Wizard Class Preview

Monday, May 21, 2018

With Paizocon getting underway in just a few days, we wanted to round out our previews by looking at the final class that you will be able to play at the show. So, without further delay, it's time to look at the wizard!

Wizard Features

If you are building a wizard, everything starts with your key ability, Intelligence. Having a high Intelligence gives you a boost to the DCs of your spells, and it gives you more skill choices at 1st level.

At 1st level, you begin play with a spellbook containing 10 cantrips and eight 1st-level spells, giving you a wide variety of spells to draw upon when you prepare your magic each morning. Starting out, you can prepare four cantrips and two 1st-level spells each day. In addition, you also select your arcane school at 1st level, which grants you one extra spell slot of each level that you can use only to prepare a spell from your chosen school. You can compare this to the cleric, who doesn't get extra spell slots, but instead gets a narrow ability to cast extra heal or harm spells. Your school also grants you a school power that you can cast using a pool of Spell Points. Take a look at the nifty power you can pick up from choosing divination as your school. (Remember, that [[A]] code you see indicates that this is an action, and it will be a snazzy icon in the final rulebook!)

DIVINER'S SIGHT

Concentrate, Divination, Fortune

Casting [[A]] Verbal Casting

Range 30 feet; Targets one willing living creature

Duration end of your next turn or until dismissed

You glimpse into the target's future. Roll a d20. When the target attempts a Perception check, saving throw, or skill check, it can use the number you rolled instead of rolling, and the spell is dismissed. Casting it again dismisses any active diviner's sight.

Even if you don't roll so great, it might still help avoid a critical failure on a vital saving throw.

You can forgo selecting an arcane school, instead choosing to be a universalist. This grants you a bonus wizard feat and extra uses of your arcane focus.

Speaking of which, all wizards gain the ability to place some of their power into a designated item called an arcane focus. You can drain the power from that focus once per day to cast any one spell that you have already cast without spending another spell slot. Universalists get to use this ability once for each level of spell that they can cast!

As a wizard goes up in level, they gain more spells that they can cast (either one extra spell of their highest level, or two of a new level) and their proficiency at spellcasting also increases. They start as trained, but rise to the rank of legendary at 19th level.

Illustration by Wayne Reynolds

Wizard Feats

Wizards have never had too many class features to choose from to help distinguish them from one another, so when it came time to design feats for the wizard, it was a clear opportunity to add some variety to the class.

Lets start out with a few classic concepts. At 1st level, you can pick up a feat that allows you to spend your reaction to counterspell any spell someone else casts as long as you currently have that spell prepared. If that isn't to your taste, you can take a wizard feat to recruit a familiar instead. Every day, you can select a pair of abilities to give this loyal companion, some of which grant you boons as well. At high levels, your familiar can even grant you an additional spell slot, as long as it is 3 levels lower than the highest-level spell you can cast. At 8th level you can select from a series of feats that enhance the power of your arcane school, increasing your pool of Spell Points and granting you an extra spell you can cast using that pool. One of my favorites is the necromantic power called life siphon, which lets you draw some of the magic from a non-cantrip necromancy spell you cast to regain 1d8 Hit Points per level of the spell.

Not surprisingly, the wizard also has a lot of feats to choose from that modify the spells that you cast. While many of these metamagic feats will be familiar to veterans of the game, allowing you to extend the reach or widen the area of a spell, for example, others are new. Conceal Spell lets you add an action to a spell as you cast it to hide the fact that you are casting. Focus Conservation is an action you can add to any spell that you cast by draining your arcane focus, and it lets you drain your arcane focus again the next round, casting another spell as long as it is 2 levels lower than the spell you just cast. Better still, you can keep using this feat as long as you have lower-level spells to cast. For example, if you start out draining your focus to cast cone of cold (a 5th-level spell dealing a wicked 11d6 cold damage to all your enemies), you could follow it up next round with a fireball. If you use the feat again, you could drain focus again on the following round, casting any 1st-level spell you had already cast.

As a wizard rises to the highest levels of power, their feats grant them more and more options when determining how to best utilize their spells. Effortless Concentration gives you a free action at the start of each round to concentrate on a spell you have cast, freeing you up to use all 3 actions normally. Superior Focus gives you another use of your arcane focus. Quick Preparation lets you swap out spells you have already prepared in just 10 minutes. At 20th level, you can pick Spell Combination, which lets you combine two spells into one terrifying attack that you can unleash on one unfortunate foe.

Spells

One of the biggest ways you can customize your wizard is in your spell selection, so it's probably worth looking at a few signature wizard spells to see how they work. Let's start with one of the most iconic spells of them all.

MAGIC MISSILE SPELL 1

Evocation, Force

Casting [[A]] Verbal Casting or more

Range 120 feet; Targets one creature

You send a dart of force streaking toward a creature that you can see. It automatically hits and deals 1d4+1 force damage. When Casting this Spell, you can increase the casting by a Material Casting action, a Somatic Casting action, or both. For each component you add, increase the number of missiles you shoot by one. You choose the target for each missile individually.

Heightened (+2) You shoot one additional missile with each action you spend.

Magic missile shows off a couple of interesting options in the wizard's arsenal. Casting a spell can be done in a number of ways using a variable number of actions. While most of the time this is through metamagic feats, it can also come from the spell itself. Adding casting actions to magic missile gives you more missiles to throw. In addition, a wide variety of spells can be prepared using a higher-level spell slot, giving you a better effect without having to refer to an entirely different spell. (You can find out more about that in the All About Spells blog.) That means you can prepare magic missile as a 9th-level spell and spend three actions casting it for 15 missiles!

Another important aspect of picking spells for your wizard is to balance what saving throws they allow and what effects you can get depending on the results of the save. For that, let's take a look at a spell that might instantly kill a foe.

PHANTASMAL KILLER SPELL 4

Death, Emotion, Fear, Illusion, Mental

Casting [[A]] Somatic Casting, [[A]] Verbal Casting

Range 120 feet; Targets one living creature

You create a phantasmal image of the most fearsome creature imaginable to the target. Only the spell's target can see the killer, though you can see the vague shape of the illusion as it races forth to attack. The effect of the killer is based on the outcome of the target's Will saving throw.

Success The target is frightened 1.

Critical Success The target is unaffected.

Failure The target takes 8d6 mental damage and is frightened 2.

Critical Failure The target is so afraid it might instantly die. It must attempt a Fortitude saving throw; if the target fails, it is reduced to 0 Hit Points and dies. On a successful Fortitude save, the target still takes 12d6 mental damage, is fleeing until the end of its next turn, and is frightened 4.

Heightened (+1) The damage on a failure increases by 2d6 and on a critical failure by 3d6.

This spell is perfect for removing a lower-level foe from a fight, but it has the chance of greatly hampering a higher-level foe as well. The frightened condition reduces by 1 each turn, but it applies a penalty to almost all of your checks and rolls until it does. You will find interesting choices like these throughout the arcane spell list. While most will be familiar to a Pathfinder veteran, there are a lot of new spells to explore as well, from grim tendril to chromatic wall, so your wizard will be ready for anything.

Well, that wraps up our look at the wizard. If you want to give this class (or the alchemist, cleric, fighter, paladin, or rogue) a try, make sure to stop by PaizoCon (this weekend), the UK Games Expo (early June), or Origins (mid-June), as we'll be running demos during all three conventions!

Jason Bulmahn
Director of Game Design

Note: Due to PaizoCon, there will not be a Pathfinder Playtest Blog on Friday, May 25th or Monday, May 28th.

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Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Trimalchio wrote:

Compare this to PF1 and all the math leads to one conclusion: a major nerf to using blasts when blasts were already widely acknowledged to be a sub par option.

Even the 'math' shows that of the ogres in the blast only die about 50% of the time, again this is a level 3 monster against the best spell of a level 9 character.

Not sure why people are so agressive, this is rather obvious, blasting as previewed is strictly worse then in PF1, the reason we have playtests is to point this out. And I'll repeat for the 5th time, the issue appears to me to be mostly too many hit points on the ogre, but it's hard to say without seeing hit points for other Giants etc.

It seems extremely disingenuous to me to point to a big bag of HP (huge for its level!) and say that the big bag of HP has too many HP for a specific tactic to be 100% effective against it, and then extrapolate that to say that the whole system doesn't work at all. The point of a big bag of HP in the first place is to make it more difficult to kill under all circumstances. It's a big bag of HP.

I think the fact that the level 5 spell has a good chance of totally eliminating ~50% of those big bags of HP in one shot, while seriously debilitating the rest to the point of it becoming a mop-up game, shows that the system works perfectly fine as intended, especially because the nature of the action economy means that so many big bags of HP being crushed by that one level 5 spell means that it was well used. A similar level martial character could probably take out 1 reliably with a whole turn. You've multiplied both the number he could take out, and made it easier for him to finish off more than one of the rest with a single turn at the same time.

Blasts haven't been nerfed. The chance of a critical failure on the save has made them immensely more effective when used in the right circumstances. That the circumstances might not always be right isn't a nerf. That some monsters are big bags of HP for their level isn't a nerf. They're just circumstances to consider when deciding how to approach a problem. The game is not, and should never be, a matter of spamming one option to win everything everytime.


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I think it is pretty obvious now my first PF2 character is going to be a goblin wizard who only casts different versions of the magic missile spell.

Liberty's Edge

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Trimalchio wrote:
Compare this to PF1 and all the math leads to one conclusion: a major nerf to using blasts when blasts were already widely acknowledged to be a sub par option.

Er...no? Not really.

Trimalchio wrote:
Even the 'math' shows that of the ogres in the blast only die about 50% of the time, again this is a level 3 monster against the best spell of a level 9 character.

That's an improvement over an unenhanced Cone of Cold in PF1 vs. a 'bag of HP' CR 3 monster like a Gelatinous Cube. On avergae, despite their abysmal saves, 0 Gelatinous Cubes die to a PF1 Cone of Cold.

Trimalchio wrote:
Not sure why people are so agressive, this is rather obvious, blasting as previewed is strictly worse then in PF1, the reason we have playtests is to point this out. And I'll repeat for the 5th time, the issue appears to me to be mostly too many hit points on the ogre, but it's hard to say without seeing hit points for other Giants etc.

Because this statement is mathematically false. The DPR of a Fighter can be compared to that of a Cone of Cold. I even did so. The degree to which a Fighter can kill Ogres is less than that to which a Cone of Cold can do so.

Seeing how good the spell does at killing X foe is meaningless to its balance without seeing how good martial options are at doing the same thing.

Also, given that Mark Seifter explicitly noted that the Ogre was quite a few HP above average for its Level, saying that we don't know whether they're high HP without seeing other creatures' HP isn't quite true.

Leedwashere wrote:
A similar level martial character could probably take out 1 reliably with a whole turn.

It's actually about two for a full turn, if you don't need to move or get lucky. Certainly 1.5 or so. It's probably 3 that have been softened up, though, and the spell will likely kill way more than 2 since there'll be a lot of them if you're fighting them at 9th level.

Not that I disagree with you. I'm just clarifying the math.


Try rereading my posts.

It's a level 3 monster, that shouldn't even register as a threat to a single level 9 character much less a group of 4.

Again the hp calculation for ogres is probably off, and/or blasting needs a rework if they are just buffing hp across the board.

Pointing out the obvious isn't disingenuous.


Deadmanwalking wrote:
Trimalchio wrote:
Compare this to PF1 and all the math leads to one conclusion: a major nerf to using blasts when blasts were already widely acknowledged to be a sub par option.

Er...no? Not really.

... A level 9 wizard could use a third level spell slot to cast a 9d6 fireball, against 30 hp ogres with ref +0 save against a DC that's going to be 19+.


Unicore wrote:
I think it is pretty obvious now my first PF2 character is going to be a goblin wizard who only casts different versions of the magic missile spell.

But we only know of regular MM and Macro Missile (the new idea they suggest that starts with 2 actions, but heightens each level instead of every 2 levels).

What would the other missiles do?
Cold version of MM that deals 1d6+1 Elemental damage :
Cold but has a save- Still one missile per action, you only get one save with each attack (even if hit with multiple missiles)
Success The target is takes normal damage.

Critical Success The target is takes 1/2 damage.

Failure The target takes extra 1d6 Cold damage and is frozen 1.

Critical Failure The target takes extra 2d6 Cold damage and is frozen 2.

Heightened (+1) The damage on a failure increases by 1d6 and on a critical failure by 2d6.

Frozen status would weaken your actions, lower movement, and make you take more damage from cold by that amount (in d6's).
---

Fire but has a save- Still one missile per action, you only get one save with each attack (even if hit with multiple missiles)
Success The target is takes normal damage.

Critical Success The target is takes 1/2 damage.

Failure The target takes extra 1d6 Fire damage and is Burning 1.

Critical Failure The target takes extra 2d6 Fire damage and is Burning 2.

Heightened (+1) The damage on a failure increases by 1d6 and on a critical failure by 2d6.

Burning status would weaken your actions and make you take damage from fire by that amount each round (in d6's).
--

Electric but has a save- Still one missile per action, you only get one save with each attack (even if hit with multiple missiles)
Success The target is takes normal damage.

Critical Success The target is takes 1/2 damage.

Failure The target takes extra 1d6 Electric damage and is Shocked 1.

Critical Failure The target takes extra 2d6 Electric damage and is Shocked 2.

Heightened (+1) The damage on a failure increases by 1d6 and on a critical failure by 2d6.

Shocked status would weaken you actions, lower actions each round, and make you take more damage from cold by that amount (in d6's).


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I seriously think people have lost sight of what blasting spells are meant to be because blasting spells in Pathfinder 1 were so badly designed. Because you were pretty much forced to spec into one spell, and a single target spell rarely did significantly more damage than a AoE spell.

AoE spells are meant to deal less damage to single targets but more damage overall than pretty much anything else by hitting multiple targets. Single target blasts are meant to hit significantly harder.

Also, as I pointed out before, an ogre can probably hit a 9th level wizard on like 12-14. 8 of them throwing out 2-3 attacks a round can be a big problem, and that's without touching grappling. Cone of Cold wipes out half of them in one go, and probably let's your party dispatch at least 3 of the surviving 4 with their own actions because they are hella softened up. That's a pretty solid use of a blast. Your party has practically one rounded the encounter-- that last ogre will probably flee or surrender based on how badly you just mauled his clan.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Reposted below has I had problems editing.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Starbuck_II wrote:

Frozen status would weaken your actions, lower movement, and make you take more damage from cold by that amount (in d6's).

I wouldn't mind seeing some kind of effect or spell apply a weakness to a target, or make that target's weakness bigger. Could be an interesting Sorcerer spell point ability, or something a Kinteticist might do once we reintroduce them.

Liberty's Edge

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Excaliburproxy wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:
Toblakai wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:
Note that currently a heightened MM deal an average of 15*3.5=52.5 hp of damage

Just as a comparison to PF1 a Maximized, empowered, intensified MM does an average of 52.5 damage in a level 7 spell slot instead of a level 9.

Add a quickened, maximized, intensified MM also for another 35 using a level 9 slot and 4 17th level PF1 wizards can kill a lot worse in one round.

But in PF1 ogres have 30 hp, not 60, A human skeleton has 4 hp, not 6, a zombie 12 hp, not 20 and PC have average hp for their dices, not maximum. The only creature that we know that has lost hp is the redcap, 55 in PF2 vs 60 in PF1, but it get fast healing 10 instead of 3.

So most enemies get an hp increase of 50% or more, wile all the spell we know do less damage after we have got a few levels more than the minimum to get them (MM in a 1st level slot do more damage till you get to level 4, then it is on par with a level 5 and 6, then it start to lose, fireball is stronger when the wizard get it at level 5, on par at level 6, then it start to lose damage).

And you aren't using your metamagics efficiently. Try an intensified, empowered MM. Level 5, 42 hp of damage. And you are still able to move.
Way, way better than a 9th level spell that require you to stand still.
If you want to stay mobile, you deal only 35 hp of damage with a 9th level MM in PF2.

But all that is pretty irrelevant.
The basic question is:
We are meant to be able to play blasting mages without hyper specializing or we will end like in PF1 with Save or sucks/Dye mage and hyper specialized blasting mages?
The reply seem to be "you will have to hyper specialize do do a decent level of blasting".

But magic missile does more damage now (at level 1) and cantrips do more damage now. A 3 action magic missile can now auto-kill a skeleton and that was not true before. It is a corner case, but MM now is a better spell for killing skeletons than before. It is...

It do more damage until you reach level 7, then it do less damage.

Same for fireball: more at level 5, equal at level 6, less after that.

MM is even worse, as it don't progress at all (if memorized in a level 1 slot) from level 1 onward. At least fireball save become more difficult when your level increase.

Wandering Wastrel wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:

The basic question is:

We are meant to be able to play blasting mages without hyper specializing or we will end like in PF1 with Save or sucks/Dye mage and hyper specialized blasting mages?
The reply seem to be "you will have to hyper specialize do do a decent level of blasting".

We already know that save or suck/die spells are going to be changed significantly by the new "4 degrees of save" (i.e. critically save, save, fail, critically fail). So nothing like PF1.

We don't yet know how blasting will work. I also don't know what you mean by "a decent level of blasting" - are you looking for the wizard to single-handedly one-shot the BBEG? I think that's unlikely to happen. It's a co-operative game, after all, and I think the rest of the party might like to feel that they are making a contribution to the fight.

EDIT: ninja'd!

A CR0 is zombie a boss fight?

Because you will never be able to kill it with a MM in a 1st level slot.
A CR3 Ogre will require 3 fireballs from a CR5 wizard even if it never save.
A Redcap with a CR5, the same of the wizard, will never be killed (unless you have super luck with your damage dices and he never saves) as it has 55 hp plus fast healing 10. You deal an average of 21 hp of damage and when the third fireball land he has healed the damage from the first.

That isn't the "single-handedly one-shot the BBEG" argument that you guy use as a straw man, it is "well, my best spell at this level is worth less than a single swing of a sword unless I get some ultra favorable condition".

"But fireball cover an area". Yes, and how often you have been able to get more than 2 targets in its area of effect lately?

And no one has really addressed the number of actions needed to get the effect. To reliably (but not always) kill a CR0 skeleton you need 2 actions. For a zombie 2 spells and 6 actions.
To do that reliably a martial probably will need 2 actions on the skeleton and 3 on the zombie at level 1 as he has a chance to miss, but that will improve rapidly with the level.

What I see is that using low level slots for blasting small fry enemies will be a waste of time as a martial will kill them with a single attack and still have 2 actions. After a spell is behind by a couple of levels (let's say a MM at level 3-4) the damage is so negligible that it isn't even worth the action unless there is some very favorable condition.
Essentially they become the equivalent of you "trusty crossbow" in PF1. An attack that you use to kill a enemy on the verge of death, so that the martial get to move and attack another target with his more valuable attack.

Currently it seem that action economy will greatly benefit martials.

- - - -

I really hate: "you have backtracked too far" when I am editing a post. Someone having posted after me has nothing to do with backtracking.

Liberty's Edge

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Cyouni wrote:
Trimalchio wrote:
Cyouni wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:

But all that is pretty irrelevant.

The basic question is:
We are meant to be able to play blasting mages without hyper specializing or we will end like in PF1 with Save or sucks/Dye mage and hyper specialized blasting mages?
The reply seem to be "you will have to hyper specialize do do a decent level of blasting".
If "a decent level of blasting" equates to you soloing difficult encounters with blasts, then I'm pretty sure that's never going to happen. There was a specific note that they're trying to avoid the rocket tag that was so pervasive in PF1.
No need to worry because a level 9 wizard can't even reliably blast a group of level 3 monsters with a level 5 spell.
Oh look, you've been mechanically proven wrong. Are we done with this hyperbole yet?

Actually that post prove that "if you can target more than 2 large ogres in your cone of cold you deal more total damage than a martial. Unless you roll near maximum damage or they critically fail the save you will kill 0 ogres.

Assuming that you use 1 move to get in position and 2 to cast Cone of cold, after doing that you are in position for a world of hurt, as those still living ogres will all be in position to reach you and do 2 attacks each on you.
More probably you will be able to deal some decent damage to a couple of creatures 6 CR levels lower than you and then hope that the martial near you will stop them before they get you.

DPR aren't the same of of Damage Applied to a Single Target. In a game where decreasing health don't reduce your efficiency, some damage spread over multiple targets is way weaker that less damage done at a single target.

Deadmanwalking wrote:


In fairness, I mostly skipped the math on Ogres in that post. If you want it, it's as follows:

Ogres have a +3 Reflex Save. They need an 11 to fail (rather than critically fail) vs. a Save DC of 23 (sort of a level 9 minimum). So half take double damage (average 77) and almost certainly die.

To translate: our level 11 wizard has a 50% chance of killing a ogre with a 5th level spell.

If he can target 2 ogres at the same time there is a 50% that he will kill at least one and a 25% chance of killing both. 25% chance of killing neither of them.
With good positioning you cold be able to target 3 ogres, but more than that require dumb ogres and a very favorable environment.


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I need to know - have you considered not using AOE spells on a single enemy (or two enemies)? This is more a problem of your expectations than anything else - if you can't find a situation to use AOE spells in, then perhaps you shouldn't be using them. Stop stuffing the square peg in the round hole and then complaining that the hole's the wrong shape.

Complaining that every spell isn't equally as good in every situation is ridiculous. For a zombie, what's the problem with using Telekinetic Projectile...the spell which can do 1d10 of slashing damage? 0 spell slots required.

And if you can't ever use a cone spell without complaining about the danger, use heightened-to-5th fireball instead. 1d6 less, but you get to save yourself the theoretical danger. (I'm also surprised that the ogres with -2 Int mod could be considered as not very dumb according to you.)

Liberty's Edge

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Diego Rossi wrote:
A CR0 is zombie a boss fight?

No. Of course, Magic Missile, due to how AC and auto-hitting works is much better in boss fights than vs. mooks (especially low AC high HP mooks like zombies).

For example, vs. another PC classed character of the same level with 17 AC, a PF2 Fighter with a greatsword (+6 to hit for 1d12+4 damage) has a DPR of 10.405 if he attacks three times. A Magic Missile has a DPR vs. that guy of 10.5 and better than the Fighter...the same as Magic Missile has vs. everyone else.

That DPR looks bad vs. the zombie, because the Fighter will do an order of magnitude more. But vs. someone with AC 18+ (like a boss)? It suddenly looks pretty amazing as it shoots past the Fighter by potentially quite a bit.

In short all your examples are profoundly misusing Magic Missile and acting like that means it's bad and worth less than a martial's attacks.

Diego Rossi wrote:
Actually that post prove that "if you can target more than 2 large ogres in your cone of cold you deal more total damage than a martial. Unless you roll near maximum damage or they critically fail the save you will kill 0 ogres.

This sort of ignores the fact that they critically fail at least half the time vs. a Cone of Cold. Which also makes your analysis of how many fireballs it takes to kill them flawed, by the way (though less so, since a critical failure vs. a Fireball probably still doesn't kill them...one vs. a Cone of Cold absolutely does).

You're approaching this whole discussion from a PF1 perspective, without apparently realizing exactly how much Critical Failures and their doubled damage profoundly change the dynamics of area blasting vs. low CR foes.

You're also doing the 'misusing a spell' thing again if you're thinking of using an area effect spell on less than 4 enemies.

Diego Rossi wrote:
DPR aren't the same of of Damage Applied to a Single Target. In a game where decreasing health don't reduce your efficiency, some damage spread over multiple targets is way weaker that less damage done at a single target.

This is not always true. The same DPR dealt to multiple people is pretty much always worse than dealing it to one. With better DPR it depends on how much better, y'know?

A Fighter's DPR vs. Ogres is effectively about 120 most of the time if they don't have to move (since they can usually kill two if they don't have to move, but rarely more). A Cone of Cold that hits 4 Ogres effectively does almost 200 and kills just as many Ogres while injuring the remainder.


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rainzax wrote:

Spell Manifestations, Saving Throws, Skills, and Character Knowledge

Situation
An NPC casts a non-flashy spell on me (say, Charm), not using the Concealed Spell metamagic feat, from the middle of a crowd of other NPCs whom I am aware of.

Questions
1) If I pass my save, do I know I succeeded in resisting a mental attack?
2) If so, do I know who attempted the mental attack?
3) Would having training in a certain skill (say, Arcana or Spellcraft) give me more / different info?
4) What if I failed my saving throw?
5) What about my party-members standing next to me - do they perceive the mental attack in the above situations? Which?

I have my own Houserule answer to these questions - naturally - and am curious if these are being "decided" by this second edition ruleset, or if they will remain within the purview of the magical tone and norms (if you will) a DM is at liberty to set (or, if you have as clever players as I, must definitely reconcile to progress forward narratively).

Cheers!

Bump


Why can't Magic Missile just become a cantrip? I think we all know in our heart-of-hearts that it's an incredibly under-performing spell and always has been. ;)

Silver Crusade

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Neo2151 wrote:
Why can't Magic Missile just become a cantrip? I think we all know in our heart-of-hearts that it's an incredibly under-performing spell and always has been. ;)

I have absolutely no idea how "always hits" and "under-performing" even go into each other's general vicinity.


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Rysky wrote:
Neo2151 wrote:
Why can't Magic Missile just become a cantrip? I think we all know in our heart-of-hearts that it's an incredibly under-performing spell and always has been. ;)
I have absolutely no idea how "always hits" and "under-performing" even go into each other's general vicinity.

Always hits with tiny damage that has never scaled well and can't crit.

That's how. ;)

Silver Crusade

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Neo2151 wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Neo2151 wrote:
Why can't Magic Missile just become a cantrip? I think we all know in our heart-of-hearts that it's an incredibly under-performing spell and always has been. ;)
I have absolutely no idea how "always hits" and "under-performing" even go into each other's general vicinity.

Always hits with tiny damage that has never scaled well and can't crit.

That's how. ;)

Always hits Incorporeal.

Always hits Mirror Image.

Always hits from pretty good range.

Don't have to worry about hitting Allies.


Rysky wrote:
Neo2151 wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Neo2151 wrote:
Why can't Magic Missile just become a cantrip? I think we all know in our heart-of-hearts that it's an incredibly under-performing spell and always has been. ;)
I have absolutely no idea how "always hits" and "under-performing" even go into each other's general vicinity.

Always hits with tiny damage that has never scaled well and can't crit.

That's how. ;)

Always hits Incorporeal.

Always hits Mirror Image.

Always hits from pretty good range.

Don't have to worry about hitting Allies.

Total, people seem to be forgetting the purpose of magic missile: = auto damage. shtick aside.


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Weather Report wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Neo2151 wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Neo2151 wrote:
Why can't Magic Missile just become a cantrip? I think we all know in our heart-of-hearts that it's an incredibly under-performing spell and always has been. ;)
I have absolutely no idea how "always hits" and "under-performing" even go into each other's general vicinity.

Always hits with tiny damage that has never scaled well and can't crit.

That's how. ;)

Always hits Incorporeal.

Always hits Mirror Image.

Always hits from pretty good range.

Don't have to worry about hitting Allies.

Total, people seem to be forgetting the purpose of magic missile: = auto damage. shtick aside.

I think at this point we have gone past "forget" and into "ignore because it shoots holes in my bad argument." Magic Missile and AoE spells being "bad" had been disproved a lot here, but people just keep ignoring it.


How relevant are those points though? Do you MM an enemy spellcaster or do you Dispel?
How often are you facing off against incorporeal opponents? At very low levels it can be a huge deal, but you'll rarely see them at very low levels because of the high chance of TPK. At higher levels, there are better options available.
An archer hits at a good range too and has a much better outcome even considering miss chance.
Smart tactics/placement means you never really have to worry about AoEing your allies anyway.

I know in my personal gaming experience, I've always been happy to have a CL9 MM wand available for the rare incorporeal foe, but I've never ever wanted to prepare it. Ever. There's always a better spell for the slot.


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[Paizo Headquarters]

Developer A: Wow, 600+ plus posts on the Wizard blog so far. I guess they must be really mad about all the nerfs to the number of spells, arcane bond/focus, and weakened school powers, huh?

Developer B: Actually, they're mad that Magic Missile isn't going to be as good as Wail of the Banshee or Meteor Swarm when put in a 9th level slot.

Developer A: Wow, I did NOT see that coming.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Neo2151 wrote:

How relevant are those points though? Do you MM an enemy spellcaster or do you Dispel?

How often are you facing off against incorporeal opponents? At very low levels it can be a huge deal, but you'll rarely see them at very low levels because of the high chance of TPK. At higher levels, there are better options available.
An archer hits at a good range too and has a much better outcome even considering miss chance.
Smart tactics/placement means you never really have to worry about AoEing your allies anyway.

I know in my personal gaming experience, I've always been happy to have a CL9 MM wand available for the rare incorporeal foe, but I've never ever wanted to prepare it. Ever. There's always a better spell for the slot.

1) I have completely shut down an enemy spellcaster by Readying to MM them when they tried to cast.

2.a) Enough to know MM comes in handy against them.
2.b) Uh, Shadows are Incorporeal and they're low CR.
2.c) Yes, at higher levels I have higher level spells, MM is a 1st level spell. That you can get at 1st level. it also stays useful throughout the game.
3) Well no, specifically because of miss chance. MM is a sure thing. I'm sure the Archer would rather Full Attack as well.
4) That's an assumption. Fights aren't neat and orderly.


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Magic missile can't be a cantrip because cantrips autoscale, and can be cast indefinitely. Even if it was set at 1 point a level, that gets ridiculous when it translates into automatic damage every time. Things that can be done over and over again without limit and cause damage need to involve of some kind of die roll, or else you could just get enough 1st level wizards together and have the ultimate unlimited siege weapon, or have other kinds of world complicating shenanigans . Auto-damage is not always the most damage or even the best damage to be doing, but it is always damage, and that has its own utility that belongs outside of the cantrip.

Yes I know 4e eventually tried this because people hated what they did by adding a die roll to the spell, but I have to admit to having left the game before that happened, and their redesign of the spell looks ridiculous to me. If PF2 made it anything like that, they would have to make it a 3 action cantrip or else it really starts to get ridiculous when it would be shot as a third action attack.

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

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Diego Rossi wrote:
"But fireball cover an area". Yes, and how often you have been able to get more than 2 targets in its area of effect lately?

All the time. It happens pretty regularly, both in games I run and games I play in.


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Xenocrat wrote:

[Paizo Headquarters]

Developer A: Wow, 600+ plus posts on the Wizard blog so far. I guess they must be really mad about all the nerfs to the number of spells, arcane bond/focus, and weakened school powers, huh?

Developer B: Actually, they're mad that Magic Missile isn't going to be as good as Wail of the Banshee or Meteor Swarm when put in a 9th level slot.

Developer A: Wow, I did NOT see that coming.

I think people is still on the fence waiting to see Cantrips and Rituals before complaining on spells per day nerf, I'm at least.


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Magic Missile might be more useful if there are carrier effects to be considered. If you can staple on a knockdown to a bunch of enemies in full melee with your allies, those auto targeting bolts of light could be much more useful than a fireball or a single target cantrip.


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Rysky wrote:
Neo2151 wrote:

How relevant are those points though? Do you MM an enemy spellcaster or do you Dispel?

How often are you facing off against incorporeal opponents? At very low levels it can be a huge deal, but you'll rarely see them at very low levels because of the high chance of TPK. At higher levels, there are better options available.
An archer hits at a good range too and has a much better outcome even considering miss chance.
Smart tactics/placement means you never really have to worry about AoEing your allies anyway.

I know in my personal gaming experience, I've always been happy to have a CL9 MM wand available for the rare incorporeal foe, but I've never ever wanted to prepare it. Ever. There's always a better spell for the slot.

1) I have completely shut down an enemy spellcaster by Readying to MM them when they tried to cast.

2.a) Enough to know MM comes in handy against them.
2.b) Uh, Shadows are Incorporeal and they're low CR.
2.c) Yes, at higher levels I have higher level spells, MM is a 1st level spell. That you can get at 1st level. it also stays useful throughout the game.
3) Well no, specifically because of miss chance. MM is a sure thing. I'm sure the Archer would rather Full Attack as well.
4) That's an assumption. Fights aren't neat and orderly.

Also, if you didn't think Magic Missile was worth preparing before at higher levels but thought it was worth keeping handy as a consumable, why are you expecting that to change now? Because you CAN up cast it? Well, that doesn't mean you should instead or just using a 9th level spell. Keep it ready as a consumable and call it a day.

Seriously folks, we have seen that equal level AoE stuff hits as hard or harder than magic missile on a normal fail, and much harder on a crit fail. Mark has promised us that single target blasts hit harder than AoE blasts, or carry riders, or both. You will have options to blast single targets plenty hard.

That damage will not and should not come from things like magic missile or AoE spells. If it does, there's no reason for single target blasts to exist.


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TeCoolMage wrote:
At first I read the part about school powers and thought there was a list you can choose from until I noticed it said "take a look at the nifty power you can pick up" which was pretty disappointing. Still, I'm really hoping PF 2e will be more flexible with its wizards than 5e.

After reading this, I realized that there isn't really a mention about how many school powers we might have access to, other than saying there is a series of feats that can be taken after 8th level (though I thought the goal of PF2 was to get away from feat chains?).

Please, please tell me that specialists are going to have access to more than just 2-3 powers and will actually have options to select between within their school.

I know the biggest problem with PF1 Wizards in my group was that while they were mechanically powerful, they were also rather boring. Other 9th level casters had interesting features in addition to spellcasting (sorcerer bloodlines, witch hexes/patron, arcanist exploits) while wizards... didn't. Sure they had specialty school powers, but they didn't get many and most weren't all that notable. Even the arcane bond was often forgettable as players would just pick an amulet or ring to avoid the drawback and only bring it up in the rare cases they didn't already have a scroll/wand/open spell slot to solve a problem. Having more options/advancement involving arcane bonds & speciality schools would go a long way to help make the wizard feel more unique/interesting rather than just "they do spells the best."

And as a side note. Considering how iconic it is for a wizard to be carrying a staff (such as the picture above), is there going to be any thought in giving wizards more mechanics that actually make doing so worth it? I know in PF1, magical staffs were prohibitively expensive for most characters and picking a staff as an arcane bond was basically mechanically inferior to having a ring or amulet that didn't take up a character's hands and couldn't be easily disarmed/stolen. So there really wasn't much point in carrying a staff for most wizards. Even a small change like saying that a wizard treats wielding a staff as if they had a free hand for somatic components would be a welcome thematic addition.


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At 1st level, a single magic missile hits as hard as a dagger wielded by someone with Str 12 or 13, but it has a range of 120ft cannot miss. If you "full attack" with magic missile, you don't suffer the iterative attack penalties, and instead keep automatically hitting.

Cast from a 9th-level slot, the magic missiles you get from a single casting action are equivalent to a +4 dagger wielded by someone with Str 20 or 21, but still cannot miss, even if you "full attack" with it.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Charon Onozuka wrote:


(though I thought the goal of PF2 was to get away from feat chains?).

Just to clarify for you. They are getting rid of unrelated Feat Chains. Like needing Combat Expertise to take better combat manouvres, despite them having nothing to do with each other. So a necromancy power feat chain where the powers are related and build on each other is perfectly fine.


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Charon Onozuka wrote:
TeCoolMage wrote:
At first I read the part about school powers and thought there was a list you can choose from until I noticed it said "take a look at the nifty power you can pick up" which was pretty disappointing. Still, I'm really hoping PF 2e will be more flexible with its wizards than 5e.

After reading this, I realized that there isn't really a mention about how many school powers we might have access to, other than saying there is a series of feats that can be taken after 8th level (though I thought the goal of PF2 was to get away from feat chains?).

Please, please tell me that specialists are going to have access to more than just 2-3 powers and will actually have options to select between within their school.

I know the biggest problem with PF1 Wizards in my group was that while they were mechanically powerful, they were also rather boring. Other 9th level casters had interesting features in addition to spellcasting (sorcerer bloodlines, witch hexes/patron, arcanist exploits) while wizards... didn't. Sure they had specialty school powers, but they didn't get many and most weren't all that notable. Even the arcane bond was often forgettable as players would just pick an amulet or ring to avoid the drawback and only bring it up in the rare cases they didn't already have a scroll/wand/open spell slot to solve a problem. Having more options/advancement involving arcane bonds & speciality schools would go a long way to help make the wizard feel more unique/interesting rather than just "they do spells the best."

And as a side note. Considering how iconic it is for a wizard to be carrying a staff (such as the picture above), is there going to be any thought in giving wizards more mechanics that actually make doing so worth it? I know in PF1, magical staffs were prohibitively expensive for most characters and picking a staff as an arcane bond was basically mechanically inferior to having a ring or amulet that didn't take up a character's hands and couldn't be easily disarmed/stolen. So...

While I don't know what the costs will be, I think it is safe to assume staffs will function much differently in PF2 and that pricing will change in response. I'm almost certain staffs will now use Resonance instead of charges, and I'm pretty sure quarter staffs are being made into one handed weapks specifically so they are more appealing to casters.


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It is interesting how much weaker they are making the wizards at higher levels. There is a CMD myth. I think we should make the martial types as weak as casters at lower levels.

let's see, they can only make 3 attacks per day with their weapon, then they become fatigued and can only do 1d3 dam (no STR mod) after that. That will level the playing field.

I like playing casters and I get that some people like playing martials. The CMD is a myth. Most of my significant opponents have SR. casting blasting spells is a last resort for me. I have done it and it is usually ineffective.

Helping the martials always works.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

We still have no evidence that casters are over all weaker at any level. Until we see that Cantrips rules we will not know.

As a system optimist I'm hoping the end result will be: Casters nova potential is slightly reduced but their consistency over time is improved.


Malk_Content wrote:
We still have no evidence that casters are over all weaker at any level. *** Casters nova potential is slightly reduced but their consistency over time is improved.

But we have confirmation from Paizo in several discussions that the PF1 full caster was too good. Paizo openly acknowledged it and that it is something they were going to try and correct in 2e.

That means there will have to be some reduction in either efficacy and/or agency that is non-trivial and manifest itself in actual game play. If four martials can't cover every contingency, then neither should four casters (and i don't mean all with the same class and focus)

In a single-player game, it makes sense that every class can solve every problem in some way. That is counter-productive for a game that was predicated on having multiple adventurers that fulfilled different functional roles.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
edduardco wrote:
Xenocrat wrote:

[Paizo Headquarters]

Developer A: Wow, 600+ plus posts on the Wizard blog so far. I guess they must be really mad about all the nerfs to the number of spells, arcane bond/focus, and weakened school powers, huh?

Developer B: Actually, they're mad that Magic Missile isn't going to be as good as Wail of the Banshee or Meteor Swarm when put in a 9th level slot.

Developer A: Wow, I did NOT see that coming.

I think people is still on the fence waiting to see Cantrips and Rituals before complaining on spells per day nerf, I'm at least.

I have decided that that is a lost cause until we get more information.

Low levels lot losing most of their importance relatively fast as the only scaling effect of the spell memorized in them is an increasing DC/to hit, but no increase utility (unless there are big surprises in the not jet published spells) and 4 cantrips mean we will end with maybe 10-12 usable "spells" after a few levels and several spell slot with one shot effects that last a short time or do small for our character level. Maybe rituals will cover for that, maybe not.

Considering that the cantrips will be: Shield, damage cantrip, Detect magic and another cantrip I see a lot of copy/paste builds.
The arcane focus will not help much as it only allow us to repeat a memorized spell. It is mostly a PF1 pearl of power.

Maybe wizards had too much narrative power, but now it seem that they will end becoming the equivalent of a staff of PF1, a container for a few spells, always the same.

Maybe I am pessimist, but as one that like to use the spells in a non orthodox way, having a reduced selection of level adequate spells seem a big drawback.

But currently it seem pointless to argue about that. We will see what the play testing manual say.

Liberty's Edge

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Charon Onozuka wrote:
TeCoolMage wrote:
At first I read the part about school powers and thought there was a list you can choose from until I noticed it said "take a look at the nifty power you can pick up" which was pretty disappointing. Still, I'm really hoping PF 2e will be more flexible with its wizards than 5e.

After reading this, I realized that there isn't really a mention about how many school powers we might have access to, other than saying there is a series of feats that can be taken after 8th level (though I thought the goal of PF2 was to get away from feat chains?).

Based on the cleric domains, there will be higher level abilities, but they will cost a feat.


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Malk_Content wrote:

We still have no evidence that casters are over all weaker at any level. Until we see that Cantrips rules we will not know.

As a system optimist I'm hoping the end result will be: Casters nova potential is slightly reduced but their consistency over time is improved.

No amount of perpetual cantrip damage will replace all the spell slots that are no longer available for utility and battlefield control.


Xenocrat wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:

We still have no evidence that casters are over all weaker at any level. Until we see that Cantrips rules we will not know.

As a system optimist I'm hoping the end result will be: Casters nova potential is slightly reduced but their consistency over time is improved.

No amount of perpetual cantrip damage will replace all the spell slots that are no longer available for utility and battlefield control.

Spell feats that use and increase the wizard's spell point pool might, though. Hell, maybe you can get a new one every other level. Diviner's sight seems okay already and gives your Divination wizard something to do, especially if your party uses tactics optimized around skill feats or whatever.


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PF1 Wizards have a maximum of four spells per level per day before ability modifiers and they had to work up to that four.

PF2 wizards have four spells per level per day without any bonus for ability score, but also cantrips, rituals, and powers to take up the slack and they seem to get all four spells per day as soon as they get their new spell level.

They are only missing out on a scant few slots per level that they probably don't even need anymore.

I'm the first one to say that people should be free to criticize and offer alternatives to any preview we might not care for, but from where I'm standing I'll take a PF2 wizard over a PF1 wizard until the PDF drops and proves me wrong.


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Diego Rossi wrote:
edduardco wrote:
Xenocrat wrote:

[Paizo Headquarters]

Developer A: Wow, 600+ plus posts on the Wizard blog so far. I guess they must be really mad about all the nerfs to the number of spells, arcane bond/focus, and weakened school powers, huh?

Developer B: Actually, they're mad that Magic Missile isn't going to be as good as Wail of the Banshee or Meteor Swarm when put in a 9th level slot.

Developer A: Wow, I did NOT see that coming.

I think people is still on the fence waiting to see Cantrips and Rituals before complaining on spells per day nerf, I'm at least.

I have decided that that is a lost cause until we get more information.

Low levels lot losing most of their importance relatively fast as the only scaling effect of the spell memorized in them is an increasing DC/to hit, but no increase utility (unless there are big surprises in the not jet published spells) and 4 cantrips mean we will end with maybe 10-12 usable "spells" after a few levels and several spell slot with one shot effects that last a short time or do small for our character level. Maybe rituals will cover for that, maybe not.

Considering that the cantrips will be: Shield, damage cantrip, Detect magic and another cantrip I see a lot of copy/paste builds.
The arcane focus will not help much as it only allow us to repeat a memorized spell. It is mostly a PF1 pearl of power.

Maybe wizards had too much narrative power, but now it seem that they will end becoming the equivalent of a staff of PF1, a container for a few spells, always the same.

Maybe I am pessimist, but as one that like to use the spells in a non orthodox way, having a reduced selection of level adequate spells seem a big drawback.

But currently it seem pointless to argue about that. We will see what the play testing manual say.

Low levels absolutely lose their power pretty fast and I am not sure if I care for that aesthetically. For balance, I think things will generally work as follows (past around level 7/9):

A wizard's most powerful abilities will be their spells in their highest level spell slots and maybe their second highest level spell slots. These are their real novas. With their focus/specialization, they are gonna have 3 to 5 uses a day of their highest level spells
(and 4ish uses of spells L-1). That is not bad~

A wizard's medium tier of abilities will be the spells they get that use their spell points. These have limited uses but you can afford to throw them around a bit. Evocation, conjuration, and necromancy are probably all gonna get some direct damage from here and those will probably scale better than cantrips.

A wizard's cantrips will take the place of their throwaway low level damage/control spells. You will generally stop readying attack spells in your low level slots and instead use those slots for general purpose utility.

I feel like this works just fine for me.


Stone Dog wrote:

PF1 Wizards have a maximum of four spells per level per day before ability modifiers and they had to work up to that four.

PF2 wizards have four spells per level per day without any bonus for ability score, but also cantrips, rituals, and powers to take up the slack and they seem to get all four spells per day as soon as they get their new spell level.

They are only missing out on a scant few slots per level that they probably don't even need anymore.

I'm the first one to say that people should be free to criticize and offer alternatives to any preview we might not care for, but from where I'm standing I'll take a PF2 wizard over a PF1 wizard until the PDF drops and proves me wrong.

Well, for the wizard chassis itself, you seem correct. But a significant consideration will be how good the spells themselves are.

Not that I'm worried about that. Most of the concern I've seen thus far has been pretty overblown.


Yes, the number and quality of ritual utility spells will matter a lot.


Diego Rossi wrote:
Charon Onozuka wrote:
TeCoolMage wrote:
At first I read the part about school powers and thought there was a list you can choose from until I noticed it said "take a look at the nifty power you can pick up" which was pretty disappointing. Still, I'm really hoping PF 2e will be more flexible with its wizards than 5e.

After reading this, I realized that there isn't really a mention about how many school powers we might have access to, other than saying there is a series of feats that can be taken after 8th level (though I thought the goal of PF2 was to get away from feat chains?).

Based on the cleric domains, there will be higher level abilities, but they will cost a feat.

That's part of my concern actually. In PF1, wizard schools and cleric domains got 1-2 abilities at first level and then one advanced ability around levels 6-8. In the cleric post, the language on domains seemed to imply that there was only a single advanced power for each domain, similar to PF1.

My concern isn't that the advanced abilities will cost a class feat. My concern is that each school will only have 2-3 unique abilities associated with it, which makes the decision to specialize in one school over another less impactful and interesting.


Totally digging the non-ability score modifier adding to spell-slots action, I house-ruled that out long ago. 30+ spells a "day" is plenty (especially not counting cantrips).


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Xenocrat wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:

We still have no evidence that casters are over all weaker at any level. Until we see that Cantrips rules we will not know.

As a system optimist I'm hoping the end result will be: Casters nova potential is slightly reduced but their consistency over time is improved.

No amount of perpetual cantrip damage will replace all the spell slots that are no longer available for utility and battlefield control.

As a player of wizards, sorcerers, and arcanists in PF1, I'm perfectly fine with this. Having to make a choice between utility and offense is part of the strategic element of a prep-caster. I actually feel a bit guilty when I pull out a dozen scrolls full of detects, knocks, stone shapes, etc. and steal the thunder from half the people at the table. Heck, I do it as a Cleric and Oracle, too, with invisibility purges, plane shifts, remove (condition) spells, etc. They're so cheap, it's almost criminal not to.

Besides, assuming scroll prep feats are still a thing, it's not really a loss at all, and there's no reason to think they aren't in some fashion.

You think that's tough? Try D&D5 where the spells you prep are ALL you get -- there aren't any scroll, potion, or wand-crafting feats, and you have to plan carefully not to leave yourself a one-trick pony offensively while taking enough utility.


Oh, that reminds me, I am sure they'll get rid of the stalled spell-level access for the Sorcerer.
Talk about a kick to the nuts to test out a non-Vancian-Int-based caster.


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I am Gumby wrote:

It is interesting how much weaker they are making the wizards at higher levels. There is a CMD myth. I think we should make the martial types as weak as casters at lower levels.

let's see, they can only make 3 attacks per day with their weapon, then they become fatigued and can only do 1d3 dam (no STR mod) after that. That will level the playing field.

I like playing casters and I get that some people like playing martials. The CMD is a myth. Most of my significant opponents have SR. casting blasting spells is a last resort for me. I have done it and it is usually ineffective.

Helping the martials always works.

In PF1, Some of the stronger spells don't even give opportunities for saves, or ignore spell resistance, heck, even Black Tentacles doesn't target saves at all, but combat maneuver defense (plus it scales pretty strongly too, and a +4 bonus due to tentacle size).

CMD isn't just about combat ability either, but out-of-combat utility as well. Say you have a rogue who is skilled at picking locks, sneaking around, and talking his way around problems. However, a lot of skills are outperformed by magic. Picking locks can be accomplished by a knock without the need of a skill check, same can be said invisibility(or something cheaper, like camouflage) and stealth. Even charm person (or a dominate spell) can take care of social problems without much investment aside from a spellslot. Escape and mobility wise, a wizard is way better, with tricks like fly, teleport, dimension door, and so on. Although I don't think iconic spells like flight and invisibility should be removed, a wizard is a better rogue than the rogue is, and that is on top of being able to swap out all of your spells every morning for more offense or different utility, such as wall creation for building town defenses. With scroll and wand creation and the like, you don't even need to commit spell slots for some of these.

While druids and clerics don't have as vast a spell pool as a wizard, they get some tricks of their own, and can even function on the front lines, or in the druid's case, have a pet that can do that too. There's also summons to help with front-lining.

And meanwhile, many "pure" martials are there just for dishing damage the tanking, but not much else, especially not outside of combat. It is possible for these martials to take a controller kind of role, and although maneuvers aren't limited in resources, you have to commit really heavily to that play-style those, and most classes can't switch out feats like a prepared spell-caster can swap spells, and those maneuvers often scale worse than spells. I think skills need a buff to compete better so they don't end up obsolete to spells, and I think pure martials need to be more skilled in general.


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I'm not sure I buy the whole "low level spells lose their effect too fast now" issue. It's not like Command or Sleep were useful for a whole Adventure Path either, you know.

Imho, it seems the issue is more that the spells that remain relevant are a different kind of spells than before. Maybe a lvl 15 Magus will not keep spamming Shocking Grasp, but now we can use for longer other spells like Color Spray for example.

It looks like the design goal is to make spells more useful the very moment you get them (for example, a lvl 1 wizard will do much more damage with a magic missile in PF2 than he would in PF1, where he was able to do just 1d4+1), but those spells do not autoscale to avoid the quadratic wizard problem. I think it's a fair trade off: wizards become a bit better at the begining, when they suck, and a bit worse in the long run, where they are OP. It seems a good balanced design goal to me.

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