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I think a lot of people who take issue to the economics of pc crafting really do underestimate the benefits of a professional shop.

Irl, it costs more to buy the materials to make a pair of jeans and sew them than it does to buy a cheap pair of jeans. This is because a manufacturer that makes a f~~&tillion jeans has specialized equipment to speed up the process, suppliers who offer discounts due to mass bulk purchases, etc, while the home crafter is buying enough material for one pair of jeans and lacks an automation process. The traveling adventurer who is crafting an item is like that home crafter; they have their alchemy/enchanters/woodworking/whatever kit and they are making in the back of their wagon, inn room, rented studio, what have you.

The crafter making all the ladders and cheap stuff in the world have a shop specially build to streamline the process, an army of apprentices, assistants, and co workers who make the process much more streamlined and efficient. When you use crafting to Earn Income, this is closer to what you're doing; you're making abstract items and selling them, with the profit margin being what what you take home after the roll.

Obviously, this still glosses over some things, but crafting items yourself not giving you a benefit in your pocketbook is not unrealistic.

Though it would need a rename, the occultist class fits spiritual/material extremely well, and kinetisist or psychic would great for body/mind. Idk what the lists would be called though

Pronate wrote:
How/where can I do that? Also, I have rules for gun traits elsewhere I can give to you if you want.

There's a thread called "2nd edition guide to guides" or something along those lines on the forums. Drop a link to this thread and ask to be added.

I already have some ideas for gun traits, but I'd love to see your's for comparison!

I'm handling guns by creating the following trait:

Magazine: The magazine trait is always followed by a number (ex magazine 6). This indicates the number of time you can Strike with the weapon before having to take a reload action again (so a revolver with magazine 6 could be fired 6 times before needing to be reloaded)

In my setting, most guns are martial weapons, with a couple of simple guns, and possibly a couple advanced guns. Most guns with the magazine trait will have reload 1, though I might make an especially nasty one with reload 2. This trait also works nicely for making repeating crossbows and the like.

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Goldryno wrote:
I think depending on the situation it would be fitting to award a small Circumstance bonus to the initiative roll or give them the option to have their initiative score be settled with Athletics instead of Perception. It may not be 100% RAW but I prefer it to awarding no bonus at all (if the surprise charge does indeed fit the narrative).

Tbh, being able to roll a skill vs perception is already a pretty big boon without bonuses to the roll.

Most people who are rolling skills to enter combat probably have a higher attribute in that stat than they have wisdom. Odds are, the barbarian only has like 10-14 wisdom, but, at minimum, has 18 str, so were looking at +2 to 4, if not more, right off the bat for rolling athletics vs rolling perception.

Additionally, you can raise skill proficiencies faster than perception proficiency, and most classes only get up to expert or master perception, while all classes can get legendary in any skill they want, so just being able to roll a skill you're specialized in also basically amounts to an additional +2 from higher proficiency.

On top of that, when rolling a skill for initiative, you still get bonuses to the roll from your gear that grants bonuses, unless the skill bonuses are only for certain types of rolls, on top of feats like incredible initiative still applying.

While there might be some especially appropriate times to award initiative bonuses, at most 1 or 2 for setting up an ambush with tons of time in advance to plan and really good information or the like, just being able to use a skill is a tremendous boost in disguise. That said, I do super encourage DMs to let players roll skills for initiative when possible; it's a really nice reward for clever roleplaying and planning.

As ravingdork said, the rules for initiative are pretty explicit; as soon as hostilities start, you roll initiative. It works pretty well, too; if the defending negotiating party wins, you justify it as them spotting the danger first and being able to act before they get their face pummeled in.

It's also worth noting that you can use literally any skill in place pf perception for initiative, as long as the dm says yes, and it makes sense. The swashbuckler from the apg playtest even gave us a precedent for allowing intimidate, athletics, and acrobatics for this purpose.

In this specific case, I'd allow the barbarian to roll intimidate (basically, startling the foe with a quick display of force that makes the enemy hesitate) or deception (pretending to go along, but throwing a quick sucker punch). I could see a case for athletics too, depending on the surroundings and how the barbarian is justifying it

Dotting for interest. I plan on making firearms in my next 2e game, and these rules sounds like they will really help

Have you considered submitting this to the zenith games guide to guides? It would get a lot of visibility and covers a niche many people are interested in

I've been thinking about a few ways to spin this idea, since it's pretty cool imo:

Transmute (level 1)

Requires Alchemist tools (or w/e the portable version is called)

By taking 10 min and making a crafting roll, you can destroy an alchemical item to create a different alchemical item. You must have the recipe for the item you wish to create, and the item you create must be the same level or lower than the item you destroyed. Items created this way have the infused trait. If you have Double brew, you may destroy 2 items to create two items, if you have Alchemical Alacrity, you can destroy three items to create three items. The DC for this roll is equal to the DC to craft the highest level item being created.

Critical success: You successfully create the items. Items do not have the infused trait unless the item you destroyed had the infused trait

Success: as per the text

Failure: you do not lose the base item, but you fail to create a new item

Critical failure: as failure, but infused items you intended to destroy are lost; items without the infused trait instead gain it, meaning they will become inert the next time you perform daily preparations

Quick Transmutation (level ???)

Requires transmute

Rather than spending reagents to use quick alchemy, you can destroy one alchemical item to create an alchemical item who's level is equal to or lower than the item you destroyed. You cannot destroy an item with the infused trait in this way.

Stable Transmutation (level ???), Skill feat

Requires transmute

You can use transmute to craft stable alchemical items with alarming speed. When using transmute, you can destroy an amount of crafting materials equal to the cost of the item you wish to make instead of destroying an item. If you do, treat any success as a critical success.

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Imo, your best bet is to bring your two players together and the three of you discuss concepts and work something out.

How aggressive does you hellknight want to be about enforcing his code on others? Sure, the wild order says "don't become domesticated by civilization", but only the strictest of readings would throw that into "does not accept chelish culture". By that level of strictness, you'd also be obligated to murder anyone who hails from any culture that isn't chelish as well. At the very least, it seems that a pc hellknight could get away with reading this as "so long as you don't utterly reject chelish culture as intrinsically bad, we're cool"

Also, how does the druid want to behave? I could definitely see them conflicting if they went full Princess Mononoke levels of hating civilization, but "don't get completely domesticated by the comforts of civilization" is pretty vague and open. One could argue that a wild order druid who lived in a city, but spent most of their time wild shaped, looking after and living among the stray animals in the city would count as not being fully domesticated on the grounds that while they live in the city, they aren't really relying on its conveniences. Even your classic hermit in the woods type of druid really wouldn't count as a threat to civilization unless they took hostile actions against it.

Given that the players are asking these kinds of questions, and that they are good friends, it seems like they should be able to talk it out. I get the impression that your hellknight is mostly just looking for an iron clad justification to cooperate with their druid buddy despite their differences rather than looking to the internet for justification for violence. If worst comes to worst, since there's really not a lot of mutual exclusiveness here, you, as a dm, are free to alter the parameters of one or both codes in a way that keeps the spirit while removing the conflict, or you can ask one or both to bring different concepts.

It was definitely a deliberate choice by paizo to make crafting's rate match up with earn income, even at the expense of realism (for example, as a chemist, I can tell you it does not take days to weeks to make a flask sized container of acid). That said, there still are monetary and roleplaying boons for crafting, should you choose to invest in it.

Money wise, when you are crafting an item, you are always earning your maximum possible income, you're just putting it towards your equipment rather than your pocketbook. Using Earn Income restricts you to they types of jobs available. For example, if I'm playing a level 6 character and I visit a small town, I might only be able to find level 2 jobs for my Academia Lore skill to teach people about the fundamentals of magic, or I could earn the equivalent of a level 6 job by crafting myself a new piece of magical gear.

Roleplay wise, if you're in a game in which the market doesn't always have everything you want to buy readily available, crafting lifts those restrictions. The idea of "ye olde magick shoppe" doesn't jive well with some people, and in those types of settings, crafting is extremely helpful for getting the specific gear you want.

All in all, crafting does have legitimate benefits, but it depends a lot on your game setting. You will need to have a good amount of downtime to see benefit from this skill. The financial benefits you reap are based heavily on how much the DM regulates the job and item markets. If your DM makes it so that anyone can get to max level jobs without sweating the details, you're better off using Additional Lore to get an automatically maxed out lore skill for earning income if money is your main concern; if they follow the recommended guidelines for finding a job, you'll be earning significantly more money by crafting gear vs earning income as you advance in proficiency. If you're in a setting where buying any type of magic item is easy, you'll also find crafting to be a mediocre investment, but if your DM controls the market, the benefits of investment are proportionate to how heavy the restrictions; in a setting where magical crafters are rare, your skills will be a valuable asset to the team.

The alchemist's to hit being lower honestly doesn't really hit until level 13, where all the other martials get master proficiency and the alchemist is stuck with expert. Personally, I houserule that the alchemist does go up the master at the same time most martials do and the math comes out pretty nice for them.

I have a number of other houserules for the alchemist, mainly to address the mutagenist, but that's a bit beyond the scope of this thread

In pathfinder 2e, there's no good way of setting up the sniping with spells style arcane trickster due to the fact that any spellcasting actions break sneaking. This might change in the future.

Since you want a blasting spontaneous caster with some healing, I'm gonna second fey bloodline sorcerer. Being a cha caster lets you be a party face, and the primal list has both heals and battlefield control alongside one of, of not the best choice of blasts. Fey disappearance and fey glamour work well for a trickster theme, and even faerie dust can soften up will and perception DCs, though this power overall is kinda eh. The blood magic ability is pretty decent, even if you cant use it to hide. Your class doesn't give you a terribly high amount of skills, but you can still make it work as long as you don't dump int. Rogue multiclass also really bolsters your skills.

Ancestry wise, your favored picks actually combo really well. The elf's stats can be set up as +dex, cha, int to give you some more skills, or the half elf/human works just as +dex and cha. Elf does have an option for a primal innate cantrip that is basically acid splash of whatever element you want, the human's adapted cantrip and adapted spell feats are a good way of getting a couple extra spells onto your list that you wouldn't normally have access to.

For damage, you're best off using your cantrips and blasts, but you can make a finesse weapon work respectably if you invest the gold. Your best cantrips for raw damage are electric arc (if you have 2 targets) or telekinetic projectile (for single target). I wouldn't focus on using a weapon unless you have access to true strike, though. Fortunately, adapted spell lets you put that onto the primal list. A lot of people will tell you that using a weapon on a caster is unviable, but in the game I run, the dragon blooded sorcerer does just fine using her claws as a filler attack after using a two action spell; as long as you're not expecting the same level of skill in arms as a martial, you'll be fine as long as you're smart about using flanking and the like.

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While I can actually get the "wow, is it really wise to just go full ham with the weird stuff on your first go?" reaction, but if we are being totally honest, humans are the most complex ancestry to pick from a mechanical standpoint. For example, "pick a general feat" or "add a cantrip from another spell tradition onto your own" is a lot more complex than "get a natural weapon with these stats" or "you can cast this innate cantrip", even though seasoned players know the former is actually much better than the latter.

From a roleplaying standpoint, I tend to find a lot of rp hooks in "weirder" races that extend beyond just trying to be unique. My first pf character was a tiefling, and, at the time, the apg said their lifespan was way longer than a human, so a good chunk of her backstory was influenced by how parents might raise their children if they reached adult maturity right around their own retirement age. Would gnomish half elves experience a more "normal" upbringing than human ones, given that both parents have incredible life spans rather than outliving one parent, and dying before the other even shows signs of aging? Do "civilized" goblins just absorb their surrounding cultures, or do they reform their own to be more peaceful and hospitable to other races, and do we have crotchety old geezer goblins complaining about the new ways and constantly try to relive their old raiding days when they truly felt free? I know it's not the same for everyone, but these kinds of hooks are what really excite me about fantasy games featuring other sentient races

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My initial impression od the classes is pretty good, they all have a lot of great flavor and look fun to play. I cant help but be excited that the battle oracle will let me play a madoka magica style "magical girl" character, with the curse representing soul gem taint and such. Swashbuckler looks super fun, and thats coming from a guy who normally doesn't like martials. Investigator looks neat, I think I might play it rhe next time I want to roll a more combat focused "alchemist", perhaps even multiclassing into alchemist to have a large stockpile of weaker elixirs. Witch looks super fun, I'm happy to see a prepared caster that can cast occult spells, bur I really dig that witches can (hypothetically, I dont think you have any divine options, but that doesn't mean it couldn't happen) draw power from any spellcasting tradition.

I'm not liking that neither of the witch's natural weapons are finesse though, but the nails feat gives me an idea on how I could homebrew up something like spellstrike

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A lot of nice clarification stuff. Love the thing about bulk.

Disappointed that the mutagenist ability is 1/day though. I still feel at this point if I wanted to make a mutagen alchemist, I'd just pick on of the other two fields and prep mutagens

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I think you're suffering from blinders imposed by genre convention. It's kinda the same thing when we have people who think that all paladins and clerics have to be religious zealots/sticks in the mud.

Currently I'm theorycrafting a wild order desnan druid who's main thing is flitting betweeb various desnan holy sites and maintaining them so that people have places to interact with nature in a way that doesn't harm nature either. In many regards, it still holds the idea of harmony that gets tacked onto druids, but theres also plenty of ways to motivate the character, and interesting ways they can engage with the rpg world.

My best suggestion is to say toss out what you think you know about the class and don't be held back by expectations. Also remember that druids, just like any other "religious" character, have personalities and goals beyond their faith and devotion.

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Samurai wrote:
We'll see tomorrow, but I hope and suspect the Flashback is a once per day ability only for a few rounds of effect at most. So if you just drank all your elixirs in the morning, you could belch 1 of them back up for a few rounds of effect and that's it.

Honestly that'd be pretty terrible. 1/day would hardly even be noticable, given that the mutagen is easily the most resource efficient field. Personally I'd think 1/10 min would be balanced; enough to be able to frequently use and be fun, but doesn't allow for things like cycling out into a new mutagen every turn. That would also put it at about the same timetable as a focus power

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Is there anything in the errata about the alchemist's weapon proficiencies? As it stands, they max out at expert, which seems weird, since every other class that advances their weapon proficiencies to expert at level 5 reach master at level 15, not to mention it just plain feels wrong that a bomber doesn't have master in bombs and the mutagenist doesn't get master in even simple weapons for going ham with the bestial mutagen claws.

It honestly feels more like an oversight, like sorcerers not getting master will saves, to not have the alchemist get master in any form of offensive proficiency. Heck, an alchemist can get master level spellcasting via multiclass, but never in something their class starts off with.

I'd like to see some dedications for classes like magus, arcane archer, arcane trickster, rage prophet, etc, but atm it's not hard to get the feel of any of them using just multiclassing. With how 2e works I feel making any of these an actual base class is a bit superfluous.

Outside of arcane pool (easily replicated via class feata that grant focus powers), defenses against AoO with casting (again, not hard to make in a single class feat), and spellstrike (again, easy to do with focus powers or a metamagic class feat), there's nothing magus offers that a fighter/wizard or wizard/fighter can't get in 2e

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I really hate not awarding exp for not being able to show up. Gaming is something we do for fun, it's not a second profession. Losing out on level progression just feels really bad, especially when most of the time, you're missing out on your hobby because life threw a curveball at you.

Ive always kept my party at the same level, and it's not even that hard to justify why the absent player still got exp. Most characters DO have jobs, and, in second edition, just by character creation, EVERY pc has a background that justifies them being able to earn exp "off screen" doing other stuff. Hell, I take the opportunity to make the absence useful. Party alchemist cant attend the session? That just means they are crafting useful stuff for the party or developing a weapon to kill the big bad? Fighter's player got called into work? Well there's plenty of people who'd love to learn a thing or two about the art of war from a hero.

Denying people exp doesnt help anyone, and it just feels like doubling down the punishment wgat life happens to people

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I actually really hope thats a hint in there about power recovery, that can make for some really dramatic stuff! (If not, I may houserule that hero points can be used to fuel powers)

The bard has a little thing on their entry that says they can use a performance for certain components, like you can use dance/act/etc for somatic, or sing/orate/play an instrument/etc for verbal.

The composition thing just means you HAVE to do this, instead of just speaking magic words and using magic moves, at least, that's as far as I understand.

I mean, it's a valid concern, in say Attack, grab, attack, where the question would be if attack #2 has -5 or -10 from MAP.

That said, Grab just automatically gives the target Grappled, which is different from using athletics to attack the target to grapple them

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I'm actually going to be using the 4 essences as the basis for a setting in which magic works kinda like IRL alchemy, where spells are composed of different essences, and it takes devotion, practice, and the right mentality to work each different type.

You have a lot of really good ideas here, and I hope many of them get used!

I look forward to seeing the final product! While I had some complaints about specific details of the game, I can tell from the erratas that you really have been listening to your playtest data! (also, it was super cool seeing an idea I proposed get adapted into the 1.6 alchemist update :) )

Overall, it's a really fun system to play, and it's been my favorite system to date to DM. It's also been my favorite playtests to participate in, and I've done some testing for early development in 5e! With a little bit of polish and improvement, I think you guys will make a great final product. I only wish I'd be able to hear you guys sprinkle some teasers here and there for hype though!

PS Explosive missile and grenadier archetype style attaching bombs to weapons for 'splosion attacks please! :p

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I genuinely hope that they take the extension mechanic for this spell and use it for other spells. It's simple, elegant, and provides a key balancing mechanic. It's also quite potent for story telling. I'm already imagining high level wizards or priests who no longer adventure and rarely cast magic due to dedicating tons of spell slots to support magical barriers to hold back powerful monsters.

I like the idea of regripping as well, it accomplishes the goal of making it harder to fight even if you dont totally toss the weapon away

I know a bit late, but I've been houseruling that success on disarm is:

"The target's weapon is unbalanced, causing them to take a -2 on all attack rolls with the weapon and the next successful disarm attempt is treated as a critical success instead. These penalties last until the start of your next turn or until the weapon is disarmed"

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While I wasn't so sure about resonance, and I didn't like how focus merged with the spell point system, I really enjoyed the boosting mechanic that focus allowed for. I was hoping to see it return with a tweak that divorced it from spell points. It was a really fun tool for my alchemist

While IRL it can make sense for the acid (or any other form of persistant damage) to have a turn limit, I feel it's pretty unnessisary. The pass/fail on the flat check is already a pretty good representation of how many protons are still in the acid, how long the fire can burn, long it takes for your body to stop the bleeding, etc.

What I think there really needs to be is a means to help improve the odds of passing the check beyond just the medicine roll outto make recovery go from a 5% to 25% chance to pass. My preference would be an alchemical item, and to add it to the list of elixirs the chirurgeon research field can make using perpetual alchemy. Have the item lower the DC to recover from persistant damage for a short time (1 min or so), and make the DC reduction stack with the medicine check to reduce, and just increase how much it helps for each level of the elixir.

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Unless you are an elf, your choices are slings, crossbows, or thrown weapons.

Slings do less damage than a crossbow, but if you have a +2 str mod, you dp the same damage

Hand crossbow to sling damage without propulsive. A regular crossbow is better than a heavy crossbow due to 1 reload over the heavy crossbow's 2 reload.

Thrown weapons have shorter range,but deal full str damage.

If you plan to just carry this until the next level, I'd go crossbow or sling

I thought is bolstered regardless, Idk why

Wait, battle medic doesn't bolster? Holy starknives! I've been playing this wrong!

Edit: oops, forgot I was posting in the no cursing forums instead of my group chat :p

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While not the most devastating thing, I can imagine goblin song would be nice for bards looking to soften up will saves for a mass targeted will save attack. I do wish the intensity got a bump from a crit though.

Sebastian Hirsch wrote:
I realize that this might sound silly, but I would really like the option of alchemists being able to throw healing potions on their allies

Honestly, I really want alchemical familiars to get a modification of the deliver touch spell option for delivering elixirs for exactly this reason. It would let them buff/heal at range, gives the alchemist familiar a little more to do, and is just plain cool.

I'm honestly not so sure the bomber is the only viable one. The mutagenist seems pretty reasonable, especially when you consider that mutagen actually puts you ahead in terms of potency bonuses for most levels. Assuming you use unarmed strikes as your main weapon, you even save money on not having to buy potency buffs for your HoMF, freeing up cash for better property runes, armor, or just whatever else you want to buy. There's also a neat trick you can pull with revivifying mutagen that, when combined with your perpetual mutagens, gives you a really fast out of combat heal. Not saying its the best, but nothing I'd consider "unusable"

Thanks for the explaination, Mark! That makes a lot of sense, and perhaps it can put my sorcerer player's mind at ease.

I do wonder if a bit of her saltiness though is that pretty much half the party (my alchemist and my girlfriend's ranger) got a lot of really cool stuff in 1.6, while sorcerers got a (temporary) nerf in the resonance test, due to focus being a more limited resource than focus

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Captain Morgan wrote:

By automatic heightening, do you mean that they get spontaneous casting on all spells, or that a 5th level sorcerer casts a 3rd level magic missile using a 1st level spellslot?

I was implying the former, which I can hardly see being overpowered with the wizard being able to swap prepared spells. Anyone who supports the latter is downright insane!

I must admit, in my haste to get that post out before work, I forgot a third option that I'm actually quite fond of: allowing sorcerers to downcast, in a similar way that some psychic spells, like Mind Thrust, worked in pathfinder. It still requires the sorcerer to take fireball at their highest spell level if they want the biggest boom, but feels less like you're getting ripped off than if you needed to take fireball, fireball +1, fireball +2, etc

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I'd definately have to toss my hat in support of sorcs getting automatic heightening on all of their spells, especially now with wizards getting quick prep for free.

The appeal of the sorcerer has always been their focus and power in the narrow range of spells they know, which in 3.P was represented through spammability. In practice, with high optimization, wizards caught up to them fine, but that's a whole other subject not related to pf 2e.

The design principle of 2e here is to prevent mages from solving literally all problems with spells like in the old days, which is partly why we have no bonus spells based on casting score. Spammable spell effects now are very much in the land of bards or 20th level casters. With that in mind, we are basically left with two(and a half) primary options to retain this feeling of specialization: making them the sole users of metamagic (or give them class abilities that make them far better at it than everyone else), and/or allow them to heighten any known spell. The former sounds bluh to me, since all casting classes imo should have metamagic, and I wasn't super impressed by how it worked in 5e, while auto heighten is intuitive, easy, and feels more "natural" to a class who's selling point is innate power

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I would think it just locks you out of those points, since the design principle of resonance is that higher level itemsare supposed to give you more bang for your buck, RP wise, and never have a cost to activate greater than 1

From what I've seen, the mutagen and bomber paths both seem fairly good, though I'm really not sure how I feel about how slowly perpetual alchemy scales for bombers and poisoners, and lets not even get started on healer path.

As it stands, the mutagen user getting infinate mutagens has a really nice hidden benefit of being able to give those buffs to their teammates as well, which could be a really nice trick.

The bomber, with it's damage being lower, probably needs to rely on exploiting those free additives every bomb. Calculated + expanded splash does give you a niche of spammable AoE, though. It would be great if bomb proficiency adds to your class DC like spellcasting proficiency does. If explosive missile enters the game, I'd be absolutely fine with the weaker bombs though.

The poisoner I no real thoughts on becaise I havent really dealt with poisons much to familiar with the problems.

The medic though... Like, the actual benefits they get are kinda neat for the flavor, but anti plague and antitoxin are just way too situational. They really should just be allowed to pick any appropriate level common elixir excluding elixir of life.

Overall though, I'm happy to see some very much needed buffs

Having played an alchemist a few times, I can say they do actually work fairly decent at lower levels; in particular, smoke bomb has been surprisingly good.

That said, they feel a lot less... open than they used to. A lot of really neat options, making potions and oils with their class features, comes in way too late, and the fact that you can't ever add more formulas for them feels kinda bluh, and even precise bomb coming in at level 6 is painful.

I won't say my alchemist feels boring to play, and I feel their core mechanic of Advanced/Quick alchemy feels really cool. Their first take on focus gives the alchemist a fairly nice buff, too, since their reagents are now seperate from their items slots, and focus boosts on many elixirs are genuinely good. Bombs being leveled, rather than requiring infusions, is also nice, since they do have tue option of preping them in down time, as well, and perhaps more importantly, opening up 6 more class features to gain new abilities.

I do think, now that focus is a thing, additives should work in any elixir, infused or not, instead of quick alchemy ones, and just have a focus point cost. Its seems weird to me that these abilities weren't powered by spell points to start, but, as others have said, it seems as though the alchemist was one of those early designed classes before the design philosophy of powering abilities with spell points and offering multiple speciality paths really came to crystallize

I'd love to see fighting styles be a non dedication requiring archetype (I.e. none of this "you need to take two others before picking another" stuff) and just have the classes provide your cool powers. Fighter might be a little weird with this, but things like inherent potency effects as a class feature and similar can make them feel unique still.

Personally, I think each class could a class feat upon every level up, rath we than just on even leveled ones to allow people to really customize their play style, but thats only a tangentally related topic

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Sounds like a great skill feat:

Trick shot

Requires trained deception

You can make feint against a target within 20 feet, and your target is now flatfooted against both ranged and melee attacks.

This would also let you get away with other tricks, like the classic "hey, look over there!"

SnarkyChymist wrote:

I prefer having this as a class feat such as Explosive Missile from PF1, modeled after Channel Smite and other similar 2-action attack feats, instead of as a form of ammunition itself. Reason being that making it ammunition itself leads to the issue of the alchemist having to either multiclass or take a general feat for bows, instead of playing to the alchemist's base proficiencies, and greatly overtuning damage for the class as roughly any attack with this ammunition would deal double the damage of another weapon user (late game of 12d8+splash, without property runes! This should not be a reliable single action attack!).

I suggest the following:

Alchemist Class Feat 4
Name - Explosive Missile
Prerequisites - either Quick Bomber or Quick Alchemy
Action time - 2 Actions
Cost - 1 ammunition, 1 alchemical bomb
Description - You draw and load an alchemical bomb and a piece of ammunition onto a ranged weapon with reload 1 or lower, and fire the weapon. On a success, the attack deals both the regular damage of the weapon in addition to the damage and properties of the bomb. On a failure (but not a critical failure), the target of the attack and creatures within 5 feet of the target are subjected to the bomb's splash damage.

One action to load the bomb and ammo, one to fire, simple. Makes light and hand crossbows that much better for the alchemist, without breaking the system by giving alchemists reliable access to a pseudo-spellstrike ammunition that they can shoot off multiple times a round.

I'll admit, I was initially leary on having this combat style be a feat due to how feat starved dedicated bombers are, but considering you proposal only costs a normal alchemist 2 feats (explosive missile and precise bomb) to be good at alchemical archery, that actually seems really doable. More explosively minded alchemists taking debilitating bomb, calculated splash, and expanded splash would be paying more, but getting a truly devastating attack out of it. You've got me sold

Joey Cote wrote:

If you clock someone on the head with a full bottle of beer, you can actually very easily cause harm from the impact, even if the bottle breaks.

The main reason I advocated dealing bullet plus bomb damage is twofold: it keeps the damage in line with, say, double slice, and it makes dealing with how potency runes modify bombs way easier. Technically, acid flasks do not deal base damage, only splash and ongoing, and while it might seem like common sense to just add on some d4s on impact, it would require some weird wording to interact with ongoing damage. If you have it deal weapon plus bomb damage, the matter becomes easy: potency applies to the weapon, and count the bomb and weapon as one attack for weakness/resistance

Irl, there actually is a crossbow designed to fire rocks and bullets, called a prodd, which where my claim for bomb launching crossbows comes from. I'd think it would be perfectly fair to change the damage to bludgeon to avoid stacking a poison on top of the bomb, though.

You and I both seem to agree though that regular arrow, with a reload of 0, would be op. For what it's worth, I think that alchemical rounds would be a great shtick for crossbows and slings to even the field with bow in the hands of an alchemist (specialist or dabbler)

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The damage for quicksilver mutagens stack up pretty harsh fairly fast, though, especially given that you can't heal it off, and it doesn't stack with potency runes that your alchemist likely has anyways so they have a backup weapon when the bombs run out.

In keeping with Kai's proposition, a property rune allowing crossbows and slings to load bombs as ammo for weapon damage plus bomb damage vs ac, or bomb damage plus runes vs TAC could also be a nice, easy to implement piece of gear for alchemists.

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The Once and Future Kai wrote:
They have spellstrike ammunition on the spellcasting side of things... Shouldn't be too hard to make an alchemic equilivent.

I actually really like this idea, but it should definately be an alchemical item instead of a magic item, otherwise alchemists couldn't craft it with advanced alchemy and thus lose the point of it in the first place.

Since the errata says all infused elixirs cost 0 rp to consume, and that a combined elixir is by default infused, it most likely costs 0 rp to use

At my table, we've been allowing bombs to be loaded into slings as improvised ammo. The end result is an attack at -2 (for improvised gear) hitting AC and dealing sling damage plus bomb damage. The end result is a somewhat less accurate double slice that deals about the same damage, assuming you are using an empowered bomb. Given that the alchemist has a limited number of bombs, it ends up being pretty balanced.

We also allow TK projectile to fling bombs in theory, but haven't had the time to actually see it in action

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