Witch Doctor

John Lynch 106's page

RPG Superstar 9 Season Star Voter. Organized Play Member. 2,899 posts (2,901 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 12 Organized Play characters.

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Terrible things can be done in the name of a nation, not due to evilness by every person in that nation, but simply from a lack of empathy by the people of that nation for the victims of that evil. A popular culture example of this is Man in the High Castle (I found it quite chilling watching ordinary people in Nazi America and the nonchalant way in which they speak of the horrors that is being done. They would never do the horrors themselves, but they don't even blink when it's done on their behalf).

In Golarion this is how I liked to portray Cheliax and worshipers of Asmodeus. Not everyone in Cheliax eats babies. The church is evil. The true hardcore believers/nobility are definitely evil. But most people are simply apathetic. I had a PFS Inquisitor of Asmodeus (LN in alignment) and it was really fun playing him to that lawful neutral alignment to the hilt. He would often take LG paladins to task for the terrible (unlawful) actions they were advocating. People would start nodding along and the paladin would start to get a bit sheepish and then suddenly someone would say "wait. Which one of you worships a devil?" In Golarion 2.0 that PC is no longer legal.

So how can "nice" NPCs who worship Asmodeus be included in the game now that they're obligated to be LE? I was thinking of a Sheriff in Isger who rescued a halfling from being carted off back to Cheliax because the halfling was in fact not an escaped slave but a free person. That would certainly fulfill the "lawful" requirement of a worshiper of Asmodeus. But how would such a character fulfill the evil requirement?

Does the NPC have to kick X number of puppies per month in order to keep to their LE alignment and not slip into LN? The Core Rulebook says

Your character has an evil alignment if they’re willing to victimize others for their own selfish gain, and even more so if they enjoy inflicting harm.

This seems like such a cartoonish take on the evil alignment. A lot of people aren't going to stab everyone they can find in the back. Maybe it's just because I'm Australian and therefore inherently lazy (we don't even know our national anthem and we just pretend to mouth the words), but people just don't have the energy or motive to be constantly trying to get ahead. Similarly, most people aren't going to go out of their way to worship a very specific deity. They'll just worship the one their parents worship, the one their neighbours worship and the one the state tells them they should worship because doing anything else is too much effort.

So how does Cheliax stay a predominantly Asmodeus worshiping country without everyone having to constantly

victimize others for their own selfish gain


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I’ve got a one shot coming up, people completely new to Pathfinder. I decided to use a PFS module as I’m already GMing another campaign. I decided on Escape from the Grave. Simple premise, provides a dungeon-esque experience and is nice and easy to get into. It seems to have a good setup with consequences for taking too long in the adventure. Exactly what I want in an adventure.

However on page 10 we have the same information being provided to PCs with two separate DCs depending entirely on their level. There is no in setting reason for the higher DC if the PCs are higher level. The DCs are simply arbitrary and exist solely to provide level appropriate challenges.

Now I’m not running this as a PFS module so I can change whatever I want. But we are a few months into the new rules. We have several PFS modules, 3 AP books and one stand alone module. So we should have a good grasp on how Paizo is handling setting DCs.

So the question is: do the DCs match the in world reality of Paizo’s adventures? Or are they being assigned arbitrarily to provide level appropriate challenges?

If a reaction triggers when an ally is attacked and gives you a free attack against the attacker and you kill the attacker, does the triggering attack still deal damage? Is there a page number you can point me to that details the answer?

The Paladin’s Retributive Strike definitely requires it (because it triggers on damage dealt), but I’m curious on the overall general principle.

So here's a silly question: Does magic missile need line of effect?

I've always understood that magic missile just hits no matter what.

Magic Missile (evo)H: Pelt creatures with unerring bolts of magical force.
You send a dart of force streaking toward a creature that you can see. It automatically hits

I'm guessing the answer is yes all spells need line of effect. But has that always been the case with D&D? Or was that an introduction to 3e?

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Enworld has a preview of a couple of NPCs in the next Gamemastery Guide.

I like the surgeon. They have a unique ability that makes sense (and is a bit humorous) for their story. It also gives us a good idea on how to construct "high level NPCs" that actually have little to no combat ability.

The plague doctor on the other hand is a bit disappointing. It's just a cleric with the name "Cleric" scratched out and "Plaguedoctor" written next to it in sharpie. Is that what PF1e plague doctors were?

Overall quite interesting and I do appreciate the "surgeons are level 6 creatures for matters relating to surgery". I think that gives it a nice nuance that earlier editions of D&D-esque games have missed out on.

I've got my first PF2 game (and my first home game in 8 months) starting next Monday! It is set in Eberron and is going to run for 3 months to get the hang of PF2e and a better idea of how it works.

We had a slot zero/introduction session last week (we haven't gamed with each other before). Afterwards I sent out this campaign pitch to the players.

All the players were happy with it so I sent out this character creation guide. I'll aim to get a summary of our first session posted on Tuesday :)

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I put together this guide to determine what bonuses are possible across what level in order to see what DCs would be suitable to challenge the players. I also put in a list of spells that can be used to overcome mundane problems.

Feel free to critique and point out math errors :)

This was largely done for myself in putting together adventures. But I tried to polish it slightly so other people could use it if that sort of thing was of interest to them.

Just confirming that the Thorough Reports feat for Pathfinder Agent is a skill feat and can be taken with a skill feat slot. Is that right?

For the first time in many years (if ever) a permadeath game is actually possible straight out of the box without any houserules, thanks to raise dead and resurrect being uncommon.

So how do people plan on handling returning from the dead?

For me, I find the idea that anyone rich enough can simply pay their priest enough money and come back from the dead to not really be supported by the fiction of most settings (including Eberron). So I plan on having most of the mainstream religions flat out be unable to cast raise dead. They never learned the prayers required to cast the spell. They instead teach that every life eventually comes to an end and it is only natural.

If you want raise dead cast your going to have to find a cult to teach it to you (and they will have it as a prayer to a non-mainstream god so your cleric of a mainstream god better not be praying to that other god!). In this way sorcerers can learn raise dead, although it would come at a very high price.

However because I know after 40+ years people expect to be able to come back from the dead, I'll be making resurrect much more available. Druids would commonly know it and be able to share it. But books on ancient cultures and their religions would also be able to contain the ritual as well. So in this way, most people wouldn't have access to the resurrect ritual or think to look for it, but PCs will be able to gain access to it without TOO much difficulty. It has it's own downsides though (it takes a day) so if you want the convenience of raise dead you'd better hope for a sorcerer to convince someone to teach them raise dead ;)

It looks like darkvision no longer has a range and works so long as you have line of sight. Is that right?

I've introduced some substantial houserules into my conversion document for an Eberron setting notes. So I thought it might be more appropriate to put them in this forum.

You can find a PDF document here with my notes so far. You can also find a word version of the document here if anyone wants to modify it for their own group.

It obviously has a long way to go. What it covers so far:

Introduction that explicitly says this document is for tables with a fair bit of experience with Pathfinder 2e. I personally (with the exception for the Warforged ancestry) will not be using it myself until next year at the earliest.

Ancestries: I have split up ancestries into race (which represents the physical elements of the ancestry) and culture (which represents the non-physical elements of an ancestry). This is very incomplete at this stage. I have only done warforged, kalashtar (human heritage), elves, dwarves, the mror holds and the tairnadal so far.

Backgrounds: Specifically a background for all of the 12 dragonmarked houses.

Faiths & Philosophies: This has domains and favoured weapons for the main religions (and some minor ones) in Eberron. I have pulled content from 3.5, 4e and 5e to help choose the domains I chose. When Paizo produces more domains it might be worthwhile revisiting the ones I've listed and tweaking them as necessary.

Archetypes: Ghallanda Host and Jorasco Healer are two archetypes I've made so far. I would love suggestions on feats that don't rely on the dragonmark for either of these archetypes.

The document is deliberately light on lore and instead focuses primarily on mechanics (there are a few exceptions). It isn't intended to replace the 3.5-5e books WotC has produced and it contains a link to where you can find them if you do want more lore information.

I am open to feedback and suggestions on anything in the document :)

So we've got a lot of internet chatter about how the gnome flickmace is the best weapon eva!!111ononeoneoneone. Which anyone can access via the Adopted Ancestry feat. So what if we just removed the feat tax and made all ancestry feats available to everyone who is from a particular culture?

Here's what I'm envisioning (yes, it does remove the ABC that everyone loves).

SPECIES (a.k.a. PF1e RACE)
Your species determines your physiological properties. Typically members of one species cannot breed with a member of another species, although humans and elves as well as humans and orcs are notable exceptions.

You gain all of the elf mechanics and an elven heritage. In addition you gain access to the following elven ancestry feats: Ancestral Longevity, Forlorn, Ageless Patience, Expert Longevity and Universal Longevity.

You may select an elven feat in place of an ancestry feat so long as you meet the prerequisites.

Your ancestry represents the culture of your parents.

Forest Kingdom (e.g. Kyonin, Eldeen Reaches)
You are a member of a culture that lives close to nature and forgo the trapping of advanced technology. Druids are most likely common among your people.

When you gain an ancestry feat you may select one of the following feats: Elven Lore, Elven Weapon Familiarity, Nimble Elf, Outworldly Magic, Elven Weapon Elegance, Elf Step, Elven Weapon Expertise, Animal Accomplice, Burrow Elocutionist and Animal Elocutionist.

General feats work as normal.

Immigrant (GENERAL 1)
You are either an immigrant or your parents are immigrants. So long as you've spent more than a few years among people of the new culture you can select ancestry feats from that culture. This feat can only apply to one culture (giving you access to a total of 2 culture's ancestry feats).

Obviously in an ideal world you would rename everything from "Elven" to "Kyonin" but other than that all of the above feats would be available to anyone whose ancestry is that of the Kyonin kingdom.

So what's the point of the above? The advantages are:
* Allow players to better match the mechanics and the character concept. To me it's absurd that <insert large percentage of characters> are all adopted from <insert ancestry here> because they want that one feat that helps their character work. It's much more palatable for me to say that <insert large percentage of characters> are immigrants from <insert country here> because it reinforces the flavour of the PC rather than concentrating solely on the mechanics of the PC.
* It makes it easier to get the mechanics you want without a feat tax.
* It better represents racially diverse cultures.
* It removes GM fiat by the GM up front saying "these ancestral feats are physiological and are not available via the Adopted Ancestry feat".
* You could OPTIONALLY require certain archetypes be from certain cultures (e.g. Aldori Swordlord). So either they take the Brevoy ancestry or the immigrant feat.

So how do people think this will work mechanically? I don't think there's a balance issue due to the fact that Adopted Ancestry effectively means any single ancestry feat is available to any other ancestry. But I thought I'd check in case there are some unexpected issues I'm overlooking.

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I made some pregen characters and one was a Dex based TWFing Elven ranger, bulk was hard. Even without an adventurers pack I was still over my light encumbrance. I had to boost strength just for the minimum equipment needed to play a character with both melee and ranged options.

After 10 years of only worrying about encumbrance with 8 strength sorcerers (and even then only for the first few levels), bulk has made encumbrance easy to track and relevant.

That’s a good system IMO.

I’m putting together a one shot and I wanted to include a variety of situations to demonstrate the capabilities of the new game, teach certain rules and encourage tactics without creating fights that are going to be complete murder to a bunch of newbies.

One of the encounters is a pair of kobolds (or maybe goblins. Still deciding) hiding in ambush and waiting for the PCs to reach a certain point before jumping out. Unless a PC scouts ahead, the kobolds will be aware of their presence. How do I determine whether or not the PCs spot the kobolds before the kobolds leap out? Rolling initiative as soon as they enter the cave seems like the wrong answer.

Any help?

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So I was building up an eldritch knight with wizard as the main class, all excited about it. However with the removal of heroism from the arcane spell list and the fact enlarge person doesn’t include an accuracy boost, there is no way for a wizard to be workable as an eldritch knight.

Human Wizard 15 with Fighter Archetype (Eldritch Knight build)

STR 20
Dex 12 (boosted at level 15)
Con 18
Int 20
Wis 18
Cha 10

Reflex: +22 (succeed on a 14)
Fort: +25 (succeed on a 11)
Will: +25 (succeed on a 11)

Trained: Occultism, Forest Lore, Deception, Religion
Expert: Athletics, Society
Master: Arcana
Legendary: Medicine

Human 1) Versatile Heritage (Light Armor Proficiency)
Human 1) General Training (Medium Armor Proficiency)
Background 1) Dubious Knowledge
Wizard 1) Reach Spell
Wizard 2) Fighter Dedication
Skill 2) Courtly Graces
General 3) Heavy Armor Proficiency
Wizard 4) Opportunist
Skill 4) Quick Identification
Human 5) Natural Ambition (Power Attack)
Wizard 6) Basic Fighter Maneuver (Dueling Parry)
Skill 6) Continual Recovery (expert medicine)
General 7) Incredible Initiative
Wizard 8) Fighter Resiliency
Skill 8) Ward Medic
Human 9) General Training (Streetwise)
Wizard 10) Bond Conservation
Skill 10) Robust Recovery
General 11) Toughness
Wizard 12) Diverse Weapon Expert
Skill 12) Rapid Mantel (expert athletics)
Human 13) General Training (Fleet)
Wizard 14) Advanced Fighter Maneuver (Furious Focus)
Skill 14) Battle Medicine
General 15) Legendary Medic

Class Features:
Background (Hermit)
Arcane Bond
Arcane Thesis (Spell Blending)
Universalist Wizard
Lightning Reflexes
Magical Fortitude
Wizard Weapon Expertise
Defensive Robes
Weapon Specialisation
Master Spellcaster

+2 Full Plate AC = 35 = 10 (base) + 6 (full plate) + 2 (training) + 2 (rune) + 15 (Level)
+2 Striking Bastard Sword: +26 (3d12+5)

Spells (Spell Attack +26; DC 36):
Cantrips (5): Shield, Acid Splash (3d6+5, 4 persistent, 3 splash), Detect Magic, Light, Message
1st (3): Feather Fall, True Strike, True Strike
2nd (1): Glitterdust
3rd (3): Blindness, Haste, Haste
4th (2): Enlarge (5 mins +4 status damage), Invisibility
5th (4): Cloak of Colors (1 min blind effect when hit), See Invis (8 hours), Cloak of Colors, Cloak of Colors
6th (3): Chain Lightning (8d12), Collective Transposition, Chain Lightning
7th (3): Energy Aegis (resist all element 5), Freedom of Movement (1 hour), Fly (1 hour)
8th (3): Mask of Terror, Stoneskin, Stoneskin

Someone has kindly done the math on expected AC values based on the bestiary. Here it is: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1VQdXIJMMeNlkL1ta_b9q_iImAHoujDCYs1W aBJP-Rjs/htmlview#

At level 15 a wizard has a 55% chance of hitting level-1 foes. So against mooks he’s fine (especially if he flanks). Against an elite henchmen or a boss’s right hand man (Level+0) he has a coin tosses chance of hitting (50%) but flanking boosts it to be workable.

In an important fight against the boss (which could reasonably be as high as level+2) he can’t meaningfully contribute as a warrior with a 35% chance of hitting (45% with a flank). He will also be relying on the half damage (or equivalent) entry for his spells as the boss succeeds on anything between a 4-9 (depending on save). Real martials get a 10% accuracy boost on all the above numbers (with fighters getting even higher boosts) which while not great (except fighters), it’s still workable. This means the only way to realise an arcane caster that uses weapons is to multiclass into wizard and take a martial as your main class.

Has anyone spotted anything I’m missing?

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I'm currently thinking about using rarity to restrict what classes are available. Monks would be rare while barbarians, champions, clerics and druids would be uncommon. In order to get access to an uncommon class you must take a specific background.

Druids will be an old tradition that has been all but forgotten except by a couple of cultures (tribal humans and gnomes to be specific). To become a druid you'll need to take the "Priest of the Old Gods" background which is only open to gnomes and humans. By taking it, you are identifying yourself as a member of that culture. Barbarians will likewise have to be a "Warrior of the Northern Tribes" and that grants you access to the barbarian class and the fury, giant and spirit totems.

Dwarven clerics would have their own unique background, as would halfling clerics and human clerics. Taking any one of these backgrounds would identify which culture your character belongs to and grant you access to the cleric class and specific pantheon associated with that culture.

Champions would have two ways of accessing it. Being a knight (human only background) would certainly grant you access. Otherwise you could take the "Unexpected Hero" background (open to any ancestry). The difference between the backgrounds are that knights are typically the ones who become champions and that says a lot about their place in the world. However "Unexpected Hero" means that despite not meeting the normal requirements to qualify as a champion, you've done something remarkable in your background and so an exception has been made for you. This means the fact your a champion is going to be notable and will draw attention from a lot of people.

All of this is just to help cement what the classes represent in terms of the culture of the setting and what it means to be a member of that culture. Monks are not native to this particular area of the setting and so you can't even take a background to gain access. But that doesn't mean you can't become a monk later on. It just means it's more likely to be handed out as treasure rather than something that can be taken willy nilly.

Does anyone else have any ideas for how they plan to use the rarity system in their games?

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Not all of us have burned our PF1e books in a sign of devotion to the new edition. Some of us are still on the fence as to whether or not we'll move over to the new edition.

If for whatever reason you do decide not to move over to PF2e, what (if any) houserules will you make to PF1e that were inspired by PF2e?

Goblins as Core
So long as I'm using a homebrew setting I'm actually okay with goblins being in the homebrew setting. They'll take the tinker gnome archetype with gnomes representing the forest gnome archetype.

Leveling Up
Given (in home games) PCs are always at the same level, I like the idea of the XP required to reach the next level always being the same and XP is awarded based on how difficult the encounter was relative to the level of the PCs.
That's it for now. We'll have to see what the final rules are like.

In the playtest using any alchemical item typically cost 2 actions: 1 to pull out the item and 1 to use it.

In the playtest alchemist's fire deals 5.5 damage on average (+1 to all adjacent enemies) and takes up the victim's 3rd action on their next turn. Alternatively ANYONE can deal 7 damage on average + 2xStrength mod with the same action economy. Given how little value the 3rd action is touted as having, consuming the victim's 3rd action isn't really that meaningful. Oh yeah, and it costs 30 silver pieces to use alchemist's fire vs 0 silver pieces to purchase a club.

So just to summarise:
2 actions of alchemist's fire = 30 silver pieces to deal 5.5 damage on average (+1 to all adjacent allies), victim's 3rd action being gone.
2 actions of club attack = 0 silver pieces to deal 7 damage on average (+2xStrength mod)

Is it really worthwhile ever using alchemical items in combat without the enemy having a highly specific weakness? In Pathfinder 1e it certainly wasn't, and it doesn't look great for Pathfinder 2e. The only way alchemical items began to even come close to being competitive was through items like spring loaded wrist sheathes which reduced the action economy cost. But even then, they still weren't great.

Would it really be the end of the world if a GM ruled that pulling out alchemical items and using them only cost 1 action?

I was wondering if we have enough information about the classes to know whether or not the alchemist has enough healing to be able to be the primary healer in an ongoing campaign?

I know Mark Seifter had a barbarian (multiclassed cleric) as his healer in the playtest. But I was curious as to whether we'd learned anything more informative following the playtest and previews?

PF1e seemed to operate on a "level up once every 3 sessions" principle, as enshrined in PFS which had you level up after three 4 hour PFS scenarios.

Starfinder uses the fast XP progression which would make it look like it levels you up every 2 sessions?

D&D 5e operates on a once every session for levels 1-4 and then once every 2 sessions thereafter as enshrined in adventurers league (if you use XP level up system I believe it speeds up again at very high level).

Do we know how often you'll level up in PF2e? Is it going to be similar to PF1e medium XP chart or Starfinder/D&D 5e?

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I've been wondering how a Thassilonian Specialist could work in PF2e with opposed schools seemingly not existing anymore. When it occurred to me that they could be anathema to cast spells from the opposed school. I then couldn't work out what sort of benefit to give the Thassilonian Specialist (I thought maybe the Universalist Drain Arcane Focus ability but that felt a bit cheap) when it occurred to me that the Thassilonian Specialist might work out as an archetype.

Here's my attempt at it. In order to get the full benefit of being a Thassilonian Specialist it does cost you 4 of your class feats which is a pretty high price to pay. But it does net you 1 extra 8th level and 7th level spell slot and 2 extra spell slots for 6th level and lower which is fairly comparable to the PF1e benefit of being a Thassilonian Specialist. You also get 100% synergy and full access to the spells in your spellbook as the archetype keys off the wizard's primary stat and allows any spell from your spellbook to be prepared in your extra spell slots.

What do people think?

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I recently made a comment (that was subsequently deleted) that the fighter was full of non-choices as you level up in terms of class feats. I wanted to analyse each of the classes to see how widespread it is and to quantify what I perceive as the problem. So I looked at every class (except the Alchemist which is quite a mess at the moment with the last extensive overhaul. I need to read it carefully to understand it better) and below is what I consider to be the results.

Meaningful Choices at these Levels: 1, 2, 4, 6, 8ish, 10, 16, 18, 20
Non Choices at these Levels: 12, 14
Summary: 8.5 meaningful choices

Meaningful Choices at these Levels: 1, 4, 8, 14, 20
Non Choices at these Levels: 2, 6, 10
Summary: 5 meaningful choices (plus spell's)

Meaningful Choices at these Levels: 1, 4, 8, 14, 20
Summary: 5 meaningful choices (plus spell's)

Meaningful Choices at these Levels: 1, 2, 4ish, 10ish, 20
Non Choices at these Levels: 6, 8, 14, 18
Summary: 4 meaningful choices (plus spell's)

Meaningful Choices at these Levels: 1, 4ish, 6ish, 8ish, 10, 12ish, 14, 18, 20
Non Choices at these Levels: 2, 16
Summary: 7 meaningful choices (depends on build)

Meaningful Choices at these Levels: 1, 4, 6ish, 8, 10, 12, 14ish, 18, 20
Summary: 8 meaningful choices

Meaningful Choices at these Levels: 1, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 18ish
Non Choices at these Levels: 16, 20
Summary: 8.5 meaningful choices

Meaningful Choices at these Levels: 1, 2, 4, 6, 8ish, 10ish, 12, 14ish
Non Choices at these Levels: 16, 18, 20
Summary: 6.5 meaningful choices

Meaningful Choices at these Levels: 1, 2ish, 4, 6, 8ish, 12ish, 16, 18
Non Choices at these Levels: 10, 20
Summary: 6.5 meaningful choices.

Meaningful Choices at these Levels: 1, 4, 8, 10, 14, 20
Non Choices at these Levels: 6
Summary: 6 meaningful choices (plus spells)

Meaningful Choices at these Levels: 1, 4, 8, 14, 20
Summary: 5 meaningful choices (plus spells)

Logic Behind the Numbers
What I consider a non choice is where the options available are dependent on an earlier choice so that you are almost guaranteed to choose a particular feat. This is especially common for the druid. If you choose an animal companion as your order, you're pretty likely to choose all of the animal companion feats. So you've made 1 meaningful choice at 1st level which has predetermined your subsequent choices at later levels.

Where it gets a bit murky is when there are feats that build upon your earlier feats, but there are alternatives as well. Depending on how good the choices are depends on whether I considered a non choice or not. The "ish" (which I consider worth half a meaningful choice) is when only some builds locked you into a certain feat while other builds didn't for that level.

The above is 100% subjective. If you got me to do it again you'd probably get slightly different answers. But this is my best effort to quantify what is meant by the lack of choices.

Of the non-spellcasters the monk is best IMO. Only a couple of levels potentially lock you into a feat. Paladin and Barbarian follow closely behind with Ranger and Rogue. Fighter is the absolute worst class for having non-choices in terms of class feats IMO.

Of the spellcasters the sorcerer is the best demonstration on how classes can be improved to increase meaningful choices. Giving the sorcerer more class feats, even if they only have 1 feat to choose from, is great. Because it makes them more multiclass friendly. Cleric is the gold standard among spellcasters with the others following close behind.

How can Non-Choices Be Improved
My complaint of non-choices can be remedied, if not in the Core Rulebook then in subsequent releases. Every level where the feats have a prerequisite for a certain build or an earlier choice, introduce a new feat with the same prerequisites that provides a meaningfully different benefit that a player now has to choose from. That would 100% fix my "non-choices at certain levels" complaint and help start to move towards the more variability that we had in PF1e. It may not ever equal PF1e's flexibility, but it can certainly move towards it.

What that means though is that Paizo can improve the game and directly address this criticism simply by introducing more feats. Which is something I've dismissed prior to now.

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One of my biggest criticisms about PF2e (and I had this criticism before the rules were even published because I could see the direction Paizo were headed) was the DC by level table and the lack of guidelines on proper adjudication of challenges. People have also commented that Paizo's adventure also uses this table with little to no change in context for the narrative of the game (I haven't read the adventures myself so I can't say for sure how accurate that criticism is).

Looking at the guidelines for what should be an "easy" challenge and a "hard" challenge we have the following guidelines from Paizo:

An easy DC represents a minor speed bump for a group of the indicated level. The DC is so low that even the least skilled character of that level with a low score for the associated ability has around a 50% chance to succeed. These are good DCs for when a task is going to be rote for the more skilled members of the party. You can usually skip rolling and assume the characters succeed against easy DCs unless it’s necessary for everybody to try the check.
A hard skill DC, the most common in the game, represents something that an average commoner might not try but that adventurers attempt frequently. This DC challenges even characters who have strongly focused on the skill and can often be overcome by a character who has increased their modifier or proficiency rank. A character who’s really strong in the skill starts at around a 50% chance of succeeding but ends up almost certain to succeed at higher levels.
An ultimate skill DC is reserved for only the greatest of impediments. It’s so hard that even the best possible character succeeds only about half the time, though assistance from allies can improve this chance. Characters with less training have a far lower chance of success, and will critically fail much of the time. You should avoid using ultimate DCs if a failed check results in death, massive harm, or other dire consequences.

So looking at this through the lens of Pathfinder 1st edition I would say that someone who is "strongly focused" in a skill will have max ranks in the skill and it will either be a class skill or they'll have a high ability score bonus in the relevant ability score. Someone who is "the best of the best" will have it as a class skill, have a high ability score in the relevant ability and will have max ranks.

So looking at what a "hard" DC for a level 1 character would be in PF1e I'd say about DC 15. This matches up with the Update 1.6 DC table. In Pathfinder 1e I believe a hard DC increases by +1 per level, making a level 15 high DC 29.

An Ultimate DC for a level 1 character would take close to max ability score (+4 starting), a class skill and max ranks with it still then being a 50/50 chance of success. So at level 1 an Ultimate DC would be DC 19 while at level 15 it would be DC 37.

So with those sort of parameters in mind, I've converted a bunch of PF1e DCs into PF2e playtest DCs.

For anyone looking to convert other PF1e DCs the following logic is what I use:
DC 4 or less = Not worth assigning a DC.
DC 5 = Level 0 Trivial check (DC 7)
DC 10 = Level 1 Trivial check (DC 8)
DC 15 = Level 1 Hard check (DC 15)
DC 20 = Level 6 Hard check (DC 21)
DC 25 = Level 11 Hard check (DC 28)
DC 30 = Level 16 Hard check (DC 34)
DC 35 = Level 21 Hard check (DC 41)

+2/-2 modifier = +1/-1 level
+5/-5 modifier = +3/-3 level
+8/-8 modifier = +5/- level
+10/-10 modifier = +7/-7 level

You could do +1 modifier = +1 level. But I personally don't think that's how PF1e works which is why the I've not translated the modifiers for a straight bonus-to-level ratio.

Another way to convert DCs from PF1e to PF2e are:
PF1e DC....PF2e DC
DC 1-10 = PF1e DC-3
DC 11-20 = PF1e DC+0
DC 21-30 = PF1e DC+3
DC 31+ = PF1e DC+6

In another thread we had a couple of people say that combat takes longer the higher level you get. So for those who have actually played at level 12 and higher, did you find combat took longer than it did at level 1 to 5? What would you attribute that to? What level have you played up to?

So I was wondering whether or not any of the books detail any sort of timeframe for when things happen. Such as:
1) When did Destiny leave Androffan?
2) When did it reach Kasath?
3) When did Destiny first tangle with the Dominion of the Black?
4) When did Destiny crash into Golarion?

I'd be very appreciative for any help in time frames on these things as I'm trying to piece together a history for the world of Kasath in my Starfinder campaign. (I've finished the AP but never read the books).

I've started really sinking my teeth into Starfinder which means writing up timelines, fleshing out the skeleton we've been given in the Core Rulebook and Pact Worlds book and collating information together. Here's what I've got so far.

I've successfully linked Earth and Toril together with precise dates as to when contact occurred between those two worlds. I've also given us dates for when Toril entered the Spellplague (it was 5 years after Aroden's death as a big coincidence). The Age of Heroes essentially covers what has happened in our Pathfinder campaigns.

I've also got my writeup on Androids (previously linked) and now humans. I've only covered humans on golarion and akiton at this time. I'll eventually be looking at a writeup on humans for Absalom Station and the Azlanti Star Empire.

I did sneak in a little peek at the fact halflings (i.e. hobbits) are from Earth (known by their scientific name as homo floriensis). I've also included the fact that deep in the Indonesian jungles halflings still exist unbeknownst to the rest of us.

I'm not wanting any spoilers here. But I was wondering if the Gap is actually used in a way that substantially enhanced the story of this AP? Or is it simply a footnote (or perhaps not even mentioned)?

I'm looking at undoing the Gap next year and want to see how much Paizo's APs would be affected by that.

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So in book 2 of the Dead Suns AP (Temple of the Twelve Suns) we have a map of a few constellations of stars (including 2 unknown ones and a secret message) as they were when the structure was built.

We know that stars move over time and that over hundreds of years (and for other stars for thousands of years) their position in the sky changes. We have had 300 years to study how quickly they move across space (and while that isn't a lot of time for some stars, with advanced scientific equipment I expect it should be more than enough to know the speeds at which most of the stars move) and we know where they currently are. It wouldn't be too difficult to plug in those details into a simulator to work out how many years would have to pass to match their position as shown in the scientifically accurate Temple of the Twelve Suns (and it's specifically mentioned that the star map is scientifically accurate).

What does this do? Well it doesn't tell them how long the Gap lasted. But it does tell give them a maximum length of time that the Gap can't be greater than. If the GM was so inclined he could say that the Planelliar knows how much time passed between when he was stationed at the temple and when the Gap occurred (it would take a very rigorous mind to withstand millenia of monotony. I personally won't have that be the case. I'll have the Planelliar retreating his consciousness into a dormant state and basically operating on auto pilot until such time as some stimulus occurred for him to awaken from his vegetative state. But another GM could rule in a different direction if they were so inclined) and you then actually have an accurate start time for the Gap.

Finally we know that when the elves of Soyvorian emigrated back to Golarion (in 2632 AR) a group of them instead chose to travel to Ukulam instead. Now we don't know how long they were on the continent before they built their temple, so a GM would have to determine that (I'd probably say between 500 years and 1,000 years myself) and then work out how long that is until the present day.

Now all of this of course relies on GM fiat to allow the PC's to do this. A GM could simply say "No. The computer simulations for some inexplicable reason crash before they can return a result. It would take someone years to do it by hand and even then they go insane while doing so." But for me that isn't fun. If my player's go to the effort of carefully taking down the position of the constellation from the temple, go to the effort to compare that to where the stars are now, take it to a researcher and mathematician and get them to plug in the numbers to their simulator then hell yeah they should be rewarded with getting an actual answer.

So my question is: Does anyone see a flaw in my reasoning with the above? Or should it all work (with a GM whose willing to let his players do so assuming they think of the idea themselves)?

I was wondering what information is available on this planet (either rules system?).

I have:
Starfinder Core Rulebook
Starfinder AP #2
Starfinder Pact Worlds
Distant Worlds
Am I missing anything? Does Elves of Golarion have anything? Any other book out there?

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Jason recently pointed out that general feats and class feats are not equal. This (IMO) is a problem because the PF1e fighter has gone from being able to take 21 combat feats to only taking 11 combat feats. Furthermore a fighter's ability to take advanced weapon training and advanced armor training is also greatly reduced (if not removed) reducing the ability to customise your combat prowess even further.

I definitely think the game would benefit by beefing up General Feats. At the moment if I go to make a character chances are I'm going to avoid general feat and instead take a skill feat if a suitable one exists. As the list of feats grow my ability to avoid general feats will improve until I'm only taking skill feats and avoiding the category of general feats altogether.

To me having a category of feats that is avoided provides no value to the game. It's also causing fighters to be quite anemic when it comes to customising their combat options, which in turn makes other classes (such as clerics and bards) struggle in expressing themselves when it comes to weapon based combat.

Improving general feats would remove a category of feats that are taken only when forced and it improve how fighter's can customise themselves which in turn lets other classes potentially have more resources to use on combat.

Now I'm not saying fighter's need 21 feats. Many feats are no longer necessary (although by consequence everyone gets those feats for free now), but I do think improving general feats to be equal to class feats would allow more combat and magic specific feats to become general feats which would improve resources available for the clases to meaningfully spend.

Having feat options is great, but only when meaningful. And right now general feats are seldom meaningful.

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Some of us are missing parts of the game in the playtest that we have in PF1e: 3.5 style multiclassing, background traits and racial traits with alternate racial traits. Jason has said that these elements were often the most problematic because they allowed players to cherry pick stuff and make their character more powerful as a result.

Presumably these elements have been removed from the playtest (alternate racial traits kind of exist but are quite anemic. Although I do expect Paizo to increase it to 2 feats at 1st level, it doesn't really address my point which is racial traits were less fat then racial feats are and so offered more customisation because you got more of them. Same with skill feats vs background traits).

I was wondering how imoortant balance is to people and whether they would prefer less balance with more PF1e elements or if they're happy with more balance with less options.

My group cares about balance to a degree. We don't allow summoner in our games because we find them overpowered. But we do allow 9th level casters knowing that they are quite overpowered compared to say the CRB rogue.

Some of my group has played more balanced games that had less options for a while, but stopped playing them because we enjoyed the greater breadth of PF1e (and this was CRB PF1e vs multitude of splat books other game. So no. It's not a lack of bloat making us want PF1e). Others in my group just went straight from 3.5 to PF1e.

As I've said quite a bit my group is dissatisfied with the current rules and would happily accept less balance for more optipns.

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This is looking at the feat investment required for TWFing in PF1e vs PF2e. Many of the feats are just signficantly worse in PF2e because everything has been nerfed into the ground. This is not looking at that aspect and instead simply seeing what's required in order to invest in TWFing.

I am also not exploring the fact that in PF2e TWFing has been locked down to specific classes as I'm already harping on about that in other threads.

Baseline TWFing in PF1e vs PF2e
In PF1e You need the following feats to get baseline TWFing working:
1) Two-Weapon Fighting (Reduced penalty on extra attack)
2) Improved TWFing (extra attack) - 6th level
3) Greater TWFing (extra attack) - 11th level

In PF2e you don't need any feats to get TWFing working. However you will deal about -1 penalty to damage for a +1 bonus to attack rolls. If you do take Two-Weapon Flurry this gives you 2 extra attacks which is quite substantial, however it's at your worst attack penalty so the chances of them hitting are the same as a PF1e's +16 attack hitting. Not very good.

In PF1e a TWFer (shortsword/shortsword) and a Two-Handed Fighter (greatsword) are going to deal the same amount of damage however the TWFer will have less accuracy due to the -2 TWF penalty and a lower enhancement bonus on their weapons.

Double Slice in PF1e vs Double Slice in PF2e
If you take double slice in PF1e you effectively get +1/2 strength mod damage to half of your attacks. If you take Double Slice in PF2e you get to reduce your penalty with your off-hand weapon by an additional -4 for 1 attack.

Two-Weapon Defense in PF1e vs Twin Parry in PF2e
You get a flat +1 AC bonus in PF1e vs losing an attack in PF2e for a +2 AC bonus. The power level is certainly different but they fil the same niche in terms of effect.

At 16th level you can remove the action required to have Twin Parry running by taking Twin Paragon.

Two-Weapon Rend in PF1e vs Twin Riposte and Improved Twin Riposte in PF2e
You get a +2d6 damage bonus once a round in PF1e vs being able to effectively spend an AoO when someone critically misses you so long as you are under the effects of Twin Parry. Improved Twin Ripose gives you an extra AoO each round in PF1e terms that must be spent on the Twin Riposte action instead of a standard AoO.

Someone who wants to invest the bare minimum into Two-Weapon Fighting in PF1e needs 3 feats while in PF2e you need 0 feats. Although in either case the benefits of investing in TWFing is almost non-existant.

Someone who wants to specialise in TWFing will need at least 6 feats in both PF1e and PF2e.

I think this is fairly balanced out. I think there's definitely reasons to go a TWFer in PF2e vs a Two-Handed fighter.

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I've been uncharacteristically quiet of late because my group hasn't playtested, although at this point it's looking like they won't playtest at all.

When they started looking at the rules the chorus of "This is 4th ed" began which was expected. I was able to refute many of the points, notably scaling DCs. Thanks to the work I'd already done I could confidently say that classes who invest vs don't invest will have suitably different bonuses in their skills. I did concede a 16th level wizard isn't in danger of drowning in a calm pond, and then pointed out that the even in PF1e this hasn't happened ever. I then got "being a 20 year scientist can't magically swim" which I pointed out a 20 year scientist would be low level.

Monster math was mentioned and I reassured them it would be toned down so optimized experts don't have a 50/50 chance of success.

The biggest issue I couldn't counter was class feats. Having feats locked behind class and level is presenting a significant barrier that I can't overcome at this point. A lot of them feel like they shouldn't have a level requirement do so merely to bulk out the class options at that level. Power Attack (.and other feats) being limited to 1 class is also terrible from their perspective.

Current sentiments are:
* Character Creation feels like paint by numbers. Everything is too locked down and it feels like 4th Ed's builds are back.
* We might as well play D&D 5th edition. Sure it might not be any better, but at least we get to call spell's by their proper name (e.g. Bigby's Grasping Hand)
* We could always try writing our own adventures for PF1e.
* If I wanted a 4th ed-esque game I'd play Starfinder. At least then I get occasional cool weapons and can go around shooting things in space.

There may be some more opportunities to try to playtest PF2e and I'll keep advocating it. But at this point I can't get them past character creation.

My group's preferred cleric build is a battle cleric. We once had a player threaten to make a caster cleric and he decided to go an archer bard instead much to my disappointment. Our clerics will typically have weapon focus, power attack and heavy armor proficiency by level 5. With power attack now a fighter feat (and not that good of one at that) I was curious to see how a battle cleric in PF2e would work out.

Human (Acolyte) Cleric 15 of Gorum:
STR 22 = 10 + 2 (ancestry) + 2 (background) + 2 (1st) + 2 (5th) + 1 (10th) + 1 (15th) + 2 (belt)
DEX 12 = 10 + 2 (1st)
CON 18 = 10 + 2 (1st) + 2 (5th) + 2 (10th) + 2 (15th)
INT 10 = 10 + 2 (15th)
WIS 20 = 10 + 2 (ancestry) + 2 (background) + 2 (class) + 2 (1st) + 1 (5th) + 1 (10th)
CHA 16 = 10 + 2 (5th) + 2 (10th) + 2 (15th)

Actions in Combat
+3 Keen Greatsword Strike: +25/+20/+15 (4d12+6/19-20)
+3 Keen Greatsword Blessed Enlarged Strike: +26/+21/+16 (4d12+8/19-20)
+3 Keen Greatsword Heroism Strike: +27/+22/+17 (4d12+6/19-20)
+3 Keen Greatsword Righteous Might Heroism Strike: +28/+23/+18 (5d12+5/19-20)
Special: 8 times per day by spending 1 action a cleric can have +1 to a single attack roll and +1d12 damage to that specific attack.

Gorum Lore, Occultism, Society, Medicine, Religion, Nature, Athletics, Society

Ancestry 1) General Training (Armor Proficiency)
Skill 1) Student of the Canon
Cleric 2) Healing Hands
Skill 2) Battle Medic
General 3) Lightning Reflexes
Cleric 4) Advanced Domain (Prepare for Battle)
Skill 4) Natural Medicine
Ancestry 5) Natural Ambition (Expanded Domain - destructive cry)
Cleric 6) Selective Energy
Skill 6) Courtly Graces
General 7) Fast Recovery
Cleric 8) Divine Will
Skill 8) Connections
Ancestry 9) General Training (Feather Step)
Cleric 10) Channeled Succor
Skill 10) Recognise a Spell
General 11) Improved Initiative
Skill 12) Quick Recognition
Ancestry 13) General Training (Great Fortitude)
Cleric 14) Warrior Priest
Skill 14) Glad-Hand
General 15) Legendary Medic

Channel Energy: 6 uses of heal per day (17d8+5 hit points to a single target or 8d8+5 hit points in a burst)

Domain: 9 times per day weapon surge (+1 to hit, +1[W] damage for 1 strike), destructive cry (+15 damage) OR 2 times per day prepare for battle

Cantrips) Shield, Detect Magic, Light, Stabilize
Level 1) Bless (+1 conditional), Bless, Protection
Level 2) Remove Fear, Enlarge, Enlarge
Level 4) Circle of Protection (1 hour)
Level 3) Heal, Heal, Heal
Level 4) Air Walk, Freedom of Movement, Weapon Storm
Level 5) Heroism (+2 conditional), Heroism, Death Ward
Level 6) True Seeing, Heal, Heal
Level 7) Resist Energy, Raise Dead, Energy Aegis
Level 8) See Invis, Righteous Might

Belt of Giant Strength
+3 Keen Greatsword
Bag of Holding type IV
+3 full plate
Staff of Healing

Overall I'm pretty happy with the build. A fighter is likely to have +26 without buffs (+28 with heroism). What the fighter will have is a whole heap of tricks and the ability to get a number of attacks at their full BAB bonus when in a favourable situation (they'll also get to use their reaction on AoOs unlike the cleric who has no reaction). On the cleric's side they can get +28 to attack (equal to a fighter) and then 5d12+5+15 damage when they pull out all stops and fully buff themselves.

Downside is I have to be a priest of Gorum to get it to work ;)

Months ago Mark Siefter has said how his group’s barbarian acted as the party healer. This was great news for those of us who’ve long wanted non-magical healing in Pathfinder being a viable alternative to the cleric. We since discovered that barbarian was really a barbarian multiclassed into cleric which took the shine off the whole premise a fair bit (although Mark assured us the cleric feats had minimal contribution to the barbarian’s healing, I remained sceptical).

This is an attempt to look at how viable a non-spellcasting (as in, not a cleric/bard/divine sorcerer and not multiclassing into those classes) character would go at replacing the cleric as the party healer. For this demonstration I’m also not going to look at the alchemist either.

Non-magical healer 5:
STR 19
CON 16
DEX 14
INT 10
WIS 16
CHA 10

Race: Human

Ancestry 1) General Training (Battle Medic)
Skill 2) Natural Medicine
Skill 4) Trick Magic Item
Ancestry 5) General Training (Robust Recovery)
Skill 6) Magical Crafting

Trained: Crafting, Nature
Expert: Medicine, Religion

Battle Medic (1 action): DC 20 medicine check to grant 1d10+3 healing (once per day per creature).
Natural Medicine (1 action): DC 20 nature check to grant 1d8+3 healing (once per day per creature). If in the natural wilderness the GM may increase this to 2d8+3 healing.
First Aid (1 action): DC 15 medicine check to stabilise a fallen ally or end their bleed condition.
Treat Poison (1 action): Medicine check (DC of poison) to grant a +4 bonus to their next saving throw.
Treat Disease (1 day): Medicine check (DC of disease) to grant a +4 bonus to their next saving throw.
Alchemical Crafting (Downtime): Create alchemical concoctions during downtime to be used during the adventuring day.

Notes on Hit Point Healing
At level 1 this non-spellcasting healer can heal people 4 times per day (total of 4d10+8 for a 4 man party) vs a cleric who can heal people 3-5 times per day. A cleric can heal a party a total of 3d8+12 hit points to 5d8+20 hit points. That’s 30 HP (non-spellcaster) vs 25.5 to 42.5 hit points. All you need is for 2 people to need the cleric’s healing and they will be doing 51 to 85 hit points (more if more than 2 people need healing). This isn’t taking the cleric’s spells into account (I’m assuming they’re preparing bless or other spells in those spell slots).

At level 2 the non-spellcasting healer can heal people 8 times per day for a total of 56 hit points (or 74 hit points if in the wilderness) vs the cleric’s non-spell slot healing which is still stuck at 25.5 to 42.5 hit points (51 to 85 if healing two people). This is quite viable at this level.

At level 3 the non-spellcasting healer is stuck at 56 to 74 hit points. The cleric has boosted their single target healing to 52.5 to 87.5 hit points (78 to 130 if healing 2 people or more). I would argue that the non-spellcaster is still somewhat viable at this level.

At level 5 the non-spellcasting healer has had a modest increase from 64 to 82 hit points. The cleric’s single target healing is 79.5 to 132.5 hit points (105 to 175 hit points if healing 2 targets at once). I’d say that the non-spellcasting healer has taken a substantial hit at this point. Especially when the spellcaster can prepare heal spells in their spell slots to boost it further. HOWEVER the non-spellcaster can use a wand. Assuming 1 RP for armor, 1 RP for weapon, that gives them 3 more uses of 3rd level heal which can bring them right back to being viable again.

After this point it gets worse the higher level you get because unless your non-spellcasting healer is an alchemist, they’re not going to get master medicine or master nature. They will become 100% reliant on a wand of healing at this level.

Cleric Spells and the Healer Role
Level 3) Restoration (lvl 2 spell), Restore senses (lvl 2 spell)
Level 5) Neutralize poison (lvl 3 spell), Remove disease (lvl 3 spell)
Level 9) Breath of Life (lvl 5 spell)
Level 11) Raise dead (lvl 6 spell)

Breath of Life: This seems largely unnecessary. Dying of anything except a “save or die” effect is extremely hard with plenty of time for someone to stabilise or heal someone. I also understand that save or die effects are few and far between.

Neutralise Poison/Remove Disease/Restore Senses: These spells are great at 3rd level to 5th level. It’s going to get substantially worse as your levels go on. The fact this spell can’t be heightened seems like a significant oversight because once you hit level 13 you just can’t neutralise at-level poison/disease anymore (and to be honest your chances of neutralising it before then aint great either). This is good news for the non-spellcasting healer as they can compete on this front at higher level.

Raise Dead: This is costly. Really, really costly. I’m going to say this is a “someone dies we stop for the day and raise them tomorrow” type situation unless they buy a scroll (in which case your non-spellcasting healer with trick magic item can also use it). This is good news for the non-spellcasting healer as they can compete on this front.

Restoration: This is going to be the go to spell for people suffering afflictions. However the fact it only reduces a condition by 1 step means that a dedicated healer is going to blow through a lot of their spell slots. As such I think this helps make non-spellcasting healers quite viable.

Resurrect (ritual): Given the substantial cost of raise dead, resurrect is an entirely viable way of bringing someone back to life for both a spellcaster or a non-spellcaster. The fact it only requires expert religion means anyone can cast it.

I do believe non-spellcasting healers are completely viable. It requires no loss of class features and allows you to keep up with spellcasters, although most of your resonance will be spent on wands of heal.

If you wanted a non-magic campaign then a solution like Starfinder’s HP and healing system will be necessary.

A cleric who wants to be the best healer the world has ever seen and devotes not just all of their class feats to this goal (although not spells) and takes all of the healing skill feats they’ll be better than a non-spellcaster healer. However my group has never created dedicated healers, instead relying on battle clerics who prepare sufficient spells to perform the healer role but otherwise concentrate on dealing damage and relying on wands to get people back up to full (something that, although expensive, looks like it will still work in PF2e).

So now that I've actually read the PF2e wizard and looked at it's spells, I'm really disappointed to see that only universalists get a level 1 feat.

In PF1e wizards were hardcoded with set powers depending on their school specialisation. Not all of these powers were so good for all builds and so when the Advanced Player's Guide came out 1 year later Paizo gave us Focused Arcane Schools which gave us alternative wizard powers. Now with PF2e, which is designed to have modular class features that can be freely swapped out or replaced by calling them Class Feats, we have Paizo repeating history.

I'd prefer to see all wizards (not just universalists) get a class feat at level 1. If Paizo want to force specialist wizards to get a power associated with their school they should do it in this way:

If you choose to specialize in an arcane school, you gain an extra spell slot for each level of spell you can cast. You can prepare only spells of your chosen arcane school in these extra slots. In addition, you can prepare an extra cantrip of your chosen school. You also add another arcane spell of your chosen school to your spellbook.

You learn a 1st level power that has your school as a trait, a special type of spell taught to students of your arcane school. You gain a pool of Spell Points you can spend to cast school powers. You can cast a school power only by spending Spell Points, not by using spell slots. Like a cantrip, your school power is automatically heightened to the highest level of spell you can cast.

Your maximum number of Spell Points is equal to your key ability modifier (minimum 0). You regain all your Spell Points when you prepare your spells. Some feats let you learn more school power; such feats typically increase your pool of Spell Points.

If you gain multiple 1st level school powers you increase your spell points by +2 for each power after the first.
The above will still hard-code specialist wizards into selecting their school power. But it keeps the door open for future supplements to come out with alternative school powers and we don't need to have an archetype like we did in PF1e.

Here is the wizard class reformatted to include all of the powers within the class writeup instead of in the spells section.

I've been struggling with trying to look at what all the different powers do for the different schools of magic, so I've reformatted them to include the powers in the class writeup.

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I have created my first stab at an Eldritch knight in PF2e. He's actually a recreation of my Iron Gods character. As such he has to be a human who wields a bastard sword (incidentally a bastard sword seems to be the optimal weapon for an Eldritch knight).

Human (Scholar) Fighter (Wizard) 17:

STR 22 = 10 + 2 (ancestry) + 2 (background) +2 (class) + 2 (1st) + 1 (5th) + 1 (10th) +2 (belt)
DEX 12 = 10 + 2 (1st)
CON 18 = 10 + 2 (1st) + 2 (5th) + 2 (10th) + 2 (15th)
INT 20 = 10 + 2 (ancestry) + 2 (background) + 2 (1st) + 2 (5th) + 1 (10th) + 1 (15th)
WIS 12 = 10 + 2 (15th)
CHA 16 = 10 + 2 (5th) + 2 (10th) + 2 (15th)

Combat Actions:
Two-Handed Broadsword: +30/+25/+20; (5d12+6)
Two-Handed Huge Broadsword: +30/+25/+20; (5d12+10)
One-Handed Broadsword: +30/+25/+20; (5d8+6)
One-Handed Huge Broadsword: +30/+25/+20; (5d8+10)
Critical effect: creature is flat footed for 1 round.

AC 36 (38 when fighting one handed; 39 with shield and one handed fighting)
HP: 263 = 8 (ancestry) + 68 (con) + 170 (class) + 17 (toughness)

Suggested Actions per Round:
1. Spell+Spell; Attack; Shield
2. Shield; whirlwind Strike (3 attack full round)
3. Shield; Attack; Attack; Attack

Trained: Academia Lore, Acrobatics, Occultism, Diplomacy
Expert: Deception, Society, Intimidate
Master: Perception
Legendary: Athletics, Arcana

Ancestry 1) General Training (Toughness)
Skill 1) Assurance (Arcana)
Fighter 1) Sudden Charge
Skill 2) Charming Liar
Fighter 2) Wizard Dedication
General 3) Diehard
Skill 4) Confabulator
Fighter 4) Basic Wizard Spellcasting
Ancestry 5) Assurance (Athletics)
Skill 6) Courtly Graces
Fighter 6) Dueling Parry
General 7) Fast Recovery
Skill 8) Connections
Fighter 8) Arcane Breadth
Flexible Feat 8) Dueling Riposte
Ancestry 9) General Training (Recognize Spell)
Skill 10) Lie to Me
Fighter 10) Combat Reflexes
General 11) Quick Recognition
Skill 12) Quick Identification
Fighter 12) Expert Wizard Spellcasting
Ancestry 13) General Training (Scribe Scroll)
Skill 14) Quick Climb
Fighter 14) Dueling Dance
Flexible Feat 14) Whirlwind Strike
General 15) Legendary Climber
Skill 16) Remarkable Resonance
Fighter 16) Stance Savant
Ancestry 17) Natural Ambition (Furious Focus)

Class Features:
Attack of Opportunity
Legendary Proficiency bastard sword
Master Proficiency heavy armor
+1 initiative

Cantrips: Detect Magic, Shield
Level 1) True Strike
Level 1) True Strike
Level 2) False Life: 13 temporary hp
Level 2) False Life: 13 temporary hp
Level 3) Haste
Level 3) Haste
Level 4) Enlarge
Level 4) Enlarge
Level 5) See Invisibility
Level 5) Wall of Fire
Level 6) Enlarge
Level 6) Baleful Polymorph
Level 6) Enlarge

Resonance: 21

+4 keen adamantine bastard sword
+4 full plate
Belt of Giant Strength +2
Greater Ring of Wizardry

Overall I think this is a good build. The lack of heroism on the arcane spell list and buffs only lasting 1 minute were a substantial hit to the build. But I think it's still a very viable and didn't require any prestige class. Shield is a good buff.

I'll make a Wizard (fighter) next although this one took a while.

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With +level to everything, I was worried that skills would scale too high. I made a Str 8 gnome wizard to see how high his athletics bonus would get. Here are the results:
Level 1 Untrained bonus -3 (need a 15 for a low DC, 17 for a high DC, 18 for a severe DC, cannot get an extreme DC)

Level 8 Untrained bonus +5 (need a 16 for a low DC, 19 for a high DC, cannot get a severe DC)

Level 11 untrained bonus: +8 (need a 17 for a low DC, 20 for a high DC, cannot get a severe DC)

Level 15 untrained bonus: +12 (need a 20 for a low DC, cannot get a high DC)

So you do undeniably improve. However when faced with level appropriate challenges you also clearly lag behind the group. With these results I'm satisfied with how skills work. It does make sense you'd pick up some knowledge across levels and the bonus you do get is quite minimal.

So I was wrong in what I said before the rules came out.

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I don't get the reasoning for banning spontaneous heightening. 17th level wizards experience no analysis paralysis 9 times a day when they spontaneously choose to cast a spell through their arcane focus. Nor are they overpowered by getting to choose certain spells (e.g. dispel magic) and cast it at the optimum level through their arcane focus.

So why do sorcerers suddenly cause analysis paralysis? Why do they seem overpowered when wizards don't? Also if certain spells are really overpowered with spontaneous heightening, then sorcerers still get to be overpowered by selecting 2 of those spells a day, and wizards get to be overpowered up to 9 times a day.

The only benefit sorcerers seem to have is that they get more resonance then wizards. Except wizards get the luxury of having an 18 in their primary stat and a 16 in charisma to only put them behind by 1 point of resonance. So the so-called advantage sorcerers get can be as little as 1 resonance point per day. It doesn't seem like very much compared with wizards.

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We've had a lot of discussion about what you have to spend a feat on to do now, I figured it might be helpful to see what you no longer need to spend a feat on. Here is what I think we now essentially get for free.

Two-Weapon Fighting: Two-Weapon Fighting had no purpose other than to reduce the penalty you take on attack rolls when fighting with two weapons at once. IMO the PF2e equivalent of this is the Agile weapon property. Therefore all characters get TWFing for free.

Improved Disarm: Disarm has gone from having a feat tax + the improved disarm feat to simply being something you can do with weapons that have the disarm trait and training in the athletics skill.

Weapon Finesse: In order to use dexterity for melee attack rolls you need to use a finesse weapon and have the feat. In PF2e you just need to use a finesse weapon.

Improved Bull Rush: You do not provoke an Attack of Opportunity to bull rush someone, you just need to use a weapon with the shove property.

Precise Shot: Characters still get the cover-equivalent for characters being in the way, however ranged attacks no longer have a penalty if you're in base-to-base contact with someone.

Arcane Armor Training: Not only do you not have to use an action to avoid the arcane spell failure chance, but you don't need the feat to cast arcane spells in armor, you just need proficiency.

Arcane Armor Mastery: Same as Arcane Armor Training.

Most of these free "feats" are aimed at martial characters. There is a bit less flexibility in that you have to have a specific weapon, but just like casters can swap out the spells they have, martial characters can swap out what feats they have by choosing different weapons.

[EDIT]: Added precise shot.

We've had a fair few threads of people complaining that there weren't enough spellcasting on the spellcasters, so I figured I'd try my hand at creating a version of the cleric class that had the most spellcasting of cleric spells that can be achieved in PF2e. Here are the results of my efforts.

The above rewording of the cleric class is 100% legal by PF2e playtest rules (well, it would be if we had sorcerer multiclass rules. I've houseruled my own version just for demonstration purposes). By 20th level the cleric gets the same number of spellslots for 1st level spells through to 6th level. They get 1 less spellslot for 7th level spells and 8th level spells. If you count the 10th level spell as a 9th level spell then they also get 1 less spell for 9th level.

The class gets a 2nd domain power at 6th level or 8th level and then a bonus feat at the other level. They're also hard-coded to get Spell Focus and Greater Spell Focus and Even Greater Spell Focus at 12th level, 16th level and 19th level.

Overall I think the PF2e cleric class is fairly equitable to the PF1e cleric class. It has lost some spell slots, but in their place you get class feats that you can trade back in for some of the lost spell slots. The domain spell slots are effectively mimiced by the sorcerer domain spell slots (right down to both of them being spontaneous).

The only two big downsides is if you want the extra spell slots, you have to pump up Charisma which means you're not going to be a melee weapon wielding cleric AND have get those spell slots back. The other big downside is casters have lost their bonus spells for having a high casting score. But in return the Spell Focus feat-line has been improved to apply to all spells instead of spells to a specific school.

Overall I think the complaints about reduced spell slots are overblown, ESPECIALLY on prepared casters who (in my experience) habitually end the day with some prepared spells at higher level.

I've read the multiclass rules 3 times now and I just don't get it. If a wizard multiclassed into cleric and get the extra spellslots how many divine spell's can they prepare? Can they prepare any divine spell the cleric would be able to?

What if a divine sorcerer multiclassed into cleric? Do they have to prepare those spellslots?

What if a wizard theoretically multiclasses into sorcerer (arcane)? Can they use any spell slot to spontaneously cast a known spell? (I know we don't have these rules yet. But I was wondering if we knew how it would work yet)

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