arcane magic than your friend's level 1 bibliophile wizard does? Not really. Your barbarian, with her extensive experience in battle, might be able to identify a dragon's weaknesses much better than the wizard with his ivory-tower book learning, but when it comes to magical theory, identifying the gestures that compose a spell, or other such topics, your barbarian simply doesn't know anything at all.

Gaining Proficiency

For most of your statistics, your starting proficiencies are determined by your class, though for skills, you can assign your ranks as you choose among any of the skills in the game. When it comes to leveling up, all classes gain skill rank increases at every odd-numbered level (or more often for the rogue!). Your other proficiencies increase based on your class and feat choices.

Making the Nonmagical Extraordinary

The best part about proficiencies is the way they push the boundaries for nonmagical characters, particularly those with a legendary rank. If you're legendary in something, you're like a character out of real-world myth and legend, swimming across an entire sea while beating up sea monsters like Beowulf, performing unbelievable tasks like Heracles, or hunting and racing at astounding speeds like Atalanta. While we did perform a bit of research on things like real world Olympic records and average expectations when it came to the lower ranks, masters and especially legends break all those rules. Want your fighter to leap 20 feet straight up and smash a chimera down to the ground? You can do that (eventually)!

And that's the basics of how proficiency works! Thanks for reading, and let us know what you think in the comments.

Mark Seifter
Designer

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Lady Firebird wrote:
John Lynch 106 wrote:
Shinigami02 wrote:
As long as it remains possible for skills like Stealth or the movement skills (Climb, Swim, basically stuff that's in Athletics now I think) to be relevant without either the entire party having to invest in it (particularly bad with Stealth) or suicidally splitting the party and going alone, I would be okay. As is, PF1e makes Stealth virtually useless as a skill most of the time.

Master Trainer (Skill Feat)

Prerequisite: Master Rank
Benefit: Select one skill you have master rank in. By first spending 10 minutes you can give everyone your bonus in that skill so long as they perform the activity with you. This bonus ceases after either 1 hour or when they stop performing the activity with you (whichever happens later).

There we go. My agency of being able to be bad at a skill (except when working with a master) is kept in tact. And you get to be so awesome that even untrained people can be passable just by being in your presence. How is that not cool and help show just how good you are at a particular skill?

Or you could just add Flaws to your game and leave the rest of us with a baseline of heroic skill abilities.

No need of house rules even. Maybe Paizo can add it to the normal game, so those who really want their adventuer not being able to climb trees, because it fits better their idea for their character, can do it, legally, without needing a house rule.

I preffer Starfinder approach (nothing in return), but I suppose it can be properly tested and balanced to see what happens. I feel a lot of people will dump "appraise" to get a skill proficiency in, say, Diplomacy or Arcana. But let's see.


TolkienBard wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Deranged Stabby-Man wrote:
Lady Firebird wrote:
Deranged Stabby-Man wrote:

"A master is extremely skilled in an area, and she can achieve incredible results. In addition to adjusting her checks and DCs by +2, she may unlock powerful perks like master-level skill feats for skills, **or the ability to dodge fireballs completely for Reflex saves**."

Please tell me you didn't just make Evasion a feat instead of a Class Feature....

Why not? This would make it more readily available to everyone, but especially to those nimble characters whose expertise lies in that sort of thing.
We don't need a Dex-Based Barbarian that in addition to having a MASSIVE pool of HP, and probably DR of some sort, also just "Lol, Nope"-ing Fireballs.
We don’t?
MEh, I can see where the concern might be, but I think it can be quickly mitigated. It would depend entirely on just HOW MUCH a barbarian needs to invest in acrobatics (or whatever the eventual choice is)before unlocking the ability to take the evasion feat. I mean, if he invests in acrobatics to the detriment of all other skills, then - why not? If it is just a basic skill anyone can take though, then there are some serious issues.

So based on my current understanding: You need to be a Master of Reflex Saves in order to gain "Evasion". Given that you only gain one bonus "proficiency rank" on odd levels, you only get 10 over the course of 20 levels (barring bonus ranks from special class skills or perhaps feats).

As such, you would need to invest 3 into reflex saves to gain evasion. That is 1/3 of ALL of the proficiency ranks you gain. I'd say that's a heavy investment.

But again, that's just as I understand it. I might be wrong.

As a side note: Rogues apparently get a specific class skill that automatically gives them Master rank in Reflex, which Seifter has said will be named "Evasion".


I wouldn't set dumping one skill for one skill.

If PF2 uses a similar Point Buy maybe abandoning a skill could grant one extra build point.


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LadyBird: Playing superheroes who are good at everything was not what Pathfinder 1st ed was about. Moving into that design space has a high risk of alienating a good portion of the Pathfinder fanbase. Making it the core assumption with optional rules to enable Pathfinder 1st ed feel is going to be extremely controversial. I'd rather preserve the Pathfinder 1st ed feel and have the superheroic option be optional and cost a small amount of resources.


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I still mantain that "being able to climb a tree" and "being a superheroe good at everything" are two different things. A superheroic climber is Spiderman, who can climb sheer polished surfaces. Nobody is saying that a sorcerer with no skill proficiencies should be able to become Spiderman.

Just that he should be able to climb a tree.


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gustavo iglesias wrote:

I still mantain that "being able to climb a tree" and "being a superheroe good at everything" are two different things. A superheroic climber is Spiderman, who can climb sheer polished surfaces. Nobody is saying that a sorcerer with no skill proficiencies should be able to become Spiderman.

Just that he should be able to climb a tree.

Go back to the list of all untrained skills from pf1 I listed.

Because that's everyone else is talking about. Climbing a tree is one example.


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gustavo iglesias wrote:

I still mantain that "being able to climb a tree" and "being a superheroe good at everything" are two different things. A superheroic climber is Spiderman, who can climb sheer polished surfaces. Nobody is saying that a sorcerer with no skill proficiencies should be able to become Spiderman.

Just that he should be able to climb a tree.

A sorcerer with no skill proficiency can beat DC 30 acrobatics checks 1/2 the time with only 14 STR. That's quite a bit better than "can climb a tree".


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Climbing a tree with sufficient handhelds should be DC 10. Climbing 100 feet up a sheer cliffface with handhelds should require a skilled person assisting you or actual training and not "I got to level 15 so I can just do stuff like this despite being strength 7". Also 4th ed had skill powers that handled havung a climb speed. Everyone still felt amazung at everything. The climb speed person was just ridiculous.

Obviously this discussion is hampered without knowing what requires training. But the more things that require training the less benefit the game gets by handing out big bonuses.


Chaotic_Blues wrote:

How can a martial character stand out in combat, if the only real difference between himself, and the guy who spends his time reading books, is only a +3 to +5(baring equipment, and stats OC)?

Actual class mechanics and abilities that differentiate between combat styles. The previous edition was atrocious at times with it (Fighter. Im looking at you) but still that is how to do it.


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Charabdos, The Tidal King wrote:
A sorcerer with no skill proficiency can beat DC 30 acrobatics 1/2 the time checks with only 14 STR. That's quite a bit better than "can climb a tree".

But in PF2 skill checks aren't measured just in DC, but also "what level of proficiency can be needed to attempt this". So I imagine DC 30 checks one can attempt untrained are fairly rare. Like a DC 30 acrobatics check one can attempt untrained might be "move along this really slippery surface without falling down" but not like "run up a wall? I'm happy with experienced adventurers being able to "not fall down" more often.


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John Lynch 106 wrote:
LadyBird: Playing superheroes who are good at everything was not what Pathfinder 1st ed was about. Moving into that design space has a high risk of alienating a good portion of the Pathfinder fanbase. Making it the core assumption with optional rules to enable Pathfinder 1st ed feel is going to be extremely controversial. I'd rather preserve the Pathfinder 1st ed feel and have the superheroic option be optional and cost a small amount of resources.

1) This isn't superheroes. It's fantasy heroes, mythic heroes, the kinds of things that inspired superheroes to begin with.

2) Pathfinder 2nd Edition isn't Pathfinder 1st Edition. That they're trying new things, many of which embrace the entire concept of "mortal heroes who rise to demigod levels" far better than anything 3.x/PF ever did, is a very good thing.

3) You still have PF1 and can play that for the rest of your lifetime with the wealth of material they have available. Let them try something new for those of us who want it, rather than the base who has been covered for 10+ years.

4) Though it didn't do it well regarding skills, Pathfinder 1E still had plenty of "superheroics" at high levels, so this argument that somehow PF2 is different in that regard and thus worse is false.


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Charabdos, The Tidal King wrote:
gustavo iglesias wrote:

I still mantain that "being able to climb a tree" and "being a superheroe good at everything" are two different things. A superheroic climber is Spiderman, who can climb sheer polished surfaces. Nobody is saying that a sorcerer with no skill proficiencies should be able to become Spiderman.

Just that he should be able to climb a tree.

A sorcerer with no skill proficiency can beat DC 30 acrobatics checks 1/2 the time with only 14 STR. That's quite a bit better than "can climb a tree".

Assuming those skill checks are allowed for non-trained people, yes.

On the other hand, a lvl 20 sorcerer with STR 14 in Pathfinder can wrestle a rhinoceros with a hand tied to his back (so -4 to his check for not having two hands free) and only needs to roll 12+. So he is pretty badass.


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I want a better version of pathfinder, I want a pathfinder second edition that fixes all the annoyances from the first edition. But I don't especially want a completely new game with a completely different feel. If i want to play super heroes I can play Mutants and Masterminds, if I wanted bounded accuracy I could play 5th edition, If i wanted to play D&D the computer game I could play 4th edition. But I haven't been playing those games because I rather play pathfinder.

It's far too early to say, but the glimpses and peaks we've gotten so far isn't exactly the fixes and cleanups and re-balances i really wanted from a second edition pathfinder, it's sounding more and more like an entirely different game.


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Shinigami02 wrote:
John Lynch 106 wrote:

To those who are saying +level scaling is god's gift to gaming and is the most innovative feature (at least for 2008) ever: Have you considered that this might be an example of one of the more extreme rules implementations and Paizo do in fact have a backup plan that will satisfy those who are more comfortable with Pathfinder 1st ed's system while still addressing what they're trying to address with this implementation of the rules.

Praise it and love it as much as you want. But keep in mind there's a good chance it won't make it through the playtest without some form of change.

As long as it remains possible for skills like Stealth or the movement skills (Climb, Swim, basically stuff that's in Athletics now I think) to be relevant without either the entire party having to invest in it (particularly bad with Stealth) or suicidally splitting the party and going alone, I would be okay. As is, PF1e makes Stealth virtually useless as a skill most of the time.

Weird that stealth has not been worthless in the games I’ve been playing for a long time.


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I don't think anybody considers the way grappling is handled in PF1 to be exemplary. One obvious contradiction: why is it possible to move a creature you're grappling at half your speed, even if its weight is so far beyond your drag limit that you shouldn't be able to move it at all?

But if you really want to take the risk and go the superhero route, at least make it coherent, and don't just aggravate the inconsistencies of PF1 several fold. The obvious solution to making characters consistently superhuman is to automatically scale ability scores by level. If you really want high level wizards to wrestle down elephants, then I don't see a way around this that doesn't result in some schizophrenic state of affairs where the same elephant-wrestling wizard suddenly needs to ask Ordinary Joe for help when he wants to move his furniture, and similar nonsense.


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This is a cooperative game. I don't think anyone can deny this. What this addresses is the gap at high levels where the stealth characters are basically auto-succeed and the others might as well stay home. This breaks any sort of design except for "go into a place and kill everything", which everyone is designed to do.

With these new rules, some can be poor at stealth but not automatically fail, unlike the current skill rules. A lot of you are talking about the "choice" to be bad at something, but this is a choice in investing your few skill points in what you want to do and being unable to participate in other things.

The game, as most agree, breaks down at high levels. These widening gaps create huge variance in what a character good at something can do, even with attack, initiative, and saves. This is what breaks the cooperative experience.

This is at least an attempt to solve that. Can we at least agree that Paizo is attempting to solve a problem and not make baby's first D&D. Let's give Paizo a little credit here.


Turmoil wrote:

I don't think anybody considers the way grappling is handled in PF1 to be exemplary. One obvious contradiction: why is it possible to move a creature you're grappling at half your speed, even if its weight is so far beyond your drag limit that you shouldn't be able to move it at all?

But if you really want to take the risk and go the superhero route, at least make it coherent, and don't just aggravate the inconsistencies of PF1 several fold. The obvious solution to making characters consistently superhuman is to automatically scale ability scores by level. If you really want high level wizards to wrestle down elephants, then I don't see a way around this that doesn't result in some schizophrenic state of affairs where the same elephant-wrestling wizard suddenly needs to ask Ordinary Joe for help when he wants to move his furniture, and similar nonsense.

I am prone to agree with the idea of ability scores going up more within the 3P paradigm.

One thing I will note though, is that there is far more to wrestling than strength alone.

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32

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Here's a reducto ad absurdum argument: So there are things out there that aren't necessarily covered by the skill list. At first you think, great, I can just use the untrained value. But you know what else a fantasy character is Untrained in? Computer hacking. Hyperspace navigation. Corporate accounting. Aircraft piloting. Retroviral engineering. Now my 10th level rogue has a +8 in all these as well! I guess he just picked it up somewhere by osmosis.

While this example is admittedly silly, many of us has had that player who attempts to build a modern piece of technology in the fantasy world. In PF1e, we could say "your PC doesn't have the background knowledge for that," but in this system that explanation doesn't fly because everybody gets free skills at everything.


To be fair I suspect those skills would be ‘requires skilled for almost everything to even make a check’


ryric wrote:
While this example is admittedly silly,

I agree it is.

However, to address your concern, I suppose the wording of the skill proficiency will say something like "you add your level to the skills in table XX of page YY". I do not think it'll be worded "you add your level to everything" so 20th lvel players can add +20 to "world destruction laser sight", +20 to their move speed, and 20 inches to their penises.
But who knows.


Still think plus level to everything untrained is way too much.


Turmoil wrote:
I don't think anybody considers the way grappling is handled in PF1 to be exemplary. One obvious contradiction: why is it possible to move a creature you're grappling at half your speed, even if its weight is so far beyond your drag limit that you shouldn't be able to move it at all?

If you don't like the grappling example, the same lvl 20 sorcerer spices up his soup with arsenic. Just because he likes the taste.


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Dismissively calling it "superheroes" carries about the same weight as when detractors dismissively called 4E "an MMO." It's abjectly false, and also ignores the facts: in this case, it's that the fantasy game in question is taking inspiration from the very thing that inspired superheroes, and fantasy to begin with. It's a short-sighted view that ultimately misses the heart of the matter.


ryric wrote:

Here's a reducto ad absurdum argument: So there are things out there that aren't necessarily covered by the skill list. At first you think, great, I can just use the untrained value. But you know what else a fantasy character is Untrained in? Computer hacking. Hyperspace navigation. Corporate accounting. Aircraft piloting. Retroviral engineering. Now my 10th level rogue has a +8 in all these as well! I guess he just picked it up somewhere by osmosis.

While this example is admittedly silly, many of us has had that player who attempts to build a modern piece of technology in the fantasy world. In PF1e, we could say "your PC doesn't have the background knowledge for that," but in this system that explanation doesn't fly because everybody gets free skills at everything.

Fun fact. I have a character in 1e who is trained in computer hacking and they'd probably handle it the same way they did it in that edition which is just to say no with caveats.


I wonder how they're going to do the DCs for jumping. If it's the same as PF1e, then my current 8 str 15th level wizard would be able to beat the world record for long-jumping which would be amusing.


gustavo iglesias wrote:
If you don't like the grappling example, the same lvl 20 sorcerer spices up his soup with arsenic. Just because he likes the taste.

You're missing the point. Everybody here obviously knows that there are cases of auto-scaling by level in PF1 (albeit often with internal contradictions, like the grapple case). The point is that those cases do not exlusively characterize PF1 any more than the cases without auto-scaling. If they did, you would not have a level 20 wizard who has trouble climbing trees to complain about. So yes, PF1 is inconsistent in that there is auto-scaling in some areas, and no auto-scaling in others; the former being primarily the capacity for withstanding punishment via HP and saves, but also attack rolls, the latter skill and ability checks, but also things like AC and weapon damage rolls. Whether and how to resolve this inconsistency is a design choice. The decision to resolve it unilaterally by simply auto-scaling everything, and at the same high rate (a full +1/level) at that, is bound to be controversial for obvious reasons, especially given the fact that many PF players migrated from D&D instead of moving to 4e which took a similar route.


CalebTGordan wrote:
Vic Wertz wrote:
Once you understand how proficiency works with weapons, you understand how it works with armor...

I don't know why this gave me tingles, but I have a feeling my fighter builds are going to be even cooler as a result.

I get the same excited feeling, and I like the efforts here to give the epic non-magicians epic feats of strength. In my game I have 2 Barbarians (plus a Sorceror and Cleric. The cleric died heroically saving Sverfneblin and was replaced by a Chaotic neutral Gnome Druid - kill me) but if it's not bashing they aren't really capable of much.

Also I just had to respond to humour of your post, I can't wait to see a Barbarian dragon punch a dragon either!


Milo v3 wrote:
I wonder how they're going to do the DCs for jumping. If it's the same as PF1e, then my current 8 str 15th level wizard would be able to beat the world record for long-jumping which would be amusing.

I'm interested in this too. I like the new fall rules (the feet you fall is the damage you take, not 1d6/10ft) so it would be a shame if they changed it from your Jump check = your feet in movement.

Dark Archive

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Having observed the wild speculation in every thread, I now feel that, if the Paizo Staff posted a Blog Post that simply said "The Core book will include stats for Bears." and that was it word for word, within 12 hours we would have 600 posts discussing:
- Are Bears a Playable Race, er, Ancestry?
- Are Bears a Class
- Bears in core are ruining the game
- Bears in core are essential
- How do bears work with Skill Feats?
- Am I proficient in Bears?
- Random race/class stats for Bears with no idea how any of those systems work in PF2.
- Obligatory "Bears mean PF2 is now exactly 4e/5e"
- "You've Ruined the Game I hate you forever".
- Making rules for Bears ruins the game because before we had rules for bears we could do bear things freely.

and 100 of those posts would be

- I just assumed Bars would be in
- Waht is an Ebra

Dark Archive

I read the first 350 comments.
Add me to the "Do not like." brigade.
I want my hero to fail at things s/he can't do.
I want to invest only once and be able to compete with low level NPCs.
I want to be unbeatable at a skill because I invested at EVERY level.
And I don't want to ignore the laws of physics at higher levels with just training.

The rules were originally that if you want to try something then you could:-
Succeed.
Fail.
Roll.

This system appears way more complicated AND less granular and refined. The Playtest may change my mind. But Core Pathfinder has always been my sweet spot.

Paizo Employee Director of Game Design

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Hey there all,

I want to take a moment to thank everyone here for the spirited debate on this part of the game. We knew that this one was going to raise some eyebrows. Fundamentally, this system is trying to replace a fundamental part of 1st edition that caused us HUGE problems at the high levels of play, which distorted character choice and severely hampered design. A huge disparity is statistics between characters/adversaries of equal level really warps the play space and it led to stability problems with the entire game engine.

The goal here to find a middle ground that still allows characters to excel in the places that they want, but not in such a way as to dominate the game. To allow monsters to be an appropriate challenge for their level without having an ability that practically auto-cripples some characters.

This blog is a good overview of the system, but there are certainly a number of parts of it that are not at all clear. We will endeavor to get to that information as we come to it through other topics (for example, expect us to talk about how it relates to armor when we get to talking about gear).

We expect there will be corner cases, spots where these rules might leave us with a play condition that does not meet the vision of the game. We are going to be looking at ways to make this work because of just how critical it is for play balance and game sustainability. That is, after all, why we playtest, to tune the game, look for rough spots and smooth them out.

Thanks for your continued patience on this. We know its tough to only get pieces of the game, as we work to get all of the information out there. There is a lot more to come.


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I must say I am pleasantly surprised that the point of contention is not "mundane people should not be able to do superhuman things without magic".


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Pryllin wrote:
l I don't want to ignore the laws of physics at higher levels with just training.

You have PF1 for this.

Probably 5E as well.

Please don't poison PF2 with this philosophy


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kyrt-ryder wrote:
Pryllin wrote:
l I don't want to ignore the laws of physics at higher levels with just training.
You have PF1 for this.

Forgive me, I lied.

See the lava rules of PF1


Jason Bulmahn wrote:

Hey there all,

I want to take a moment to thank everyone here for the spirited debate on this part of the game. We knew that this one was going to raise some eyebrows. Fundamentally, this system is trying to replace a fundamental part of 1st edition that caused us HUGE problems at the high levels of play, which distorted character choice and severely hampered design. A huge disparity is statistics between characters/adversaries of equal level really warps the play space and it led to stability problems with the entire game engine.

The goal here to find a middle ground that still allows characters to excel in the places that they want, but not in such a way as to dominate the game. To allow monsters to be an appropriate challenge for their level without having an ability that practically auto-cripples some characters.

This blog is a good overview of the system, but there are certainly a number of parts of it that are not at all clear. We will endeavor to get to that information as we come to it through other topics (for example, expect us to talk about how it relates to armor when we get to talking about gear).

We expect there will be corner cases, spots where these rules might leave us with a play condition that does not meet the vision of the game. We are going to be looking at ways to make this work because of just how critical it is for play balance and game sustainability. That is, after all, why we playtest, to tune the game, look for rough spots and smooth them out.

Thanks for your continued patience on this. We know its tough to only get pieces of the game, as we work to get all of the information out there. There is a lot more to come.

You seem to be basing the entire game around level 15 and higher. Most of the arguments in favour of these new massive overhauls that you guys give involve high level play (especially in regards to skills and death mechanics), and I don't think I've seen any designer even mention a playtest session lower than 12th level. The Resonance system is also very punishing on low level characters, but fairly lenient on the top quarter or so.

Also, am I correct in getting the impression that a lot of the current design staff really dislike PF1? I'm certainly not saying you all do, but I get the distinct feeling that someone wants it gone and out of the way.


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QuidEst wrote:
Eh. I'll take "every high-level Sorcerer is good at climbing" over "no high-level Sorcerer is good at climbing". Wizard might have a choice between good and bad on any given skill, but that's only because they could afford tons of Int. Paladins, Clerics, Fighters, and Sorcerers just got to suck at almost everything.

cool. I have no issue at all with anyone else or their individual preference.

But I do see this as agreement that the thing you prefer is a reduction in the narrative space. I agree that it is more difficult to come up with the skill points for a sorcerer. But if you wanted a climber/sorcerer, it could be done.

As I said, I've been down this road before.
It isn't about "winning" a debate. It is about a system that gains more players than it loses.


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Yeah which is likely moving away from PF1 and not making the exact same game again, which I’ve come to conclusion a subset of this board wants. You just want them to slap PF1 rules into PF2 and call it a day.

PF has an issue that at low levels everyone can contribute, but at higher levels you either auto succeed or auto fail. This leaves most of the group sitting out with nothing to do. I see plenty of you think this is perfectly fine, but they’re not going to release a game so exclusionary. 5e has shown there is value to every player being able to contribute and not be locked out of the game.


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Bloodrealm wrote:


You seem to be basing the entire game around level 15 and higher. Most of the arguments in favour of these new massive overhauls that you guys give involve high level play (especially in regards to skills and death mechanics), and I don't think I've seen any designer even mention a playtest session lower...

Why that keeps getting mentioned, I think, is that high levels is where the old system breaks down. I expect at lower levels being trained with the ranks mentioned will flow fairly similarly to PF1; when PF1 starts to break down is high levels, they need the fix, so that is what they talk about. "See it works at 18th level".

Keeping the game working after level 15 so all levels of play are enjoyable is a great idea.

Paizo Employee Director of Game Design

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Bloodrealm wrote:

You seem to be basing the entire game around level 15 and higher. Most of the arguments in favour of these new massive overhauls that you guys give involve high level play (especially in regards to skills and death mechanics), and I don't think I've seen any designer even mention a playtest session lower than 12th level. The Resonance system is also very punishing on low level characters, but fairly lenient on the top quarter or so.

Also, am I correct in getting the impression that a lot of the current design staff really dislike PF1? I'm certainly not saying you all do, but I get the distinct feeling that someone wants it gone and out of the way.

Well, I think every playtest session we've shown off up to this point has been 1st level.. but I will say this, we spent about 6 months just testing the first 10 levels of the game. The first long session we ran was a complete conversion of Burnt Offerings.

Resonance is not really the topic of this thread, but in all honestly, it is very difficult for a low level character to run out of resonance (which is by design). Mass playtesting might show us otherwise, and we are looking forward to that feedback.

Finally... in regards to PF1. Let me state unequivocally. I LOVE the game. It was my life's work for the past decade. I do not at all want it to go away, but I cannot let my love and efforts blind me to the fact that it is not perfect. There are things that could be even better, making the game more approachable and hopefully widening out the audience of people who love the game just as much as I do.

Anyway, I am still trying to recover from my long trip and will have much more to say in the coming days and weeks. Happy Saint Patricks Day everybody!


I don’t see how it works even remotely similarly at low levels. Where do you get that from?


Milo v3 wrote:
I wonder how they're going to do the DCs for jumping. If it's the same as PF1e, then my current 8 str 15th level wizard would be able to beat the world record for long-jumping which would be amusing.

You can't jump more than 15 feet without being trained.

kyrt-ryder wrote:
Please don't poison PF2 with this philosophy

Calling requests that "PF2 be a recognisable new edition of PF1" poison is taking the rhetoric to a whole new (bad) level. Please do not bring the conversation down to this level.

I want Pathfinder with the rough edges smoothed down and for it to recognisably be the same family of game. I don't want Paizo to adopt WotC's philosophy of a brand new game every edition. If you don't want that sort of game, consider my posts poison to your desires from here on out and feel free to not feel the need to reply to every single point with the above sort of rhetoric.

Thank you.


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Jason Bulmahn wrote:
***Good stuff***

Thanks

I really appreciate the comments about context.

I do hope the reasons for concern are appreciated. Again, I think that saying the game which was so successful for nearly two decades (counting the 3X time) had "HUGE" problems and was "severely hampered" is an overstatement. To dispute that terminology isn't to say that there is no value in improvement. But, seriously, the game was pretty frickin awesome. And I'd wager we could go into the time machine to nine years ago and see 4E diehards making this case about this same general issue in that system and being dismayed by the outcry AGAINST them on this same board. It doesn't remotely mean that 4E was bad or PF1 was good. But the evaluation shoudln't change just because PF2 is coming along.

So please don't go doing anything that is based on the presumption that PF1 had HUGE (in all caps) problems.
We've literally seen REALLY GOOD designers roll out a game with a similar approach and justify that approach through (in part) trashing the prior edition. And that story dodn't end well for that edition.

I recognize that being the guy who disputes the designers choices makes me an automatic ahole to a certain swath of the community. So be it.
But please tread lightly on the big swings. You can change ten things, hit nine home runs and botch one and watch that one thing be what ends up in control.

As presented, it goes too far.

Thanks


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To be fair, Jason said that it presented HUGE problems to them, as game designers, to design high level play. And certainly the number of APs that delve into lvl 20 is pretty small, and PFS ends at 12 I think. Maybe one of the reasons is because it's hard for them to properly design things at those levels because the math breaks.

Sovereign Court

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Jason Bulmahn wrote:

Hey there all,

I want to take a moment to thank everyone here for the spirited debate on this part of the game. We knew that this one was going to raise some eyebrows. Fundamentally, this system is trying to replace a fundamental part of 1st edition that caused us HUGE problems at the high levels of play, which distorted character choice and severely hampered design. A huge disparity is statistics between characters/adversaries of equal level really warps the play space and it led to stability problems with the entire game engine.

Thank you for acknowledging and addressing these pain points. There are a lot of things that make the game great, and a lot of places it can be improved. I look forward to seeing what you've come up with.


gustavo iglesias wrote:
To be fair, Jason said that it presented HUGE problems to them, as game designers, to design high level play. And certainly the number of APs that delve into lvl 20 is pretty small, and PFS ends at 12 I think. Maybe one of the reasons is because it's hard for them to properly design things at those levels because the math breaks.

He said "which distorted character choice and severely hampered design". You have ignored the first part. Not that it makes any difference to the real issue at hand.


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Overall, I would prefer if the system worked at all levels of play, even those rarely seen. Those tiers of play might get more screentime if it was easier to play in them too.


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John Lynch 106 wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:
Please don't poison PF2 with this philosophy
Calling requests that "PF2 be a recognisable new edition of PF1" poison is taking the rhetoric to a whole new (bad) level. Please do not bring the conversation down to this level.

Just making sure, you did read the whole post you quoted right? Not just the quoted part? You read the thing he was replying to, which was very much not "PF2 be a recognisable new edition of PF1" but that non-casters should be entirely shackled to the restrictions of the laws of physics (something already broken in plentiful places in PF1e I might add)?

Shadow Lodge

Ooh, all the potential here.

This means adventurers are really good dancers!

I'm totally taking level 10 characters in PFS2 and having them detour to dance halls and other similar venues, rocking their level-based +10 (+12 to +13 with Cha/Dex) and rolling out the Perform (dance) or Perform (sing) checks having never even attempted a single step or vocal note before that very minute in their careers!

All present will assume their naturals, but they simply "saved" themselves until they had a few months of adventuring under their belt!


All adventurers are really good everythings. Complete polymaths.


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John Lynch 106 wrote:
Milo v3 wrote:
I wonder how they're going to do the DCs for jumping. If it's the same as PF1e, then my current 8 str 15th level wizard would be able to beat the world record for long-jumping which would be amusing.

You can't jump more than 15 feet without being trained.

kyrt-ryder wrote:
Please don't poison PF2 with this philosophy

Calling requests that "PF2 be a recognisable new edition of PF1" poison is taking the rhetoric to a whole new (bad) level. Please do not bring the conversation down to this level.

Allow me to quote the comment I was addressing again.

Quote:
l I don't want to ignore the laws of physics at higher levels with just training.

That's a far cry from 'let the game be a recognizable sequel.'

It's a statement diametrically opposed to everything I want out of high levels.

Training (and increasing in level) is every bit as much a reason to violate the laws of Real World Physics as any other, magic included.

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