Sorcerer Class Preview

Monday, July 9, 2018

Their magical blood gives sorcerers their spellcasting power, and it's been a major part of the class since Pathfinder's inception. So for the Pathfinder Playtest, we're going all in: your character's bloodline determines her spell list!

Illustration by Wayne Reynolds

Bloodlines

You pick your bloodline at 1st level, which tells you which spell list you use: arcane, divine, primal, or occult (the last of the four magical traditions, which we'll cover in a future blog!). It also defines some of the spells you know. For instance, the demonic bloodline gives you the divine spell list and the fear spell at 1st level, in addition to two other spells that you choose yourself from the divine list. In some cases, the special spells from your bloodline come from other lists. For example, the demonic bloodline gives you slow when you learn 3rd-level spells (for the sin of sloth) and disintegrate when you learn 6th-level spells. There are a couple more. How about we look at that whole bloodline entry and you can make your own guesses about which ones are from other lists?

Demonic

The demons of the Abyss debase all they touch, and one of your ancestors fell victim to their corruption. You're burdened with dark thoughts and the desire for destruction. This urge can be overcome if you choose to fight it, but the beauty of sin calls to you always.

Spell List divine (Pathfinder Playtest Rulebook 200)

Signature Skills Athletics, Deception, Intimidation, Religion

Granted Spells Cantrip: detect magic; 1st: fear; 2nd: resist energy; 3rd: slow; 4th: divine wrath; 5th: banishment; 6th: disintegrate; 7th: divine decree; 8th: power word stun; 9th: meteor swarm

Bloodline Powers Initial Power: glutton's jaws; Advanced Power: swamp of sloth (2); Greater Power: abyssal wrath (2)

You can see that the bloodline also determines your most important skills and gives you some bloodline powers. We've talked about powers before (see the cleric preview. These are special spells you can get only from specific classes, and they are cast using Spell Points rather than spell slots. They also automatically heighten to the highest level of spell you can cast. You start out with a number of Spell Points per day equal to your Charisma modifier, and if you have the demonic bloodline, you gain the glutton's jaws power, which you can cast at a cost of 1 Spell Point.

Glutton's Jaws Power 1

Necromancy

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

Duration 1 minute


Your mouth transforms into a shadowy maw bristling with pointed teeth. These jaws grant you an unarmed attack you're trained in, dealing 1d6 piercing damage. They have the finesse trait.

Attacks with your jaws have the following enhancement.

Enhancement If the target was living, gain 1d4 temporary HP.

Heightened (2nd) Your jaws gain the effects of a +1 weapon potency rune (a +1 item bonus to attack rolls and an additional damage die) and the temporary Hit Points increase to 2d4.

Heightened (4th) The jaws gain the effects of a +2 weapon potency rune and the temporary Hit Points increase to 3d4.

Heightened (6th) The jaws gain the effects of a +3 weapon potency rune and the temporary Hit Points increase to 4d4.

Heightened (8th) The jaws gain the effects of a +4 weapon potency rune and the temporary Hit Points increase to 5d4.

At higher levels, you'll get to make a swampy morass that makes creatures slothful or call forth the dangers of an Abyssal realm.

The number of bloodlines in the Pathfinder Playtest Rulebook is fairly small, since we want to see how people react to the new style of the class with just a subset of the bloodlines. In the book, you'll see the following bloodlines: aberrant (occult), angelic (divine), demonic (divine), draconic (arcane), fey (primal) and imperial (arcane). That last one comes from the magical traditions of ancient mortals and matches our iconic sorcerer, Seoni!

Spontaneous Spellcasting

This is our first preview of a spontaneous spellcaster! The sorcerer gets the same number of spells per day as a wizard, but she has a number of spells she knows permanently instead of preparing them from a spellbook every day. The spells she knows make up her spell repertoire. That means she can choose which spell to cast each time she casts a spell instead of needing to plan ahead. It's worth noting that the sorcerer now learns spells at the same character level as the wizard: 2nd-level spells at 3rd level, 3rd-level spells at 5th level, and so on.

As you level up, you learn new spells and can replace some of the spells you previously had with new ones. This lets you get rid of some spells that were great options when they were at your highest level but maybe aren't worth casting anymore.

The sorcerer's spellcasting is based on her inborn magical potency, so she uses her Charisma for her spell rolls and spell DCs. Because Charisma also adds to Resonance Points, the sorcerer can make up for some of her limited spell choice compared to the wizard's spellbook by supplementing her spell selection with more scrolls, staves, and wands.

Sorcerer Features

Many of the sorcerer's class features were explained under bloodline, as most of them tie back to that choice. The sorcerer gains her advanced power at 6th level and her greater bloodline power at 10th level. As with other spellcasters, her proficiency with spell rolls and spell DCs increases to expert at 12th level, master at 16th, and legendary at 19th.

The sorcerer gets one other class feature, called spontaneous heightening. As mentioned before, some spells in your lower-level spell slots get less useful as you go up in level. However, there are some spells you might want to cast with any of your slots. The spontaneous heightening feature lets you choose two spells at the start of each day that you can cast as their heightened versions using any of your spell slots. That means that if you want your angelic sorcerer to be able to cast 1st-level heal, 2nd-level heal, and 3rd-level heal, you can choose your 1st-level heal spell with spontaneous heightening rather than needing to learn the spell in your spell repertoire at all three spell levels. Then you can cast a 1st-level heal to top off someone's Hit Points when they're almost at full and still cast a 3rd-level heal in the middle of a fight to really save someone from the brink!

Sorcerer Feats

The sorcerer's feats primarily deal with her spells. Sorcerers get metamagic feats, many of which they share with other casters. One we haven't shown off yet is Overwhelming Spell at 8th level, which lets a spell that deals acid, cold, electricity, or fire damage ignore the first 10 points of a target's resistance.

If you want to make a blaster, you can pick up Dangerous Sorcery, which increases the damage of your spells by their spell level (with the exception of cantrips). You can also take Blood Magic at 8th level, which uses the magical potential in your blood to grant temporary Hit Points to you or a target of your spell if you're bleeding when you cast it.

One of my favorite cycles of feats are the evolution feats, which reinforce the themes of each magical tradition. Arcane Evolution makes your arcane sorcerer trained in a skill and lets you add a spell from a scroll to your spell repertoire for the day when you prepare each morning. Divine Evolution lets you channel energy like a cleric. Occult Evolution gives you a skill and lets you pick a spell with the mental trait to add to your repertoire each day. Finally, Primal Evolution lets you cast summon nature's ally as an innate spell once per day at the highest spell level you can cast.

How about a 20th-level feat? Sorcerers can take a feat to gain 10th-level spells of their tradition, but you might want to look at other options, like Wellspring Spell. This metamagic feat lets you cast a 5th-level or lower spell once per minute without expending the spell slot!

What sort of predictions do you have for the bloodlines? What spells will they get? Does this new scheme make you more or less likely to play a sorcerer? Do you want to try out a gnome fey sorcerer? How about an angelic sorcerer with the heal spell? Let us know in the comments, and start preparing for when you get the book!

Logan Bonner
Designer

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Tags: Pathfinder Playtest Seoni Sorcerers Wayne Reynolds
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Deadmanwalking wrote:
It's Bard. There've been clear and definitive mentions indicating Bard as Spontaneous and Druid as Prepared.

I do wonder how a Primal casting sorcerer compares to a non-wildshaping druid, since I spent basically the entirety of PF1 hoping for a spontaneous casting druid archetype and never got one.


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Seoni actually looks like an adventurer and not a magical stripper. Good! However, I can't say I like the piece otherwise. You took away her energy and confidence in the process, and she's a sour lemonmancer in a static boring pose now. You can keep the outfit, I like a lot better than the old one, but please reconcept the piece otherwise.

I'm definitely all in for bloodline determining spell list, considering how many times I've advocated that on this very forum! It's a good way to help distinguish sorcerer further from the wizard and play into the thematics of the class. <3 It also makes an excellent option for a divine sorcerer to stand in for a Cloistered Cleric, which is a concept I favor but which has always proven mechanically inferior every time it shows up.

Demonic bloodline should be Arcane though, or hell, even Primal. In its place, the Infernal / Diabolic / whatever-it's-called-now bloodline should be the fiendish Divine one. Demons are not subtle, they are the "raw power" and "blaster" and "corruption of natural forces" types. Meanwhile devils are the subtle ones more likely to lean into buffing and other tactical decisions, and devils are also by far the ones more associated with fallen angels and the like.

Bard is DEFINITELY going to be Occult now. They wouldn't print an entire spell list in the CRB that would only get used by one variant of one specific class - they would just leave the Aberrant bloodline out until a later book if that was the case. So Bard as a full progression Occult caster is pretty much confirmed. I continue to believe that their general versatility and access to "sonic magic" will either be represented by Spell Point powers, and/or an "Advanced Learning" ability every few levels to pick one spell to learn off of any other spell list.

Signature skills for the Sorcerer are by bloodline. That makes sense. :)

I'm glad to see bloodlines still have a cantrip and spell at each spell level associated with them, and that these do not necessarily have to be from their associated spell list. But can we also get that back for the cleric please? My preference is still for these to be tied to domains, because that makes it way easier for the vast majority of GMs who do not use Golarion and are never going to use Golarion no matter how much you push it. But at the very least each deity could have a full spread like this.

Not keen on bloodlines now seemingly following domains in losing passive benefits, such resistances and the like. Apparently everything has to be an actual active power that uses spell points now.

Also not keen on a bloodline only getting three powers. At least with the way you did domains, it left open the possiblity that future books could print additional domain powers / feats for each domain to expand their options over time. But with you hard coding the three powers right in the bloodline listing like this, it pretty much slams the door on that. It's also particularly awkward with the demonic bloodline in specific, because it's seemingly Sin themed, but there are generally seven or eight classical sins and apparently only three of them warrant bloodline powers. :p

Glutton's Jaws: By RAW, you would get the temporary hit points even if you miss, as long as you at least targeted a living creature. I guess that at least makes up for the lousy short sword damage on a power you can only use for a minute at a time a few times a day. But is that intentional?

THANK YOU for finally letting spontaneous casters get their new spell tiers at the same class levels as other casters. Fricking finally! :)

It's a little frustrating that caster save DCs, for apparently confirmed all casters, increase at the same levels (12, 16, 19) and not until the tail end of your career, which most games never reach. Hopefully they don't all give up class feats for this like the cleric, but I suspect they do, which is still a weird decision to me that breaks the otherwise universal feat progression. If it's a static thing that you get at certain levels, especially later levels, that should just be a class feature and not come in place of a feat. If you want it to cost feats, let people choose whether to take it or not (a buffer or other caster who doesn't rely on saves may elect not to raise their save DCs at all!) and let them take it earlier.

The metamagic options presented this time seem weirdly situational and like they won't actually come up very often. Blood Magic is particularly situational and also runs counter to the usual flavor of blood magic.

Instead of Dangerous Sorcery, I would rather just have all casters add their ability modifier to damage as a base part of the rules. :p But even better would be to have that be a base part of the rules, then have Dangerous Sorcery add +1 per die of damage, or +1 per 1 or 2 caster levels, rather than varying with the spell slot.

The evolution feats seem mostly good, but One Of These Things Is Not Like The Others. Primal Evolution should be a spell point ability rather than a 1/day, or failing that, needs to grant another benefit in addition to the 1/day spell.

I think Wellspring is the same feat shown off for the druid, but that's fine. I do like feats being shared between classes when possible. Though this is starting to make me curious if we're going to get page bloat with the same feat being reprinted multiple times (ie, Whirlwind Attack printed under both the Barbarian and Fighter), or if it's just going to be listed once with multiple classes in the heading, or if it will be printed once and then the later class alphabetically will say "Feat: see (class listing)."

* * * * *

Okay, so dealing with the casting. I'm going to be blunt - this concern about "decision paralysis" that Mark has brought up in the comments for several blogs / threads now is WAY overblown. You are talking it up into hugely more of a thing than it actually is. I've run 3.5 / Dreamscarred psionics, which is way more freeform than freeform heightening would be, mostly with newer players who aren't rules gurus that innately know the best options. It has uniformly gone excellently with them, so I can say this with confidence.

When a player has their turn come up and goes to cast a spell, they aren't going to be laboriously poring over every spell they know and agonizing over what level to cast it at. They are just going to pick an appropriate spell and cast it. Is it a group of enemies? They'll pick fireball or whatever and just cast it. They won't spend much time worrying about what level to cast it at either. I don't see decision paralysis come up with psionics, it's not going to come up here.

But you know where it does come up? It comes up when a character has a ton of scrolls and wands and stuff. So it's painfully ironic that you guys are pushing the sorcerer leaning on such items to supplement their hugely debilitated spells per day, while wringing your hands over decision paralysis from their actually class-granted spellcasting. The decision making process has me utterly flabbergasted here. Especially when the GM having to explain to the player that they have to learn the same spell three times at three different spell tiers is going to cause infinitely more confusion and frustration than any confusion you think might come about from free heightening!

The player of a sorcerer, much like the player of a psion, only has a few spells that they have to keep track of. They don't have to keep in mind all the options at every level for a spell list that might change every day - their spell list is the same every day, barring feats like a couple of the Evolutions. They will quickly internalize, or put in their notes, the relevant options. It's what I see every time. The only player I have who has significant decision paralysis also exhibits it as a martial, in fact usually more often ironically when playing a martial, because they are always trying to figure out how to do things in the "coolest" way.

If the sorcerer has the same number of spells per day as a wizard, and that is also the most spells they can ever know, then freely being able to heighten is a fair tradeoff for the crushing loss of flexibility compared to a wizard, cleric or druid who can completely change out their entire repertoire of spells "known" every day. Especially when they don't even get any more spells per day than a wizard anymore! They have to get SOMETHING to make up for that, and it might as well be heightening. It's certainly not the bloodline powers, because clerics, druids and wizards also all get spell point powers on top of their casting, with clerics additionally getting channeling on top of that.

If it's such a concern, have a sidebar in the bard and/or sorcerer specifically addressing this. Give recommendations for dealing with it for those few players who will actually be affected by it. Suggest players use spell cards with all the options written out, for quick reference without needing to dig into the book.

Even if you end up rejecting that and continue to go with the limited heightened option you have here, at least fix it so it's more in flavor for the sorcerer. A sorcerer basically "preparing" their heightened spells goes against the flavor of the class. A sorcerer comes with spell points, because of their bloodline power - let them spend a spell point to swap out one of their heightened spell choices for a different spell, which then remains until they spend another spell point. Or let them heighten any spell but they have to spend a spell point to do so, which still provides an incentive to retrain a heightened spell into a higher level variant or another spell entirely if they aren't using the low level form much anymore.

Liberty's Edge

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Mark Seifter wrote:
Quandary wrote:
Ninja in the Rye wrote:
I still don't understand what they're getting to compensate for having no more spells per day than a wizard though.
I can't help you there, that seems like key issue. Curious how Paizo views the issue.

The ability to cast at the same rate as the wizard seems to me like a much better thing to have than the ability to cast an extra spell of each of my weakest spell levels (in PF1, specialists have 5+ in their lower slots and sorcerers have 6+, but sorcerers don't have the highest slot at all half the time, and even when they get it, they are not ahead). Or to put it another way, if you gave me an option in PF2, for wizard or sorcerer alike, to not get access to a new spell level at odd levels in exchange for a bonus spell per day of all but my top level of spells, I would not take that deal.

So unless you would take that deal, this is another gain for the sorcerer over its PF1 counterpart.

The point isn't how the PF2 Sorcerer compares to the PF1 Sorcerer, though, it's how it compares to the PF2 Wizard. They have the same number of spells, but the Sorcerer has an incredibly limited list from which to choose those spells. Look at any comparisons in PF1 and you'll find that the Wizard's requirement to prepare spells in their slots does not diminish the fact that their versatility in spell selection is the main draw.

Spontaneously casting from a very small list of spells known does not make up for the loss of versatility from being able to prepare spells from a massive list of possible options, even if all other things (like the levels at which new spell levels are gained) are equal. That's why the Sorcerer (starting in 3e and continuing in PF1) is supposed to be getting more spells per day, not just the slightly slower spell progression.

Liberty's Edge

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Mark Seifter wrote:
Captain Morgan wrote:
Logan Bonner wrote:
Captain Morgan wrote:
I hope blasting damage is looking all right. I've been optimistic, but those feats leave me a little underwhelmed at first glance. (Though, if Dangerous Sorcery works off each seperate "hit" for a spell, Heightened Magic Missile is gonna be awesome.)
That's definitely one we're planning to keep a close eye on!

AAAAW HEEELL YEAAAH. If Dangerous Sorcery gives damage to each missile, that spell is gonna be a popular Spontaneous Heighten Choice.

1st level: 3d4+3+3 =13.5
3rd level: 6d4+6+18 = 39
5th level: 9d4+9+45 = 76.5
7th level: 12d4+12+84 = 126
9th level 15d4+15+135 = 187.5

Those numbers are significantly better than what we were seeing for the AoE damage, as I predicted. Especially when you consider it is there's no save

That means a 5th level Dangerous Sorcerer probably won't be one shotting a Red Cap, but if that thing has taken even a single greatsword hit, it is dead. And those higher level numbers.... Mmmf.

Yeah, the wording right now is technically ambiguous on multi-"particle" effects in general, since the entire spell gets the bonus damage. It certainly should not apply to every particle, and I think the best close reading doesn't cause it to do so (though still leaves you questioning exactly where it goes), but I imagine some people are going to be running it the problematic way, which will provide a useful test of both unless we want to just errata it to avoid that variation. This is not just something for the sorcerer feat, it's an issue with any +damage or -damage source (since -3 to all damage is definitely something that can happen and would pretty much render magic missile useless if you applied per missile), as well as resistances and weaknesses. I think it will be clear to most that if a spell 52.5 damage and a feat seems to increase that by 135 damage, something is not working properly.

I think the best way to handle it is to make the bonus damage per-target, and not per-spell. That way, magic missile doesn't become a single-target slaughterspell, but it's better for multiple targets just like, say, a burning hands would be.


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Fuzzypaws wrote:

Okay, so dealing with the casting. I'm going to be blunt - this concern about "decision paralysis" that Mark has brought up in the comments for several blogs / threads now is WAY overblown. You are talking it up into hugely more of a thing than it actually is. I've run 3.5 / Dreamscarred psionics, which is way more freeform than freeform heightening would be, mostly with newer players who aren't rules gurus that innately know the best options. It has uniformly gone excellently with them, so I can say this with confidence.

When a player has their turn come up and goes to cast a spell, they aren't going to be laboriously poring over every spell they know and agonizing over what level to cast it at. They are just going to pick an appropriate spell and cast it. Is it a group of enemies? They'll pick fireball or whatever and just cast it. They won't spend much time worrying about what level to cast it at either. I don't see decision paralysis come up with psionics, it's not going to come up here.

But you know where it does come up? It comes up when a character has a ton of scrolls and wands and stuff. So it's painfully ironic that you guys are pushing the sorcerer leaning on such items to supplement their hugely debilitated spells per day, while wringing your hands over decision paralysis from their actually class-granted spellcasting. The decision making process has me utterly flabbergasted here. Especially when the GM having to explain to the player that they have to learn the same spell three times at three different spell tiers is going to cause infinitely more confusion and frustration than any confusion you think might come about from free heightening!

The more I've been thinking about a solution to the whole heightening problem, the more I agree with this. When games grind to a halt in my group, it's because people are digging through their inventories (or chronicle sheets) for some kind of half-forgotten consumable that could turn a situation around.

Are some players gonna get hung up on their spellcasting? Yes. They're also probably gonna get hung up even if they have 3 spells. In my experience, people who take slow turns take slow turns, regardless of how complicated their character actually is.

I also think that there's a weird conflation of systems mastery situations here - generally newer players have one or two tactics that they are comfortable with and aren't going to be hunting for the "best" spell solution, while experienced/high-optimization players probably mathed it all out while they were still level 2. I understand having balance concerns, but the idea that the majority of players are going to be freaking out at the table trying to find the "optimal" use of their casts seems unlikely.

I keep going back to 5e. 5e uses spontaneous heightening, yet to my understanding it's been successful as a system almost entirely because of how accessible it is to newcomers. If anything, the proposed PF2 system seems to sacrifice clarity in favor of reduced at-the-table decisionmaking, which seems off to me.


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worldhopper wrote:
Funny, because at least 2 women in this thread have pointed out it sure didn't feel like a power fantasy.

Since our avatars aren't our real life images aren't our own images, I have no idea if ANY women pointed out anything about it. ;)

Myself, neither outfit seems overly practical: the one here seems like a safety hazards: For those that have seen the incredibles, there are reasons NOT to wear capes and she's got a dozen things trailing off behind her...

Now on to the actual content:

Bloodlines: so variable spell lists. Interesting.

Glutton's jaws: Not sure I understand why I'd need my hands to cast this... And It's not really something I see my sorcerer wanting to do: though if this can be stolen/taken by a monk, that'd be cool.

Spontaneous heightening:This works out funky IMO. I'd prefer all spells do it. I have to wonder if some of that cognitive overload in the pre-playtest was because it was a new system with new spells that people didn't know offhand. I'd be curious to see if it's still a factor once spells are a known factor.

Evolution feats: These seem to have very different strengths. Adding to your spells know seems powerful, channel energy is ok but competes with your 'normal' uses of spell points [which might not be a bad thing with the jaw ability]. Primal Evolution though? It seems a lot less useful IMO.


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Cantriped wrote:

I almost forgot Sorcerers can use staves too, and they sort of rock for a sorcerer now! No wonder she's been carrying that damn thing for ten years.

By investing in a staff (say the Staff of Healing) you gain the ability to use its Charges to cast the spell(s) it contains (Heal in this case) using any level of spell slot you have a number of times in total equal to your highest level spell slot. As a Sorcerer, you can more easily 'afford' to keep a staff or two than a cleric or wizard can... effectively converting RP into extra Spontaneous Heightening (and Spells Known) slots on a daily basis. So it's not like the sky is falling in on the sorcerer...

However I still want them to be able to also undercast any spell they know by default (and have the option to 'upgrade & replace' a limited number of spells every other level). So you use only have to 'spend' one 9th level spell known to be able cast Magic Missile as a 1st through 9th level spell, or an 8th level spell known to cast it as a 1st through 8th level spell, etc. I am okay with Sorcerers knowing almost fifty different spells at 20th level (which they can undercast at various levels) rather than being limited to a scant half-dozen such spells.

You'd need to keep upgrading your staff as you go along, and it'd eat into your resonance pretty quickly (not to mention charges at higher levels, though we don't know how many charges the higher end staves have, so it may not be such a big issue.), but yes, it does seem like Sorcerers are more item friendly given they need CHA anyway.

But honestly, they should just be able to heighten all their known spells. As has been said previously, 5th Edition does it and the world hasn't ended yet. Keep the slots as is, just give them less spells known. Problem solved.

As is, Sorcerers are incentivised to learn mostly spells with little Heighten potential, except for 2-3 you'll choose every day (my bet would probably be dispel magic once you get it, and probably a summoning spell). It also basically tells you to not bother playing blasters, ever, because I doubt the spell retraining will keep up with the change rate needed on the spells, and with only 2 Spontaneous Heightening slots most of your spells will be left in the dust quickly enough. Especially since Dangerous Sorcery doesn't apply to cantrips (and I think it should, honestly. Maybe not full level, but 1/2 level or something).


TheFinish wrote:
Cantriped wrote:

I almost forgot Sorcerers can use staves too, and they sort of rock for a sorcerer now! No wonder she's been carrying that damn thing for ten years.

By investing in a staff (say the Staff of Healing) you gain the ability to use its Charges to cast the spell(s) it contains (Heal in this case) using any level of spell slot you have a number of times in total equal to your highest level spell slot. As a Sorcerer, you can more easily 'afford' to keep a staff or two than a cleric or wizard can... effectively converting RP into extra Spontaneous Heightening (and Spells Known) slots on a daily basis. So it's not like the sky is falling in on the sorcerer...

However I still want them to be able to also undercast any spell they know by default (and have the option to 'upgrade & replace' a limited number of spells every other level). So you use only have to 'spend' one 9th level spell known to be able cast Magic Missile as a 1st through 9th level spell, or an 8th level spell known to cast it as a 1st through 8th level spell, etc. I am okay with Sorcerers knowing almost fifty different spells at 20th level (which they can undercast at various levels) rather than being limited to a scant half-dozen such spells.

You'd need to keep upgrading your staff as you go along, and it'd eat into your resonance pretty quickly (not to mention charges at higher levels, though we don't know how many charges the higher end staves have, so it may not be such a big issue.), but yes, it does seem like Sorcerers are more item friendly given they need CHA anyway.

But honestly, they should just be able to heighten all their known spells. As has been said previously, 5th Edition does it and the world hasn't ended yet. Keep the slots as is, just give them less spells known. Problem solved.

As is, Sorcerers are incentivised to learn mostly spells with little Heighten potential, except for 2-3 you'll choose every day (my bet would probably be dispel magic once you get it, and probably a...

I'm pretty sure Cantrips do scale automatically so Heighten should be unnecessary.


Pathfinder Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Vorsk, Follower or Erastil wrote:
I am curious how often you will be able to replace old spells. PF 1ed allowed a sorcerer to do so at 4th lv and every even level after that, and only 1 spell at a time and not their highest lv spells. I wonder if it will be a similar progression (Could see it start at lv 3 now and every odd level after that) now or if it will be part of the downtime system (like retraining class feats are) and allow a sorcerer to change spells slightly more often then just at level up.

In Starfinder, the two caster classes (both spontaneous) can swap out a spell each level. I would be very surprised if PF2 does it differently unless spell swapping is covered by the as yet unrevealed retraining rules.


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Pathfinder Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Igwilly wrote:
Tholomyes wrote:
Now, I love the fact that all spell lists are Sorcererable now, but it does worry me that if it's tied to bloodlines, we lose the ability to have stuff like Oracles of Flame or the like.
The designers have said in this thread that Oracle is not merged with Sorcerer ^^

Mark firmly denied that oracles are simply sorcerers with the divine spell list. I have not yet seen any statement that rules out them being a class-specific archetype -- but the lack of options for bloodline powers (which would be the counterpart of mystery revelations) suggests that they would need to restructure the class to the point of making it a separate class in order to make a sorcerer-like class that is anything like the PF1 oracle.


I don't know, the PF2 Seoni's dress might cover a bit more skin (it's hard to tell), but neither really seems like ideal adventuring attire.

The facial expression is admittedly weird and I considered commenting earlier, but when I got my PF1 Core out to compare the illustrations side-by-side I found that her PF1 depiction was wearing a nearly identical expression - I'm actually curious now what the artist was trying for (no disrespect intended as it's a wonderful picture, I just find her facial expression inscrutable)

Liberty's Edge

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Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Okay. How much Resonance does that 10 Charisma Wizard have? Not much? Oops, guess that potion/wand/staff/whatever didn't really work on you, better luck on your next character, buddy.

Who says the Wizard has 10 Charisma? And I'm pretty sure Resonance is not nearly in short enough supply to make having somewhat lower amounts a death sentence.

They'll also have a lot more skills, which isn't nothing.

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Even despite that, Sorcerers being flexible means you can have a party full of Sorcerers doing completely different roles and it will be perfectly viable. Whereas a party of Wizards is still the same lame can of worms it was in PF1.

A party of Clerics or Bards will also do better. Doesn't make them a better class than Wizard.

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Domains are meh, and Bloodline Powers are an apt comparison. Armor Proficiencies might be an issue if you're trying to be a frontliner, but Sorcerer healers don't need to if they don't want to. Which can basically be "Never." As for weapons, you're now cutting into your healing ability for utilizing weapons; bad healing battery, bad!

Being a healing battery is pretty boring for most people, though. You certainly can do it if you like, but it's hardly required.

Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
I will say one thing they get that Clerics don't, and that's effectively full Spontaneous Cure Spells.

Sure, but Clerics already get enough healing for most games most of the time, making this a potentially meaningless advantage.


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graystone wrote:
Since our avatars aren't our real life images aren't our own images, I have no idea if ANY women pointed out anything about it. ;)

This is just nonsense. All of our avatars are approximate replicas of our real-life appearances.


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Pathfinder Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Event though Spontaneous Heightening is theoretically a daily decision, I suspect that in practice it might be a decision that varies level by level (rather than day by day) at lower levels and then becomes completely fixed at mid to higher levels. To get the greatest value out of Spontaneous Heightening, you would after all want to make a point of not learning as separate spells any of the higher level versions of your two selected lower level spells for this class feature.

As a result, it would become increasingly difficult to change out your heightened spells as the drop-off in power you would have in being able to scale up a spell to its highest possible level vs. only being able to cast a spell at its very lowest level would become ever greater with level. And if I understand what has been revealed about rituals correctly, there would be few if any actual spells used primarily in downtime vs. spells used in exploration/combat, so even that swap would rarely come into play.

Lantern Lodge

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Okay, generally I like what I see here. Although I'd kind of like to know a bit more about how the various spell lists are balanced (and a description of how a celestial blooded sorcerer with their divine spell list will differ from an eventual oracle).

In keeping with the sorcerer being the flexible option (within degrees) I too think the spontaneous heighten spell abilty could do with being adjusted.

The three changes I'd suggest are
1: Change it so you can either up or down cast a spell. Just designate a spell that you can cast with a non default spell level. Maybe that is what is intended, but from the name folk seem to be reading that you can only upcast not downcast. And in terms of flexibility that is nice, and power wise doesn't really give any advantage.

2: Allow the sorcerer to pick their adjustable spells on the fly (i.e. you don't need to designate them in advance). This is nice in that the sorcerer just casts at default level until they see a need to do something substantially different, and then draw on their power.

3: Use spellpoints. Allow them to do this as often as they want, but it costs a spellpoint for them to desigate a spell as "adjustable" for the day. Or possibly use the resonance mechanic - as some of their innate magic is tied up with keeping their own options flexible rather than relying on props.

--
I do agree with at least one of the earlier comments that what mechanically giving sorcerers better responsance due to their CHA based casting is handy, thematically sorcerers in d20 have been the classes with the least requirement for any supporting items (from their eschew materials feat). I do admit that due to UMD being in class and having a high CHA, lots of them do have a good ability with using magical items though, so this is not a big point for me.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
DFAnton wrote:
graystone wrote:
Since our avatars aren't our real life images aren't our own images, I have no idea if ANY women pointed out anything about it. ;)
This is just nonsense. All of our avatars are approximate replicas of our real-life appearances.

I actually am Cayden Cailean.


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I've seen a few people point to 5e in regards to giving the sorcerers spontaneous heightening on all spells. This is a bad comparison for several reasons. Indications are that heightening will be stronger in PF2 than 5e. Also, 5e gave wizards unfettered access to spontaneous heightening on all spells and they wound up being way better than the sorcerer. However, wizards actually have to prepare spells at a heightened level now. Which creates a very real possibility that the sorcerer might wind up way better than the wizard.

There's too many differences here to make this comparison useful.


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Captain Morgan wrote:

I've seen a few people point to 5e in regards to giving the sorcerers spontaneous heightening on all spells. This is a bad comparison for several reasons. Indications are that heightening will be stronger in PF2 than 5e. Also, 5e gave wizards unfettered access to spontaneous heightening on all spells and they wound up being way better than the sorcerer. However, wizards actually have to prepare spells at a heightened level now. Which creates a very real possibility that the sorcerer might wind up way better than the wizard.

There's too many differences here to make this comparison useful.

The point of the comparison is that the number 1 issue with full spontaneous casting for sorcerers has been stated to be analysis paralysis. This is obviously not an issue to the 5e crowd, thus we don't accept it as a valid argument.


DFAnton wrote:
graystone wrote:
Since our avatars aren't our real life images aren't our own images, I have no idea if ANY women pointed out anything about it. ;)
This is just nonsense. All of our avatars are approximate replicas of our real-life appearances.

But I actually do look like something! I just never bothered to find where I put in an avatar.


Psionic Bloodline Sorcerer with the ability to create telepathic bonds. Great for forming stratagem against non-psionic opponents.

Liberty's Edge

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thflame wrote:
The point of the comparison is that the number 1 issue with full spontaneous casting for sorcerers has been stated to be analysis paralysis. This is obviously not an issue to the 5e crowd, thus we don't accept it as a valid argument.

This is largely due to Heightening in 5E being terrible the vast majority of the time, though. Nobody considers it an option because, on most spells, it's so bad, which results in it not leading to option paralysis. Sorcerers in 5E also know something like half as many spells as those in PF2 (less than half at high levels).

Double the number of spells plus Heightening actually being mechanically good a lot of the time make for way more options a PF2 Sorcerer would have than a 5E one if you went this route. Which makes option paralysis a very plausible issue.


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I do like the sorcerer. A bit flabbergasted by Paizo's decision to not make all spells spontaneously heightenable. But understand it didn't playtest well. I'm glad there is at least some flexibility as to which spells can be heightened.

james014Aura wrote:
Does this mean Sorcerers can also be Oracles and Psychics and Shamans?

Shamans weren't spontaneous. But yes.

I can see Oracle dying at this point. Depending on the class features a sorcerer gets for taking multiclassing feats into cleric, I could see someone recreating an oracle by taking an Angelic Sorcerer with the Oracle archetype. The oracle archetype could grant armor proficiency and a cleric domain power. They could also have multiple devotion feats by having the curse be the devotion feat. For example:

Here would be my go at a haunted feat:
Haunted Devotion (Level 3)
Benefit: You gain 6 spell points and can cast Levitate by spending a spell point. However due to being haunted it is a standard action for you to retrieve stowed objects. In addition anytime you drop an object it flies 15 feet away from you in a random direction.

The above feat assumes that typically you would get 4 spell points with an extra power feat. It synergises with any class that gets spell points (and if your class doesn't get spell points you gain the ability to cast levitate 6 times a day). You can then opt to keep the base curse or take feats to offset and improve the curse ala PF1e Oracles. You could then have additional archetype feats to give them higher proficiency with armor and anything else that the base sorcerer class is missing.

Of course, I wouldn't expect any of the above in core. Paizo will play it conservatively and we will only get the sorcerer and once they've assessed the fan base's appetite for archetypes and the new sorcerer they'll pull the trigger on a base oracle class or an archetype.


I’m happy to see this, but I’m just impatient to actually start playing now lol. I’m famished.

Liberty's Edge

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John Lynch 106 wrote:
I can see Oracle dying at this point. Depending on the class features a sorcerer gets for taking multiclassing feats into cleric, I could see someone recreating an oracle by taking an Angelic Sorcerer with the Oracle archetype. The oracle archetype could grant armor proficiency and a cleric domain power.

Eh. If you're changing that much stuff you might as well just make it a new Class. Fewer people will be upset, and it allows Mysteries to replace Bloodlines (and Mysteries are the main Oracle draw for many people, myself included).

We already pretty much know that there's gonna be a Charisma-based full caster other than Sorcerer on at least one list (whichever Bard gets, probably Occult), I see no reason Oracle can't fill a similar role as a specifically Divine spontaneous full caster (there's room for a Primal one and an Arcane one, too...you could make those two Wis and Int based, respectively, for variation...go spontaneous Shaman and...I honestly have no idea for Arcane, you could maybe get wacky and make that the Psychic).

There's also an obvious role for an Int-based Occult prepared caster (I'm betting this is where Witch fits in).


I thought Mark said the Sorcerer heightening was also Overpowered, nost just the option paralysis thing. His examples were good (Being able to use the lowest level slot required to fix a problem), but not sure if it makes Sorcerer's that OP because they only have so few spells anyways that their niches in which they are amazing at would be narrow.

Maybe we hsould get a chance to playtest it ourselves, dunno.


John Lynch 106 wrote:
I can see Oracle dying at this point. Depending on the class features a sorcerer gets for taking multiclassing feats into cleric, I could see someone recreating an oracle by taking an Angelic Sorcerer with the Oracle archetype.

I think there's basically no chance this happens. Both because they haven't shown any willingness to do massively mutating achetypes, and because the Oracle was the 2nd most popular none core class in PF1 (behind the alchemist.)

Plus depending on what the divine spell list looks like you won't be able to recreate things like the decidedly blasty oracle or oracle necromancers.

I mean, PF1 had room for 3 prepared casting classes in both divine and arcane. I don't see why we can't have 1.25 divine spontaneous classes. Ideally there should be a full spontaneous version for each of the four spell lists and then the sorcerer can pick one.

Like the whole concept of the sorcerer is "you have special blood that gives you powers". I can't see any archetype of sorcerer changing that. Mechanically you can reproduce other sorts of things with sorcerers, but thematically you can't and the thematics really matter as much as the mechanics in class design.


Deadmanwalking wrote:
John Lynch 106 wrote:
I can see Oracle dying at this point. Depending on the class features a sorcerer gets for taking multiclassing feats into cleric, I could see someone recreating an oracle by taking an Angelic Sorcerer with the Oracle archetype. The oracle archetype could grant armor proficiency and a cleric domain power.

Eh. If you're changing that much stuff you might as well just make it a new Class. Fewer people will be upset, and it allows Mysteries to replace Bloodlines (and Mysteries are the main Oracle draw for many people, myself included).

We already pretty much know that there's gonna be a Charisma-based full caster other than Sorcerer on at least one list (whichever Bard gets, probably Occult), I see no reason Oracle can't fill a similar role as a specifically Divine spontaneous full caster (there's room for a Primal one and an Arcane one, too...you could make those two Wis and Int based, respectively, for variation...go spontaneous Shaman and...I honestly have no idea for Arcane, you could maybe get wacky and make that the Psychic).

There's also an obvious role for an Int-based Occult prepared caster (I'm betting this is where Witch fits in).

Magus may potentially be a spontaneous full 1-10 Arcane caster this time. Them giving sorcerer choice of spell lists indirectly implies that they think the spell lists are better balanced against each other this time. Which means an Arcane full caster that can rock face as a secondary martial in the same way as the Cleric does for Divine may be entirely appropriate. Arcana abilities replace domains/channeling, Spellstrike can just be an ability (or even a feat shared with several other classes that they maybe get for free as a bonus feat) that allows a weapon attack to replace the somatic component of a spell.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
the Oracle was the 2nd most popular none core class in PF1 (behind the alchemist.)

The oracle was popular because (1) spontaneous caster (2) it got a crapload more useful class features then the cleric. Hopefully #2 won't be relevant in the new edition.

As for how much room there is for a spontaneous divine caster, it will really come down to how much new toys the cleric gets and how homogeneous distinct the classes feel.

Liberty's Edge

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ChibiNyan wrote:
I thought Mark said the Sorcerer heightening was also Overpowered, nost just the option paralysis thing. His examples were good (Being able to use the lowest level slot required to fix a problem), but not sure if it makes Sorcerer's that OP because they only have so few spells anyways that their niches in which they are amazing at would be narrow.

Well, imagine an 11th level Demonic Sorcerer with free heightening who uses it effectively. He can easily cast all the following 6th level spells assuming they work at all like PF1:

Heal, cure (the Remove X spells seem to have been made one), fear, slow, summon monster, dispel magic, disintegrate, magic weapon, magic vestment, blade barrier, and antilife shell.

That's 11 options just based on skimming the PF1 corebook Cleric list and looking for those with higher level versions (or important scaling), plus adding in some of the bloodline spells likely to scale. You could almost certainly get the full 23 (or close to it), all available at 6th level. If having more than 20 options for what to do with your highest level spells is not both overpowered and option paralysis, I don't know what is.

It's also not a narrow scope of spells at that point. Heck, I'm not sure there's anything you might want to do that won't be covered by something if you can do that.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
the Oracle was the 2nd most popular none core class in PF1 (behind the alchemist.)

The oracle was popular because (1) spontaneous caster (2) it got a crapload more useful class features then the cleric. Hopefully #2 won't be relevant in the new edition.

As for how much room there is for a spontaneous divine caster, it will really come down to how much new toys the cleric gets and how homogeneous distinct the classes feel. They will definitely wait until they get a full appraisal of how much the playerbase wants the oracle class vs how much they just want a couple of extra feats to recreate it with the sorcerer. The biggest reason sorcerers didn't work as cleric-substitutes is because of 1/2 BAB. That's no longer relevant in the new edition meaning there is at least one area in which the two classes could feel significantly less distinct.

I'm not even convinced there's room for 6th level spellcasters. I'm really looking forward to the bard preview. I suspect in order for the bard to work with new paradigm he will have to be a 9th level caster.

Liberty's Edge

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Fuzzypaws wrote:
Magus may potentially be a spontaneous full 1-10 Arcane caster this time. Them giving sorcerer choice of spell lists indirectly implies that they think the spell lists are better balanced against each other this time. Which means an Arcane full caster that can rock face as a secondary martial in the same way as the Cleric does for Divine may be entirely appropriate. Arcana abilities replace domains/channeling, Spellstrike can just be an ability (or even a feat shared with several other classes that they maybe get for free as a bonus feat) that allows a weapon attack to replace the somatic component of a spell.

This is also a distinct possibility, though I'm not sure it would work in this precise mechanical way.


Deadmanwalking wrote:
Fuzzypaws wrote:
Magus may potentially be a spontaneous full 1-10 Arcane caster this time. Them giving sorcerer choice of spell lists indirectly implies that they think the spell lists are better balanced against each other this time. Which means an Arcane full caster that can rock face as a secondary martial in the same way as the Cleric does for Divine may be entirely appropriate. Arcana abilities replace domains/channeling, Spellstrike can just be an ability (or even a feat shared with several other classes that they maybe get for free as a bonus feat) that allows a weapon attack to replace the somatic component of a spell.
This is also a distinct possibility, though I'm not sure it would work in this precise mechanical way.

The specifics may differ and would probably have to be playtested, but I think that's pretty close to how an initial foundation for the class could work out. More likely, Spellstrike would actually end up being a "Metamagic" ability allowing you to add a weapon attack as an additional action / somatic component to a targeted spell, or using a weapon attack as a special two-action "somatic" component in place of a spell's normal somatic component. It would thus generally be limited to use with one- or two-action spells except in the case of a full hero point turn. But the basics are roughly the same.

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

I will admit a certain preference for the original art, though I'll also admit that I'm an outlier. I always really aspired to that level of beauty, mystery, and confidence (yes, including the confidence to dress like that and not care what anyone thinks). But there are very good reasons to make change, and I have ten years of PF1 art (and dreams of future cosplay!) to console me. ^_^

As for the previewed mechanics... after giving it some thought, I'm actually a little torn on whether spell lists by bloodline are a good thing. I liked the idea of a fey sorcerer using arcane magic through a fey lens; likewise for celestial and fiendish sorcerers. I'll definitely look at the playtest rules and do some testing before reaching any conclusions, but I'm a bit worried that such sorcerers might move a little too far away from their identities and too close to the classes whose spell lists they've adopted. We'll see, I suppose.


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Deadmanwalking wrote:
John Lynch 106 wrote:
I can see Oracle dying at this point. Depending on the class features a sorcerer gets for taking multiclassing feats into cleric, I could see someone recreating an oracle by taking an Angelic Sorcerer with the Oracle archetype. The oracle archetype could grant armor proficiency and a cleric domain power.

Eh. If you're changing that much stuff you might as well just make it a new Class. Fewer people will be upset, and it allows Mysteries to replace Bloodlines (and Mysteries are the main Oracle draw for many people, myself included).

We already pretty much know that there's gonna be a Charisma-based full caster other than Sorcerer on at least one list (whichever Bard gets, probably Occult), I see no reason Oracle can't fill a similar role as a specifically Divine spontaneous full caster (there's room for a Primal one and an Arcane one, too...you could make those two Wis and Int based, respectively, for variation...go spontaneous Shaman and...I honestly have no idea for Arcane, you could maybe get wacky and make that the Psychic).

There's also an obvious role for an Int-based Occult prepared caster (I'm betting this is where Witch fits in).

Could we maybe do a prepared analogue of the Sorcerer, who can pick between any of the four lists but has to prepare their spells? I could see the witch filling that role, as different patrons would teach traditions of magic.

I figure you could do 2 classes for each spell list - one prepared and one spontaneous, then 2 classes which can choose a spell list - one prepared and one spontaneous.

Something like:
Divine: Cleric (P), Oracle (S)
Occult: Occultist (P), Bard (S)
Arcane: Wizard (P), Psychic (S)
Primal: Druid (P), Shaman (S)
Pick one: Witch (P), Sorcerer (S)

I figure that would be nice and symmetrical. Occultist and Shaman would switch types but it fits thematically- Occultists need to prepare all their implements and Shamans can call on whichever spirits are most relevant to the task at hand.


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I am confused on how heighten works for the sorc now.

Sure he can auto-heighten two but what about other spells?

Does he need to learn each version of fireball (like fireball 3, 5 etc)? Considering he already has a limit on spells known isn't this too big a hit?

On that note, how about prepared casters? Do they still only need to learn fireball and then slot it in whichever spell level they want to heighten it?


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Deadmanwalking wrote:
thflame wrote:
The point of the comparison is that the number 1 issue with full spontaneous casting for sorcerers has been stated to be analysis paralysis. This is obviously not an issue to the 5e crowd, thus we don't accept it as a valid argument.

This is largely due to Heightening in 5E being terrible the vast majority of the time, though. Nobody considers it an option because, on most spells, it's so bad, which results in it not leading to option paralysis. Sorcerers in 5E also know something like half as many spells as those in PF2 (less than half at high levels).

Double the number of spells plus Heightening actually being mechanically good a lot of the time make for way more options a PF2 Sorcerer would have than a 5E one if you went this route. Which makes option paralysis a very plausible issue.

First of all, numerous evaluations by people on these forums given spells that we understand show that spells are most efficient cast at their lowest level possible, with the exception of stuff like Dispel Magic or VERY particular situations, so it's fairly similar. I'm actually quite certain I remember an exchange between Mark and someone else about magic missile's damage output lagging behind fireball drastically, and the response being something along the lines of, "well yeah, it's a level 1 spell being upcast, what did you expect?"

Secondly, if analysis paralysis is THAT bad, then why do wizards get to prepare spells at any level? Shouldn't that be "too much" for them to handle? Why don't wizards have to learn each spell at each level they want to be able to cast it at? As it stands, whenever a wizard learns a spell that can be upcast, they effectively learn it multiple times as far as the sorcerer is concerned. (This is on top of the wizard's capability to learn extra spells by writing spells into their book, as opposed to the sorcerer having a hard cap.) If it is really that bad, cut the number of spells known by all casters until it isn't an issue anymore.

Thirdly, analysis paralysis is easily remedied by enforcing a time limit. Your character doesn't have 5 minutes to come up with the optimal spell this round and neither do you.

Not to mention that you have the entire time for every other player and all the GM's monsters to take their turns to come up with what you want to do on your turn. If you haven't figured out your turn by then, something is wrong. I get that stuff happens, and your planned course of action doesn't pan out, but generally speaking, you know well enough in advance to make a decent move. You should also know your character well enough that a decent move is fairly obvious given the situation.

Honestly, if "do I cast Fireball or Ice Storm" is rarely an issue, then "do I cast Fireball at level 3 or 5" is likely to be an issue just as rarely.


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It's been mentioned that Sorcerors/Spont Casters might prepare multiple Heighten versions of a spell, to not depend on Spontaneous Heighten etc, and to me that would be a failure, since it's such a dreary task entirely opposed to the approach to casting Sorcerors have exemplified. I really hope that in final rules there will be zero, or almost zero, reason to want to do such a thing with your limited spells known. This ties into what David Knott wrote, that the current "daily" choice of SpontHeighten spells is less of a choice if one's level-fixed Spells Known already include multiple versions of certain spells, making those much less likely to be chosen for SpontHeighten since you are then wasting potential # of Spells Known.

Honestly, I don't really see case for "analysis paralysis" here above what players can otherwise allow themselves to be drawn into, most situations dictate you won't consider the vast range of your spells in the first place, i.e. planning an ambush (general buffing) vs in the middle of getting ambushed (combat or maybe 1 very specific buff to deal with enemy). If fully free SpontHeighten is considered too powerful vs Wizard, I would be OK in considering a +1 action cost (similar to 1e), just keeping the limited "2 spells" for special action penalty-free SpontHeighten casting.

If it's considered "overpowered/whelming" to freely SpontHeighten ALL spells known, I think a good compromise is allowing to shift a limited SpontHeighten set around at-will with a small action/time investment, which may persuade against maximal optimal SpontHeighten tactics in the middle of a battle, but doesn't impede SpontHeighten with all spells over a broader scope of time. That could be flavored as the Sorceror focusing themselves on a certain aspect of their magical essence, like Fighter stances or whatever.


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worldhopper wrote:
Barathos wrote:
Hmm wrote:
I don’t share the same assumption that near-nudity equals confidence. While I do like women to own their sexuality, I also like it when adventurers are dressed in clothes that allow them to adventure. Her garments are still a bit unwieldy to me — long enough to trip upon — but at least she won’t fall out of her outfit in the middle of battle.

Fair enough. I'd rather have a confidence-based power fantasy than worry about how trip-prone an outfit would be in reallife.

It's not the lack of clothes itself, but her obvious confidence in that state. Compare the strut and posture of PF1 Seoni to the slumped defeatest posture of the artwork above, her face says "I'm waiting in line at the DMV and someone just farted. All I can do is give them a sour look. I'm powerless to otherwise act."

Funny, because at least 2 women in this thread have pointed out it sure didn't feel like a power fantasy. [insert that Shortpacked! false equivalence comic here.]

Also, 1e Seoni looked like she was about to fall on her dang face.

So I started to rant and rave, but I think I'll perhaps not.

I really hate modern fashion tending towards sexy. It is like everyone sees a lack of sexy as being bad or inhibited. Frankly, I don't like sexy looks in general. Most often, they just disgust me. I want cool or elegant, not sexy.


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Paizo Blog wrote:
It's worth noting that the sorcerer now learns spells at the same character level as the wizard: 2nd-level spells at 3rd level, 3rd-level spells at 5th level, and so on.

FINALLY

Took you guys long enough :P


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I figure "we can't have spontheighten for all spells" was decided when we decided to make Feather Fall, Fly, and Overland Flight into a single spell ("Fly") with the effect determined by the level you cast it at.

Grand Lodge

Why don't we make it a Class Feat to be able to spontaneously cast any heightened spell, without preparation?

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Gregg Reece wrote:
tivadar27 wrote:
Gregg Reece wrote:

So, as much as I do like all of this, I do have concerns with the examples listed specifically in the blog.

Primarily, you've got a spontaneous primary caster (squishy edition) with what is traditionally thought of as the buff spell list that gets a bite attack. Now, I could see ways of making this interesting, but the fact they likely won't have much in the way of armor gives me a bit of pause unless there's something I'm missing in all of this.

Are the squishies less squishy in order to make the melee caster work alongside their bite attack? If so, this works well. If not, I still have some concerns about the play of it.

I realize that there's no arcane spell penalty on armor, but at first level I'm more scared of them getting bit than them doing the biting.

So HP will always be a problem for Sorcerers, but they won't suffer from the BAB problems that 1e sorcerers have. We also know Rogue gets Dexterity to Damage, so there *may* be a way to get that as a Sorcerer as well (I'm guessing there is, as that's *probably* something that will be made generally available). Assuming this much is true, and combining it with Mage Armor (possibly heightenable?) and the Shield Spell, Sorcerers can probably can have a comparable AC, and be able to do some damage with their bite. But we'll see. I'm hoping melee builds for Sorcerer won't be out of the realm of possibility in 2e.
See, Mage armor and Shield are what give me pause. Those are traditionally arcane spells. Demonic bloodline Sorcerers use the divine spell-list. Which means they wouldn't necessarily have access to those spells.

Remember that Bracers of armor are meant to be a usable item in PF2, not a overpriced and not so good magic item.


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Varun Creed wrote:
Why don't we make it a Class Feat to be able to spontaneously cast any heightened spell, without preparation?

Could work as a capstone feat for sorcerers in lieu of 10th level spells or Wellspring Spell.


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I feel like if free spontaneous heightening for all spells was allowed, the Batman Sorcerer would quickly become a thing. They have 4 spells known at each tier (one determined by bloodline), and if each of them are even remotely set up for heightening, then they'd become so insanely flexible I don't think anything could possibly compare. The only way to stop that would be to massively cut back on spells known, and I don't think anyone wants that to happen.

Liberty's Edge

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PossibleCabbage wrote:

Could we maybe do a prepared analogue of the Sorcerer, who can pick between any of the four lists but has to prepare their spells? I could see the witch filling that role, as different patrons would teach traditions of magic.

I figure you could do 2 classes for each spell list - one prepared and one spontaneous, then 2 classes which can choose a spell list - one prepared and one spontaneous.

Something like:
Divine: Cleric (P), Oracle (S)
Occult: Occultist (P), Bard (S)
Arcane: Wizard (P), Psychic (S)
Primal: Druid (P), Shaman (S)
Pick one: Witch (P), Sorcerer (S)

I figure that would be nice and symmetrical. Occultist and Shaman would switch types but it fits thematically- Occultists need to prepare all their implements and Shamans can call on whichever spirits are most relevant to the task at hand.

This is fairly plausible, though I still think Witch will wind up Occult more than anything else.

thflame wrote:
First of all, numerous evaluations by people on these forums given spells that we understand show that spells are most efficient cast at their lowest level possible, with the exception of stuff like Dispel Magic or VERY particular situations, so it's fairly similar. I'm actually quite certain I remember an exchange between Mark and someone else about magic missile's damage output lagging behind fireball drastically, and the response being something along the lines of, "well yeah, it's a level 1 spell being upcast, what did you expect?"

This is true...but only to some degree. For example know the damage of Cone of Cold (a 5th level spell) and Fireball (a 3rd level spell). When cast at level 5, the Fireball does 10d6 damage...while the Cone of Cold does 11d6. That's enough of a difference to want Cone of Cold, but nowhere near enough to make Fireball useless or even bad.

thflame wrote:
Secondly, if analysis paralysis is THAT bad, then why do wizards get to prepare spells at any level? Shouldn't that be "too much" for them to handle? Why don't wizards have to learn each spell at each level they want to be able to cast it at? As it stands, whenever a wizard learns a spell that can be upcast, they effectively learn it multiple times as far as the sorcerer is concerned. (This is on top of the wizard's capability to learn extra spells by writing spells into their book, as opposed to the sorcerer having a hard cap.) If it is really that bad, cut the number of spells known by all casters until it isn't an issue anymore.

Option paralysis is a vastly larger problem when it happens in the middle of combat. A Wizard may have to pick spells, but he doesn't need to do it in the midst of the action while other people are waiting their turn.

thflame wrote:
Thirdly, analysis paralysis is easily remedied by enforcing a time limit. Your character doesn't have 5 minutes to come up with the optimal spell this round and neither do you.

This is kind of a dick move in a lot of groups, violating the social contract. For many people, if enforced, it also makes playing the character a lot less fun.

thflame wrote:
Not to mention that you have the entire time for every other player and all the GM's monsters to take their turns to come up with what you want to do on your turn. If you haven't figured out your turn by then, something is wrong. I get that stuff happens, and your planned course of action doesn't pan out, but generally speaking, you know well enough in advance to make a decent move. You should also know your character well enough that a decent move is fairly obvious given the situation.

This is not necessarily a reasonable expectation. Some people can do this, but other can't, and saying to those who can't 'Well, you're s%!$ out of luck.' is bad game design.

thflame wrote:
Honestly, if "do I cast Fireball or Ice Storm" is rarely an issue, then "do I cast Fireball at level 3 or 5" is likely to be an issue just as rarely.

It becomes a much bigger issue when you have 20 choices plus. Which you might, as I indicated above.

Also, as noted, option paralysis is far from the only reason for this decision. Free heightening being overpowered (which it is) is at least as big of one.

Silver Crusade

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Hey @DMW: You know the math pretty well. What do you think of the sorcerer getting his spell proficiency so late?
As I said before (but it got burried with the heighten-discussion) getting Expert at 12th seems late to me, when the fighter gets Legendary weapon prof. at 13th.

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
OzzyKP wrote:
Fuzzy-Wuzzy wrote:
OzzyKP wrote:
Logan Bonner wrote:
tivadar27 wrote:
Though I do worry that rolling all(?) of the spontaneous casters into a single class is a bit of overgrouping and doesn't give them as much room to make their possible feats more niche.
It's not really all the spontaneous spellcasters. It's a broadening of the sorcerer, but doesn't preclude other spontaneous casters from coming along later and this isn't the only spontaneous caster in the book.
Heh, so as y'all obsess over the mechanics of spontaneous casting I'm over here wondering whether the other spontaneous caster is the Bard or the Druid. Or both?

Both, yet only one: Bard and Druid have been merged into the Hippie class, a spontaneous caster who grooves on flower power and music and, ah, "herbalism." :-P

Oooh, they never did make a Druid-Bard hybrid class.

AD&D 1st edition Bard. Fighter/Thief/almost Druid multiclassed characters.


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Deadmanwalking wrote:
Free heightening being overpowered (which it is) is at least as big of one.

This is a statement with no basis until we see the rulebook. And is actually more likely to be wrong than correct, given the stated design philosophy that heightened spells are always worse than actual spells of that spell level.


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Ever since I began playing fantasy games, I've always been a mage at heart. Ever since I first played Baldur's Gate 2, I've loved the Sorcerer over the Wizard. Ever since I picked up the 3.5 handbook I've loved the idea of Sorcerers getting their magic from their blood. Ever since I made my first Pathfinder character (PFS no less), I've been a Spontaneous caster loving Sorcerer main.

What I'm trying to say is, I LOVE SORCERERS, AND I LOVE THIS PREVIEW!!!

I'm very much looking forward to playing Sorcerer again, perhaps even recreating character #1...Though that mostly depends on Dragon Disciple returning.

Anyhoo, love this and look forward to more!


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I hate prepared casting with a passion. I want a spontaneous wizard.

In 3.x, I could do that fairly easy.

PF1, much harder.

Now, seems even more difficult.

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