Ranger Class Preview

Monday, July 2, 2018

Rangers have a long tradition in heroic adventure. Whether they're portrayed as lone striders keeping the edges of the wilderness free of the threats that lurch forth from the world's shadows, as hunters tracking down fugitives or beasts, or as skilled archers serving as a scouting force for a local lord or group of village elders, rangers have a special place in our fantastical imagination.

For the Pathfinder Playtest, we decided to cleave closer to the core principles of the ranger—a rough and tumble warrior in the wild, possibly of the wild himself. Because of this, the most significant change we made to the class was that it no longer has spellcasting ability, at least as a default. Of course, this doesn't mean we have to abandon this aspect of the Pathfinder First Edition ranger forever. Because of the way classes are now structured, it would be easy to create a spellcasting build of the ranger later using Spell Points (like the paladin), but for the Playtest, we are trying out a a spell-less ranger.

But enough of what the ranger doesn't have. Let's take a look at what he does.

Ranger Features

First and foremost, the ranger is a hunter. In Pathfinder First Edition, you picked creature types or subtypes that you were skilled at hunting. There are few things more frustrating than playing a ranger who rarely—or worst of all, never—encounters their favored enemies. It also led to some players who tended to play in more human-centric campaigns picking the human subtype, even if their backgrounds may have pointed to better choices for favored enemies.

This time we made the ranger hunting ability a bit more flexible, based on some popular ideas from the guide archetype and the slayer's studied target. At 1st level, rangers gain the Hunt Target feature.

[[A]] Hunt Target

Ranger

Requirements You can see or hear the target.

You designate a single creature within 100 feet as your target and focus your attacks against that creature. While hunting that creature, you gain benefits for focusing your attacks. As long as all your attacks in a round are against the target you're hunting, the multiple attack penalty you take on the second attack is -4 (-3 with an agile weapon) instead of -5, and -8 (-6 with an agile weapon) instead of -10 on the third and any further attacks in the round. You also ignore the penalty for making ranged attacks against the target you're hunting within your second range increment. You also gain a +2 circumstance bonus to Perception checks when you Seek your target and a +2 circumstance bonus to Survival checks when you Track your target.

You can have only one creature designated as the target of your hunt at a time. If you use Hunt Target against a creature when you already have a creature designated, the prior creature loses the designation and the new target gains the designation. In any case, this designation lasts until your next daily preparation.

Illustration by Wayne Reynolds

There are many class feats and some higher-level abilities that augment the ranger's Hunt Target. For example, at 17th level, the masterful hunter feature decreases the ranger's multiple attack penalty to -3 (or -2 with agile weapon) with his second attack and -6 (or -4 with agile weapons) on his third or further attack, and he can ignore the penalty against the target of his hunt in the second or third range increment, assuming that he has at least master proficiency in the weapon he is. Speaking of which, like the fighter, the ranger gains weapon mastery for a group of weapons, though he gains it at 13th level instead of at 3rd level like the fighter. At 19th level, the ranger gains the swift target feature, which allows him to use Hunt Target as a free action triggered before he makes his first Strike each round, so he's never without a target to hunt! The specifics of the Hunt Target ability make the ranger excel at a variety of combat styles, especially his traditional two-weapon fighting (since you can decrease the multiple attack penalty with agile attacks to be incredibly small) and archery (since you eliminate some of the most common ranged increment penalties). Of course, a ranger with a less traditional style, like a greatsword with a reduced multiple attack penalty, works great too!

Other class features allow the ranger to stalk and avoid his foes. At 5th level, he gains trackless step. At 7th level, he gains evasion (followed by improved evasion at 15th level). He gains nature's edge at 9th level, which allows him to treat enemies in natural difficult terrain or in difficult terrain resulting from a snare (more on snares later!) as flat-footed. Come 11th level, he gains the wild stride feature, which allows him to ignore or minimize the effects of difficult terrain.

Ranger Feats

Class feats, of course, determine the flavor of individuals within a class, and the ranger is no different. Specific ranger feats allow him to gain an animal companion at the same progression as a druid's, though potentially with special benefits that only a ranger can obtain. Other feats will enable him to further focus on his weapon choice, including a whole string of feats that allow him to specialize in two-weapon fighting.

Some fun feats allow the ranger to use his knowledge and senses to aid his allies as well as himself. Here are a couple of my favorites.

Monster Hunter Feat 1

Ranger

When you critically succeed to identify a target you're hunting with Recall Knowledge, you (and your allies, if you tell them) gain a +1 circumstance bonus to your next attack roll against it, but not against other creatures of that species. The creature is bolstered.

[[F]] Scout's Warning Feat 4

Ranger

Trigger You are about to roll Perception for initiative.

You audibly or visually warn your allies of danger, granting them a +1 circumstance bonus to their initiative rolls.

Harkening back to the hunter's bond class feature in Pathfinder First Edition, these feats allow the ranger to support the rest of the group with increased flexibility in how he chooses to do so, and these are just a few. The ranger can expand on Monster Hunter to grant even more benefits with a successful Recall Knowledge and even share the benefits of Hunt Target with other PCs (pretty much any martial class will love this benefit). And while flanking-savvy fighters might be a rogue's traditional best friend, the 12th-level Distracting Shot feat allows the ranger who hits a target with two ranged attacks in the same turn to leave that critter flat-footed until the start of the ranger's next turn. This helps fast rogues bring the pain quickly and farther away from more heavily armored support.

Another group of feats allows you to create snares. (Told you I'd get to that!)

Snares

Like alchemy, the ability to create snares is granted by a general feat (Snare Crafting). And like alchemists, rangers have the potential to lift general snare crafting to greater heights.

What are snares? Well, they're small portable hazards, very similar to traps, which can be set up in a short period of time (usually 1 minute). While it's unlikely that you will set up a snare in the midst of combat, they are perfect tools to arrange a battleground to your advantage. For instance, remember the nature's edge class feature that allows you to treat enemies in difficult terrain as flat-footed? Here's the most basic snare that creates difficult terrain.

Slowing Snare Snare 1

Consumable, Mechanical, Snare, Trap

Price 2 gp

A square with this snare becomes difficult terrain when the first creature enters it, and then it is destroyed.

Other snares set off alarms, trip, or deal damage to those entering the area of a snare. Grab some alchemical items, and you can deal even more damage with a snare.

Freezing Snare Snare 8

Cold, Consumable, Mechanical, Snare, Trap

Price 50 gp

You set a trio of liquid ice bombs to explode in unison when a creature enters the freezing snare's square. The target must attempt a DC 22 Reflexsave.

Success The target takes 1d8 cold damage.

Critical Success The target is unaffected.

Failure The target takes 3d8 cold damage and is hampered 10 until the end of its next turn.

Critical Failure The target takes 6d8 cold damage and is hampered 10 until the end of its next turn.

Craft Requirements three vials of liquid ice

Ranger feats that deal with snares allow you to learn more of them as your Crafting rank increases, lets you set them up faster (even in the middle of combat), and increases snares' DCs to match your class DC. Always make sure that your allies know where you hid your snares, or no bonus to attack rolls or initiative that you grant them will make up for the damage and humiliation you might cause.

Stephen Radney-MacFarland
Senior Designer

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Tags: Harsk Pathfinder Playtest Rangers Wayne Reynolds
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I’m surprised at the removal of spellcasting in the class. I wonder what how different is it from Fighter without it. A potential animal companion, possibility to focus on snares, and some party buff while being less good at fighting?

I liked the idea that the ranger was sort of like in communion with his environment. Apparently, not every one agrees ; that’s fine. If the class changes this way, I expect that not a single base ability is based on magic, but more on mundane abilities.

Maybe better than spellcasting, some way to have some spell-like abilities as another focus might be more interesting ; similar in a way to the ki ability of the monk.


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Deadmanwalking wrote:
Roswynn wrote:

But I wasn't arguing at all. I'm not angry or "salty"... I was just imagining how I'd like things to go - since we still are getting only tidbits of classes, you know, as opposed to knowing how the whole new edition works. I'm really just all wrapped up in what I'd like classes to be like.

As for waiting to see how it works before arguing... I rarely argue *against* the previews (I actually just don't - I'm really loving most of it), but you do know everyone already has an opinion and is dead set on prolongedly defending it, sometimes even coming to (metaphorical) blows over it. It's the edition wars, Deadmanwalking... I'm sorry and I think you really don't enjoy it (I sure don't) but even if I abstain from it, it's nonetheless inevitable (like a marut... there should be an inevitable of edition wars, now that I think about it...).

Nah, I'm not upset and I didn't really think anyone else was upset either. I just feel like having actual arguments about how tracking should work when we don't even know how it's going to work is not super productive.

It wasn't an argument about how tracking should work, and it was productive for me; I enjoyed hearing people's views on tracking, and party involvement. People can have discussions about things you do not find personally find super-productive. Also, when talking about PF2, it is perfectly legit to bring up previous edition takes, it's not like we are forbidden from making comparisons and what-have-you.


勝20100 wrote:

I’m surprised at the removal of spellcasting in the class. I wonder what how different is it from Fighter without it. A potential animal companion, possibility to focus on snares, and some party buff while being less good at fighting?

I liked the idea that the ranger was sort of like in communion with his environment. Apparently, not every one agrees ; that’s fine. If the class changes this way, I expect that not a single base ability is based on magic, but more on mundane abilities.

Maybe better than spellcasting, some way to have some spell-like abilities as another focus might be more interesting ; similar in a way to the ki ability of the monk.

This is conjecture mind you but

I think they might still have some spell like-stuff using skills. Like I think the new knowledge arcane skill will allow you to do some ooc ritual type stuff so I expect other knowledge skills like nature might also have something similar. Kind of reaching I think but that is the impression I've gotten. Also maybe they could add a few class feats later or an archetype to give ranger some drood spells.


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Vid's Inner Ninja wrote:

Lich's^^^^ don't get upset they find logical proof that they are correct and post it in response!

edit: Ninja'ed but we all know the arrows were meant for deadman.

I just checked (Undead Revisited) and it appears liches do get upset and generally feel emotion, although I agree this particular lich doesn't, and is more of an incorruptible force of reason and logic... maybe the lich facade is just an illusion and they're actually an inevitable! XD

(I don't know why I'm so fixated on inevitables today, but they're just really cool).

I also read that Wayne Reynolds and the Paizo crew are working on new, distinct appearances for the various monsters/ancestries (everyone's already seen those gnomes with their beautiful new caps, right? I love them) and also unique social and material cultures to make them stand out from similar creatures in other games/media... I wonder if and how liches will change (and perhaps become as rational as Deadmanwalking as a rule XD ).

But I'm still threadjacking - sorry guys, just excited for the new edition ;)

(More seriously, I think Chest isn't wrong... but I don't have a horse in this race, said my piece, just waiting for today's blog post rather contentedly :) And btw today is the 6th of July, hope you all had a good Independence Day week of celebrations!)


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Vidmaster7 wrote:

This is conjecture mind you but

I think they might still have some spell like-stuff using skills. Like I think the new knowledge arcane skill will allow you to do some ooc ritual type stuff so I expect other knowledge skills like nature might also have something similar. Kind of reaching I think but that is the impression I've gotten. Also maybe they could add a few class feats later or an archetype to give ranger some drood spells.

Okay, some days ago Mark said... wait, let me make sure... Hah!

Mark Seifter wrote:
Rangers who focus on raising Nature should be equally capable at picking up primal rituals as are druids, even though the druid is probably a bit better at pulling them off due to Wisdom.

SOOOOO it appears you can grab primal rituals either as a ranger or as a "drood" ;D (or probably as... anyone!), and they work on Wisdom and Nature. I'd really like to know more about rituals, I love them and want them to be a big feature of my games!


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Cool thanks for looking it up. Good to know. Yeah I'm interested in ritual too.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I don't really see the term "hunter" being exclusionary of tracking, to me they're the same thing and I've used them as such. If you're hunting something, you're tracking it, and vice versa.

Rangers track, but it's not all they do, especially with Favored Enemy in 3rd on (couldn't they make arrows of slaying as well in earlier editions?).


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Rysky wrote:

I don't really see the term "hunter" being exclusionary of tracking, to me they're the same thing and I've used them as such. If you're hunting something, you're tracking it, and vice versa.

Rangers track, but it's not all they do, especially with Favored Enemy in 3rd on (couldn't they make arrows of slaying as well in earlier editions?).

Appears it was the arcane archer, at 10th level.

You're welcome Vidmaster!


勝20100 wrote:

I’m surprised at the removal of spellcasting in the class. I wonder what how different is it from Fighter without it. A potential animal companion, possibility to focus on snares, and some party buff while being less good at fighting?

I liked the idea that the ranger was sort of like in communion with his environment. Apparently, not every one agrees ; that’s fine. If the class changes this way, I expect that not a single base ability is based on magic, but more on mundane abilities.

Maybe better than spellcasting, some way to have some spell-like abilities as another focus might be more interesting ; similar in a way to the ki ability of the monk.

I would assume they'd have access to certain feats that are typically fighter, rogue and druid specific feats allowing them to fill their hybrid role without multiclassing. Whether or not that makes them distinct enough to compare to a druid that multiclassed to fighter or rogue will be the real test.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
Roswynn wrote:
Oh, also, of course, Geralt of Rivia, and Aloy from HZD, and... really guys, tracking and investigation can be great in an adventure. And if you don't have Geralt and Aloy, you use divination, if necessary hire a mage or scout, use some magic item, just do what you can without expecting awesome results, whatever - a well-written adventure and a good GM let these kind of characters thrive, and let parties without them carry on at some kind of disadvantage ("Wait, there's more than one?... Dammit").

I feel like it's worth pointing out that those are characters from single-player games, whereas Pathfinder is a cooperative storytelling game. So as much fun as one player might be having with their awesome thing that they do, if the rest of the table isn't able to be involved it's something I'm going to want to minimize in my games.

If we're going to flesh out, expand, or otherwise enhance subsystems they should either be down-time appropriate, or things that everybody can be involved in. Like I already avoid "there's a spell that does this" sorts of things, so I don't want to do "the rogue rolls to handle the trap" or "the ranger rolls to track the monster" when I could do something that involves the whole party instead.

Tracking doesn't have to be a minigame, though. Just 1 dice roll and the GM gives information based on how good that one dice was and if there were some feats that improve it or whatever. Should just be a few seconds. No different than when someone uses perception or knowledge and already better than when someone uses diplomacy as far as "pausing" the other characters.

EDIT: I also liked some of the posts above that said how you can continue the adventure while failing survival or if nobody has the skill. The character still discerns something but leads to a random encounter before reaching intended destination, or the party gets ambushed or misses critical info that makes the next part harder. In essence "punishing" them a bit in a way that it is still fun while rewarding them with more favorable scenarios when they succeed.

And it is in adventure design rather than general skill text, since these effects really avry on a case-by-case basis. Though I guess they could have some generic recommendations. As long as no result is "Party gets lost and has to roll again a while later until it works", it would be fine.


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ChibiNyan wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:

I feel like it's worth pointing out that those are characters from single-player games, whereas Pathfinder is a cooperative storytelling game. So as much fun as one player might be having with their awesome thing that they do, if the rest of the table isn't able to be involved it's something I'm going to want to minimize in my games.

If we're going to flesh out, expand, or otherwise enhance subsystems they should either be down-time appropriate, or things that everybody can be involved in. Like I already avoid "there's a spell that does this" sorts of things, so I don't want to do "the rogue rolls to handle the trap" or "the ranger rolls to track the monster" when I could do something that involves the whole party instead.

Tracking doesn't have to be a minigame, though. Just 1 dice roll and the GM gives information based on how good that one dice was and if there were some feats that improve it or whatever. Should just be a few seconds. No different than when someone uses perception or knowledge and already better than when someone uses diplomacy as far as "pausing" the other characters.

Very true, no minigame necessary. I for one really don't like 4e's skill challenges, for instance - I feel they're counter-intuitive to me, and feel artificial. I'm much more comfortable having my players roleplay their attempts, have them roll with a modifier according to how well they're using their problem-solving skills, and then decide whether it's success, fail, crit or botch in my head, considering a likely DC. For any roll.

Of course when you see your whole party is having a lot of fun you can make it longer and slightly more involved, I guess "minigame" is quite apt a way to put it. For instance, once a friend's PC was trying to outdrink a friendly barbarian in an inn, and both my players were really into it, even the guy who was not directly involved. So I went and made it a sort of contest with status conditions for intoxication and they were essentially drinking one at a time and seeing whether their body resisted the alcohol intake or they ended up throwing up and losing. There were also expendable action points to augment your roll and bonuses according to roleplaying. The other player was very riveted by what was happening and constantly cheered our friend onward and booed the barbarian (and I can assure you this guy *loves* himself some sweet spotlight, although he usually doesn't inappropriately hog it, thankfully).

In the end the player won by the seat of his pants and we congratulated him, the barb shook his hand with pride and the evening went on and was a lot of fun for everyone.

The trick is, I find, not to have the party act as an amorphous blob always acting together in everything they do. I have seen great groups fight over individual shopping trips that slowed down the game too much and left the other players in the cold, and what I think, is, first give your book to the player who wants to buy something and have *them* look for the item's cost and effects, most of the time, instead of pausing to do it yourself, roleplaying npcs and interactions only when interesting and relevant - and secondly, and this is important, if you have multiple players all wanting to buy stuff and do things, downtime or not, do it in small morsels - first one player buys something, then you pass to another player and ask what they're doing, and so on, before getting back to what the first players is doing next. Avoiding parts of the game in which one or more player is just sitting there waiting for someone else do finish their boring stuff, in essence.

That applies to everything in the game - you can always put the action on pause and wander over to another character's actions and roleplaying. It's the same mechanic as initiative, only, outside of combat, it doesn't need to be as codified and stringent - but you do want to move that spotlight often enough, to keep everyone invested and at a high energy level.

It's not as much trying to fit all the party in the spotlight at the same time, as moving it often enough for it to catch everyone, again and again.

So I rambled a bit, but these are my thoughts regarding spotlight. TLDR, it's a necessary part of storytelling, so you try to make it relevant to the whole party and shift it constantly just like it were a fight.

Large groups are very unwieldy, as an aside, while small ones are easier to handle - at least, that's the norm. In large groups individual players have less me-time and more easily grow bored. I think those are the occasions where you need to often pass the ball from a player to another the most, but I absolutely don't claim to know all the tricks - as I said my group is 2 guys, and we mostly like it that way. Still, I don't think tracking must disinvest everyone but the tracker, also considering that everyone can lend a hand, use different ways to divine a way forward, roleplay, and so on.


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I remember having a DM that allowed the ranger to make up some details himself depending on his roll. He give the base details the amount and type, but then the ranger could choose some details as long as he rolled well enough and it was his favorite enemy.

as example.
Tracking raiding party of giants, "according to the placement and weight of these footprints this one giant is absolutely plastered". when we found them there was indeed a drunk one that was given a chance to miss and if he moved his full movement had a chance to fall over.

This probably wouldn't work on all tables, but I liked it. It added some character to the smaller throwaway minions. the best one was when he rolled a natural 20 and turned a pack of dire wolfs into a bunch of bandits wearing shoes with wolf paws on the bottom by saying the spacing was all wrong.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Roswynn wrote:
Vidmaster7 wrote:

This is conjecture mind you but

I think they might still have some spell like-stuff using skills. Like I think the new knowledge arcane skill will allow you to do some ooc ritual type stuff so I expect other knowledge skills like nature might also have something similar. Kind of reaching I think but that is the impression I've gotten. Also maybe they could add a few class feats later or an archetype to give ranger some drood spells.

Okay, some days ago Mark said... wait, let me make sure... Hah!

Mark Seifter wrote:
Rangers who focus on raising Nature should be equally capable at picking up primal rituals as are druids, even though the druid is probably a bit better at pulling them off due to Wisdom.
SOOOOO it appears you can grab primal rituals either as a ranger or as a "drood" ;D (or probably as... anyone!), and they work on Wisdom and Nature. I'd really like to know more about rituals, I love them and want them to be a big feature of my games!

I can be mistaken, but it seems we have 4 lore skills with 4 different sets of rituals: Arcana, Nature, Occult, Religion.

I think that Deadmanwalking can give more details, if needed.

Liberty's Edge

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Diego Rossi wrote:

I can be mistaken, but it seems we have 4 lore skills with 4 different sets of rituals: Arcana, Nature, Occult, Religion.

I think that Deadmanwalking can give more details, if needed.

What you say is correct.

Unfortunately, I actually don't have any more details than that, at least not any I can think of (well, beyond Resurrection and Planar Binding being Rituals). They've been stingy with those in regards to Rituals.


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Minor corrections: Arcana, Nature, Occult, and Religion are not "Lore" skills. They are essentially a couple of the old knowledge skills rolled together with a subset of spellcraft and UMD.

I imagine Diego basically meant they could be used for knowledge checks, not that they were actually Lore. But given Lore is now a distinct set of skills itself, I would like to avoid confusion.

Liberty's Edge

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Captain Morgan wrote:

Minor corrections: Arcana, Nature, Occult, and Religion are not "Lore" skills. They are essentially a couple of the old knowledge skills rolled together with a subset of spellcraft and UMD.

I imagine Diego basically meant they could be used for knowledge checks, not that they were actually Lore. But given Lore is now a distinct set of skills itself, I would like to avoid confusion.

This is true. If we're doing minor corrections, it's also worth noting that the skill is actually 'Occultism' not 'Occult'.


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"no longer has the spellcasting ability"

F&%*Yeah.Gif

I've always hated the Core Ranger in PF1st, because spellcasting didn't fit the theme of "rough and tumble mountain guide", and always opted to play the Spell-less variant from Kobold Press.

I have to admit, I was a bit skeptical, and not all that excited to read this Class entry. But after that bit of text, you have my full and undivided attention!


So, assuming composite longbow and master proficiency, I can shoot a single target at up to 220ft, or 330ft by 17th level with “Hunt Target”? And, come 11th level, I can basically sprint through difficult terrain, and gain an advantage over targets that don’t have similar abilities?
Okay. Nothing is ever escaping a mid-high level ranger. Period.
Freezing Snare Question: The entry lists a price of 50gp, and 3 vials of Liquid Ice (40gp/per in PF1st), for a total of 170g. Am I reading this correctly? Seems pretty expensive for a one-time-use snare.


UlrichVonLichtenstein wrote:

So, assuming composite longbow and master proficiency, I can shoot a single target at up to 220ft, or 330ft by 17th level with “Hunt Target”? And, come 11th level, I can basically sprint through difficult terrain, and gain an advantage over targets that don’t have similar abilities?

Okay. Nothing is ever escaping a mid-high level ranger. Period.
Freezing Snare Question: The entry lists a price of 50gp, and 3 vials of Liquid Ice (40gp/per in PF1st), for a total of 170g. Am I reading this correctly? Seems pretty expensive for a one-time-use snare.

Prices have been deflated in PF2. So liquid ice that cost 40 GP in PF1 may cost 4 GP in PF2.

EDIT: so the freezing snare is about as expensive as a fly potion in PF1?


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whew wrote:
UlrichVonLichtenstein wrote:

So, assuming composite longbow and master proficiency, I can shoot a single target at up to 220ft, or 330ft by 17th level with “Hunt Target”? And, come 11th level, I can basically sprint through difficult terrain, and gain an advantage over targets that don’t have similar abilities?

Okay. Nothing is ever escaping a mid-high level ranger. Period.
Freezing Snare Question: The entry lists a price of 50gp, and 3 vials of Liquid Ice (40gp/per in PF1st), for a total of 170g. Am I reading this correctly? Seems pretty expensive for a one-time-use snare.

Prices have been deflated in PF2. So liquid ice that cost 40 GP in PF1 may cost 4 GP in PF2.

This isn't really price deflation. This is simply shifting the decimal point over for income AND expenses. A silver standard makes for slightly more rational world building, but relatively speaking, costs are essentially the same.

If, for example, an NPC mason earned an average of 2gp and 5 sp per day, and his meals and other costs were roughly 2 gp, the fact that in PF2 he'd be earning 2sp and 5cp, and spending 2 sp doesn't actually change his situation. It just sounds better if he's tossing 17 or so silver around a week, rather than 17 gold.

The Exchange

Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

With stealth and perception being iniative rolls I wouldn't be surprised if a critical success on initiative is what determines a surprise round.


GeneticDrift wrote:
With stealth and perception being iniative rolls I wouldn't be surprised if a critical success on initiative is what determines a surprise round.

I also wouldn't be surprised if the ranger has a couple of feats that trigger on a critical success for iniative.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Deadmanwalking wrote:
Captain Morgan wrote:

Minor corrections: Arcana, Nature, Occult, and Religion are not "Lore" skills. They are essentially a couple of the old knowledge skills rolled together with a subset of spellcraft and UMD.

I imagine Diego basically meant they could be used for knowledge checks, not that they were actually Lore. But given Lore is now a distinct set of skills itself, I would like to avoid confusion.

This is true. If we're doing minor corrections, it's also worth noting that the skill is actually 'Occultism' not 'Occult'.

I thought the name was "Lore (Arcana)", etc. But checking the blog it is only Arcana (and so on).


Jinjifra wrote:
GeneticDrift wrote:
With stealth and perception being iniative rolls I wouldn't be surprised if a critical success on initiative is what determines a surprise round.
I also wouldn't be surprised if the ranger has a couple of feats that trigger on a critical success for iniative.

Not sure how that would work as there's no target number or DC.

Ranger rolls a 23, opponent rolls a 12.
Seems simple, but the surprise round also functions before her allies who rolled 14+, which seems awkward. And toss in another baddie at 14+ and now the Ranger has a surprise round, but only vs. the 12-init enemy?
Or maybe there's even a baddie at 24, but he doesn't get a surprise round because all the PCs rolled 15+, but the Ranger does because there's an enemy who rolled low?
Making this work would be a labor with little reward.

I think any bonuses from beating an opponent's initiative by 10+ will have to be opponent specific, not a boost the Ranger can apply against other opponents too. It would be neat to have something like that, like say getting Hunt Target as a free action vs. such foes.

Liberty's Edge

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Diego Rossi wrote:
I thought the name was "Lore (Arcana)", etc. But checking the blog it is only Arcana (and so on).

Yeah, Lore is the generic, freeform, catchall Skill for specialized knowledges. The ones that are big and important enough to cover a whole kind of magic are full-blown non-Lore skills.


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Isn't Lore also effectively a replacement for "Profession" too? i.e. if you wanted your character to be able to earn a living as a baker you would put "Lore (Baking)" to represent all the things you know about yeasts and fondant and roll that both to earn a living baking and also in case there is a murder mystery at a fancy party and someone suspects the cake was poisoned a la "if I was going to use a cake to poison a specific person, the best place to do it would be..."

Liberty's Edge

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PossibleCabbage wrote:
Isn't Lore also effectively a replacement for "Profession" too? i.e. if you wanted your character to be able to earn a living as a baker you would put "Lore (Baking)" to represent all the things you know about yeasts and fondant and roll that both to earn a living baking and also in case there is a murder mystery at a fancy party and someone suspects the cake was poisoned a la "if I was going to use a cake to poison a specific person, the best place to do it would be..."

This is entirely correct. I'd just call all that 'specialized knowledge'. :)


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I think I will like the "new Ranger". Spellcasting has felt like a legacy element for them (and paladins) ever since Rangers and Paladins stopped being straight-up improvements upon the Fighter (at the cost of higher requirements) with 3rd Edition on.


GeneticDrift wrote:
With stealth and perception being iniative rolls I wouldn't be surprised if a critical success on initiative is what determines a surprise round.

Let's talk this out.

Four players roll 7, 15, 21, and 23 for initiative.

Four NPCs roll 4, 11, 14, and 25.

Who acts in the surprise round?

The Exchange

Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
rainzax wrote:
GeneticDrift wrote:
With stealth and perception being iniative rolls I wouldn't be surprised if a critical success on initiative is what determines a surprise round.

Let's talk this out.

Four players roll 7, 15, 21, and 23 for initiative.

Four NPCs roll 4, 11, 14, and 25.

Who acts in the surprise round?

What skill did they roll?

From the march 23rd blog
"What you do in exploration mode can also influence how you enter combat. As you go on your adventures, the Game Master will periodically ask you what you are doing, how you are traveling, and what precautions you are taking as you venture into the unknown. These choices influence what you roll when it's time to roll initiative. For most characters it will be a Perception check, indicating how alert you were to the danger. If instead you were trying to hide, you might roll Stealth, possibly allowing you to start the combat unseen. If the fight is breaking out in the middle of a crowded tavern, you might roll Diplomacy or Intimidation to get the upper hand, using charm or a brutish manner to give you an edge. The GM makes the final determination of what everyone rolls for initiative, and might allow you to choose between multiple choices (one of which is typically Perception) if several options would make sense."


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I must say, with the information provided, that this ranger class will be as bad or worse than the D&D 5e ranger. Hunt feature as written is trash, it boils down to getting a +1 on attacks, and then only if I multi attack one target, and I believe it costs an action to activate. Sorry no. Snares, while entertaining and has flavor, it’s just fluff. You will hardly ever if at all get to use them for combat. There aren’t many battles that are coming to you as the adventurer, as you are the one moving forward.
As a person that has loved the ranger class in most games, this is just disappointing. As with all classes I will have to wait for all the information on this class when 2e releases before I can make any true judgements. Though with what I see now it looks really grim for this class. I’m sure I will play test it, and hopefully we can make some changes to make this class viable. All of this is obviously just my opinion so do as you like with it


Chest Rockwell wrote:
Nightwhisper wrote:
Chest Rockwell wrote:
Ah, yes, but this is about not liking iconography in rules-text, right? I do not like it in RPGs (fantastic for CCGs), especially, another thing that did not appeal about 4th Ed.
That's one of the oddest criticisms of 4e that I've heard. IIRC, the system has four symbols (vertical sword for melee, angled bow'n'arrow for ranged, dot with three arrows to the right for close, and line with arrows in different directions expanding from one end for area), and even those are only used in the monster stat blocks.
Yeah, they look like little annoying universal symbols in cars. I would prefer Close Blast 3.

And didn't you always get that? I'm not aware of any situation where the symbol replaced the word 'close', and it was incapable of replacing 'blast' or '3'.

The Exchange

Hi Drtizzt!

Seriously, it is very disappointing that rangers still have the sacred cow of two weapon fighting due to one drow ranger from the old D&D days. If Paizo is highlighting the hunter aspect of rangers two weapon fighting as a style should not be part of it. I don't know of any non-D&D mythological or fantasy archetypes that feature dual wielding heroes as rangers. It would have been nicer to see a spear focused ranger either as a single handed warrior or a polearm warrior using long spears with cross guards. When fighting animals I would not want to be up close and personal with a bear or a wild boar. Cross guards were attached to boar hunting spears to prevent the creature from running up the spear to gore the user badly before it died. This method of fighting would make much more sense that fantasy two weapon fighting.

Archery is a big element of the ranger in both game and historical/fantasy lore. Its too bad that there was no focus on ranged combat. Green Arrow, Robin Hood, The Huntress, Merlin the Dark Hunter and Aragorn are all excellent examples of rangers in fantasy that excel in bow combat and it would have been nice to get some examples of ranged combat based upon these archetypes


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Talek & Luna wrote:

Hi Drtizzt!

Seriously, it is very disappointing that rangers still have the sacred cow of two weapon fighting due to one drow ranger from the old D&D days. If Paizo is highlighting the hunter aspect of rangers two weapon fighting as a style should not be part of it. I don't know of any non-D&D mythological or fantasy archetypes that feature dual wielding heroes as rangers. It would have been nicer to see a spear focused ranger either as a single handed warrior or a polearm warrior using long spears with cross guards. When fighting animals I would not want to be up close and personal with a bear or a wild boar. Cross guards were attached to boar hunting spears to prevent the creature from running up the spear to gore the user badly before it died. This method of fighting would make much more sense that fantasy two weapon fighting.

Archery is a big element of the ranger in both game and historical/fantasy lore. Its too bad that there was no focus on ranged combat. Green Arrow, Robin Hood, The Huntress, Merlin the Dark Hunter and Aragorn are all excellent examples of rangers in fantasy that excel in bow combat and it would have been nice to get some examples of ranged combat based upon these archetypes

My dude, Hunt Target lets you snipe foes from the second range band at no penalty on your first attack and reduced penalties on your iterative attacks. It is great for ranged builds. Snares also let you put obstacles between you and your enemies.

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Companion, Lost Omens, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

You can be a ranger with a greatsword if you want to be. Just don't pick TWF feats.


Talek & Luna, I'm kind of confused. Why do you think hunt target is two weapon fighting?


Talek & Luna wrote:
Seriously, it is very disappointing that rangers still have the sacred cow of two weapon fighting due to one drow ranger from the old D&D days.

The weird thing about that, is that TWF was originally a Drow thing, nothing to do with Rangers, it all went wrong with the 2nd Ed AD&D Ranger...I kept using the 1st Ed one.


Talek & Luna wrote:
I don't know of any non-D&D mythological or fantasy archetypes that feature dual wielding heroes as rangers.

I believe Legolas is often considered as an iconic non-DnD Ranger, and while his archery is the big, flashy thing (and where most of his class feats would probably be going) when things are too close-quarters for the bow he tends to whip out dual elven daggers and be quite effective with them. Assuming that picking class feats from one fighting style doesn't lock you out of others, it might be possible to actually do that same fighting style in PF2e now, since presumably Range and TWF won't eat 80% of your feats each anymore and thus now be possible to combine.


I like what I'm seeing for Ranger. Loss of spellcasting doesn't bother be from a flavor perspective, and we're going to test the class from a power perspective, so Paizo can calibrate it.

I'm happy to see Favored Enemy die, and won't miss it, for reasons similar to those voiced by others.

Hunt Target looks like a good situational damage boost, and I think will be very strong against stronger enemies. I feel like the 100 foot range is quite short though. I know PF2e is dialing back ranges for spells at least, but IRL you can easily mark someone at 300 feet (or far greater, especially if you have a scope). Because of the short range, I wonder how often players will get to use the bonuses to Seek and Track. I guess that Seek would be useful if a Target went into Stealth or cast invisibility . Otherwise, that particular aspect seems a bit limited, with the information I have.

Overall though, if the mechanics work well, I like this version of Ranger.


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Shinigami02 wrote:
Talek & Luna wrote:
I don't know of any non-D&D mythological or fantasy archetypes that feature dual wielding heroes as rangers.
I believe Legolas is often considered as an iconic non-DnD Ranger, and while his archery is the big, flashy thing (and where most of his class feats would probably be going) when things are too close-quarters for the bow he tends to whip out dual elven daggers and be quite effective with them.

Legolas is not considered a Ranger, that's Aragorn's shtick; Legolas is a Fighter, like Gimli and Borormir, and the dual-wielding thing was in the movies, only.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

IIRC Aragorn dual-wielded torch and sword against the Nazgul in their Dark Riders guise


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Chest Rockwell wrote:
Shinigami02 wrote:
Talek & Luna wrote:
I don't know of any non-D&D mythological or fantasy archetypes that feature dual wielding heroes as rangers.
I believe Legolas is often considered as an iconic non-DnD Ranger, and while his archery is the big, flashy thing (and where most of his class feats would probably be going) when things are too close-quarters for the bow he tends to whip out dual elven daggers and be quite effective with them.
Legolas is not considered a Ranger, that's Aragorn's shtick; Legolas is a Fighter, like Gimli and Borormir, and the dual-wielding thing was in the movies, only.

Aragon was an in universe Ranger yes. Legolas's capabilities are definitely well emulated by modern DnD Ranger though. Faster Movement, Favoured Enemy (definitely) Bond used with companions, Favored Terrain. All seems in Legolas territory.


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Malk_Content wrote:
Chest Rockwell wrote:
Shinigami02 wrote:
Talek & Luna wrote:
I don't know of any non-D&D mythological or fantasy archetypes that feature dual wielding heroes as rangers.
I believe Legolas is often considered as an iconic non-DnD Ranger, and while his archery is the big, flashy thing (and where most of his class feats would probably be going) when things are too close-quarters for the bow he tends to whip out dual elven daggers and be quite effective with them.
Legolas is not considered a Ranger, that's Aragorn's shtick; Legolas is a Fighter, like Gimli and Borormir, and the dual-wielding thing was in the movies, only.
Aragon was an in universe Ranger yes. Legolas's capabilities are definitely well emulated by modern DnD Ranger though. Faster Movement, Favoured Enemy (definitely) Bond used with companions, Favored Terrain. All seems in Legolas territory.

Elven stuff.


The Raven Black wrote:
IIRC Aragorn dual-wielded torch and sword against the Nazgul in their Dark Riders guise

I've heard that stretch before, opportunistically picking up a torch/firebrand/flaming pointed stick in your off-hand to ward off undead does not suddenly make you a TWF-focused guy.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Chest Rockwell wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:
Chest Rockwell wrote:
Shinigami02 wrote:
Talek & Luna wrote:
I don't know of any non-D&D mythological or fantasy archetypes that feature dual wielding heroes as rangers.
I believe Legolas is often considered as an iconic non-DnD Ranger, and while his archery is the big, flashy thing (and where most of his class feats would probably be going) when things are too close-quarters for the bow he tends to whip out dual elven daggers and be quite effective with them.
Legolas is not considered a Ranger, that's Aragorn's shtick; Legolas is a Fighter, like Gimli and Borormir, and the dual-wielding thing was in the movies, only.
Aragon was an in universe Ranger yes. Legolas's capabilities are definitely well emulated by modern DnD Ranger though. Faster Movement, Favoured Enemy (definitely) Bond used with companions, Favored Terrain. All seems in Legolas territory.
Elven stuff.

In LoTR yes. Elven stuff doesn't actually cut it if you were to try and make him in PF. The point is, if you wanted to make Legolas, Ranger (the class not specific in world designation) grants him capabilities closer to that character than Fighter would.


Chest Rockwell wrote:
Shinigami02 wrote:
Talek & Luna wrote:
I don't know of any non-D&D mythological or fantasy archetypes that feature dual wielding heroes as rangers.
I believe Legolas is often considered as an iconic non-DnD Ranger, and while his archery is the big, flashy thing (and where most of his class feats would probably be going) when things are too close-quarters for the bow he tends to whip out dual elven daggers and be quite effective with them.
Legolas is not considered a Ranger, that's Aragorn's shtick; Legolas is a Fighter, like Gimli and Borormir, and the dual-wielding thing was in the movies, only.

I swear I remember the daggers coming up more often in the books than the movies, but it's also been a few years since I read them.


Malk_Content wrote:
Chest Rockwell wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:
Chest Rockwell wrote:
Shinigami02 wrote:
Talek & Luna wrote:
I don't know of any non-D&D mythological or fantasy archetypes that feature dual wielding heroes as rangers.
I believe Legolas is often considered as an iconic non-DnD Ranger, and while his archery is the big, flashy thing (and where most of his class feats would probably be going) when things are too close-quarters for the bow he tends to whip out dual elven daggers and be quite effective with them.
Legolas is not considered a Ranger, that's Aragorn's shtick; Legolas is a Fighter, like Gimli and Borormir, and the dual-wielding thing was in the movies, only.
Aragon was an in universe Ranger yes. Legolas's capabilities are definitely well emulated by modern DnD Ranger though. Faster Movement, Favoured Enemy (definitely) Bond used with companions, Favored Terrain. All seems in Legolas territory.
Elven stuff.
In LoTR yes. Elven stuff doesn't actually cut it if you were to try and make him in PF. The point is, if you wanted to make Legolas, Ranger (the class not specific in world designation) grants him capabilities closer to that character than Fighter would.

Yeah, the problem is trying to map D&D/PF to Middle-Earth too closely, Elves in Middle-Earth are more like monsters in D&D/PF.

The Exchange

KingOfAnything wrote:
You can be a ranger with a greatsword if you want to be. Just don't pick TWF feats.

True but if the majority of great weapon feats are not found in ranger then it really limits my scope

The Exchange

graystone wrote:
Talek & Luna, I'm kind of confused. Why do you think hunt target is two weapon fighting?

I too am confused Graystone as I made no mention of the hunter class feature relating to two weapon fighting. I am tired of the ranger as a dual wielding warrior concept. I thought I made that pretty clear when I listed several fantasy depictions of rangers and not one of the has dual wield. Rangers should be using spears or pole arms since many cultures use spears and long spears when hunting as you don't want to be up close to a wild animal.

The Exchange

Chest Rockwell wrote:
Talek & Luna wrote:
Seriously, it is very disappointing that rangers still have the sacred cow of two weapon fighting due to one drow ranger from the old D&D days.
The weird thing about that, is that TWF was originally a Drow thing, nothing to do with Rangers, it all went wrong with the 2nd Ed AD&D Ranger...I kept using the 1st Ed one.

You are 100% correct. In AD&D 1rst Edition you could dual wield as long as your off hand weapon was a dagger or hand axe although you did so with severe penalties. With the release of Unearthed Arcana drow could dual wield any one handed weapon. 2nd edition AD&D gave this to the ranger as long as the off hand weapon as shorter than the main hand weapon and the ranger had to be in studded leather or lesser armor.

This was done because people complained that the ranger was a walking tank that could track so the ranger was given stealth options and two weapon fighting to compensate for lesser armor.

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