Hellknight

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I've used it for portraits to use in Foundry, particularly the Theatre Inserts module, because having faces of *some* sort on screen to correspond with characters does a lot to help everyone keep track of who is who. I don't particularly trust it with actual writing, though. Using it to generate names seems doable, though there's plenty of more tradiional name generators that can actually pull from Golarian lore to get lore-friendly names. Dungeon Alchemy as a program seems interesting as that's probably the only way I'd bother with 3D maps, a way to quickly b!~!$!&$ battlemaps, but I'm not entirely sure how much of that is "AI" versus having a reasonable handmade algorithm for defining room types and making sure things like food are placed on top of plates. I enjoy making maps in applications like Dungeondraft so I'd rather spend the time to make something that's actually designed to be fun to play in and has a bit more thought put into the visuals, but I can see someone wanting something prettier than older dungeon generation tools.

Basically, it's not great at anything, so its applications are gonna be limited to when the alternative is gonna be even worse, like my shaky hands trying to draw something. That works out pretty well for home games, but obviously nobody wants to pay money for something an "AI artist" made (and then there's the broader issues of companies salivating at the thought of not needing to pay artists, or at least holding AI over their heads to argue for lower compensation).


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If I went with "what sounds better to run the game with" rather than a strict RAW interpretation, I would say that runes ought to be recoverable from destroyed items, for the purposes of not making destruction be essentailly worse than character death. You can roll a new character if your old one died and not be horribly behind in WBL, but if a player invested a ton into an item that then is destroyed then they're so far behind in WBL that they might as well kill off the character and roll a new one. The counterpoint to this would be "well then just make sure they get more treasure to compensate" but then why not just have the runes be salvageable in the first place to avoid the plot contrivances? Old sword got melted, go buy a new one and put the magic into it.

Runes are magic, they can function however we need them to function to make the game fun. They got introduced for the same reason, to make it so players could theoerically use whatever weapon or armor or shield or whatever they wish like a family heirloom and have it grow with them.

For the purposes of destroying evil Macguffins, requiring rituals to actually destroy them (and the magic in their runes) is in keeping with popular fiction and requires enough intent that either the players are doing it to an NPC or hte GM is really out to ruin a PC's day.

Buying a new base item still isn't cheap and you're still unable to use the item until you reach a settlement where you can buy a new one. It also normalizes the cost when running with Automatic Bonus Progression, there's not as wide a gap between ABP and vanilla games for when an item gets destroyed.


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keftiu wrote:
Also: the difference between grabbing a random picture off of deviantArt to serve as a character portrait and having an AI spit one out is that you can still source the former. There's no credit given to the giant bucket of artists whose work is being ripped off by the algorithm - to say nothing of how many chatbot evangelists claim the end result is an original work of art they themselves made.

it's about as sourceable as a de la soul song, which also is grabbing the IP of many artists. lots of songs have very short samples that haven't been identified, lost to time. and that doesn't really change that at many tables, people don't source their portraits because nobody at the table cares. what good is the "theoritcal" ability to source artwork if it's not exercised and nobody bothers to go look it up?

this isn't an objection based on material harm done to artists, it's still just moralizing art, and it still has the same problems of applying NFT logic to home games and ignoring the actual core of the issue which is labor relations to capital. cory doctorow has gone on about this topic in a way that's pretty convincing, adopting this myopic IP-centric argument against AI absolutely will be used against artists as companies simply use their vast, vast troves of IP to train "ethical" AI anyways that, in practice, is basically indistinguishable from the "unethically sourced" AI but still does the same material harm of reducing the wages of artists. a linked list of artists the AI probably drew from doesn't make that any better.


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keftiu wrote:

If you can point me to one that uses an ethically-sourced data set instead of stealing from uncredited artists en masse, I'll be nice about AI stuff.

Until then? I'm not interested in what a blind algorithm spits out by ripping off people. It doesn't help that the folks who like it are some of the loudest evangelicals on the internet today.

sure, but again nabbing character art off of google images has been the norm for decades. iunno why just now suddenly we should all start pretending the neoliberal conception of intellectual property matters for home games, as though the only "ethical" ways to have character art for a game of adult make beleive are to either draw stick figures, go to art school, or comission artwork for hundreds of dollars. being so bold as to run an unauthorized IP as a setting for a game liek Star Wars or Pokémon is right out too because oh no we don't own that intellectual property either.

the issue with AI art comes down to that of labor, of companies using AI generation as a way to discipline labor and drive down the wages of artists. framing it in terms of IP only benefits those same companies, 'cause guess who owns those IP's? even imgur could easily add a "you must affirm you have permission to upload content to our website and consent to its use in AI" or whatever and turn this whole IP-based argument against AI against those same aritsts, just as the moral panic over sampling only benefited record labels instead of protecting any artists.

if we were talking about anything commercial, where artists are actually being screwed over in the name of increasing some company's margins on a product, sure, there's an actual public interest. but when we're morally condeming the use of AI art in literally home games then it ends up boiling down to either moralizing art or reifying the same horrible copyright laws that we would normally recognize as the abusive tools of the wealthy to pretend that it's possible to own ideas for the sake of extracting money out of everyone. like at the least we should be able to say that there exists certain s0paces, like home games, that at least morally exist outside The Market™ and that it's OK to ignore IP law and that it would be bad to introduce such invasive IP standards that it's not OK To pretend your character is Darth Vader or use some s@~%ty facsimile of his likeness. we have all been "stealing art" to use as forum avatars and character portraits and character concepts for decades, don't give up this private space to property law too.

tl;dr don't take up NFT logic trying to argue that it's morally bad to use AI art in private for completley noncommerical purposes


Pathfinder's always kind of made using other settings a bit of a pain in the ass, it's not really made with other settings in mind. The gods all have bespoke benefits for their clerics, including weapon proficiencies, that have reasonably significant build implications which makes homebrewing a whole new pantheon annoyingly involved. So it's often easier to at *least* copy paste those exact gods over. There's also a decent amount of Golarion specific feats, though none of them are particularly vital and are easy enough to just blanket disallow (and you can optionally make your own feats for your own setting's factions both to serve directly as player options and to sneak in some lore dumps they'll actually read).

I don't miss much about 5e but I do miss its assumption that that one system will be used with completely different settings with completely different tones. Golarion sorta is like that, but it ties everything into a kitchen sink setting. It's a very fun, rich kitchen sink setting that has enough variety that you can pull off most campaign concepts without needing to use anotehr setting, but you've got steampunk gun twirlers bordering fantasy Russian peasants under the tsar. It's not quite as great as being able to go for a completely new setting, unattached to over a decade of Golarion lore, with its own history, its own ancestries, its own cosmology, etc. In a future edition I hope some stuff is altered to make homebrewing new settings a bit easier and that maybe Paizo puts out a second setting to go with it.


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I do like the idea of moving away from the tag altogether and focusing more on the actual heuristic Paizo's been using to judge whether something ought to be a monk weapon. Avoids the need to throw "monk" on anything Asian and lets people use weird weapons that represent unorthodox martial art traditions from around the world.

I do think a thing to consider is the ergonomics of actually building a character with such a change. If a more complicated heuristic is needed, tags help people quickly visually filter what is and isn't relevant without leaving too much room for error. But the problem is having a tag literally applies a label. Maybe if the tag is literally applied to *all* weapons that meet whatever heuristic, that would avoid the tag having that orientalist bent... at least so long Asian weapons aren't pigeonholed into being foreign, exotic advanced weapons with lots of traits while European weapons are more straightforward damage dealers (and more often represented on optimized builds as a result) because they're "normal."


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In general I dislike people shutting down discussions with baseless assertions that their feedback does not matter. I'd rather have a thread of people trying to interpret the game and its balance and that maybe not bearing fruit than have a thread spend its first posts arguing about whether to even have the thread in the first place. I know the Roll20 forums used to explicitly disallow this, though they had an upvote system to more organically decide which threads deserved attention without any need for naysaying to weed actually bad ideas out.

It's hard to know what scope of changes are even on the table for the alchemist. It's always been in a rough spot as the first class that did magic without spell slots in this system, and despite its reworks it's still often seen as not quite there. Some of the feats, at hte least, certainly need to be reworked; as mentioned earlier, spending level 18 feat for something that situational that also has a ton of conditions on top of it is just wey out of line with what other classes are able to do with their own level 18 slots. A level 8 feat from another class would probably beat that out, almost regardless of build, that's not a good place for such a top shelf class feat to be.


Ascalaphus wrote:

If I look in the current CRB in the introduction, there's a series of steps to build a character.

Page 22: pick a concept
Page 23-24: overview of ancestries and classes
Page 25: anatomy of the character sheet, followed by select your ancestry.
Page 26: pick background and class

So you've already had a moment to see ancestries and classes together, along with ability modifiers for both of them. So first you review the ABCs, then you actually pick your ABCs.

So for anyone who actually reads all that, they get everything you're asking for. You're worrying about strict handholding the people who didn't read the initial handholding.

The issue is that the advice that everyone simply review the entire system before making any choices isn't going to work for people that prefer to follow a list to learn the process in chunks. "But the first step says you gotta read the whole book first" isn't really a gotcha, it's just not how someone already overwhelmed by the system is going to handle it. It's an option, sure, bit for those specifically coming in without prior TTRPG experience and want to follow a step by steo guide where step 1 isn't "drsw the rest of the owl", there's gonna be an order of choices that'll minimize the need to revisit steps and make sure a new player has a guide in front of them for their character ss soon as possible.

I don't think it's that uncommon to run into people who go through lists in numerical order when trying something new, I'm not entirely sure where all these "they should form thr entire concept on their head first" comments are coming from. If you're doing that then this thread isn't about you, it's about a different set of needs whose accommodation will not harm you.

If someone is claiming ABC is an easier order going into the game for the first time for whatever reason, I might disagree (boiling down to C having good advice that would be hydroxyl to know early on) but like at least that is still actually focusing on accessibility, there it's still an understanding lots of people need an ordered list. It's not dismissing the idea someone might want or need that accessibility tool at all.


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The Raven Black wrote:
I did miss the description of the Holy and Unholy traits in the Remastered Core Preview. Thank you.

I'll certainly be disappointed if the possibility of having morally bad Holy and morally good Unholy characters is written off. Those are reasonably popular tropes in media, bad guys with holy aesthetics or even "good" gods themselves being villains as well as brooding anti-heroes who question the moralizing nature of calling this or that "evil" based on some line drawn or association with a particular thing that has no actual moral weight. At the very least, having options like tieflings or sorcerors that have some sort of Unholy power that makes them a little weak to Holy attacks without that requiring them actually be villainous is the sort of interesting option I'd want on the table, ways to dip into stereotypically evil things without running into the problem of being Henry Kissinger in a party full of Anthony Bourdains.


pixierose wrote:
Not to mention If I recall the first actual step is concept, which would/should vaguely include what kind of stuff you vaguely want to do.

The issue is that, for a player who is reliant on the order of steps because they're reading the book for the first time and don't know anything about Pathfinder, they *can't* really form a meaningful concept because they have no context for what the system will permit. It's still a good first step to alert more experienced players that it's unimportant which you actually do first, but it's not really a relevant step for someone that is trying to, line by line, learn how to make a character for the first time (possibly in any RPG ever) and then play their first game. After all, anyone with enough GM experience has probably ran into new players who do in fact start with a concept only to get really, really frustrated when a system doesn't actually *support* that concept. You can't conceptualize being an angry little cactus person with a tiny wooden battleaxe until you are at least aware Leshys are an option and that Barbarians are a class, and if you conceptualize without browsing any options you might get really attached to an idea of a necromancer summoning an army of undead without realizing that's not an option in this game. For someone that can conceptualize and build along that plan, the order of the steps is irrelevant.

And besides, even if they *do* start with a concept, they're still gonna need to pick one of the three things first - so it's still helpful to suggest picking the class first for the reasons I'm laying out.

Dancing Wind wrote:
It's pretty explicit that there is no one way to develop a character. A 'suggestion' is not a 'rule'.

Sure, but I don't think anyone's implying that it's a rule. I'm talking about making it more ergonomic, changing the suggestion to make the process a bit faster and easier so that from the earliest possible step they've got a build guide helping them make the rest of their choices. A lot of people learn things by going down a list and sticking to it, building their character like one would build a Lego model from the instruction book, so ordering things in a way that makes that easier helps that kind of player.

Ascalaphus wrote:
My main advice would be "you aren't locked into your choices when you flip to the next chapter". Making a character should be a process of going back and forth. After looking at classes you might have a new take on ancestries. After looking at ancestries you might want to revisit your class choice.

That is indeed very good advice and worth reiterating. However, I don't think the issue is that most new players aren't able to intuit they're allowed to do this, my concern is rather that having to redo steps is likely frustrating and annoying to new players, if they even know that they should (because their attribute array ends up being really bad because they picked at random because they didn't know what they all did or have that class guide to inform them of a reasonable build plan).

That is, it's likely faster and easier for a new player, with fewer instances of backtracking, if they start with their class. Think of how many times a new player's got fewer boosts than they're supposed to have because they forgot they didn't add their attributes from the prior step yet but then changed their mind and took them away anyways (basically giving themselves a penalty) to respec it, needing you to spot their mistake. That's easier to avoid if we order things to mitigate the need to go back a step.

Another benefit of starting with class is that if it's the first step, then even during a session zero where everyone is making their characters together where some people will be faster at it than others, it means that class choice is more likely to be a collaborative decision. Everyone is picking their class at the same time, so it's easier for the group to sort of coordinate if they wish - even if they're new to 2e, they likely have the basic idea of what a balanced party in an RPG looks like and can at least avoid stepping on one another's mechanical toes too much. That might not be important for all tables, but I find that most groups I've played with naturally tend to want to do this anyways, or at least one player is really concerned about "being what the party needs" and would benefit from knowing what everyone's picking up front. It's also an opportunity for more experienced players to share information on the available choices when they aren't already busy focusing on their own character.


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The Gleeful Grognard wrote:

I argue that for the majority of players they either:

A. Have system knowledge enough to not be hindered.
B. Are so new they are probably better off choosing an ancestry and then background before class, because both help form the idea of a character for a new player.

I mean, I'd say a class also helps form the idea of a character for a new player. It just also has the advantage of working out more smoothly and more naturally resulting in a reasonably functioning character if someone is learning the system step by step, since knowing what a Key Ability is and what yours is more naturally guides even brand new players to getting that 18 in their attack, rather than the kinda common sight of a new player picking attributes that are irrelevant to their class because at the time they didn't know what that class would be.

The class entries in general have useful build advice for novices to know which attributes to prioritize, so then when they go to pick their ancestry they might know to opt for the variant boosts without having to backtrack and redo any steps, and might have a better picture of what ancestry feat will complement their class. And then leaving the background for last lets that step do its job of being flexible, filling in the gaps from the prior two steps rather than a player investing in a lot of INT before they notice their class's advice says that INT isn't very useful for their class.

I'd say that starting with ancestry + background is actually better left as more of an advanced thing, something a player might want to do if they've got a picture in their head already or are already familiar enough with the system to go looking for a class that might work well with it, or are otherwise experienced enough that they can handle their attributes not being quite as optimized as they should be without struggling too much during 2e's more difficult early levels.


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Magus not having INT definitely fails the vibe check. When I think of a magus in the Pathfinder/D&D sense, I'm thinking of a warrior scholar, a sword in one hand and potentially a spellbook in the other. Mechanically, I'm sure there's different ways to either justify having INT be important/at least reasonably optional, but if the Magus class is not actually benefiting from having the highest or one of the highest +INT bonuses to the booksmart skills then it undermines the fantasy of the class. I'd be fine with maybe having different mental attributes for different spellcasting traditions in a rework, like a divine magus to have RAW way to capture that classic 1e divine nuker paladin archetype, but having *something* to make them feel more like they're a legitmate caster that just so happens to also see value in stabbing people and has blended the two practices together I think is important.

PossibleCabbage wrote:
I mean, if I'm GMing and someone told me "hey, Arcane Cascade doesn't work" my response would be "sure it does" and I hope we could leave it at that. Please don't argue with me that your stuff doesn't work.

Even if your response was correct - which I really don't think it is, though I'm sure how you assume it works is perfectly fair and functional - not taking the time to explain to a player that is struggling to understand how something works is going to create problems, both in terms of play when they inevitably end up using their abilities incorrectly (if they didn't know after reading it and possibly looking online for an answer, how would they learn the correct interpretation if you were unwilling to share it?) and socially. Responding to genuine concerns, even those you might think are silly, is either going to clarify it for your player or make you aware of something, since just being the GM doesn't mean you know the rules perfectly either or aren't capable of learning something new.

Which makes Arcane Cascade's ambiguity annoying, because it certainly is frustrating for a GM that has assumed the rules function on a basic level to then need to make a call on the mechanical balance of a class with likely zero context. It would be nice if Paizo would pick one of the common interpretations and just said "until the Magus rework comes out, just go with this for now."


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I know it's not quite as cute as having an ABC character system (Ancestry, Background, Class), but virtually anyone with any experience in nearly any RPG will advise their players to pick a class first instead of an ancestry. Sure, ABC makes sense in terms of chronological order of events - you're born, you go through life, and then you become a level 1 adventurer - but in terms of making life much easier for new players, most should be picking a class that looks fun/cool and then]/i] picking an ancestry and background.

This puts the most mechanically impactful decision first and lets a new player use that Key Ability to guide all their other decisions, without needing to go back and redo certain steps because oh it turns out this background doesn't gel with the class I picked or the ancestry feat I picked out like that first step told me to is kinda redundant considering my class or I should have gone for the variant boosts because the ancestry I liked has a penalty to my class's Key Ability.

I know it won't ever really be changed in PF2e, but maybe by PF3e we could make that small change to set players up for success, especially those that really need a step-by-step list to learn. Obviously anyone can do any of the steps out of order, but that requires a certain level of confidence that a player not used to very crunchy RPG's might not yet have, and since they are unlikely to have any set preferences about the "right" way to make a character that's a prime opportunity to nudge them closer to what seems to work for [i]most people.


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I just want more class archetypes, in general. A lot of what attracts someone to the idea of a class is a vibe or mechanic, but then something else about the default assumptions of the class contradicts that. Pf1 had a ton of class archetypes that allowed you to play pretty radically different versions of a class, to the point where they were basically a new class made that just hapoened to share some ideas from the base class. If people insist on having "Wizard" on the tin because they want an INT based nerd that reads so much they learn to do magic, why not make class archetypes to that end that make the class better suited to a simpler playstyle but keeping the basic identity and feat pool? If people don't like the Psychic for having the wrong vibes, I think you can port the mechanical gist of it to a CA to plamt on an arcane class.


For blasters, at least, you can use hueristics to restrict a spell list. Fir a warcaster archetyoe, it could be something like only cantrips that do a minimum of 2d4 damage baseline or 1d6 per spell rank for slotted spells, or thereabouts, with thw intent to permit some level of additional rider effects to still have sufficient spell variety, and them adjust from thete for wonkier spells that are obviously primarily damage but fail that heuristic.

You could then provide a list of spells that you have preconfirmed are OK using that heuristic (so players have an easiwr time browsing) and then say to use the hueristic for any new content.

Harder to do for fuzzier themes, which is probably why the new wizard schools are so wishy-washy with GM fiat.


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The only errata Power Attack might need is a name change, both to avoid potential OGL nonsense (it's such a generic name that I doubt it'd be an issue anyways, but maybe Paizo already changed it out of an abundance of caution) and to better communicate what its purpose is so people don't feel disappointed that it isn't good at things it was never meant to be good at. It's meant to work around resistances or otherwise exploit temporary buffs or opportunities that only impact a single Strike, it's not meant to be (nor does 2e's design goals permit) a general bread-and-butter attack that you try to do as much as possible. The only exception to this general design principle is the Flurry Ranger.

The only "buff" I'd offer to 2h builds is more feat options at level 1 that are maybe generically good to better exploit that they don't really need any feats to work well. Maybe feats that explicitly only work well with 2h non-reach weapons and not 2h reach weapons, since the drop from d12 to d10 damage IMO isn't by itself enough to compensate for the many advantages reach grants you. Reach fighters are really the most visible "OP" end of the current Pathfinder meta whose only real drawback is the very slight damage nerf relative to non-reach weapons and the lack of a martial d10 hammer or flail reach weapon, since stunlocking with that crit effect is so powerful. But since the latter is confirmed as being nerfed into something far more reasonable, I could see an argument that a Fighter feat to make taking a greatsword or greataxe be a bit better would make some sense. Maybe in the form of feats that temporarily grant you Reach that won't stack with existing Reach weapons.


The Raven Black wrote:
Sanctified-only Champions is still my greatest fear as far as Remastered is concerned.

Gorum paladins, who are just really decent people in a way that's unrelated to their religious appreciation of combat. Alignment being shown the door opens up a lot more interesting takes on how people approach religion in the setting.

Also, please, for the ironic love of God, RAW option to not have a god as a champion and that not mechanically matter. Don't make people have to negotiate this with their GM and bring up their reasons why, make it so people can just show up to the first session having never mentioned it and the GM never commenting on it.


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WWHsmackdown wrote:
Unicore wrote:

I will only make this one post in this thread and then leave it for folks who want to homebrew new options for their own tables, but this very much is a homebrew thread.

The remastered wizard is long done at this point. Asking for things like new and more interesting schools, focus spells and class feats is still something that could result in new printed options, and there is a possibility of archetypes like Elementalist, Rune Lord, cathartic mage, and Dragon Disciple being offered as ways to hone in specifically on thematic ideas, but that isn't about remastering the wizard, a process which, for better or worse, was done entirely in house with minimal direct and specific feedback from players.

So I don't really know how to treat this like "something more positive," for players frustrated at the decisions made about the wizard remastery, because nothing anyone posts here possibly could change the wizard remastery, even if it was the best, most universally loved idea possible. The best case scenario for class-based changes to the structure of the wizard here would be a homebrew class that became exceedingly popular amongst players, but it would still need to be homebrew first at this point.

Squaring up like a linebacker towards all dissenting opinion is tiring to watch, Unicore, and that's coming from soneone who agrees with 70 percent of the stuff you say.

In their defense, it is useful context to know Paizo's not going to implement any of this in time for the Remaster so people aren't getting their hopes up, though yeah in general I dislike people trying to shut down/derail discussions others are finding useful.


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With alignment being removed and "good" and "evil" no longer necessarily lining up one-to-one with being holy or unholy, I think a post-Asmodeus conflict in hell could be a lot more interesting and have more nuanced personalities that players could care about. The holy gods could also be less than perfect or have a genuine prick amongst their ranks that's aligned out of cosmic convenience rather than any sense of genuine benevolence towards mortals. Holy gods politcking to make sure their favored ruler of Hell gains power sounds like ripe fodder for drama, or at least Sarenrae cooperating with some sympathetic devils to sneak some souls out of Hell. Or maybe a holy god becomes unholy to fill that power vacuum in what they think at the time is the most expedient way to avoid a bloodbath, suffering the rejection of their old allies and the distrust of the other unholy gods.

Also gotta agree, it'd be disappointing to see Lamashtu go right when alignment's gone. Without being labelled as either good or evil per se, there's a lot more room for nuance with her that I would appreciate.


Blave wrote:
Not a thing right now. Might be a thing in the remaster, though. Always felt weird that fighters and champions in light armor can't use one of their class features.

Melee DEX fighters are already getting some better feat support, so it makes sense for that to be part of shoring up on what's admittedly a somewhat underwhelming playstyle for fighters. I don't think archer fighters/champions would be too strong if they got this and it does avoid that bad feeling of letting a class feature go to waste.


Responding to a criticism of how culture is portrayed in 2e with mechanical advice like "just don't take the clan dagger" is completely missing the point. They're clearly not a player who simply doesn't want a free knife.

Tolkien freely admitted he based his dwarves on (his assumptions about) Jews, so it's a bit like how orcs carry a lot of baggage from Tolkien's (also freely admitted) anti-Asian racism. It's more complicated than the situation with orcs as there's a massive shift in how he portrayed dwarves between writing The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, 'cause WWII happened and a lot of the passive antisemitism he absorbed as a very British dude was put into a horrific context. He did actually get a lot better in his lifetime and of course he famously told a Nazi publisher to f%~@ off.

So with that context, having a cultural practice that all dwarves do regardless of heritage can be seen as questionable, especially when the specifically Jewish-coded ancestry is the one sticking out with this ancestry-wide practice. Not every criticism about these sorts of things has to be "a sky citadel" to be worth at least talking honestly about, OP is not accusing Paizo of being antisemites and reacting to a fairly tame criticism with this kind of defensiveness is more embarassing for the community than just accepting that untangling TTRPG's from a problematic past is tricky. It's the sort of thing Paizo already prides itself on trying to do, so it's completely unnecessary to try to derail it by calling it bait and responding in bad faith.


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Mathmuse wrote:
maffs

Another factor in that as the gap between a character's attack modifier and non-attack modifiers and MAP increases, the more value a character will likely see in spending all three actions on attacking. This would likely reduce the tactical complexity of the game, with fighters and gunslingers in particular getting absolutely absurd crit ranges that make not attacking even more punishing.

With more spread out boosts capped at +5 at 10 and +6 at 20, characters would have stronger defensive stats, namely HP, that would probably still be problematic, just not in the sense that monsters are getting critted into oblivion but rather that they'll struggle much more targeting the no-longer-weak saves of players and needing to deal a chunk more damage to boot to deal with the increased player HP. Not as dramatic an issue, but like maybe monsters would need to be a level higher than normal, at least once you get past level 10 and the extra attribute boosts come into effect.

Feragore wrote:

I like the double-boosting idea, but it was pointed out to me that taking the double-boost at 10 means you can only boost 3 attributes. If you are reasonably MAD that you care about 4 attributes, or have two dump stats, then this system would force you to boost the 5th stat you don't care about.

Consider a heavy-armor champion that decides they have no need for DEX or INT. Starting with a 4-2-2-1-0-0 array, they can boost STR/CON/CHA/WIS, then STR/CON/CHA/WIS again at 10 for a 5-4-4-3-0-0 array at level 10.

With double-boosting, they're forced to take a dump stat as they can't invest in STR. So their boosts look like CON/CHA/WIS/INT and STR/STR/CON/CHA for a 5-4-4-2-1-0 array at 10th.

While they get the extra 5th stat from levels 5-9, it's not something this example cares much for, so they end up with a weaker array at 10-14, losing out on their 4th priority stat.

You normally may not increase an attribute above +4.

Beginning at level 5, you may spend two boosts to boost any one attribute twice, up to a maximum of +4. You may only do this once per level up.

Beginning at level 10, you may spend two boosts to boost your key attribute from +4 to +5.

Beginning at level 15, you may spend two boosts to boost up to a maximum of three attributes from +4 to +5.

Beginning at level 20, you may spend two boosts to boost your key attribute from +4 to +5.

---

So to show my work:

Level 1
Base starting array: 4 2 2 1 0 0

Level 5
My system: 4 4 3 2 0 0 (legal RAW array, just start with 3 3 2 1 0 0)
RAW: 4* 3 3 2 0 0

Level 10
My system: 5 4 4 3 0 0
RAW: 5 4 4 3 0 0

Level 15
My system: 5 5 5 3 0 0
My system, alternate: 5 5 4 4 1 0
RAW: 5* 4* 4* 4 0 0

Level 20
My system: 6 5 5 4 1 0
RAW: 6 5 5 4 1 0

---

Now it should be one-to-one With RAW. The restriction on doing it once per level up is necessary to avoid it being possible to have a 4 4 4 1 0 0 array at level 5 with a two free boost ancestry, which RAW isn't possible (and that's one of the things I like about RAW, forcing you to have a reasonable spread of values for attributes). My older restriction that it only be available if you can't otherwise boost four different attributes was more complicated and ultimately unnecessary.


Raiztt wrote:
Here's the question: Will by game explode into a fiery conflagration if I just say all stat boosts are +2, period.

I'm assuming you're referring to ability scores like 14 or 16, not the new modifier only system. It results in some odd behavior as characters can get a higher attack stat earlier if there are no level requirements, and if it isn't capped at all it definitely breaks the existing system with absurd crit ranges, it will likely increase player HP considerably as players have a lot of extra boosts that they can pump into attributed they wouldn't normally prioritize. Medium armor basically loses a decent chunk of its niche as it becomes much harder to avoid levelling DEX, heavy armor still has the +1 AC and Bulwark to justify itself. Certain claases and builds that do not have their key attribute as their attack stat like Alchemist and Ki Monk get a considerable buff to their accuracy. MAD classes in general get a big buff.

Not unworkable, fine as a house rule if you understand the effects or otherwise feel the things it buffs (and by extension relatively nerfs) need the buffs. Free attribute respecs om level ups are a similarly simple to write out houserule that won't disrupt the balance beyond what is possible RAW.


Feragore wrote:

I like the double-boosting idea, but it was pointed out to me that taking the double-boost at 10 means you can only boost 3 attributes. If you are reasonably MAD that you care about 4 attributes, or have two dump stats, then this system would force you to boost the 5th stat you don't care about.

Consider a heavy-armor champion that decides they have no need for DEX or INT. Starting with a 4-2-2-1-0-0 array, they can boost STR/CON/CHA/WIS, then STR/CON/CHA/WIS again at 10 for a 5-4-4-3-0-0 array at level 10.

With double-boosting, they're forced to take a dump stat as they can't invest in STR. So their boosts look like CON/CHA/WIS/INT and STR/STR/CON/CHA for a 5-4-4-2-1-0 array at 10th.

While they get the extra 5th stat from levels 5-9, it's not something this example cares much for, so they end up with a weaker array at 10-14, losing out on their 4th priority stat.

If we dropped the "can't boost four different attributes" requirement and just let you do that at any level, would that fix that? With the cap for double boosting being +4, I don't think this would let you get any array that isn't already legal, so maybe that was an overly cautious restriction to begin with. Maybe restrict it to doing it only once per increase if it's otherwise possible to get four +4's early.


Super Zero wrote:
Helmic wrote:

You normally may not boost any attribute above +4.

At level 10 and any level thereafter, you may spend two boosts to boost your class's key attribute from +4 to +5.

At level 15 and any level thereafter, you may spend two boosts to boost any attribute from +4 to +5. You may only ever have up to three attributes at +5 or higher.

At level 20, you may spend two boosts to boost your class's key attribute from +5 to +6.

If you ever cannot boost four different attributes due to these maximum limits, instead of spending two boosts to boost an attribute to +5 or +6, you may instead spend two boosts to boost one attribute from +2 to +4, +1 to +3, +0 to +2, or -1 to +1.

And what is the gain from using this far more complicated system?

Aside from being a completely new system and not a Remaster of the existing system, a lot of these proposed alternatives are... really complicated. And don't get any benefit out of that complication.

It's not far more complicated. It's the same as has been discussed, except boosting to +5 and +6 still costs two boosts, there's a cap on how many +5's and +6's you can have based on level (matching the current system), and there's an option to double boost a lower attribute. Only the quoted bit here is the actual rules, the rest of it is simply a side by side comparison to show that it gets (almost) the exact same results as RAW but without any dead levels, so it's not doing anything the system cannot currently handle in terms of balance. It's about as simple as the skill rules while eliminating the need to track anything like partial boosts between level ups.


You normally may not boost any attribute above +4.

At level 10 and any level thereafter, you may spend two boosts to boost your class's key attribute from +4 to +5.

At level 15 and any level thereafter, you may spend two boosts to boost any attribute from +4 to +5. You may only ever have up to three attributes at +5 or higher.

At level 20, you may spend two boosts to boost your class's key attribute from +5 to +6.

If you ever cannot boost four different attributes due to these maximum limits, instead of spending two boosts to boost an attribute to +5 or +6, you may instead spend two boosts to boost one attribute from +2 to +4, +1 to +3, +0 to +2, or -1 to +1.

---

A breakdown of how this compares to various RAW strategies. An asterisk (*) denotes the baseline standard optimization plan for a level 20 character that wants a +6 in their key attribute. Bold compares the "best" arrays at each level, assuming you want the highest key attribute. Italics compares arrays going for 3 +5's at level 15, a more all-round array that's probably the best option for any characters playing from 15-19. Please point out any errors, I rechecked everything but I may have made a typo somewhere.

Level 1
A typical minmaxed array with a 3 boost / 1 penalty ancestry: 4 3 2 1 0 -1
An array arranged for 3 +5's at level 15, RAW: 3 3 3 1 0 -1

Level 5
My system, going for maximum maxed out attributes: 4 4 3 2 1 -1
* RAW, going for as many maxed out attributes as possible: 4* 4 3 2 0 -1
RAW, maximum overall boosts (optimal spread): 4 4 3 2 1 -1
RAW, going for 3 +5's at level 15: 4 4 4 2 0 -1
My system, recreating the above by starting with the same array: 4 4 4 2 0 -1

Level 10
My system: 5 4 4 3 1 -1
* RAW, going for as many maxed out attributes as possible: 5 4* 4 3 0 -1
RAW, maximum overall boosts: 4 4 4 3 2 0
My system, maximum overall boosts: 4 4 4 3 2 0
RAW, boosting to 5 and then no longer using partial boosts (optimal spread): 5 4 4 3 1 -1
RAW, going for 3 +5's at level 15: 4* 4* 4* 3 0 -1
My system, recreating the above by starting with the same array: 5 4 4 3 1 -1

Level 15
My system: 5 5 5 3 1 -1
* RAW, going for as many maxed out attributes as possible: 5* 5 4* 3 0 -1
RAW, maximum overall boosts: 4* 4 4 4 3 1
My system, maximum overall boosts: 4 4 4 4 4 1 or 4 4 4 4 3 2
RAW, no longer using partial boosts: 5 5 4 4 1 0
My system, attempting to recreate the above array: 5 5 4 4 1 0 or 5 5 4 4 2 -1
RAW, going for 3 +5's: 5 5 5 4 0 -1 (not exactly the same)
My system, recreating the above by starting with the same array: 5 5 5 3 1 -1

Level 20
My system: 6 5 5 4 3 -1
* RAW, going for as many maxed out attributes as possible: 6 5 5 4 1 -1
My system, but eschewing a +6: 5 5 5 4 4 0 or 5 5 5 4 3 1
RAW, maximum overall boosts: 5 4* 4 4 4 2
My system, maximum overall boosts: 5 4 4 4 4 3

---

So you can see that these arrays are very close to RAW, able to use the best option from RAW at each level, no dead levels. Where the arrays differ the most is when going for an extreme all-rounder - my system is able to spread its attributes more evenly and doesn't ever get stuck putting a useless "partial boost" into something at level 20 when you have no possibility of turning it into a "full boost." I'd argue none of this introduces any more power than is already possible in the system, even on the same character if the GM is permitting respecs.

The exception is when going for 3 +5's at level 15. 5 5 5 3 1 -1 is very slightly worse than 5 5 5 4 0 -1, lots of classes will make use of four different attributes. Granted, my system is able to reach those 3 +5's without permanently sacrificing the ability to ever get a +6, but it's still annoying to have a slightly lower save or whatever to accomplish that, and this whole thread is about avoiding that sort of exchange.

I'm trying to think of a simple rule that would make it possible to get that exact same array without overcomplicating it, so if anyone's got an idea lemme know. Of course, if this was made RAW then 5 5 5 3 1 -1 would be the minmax at that level and 5 5 5 4 0 -1 wouldn't exist and I don't think that'd be bad per se (whole point of PF2e's attribute system is to force some diversification after all), but I imagine someone would take issue with losing that specific array.


Unicore wrote:
I am more and more convinced that one of the new classes is going to be the “seneschal” and it is going to be a leadership/mob class. I am not really sure what the mechanics of this class are going to be, but I am imagining a class that has a/+ companion/s and does a lot of aura buffing of allies. My favorite theory for the companion is that it will be a troop to start off with. I think it is entirely possible that one subclass could be “necromancer” and the troup/ally is undead. My personal vision for this class is that the main stat is constitution, and that it does class DC aura effects based on constitution, but it’s secondary attribute would be cha or INT, and I could see the necromancer being an INT subclass that even possibly gets MC spell casting like an eldritch trickster.

I really like the idea of being just a dude with an army. Just regular ass soldiers you commamd who collectively are about on par with a single other member of your party. Just a guy with his homies at all times. Or hell, not even being the guy but just playing as this collective, leaderless mob, going into dungeons and just overwhelming anything inside with sheer numbers.


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Aside from the Holy/Unholy thing, the lowercase e evil part of it is that necromancy in Golarian does not nice things to souls and the fabric of reality that make it a very jerkass thing to do, regardless of your damage resistances, and so it immediately puts one in conflict with most other people. It's the classic problem of most players wanting to play Anthony Bourdain and one player wanting to play Henry Kissinger - the other players can't be Anthony Bourdain anymore because they're not actually Anthony Bourdain if they do not beat Henry Kissinger to death with their bare hands. If you're playing Henry Kissinger, everyone else has to make characters that would tolerate the presence of Henry Kissinger.

Which, as Captain Morgan said, is a big showstopper for something as complicated as an entire class. Their approach of making a troop summoner class that has necromancy as an option sounds like the most viable way to go about it, it's easier to have niche options that can't work in every party or campaign if they're not by themselves taking up pages and pages of rules that took months of design and playtesting to create.


Perpdepog wrote:

I wouldn't mind if resistances became somewhat more common, but I'd be disappointed if immunities started showing up more frequently. Making the game more tactical is fun, but not everyone is looking for that in PF2, and it's never fun to find out the thing you are wanting to do gets shot down. We already have folks grumbling over not being able to sneak attack oozes, and that's been going on for multiple editions.

At least with a resistance the party can bull their way through it if they really, really don't feel like being tactical, and that's a choice they're making. Immunities don't offer that choice and can really hamper some concepts based on what the immunity is; see all the fear over pyrokineticists for another example.

To answer the original question though, no. I don't think we'll be seeing a sudden glut of resistances and immunities cropping up. It's probable that you've seen a bunch because a lot of creatures in Rage of Elements are elementals, and they traditionally have a bunch of resistances and immunities, but the game isn't really built around giving creatures loads of both those things as a matter of course, and I don't see why that'd need to change.

I think the main problem there is that rogues, and martials in general, have limited capacity to change their damage type, and so if a monster resists or is immune to their weapon - and often their one weapon, as Bulk and runes make keeping a backup weapon impractical - there's little recourse, you're expected to just power through it. Slashing/piercing (currently) doesn't count because practically nothing takes more piercing than slashing damage.

But for casters, they can often have multiple damage types at their disposal, and being able to exploit weaknesses is kind of a hallmark of magic users in video games. If the weaknesses, resistances, and immunities are more about magical damage types, then it can help make spells like the new Ignition cantrip have a role as being both a melee damage dealer and a backup ranged option for dealing a damage type your main ranged option doesn't.

Still an issue for themed casters, if you've got a fire sorcerer you don't necessarily want to be resisted constantly, but at least if the class mechanically supports that theming there's often something to help you work around that to deal your damage anyways.

Squiggit wrote:
Unicore wrote:
I do also like more weaknesses for creatures, but I also enjoy some of the incorporeal creatures and the like that feel impossible to fight until you figure out what you need to be doing, or you happen to have a reliable way of doing force damage.

The problem I have with resistance based enemies is that often times you don't really have the tools to "figure out what you need to be doing"

When our barbarian runs into a ghost with high physical resistance, he keeps hitting it and just does less damage, there really isn't much else in his kit.

When our rogue finds an enemy immune to precision damage, there isn't really a new and innovative way for them to fight it... they just do a lot less damage that combat.

When our kineticist bumps into the wrong kind of golem, they just kind of don't exist that fight.

Treating resistances and immunities as puzzles only works if solving the puzzle is an option, and for many characters it isn't.

Alchemists and arcane/primal spellcasters are the only ones who can really do this freely, and the spellcasters need the opportunity to disengage and reset to pull it off.

PF2 characters, especially martials, are just not very versatile by design. So a lot of these 'puzzles' aren't really.

Hmm, yeah I'm starting to see the issue. Cantrips sorta work but unless a class has an option to (quickly) flex to the correct damage type it would be more of a "you have to sit this one out" ordeal, or a forced retreat - and I'm not seeing anything from the "retreating's good actually" arguments that make me think that's really what the role of resistances and immunities should primarily be.


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Unicore wrote:
One possible consequences of making the PF2 and SF2 rules very compatible, is that it will make a much more tempting for a computer game company to develop a solid core system that could be used to make games for either, running entirely alongside the ORC License with no OGL content to worry about.

This is indeed exciting, but I wonder if by the time such an engine would be made that people's interest would have already shifted to a PF/SF3e by then. Like a common take is that we're maybe halfway through PF2e's lifecycle and games take a while to make, especially games being made after a TTRPG that isn't even going to be out until 2025 or later is released. I know my interest in the Owlcat games was diminshed significantly because I just prefer the 2e rules so very much over 1e. Though maybe 2e being so much more robust than 1e means a longer lifecycle, and thus more time for video games to come out while 2e's still all the rage?


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PossibleCabbage wrote:

I don't understand getting disappointed about something not changing from how it has always worked.

Like if going from 18 to 19 to 20 in two boosts was a huge failure of design, I'm confused why we never saw people complaining about it before the remaster? Like suggesting house rules or something?

I'm not sure that it actually is difficult to understand, but it does require undoing a couple assumptions about why people are disappointed and then wondering why people have such imagined silly motivations for disliking it.

People here aren't *suddenly* disappointed that partial boosts are going to be a thing, for the most part we were always disappointed that's how the system worked and were really hopeful that this would have been touched up as part of the remaster alongside many of the more dramatic changes - changes that certainly are more of an issue for converting characters than any alternative boosting system would be, especially those that simply give you an effective extra boost to work with to one of your two lowest stats.

The discourse over the "it's just a box you check" thing is also similarly misunderstanding the issue. It is inelegant as I posted before, but a bit of inelegance in the name of balance is something I imagine most 2e players are OK with. It's an assumption that this is about character sheet space concerns, responding as though that's silly since it's just a checkbox, and then acting surprised when people are still saying they dislike the partial boosts even though I don't think anyone's actually making this out to be a layout preference.

What my and other comments keep pointing out is the dead levels problem, being asked to pay for a thing but not get the thing until much, much later (potentially months!) for a payoff that might not actually come to fruition, which is exacerbated by the system RAW not permitting you to retrain attributes (which itself is very weird, as it makes more sense to neglect weightlifting to study books than to forget specific information on how to do a technique in a feat). That doesn't actually do anything to balance having a higher to-hit stat with having a more MAD array, like the benefits a MAD array needs to justify itself over boosting your key attribute don't include temporarily having a higher 4th stat, and it's clearly not the only way to accomplish having the dimishing returns or even the specific pacing of increases we see in 2e. It's just... seems more like it was made to work this way to maybe justify having 12's and 16's and 18's instead of modifiers, or some other arcane reason that I don't think anyone at Paizo's really explained other than "we didn't think of anything else."

PossibleCabbage wrote:
And I've been arguing for Champions without patron deities since the playtest. Should I be disappointed when this doesn't happen in Player Core II?

...yeah. It's completely fine to be disappointed that something that would be a good option, that probably should have been an option from the start, isn't coming. I think that's a really important in general for player characters to have the option to opt out of religious stuff due to many players having IRL traumas from that, and I think it's worth bringing that up so Paizo's aware that's still a thing people want - even if that's easier to houserule, having it in the print means it has to be negotiated every time a player wants to opt out of that, which isn't something a player would always feel comfortable doing. Why frame this in terms of whether people should or shouldn't feel something, rather than the actual merits of the rules?

Rysky wrote:
This is why the GM sets up expectations about the level range of the campaign beforehand.

If campaigns went as expected, there wouldn't be an entire little cottage industry for GM advice and conflict resolution. People don't even finish single player video games a lot of the time and the only point of failure is yourself, barring genuine gamebreaking technical issues.

This amounts to little more than telling GM"s to "git gud" over an extremely common experience I'm sure you've dealt with yourself. Pretending that campaigns don't often end before planned isn't a very convincing argument that people shouldn't be frustrated that they feel they have to *plan* around their group falling apart to get their reward, it's just moralizing it as though only bad players and bad GM's would have any complaints. Campaigns can take years, and in those years things beyond anyone's control can happen, or it might be healthier for a game to end than to see it through to the planned ending. You already know that.


NielsenE wrote:
I think its some people were confused that cantrips had casting mod while non-cantrips typically didn't. so people were either forgetting to add on cantrips, or adding on regular spells.

I guess this does make sense to me, even if the averages they're using are maybe a bit low. But again, I think maybe the intent is for focus spells to fill in that niche somewhat? Hard to tell.


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I mean, not knowing your casting modifier is about on par with not knowing your strength modifier when you go to swing a weapon. It's simpler, sure, but not simpler in a way that I think actually matters for accessibility.

I think the reason may be that casters in general are going to be expected to cast a lot more focus spells and that those will be more of the bread and butter of casters, with cantrips being more of a backup option. But it's hard to guess exactly what the intention is there until someone from Paizo explains it to us.

This also I guess makes cantrips very slightly better for characters that are getting their spellcasting as a dedication, like a fighter that sometimes casts a cantrip to deal ranged damage - but that's still a bad idea overall as you need your casting modifier to be high to land the damn attack in the first place and throwing weapons and crossbows do that job better in such a scenario.


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Squiggit wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
I wonder what the reason for not letting people go from 18 straight to 20 (and so on) was to begin with. Like I know that if we did that now some of the math would break, but if they had done that from the beginning they probably could have accounted for scores as high as 28.

I think part of the idea is it creates a soft catch up point. It takes the same number of boosts to go from 10 to 18 as 18 to 22. So it limits how much vertical scaling there is.

I feel like hard attribute caps at certain levels would have been better though, since it would provide the same result while also making it easier to diversify, which is something PF2 kind of struggles with.

This is my logic as well. The system generally wants to make reasonably well-rounded characters that can do things outside of their combat niche (ie, strength-based characters can Intimidate worth a s$*@ because their 16/18 in CHA isn't unfathomably far behind the 20/22 in CHA a Sorceror might have, but if 28 was the cap then the difference between the two would be much more significant), so I *get* the diminishing returns, I just really dislike the mechanism by which they've been doing it.

I feel like it is an annoyance more people are aware of, but it's the kind of thing that you can sometimes get mocked for bringing up with how defensive the PF2e community is known to be at times. It feels bad, worse than "you're missing one out of your four boosts" may initially imply because it's more like you're missing a boost to your third least favorite stat, but it still feels too much like the marshmallow experiment where scientists gave children a marshmallow and promised to give them another one if they didn't eat it for ten minutes or whatever. You're stuck gauging on a meta level how likely it is for the campaign to actually reach a high enough level for your investment to matter, before either the campaign ends early due to in-game events or because of the inevitable churn of scheduling conflicts.

breithauptclan wrote:

This also seems like it is completely a 'feels bad' type of problem rather than an actual 'is bad' problem.

What exactly does an ability score of 19 mean anyway other than a partial boost between 18 and 20? Writing it down differently on the sheet doesn't actually change anything. I'm not sure why it changes how it 'feels' either.

It's not that it feels bad because it changed, it's that what we had already was bad (or at least feels bad) and it's frustrating to see that not meaningfully changed but also packaged in a less elegant way. The 18 to 19 to 20 thing I don't think should have been how it ever worked and I was hoping the Paizo team would have agreed when they went to do the remaster.


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Pathfinder Core Preview, page 3 wrote:

Attribute Boosts

An attribute boost normally increases an attribute modifier’s value by 1. However, if the attribute modifier to which you’re applying an attribute boost is already +4
or higher, instead mark “partial boost” on the character sheet for that attribute. If the attribute already has a partial boost invested in it, increase the modifier by 1
and uncheck the box. At 1st level, a character can never have any attribute modifier that’s higher than +4.

When your character receives an attribute boost, the rules indicate whether it must be applied to a specific attribute modifier, to one of a limited list, or whether
it’s a “free” attribute boost that can be applied to any attribute modifier of your choice. Dwarves, for example, receive an attribute boost to their Constitution modifier and their Wisdom modifier, as well as one free attribute boost, which can be applied to any other attribute.

When you gain multiple attribute boosts at the same time, you must apply each one to a different modifier. This means you can’t apply a partial boost to an attribute modifier and apply another boost simultaneously to increase it.

I was really hoping Paizo would take the opportunity of the new Core books to address the annoying problem of there being a five level stretch where players are expected to be down a boost in order to have a higher attack modifier later, a kind of exchange that the system overall tries to discourage. The "partial boosts" are also a bit less elegant than the original boost of 18 to 19 to 20 even if mechanically they're identical.

I would have much rather the math be changed up a tiny bit to avoid the need for having that awkward five level period. In practice all we really want is for players to need to spend 2 boosts instead of 1 past a +4 modifier, and to also limit how many attributes can be boosted in that way to force relatively well-rounded characters no matter what, the five level period feels more like a vestigal side effect of a clumsy attempt to accomplish that rather than something that Paizo intentionally believes is a necessary drawback to balance the power of a higher to-hit.

What I've been doing has just been allowing my players to just respec on level up regardless, including attribute scores, so it's not like there isn't a way to work around this, under the logic that if a player having four functional boosts isn't a problem from levels 5 through 9 and a player having a higher to hit isn't a problem at levels 10 through 14, then it shouldn't be a problem if a player goes through both scenarios. It's just mildly unsatisfying for the RAW method to still be so penalizing.


While this is obviously a good thing to keep in mind for optimization, I rather dislike that this is kinda how armor works in 2e. I hope in a third edition there's more built-in flexibility and control over your character's costume from 1-20, especially since class proficiency is what should actually be determining the bulk of a character's AC. If non-scaling feats are currently necessarily for balance reasons, I would like a third edition to be designed from the ground up to avoid the need for them altogether - if a player thinks an option is cool now, they shouldn't feel pressured to abandon that option later.


On the baseless assumption that we aren't going to get a ton of monsters who take more piercing than slashing damage, I think it would be good to just admit that versatile P on slashing weapons is effectively cosmetic (how often does anyone fight underwater?), give it to basically *all* weapons it would logically apply to (like the bastard sword) and give weapons that currently have slashing/piercing some other extra trait.

It's very annoying that the bastard sword can do the exact same thing as a greatsword while being 1 bulk lighter *and* being optionally useable in one hand, with the only "drawback" being that for some arbitrary reason it cannot stab. It's very, very unlikely you will ever need to stab with it, but the idea of that rare possibility coming up and telling a player "no, you can't stab them with your sword, it lacks the versatile P trait" seems silly.

I do like that it is d12 when two handed and d8 when one-handed, I think for it to do its job well in its niche as a weapon that grants you the option of swapping handedness it can't be sacrificing damage, but it should be missing out on some other trait or benefit in exchange for that powerful flexibility. Greataxes at least have sweep to differentiate them from bastard swords, but like the sweep trait probably isn't worth the extra bulk most of the time.


Perpdepog wrote:
That differs from, say, requiring a fourteen in a stat to take a dedication when a PC's starting array had that stat at an eight, so it could only reach fourteen when they reached level fifteen. That's when I enforce the limitations for retraining.

Even then, a character that has 14 in a stat at 15 after boosting it three times isn't actually any stronger than a character that has a 14 in the same stat the whole time. A 14 is a 14, the dice don't care how you got it. I fail to see how it's necessary to force that player to sacrifice a level 16 feat to take a level 2 dedication to keep the game balanced, much as I'm already skeptical that we actually need to have certain multiclass dedications require two different attributes be 14 in the first place. I'd even go so far aa to say we don't actually need attribute requirements at all for most dedications, not when there are already broadly accessible and broadly powerful archetypes already competing for investment.


Squiggit wrote:

It would be a more significant change but I feel like, especially since we're switching just to modifiers and not points, that just making 1 boost always +1, but you can't reach +5 until 10 or +6 until 20 would be fine.

It would change the math in that Inventors and Thaumaturges (etc) can catch up to other martials at level 5, and effectively give characters two extra boosts over the course of the campaign that would have to go into secondary/tertiary stats.

But I don't think those would necessarily be bad things, and tracking 'half boosts' in the new math would be kind of awkward and not necessary.

I still think it should cost more to get a +5 than a +4, spending two boosts per upgrade past +4 makes sense in terms of balance. It's just the need to reserve one boost uselessly for five levels, betting that the campaign will still be going in several months and that the payoff will be worth not having a boost to a vulnerable save, that seems to go against the rest of the system's design.

A way to do it is to permit one attribute to be boosted to +5 at level 10, two at level 15, and one to +6 and two to +5 at level 20, matching exactly what is normally possible currently. Each of these increases costs two boosts.

For the variant attribute boost progression rule, additionally no attribute can be boosted to 18 until level 5 except as part of chargen, to curtail the effect of getting a +1 to an attack mod much earlier than normal.


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Another relatively minor change - right now you have to increase a score from 18 to 19 and then 19 to 20, which is five levels where you effectively only have 3 instead of 4 boosts for no benefit. Which runs counter to 2e overall being very insistent on not giving you the option to suck or have less nice things now in exchange for power later, and RAW I don't believe you can retrain attribute scores.

It would be nice to have somw way to smooth that over, to delay the ability to get a +5 or +6 and have it cost more without having that awkward period. I currently work around this by simply letting people respec on level up for free, but it seems too inelegant to be RAW.


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magnuskn wrote:
Probably that gnomish Flickmace thing could go the way of the do-do, if I've followed discussions here correctly.

I was thinking smaller things than impactful balance changes, but I don't think that'd be necessary with the upcoming changes.

What made flickmace good was being a d8 one handed reach weapon whose crit spec knocked the target prone with no save, with bludgenoning damage type being really good too. The original nerf took it from d8 to d6 (so not maxing out one handed damage while also having an incredibly powerful weapon trait) while giving it sweep (apparently to make it feel more flail-y), but this didn't change that its crit specialization knocked people prone. Being able to knock enemies prone at reach is very powerful, and on a Fighter they're very likely to crit. But because the flickmace is one-handed and very easy to get due to its racial trait (racial advanced weapons are much easier to get than regular advanced weapons), you could either do this *and* have a shield, or more annoying you could hold another g$!@@%n flickmace in the other hand and just absolutely ruin an NPC's day.

Now that hammers and flails are going to at least require a save, I think that capacity to stunlock enemies will be reasonably addressed. Pretty much all the hammers and flails were annoyingly effective auto-picks for Fighters outside of specific builds that need a particular trait or weapon and this dials them back reasonably. The flickmace simply stood out for being the most obnoxious of these weapons due to its reach and damage output while also having a hand free to do yet more b!#~+$#+, but without the stunlock it's merely going to be good but not necessarily worth spending a feat or heritage on.


Feragore wrote:

I remembered studded leather isn't real, so that could go. Easily replaced by brigandine, which is near visually identical, but a real historic type of armor - the 'studs' are rivets that hold steel plates on the inside.

As a bonus, studded leather was even invented by WotC long ago so there's a case that it's OGL property and should be replaced.

Well, Gygax, but WotC would theoretically own the rights to it. Dunno if one can claim copyright over mistaken historical fact? Like Gygax apparently thought it was just legit armor.

Regardless, would be nice to have "real" armor in its place.


Hedge wizards are probably going to continue to be a thing even if there's literal schools, they'll just likely either be universalists of some variety, have come to a lot of the same conclusions as a formal school independently, or they've got their own school of some sort.

Wizards are definitely academic themed but there's romance in being a rogue academic whose theories are just on the cusp of being vindicated, or someone that was just that into books that they were able to teach themselves everything through experimentation and mugging other wizards with a gun for their spellbooks. The how isn't necessarily carved in stone, just what spells are available which has always been the case. It's just that now there's an academic establishment to rage against, where you've got a war magic school on your character sheet but your character didn't go to any of hte war magic colleges because f~~* those warmongers, you learned war magic from murdering them and taking their scrolls.

Civil engineering magic without formal education? You are the protagonist of a Well There's Your Problem episode.


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Tiny little things that maybe don't have a big overall impact but fix some annoyance you have. For me, I want leaning from cover to be codified as an actual action. As it currently exists, you *can* lean around cover for one action to attack (or for free if you're shooting through a slit or similar), but it's buried in the cover rules where it's hard to find and reference. Myself and players alike just assume that it would be an action if it existed and start thinking we misremembered it or something, only to find where it is in the rules after the session. I wanna be able to add that action to a character sheet in Foundry and just click it so everyone can see the rules and see the action being spent.


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Dragonbane999 wrote:

Bomber Alchemists need legendary prof. with alchemical bombs for the same reason gunslingers need legendary prof. in firearms.

Right now the most effective use of an alchemist's core class ability is to craft the bomb, and then to gain maximum hit chance, hand it to the fighter to throw.

Imagine the gunslinger only got master firearms proficiency. The core ability of the class to craft and use firearms would be best served by handing the gun to a fighter to shoot it.

An alchemist's ENTIRE IDENTITY is to make alchemical items. If they are not the best at using alchemical items (or at least tied for best), then the core class identity is broken (in a bad way).

You could get away with specific alchemical items being designed for certain classes that the alchemist itself doesn't have much use for, the same way haste is better to cast on the martial than yourself, but bombs are a core alchemical item type that the class has an entire subclass dedicated to, and which no other class has a specific focus on.

Even if we don't want Legendary proficiency per se, I think this is a core problem - it should not be more efficient to hand everything over to party members. Handing some things over is neat and cool, but the alchemist *has* to be the absolute best at chucking their own bombs, no questions asked. Whether that come in the form of action economy, proficiency, damage output, gold cost, new penalties, however it's achieved it's important that the Alchemist is the best at throwing their own bombs. That is a niche that needs protecting, even if another class comies around that's focused on throwing bombs that class should have some barrier that keeps their existence in a party from making the Alchemist feel implicitly pressured to give them their bombs.

It doesn't even matter if the Alchemist doesn't actually hand out their bombs or if it's not actually more effective to hand out their bombs, that the thought is crossing people's minds has an impact on the fun of the class. If someone suspects the fun thing they're doing is "greedy" and less effective, that feels bad for a lot of people. Making Alchemist players feel secure knowing that they're unquestioanbly the best at using the alchemical items they create lets them feel powerful, like any class should make players feel.


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Martialmasters wrote:
scrolling through this i just see a severe desire for massive power creep

I don't think that's a helpful response, it just amounts to accusing people of some moral fault for having a take on the game's mechanics you dislike. I think it would be better to talk about what you view as excessive power creep rather than insinuating people have some ulterior motive, as though nobody here is a GM that would obviously be running monsters against these PC options.


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The Raven Black wrote:
In other words, we will never again have debates about what Chaotic / Lawful means or should be.

I mean, getting one's politics from the cosmology of really old pulp fantasy can lead to some Jordan Peterson tier takes (CHAOS DRAGONS), with utterly incoherent ideas that aren't built from an understanding of material reality or history but instead from trying to squeeze reality into a taxonomy that was never *made* to reflect any aspect of reality.

I get enjoying it as an evocative prompt and I'm sure people can still make interesting characters by essentially pretending their character is actually one of the nine alignments, but the debates were mostly just people tying their brains up in knots and doing all sorts of mental gymnastics to do extremely bad philosophy. It was like a degree removed from horoscopes.


I remember the old justification for why nothing ever got to be proper Large, taking up multiple squares, at least with D&D was that battlemaps are only so big and PC's need to be able to fit through doors and hallways. I can definitely look at AP battlemaps and see plenty of chokepoints, and even with squeeze rules I could see issues arising from 5 foot wide hallways.

I also wonder how that impacts the versatility of these ancestries, as being Large grants 5 more feet of bonus reach as well as the four squares resulting in a pretty big area to lock down with reaction attacks. That's very valuable for melee characters and almost cosmetic for everything else. We saw art of a Minotaur caster of some sort, and I'd hate for them to have to be Medium because too much of hte power budget is going into this thing they aren't particularly likely to mechanically benefit from even though it's just innately cool to be big.

Also, I want level 1 iruxi/lizardfolk to get to be Large too. I want to be beeg, Paizo, I don't care if it's in nerfed form. Something about having a larger token than everyone else is satisfying to my lizard brain.


These new schools do a much better job of making these feel like proper subclasses rather than just an unthemed discount on particular types of spells. Being able to arbitrarily combine a suite of spells to create a whole playstyle, and perhaps add extra goodies on top to make a dedicated Blaster Caster wizard truly viable that would be OP were it available to a wizard that's going for the more classic God Wizard playstyle. Rules for making your own school would be great as well, to homebrew a particular school that the PC's will physically explore or that are otherwise a notable faction in the world.

Any Focus Point changes I think might also help with the pain points of the Flexible Spellcaster archetype, as currently having only two spell slots per rank is really, really limiting at early levels where you can't afford wands and staves to shore up on slots. I don't remember people talking too much about the higher level balance of Flexible Spellcaster, but if those early levels aren't as rough then I think that might better satisfy players that are coming in from 5e or just dislike Vancian but feel Flexible Spellcaster is too harsh a tradeoff.


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arcady wrote:

While that's a viewpoint...

It's also important to ask if anyone on that podcast was mixed? Or if they were just giving an outsider perspective that is no more valid than anyone else's.

Growing up with a Chinese name and being a quarter Chinese - It's been made brutally clear to me that I have no business speaking for or even alongside the Asian community. The only people who have ever asked me to speak with them as if I was one of them were the Chicanos where I grew up - and I'm not even Mexican American.

The topic of diversity of single-heritage people may seem similar to that of mixed heritage, but it's not identical. And some PoC need to back off from claiming they can speak for mixed folk like me just as much as White folk already know to do. They can speak 'about' me the same way someone might speak about a person of another heritage. But they cannot claim to speak for me or any other multi-ethnic person.

They are however, correct that in the USA 'White' is treated as a default. And in tRPGs, as an originally American product; Human has long proxied for that. Especially given how before D&D 4E came out there were very-few non-White humans in the 'd20' sphere of gaming. I remember being excited back during 3.0 when I discovered they had non-White elves in Faerun that were NOT Drow. Something I had not seen in older...

Everyone on that podcast was mixed race. It was a lot of people too, many who pushed back on the "half" thing because that obviously doesn't describe people's actual ancestry which can be much more than two things in equal parts. They brought up your point about being excluded from particular communities and seemed to conclude that's kinda b*!~%+*% and obviously they're not viewed as white just because they're black and Chinese.

Podcast more generally makes sure to bring on people with relevant experiences, so I find it pretty useful to hear things outside my own bubble.

Asians Represent!: Episode 43: Mixed Race Representation in D&D

Episode webpage: http://oneshotpodcast.com

Media file: https://cdn.simplecast.com/audio/7d9dff34-0e4a-4136-a13f-68a2f5c2d3dd/episo des/ded9a561-4e73-4e7c-ac3d-4be46c9fe17b/audio/9dc4b63f-7f02-49c8-8584-1144 245de304/default_tc.mp3?aid=rss_feed&feed=qj7mNz7k

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