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Mechalibur wrote:

I believe the Paizo staff doesn't want too much detailed information being given on products before the release date, so I was intentionally terse with my description.

The levels range between 1-9

I wonder how many of these monsters appear in the AP Book itself. I enjoyed seeing most (if not all) of the monsters at the back of Hellknight Hill in the book.

These seem like really interesting monsters. I do hope my players will have to fight them. :)


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Hi all, Just wondering if anyone else feels like the last couple APs (Return of the Runelords, Tyrant’s Grasp, and the first book of Age of Ashes and summary of the AP) have been underwhelming to you? The plots feel simplistic and immature to me, the NPCs have little motivation, there’s not great connection between books, and plenty of weird plot holes. I find that more recent books take more work to adapt into something that's sensible. Is anyone else finding this? (See my review for Secrets of Roderick's Cove for an example of more specific complaints I have).

I’ve noticed that AP reviews on Paizo are also generally lower since War for the Crown, so it’s not just me perhaps? (**Only counting reviews with at least 2 reviews - a sample size of "1" doesn't say much, especially since there are a few reviewers who consistently give 4-5 stars).

I keep hoping the next AP will be better but I keep getting disappointed. I feel like they’re writing for people who just want a list of things to kill. There’s little room for subtlety and plot development.

Is there a new developer for APs or something? Have they tightened their budget on APs to invest in other things? Thoughts? I'm hoping that it's just that they've had to invest so many people-hours in developing the new Edition over the last year.

I’m happy to be more precise about the problems with any of the last 13 books, if anyone wants to get into the nitty gritty...


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I wish there weren't spoilers for the AP in the Adventurer's Guide. I don't think they were necessary. (Talking about the 'castle' details on p. 9 under "Downtime in Breachill").

I'll have to strike some things from this Guide and personally send it to players, I think.

Love the premise overall, just makes me cringe to see it given away to players before the AP even starts.


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Happy to hear I'm not the only one who feels like Focus Points would be an odd change from a Golarion / roleplay perspective. Again, this comes down to personal opinion... just glad I'm not the only one.


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Vidmaster7 wrote:
Coffee Demon wrote:
Vidmaster7 wrote:
Coffee Demon wrote:
Vidmaster7 wrote:
Focus your inner magical energy on the item as you consume it.

.Yep, that's what we'll be saying I think. I don't like it. It's not integrated into Golarion lore deeply enough (or at all) so it sounds silly and ungrounded in the world.

"You drink the potion and focus your magical energy on it so it will last longer."

That doesn't feel right, narratively. It moves away from the standard of fantasy RPGs where items do particular things. I get points that give heroes certain abilities (Grit, etc, and plenty of mechanics in other sustens), but points that raise item power levels is something new and it doesn't feel right to me.

Well can't really make a logic based argument against an emotional based one so I don't what else to tell you other then maybe do some reading and try to imagine or think of your own explanation for it.
Roleplaying is a creative endeavour, so I would never expect a logical reason to influence my personal tastes anyways - but thanks for trying :) . I'm not asking for help, just giving my highly subjective opinion from a narrative perspective, and based on the styles of games that I've been running for the last 32 years as a DM.
Hmm. Its odd for me because I have been playing for less then that but have no problem imagining the focus thing in my head. no conflicts at all. Old dog new trick kind of thing maybe? I don't know. I've read a lot of books that does a lot of drastically different things with magic maybe that is why its easier? *shurg* I dunno.

Yeah I think it must simply be that you're better at imagination than I am. Thanks! I aim for mastery one day. I'll try to read more too. Maybe that will help. I only read about a book a week so I'll have to up my game.


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Vidmaster7 wrote:
Coffee Demon wrote:
Vidmaster7 wrote:
Focus your inner magical energy on the item as you consume it.

.Yep, that's what we'll be saying I think. I don't like it. It's not integrated into Golarion lore deeply enough (or at all) so it sounds silly and ungrounded in the world.

"You drink the potion and focus your magical energy on it so it will last longer."

That doesn't feel right, narratively. It moves away from the standard of fantasy RPGs where items do particular things. I get points that give heroes certain abilities (Grit, etc, and plenty of mechanics in other sustens), but points that raise item power levels is something new and it doesn't feel right to me.

Well can't really make a logic based argument against an emotional based one so I don't what else to tell you other then maybe do some reading and try to imagine or think of your own explanation for it.

Roleplaying is a creative endeavour, so I would never expect a logical reason to influence my personal tastes anyways - but thanks for trying :) . I'm not asking for help, just giving my highly subjective opinion from a narrative perspective, and based on the styles of games that I've been running for the last 32 years as a DM.


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Vidmaster7 wrote:
Focus your inner magical energy on the item as you consume it.

Yep, that's what we'll be saying I think. I don't like it. It's not integrated into Golarion lore deeply enough (or at all) so it sounds silly and ungrounded in the world. It sounds like a cludged-on explanation for a mechanic.

"You drink the potion and focus your magical energy on it so it will last longer."

That doesn't feel right, narratively. It moves away from the standard of fantasy RPGs where items do particular things. I get points that give heroes certain abilities (Grit, etc, and plenty of mechanics in other systems), but points that raise item power levels is something new and it doesn't feel right to me.

Just my personal opinion. I understand that many people are fine with it but it feels little closer to the D&D 4e style of play that was too mechanics-centred and lost some heart in the process..


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Focus Points sound interesting from a game mechanic perspective but don't make sense to me from a logical-world perspective. I can't imagine how a character decides to 'upgrade' a magic item in the world, in this example:

"If you only need to move into a combat and make an attack while invisible, you can drink the potion to get 1d4 rounds of invisibility. However, if you have a lot of sneaking around to do before you plan on fighting, you can extend the effect to 10 minutes instead by spending a Focus Point!"

Like, how am I supposed to narratively imagine that? Any reasons I can think of are too weird and against the world if Golarion that I know up to this point.

I actually think PF1 Magic items could be more wild than they are (more towards zany OSR abilities, less 5-10% situational modifiers), so the Magic item (and spell) nerfing that I'm seeing loses my interest somewhat. That quest for balance between classes is flattening the whole system in a way that makes it a very different game.

I play Pathfinder because I like the variety of character builds, and I like the stories that APs tell, and I'm not seeing the former as much with the new multiclass rules.

I remain lukewarm on 2e at this point. It's such a different system that I can't really see it as a natural evolution from 1e.

I hate to sound like a downer. This is the first time I've posted my opinions on the playtest.


Just curious, are there issues with It Came From Hollow Mountain getting out to game stores / into Canada? The game stores in Vancouver Canada don't have it yet, and usually they'd have it by now. Also, amazon.ca just suggested that I ask for a refund with my preorder through them, because they don't yet have an estimate of when the book will be in stock.

Thanks in advance!


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Just curious, are there issues with this book getting out to game stores? The local game stores in Vancouver Canada don't have it yet, and are having a hard time finding a way to order it. Also, amazon.ca just suggested that I ask for a refund with my preorder through them, because they don't yet have an estimate of when the book will arrive.

Thanks!


That's a promising review, Asgetrion. Secrets of Roderic's Cove deflated me a bit, and I'm hopeful that this and the next book(s) make the AP worthwhile on the whole.


I also feel like this book is pretty weak. I'm going to carefully read the whole thing then write a review. Gonna have to do a fair bit of work as a GM to make Rodericks Cove feel like a liveable town. Just as a start (without spoiling anything):

(1) The 'factions' seem like simplistic caricatures that I think my players will have a hard time believing in. One group in particular seems really divorced from the look and feel of the rest of the town.

(2) The main NPC descriptions aren't very evocative - they don't stir my imagination or add complexity or depth that I could add subplot to.

(3) The Macguffin in this book uses a power that is dormant, for a moment, but it doesn't adequately explain why that powerful latent power arose at such an innocuous time. I think that could have been better considered or explained.

(4) Some witnesses suspect something that the PCs have already seen. (p.7). I need to give them something more to say, rather than just banging the PCs over the head something they already suspect.

(5) No Adventure Summary at the start of the book.

And I'm only on page 9 (and the NPC section) so far.

I hope it's just this book and not some overall issue with the whole AP.


Cool thanks. Once that POD option is up, I guess someone will post here?

(One of my players wants to play a Scholar, but I don't allow classes / archetypes that I don't own in printed form. I can't deal with PDF's.) :)


Ssalarn wrote:
Coffee Demon wrote:
I hope it's not nagging if I ask again about news on a print version?
I'll bump Adam and ask, see if I can get an updated ETA.

Just thought I'd ask again, since it's been a few weeks.

Thanks!


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I hope it's not nagging if I ask again about news on a print version?


Hi all, two questions:

1) I'm not closely tracking this thread, but it sounds like there have been some recent adjustments to the rules? If so, will those changes be reflected in the print version?

2) Any idea when the print version will be available for order?

Thanks!


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medtec28 wrote:
I'm starting to fear the response to the negativity this class seems to have provoked. I'm afraid that they may react in response to our complaints by doubling down instead of changing their stance. I almost expect the response to be that this is the shifter that we were always intended to have.

I also fear that response, because it would mean that Paizo as a business can't respond, react and adapt to consumer feedback.

As the customer, it's not our job to go gentle on feedback in case we make the business defensive.


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nighttree wrote:
Coffee Demon wrote:

Can someone send me a link to the "FAQ's in queue to be answered" page for this book?

There's an awful lot of apparent omissions and required clarifications. The Flightless Owl Aspect is my latest "WTF" unpleasant surprise here.

I friggin' hate buying a book and feeling like I'm playtesting it. I've said that here before, but I'm saying it again because I can't shake the feeling.

And yes, sadly I will wait to pick up the next hardcover because I want to see if we've entered an unfortunate era of less-playtested PF hardcover books.

I'm also wondering if that's not prudent at this point....

I have always just purchased pretty much everything coming out...and historically have not regretted it.

But lately, between all the re-printed mechanics, and now the Shifter disappointment....I'm thinking I should be a bit more discerning....

Yes, and I hate to do that because I play the crap out of this RPG and I want to support it. But this book makes me wary and (I'll be honest) a bit afraid for the future of the game.

I realize it's just one book, but I frikkin' LOVE every other hardcover book I've bought, which is all of them except (oddly enough) the Book of the Damned and Ultimate Villains. Those two didn't have as much of what I wanted, so there's more 'lack of support' that I don't like to do.

I still think a lot has to do with the heavy investment into Starfinder. No matter what Paizo says, I think the attention has been split and perhaps the quality has come down. I hope Planar Adventures turns things around - but I don't know if that will be a great indicator, because it's at least 50% plane fluff, which doesn't require playtesting.


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Can someone send me a link to the "FAQ's in queue to be answered" page for this book?

There's an awful lot of apparent omissions and required clarifications. The Flightless Owl Aspect is my latest "WTF" unpleasant surprise here.

I friggin' hate buying a book and feeling like I'm playtesting it. I've said that here before, but I'm saying it again because I can't shake the feeling.

And yes, sadly I will wait to pick up the next hardcover because I want to see if we've entered an unfortunate era of less-playtested PF hardcover books.


Can someone tell me the page count for this book?

Thanks!


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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:
I'm going to go back to having a little bit of faith and hoping that the team is aware of the issues as we've been bringing them forwards and are listening to the concerns, perhaps with wholesale revisions to classes/archetypes/problematic issues to address them.

I don't have the same faith, but I am REALLY hoping the team eventually publicly acknowledges that changes need to be made... both in the Shifter class and some of its archetypes, and perhaps with the way they're playtesting. That will do a lot to restore my sense that Paizo is trying to uphold a high standard of quality with their hardcover books.

For me, Pathfinder is founded on two things that no other RPG has: Awesome Adventure Paths integrated into a rich world, and a huge breadth of character options. I'm loving the AP's and I think they're actually getting better over time. If the character classes / feats / archetypes is starting to drop, that's gonna hurt.

I'm willing to overlook a certain percentage of crappy Feats and archetypes, but when the classes themselves seem rushed and uninspired, I actually feel a bit worried. I also get a lot more critical of what else the book has to offer.

Optimally, every single Feat and Archetype should be compelling and usable. There is no reason to have a certain percentage of Archetypes that is unusable (Oozemorph).

I will eventually write a review, but I'm posting here to voice the importance of a little more transparency from Paizo on class and archetype development - now, and in the future. I'm only saying this because I want to give contructive feedback, and I'm genuinely concerned that the current strategy is going to lead to more problems in the future.

I don't want to feel like a playtester on a $45 (CDN) book.


Does anyone know how long it usually takes for Paizo to release errata for a book? Any idea when we might see errata for this book?


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I hope the developers step in to address the widespread complaints about this new class. It's not just here in the Paizo threads, it's pretty much everywhere.

I spend a fair bit of money on Paizo products every year and I'm genuinely curious to see how they handle this. The Shifter comes out at a moment where Paizo is expanding into another RPG. The quality of this new class is not what I've seen with the Vigilante or the Occult Classes (the most recent classes).

For me, this is a crucial moment to see how Paizo handles criticism and concern over playtesting. I will feel much better if I see that they're listening to what is being said and offer some formal acknowledgement and reply.

My greatest fear is that this won't turn into a conversation with Paizo, and that the class will be improved in splatbooks that I have to pay $30 each for.

Whether there is a problem with the Shifter or not, it's obvious that there is widespread public perception that it was not as well developed as other classes, and I am waiting to see how Paizo deals with that.

I want to keep playing PF for a long time in the future, and I hope the level of quality remains top-notch. I think a big part of that quality is for a company to hold themselves accountable to the desires of their playing audience. If this class is not popular, what went wrong? How could that change for next time? I would like to know that Paizo is listening and willing to change.

If this should go into a different thread, please let me know and I'll put it there.


Thank you!


Hi all,

Can anyone point me towards some printed material that will help me create:

(1) Several bipedal caribou characters? (Deer / Moose / Elk-men would work fine).

(2) A bipedal polarbear character? (Any kind of bear-man would work fine)

Optimally, this would be a template in an existing pathfinder bestiary, or from an existing Adventure Path (since I own them all). If not, anything available on the PFSRD would also help.

Thank you!


Thanks!

I just read an interview with one of the designers, and I feel optimistic about what they're probably doing to streamline the rules and ensure that the game doesn't get bloat-y.

You gotta think that if the rulebook is as big as the PF Core book, but also includes ship combat and lore about the universe, they're going to have to trim and polish a fair bit. I'm looking forward to seeing what they come up with!

I'm really curious to see how they make it compatible to BF Bestiaries, but I suppose that's just a matter of making bonuses increase at the same rate, and matching AC and HP.


I don't see any mention of monsters in the description of this book. Are you squeezing that into each AP?

I'll buy this for sure; curious to see if it's as crunchy as Pathfinder or if you're taking a cue from the 5e rules and roll-out strategy and trying for something that's a little more accessible and non-bloaty. I'm hoping for the latter, just so I can get more people into the game and not feel like I have an IV drawing from my bank account. :)


I've been away from the conversation for about four months. Just wondering if anything has been said about the differences, rules-wise, between this and PF? I'm talking about number of skills / using skill ranks / feat trees / BAB progression... are there any fundamental differences? Any streamlining? Anything that would help eliminate bloat over time? Incorporating / adopting other novel mechanics?

Thanks!


Slumbering Tsar gets two thumbs down from me. Rappan Athuk I like.

Maybe not a mega-dungeon, but Caverns of Thracia is a good mid-sized dungeon that every fantasy RPG player should play. That would be my vote.


Conversely, I'm annoyed by posts that assume a GM should -not- be asked. The rules are a guideline unless you're playing PFS.


I position my NPCs and monsters in places that are realistic for them, depending on the situation. This is an extension of the living imaginative universe we're playing in, not a transition to a tactical board game.

My players are positioned similarly.

We never worry about CR because I don't play enemies optimally and neither do my players.

Depends on game styles, I guess.


Vidmaster7 wrote:
Ashiel wrote:
Lemmy Z wrote:

Homebrew and 3pp.

Admittedly, they're not universally hated, but then again, nothing is...

Still, there's some great homebrew out there and 3pp companies that I think actually release better Pathfinder material than Paizo itself, but even so, many (if not most) GM and players still automatically disregard 3pp and homebrew as "broken" or "low quality" without even giving it a chance.

In all fairness, the reason for that is: For every dreamscarred press that's raising the bar, there's like twelve other 3PP guys lowering it.

You just got to be selective. :)

like the gravity elemental by the frog guys (incidentally that publisher is pretty well banned in my games until someone shows me they can do better.)

Word.


james014Aura wrote:

Puzzle room: A gigantic labyrinthian room with no map, as the maze constantly twists and turns. Every 10 minutes, they get to make Int/Wis/Know: Dungeoneering/Know: Engineering (at a -5 penalty)/Survival/Perception (at a -5 penalty) to find their way.

** spoiler omitted **

What about this involves creative problem-solving? It seems like a series of die rolls. Plug it into a die-rolling subroutine and go eat nachos until your characters emerge from the puzzle..


Rysky wrote:
Um, I don't really see those as problems.

Exactly. That's the typical response. Many PF players think it's normal, whereas it's the exception in terms of roleplaying games. I think only 4th Ed is more rigid in these respects. (I think the Burning Wheel system is also rigid, but in different ways...)

Before you or anyone says "play another game", there are many other aspects of PF that make it worthwhile to play for me -in spite of- the dominant PFS-esque culture. It has taken some unlearning for the longtime PF(S) player in my group though.

I'm not speaking for everyone - just my POV.


Check Maze of the Blue Medusa for some tripped-out rooms...


The worst thing about Pathfinder, in my mind, is PFS. I think even Adventure Paths are more restricted than they should be, so they might possibly be registered for PFS play. Even if they're not, it becomes difficult for scenarios to deviate from a culture of roleplaying that I don't see anywhere else:

- Heavy preference towards RAW
- Modules and scenarios that are carefully designed for specific levels, with encounters that are designed to be overcome by a very specific power level.
- Modules and scenarios with specific methods of overcoming the encounters. Far less freedom to innovate and open-endedness than in many other games.
- Linear modules and scenarios. You can't accidentally jump ahead to higher challenges.

Of course, all these things are possible to overcome and there are exceptions; but it is less 'normal' to see open-ended scenarios and a more free-wheeling approach to the system than in other games. I think this has a lot to do with the expectations built around PFS which requires standardized play across hundreds of groups. It's kinda crazy and I honestly think it hurts the game experience (but probably not the business).


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This is my favourite thread on these forums, since first arriving here about a year ago.

I am all over the spontaneous actions that consider the imagined situation, as opposed to mechanics. I try to encourage this as DM in all my games and find that many long term PF players have a hard time with it.

Agreed WRT combat maneuvers too. As DM, my monsters and NPCs are pretty in-character, which means they use all kinds of actions depending on the situation. They're not on the game to lower players' HP - they have their own motivations which means they take all kinds of crazy actions.

Also, manipulating RAW is a fave for me. Another one that many people here can't deal with. :).

In a PbF game I'm running right now, we have four medium creatures (2 PCs 2 enemy) in one 5' space, all wrestling, trying to push each other off a cliff, with one of the four trying to hang on to a rope that extends off the cliff. To keep it chaotic, everyone is declaring their actions at the same time. The action is awesome but impossible in standard PF rules.


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Another (I think) valid reason to ignore some posters is to cut down on a low signal-to-noise ratio. I do it all the time in other forums. Too much posting about nothing, or conversation between web-pals, makes it more frustrating and less efficient for me to browse through a forum when I'm looking for actual game information. So I see Ignoring as an ability to customize my experience, somewhat...


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I haven't read the book yet, but that additional option, and it's complications, is great. Good design gives players multiple paths and solutions to a problem.


Interesting to note that an underwater AP is being developed for Pathfinder, coming at the same time as Starfinder. Perhaps there will be some cross-pollination in terms of low-gravity gaming rules there?


Awesome. All new monsters. It's gonna feel like I'm looking through Monster Manual II for 1st Ed. Again!


Duiker wrote:

I completely disagree, and find great value in the fiction as a DM. In Mummy's Mask the fiction is what gave me the description and atmosphere of the Tooth and Hookah, which the players loved so much they ended up spending the entire first session there instead of starting the adventure, and it ended up being their base for the rest of the AP.

In Giantslayer, the individual tales of fighting giants became a couple of different extremely flavorful encounters that had no combat at all.

Flavor and ambience are what I get out of the fiction, and I think that is a very valuable contribution that is distinct from what you get from stat blocks and gazeteers, which of course I find valuable in their own ways.

Maybe I should read some of it before trashing it then.... :0


Here's more of a discussion about this topic:

http://paizo.com/threads/rzs2tujy?Space-battles-subgame


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If I want to read fantasy fiction, I'll buy a book. I can deal with it in the AP's only because it doesn't occupy too many pages.


Based on the just-released descriptions of book 1 and 2 of Ironfang Invasion, it's sounding really good to me. Kinda classic beasts but a dynamic situation and less-than-typical interactions with other 'factions' for interesting reasons. I tend to loosen up published adventures to give my players a more sandbox-y situation to work with, and this one sounds like a great base to work from.

Strange Aeons - totally stoked cuz I'm a huge fan of Lovecraft's writing, which got me into the Call of Cthulhu RPG in a big way about ten years ago. I will likely modify this one to bring out the sanity and horror aspects a little more. My players are totally okay with not being kick-ass, so it'll work. :)

Azlant - I'm not a huge Golarion expert so the history aspect of this doesn't attract me. I get the sense this will supposedly connect some ideas that are already milling about in the Golarion canon, but I don't know what that is. As with everything, my Golarion is heavily modified :) Paizos AP's rarely disappoint me though so I'm eager to see how they deal with such a specific environmental situation without it getting tedious.

Starfinder - Very eager to see how they treat this as well! I follow the Starfinder news very closely.


Steven "Troll" O'Neal wrote:
Coffee Demon wrote:
Steven "Troll" O'Neal wrote:
What the devs feel, and what I feel are two different things. Technically speaking I feel a gestalt psychic warrior/psion is the closest mechanically to a Jedi. But of the way the new classes have been described the Mystic feels more like a Jedi than the Solarion. Totally an opinion though.
I don't think the mystic will have the combat abilities of a Jedi. I think they will be 'Full Caster' without great melee and combat skills. Just my opinion.
You misunderstand. I do not mean to say you can't make a very Jedi-like character with the Solarion. You could absolutely make an awesome character with that class, and you could absolutely call it a Jedi and I doubt anyone would argue it wasn't (except on the internet). However, my personal concept of Jedi isn't as combat focused. My Jedi is more Obi Wan, less Anakin. I'd have to see the classes, but the way they're described the Solarion doesn't sound like it has the more non-combat abilities that I want. It's a personal preference.

Yeah, I'm no Star Wars aficionado. Jedi to me is a dude like Luke kickin ass with an energy sword and doing flips. I'm not familiar with the whole Star Wars Universe, couldn't gag my way through the 4th-6th films made, never watched Clone Wars or read any books. So your vision of a Jedi may very well be the more common one, no idea. :)


Steven "Troll" O'Neal wrote:
What the devs feel, and what I feel are two different things. Technically speaking I feel a gestalt psychic warrior/psion is the closest mechanically to a Jedi. But of the way the new classes have been described the Mystic feels more like a Jedi than the Solarion. Totally an opinion though.

I don't think the mystic will have the combat abilities of a Jedi. I think they will be 'Full Caster' without great melee and combat skills. Just my opinion.


Edmond Bass wrote:
Playtested Starfinder ship combat at Gencon with the Paizo crew. My impression - it was fun! it was fairly quick, with not a lot of downtime between taking actions, which I've seen in other RPGs where the party members take on various roles within the ship.

Good to hear!


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Steven "Troll" O'Neal wrote:
See, I get the feeling the Mystic is more true to the Jedi. Take the requisite weapon proficiency there you go.

The designers have explicitly said that the Solarion is closest to a Jedi. It's a melee class with an energy melee weapon, telekenetic ("gravity") powers, and energy-based powers. It even has two polarities in the Force... er.... "solar energy" they draw from. If you go far along one end of the spectrum, you can't do as much on the other end of the spectrum. I don't know how much closer you could get to Jedi without calling it a Jedi. :)

It does sound like the polarity mechanic is very different from a Dark Side Corruption-type mechanic though.


ryric wrote:

"Choice of class has no effect on ship role, each ship role has a single skill that influences it (5)"

I hope it's addressed what we do for PCs that have none of these skills, unless every skill in the game contributes somehow. Or what we do if there is duplication. I know my group is going to make a party based on concepts they have, not on having a balanced ship crew. So we may end up with three pilots or none.

Because somebody is going to make that PC who only has academic Knowledge skills and nothing else. Or a 7 Int Klingon expy that only knows Intimidate and Climb.

I get the sense that

(1) Everyone is going to have the skills; some will just be better than others, and

(2) Each class is actually designed to work in the ship combat system, so "PC's having none of these skills" isn't a possibility.

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