Distinct? Yes. Versatile? Much less so.
Far more options, and therefore, utilities, are walled off due to the bonds you choose, and many options that were standard in 1E are either gotten at much later levels, have to be chosen over other options, or both, and in many cases are significantly less powerful. I think Paizo may have been attempting to make the Champion fill a 'support melee' niche, but thus far, I'm very unimpressed.
Thanks for the streams, Mark! This is definitely something to bring up with an acquaintance and his strategy of 'winning' Patfinder using pocket dimensions and simulacri.
I and others were wondering if you and any of the other staff have come up with a solution to how Greater Tyrant Totem works; at the moment, there's no way to know how much damage per round Swallow Whole inflicts.
Another thing was brought to my attention by a player. Namely the way class feats work. Or don't? He said that it was frustrating spending so much time making a character that could do less. It seems like many things that came standard with a class in Pathfinder are now things you have to choose at the expense of others in 2E.
I recall remaking my very first Pathfinder character in 2E. It's hardly even the same character, anymore. How are people going to move campaigns or characters over to this new edition?
I typed it out in Libre Office. I guess the transfer didn't work as intended.
I would like to thank everyone at Paizo for this exciting playtest, and for allowing all of us to take part in shaping the next chapter of a game that has changed my life for the better. Without this game, I wouldn’t have the friends I have today. I would also like to offer a sincere apology. Due to all of us having such busy schedules, we weren’t able to meet very often, and as such we only finished the first two chapters of Doomsday Dawn. Know that it wasn’t due to apathy that we were only able to get this far; I myself was GM while holding down two jobs. I’m sorry for this being late. I’ve been told I’m a sucker for the ‘sunk cost’ fallacy, but we’ve spent too much time (and in my case, money) not to have our voices heard. If the Paizo staff are not able or willing to read this due to the official deadline being passed, I understand.
But pleasepleasepleasepleaseplease do read this, even if it’s just a short skim-through.
Before I begin, I’d like to tell you a little about myself. I’ve been reading the D&D 3.5 Player’s Handbook since launch, but as much as I dreamed about it, I never got a chance to play an actual pen & paper RPG until being invited to join a group in 2012. The Pathfinder RPG is the first tabletop RPG I’ve ever played and I’ve loved it so far. I’ve dabbled a bit in Rifts, 3.5, 5th Edition, and read through some others, but Pathfinder is my favorite. Getting to be a part of the next edition is like a dream come true.
For the most part, character creation has been very rewarding. Not only is the new method more conducive to a balanced party, but it also allows the players to become more invested in backstory decisions, which plays well into the roleplaying experience. I especially like the modular nature of this stage. It makes new characters feel more personal. On the other hand, the variability and the surprises that die rolling gives have their own charms, and I’m glad to see that it has returned, too. I would like to point out that the decision to give the bonus of Charisma to Goblins seems nonsensical. Aside from perhaps Paizo’s own IP, they aren’t known for being very charismatic, and given their violent lifestyle and penchant for eating things most would find inedible, it would make far more sense for them to be given bonuses to Dexterity and Constitution. Gnomes, in turn, should be given Dexterity and Charisma.
It’s difficult to say how this new edition saves or adds time to planning and adventure. Due to us all treating the system as a fresh start and not taking any rule for granted, the added time of learning was something to overcome. Because of this, some of my players didn’t exactly enjoy character creation, but all were excited to actually start things off. Of course, somone made a Goblin, and had we continued, every party would have had one, with the way we planned things out.
I have mixed feelings about this edition of Pathfinder thus far. For every change I’ve seen that I like, there’s been a change I don’t. Some rules changes elicit neither like nor dislike, but simply seem unnecessary. The changes to Skills come to mind. For those switching from 1E, this change won’t be a short or easy one, and for newcomers, it will probably be only slightly less complicated than before. With the way spellcasters have been changed, balance is coming back, which I am very grateful for, but some classes seem to have had their roles change or become more difficult, especially the Cleric. In addition, monsters seem to either be massively underpowered, or massively overpowered, with the range in which they provide a balanced challenge to the party being only a level or so.
Jason Bulmahn wrote:
Will there still be time to give more feedback? My group only just finished part 2 and I'm actually writing out a document to try and give you all my GM notes, and my thoughts on the paladin.
It may have just been the parts I've read so far. I've mostly been looking through character creation and tactical, so maybe those are the bits. I'm used to seeing 'they/them' because I mostly read formal stuff. It is nice to crack open a fresh new rulebook. Starfinder even has that new RPG smell!
To that end, why didn't Paizo use gender-neutral pronouns throughout the Core Rulebook? It seems odd to focus so much on inclusivity and make the decision to use almost exclusively feminine pronouns.
So, in the interim of my GM coming up with more things for his own campaign, we're going through the Emerald Spire starting at level one. The good thing about this is that you guys at Paizo know exactly what I'm going up against, so the numbers game is more concrete. The bad thing is, this class probably wasn't built purely for combat, but hey. Them's the breaks, right? I mean, when you're given the chance to be Batman, you take it. Some caveats, however. We are playing with the consolidated skill list from Unchained, rolling max HP for first level, creating a custom race from the ARG with a 13 point build, and including two background traits each. For reference, here is my character sheet in spreadsheet form. You may notice my Social Talent for level one is unchosen. My DM wants to get back to me for reasons I'll explain as I go on.
As you can see, I'm basically playing Batman, with an emphasis on the whole 'making people think you're more than just a man' with tricks sort of thing. But instead of a bat, I'm using the wolf as a symbol, thus the name 'Lobo.'
Starting off, it was difficult to decide on how my character would interact with the group, which consists of myself, a fighter, a wizard, and a cleric. Or it did. Eventually I decided that I would be cloaked, my costume unseen until we got to the spire. In Fort Inevitable, I had to join the party, as they wouldn't trust someone who hadn't pitched in to purchase the adventuring license. Meeting them along the road to the spire wouldn't work.
Once we got to the spire, all of our party had darkvision save for one person, and most battles consisted of me throwing a shuriken for the hidden strike bonus, and the fighter and myself flanking while the wizard and cleric provided support. Against the goblins, I had to roll around 14 to 16 to hit on average, and It usually took two hits to drop one. At the split in a corner, there was a trap that I didn't look for that caused a cave in, and I beat the cleric and the wizard in combined strength to get the fighter out. Before this, I rolled intimidate and managed to scare two goblins into a room with goblin archers. That was fun. Anyway, the cave in split us up, and I and the fighter entered the archer room through a sort of flap.
Now this is where things changed up due to us ending the session halfway through the map. First off, until now, I'd been using the first playtest rules, as the second hadn't come out yet. I told my GM when I got to his place on Thursday that I had to change the class a tiny bit because of the Round 2 rules, however this hardly has any effect at level one, aside from Social Grace not being built in. In addition, up to this point, the GM had been playing the wizard, as there were only us four, but I invited a new player who rolled up a barbarian. Who was a bearperson. A barBEARian, if you will. He replaced the fighter behind me, and so the two casters were cut off from us. We of course had to go in first and they pussyfooted around for a while before helping us out. Probably one out of every four or five attacks hit me, and it generally took out four or five hp, so I had to get healed quite a bit. However, thanks to the barbarian, who I'm happy to say got a critical on his first ever attack roll (he'd never played Pathfinder before) and killed the goblin in one hit, something he did on a regular basis. This came in handy with the fight against the goblin machine man. I was reduced to 0 hp at one point against the mechanic during that fight, as I'd tried to grapple him and he succeeded in landing an attack of opportunity on me. I was going to interrogat him, you see. A few more shuriken ambushes and flank fights later, and we came upon the final boss of the room, the bugbear. The barbarian got in the final blow, and we all rolled high on our damage rolls. He took about four hits, including a maxed out magic missile. The goblin mechanic is still out there somewhere, though. He got away. Finally, we swept the place for more enemies, and headed back to town after getting rid of two zombie goblins, barely reaching level two under the Fast xp rules. All in all, fun times.
As for my social identity, I plan on being a minstrel who gets to be well-liked around town. I plan on revealing my identity to the party at about level three, perhaps. We'll have to see how that plays out.
Now as for the Social Talent. I was aiming for Renown so I could interact with Fort Inevitable more often, and possibly have a Safe House later on. Problem is, Renown states that it can only be in a community of about 200 people, and the book says Fort Inevitable has a bit over 900 people. This is odd, considering it's a small town. That seems like the perfect spot for a vigilante to start out, unless you mean to say that he or she gets known in a neighborhood, and that the whole town doesn't have to fit within the numbers requirement. Also, if you start in a village of 200, how would such a small place not recognize you in vigilante form, especially if you're from there? And as another friend pointed out, at level 20, you should be known around the world, but apparently there's a cap to renown at 25,000, which isn't even a metropolis. Just a thought, guys. The other option I was looking at was Social Grace, but as it uses the social identity, I didn't see how it would help us in the campaign. He's having me wait a week to decide if perhaps a section of Fort Inevitable that has around 200 could count as its own community.
This is a great class and one I've been looking forward to. I've been looking everywhere for a class that would essentially let me play Batman, and I think this is it. If it has one flaw, it's that many of its aspects are ill-suited for a battle and dungeon-crawl centric campaign such as Emerald Spire. But hey, I'm still looking forward to being a legend. Thanks for letting me contribute to the playtest, guys.
I know that the spell Bless Weapon and Keen don't stack with regard to critical hits, but does Bless Weapon stack with Improved Critical? Based on the wording of the Improved Critical feat I'm inclined to say no, but some people have implied that it does. And for that matter, do Improved Critical and Keen stack? I know they don't in 3.5.