Multiclassing and Archetypes

Friday, July 27, 2018

One of the trickiest parts of the rules is multiclassing. At its heart, multiclassing allows you to build almost any character you can envision, taking parts from multiple classes to build the perfect version of your character. Making these rules play well with the rest of the game, unfortunately, has always been a challenge. Concepts that really should work together just fell flat, leaving you with a character who could not perform at its level and keep pace with single class characters. This was especially the case for certain classes, like most spellcasters, that had a central class feature or features that you would fall sharply behind in if you weren't constantly progressing in that class.

Suffice to say, when it came time to redesign the system for the Pathfinder Playtest, we knew that multiclassing needed work.

Then came the rules for archetypes. The new design for this emblematic part of the game allows archetypes to be taken by any class, so you can decide exactly how much you want to invest into an alternative path for your character. The more we worked on that system, the more it began to sound like it shared almost exactly the same goals as multiclassing. Our thought was, shouldn't they just be the same system?

Multiclass archetypes are one of the more experimental parts of the Pathfinder Playtest. So much so that there are only four of them in the book, one for cleric, one for fighter, one for rogue, and one for wizard. Just like ordinary archetypes, you must take a special dedication feat to gain access to the archetype, but you cannot be of the same class as the archetype (so you can't take the rogue dedication feat if you are already a rogue). Let's take a look at one of these feats.

Wizard Dedication Feat 2

Archetype, Dedication, Multiclass

Prerequisites Intelligence 16, trained in Arcana


You cast spells like a wizard and gain a spellbook containing four arcane cantrips of your choice. You gain access to the Cast a Spell activity and the Material Casting, Somatic Casting, and Verbal Casting actions. You can prepare two cantrips each day from those found in your spellbook. You're trained in spell rolls and spell DCs for casting arcane spells and in attacks you make with arcane spells. Your key spellcasting ability for these spells is Intelligence. You can use wands, scrolls, and staves, but only for spells of a spell level you can cast. Arcana is a signature skill for you.

Special You cannot select another dedication feat until you have gained two other feats from the wizard archetype.

Right away, this lets you cast a few simple cantrips; allows you to use wands, scrolls, and staves; and makes Arcana a signature skill for you (meaning you can advance your proficiency in the skill to master and legendary). Like other dedication feats, once you've taken Wizard Dedication, you gain access to other wizard archetype feats, each of which makes you a more powerful master of the arcane arts. Take a look.

Basic Wizard Spellcasting Feat 4

Archetype

Prerequisites Wizard Dedication


Add two level 1 spells to your spellbook. You gain a single level1 spell slot that you can use to prepare a level 1 spell from your spellbook. At 6th level, add two level 2 spells to your spellbook, and you gain a level 2 spell slot that you can use to prepare a level 2 spell from your spellbook. At 8th level, add two level 3 spells to your spellbook, and you gain a level 3 spell slot that you can use to prepare a level 3 spell from your spellbook.

Even though you can cast spells, the spell level of your cantrips and arcane powers is half your level rounded up.

This feat pays dividends all the way up through 8th level, giving you more spells you can cast, and if you take it later on in your career, you get all of that spellcasting all at once. Better still, there are additional feats you can take to gain spells of up to 8th level! But let's say you want to be even more of a wizard—you want to get some of the other class features that make wizards fun to play. Take a look at these feats.

Arcane School Feat 4

Archetype

Prerequisite Wizard Dedication


Select one school of magic from those found in the wizard class. You gain the level 1 school power tied to your school and a pool of Spell Points equal to your Intelligence modifier that you can use to cast that power.

If you already have a pool of Spell Points, use the higher ability score to determine the pool, as normal, and your Spell Point pool increases by 1.

Basic Arcana Feat 4

Archetype

Prerequisites Wizard Dedication


Gain a level 1 or level 2 wizard feat of your choice.

Advanced Arcana Feat 6

Archetype

Prerequisites Basic Arcana


Gain one wizard feat. For the purposes of meeting its prerequisites, your wizard level is equal to half your level.

Special You can select this feat more than once. Each time you select it, you gain a new wizard feat.

There's even a feat that gives you additional spell slots of every level except for your two highest, giving you more versatility in your spellcasting. It's important to note that these powers come at the cost of some of the flexibility of your primary class, but not at the cost of core features. A cleric who multiclasses into fighter will keep all of her spellcasting abilities, but she will have to trade out some of the feats that allow her to be better at casting heal or at using domain powers in exchange for increased proficiency in weapons and armor, added hit points, and the ability to make attacks of opportunity. You might even choose to multiclass into several classes. You could play a cleric who, in addition to all her cleric spells, also has up to 8th-level druid spells and 8th-level wizard spells, though such a three-tradition spellcaster would have few cleric feats to speak of!

Well, that about covers the rules for multiclassing in the Pathfinder Playtest. If these archetypes work, you can expect to see one for each class in the final version of the game, giving you the flexibility to build characters that draw on more than one class to make their concept click. We hope you'll give these a try during the playtest and let us know what you think!

Jason Bulmahn
Director of Game Design

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@Unicore: but if one has other spellcasting or no spellcasting it would scale full - or am I a bit dense right now?

@rooneg: I certainly hope that dex is an option for fighters mc


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I will have to experiment with this, see how it actually works out.

It does mean that each time they bring out a class, they need to also bring out the multiclass chain. Considering they couldn’t do that for all the classes they have in the playtest, seems like this will be a problem.


Seisho wrote:

@Unicore: but if one has other spellcasting or no spellcasting it would scale full - or am I a bit dense right now?

@rooneg: I certainly hope that dex is an option for fighters mc

Trying to figure this out from blog posts instead of reading it in its complete form in the books is probably making this confusing. I don't think you could heighten your first level spells to 8th level in the example I gave, without taking the feats to have 8th level spells, but I am not sure about that without reading it more carefully. Cantrips and spell powers work differently than other spells though, which is why they do heighten.


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Seisho wrote:

@Unicore: but if one has other spellcasting or no spellcasting it would scale full - or am I a bit dense right now?

Spell Level = Half-Character Level (round up) is "full" scaling. A level 5 wizard can cast level 3 (5/2; round up) spells; and their cantrips scale to level 3 (5/2; round up).

The scaling is the same for the Cantrips/Powers you would get with a Multiclass Feat.

If the scaling was Full Character Level, then a level 5 wizard would be able to cast level 5 spells, and have level 5 cantrips.

And the poor developers would need to find 11 more spell levels somewhere.

Liberty's Edge

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From the examples we got, cantrips and powers always scale fully, no matter how you got them (Class or MC feats)

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
BretI wrote:

I will have to experiment with this, see how it actually works out.

It does mean that each time they bring out a class, they need to also bring out the multiclass chain. Considering they couldn’t do that for all the classes they have in the playtest, seems like this will be a problem.

Multiclassing seems to be one of the last parts they tackled. This is likely why we only have the Big 4 available : not enough time to design the other core classes

Dark Archive

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AnimatedPaper wrote:


Making everyone run off the same four spell lists intead of the, what, ten different lists we had in PF1, will make updating and adding to those lists a lot easier.

There were 19 spell lists, actually. We had 10 after the APG hit shelves. It's really a big mess.


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I just want to note that while Class Archetypes require 16s, basic archetypes (like pirate) only require 12s. Because the requirements are so much lower, it is almost effortless to work a basic archetype into your concept, as such it makes some sense that they'd be weaker*.
*As Paizo habitually conflates 'giving player's options' with 'making their characters more powerful' when they write rules.

As an example I could see taking Pirate over Fighter Dedication as a Wizard:
12 Dex is easier to meet than 16 Str. Armor proficiencies are nice, but I'd need that higher STR to wear it, and wearing heavy metal armor on a boat is stupid anyway. However if all I care about is getting a few weapons and a few physical skills; pirate offers cutlass, spear, and hand-axe IIRC, plus between it and sea-legs my wizard would be pretty fit, and capable of defending thsemselves reasonably well (from being trained and having modest physical stats).

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
rooneg wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:
Also it seems to pigeonhole the role of stats for classes : want to be a part-Fighter, get high STR. But what about a DEX-based character then ? Why restrict them from gaining Fighter goodies that apparently do not depend on high STR ?
Has anything explicitly said the Fighter Dedication feat will require 16 STR? I sort of assume that Fighters would be picking either STR or DEX.

I think it was not mentioned either way. I guess the DEX to damage debate is getting under my skin.

Also I would see a nice symmetry in having the requirements be

INT 16 for Wizard MC
WIS 16 for Cleric MC
DEX 16 for Rogue MC
STR 16 for Fighter MC


The Raven Black wrote:
Multiclassing seems to be one of the last parts they tackled. This is likely why we only have the Big 4 available : not enough time to design the other core classes

I saw mention of the 'core-four' earlier too... IIRC it was actually a "Core Trio" in 3rd edition and Pathfinder: Fighter, Rogue, and Cleric. I'd assumed it was because clerics could cast Detect Magic now (which was just about all that an AD&D Mage was good for at low levels.

As for not including the other classes, I doubt it was time constraits so much as a desire not to waste work on an experiment.
The Class-Archetypes we have are more than sufficient to break the system over our knee with, if we are going to be able to. I would rather rewrite or discard four entries as opposed to twelve. I kinda wish Alchemist, Bard, and Monk had also been included for 'test-their-breakability' reasons... but that kind of argument is a slippery slope. Four is sufficient for playtesting.

Same goes for the Half-Its, they had to be tried now while there are only two, because there is still time to go back and write two more standard ancestry entries; and use the feat-tax concept as an optional method of accessing the parent lists in addition to the hybrid's list instead).


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When I first read the 3e manual I was really excited at how multiclassing was handled. Later, in practice, I found that it didn't work very well.
I tried these two character in Pathfinder: a monk/wizard whose concept was about getting a perfect mind in a perfect body, focusing on buff spells and melee fighting - it didn't work well, despite having rolled very good stats that allowed the extremely MAD build; and a barbarian/druid as a sort of savage warrior channeling the raging side of nature - it was quite good in melee, but the spellcasting was of course weak.

Nevertheless I still liked the flexibility of the multiclassing system, while I never liked VMC. So at first I seriously hoped that 2e multiclassing wouldn't be like that.
But after reading the blog post and the discussion, my point of view changed completely.
I think that what is most important is being able to pick a character concept and build it in a way that is loyal to it and viable mechanic-wise. Fighter 2/Cleric X is not a character concept, nor is Ranger Y/Rogue Y: you have a cleric with heavier martial training, or a very sneaky and tricky hunter. You can easily build both with the new system, in a way that is actually MORE flexible (as you choose which abilities you get) and more balanced (as you don't hamper full casters and you can't just dip into front-loaded classes for raw power).

I mean, I could build my monk taking just wizard dedication and another one or two wizard feats. I woulnd't even need to consider it a multiclass, it would be just a smart monk who uses his mind power to boost his physical prowess.
And the barbarian? A savage warrior indeed, who even turns into a bear when his rage explodes.
The best part is that these characters will probably be more viable than however I may have built them in 1e.

So, as much as I liked the easy and flexible rules for multiclassing we had, I have to remember that they were just a tool to build certain characters concepts, and only really worked for a few of them. The new rules, I think, do a much better work.

That said, if I was a developer, I would do the following:
- lower the dedication feat ability score requirement to 14 or 12, and require higher scores for stronger feats down the chain;
- use a different keyword than dedication for either multiclassing or archtypes, allowing a build to take one of each together.


Ah, thanks again @ all for explanations - I thin I mixed up something from the wording
I think this was one of the rare moments where it catches up with me tht english is not my primary language

Well, that certainly calms me down

and thanks again :D


Seisho wrote:

I reread the whole and kinda stumbled upon something in the wording.

The Wizard dedication feat says you get two cantrips and doesn't state anything about their power.

The basic Spellcasting tells that Cantrips, Spell Powers etc are scaling at half you level.

I guess the info how all the wizard related stuff scales should be in the dedication feat (or individual in the feats with only the stuff its relevant too listed)

It also opens up the question what the cantrips strength is withoug basic spellcasting

and how well half your level is when you want to use cantrips in high level

I’m pretty sure it’s a universal rule that cantrips automatically scale to the highest level of spell you can cast.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
The Raven Black wrote:
rooneg wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:
Also it seems to pigeonhole the role of stats for classes : want to be a part-Fighter, get high STR. But what about a DEX-based character then ? Why restrict them from gaining Fighter goodies that apparently do not depend on high STR ?
Has anything explicitly said the Fighter Dedication feat will require 16 STR? I sort of assume that Fighters would be picking either STR or DEX.

I think it was not mentioned either way. I guess the DEX to damage debate is getting under my skin.

Also I would see a nice symmetry in having the requirements be

INT 16 for Wizard MC
WIS 16 for Cleric MC
DEX 16 for Rogue MC
STR 16 for Fighter MC

Don't get me wrong, I love me some symmetry, but I can't imagine a world where the Fighter class and multiclass wouldn't let you go down the DEX path, if only because being able to build an Archer is important. I mean a Wizard multiclassing into DEX Fighter could make a great Arcane Archer. I mean it might not be as optimal as the STR version, since the Dedication feat gives you armor proficiencies that you may not care about as a DEX build, but still, I expect it to be there.


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Colette Brunel wrote:

I am quite optimistic about feat chains being the way multiclassing is being handled in Pathfinder 2e. The wizard multiclass seems quite similar to 5e's Magic Initiate and Ritual Caster, though I see the wizard multiclass's best use as adding noncombat utility to characters such as barbarians and fighters, who might struggle with noncombat utility ottherwise.

For one, it allows designers to create class options without worrying about dippability. For two, it allows any abilities gained via multiclassing to actually be level-appropriate and scale properly. For three, it enables main class abilities remain level-appropriate and to remain scaling properly.

I have to disagree here, the whole point of this system seems to be embracing 'dipping'.

And spells and the the first feat gain ability (basic arcana as the example), aren't really level appropriate. They're several levels behind (possibly more depending on when you take them). A standard progression for the wizard MC feats would be dedication at 2, 1st level spells at 4 (not level appropriate) and maybe shenanigans for a level 1 or 2 feat at 5 but probably 6 (not level appropriate)

I tentatively agree that main class abilities remain untouched, but that's mostly because the cost of the dipping seems pretty low. Dedications are MUCH better than other feats we've seen (with the fighter feat being worth 3-5 feats), and honestly even getting just three spells is better than another +1 to some speciality, or something comparable like the terrible feats on the paladin pregen. If you don't like your choice of class feats at a given level, picking up an mc class feat isn't a problem.


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The Raven Black wrote:
BretI wrote:

I will have to experiment with this, see how it actually works out.

It does mean that each time they bring out a class, they need to also bring out the multiclass chain. Considering they couldn’t do that for all the classes they have in the playtest, seems like this will be a problem.

Multiclassing seems to be one of the last parts they tackled. This is likely why we only have the Big 4 available : not enough time to design the other core classes

It might also be the case that multi-classing is something that they really need much more tightly defined feedback from us players on and having 4 versions to test will give more data points on each of those 4 rather than having less data than having it on all 8.


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Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber
Charlaquin wrote:
Ooh! I just realized that this effectively allows people who want a spellcasting ranger to get it with a couple Class Feats by taking the Druid archetype. Or heck, if you want to go really old school, splash some Wizard Archetype Feats in there too!

Dang, I like this !! My first and favorite character of all time was a 1st Edition Unearthed Arcana Ranger who made it up to about 10th level before retiring!!!! This is back in 1986.

-- david


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I will say this start by saying: Sorry for the long post.

PF1 MC was one of the best thing about the game in my opinion. The reason being that it rewarded people who spent their time trying to make sure their character worked as envisioned (no matter how impratical the end result might be in play). For example: I'm making a flying 2k+ ft sniper using pf1 thats Zen Archer 6/Fighter 4/Arcane Archer x and 1 level of a caster for 1st lv spells (probs Archer Bard or Eldritch Archer). In play I will probably never used the range I'm building for but the fact remains he would make a great scout, mark enemies with special arrows, and overall play a support role.

In pf2 this type of build is by the looks of it impossible to do as it requires 2 archetype and 3 multiclass. Not to mention that barring retraining I cant go with the flavor of I stopped practicing X magic to focus on my archery when I got Y idea to mix them (barring retraining which may not even be allowed by a GM, and would be a retcon).

Anyways, my disillusion with the pf2 system aside, I think the idea is a great expansion of VMC and much more flexible than it for character creation. The fact you could choose how much is traded off and when just makes it so much better. The ability req however seems kind of strange as you could make a 10 int wizard and still play the class (probably not best) but can't multiclass wizard? The other possible problem is that the gains are probably too good compared to the low cost. Using the wizard MC as an example: You gain 8 lv spell for 4 feats, or you can spend the feats for 4 powers that are probably meh compared to 6th+ lv spells.

Scarab Sages

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BretI wrote:

I will have to experiment with this, see how it actually works out.

It does mean that each time they bring out a class, they need to also bring out the multiclass chain. Considering they couldn’t do that for all the classes they have in the playtest, seems like this will be a problem.

shouldn't be any more of a problem than the 7 to 10 pages of archetypes everytime a new class or classes were published.


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I'm not sure I consider spending 3/11ths (if human), or 30% of a non-human's class feats for fully-scaling cantrips and one 1st (through 5th or 6th) level spell per day to be a dip anymore. Not that I am at all complaining about the cost. But for me the defination of a 'dip' is spending no more than 1/10th (10%) of your total 'class-related' choices on it.

So the Halfling Rogue 2/Sorcerer 18 'dipped' 2 levels of rogue (for Evasion to be able to point-blank fireball).
Likewise the Human Fighter that takes just Wizard Dedication is 'dipping'.

Because there are rules preventing serial dedication, it is impossible to dip more than once, and there are higher prerequisites for the better dedications. These are hardly encouragments to dip*. So although the initial dip is, admittedly pretty sweet, the example human fighter also paid a high price (16 int) just to make that dip into Wizard; but not as high as losing his capstone would have been.

*As opposed to PF1; where the initial dip into a martial class granted, accelerated, or at least maintained weapon proficiencies (aka BAB), generally improved saving throws, and added (potentially quite a few) class skill bonuses, and sometimes a bonus feat or synergistic class feature... but anything more than a dip (1-2 levels) diluted your class features effective levels into ineffectiveness (because the world was on a level-based treadmill even if you couldn't see it). Punishing you by design for having built to concept. Prestige classes were just an unsatisfying patch for the problems inherent to WoTCs horrible multiclassing system. Even the good ones created dissatisfying results unless you had excessive system mastery.


While I don't completely agree or disagree with the post I quoted it was never intentional. My phone fell on the ground so disregard that wierd quote post.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32, 2011 Top 16

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Had a thought this morning about how these multiclass rules lose flexibility. Not only does it interfere with also taking an archetype but it makes it impossible to multiclass into an archetype for your 2nd class. Let's say samurai is a fighter only archetype. If you're a wizard who wants to multi class to fighter you're fine. But if you're playing a wu Jen who wants to multiclass to samurai you're out of luck. Multiclass rules as written only allow the base class, no archetypes allowed. That's a flaw with the rules for me

Sovereign Court

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JoelF847 wrote:

Had a thought this morning about how these multiclass rules lose flexibility. Not only does it interfere with also taking an archetype but it makes it impossible to multiclass into an archetype for your 2nd class. Let's say samurai is a fighter only archetype. If you're a wizard who wants to multi class to fighter you're fine. But if you're playing a wu Jen who wants to multiclass to samurai you're out of luck. Multiclass rules as written only allow the base class, no archetypes allowed. That's a flaw with the rules for me

Does this hypothetical samurai archetype not include fighter class feats with samurai flavor? Seems like an oversight of the archetype. Why would that need to be an archetype at all, actually? You could achieve the same thing by publishing a number of themed class feats any fighter could choose. Give people control over how much or little samurai they want to be.


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Seisho wrote:
JulianW wrote:

My fear is that Annie will have to chose between multiclassing or archetypes, Ben can't keep it even and has to pick a side to favour, Carol will always be a ranger with a sideline in cleric even when she hasn't been out in the wilderness for a ton of levels and Dave's adventuring career is mostly done before he gets his 3 class flavour.

Okay Annie has really no chance but that seems like a really wild concept.

Really? Because tbh that sounds like a lot of my character builds. Given how archetypes are described in PF1 it only makes sense to have an archetype or two for every class you take. It's just a way of individualizing the class. Why should having two classes prevent that? If Annie is a Zen Archer Monk and wants to multiclass to Rogue, why on earth would that prevent her from taking the Sniper archetype with it?

Seisho wrote:
Ben might not be able to keep it even but if he can pick a favorite he will have the capstones and high level of it and probably profit from it

Ben is probably the best served concept of the 4 here. He'll probably never be 100% even, but he probably won't really suffer for it. Mechanically he'll probably be better.

Seisho wrote:
carol should speak with her gm, retraining is a big thing and doesnt cost anything, I don'T know about the class but I would let her exchange her main class and multiclass

I dislike retraining, but that is a functional in-game way to deal with that. Though bear in mind that it does cost in-game time, so if you're playing a campaign with built in time limits that is a major cost. Personally I like character builds that reflect the "this is something that I trained in way back, so I still know the basics" idea. This system does cover that angle, but it feels unsatisfying somehow. YMMV

Seisho wrote:
and dave...wow, that might work but I would still guess that he gets problems in the later game with that setup. Of course many of those things work together but for having such a hodge-podge you pay with having nothing really good

I did this once in 3.5, though with less martial focused classes. He was a lvl 7 character with 6 classes. I really just did it as an experiment, but I was able to make a functional, though not amazing, character doing it, and have thematic/story justification for it. Oh, and his saves were pretty much untouchable level. :P

Seisho wrote:
So while those players may not be able to do what they have done I have to ask: is it really that bad that one cant have such a muddled combnation?

Yes. It honestly removes a lot of possible concepts, or makes it take an absurdly long time to realize them. If you didn't really multiclass or use a lot of archetypes before, I'm sure you won't mind these changes, and to be fair, this does make multiclassing much more accessible. But for those of us that actually liked PF1 multiclassing and archetypes, this is a very weak sauce replacement.

I can accept the multiclassing, it does kind of makes sense, as long as the feats actually give you legit abilities. None of the VMC BS of "I'm an 11th level Fighter with the Wizard VMC. This level, I learned how to cast a cantrip!" The preview does a fair job of demonstrating that that shouldn't be an issue here though.
My issue is moreso that I can't have archetypes and multiclass at the same time. Those two shouldn't be mutually exclusive. I'm not thrilled about how hard it's going to be to get a third or fourth class either, but that I can live with, mixing that many classes shouldn't be easy, though it should be possible.


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JoelF847 wrote:

Had a thought this morning about how these multiclass rules lose flexibility. Not only does it interfere with also taking an archetype but it makes it impossible to multiclass into an archetype for your 2nd class. Let's say samurai is a fighter only archetype. If you're a wizard who wants to multi class to fighter you're fine. But if you're playing a wu Jen who wants to multiclass to samurai you're out of luck. Multiclass rules as written only allow the base class, no archetypes allowed. That's a flaw with the rules for me

Traditional 1st level archetypes are going to have to work differently if the idea is that they modify the abilities you get at first level. They will not be showcasing these during the playtest, because they feel like they already know how they work, but they will probably be able to release archetype multi-classing feats that would let you be the archetype version of the class you choose relatively easily.


JoelF847 wrote:

Had a thought this morning about how these multiclass rules lose flexibility. Not only does it interfere with also taking an archetype but it makes it impossible to multiclass into an archetype for your 2nd class. Let's say samurai is a fighter only archetype. If you're a wizard who wants to multi class to fighter you're fine. But if you're playing a wu Jen who wants to multiclass to samurai you're out of luck. Multiclass rules as written only allow the base class, no archetypes allowed. That's a flaw with the rules for me

I dont think archetypes will be class specific, though they might have prerequisites that favor certain classes.


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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
KingOfAnything wrote:
JoelF847 wrote:

Had a thought this morning about how these multiclass rules lose flexibility. Not only does it interfere with also taking an archetype but it makes it impossible to multiclass into an archetype for your 2nd class. Let's say samurai is a fighter only archetype. If you're a wizard who wants to multi class to fighter you're fine. But if you're playing a wu Jen who wants to multiclass to samurai you're out of luck. Multiclass rules as written only allow the base class, no archetypes allowed. That's a flaw with the rules for me

Does this hypothetical samurai archetype not include fighter class feats with samurai flavor? Seems like an oversight of the archetype. Why would that need to be an archetype at all, actually? You could achieve the same thing by publishing a number of themed class feats any fighter could choose. Give people control over how much or little samurai they want to be.

Or consider an example with only things we've seen already--

What about the Rogue who for the sea themed campaign who is supposed to be a Rogue (Pirate)/Wizard multiclass?

He has to spend 3 class feats on Pirate before he can take his first in Wizard, or vice versa?

Comparatively, in PF1 he could have the appropriate archetype from his first level of Rogue--

Isn't this the exact problem that existed with Prestige Classes that Paizo despised and so essentially did away with them for years and pushed Archetypes instead?

Wasn't a big push supposed to be, "be able to play your character concept from level 1"?


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KingOfAnything wrote:
JoelF847 wrote:

Had a thought this morning about how these multiclass rules lose flexibility. Not only does it interfere with also taking an archetype but it makes it impossible to multiclass into an archetype for your 2nd class. Let's say samurai is a fighter only archetype. If you're a wizard who wants to multi class to fighter you're fine. But if you're playing a wu Jen who wants to multiclass to samurai you're out of luck. Multiclass rules as written only allow the base class, no archetypes allowed. That's a flaw with the rules for me

Does this hypothetical samurai archetype not include fighter class feats with samurai flavor? Seems like an oversight of the archetype. Why would that need to be an archetype at all, actually? You could achieve the same thing by publishing a number of themed class feats any fighter could choose. Give people control over how much or little samurai they want to be.

That really wouldn't matter, because regardless of how many samurai flavored feats are available for fighter, you can't take them, you're spending your feat on just becoming a fighter. In theory, depending how the Fighter multiclass feats look, you might be able to take them for your 2 dedication feats, but that's a few levels in the future. Until then, you're just a Wu Jen/Fighter. And to make matters worse, you couldn't even multiclass to Fighter until level...8 I think? Because you took the Wu Jen archetype.


JoelF847 wrote:

Had a thought this morning about how these multiclass rules lose flexibility. Not only does it interfere with also taking an archetype but it makes it impossible to multiclass into an archetype for your 2nd class. Let's say samurai is a fighter only archetype. If you're a wizard who wants to multi class to fighter you're fine. But if you're playing a wu Jen who wants to multiclass to samurai you're out of luck. Multiclass rules as written only allow the base class, no archetypes allowed. That's a flaw with the rules for me

I don’t think Archetypes are going to be class-specific any more. If there is a Samurai archertype, it should be available to anyone who meets the prerequisites, regardless of class.


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A Ninja Errant wrote:
KingOfAnything wrote:
JoelF847 wrote:

Had a thought this morning about how these multiclass rules lose flexibility. Not only does it interfere with also taking an archetype but it makes it impossible to multiclass into an archetype for your 2nd class. Let's say samurai is a fighter only archetype. If you're a wizard who wants to multi class to fighter you're fine. But if you're playing a wu Jen who wants to multiclass to samurai you're out of luck. Multiclass rules as written only allow the base class, no archetypes allowed. That's a flaw with the rules for me

Does this hypothetical samurai archetype not include fighter class feats with samurai flavor? Seems like an oversight of the archetype. Why would that need to be an archetype at all, actually? You could achieve the same thing by publishing a number of themed class feats any fighter could choose. Give people control over how much or little samurai they want to be.
That really wouldn't matter, because regardless of how many samurai flavored feats are available for fighter, you can't take them, you're spending your feat on just becoming a fighter. In theory, depending how the Fighter multiclass feats look, you might be able to take them for your 2 dedication feats, but that's a few levels in the future. Until then, you're just a Wu Jen/Fighter. And to make matters worse, you couldn't even multiclass to Fighter until level...8 I think? Because you took the Wu Jen archetype.

The Wu Jen might also not be an archetype (is it even one in PF1?). It might simply be an arcane school you pick up at first level, or an alt-class of the wizard that replaces some of the level 1 features with different ones. If the samurai "class" is also just fighter class feats, you can start picking them up right after the initial dedication feat into fighter.


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Temperans wrote:
PF1 MC was one of the best thing about the game in my opinion. The reason being that it rewarded people who spent their time trying to make sure their character worked as envisioned (no matter how impratical the end result might be in play). For example: I'm making a flying 2k+ ft sniper using pf1 thats Zen Archer 6/Fighter 4/Arcane Archer x and 1 level of a caster for 1st lv spells (probs Archer Bard or Eldritch Archer). In play I will probably never used the range I'm building for but the fact remains he would make a great scout, mark enemies with special arrows, and overall play a support role.

While it is a cool concept, in play this is one of the types of multiclassing build that is no fun for anyone but the player of the super-sniper in play. The sniper can kill things from literally several combat mats away, with no harm, while the other players get results reported in with no challenge. The GM basically sets up straw targets for sniper to shoot, or (just as bad) has all the action take place in enclosed spaces with anti-missile magics, where the thing the character specked for is useless, and then the character sits out on the fun. While I like the 3e multiclassing simplicity, there are too many specialized archetypes and prestige classes in PF1 than can be mixed together to make characters with abilities that no designer can foresee and balance for.

Quote:
The ability req however seems kind of strange as you could make a 10 int wizard and still play the class (probably not best) but can't multiclass wizard? The other possible problem is that the gains are probably too good compared to the low cost. Using the wizard MC as an example: You gain 8 lv spell for 4 feats, or you can spend the feats for 4 powers that are probably meh compared to 6th+ lv spells.

The 10 INT wizard vs. 16 INT multiclassing can be explained in-game by the idea that, if someone spent years training for something, they can overcome a lack of natural talent, to some extent. However, if someone wants to pick up a very different skill set in a short period of time, they need to start with at least some natural aptitude to make up for the lack of a lifetime of training, and even then they won’t be as good as the person who trained since their youth.


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PF1 'Archetypes' will likely return mechanically as 'Variant Classes' or 'Alternate Classes' and be reserved for changes on par with Paladin to Antipaladin or Alchemist to Engineer.

Maybe Fighter to Cavalier or Samurai and Rogue to Ninja would work as variants, but they likely won't be Archetypes. Besides there isn't much point. Katanas are just Uncommon in Golarion. They aren't going to be a special snowflake weapon you need to be a special snowflake class to use proficiently.


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Charlaquin wrote:
JoelF847 wrote:

Had a thought this morning about how these multiclass rules lose flexibility. Not only does it interfere with also taking an archetype but it makes it impossible to multiclass into an archetype for your 2nd class. Let's say samurai is a fighter only archetype. If you're a wizard who wants to multi class to fighter you're fine. But if you're playing a wu Jen who wants to multiclass to samurai you're out of luck. Multiclass rules as written only allow the base class, no archetypes allowed. That's a flaw with the rules for me

I don’t think Archetypes are going to be class-specific any more. If there is a Samurai archertype, it should be available to anyone who meets the prerequisites, regardless of class.

IIRC there aren't going to be any class specific ones in the playtest, but they weren't ruling them out for the future.

Even so, you'd still have to have 3 dedications at that point, so being a Wizard with the Wu Jen, Samurai, and Fighter MC archetypes means you now have 3-4 class feats left, and are minimum level of 14 before having all your class-identity defining stuff. In PF1 you could have that by level 2. I don't see this as being a good change.

AnimatedPaper wrote:
The Wu Jen might also not be an archetype (is it even one in PF1?). It might simply be an arcane school you pick up at first level, or an alt-class of the wizard that replaces some of the level 1 features with different ones. If the samurai "class" is also just fighter class feats, you can start picking them up right after the initial dedication feat into fighter.

Wu Jen might not be an archetype. (You are correct that it isn't one in PF1.) Samurai might not be either. But the point is, that's going to be the reality for anyone who wants a multiclass combo that includes archetypes. The specific example really doesn't matter, but how about we use what we have? It is more or less definite now that you can't be a Fighter (Pirate)/Cleric (Gray Maiden) til 14th level. Gray Maiden is a prestige archetype, but it only requires level 6, so 14 is very late to be getting it. And really, the same applies regardless of which archetypes you want.

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Nathanael Love wrote:
KingOfAnything wrote:
JoelF847 wrote:

Had a thought this morning about how these multiclass rules lose flexibility. Not only does it interfere with also taking an archetype but it makes it impossible to multiclass into an archetype for your 2nd class. Let's say samurai is a fighter only archetype. If you're a wizard who wants to multi class to fighter you're fine. But if you're playing a wu Jen who wants to multiclass to samurai you're out of luck. Multiclass rules as written only allow the base class, no archetypes allowed. That's a flaw with the rules for me

Does this hypothetical samurai archetype not include fighter class feats with samurai flavor? Seems like an oversight of the archetype. Why would that need to be an archetype at all, actually? You could achieve the same thing by publishing a number of themed class feats any fighter could choose. Give people control over how much or little samurai they want to be.

Or consider an example with only things we've seen already--

What about the Rogue who for the sea themed campaign who is supposed to be a Rogue (Pirate)/Wizard multiclass?

He has to spend 3 class feats on Pirate before he can take his first in Wizard, or vice versa?

That’s not quite the same scenario Joel was worried about. If you really want to do three things at once, you can support one with your class, another with class feats and the third with your skill feats.


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KingOfAnything wrote:
Nathanael Love wrote:
KingOfAnything wrote:
JoelF847 wrote:

Had a thought this morning about how these multiclass rules lose flexibility. Not only does it interfere with also taking an archetype but it makes it impossible to multiclass into an archetype for your 2nd class. Let's say samurai is a fighter only archetype. If you're a wizard who wants to multi class to fighter you're fine. But if you're playing a wu Jen who wants to multiclass to samurai you're out of luck. Multiclass rules as written only allow the base class, no archetypes allowed. That's a flaw with the rules for me

Does this hypothetical samurai archetype not include fighter class feats with samurai flavor? Seems like an oversight of the archetype. Why would that need to be an archetype at all, actually? You could achieve the same thing by publishing a number of themed class feats any fighter could choose. Give people control over how much or little samurai they want to be.

Or consider an example with only things we've seen already--

What about the Rogue who for the sea themed campaign who is supposed to be a Rogue (Pirate)/Wizard multiclass?

He has to spend 3 class feats on Pirate before he can take his first in Wizard, or vice versa?

That’s not quite the same scenario Joel was worried about. If you really want to do three things at once, you can support one with your class, another with class feats and the third with your skill feats.

So your answer is, "You cannot be a Rogue (Pirate)/Wizard?"

Again, this was an easy 2-3 levels and you are on the path and are playing your character concept in PF1 so it requiring waiting till 8th level or being impossible in PF2 is a MASSIVE step backwards, not forwards.

This isn't even getting into esoteric or complicated builds-- just a Rogue/Wizard for a Pirate themed game, but because both the multiclass and the "pirate" archetype are locked with dedication requirements they are incompatible.

And since all the piratey ship bound benefits are in the Pirate Dedication feat then I don't expect they will be replicable with Rogue feats outside that, right?


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Nathanael Love wrote:
KingOfAnything wrote:
Nathanael Love wrote:
KingOfAnything wrote:
JoelF847 wrote:

Had a thought this morning about how these multiclass rules lose flexibility. Not only does it interfere with also taking an archetype but it makes it impossible to multiclass into an archetype for your 2nd class. Let's say samurai is a fighter only archetype. If you're a wizard who wants to multi class to fighter you're fine. But if you're playing a wu Jen who wants to multiclass to samurai you're out of luck. Multiclass rules as written only allow the base class, no archetypes allowed. That's a flaw with the rules for me

Does this hypothetical samurai archetype not include fighter class feats with samurai flavor? Seems like an oversight of the archetype. Why would that need to be an archetype at all, actually? You could achieve the same thing by publishing a number of themed class feats any fighter could choose. Give people control over how much or little samurai they want to be.

Or consider an example with only things we've seen already--

What about the Rogue who for the sea themed campaign who is supposed to be a Rogue (Pirate)/Wizard multiclass?

He has to spend 3 class feats on Pirate before he can take his first in Wizard, or vice versa?

That’s not quite the same scenario Joel was worried about. If you really want to do three things at once, you can support one with your class, another with class feats and the third with your skill feats.

So your answer is, "You cannot be a Rogue (Pirate)/Wizard?"

Again, this was an easy 2-3 levels and you are on the path and are playing your character concept in PF1 so it requiring waiting till 8th level or being impossible in PF2 is a MASSIVE step backwards, not forwards.

This isn't even getting into esoteric or complicated builds-- just a Rogue/Wizard for a Pirate themed game, but because both the multiclass and the "pirate" archetype are locked with dedication requirements they are incompatible.

And...

What is a rogue (pirate)/ wizard? A character with SA, spells and the ability to sail? That is accomplishable with a background, a class and a multi-class feat.

Until we see the book as a whole, it is very difficult to tell how much these characters will play like different class combinations from PF1. Depending on the weapon they want to use, a character might be able to be a magus with a single weapon proficiency feat, possibly one granted from an ancestry.


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I think killing off complicated builds is one of the goals. Complicated builds reward system mastery which is the same as punishing new players. In PF1 if a veteran and a newbie both make characters without assistance, just reading the book, the veteran is likely to come out with a far stronger character. That is bad for the game.

As to the pirate rogue wizard character you can focus your skill feats on athletics and acrobatics to be a better sailor but it looks like you need to make a choice between picking up wizard powers or perfecting your pirate techniques. Needing to make a choice isn't a bad thing.


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So, you assume there will in addition to the Pirate Dedication feat be an option for a "background" that will definitely make any character good enough at sailing?

I doubt very much that this will be true.


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Bardarok wrote:

I think killing off complicated builds is one of the goals. Complicated builds reward system mastery which is the same as punishing new players. In PF1 if a veteran and a newbie both make characters without assistance, just reading the book, the veteran is likely to come out with a far stronger character. That is bad for the game.

As to the pirate rogue wizard character you can focus your skill feats on athletics and acrobatics to be a better sailor but it looks like you need to make a choice between picking up wizard powers or perfecting your pirate techniques. Needing to make a choice isn't a bad thing.

It's not "needing to make a choice", it's "being denied a meaningful number of choices and having a large swatch of character types deemed essentially unavailable and off limits."

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Nathanael Love wrote:
KingOfAnything wrote:
Nathanael Love wrote:
KingOfAnything wrote:
JoelF847 wrote:

Had a thought this morning about how these multiclass rules lose flexibility. Not only does it interfere with also taking an archetype but it makes it impossible to multiclass into an archetype for your 2nd class. Let's say samurai is a fighter only archetype. If you're a wizard who wants to multi class to fighter you're fine. But if you're playing a wu Jen who wants to multiclass to samurai you're out of luck. Multiclass rules as written only allow the base class, no archetypes allowed. That's a flaw with the rules for me

Does this hypothetical samurai archetype not include fighter class feats with samurai flavor? Seems like an oversight of the archetype. Why would that need to be an archetype at all, actually? You could achieve the same thing by publishing a number of themed class feats any fighter could choose. Give people control over how much or little samurai they want to be.

Or consider an example with only things we've seen already--

What about the Rogue who for the sea themed campaign who is supposed to be a Rogue (Pirate)/Wizard multiclass?

He has to spend 3 class feats on Pirate before he can take his first in Wizard, or vice versa?

That’s not quite the same scenario Joel was worried about. If you really want to do three things at once, you can support one with your class, another with class feats and the third with your skill feats.

So your answer is, "You cannot be a Rogue (Pirate)/Wizard?"

Again, this was an easy 2-3 levels and you are on the path and are playing your character concept in PF1 so it requiring waiting till 8th level or being impossible in PF2 is a MASSIVE step backwards, not forwards.

This isn't even getting into esoteric or complicated builds-- just a Rogue/Wizard for a Pirate themed game, but because both the multiclass and the "pirate" archetype are locked with dedication requirements they are incompatible.

And...

No, my answer was “yes, you can”. What does it mean for the character to be a Rogue/Wizard/Pirate? Not what labels you have, what abilities help you realize that concept? You can achieve your concept without using class labels as a crutch.


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Nathanael Love wrote:

So, you assume there will in addition to the Pirate Dedication feat be an option for a "background" that will definitely make any character good enough at sailing?

I doubt very much that this will be true.

If "Sailor" isn't a background by the CRB, I would be absolutely shocked. Between getting training in Acrobatics and Lore (sailing), I think that is pretty much all you need to have a character that qualifies as pirate.


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Nathanael Love wrote:

So, you assume there will in addition to the Pirate Dedication feat be an option for a "background" that will definitely make any character good enough at sailing?

I doubt very much that this will be true.

What does it take to be good at sailing? Lore(Sailing), Acrobatics, and Athletics. Right?

I don't know for sure but I bet there will be a sailor background that gives lore(sailing) and probably assurance Athletics or similar. Then use two of your level one skills to become trained in acrobatics and athletics and that's a damn good start.

Pirate archetype is about naval combat and yes it would be a good thing to have to be a pirate but you don't need it and if you want to get spells instead you can still be a contributing member of the crew can still swing on ropes and sail and s&!$ you just don't get some of the specific boarding action and swimming benefits. But you have magic spells instead.

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Nathanael Love wrote:

So, you assume there will in addition to the Pirate Dedication feat be an option for a "background" that will definitely make any character good enough at sailing?

I doubt very much that this will be true.

They are called Sailing Lore and Acrobatics.


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Nathanael Love wrote:

So, you assume there will in addition to the Pirate Dedication feat be an option for a "background" that will definitely make any character good enough at sailing?

I doubt very much that this will be true.

IIRC "Sailor" is one of the 19 Playtest Backgrounds (25 in total including thosemin the module).


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My take is this. Some time ago I considered a martial (a Barb) who could blast a bit. I went Cleric. I playtested and ran up some levels and what I discovered was that he was decent at punching people in the face with an axe, but he couldn't compete with his spells.

The one time shooting became a real option was if he was taking on an airborne foes he couldn't otherwise hit, and even then he'd be subpar.

I suppose that to a degree, the Bloodrager may have filled that niche, but I still bet that buffing would be much better than trying to shoot fireballs.

I'm excited for this new multiclassing. It looks like I may finally get to build a martial who can blast a bit and not be totally useless.


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Bardarok wrote:
Nathanael Love wrote:

So, you assume there will in addition to the Pirate Dedication feat be an option for a "background" that will definitely make any character good enough at sailing?

I doubt very much that this will be true.

What does it take to be good at sailing? Lore(Sailing), Acrobatics, and Athletics. Right?

I don't know for sure but I bet there will be a sailor background that gives lore(sailing) and probably assurance Athletics or similar. Then use two of your level one skills to become trained in acrobatics and athletics and that's a damn good start.

Pirate archetype is about naval combat and yes it would be a good thing to have to be a pirate but you don't need it and if you want to get spells instead you can still be a contributing member of the crew can still swing on ropes and sail and s&~% you just don't get some of the specific boarding action and swimming benefits. But you have magic spells instead.

This still amounts to "No- you are not allowed to play a Rogue (pirate)/Wizard".

"well, you can take the skill points and almost kind of be this if you squint and if you ignore the fact that what you really want to do is right there you just aren't allowed to do it because of an arbitrary limit that you have to wait till level 8 to get a second 'archetype', and oh by the way-- you'll have to spend MORE resources to get less, but you can almost, sort of, kind of do it, so enjoy it and stop trying to be different-- you put the word 'Rogue' on your sheet at level one, so enjoy being 'Rogue' until level 20 dangit!"

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Nathanael Love wrote:
Bardarok wrote:
Nathanael Love wrote:

So, you assume there will in addition to the Pirate Dedication feat be an option for a "background" that will definitely make any character good enough at sailing?

I doubt very much that this will be true.

What does it take to be good at sailing? Lore(Sailing), Acrobatics, and Athletics. Right?

I don't know for sure but I bet there will be a sailor background that gives lore(sailing) and probably assurance Athletics or similar. Then use two of your level one skills to become trained in acrobatics and athletics and that's a damn good start.

Pirate archetype is about naval combat and yes it would be a good thing to have to be a pirate but you don't need it and if you want to get spells instead you can still be a contributing member of the crew can still swing on ropes and sail and s&~% you just don't get some of the specific boarding action and swimming benefits. But you have magic spells instead.

This still amounts to "No- you are not allowed to play a Rogue (pirate)/Wizard".

"well, you can take the skill points and almost kind of be this if you squint and if you ignore the fact that what you really want to do is right there you just aren't allowed to do it because of an arbitrary limit that you have to wait till level 8 to get a second 'archetype', and oh by the way-- you'll have to spend MORE resources to get less, but you can almost, sort of, kind of do it, so enjoy it and stop trying to be different-- you put the word 'Rogue' on your sheet at level one, so enjoy being 'Rogue' until level 20 dangit!"

You are really very stuck in a PF1 paradigm. You don’t need an archetype to be a pirate. It just makes you a better Pirate.


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Everybody is getting hung up on Pirate. Pirate just gets used as an example because it's the one basic archetype they previewed. Being able to do basic pirate-y stuff without having to take pirate archetype doesn't change the argument, it just obscures it.
Quite frankly, I could probably make a hundred characters and never actually feel the need to take the pirate archetype, even if I was making an actual literal pirate. That's mostly because the pirate archetype looks pretty weak though. That doesn't change the fact that not having the capability to have an archetype and a multiclass simultaneously is a problem that needs to be addressed.
EDIT: Or that not being able to have an archetype from level 1 is also an issue that should be addressed.


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KingOfAnything wrote:
Nathanael Love wrote:
Bardarok wrote:
Nathanael Love wrote:

So, you assume there will in addition to the Pirate Dedication feat be an option for a "background" that will definitely make any character good enough at sailing?

I doubt very much that this will be true.

What does it take to be good at sailing? Lore(Sailing), Acrobatics, and Athletics. Right?

I don't know for sure but I bet there will be a sailor background that gives lore(sailing) and probably assurance Athletics or similar. Then use two of your level one skills to become trained in acrobatics and athletics and that's a damn good start.

Pirate archetype is about naval combat and yes it would be a good thing to have to be a pirate but you don't need it and if you want to get spells instead you can still be a contributing member of the crew can still swing on ropes and sail and s&~% you just don't get some of the specific boarding action and swimming benefits. But you have magic spells instead.

This still amounts to "No- you are not allowed to play a Rogue (pirate)/Wizard".

"well, you can take the skill points and almost kind of be this if you squint and if you ignore the fact that what you really want to do is right there you just aren't allowed to do it because of an arbitrary limit that you have to wait till level 8 to get a second 'archetype', and oh by the way-- you'll have to spend MORE resources to get less, but you can almost, sort of, kind of do it, so enjoy it and stop trying to be different-- you put the word 'Rogue' on your sheet at level one, so enjoy being 'Rogue' until level 20 dangit!"

You are really very stuck in a PF1 paradigm. You don’t need an archetype to be a pirate. It just makes you a better Pirate.

Keep following the logic-- do I need an archetype to be a Hellknight or does it just make me a better Hellknight?

I used Pirate as the example because Pirate is the example we have, but there are going to be plenty of times where being absolutely prohibited from taking a second dedication feat until 8th level gives the EXACT problem that prestige classes presented (you don't get to "be" your character until 6, 7, or 8th level).

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