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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber. Organized Play Member. 497 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 6 Organized Play characters.


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I was always partial to Wavecasting myself. Quite poetic.

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Agreed. I THINK it is only on a hit since the spell does specify that, but it is a bit odd that splash damager is never defined.

I just run it as bombs (5 foot damage emanation from target)

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Martialmasters wrote:

What is bounded casting

This isn't 5e

It is the casting type that Magus and Summoner use. They lose their lower level spell slot as they gain higher level ones, so generally they always have 4 total spells, 2 top level, 2 top level -1.

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Yeah, it works, it isn't a metamagic.

But my point was more that now we have psychic, which offers a TON from the basic dedication and such, and much better casting.

Why is bounded casting MC so bad? Less spells, and lower scaling spells, slightly higher feat cost.

I would really like to see it reworked a little. Have it give no more than 4 spells so you don't have more than the base class sure, but at least let it keep the same level scaling. Maybe have it be 1-1-2 (One max level spell, one -1, 2 -2 spells) the whole way with the same level scaling. The base classes get the same spell scaling after all.

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Necroing a bit now that the new book has been released.

I stand by my position that this needs fixing to make these archetypes better.

I mean, if the concern is you don't want to give a fighter magus higher level spells to spellstrike with, well it doesn't matter now! One dip in psychic and you have a spellstrike that outscales shocking grasp (amped produce flame)

And that archetype gives full casting, just now breadth.

At a bare minimum, you should get the same level progression as regular casting archetypes. Less spells and lower levels is a double hit, too much.

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The Raven Black wrote:

I believe enemies who are resistant/immune to cold will have weakness to fire and vice versa.

So, likely, works as intended.

There's no "absolutely ruined by certain enemies" that I see there.

Not the case most of the time actually. There are 150 fire immune enemies, and 64 that are weak to ice. Even if ALL the weak to ice enemies are fire immune, that still means that most fire immune enemies are not.

And hitting a weakness isn't as valuable as your main attack hitting.

For instance, at lvl 10, common weaknesses are 10 damage. Even an unamped ray of frost is doing 17.5 damage there. An amped one is doing 27.5. Losing that to do a little weakness damage is a bad bad trade.

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Xenocrat wrote:
The Thermal Statis not interacting at all with Conservation of Energy is indeed very bad. The only thing you have going for you against an immune creature is the hope that it has a corresponding weakness that your Entropic Wheel is triggering, and if you have psi blast and are in psyche (or have any similar mindshift psyche ability available) you can trigger it a second time in one round with that.

I am 90% sure that thermal stasis was meant too. Otherwise it is just a very situational cantrip that was given as the unique psi cantrip as level one. Would love if some dev could comment if I am off base here hah.

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They just posted an errata fixing most of the Oscillating Wave Issues

"Page 19: The oscillating wave psychic’s unique psi cantrips (thermal stasis, entropic wheel, and redistribute potential) are not intended to interact with their conservation of energy class feature, as they manipulate cold and fire at the same time. Similarly, psi cantrips from other conscious minds (for instance, ones gained through the Parallel Breakthrough feat) shouldn’t interact with conservation of energy. Modify the text in the Conservation of Energy section from “The first time in an encounter that you cast a granted spell from your conscious mind or a psi cantrip” to “The first time in an encounter that you cast a granted spell or standard psi cantrip from your conscious mind.”

Pages 34–35: The thaumaturge should increase in proficiency with unarmed attacks as they grow in level. The weapon expertise class feature should read “You’ve learned the secret ways your weapons work most effectively. Your proficiency ranks for unarmed attacks, simple weapons, and martial weapons increase to expert.” The weapon mastery class feature should read “You fully understand your weapons. Your proficiency ranks for unarmed attacks, simple weapons, and martial weapons increase to master.”

Page 48: The feats granting spellcasting benefits in the psychic multiclass archetype have some unintended discrepancies from corresponding feats in other multiclass archetypes.

First, Master Psychic Spellcasting should be an 18th-level feat, rather than a 12th-level feat.
Second, Expert Psychic Spellcasting should have a Prerequisite listing of “Basic Psychic Spellcasting, master in Occultism” and Master Psychic Spellcasting should have a Prerequisite listing of “Expert Psychic Spellcasting, legendary in Occultism.”"

All that being said, Oscillating Wave has a new issue now. No way to switch elements for one action, which is what Thermal Stasis seemed to be designed for. So if you run across a fire immune enemy, you can hit it with ice once, but then you have to hit it with fire...

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SuperBidi wrote:
gesalt wrote:
I still don't understand this focus on AoE damage. I've had better results with calm emotions removing enemy combatants than trying to DPR race a horde of mooks. I understand having a little in your pocket for when the mooks have high will saves or mental immunity, but what's the rationale behind giving it such high priority?

Calm Emotions doesn't kill enemies. Control abilities don't reduce the fight duration, they actually increase it. When the issue is that fights last forever, you want high damaging abilities.

Do you want to win the fight? Then control takes the cake. Even if the battle is longer control spells hasten the inflection point where a battle is actually a threat.

Basically Control = Longer fight but less danger

Blasting = Shorter fight but you are more likely to lose

At least late game when control is insanely good and mooks have tons of HP so blasting isn't really effective.

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This same issue (and more!) has been raised in the Dark Archives Errata thread too. Would love some clarification.

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Karmagator wrote:

Oscillating Wave - entropic wheel:

The spell limits gaining motes to 1/turn (or two when amped). This allows you to gain additional motes per round via dealing persistent damage, as that happens on a different turn. This allows you to potentially fill your max almost immediately and makes the amp somewhat redundant.

I'm pretty sure that is intended, since otherwise at higher levels you'll never reach the max, as combat is over too quickly. I've listed this just in case it is actually supposed to be once per round.

Agreed, would like this cleared up. It does seem like it is missing a heighten, like you should get extra motes at higher levels or it becomes rather useless.

Also, Order of Operations. Does it add it's damage to the spell that you use to activate it?

More unclear. When a later spell causes it to gain a mote, does that extra damage apply to that spell or just later spells? It is happening as you do things so.. who knows.

Karmagator wrote:

Conservation of Energy (Oscillating Wave feature)

It is somewhat unclear how or even if entropic wheel and redistribute potential are supposed to interact with this feature. Both spells are themed in a way that they are supposed to use both fire and cold at the same time, but Conservation of Energy negates that.

Apply this to Thermal Stasis too. An ability that gives two resists. Does it just give one thanks to conservation of energy? So it is better if taken by another subclass or on an MC that doesn't have that?

Finally, it is REALLY unclear if conservation of energy applies to cantrips taken from other subclasses with parallel breakthrough. I don't think it is intended (a mental cantrip doing fire etc. and yet still with the mental trait) but the wording is ambiguous.

I feel like a line or two got cut for copyfit.

Also, if you use firey body, is the produce flame/ray of frost you cast a psi cantrip with all the goodies or just the default? (Really only good anyways if you pick cha, as int doesn't help innate cantrips, or do much of anything...)

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Xenocrat wrote:
Karmagator wrote:

caffeinatedninja over on reddit mentioned that he thinks the exact scaling of glimpse weakness's amp is somewhat unclearly worded as to whether it fully replaces the default scaling of 1 + 1 per spell level or retains the "+1 per spell level" part.

(I don't think the latter is true, it just fully replaces it. Just in case that is supposed to work differently, because the amp is extremely terrible as-is).

Yeah. If you don't add the spell level damage even when amped, here's the amped vs regular damage at every spell level. Parenthesis in amp is if you do still add the spell level.

1 - amp: 3.5 (4.5), regular: 2, amp bonus: 1.5 (2.5)
2 - amp: 3.5 (5.5), regular: 3, amp bonus: 1.5 (2.5)
3 - amp: 7.0 (10), regular: 4, amp bonus: 3.0 (6.0)
4 - amp: 7.0 (11), regular: 5, amp bonus: 2.0 (6.0)
5 - amp: 10.5 (15.5), regular: 6, amp bonus: 4.5 (9.5)
6 - amp: 10.5 (16.5), regular: 7, amp bonus: 3.5 (9.5)
7 - amp: 14.0 (21), regular: 8, amp bonus: 6.0 (13.0)
8 - amp: 14.0 (22), regular: 9, amp bonus: 5.0 (13.0)
9 - amp: 17.5 (26.5), regular: 10, amp bonus: 7.5 (16.5)
10 - amp: 17.5 (27.5), regular: 11, amp bonus: 6.5 (16.5)

The weak form of the amp is in line with other one action damaging actions (force bolt/magic missile and psi blast), but since you get a big portion of that even without amping it you shouldn't and allowing an amp is just a trap to waste your focus ineffeciently.

At 4th spell level using a focus point increase the damage by...2 points. You'll note that amp bonus if you do add spell level damage when amped is equivalent to one point less than a force bolt would get you for a focus point. That's what it should be. You can choose to do this when your ally has a decent chance to crit and double your contribution.

And amps for other psi cantrips tend to more than double the base damage past low levels. (d4 to d10 or 2d6 is common, although some lose the +attribute to the d4)

I suspect it was intended to combine for a couple reasons -

1 - Because they put the 1 damage per spell level in the text of the spell which is very unusual, usually just make it a +1 heighten effect. I suspect it was done to make it combine.
2 - The way it is written I can see an argument that damage the amp is replacing is just the first part, the 1, with the +1 per level being on top.
3 - The scaling makes no sense without it. Like you showed, without the amp scaling better it is a dreadful waste of a focus point.

Psychic has quite a few weirdly written rules and strange scalings though so who knows.

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I like a lot of stuff about the psychic. But it does have some issues that jump out at me.

Late Game Scaling - Many of their cantrips scaling isn’t the best late game, and psychic will have lost their two focus point advantage by then as everyone else has 2 points. Entropic wheel doesn’t scale well either as it takes forever to boost up later.

Bad Scaling in General - Someone explain why telekinetic rend still scales horribly? And only every two spell levels so it is unusable half the time? It was a major complaint in playtest and wasn’t touched. Shatter mind was buffed to be a good nuke, was TK rend forgotten? Makes that whole subclass kind of eh. Also amped daze only scales +2 which gives it dead levels, no reason for that,

Confusing Rules - Conservation of Energy on Oscillatinf wave is weird. If it triggers odd thermal stasis, does that mean it only does one resist not two? Making thermal stasis better for MC weirdly. But you want it to to switch damage types…. What about entropic wheel? Also how does it work with redistribute potential? Very cool and thematic feature but the mechanics are… odd.

Also, entropic wheel order of operations, does it gain motes before or after the triggering spell does damage, both initially and in subsequent rounds?

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LordeAlvenaharr wrote:
The feature that covers ammunition, now makes viable a Thaumaturge armed with a pistol, (or crossbow would be better?), I'm imagining those cowboy-like creature hunters, cigarette in mouth, dark past, and bad face... I'm thinking about weapon as the first implement and also get the parchment feat, I thought the idea of ​​being able to use "any magic" in the game was cool.

This feat actually makes MC Thaumaturge quite good for dual wielding gunslinger. Unlike dual weapon reload, it isn't a specific action, it just lets you use the hand holding your implement reload weapons.

So, take Thaum MC, pick one of your pistols as your weapon implement. Get that feat (it is lvl 1 so at lvl 4)

Now you can dual wield guns and use ANY of your gunslinger reloads freely with both hands full.

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You know, I once defended Scare to Death as fine.

Now, having actually played with it, I was totally wrong and I admit it. The nerf is much needed. It is still a great ability, just not broken.

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Champion archetype is probably the strongest in the game. Just because getting the champion reaction is so good.

Fighter archetype I don't see used much, largely because the 14 str and 14 dex requirement makes it hard for heavy armor users relying on Bulwark to use, plus it doesn't have anything as powerful as champ reaction and LoH to compensate for the dead dedication.

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Falco271 wrote:
CaffeinatedNinja wrote:

You know when I clicked on this thread I forgot I was the one that started it, hah.

Falco, I don’t think you need to dismiss and resummon to activate the essence power. Although that really should be spelled out better (hence why I started the thread hah)

When you Manifest Soulforged Armament, you can summon any number of your armaments (you must meet the Requirements for each), and when you Dismiss the effect, you can choose to Dismiss some and not others. You can choose to manifest the essence form of any number of your armaments when you take the action. Each armament can manifest its essence form only once per day.

The above part of the rules disagrees with your remark, I would say. When you take the action of manifesting your armament you can choose to manifest the essence form. And to manifest, you need to have your hands free and/or no armor.

Well, the no armor thing is poorly written, but technically you may be right. However, equally technically, nothing says you can't manifest it when already manifested, so you could drop your sword as a free action and re-manifest it.

That is why I meant some clarification would help.

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You know when I clicked on this thread I forgot I was the one that started it, hah.

Falco, I don’t think you need to dismiss and resummon to activate the essence power. Although that really should be spelled out better (hence why I started the thread hah)

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Ly'ualdre wrote:
CaffeinatedNinja wrote:
3 - 2 handed 1d10 sword with reach. Big swords are cool. If you add a reach version of the bastard sword (think Sephiroth's massive thin sword hah) that is 1d6 reach and 2h 1d10 reach, I will buy you many beers at the next con!

I'd be surprised if the Nodachi wasn't a 1d10 Reach weapon. I'm personally hoping it'll be 1-handed by default, with the Two-Hand Trait. Maybe deal a 1d8 with 1-hand and 1d10 with 2-hands. Basically a combination Bastard Sword and Katana; maybe just trading Deadly with Reach? Although, lacking Deadly makes it odd when compared to the Katana and Wakizashi.

I realize though, Brace isn't in 2e. I wonder why.

Yeah, be a cool weapon. Not better than a guisarme but would love it. What if it is 1d8 no reach as a 1h and 2h 1d10 with reach hah.

Justify it by saying you need both hands to control it effectively at full extension.

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Greatly looking foward to this book, since I love mechanics and items! I know the ever industrious Michael Sayre said he had combed the forums looking for items people want. Here are the things I want and that I think would help the game!

1 - Attachment (or alterate medium armor) that works with medium armor that gives it bulwark. Right now heavy is almost essential in some builds not just for the AC but for the stat sub. Let medium have bulwark (make it 18 str required to balance it, whatever) so it isn't just a holding pattern until you have enough dex to get light armor! Also more stat sub in general.

2 - Blasting Ring - An item that gives dangerous sorcery and more. lvl 9+ blasting just falls behind. Give it some help. It still won't beat wall of stone. If single target damage is a concern make it an incap effect if you go above 1 damage per level.

3 - 2 handed 1d10 sword with reach. Big swords are cool. If you add a reach version of the bastard sword (think Sephiroth's massive thin sword hah) that is 1d6 reach and 2h 1d10 reach, I will buy you many beers at the next con!

Lets see, what else. Love to see some higher level versions of spellhearts that don't cap out at 12. Potion injection device to allow you to use a potion (with restrictions) in a less action intensive way so my alchemist isn't as sad. Alternatives to goggles of night that don't make racial darkvision redundant as you level (only real +perception item).

All I can think up right now, keep up the good work!

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Yes. They are almost useless for two feats. I gather people liked the idea in playtest, but they really needed to be made mechanically useful.

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Chain shirt is actually great for casters that get light armor proficiency from a feat or rogue dedication and won’t want to invest in any strength!

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Ascalaphus wrote:

I suspect we have some other feats like Arcane Shroud to blame, that attempt to give you more value for the action you spend going into cascade.

The problem with that though is that it's very finicky because you basically want spells that count for it (has to come from a spell slot, not a staff or cantrip) and be the right school and be useful at that point of the fight and preferably be only 1 action.

A feat at say, level 8-12 that makes going into the basic cascade a free action (but still requires you to have cast a spell previously) would be good.

Maybe. I thought arcane shroud was insanely good when I first saw it, but now, eh.

Magus has a lot of routines that take 3 actions it seems which, particularly for a melee class, is painful.

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I think the biggest issue is medium armor. I mean, it doesn't really have a niche.

It is useful early, but unless you have bulwark you are going to be putting some points into dex for the saves anyways, so then you might as well be wearing light armor.

And if you ignore dex, you get sentinel for heavy armor because of Bulwark.

I basically gave medium armor bulwark in my houserules to make it more of an attractive choice, but really not sure what the solution is there.

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Alchemic_Genius wrote:

Honestly, having seen melee magi play, I'm not really convinced they are as action straved as people claim. You dont need to spellstrike every turn in order to be good, and cascade is amazing for weakness targeting. Almost every example I've seen of people claiming they are dependent on haste really only say such because they think they need to swing a spellstrike every single turn to keep damage up.

The magus' main things over other martials is powerful spike damage and exploiting weaknesses. Choosing to cascade vs using a conflux spell or recharge is a tactical choice.

You don't need to spellstrike every turn, but when you aren't your damage is bad. The spikes actually aren't that big either except under very optimal circumstances.

The weakness exploit thing, unless your GM throws you a bone it doesn't come up that often. Maybe 10% of enemies have an elemental weakness. Most of those are fire so once you have a flaming rune, it is pretty rare that cascade will be a weakness hitter. (Basically nothing is weak to acid or lightning, about 3% to Ice)

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graystone wrote:

It doesn't really matter to me as it's just a useless vestigial feature the Starlit Span doesn't have a use for*.

* it's only use is Starlit Eyes and it's something you want active BEFORE you cast your spells or spellstrike.

Not going to lie, the lack of interaction with ranged magus is... weird. That being said, starlit span is the best magus from a pure power perspective already, so I suspect cascade was meant as a way to balance melee, but yeah, the implimentation is strange.

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YuriP wrote:
Cascade as free action maybe is too much. But have a cascade as reaction in a feat in a future book sounds reasonable.

Try it:) It works really nicely. Frankly starlit span magus is still better, but melee feels more fluid with this change.

Also had another change, if spellstrike is already charged and you use a conflux spell, you can recharge spellstrike as a free action once for 1 minute. Allows you to lead with a conflux spell without wasting the free spellstrike recharge! Not a power boost but allows more flexibility.

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WatersLethe wrote:

I haven't really found it to be an issue. My players have used it as an opportunity to hang back for the first round and set up for a flank. It's also not the end of the world if they wait out a round or two before activating it.

Yeah, but staying out of the fight for a round isn't fun a lot of the time, and tactically giving up your first round is rather huge.

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As I have played a lot of melee magus, I have really come to this conclusion.

Melee magus is badly action restricted, I think everyone agrees on this. And arcane cascade not only taking an action, but having to be after a spell is hard to use, not terribly fun, and often not worth the action.

Want to move and spellstrike round one? No cascade
Want to throw a spell then strike? No cascade (and giving up a MAPless strike for cascade is a horrible trade)
Yes you can cantrip and cascade, but 90% of the time that is a bad choice unless the fight is at range.

Tactically, I usually find myself in situations where cascade just isn’t worth the action given how restricted getting into it is, unlike pretty much any other stance.

Would this be a bit of a buff to magus? Yes, mainly melee magus but they need the help, starlit span doesn’t care about cascade much.

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roquepo wrote:

They can also boost INT for... They can also boost INT!

Come on.

Yeah, I keep hoping for some int love. Not sure why they did it so dirty and stacked everything on Wis.

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Why do people keep saying bulwark had a steep cost? Two classes get it by default.

It is also attached to the best armor in the game. Even if you don’t care about Bulwark, heavy armor is great. Not like you are sacrificing to use it. 1ac for 5 speed is a great trade, particularly later on when you can amp your speed up high enough that 5speed is a minimal difference.

Heck, I homebrew a medium armor with Bulwark just to keep heavy from being such an absolute must have.

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The funny thing about Bulwark is it applies to basically 95% of combat uses. Unless your GM really likes trip, almost everything does damage.

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I absolutely agree.

I think some people forget that saves are literally twice as valuable in this system as in 1e. Used to be a point in a save have a 5% chance of a better outcome. Thanks to the +10/-10 system is it now about a 10% chance per point.

I am the GM in a game with a martial that never raised wisdom. It got ugly. At lvl 15, they needed a 17 to make a saving throw in one fight hah. Crit fail on a 7.

Bulwark is great because it enables build variety. Classes with MAD stats benefit from it hugely, regardless of the heavy armor.

Heaven help you if you are a class that wants to boost too non save stats like melee magus, melee inventor, etc.

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nephandys wrote:
I like that warpriest didn't show up in anyone's tier list XD

I would rate cleric S, warpriest A. Warpriest isn't a martial really, but it is still a cleric with an insane amount of top level heals.

Just don't try to run around hitting things.

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AlastarOG wrote:
Well its more that if you're striding you'll often stride to a flanking position.

True. But in this scenario it is iffy if you have it with first attack with one stride. (Depends if you go first, if someone is close enough for you to circle, etc etc.) Second attack with the dimensional assault you likely have it.

Third one with the three action combo, probably not unless the enemy is just standing there.

I mean this is all super speculative and can change in every fight so hell, I don't know.

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AlastarOG wrote:

Oh forgot:

I can definitely model this over 5 rounds, I'd just need to know what the scenario is?

Two more dummies?
A cluster f&~+?
Go back to dummies 2 and 3?

I would say just 1 dummy is fine. I don’t know about the flanking though, I sure don’t get it every attack hah.

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AlastarOG wrote:

Ok so this whole debate has gotten me interested enough that I cracked out the ole excel.

I propose running each class through a simple scenario:

The contestant starts 25 ft. away from Dummy 1, Dummy 2 is 35ft. away, Dummy 3 is 50 ft. away. The contestant must hit dummy 1 on round 1, dummy 2 on round 2, dummy 3 on round 3. At the end of round 2, dummy 3 moves next to dummy 2. For melee, Dummies are considered flat-footed to represent the melee flanking advantage.

There are many ways that we could do this differently, but I feel this represents a fairly standard scenario. Open a door, roll ini, move in to flank, hit, move in to second target, hit, then its a big melee so you don't have to move.

Without further, ado, here are our contestants:

Michael McMasters, the Melee Magus
** spoiler omitted **

Roger Murdock, the Ranged Magus
** spoiler omitted **...

Interesting, I will have to go over this in more depth. A couple things jump out, the first is that power attacking is worse than attacking twice I believe.

Second, you have melee magus using 2 focus points in a fight, which they can't do until later, or at least can't do more than once.

Third, I don't think having the dummy flatfooted every time is reasonable. Maybe half the time?

Can we see how they do if you continue a couple rounds? And maybe a 1handed magus with a longsword?

Finally, this fight really assumes optimal stuff for melee people in one sense. Melee fighter is ending the fight next to an enemy every round. They never have to move twice, they never take defensive actions. I am not sure how realistic that is in a tough fight, but I realize this is very hard to model and I applaud your modeling.

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aobst128 wrote:
Crud. I can't. Could have sworn I saw it somewhere in the forums. Might have been the how it's played YouTube channel. I think it was a general rule that you can't apply effects requiring your last action being something and doing that across 2 rounds.

It was how it is played I believe. Half to track down the link.

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AlastarOG wrote:

Triple shot has to be done against a single enemy.

Ah, didn't realize that. My bad

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Vodalian wrote:

B - Champion (Only this low because champion archetype is OP and replicates the best features of the base class)

I wouldn't rate champ that low given it is still +2 AC at most levels, but I do agree that champ archetype is way too strong. Should probably be a once a fight reaction like spellstrike is once a fight for the archetype version.

Vodalian wrote:

C minus - barbarian (50% fighter, 50% unconscious)

That made me laugh out loud. Thank you

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AlastarOG wrote:

You it to triple shot fighter with only - 1 to MAP on all three shots.

It exploits the Crit advantage much better than eldritch archer.

I disagree, if only because damage applied to a single enemy is far more useful than damage applied to multiple.

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Lollerabe wrote:
Heh, figures. Out of curiosity - where would you rank melee Magus compared to other melee martials ?

This wasn't addressed to me hah, and I have a whole tier list I stole amd mostly agree with, but I rank them like this

S - Champion
A - Fighter (Magus Ranged)
B - Ranger, Barbarian, Monk
C - Melee Magus, Swashbuckler
D/F - Melee Investigator

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Bidi, I appreciate your graph. I do think however you are conflating a specific archetype build (magus/cleric for a TS fire ray) that has a really strong opening shot to the entire class. The fight lasts longer than one round, and after early game, even a crit with that isn't going to instant kill any enemy that isn't a lvl -3 or something.

Sustained damage is quite different, and that magus build is an outlier, and one built for that alpha strike.

I would agree that compared to other ranged attackers "that deal less than mele options" which is kind of the whole point of this discussion, as magus has very little reason not to be ranged.

As others have pointed out, comparing sustained damage over a fight with a high damage melee build (optimized fighter, giant barbarian) magus gets left in the dust, and can't do big spellstrikes more than a coupletimes a day.

Back to my earlier point about ranged magus vs melee magus (and this applies more so to investigator and somewhat inventor) I have taken out two lines of your graph. 2 strikes from a greatsword (with cascade which honestly isn't a fair option as that comes online round 2 at the earliest) against basic spellstriking magus. Ranged guy is damn close to the big 2 hander even when that one has the damage boost going. Hence, range is good hah.

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"AlastarOG” wrote:
On earlier topics: caffeinated ninja sorry for the dishonest appellation.

Accepted, all good!

The AoO thing is not the main factor in ranged beating melee but it is one of them. Not every group has a caster capable of killing AoO. And even those that do, they might want to do something else. The magus is not the person that wants to trigger it anyways, off tank at best.

It is just one more “why am I in melee range when I could be 60 feet away” thing though.

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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
aobst128 wrote:
The special spellstrikes past 10th level are pretty good. Lunging spellstrike in particular, no need for cascade as well.

Oh yeah, that one is absolutely a standout.

Meteoric is pretty good too since you can get some free damage out of it if you line up targets.

Dispelling is a bit situational. If fighting enemies that buff themselves it is great. Once again though (recurring theme) it is way easier to use as starlit span since it is 3 actions.

Overwhelming Spellstrike is pretty bad. If an enemy is resistant but not immune to your energy type you get a little more damage. But if you are striking with cantrips, better to just use a different element hah. And your main spellstrike spell is shocking grasp, almost nothing is resistant to lightning.

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
aobst128 wrote:
As far as magus vs magus goes, I'm actually more interested in 1 handed laughing shadow vs 2 handed laughing shadow. Unlike the rest of the hybrid studies conflux spells, dimensional assault doesn't have a wielding requirement and works with 2 handed weapons. The extra damage averages out to be about the same as 2 handed weapons against flatfooted targets. Only really missing out on spell parry and distracting spellstrike plus the standard benefits of having a free hand like maneuvers and high fives.

I agree! I actually have been tinkering with a bastard sword using laughing shadow. Basically gives you the “flanking” damage all the time.

I don’t find the special spell strikes all that useful on magus. Largely because they all require you to be in arcane cascade, so most of the time it is maybe working on your third round if you spellstrike round one.

The devastating spellstrike for inexorable iron is really only good for right packed enemies if they are weak to your cascade, which doesn’t happen a whole lot.

Distracting is better I think, but magus had zero room for charisma.

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AlastarOG wrote:

I have addressed it in I think pretty convincing numbers.

You're choosing to represent it as a percentage because it looks better that way, but the fact remains that 6 to 18 increased damage per hit is a significant advantage over the lifespan of a character. It's the difference between a dead monster, which gives action economy advantage, and a live one. This is made even more apparent if you're targeting two ennemies that are very wounded, a starlit span magus might struggle to bring them down, an iron magus won't as much.

Percentages matter because everything is relative. Getting 2 extra damage per hit at lvl 1 is awesome! Getting it at lvl 20 is meh.

AlastarOG wrote:
You, on the other hand, have failed to address the reaction problem starlit span has, namely that it has jack s%!% to do as a reaction, while melee builds have an abundance of reactions to pick from, in class.

Every melee class has those better reactions. They do give added benefit. My point has been more that relative to core classes the magus and investigator don’t lose much if any damage going into melee for raw damage. Do you consider ranger fighter or ranger underpowered compared to the melee versions? If not, where does that put magus and investigator?

AlastarOG wrote:
There's also archetype options, such as cavalier, that can nullify the mobility problem (just like there's archetype options that nullify the spammable spell problem for starlit span)

Cavalier is an interesting archetype for games that don’t go into tight quarters, but it would give a starlit span magus the same edge. And spammable spellstrikes isn’t a problem for starlit span, it is why they are so good.


AlastarOG wrote:
would call melee vs ranged magus equivalent through and through, each having its pros and it's cons. To call ranged vastly superior is misleading and I think dishonest.

Dishonest? I find that rather insulting to be truthful with you. We can disagree, but because I disagree with you that doesn’t mean I am arguing in bad faith, just as I have not accused you of the same. People can legitimately disagree while being truthful without insulting one another.

AlastarOG wrote:

It's better at delivering spellstrike round after round, period.

Spellstrike is good yes, but it's not what the entirety of the class is.

True. But it is a damage enhancer. Starlitspan can spam this enhancer easily, from safety. Melee can not.

AlastarOG wrote:

Just like inventor can, yes, trigger overdrive and exploit it easier at range. But doing so prevents you from using explode, megavolt, searing restoration and such adequately, and these are also signature abilities with massive returns, and they deliver better in melee.

As an inventor, I often find myself waiting for 2nd or 3rd round to overdrive, because there are other higher priority actions to take on the field rather than buffing myself.

I am not as familiar with inventor so I can’t argue in depth, but the general rule with any buff is that the longer you wait to use it in a fight the less value it has. Part of the problem with arcane cascade.

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The-Magic-Sword wrote:
I feel like propulsive is a trap (not an actual one, but i mean from the 'most effectiveness possible' perspective) on Starlit Span, you only attack once per turn, generally, so the /2 strength only applies once per turn, I feel like most players would rather spend that on Wisdom and Con for their will defense and HP-- it might be nice at low level, but it falls off hard once you start getting property runes and striking dice.

I agree. Given spellstrike the +1 damage isn’t really worth two str. Instead I would pump up int (which is giving 1 damage per point on cantrip spell strikes anyways which is most of what you are doing) and con/wis.

Plus longstrider makes the +5 speed from laughing shadow pointless hah.

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AlastarOG wrote:
So far from the few play I've seen at my tables (and its one build because no one wants to play it) the starlit span magus feels like: ''well I've rolled a dice, it missed, and that's my turn!''

How fun it is is kind of irrelevant to this discussion. It also varies greatly on the player. Personally I enjoy mixing it up in melee, but I have one player in the game I run who loves being a “turret” and just standing there shooting.

And you haven’t addressed how other classes have far less ranged damage to compensate for being ranged and magus… doesn’t.

Even your example of laughing shadow, it can do that move once a fight. And ranged magus can do the same from 60 feet away. Massive advantage all else being equal. There is a reason guns replaced spears in real life, range is a massive advantage in any fight.

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AlastarOG wrote:

1: A level 7 Greatsword Magus (to represent the risk, you can build inexorable iron with glaive, or twisted tree but then there's much less risk) deals:

2d12+4(STR)+2 (weapon spec)+2(arcane cascade)+Gouging Claw(4d6+4)= 39 average damage on a spellstrike. Glaive magus would be at 37, Twisted tree at 35.

A starlit span deals:

2d8+1(STR)+2(weapon spec)+Gouging Claw (4d6+4)= 30.

Well, not to quibble but I would do the numbers slightly differently.

Unless you spend the first round casting a cantrip and buffing or something, you aren’t in arcane cascade at the start of round 2 even. If you are, then ranged magus has already done a spellstrike and is doing another one. Also 2h weapon vs bow isn’t 100% fair since bow has a free hand, but anyways, let’s compare.

Spellstrike 2h - 2d12+5+2+4d6+4 = 38
Spellstrike shortbow(better than longbow for magus) 2d6+1+2+4d6+4 28
Magus is doing 74% of the damage of the 2h fighter at 60 feet away.

Now lets compare a fighter.
Fighter 2h strike - Spellstrike 2h - 2d12+5+3= 21
Fighter longbow strike - 2d8+1+3 = 13
Fighter does 62% of the damage at range (and that includes an action penalty to overcome volley)

So we have established fighter has a bigger penalty for going ranged.
But! Melee magus absolutely can not spellstrike every turn. Trust me on this. So it’s damage drops on off spellstrike turns.
Ranged magus can pretty much spellstrike constantly.

So as a practical matter, ranged magus gives up very very little damage in a fight, to be 60 feet away. Unlike fighter or ranger that give up a ton.

Add that to magus being rather squishy, and extremely vulnerable to disruption, which is far more common in melee, and you see why we say that the balance is shifted to range.

Or even look at it this way. Ranged magus lets you make a ranger spellstrike with a touch spell. It even outranges a wizard using reach. Tactically that is insanely valuable.

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