The Resonance Test

Monday, October 15, 2018

Today, we're happy to release an alternate version of the item Resonance system for testing using the Raiders of Shrieking Peak adventure and an encapsulated set of rules. So, how did we get to this release, how do you use it, what's different, and what do we expect out of it?

The Survey Data

First, let's talk about what our survey data has shown us. All the surveys you've been filling out during the playtest process have helped us immensely, and the Rules Survey in particular is telling us a lot about how the rules are being received. The Rules Survey asked quite a few questions about the Resonance system. As you can probably tell from some of the questions on that survey, we looked at things people in the community were already saying to gauge how widespread those sentiments really were. For example, we had seen a lot of people comment that they thought it didn't make sense for potions to cost Resonance Points, so we included this in the survey to gather more information. The results so far show that 55% of respondents have said that while it makes sense that other items cost Resonance, it doesn't make sense for potions. (26% have said it doesn't make sense that anything costs Resonance.)

The main set of questions we asked about Resonance showed us pretty strongly that Resonance as printed was highly unpopular. Few people thought characters had the right number of points, there was too much tracking, the rules on overspending weren't engaging, and only about 20% of respondents thought the system was a clear improvement over First Edition. When introducing a new system, it's especially important that the system be seen as a clear improvement, or it's not pulling its weight.

However, not all of the feedback was negative. The rules had good ratings on being easy to understand, and there was strong support (both in the surveys and in forum posts we've been seeing) for Resonance as a way to make it easier to track multiple-use items. Though we didn't ask about it directly in the survey, we've also seen solid support for a more flexible system of worn items compared to First Edition's item slots. So, the new iteration of the Resonance system looks to expand on these few elements that were well liked, while reducing the elements that felt like burdens.

How to Test Resonance

I'm going to go into plenty of detail on why we're testing the changes we are, but some of that info is also in the test document. So, if you want to just get on with it and pick up the file, here's how.

To test the new Resonance system, you'll need to download two files: the adventure Raiders of Shrieking Peak and the Resonance Test file. The adventure is the same as the preexisting Pathfinder Society Playtest Scenario (and as we've mentioned before, you can run either version in Pathfinder Society for credit). The Resonance Test file contains the rules for this alternate system, design notes on our intent with various rules, lots of new versions of items, the pregenerated characters to use in the adventure, and a short GM section with the few thematic adjustments you need to make to the adventure and items that appear in the adventure.

When you're done, go to the Resonance Test Survey and tell us what you thought! This survey will give you questions depending on whether you ran it, played in it, read it, or any combination thereof. We expect this survey will remain open till the end of the year like the other surveys.

The Changes

So what did we change? As we said from the outset, the Resonance Points system in the Playtest Rulebook was highly experimental, and it was clear that experiment had failed. Jason quite correctly pointed out that we needed to show where our line of thinking is going in the wake of this and solicit additional feedback—telling everyone to wait for the final rules isn't enough. Hence, this new experiment takes what we learned from play and the surveys and takes a crack at something we think is more interesting and flexible, and that we hope you feel the same way about. Much of what I'm about to say here is replicated in the document, and just included here to give you the full perspective.

This test is checking to see whether some version of the system is satisfying. Resonance has its roots in concepts that appeared in First Edition through the occultist class, resonant powers between certain magic items, and several other places in the lore. Is there something valuable in the idea that items can be made stronger though the user's strength of personality and essence?

First off, let's clarify that while the term "Resonance Points" is still in the document, that's not what's being used to activate items any more (we'll get to those in a bit). Instead, Resonance Points are just to track your capacity to wear items. This aspect of Resonance had a favorable response, and so we're hoping to maintain the flexibility of item choice that comes with removing item slots. However, the point value for Resonance is now different. You get 10. At 1st level, at 20th level. This is because when we use Resonance for just worn items, we're only looking to prevent extreme cases of abuse and discourage extreme item loadouts. For most characters, 10 worn items is plenty. Think of it like Bulk, where the number is high enough that characters rarely need to worry about it unless they have extremely low Strength or they try to carry way too much.

As for getting more out of items, that's where Focus Points come in. This new pool unites two similar concepts: the extra spells you could cast via Spell Points and the extra energy you could put into magic items to get more out of them (think of this along the lines of the occultist's focus powers or the Charisma-based Use Magic Device skill from First Edition). Unlike Spell Points, all characters have Focus Points, and your number per day is equal to your Charisma modifier plus 1 or 2, depending on your ancestry. You can spend a Focus Point to cast a power (in the Resonance Test, this is a cleric's domain power or a sorcerer's bloodline power), or can spend a Focus Point when activating an item to improve its effect.

Notice I said improve it. In this test, items don't normally cost anything to activate. If you use a scroll or drink a potion, you spend nothing but the consumable itself. You can activate your bracers of missile deflection once per day, spending nothing to do so. What you get out of spending a Focus Point depends on the item: A healing potion doubles its healing, the bracers of missile deflection can be activated again, the splash damage from an alchemist's fire has a bigger area, and so on. One of my favorite little distinctions is the invisibility potion. If you only need to move into a combat and make an attack while invisible, you can drink the potion to get 1d4 rounds of invisibility. However, if you have a lot of sneaking around to do before you plan on fighting, you can extend the effect to 10 minutes instead by spending a Focus Point!

The pool of Focus Points doesn't grow as huge as the Resonance Point pool did, since your level isn't added to it and, unlike Spell Points, you don't get more points when you take new powers. The goal here is to make each use of Focus more exciting and interesting. When someone spends a Focus Point, it should be a capital-M Moment. One of the overall goals for the Second Edition is to make your individual decisions during play more impactful and exciting, with fewer set routines. The printed version of Resonance didn't do that, and we're hoping Focus Points give you something exciting to look forward to rather than a chore to carry out. If you look at the cleric and sorcerer powers from the Playtest Rulebook compared to the ones in the Resonance Test, you'll see that they got stronger, because they now cost a more precious resource.

I want to address a couple concerns briefly. One is that classes that thematically should have a decent number of Focus Points will be left out if the pool is Charisma-based. We expect that these classes would have solid methods to adjust their number of points. For instance, a wizard might get some points each day from his arcane focus, or a ki-using monk might meditate to refresh some Focus Points. However, we'd be looking at these remaining Charisma-based, so a wizard who wants to increase Charisma gets a Focus Point benefit from it just like a fighter would. The other concern is that we're weakening items to make room for these Focus Point abilities, such as the shorter duration for the invisibility potion mentioned above. Some of the baseline effects of these items are weakening for another reason. Namely, when removing the Resonance Point requirement for activation, we do need to rein in some of the baseline abilities, since now money is the only limit on how often you can use them. The Focus Point additions are on top of this adjusted baseline power, and if they were removed, the base items would not end up as strong as they are in the current printed version of the book, when they cost a Resonance Point each time.

Will having Focus Points be entirely optional satisfy people's desires for a different system? Will the folks who said spending Resonance on items doesn't make sense think any differently now that Focus is an addition that allows characters to gain more power or benefit out of their items? Will a substantial number of people think that it's a cool system, but that there's still too much bookkeeping? That's what we'll be looking for you to tell us in the survey and your comments.

The Long Term

So, if this test (or parts of it) goes well, what can you expect the long-term changes to be? First off, we need to be clear: Regardless of what people think of the system, there's just no way, logistically, to implement a full change within the playtest period. We might—and I stress might—be able to put out some more samples or previews of where we think we're going, and possibly even guidelines to adapt the printed Resonance system further, but you won't be seeing a total rewrite of the rules.

It's also unlikely that the final items in the book or the final system rules will look exactly like what you see in the Resonance Test, even if the test goes great. Opening up more free magic might necessitate some other changes once players would gain unbounded access to crafting magic items. For example, wands, staves, or scrolls might need to be a higher level or more expensive. And if we get feedback that the Focus Points system should be scuttled entirely, an item like a wand might need to go still higher regardless. We're going to try and minimize that as much as we can, though! Keeping magic items magical and coming to your character when their abilities are still useful is hugely important, and we don't want to go from one system that feels too restrictive to another that feels restrictive, just in a different way.

Some of the terminology and presentation of the rules might change too. "Resonance Points" might make a little more sense if phrased in a different way, such as an interference field that builds up from 0 to a limit of 10 rather than points you spend from 10 down to 0—for the purposes of this Resonance Test, some of the wording was just kept intentionally close to the printed text so it's easier to understand and compare for readers who've been keeping up with the playtest from the start.

We can say with confidence that the printed rules in the Playtest Rulebook won't be in the final version of the book as is. The Resonance Test is an experiment to see whether there's still an interesting idea in there. The most extreme case we might end up with looks more like Pathfinder First Edition, with something like the items you see in the Resonance Test, but with no extra benefits for spending Focus Points.

And all this, of course, relies on you and what you have to say. We deeply appreciate all the time you've put into playtesting this game. If you have time to playtest the Resonance Test, that's fantastic! The playtest schedule is tight, and if you only have time to give the test a read but not to play, that's also so, so helpful. We look forward to hearing more from you as you lament the fates of your characters, struggle against the clock, achieve the impossible, punch holes in the rules, and click through another set of surveys. From Jason, Stephen, Mark, and me, thank you all!

Logan Bonner
Designer

Join the Pathfinder Playtest designers every Friday throughout the playtest on our Twitch Channel to hear all about the process and chat directly with the team.

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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

My current feelings on Focus are twofold:

1) I really like all classes having their "special ability pools" tied to Charisma, although for it work properly every class needs something it wants to spend those points on, AND every class needs to still be functional with a pool of 0. In other words, it needs to work like Ki does for monks right now, for everyone. Low Charisma should be something, like low Strength or Wisdom, that you adjust your build to account for the drawbacks of, not something that cripples your character.

2) I do not like items and class powers competing for the same resource.


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It's still impossibly game-y feeling - it doesn't feel like something that grows out of the fiction at all, it's the worst kind of immersion breaking for me.


Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
MaxAstro wrote:

My current feelings on Focus are twofold:

1) I really like all classes having their "special ability pools" tied to Charisma, although for it work properly every class needs something it wants to spend those points on, AND every class needs to still be functional with a pool of 0. In other words, it needs to work like Ki does for monks right now, for everyone. Low Charisma should be something, like low Strength or Wisdom, that you adjust your build to account for the drawbacks of, not something that cripples your character.

2) I do not like items and class powers competing for the same resource.

So, we could keep Resonance how it is now, since it looks functional and has some potential utility.

Bin the empower items with Focus stuff.

Give every character a Focus pool based on Cha mod, that can be increased by class features (so every class can use their cool stuff even if they're not cha-based). Let everyone use their Focus baseline one something universally useful but not magical (like "focusing" to roll two d20 and take highest on one check per point)


I know a lot of people don't view low level consumable spam as a problem but I do and I feel like this new system does not really address that well while the first pass at resonance addressed exactly that problem really well.

Either low level consumables are going to be wildly unaffordable for low level characters (and thus may be better off sold even if found) or high level characters will be able to use those low level items with impunity. I don't care for either scenario, really.


Meraki wrote:

On the whole, I like this much better than the previous version, but I'm leery about putting magic item use and class power use in the same pool. I'd rather those not have to compete with each other.

(Related note: is it really an expectation among most tables that any given store you go to will have 10 quickrunner's shirts and 20 CLW wands in stock? If you play strict RAW, that isn't the case (since city statblocks list what types of items are available), and if you don't, it makes complete sense to rule a party can only find one or two of a given item, imo.)

Both the Shirts and the wands only take one day to craft. So instead of a shop with a huge inventory (that must be guarded and can be robbed), they just need to find a crafter.


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The Raven Black wrote:
I am happy that we get rid of slots

Will PC's in your group be wearing multiple pairs of boots? If no, why? is it because there are no valuable boots or because it would look stupid for most footwear? If it's the latter then you do have slots, you simply have more slotless items then before.


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John Lynch 106 wrote:
Will PC's in your group be wearing multiple pairs of boots?

I'm gonna roll up Billy Tenboots as an NPC.

Lantern Lodge

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Do we still have to track Charges AND Focus points AND resonance? Please, if you are going to have Focus, please remove Charges and times per day. THEN I can see Focus making sense and making everybodies lives simpler. But if I also have to track x/day uses or charges as well as more point systems it just doesn't feel right.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
John Lynch 106 wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:
I am happy that we get rid of slots
Will PC's in your group be wearing multiple pairs of boots? If no, why? is it because there are no valuable boots or because it would look stupid for most footwear? If it's the latter then you do have slots, you simply have more slotless items then before.

I'd like to wear 10 rings please.


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Boojumbunn wrote:
Please, if you are going to have Focus, please remove Charges and times per day.

And if they do that, there is no reason to care about the number of items equipped as there is NOTHING to abuse: swapping gains you nothing as there aren't any free uses.


I feel like one free use per day, additional uses cost resonance is pretty easy to track, since literally all you have to remember is "have I used this already today?". I would very much like to avoid anything like "[Foo] has 1 free use, [Bar] has 3 free uses, and [Baz] has 7 free uses" though.


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

This "use it once for no focus cost, then use it the second time for one focus, then after that as many times as you want (up to # of charges) mechanism is the pits. And pity the poor dwarf, who by default has *no* focus points.

Paizo is looking for a mechanism to limit the amount of magic a character can use. They still haven't found the right one.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
I feel like one free use per day, additional uses cost resonance is pretty easy to track, since literally all you have to remember is "have I used this already today?".

Sure if you have a single item maybe... Now imagine if you have a per day affect on each of your 10 items and you have 5 wands... Was it item #5 or #6 you used the free use of or was that yesterday? Did you use wand #2 or #3? You have 15 individual pools to track on top of focus. Now if you're the DM and every player has similar items, you have 60 items to track 'did you use that today' with. :P

This is of course taken to the extreme but it illustrates that "have I used this already today?" is looking at the issue in a vacuum.


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Tridus wrote:

Yeah, this part is working fine. It's the focus part that gets fiddly and problematic.

They're still trying overcomplicated solutions to things they want to change, which is a comomn theme I find in the playtest.

Yeah, I keep seeing these overly complicated and often punitive 'solutions' to simpler problems. Resonance was a badly functioning Rube Goldberg machine of rule system. With the extra bonus of trying to solve a bunch of different issues, some of which weren't even problems in my mind.

Although in this case, focus doesn't even solve a problem. It just creates new ones for a new feature of dubious need.


I had some thoughts along those lines but they don't seem to have been very compelling.


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
Resonance as a "count how many magic items you have equipped" is vastly simpler and easier than "item slots." I sincerely hope that stays.

We still have item slots, though?

Quote:
However, if a character can wear only one of a given type of item, that item’s form is listed following the word “worn.” For example, if the Method of Use entry for an item is “worn, cloak,” then a character could wear only one cloak.

—Page 345


Vic Ferrari wrote:
MaxAstro wrote:

"Okay, I have 7 items left to resonate with, if I take one off and put another on I will have 6 left."

"Okay, I have 7 Resonance points left, if I take an item off and put another on I will have 6 left."

Still not seeing the difference?

Simply leave out the middleman of points. You can only resonate with 10 items at a time, once you have resonated with an item, it counts toward your max (you can resonate 10 times, before needing a rest to resonate again).

I also just don't like Resonance and Resonate as terms for this. It's weirdly artificial and brings in yet another term for no real reason. Wouldn't it be simpler to call it the Investment Limit? You can invest 10 things. Theoretical things to change this could just say "Increases your Investment limit by one." Or items can "Count as two items for purposes of investment."

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

My problem is with wands still having 10 charges, using both a focus and a charge is once again ridonculous to me. If I'm tracking charges on an item, then I shouldn't be spending focus to activate it.


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Pathfinder Maps, Pawns, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

What is wrong with using the magic item's focus pool? Also known as charges? The focus pool already existed, it was the amount of charges within the item. I'm specifically talking about wands. I do like the decreased number of charges that wands hold. I don't think the players need a separate pool of points, other than the wand's assigned charges, in order to activate the item. It would be a lot easier and less frustrating to the players.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Centurian 919 wrote:
What is wrong with using the magic item's focus pool? Also known as charges? The focus pool already existed, it was the amount of charges within the item. I'm specifically talking about wands. I do like the decreased number of charges that wands hold. I don't think the players need a separate pool of points, other than the wand's assigned charges, in order to activate the item. It would be a lot easier and less frustrating to the players.

The thing is I have no problem with item charges, but I should never need to spend a personal resource to activate an item with charges.

Charges OR Focus. If a character is going to spend focus, then the wand needs to do something more than just activate again (perhaps heightening, or ignoring the spell roll cap).

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
John Lynch 106 wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:
I am happy that we get rid of slots
Will PC's in your group be wearing multiple pairs of boots? If no, why? is it because there are no valuable boots or because it would look stupid for most footwear? If it's the latter then you do have slots, you simply have more slotless items then before.

You are right. I was not precise enough.

I am happy that we do not have RAW-defined magic item slots anymore. This way designers can create the items as they envision them and let the GMs decide what they find acceptable or not as far as stacking items go

After all, the slots thing was for magic items only in PF1. There was no RAW against carrying 100 backpacks on your shoulders ;-)

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Aiken Frost wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Fuzzypaws wrote:
On a final note, Focus is a VASTLY better name than spell points. :) But we don't need Resonance as a name for item slots. Just say you can invest 10 items per day. It doesn't need a name.
Uh, yeah it does need a name, in your suggestion you've just moved it to Invest/Investiture. Not having an official name for referring to the pool of 10 will just be really awkward when talking about it.

Wait, so the new wand rules are totally fine and immediately grokable, but not having a name to your slots is so incredibly awkward?

What!?

Please point out where I said I was fine with wands as they are.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
John Lynch 106 wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:
I am happy that we get rid of slots
Will PC's in your group be wearing multiple pairs of boots? If no, why? is it because there are no valuable boots or because it would look stupid for most footwear? If it's the latter then you do have slots, you simply have more slotless items then before.

Not boots, but footwear yes. Boots, anklets, maybe some steeltoe thing that covers the boots...

Making alternate slots for items has always been one of my favourite things, Magical earrings, belly button rings, piercings, etc...

This system encourages that :3


Doktor Weasel wrote:
Vic Ferrari wrote:
MaxAstro wrote:

"Okay, I have 7 items left to resonate with, if I take one off and put another on I will have 6 left."

"Okay, I have 7 Resonance points left, if I take an item off and put another on I will have 6 left."

Still not seeing the difference?

Simply leave out the middleman of points. You can only resonate with 10 items at a time, once you have resonated with an item, it counts toward your max (you can resonate 10 times, before needing a rest to resonate again).
I also just don't like Resonance and Resonate as terms for this. It's weirdly artificial and brings in yet another term for no real reason. Wouldn't it be simpler to call it the Investment Limit? You can invest 10 things. Theoretical things to change this could just say "Increases your Investment limit by one." Or items can "Count as two items for purposes of investment."

Fine by me, attune, bond, align, etc.


Probably it's better to keep just the investment part and dismiss the idea of Resonance completely for simplicity's sake.
And it's probably easier to restrict items via prices both for purchased or self crafted items. Just define that each body part can only hold one item at the same time (or in case of rings maybe one or two per hand) and there will be no problem again with characters overburdned by magic items.

The idea to empower invested items though is very cool, I like it. It does not restrict donning magic items spontaneously so they will still have some lesser magical effect(s) but it makes them way more potent if they are properly invested.

Personally I never had problems with tracking individual charges of items. It makes items with charges more "individual" :D

What I like about PF2 in general is, it is more streamlined and simplified than PF1 without being dumped down. Resonance and additional pools though are complicating gameplay unnecessarily.


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Ephialtes wrote:
What I like about PF2 in general is, it is more streamlined and simplified than PF1 without being dumped down.

I was hoping for streamlining, but to me it's one of the most byzantine, micro-happy versions of D&D/PF, to date. Definitely not a game for beginners, seems like an advanced, niche RPG.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Vic Ferrari wrote:
Ephialtes wrote:
What I like about PF2 in general is, it is more streamlined and simplified than PF1 without being dumped down.
I was hoping for streamlining, but to me it's one of the most byzantine, micro-happy versions of D&D/PF, to date. Definitely not a game for beginners, seems like an advanced, niche RPG.

Thats odd, all my players have remarked on how much easier to handle it is over 3.5/PF1E.


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Malk_Content wrote:
Vic Ferrari wrote:
Ephialtes wrote:
What I like about PF2 in general is, it is more streamlined and simplified than PF1 without being dumped down.
I was hoping for streamlining, but to me it's one of the most byzantine, micro-happy versions of D&D/PF, to date. Definitely not a game for beginners, seems like an advanced, niche RPG.
Thats odd, all my players have remarked on how much easier to handle it is over 3.5/PF1E.

Very odd, indeed.

"...what might be right for you, may not be for some, it takes...different strokes, it takes...different strokes..."


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Malk_Content wrote:
Vic Ferrari wrote:
Ephialtes wrote:
What I like about PF2 in general is, it is more streamlined and simplified than PF1 without being dumped down.
I was hoping for streamlining, but to me it's one of the most byzantine, micro-happy versions of D&D/PF, to date. Definitely not a game for beginners, seems like an advanced, niche RPG.
Thats odd, all my players have remarked on how much easier to handle it is over 3.5/PF1E.

Same at my table. The only aspect that is really hotly debated is the many takes of resonance which appears cumbersome to many of my players. And I tend to agree with many posters here, that Resonance seems to be specifically created to tend to PFS problems. In all my 3.5 rounds I never ran into the problems for which Resonance is said to be a fix. I even have purchased some PF1 books now to start a PF1 campaign in the meantime until PF2 is released and I did not find anything in them that would make Resonance necessary.

Don't get me wrong, I like the idea of investment and empowering but to me Resonance should be limited to this single aspect. If PFS needs regulations, make Resonance a PFS mandatory and if all an option to the rest to discard if not needed.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Ephialtes wrote:

And I tend to agree with many posters here, that Resonance seems to be specifically created to tend to PFS problems.

.
.
.

If PFS needs regulations, make Resonance a PFS mandatory and if all an option to the rest to discard if not needed.

As someone who primarily plays PFS, I still don't understand what PFS play problem that resonance (in any of its forms) is designed to solve.


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With the current rules for Focus, I feel Intelligence would be a more appropriate stat than Charisma. Sorcerers are all about their own, innate powers. The item-users are alchemists, wizards (and later occultists).

Also, Int is the current dump stat of choice, not Charisma.


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pjrogers wrote:
Ephialtes wrote:

And I tend to agree with many posters here, that Resonance seems to be specifically created to tend to PFS problems.

.
.
.

If PFS needs regulations, make Resonance a PFS mandatory and if all an option to the rest to discard if not needed.

As someone who primarily plays PFS, I still don't understand what PFS play problem that resonance (in any of its forms) is designed to solve.

Then it even seems to be just a problem of a very small minority of PFS players. In this case I wonder why this rare problem needs such a complicated system ingrained solution at all.

Dark Archive

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

This seems like a good direction.

Consider however that Staves and Wands are in many respects just another consumable. They’re also like s weapon: you pick them up or draw them, and use them.

Why not treat them like weapons too? You can pick up and use any weapon, wwands and staves should be the same way. No “resonance” needed to use staves and wands, just like potions, BUT every use can be empowered with focus.

The trick would then be “what is the effect of a spell when it’s focused”. That’s the time consuming, but fun part: add a focus effect to all spells. Examples that the spell might list might be extra duration, Extra damage dice, extra healing dice, or result is treated as result one worse/one better.

Then expand it to feats or class abilities. Some classes already have this with spell points. Fighters and other classes that don’t will need some generic actions, and a few class features, that can be enhanced with focus.

Treating all “consumables/weapons” the same way would help simplify the system for player. Yes this means a lot more up front work and balancing...which we appreciate, Paizo :)


graystone wrote:
Boojumbunn wrote:
Please, if you are going to have Focus, please remove Charges and times per day.
And if they do that, there is no reason to care about the number of items equipped as there is NOTHING to abuse: swapping gains you nothing as there aren't any free uses.

It's worth noting that the equipment limits are still useful even if all activations happen through Focus, because passive items do (or at least should) still be a thing that happens. Stuff like armor, the stat-boosters, things like that where you put it on and just have the bonus. Unless you want those to all burn the same (exceedingly small right now, even if we do manage to divorce it from class features) resource as active-use magic items in which case... why would you want that?


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Starfox wrote:

With the current rules for Focus, I feel Intelligence would be a more appropriate stat than Charisma. Sorcerers are all about their own, innate powers. The item-users are alchemists, wizards (and later occultists).

Also, Int is the current dump stat of choice, not Charisma.

It would just be swapping the two though. Give it to Int and Charisma becomes the dumpstat with 0 mechanical weight again.


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Ephialtes wrote:
pjrogers wrote:
Ephialtes wrote:

And I tend to agree with many posters here, that Resonance seems to be specifically created to tend to PFS problems.

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.
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If PFS needs regulations, make Resonance a PFS mandatory and if all an option to the rest to discard if not needed.

As someone who primarily plays PFS, I still don't understand what PFS play problem that resonance (in any of its forms) is designed to solve.
Then it even seems to be just a problem of a very small minority of PFS players. In this case I wonder why this rare problem needs such a complicated system ingrained solution at all.

Can we please stop ignoring the multiple posters who have said this is/has been a problem for them in their home games? Myself included.

Doesn't feel good to have people talk over my concerns as if they don't exist...


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Shinigami02 wrote:
graystone wrote:
Boojumbunn wrote:
Please, if you are going to have Focus, please remove Charges and times per day.
And if they do that, there is no reason to care about the number of items equipped as there is NOTHING to abuse: swapping gains you nothing as there aren't any free uses.
It's worth noting that the equipment limits are still useful even if all activations happen through Focus, because passive items do (or at least should) still be a thing that happens. Stuff like armor, the stat-boosters, things like that where you put it on and just have the bonus. Unless you want those to all burn the same (exceedingly small right now, even if we do manage to divorce it from class features) resource as active-use magic items in which case... why would you want that?

How is that an issue with so few bonus types? When you can only have 3 types of bonuses, you can max the bonuses with any number of items over 2... And is getting bonuses on different activities REALLY an issue when you need to max out your bonuses to get to 50% chances of success? I'm not seeing how this can be seen as anything close to 'abuse'.


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Ephialtes wrote:
What I like about PF2 in general is, it is more streamlined and simplified than PF1 without being dumped down.

In several areas, like the action economy, it's achieved admirable Depth. In others it's traded PF1e's Comprehension Complexity for Tracking Complexity. I'm hoping to see further streamlining and a reduction in meta-currencies.

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Something just struck me. Wands have always been just a replacement (with discount) for a stack of scrolls.

Why have so complicated rules for wands when one can just use scrolls with zero focus expenditure needed to use more than one on any given day ?


Rysky wrote:
John Lynch 106 wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:
I am happy that we get rid of slots
Will PC's in your group be wearing multiple pairs of boots? If no, why? is it because there are no valuable boots or because it would look stupid for most footwear? If it's the latter then you do have slots, you simply have more slotless items then before.

Not boots, but footwear yes. Boots, anklets, maybe some steeltoe thing that covers the boots...

Making alternate slots for items has always been one of my favourite things, Magical earrings, belly button rings, piercings, etc...

This system encourages that :3

Does it?

Under Item Slots, I really don't see what you're doing as a problem. Those would either be new slots or function as attachments basically.

With Resonance 10, well your boots take up 3 slots now(Boots, Anklets + Steeltoe). Heck, I'd be surprised if they didn't look at some items, decide they might too powerful, and make them a Resonance 2 or 3 cost. Higher leveled items(Like say level 9?) Costing 2 points? I can believe that. Won't like it but believe it's possible.


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Pathfinder Maps, Pawns, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
Centurian 919 wrote:
What is wrong with using the magic item's focus pool? Also known as charges? The focus pool already existed, it was the amount of charges within the item. I'm specifically talking about wands. I do like the decreased number of charges that wands hold. I don't think the players need a separate pool of points, other than the wand's assigned charges, in order to activate the item. It would be a lot easier and less frustrating to the players.

The thing is I have no problem with item charges, but I should never need to spend a personal resource to activate an item with charges.

Charges OR Focus. If a character is going to spend focus, then the wand needs to do something more than just activate again (perhaps heightening, or ignoring the spell roll cap).

That is precisely my point! Why do we need a focus pool for wands when they are loaded with charges, that once are used render the wand useless?


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Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Centurian 919 wrote:
That is precisely my point! Why do we need a focus pool for wands when they are loaded with charges, that once are used render the wand useless?

Not useless. You can still poke someone (or some thing) in the eye with it. :-)


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I honestly think wands as they are now are unneeded and can be stripped out. Just keep scrolls as the "spell in item form" and have wands be little enhancers to spells. Maybe with a wand you can spend an action to flick it while casting a spell and it can boost the DC of the spell by 1. Or increase the area of effect. Or unique ones can be like wand of magic missile mastery which could whenever you cast a magic missile spell add a spell casting action as a free action. I guess kinda like meta magic, but now that the meta magic system is completely changed we can just have wands be the new "meta magic rod" replacement.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
whew wrote:
Meraki wrote:

On the whole, I like this much better than the previous version, but I'm leery about putting magic item use and class power use in the same pool. I'd rather those not have to compete with each other.

(Related note: is it really an expectation among most tables that any given store you go to will have 10 quickrunner's shirts and 20 CLW wands in stock? If you play strict RAW, that isn't the case (since city statblocks list what types of items are available), and if you don't, it makes complete sense to rule a party can only find one or two of a given item, imo.)

Both the Shirts and the wands only take one day to craft. So instead of a shop with a huge inventory (that must be guarded and can be robbed), they just need to find a crafter.

Sure, but that presupposes they have both A) time to wait around for however many of said item they want to be crafted (1 wand? Probably, in most adventures. 10? Ehhhh...less likely.) and B) a crafter around to do said crafting, which isn't necessarily guaranteed. The town cleric might not have crafting feats, or might have things to do besides just sit around for two weeks making wands for a single group of people.

Unless the PCs have the crafting feats themselves, in which case the only limit is time...and honestly, my personal inclination would be to let them go for it if they've invested those resources. If you [generic you] feel like your players are abusing it, maybe talk to them?

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Maybe just forbid once per day effects for permanent low level / cheap items :-)


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Ephialtes wrote:
pjrogers wrote:
Ephialtes wrote:

And I tend to agree with many posters here, that Resonance seems to be specifically created to tend to PFS problems.

.
.
.

If PFS needs regulations, make Resonance a PFS mandatory and if all an option to the rest to discard if not needed.

As someone who primarily plays PFS, I still don't understand what PFS play problem that resonance (in any of its forms) is designed to solve.
Then it even seems to be just a problem of a very small minority of PFS players. In this case I wonder why this rare problem needs such a complicated system ingrained solution at all.

The fact that the new version of resonance has been so vastly scaled back makes me wonder how much of a problem it was in the first place for anyone, not just PFS players. My view when it came out was that it was a solution in search of a problem.

The fact that so many of its proponents have been so quick to accuse the rest of us of badwrongfun didn't exactly help, either.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Wandering Wastrel wrote:
Ephialtes wrote:
pjrogers wrote:
Ephialtes wrote:

And I tend to agree with many posters here, that Resonance seems to be specifically created to tend to PFS problems.

.
.
.

If PFS needs regulations, make Resonance a PFS mandatory and if all an option to the rest to discard if not needed.

As someone who primarily plays PFS, I still don't understand what PFS play problem that resonance (in any of its forms) is designed to solve.
Then it even seems to be just a problem of a very small minority of PFS players. In this case I wonder why this rare problem needs such a complicated system ingrained solution at all.

The fact that the new version of resonance has been so vastly scaled back makes me wonder how much of a problem it was in the first place for anyone, not just PFS players. My view when it came out was that it was a solution in search of a problem.

The fact that so many of its proponents have been so quick to accuse the rest of us of badwrongfun didn't exactly help, either.

I honestly do not remember anyone on either side accusing the other of badwrongfun, even when tempers rose high

I remember that kind of arguments or close to it used on some other topics, but not about Resonance


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The Raven Black wrote:
Maybe just forbid once per day effects for permanent low level / cheap items :-)

Or have the effects of "low level / cheap items" actually be minor/low level? ;)

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