Pathfinder a la Mode

Friday, March 23, 2018

No, we are not putting a scoop of ice cream on top of every copy of the Pathfinder Playtest Rulebook, but we are adding flavor to the different parts of the game. You've probably heard a lot about it in the blogs and podcasts, but today we are dishing out a big scoop of news on the different modes of play in the next evolution of Pathfinder!

Every moment in the game can be categorized into encounter mode, exploration more, or downtime mode. The modes of play are governed by the needs of the adventure, and the transition between them is ultimately up to the Game Master to decide. You might be traveling through the woods, following the trail of the bandit queen, which would be exploration mode, only to have the group thrust into encounter mode as a combat breaks out with a pack of bloodthirsty wolves. Later, after defeating the bandit queen, you might take your treasure back to town and take a week off, entering downtime mode to craft a better suit of armor with your newfound wealth.

Illustration by Wayne Reynolds

Encounter Mode

Without a doubt, this is the most talked about part of the game up to this point. Combat takes place exclusively in encounter mode, when characters, villains, and monsters are locked in a life-or-death struggle, wielding blades, claws, and spells to win the day. As we've mentioned elsewhere, encounter mode functions much like it did in Pathfinder First Edition, with each round of play taking 6 seconds of game time. You roll initiative at the start, putting all of the combatants in order; each one takes a turn in initiative order, and then you cycle through the combatants repeatedly until one side is victorious.

The changes we made to this system are intended to make play a little easier to learn, while also giving you a wider array of choices as to how you can take your turn. To start with, each character gets 3 actions on their turn. While everyone has access to a list of basic actions, like stride (which lets you move your speed), step (which lets you move just 5 feet, but without provoking any reactions), and strike (which lets you make an attack), all characters have special actions that they can take, derived from their ancestry, class, feat, and gear choices.

For example, if you're playing a barbarian, you can take a feat called Raging Courage that allows you to spend actions to shake off being afraid, letting you get back into the fight. If you're playing a fighter, you instead pick a feat called Intimidating Strike, which lets you spend 2 actions to make an attack against a foe. If it hits, your enemy is frightened and flat-footed until the end of your next turn! (Just don't use it on that barbarian.)

In addition to the 3 actions on your turn, you also get 1 reaction to use anytime before the start of your next turn. The fighter blog on Monday mentioned the reaction attack of opportunity, which allows you to take a free swing at foes that try to move around you or attempt to cast spells adjacent to you, but fighters are not the only class to have fun things to do with their reactions. The druid can gain a feat called Storm Retribution. If you are a druid of the storm order and a foe critically hits you, this feat allows you to unleash a powerful tempest on them in return, dealing 3d12 damage and possibly pushing them away. Wizards, meanwhile, can get the ability to counterspell with their reaction, canceling out enemy magic before it can even take effect.

The choices you make when building your character greatly influence what you can do during combat. You can build a simpler character with a narrow field of powerful choices, just as easily as a more complex character with a vast array of options in a fight. As with the other modes of play, it's all up to you!

Exploration Mode

If you are not in a combat, chances are you are in exploration mode. This free-form part of the game allows characters to take actions as needed to accomplish tasks, investigate problems, and interact with other characters and the world around them. Travelling from place to place, talking to a merchant lord, and swimming across a river to a mysterious island are all part of exploration mode. Exploration mode is measured in minutes and hours, depending on the task at hand and the flow of the game.

Skills and skill feats govern a lot of what you can do in this part of the game, along with your roleplaying and character backstory (as related to your background). These options are available to all characters, and while some get more options than others (like rogues), you can always focus on a few ways in which you can shine.

Let's say you really want your sorcerer to be in tune with nature. Not only could you put some of your proficiencies into the Nature skill, giving you knowledge of the natural world, including plants and beasts, but you could take skill feats that let you use Nature to heal people or even train an animal, which can then help you on your journey. These opportunities are not unique to any particular character. Anyone with the right proficiencies can select them.

For long periods of exploration, characters focus on one task at a time so it's easy for the GM to determine what rolls they make and how they're set up for any challenges they face. This lets the game move quickly through long journeys, then resume a more fine-grained pace when the party finds something to investigate or encounters monsters or hazards.

What you do in exploration mode can also influence how you enter combat. As you go on your adventures, the Game Master will periodically ask you what you are doing, how you are traveling, and what precautions you are taking as you venture into the unknown. These choices influence what you roll when it's time to roll initiative. For most characters it will be a Perception check, indicating how alert you were to the danger. If instead you were trying to hide, you might roll Stealth, possibly allowing you to start the combat unseen. If the fight is breaking out in the middle of a crowded tavern, you might roll Diplomacy or Intimidation to get the upper hand, using charm or a brutish manner to give you an edge. The GM makes the final determination of what everyone rolls for initiative, and might allow you to choose between multiple choices (one of which is typically Perception) if several options would make sense.

Downtime Mode

Up to this point, we haven't talked much about the downtime mode of play, where time passes quickly, allowing characters to retrain, work at a profession, craft items, and more. Downtime mode is always measured in days, allowing you to accomplish large tasks quickly in terms of time at the table.

Just as with exploration mode, how you interact during downtime mode is mostly up to you and the choices you make with your character. If you are playing a bard with expert proficiency in Performance, you might spend your downtime putting on shows in local taverns and for nearby nobles, earning money to help fund your next adventure. With a few days and a decent roll, you could easily afford an extra potion or two.

Let's say instead you are playing a dwarven fighter who wants to make his own weapons. With the Craft skill, you can make weapons of a quality up to your proficiency. Better yet, if you pick up the Magical Crafter skill feat, your dwarven fighter could even make magic weapons! This feat is available to anyone who is an expert crafter, making the creation of magic items available to all. I should note that some items, like scrolls and wands, do require you to be able to cast certain spells to create them, though.

Finally, we have made retraining a core part of the game, allowing you to trade out a feat, skill, or even class choice for another equal option. Retraining occurs during downtime, and can take as little as a week, giving you the flexibility to go on your next adventures with the right tools to succeed.

Well, that's the scoop on this blog. I wish I could tell you a bit about the Monday blog, but it succeeded at its Stealth check. You'll just have to stop by then to find out what it is!

Jason Bulmahn
Director of Game Design

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John Lynch 106 wrote:


CrystalSeas wrote:
Why wouldn't they just keep playing PF1?
We exclusively play the Paizo adventure paths. We have also started every single adventure path and they've finished a fairly decent chunk of them (quite possibly most of them and at least some of them more than once due to the size of the group allowing for multiple playthroughs with different players). While converting the 2nd edition Adventure Paths...

John, just as a side thought, there are a TON of awesome 3pp PF adventures, perhaps you could go that route if your group decides to actively dig their heels in on an edition change.


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I figure you can use Storm's reaction every single round all day long if you can get crit that often, and you can survive getting hit that much.

It's really just an ability that has a trigger, like the Dodging Panache Swashbuckler deed, it's just more obviously magical even though it's not a spell.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

You do know there is one other thing those of us who dislike 4th Ed. D&D can do... and that is when the Playtest rules come out, look at what can be modified or altered so that it is closer to Pathfinder 1 than 4th Ed. D&D.

Let's be honest. Pathfinder is flawed. It has some intrinsic flaws to it that we know are problematic. The increased length of time for combat at higher levels is one such problem. The ability for one critical to instant-kill most players is another (which is why I significantly nerfed crits in my game to only do double initial weapon-damage without strength modifiers). And as GMs (and players) we've been creating work-arounds for these problems for a while.

If the core aspect of 2nd Edition works better than Pathfinder 1st Ed., then we as players can modify the game further. Hell, we might find enough players speak out against a certain mechanic and find legitimate reasons why it doesn't work (not just "too 4th ed.) and have that mechanic *changed* as a result. That's the whole point of the Playtest. And we're still a little over four months away from the actual Playtest in any event. So we just need be patient. There's no need to ragequit over some blog posts.


FYI its storms Retribution the reactions name not storm strike or something other so its probably defensive power with damage and optional knock back so no free 2d12 damage after every attack unless you are in melee.


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I mean, this blog helps one of my concerns about PF2 being like 4e. For my money the worst thing about 4e is that it was *extremely* combat focused, and if PF2 has robust and deep mechanics for "things you do when you're not fighting" that's a massive leg up on 4e.


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John Lynch 106 wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:
I don't think you need to have a comprehensive break down of all difference you dislike. I do think that "this is like 4e with out stating why it is at all similar and why I don't like that element of 4e design" is totally unhelpful to discussion or the developers. It isn't valid feedback because it isn't actually helping get to the root of the problem one iota. Especially when everything you have said "is like 4e" seems unlike 4e to me.

Storm's Retribution sounds like a spell. It seems to operate like a spell (doesn't deal weapon damage). Has a damage + affect format (much like most non-striker 4th ed powers), but it is gained in a way that appears to not be from the Vancian method (it's called out as a feat). Storm's Retribution, based on the information we have (which I acknowledge is quite incomplete) sounds a lot like a 4th ed power.

For a while now I can't help but think of "class power" and "utility power/skill power" when I hear about skill feats and class feats. Storm's Retribution only further emphasises the similarities. I'm not the only one to notice this "spell that is not a spell" doesn't seem very Pathfindery. Furthermore now that durations don't scale the developers/designers are tweaking and manipulating the spell durations to essentially make them last "until the end of the encounter" (another rules element that is shared by D&D 4th ed). Sure they're technically not for the "end of the encounter" because they have a duration of "1 minute" or "10 rounds" or any other stand in. But the end result is effectively the same.

Many here also agree there's a lot we're getting that's not very Pathfindery, they're just happening to celebrate that rather than disliking it.

Although I suspect short of finding a power in a 4th ed book with the same name and same rules text I'm not going to convince you of any similarity. That's fine. You're entitled to your opinion.

Honestly, it sounds more like a pathfinder supernatural/spell-like ability. Spells that arent spells have always been in the game. Sounds more like a domain power than anything from d&d as far as I can see, unless im missing something


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John Lynch 106 wrote:

I'll say it again: Pathfinder 2nd edition being too dissimilar to 1st edition and too similar to 4th edition will stop my group from playing it.

If Paizo want feedback as to what will make people play the game or stop people from playing the game, this is valid feedback.

Until we get the full rules text I can't say "elements X, Y and Z are disliked for reasons A, B and C. Furthermore elements S, T, U, V, X, Y and Z are too sufficiently different from Pathfinder 1st ed that when taken in their totality make this feel like a game wholly unconnected with 1st edition beyond a very thin coat of paint." Until then, I'll certainly continue to point out the similarities that I see with D&D 4th ed. Because every single similarity is yet another nail in the coffin of getting my group to move over to 2nd edition.

You haven't pointed out even one similarity so far! Beyond the similarities all of the games share, 3.x/PF and 4E and 5E included, you've yet to name anything specific enough to interact with. So at this point, it's a meaningless statement without anything to back it up.


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I hated 4e. I will admit, I do see some minor similarities between PF2 and 4e. BUT I think it's important to keep in mind that just because 4e did a thing doesn't necessarily make it bad. 4e actually had some good ideas, just they implemented a lot of them poorly, and also destroyed the flavor of the classes in the name of balance, and destroyed the lore of the campaign settings, because reasons I guess...

Even the idea of At will/Encounter/Daily powers wasn't terrible as such, although I think per encounter abilities feel very meta, they just butchered the flavor of both martials (why can I only use this sword strike once per day?) and casters (why do my spells now work the same as any other class feature?) trying to implement it. So far, none of the stuff I've seen the Paizo devs mention that sounds 4e-like has sounded like the parts of 4e that I disliked, that's why I'm not bothered by it.

I can see where John Lynch 106 gets the notion that the druid reaction seems like a 4e ability, but I don't think that it particularly embodies any of the negative aspects of 4e.

Oh, and 3.5 had feats that allowed casters to do magic effects without using up their Vancian spell slots. Reserve Feats they were called. Actually a pretty cool idea, though it didn't get developed much since they only came up with the idea right at the end of the 3.5 run. I don't have a problem with a spellcaster getting magic abilities besides spells, as long as spells are still their primary ability. You know, like the pf1 Sorcerer.

That said, I don't have much to say about this actual blog entry. I didn't feel like the modes needed to be codified, but I don't see it hurting anything either. Glad to hear counterspell will now be a reaction, might make it actually usable. As far as the druid reaction, I don't think I would take it, I don't generally like having those sort of abilities that trigger off of me getting slammed, but I think that's just personal preference, the power itself doesn't seem terrible. It also sounds like you may have a decent variety of options as to what Reactions you get, which sounds cool to me. Also glad to hear that Magic Item Crafting will be less restricted to casters.


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I feel like giving buffs a duration of "one fight" (or some diegetic duration that effectively makes it so) makes sense, honestly since I never liked when buff durations in PF1 sometimes encouraged players to rush into the next room before their buffs elapsed without stopping to wipe the blood off their swords, make sure everybody is okay, stop any active bleeding, retie your bootlaces, or things that even hardy adventurers will do after getting in a scuffle.

Like when people tried to get two fights out of the 10 round duration of divine favor, it just rankled.


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I'd personally like to see most spells have a flat duration, where it's either 1 minute, or some number of hours. Dictate which spells are meant for combat, and which are long-term. At high levels, Cat's Grace or Undead Anatomy could last ~20 minutes with an extend, encouraging what @PossibleCabbage mentioned.

Also, I'm not against spells with a duration of "concentration plus one minute". Let people pre-buff during exploration with a single spell and have it up at the start of combat, but don't make that abusable.

EDIT: 10 minutes/level spells are the Dirty Little Secret of Pathfinder. I'm as guilty as many at abusing them (Discovery Torch, Heroism, Barkskin...), and it's always been unclear to me whether they were intended to last for the long durations they did, or if they were meant to be a couple of fights.


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I know as a GM, I've always been bothered by the duration space in between "around a minute or two" (clearly intended for one encounter) and "about an hour or more" (clearly intended to last through many encounters and a chunk of exploration). A spell lasting 10 minutes made more sense in 2E, when a round was a minute and exploring a room would take a few minutes. But when they changed the duration of rounds of 3.x they just copy pasted a lot of spell durations over and that put mid-duration spells in a weird space open to players gaming the system.

The Exchange

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Angel Hunter D wrote:
Unfortunately "plain english" is a horrific language for rules, full of implications, shortcuts. euphemisms, inconsistencies and ambiguities. A step to something more structured is better for the game, even if it's harder to adjust to.

And still, "plain" English is a beautiful language, while "technical manual" English is not. The problem (and that may just be me) I have with the Modes is that it's too much of an abstraction for me and that I'm not willing to even think in those terms.

So like Steve (Geddes) I'm a tiny bit worried that the structure and the language of the Core Rules won't make me read them. We'll see when the playtest rules are out.


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WormysQueue wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:
Unfortunately "plain english" is a horrific language for rules, full of implications, shortcuts. euphemisms, inconsistencies and ambiguities. A step to something more structured is better for the game, even if it's harder to adjust to.

And still, "plain" English is a beautiful language, while "technical manual" English is not. The problem (and that may just be me) I have with the Modes is that it's too much of an abstraction for me and that I'm not willing to even think in those terms.

So like Steve (Geddes) I'm a tiny bit worried that the structure and the language of the Core Rules won't make me read them. We'll see when the playtest rules are out.

I want very clear and precise game rules; this was the single biggest strength of 4E. At the same time, I don't want a dry textbook, or for certain aspects of the game to be overdefined to the point they get straightjacketed. This can be a balancing act, and something that will require seeing the playtest draft and giving feedback as necessary.

Paizo Employee Designer

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Fuzzypaws wrote:
WormysQueue wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:
Unfortunately "plain english" is a horrific language for rules, full of implications, shortcuts. euphemisms, inconsistencies and ambiguities. A step to something more structured is better for the game, even if it's harder to adjust to.

And still, "plain" English is a beautiful language, while "technical manual" English is not. The problem (and that may just be me) I have with the Modes is that it's too much of an abstraction for me and that I'm not willing to even think in those terms.

So like Steve (Geddes) I'm a tiny bit worried that the structure and the language of the Core Rules won't make me read them. We'll see when the playtest rules are out.

I want very clear and precise game rules; this was the single biggest strength of 4E. At the same time, I don't want a dry textbook, or for certain aspects of the game to be overdefined to the point they get straightjacketed. This can be a balancing act, and something that will require seeing the playtest draft and giving feedback as necessary.

We want language that can both be quite precise, with rules terms used consistently, but also sound plain, natural, and elegant rather than clunky. We think we've figured out a way to have our cake and eat it though, thanks to Logan's masterstroke of making certain rules elements act as nouns, certain rules elements (like actions) act as verbs, and certain rules elements act as adjectives and then allow natural language usage. So for instance, the blog mentions the Stride action, so we can say "whenever you Stride, you ignore difficult terrain" or "While Striding, you gain concealment against any reactions" or "Whenever an enemy in your reach Strides" or any other form of the verb. Like many of these wording-based decisions, this is the kind of thing that might seem like it could be "obvious" in hindsight but still takes inspiration to realize.


tivadar27 wrote:


EDIT: 10 minutes/level spells are the Dirty Little Secret of Pathfinder. I'm as guilty as many at abusing them (Discovery Torch, Heroism, Barkskin...), and it's always been unclear to me whether they were intended to last for the long durations they did, or if they were meant to be a couple of fights.

For comparison, Cat's grace and similar spells were 1 hour/level in D&D 3.0 and got nerfed in 3.5. I didn't think they were so bad back then and I like buffs that last several fights.


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Mark Seifter wrote:
Fuzzypaws wrote:
WormysQueue wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:
Unfortunately "plain english" is a horrific language for rules, full of implications, shortcuts. euphemisms, inconsistencies and ambiguities. A step to something more structured is better for the game, even if it's harder to adjust to.

And still, "plain" English is a beautiful language, while "technical manual" English is not. The problem (and that may just be me) I have with the Modes is that it's too much of an abstraction for me and that I'm not willing to even think in those terms.

So like Steve (Geddes) I'm a tiny bit worried that the structure and the language of the Core Rules won't make me read them. We'll see when the playtest rules are out.

I want very clear and precise game rules; this was the single biggest strength of 4E. At the same time, I don't want a dry textbook, or for certain aspects of the game to be overdefined to the point they get straightjacketed. This can be a balancing act, and something that will require seeing the playtest draft and giving feedback as necessary.
We want language that can both be quite precise, with rules terms used consistently, but also sound plain, natural, and elegant rather than clunky. We think we've figured out a way to have our cake and eat it though, thanks to Logan's masterstroke of making certain rules elements act as nouns, certain rules elements (like actions) act as verbs, and certain rules elements act as adjectives and then allow natural language usage. So for instance, the blog mentions the Stride action, so we can say "whenever you Stride, you ignore difficult terrain" or "While Striding, you gain concealment against any reactions" or "Whenever an enemy in your reach Strides" or any other form of the verb. Like many of these wording-based decisions, this is the kind of thing that might seem like it could be "obvious" in hindsight but still takes inspiration to realize.

This sounds promising, and like the sort of thing I've always strived for in my own campaign houserules writeups. I'm looking forward to seeing more. :)


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I find it really funny that some people claim that PF2 is almost identical to 4e, and other people claim than it is almost identical to 5e, while others claim that it is not different enough from 3.5 and "sacred cows".


gustavo iglesias wrote:

I find it really funny that some people claim that PF2 is almost identical to 4e, and other people claim than it is almost identical to 5e, while others claim that it is not different enough from 3.5 and "sacred cows".

I just want to be clear I've never said it's exactly like 4th ed.

I'll leave the derail in this thread for now. It is clear some here would need identical powers to admit there's any similarities between 4th ed and Pathfinder 2nd edition. I would like it if it was all in my head, but it's clear I'm not the only one noticing such similarities and getting putting off by them.


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gustavo iglesias wrote:
I find it really funny that some people claim that PF2 is almost identical to 4e, and other people claim than it is almost identical to 5e, while others claim that it is not different enough from 3.5 and "sacred cows".

"I will avoid specifics about why I do not like a thing by instead drawing analogy to a separate thing I dislike, but do not know how you feel about it."

Instead can we just focus on making the game fun? If something rankles, is it too much to dig deep into why, instead of saying it's like a different game or a video game or something? Like I'm genuinely confused by the people who dislike resonance because it downplays consumables without being willing to consider if "consumables are very important and you use them all the time" is a good thing or not.

Like I haven't read the Starfinder core rules yet (I know, I know) so it's really confusing when people say "good, like Starfinder" and other people say "bad, like Starfinder".


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

My issue with Resonance is that I honestly don't remember seeing it in the blog post. If it was talked about in the Forum afterward... well, I didn't read the first couple of Forum responses so I have no idea what folk are talking about.

My issue with anyone being able to heal is "how?" And "how much" and "how is this justified." Now I will admit. I'm old-school. I've been playing for around 40 years now and was here for First Edition AD&D. So certain things are hard-coded into me.

One thing I disliked about 3.5 and about 4th Edition D&D is that it became Dungeons and Diablos. If I want to play Diablo, I can pull up the old copy I have and run it on my computer. I can even play it multiplayer if I really want to. But D&D is different. It is more tactical and it's not just button-mashing and killing dozens of critters with one swing of a sword. Some folk like that style of play. I do not.

So I want to avoid that sort of fate with Pathfinder. I gave up on D&D when they went to 4th edition. It is doubtful that Pathfinder 2 is going to go that route... but I still keep an eye open to where it will be going. Because the game needs to be fun for me as a GM if I'm going to make it fun for my players.


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Mark Seifter wrote:
Fuzzypaws wrote:
WormysQueue wrote:
Angel Hunter D wrote:
Unfortunately "plain english" is a horrific language for rules, full of implications, shortcuts. euphemisms, inconsistencies and ambiguities. A step to something more structured is better for the game, even if it's harder to adjust to.

And still, "plain" English is a beautiful language, while "technical manual" English is not. The problem (and that may just be me) I have with the Modes is that it's too much of an abstraction for me and that I'm not willing to even think in those terms.

So like Steve (Geddes) I'm a tiny bit worried that the structure and the language of the Core Rules won't make me read them. We'll see when the playtest rules are out.

I want very clear and precise game rules; this was the single biggest strength of 4E. At the same time, I don't want a dry textbook, or for certain aspects of the game to be overdefined to the point they get straightjacketed. This can be a balancing act, and something that will require seeing the playtest draft and giving feedback as necessary.
We want language that can both be quite precise, with rules terms used consistently, but also sound plain, natural, and elegant rather than clunky. We think we've figured out a way to have our cake and eat it though, thanks to Logan's masterstroke of making certain rules elements act as nouns, certain rules elements (like actions) act as verbs, and certain rules elements act as adjectives and then allow natural language usage. So for instance, the blog mentions the Stride action, so we can say "whenever you Stride, you ignore difficult terrain" or "While Striding, you gain concealment against any reactions" or "Whenever an enemy in your reach Strides" or any other form of the verb. Like many of these wording-based decisions, this is the kind of thing that might seem like it could be "obvious" in hindsight but still takes inspiration to realize.

That goes a long way to alleviating my concerns.

Can I ask you to share any thoughts you had on (to use your example) the fact “stride” is also en English noun? Does that mean you’d never use it in that way in flavour text and so forth?


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Steve Geddes wrote:
Can I ask you to share any thoughts you had on (to use your example) the fact “stride” is also en English noun? Does that mean you’d never use it in that way in flavour text and so forth?

I can guarantee it'll be less trouble than "move", even if it's not perfect.


John Lynch 106 wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:
Oh come on stop with the everything is 4e.
I'll stop pointing out the similarities between D&D 4th ed and Pathfinder 2nd edition when they stop posting mechanics that have strong similarities with those from D&D 4th ed.

Before they could stop, they would have to start...

John Lynch 106 wrote:
They've certainly put a strong veneer of Pathfinder/3.5e onto the structure, but there have been (at least when posted in a summary format) strong similarities between D&D 4th ed and Pathfinder 2nd ed on some of the details that have been released thus far.

Such as?

EDIT: Apologies, I thought I was at the end of the thread, but somehow there were two more pages.

_
glass.


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QuidEst wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
Can I ask you to share any thoughts you had on (to use your example) the fact “stride” is also en English noun? Does that mean you’d never use it in that way in flavour text and so forth?
I can guarantee it'll be less trouble than "move", even if it's not perfect.

I don’t have a problem with move. I prefer the rules be written in loose English than strictly codified legalese. It sounds like Logan and the others have put some thought into trying to achieve “casual precision”, which is pretty clever.


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"Move" has issues. Like, you can draw a weapon while you Move, but not when you do a Move Action. Even if you move when you do your Move Action (like when you stand up). However, you cannot draw a weapon if you move without a Move, like in a 5 feet step, or if your movement involve a Forced Movement, like being pushed.

Levels, racial traits, attacks, grappling and plenty of other examples share this ambiguity.


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Don't forget, you can stealth as part of movement, which may be a move action, but is also probably a withdraw or spring attack, but probably not a 5' step... I'd agree, the new terminology is probably a good idea in places where it's not obvious if you're referring to a specific action, or just using English.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Steve Geddes wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
Can I ask you to share any thoughts you had on (to use your example) the fact “stride” is also en English noun? Does that mean you’d never use it in that way in flavour text and so forth?
I can guarantee it'll be less trouble than "move", even if it's not perfect.
I don’t have a problem with move. I prefer the rules be written in loose English than strictly codified legalese. It sounds like Logan and the others have put some thought into trying to achieve “casual precision”, which is pretty clever.

Yeah, it’s mainly the issue of needing to say “move action to move”.


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Malk_Content wrote:
I hope there is a bit of fluff to the Storm Retribution power to justify why it only procs on crits from an in world perspective. If not I won't bat an eye and merely describe it along the lines of "the power of the tempest that thrives barely contained within you resonates with the powerful blow, expanding and extending beyond you."

The Storm only seeks retribution on your behalf when you have been wronged on a significant enough way.

Dark Archive

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I have to say that I, personally, do not see any 4e similarities in these reactions.. or much else over all. And am not in the LEAST bothered by a spell like nature to reactions performed by spellcasting classes. In fact, I applaud it. In 3.5 and earlier editions my biggest beef was how little magical stuff you got to do per day, especially at lower levels. Once you get higher this reduces but for many levels you are relegated to primarily firing off your little crossbow or similar with little effect because you are conserving all your magic. Cantrips/Orisons were a heavensend to me, letting you do similar mechanical effect to the crossbow but getting to feel magical about it! To me, this Stormy Retribution (or whatever the name is) is really just an extension of that. It's not a spell it's a different application of your magical abilities to provide you yet again more options where you are using those abilities.

I don't know about you, but I doubt most people make a wizard or a druid with the purpose of using mundane weapons half (or more) of the time. They did it to do neat mystical things!

Shadow Lodge

Biztak wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:
I hope there is a bit of fluff to the Storm Retribution power to justify why it only procs on crits from an in world perspective. If not I won't bat an eye and merely describe it along the lines of "the power of the tempest that thrives barely contained within you resonates with the powerful blow, expanding and extending beyond you."
The Storm only seeks retribution on your behalf when you have been wronged on a significant enough way.

Having witnessed Critical hits that result in just 2 points of damage 'significant' might be stretching it.


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So far I'm loving everything that I've heard. Personally, I'm not seeing the similarities to 4e and 5e that others seem to be jumping at.

Limiting spells to roughly one minute seems reasonable. It's way easier for me to plan for as the GM, and it get's the casters off my back to keep rushing forward when I'm playing, even if we need to investigate or role play after a fight.

If anything, rushing around to stay inside the spells duration feels way more game-y to me, exactly like I'm trying to speed run a level before a buff runs out. Personally, I'll pass on that aspect.


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

While I would've been fine with keeping the same set of rules, I also think I'm okay with an edition change after 10 yrs.
All of this stuff is being tested, so nothing is set in stone. I don't feel the need to complain until it's seen in actual play.
I think the guys who brought us the awesome 1st edition (and who love the game as much as we do) can be trusted to make the best game they can possibly make for us and them.
I am really interested in the section about the modes. I think the most useful part of it, to me, is the fact that it lets you know when it's okay to play round by round ("What is your character doing right now?"), and when it's okay to gloss over things ("Okay, so you all made it back to town, and you spend a few weeks recovering from your fight with the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal.").
I mean, I can see what the bard guy is saying about not liking the "feel" of modes, making it too gamey from his point of view. But he even admits that's just a personal taste thing, and not a real design gripe. Myself, I find it very handy from a descriptive and narrative point.
I like the idea of class feats. Basically taking rogue talents, barbarian rage powers, and calling them class feats, and giving every class these types of options, is neat.
But overall, my excitement is in the game being made easier to explain to new players. I've been playing D&D since 1985. I have zero problem keeping different action types, spells, bonus types, or whatever straight. I can do it in my sleep backwards. But not everyone's brain is on that wavelength. So it'll be nice to have a more explainable game.


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bookrat wrote:
John Lynch 106 wrote:
Volkard Abendroth wrote:
we need strictly defined keywords and a separation between RAW and fluff.
Make the rules too jargony and divorce the flavour and the rules too much and you'll end up with a sterile game that feels more like a board game than the Pathfinder we've all come to know and love (well. Assuming people posting here actually enjoy the game. I know not all posters do).

That's certainly true. I hate it when fluff and mechanics are so divorced that the rulebooks feel like legal text devoid of life and meaning and context.

Fluff makes the world come alive, and provides immediate context to the rules at hand.

My absolute favorite rulebooks ever printed were the Planescape books, all written from the perspective of someone living in the actual campaign setting. Absolutely full of flavor and life that the rules felt real and alive.

The fun comes to an end the moment I show up to a table with a character I've spent hours working on, only to have the GM interpret the rules for that character is a way that is very different from my interpretation.

Different enough that my character no longer plays the way I had envisioned it.

Clear and unambiguous wording keeps this from happening.

CrystalSeas wrote:
John Lynch 106 wrote:
If I can't convert my group over there's a good chance they'll stop playing Pathfinder altogether (and perhaps tabletop RPGs altogether). So I'm not sorry if my agenda of ensuring my group can keep enjoying the game we've grown accustomed to is getting on your nerves.
Why wouldn't they just keep playing PF1?

No more AP support comes to mind.


glass wrote:
John Lynch 106 wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:
Oh come on stop with the everything is 4e.
I'll stop pointing out the similarities between D&D 4th ed and Pathfinder 2nd edition when they stop posting mechanics that have strong similarities with those from D&D 4th ed.

Before they could stop, they would have to start...

John Lynch 106 wrote:
They've certainly put a strong veneer of Pathfinder/3.5e onto the structure, but there have been (at least when posted in a summary format) strong similarities between D&D 4th ed and Pathfinder 2nd ed on some of the details that have been released thus far.

Such as?

EDIT: Apologies, I thought I was at the end of the thread, but somehow there were two more pages.

_
glass.

Every single damned mechanic they've posted to date reeks of either 4E or 5E.

If I had even the smallest desire to play either of those games, I would not be here.


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Volkard Abendroth wrote:
No more AP support comes to mind.

Well, by the time Pathfinder 2nd Edition launches, there will have been 22 adventure Paths released for the first edition of the Pathfinder Roleplaying game. It's gonna take a while to play through all of them.

I mean, has anybody here played through all of the 19 completed PFRPG APs to date? I think I'm up to 7, and that feels like a lot of Pathfinder honestly. I feel like the "no more APs for me to play" is more of a theoretical concern than a practical one.


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Dragonborn3 wrote:
Biztak wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:
I hope there is a bit of fluff to the Storm Retribution power to justify why it only procs on crits from an in world perspective. If not I won't bat an eye and merely describe it along the lines of "the power of the tempest that thrives barely contained within you resonates with the powerful blow, expanding and extending beyond you."
The Storm only seeks retribution on your behalf when you have been wronged on a significant enough way.
Having witnessed Critical hits that result in just 2 points of damage 'significant' might be stretching it.

Anything is significant if you're spiteful enough!


Sevrenloreat1 wrote:
Limiting spells to roughly one minute seems reasonable. It's way easier for me to plan for as the GM, and it get's the casters off my back to keep rushing forward when I'm playing, even if we need to investigate or role play after a fight.

Limiting spells to a duration of 1 minutes while also limiting action economy removes buffing as a viable tactic.

A caster buffing has essentially wasted his turn. By the time buffs are in place, combat is over and there is no reason to have buffed. Said buffs then cease to work before the next encounter.

Why would any caster memorize buffs or, for that matter DPR spells, given what we've seen of the proposed spell changes. Casters are going to go balls-to-the-wall on save-or-suck spells for everything except their highest spell level.

Shadow Lodge

Because Haste might grant an Astra action now?


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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Volkard Abendroth wrote:
Every single damned mechanic they've posted to date reeks of either 4E or 5E.

Initiative keying off different skills? Which one is that from?


Volkard Abendroth wrote:
Sevrenloreat1 wrote:
Limiting spells to roughly one minute seems reasonable. It's way easier for me to plan for as the GM, and it get's the casters off my back to keep rushing forward when I'm playing, even if we need to investigate or role play after a fight.

Limiting spells to a duration of 1 minutes while also limiting action economy removes buffing as a viable tactic.

A caster buffing has essentially wasted his turn. By the time buffs are in place, combat is over and there is no reason to have buffed. Said buffs then cease to work before the next encounter.

Why would any caster memorize buffs or, for that matter DPR spells, given what we've seen of the proposed spell changes. Casters are going to go balls-to-the-wall on save-or-suck spells for everything except their highest spell level.

By the time they're in place, combat is over? How does that make any sense at all? If the combat only lasted a single round then the DM shouldn't have bothered running it, and if you can't justify giving up a single round-hell, maybe even just a single action- to buff yourself, it was probably pretty useless to begin with. Have they said anything about limiting you to one spell in a turn? Make buffs cost one action, other damage dealing spells cost 2, and it makes them pretty solid, otherwise your going to be wasting a lot of actions throughout combat.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Sevrenloreat1 wrote:
Have they said anything about limiting you to one spell in a turn?

I think they’ve said most spells take two actions.

In the playtest, it kind of sounded like it was one per component (so a V, S, M spell would take three but a spell with solely verbal components would take one).

If that’s true, hopefully there’s no “special rule” about spells. One gets the feeling the three actions was meant to cover most of that stuff.


Steve Geddes wrote:
Sevrenloreat1 wrote:
Have they said anything about limiting you to one spell in a turn?

I think they’ve said most spells take two actions.

In the playtest, it kind of sounded like it was one per component (so a V, S, M spell would take three but a spell with solely verbal components would take one).

Cool, so it's entirely possible they make several buffs take up a single action (Say, V only), leaving you two entire actions to cast a spell or do what ever else you want.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Sevrenloreat1 wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
Sevrenloreat1 wrote:
Have they said anything about limiting you to one spell in a turn?

I think they’ve said most spells take two actions.

In the playtest, it kind of sounded like it was one per component (so a V, S, M spell would take three but a spell with solely verbal components would take one).

Cool, so it's entirely possible they make several buffs take up a single action (Say, V only), leaving you two entire actions to cast a spell or do what ever else you want.

I haven’t heard that specifically stated, but it seems like an easy way to do it. (It would make it possible to triple buff in one round - perhaps some of the “super buffs” would take two actions? Or buffing one target would be one action and multiple targets would take more?)


Or some buffs might only last one combat but affect the whole party, or some buffs might last a very long time. An hour long buff can last an extended number of combats, but a 2 minute buff might not (unless the next thing to fight is in the very next room). I don't think they will set out to make anything "useless".

If you can think of a way to make buffing good considering the constraints of the 3 action system and how you don't track rounds outside of encounter mode, rest assured Paizo can as well.


Steve Geddes wrote:
Sevrenloreat1 wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
Sevrenloreat1 wrote:
Have they said anything about limiting you to one spell in a turn?

I think they’ve said most spells take two actions.

In the playtest, it kind of sounded like it was one per component (so a V, S, M spell would take three but a spell with solely verbal components would take one).

Cool, so it's entirely possible they make several buffs take up a single action (Say, V only), leaving you two entire actions to cast a spell or do what ever else you want.
I haven’t heard that specifically stated, but it seems like an easy way to do it. (It would make it possible to triple buff in one round - perhaps some of the “super buffs” would take two actions? Or buffing one target would be one action and multiple targets would take more?)

The method they use for the cure spell might work nicely, 1 action buffs you, 2 buffs someone far away, 3 buffs the whole party. Pretty strong for a single spell, but you could probably tweak it a bit to make it work. 3 actions buffing two people would probably be reasonable.

At this point, Paizo has designed one of the largest, most successful game systems to date for over 10 years. I have complete faith that they can make what ever play style they want work, and I seriously doubt they are going to make an entire time-honored spell type useless. If we can't have faith in their ability to do that, we probably shouldn't have faith in their ability to continue breathing.

Edit: erm, that last bit wasn't aimed at you, just at the sheer number of ridiculous people that seem to think a company that so completely despised 4e and all it stood for that they put absolutely everything on the line, has suddenly lost all ability to design a game with varied styles of play.

Liberty's Edge

First, let me say that the fighter preview raised some concerns, but this preview was fantastic. It still refers to class-specific feats, but the new content is very exciting.

Mark Seifter wrote:
MadScientistWorking wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:
Glad to see magic item crafting (sans spell batteries) shift to the role of craftsmen rather than mages.
I mean we don't know that yet because well the last edition you could do that too. It was such a crappy feat.
The Magical Crafter skill feat is the feat to make magic items. It is the feat for spellcasters. It is the feat for fighters.

Will crafting mundane and magic items cost less than buying them?


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I personally never run the adventure paths my games all come from the top of my head. I do read a lot of fantasy I suggest it heavily for the improvement of your dnd/PF games. If I don't like PF2 it will not slow me down. PF1 till something better comes out. that said PF2 is looking awesome.


Please don't call the actions "Stride" and "strike". That will just get confusing. For example, another system I play has "shift" and "swift" actions, and the two get confused *constantly*.


While I find the alliteration of Step, Stride, and Strike to be slightly irksome, I think all the abilities have sufficiently distinct outcomes that "When you stride" and "when you strike" aren't likely to be confused much.

After all, each of the above have the same cost (one action) so you should know whether you're trying to move or hurt something.


Vidmaster7 wrote:
I personally never run the adventure paths my games all come from the top of my head. I do read a lot of fantasy I suggest it heavily for the improvement of your dnd/PF games. If I don't like PF2 it will not slow me down. PF1 till something better comes out. that said PF2 is looking awesome.

J.R.R. Tolkien fantasy, or (GNU) Terry Pratchett fantasy? Because those two are very distinctly different flavors of fantasy.

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