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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graystone wrote:
ChibiNyan wrote:
Part of the design goals seem to be "Nerf Magic Items"
All magic in general IMO.

Don't be ridiculous.

Magic Swords aren't nerfed. In fact, you could say that Magic Swords are so great that they are the real protagonists of PF2E, and high level characters are just taxis for the godlike power of the +5 potency rune and it's herald, the legendary quality bastard sword.

Unless that high level character is a cleric. Because editions may come and go, but CZilla never dies, apparently.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Philippe Perreault wrote:

I've read the new resonance rules and I'm having a question about the alchemist's Alchemy ability.

It is my understanding, after reading the rules, that the alchemist who crafts his bombs at the beginning of the day using Advanced Alchemy is loosing items slots so he can use his bombs. Am I reading correctly?

Nope. This is actually one of the changes I'm happiest about, since I agree with you about Alchemist's main problems.

In the new rules, Alchemists use their new Reagents resource for both Advanced Alchemy and Quick Alchemy.

The Exchange

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

The only thing you should have to expend from yourself to use a potion or scroll is gold! They are premade spells in a bottle or on a page. The creator of the potion/scroll had to expend/enhance/imbue ect their own essence into those items when they were created!
I get they are trying to get away from the "I hit him with 12 charges of the heal stick" after every combat, but there are better ways of doing it.
Limit the charges on the wand based on the lvl/cost of the item, higher the level spell the more they cost and the more charges you get before its expended. They are already give you the bolstered condition with certain things, just make CLW only useful 1-2 times on each person per day if you are wanting to limit its usage. You would need a CMW or higher wand there after. Or change the paradigm and make wands conduits/amplifiers for spells instead of ready made dispensers! Anything really besides resonance/focus/ect!
Less pools, points, extra systems keep things simple IMHO.

Things I like about PF2:

3 actions and a reaction
every class not having AOO automatically, makes combat more mobile and more dynamic!
Not confirming Crits!!!
The responsiveness of the powers that be to feedback from the fans!

Things I don't like in PFS:

Resonance period!
The appearance of nerfing/limiting magical items.
The struggle to keep resonance when it appears to be very clunky and widely rejected.


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

To be fair, Marc, the new form of Resonance has nothing to do with limiting consumables and instead achieves a much more laudable goal of mitigating abuse of permanent magic items.

It's Focus you should be complaining about now. :P


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MaxAstro wrote:
To be fair, Marc, the new form of Resonance has nothing to do with limiting consumables and instead achieves a much more laudable goal of mitigating abuse of permanent magic items.

What possible 'abuse' is there for items that aren't per day items that use focus? If you toss 1/day uses and/or free uses, you just use focus and resonance serves no purpose and can be gotten rid of. Win/win of less to track and no 'abuse'.


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Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Are there 1/day items that are unbalancing to have multiple of, in any case? It seems like it'd only be a problem if there was one effect that overshadowed everything, in which case you've got a game design issue.

But, let's say some 1/day effects should really not be multiplied at all cost. Resonance doesn't stop you from having 5 regular items and 5 of this hypothetical uber item.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Mark Seifter wrote:
Ouranou wrote:
The Kyra pregen has a wand of Heal at 2nd lvl. I thought wands couldn't be heightened? Have I been cheating myself out of crafting heightened wands this whole time?
You can definitely make a heightened wand. You just can't take a non-heightened wand and then use it to cast the heightened version.

Good to know, from reading the text on wands it seemed that you couldn't put a heightened spell into a wand at all.

Wands wrote:
Each wand holds a specific spell of a certain level, determined when the wand is created. The spell can’t be heightened.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
thewastedwalrus wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
Ouranou wrote:
The Kyra pregen has a wand of Heal at 2nd lvl. I thought wands couldn't be heightened? Have I been cheating myself out of crafting heightened wands this whole time?
You can definitely make a heightened wand. You just can't take a non-heightened wand and then use it to cast the heightened version.

Good to know, from reading the text on wands it seemed that you couldn't put a heightened spell into a wand at all.

Wands wrote:
Each wand holds a specific spell of a certain level, determined when the wand is created. The spell can’t be heightened.

I think what they meant was that you can't heighten the spell that's in the wand when you cast it. It could be clearer.


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Vic Ferrari wrote:
graystone wrote:
Vidmaster7 wrote:
So would you prefer it to just give extra charges or only empower certain items or not empower at all?
I don't know that it fits for any item to be honest: it's all somehow adding and altering something that's already made and finished.

Yes, concentrating/focusing on a potion is an entirely revolutionary concept, with no rhyme or reason, no legacy, no grounding in the genre this game is supposed to support, nothing, so it's just stupid, as far as I'm concerned.

In the end, I just want them to get to work on honing the core chassis, these resonance shenanigans seem like a distraction/diversion.

Yeah. We're quickly approaching the end of the test and there is a whole lot left to do.


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Happy to hear I'm not the only one who feels like Focus Points would be an odd change from a Golarion / roleplay perspective. Again, this comes down to personal opinion... just glad I'm not the only one.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber

Why do we have resonance in the first place?

Resonance was added to place a mechanical benefit for Charisma that was missing in prior iterations of the game. Other attributes had a use outside skills but Charisma did not, other than as a casting attribute or for certain class features.

So what should Charisma do? They tied it to magic item use because of the link between Charisma and internal magic. So why not make it determine how many magic items you can use. Leading to the problems with the original Playtest and magic item use, in addition to being yet another pool of points to manage.

However, tying Charisma to class abilities makes no sense. Why should my Cha 8 dwarf druid such at being a druid when none of his abilities are tied to Charisma and he is already MAD because of the need for Strength. Why should the elf wizard who lack social skills suddenly lose a bunch of abilities. The old system you could work around and eventually outgrow, the new system degrades your character for pushing survival over social acumen.

And why? Two reasons, to make Charisma useful to all characters for something other than skills and to avoid having too many pools of points to worry about. I think Paizo can do much better.

So I will offer some suggestions for Charisma that don't complicate the game too much but still make it useful and not debilitating if low.

1. Hero points. Let your Hero points equal your Charisma modifier. Basically it represents your luck or force of personality coming out. This gives high Charisma characters a couple of re-rolls or Paladins the ability to recover from death to keep fighting battle after battle. Could even give feats to classes like the bard that let them use hero points on others.

2. Focus points that don't effect spell points but do effect items. This does create a new pool but it basically replaces the resonance pool and means that you are good with magic items, nice but not game breaking if low.

3. Use Charisma to effect the DC/Spell Rolls of items for non casters and to allow access to normally unusable items. For example Charisma might let you use a staff even if you are a fighter or rogue, or allow a bard to access to a Staff of Evocation when the spells are not normally on their list.


It is unclear to me how this is going to mesh successfully with the economy. Won't we still have the wand of CLW/General low level consumable problem at higher levels without resonance imposing an opportunity cost?

I foresee all high level fighters going into battle with a scroll of True Strike in one hand.


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Taenia wrote:

Why do we have resonance in the first place?

Resonance was added to place a mechanical benefit for Charisma that was missing in prior iterations of the game. Other attributes had a use outside skills but Charisma did not, other than as a casting attribute or for certain class features.

So what should Charisma do? They tied it to magic item use because of the link between Charisma and internal magic. So why not make it determine how many magic items you can use. Leading to the problems with the original Playtest and magic item use, in addition to being yet another pool of points to manage.

However, tying Charisma to class abilities makes no sense. Why should my Cha 8 dwarf druid such at being a druid when none of his abilities are tied to Charisma and he is already MAD because of the need for Strength. Why should the elf wizard who lack social skills suddenly lose a bunch of abilities. The old system you could work around and eventually outgrow, the new system degrades your character for pushing survival over social acumen.

And why? Two reasons, to make Charisma useful to all characters for something other than skills and to avoid having too many pools of points to worry about. I think Paizo can do much better.

So I will offer some suggestions for Charisma that don't complicate the game too much but still make it useful and not debilitating if low.

1. Hero points. Let your Hero points equal your Charisma modifier. Basically it represents your luck or force of personality coming out. This gives high Charisma characters a couple of re-rolls or Paladins the ability to recover from death to keep fighting battle after battle. Could even give feats to classes like the bard that let them use hero points on others.

2. Focus points that don't effect spell points but do effect items. This does create a new pool but it basically replaces the resonance pool and means that you are good with magic items, nice but not game breaking if low.

3. Use Charisma to effect the DC/Spell...

this is not correct. resonance was created to address an issue with the abuse and rightfully so of certain magic items. the goal was a good one. however as I have the means they have attempted o use are artificial and disjointed. The easiest solution and best solution is to properly rebalance magic items. the main issue was that magic items weren't priced correctly. they were priced based on level and sort of coolness instead of utility. so it was almost always the case the low cost high value utility items were better than higher cost cool magic items. the vast majority of people pick and use magic items based on utility not power or coolness. what needs a overall is the magic item themselves and their cost. some of the them should probably be removed as it seems they have done. the CLW wand should be removed. any magic item that gives a straight plus should be removed. and the rest should be rebuilt and priced based on utility


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I'm still REALLY hoping Resonance gets dropped completely. Too many pools, too much bookkeeping, and too many headaches for it to be worth my time. When I sit down at the table, I want to play a game, not do algebra.


7 people marked this as a favorite.
MidsouthGuy wrote:
I'm still REALLY hoping Resonance gets dropped completely. Too many pools, too much bookkeeping, and too many headaches for it to be worth my time. When I sit down at the table, I want to play a game, not do algebra.

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

It's the difference between "neat- a magic hat, I don't have 10 magic items equipped so I can put it on" and "hey, a magic hat- which of my magic goggles, circlet, and headband do I need to take off to use it?"


3 people marked this as a favorite.
PossibleCabbage wrote:
MidsouthGuy wrote:
I'm still REALLY hoping Resonance gets dropped completely. Too many pools, too much bookkeeping, and too many headaches for it to be worth my time. When I sit down at the table, I want to play a game, not do algebra.

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

It's the difference between "neat- a magic hat, I don't have 10 magic items equipped so I can put it on" and "hey, a magic hat- which of my magic goggles, circlet, and headband do I need to take off to use it?"

I still prefer item slots. It's entirely possible to wear goggles, circlet, headband, AND hat at the same time. Although you will look ridiculously gaudy.

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Number of items limited by Resonance rather than slots ? Great, especially if there are well-designed ways to increase or reduce it

Consumables always bringing a benefit : great

Items having 2 benefits based on whether or not you spend Focus : cumbersome. I would have Focus maximize values of the effect : say heal 8HP rather than 1d8 and do nothing for items without variable numbers

Wands needing you to track several pools sounds clunky. And the idea of either one use a day if you do not focus or any number of uses if you do feels to much like an all or nothing proposition. Maybe just being able to spend one of your focus points instead of a use/charge would be enough

I am not sure about using focus points to also fuel things like Domain powers. It limits design possibilities since you now have to balance the design of powers (for example small powers often like we had at low level in PF1 vs big powers rarely used) against the design of items' abilities (focussed vs non-focussed)

I have all faith in the Devs being able to find cool ways for non-Cha based characters to still get some mileage out of their class abilities

Beware though of having the system require All Attributes Dependent characters. The goal should be how to avoid SAD, but going the extreme opposite is not good IMO. Being able to dump 2 stats while still being viable should remain a possibility

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
MidsouthGuy wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
MidsouthGuy wrote:
I'm still REALLY hoping Resonance gets dropped completely. Too many pools, too much bookkeeping, and too many headaches for it to be worth my time. When I sit down at the table, I want to play a game, not do algebra.

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

It's the difference between "neat- a magic hat, I don't have 10 magic items equipped so I can put it on" and "hey, a magic hat- which of my magic goggles, circlet, and headband do I need to take off to use it?"

I still prefer item slots. It's entirely possible to wear goggles, circlet, headband, AND hat at the same time. Although you will look ridiculously gaudy.

The slot system gave value to the slot an item used, based exclusively on how other items using the same slot compared.

It put an artificial limit on magic items design because for example if your idea for an item used the shoulders slot, you were competing against cloak of resistance. So you'd better redesign your item to use another slot where competition was not so strong

I am happy that we get rid of slots

Grand Lodge

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I like item slots...I remember the days of munchkins trying to wear multiple pairs of boots because the rules didn't say they couldn't.


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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."

Except PF2e still has item slots? Items still say what body part they're worn on. The only difference is that you can wear more amulets and rings.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
MidsouthGuy wrote:
I'm still REALLY hoping Resonance gets dropped completely. Too many pools, too much bookkeeping, and too many headaches for it to be worth my time. When I sit down at the table, I want to play a game, not do algebra.

I like the new Resonance - that is worn magical item capacity. I agree about the meta-currency concerns but counting to 10 isn't really algebra.

I've been holding off to give it a fair chance...but the more I think about it the less I like the Resonance side of Focus*.
*I am a big fan of renaming Spell Points to be Focus.

In my opinion, items - especially consumables - don't need supercharged outside of some specific thematic instances. I think Staves are cool and make sense (along the lines of a Wizard's bonded item) but most other items and consumables? Those seem more like an Artificer type class ability.

In the test Wands seem like the worst of both worlds - I'm not sure how the positive survey results that people liked the idea of Resonance replacing charges/uses per day resulted in Wands having a use per day, charges, and costing Focus.

I think I'd be good with the Resonance side of Focus if it gave up supercharging most items, completely replaced charges/uses per day, and the pool was larger.


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

The more I read about this resonance or focus system as it pertains to unleashing the abilities and potency of magic items, I cannot help but think that my beloved Pathfinder is being molded to shadow some sort of online video game MMORPG format. Magic items seem to be like a "Bind to Account" item that becomes more powerful as the character grows in power. This philosophy needs to be gone. The power of a magic item is unique to the item. It should have no bearing on a character's charisma score, or focus pool. Thats what makes possessing and using magic items epic. They should not be enhanced with character progression. They are the rewards that are granted as a character gains power unique to his class. Scrap this pool system for magic items altogether please, and leave the focus points to class development only. I have been a DM or GM for around 30 years and this will substantially change my outlook on this product.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Greg.Everham wrote:
ikarinokami wrote:

focus using only charisma seems super weird to me in some cases.

Why is my monk using cha instead of wisdom for his pool?

wouldn't a wizard's ability to focus be really based on his intelligence?

focus points like spell points should be based on the classes primary spell casting ability or wisdom in the case of the monk.

and for melee classes it should be based on the players chioce of mental attribute. since different characters could choose to focus by different means, as an act of will, or a force of personality or a pnomonic pharse in thier head.

I prefer the old spell points. I think resonance being just 10 point is fine. I think focus is unnecessary and a bit immersion breaking, even a game with magic.

they should go with the simple and elegant solutions. remove the wand of cure light wounds, and rebalance magic items, because ultimately that's the issue the magic items were not priced correctly. they already pulled the trigger by redesigning some very powerful spells to be less so, and just de facto removed some, they should just do the same for magic items, instead of creating these weirdly disjointed systems that though are necessary just simply don't flow logically from the world.

Hmm... sure seems like Starfinder, in addition to hit points, also did focus/resolve better. In the words of the great power DJ Khaled, "another one."

Gonna disagree with both of those. Don't like having two health pools, and Resolve is basically in the same state as Resonance but worse in certain aspects.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Marc Waschle wrote:
The struggle to keep resonance when it appears to be very clunky and widely rejected.

Yeah, this feels like flailing about to me.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Milo v3 wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
Resonance as a "count how many magic items you have equipped" is vastly simpler and easier than "item slots."
Except PF2e still has item slots? Items still say what body part they're worn on. The only difference is that you can wear more amulets and rings.

I believe that should not be systematic, but left to a GM to veto a la "okay, explain how you are wearing five hats at once."

Because I honestly have no problem with wearing 4 pairs of magical boots, since if those same boots will magically resize themselves to fit both a Shaq-sized half-orc and a gnome who is on the small size for a gnome, they can magically resize themselves to fit over other boots.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Centurian 919 wrote:
The more I read about this resonance or focus system as it pertains to unleashing the abilities and potency of magic items, I cannot help but think that my beloved Pathfinder is being molded to shadow some sort of online video game MMORPG format.
What MMO uses the format of using a renewable player resource to buff up their consumables and the like?
Quote:
Magic items seem to be like a "Bind to Account" item that becomes more powerful as the character grows in power.
Which in the Playtest do that? Also you do realize that not only did 1st Edition Pathfinder do that but so did 3.5 DnD with Weapons of Legacy, long before WoW did.
Quote:
This philosophy needs to be gone. The power of a magic item is unique to the item. It should have no bearing on a character's charisma score, or focus pool.
Conversely, a character able to "draw out an item's true potential" or whatever is a common trope and one that I'm not opposed to.
Quote:
Thats what makes possessing and using magic items epic.
I have never felt "epic" having a potion of CLW or +1 Greatsword. Nice to have, but not epic.
Quote:
They should not be enhanced with character progression.
Almost all items are, and always have been. The Barbarian's increasing BAB and Strength score made her better with her +1 Greatsword, the sword wasn't the end all solution. The sword is an accessory.
Quote:
They are the rewards that are granted as a character gains power unique to his class.
I would be vehemently against having items be class locked (now that's a WoW thing), having items that boost certain class powers is fine and a staple but "+1 Greatsword Class Requirement: Barbarian" is gonna be a hard no from me.
Quote:
Scrap this pool system for magic items altogether please, and leave the focus points to class development only.
I'm still undecided on if I want FP to work with both class features and item boosting or have two seperate things, and possibly combine the class one with Hero Points.
Quote:
I have been a DM or GM for around 30 years and this will substantially change my outlook on this product.

Okay?


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PossibleCabbage wrote:
Milo v3 wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
Resonance as a "count how many magic items you have equipped" is vastly simpler and easier than "item slots."
Except PF2e still has item slots? Items still say what body part they're worn on. The only difference is that you can wear more amulets and rings.

I believe that should not be systematic, but left to a GM to veto a la "okay, explain how you are wearing five hats at once."

Because I honestly have no problem with wearing 4 pairs of magical boots, since if those same boots will magically resize themselves to fit both a Shaq-sized half-orc and a gnome, they can magically resize themselves to fit over other boots.

While multiple boots would be a nono from me, other slots are much more flexible.

Using classic PF1 examples, mule back cords+cloak, a vest+a shirt+a bandolier, and etc

Silver Crusade

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pjrogers wrote:
Marc Waschle wrote:
The struggle to keep resonance when it appears to be very clunky and widely rejected.
Yeah, this feels like flailing about to me.

Are you talking about Resonance or Focus? Because I adore current Resonance since it's doing what it was originally stated to try to do. Don't really see any flailing or clunkiness there. You get 10 magic times you can attune to, there we go.

Silver Crusade

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shroudb wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
Milo v3 wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
Resonance as a "count how many magic items you have equipped" is vastly simpler and easier than "item slots."
Except PF2e still has item slots? Items still say what body part they're worn on. The only difference is that you can wear more amulets and rings.

I believe that should not be systematic, but left to a GM to veto a la "okay, explain how you are wearing five hats at once."

Because I honestly have no problem with wearing 4 pairs of magical boots, since if those same boots will magically resize themselves to fit both a Shaq-sized half-orc and a gnome, they can magically resize themselves to fit over other boots.

While multiple boots would be a nono from me, other slots are much more flexible.

Using classic PF1 examples, mule back cords+cloak, a vest+a shirt+a bandolier, and etc

I wanna play Lulu, let me have all the belts.


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pjrogers wrote:
Marc Waschle wrote:
The struggle to keep resonance when it appears to be very clunky and widely rejected.
Yeah, this feels like flailing about to me.

As I said, magic item investment, resonance, focus, attunement, etc, can wait, I would prefer they focus on more core, essential aspects of the game. Then, the rest can fall into place, more comfortably.


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Rysky wrote:
Centurian 919 wrote:
The more I read about this resonance or focus system as it pertains to unleashing the abilities and potency of magic items, I cannot help but think that my beloved Pathfinder is being molded to shadow some sort of online video game MMORPG format.
What MMO uses the format of using a renewable player resource to buff up their consumables and the like?
Quote:
Magic items seem to be like a "Bind to Account" item that becomes more powerful as the character grows in power.
Which in the Playtest do that? Also you do realize that not only did 1st Edition Pathfinder do that but so did 3.5 DnD with Weapons of Legacy, long before WoW did.
Quote:
This philosophy needs to be gone. The power of a magic item is unique to the item. It should have no bearing on a character's charisma score, or focus pool.
Conversely, a character able to "draw out an item's true potential" or whatever is a common trope and one that I'm not opposed to.
Quote:
Thats what makes possessing and using magic items epic.
I have never felt "epic" having a potion of CLW or +1 Greatsword. Nice to have, but not epic.
Quote:
They should not be enhanced with character progression.
Almost all items are, and always have been. The Barbarian's increasing BAB and Strength score made her better with her +1 Greatsword, the sword wasn't the end all solution. The sword is an accessory.
Quote:
They are the rewards that are granted as a character gains power unique to his class.
I would be vehemently against having items be class locked (now that's a WoW thing), having items that boost certain class powers is fine and a staple but "+1 Greatsword Class Requirement: Barbarian" is gonna be a hard no from me.
Quote:
Scrap this pool system for magic items altogether please, and leave the focus points to class development only.
I'm still undecided on if I want FP to work with both class features and item boosting or have two seperate things, and possibly combine the class one with Hero...

Why do we need a separate point system, unique to character ability scores, to use magic items? What good does an item that contains charges do for a player who has run out of pool points and cannot use them. Seems rather discouraging. Magic items have commonly been used when player resources have run dry (at least in the groups I have played in). The concept of using a magic item to save your butt when you are out of resources is where the "Epic" comes from. I am curious to know why this system is a good one.


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Centurian 919 wrote:
Why do we need a separate point system, unique to character ability scores, to use magic items? What good does an item that contains charges do for a player who has run out of pool points and cannot use them. Seems rather discouraging. Magic items have commonly been used when player resources have run dry (at least in the groups I have played in). The concept of using a magic item to save your butt when you are out of resources is where the "Epic" comes from. I am curious to know why this system is a good one.

Because in a high-magic setting, where magical items are easy to buy or craft, characters can easily stuff twenty cheap items into their magical bag and use that cool 1/day ability over and over.

With the Focus rules that are in testing now, consumables can be used freely, so they are the safety net for when you are out of resources; what Focus does is just overpowering them a few times per day, if you want so.


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Megistone wrote:
Centurian 919 wrote:
Why do we need a separate point system, unique to character ability scores, to use magic items? What good does an item that contains charges do for a player who has run out of pool points and cannot use them. Seems rather discouraging. Magic items have commonly been used when player resources have run dry (at least in the groups I have played in). The concept of using a magic item to save your butt when you are out of resources is where the "Epic" comes from. I am curious to know why this system is a good one.

Because in a high-magic setting, where magical items are easy to buy or craft, characters can easily stuff twenty cheap items into their magical bag and use that cool 1/day ability over and over.

With the Focus rules that are in testing now, consumables can be used freely, so they are the safety net for when you are out of resources; what Focus does is just overpowering them a few times per day, if you want so.

You make a good point, but loading up on those items seems like a GM discretionary problem. It seems you believe more regulation is better. Is this because society groups were abusing the magic item availability? In my private campaigns, an overload of those items would not be allowed.

Silver Crusade

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Megistone wrote:
Centurian 919 wrote:
Why do we need a separate point system, unique to character ability scores, to use magic items? What good does an item that contains charges do for a player who has run out of pool points and cannot use them. Seems rather discouraging. Magic items have commonly been used when player resources have run dry (at least in the groups I have played in). The concept of using a magic item to save your butt when you are out of resources is where the "Epic" comes from. I am curious to know why this system is a good one.

Because in a high-magic setting, where magical items are easy to buy or craft, characters can easily stuff twenty cheap items into their magical bag and use that cool 1/day ability over and over.

With the Focus rules that are in testing now, consumables can be used freely, so they are the safety net for when you are out of resources; what Focus does is just overpowering them a few times per day, if you want so.

^

Silver Crusade

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Centurian 919 wrote:
Megistone wrote:
Centurian 919 wrote:
Why do we need a separate point system, unique to character ability scores, to use magic items? What good does an item that contains charges do for a player who has run out of pool points and cannot use them. Seems rather discouraging. Magic items have commonly been used when player resources have run dry (at least in the groups I have played in). The concept of using a magic item to save your butt when you are out of resources is where the "Epic" comes from. I am curious to know why this system is a good one.

Because in a high-magic setting, where magical items are easy to buy or craft, characters can easily stuff twenty cheap items into their magical bag and use that cool 1/day ability over and over.

With the Focus rules that are in testing now, consumables can be used freely, so they are the safety net for when you are out of resources; what Focus does is just overpowering them a few times per day, if you want so.
You make a good point, but loading up on those items seems like a GM discretionary problem. It seems you believe more regulation is better. Is this because society groups were abusing the magic item availability? In my private campaigns, an overload of those items would not be allowed.

PFS groups and elsewhere. PFS just provided the most steady feedback.

While in a homegame GM Discretion is advised that only works to a certain point before you actually have to go against the rules. "No crafting" is one on thing, "You're only allowed to have one/make one of these common magic items" is a whole nother thing.

If a GM has to dance around a rule or constantly implement a houserule on the subject then maybe the core rule needs to looked at.


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Scenario: I am out of spell slots, no more focus points, I have a wand that is loaded with 9 charges and can cast a spell that I need at that moment. I have already used my once per day charge and need focus points to tap into its remaining power. Yet, I have no way to access this item because I do not have any focus points because I already used them on my class abilities. Sounds rather discouraging and I can see people at the table getting very frustrated on this restriction.


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Rysky wrote:
"You're only allowed to have one/make one of these common magic items" is a whole nother thing.

Irregardless of a nuculear war.

Sorry, couldn't resist.


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Centurian 919 wrote:
Scenario: I am out of spell slots, no more focus points, I have a wand that is loaded with 9 charges and can cast a spell that I need at that moment. I have already used my once per day charge and need focus points to tap into its remaining power. Yet, I have no way to access this item because I do not have any focus points because I already used them on my class abilities. Sounds rather discouraging and I can see people at the table getting very frustrated on this restriction.

I believe they mentioned classes with powers/ki, etc, getting extra focus points or something, but that could get messy.


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Vic Ferrari wrote:
Centurian 919 wrote:
Scenario: I am out of spell slots, no more focus points, I have a wand that is loaded with 9 charges and can cast a spell that I need at that moment. I have already used my once per day charge and need focus points to tap into its remaining power. Yet, I have no way to access this item because I do not have any focus points because I already used them on my class abilities. Sounds rather discouraging and I can see people at the table getting very frustrated on this restriction.
I believe they mentioned classes with powers/ki getting extra focus points or something, but that could get messy.

It just feels a little too restrictive. There's gotta be a better way. Still thinking about how to do that.


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Centurian 919 wrote:
Vic Ferrari wrote:
Centurian 919 wrote:
Scenario: I am out of spell slots, no more focus points, I have a wand that is loaded with 9 charges and can cast a spell that I need at that moment. I have already used my once per day charge and need focus points to tap into its remaining power. Yet, I have no way to access this item because I do not have any focus points because I already used them on my class abilities. Sounds rather discouraging and I can see people at the table getting very frustrated on this restriction.
I believe they mentioned classes with powers/ki getting extra focus points or something, but that could get messy.
It just feels a little too restrictive. There's gotta be a better way. Still thinking about how to do that.

Oh, I agree, I think they should keep the 10 (I would prefer less) items restriction, but scrap the Focus Points deal. Powers should be spells, or class features, or talents, or something.


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Vic Ferrari wrote:
Centurian 919 wrote:
Vic Ferrari wrote:
Centurian 919 wrote:
Scenario: I am out of spell slots, no more focus points, I have a wand that is loaded with 9 charges and can cast a spell that I need at that moment. I have already used my once per day charge and need focus points to tap into its remaining power. Yet, I have no way to access this item because I do not have any focus points because I already used them on my class abilities. Sounds rather discouraging and I can see people at the table getting very frustrated on this restriction.
I believe they mentioned classes with powers/ki getting extra focus points or something, but that could get messy.
It just feels a little too restrictive. There's gotta be a better way. Still thinking about how to do that.
Oh, I agree, I think they should keep the 10 (I would prefer less) items restriction, but scrap the Focus Points deal. Powers should be spells, or class features, or talents, or something.

I agree. I have no problem with using resonance to assign the 10, but this focus point system either needs to be gone or redone so your class abilities and magic item usage do not cancel each other out.


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Rysky wrote:
pjrogers wrote:
Marc Waschle wrote:
The struggle to keep resonance when it appears to be very clunky and widely rejected.
Yeah, this feels like flailing about to me.
Are you talking about Resonance or Focus? Because I adore current Resonance since it's doing what it was originally stated to try to do. Don't really see any flailing or clunkiness there. You get 10 magic times you can attune to, there we go.

What seems to me to be doing something, anything to keep "resonance," even if it means more-or-less turning it into D&D5e's attunement system.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Centurian 919 wrote:
Scenario: I am out of spell slots, no more focus points, I have a wand that is loaded with 9 charges and can cast a spell that I need at that moment. I have already used my once per day charge and need focus points to tap into its remaining power. Yet, I have no way to access this item because I do not have any focus points because I already used them on my class abilities. Sounds rather discouraging and I can see people at the table getting very frustrated on this restriction.

In this scenario it sounds like you didn't prepare well enough. You spent all your focus points even though you have a wand that is "needed". I think it's perfectly fine to punish players for not preparing. All you would've needed to do is save 1 focus point to use the wand. Maybe you spent it on a potion to heal yourself more? You have to weigh what's best at the moment but that's something I like.

In that scenario you would have been rewarded for deciding not to use a focus point to enhance a potion. Instead risking your low hp because you know that the wand might be useful later on.

Silver Crusade

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Centurian 919 wrote:
Scenario: I am out of spell slots, no more focus points, I have a wand that is loaded with 9 charges and can cast a spell that I need at that moment. I have already used my once per day charge and need focus points to tap into its remaining power. Yet, I have no way to access this item because I do not have any focus points because I already used them on my class abilities. Sounds rather discouraging and I can see people at the table getting very frustrated on this restriction.

1) Cantrip.

2) Wands need more tweaking. This was a step in the right direction.

Though to the above it’s the same if you didn’t have a wand, or had one and was out of charges. Or had one in previous editions and didn’t have UMD or the spell on your spell list. Or you had a potion but couldn’t spare the action to drink it. With everything that’s been added in thus far I see those scenarios of running completely out of resources to less than what would occur previously.

Silver Crusade

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pjrogers wrote:
Rysky wrote:
pjrogers wrote:
Marc Waschle wrote:
The struggle to keep resonance when it appears to be very clunky and widely rejected.
Yeah, this feels like flailing about to me.
Are you talking about Resonance or Focus? Because I adore current Resonance since it's doing what it was originally stated to try to do. Don't really see any flailing or clunkiness there. You get 10 magic times you can attune to, there we go.
What seems to me to be doing something, anything to keep "resonance," even if it means more-or-less turning it into D&D5e's attunement system.

So you don’t like the name “Resonance”.


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Centurian 919 wrote:
Vic Ferrari wrote:
Centurian 919 wrote:
Vic Ferrari wrote:
Centurian 919 wrote:
Scenario: I am out of spell slots, no more focus points, I have a wand that is loaded with 9 charges and can cast a spell that I need at that moment. I have already used my once per day charge and need focus points to tap into its remaining power. Yet, I have no way to access this item because I do not have any focus points because I already used them on my class abilities. Sounds rather discouraging and I can see people at the table getting very frustrated on this restriction.
I believe they mentioned classes with powers/ki getting extra focus points or something, but that could get messy.
It just feels a little too restrictive. There's gotta be a better way. Still thinking about how to do that.
Oh, I agree, I think they should keep the 10 (I would prefer less) items restriction, but scrap the Focus Points deal. Powers should be spells, or class features, or talents, or something.
I agree. I have no problem with using resonance to assign the 10, but this focus point system either needs to be gone or redone so your class abilities and magic item usage do not cancel each other out.

You don't need resonance points, either, you could just resonate with a max of 10 items. If you have 10 resonated items, and want to drop one and resonate with a new one, you would have to take a rest to resonate or whatever.

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