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I don't see anything stopping you from taking Assurance on Esoteric Lore right? If you want to dump Charisma, or just remove the chance of flat-footing yourself in an important boss fight against an already researched creature, this would basically make you guaranteed to fail the check against on level and higher enemies, but not crit fail it.

At level 7 and 8 you would actually succeed against on level foes, and you only ever crit fail versus creatures ~6+ levels above you.

Another problem Ancestry; Poppets have the construct trait, which say this: "When reduced to 0 Hit Points, a construct creature is destroyed" but unlike Automatons they do not have a rule like Automaton Core that contradicts this.

This falls under too bad to be true IMO, so I think it's safe to say that there are some mistakes in how some Ancestries are written RAW.

It seems like there ought to have been a "Living" trait which applies to most creatures that makes them need to breathe, sleep and have blood. It'd be nice if what it meant to be "Living" was explicitly described somewhere, it would be a little too onerous to add living to all those stat blocks now.

Maybe there should even be a defined baseline (you breathe, you eat, you sleep, you bleed etc.) for what PCs are that you do not deviate from no matter your traits unless you get an actual ability from your Ancestry or elsewhere that tells you to. I know that sort of thing annoys some people though.

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It doesn't work with bows because:

1 - IMO they don't spend any interact actions to reload (I know this one has already been debated on the forums)

2 - Even if you could "reload" it you still need two hands on the bow when you make a Strike, requiring you to drop your off-hand implement and causing you to not benefit from Implements Empowerment regardless.

Squiggit wrote:

Concealed after moving is really asynergistic with a curse that makes it so you can't move and cast spells.

Djinn71 wrote:
A Mature mount is probably fine to get a move, but even then some GMs might call that mitigation...

Does your GM tell battle oracles they can't wear armor, or prevent Cosmos, Tempest, Life, and Bone oracles from putting points in Constitution too?

IMO there are easier ways to tell someone not to play a certain class.

Not my GM, or me when I'm GMing, but I've certainly seen some deeply conservative takes on what constitutes mitigation on these forums!

For some reason I thought Quickened and Slowed directly cancelled each other, but given that's not the case I'd 100% allow that option to Time Oracles, but the Electricity resistance deniers might not.

PossibleCabbage wrote:
The trick is to figure out how to get an extra action so you can move and cast; presumably several spells you know can do this.

I don't know, Quickened doesn't work obviously because you can't directly mitigate the curse in any way. A Mature mount is probably fine to get a move, but even then some GMs might call that mitigation...

Concealed, and only after moving, is not strong enough to justify being in the major curse in combat IMO. Definitely a curse where you want to avoid the cursed state as much as possible, you're here for the focus spells (hopefully, only seen one) and the speed bonus, with the major curse being a very hard soft limit on your focus spells.

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Time Oracle sure has a brutal curse. Permanent Slowed 1 at major? Actually might be the worst curse, which is saying something.

Time Skip is a great focus spell though, 1 action to give an ally within 30ft haste for 1 round and +1 heightens for additional allies. Looking forward to seeing if the other focus spells make the downsides of that curse worth it!

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"Background" is general enough to cover everything, Skeletons and all. Problem is it's already in use.

Overwatch Dedication would work (it eventually let's you see around corners within 60ft), but the Project Image spell should just grant LoS to begin with given its level.

I've found Outlaws of Alkenstar pretty great so far to run, although that may be because of the full Foundry module support being so good. The only poor part of it so far is one full level that seemed super rushed, and looking at the XP provided there is no way to reach the milestone for the next level using pure XP.

It all seems to fit together pretty well though, I don't see any discordant genre shifts. You can't really expect the large city in the middle of the mana wastes, wedged between Nex and Geb, in Golarion, to just have frontier west themes after all. That wouldn't make any sense.

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SuperBidi wrote:

An effect, singular. A cold-based Meteor Swarm is a bunch of effects and as such you can't do it with Wish.

A cold-based Meteor Swarm is exactly as many effects as a fire-based Meteor Swarm.

What is the point of the third option of the Wish spell if you aren't able to produce any effect whose power level is in line with a 9th level or lower Arcane Spell, or a 7th level or lower non-arcane Spell? Sure, your GM has to agree that it is in line with those spells (same as anything else subjective in the game), but if they do then they should allow it by RAW.

This clause is separate and different to the "The GM might allow you to try using wish to produce greater effects than these" clause. It's effectively saying "the GM will allow you to produce any effect whose power level is in line with the above effects", in exactly the same way as it is saying "the GM will allow you to duplicate any arcane spell of 9th level or lower."

AlastarOG wrote:

If you want to play a mage that can design spells on the flyz may I suggest Mage: The awakening? It's a great system that helps you set will to power in a typical mage way.

But for pf2e every houserule (because that is what that is) has to be weighed carefully and can expose you to Gm regret after.

What does the third clause of the Wish spell allow you to do in your opinion? You are the one houseruling here (and that's fine!), not those running the spell how it is written.

RAW the Wish spell allows you to produce any effect that has a power level that is in line with a 9th level Arcane Spell.

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Lycar wrote:
Arcaian wrote:
But this is clearly different - Wish allows you to create an effect that has a "power level in line with an arcane spell of 9th level or lower". The question here is "does Meteor Swarm, but dealing cold not fire damage, have a power level in line with 9th level arcane spells" - if you answer yes, you have to be saying that the cold damage is the source of the increase in power level; the flexibility is being paid for by the 10th level spell slot.

You are forgetting that the flexibility already lies in being able to cast any arcane spell other then another 10th level spell, and on top of that any spell up to 7th level of spell lists you don't even have access to otherwise.

Now bending and twisting those spells on top of getting access to them in the first place may be more flexibility then the 10th level slot pays for.

The original question is: 'If in all the spells accessible by Wish, a player does find many that are a solution for the problem at hand, but not the ideal/optimal solution, is allowing the player to further bend and twist a spell to 'optimise' it covered by the Wish spell's power or not.'

Ultimately, every GM has to answer that for themselves, but I will say again, if only casters get to play that game, you are back at creating a caster/martial imbalance that PF2 tries so hard to avoid.

Pointed question here, do you honestly think that a cold damage version of Meteor Swarm is generally out of line with the power level of a 9th level arcane spell? Would you say that Meteor Swarm warranted a nerf if the spell currently did cold damage instead of fire damage? If not, then can you explain how it doesn't fall under the third option of the Wish spell?

Your description of a player looking for a solution "in all the spells accessible by Wish" is only allowing for two out of four explicitly allowed effects listed in the Wish spell. One of the clearly listed options of what you can produce with the Wish spell, without GM permission, is any effect that is in line with the power of a 9th level Arcane spell. If you think that an effect that is identical in damage to an existing 9th level spell, but with sidegraded damage type, doesn't fall under that description, then what does? This clause specifically allows the effect to be outside of existing spells as long as it is not out of line power wise. What use would this be if you decided that any effect that is different than an existing spell must have inherently more power simply due to adding to the flexibility of the Wish spell, and should therefore should default to the later GM fiat clause?

If you think that Wish is too powerful go ahead and nerf it, but I don't understand the argument that disallows swapping a common damage type to another by RAW, it seems exactly what the third option in the Spell is for tbh.

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"You state a wish, making your greatest desire come true. A wish spell can produce any one of the following effects.

- Duplicate any arcane spell of 9th level or lower.
- Duplicate any non-arcane spell of 7th level or lower.
- Produce any effect whose power level is in line with the above effects.
- Reverse certain effects that refer to the wish spell.

The GM might allow you to try using wish to produce greater effects than these, but doing so might be dangerous or the spell might have only a partial effect."

I'm pretty sure that by the wording of the Wish spell you do not need GM permission to produce an effect that is in line with the power of a 9th level arcane spell, you only need permission to exceed it. Now you can attempt to argue that a cold damage version of the meteor swarm spell exceeds it in power, but it seems very dubious to me. I can't see a reasonable argument as to why Cold damage is generally more powerful than Fire damage, can anyone explain this?

Do you believe that the Wish spell is checking how powerful the suggested effect is in the context of the current situation? Would you allow a Wizard to Wish for a Cold Meteor Swarm if they were attempting to use it on a group of White Dragons because it would be weaker than a 9th level spell in that context?

How does an effect that is identical to Meteor Swarm but produces Cold damage instead of Fire damage not have a power level that is in line with a 9th level Arcane Spell?

Ly'ualdre wrote:
Perpdepog wrote:
aobst128 wrote:
Maybe we'll get a occult/psychic methodology for investigators in dark archives.
I really really hope so. I miss Psychic Detective. Granted, you could play a psychic with the detective background but that's not the same.
Why not just an Investigator/Psychic MC, or vice-versa?

Because actual subclasses are usually more effective at fulfilling a theme/idea than multiclassing due to getting unique and specific mechanics that support that idea. Same reason a Gunslinger isn't just a Fighter with a gun, or Battle Oracle isn't just a Cleric with a Fighter Dedication + RP, or a Magus isn't just a Fighter with a Wizard Dedication. Just look at all the subclasses/classes that could be made by just multiclassing, but are an actual class or subclass and are better for it.

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I think what Wish is asking when it says "Produce any effect whose power level is in line with the above effects", being a 9th level Arcane or 7th level non-Arcane Spell, is if it were a printed Spell would it be too strong? I don't think anyone would call Comet Storm, the cold version of Meteor Swarm, too strong if Paizo printed it as it is quite clearly on par with Meteor Swarm. I don't see a good argument for Cold damage being meaningfully overall stronger than Fire damage. It would be different if it was a damage type that Arcane casters usually don't get access to.

Getting to pick and choose the damage type at the time of casting isn't part of this duplicated Spell's power budget (this made up spell is ALWAYS cold after all), it's part of Wish's power budget as a 10th level Spell.

Malk_Content wrote:

So I'm going to assume no one else has this problem, but for me its been a big issue. The Punks in a Powderkeg module seems to be stopping the Bestiary and Hazards compendiums from loading. I've tried disabling all other modules and that is the only one causing issues.

Needless to say this is a problem because a) players don't always stick to the rails and b) summoning spells kinda rely on being able to quickly filter through the bestiary.

I think I remember reading about a similar problem in the Foundry PF2e discord (highly recommend it if you're using Foundry) and it was a bug with the Alkenstar Module. You should be able to disable the Alkenstar module after it has imported everything, which should fix the bug.

You only need to have the AP module enabled to import all the scenes and stuff, disable it while you're running the game. Hope the fix for your bug is that simple!

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The-Magic-Sword wrote:
Perpdepog wrote:

Has anyone mentioned the value of RK checks yet in this thread?

Asking because, in our AoA game, my party just did two relatively challenging fights back to back that we were able to break into much more manageable chunks thanks to RK checks. Spoilering just in case. ** spoiler omitted **

It made us all feel really good to handle a difficult encounter like that relatively easily because we planned ahead and did our homework. Granted, APs don't always give you opportunities to do that.

The actual power of the RK action (which normally involves a player attempting to recall a specific piece of knowledge, and then the first line of each success says get that knowledge) short circuits people for whatever reason so some people use Creature Identification and only Creature Identification, even if they already know what the creature is.

That's because the RK rules are vague, ambiguous and confusing. Could be much improved.

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Perpdepog wrote:

Has anyone mentioned the value of RK checks yet in this thread?

Asking because, in our AoA game, my party just did two relatively challenging fights back to back that we were able to break into much more manageable chunks thanks to RK checks. Spoilering just in case. ** spoiler omitted **

It made us all feel really good to handle a difficult encounter like that relatively easily because we planned ahead and did our homework. Granted, APs don't always give you opportunities to do that.

Recall Knowledge is extremely GM dependent as the base rules for it are rather bad.

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The-Magic-Sword wrote:

It could be, in theory, but the momentum of the evidence largely goes in the other direction, the substance matters more than the structure-- in other words, you can figure it out based on the presentation of actual evidence, rather than simply accepting the idea that the trope can mirrored uncritically.

I don't get invested in other people's levels of personal validation in the context of debates like this-- if the best you can say for your opinion is that literally no one can force you not to have it, that isn't worth a lot to me, so that part of your post is kind of orthogonal to the discussion of whether there's a problem and whether additional playtests can fix it. Its not about the person who holds the view and their right to hold it, its about the Validity and Soundness of their arguments, as supporting the truth of the arguments they're trying to advance.

I don't care if you want to invalidate people's opinions, I'm just suggesting that you do it based on more than 'they disagree with you' and 'some people who have opinions about things formed them uncritically'.

If you disagree with someone because they have nothing supporting their opinion then say that, don't say "I've found this study that says when people repeat an argument a lot it can cause people to agree with it uncritically. Hey people I argue with have an argument and I KNOW they're wrong, they must have accepted it uncritically!" Not saying that's your intention, but you sound like you're trying to dismiss any consensus of a class being weak when it suits you, an "I'll know it when I see it" approach.

You mentioned the "presentation of actual evidence" as something you can use to identify cases where the people who disagree with you have opinions that were formed uncritically, do you have any examples of a consensus formed around a class's balance that has fallen prey to this bias? I'd like to see the arguments that you're suggesting we ought to dismiss as uncredible (and instead recognise as simply familiar) based on this psychological phenomena.

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The-Magic-Sword wrote:

One interesting thing I was watching a video on recently, is the fact that people tend to accept that something is true the more often it is repeated-- essentially the feeling of recognition can become the feeling of credibility.

They've done studies where information people either aren't sure is true, or know is false, is repeated across a couple of days-- and all kinds of information, including both the information the people knew wasn't true, and the information that they aren't sure is true, became accepted as true more easily through repeated exposure.

One knock on effect is that if someone has a strongly held belief, say about a given class being over or under powered, and they repeat it, people are going to start believing it, even if the evidence wasn't sufficient to convince them when they first heard it and hasn't actually increased in the intervening time, it can serve to manufacture support and consensus where none exists.

Shouldn't that also be the case about people claiming a class is fine and needs no changes then? Or maybe we could leave the ambiguous pop psychology that completely dismisses the validity of the opinions of those we disagree with out of the discussion unless it has specific relevance?

I've seen plenty of posts, usually from the same people, about how the Alchemist is fine and needs (or needed, before it got Errata'd) no changes, but I've also seen plenty of posts from entirely new players asking for Alchemist advice because they hate it.

Gortle wrote:

There is sort of.

Rogue level 8 the feat Loaner Spell
Allows the Rogue to borrow a spell up to 3rd level off a friendly caster, and cast it themselves.

Which is pretty good. Unfortunately its at the same feat level as Opportune Backstab and SideStep which are just so strong, so it hardly sees much use.

It requires the spell to have a Targets entry or an area, so it wouldn't work on things like Mage Armour.

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Playing the Wrath of the Righteous crpg really makes me miss the dozen archetypes per class world of 1e, it really let you make a specific focused idea that was quite distinct from every other character made with that class.

I love the generic (as in they can go with any class, not that they're boring) archetypes of 2e as well, just wish we had some of both.

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Gaulin wrote:
Ah you're right. That's extremely stupid and I dislike that.

And in addition to that, falling is forced movement and forced movement can never trigger reactions based on movement.

Gaulin wrote:
I only realized the other day you can't step while flying - this means that someone/thing that can AoO up in your/their grill is going to trigger it, guaranteed. Either they use a move action to stay up, or they fall. Either way, free attack!

Falling doesn't trigger AoO, and they can reaction to arrest a fall and take no damage. This edition is very kind to fliers when it comes to fall damage

thewastedwalrus wrote:
Summoner Dedication wrote:
Due to your tenuous link, you can't gain or use tandem actions.
Steed form gives you tandem move actions, so you can't take it because of the summoner dedication limitation.

I don't see any restriction on your Eidolon gaining/using Tandem actions, which is what the Steed Form feat allows. Am I missing a mechanic that applies this restriction to your Eidolon as well?

Edit: Oh I see, the "Due to your tenuous link, you can't gain or use tandem actions." is ambiguous, "you" could refer to the PC or both the PC and the Eidolon.

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AlastarOG wrote:
egindar wrote:

The horse's Support benefit does say "damage dice" rather than "weapon damage dice," as other effects that determine their bonuses based only on the number of dice from the weapon and its Striking rune normally do.

The horse's Support benefit is written unusually loosely in general, though, and I'd consider it fairly normal for a GM to rule that it applies to one or more of 1) Strikes only, 2) melee only, and 3) weapon damage dice only, and I suspect errata will eventually apply all three of those conditions to it at once.

Edit: Other features that add bonuses based on weapon damage dice, such as Dread Marshal Stance or the Forceful weapon trait, unambiguously do not stack with features that add weapon damage dice, such as Power Attack, Grievous Blow, or the Fatal weapon trait, to echo what others in here have said already. My comment is more about the horse Support benefit in particular than the general case.

All of these are trumped by the broad rule that states:

Effects based on a weapon’s number of damage dice include only the weapon’s damage die plus any extra dice from a striking rune

There is no ambiguity here. GM's might rule otherwisez but I don't see why they would because it is very clear cut.


It isn't trumped actually, because nowhere in the Horse's support ability does it say that the bonus is "based on a weapon's number of damage dice", just damage dice in general.

Here's that wording:
"Your horse adds momentum to your charge. Until the start of your next turn, if you moved at least 10 feet on the action before your attack, add a circumstance bonus to damage to that attack equal to twice the number of damage dice. "

There is a following statement that says "If your weapon already has the jousting weapon trait, increase the trait’s damage bonus by 2 per die instead." which I think strongly implies that it should be referring to weapon damage dice, but strictly RAW it could easily refer to a spell attack's damage dice for example.

That's why it should be cleared up, it ought to say Strike instead of attack and it should say it adds a circumstance bonus to damage equal to twice the number of weapon damage dice.

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Squiggit wrote:
Thezzaruz wrote:
I expect it to be the latter as otherwise that "0" means nothing and also a whole host of other rules break down.

Literally nothing breaks down, don't be melodramatic.

It isn't unrelated though, it's the whole ball game. If "Reload 0" means "Strike and Interact" then archery simply doesn't work anymore.

This is just flatly untrue. For the most part, almost nothing changes between either interpretation, except that reactions that activate on manipulate/interact activate for one and not for the other.

This is a very low stakes debate, trying to pretend the game breaks down somehow one way or the other is silly.

That depends on whether you think the game allows actions like Strike to be modified into weird hybrid activities and still be allowed to function in things like Flurry of Blows or Spellstrike. If you don't think "Strike-but-it-includes-an-interact-that-takes-zero-actions" is the same as "Strike" for those purposes then it does sort of break the game for those weapons.

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If Paizo didn't use Errata to buff the many poorly balanced things in 1e, then I'd guess they aren't going to do it much to the significantly less unbalanced 2e. The best we can hope for is an Unchained version of those classes which have disappointed a good chunk of their fans, or more class specific class archetypes if those ever manifest.

Guntermench wrote:
You must use the Command an Animal action to get your mount to spend its actions. If you don’t, the animal wastes its actions.

Technically, this has always been the case. If you're mounted on something it gets it's actions, it just wastes them if you didn't command it.

This is actually the case for Mature Animal Companions as well with their action if not commanded.

Where are you getting this? The Mounted Combat rules are describing a case when you're riding a regular animal, not an Animal Companion, or do you think because it mentions you needing to Command an Animal for each action your mount takes that you don't get the usual AC two actions? The general rule says you have to command your mount, but the more specific Mature Animal Companion feat says it gets an action even if you don't do that, so it overrides.

Note: the general rule for Animal Companions also requires you to command them for them to get actions, do you really think Mature Animal Companion doesn't override that limitation?

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WatersLethe wrote:
I think all three of those should see a few class archetypes before going Unchained. There are plenty of people satisfied with the chassis of them as-is, so an "Unchained" version would likely just muddy the waters.

I think when there's a big divide in satisfaction regarding classes is exactly when Unchained is most suitable. I know plenty of people thought the Chained Monk (with adequate system mastery and archetypes) was stronger than the Unchained Monk in 1e, and those people were free to keep playing Chained Monks. The Unchained versions really made it so the classes had wider appeal outside of the groups that already thought they were great, it didn't take anything away from the originals.

I do agree though, if it is possible within Paizo's framework to make these classes more widely appealing just through class archetypes then that'd be fine as well.

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Wish Paizo would focus a bit more on buffing things like Witch and a bit less on nerfing stuff that is barely a problem.

Like, I get that they got it earlier than other ancestries could, but they also get terrible reach and can't even melee attack adjacent creatures while mounted unless they use a reach weapon. I doubt they were really competing with stuff like Human's multitalented Ancestry feat at the upper end of optimisation...

It'd be nice if they'd release a 5th, or even 9th, level Ancestry feat for Sprites (and future familiar riding Ancestries) that reenabled independent while mounted, and maybe gave an additional familiar ability so you can offset being forced to take Scent.

Grankless wrote:

Can confirm hitting the "Problems downloading this file? Click here." button did fix it for me.

Was hoping for balance changes. Alas.

They really didn't touch the Witch...?

Karmagator wrote:

I kinda forgot about this one - is it an oversight that the Rowan Rifle doesn't have reload? The text says it runs on magic and therefore doesn't require ammo (nor could it use special ammo if it wanted to), which heavily indicates that this is intended. The stats + abilities somehow make me doubt that a bit, though, high-level specific magic item or not.

It would be really cool if it was correct. The magic revolver dream isn't dead yet, even if it takes a few levels :D

Might be a challenge to get your hands on, as it is unique. The only thing that's way out of line of an equivalent Longbow is the range tbh, the damage isn't too much compared to Longbows with Deadly at that level (especially including an additional 2-3d6 damage from property runes they'll get, it's probably a good bit lower). It'd probably be okay to have it be that strong given its rarity.

gesalt wrote:
You don't have expert proficiency in animal form as a fighter as I'm sure has been stated a dozen times.

You do with the Martial Artist dedication. So it costs you four out of your seven fighter feats by level 10.

I'm guessing Fighter'll be getting the Gunslinger proficiency treatment next errata so that they can't do this (though it'll makes switchhitting with them pretty crap, same as Gunslinger) but who knows, maybe paizo just did that so you couldn't build a Gunslinger and completely ignore guns/xbows by archetyping.

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And what about the Mounted Melee Magus? They can do the exact same routine with higher damage.

Or, much scarier, the Mounted Fighter multiclassed into Magus. They can easily do the exact same thing as the Starlit Span Magus, but with +2 to hit and a bigger damage dice weapon. Keep in mind that with True Strike you're probably only doing The Big One once (maybe twice) a fight with the Starlit Span anyway.

And what about the Sixth Pillar leaping Magus (12th level, but you can get a 35ft Leap whenever you cast a spell)?

Fighter Multiclass into Monk for Monastic Archer + FoB + Ki Strike?

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HumbleGamer wrote:
Djinn71 wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
Mounted? Goblin + Independent Familiar? Guiding Luck? Or your GM gives you a high amount of Hero Points?
What does Goblin + Independent Familiar do to help action economy?

Indipendent > Stride ( ending close to the goblin, or the one with adopted heritage goblin + goblin scuttle ) > Goblin Scuttle.

By lvl 9 scuttle gives the possibility to stride for half speed ( mostly, 40 > 20 ).

Oh, that's pretty decent.

SuperBidi wrote:

If I use Fire Ray, then the Magus suddenly jumps at 20-30% extra damage. And if I decide to use a True Strike on my first attack, the Ranger is left alone in the dust.

In my opinion, it's not much melee Maguses but other ranged characters that should be worried about Starlit Span. I change my mind about it, Raven Black, maybe it would be more balanced if it was only available while in Arcane Cascade. I didn't realize how strong it is as is.

The full routine is a lot more rigid to use than Ranger though, and you have to consider the recharge means you can't True Strike consistently. I think a better comparison for the Focus Point Spellstrike is to the Monastic Archer Monk with Ki Strike. It has less range, but does similar damage with more versatility on a better chassis (saves, health).

The real danger for Ranged DPR comparisons is a Fighter multiclassing into either Monk or Magus and getting these effects with their inherent +2 to hit, even if it is only for one round per combat.

SuperBidi wrote:
Mounted? Goblin + Independent Familiar? Guiding Luck? Or your GM gives you a high amount of Hero Points?

What does Goblin + Independent Familiar do to help action economy?

Step 1: Cast 5+ Fireballs onto a small sack with a trigger like "people who aren't holding x holy symbol", or "people with their fingers crossed", whatever works.
Step 2: Get your Rogue all the Fire Resist gear they want, doesn't need that much to be honest. Use a potion I guess. Also a Backfire Mantle for the bonus to saves.
Step 3: They Stride next to the target(s) and release the symbol, or do whatever, to meet the trigger.
Step 4: Kaboom.

High Reflex and Evasion + Fire Resist means they don't take much damage per Fireball, but enemies are toast.

Deriven Firelion wrote:
If I wanted to add some alphastrike ability, I guess you could take Cleric Archetype and get the channel smite feats focusing on the ability to alphastrike with Channel Smite using most of your slots for alphastriking. Though I prefer to boost AC and attack rolls with Protection and Heroism.

I don't think you can get Channel Smite unless you're an actual Cleric unfortunately. It has harmful/healing font as a prerequisite.

Cordell Kintner wrote:

By nocked they just mean the arrow is ready to be pulled back to be fired.

With modern bows, arrows can essentially attach to the string, and we have metal clips on the string to help position it so it's always straight. Combined properly, an arrow can stick to the string and sit in the arrow rest with no additional input from the user, and always be ready to fir. (I can show you this when I get home if you're curious what it looks like.)

These weren't really around back in the time period Pathfinder is emulating. To move around with an arrow nocked means you would be occupying both hands, with one hand holding the arrow with the bow, and the other holding it against the string. This is the main drawback to holding an arrow nocked, and most players trying this would probably not even think about it. As soon as they try something with their free hand like they're used to doing, they would drop their prepared arrow.

I can move around with an arrow nocked to my bow, and it isn't of a modern style. You can use a finger from the hand holding the bow to hold the arrow in place while putting slight pressure on the nock, it's quite easy.

Squiggit wrote:
Djinn71 wrote:
then why not make them require a feat? Or make it a defined activity that cannot be used with things like Flurry of Blows or Haste?
Why would they? This whole train of thought is a complete non sequitur.

Because measuring what is "Too Good To Be True" by whether or not two completely different parts of the rules are treated inconsistently is not a good way to balance the game. Point being that a feat like quick draw being disrupted due to being an activity with subordinate actions and therefore the manipulate trait is not a good argument for reload 0 weapons being overpowered or too good if it were ruled that they were not disrupted. They're two entirely different things, one is a feat that lets you draw a weapon and attack and one is a part of the core rules of some weapons basic Strikes. Comparing them beat for beat is not very useful.

This was in response to Darksol's argument that the interpretation of the rules that did not disrupt bow strikes/reloads on AoO was too good to be true because Quick Draw exists and is a feat that is 1 action, involves drawing an item, and is interrupted on crit.

Inconsistent narratively? Yes, plenty of things are. Too good to be true? No, this will not make Archers too strong or invalidate Quick Draw in any way. It seems very minor from a balance perspective given how niche this situation is.

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So do those who think that Striking with a Bow is an activity that includes a Strike and a Reload not allow the Monastic Archer Monk to Flurry of Blows with it? Do you disallow a Hasted Archer from Striking with their bow? Both of these cases require an unmodified basic Strike rather than an Activity that includes a Strike.

I think it is pretty obvious that Paizo does not intend for a Strike with a reload 0 weapon to be simply an activity that includes a reload, it is a separate case with different rules.

Darksol I don't think you're using the Too Good To Be True guideline correctly. It is referring to too good in a holistic sense, not one facet of one rule being less affected by a niche case than a feat that does superficially similar things. If you're trying to argue that Reload 0 weapons should be held to the same standard as Quick Draw then why not make them require a feat? Or make it a defined activity that cannot be used with things like Flurry of Blows or Haste? Quick Draw and Reload 0 are entirely different things and they don't need to be, and shouldn't be, balanced by comparing each facet of them against each other any more than other aspects of the rules should be. It's absurd.

A reading of the rules is Too Good To Be True when it is actually unbalanced, not when it is simply inconsistent. The worst you could say about reload 0 weapons dodging an AoO disruption is that it is inconsistent in a simulationist sense. Dodging such a niche penalty (that is likely not even intended given it would invalidate Mobile Shot Stance) is a far cry from too good to be true.

Also, could you please stop strawmanning everyone who disagrees with you as people that are just calling your playstyle badwrongfun? Play how you want, most people here who disagree with you are arguing against your interpretation of the rules, not how you run them.

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The Raven Black wrote:
Just a reminder that people tend to hate on skill uses that seem to be feat-gated. To the point that they misread feats as saying you cannot do this or that without the skill, whereas the feat merely allows a more efficient approach. This was already the case in PF1 and PF2 inherited them.

I think people want more feats that aren't really within the normal purview of a skill but enable a play style, like Bon Mot, which I haven't seen much griping about.

Nice guide!

Correction on True Target, you say in your guide that it allows you to effectively share True Strike with a single friend, but it actually allows you to share it with up to four creatures!

You already rated it blue at 1/4 the strength, is there perhaps an even bluer blue? Pretty funny that it's still top tier even when nerfed so much.

On another note not specific to Wizards, but what am I not getting about Visions of Danger? I saw that you rated it as Orange. It seems like an absurdly powerful spell to me, but I always see it (and the Occult list) lowly rated in terms of damage. It is near guaranteed to do 16d8 mental damage (basic save obviously, but usually it will hit twice as you say in your guide) in a 30-foot burst, and can easily do more than that if you can combo it or block a hallway with your frontline (centering it 25 ft back from the front most enemy so they have to cross like 55ft to get out of it without tumbling or shoving the party). This is on average more damage than 7th level Chain Lightning WITH Dangerous Sorcery, and a creature crit succeeding only has like a 50/50 chance of ending it for themselves rather than guaranteed ending the Chain Lightning.

Assuming Halcyon Speaker to cast it as Arcane so you get a good DC, Wizard even gets convincing illusion to make disbelieving it even less likely for elite enemies. This is also just the damaging effects, it is still an illusion of a swarm of creatures. If your opponents don't recognise the spell or disbelieve it then they don't really have a great reason to think the swarm won't follow them if they try to leave. Obviously many will still gtfo but I'd be surprised if they don't try to kill the "swarm" they think is attacking them with any AoE they have, I'm sure players would do that if they were unfamiliar with the spell.

Honestly trying to figure out if I'm missing a major downside to this.

Looking to the future, has anyone thought about using the Overwatch Dedication + Vigilant Eye Diviner focus spell to get huge scouting capabilities? See around a corner within 60ft and then cast the diviner focus spell within your line of sight (but not necessarily your line of effect, as per clairvoyance) a few hundred feet away. If you see an encounter, maybe summon a Wandering Monster to send at the NPC's party for a change! Mind, you'd still have to summon it within your line of effect and tell it to go fight those enemies within the minute it sticks around. Dragons would be fast enough to do this kind of thing though. Might be worth softening them up before your main party hits them, preferably after any buffs they cast have run out.

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Deriven Firelion wrote:
My conclusion for P2 is based on recorded numbers.

? Is this white room maths or your experience? Is this a representative sample of optimal play? You seem extremely confident that you have the Objective Truth of how good Wizards are at low level, why is that? If all you're doing is accurately recording what's happened in your games then I'm sorry but all you've done is made it less likely that your personal biases are affecting your conclusions, your group's style of play and GMs are still going to prevent your data from being representative. Sorry if I've made incorrect assumptions about how you've collected your data, but unless you've been sampling different games then I don't see this as particularly useful for drawing conclusions on how balanced the game is in general. You can definitely draw meaningful conclusions about your group though.

Regardless, let's assume you're correct and martials are no more effective than casters at lower levels. We're now looking at basically two ways of playing casters at low levels effectively: supporting martials with magic weapon and similar spells, or playing a sort of gish. Many people (including myself) would strongly prefer more options than that.

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Deriven Firelion wrote:
Once you accept this paradigm change and build accordingly, you find the low level caster is on par with the low level martial.

That may be your experience, it hasn't been mine. I am actually already aware that they have only slightly worse to hit levels 1-5, I just came to a different conclusion than you on their effectiveness.

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thenobledrake wrote:

I am with Leomund here. It's a massive win that people are admitting their problem isn't with the mechanical performance of the class but with that they aren't into what it can do.

Just like I find some classes to be "bland" and that in no way should affect the way the class is designed because making me interested in it would almost definitely cause people currently interested in it to lose interest, people that think "wizard is bland" should not be counted as a reason to significantly alter the design going forward because there are already folks (me as an example) that think it's one of the most interesting classes in the game.

There's a point at which a person is bored not because there's nothing interesting for them to do, but because they are boring them self.

I mean I definitely think there is a problem with the mechanical performance of the class, it's just at low levels (1-7ish) and it affects most other casters, and a lot of people like it because it's traditional to the genre. I'd say Wizards are affected more due to having less power in their chassis vs. spells, but I may be wrong.

Some people don't have an issue with this as it is sort of tradition, but I would have preferred if martials and casters were more balanced in the early game and late game rather than martials starting stronger and then switching around for the later levels when high HP and exotic challenges makes damage less effective than control and versatility (broad strokes, I know). In the early levels you get less spells and they do less, it only makes sense that a class that relies on their spells more will be less powerful than those that rely on their abilities/chassis, like Bards/Druids.

I think if you go back to those Wizard hate threads you'll find that many of its detractors were already talking about the first half of the levelling experience, if only because that's what most people had played earlier into the game's life.

Personally, even if the early levels are actually balanced, I think bland and balanced is a much worse problem than interesting but underpowered. It is a lot easier (and quicker) to buff an interesting class than it is to add a variety of interesting but balanced feats/features.

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Leomund "Leo" Velinznrarikovich wrote:
It is so heartening to see the posts in this thread. Having been a staunch defender during the 'wizards are terrible' threads a year or so back, it is awesome to see wizards being recognized for their strengths.

You're happy people think they're bland and weak early, but bland and balanced mid to late levels? Doesn't seem like a win for Wizards to me. Especially given we're post-Secrets of Magic, where people had hoped (and argued that) the interesting feats would come.

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Ruzza wrote:
Djinn71 wrote:
Ruzza wrote:

Have you changed the rules for the candle, merchant's scale, manacles, or any other of the numerous items that also have handed-ness that has numerous edge cases?

Point being, none of this is new. Acting like it is seems to ignore the existence of Core Rulebook items.

No, but none of those have a common usage the requires less or more than their Usage entry.

If I can set down a candle and still use it, how is that different from setting down a ball and kicking it? If I can hold manacles in one hand, how is that different from holding a ball in two? If I can use merchant's scale by setting it on the table and measuring out gold with a single hand, why does a ball not fit the mold of all of these other items?

Rations, 1 hand; Dueling Cape, 1 hand; Blocks, 2 hands (and Usage - held in 2 hands!); A ruler, Usage - held in 1 hand, but no hands required!; Old Mage Deck, 2 hands.

Why is this ball breaking your mind? What part of the game completely stopped for you when you saw this?

If I may offer a completely biased assumption. Bear in mind, this is just an assumption. You saw the thread and went, "Hey yeah, that is weird," and decided to post. Okay, yeah, a few other items have these same caveats and formatting differences. Sure, you haven't read every entry in the books (who has?), but now you're firmly entrenched in this position. I mean, you're the guy who is arguing for ball errata! You can't turn back now! But also, you could take a step back and remember that this is a game of imagination fun time written by not one, two, or even three people, but a whole host of writers from around the world. What makes rational sense to one may not to another. And while they both may follow guidelines, that's not to say that either of them have made a mistake. It's just that we, as human, have differing perspectives on this incredibly open-ended game that attempts to put rules to the ordinary.

I don't think it's worth an errata, I just think it would have been a slightly better item if it had released with a more accurate handedness requirement. Some of those other items would be better (to my eye) if they were less gamified in some respects as well.

Also, with your slightly weird psych assessment of my thought process have you considered that you're also in this thread writing essays in defence of the ball item?

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Ruzza wrote:

Have you changed the rules for the candle, merchant's scale, manacles, or any other of the numerous items that also have handed-ness that has numerous edge cases?

Point being, none of this is new. Acting like it is seems to ignore the existence of Core Rulebook items.

No, but none of those have a common usage the requires less or more than their Usage entry. None of my players have tried to manacle someone using one/no hands yet and I doubt I'd let them without a good argument (or I guess if the target is unconscious? still seems very tricky with old fashioned manacles.) I haven't looked through the handedness of every item but I would say I'd prefer their handedness to correlate to their common usages/flavour if at all possible.

I mean it wouldn't matter in practice if something like Rations had Hands 2 or something, but I feel ever so slightly better about the item accurately depicting what it is. That is to say that you can eat Rations with 1 hand. If it had Hands 2 as an entry I would feel the same way about that as I do about the Ball, which is to say I find it slightly annoying as it doesn't match up with my mental image of ways to use a ball (i.e. kneeing it, kicking it, etc.)

All I'm arguing here is that this item would have been better if it didn't have a Hands/Usage entry, or if it must then have it be 0+ hands to more accurately represent all the different kinds of balls.

Remember kids, hacky sacks don't require a hand to use! Let us hacky sack with our greatswords out Paizo, it's what the people want!

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Ruzza wrote:
Djinn71 wrote:
Ruzza wrote:
Djinn71 wrote:
Obviously not a big deal, but why do I have to houserule a ball?
I don't know, why do you? Honest question.
If someone wants to use a ball by kicking it, or use it with two hands I guess? That's how a ball should work. There's no reason the entry should need a Usage section at all, it is needlessly detailed for such a vague and non-crunchy item, especially as it's just plainly incorrect.

Player: Ooh, Grand Bazaar has a ball, I'd like to get one to play with my animal companion.

GM: I'll let you know that I had to houserule it so that it works.

Player: Oh, okay. Well, I throw the ball to-

GM: How far?

Player: What? Oh, like... I guess 15 feet away?

GM: Okay, that'll be beyond the 10 ft range increment I have for it. That's an inprovised weapon for you. Go ahead and make a ranged attack with a -4 penalty. You're level 2 right now with a 16 Dex, so...

Player: Forget it, I'll just throw a stick!

GM: What's your weapon proficiency with clubs?

Player: Ugh! Snaps pencil in half.

GM: Hey! There are no rules for attacking objects!

I don't think that's a very fair characterisation of my point. Sure, we houserule stuff all the time, but usually it isn't very simple things directly against the usage section of the item. I'm not saying it's a huge issue I'm just saying I'd prefer it not to be there. Like if Stick was an item with "Usage 1 hand" it's not like it'd change anything, it'd just be like... why? You could respond to that criticism with "but of course you can use a stick with two hands! You're taking it too literally!" but my problem is that it's inaccurate and unnecessary, not that it's a pain to ignore (because it isn't). Just because everyone sane would rule it that way doesn't mean it isn't technically a houserule.

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