The Beast

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Does this indicate that he's going to focus on crossbowery instead of axes or magic? I think it probably does.
Also: totally agree that Harsk is one scary dude.

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Synthesist Summoner!
You get a minute-long transformation sequence, which empowers you with strange abilities and an ancient being to guide you through using them.
Go Biped, give it the Flight and the Weapon Proficiency evolution to wield the sword that you magicked out of thin air (stored on your Eidolon), or do the usual Ball-o-Tentacles build.
As a plus: you have the best spell list in the game, and can fight better than the group's Fighter.
As a plus: if you don't like something you chose you can change it when you level up, or use the Transmogrify spell to fix it.

Synthesist summoner.

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Like basically everyone else mentioned, combat is less about "role" and more about "outcomes." I explain it with a mnemonic called "the 3 p's."
-Performance: everything ties back into this. There's an objective to this scene. Someone needs to complete it, whether it is "steal this thingy" or "kill this many orcs" or "open the door." A Performer usually needs a large damage output in some way, as a lot of combats are resolved through combat.
-Positioning: It's the Performer's job to carry out the objective, but it's the Positioner's job to get them there. They're in charge of getting all of the little details of the battle; manipulating the enemies, the lighting, and the buffing/debuffing. This role is frequently overlooked because of its indirect relationship to damage, but played well, can trivialize a lot of encounters.
-Protection: The GM has an infinite supply of monsters, and the Performer and Protector have a definitely-not-infinite supply of HP. It is the job of the Protector to keep them alive (and not blinded/sickened/unconscious/any number of other bad things) long enough for them to do their job. While this sounds like the traditional "healer" role, it is usually tied more to condition removal and other, more proactive methods of avoiding death.

An example:
A group I'm playing with on Saturday (we all built Monks, because Monks are a pretty good meme.)
Tetori Monk with Agile Maneuvers, specialized into grappling.
Monk of the Mantis, specialized into Stunning Fist.
A weird-ass Drunken Master build, specialized into having ridiculous strength and elemental attacks.

Example Encounter 1: Swarmed by Mooks
Positioning: Our high Perception and Movement let us set the battlefield to somewhere with a chokepoint (doorway, narrow pass, etc.).
Protection: The Tetori and Mantis flank the doorway, slowing down the enemy advance with blocking, Sneak Attack OAs, and Grappling to buy the Drunken Master time to "recharge"
Performance: The Drunken Master lets loose through the doorway with his fire breath, and we flurry the survivors.

Example Encounter 2: A single powerful monster
Positioning: The Mantis stuns the enemy, limiting their offensive options and making them easier to hit.
Protection: The Tetori flanks the enemy, and uses the Disarm/Grapple chain, limiting the monster's offensive and escape options.
Performance:The Drunken Master uses Drunken Strength, Flurry, and Ki Strikes to deplete the monster's HP.

If Monks can do it, you can do it too!

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What if Paizo embraced the whole idea of "imbalance" instead of shunning it?
It seems like there's already the groundwork for it in the "common, uncommon" ranking system. What if, instead of making access to Uncommon weapons/spells a racial thing, they made it a power level thing.
Kind of like MtG does with the Pauper format. That way, when the GM is making the campaign, they can say something like "commons only," or "everything is allowed" to keep the power level a little tighter.

Leedwashere wrote:

I think this is a perfect penalty, because it doesn't negatively impact your ability to contribute if you continue to try to take part in the fight, but makes you consider the looming specter of death as the consequences for doing so.

Not all penalties are created equally, and the stick and the carrot don't have to be used to the exclusion of the other. You can use a little bit of both to adjust behavior as well.

I must confess, I didn't get a good look at death/dying until last night. I really like the Wounded(X) condition! It looks like it puts a super-cool importance on mundane healing.

Leedwashere wrote:

I don't think there should be inherent bonuses just for being at full HP.

I get where you're coming from.

With Monsters having (on average) more HP than PCs, and by extension, a bigger buffer of "almost-max" HP, I could see that being brutal too.
Leedwashere wrote:

I think totally free healing is uninteresting and would have a detrimental effect on the game by removing one major area of opportunity costs.

I'm not sure if I agree with you here.

I don't know a lot of character concepts that hinge on healing.
Outside of martyr builds, (who really care about healing options, because healing increases both their distance from Unconscious and their expendable resources, it's like if Wizards gained more spell slots every time they got healed.) I don't know if anybody really interacts with the system besides providing healing options.

Joey Cote wrote:

I find it far more believable that anyone would choose to wear actual armor instead of a set of robes when heading into danger.


I feel like one of the big differences between Pathfinder and DnD is that Golarion is a lot grittier than the Forgotten Realms. This, combined with mundane healing actually being good, creates a really interesting world, where even those with magic power still rely on more "mundane" solutions to some of their problems.
I'd draw the line at weapons. I don't want my Wizards needing magic crossbows to contribute, but I'm fine with armor being the way most people in the world protect themselves.

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Obligatory SoP plug:
Spellcasting is already a feat system in Spheres of Power.
What we should really be doing is just dispensing with Vancian Magic, and using something that fits with the rest of the world.

We should brainstorm ways to solve this.
Penalizing characters for reviving.
I don't like this one, but it might work. If you get another penalty every time you go down, there's a heck of an incentive to stay upright. But I think that the playerbase would probably just shift to figuring out ways to remove the negative condition.

Reward characters for having higher HP.
This one's really interesting.
I could really see this being the spot for some super cool Morale bonuses. The best part, you don't have to worry about condition removal cheapening this. Definitely more "carrot" than "stick." As an extra bonus, you could use this to replace item bonuses (since HP scales with level)

Give everyone ways to sacrifice HP:
I mentioned Martyr builds upthread, and while that would be an interesting way to encourage healing, I'm thinking that PF2 is a little too deadly to want to sacrifice MORE of my HP.

Bake healing into the characters themselves:
Someone mentioned this upthread, but I kind of like the idea of having characters slowly reheal if they aren't taking damage. It removes the need for a healer, makes battles more dynamic (the real strategy would be to cycle who's on the front lines so that your other guys get a chance to heal). I'd point to high-tier MOBA play as an example. But on the other hand, I could see this slowing down combat pretty badly.

If I remember right, there was a ton of conversation about why everyone picked CLW over all of the other cure spells. The answer I thought made the most sense was one of action economy:
HP really only did one thing (outside of specific Martyr builds):
When you ran out of HP, you were Unconscious and out of the game. When you had HP, you could do things to help your team out, no matter how much HP you had.
So, four characters at 20% health actually had a lot better chance of winning a fight than one character at 100% health.
But this creates kind of a Whack-a-Mole problem.
See, movement in PF1 was kind of restricted, which meant that monsters and PCs kind of just paired off and swung until someone died. So even if you would rather that a monster was hitting you instead of your buddy, you couldn't really switch places if you didn't want to eat an OA or two. So, it turned out that instead of trying to spread the damage out among a few team members, it was easiest to just revive the PC once he hit 0 HP.
Of course, it would be best if you could give enough HP to your buddy that you didn't have to heal him every round. But the healing options at the time didn't really keep pace with the damage that a Full-Attacking monster put out.

Hmm. In past editions, the +4 Str -2 to all mental stats is a little problematic. It's just a little hard to look at that and call your non-Orc martial optimized.
However, I like the idea of making them a core race. ESPECIALLY if it sets a precedent for playing as other "monstrous" races.
I've had a player who has wanted to play Vampires for a while now, but Pathfinder doesn't support Vampire/Lycanthropy/Undead very well.

I like it!
I was thinking on making some kind of "baseline estimate" to compare homebrew, but it seems like you beat me to it.

Good to know!

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thenobledrake wrote:
Lyee wrote:
Let's take Burning Hands as an example.
Unless you are suggesting spells be re-written along these lines and the idea of cantrips as an always-available spell option be removed from the game, all you are doing is taking an already powerful character and giving them even more power...

I just on a thread that was 16 pages of "casters are super-nerfed, especially the ones that want to do damage"

There were people that said that casters needed the nerf, that it was the direction the game needed to go. There were people that said that it went way too far, and that it was making the game worse for them.
But you're the first people who I've heard say that casters are super powerful in this edition.

I'm not disagreeing with you, casters in PF1 were super powerful, and it makes sense that they'd be powerful here, too.
But as someone who doesn't get to play much (1/month is a long time to wait) I'd just assumed that what this other thread was saying was true.

Is there any evidence, or any anecdotes, of casters doing really ridiculous damage?

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Hmm. Now that I'm thinking about it, PF2 could be a fantastic rules system for running Spheres of Power. It has scaling already built into the core class mechanics, and the class feats look a LOT like the sphere talents. Maybe that's the direction the magic should go. It was pretty popular in 1e, and now that Pathfinder is completely breaking away from DnD; we could convert pretty cleanly.
Can someone from Drop Dead confirm that they're doing this?

If I remember right, you usually are a member of the Sisterhood of the Golden Erinyes (So... Lawful Neutral unless you're playing Hell's Rebels or something)
I think it's from the Inner Sea line of books.

Also, Swashbuckler is Dex/Cha based, right?
And Core Monk is Wis/Dex/Strength based.
This might be a problem, as you are dependent on five stats.
I don't know if Core Monk can use the Scaled Fist archetype but if you can, Scaled Fist is dependent on Cha instead of Wis.

I mean, you could take Hamatulatsu (Might be misspelled) and Improved Critical.
Your Crit Range still won't be the greatest, but your Unarmed Strikes will deal Piercing Damage, and if you make enough attacks, you're bound to Crit sometime, right?

I'd love to see a guide for the Ancient Lore Keeper!
Ghost Sound, Mage hand, and Prestidigitation are all really good spells; Touch of Fatigue is kind of flavorful, but it isn't very useful (Unless you fight a LOT of Chained Barbarians).
I personally suggest Ghost Sound, because casting it as a Level 1 spell will make the DC higher.
Mage Hand and Prestidigitation are still both solid options, though.

I personally enjoy playing Core Monk, since I can optimize more without ruining the experience for everyone else. The flavor is fine, I think. It's mostly just that the "Monks are worthless" meme scares everyone off.

Are you wanting to have a whole bunch of different pools to use, or do you want to have one big pool that you use for everything?
Also: are you trying to focus on a specific stat?

The combo that I heard there was that you abuse the really vague definition of "enemy," so that you can tote around a box of rats, shake them up so that they get angry, and then kick the Ki out of them.
It's pretty cheesy, but at the same time, you have to play a Core Monk. So I'd probably let it into my game if anyone ever wanted to actually play a monk.

666bender wrote:

theres is a monk that alos good at draining, espeically when able to crit.

Yeah, Hungry Ghost Monk, or something like that (Don't have my APG on me)

If I remember right, you get Ki points back when you kill enemies, but there might be something about regaining health, too. You have to use Core Monk with it, but it's still the best option.
I remember hearing some noise about a third-party "Vampire" class at one point, too.

Could you link us to the archetypes?
My google-fu isn't up to snuf today.

Oh, Nice ninja!
Yeah, Sneak Attacking at range is tough but it can be done. Another build that our party Sap Master abuses: Light Crossbows with Training Arrows provide a decent ranged option until they can get to melee range.

If your GM lets you variant multiclass (from Unchained), I would suggest you grab Oracle. Life Oracle is a really fantastic healer, and might be worth your time over Channel Energy.
Also remember: On-the-battlefield healing is not all that useful. You can use it to stop your buddy from dying, but if they aren't in critical condition, I would suggest focusing on condition removal with your Mercies instead.

The Range Limit (30 feet for the Un!Rogue), lack of a stat-to-damage (Un!Rogue's Finesse training only works for melee weapons), lack of feat/weapon support, and lack of full-attack options make this really tough to pull off. Plus, you take a pretty painful penalty to Stealth checks.
That said, I could see a Dagger-wielding switch-hitter working decently. I might also see an Elven Longbow Rogue working okay, but it would be really MAD.

The Half-elf Summoner FCB is good enough that I banned it in my games.
An extra evolution every 4 levels is a pretty big power boost to an already powerful class.
Unless I'm reading it wrong?

I really enjoy the look on the rogue's face when I set up a really great combo for him. He gets to roll all these dice, and thinks it was all his doing.

MerlinCross wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
Lady-J wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
So while she *wants* to, for example, piece by piece remove all the skin from a captive who made her angry and feed it to them
that is still an evil act and she would fall

There's a pretty big difference ethically between "I want to do a thing, so I do it" and "I want to do a thing, but I stop myself because I realize that it's wrong and I do not do the thing" though.

Like if you get really angry, and you want to hurt someone really badly, but you choose not to, you're not evil because of what you felt. One's actions are judged moral or otherwise, less so their private thoughts.

Again Wrath of the Rightous brings this up as a plot point. "I feel drawn to evil but I want to do good". Fighting back against the impulses brought on by teaching or even race in order to do good is indeed a trope/idea. Heck that's built into Teiflings and Changlings. Half Orcs at times too.

This is a really good point... And I'm totally including Paladins in my next game.

But in Golarion, people can read your thoughts. I feel like you could make a case that planning a heist or thinking horrible things might qualify as "evil" and Paladins kind of bleach their minds during training to protect themselves.

This game looks fantastic.
Can I join in, or is it too late for that?