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RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32. RPG Superstar 6 Season Star Voter. Organized Play Member. 912 posts. 12 reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 1 Organized Play character.


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RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I dunno...I really like the current style of the books. During the life of this game, I will probably use ten percent or less of the full range of options, but the flavor focus on the books from Secrets of Magic on has made each one well worth the purchase. Even the upcoming treasure book seems like it will probably be an entertaining read.

I'm sure that those with access to the company's accounting know what sells better, but if I could cast a vote I would say more of what they're doing.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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No predictions, but I really hope we get more Book of the Dead-like stuff. That's probably my favorite release of Pathfinder 2e so far, and I'd love to see the pattern repeated with other monster types.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I hope Book of the Dead proved popular enough to repeat that style with similar monsters. The book was absolutely dripping with flavor.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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It used to be that Paizo shied away from compilations because of how they impacted subscriptions. It's interesting to see how the business model seems to have shifted. (And nice for me since it makes it easier to catch up on stuff I missed.)

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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That's some very good news, despite the sadness that Paizo is losing an excellent designer. Pathfinder 2e definitely would not have turned out as good as it is without Mark.

Congratulations, and I look forward to seeing lots of cool stuff from the Battlezoo line in the future. (Really excited for the dragon ancestries book!)

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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Squiggit wrote:
Lucas Yew wrote:
I'll most likely never understand those "majority" in that awful poll, who thought crippling martial (or any PF2 character) performance in general by making their expected math dependent on external equipment so badly was a good thing, for the rest of my life (especially when your on-level NPC adversaries blatantly enjoy those expected bonuses as essentially ABP for free)...

From my recollection the poll questions were more vague than that. It was more like "do you think magic items should matter" not "do you think high level characters should be functionally helpless without magic weapons"

The developers took what they wanted from that.

I wish we had copies of the surveys, because folks' recollections conflict on this. I recall a handful of questions on the subject, as well as open-ended comment spaces.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I feel like any game that offers a magic item market is going to wind up having items that players tend to see as essential.

On the other hand, if the issue is simply an issue with players selecting the "plus" weapons too often, the automatic bonus progression rules forestall that easily.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I really wish that Pathfinder had never included pricing for slaves. I think it would be good to remove that from SRD sites. If 2e introduced a slave buying option, it would give me serious reservations about playing the game.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I don't know when I'll get around to it, but a Pathfinder-ized Council of Wyrms game is on my list of things to run. I played the boxed set a lot but never ran the full cradle to grave campaign I wanted because the way experience and time interacted had some weird consequences.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I created a paradise dragon ancestry for a player back at the start of 2e. I'm looking forward to that dragon in particular and plan to convert the PC over to those rules.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I mean...barbarian would be a good one to change, but that would probably need to wait until the next edition cycle.

Demons and devils have no reason to be renamed because those are depictions of mythological things that are traditionally evil anyway.

The lich's phylactery was taking a piece of Jewish tradition and tying it to a monster that was always evil, and which was evil in large part because of the item that was representative of Jewish lore.

There's a world of difference between using language with real-world connotations (like demons, angels, or witches) and tying a thing from a real world religion to a creature and ritual that is inherently evil.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I like D&D Beyond, and I hope Pathfinder Nexus turns into something similar. I just hope that Paizo continues to offer PDFs for their rulebooks, because the one thing I hate about D&D Beyond is that it gave WotC an excuse not to offer official PDFs.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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This is a good step for Paizo to take, showing that management seems willing to work with employees to make a better company.

Yes, they had a lot of pressure on them to make this move. Even still, many a company would force a vote anyway, arguing that it would be good business to fight the union.

There is A LOT of work to be done, but I'm happy that Paizo took this step.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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After reading Bestiary 3, I'd adore a kappa ancestry.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I feel like the Core Rulebook makes it clear that you can swap languages out, although it could definitely be more explicit about it.

In a future edition, they could probably just go with:

Two languages appropriate to your upbringing (typically Common and Elven) plus a number of additional languages equal to your Intelligence modifier.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I think it's probably worth looking at other gaming systems, too, especially those in the modern era (past 20 years or so).

D&D may well not be representative of the rest of the industry in this regard because it's so huge that it doesn't need to change very often.

I would previously have lumped Pathfinder into a similar category, but I don't work at Paizo and somebody who does is telling us that the ten years first edition got was very tough at the end.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I feel like AD&D is far enough in the past and had enough extenuating circumstances around it that it's not great for using as real evidence in this example.

1st edition AD&D took three years to roll out, with the Dungeon Master's Guide not landing on shelves until 1979. Rules-wise, the game only got about one hardcover release a year, which made its production schedule dramatically different than any major title nowadays.

TSR also had major financial troubles in the mid-80s with a change of ownership. That ownership took a few years to ramp up 2nd edition, as the company was trying to move as far away from the guy who would have designed that (Gary Gygax) as possible.

2nd edition AD&D had a release schedule that was actually way faster-paced than even Pathfinder. And it also hit financial troubles, with TSR unable to print products by 1997 and being bought by WotC. When WotC purchased the company, they started working on their own version of D&D that again moved in a very different direction than what previous management had been doing.

In looking at edition cycles, I feel like going back prior to the 21st century probably warps the scale a bit because the industry has changed a whole lot in the past 20 years. Furthermore, the circumstances around both editions of AD&D were way too messy to really be reflective of how edition changes tend to happen, in my opinion.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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Leon Aquilla wrote:

If you switched to 5e from Pathfinder for whatever reason, or you stuck with Pathfinder after 5e, I don't see how 5.5 would cause you to change your mind.

I dunno...while I'm primarily into Pathfinder, D&D does several things I like but just isn't quite there for me. A revision gets my attention because there are certain steps that can be taken to make the game much more to my liking.

Then again, I don't see D&D and Pathfinder as mutually exclusive. They fill similar niches, but each has strengths in different directions, so there are compelling reasons to include both on the gaming shelf.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I highly doubt that Pathfinder is likely to overtake D&D again, though I'm hopeful that the success of D&D is giving both Pathfinder and Starfinder a boost. Then again, trends change and D&D's superb fortune will eventually wane (hopefully not harming the industry as a whole when it does).

I'm interested in the next iteration of D&D. I'd like to see if any Pathfinder 2e ideas get incorporated, partly because I think there are several things that Pathfinder just does better than D&D right now.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I would be willing to pay higher prices on the books I buy if it meant better pay for those involved in making them.

Unfortunately, it would probably take most or all of the major players in the industry getting on board to make that a reality.

I think one of the tough issues facing the RPG industry is that everybody is so small...except D&D, which sets the tone but is also so big that it sucks all the oxygen out of the room. Maybe I'm wrong and the gap between D&D and games like Pathfinder, Call of Cthulhu, and other industry leaders isn't as big as I think. But if it is that sizeable, it would be tough to significantly raise book prices without convincing WotC to do so first.

This is an interesting conversation to have. Pay in the RPG industry should definitely be higher, especially for those who have to navigate all the stresses involved in creating the products that we all love.

That said, even with low pay being a major cause of stress, it sounds like there are several things that Paizo can improve upon to make life easier for employees in other regards, and I hope they do so moving forward.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I'm unreasonably happy that we're getting a holodeck gone deadly adventure for Starfinder.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I mostly just like the fact that the books are getting more flavor intensive. I'm normally hesitant about adding new rulebooks to my shelf, but making them more interesting to read and including adventure content increases my interest in buying them.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I don't think that fans always realize how difficult it is to produce stuff of the quality that companies like Paizo put out, or the unique advantages that Paizo had that allowed them to become so big.

I think that progress toward addressing the concerns that have come to light includes a vocal and active fan base that stays informed of the company's actions, makes it clear that those actions will play a role in future purchasing decisions, and does what they can to provide support and goodwill toward the ground-level employees who do good work. I don't believe that just trying to crank out a parallel game, likely through a company with little marketing presence and minimal resources, would have an impact on business decisions.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I had a very visceral reaction to the recent news, but I'm not sure that making a public statement in this matter is likely to be all that productive.

In a situation where onlookers have such a deep emotional investment, I suspect that people are going to read any statement in a light that supports their own conclusions. Furthermore, I'm not sure how the company can address the firing of a beloved employee in a way that doesn't sound like it's dragging her name through the mud.

As to the contents of Jessica Price's posts, this is far from the first time that she's engaged in a long and public discussion of her problems with Paizo. If there wasn't a response to any of the previous Twitter threads, I don't expect that there will be a response now.

This is a fairly knotty situation in which the public does not know the facts and probably never will. It's worth taking the time to analyze what is known and what is speculation. From there, drawing a final conclusion and determining the best way to engage in ethical consumption of media is, in my opinion, a very personal matter.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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It breaks my heart to see both Sara Marie and Diego gone. Paizo's customer service department has been a source of strength for many, many years. There was never a time, not even during what must have been insanely busy moments such as the rollout of PF2e, that I didn't doubt that they were capable of solving a problem and that they would do so with the best effort possible.

Good luck and bright futures.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I did a homebrew dragon ancestry for one of my PCs, creating a heritage and ancestry feats for them to choose from. The ancestry was significantly less powerful than a true dragon, but still gave enough of the basics, such as a bite, breath weapon, and enhanced senses that the player felt like they were playing a dragon.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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Sunderstone wrote:
In my case, it is most likely the newer writers. It's not that the material is dull, it just lacks the depth of PF1 APs. 2e APs feel like their targeted at newer players with simplified (again, compared to 1e) stories that are less epic in scope.

I guess I differ in my take of the adventure paths so far. I thought Age of Ashes had a very diverse set of challenges (including several that required their own subsystems because the Gamemastery Guide wasn't out yet) and a very grand scope.

The again, I also disagree with the thread starter that the adventure paths play in a samey manner. I've gone through Age of Ashes and have started Agents of Edgewatch, and at least early on in AoE I would say that it indeed feels distinct and very much like a cop story.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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Considering the upcoming Book of the Dead, and if that's the new paradigm for the annual monster book, it seems like a similar tome about dragons might fit there in the future.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I trust Gaiman to do well. He's one of the most talented creative minds on the planet.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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After Guns & Gears, I think mythic rules are at the top of my list. This is especially true now that the adventure paths go to level 20 and we have three-volume adventure paths. I could see a level 20-25 adventure path happening, which seemed like an impossibility in the past.

Doing themed books instead of big books of general new options strikes my fancy. Assuming that The Book of the Dead is as good as I expect, I'd love to see a fey equivalent.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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Charon Onozuka wrote:

Would you not just get the same feeling by giving out a property rune like flaming before a player could normally get it? Or you know, any useful magic item that's at a higher level than the party?

Then you get down to the basic question of whether a group finds a +1 or striking weapon exciting. For some players it's just a boring numbers thing, but for others it's not. And while property runes are fun, fundamental runes provide a nice simple way to demonstrate that a weapon is notably more powerful than a mundane alternative. For many groups, there's room for both.

Quote:

My issue with mandatory items is how it ruins the theme of "special magic weapon" when every PC and NPC above a certain level requires it to stay relevant. It feels kinda like an Elder Scrolls game where the excitement of crafting a new tier of weapon is watered down the moment you see that every guard and bandit now has one too.

With the way NPCs are built, I think this is less of a concern; you can have NPCs delivering level-appropriate damage without stocking their gear full of magic items if you wish.

I don't mean to downplay ABP, which is awesome and I'm super glad we got it quickly instead of waiting until the halfway point of the edition cycle. I'm just saying that there are reasons some players might like not using it beyond mere tradition.

Basically, in first edition I always used ABP (and my own houseruled version before Pathfinder Unchained was a thing) because cloaks of resistance and rings of protection bored me to death. The shift toward making the "big" items fantasy staples like weapons and armor solved that problem for me, and now ABP is something I may or may not use based on the campaign. It makes sense to me that some would find a striking weapon as boring as I found an amulet of natural armor in 1e. But those who do find appeal there are likely driven by more than just a slavish devotion to tradition.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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In terms of ABP versus no ABP, I think it's too narrow of a view to categorize those in the latter category as strictly traditionalist (and, indeed, given the tone, it can come off as dismissive or insulting).

Yes, at certain levels PCs should have certain items. However, my view is that the benefit of item-based bonuses comes when they are not lockstep with the ABP table.

If I were to give out treasure strictly according to the ABP progression, there would be no point in using items. But I feel there is value in the thrill a player gets when their PC gets an item a level or two early, and some drama if the fighter's main weapon is unusable for some reason and they have to change tactics.

Using items, in my view, is not, "You get a striking rune by level four" and is more about opening up certain specific story choices.

I very much subscribed to ABP in first edition, but have generally skewed more toward item use in second edition. The "necessary" items have been streamlined to things that hit classic fantasy tropes well. And there are storytelling possibilities in giving them out or restricting them at a rate that is sometimes out of sync with what is expected.

I'm about to start an Agents of Edgewatch campaign, and ABP is an option I am considering. But the question runs deeper than, "Do I want to do things the 'traditional' way or not?"

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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Planpanther wrote:
You know, there is no reason you cant use the APs with a glacial leveling pace on your own. You just need to shave off some numbers to make the challenges fit. Cut a few AC, attack, saves, etc and it shouldn't be straight up suicide anymore.

The proficiency without level variant from the Gamemastery Guide would be good for this model.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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Quote:
Back in the day, if you gained three levels a year playing at typical frequency, it was considered a fast campaign.

This was not my experience. The most common reason it took forever to level up in my AD&D days was that we would frequently restart campaigns, thus making a loop of repeated level one adventures.

IIRC, the DM's Guide gave leveling up every three to five adventures as a guideline, meaning a typical group could get into the teens through weekly play.

Moreover, if you played using gold as XP, a large treasure haul could land you well into the next level in a single session.

I don't intend to say that you didn't have that experience, but I suggest that it is not as universal as you recall.

Quote:
And things slowed down even more at higher levels (9th level and higher).

In AD&D, the XP needed for next level eventually plateaued but XP granted for creatures and treasure didn't. At a certain point, you gained higher levels faster than lower levels playing rules as written.

In terms of changes through the years, D&D and Pathfinder didn't (usually) make arbitrary changes for the sake of change; they evolved the editions based on how people played or what people wanted. That leveling got easier seems a reflection of that; I don't see too many people waxing nostalgic about not getting to reach fifth level before their gaming group dissolved.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I feel that calling 2e goblins a retcon ignores a lot of 1e material. If you go from core books to core books with no other context, it is a drastic change. But in between, there is a decade of refinement.

Through comics, fiction, adventures, supplements, Society scenarios, and more, goblins showed different faces.

The 2e status quo makes much more sense when considering the full scope of the 1e evolution.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I used this for my session over the weekend, in lieu of the magnetic combat tracker that I normally bring to the table. It worked well.

I kinda hope that a future update might allow the resetting of an encounter without having to rewrite the names of the PCs. It would also be great to have some sort of note functionality, which would mean that I wouldn't need any scratch paper to keep track of monster hit points, etc. (In this case, I updated the monster name with hit point totals, and it worked well.)

I couldn't find a way to remove creatures from the encounter as they fell in battle, but that might just be my lazy tech mind not seeing an obvious solution.

Overall, this meant one less thing that I needed to cart to the table, so that's great.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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The only variant I have on Hero Points is that, when I reward one, I give them to all the PCs. That's just personal preference and helps me avoid accidentally showing favoritism to one player over others. (I've been in games with similar mechanics where the person who is witty or more forceful with taking a leadership position racks up all those points, and I don't want that in my play.)

In terms of rewarding them, I usually grant them when I hand out an XP award. "For dealing with this obstacle, you get 30 XP and a Hero Point," for example.

There is disappointment when a reroll still turns out to be a failure, to the point where I've occasionally allowed the spending of multiple Hero Points on the same action. Then again, I find that my players don't tend to spend Hero Points of stuff that has a high chance of failure; it's mostly as a way to displace a roll that should succeed but that gets an unlucky 1.

I haven't seen a lot of characters needing to use Hero Points to cheat death after 1st level or so. Every group I've played in so far has a dedicated healer who can get fallen allies back on their feet very quickly, and it's hard to die before a healer can save you.

I did once consider allowing a Hero Point to just shift success up one category (or down one category, if that would be more advantageous), but I worried that might be too powerful and/or lead to my players hoarding their Hero Points so they can just lay multiple crits on a boss.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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The Monsters Revisited series (part of the Campaign Setting line) is terrific and the thing that got me into Pathfinder at the beginning. Some of the lore has been rewritten in 2nd edition, but most is still relevant, and they're a great read overall.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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I have one player who hates missing or failing rolls of any kind, to the point where he sulks when his PC fails at something. I'm of the opinion that Pathfinder simply is not his game, and that's okay.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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The Blakros Museum was incredibly fun to write about. I really hope folks enjoy this one.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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Exton Land wrote:
There is nothing in the rules for discovering this information except thru Recall knowledge and that feat. How do you know how the creatures are supposed to react? You're slashing and stabbing an ooze. Just what does it look like when an ooze takes damage?

IMO, there doesn't need to be a check for basic perception (the Seek action is to find things you wouldn't normally see). If I punch a brick wall, I know whether I did damage. I also see the difference between punching the wall and hitting it with a sledgehammer.

Using the ooze example, if you take hit points off a creature, it gets closer to death/destruction. Therefore, I would reason that it's noticeable when an attack does nothing, versus when one significantly injures the creature.

A nice thing about 2e is its broader emphasis on GM interpretation rather than strict rulings, so your approach is valid if everyone is having fun. On my end, I'm sure my sessions would end with a lot of angry feelings if the PCs found out midway through battle that none of their crits did anything and I didn't tell them.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32

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Exton Land wrote:
The rules are pretty explicit that you don't notice that your weapons are ineffective or even less effective. (See battlefield assessment feat). If your GM is giving you that information, they're fundamentally altering the nature of the game and some of its balance.

I'm looking at the Battle Assessment feat, and I don't agree with you on this one. You use the feat to identify strengths and weaknesses of an opponent, but there's nothing to say that you can't find out that stuff in other ways.

If a PC swings an axe at a skeleton and doesn't snaps its bones or watches a fire giant walk through a wall of fire, I don't see any logical way that they wouldn't be able to figure out resistances when they see them in action. Likewise, if you hit a fey creature with a cold iron weapon, there's no way you shouldn't notice that it does more damage than normal.

IMO, Battle Assessment is for finding that information without needing trial and error to do it.

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In my experience, what is and is not worth it in combat depends highly on the opponents.

You can have a severe-level encounter with a single creature that is at Party Level +3 or six creatures that are Party Level -2. In the former, you'll get slaughtered if you stand in one place and whack at the bad guy. In the latter, high-AC characters are much less likely to be hit or crit, allowing them to shine.

The level-based scale provides a lot of variance in encounters, making each one quite different based on the number, power level, and tactics of your opponents.

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I've found spellcasters to be pretty effective overall. The example of a fireball only doing 7 damage to a group is a pain, but an extreme circumstance that combines a poor damage roll with several good saves.

As in the previous edition, spellcasters benefit most if they can identify things about their enemies. Figuring out an energy weakness or a low save gives them a major advantage. Recall Knowledge is a good use of an action early on in battle.

It's also worth holding a few spells that have guaranteed effects. Magic missile may not seem to be worth heightening on paper, but it's nice to be able to pepper a foe for 20 points of guaranteed damage in a pinch.

Finally, remember that some creatures have really good saves, usually because they had spell resistance in 1st edition. Trying to zap a whole group of demons is going to be rough at times.

Overall, in my Age of Ashes group that has a wizard, a sorcerer, and a cleric, the melee fighters are dominating in the single-target damage area, but the spellcasters can mop up groups like nobody's business.

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I find it to be very easy. The system runs equally well at both low and high levels, and the rulebook is pretty intuitively laid out, making it easy to look things up in a pinch. (I still have issues with the layout of the treasure section, but am getting the hang of that, too.)

One thing I have noticed is that an enemy that is on-level or slightly higher than the group can wreck a PC if it just stands there and uses all three actions to attack. Luckily, the system encourages movement, making it easy to switch things up and avoid overwhelming PCs without obviously pulling any punches.

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The ice devil is rough, but the action economy works in PCs' favor. IIRC, Nolly may be there to help the PCs, which can draw fire and inflict some extra damage.

For severe encounters, I find that it helps to keep an opponent moving. That makes the fight more dynamic and also cuts down some of the damage the enemy can do.

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One year in, playing pretty regularly throughout, I like the new system a lot. It plays significantly faster than 1st edition, while simultaneously allowing for greater tactical depth.

I find that it places more emphasis on in-play decisions and creativity rather than out-of-play character optimization. This means I can run a game with the player who likes to spend hours building a character with the player who likes to just throw random choices together and go without the former overshadowing the latter.

PCs get a ton of options as they level up, but they only need to know their own character sheet. The game also plays well at every level I've experienced so far.

Overall, Pathfinder 2e hits my sweet spot in this particular RPG genre, to the point where other games that fill the same niche often leave me wishing I was playing this one instead.

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I preemptively endorse kobolds as a core 3e ancestry and am arming myself for the inevitable flame wars.

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On top of the fact that the goblin evolution has taken place over the last decade, I would point to the fact that heroic goblins are still pretty rare in published material so far. The non-evil tribe in Hellknight Hill, for example, is more or less neutral and has a specific history with one small town. It's not like goblin paladins are ubiquitous now.

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My last experience with customer service was at the launch of second edition, when the volume of work gave them every reason to do a less than exemplary job. They still went above and beyond. That team deserves all the kudos they get, and then much more.

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