# Bardic Dave's page

Organized Play Member. 605 posts (606 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 1 alias.

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SuperBidi wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
I think you’re misreading my post; I’m not suggesting that variance can help you determine the relative value of increased DPR vs improved decpetion. I’m saying that if variance can show that within a projected number of sessions a +1 bonus will not be statistically significant, you might feel more inclined to invest that +1 based solely on personal preference. This isn’t a non-sequitur, it’s my entire point.

Very easy to calculate. You need 22 d20 rolls for a +1 to be statistically significant 90% of the time, and 11 for a +2.

If it's an attack roll, if we consider 2 attacks per round, and 4 rounds of combat, you have it statistically significant after 3 fights with 90% chance. So, just one session.

All the variance calculation in this thread is just plain wrong. The 5000 rolls are just a maths mistake. A +1 is very quickly significant.

By which you mean a +1 will yield a higher average result than a +0 over 22 rolls 90% of the time, correct? I think that’s pretty conclusive.

Thanks for doing the math.

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Bandw2 wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
Bandw2 wrote:

DPR calculatiosn are used to determine how you should build your character, what you will get the most out of. d6+1 versus d6, there is not choice to take, d6+1 is the better choice. there is no reason for me, even in play choose an option that does 1d6 damage versus choosing an option that does 1d6+1.
The reason to choose 1d6 over 1d6+1 is presumably that you'll get to make some other build choice instead (e.g. boosting your Int instead of your Str). The fact that variance may stand a decent chance of making that +1 insignificant (depending on the projected length of your campaign) is just ammunition for justifying whether or not you make that choice.
that's a non sequitur, you could just as easily use DPR calculations to figure out if +1 to deception is worth losing a point in strength. I lose on average X DPR, or reducing charisma to gain strength makes melee have X higher DPR, how does this effect my rounds to kill?(goign from 2.1 rounds to kill, to 2.2 rounds is more or less fine for a little boost in side stats) etc. Variance still isn't the best tool for that >_>

I think you’re misreading my post; I’m not suggesting that variance can help you determine the relative value of increased DPR vs improved decpetion. I’m saying that if variance can show that within a projected number of sessions a +1 bonus will not be statistically significant, you might feel more inclined to invest that +1 based solely on personal preference. This isn’t a non-sequitur, it’s my entire point.

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Malk_Content wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
Bandw2 wrote:

you... are not getting it.

I think you might also not be getting it? If a build choice stands a chance of not actually making an impact in performance, isn't that a valuable metric to consider when building your character?

For instance, if I'm contemplating making a bard with only 16 charisma, don't you think it's helpful for me to know that the difference between a 16 and an 18 charisma will only become statistically significant after X number of saving throws?

Yes but you dont need a graph showing comparisons between two sets of rolls to show that. What you need to know is against the dcs you are likely to face, how often would that plus 1 been the difference in a success category.
DC (i.e. AC) is already factored into DPR calculations. That's not really what's under discussion. We're talking about dice variance. How a +1 bonus compares to the noise of the d20 across a given number of rolls is what's being discussed.
I know, I'm debating whether that adds any appreciable utility to a players desicion making.

It does if you have an idea of how long your campaign will be and how likely a particular kind of roll is to come up. My contention is that recognizing the role of dice variance can help free a player to feel comfortable making a "sub-optimal" choices dictated by personal preference. Squeezing that extra +1 out of your build might seem less essential when you realize there's a 63% chance it won't actually make a difference over the next 6 sessions (or whatever).

Malk_Content wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
Bandw2 wrote:

you... are not getting it.

I think you might also not be getting it? If a build choice stands a chance of not actually making an impact in performance, isn't that a valuable metric to consider when building your character?

For instance, if I'm contemplating making a bard with only 16 charisma, don't you think it's helpful for me to know that the difference between a 16 and an 18 charisma will only become statistically significant after X number of saving throws?

Yes but you dont need a graph showing comparisons between two sets of rolls to show that. What you need to know is against the dcs you are likely to face, how often would that plus 1 been the difference in a success category.

DC (i.e. AC) is already factored into DPR calculations. That's not really what's under discussion. We're talking about dice variance. How a +1 bonus compares to the noise of the d20 across a given number of rolls is what's being discussed.

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Bandw2 wrote:

DPR calculatiosn are used to determine how you should build your character, what you will get the most out of. d6+1 versus d6, there is not choice to take, d6+1 is the better choice. there is no reason for me, even in play choose an option that does 1d6 damage versus choosing an option that does 1d6+1.

The reason to choose 1d6 over 1d6+1 is presumably that you'll get to make some other build choice instead (e.g. boosting your Int instead of your Str). The fact that variance may stand a decent chance of making that +1 insignificant (depending on the projected length of your campaign) is just ammunition for justifying whether or not you make that choice.

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Bandw2 wrote:

you... are not getting it.

I think you might also not be getting it? If a build choice stands a chance of not actually making an impact in performance, isn't that a valuable metric to consider when building your character?

For instance, if I'm contemplating making a bard with only 16 charisma, don't you think it's helpful for me to know that the difference between a 16 and an 18 charisma will only become statistically significant after X number of saving throws?

FowlJ wrote:
krazmuze wrote:
d6+1 is in fact not always greater than d6 - simply because you are NOT rolling the average every time, but instead are more likely to see a deviation.

You... do realise that you aren't even talking to anyone here, right?

Literally nobody has claimed the thing that you're disputing here. Nobody has said that through some magic 1d6+1 will always roll better than 1d6, 100% of the time. It has been said, accurately, that 1d6+1 will always be better than 1d6, in that given the choice between the two there is no reason why 1d6 would be a better option.

I'm willing to bet the average min/maxer discounts the effect of dice variance as "just luck". Calculating averages is easy, but most people haven't taken a stats course.

Thinking about dice variance is useful in so far as it can tell you how likely the theoretically higher average of min/maxing is to actually affect your play experience. I know that once I started thinking about dice variance, I became a lot more comfortable playing "sub-optimal" builds.

Hiruma Kai wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
Also of note: if you start with a 16 in your main stat, you’re only behind by one *some of the time*, so I think your calculations likely lend credence to the idea that it won’t be statistically significant (in that particular case at least)

Believe me there's a whole host of things I've ignored if you want to fully simulate attack rolls through a campaign. As you note I've ignored level ups. Crit successes can have a large effect on combat. My estimate of the number of rolls is very rough, no consideration to secondary benefits of a higher combat stat (+1 to hit and +1 to damage), and so forth.

So all the graph is saying is if you roll 900 rolls with the threshold of 10 or higher vs a threshold of 9 or higher, you'll likely be able to tell that there was in fact a 1 point difference. Does 5% more hits make the difference between overall success and failure in a campaign? I personally don't think so. At least for most APs.

Nor does this even begin to look at the trade offs one makes for a +1 to hit. Presumably, you'd have +1 to some other rolls, or more hit points which could potentially be more important than 5% more hits. At 1st level, 2 more Con for a human fighter is ~5.6% more hit points, plus a better fort save. Is 5% more hitpoints worth 5% more hits over the course of a campaign? Maybe? Depends on the player?

I also agree the way stat boosts work every 5 levels, they favor a more even spread at 1st level and make MAD characters much more viable than PF1. I've personally played characters in Starfinder with a 14 in their primary combat stat at 1st level, which has a similar stat upgrades by leveling. It worked out fine.

I figure over the course of a campaign, smart tactics and average builds will trump perfect optimization and poor tactics. I feel that was true even in PF1.

At the end of the day, DPR is just a piece of information, which players can do with what they want. Doing a simple DPR or DPA calculation is better than walking in...

Oh yeah, that wasn't meant as a critique of your methodology. I was just coming up with a new hypothesis about a particular area of concern for me, based on your calculations.

Also of note: if you start with a 16 in your main stat, you’re only behind by one *some of the time*, so I think your calculations likely lend credence to the idea that it won’t be statistically significant (in that particular case at least)

Hiruma Kai wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:

2) You don't make an infinite number of rolls in a campaign. With a limited number of rolls, it is quite possible that the variance in your rolls will render the theoretically higher average result of a +1 bonus irrelevant. A lot of people are saying "Sure, but that's just bad luck. You can't account for that mathematically", but what they aren't getting is that you actually can, thanks to the magic of statistics.

You're right. We can calculate it. Lets do it.

How many rolls do you think you make with your primary statistic in a campaign? I'll assume we have 12.5 encounters per level, with approximately 2 equivalent level enemies. Call it 6 successful attacks per enemy, maybe 12 attempted attacks per, so 24 attack split between 4 players for an encounter, so 6 rolls each? That means 75 attack rolls a level and assume a 1-12 level campaign for roughly 900 attack rolls with your primary attack stat.

900 factorial is going to be a bit rough to do for exact combination counts, so I'll switch over to simulation.

So I've thrown up a simulated plot for 1 million sets of 900 rolls in the same google doc I had a plot for 40, again with a 60% versus 55% success chance. The google doc is here: Google Doc. Second page has the 900 roll plot.

The big thing to note is that as you add more rolls over the course of a campaign, there is less and less overlap between the distributions - making it easier to tell the difference if you had a +1 bonus or not.

With 40 rolls, you have a 75% chance of there being no difference in your success ratio (i.e. the overlap between the distributions). However with 900, you have only about a 13% chance of having the exact same number of successes. Sometimes it might only be a 1 roll difference, but the two peaks are pretty distinct. The most probable outcome is that you've gotten 45 more successes out of 900 with that +1....

Thanks for this post. I think some of your assumptions are potentially slightly inflated (12.5 encounters, 6 attack rolls per encounter) but I appreciate that you took the time to do this, and I don’t disagree with your findings.

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I'm by no means a statistician or mathematician, but I'd like to take a crack at explaining in very simple layman's terms, why small bonuses to-hit are less important than people like to think. A lot of people are saying things like "higher average roll = better performance, it's really that simple," but it actually isn't.

I think there are a couple simple things that people overlook:
1) This one is fairly obvious, but I think it still bears repeating: a success is a success and a failure is a failure. Whether you need an 11 or a 10 to succeed makes no difference if you actually rolled a 12. Similarly, if the monster only has 6 hit points left, it doesn't matter if you deal 7 or 8 damage with your strike. So that +1 bonus is actually only relevant in a small number of cases.
2) You don't make an infinite number of rolls in a campaign. With a limited number of rolls, it is quite possible that the variance in your rolls will render the theoretically higher average result of a +1 bonus irrelevant. A lot of people are saying "Sure, but that's just bad luck. You can't account for that mathematically", but what they aren't getting is that you actually can, thanks to the magic of statistics.

So how does this matter for you, in practical terms? It's simple: for any given character over the course of a campaign, the variance in dice rolls is almost certainly going to be high enough to make that +1 bonus moot. That's right; once the campaign is over, if you were to go back over all the checks/saves/attacks you rolled to analyze the impact of your +1 bonus, you'd most likely discover that statistically it didn't impact your performance in a meaningful way. Meaning it probably doesn't matter if you start with an 18 or a 16 in your main stat. Meaning that min/maxing often doesn't actually result in a statistically significant improvement in your performance.

Blave wrote:

That's not strange at all. When you become level 7, your maximum spell level and the level of your cantrips goes to 4 and half of that happens to be 2.

They could (and probably should) just have said

Inspire Defense as it should have been written wrote:

You inspire your allies to protect themselves more effectively. You and all allies in the area gain a +1 status bonus to AC and saving throws, as well as resistance 1 to physical damage.

Heightened (+2) The physical resistance increases by 1.

It is weird that Inspire Defense doesn't use this normal spell format for heightening, but it really doesn't work differently from any other spell.

EDIT: Improved quote to make my point more clearly.

You started out by saying my criticism of the needlessly convoluted mechanism by which inspire defence functions wasn't apt, but then you went on to propose a much better mechanism that perfectly addresses my criticism. So thank you, I guess?

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Blave wrote:
No, it's half the spell's level not half your level. If you're level 6, the spell is heightened to level 3. Half that is one point of damage resistance.

What I find funny about this is how the rounding rules come into play differently depending on whether your character level is odd or even.

At level 6, spell level is 6/2 = 3, and damage resitance is 3/2 (rounded down) = 1.

But once you reach level 7, spell level is 7/2 (rounded up) = 4, and damage resistance is 4/2 = 2 damage resistance.

I wonder why fractional advancement for proficiency was deemed too complicated when this passes muster? I doubt the OP is the only one confused by this.

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Think of it like this:

The MAP for a regular weapon is -5 per additional attack: 0 – 5 – 5 = –10
The MAP for an agile weapon is -4 per additional attack: 0 – 4 – 4 = –8

Does that help?

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Cyouni wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:

And your point is... that I didn't have a good answer to an objection that hadn't been raised yet? I'm not trying to claim I made an unanswerable argument. My point was just that you obviously misunderstood my what I was advocating for, probably because you didn't read what I'd written closely enough.

Anyway, I don't particularly care about Advanced Weaponry, and I've never argued for or against any particular viewpoint on that front. I just think there should be a way for a wizard to invest 60% of his total General Feat allotment so he can be an Expert with a halberd if he wants to be. That's all.

Uh huh, I did. But how does that change the argument as far as the halberd (or other martial weapon) goes? You vehemently argued against allowing wizards to get Expert in the halberd before you brought up advanced weaponry. I can dig up the exact post if you want.

Anyway, I'm exhausted. I need to go to bed. 'Night.

Cyouni wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
Cyouni wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:

DeadManWalking comes in and says exactly what some of us have already been saying for the past 3 pages, and now it's an interesting concept when before it was unacceptable power creep? :P I guess you didn't really read some of my earlier posts?

I did actually check back to make sure, and every post I'm seeing is "I want the base Weapon Proficiency general feat to add to your class weapon list for the purposes of scaling".

(I also did check some of your earlier posts, and that still does fall under "suddenly have to change your entire fighting style" for any advanced weapons.)

From my very first post in this thread:

Bardic Dave wrote:
Maybe I was too quick in my response. I actually think your house rule looks pretty reasonable. Breaking it into two Feats, as you suggested, would be more in line with how the Ancestral Weapons Feats work."
I'm expecting that apology card in the mail any day now...

Still doesn't have the advanced weapon clause, which also does completely defy quite a few things people have constantly said thus far.

Advanced weapons are definitely a large portion of potential problems - take the falcata and falchion from PF1 as good examples regarding exotic weapon proficiency. They're constantly taken because they fit the mold for what advanced weapons are in PF2 - as a weapon, they're straight-up better than martial variants. Even spending two general feats to allow that in PF2 is practically guaranteed to lead to the exact same thing unless you have a particular need for general feats.
For an easy example, take the Orc Necksplitter (1d8, forceful, orc, sweep) and compare to the Battle Axe (1d8, sweep). It creates a heavy press on martials to go grab those advanced weapons, and general feats are a particularly cheap currency compared to class feats.

(I also did note that the problem was primarily regarding what this would result in for martials. If we're willing...

And your point is... that in my very first post in this thread, I didn't have a good answer to an objection that hadn't been raised yet? I'm not trying to claim I made an unanswerable argument. My point was just that you obviously misunderstood what I was advocating for, probably because you didn't read what I'd written closely enough.

Anyway, I don't particularly care about Advanced Weaponry, and I've never argued for or against any particular viewpoint on that front. I just think there should be a way for a wizard to invest 60% of his total General Feat allotment so he can be an Expert with a halberd if he wants to be. That's all.

EDIT: Or in the alternative, a wizard shouldn't be allowed to invest 40% of his General Feats into a weapon that will work on curve up until level 10, but fall behind permanently thereafter.

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Cyouni wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:

DeadManWalking comes in and says exactly what some of us have already been saying for the past 3 pages, and now it's an interesting concept when before it was unacceptable power creep? :P I guess you didn't really read some of my earlier posts?

I did actually check back to make sure, and every post I'm seeing is "I want the base Weapon Proficiency general feat to add to your class weapon list for the purposes of scaling".

(I also did check some of your earlier posts, and that still does fall under "suddenly have to change your entire fighting style" for any advanced weapons.)

This gem is from my very first post in this thread:

Bardic Dave wrote:
Maybe I was too quick in my response. I actually think your house rule looks pretty reasonable. Breaking it into two Feats, as you suggested, would be more in line with how the Ancestral Weapons Feats work.

I'm expecting that apology card in the mail any day now...

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MaxAstro wrote:

Hrm... Except I think my example is more apropos than you think?

TPtP doesn't read "all crit fails are regular fails, and all regular fails are successes"; in fact it very much reads "all crit fails are regular fails and all regular fails get an extra bonus".

For example, consider an ability that did full damage on a failure and no damage on a success - TPtP would give you half damage on a failure, not no damage.

I don't see why it matters if the extra bonus ability is attached at the end of the spectrum or not; my argument is a general rule that "if an ability changes [one result] to [other result] and then has a separate clause that [other result] gets [bonus effect], the ability doesn't cause you to get [bonus effect] on [one result]".

To give another example, let's consider a theoretical version of TPtP that works on the positive end of the spectrum. It is worded like this:

"When you roll a success on the chosen type of save, treat your result as a critical success. When you critically succeed at the chosen save against an effect that deals damage, you instead gain that much life."

By the same logic that the actual version of TPtP doesn't give you half damage on a crit fail, wouldn't this version of TPtP not give you life gain on a regular success?

Ohhh.... I clearly should have read your post more closely. My bad. Well, I'm uncertain of the correct interpretation. I think it's a reasonable that Third Path to Perfection might give you half-damage on all Failed Saves, even if they would have otherwise been critical failures. I suppose it could go either way, but I imagine there's be a correct answer buried somewhere in the book.

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Cyouni wrote:
Cyouni wrote:

I'm going to point out that the solution constantly coming up is to make a level 1 General Feat equivalent to a level 6 Fighter Feat, alternately a level 12 multiclass Fighter feat.

It would alternately be equivalent to two Ancestry feats, one of which is a level 13 one.

Which solution? The solution I think is reasonable is the addition of a single 11th level General Feat that grants Expert (technically, it would grant whatever you have as your highest Proficiency from Class) in a single weapon you are already Trained in (restricting it to not be an Advanced Weapon seems a reasonable limit).

So, this can't duplicate the 6th level Fighter Feat, doesn't really duplicate the Fighter Multiclass version (as that applies to all weapons) and is even narrower than the Ancestry version (since all those also apply to multiple weapons).

Hmm, that's definitely an interesting concept. So in this proposal, what happens with the trained Advanced weapons that you can get from Weapon Proficiency? Are you just expected to not take them?

Expert in a single specific weapon (martial or lower) for a level 11 general feat would certainly seem to fit the guidelines, but that does leave Advanced weapon proficiency high and dry.

(I'm not certain how I feel about Elven Curveblade rogue, but eh, uncommon can probably handle that.)

DeadManWalking comes in and says exactly what some of us have already been saying for the past 3 pages, and now it's an interesting concept when before it was unacceptable power creep? :P I guess you didn't really read some of my earlier posts?

I see what you're saying, and I don't disagree with how it relates to Third Path to Perfection. However, this ability is different in one important aspect:

Third Path to Perfection involves IMPROVING FAILURES. Improvement and Failure run in opposite directions, so you can never end up in the unusual situation of going beyond the four normal categories of success/failure.

This Feat, on the other hand IMPROVES SUCCESS, effectively (but not actually) creating a fifth category of super-critical success.

Do you see the difference and why that changes the way the feat reads? If all successes are crits, and all crits get an extra bonus, that reads very differently from all crit fails are regular fails, and all regular fails are successes.

The former case isn't covered by the general rule that "you can only move one step at a time", because there is no extra category beyond Critical Success. So any success that becomes a Crit Success should also gain the additional benefit of a Crit Success.

Do you see what I'm getting at?

Regardless, if you can find one ability that's worded the way you said and that works exactly like this Feat does (Success=Crit, Crit=extra goodies) then I'll admit I'm wrong.

EDIT: Or alternatively one ability with the wording you suggested that works like this: (Fail=Crit Fail, Crit Fail=extra bad stuff)

Cyouni wrote:

I'm going to point out that the solution constantly coming up is to make a level 1 General Feat equivalent to a level 6 Fighter Feat, alternately a level 12 multiclass Fighter feat.

It would alternately be equivalent to two Ancestry feats, one of which is a level 13 one.

General feats, aside from their ability to take skill feats, are by and large the worst out of the four buckets, and I'm pretty sure this is by design.

I think the more common solution being proposed is to create a level 11 general Feat to achieve Expert in one weapon. So a wizard could spend his 3rd (simple: Trained), 7th (martial: Trained), and 11th level General Feats to get Expert Proficiency with a Halberd, forgoing everything else he could have got with those feats instead. If you think that's wrong, then I guess we just can't see eye to eye.

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Well, I'm stumped! My hunch is that the interpretation a few of us have suggested is correct, but I agree there is some ambiguity there.

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Is Stunning Fist a Free action? What's the trigger?

MaxAstro wrote:

Bardic Dave wrote:
You couldn't word it that way, because (as Mark points out) then ANY success would become a critical success and gain the Super-Extra benefit of EVEN MORE knowledge/context.
That is not true, based on the wording of some other abilities.

Can you find an ability that works in the exact same way as this one does (improving a success to a crit success and a crit success to a super crit)? I'm skeptical that there are any, but I'll concede the point if you can produce one.

MaxAstro wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
sherlock1701 wrote:
You could go with "Any time you roll a check to Recall Knowledge, your degree of success increases by one".
Still wouldn't work. What's above a Crit Success? There's no general rule for a Super Critical Success. Also, your re-wording would turn Failures into Successes, and Crit Fails into Regular Fails (something the current Feat doesn't do). It would be a very different Feat if you worded it that way.

There are actually other abilities that use the terminology "degree of success increases by one", so your first point doesn't apply.

Also, I think you slightly misunderstood Mark - he did not mean that the wording I suggested would cause a regular success to get Know-It-All's crit success benefit - remember, I mentioned there are already other abilities worded that way without having that problem.

Instead, he meant that any other ability you have that triggers from a critical success on knowledge would trigger from Know-It-All. For example, I believe Rangers have a feat that gives them a bonus if they crit succeed Recall Knowledge against a monster - the devs did not want a multiclass bard/ranger to get that effect all the time with Know-It-All.

In any case, that is a point well taken, Mark. I still feel the feat is worded awkwardly, but now I understand why.

I can tell from your post that you've misunderstood what I wrote. If you care to, I suggest you read my posts again.

In any case, here's the summary version:
What I'm NOT saying: "You could never word any ability like that, because it would just be wrong"
What I AM saying: "If you worded this specific ability like that, it would change how it works; it would no longer be the same feat."

This seems like a reasonable 11th level General Feat to me.

The good news about that is, of course, that it's super easy for Paizo to include such a Feat if they have a mind to.

I agree. And I think it's quite likely that they will eventually.

Stone Dog wrote:

Okay, let me see if I break this down right.

• Wizards have weapon proficiencies.
• Wizards get Expert in those weapons at 13th level.
• Under normal circumstances, you get five general feats in 20 levels.
• You can burn a feat to gain proficiency in a single, solitary weapon with one of those five feats.
• However, that single weapon that you burned a feat for doesn't count as one of your weapons when you hit 13th level and it stays merely Trained.

So now you are 13th level, have spent 20% of your lifetime General Feats because you wanted to be a Wizard with a Halberd, or whatever and now you aren't as good at it as you are with every other weapon you may or may not have used that you didn't burn a feat for.

You COULD spend two of your CLASS feats to be a Wiz/Ftr, but you don't WANT to be a Wiz/Ftr, you just want to have an additional (1) hurty stick with the same cost of living upgrade as the rest of your measly selection of hurty sticks.

And people think this is, what... unfair? Hurting the Fighter's niche?

Am I getting something wrong in the above bullets?

You're basically spot on. A few nitpicks:

1) Wizards get expert at 11th level, not 13th.
2) The General Feat gives you Trained in all Simple Weapons, or Trained in all Martial Weapons if you're already Trained in all Simple.
3) So to become Trained with a halberd, the Wizard has to take the General Feat TWICE, using 40% of their total allotment of General Feats.

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Cyouni wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
Cyouni wrote:

Except that as soon as you get Expert, the complains then become "why does my rogue have Master in all these weapons but only Expert in the greatsword?"

Exact same situation, different class and weapon.

Except can't human rogues already do that via Ancestry Feats?

One, no. The ancestry feat is quite explicit in how it applies. It applies only to "a single uncommon simple or martial weapon with a trait corresponding to an ancestry or is common in another culture".

If two general feats get every rogue master proficiency in elven curveblade, oh look we're back to the PF1 problem again. Or one general feat gets every single martial master proficiency in an advanced weapon. Welcome back falcata everybody.

I'm not convinced. If the elven curved blade is actually that much better than every other weapon (and I'm not convinced that it is), then wouldn't you expect every single rogue to be an elf? How is that situation preferable?

EDIT: also isn't it reasonable to say that the Greatsword is common to another culture? Perhaps somewhere that venerates Gorum, like Realms of the Mammoth Lords, or the Linnorm kingdoms?

EDIT: NVM, I see why; the Greatsword isn't "uncommon".

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Joe Wells wrote:

Gygax acknowledges the fictional roots of the game's druids right up front in the AD&D PHB:

"Druids can be visualized as medieval cousins of what the ancient Celtic sect of Druids would have become had it survived the Roman conquest."

The class was never meant to closely model historical druids.

Nice quote! Thanks for sharing! I enjoy learning more about the roots of the game.

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Cyouni wrote:

Except that as soon as you get Expert, the complains then become "why does my rogue have Master in all these weapons but only Expert in the greatsword?"

Exact same situation, different class and weapon.

Except can't human rogues already do that via Ancestry Feats?

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Data Lore wrote:
I disagree. Master and Legendary should be limited by the main class. This is like BAB in 3.X.

I hope this person is trolling... and if they are, well played!

Cydeth wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
Fair point. So do you think it would be bad if there were another General Feat at level 11 to increase your spellcasting proficiency to Expert for one innate spell that you can cast? Because I don't.
As I said before, several times. I do not think this is the place of General Feats. If the designers decided to put a feat into Fighter that allowed me to dabble in magic, and thus get an Expert spellcasting proficiency at 12th or higher? Sure! I'm all for it. Because they've put these sort of things as class feats, and as far as I'm concerned that's intentional on their part.

Alright. So one key difference between the General Feat that gives you an innate spell and the General Feat that gives you proficiency with weapons, is that if you multiclass into a spellcasting class, your innate spellcasting proficiency automatically goes up with your spellcasting proficiency bonus.

However, no such multi-class compatibility exists for the weapon feat. The weapon feat is just completely redundant with multi-classing.

I would love it if they were compatible in some way. I really don't like that there's no way to improve upon the Feat's limitations after you take it.

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Cydeth wrote:

When I was building my fighter early today, I seriously considered taking the elven feat Otherworldly Magic to get Ray of Frost for a ranged attack. This is available to every elf, and gnomes could do similar things.

Ray of Frost is an innate spell, and thus is considered Trained and only uses Charisma for the linked attribute. As such, unless I multi-class to a spellcaster, my to-hit with it will never rise above Trained, and I'll be using Charisma for it's to-hit.

This is exactly like using the Weapon Proficiency feat. It has the same pitfalls. Thus, the previous comments about them being similar are very applicable.

Fair point. So do you think it would be bad if there were another General Feat at level 11 to increase your spellcasting proficiency to Expert for one (or more) innate spell(s) that you can cast? Because I think I could live with that.

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Cydeth wrote:

Actually, yes it is. Several ancestries get innate spells, and innate spells are only trained unless you have an Expert or higher spellcasting proficiency.

It is the exact same thing as what you're asking for.

No, the reason it's not the same thing is because the Wizard already gets Expert Weapon Proficiency for free at level 11.

Actually, the fact that your innate casting proficiency increases along with your own spellcasting proficiency kind of speaks against your point, doesn't it?

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Cyouni wrote:

Being a wizard comes with certain ups and downs.
Up: You get 10th level spells.
Down: You'll never be as good at the halberd.

So, I feel like you're misunderstanding/misrepresenting my point. Regardless, this part is wrong, because from level 1-10 you are exactly as good as the expected baseline for your class with the halberd. So "never" is wrong, because you can be 100% at par for your level, but only within a particular level band.

That's the part that bugs me. I don't like the inconsistency of it. If it's a valid concept from level 1-10, it should be valid from 11-20. If it's not a valid concept, then it shouldn't be supported from levels 1-10.

That's my position. If it's "better" for it to be gated behind multi-classing, then it should actually be gated behind multi-classing for all 20 levels.

The reason I don't like the inconsistency is because for a new player, the nuances of the Feat being "good at some levels but not at others" won't be readily apparent, which could make for an unsatisfying gaming experience when they hit level 11 and realize that they can't swing their mother's ancestral batteaxe as well as a club.

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Xenocrat wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
Cydeth wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
All they want is a way to extend a wizard's existing Expert proficiency with the club to gain Expert proficiency with the Warhammer at the cost of a couple of feats. That's not really that unreasonable, is it?
I'm beginning to think yes, it is. They can get it by multiclassing, since class feats are supposed to be more powerful than general feats.
Yeah, I think I also prefer that it be restricted to Multiclassing and Ancestry Feats as it currently is. However, if that's the case, then the existence of the General Feat that grants Trained proficiency is problematic, because it allows you to stay on par up until level 10, only to fall behind with no way to catch up at level 11. Like, why would you ever take that Feat if you know your campaign is going above level 10?
Because you remembered that retraining feats is easy?

Call me old-fashioned, but I don't think any Feat in a game that is supposed to be beginner friendly should come with the implicit caveat "this is only good up until X level, so make sure you remember to retrain".

EDIT: I also don't find the idea that you should retrain out of your preferred weapon style because you've hit the magic level very satisfying. Like, if I was allowed to be the cool Wizard with a halberd for the first 10 levels without multiclassing, why can't I continue being that wizard for rest of my adventuring career and not fall permanently behind?

EDIT2: Alternatively, if being the the cool non-multiclassing Wizard with the halberd isn't supported from level 11 onward, then why did you give me a Feat to realize that concept for the first 10 levels? Why is the concept ok at some levels but not at others? It just seems wrong...

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Cydeth wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
Yeah, I think I prefer that it be restricted to Multiclassing and Ancestry Feats as it currently is. However, if that's the case, then the existence of the General Feat that grants Trained proficiency is problematic, because it allows you to stay on par up until level 10, only to fall behind with no way to catch up at level 11. Like, why would you ever take that Feat if you know your campaign is going above level 10?

I did the math earlier in this thread. If you do the same degree of focus, a character who's only trained in their weapon is able to hit an enemy pretty much on the same numbers all the way to 15th level. That isn't 10th level.

That said, I don't think it's a good feat. I struggle to come up with an instance where I'd personally take it, because I'd build my characters to where they got the proficiencies I felt were vital very early on, either via multiclassing or my base class.

But that doesn't make it a terrible feat. Just not an amazing one.

11th level is when the least-weapon focussed classes (wizard, sorc, bard, druid etc.) get expert proficiency with their weapons. That's where the "up until level 10" comes from. So no math needed. Or rather, some very, very simple math (+2 is less than +4)

Why would I stubbornly insist on swinging my morningstar past level 10 when the club has now become unequivocally a better option for me? And why was it "fine and balanced" for me to swing my morningstar as well as I can swing a club for the first 10 levels (at the cost of a General Feat), but now It becomes "unbalanced" for me to keep pace at level 11?

That's why the General Feat is problematic in its current implementation. There should be another one to go up to expert at level 11, or they should get rid of the current one that takes you up to Trained. But having one without the other is... unsatisfying.

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sherlock1701 wrote:
You could go with "Any time you roll a check to Recall Knowledge, your degree of success increases by one".

Still wouldn't work. What's above a Crit Success? There's no general rule for a Super Critical Success. Also, your re-wording would turn Failures into Successes, and Crit Fails into Regular Fails (something the current Feat doesn't do). It would be a very different Feat if you worded it that way.

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Midnightoker wrote:

Just delete the General Feat then.

I agree. Just get rid of it. If multiclassing or ancestry feats are the only "correct" options, then don't include a "wrong" option that functions perfectly fine for 10 levels and then leaves your character permanently behind the curve unless you change your fighting style.

Cydeth wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
All they want is a way to extend a wizard's existing Expert proficiency with the club to gain Expert proficiency with the Warhammer at the cost of a couple of feats. That's not really that unreasonable, is it?
I'm beginning to think yes, it is. They can get it by multiclassing, since class feats are supposed to be more powerful than general feats.

Yeah, I think I also prefer that it be restricted to Multiclassing and Ancestry Feats as it currently is. However, if that's the case, then the existence of the General Feat that grants Trained proficiency is problematic, because it allows you to stay on par up until level 10, only to fall behind with no way to catch up at level 11. Like, why would you ever take that Feat if you know your campaign is going above level 10?

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TheGoofyGE3K wrote:
Think of it this way: if proficiency only went to expert, with fighters getting "Weapon Master" and "Legendary Caster" as class feats while wizards got "Spell Master" and "Legendary Caster" as class features would you still be clamoring for the fighter's high level abilities for weaponry?

Come on, man! No one is "clamouring for the fighter's high level abilities for weaponry!" All they want is a way to extend a wizard's existing Expert proficiency with the club to gain Expert proficiency with the Warhammer at the cost of a couple of feats. That's not really that unreasonable, is it? And I'm not even really advocating for their position; I'm pretty happy with how things stand. It just really bugs me how people keep misrepresenting what they're saying.

Cyouni wrote:

The stun is an incapacitation effect, the flurry is not.

Therefore, it only affects the stun.

Thank you. You said it much better than I did.

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Quandary wrote:

I'm unclear on who has the final rules and is referencing them and who isn't.

re: MaxAstro's Incapacitation quote (if accurate, in final rules),
"When(...), you reduce(...), the creature improves(...)" doesn't seem to be grammatically correct if both are to be applied.
If that was the intent, there should be an "and" before "the creature". Of course, there should also be supporting grammar if they are intended as alternatives, but I would say it is a reasonable possibility the intent is NOT for both of them to be applied to any single Incapacitation effect.

That ties in with BD's comment (above) which queries whether the "triggering" attack roll itself is properly part of the "Incapacitation effect" or merely a trigger for it. Which would clarify the rule re: Stunning Fist itself, but not in general for potential future Incapacitation effects which "actively" contain both an attack roll AND saving throw. Although the "editorial" meta-guidance for such abilities could include need to specify WHICH of attack or save is penalized.

Even with such meta-guidance covering prioritization, I think the text of Incapacitated would still need to be amended either with an "or" preceding "the creature". Or alternatively, if intent is both always apply when possible, amended with an "and" although that wouldn't apply if attack roll is "outside" scope of the Incapatitation effect "proper".

I like your in-depth analysis, but I think the whole question is circumvented by the fact that Stunning Fist doesn't even enter the picture until AFTER you determine the degree of success of your attack roll.

Example 1: You miss. Stunning Fist isn't triggered.

Example 2: You hit! Stunning Fist triggers! But Stunning Fist has the incapacitation trait and your target is a higher level, so actually you miss? That doesn't seem right... why did you even take this Feat again?

Example 3: You hit! Stunning Fist Triggers! You don't revisit the attack roll, because it's over and done with; it's in the past; its success was a necessary pre-condition to even invoke the Stunning Fist rules. Your opponent now rolls a Saving Throw and fails! But they're a level higher than you, so actually they succeed on the saving throw. That seems more reasonable, no?

MaxAstro wrote:

Actually, it could have. There is at least one ability I've seen that uses the language "if you get a critical failure on [thing], you instead fail. If you get a failure on [thing], you instead [different benefit]".

So similar wording could have been applied to Know-It-All. Still, thank you Mark - good to know that is how the feat works, even if it's worded a bit awkwardly.

You couldn't word it that way, because (as Mark points out) then ANY success would become a critical success and gain the Super-Extra benefit of EVEN MORE knowledge/context.

So if the wording appears a little awkward to you, know that it's awkward for a reason.

Mark Seifter wrote:
MaxAstro wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
Detect Magic wrote:
Would have been simpler/easier to understand if the feat had indicated that when you roll a success on a Knowledge check, you get a critical success instead.
Yes, but then you couldn't have the extra clause about getting EVEN MORE on a crit success, right?

Actually, it could have. There is at least one ability I've seen that uses the language "if you get a critical failure on [thing], you instead fail. If you get a failure on [thing], you instead [different benefit]".

But then you would get riders that are supposed to require a true critical success.

Thanks for backing me up, Mark! :p

I'm pleased I was able to divine the reasoning behind the Feat's wording. :D

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MaxAstro wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
Isn't anything higher level than the PCs supposed to be a serious challenge in which the PCs likely already have a noticeable action economy advantage? If so, I assume "let's not compound that action economy advantage even more" is why incapacitate effects are bad against higher level opponents.

Yes, that logic makes sense.

My concern is that the other Incap effects I have seen (Sleeper Hold and the rogue's Master Strike) both only apply the debuff to a single roll, while Stunning Fist both penalizes your roll and buffs the enemy's roll - in other words, while normally you take an effective -10 penalty for Incap effects against higher level enemies, with Stunning Fist you are taking an effective -20.

Basically it makes Stunning Fist something you should never, ever try against anything higher level than you, because not only will it fail, it will fail AND ruin your attack rolls.

Based on what I've read in this thread, I don't think you reduce the degree of success of your attack rolls; the attack rolls are just regular old attack rolls and don't have the incapacitation trait. Stunning Fist seems like it's a "passive ability" that "triggers" when your Flurry of Blows attacks hit, i.e. you determine the degree of success of your attack roll before Stunning Fist even enters the picture. Otherwise, Stunning Fist would just be a straight up nerf to your Flurry of Blows, and that doesn't seem right. It's not like you can choose to turn Stunning Fist off, right?

So the Saving Throw is increased by one degree of success, but the attack rolls aren't reduced by one.

Does that seem like a plausible interpretation, MaxAstro?

EDIT: For clarity, I don't have the final rules. I'm just going off what MaxAstro has written. MaxAstro does have the final rules.

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MaxAstro wrote:
Bardic Dave wrote:
Samdroid wrote:

I would definitely argue that the General feat to increase a weapon's proficiency to Trained is a trap option. One could just use that general feat to pick the Adopted Ancestry general feat instead (which lets you choose ancestry feats from an ancestry of your choice) and then use two ancestry feats to pick up the 1st level weapon proficiency feat for Humans and the level 13 feat to match class proficiencies.

It's admittedly a 3 feat tax, but most ancestries are already paying a 2 feat tax to do it with their ancestral weapons. The tax of a general feat seems like a fair price to match versatility of Humans.

Just wanted to highlight this, in case it gets lost in the noise. So there's already a way to do what the OP wants in the game, and it only costs 2 Ancestry Feats if you're a human? That sounds pretty good. It's not a complete solution to the OP's issues, but it's something.

Not only would a feat like this devalue humans, it would also devalue Fighters - they have a level 6 feat to treat a specific advanced weapon as a martial weapon for proficiency.

The more I think about this the less I'm okay with it. One thing that specifically turned me off to it was the comment about "elf with longbow is okay, why not dwarf with longbow?" Giving different races reasons to play differently is a good thing.

Yeah, I tend to agree with you. I think my only real issue is that the General Feat essentially accomplishes this up until level 10, and then you hit level 11 and suddenly there's no way to stay on the same track you've been on since level 3. That seems like an unfortunate gap to me. IMO, If it's acceptable and balanced from level 3-10, it should be acceptable and balanced from level 11-20 also. Either there should be another General Feat to extend your weapon proficiency to Expert at level 11, or there shouldn't be one to get Trained at level 3.

As it is, the existing General Feat seems like a bit of a trap if your game is going above level 10 (similar to how Toughness was a good feat for a 1st level one-shot in 3e, but was a trap if your game was going past level 2 or 3).

Rhyst wrote:
Kolyarut wrote:
Rhyst wrote:
Nothing in the monk area that talks about Ki Spells states WIS other than the "Ki Monk" sample. Which isn't exactly a rules reference.

Yep, it's possible they want you to use your class DC, so STR or DEX. But the Ki Monk sample text indicates they either forgot to list Wisdom as the spellcasting ability, or they forgot to remove that blurb from the sample text.

I'd put my money on the Ki Spells using Wisdom to set DC's, but it's not completely clear.

Hint #2 that it may have been missed, the class specific character sheet for monk lists "Spell DC" and has WIS as it's heading.

Great catch!

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Can you clarify what you mean by "Incap penalty" and how this affects the sunning strike ability?

Detect Magic wrote:
Would have been simpler/easier to understand if the feat had indicated that when you roll a success on a Knowledge check, you get a critical success instead.

Yes, but then you couldn't have the extra clause about getting EVEN MORE on a crit success, right?

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