Fighter Class Preview

Monday, March 19, 2018

Over the past 2 weeks, we've tried to give you a sense of what Pathfinder Second Edition is all about, but now it's time to delve into some details on the classes. From now until the game releases in August, we'll go through the classes one by one, pausing now and then to look at various rules and systems. Today, let's take a look at one of the most foundational classes in the game: the fighter.

The fighter was one of the first classes we redesigned, alongside the rogue, cleric, and wizard. We knew that we wanted these four to work well in concert with each other, with the fighter taking on the role of primary combat character, good at taking damage and even better at dealing damage. The fighter has to be the best with weapons, using his class options to give him an edge with his weapons of choice. The fighter also has to be mobile, able to get into the fray quickly and hold the line, allowing less melee-oriented characters time to get into position and use their abilities without have to fend off constant attacks.

Let's start by looking at some of the features shared by all fighters.

Illustration by Wayne Reynolds

First up is attacks of opportunity. This feature allows you to spend your reaction to strike a creature within your reach that tries to manipulate an object (like drinking a potion), make a ranged attack, or move away from you. This attack is made with a –2 penalty, but it doesn't take the multiple attack penalty from other strikes you attempt on your turn. Other classes can get this ability—and numerous monsters will as well—but only the fighter starts with it a core feature. Fighters also have feat choices that can make their attacks of opportunity more effective.

Next up, at 3rd level, you gain weapon mastery, which increases your proficiency rank with one group of weapons to master. Your proficiency rank increases to legendary at 13th level, making you truly the best with the weapons of your choice. At 19th level, you become a legend with all simple and martial weapons!

The fighter gets a number of other buffs and increases as well, but one I want to call out in particular is battlefield surveyor, which increases your Perception proficiency rank to master (you start as an expert), and gives you an additional +1 bonus when you roll Perception for initiative, helping you be first into the fight!

As mentioned in the blog last week, the real meat behind the classes is in their feats and (as of this post), the fighter has the largest selection of feats out of all the classes in the game! Let's take a look at some.

You've probably already heard about Sudden Charge. You can pick up this feat at 1st level. When you spend two actions on it, this feat allows you to move up to twice your speed and deliver a single strike. There's no need to move in a straight line and no AC penalty—you just move and attack! This feat lets the fighter jump right into the thick of things and make an immediate impact.

Next let's take a look at Power Attack. This feat allows you to spend two actions to make a single strike that deals an extra die of damage. Instead of trading accuracy for damage (as it used to work), you now trade out an action you could have used for a far less accurate attack to get more power on a roll that is more likely to hit.

As you go up in level, some of the feats really allow you to mix things up. Take the 4th-level feat Quick Reversal, for example. If you are being flanked and you miss with your second or third attack against one of the flankers, this feat lets you redirect the attack to the other target and reroll it, possibly turning a miss into a hit!

We've talked before about how fun and tactical shields are in the game. To recap, you take an action to raise your shield and get its Armor Class and touch Armor Class bonuses, and then you can block incoming damage with a reaction while the shield is raised. At 6th level, fighters can take the feat Shield Warden, which allows them to use their shield to block the damage taken by an adjacent ally. At 8th, they can even get an extra reaction each turn, just to use shield block one additional time. (And yes, they can spend this extra reaction on another use of Shield Warden.) At 14th level, a fighter can use their shield to protect themself from dragon's breath and fireballs, gaining their shield's bonus to Reflex saves.

The fighter also has a wide variety of options with ranged weapons, allowing you to deal more damage up close or fire more than one arrow at a time. I foresee a lot of fighters taking Debilitating Shot, which causes a foe to be slowed if the attack hits (causing it to lose one action on its next turn).

And all this is a small sample. We've made a conscious effort to give fighters a number of paths they can pursue using their feats: focusing on shields, swinging a two-handed weapon, fighting with two weapons, making ranged attacks, and fighting defensively. These paths are pretty open, allowing you to mix and match with ease to create a fighter that matches your play style.

The goal here is to give you a variety of tools to deal with the situations and encounters you are bound to face. You might walk into a fight with your bow and open with Double Shot, allowing you to fire a pair of arrows into the two nearest foes, only to swap over to using a greataxe when the rest surround you, making an attack against all enemies in your reach with Whirlwind Strike! It all comes down to the type of fighter you want to play.

Jason Bulmahn
Director of Game Design

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One style of character I've never seen be that useful, which I think this edition could promote, is the fighter who carries a weird mix of weapons for different situations. Sword and shield, sure, but also whips and nets and maybe a mace for enemies who are vulnerable to bludgeoning damage, possibly some bolas, and a 10-ft. pole that can double as a staff with reach.

I hope there's a way to make all those different weapons useful, instead of the 'right' way always being to focus on a single weapon to get your bonuses as high as possible.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Stone Dog wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
This is not good design, I'm not being rewarded for learning the system. This is not Pathfinder.

I'd rather reward players for actual play than for doing homework to obtain some arcane level of system mastery.

RPG System mastery is the most useless thing to take personal pride in.


Fuzzypaws wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:

I like how Power Attack is automatically better on bigger weapons now- that feels right.

I am also curious as to whether power attack can be combined with sudden charge, because "you can't vital strike on a charge" has been a personal point of annoyance for some time.

Shifting the focus on doing damage from "accumulating a bunch of static bonuses" to "rolling more dice" is a positive change. I had one character who by the end of the campaign was rolling like "1d8+45" for damage and at that point, the die is pretty much superfluous.

The die should be superfluous, because it means your character can be reliable regardless of the weapon they are using.

It won't be good design when killing the dragon becomes two battles of you vs. the dice landing correctly instead of making sure your properly trained fighter hits and the team can rely on him/her to kill the dragon within a small margin of #of hits landed. Now you could see a swing of something like 6 damage per hit to 28 damage per hit on the same weapon.

This is not good design, I'm not being rewarded for learning the system. This is not Pathfinder.

We haven't seen everything, and I'd be really surprised if they haven't already thought of this and encountered it in their internal playtesting - they've been playing for a year, after all. Maybe as you improve in a weapon from Expert to Master or whatever, you get to start rerolling low damage dice. Maybe instead of just rolling double damage on a crit, a crit is actually rolling damage once and adding the max of what you would have rolled on a normal hit. There's any number of things they could have already done to mitigate a night of rolling 1's.

Sadly, damage economy and martial characters being nerfed was a major issue with the lengthening of PF1.

I suspect there will not be anything like this and that 'yay more dice to roll' is supposed to be the big sell here. Why would they give us both when the argument already has been "yeah old power attack is less reliable because of average damage" whereas statistically speaking you're going to have a lot less reliable martial characters than you ever could with flat bonuses.

Seems especially weird given the proficiency system, unless that system is also added into damage (which I assume it is not given the dev comments).

Critting more often seems like it's supposed to sell me, but even then I'm not getting more reliable damage, I'm still just getting more dice.

Unless there's feats that mirror the mythic abilities that increase the minimum value I expect from those dice consistently, then there isn't going to be consistency from the game for martial characters and even if they can move around more they lose out on that being a buff if the whole point of moving around more was to become more reliable.

I don't want to rely on dice for damage, it makes me feel like I'm in less control of my character and that what I do doesn't matter.

So please devs, elaborate for us on whether or not this is intentional to counterbalance the fact that martial characters can move more, or if they simply want less reward for reading their products more thoroughly so Joe Schmuck can be just as good as someone who toiled for hours reading their book.


Smite Makes Right wrote:
What is concerning to the me is that the language of the post hints that there may artificial fighter only abilities. One of my pet peeves is the fighter level requirement for greater weapon focus and greater weapon focus. Either this is gained through training and the fighter level is out of place or it is a class feature like animal empathy. As the fighter is just a focus on martial training, the fighter level requirement is an artificial method of enticing players to play the class.

My suspicion is that a number of classes will have options, via class feats, to do a standard thing that any class can do, better than all the other classes. Remember that "Fighter Feats" are not like "Bonus Combat Feats" as in PF1, they're the equivalent of rogue talents, rage powers, style strikes, etc.


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Stone Dog wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
This is not good design, I'm not being rewarded for learning the system. This is not Pathfinder.

I'd rather reward players for actual play than for doing homework to obtain some arcane level of system mastery.

There are other systems that do that. In fact, there are systems out there that don't even require you to learn the full rules.

That's not what PF1 was, and it's not what I want. If this is what PF2 is, then Erik doesn't get any of my money. In fact I may skip my plans to preorder if this is the direction the game goes.

You reward your players for playing sure, but the dice may not. You going to fudge damage rolls because the fighter couldn't outpace the enemy in damage to no fault of their own?

How do you reward your players for playing then?

Or are you just taking a shot at me for enjoying my hobby?


master_marshmallow wrote:
It won't be good design when killing the dragon becomes two battles of you vs. the dice landing correctly instead of making sure your properly trained fighter hits and the team can rely on him/her to kill the dragon within a small margin of #of hits landed. Now you could see a swing of something like 6 damage per hit to 28 damage per hit on the same weapon.

The game still functions off APL vs CR which assumes odds skewed in PC favor, even for BBEGs, attack/damage mechanical changes don't change that. I don't know the math, but it seems like 10+ crit requirement may yield less swing than variable Crit range/multiplier + Confirmation, or at least affect the comparison.

Regardless, if PFS introduced non-variable HP/HD using P1E rules, it doesn't seem like a stretch to house-rule flat damage/dice if you don't like weapon damage variability.


DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
So please devs, elaborate for us on whether or not this is intentional to counterbalance the fact that martial characters can move more, or if they simply want less reward for reading their products more thoroughly so Joe Schmuck can be just as good as someone who toiled for hours reading their book.
Poor Joe, just wanted to have a good time with friends.

Doesn't stop him from being a Schmuck.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
master_marshmallow wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
So please devs, elaborate for us on whether or not this is intentional to counterbalance the fact that martial characters can move more, or if they simply want less reward for reading their products more thoroughly so Joe Schmuck can be just as good as someone who toiled for hours reading their book.
Poor Joe, just wanted to have a good time with friends.
Doesn't stop him from being a Schmuck.

I'd prefer Joe Schmuck at my table than a gatekeeper demanding the party perform a requisite amount of toil to qualify to play the game.


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Demon Lord of Paladins! wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
Joana wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
I am also curious as to whether power attack can be combined with sudden charge, because "you can't vital strike on a charge" has been a personal point of annoyance for some time.
Since Power Attack and Sudden Charge each take two actions and you only get three actions in a round, I'm guessing not.
I'd like an option to add power attack onto other things by increasing their action cost by one, I guess. So you could sudden charge for 2 and Power Attack for +1, using all three of your actions.
That would be 4 actions however, I don't see stuff being allowed at a discount as that is screaming spell abuse.

I could see it as an extra feat.

Powered Charge
Prerequisites: Power Attack; Sudden Charge
Cost: 3 Actions
Use: Move twice your speed and perform one power attack.

Sudden Charge takes something that would cost 3 actions and makes it 2. This would make something that cost 4 actions and makes it into 3 and costs and additional feat. I think that would be fairly balanced.


DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
So please devs, elaborate for us on whether or not this is intentional to counterbalance the fact that martial characters can move more, or if they simply want less reward for reading their products more thoroughly so Joe Schmuck can be just as good as someone who toiled for hours reading their book.
Poor Joe, just wanted to have a good time with friends.
Doesn't stop him from being a Schmuck.
I'd prefer Joe Schmuck at my table than a gatekeeper demanding the party perform a requisite amount of toil to qualify to play the game.

Well, then you must love derailing your game every 5 minutes to explain to him how the rules work and making sure he understands how his character works while everyone else at the table sits there bored too.

Liberty's Edge

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If you don't want dice in your game, there are diceless game systems.


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I would humbly suggest grand gestures of "I am done with this!" aren't really helping anyone. If getting the information in drips and drabs is going to make people mad, I would suggest just checking out until August, then downloading the playtest rules (it's free), reading it, and playtesting it if you want.

I mean, the only value there has ever been in riding the waves of a hype cycle for anything is if you find the act of doing so enjoyable. Five months is a long time to be mad, and pretty much everyone posting here is invested enough to practically guarantee you'll download the playtest rules when they are out (again, the pdf is free).

Liberty's Edge

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Joe is welcome at my table any day. Except maybe Thursdays. I need time for me somewhere during the week.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
master_marshmallow wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
So please devs, elaborate for us on whether or not this is intentional to counterbalance the fact that martial characters can move more, or if they simply want less reward for reading their products more thoroughly so Joe Schmuck can be just as good as someone who toiled for hours reading their book.
Poor Joe, just wanted to have a good time with friends.
Doesn't stop him from being a Schmuck.
I'd prefer Joe Schmuck at my table than a gatekeeper demanding the party perform a requisite amount of toil to qualify to play the game.
Well, then you must love derailing your game every 5 minutes to explain to him how the rules work and making sure he understands how his character works while everyone else at the table sits there bored too.

Nah, see I go to a lot of effort before the game to colour code his character sheet, make the choices he made in character building easy to understand at the table and sit him next to an experienced player so that if he does have any questions someone can help him.

It'd be a lot better if a lot of that work got taken off my shoulders because the rules were easier to understand, and rewarding whether you play seriously or casually.

But you do you.

Paizo Employee Designer

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Rek Rollington wrote:
Demon Lord of Paladins! wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
Joana wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
I am also curious as to whether power attack can be combined with sudden charge, because "you can't vital strike on a charge" has been a personal point of annoyance for some time.
Since Power Attack and Sudden Charge each take two actions and you only get three actions in a round, I'm guessing not.
I'd like an option to add power attack onto other things by increasing their action cost by one, I guess. So you could sudden charge for 2 and Power Attack for +1, using all three of your actions.
That would be 4 actions however, I don't see stuff being allowed at a discount as that is screaming spell abuse.

I could see it as an extra feat.

Powered Charge
Prerequisites: Power Attack; Sudden Charge
Cost: 3 Actions
Use: Move twice your speed and perform one power attack.

Sudden Charge takes something that would cost 3 actions and makes it 2. This would make something that cost 4 actions and makes it into 3 and costs and additional feat. I think that would be fairly balanced.

We actually have two feats that work together like you suggest explicitly in the rules (some of the anti-aerial feats), and we don't charge you extra for it!


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Drakhan Valane wrote:
If you don't want dice in your game, there are diceless game systems.

It's not that I don't want dice at the table, I just don't want the new system to give me 'better martial characters' that aren't better.

C/M/D was something I wanted fixed, and this doesn't sell it for me.

I don't think it's wrong to want to know how to play the game before I do it. I don't think it's wrong to want to have some level of understanding of the character I'm playing before I bring it to the table.

I also don't think I'm going to stick around.

Peace.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

I do find it interesting some folk are complaining about having to roll extra dice when one of the "problems" with fighters vs. spellcasters was that a wizard could learn and cast Fireball that at 10 level would do 10d6 damage while the fighter at 10th level would be relying on static damage and strength and power attack bonuses. I like the concept of power attack doing an extra damage die (or two)... and for that matter magic weapons doing extra dice of damage as well.


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master_marshmallow wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
So please devs, elaborate for us on whether or not this is intentional to counterbalance the fact that martial characters can move more, or if they simply want less reward for reading their products more thoroughly so Joe Schmuck can be just as good as someone who toiled for hours reading their book.
Poor Joe, just wanted to have a good time with friends.
Doesn't stop him from being a Schmuck.
I'd prefer Joe Schmuck at my table than a gatekeeper demanding the party perform a requisite amount of toil to qualify to play the game.
Well, then you must love derailing your game every 5 minutes to explain to him how the rules work and making sure he understands how his character works while everyone else at the table sits there bored too.

5 is a gross exaggeration. We go 30min or longer before someone has to pause to ask questions.

What really slows things down is the archer with a bucket of variable bonuses who has to calculate manyshot, rapid shot, judgement, bane, haste, bardic performance, deadly aim... ect with each shot


I've been seeing a lot of people in here talking about how the change in Power Attack is going to be a near-catastrophic change to how Martial classes deal damage, while seemingly neglecting that there are other static bonuses for damage in the game?

Just because Power Attack resembles Vital Strike more than previous versions of Power Attack doesn't equate to static bonuses going the way of the dodo - hell I'd go as far to say that the change helps make non-two handed weapon builds have a better chance at not being completely overshadowed by one Barbarian with Power Attack that can get 2d6+Str.5+58, while the TWF Ranger right next to him (with two shortswords) gets more around 1d6+1d6+Str+Str/2+Misc. Bonuses.

The +58 damage is hyperbole but the point still stands that, in P1e, two-handed weapon builds did so much more static damage than other melee builds in general didn't stand a chance at keeping up.

Sovereign Court

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master_marshmallow wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:

I like how Power Attack is automatically better on bigger weapons now- that feels right.

I am also curious as to whether power attack can be combined with sudden charge, because "you can't vital strike on a charge" has been a personal point of annoyance for some time.

Shifting the focus on doing damage from "accumulating a bunch of static bonuses" to "rolling more dice" is a positive change. I had one character who by the end of the campaign was rolling like "1d8+45" for damage and at that point, the die is pretty much superfluous.

The die should be superfluous, because it means your character can be reliable regardless of the weapon they are using.

It won't be good design when killing the dragon becomes two battles of you vs. the dice landing correctly instead of making sure your properly trained fighter hits and the team can rely on him/her to kill the dragon within a small margin of #of hits landed. Now you could see a swing of something like 6 damage per hit to 28 damage per hit on the same weapon.

This is not good design, I'm not being rewarded for learning the system. This is not Pathfinder.

Have you ever in your life thrown a fireball? That is very pathfinder. Take xd6 roll. Damage. Yay. Do you see my static pluses there? Good. Neither do I.

Grand Lodge

Mark Seifter wrote:
Kevin Mack wrote:
So power attack Is a lot worse now? Since going from a flat +2/+3 somewhat scalable damage to a single random damage die amount?
Power Attack gives you one (and actually, eventually two without taking another feat to improve it!) extra damage die and does not penalize you on accuracy; and you don't want a penalty on accuracy. For a d12 two-handed weapon that might have gotten +3 damage (+3 more every 4 BAB) in PF1, that's 6.5 damage on average, going up to 13. It wasn't until BAB 16 that you would do more damage than that in PF1, and that was at a cost of -5 accuracy.

Maybe, but that also discounts the iterative attacks versus single attack. At a glance I'm gonna say it's more complicated than either side it willing to admit right now. No accuracy penalty is huge. The EDV increase is great. Extra dice are traditionally bad however compared to static modifiers. That said we as readers (versus you as staff) don't know exactly what equipment looks like/other interactions that come into the evaluation.

So, first I will say we obviously don't have full information to compare so I'm making assumptions here. If I build a generic fighter level 12, 24 STR, a +3 longsword (let's be honest here, the longsword not a d12 weapon is the iconic weapon that is most likely to show up in a printed adventure), was Weapon Training 2, Weapon Focus, Greater Weapon Focus, Weapon Spec and Greater Weapon Spec - all for longsword.
I'm going to assume all of that translates reasonable well to PF2 given what's above. He will be two hand attacking in all math

That gives me a fighter with +26/+21/+16 (1d8+19) 19-20x2

So let's breakdown the math from there. (All attacks versus AC 27 - average AC according to Monster Generation Tables for a CR 12 creature)

PF1 Fighter (power attack penalties and additional damage accounted for)
Single Attack (power attacking)- 31.24 EDV
Full Attack (power attacking) - 64.43 EDV

PF2 Fighter (single die at this point, since I don't know where the breakpoint is)
Single Power Attack - 29.26 EDV (taking 2 actions)
Full Attack (not sure this is possible, but if I use the extra action I have left to attack as well) - 44.77 EDV

PF2 Fighter (2 extra die)
Single Attack 33.96 EDV
Full Attack - 52.47 EDV.

So maybe the new full attack is better, I can't prove it using an "average" fighter comparison, but I don't have nearly enough information. I will say it ended up closer than I thought it might, but it looks like it could easily be a downgrade from the Power Attack we have now. Of course as we see more monsters, equipment, actual feats etc. the comparison points could be more favorable to the new Power Attack, we just don't know yet.


I had some thoughts on the new Fighter.

It's not a class I'm too concerned with one way or another, but it seems a lot more interesting than Core Fighter in PF1.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber
Rubber Ducky guy wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:
So please devs, elaborate for us on whether or not this is intentional to counterbalance the fact that martial characters can move more, or if they simply want less reward for reading their products more thoroughly so Joe Schmuck can be just as good as someone who toiled for hours reading their book.
Poor Joe, just wanted to have a good time with friends.
Doesn't stop him from being a Schmuck.
I'd prefer Joe Schmuck at my table than a gatekeeper demanding the party perform a requisite amount of toil to qualify to play the game.
Well, then you must love derailing your game every 5 minutes to explain to him how the rules work and making sure he understands how his character works while everyone else at the table sits there bored too.

5 is a gross exaggeration. We go 30min or longer before someone has to pause to ask questions.

What really slows things down is the archer with a bucket of variable bonuses who has to calculate manyshot, rapid shot, judgement, bane, haste, bardic performance, deadly aim... ect with each shot

That is what having the GM own Hero Labs or having character sheets up on Roll20 is for. ;) I often just tell my players what their bonuses are at this point. It speeds things up a lot.

That said, the new functionality of Roll20 will come in handy for my group when we start new next campaign with low-level characters. (The group is facing down Karzoug as we speak. Best part was when Karzoug used a Mythic Wish to try and eliminate the group's Mythic abilities for the fight and not only did everyone make their save but the Sorceress with Spell Turning up had it bounce back only for Karzoug to fail his own save against his own Mythic Wish and lose access to Mythic for the rest of the fight. After which point he trapped the highest AC character behind a Wall of Force in revenge.)


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Thinking about Power Attack, there is one significant advantage of the PF2 version over the PF1 version: no attack penalty.

In PF1, Power Attack was a staple of Full BAB classes but not so much for 3/4 BAB since the lower to hit could often cost you more than you gained in damage. The new one is all about action economy rather than bonus to hit.

The action economy changed are going to be interesting. For example, going against multiple opponents your shield block isn’t going to be as useful. I wonder what else will change because of the new action economy along with variable action costs.

I fear characters needing chest sheets to track their action costs for various special abilities.

Liberty's Edge

PossibleCabbage wrote:
Smite Makes Right wrote:
What is concerning to the me is that the language of the post hints that there may artificial fighter only abilities. One of my pet peeves is the fighter level requirement for greater weapon focus and greater weapon focus. Either this is gained through training and the fighter level is out of place or it is a class feature like animal empathy. As the fighter is just a focus on martial training, the fighter level requirement is an artificial method of enticing players to play the class.
My suspicion is that a number of classes will have options, via class feats, to do a standard thing that any class can do, better than all the other classes. Remember that "Fighter Feats" are not like "Bonus Combat Feats" as in PF1, they're the equivalent of rogue talents, rage powers, style strikes, etc.

In my opinion, that is poor design. The rogue and fighter are training classes. They are really focused on acquiring training that should be available to everyone. The draw should primarily be the volume of training achievable in their focus allows for combinations or levels of mastery that other characters cannot achieve. However, when a fighter achieves a superior level of martial mastery, it should be because rangers or paladins do not have enough feats for the chain, not because there is a random requirement for x levels of fighter. I typically house rule the weapon specialization chain to be open to non-fighters at BAB +5 and +5 per step in the feat chain.

The same principle applies to the rogue (mostly, their trap evasion is tied to their class). I would say that monks sit on the border of what should be a class feature versus a class themed around acquiring certain training. I believe that a martial artist concept should be buildable through the fighter with a different flavor than the monk class. That would also open martial artists themes for other classes, just not to the degree that the monk or fighter can achieve,


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master_marshmallow wrote:
Well, then you must love derailing your game every 5 minutes to explain to him how the rules work and making sure he understands how his character works while everyone else at the table sits there bored too.

It depends on the game. In 5e, it takes seconds, with PF it derailed whole game when one player did not worship the rules set like holy write


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master_marshmallow wrote:

How do you reward your players for playing then?

Or are you just taking a shot at me for enjoying my hobby?

Players are rewarded by having fun playing a game and not spending their time trying to squeeze every drop of juice out of the game math. If they want to do that, that is fine. I have one player like that out of six. I'm glad to have him, he helps out a lot. But I'm not demanding that anybody else do more than show up, know how to play their character well enough to keep things flowing, and have fun.

The only thing I'm taking a shot at is the idea that "toiling for hours" is a key part of playing a game and that if you don't have to do it, PF2 is failing.


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Stone Dog wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:

How do you reward your players for playing then?

Or are you just taking a shot at me for enjoying my hobby?

Players are rewarded by having fun playing a game and not spending their time trying to squeeze every drop of juice out of the game math. If they want to do that, that is fine. I have one player like that out of six. I'm glad to have him, he helps out a lot. But I'm not demanding that anybody else do more than show up, know how to play their character well enough to keep things flowing, and have fun.

The only thing I'm taking a shot at is the idea that "toiling for hours" is a key part of playing a game and that if you don't have to do it, PF2 is failing.

The cult of Droskar has infiltrated the Paizo Forums!? We need to tell the Dwarves!

Jokes aside, I agree with your point. Most fun I have GMing is with a group of total newbies. Once you start mathing hard, you lose some of the magic...

Paizo Employee Designer

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BartonOliver wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
Kevin Mack wrote:
So power attack Is a lot worse now? Since going from a flat +2/+3 somewhat scalable damage to a single random damage die amount?
Power Attack gives you one (and actually, eventually two without taking another feat to improve it!) extra damage die and does not penalize you on accuracy; and you don't want a penalty on accuracy. For a d12 two-handed weapon that might have gotten +3 damage (+3 more every 4 BAB) in PF1, that's 6.5 damage on average, going up to 13. It wasn't until BAB 16 that you would do more damage than that in PF1, and that was at a cost of -5 accuracy.
Maybe, but that also discounts the iterative attacks versus single attack. At a glance I'm gonna say it's more complicated than either side it willing to admit right now.

Actually, theflame fixed the bug in his code (it actually was counting all misses that weren't critical failures as hits, which is a pretty big issue from a pretty small line of code). He posted his findings here.

Grand Lodge

Mark Seifter wrote:
BartonOliver wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
Kevin Mack wrote:
So power attack Is a lot worse now? Since going from a flat +2/+3 somewhat scalable damage to a single random damage die amount?
Power Attack gives you one (and actually, eventually two without taking another feat to improve it!) extra damage die and does not penalize you on accuracy; and you don't want a penalty on accuracy. For a d12 two-handed weapon that might have gotten +3 damage (+3 more every 4 BAB) in PF1, that's 6.5 damage on average, going up to 13. It wasn't until BAB 16 that you would do more damage than that in PF1, and that was at a cost of -5 accuracy.
Maybe, but that also discounts the iterative attacks versus single attack. At a glance I'm gonna say it's more complicated than either side it willing to admit right now.
Actually, theflame fixed the bug in his code (it actually was counting all misses that weren't critical failures as hits, which is a pretty big issue from a pretty small line of code). He posted his findings here.

That's cool, except I didn't use his coding at all. I did a pure EDV calc and I showed it's results just below below where you quoted me. His way is fine for a comparison, but not a very good case using a traditionally rare die (d12 - yes I know that was your example as well) and not accounting well for statics which may be further discounted in PF2 but are incredibly important in PF1. A 12th level fighter with 1d12 + 4 is not a fitting case. I don't find it reasonable to say for sure that the new Power Attack is better, it has advantages certainly but it also has drawbacks (from what we can see so far). I by no means am making any final determination, but I don't think it is simply better or simply worse right now.

Edit: Also, we both know by using a d12 for comparison you're choosing the best case scenario (basic weapon) for the new system. I chose an absolutely average weapon to show a middle of the line case. If you take the comparison instead with a say a heavy shield (1d4 at medium) the new power attack looks worse than either set of comparisons.


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I, for one, am happy that Power Attack is nerfed. It was the best feat for all melee builds, including DEX ones. It was just so good and auto-pick all the way from level 1 to 20 that it constrained all other builds for sucking in comparison.

Have "soft" banned it at low levels recently with some interesting results.


Math wise once your static bonus is above the average of the extra die you should skip power attack, which even for a d12 is 7. This does change depending on the minus to hit and the number you need to roll above on a d20 (as well as whether power attack dice are doubled on crits), still a static of bonus of +7 shouldn't be too hard to beat.

It does sound increasingly like starfinder, how does iterative attacks work, do high level fighters get some freebie attacks or are extra attacks only when you're using all 3 actions at higher levels?

One of the reasons archery is so good is how many chances you get to hit, it really improves your average damage, but if most of a fighter's career is going to be one or two attacks a round, then having small static bonuses and high variable dice damage rolls are going to make combats really swingy and sometimes cause rather unfun nights for those playing fighters.

I think we all know damage is going to be scaled down in PF2, forum martial builds were clearing breaking intended damage per round design constraints, especially at higher levels.


Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Bodhizen wrote:
My single greatest concern is the lack of any mention of Fighters having greater narrative power than they did in First Edition. Can we please get a response to this concern?

Then the Fighter is not your class. They don't need any NARRATIVE power. They are a COMBATIVE CLASS. They fight. At most I can see is maybe doing something with intimidate. Other than than I don't think they need any. If you want it that bad then dip in to classes that give it.

The response is either there is none or wait till the playlets comes out and see the full CLASS.

Paizo Employee Designer

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BartonOliver wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
BartonOliver wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
Kevin Mack wrote:
So power attack Is a lot worse now? Since going from a flat +2/+3 somewhat scalable damage to a single random damage die amount?
Power Attack gives you one (and actually, eventually two without taking another feat to improve it!) extra damage die and does not penalize you on accuracy; and you don't want a penalty on accuracy. For a d12 two-handed weapon that might have gotten +3 damage (+3 more every 4 BAB) in PF1, that's 6.5 damage on average, going up to 13. It wasn't until BAB 16 that you would do more damage than that in PF1, and that was at a cost of -5 accuracy.
Maybe, but that also discounts the iterative attacks versus single attack. At a glance I'm gonna say it's more complicated than either side it willing to admit right now.
Actually, theflame fixed the bug in his code (it actually was counting all misses that weren't critical failures as hits, which is a pretty big issue from a pretty small line of code). He posted his findings here.

That's cool, except I didn't use his coding at all. I did a pure EDV calc and I showed it's results just below below where you quoted me. His way is fine for a comparison, but not a very good case using a traditionally rare die (d12 - yes I know that was your example as well) and not accounting well for statics which may be further discounted in PF2 but are incredibly important in PF1. A 12th level fighter with 1d12 + 4 is not a fitting case. I don't find it reasonable to say for sure that the new Power Attack is better, it has advantages certainly but it also has drawbacks (from what we can see so far). I by no means am making any final determination, but I don't think it is simply better or simply worse right now.

Edit: Also, we both know by using a d12 for comparison you're choosing the best case scenario (basic weapon) for the new system. I chose an...

Actually, the more static damage you add, for most accuracy levels, the worse PF1 Power Attack will be (because it's actually worse than just attacking normally for those accuracies if your damage is high enough due to negating crits). Let's discuss in the math thread please!


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Tangent101 wrote:
I do find it interesting some folk are complaining about having to roll extra dice when one of the "problems" with fighters vs. spellcasters was that a wizard could learn and cast Fireball that at 10 level would do 10d6 damage while the fighter at 10th level would be relying on static damage and strength and power attack bonuses. I like the concept of power attack doing an extra damage die (or two)... and for that matter magic weapons doing extra dice of damage as well.

This was never the problem with wizards. 10d6 is an atrociously weak use of a 3rd level spell comparatively speaking. Narrative influence, battlefield control, and out of combat utility were the problems with wizards over fighters.

Rubber Ducky Guy wrote:

5 is a gross exaggeration. We go 30min or longer before someone has to pause to ask questions.

What really slows things down is the archer with a bucket of variable bonuses who has to calculate manyshot, rapid shot, judgement, bane, haste, bardic performance, deadly aim... ect with each shot

If adding 4-5 numbers from paper is derailing the game by 30 minutes, then how is adding 4-5 numbers from a dice going to change your experience and make it better? The process is the same, but instead the player now has to deal with the system working against them roughly half the time, at best.

Stone Dog wrote:

Players are rewarded by having fun playing a game and not spending their time trying to squeeze every drop of juice out of the game math. If they want to do that, that is fine. I have one player like that out of six. I'm glad to have him, he helps out a lot. But I'm not demanding that anybody else do more than show up, know how to play their character well enough to keep things flowing, and have fun.

The only thing I'm taking a shot at is the idea that "toiling for hours" is a key part of playing a game and that if you don't have to do it, PF2 is failing.

I didn't say that you have to squeeze every drop of math out of the game. I'm saying that the options we are being presented which make the characters less mathematically reliable in practice at the table which ultimately creates less fun characters if they are not able to beat encounters due to the second set of dice they are forced to rely upon not landing where they need them to to succeed in the encounters they are supposed to be designed to succeed at. You don't have to be a genius to understand that a fighter that does 2d6+20 three times per turn is going to have more consistent and reliable numbers they can play with than a fighter who gets 4d6+4 and then 2d6+4. If the player can't win their combats because the 'simpler system' created a scenario where they were punished by dice and not by their own choices when playing the game then odds are they won't be having more fun than in a system where their choices mattered.

You all have proven nothing about game design, in fact all you've proven is that you like to be smug so you can milk each other for favorites.

Simple design doesn't make it better by virtue. Other systems exist for simple design that anyone can sit at and play. That was never what playing Pathfinder 1E was about, and if P2 is going to be about this, then I have no need to play it because as stated, there are already systems that do this.

I have actual questions I want answered, and none of them are covered by you guys.

Hyperbolize, name call, do whatever you want guys. I want to challenge the design of the system critically because this is a play test and if in that play test I find that the game isn't fun because the absolute most complained about problem with the previous edition was made worse instead of better, then Paizo wants me to tell them that.

By all means, quote me and snark some more without proving your points or refuting mine. Better yet, take the wrong parts of my statements and attack them because it's easier for you. I'm expecting it.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Feel free to go to the math thread which proved Power Attack in PF2E is better than static power attack.

But more than that, rolling dice is straight up more fun.


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Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
master_marshmallow wrote:
I want to challenge the design of the system critically because this is a play test and if in that play test I find that the game isn't fun because the absolute most complained about problem with the previous edition was made worse instead of better, then Paizo wants me to tell them that.

The play test hasn't started yet.

Paizo wants you to respond to the actual play test by participating in their feedback process.

FAQ wrote:
The playtest will kick off in August with character creation and the first of the seven parts of the Pathfinder Playtest Adventure. We will take a few weeks to focus on each section, giving you a chance to play it with your friends and submit feedback in the form of detailed experience surveys.


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DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

Feel free to go to the math thread which proved Power Attack in PF2E is better than static power attack.

But more than that, rolling dice is straight up more fun.

The math thread can't even agree on what damage die is being used much less what the expected bonus to hit and the AC you're targeting, nor how many attacks you're rolling, nor if it two-handing the weapon for the -1 +3 bonus or one handing it, all of which greatly changes the math behind power attack.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Trimalchio wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

Feel free to go to the math thread which proved Power Attack in PF2E is better than static power attack.

But more than that, rolling dice is straight up more fun.

The math thread can't even agree on what damage die is being used much less what the expected bonus to hit and the AC you're targeting, nor how many attacks you're rolling, nor if it two-handing the weapon for the -1 +3 bonus or one handing it, all of which greatly changes the math behind power attack.

This community can’t even agree if rolling dice is fun. So:

¯\_(ツ)_/¯


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Trimalchio wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

Feel free to go to the math thread which proved Power Attack in PF2E is better than static power attack.

But more than that, rolling dice is straight up more fun.

The math thread can't even agree on what damage die is being used much less what the expected bonus to hit and the AC you're targeting, nor how many attacks you're rolling, nor if it two-handing the weapon for the -1 +3 bonus or one handing it, all of which greatly changes the math behind power attack.

It's almkst as if you don't have enough information to judge the changes from PF1 to PF2 :P


I had a thought going over the thread, not sure if it's been addressed elsewhere and I don't think it requires its own thread. So I'm posting it here. Readying an action is still a thing in PF2nd. In PF1e it required a Standard action to do. Now all actions are the same, so could you ready three actions in PF2nd? I can see that opening up for some interesting, maybe odd, tactics.

Micheal Smith wrote:
I like these FOOLS who try and compare 1st edition to 2nd edition. YOU CAN'T. You don't understand how everything works so therefore you CAN"T MAKE ACCURATE comparisons. So why even try?

I'm going to repeat myself, again: What would you have people do?

I keep seeing this sort of sentiment and that's what I saw as a concern in the thick skin thread. Comparing the info we get about PF2nd to what we already know about PF1e is effectively being treated as wrongthink.

Micheal Smith wrote:

DEVELOPERS,

Please stop half-a$$ing things. If you are going to talk about an ability or feat then clearly define what it does. Be more clear as to how it functions. Whats the point of a preview if you are going to preview part of an ability?

I do agree with this.

Liberty's Edge

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DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
Trimalchio wrote:
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

Feel free to go to the math thread which proved Power Attack in PF2E is better than static power attack.

But more than that, rolling dice is straight up more fun.

The math thread can't even agree on what damage die is being used much less what the expected bonus to hit and the AC you're targeting, nor how many attacks you're rolling, nor if it two-handing the weapon for the -1 +3 bonus or one handing it, all of which greatly changes the math behind power attack.

This community can’t even agree if rolling dice is fun. So:

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I have sooooo many dice. I want to roll them.


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Tangent101 wrote:
I do find it interesting some folk are complaining about having to roll extra dice when one of the "problems" with fighters vs. spellcasters was that a wizard could learn and cast Fireball that at 10 level would do 10d6 damage while the fighter at 10th level would be relying on static damage and strength and power attack bonuses. I like the concept of power attack doing an extra damage die (or two)... and for that matter magic weapons doing extra dice of damage as well.

That has never been a problem in any version of 3.X/PF.

The only time Fireball has ever been a problem is when Wizards start doing things like using a lesser rod of Dazing Spell to turn that Fireball into a single turn, 3rd level spell slot instant win button.


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LuZeke wrote:
I'm going to repeat myself, again: What would you have people do?

Socrates said that the true wisdom is in knowing what you don't know. So a lot fewer declarative statements would be useful. At the very least we could all stand to include more linguistic hedges ("I think", "I feel", "It seems", "I wonder if", "I hope", etc.) to make statements that are less hyperbolic and less prone to cause arguments (and more prone to get feedback from helpful developers).


master_marshmallow wrote:
Not happy with power attack, more dice means less reliable numbers, I don't want to base my damage calcs solely on variables.

Your damage calcs won't be based solely on variables. They include Str and we may find out more later. Add to that people who forego Power attack in PF1 never had that big a static number. I know, who would play a martial character w/o PA in 1e... well that's a feat tax for a different conversation. My argument is with the use of solely, it's afaik incorrect.

Quote:


Is there a source somewhere that confirms weapon damage dice? Is a greatsword still 2d6? Does Power Attack make it 4d6? Do two-handed weapons still add 1.5 STR?

Where did the information on +1/+2 weapons come from? Do we know that each +x results in more dice? Are there weapons that deal multiple dice in damage?

We only really know about the few weapons featured in the playtested. So far based on what we know a +1 weapon does an extra die worth of damage PA adds another extra die. We haven't really heard what a +2 or higher weapon does and they haven't talked about or playtested any multi dice weapons that I can recall.

Quote:


Seems martials got nerfed, and fighters got worse not better. Not happy, and now much less excited for the other classes.

We can't really know till we see more. I will say Fighters got changed... I like the idea of the fighter crit-ing more. I like the idea of a fighter able to jump 20 feet... and those are the few things they've mentioned. So far it not feeling like a hit from the nerd bat to me.

Quote:


To be sure, the paladin is more than likely going to be our Tank class, most likely with CHA related abilities to draw aggro, since I can't really see a class that focuses on armor being able to use that feature without making enemies want/need to attack them.

That's my take away too. At our table Paladins are almost always tanks with some very nice extra utility. I look forward to seeing if they can make fighters into the main damage dealers with some cool extra utility too.

Quote:


Seems the 4e comparisons are coming more and more true. I'm losing faith in this edition now.

Move+ Power attack is just as bad as move+ vital strike. That's why we hated vital strike.

At what rate does this power attack scale? How much does it scale?

You've created many questions that I didn't realize I never wanted to have to ask.

As for 4e I liked it less than 3.5 and PF1.. so far I like what I hear here. 4e felt like a card game to me that was masquerading as a rpg. But there were many MANY who liked it. I don't see the comparison but if they'd take brings in those players too. Well what's good for Paizo is hopefully good in the long-term.

If the 4e feeling is really rubbing you raw, then I hope you around long enough to try the playtest, since that may change your mind. Barring that let them know and follow your heart.

As far as Move + Vital Strike, I loved it in my npcs, and always thought my players undervalued it.

We don't know when PA adds the extra die, only that it does.

I hope the next blog fills you full of questions you want to ask, because I agree that's where the fun is at.

Liberty's Edge

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master_marshmallow wrote:


Rubber Ducky Guy wrote:

5 is a gross exaggeration. We go 30min or longer before someone has to pause to ask questions.

What really slows things down is the archer with a bucket of variable bonuses who has to calculate manyshot, rapid shot, judgement, bane, haste, bardic performance, deadly aim... ect with each shot

If adding 4-5 numbers from paper is derailing the game by 30 minutes, then how is adding 4-5 numbers from a dice going to change your experience and make it better? The process is the same, but instead the player now has to deal with the system working against them roughly half the time, at best.

I think you misunderstood what Rubber Ducky Guy* was saying. They play for 30 minutes or more without a question. The time spent on the math for the archer's damage was not specified.

*I can't help but say that in an Ernie voice.


LuZeke wrote:
I had a thought going over the thread, not sure if it's been addressed elsewhere and I don't think it requires its own thread. So I'm posting it here. Readying an action is still a thing in PF2nd. In PF1e it required a Standard action to do. Now all actions are the same, so could you ready three actions in PF2nd? I can see that opening up for some interesting, maybe odd, tactics.

I saw this mentioned in the Games Trade Media plays the Playtest video. It takes 2 actions to ready an action. So you can only have one. I'm not sure if it uses your reaction to actually use it. The player decided to delay his turn instead so we didn't see it actually used.


Every character class should be able to make Attack of opportunity!


Smite Makes Right wrote:
master_marshmallow wrote:


Rubber Ducky Guy wrote:

5 is a gross exaggeration. We go 30min or longer before someone has to pause to ask questions.

What really slows things down is the archer with a bucket of variable bonuses who has to calculate manyshot, rapid shot, judgement, bane, haste, bardic performance, deadly aim... ect with each shot

If adding 4-5 numbers from paper is derailing the game by 30 minutes, then how is adding 4-5 numbers from a dice going to change your experience and make it better? The process is the same, but instead the player now has to deal with the system working against them roughly half the time, at best.

I think you misunderstood what Rubber Ducky Guy* was saying. They play for 30 minutes or more without a question. The time spent on the math for the archer's damage was not specified.

*I can't help but say that in an Ernie voice.

It really doesn't change my point, if they were having problems adding 4-5 different numbers that are static and don't change turn to turn then how is the same group going to fare when they have to add 4-5 numbers that do change every turn?

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