Big Beards and Pointy Ears

Friday, April 6, 2018

You know, after all this time being stuck next to each other in game books, dwarves and elves might be getting pretty sick of each other. Well, too bad for them—they get no respite in the Pathfinder Playtest! Today, we'll be looking ahead to the newest versions of these classic folk by delving into their ancestry entries.

Illustration by Wayne Reynolds

Dwarves

Adventuring is for the stout-hearted. Be stable. Be dependable. Be a dwarf! These fine folk live in isolated citadels, their surface empire having fallen long ago, but from time to time they venture out into the world of adventure.

As a dwarf, you get three ability boosts: one to Constitution, one to Wisdom, and one to the score of your choice. You take an ability flaw to Charisma, though your clan mother says you're quite charming. You get 10 Hit Points from your ancestry—more than the other ancestries and MUCH more than the elves! Your speed is 20 feet, perfectly adequate for adventuring, and you can ignore the speed reduction from your armor. You speak Common and Dwarf, as you may expect, and you can see in the dark just fine.

All that represents what's common to all dwarves, and comes from their innate tendencies. Ancestry feats go farther, reflecting mostly the cultural propensities of the ancestry. For example, you likely grew up among your dwarven kin, training with the weapons of the Weapon Familiarity feat. Battleaxes, picks, warhammers... those are good, dependable weapons. And let's not forget the special weapons with the dwarf trait, like the dwarven waraxe or your beloved clan dagger (forged for you at birth and capped with a gemstone sacred to your clan). Your training might have included the best ways to battle creatures like derros, duergar, giants, or orcs. In that case, you might pick up the Ancestral Hatred feat to give you a bonus on damage against these enemies—a bonus that goes up for 1 minute if one of those wretched creatures critically hits you!

Now, this isn't to say ancestry feats deal exclusively with your upbringing. Heritage feats are a special type of ancestry feat that reflect special physiological traits of your ancestry. Because they're inborn, you can select them only at 1st level. Hardy is one of these, letting you resist poisons and recover from them more quickly. (This kept Ron Lundeen's dwarven barbarian up during a recent playtest—even though he was still pretty sick, he didn't take any damage during all those rounds he spent retching after getting exposed to a poison!)

Because each ancestry entry is your starting point, it also gives you some ideas for how you might build or advance your character. For instance, the dwarf suggests backgrounds suitable for many sorts of dwarves (acolyte, nomad, or warrior) or for those who specifically follow a traditional dwarven way of life (barkeep, blacksmith, farmhand, and merchant).

Elves

An elf can live up to 600 years, an amount of time fit for appreciating the beauty of the natural world, of elegant arts, and of refined magic. Demons may haunt ancient elven lands, but you have plenty of time to plan their demise.

Elves' grace gives them an ability boost to Dexterity, and their years of study give them one to Intelligence. Their third ability boost can represent the other score they developed over the years. Their physical frailty is represented by their ability flaw in Constitution, as well as their low racial hit points of 6. They speak the Common and Elf languages, and are likely to have an Intelligence high enough to select a third language. Elves can see in dim light, and have the highest speed of all the ancestries at 30 feet. (Going to three actions per round brought the other ancestries that were as fast as elves in Pathfinder First Edition down to 25 feet from 30.)

Elves' ancestry feats can help them fight demons, teach them arcane cantrips, or make their hearing better with the Keen Hearing heritage feat. Elves can pick up many things in their long lives, and the Ancestral Longevity feat reflects how some of their life experiences might fade from the forefront of their memory until they focus on them. This feat allows your elf to become trained in a skill of your choice when she prepares for each day. If elves' 30-foot speed isn't enough for you, you can even take the Nimble feat, which increases your speed by 5 feet and lets you ignore a square of difficult terrain during each stride action you take.

Good background options for elves include hunter for those raised in the wild; noble or scholar for more cosmopolitan elves; and acrobat, entertainer, or scout for an elf with a more adventurous bent. Elves make good rangers or rogues, and those who wish to study spells can pursue the path of the wizard.

So which do you think has it better? Elves or dwarves? We'll let you think about that and see you again here on Monday, when we talk about another class elves' Intelligence points toward: the alchemist!

Logan Bonner
Designer

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Tags: Pathfinder Playtest Wayne Reynolds
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Deadmanwalking wrote:
Berselius wrote:
So, wait a sec, do we have to spend some of our "feats" that we get as we level up our characters to get these "racial feats" or do we start off with one or two "racial feats" from the get go?

You start with one at 1st and get another at 5th, 9th, 13th, and 17th (those levels might be off, but probably not).

You get General Feats at 3rd, 7th, 11th, 15th, and 19th (ditto).

You get Skills and Class Features every odd level.

You get a Class Feat and a Skill Feat every even level.

Wait, wait, wait a second, CLASS FEATS? Also only five General Feats? No offense but this is getting complicated and crazy. This is a LOT of change to a system. I'm still reserving my judgement for the final product of course but now I'm getting very concerned.


Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'm so tired of the "toss out half elf and half orc" thing. Humans, at least in pathfinder/golarion CAN'T breed with everything.

Humans are very similar to a "link" in a elf-human-orc ring species(real life phenomenon where species can interbreed viably with related populations, but populations further away from the "beginning" cannot breed with the other tree, in this case, elf and orc)


8 people marked this as a favorite.
Berselius wrote:
Wait, wait, wait a second, CLASS FEATS? Also only five General Feats? No offense but this is getting complicated and crazy. This is a LOT of change to a system. I'm still reserving my judgement for the final product of course but now I'm getting very concerned.

Rogue talents, Discoveries, etc. are now termed "class feats" and every class is modular in this way not just the rogue, alchemist, investigator, magus, oracle, witch, psychic, occultist, etc.

People liked the modular classes the best in PF1, for the most part.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Milo v3 wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:

Isn't the blog clear that you can only take Heritage feats at level 1?

Yes it is. That is irrelevant to what I asked though, since I was saying I don't want to have to take non-heritage feats at all, hoping that you aren't forced to take them after first level.

even if there free>?


jimthegray wrote:
even if there free>?

My hope was that they Weren't free. I want my players to be able to make characters that don't have Golarion fluff without difficulty.


MusicAddict wrote:

I'm so tired of the "toss out half elf and half orc" thing. Humans, at least in pathfinder/golarion CAN'T breed with everything.

Humans are very similar to a "link" in a elf-human-orc ring species(real life phenomenon where species can interbreed viably with related populations, but populations further away from the "beginning" cannot breed with the other tree, in this case, elf and orc)

Unfortunately this is a genre legacy that is probably not going away. Presuming the existing descriptions still apply, it seems simpler to make "mixed ancestral heritage" for celestial, draconic, elemental and fiendish 'things' a plug-n-play item instead of requiring eleventy-million different sets of ancestries.

Oreads et al are 'usually elementally-infused humans'. Aasimar and tieflings are 'usually planar-infused humans'. 'Usually' does not equal 'always', implying that aasimar et al can be of non-human ancestry, heritage and background.

Same principle applies to dwarves, elves and orcs of mixed ancestry. Are they mixed human ancestry ('mules', half-elves and half-orcs respectively) or 'other' (resulting in such fun things as aasidwarves, tieflelves, oreahobbits, ignagnomes and sylorcs)?

It will be interesting to see how these matters are decided upon .. and of course what is either home-brewed, 'officially' developed later or by one or more of the 3rd-party publishers.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

What might be interesting is if elemental and planar traits breed true. So a halfling or gnome (or goblin) may give birth to an aasimar who grows up to be tall and human-looking, a dwarf or elf might give birth to a tiefling that is mostly human-seeming but with that one demonic/devilish trait, Sylphs always appear as pale-skinned human-like folk with shifting blue tattoos, and on down the line.

This would allow other races to have these elemental-touched and planar-touched children as well, but have these children be shaped by their other-aspect heritage to take certain forms instead. And maybe they would retain one trait that is akin to their heritage - like a dwarf Aasimar might have a beard (a luxurious one that drives other folk to envy in the case of a female aasimar of dwarvish heritage), a halfling Tiefling may have a devil's tail but also tough hair-covered feet, the elvish-heritage Sylph with upswept ears, and on down the line.


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So basically to get all the abilities a dwarf used to have at level 1 in 1e you would have take multiple feats over the course of several levels to get...meh.


Milo v3 wrote:
jimthegray wrote:
even if there free>?
My hope was that they Weren't free. I want my players to be able to make characters that don't have Golarion fluff without difficulty.

Maybe just let people take general feats in place of ancestry feats? Seems like it would be a power boost, but it's hard to tell now.


10 people marked this as a favorite.
PossibleCabbage wrote:
TheFinish wrote:
You're a Dwarf, ergo, you may, at any moment of your life, irrespective of the situation, decide to be better at fighting Derros/Orcs/What have you. Simply because you're a Dwarf.

I would ask a player who took that feat to explain what part of their upbringing, training justifies it. Like you can just say "the training I received as a youth has come into sharp relief with the benefit of experience" and that would be fine. One would take that feat to reflect what their dwarf learned in their formative years, presumably.

Like, take the feats that define your character in the way you want them to, not the ones that don't. If you want a Dwarf that has never seen an Orc before, don't take that feat.

But in terms of "why did you get this bonus at 9th level and not sooner" it's just the classic "flashback training montage" trope in action movies, if you like.

"As Daerun stirred the pot over the small fire that evening, while Tiriel tended to the still broken shield arm of her brother Turiel, his thoughts kept going back to the vicious battle only a couple of hours before.

They had been totally unprepared when the blue-skinned giant came sliding down the snow covered mountain slope.
Suddenly the old tales uncle Rustbeard had told him and the other children to both delight and scare them made perfect sense.
The stories of how ancient battles against the giants had been fought, his funny way of doing a dive across the floor every time he mentioned the mighty swings of the giants' weapons. The dive only made funnier to look at due to Rustbeard's stiff leg.
The stories seemed to take on a new life, Rustbeard's voice repeating key phrases from the stories, as if he was sitting right next to Daerun again."

The Exchange

Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Berselius wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
Berselius wrote:
So, wait a sec, do we have to spend some of our "feats" that we get as we level up our characters to get these "racial feats" or do we start off with one or two "racial feats" from the get go?

You start with one at 1st and get another at 5th, 9th, 13th, and 17th (those levels might be off, but probably not).

You get General Feats at 3rd, 7th, 11th, 15th, and 19th (ditto).

You get Skills and Class Features every odd level.

You get a Class Feat and a Skill Feat every even level.

Wait, wait, wait a second, CLASS FEATS? Also only five General Feats? No offense but this is getting complicated and crazy. This is a LOT of change to a system. I'm still reserving my judgement for the final product of course but now I'm getting very concerned.

I suspect the name "feat" may get pared back to a more traditional meaning as I too find the decision to use feat for ALL of these to be more confusing and less intuitive, not the opposite as was clearly intended.

The Exchange

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
The Mad Comrade wrote:
MusicAddict wrote:

I'm so tired of the "toss out half elf and half orc" thing. Humans, at least in pathfinder/golarion CAN'T breed with everything.

Humans are very similar to a "link" in a elf-human-orc ring species(real life phenomenon where species can interbreed viably with related populations, but populations further away from the "beginning" cannot breed with the other tree, in this case, elf and orc)

Unfortunately this is a genre legacy that is probably not going away. Presuming the existing descriptions still apply, it seems simpler to make "mixed ancestral heritage" for celestial, draconic, elemental and fiendish 'things' a plug-n-play item instead of requiring eleventy-million different sets of ancestries.

Oreads et al are 'usually elementally-infused humans'. Aasimar and tieflings are 'usually planar-infused humans'. 'Usually' does not equal 'always', implying that aasimar et al can be of non-human ancestry, heritage and background.

Same principle applies to dwarves, elves and orcs of mixed ancestry. Are they mixed human ancestry ('mules', half-elves and half-orcs respectively) or 'other' (resulting in such fun things as aasidwarves, tieflelves, oreahobbits, ignagnomes and sylorcs)?

It will be interesting to see how these matters are decided upon .. and of course what is either home-brewed, 'officially' developed later or by one or more of the 3rd-party publishers.

Try to imagine how completely convoluted a basic plug n play mixed ancestry Ancestry would be once it was actually down on the page.

It's not fixing anything; you would still have eleventy million different sets of ancestries they would just all be confusingly tossed together into one completely unintuitive block instead of the easier to understand blocks they currently exist in.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Dragon78 wrote:
So basically to get all the abilities a dwarf used to have at level 1 in 1e you would have take multiple feats over the course of several levels to get...meh.

To be fair, dwarves were more powerful than basically every other race and had too many abilities compared to the others. Or the other races didn't have enough and should have been brought up to dwarf standards, take your pick. So it makes sense for it to be broken up a bit.

However, only one or two abilities at 1st level and only one ancestry feat is way, way too little to establish the feel of a race. These definitely need to get fleshed out more, and you need to be able to pick at least two and preferably three ancestry feats at 1st level.


eddv wrote:
I suspect the name "feat" may get pared back to a more traditional meaning as I too find the decision to use feat for ALL of these to be more confusing and less intuitive, not the opposite as was clearly intended.

I feel like the issue is that we don't have the full 20 level advancement table yet. Once you do it's just a matter of looking up what you gain at a level and consulting the appropriate lists.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

You do realize that Ancestry Feats might grow more powerful as the character levels. For instance, Keen Hearing might give an initial +1 bonus, and every 5 levels increase that by an additional +1. Demon Hatred might start with a +1 to hit and the ability to ignore 5 points of a demon's damage resistance and then at level 10 it increases to +2 and 10 points of damage resistance.

There is precedent for this with how they're treating Power Attack, after all.

The Exchange

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Fuzzypaws wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
So basically to get all the abilities a dwarf used to have at level 1 in 1e you would have take multiple feats over the course of several levels to get...meh.

To be fair, dwarves were more powerful than basically every other race and had too many abilities compared to the others. Or the other races didn't have enough and should have been brought up to dwarf standards, take your pick. So it makes sense for it to be broken up a bit.

However, only one or two abilities at 1st level and only one ancestry feat is way, way too little to establish the feel of a race. These definitely need to get fleshed out more, and you need to be able to pick at least two and preferably three ancestry feats at 1st level.

The thing that made them so much more powerful was the combination of abilities together.

Now they get a slower move speed, better HPs, and while Hardy is SUPER GREA, it does feel like their dwarfiness gets lost just a bit.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
eddv wrote:
The Mad Comrade wrote:
MusicAddict wrote:

I'm so tired of the "toss out half elf and half orc" thing. Humans, at least in pathfinder/golarion CAN'T breed with everything.

Humans are very similar to a "link" in a elf-human-orc ring species(real life phenomenon where species can interbreed viably with related populations, but populations further away from the "beginning" cannot breed with the other tree, in this case, elf and orc)

Unfortunately this is a genre legacy that is probably not going away. Presuming the existing descriptions still apply, it seems simpler to make "mixed ancestral heritage" for celestial, draconic, elemental and fiendish 'things' a plug-n-play item instead of requiring eleventy-million different sets of ancestries.

Oreads et al are 'usually elementally-infused humans'. Aasimar and tieflings are 'usually planar-infused humans'. 'Usually' does not equal 'always', implying that aasimar et al can be of non-human ancestry, heritage and background.

Same principle applies to dwarves, elves and orcs of mixed ancestry. Are they mixed human ancestry ('mules', half-elves and half-orcs respectively) or 'other' (resulting in such fun things as aasidwarves, tieflelves, oreahobbits, ignagnomes and sylorcs)?

It will be interesting to see how these matters are decided upon .. and of course what is either home-brewed, 'officially' developed later or by one or more of the 3rd-party publishers.

Try to imagine how completely convoluted a basic plug n play mixed ancestry Ancestry would be once it was actually down on the page.

It's not fixing anything; you would still have eleventy million different sets of ancestries they would just all be confusingly tossed together into one completely unintuitive block instead of the easier to understand blocks they currently exist in.

No more convoluted than it is already. What we are presently accustomed to is going to change into something we will have to adapt to and learn. To a new player, the whole kit and kaboodle is a hot mess.

I'd rather have all of the mixed ancestries in one spot rather than individually reprinted for each and every combination possible, ancestry by ancestry by ancestry ...

The Exchange

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Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I don't understand how you think that having Tiefling/Aasimar/Oread/Sylph/Undine/Half-Orc/Half-Elf/Half-Tengu-Grippli all labeled as the same race is LESS confusing, but I guess I will take your word for it.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Berselius wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
Berselius wrote:
So, wait a sec, do we have to spend some of our "feats" that we get as we level up our characters to get these "racial feats" or do we start off with one or two "racial feats" from the get go?

You start with one at 1st and get another at 5th, 9th, 13th, and 17th (those levels might be off, but probably not).

You get General Feats at 3rd, 7th, 11th, 15th, and 19th (ditto).

You get Skills and Class Features every odd level.

You get a Class Feat and a Skill Feat every even level.

Wait, wait, wait a second, CLASS FEATS? Also only five General Feats? No offense but this is getting complicated and crazy. This is a LOT of change to a system. I'm still reserving my judgement for the final product of course but now I'm getting very concerned.

I feel like you must not have been following the previous blogs very closely. Go back and give them a closer read; I think you might find it all makes sense and fits together rather nicely!


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Huh, can someone tell me where it's been said that we get one Ancestry feat every 4 levels?

They weren't in the Level Up Blog, were they?


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Since we don't have the full rules yet I think people are jumping to lots of conclusions based on ... very little actual information.
We've only been given snippets, yet some people seem to think that this is almost the entirety of the ancestries.
There are two scenarios that I can easily see being more likely than the "What? We only have to pick one of the things we got in PF1!".
The first is that each character will actually get enough starting ancestry feats to pick the same number of racial abilities that the races had in PF1 (maybe less, as some of them might have been merged or taken out completely). In additon to that the number of actual feats they can pick from is now larger. Think the "old" racial abilities + the alternative ones that became available later on (it might not be those, but for a point of comparison think of those). Thus you could pick and chose the ones you wanted, just like in PF1. Although we've already seen that they have other alternatives.
The second one is, as has already been mentioned, that the ones you can pick (if you can only pick one or two from character creation) are beefed up versions. Like a bonus that keeps going up and so on.
The ones they've mentioned all seem like they're 1st level choices, so we haven't seen what any of the later ancestry feats might look like.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

And if people are hung up on "half-races" being called that (even though half-elves and half-orcs have a very long literary tradition), there's always the option of changing them to "dual-blooded" (since they seem to take the best characteristics from both parents).


2 people marked this as a favorite.
TheFinish wrote:

Huh, can someone tell me where it's been said that we get one Ancestry feat every 4 levels?

They weren't in the Level Up Blog, were they?

I suspect they are being coy about how many ancestral vs. general feats you get because it's still up in the air, and can easily change any time before the book is sent to the printers (and is liable to change again after the playtest.) Like if it takes 12 levels to get "good at rocks" and "poison resistance" and "can swing a warhammer" and those abilities aren't much more satisfying than the level 1 abilities Dwarves got in PF1, I think that's something a lot of people would want to change.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
PossibleCabbage wrote:
TheFinish wrote:

Huh, can someone tell me where it's been said that we get one Ancestry feat every 4 levels?

They weren't in the Level Up Blog, were they?

I suspect they are being coy about how many ancestral vs. general feats you get because it's still up in the air, and can easily change any time before the book is sent to the printers (and is liable to change again after the playtest.) Like if it takes 12 levels to get "good at rocks" and "poison resistance" and "can swing a warhammer" and those abilities aren't much more satisfying than the level 1 abilities Dwarves got in PF1, I think that's something a lot of people would want to change.

Well, obviously. I've been vocal about that, but I thought maybe if the number of feats you got was high it would still work out.

But if it's 4 or 5.....well that's just bad. And not just from the fact that it drives playing your PF1 race into the ground, but also, it will again just lead to optimal builds immediately. Not that I expect there to not be optimal builds, but the less feats you have, the more heated competition becomes, the quicker the obviously good options rise to the top.


eddv wrote:
I don't understand how you think that having Tiefling/Aasimar/Oread/Sylph/Undine/Half-Orc/Half-Elf/Half-Tengu-Grippli all labeled as the same race is LESS confusing, but I guess I will take your word for it.

Not the same race, instead as optional ancestries for the normal races, with some races unable to select them for [reasons].

An angelic ancestry dwarf is as much an aasimar as a agathial ancestry human.

Differentiate between the various optional ancestries once, then apply as selected to dwarves, elves, gnomes, hobbits, kobolds, lizardfolk ad nauseam.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
TheFinish wrote:
But if it's 4 or 5.....well that's just bad. And not just from the fact that it drives playing your PF1 race into the ground, but also, it will again just lead to optimal builds immediately. Not that I expect there to not be optimal builds, but the less feats you have, the more heated competition becomes, the quicker the obviously good options rise to the top.

I guess the question is whether Ancestry feats are strong enough that limiting them to 4-5 is reasonable. Like if Hardy is just "+2" like it was in PF1, then that's not great but if its "1+Floor(Level/5)" with the bonus applying to more and more things it might be a different matter.

One thing they have signaled is that they want to do more feats that auto-improve, rather than having long feat chains.

But I suspect the thing about "some things are just optimal" is unavoidable. Since you won't take "good vs. demons" unless you know you're gonna fight a whole lot of demons, in which case you always take it.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

It sounds like Hardy isn't a boost to saves, but rather something like immunity to damage from poison.

Grand Lodge

3 people marked this as a favorite.
eddv wrote:
Fuzzypaws wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
So basically to get all the abilities a dwarf used to have at level 1 in 1e you would have take multiple feats over the course of several levels to get...meh.

To be fair, dwarves were more powerful than basically every other race and had too many abilities compared to the others. Or the other races didn't have enough and should have been brought up to dwarf standards, take your pick. So it makes sense for it to be broken up a bit.

However, only one or two abilities at 1st level and only one ancestry feat is way, way too little to establish the feel of a race. These definitely need to get fleshed out more, and you need to be able to pick at least two and preferably three ancestry feats at 1st level.

The thing that made them so much more powerful was the combination of abilities together.

Now they get a slower move speed, better HPs, and while Hardy is SUPER GREA, it does feel like their dwarfiness gets lost just a bit.

Dwarves are my favorite race but even with my fanboy eyes i'm surprised everyone finds them the most powerful 1ed race. They are fairly uncommon at the table and if you look at most of the guides Human and Half-Orc are nearly always the "blue" favored race.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Gorignak227 wrote:
eddv wrote:
Fuzzypaws wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
So basically to get all the abilities a dwarf used to have at level 1 in 1e you would have take multiple feats over the course of several levels to get...meh.

To be fair, dwarves were more powerful than basically every other race and had too many abilities compared to the others. Or the other races didn't have enough and should have been brought up to dwarf standards, take your pick. So it makes sense for it to be broken up a bit.

However, only one or two abilities at 1st level and only one ancestry feat is way, way too little to establish the feel of a race. These definitely need to get fleshed out more, and you need to be able to pick at least two and preferably three ancestry feats at 1st level.

The thing that made them so much more powerful was the combination of abilities together.

Now they get a slower move speed, better HPs, and while Hardy is SUPER GREA, it does feel like their dwarfiness gets lost just a bit.

Dwarves are my favorite race but even with my fanboy eyes i'm surprised everyone finds them the most powerful 1ed race. They are fairly uncommon at the table and if you look at most of the guides Human and Half-Orc are nearly always the "blue" favored race.

Agreed due to Humans getting a free feat and Half Orcs can get the Sacred Tattoo.

What does Dwarf have to compete vs that?


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Plus, "having the correct stat bonuses" was super important in PF1, and there weren't a ton of classes for which Con and Wis were at the top of their list- always useful stats, but there might have been some weird aasimar with *perfect* stats.

With the floating stat bonus, Dwarf Fighters are now likely excellent, as it should be.


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So, basically, race is just stat bonuses, yet even more HP bloat (on top of max HP per level on top of 3rd's general bloat of dice + con bonus at every level), languages, vision types and speed, and everything else has been hacked apart into tiny little feats?

This does not sound particularly delightful.

The Exchange

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Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
PossibleCabbage wrote:

Plus, "having the correct stat bonuses" was super important in PF1, and there weren't a ton of classes for which Con and Wis were at the top of their list- always useful stats, but there might have been some weird aasimar with *perfect* stats.

With the floating stat bonus, Dwarf Fighters are now likely excellent, as it should be.

Well Aasimar's were full scale BUSTED.

A 3rd level spell SLA, no negative stats, ENERGY RESISTANCE, even with nothing else thats so much more than any race normally gets.

But the thing that super busted them was that there were all those alternate ancestries that just turned them into the omni-race.

Tieflings weren't MUCH better but they were a LITTLE better because they still got a drawback and their SLA was weaker.


QuidEst wrote:
It sounds like Hardy isn't a boost to saves, but rather something like immunity to damage from poison.

In Starfinder, which is the basis for the new poison and disease system, some poisons inflict damage every time you have to roll a saving throw. So maybe Hardy prevents that automatic damage, without necessarily making you immune outright. It could also potentially make it so you have to fail an additional save before you move down to a worse step on the poison's track.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Personally, I think the half-orc and half-elf should keep their own entries rather than being replaced with a generic 'half-blood' mechanic.

My main reason for it is something Golarion material has been hinting at and that is more prevalent in Starfinder: half-elves or half-orcs forming communities and developing their own culture as something different from either of their parent species.

I understand the point of view of people who want to keep setting-neutral but even in this case, the option to have those 'true half-elves' or 'true half-orcs' is something they can use (or not) in another setting than Golarion

More generally, I'm a big fan of the toolbox approach, probably because of the time I spent playing point-buy games à la GURPS some years ago. I think that the approach chosen keeps things codified enough for each ancestry to keep some fundamentals while opening up the rest to customization. It's also a good occasion to rebalance things. as eddv pointed out, some of the PF1 races sorely need it.


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So, with this I'd need at least 4 ancestry feats just to play a standard P1E dwarf (hatred, weapon familiarity, poison resist, magic resist). Also no mention if stonecunning is a free basic ancestry trait or if that's a 5th feat needed.
5 feats to gain all the stuff dwarves used to get for free sounds like a load of hot garbage to me. Ancestry feats should provide cool alternate options, not the bare-bones basics of the race.

Hopefully, this changes between now and when the actual 2.0 books drop next year. If not, looks like my group will just stick to 1.0.


Childeric, The Shatterer wrote:

So, with this I'd need at least 4 ancestry feats just to play a standard P1E dwarf (hatred, weapon familiarity, poison resist, magic resist). Also no mention if stonecunning is a free basic ancestry trait or if that's a 5th feat needed.

5 feats to gain all the stuff dwarves used to get for free sounds like a load of hot garbage to me. Ancestry feats should provide cool alternate options, not the bare-bones basics of the race.

Hopefully, this changes between now and when the actual 2.0 books drop next year. If not, looks like my group will just stick to 1.0.

We'll see what we actually get when we see the full writeup in the document this August. If the races are still gimped at that time, my group will definitely be commenting to that effect in the playtest surveys.


Fuzzypaws wrote:

Huh... so it does sound like the cultural aspects are just being folded into ancestry feats for each race, rather than a separate background. Does this mean I can't have a human raised in a dwarven city with dwarven cultural traits like weapon familiarity after all? If that is still not going to be possible, I'm actually going to be quite disappointed, because that was one of the things I was hoping for most from this new edition.

..

My thoughts exactly. Will there be rules to have human raised in dwarf communities. Being human they would still get 25 feet move but no darkvision.

They might still have the clan dagger and the derro fighting training.

P. S. Hope this wasn't answered in the 260 post I just skipped


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I am perfectly happy with combat techniques and weapon familiarity being things that are developed with time instead of something that everybody of a particular race gets automatically.

Heritage feats sound like a good way to play different kinds of a particular ancestry, but dwarfs should have a standard resistance to poison and magic from day one.

"Hardy" might be an improved version of their normal toughness, which would be fine, but they need to have something more than just a Con/Wis boost.

Likewise, elves need to start out with at least a small bonus to their keen senses.

I appreciate that biology and culture are being decoupled from race into a general Ancestry category, but if things that really NEED to be inherent traits are being shaved away for later development, maybe one of the things that should get retooled is bringing all the ancestries up to the same standard instead of grinding some of them down.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
PossibleCabbage wrote:

Plus, "having the correct stat bonuses" was super important in PF1, and there weren't a ton of classes for which Con and Wis were at the top of their list- always useful stats, but there might have been some weird aasimar with *perfect* stats.

With the floating stat bonus, Dwarf Fighters are now likely excellent, as it should be.

eddv wrote:

Well Aasimar's were full scale BUSTED.

A 3rd level spell SLA, no negative stats, ENERGY RESISTANCE, even with nothing else thats so much more than any race normally gets.

But the thing that super busted them was that there were all those alternate ancestries that just turned them into the omni-race.

Tieflings weren't MUCH better but they were a LITTLE better because they still got a drawback and their SLA was weaker.

This.

I really hope that Paizo takes the opportunity with PF2 to re-balance aasimar. For some unknown reason aasimar lost their Constitution penalty when they made the transition between 2e and 3e. "Translated" properly, they should have had a -4 penalty to Constitution.

I am not suggesting giving them a -4 penalty now, but at least give them a -2 penalty to Constitution, please!


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Cutting up the various racial features into more modular blocks sounds interesting.

I am not a fan of completely pre-set hit points for all levels. I am fine with that for 1st level though. (At my table for levels 2+, we roll the hit point dice twice and take the highest value, re-rolling any "1s", and even then if the rolls are still lousy we get half the maximum value of the die.)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

It's always good to get more info on our options for the playtest. I'm cautiously optimistic, and plan to try running a campaign using the new ruleset come August.

One thing I've seen mentioned several times but rarely if never commented on is the notion of "backgrounds".

Paizo blog wrote:
For instance, the dwarf suggests backgrounds suitable for many sorts of dwarves (acolyte, nomad, or warrior) or for those who specifically follow a traditional dwarven way of life (barkeep, blacksmith, farmhand, and merchant).

and

Paizo blog wrote:
Good background options for elves include hunter for those raised in the wild; noble or scholar for more cosmopolitan elves; and acrobat, entertainer, or scout for an elf with a more adventurous bent.

Have I missed something? Do we know what "backgrounds" will entail? Will they include some minor bonus or specialisation like the current trait system? It seems like an interesting design space to add some depth to off-the-shelf character concepts. And it could help inform what our characters have been doing with themselves prior to a career as an adventurer.

Perhaps this is a way to get a package of starting skills.


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Maybe it's just me, but nothing about this preview was very unexpected or new.
"Our new game will keep the exact same traditions/mechanical considerations you're used to, just applied differently!"

Uh... great?

Consider me bored of Racial previews until we get to Humans - THEY'RE the ones that need work (and we'll see if PF2 is up to the challenge that no other gaming system can tackle; making humans interesting!)


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Neo2151 wrote:
Consider me bored of Racial previews until we get to Humans - THEY'RE the ones that need work (and we'll see if PF2 is up to the challenge that no other gaming system can tackle; making humans interesting!)

Yes, we definitely need to see how some of the non-racially defined ancestries are going to work.

Although this also begs a question that has annoyed me for years: why are humans so different when they are from different regions, from Varisians, to Ulfens, to Vudrani and more, when dwarves (say) from all over are so shockingly homogeneous?

Wouldn't it make more sense to have one entry for each major enclave of dwarves that has some cultural specificity? Or at the very least, a sidebar mentioning which choices to make to best represent a dwarf from Kalsgard, from the Five Kings Mountains, from Osirion or from Janderhoff.

And of course, these remarks hold true for other standard races of Golarion. All elves are not the same, depending on their regional and cultural origins.

If our pals at Paizo are really serious about distancing themselves from the race-oriented structure of most RPGs, they need to go further than simply substituting the word "ancestry" for "race".


Renegade Paladin wrote:

DWAAAAAARVES, to hell with elves!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HNrLMob39qI

=D

hee hee .... fun

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32

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Leedwashere wrote:
ryric wrote:

It's going to take me a long time to switch over to ancestry instead of race. 34 years of habit doesn't change quickly.

So elves can get a floating Trained skill? That they can change every day? That's super flighty. "Hey elf, can you pick this lock?" "*Sigh* No, picking locks is so yesterday. Today is about playing the flute."

I suppose the big question is what the blog really means when it says "prepares for each day." That could mean "in the morning" or it could be more flexible on the timing, like preparing arcane spells. It would be really cool and most useful if you could hold onto that floating proficiency until you want it. It would be a bit more niche if you have to pick when you wake up, in which case you're probably not going to use it for something that it's important to not be without.

I think a "floating" proficiency that activated when you need it would better represent odd bits of knowledge from a long life, so maybe it does work that way. "I don't know how to pick most locks, but I watched a guy pick one very similar to this eighty years ago and I think I remember the trick."


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CraziFuzzy wrote:
Based on how 'generic' half-elves in pf1 are, I can't see how simply choosing human with the elf-blooded feat, or vice versa, in pf2 would turn people away. The same could be said for half-orcs (choosing orc with the human-blooded, or vice versa). What this DOES do is allow DWORCS and DWELFS, right out of the core, which I have seen homebrewed so many times that it's odd that the devs didn't look in that direction.

Though on some rational level see your point regarding how "half-races" could be expressed through one or more parent species via ancestry feats, I still would like to keep half-elves around as its own ancestry due to my own selfish desire to potentially use PF2 for a Eberron campaign. In Eberron, the Khoravar ("half-elves") are mostly children of other Khoravar, and they have their own culture, traditions, and several dragonmarked houses.


So will half-elfs get to choose from both human and elf ancestry? makes sense to me. Hmm maybe their should be a feat for half-this or half-that so you can choose to choose from 2 different ancestry. Get down with your dwelfs and gnorcs.


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I hope races like aasimar, tiefling, genie-kin, dhampir, etc. will not be done through ancestry feats. I don't want to have to wait several levels just to play the race I want. Let alone all that extra investment in the ancestry feats so you can't add anything fun to the race you would want to play.


Blog wrote:


This feat allows your elf to become trained in a skill of your choice when she prepares for each day.

I think the "floating" proficiency is a great idea and hope for an ancestry feat for a second one, or even a "floating" skill feat to go along with it (like the brawler's floating combat feat).


Dragon78 wrote:
I hope races like aasimar, tiefling, genie-kin, dhampir, etc. will not be done through ancestry feats. I don't want to have to wait several levels just to play the race I want. Let alone all that extra investment in the ancestry feats so you can't add anything fun to the race you would want to play.

That would be a down side true but their would also be the upside that you can have potentially abilities that are more useful or powerful at higher levels. Like right now You wouldn't think a genie kin could get something nowhere near wish but with the new ancestry stuff maybe a high level feat that lets you do something close to a wish is possible.

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