Gearing Up!

Friday, May 4, 2018

In Monday's blog, we talked about weapons and all the plentiful options you have when you're picking those. So let's stay in the Equipment chapter for the Pathfinder Playtest Rulebook and take a look at armor, other gear, and everything else having to do with items!

Don Your Armor!

Armor's job is to protect you from your enemies' attacks. Your character can have proficiency in light armor, medium armor, or heavy armor (or, in some cases, none of the above). Most classes are only trained in their armor at first, though some martial classes gain better proficiency at higher levels. In Pathfinder First Edition, many types of armor were effectively obsolete because you could just buy a better type, but for Pathfinder Second Edition, we've made a few new adjustments to make each type a little different.

A suit of armor has many of the same statistics as in Pathfinder First Edition, but now each one also gives a bonus to your TAC (Touch Armor Class). For instance, studded leather gives a +2 item bonus to AC and +0 to TAC, whereas a chain shirt gives a +2 item bonus to AC and +1 to TAC, but it is heavier and noisier. That last bit comes from the noisy trait, one of a small number of traits some armors have to reflect their construction and effect on the wearer. Armor also has a Dexterity modifier cap (which limits how much of your Dexterity modifier can apply to your AC); a check penalty that applies to most of your Strength-, Dexterity-, and Constitution-based skill checks; a penalty to your Speed; and a Bulk value. You'll balance these variables to pick the armor that's best for you.

As you adventure, you'll find or craft magic armor. Weapons and suits of armor alike can be enhanced with magical potency runes. For weapons, a potency rune gives an item bonus on attack rolls and increases the number of damage dice you roll on attacks with the weapon. For armor, the potency rune increases the armor's item bonuses to your AC and TAC and gives you a bonus to your saving throws! For instance, studded leather with a +3 armor potency rune (a.k.a. +3 studded leather) would give you +5 AC, +3 TAC, and +3 to your saves. You can also upgrade the potency later, etching a +4 armor potency rune onto that armor to increase its bonus. You can even upgrade the potency of specific armor (and weapons) so you can hold on to your celestial armor at higher levels. If you don't wear armor, not to worry! Your bracers of armor give you a bonus to AC, TAC, and your saves without requiring you to clad yourself in a clunky metal box. They might not protect you quite as well, but maybe that trade-off is worth it to your wizard or monk!

Illustrations by Wayne Reynolds

Shield Yourself!

You've probably seen mention of shields in previous blogs, announcements, and broadcast play sessions. To gain the benefits of a shield, you have to spend an action to raise it, which then gives you a bonus to AC and TAC (+1 for a light shield or +2 for a heavy shield) for 1 round. Your character has proficiency in shields just like she does with armor, and when using a shield, you use the lower proficiency rank of your armor or shield to calculate your Armor Class.

Shields don't have potency runes. Instead, you might pick up a shield made of a durable material like adamantine or craft a magic shield that catches arrows, reflects a spell back at its caster, or bites your enemies!

Fill Your Backpack!

The Equipment chapter also includes all sorts of other gear you might want on adventures, from rope to tents to musical instruments to religious symbols. Many of these items are required to perform certain tasks, like thieves' tools. The new system of item quality makes it pretty straightforward to figure out how tools work. For example, you need thieves' tools to pick a lock or disable many traps. Normal thieves' tools let you do this normally, expert-quality tools give you a +1 item bonus on your check, and master-quality tools give you a +2 item bonus on your check. Now what if you get stuck without your tools and need to improvise? Well, if you can scrabble something together, you've created a poor-quality set of tools, which gives you a -2 item penalty (much like the penalty for having an proficiency rank of untrained in a task). The same thing might happen if you had to turn vines into improvised rope or use an empty chest as a drum for an improvised musical instrument!

Take a Load Off!

Not everything you can purchase is adventuring gear. Cinco de Cuatro wouldn't be complete without some luxuries like a bottle of fine wine or renting an extravagant suite! You might even rent an animal to ride about town. Of course, an extravagant lifestyle can have a high cost, and the chapter includes costs of living per week, month, or year so you can accurately budget your lifestyle decisions.

Switch It Up!

One of the squidgy parts of Pathfinder First Edition we wanted to clear up with the redesign is how holding, wielding, and stowing items work, particularly switching how many hands you're using for an item. Now, drawing an item from a pouch, changing your grip from one-handed to two-handed, or detaching a shield from your arm all require the Interact action. We've codified the rules for many of the basic things you do with items so the other rules interface with them cleanly. That [[A]] code you see there indicates this is an action, and will be a lovely icon in the final rulebook!

[[A]] Interact

Manipulate

You use your hand or hands to manipulate an object or the terrain. You grab an unattended or stored object, open a door, or do some similar action. You may have to attempt a skill check to determine if your Interact action was successful.

The equipment chapter also covers the full rules on item quality and on Bulk, plus a section on how items and Bulk work for creatures of different sizes.

Now you have a basic rundown of the gear in this book. We'll dive deep into magic items at a later date. Looking at what you see here, what sort of useful, peculiar, or silly things do you think your character will spend their silver pieces on?

Logan Bonner
Designer

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Tags: Pathfinder Playtest Wayne Reynolds
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Pathfinder Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Regarding armor class, we now know that magic armor doesn't do anything funky like using DR. The only cool thing about magic armor is that it automatically adds to your touch AC, and it gives you a cloak of protection saving throw bonus to all your saves. Why it would help you with fortitude or will saves, I don't know, but hey, it's magic!

All things considered, magic armor is less mind-blowing than magic weapons, which give you extra dice of damage.

Also, it's looking more and more like your level will *not* add directly to your AC, just your proficiency bonus (-2 to +3 being the range).

We also don't know if armor will still have a spell failure percentage, or if there will be some new funky mechanic for that.


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Pathfinder Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Rysky wrote:
Quote:
Your character has proficiency in shields just like she does with armor, and when using a shield, you use the lower proficiency rank of your armor or shield to calculate your Armor Class.
Would someone be kind enough to expand on this? It doesn’t really sound pleasant atm :3

Looks pretty simple. You don't get to add your proficiency bonus in twice. Just the lesser of your armor and shield proficiency levels - if you are using a shield, that is.

I'd prefer to see you get the better of the two, otherwise the raise shield action could be a sub-optimal action (although you would still benefit from a chunk of DR to one attack).

Liberty's Edge

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I like it. You definitely need magic armor (or bracers) and a magic weapon in the new system, but two required items is doable without all your money and investment going into keeping them upgraded. I'm fine with it.

Constitution based skills also interest me as well.

Joe M. wrote:
I wonder how these two item bonuses (weapon quality + potency rune) interact.

They've made it very clear that bonuses of the same type will never stack in PF2. So those bonuses don't stack.

Fuzzypaws wrote:
I'm still curious how high the AC bonuses go, and how they'll balance that against attack bonus. Because +8 from full plate, if it scales with level, would make it almost impossible to hit the wearer at any level. Yet if it doesn't scale, eventually AC will be completely outstripped by attack bonus... Need more info.

Eh. Studded Leather gives a +2 and probably allows at least 18 Dex. That's AC 17 at 1st level. If Full Plate adds +8 but doesn't allow Dex bonus that's only two AC more, and if it adds +6 the AC winds up identical. If it gives a +7 and allows only +1 Dex mod but is Noisy with large armor check penalties, then it gives a single point of AC (or two with some Dex investment) but with some real trade offs.

This is pretty easily handled really.

Cyrad wrote:
Sad to see that there will be no upgrades for shields.

There are upgrades, but they don't give a raw enhanced AC bonus.


Interesting i guess. The kind of blog i cant judge really without numbers and the rest of the system to compare things.

The concept of more customizable armor is nice, but if they are really so different we wont all just pick the one who gives the highest bonus of the category only time will tell.

Im also wondering which skill is now based on CON.


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I'd love to know more about armor traits. We read that there's one called noisy, but I'm curious if there are some that are more interesting, something positive that makes you choose a specific type of armor.

Silver Crusade

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Rysky wrote:
Quote:
Your character has proficiency in shields just like she does with armor, and when using a shield, you use the lower proficiency rank of your armor or shield to calculate your Armor Class.
Would someone be kind enough to expand on this? It doesn’t really sound pleasant atm :3

Warren the Warrior is a generic martial character with: Dex 14; Chain Shirt (+4 to AC); and a Shield (+2 to AC). He has Expert Armor Proficiency (+1) but only Trained Shield Proficiency (+0).

Normally, Warren has a 17 AC (= 10 + 4 Armor + 1 Armor Proficiency + 2 Dex).

But when Warren uses an action to raise his shield, he has an 18 AC (= 10 + 4 Armor + 2 Shield + 0 Proficiency + 2 Dex).

(Note: unclear to me whether the proficiency change kicks in when you use the action with the shield, or just when you wear one. If it's whenever you're wearing a shield, Warren will have 16 AC that bumps up to 18 when he activates his shield.)


And the TAC bonus from armor is interesting... I hope that spellcasters get proficiency with touch attacks at least.


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There seems to be a lot of balancing of mechanics based around requiring extra actions. While this may be necessary to avoid obviously better scenarios, part of the core of games like DnD and Pathfinder is that a player should be allowed to have their character attempt anything that makes sense, as though they were people in a real world.

I think this was the biggest failing of 4e. I have heard numerous complaints about 4e that all revolved around, "I wasn't allowed to do X because the rules said no, even though it would be totally feasible for my character".

Stuff like raising a shield costing an action, grasping a weapon with your free off hand, and verbal casting components costing a separate action to somatic components (I mean, really, just say the spell takes 2 actions worth of casting time) is ultimately going to lead to instances where real life people are more capable than their heroic characters in trivial ways.

I recommend that Paizo finds another way to balance mechanics, specifically a way that maintains verisimilitude.

Paizo Employee Designer

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PossibleCabbage wrote:
So how does proficiency interact with armor exactly? Do we add the same proficiency bonus from being a master of medium armor to our AC that we would to our skill checks if we're a master of that skill?

Yep. All proficiencies follow the same system. You'd also get the item bonus from your armor, which you probably aren't getting a corresponding bonus to your skill checks at low levels.


Ahh going back to D&D and AD&D for save rules, Looks very interesting for many things. I am looking forward to the new book

Paizo Employee Designer

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Woodenman wrote:
Tarik Blackhands wrote:

Real hidden takeaway from the blog: Constitution based skill checks.

That said, color me unimpressed so far with the fact that cloaks of resistance and rings of protection to a lesser extent are now just being subsumed into armor. You're not going to promote more diverse item usage if the dull no-brainer options are still around.

I’m pretty sure ACP referenced con based checks in PF1 as well.

Yep, this is to cover circumstances under which your DM might have you use Con instead of the standard score for a skill check.

Scarab Sages

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Nox Aeterna wrote:

Interesting i guess. The kind of blog i cant judge really without numbers and the rest of the system to compare things.

The concept of more customizable armor is nice, but if they are really so different we wont all just pick the one who gives the highest bonus of the category only time will tell.

Im also wondering which skill is now based on CON.

Maybe Concentration is moved back into a Constitution Skill?

I wouldn't be surprised if the skills we've seen revealed of Athletics and Acrobatics would give you the option to use one of the 3 physical attributes.

Maybe there is an Endurance skill? That would be cool for nicely dovetailing forced march and hustle into the skill system instead of being its own discrete system.


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Pathfinder Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Logan Bonner wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
So how does proficiency interact with armor exactly? Do we add the same proficiency bonus from being a master of medium armor to our AC that we would to our skill checks if we're a master of that skill?
Yep. All proficiencies follow the same system. You'd also get the item bonus from your armor, which you probably aren't getting a corresponding bonus to your skill checks at low levels.

Which implies that you get to add your level to any AC score that derives from armor or shield, since level appears to add directly to any skill bonus.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

I see sheild rules are still absurd. There is a lot of good stuff, but I just can't get past this.

Silver Crusade

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Deadmanwalking wrote:
Joe M. wrote:
I wonder how these two item bonuses (weapon quality + potency rune) interact.
They've made it very clear that bonuses of the same type will never stack in PF2. So those bonuses don't stack.

Yes, I'm just curious about how the whole system fits together, how these factors interact when I'm making choices with a character: why do I need a higher-quality item if I can just upgrade the proficiency rune? Or why do I need a higher proficiency rune on a nicer-quality weapon? Or is the strength of the proficiency rune bounded by the quality of the item? — That kind of thing.


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So many things to like completely overshadowed by the interact ruling - you can simplify things too much and requiring an interact to change grip is looking like a step too far.

The only other negative for me is the confirmation that it requires an action to benefit from your shield - Are shields going to be SO amazing that it's worth giving up an action for?

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber
Joe M. wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Quote:
Your character has proficiency in shields just like she does with armor, and when using a shield, you use the lower proficiency rank of your armor or shield to calculate your Armor Class.
Would someone be kind enough to expand on this? It doesn’t really sound pleasant atm :3

Warren the Warrior is a generic martial character with: Dex 14; Chain Shirt (+4 to AC); and a Shield (+2 to AC). He has Expert Armor Proficiency (+1) but only Trained Shield Proficiency (+0).

Normally, Warren has a 17 AC (= 10 + 4 Armor + 1 Armor Proficiency + 2 Dex).

But when Warren uses an action to raise his shield, he has an 18 AC (= 10 + 4 Armor + 2 Shield + 0 Proficiency + 2 Dex).

(Note: unclear to me whether the proficiency change kicks in when you use the action with the shield, or just when you wear one. If it's whenever you're wearing a shield, Warren will have 16 AC that bumps up to 18 when he activates his shield.)

How I read it, "when using" means the proficiency gets recalculated when you raise the shield.

Don't forget that using a shield lets you Shield Block for your reaction. Even if your AC doesn't change much or goes down a little, that damage mitigation could come in real handy.


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Logan Bonner wrote:


Yep, this is to cover circumstances under which your DM might have you use Con instead of the standard score for a skill check.

Will this be a rule? If you swim for a short time, you add the Str modifier, but if you swim for a long time, you'll add the Con modifier, for example?


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Boy do I not like heavier armor improving your TAC.

Scarab Sages

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thflame wrote:

There seems to be a lot of balancing of mechanics based around requiring extra actions. While this may be necessary to avoid obviously better scenarios, part of the core of games like DnD and Pathfinder is that a player should be allowed to have their character attempt anything that makes sense, as though they were people in a real world.

I think this was the biggest failing of 4e. I have heard numerous complaints about 4e that all revolved around, "I wasn't allowed to do X because the rules said no, even though it would be totally feasible for my character".

Stuff like raising a shield costing an action, grasping a weapon with your free off hand, and verbal casting components costing a separate action to somatic components (I mean, really, just say the spell takes 2 actions worth of casting time) is ultimately going to lead to instances where real life people are more capable than their heroic characters in trivial ways.

I recommend that Paizo finds another way to balance mechanics, specifically a way that maintains verisimilitude.

I agree with this. But I think this is something we can hash out during the playtest.

I get why they are doing it, because less types of actions means less confusion over what happens when, where, and how, and whether you can still do other things. I like that they are creating a more streamlined system of keywords and actions so that we don't have another Vital Strike type issue.

But making it a full action to change your grip? That seems arbitrary at best. But I suppose that is to stop all the machine gun issues of a dual-wielding pistoleer.


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Jonathan Cormier wrote:
Boy do I not like heavier armor improving your TAC.

Well, considering that

1. the chracter level does not go into the AC
2. spellcasters get their level to their attack bonus

something has to add to touch ac to rebalance it.

This doesn't mean that I think this is the best or only solution.
Maybe we can come up with a better one?


Wheldrake wrote:
Also, it's looking more and more like your level will *not* add directly to your AC, just your proficiency bonus (-2 to +3 being the range).

I guess your proficiency bonus will ALWAYS be equal your level + you proficiency rank modifier (from -2 to +3), so your level will be added to your AC as well. So, a caster with no armor should always have level -2 added to AC, I guess...

Scarab Sages

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Jonathan Cormier wrote:
Boy do I not like heavier armor improving your TAC.

I do. Because what this does is it allows them to scale Touch AC similarly to regular AC where the more powerful monsters for higher levels are often the larger monsters and have really horrendous touch ACs. This helps the perceived (yeah, I don't always buy it) caster/martial disparity.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Logan Bonner wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
So how does proficiency interact with armor exactly? Do we add the same proficiency bonus from being a master of medium armor to our AC that we would to our skill checks if we're a master of that skill?
Yep. All proficiencies follow the same system. You'd also get the item bonus from your armor, which you probably aren't getting a corresponding bonus to your skill checks at low levels.

So, to make sure I understand, a legendary chain shirt, worn by an level 11 expert in light armor, with a +4 potency rune would grant a total of +11 to AC and 10 to touch AC? Are we adding level to this so it's actually a +22/21?

And for shields does lower bonus here mean a legendary shield but expert armor user who raises a shield adds +3 to their AC?


Bruno Mares wrote:

I guess your proficiency bonus will ALWAYS be equal your level + you proficiency rank modifier (from -2 to +3), so your level will be added to your AC as well. So, a caster with no armor should always have level -2 added to AC, I guess...

I hope there won't be a "No armor proficiency"...

Silver Crusade

Bruno Mares wrote:
Wheldrake wrote:
Also, it's looking more and more like your level will *not* add directly to your AC, just your proficiency bonus (-2 to +3 being the range).
I guess your proficiency bonus will ALWAYS be equal your level + you proficiency rank modifier (from -2 to +3), so your level will be added to your AC as well. So, a caster with no armor should always have level -2 added to AC, I guess...

Hmm, yeah, I forgot about that. From the Proficiency Blog:

Proficiency Blog wrote:
Your proficiency modifier is based partly on your rank and partly on your level—you add your level to the modifier from your rank to determine your proficiency modifier.

Dark Archive

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I don't like armor giving any bonus to Touch AC, it just doesn't make any sense to me. Okay, maybe versus Acid Arrow or similar spells that need to hit "fleshy parts", but it feels really wonky if we're talking about Shocking Grasp, Vampiric Touch or incorporeal creatures making touch attacks. Why not abstract the whole thing and get rid of it, just like PF2 has already got rid of flat-footed AC? It would be a breeze to fold it into your "regular" AC and make everyone's life easier, since AC is an abstracted concept anyway.

I also don't like that only the lower proficiency applies... why? Because it is more balanced that way? The math requires it? But I thought armor already gave a smaller bonus anyway, such as "mere" +2 for chain shirt?

I do like something in this blog, and I like a lot: apparently there won't be a long list of bonus types, and judging by these blogs it's going to be modeled after 4E (item bonus, feat bonus, power bonus?). *Finally* we'll likely get rid of 10+ different bonus types that always get mixed up in my group, because nobody remembers which bonuses stack and which don't.

Scarab Sages

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Planpanther wrote:

So cloak of resistance has been off loaded to magic armor? Not thrilled about that.

I do like the changes to shields very much though!

Too many items in First Edition were "must haves" that made choosing other gear for that slot a moot point. Saves were so vitally important that running around with anything but a Cloak of Resistance was a bad idea unless you could afford one of the late-game fabulously expensive alternatives. But, the vast majority of playtime happens before then so the slots were effectively locked, reducing customization options.

Now your armor, or bracers of armor, fill multiple roles leaving other equipment slots open for meaningful choices.

Here's to hoping they do the same for headbands and belts.

Paizo Employee Designer

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Ssalarn wrote:
Bruno Mares wrote:
Why change a grip is an action and not a free action? Because it can boost your damage? Is that so good to change a grip from two hands to one hand? Open or close a hand takes the same effort of Strike?!? Why?
We actually don't know yet that it goes the other way. The blog says "Now, drawing an item from a pouch, changing your grip from one-handed to two-handed,..." so it's possible that only increasing your handedness requires an action while releasing your grip could be a free action.

Yeah, we can probably tighten up the language on that to make it clearer. If, as in the example upthread, you were releasing your weapon to open a door, releasing your grip should be part of that first Interact action and returning and rebalancing your grip on the weapon would be a second action. You shouldn't need three.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

It looks like fighting with a shield is going to take a large investment of proficiencies and feats to be worth doing. I don't think this is inherently bad as long as the things you can do with a shield are really impressive. I see far fewer clerics running around with bucklers, especially if changing grips is an action.


Tallow wrote:
Nox Aeterna wrote:

Interesting i guess. The kind of blog i cant judge really without numbers and the rest of the system to compare things.

The concept of more customizable armor is nice, but if they are really so different we wont all just pick the one who gives the highest bonus of the category only time will tell.

Im also wondering which skill is now based on CON.

Maybe Concentration is moved back into a Constitution Skill?

I wouldn't be surprised if the skills we've seen revealed of Athletics and Acrobatics would give you the option to use one of the 3 physical attributes.

Maybe there is an Endurance skill? That would be cool for nicely dovetailing forced march and hustle into the skill system instead of being its own discrete system.

Well, the thing with skills, assuming it follows PF1 logic, is that they werent hard to boost. So adding concentration to it could lead to people not failing checks pretty much never. Again assuming magic items are still around aplenty to boost skills.

Assuming all atributes now have value, well charisma got resonance, maybe not locking skills to single atributes could be interesting.

Silver Crusade

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Asgetrion wrote:
I also don't like that only the lower proficiency applies... why? Because it is more balanced that way? The math requires it? But I thought armor already gave a smaller bonus anyway, such as "mere" +2 for chain shirt?

Since it looks like your level is folded into proficiency, you wouldn't want to apply it twice.

As to why the lower and not the higher one applies . . . a character completely untrained in armor but really good with shields (captain america brawler type) puts on full plate. This character shouldn't be able to use the full plate as if she were trained to the level she is with shields—don't want a great proficiency to "smuggle in" untrained items via a mechanical loophole. So just apply the lower proficiency.


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Hmmm. While I like some of the design ideas behind further enhancing armour -- although the rune bit reminds me a bit too much of Diablo to be honest -- it is starting to look like their are a lot more moving parts involved in 2.0. I'm not sure that this is going to be that much easier for the theoretical newbies to pick up.

Dark Archive

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I like that armor is less binary. Seems like everyone and their mother was either in full plate or a mithral chain shirt sooner rather than later, and most other armor got ignored beyond third level.

Kinda bothered by the continuing changes to action economy. Changing grip as an action seems rather severe of a limitation. Having to spend an action to get literally any benefit out of a shield feels borked. Not only are you having to spend an action to get a benefit, you're also NOT spending an action on something else, like another strike. How often is move-strike-raise shield going to be better than move-strike-strike?
Even if using a shield provides significant advantages, does it outweigh the cost of not attacking? Offense is often overwhelmingly favored in combat that I'm having trouble accepting giving up attacks to be defensive as viable. It's the same problem as crane style monks. Sure, the monk might be nigh-impossible to hit, but his party members can't say the same, and the enemy can just ignore the low-damage, highly defensive monk.

Con-based skill checks?!? Color me excited.


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The AC bonus of the armor looks promising, I think.

it seems that light armor adds +2 (+quality?) +magic, no matter what kind of armor.

So medium probably has a +4 base, while heavy has +6 ac bonus?
Or is it even flatter like +2/+3/+4?


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I share the concerns about shifting grip requiring its own individual action that other posters have; this is going to heavily limit anyone planning on using a two-handed weapon, especially a spell caster. Having your Wizard or battle cleric need to spend an action to get a free hand to cast a spell and another action to wield their staff or Greatsword properly is a huge drawback for what doesn't seem like that much benefit.

[Edit: a dev has clarified that it does not require an individual action for every single shift of grip. Paizo is going to have to be very careful about how they word this section in the rules. Even still, I'm not a fan of adding grip requiring its own action nor am I a fan of Shifting grip one-way not requiring an action and shifting grip another way requiring an action. That's not very streamlined or easy to remember. I hope that this can be changed in the playtest like bombs going from two handed to one handed was.]

But my current primary concern is about higher quality weapons giving you an item bonus to attack rolls and now potency runes also give you an item bonus to attack rolls. From what we know, bonuses of the same type never stack in 2nd edition.

This either means that having higher quality weapons is ultimately redundant because you can just slap a potency Rune onto your weapon and gain the same effect; or, if applying a potency Rune of a certain level requires a specific item quality as a prerequisite, then the item bonus from the potency rune is automatically redundant.

Can anyone clarify how the item bonuse to attack rolls from mundane but high-quality weapons interact with the item bonuses to attack rolls from potency runes?

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber
Logan Bonner wrote:
Ssalarn wrote:
Bruno Mares wrote:
Why change a grip is an action and not a free action? Because it can boost your damage? Is that so good to change a grip from two hands to one hand? Open or close a hand takes the same effort of Strike?!? Why?
We actually don't know yet that it goes the other way. The blog says "Now, drawing an item from a pouch, changing your grip from one-handed to two-handed,..." so it's possible that only increasing your handedness requires an action while releasing your grip could be a free action.
Yeah, we can probably tighten up the language on that to make it clearer. If, as in the example upthread, you were releasing your weapon to open a door, releasing your grip should be part of that first Interact action and returning and rebalancing your grip on the weapon would be a second action. You shouldn't need three.

Okay, I actually kind of like taking an action to properly grip your weapon.


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A question on the shield thing: Can you use potency runes on a shield as a weapon?
The wording in the blog more or less says you can't, which would be a sad thing. I love shield bashing.

Designer

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Unicore wrote:
It looks like fighting with a shield is going to take a large investment of proficiencies and feats to be worth doing. I don't think this is inherently bad as long as the things you can do with a shield are really impressive. I see far fewer clerics running around with bucklers, especially if changing grips is an action.

I don't think it is currently possible in the playtest rules for a character who is at least trained in both armor and shields to have a worse proficiency from shields because abilities that give you really good proficiencies with armor tend to always raise your proficiency with shields. Now, conceivably we could have shields just not be a proficiency at all and just everyone can use them, and it would help simplify that bit of the rules too. I suppose we might ask you guys about that later in the surveys!


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I'm mostly just worried about shields only being worthwhile with a huge investment. Sword and shield style or two-handed weapon style should be "equally good" with the same levels of investment. I don't feel like PF1 comes close to doing this.


Mark Seifter wrote:


I don't think it is currently possible in the playtest rules for a character who is at least trained in both armor and shields to have a worse proficiency from shields because abilities that give you really good proficiencies with armor tend to always raise your proficiency with shields. Now, conceivably we could have shields just not be a proficiency at all and just everyone can use them, and it would help simplify that bit of the rules too. I suppose we might ask you guys about that later in the surveys!

I assumed it would be possible to upgrade proficiencies with feats if a character doesn't get these from its class. So specializing in either one would be possible.

I like the shield proficiency, speculating that higher proficiency levels allows characters to do more interesting actions with them (without additional feat investment).


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So now that I have had the time to read through again, I'm returning to a thought I've posted before... Why is touch AC still even its own thing? It could easily be handled with Touch AC = 10 + Reflex save bonus + gear bonus. That way it still scales with level, but you don't have the wonky situation where a flippy ninja can evade fireballs, but somehow can't avoid being touched because their touch AC is lower than their Reflex.

Designer

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Fuzzypaws wrote:

So now that I have had the time to read through again, I'm returning to a thought I've posted before... Why is touch AC still even its own thing? It could easily be handled with Touch AC = 10 + Reflex save bonus + gear bonus. That way it still scales with level, but you don't have the wonky situation where a flippy ninja can evade fireballs, but somehow can't avoid being touched because their touch AC is lower than their Reflex.

Though of course then you can get the worse situation where the ninja's Reflex is also higher than her AC altogether, so she can avoid being touched more easily than being actually hit, despite her armor.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

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Melkiador wrote:
I'm mostly just worried about shields only being worthwhile with a huge investment. Sword and shield style or two-handed weapon style should be "equally good" with the same levels of investment. I don't feel like PF1 comes close to doing this.

In Mark and Logan's playtest games, I've played more shield users than non-shield-users, and when playing a non-shield-user I have on more than one occasion found myself wishing that I could be spending that third action to raise a shield for some extra AC and damage reduction instead of taking a swing that probably isn't going to connect and definitely won't crit. Granted I've only played a handful of the classes in the new system, but I've consistently been very effective and felt very useful while playing shield users, regardless of class.


PossibleCabbage wrote:
So how does proficiency interact with armor exactly? Do we add the same proficiency bonus from being a master of medium armor to our AC that we would to our skill checks if we're a master of that skill?

Probably reduces skill check penalties or movement penalties, but you may be right.

Designer

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Leyren wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:


I don't think it is currently possible in the playtest rules for a character who is at least trained in both armor and shields to have a worse proficiency from shields because abilities that give you really good proficiencies with armor tend to always raise your proficiency with shields. Now, conceivably we could have shields just not be a proficiency at all and just everyone can use them, and it would help simplify that bit of the rules too. I suppose we might ask you guys about that later in the surveys!

I assumed it would be possible to upgrade proficiencies with feats if a character doesn't get these from its class. So specializing in either one would be possible.

I like the shield proficiency, speculating that higher proficiency levels allows characters to do more interesting actions with them (without additional feat investment).

I believe the people who did a mock math run of a two-hander vs a shield-user (shield-user had a clear edge in the 1-on-1, but they made a lot of assumptions to do the best they could) were not aware of any of the additional shield feats we have in the game, so that would be just the basics without investing.


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Cuz I'm a historical weapons nerd (on top of a computer nerd) I just tested how long it takes me to open a door with a rapier (and a two handed longsword) walk through the door, then close the door (putting my hand back on the two handed sword when I was done).

Both took 5 seconds. (Not rushing, just like I was carrying a sword through a doorway.)

Do we see the problem yet?

The time it takes to reestablish a two handed grip is negligible.

To be fair I was more worried about hitting the doorway with the longsword than the rapier.

This is the sort of stuff I check when I make on the fly rulings in my games. If someone tries to attempt something that I think is too far fetched, I hand them a prop (or a training implement) and have them do it.

Under this last test, if one of my players asked to be able to reattach a grip as a free action, I would have granted it, but now the rules explicitly say otherwise and allowing one player to violate the rules because they felt as though they needed to be challenged isn't fair to the other players who have been playing by the rules because they didn't think to challenge them.

Heck, I just realized that wizards with a staff won't be able to cast a 2 action spell with a Somatic Action and attack with a quarterstaff in the same round, (assuming quarterstaves are still two handed weapons) but they could totally stab with a dagger if they had one.


Wait what ???

Weren't the +X to weapons and armors supposed to be removed in PF2 because they were not magic enough ? Didn't the devs tell us that +X items to AC and ST were replaced with something else and built in directly in the character progression ?

In which circunstances is a studded leather a better armor than a chainshirt ? The chainshirt gives a better bonus to AC withjust the disadvantage of giving an extra malus to stealth. That's almost exactly the same than 1st edition ... And I'm sure that we will get an opportunity to remove this noisy talent (special material of superior quality, JUST LIKE 1ST EDITION).

What is the point of needing to use a reaction to activate the bonus of a shield when it lasts ONE FULL ROUND ? You could as well say it is always active but remove the possibility to use your reaction ...

What is the point of simplifying the action system if you keep adding new action types AT EVERY PREVIEW ?? Interact is the 2nd new action type you are introducing. Where is the simplification if you add as much new action types than you remove ??

Are you really sure that you want that any character can use any skill even untrained ? Because in my long experience of RPG, it can only mean 2 things :
* either we will very soon see high-level characters open locks of any house with a hairpin
* either we will see the difficulty of these skill checks depend not on the circunstances of the situation but on the level of the characters

I don't hate eveything I read in this preview, I know I look very negative but I must say that the latest previews are worrying me more and more.

So I'm gonna ask one last question :

IS THERE SOMEONE LEADING THIS DEV TEAM ??

Silver Crusade

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Cuàn wrote:

A question on the shield thing: Can you use potency runes on a shield as a weapon?

The wording in the blog more or less says you can't, which would be a sad thing. I love shield bashing.

+1 to this question. I'd love to know more about shields-as-weapons in the playtest rules.

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