Lightning Raven's page

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I don't mind arguing about details, I'm all of them because details are what makes the world feel alive and lived-in. A mark of good world-building.

But seriously debating if a week is 7 days or what not? This doesn't matter at all in the grand scheme, unless of course we're talking about how different the week is from reality, like the one in the Kingkiller Chronicle series, with eleven days named and changed based on the culture developed in the series.

Why would it matter if in 7-ish days the effect would end? It's still a really long time that doesn't actually affect gameplay for most cases. Unless the party can't refuse to attend a huge party and the item can't be removed from the user's face.

the Internet wrote:
Lightning Raven wrote:
Why is everyone arguing about something that will barely affect the game?
Have we met?

Hahahhaha. That's true. People are gonna argue regardless of merits.

Why is everyone arguing about something that will barely affect the game?

Odds are that this will be created during some downtime, the party will be fine, most people in town will be fine. Also, I don't see anywhere the item preventing someone from removing the item and only using it when battle is to be expected, of course, a compromise has to be made to use such a dreadful item in the middle of a crowd.

PS: I don't know if "invested" prevents the item from being used when you want it or if there's a specific time (or interval that prevents benefits from applying) to invest the item.

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Really interesting items and the type of stuff that should exist more.But seems to be really high level stuff.

I wonder if there will be similarly interesting items at the most commonly played levels.

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If I had Cat Fall as a feat, I probably would be looking for ways of taking advantage of it in almost every battle. It's really something hard to plan against and definitely will take anyone off-guard.

Feats should provide interesting tools and as such, they can be used well or not. Feats that only provide math enhancement are mechanically great and useful, but lack the "oomph" that a feat offering a new type of action or effect normally unavailable has.

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As long as unnecessary and meaningless feat taxes are gone. I'm down for it.

In fact, if the feat gets more useful over levels, it's way easier to justify a "tax", since later on it will become more than just a prerequisite for some thing else.

I, for one, welcome a lot skill feats being impactful. If there's one thing I like is creating characters that have combat prowess but also can meaningfully interact with the world outside of it. I'm not a big fan of the "dumb and strong" or "illiterate savage" that martial characters often lean to because of the stat dumps and general dependency on multiple feats, it simply makes it impossible to make a satisfying general-type martial character or someone that's tactically cunning while also being really good at battling.

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adam morin wrote:

Thanks for the response.:-)

Makes sense Xenocrat I think the line Resolve Point that he can spend to empower one of his abilities was what thru me in the power. Now I'm not even sure if its worth taking the Sustained Determination 2RP to use it seems kinda of steep.

That's true for almost every Envoy improvisation. Steep cost, highly situational and buried under a ton of constraints. It's even worse because it isn't even half as cool as the name suggests. Why not spend a RP to allow a re-roll on saves for allies? Pretty useful and has a decent cost, that sounds more like "Sustained Determination" to me. I mean, it's basically a "capstone" ability if you consider the fact that the improv is the highest level available.

Here's the quick patch that the CRB should've mentioned:

"Second Skin is present in every armor as an undergarment for additional protection. "

Seems reasonable to have one of these under most armor, to have better comfort or simply to reduce weaknesses gaps. It also prevents shenenigans of more AC and/or armor upgrades.

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I don't have any idea whatsoever how form or shape the encounter powers had in 4e and I'm too lazy to look it up, but I do like the idea of "special" attacks for martial characters.

They can add an interesting layer for martial combat and if done right, they can be tools to add to the classes that have been just using full round actions to be meaningful every round.

It could be very interesting, specially now with the 3-action system, to have 2-cost attacks that have a meaningful trade-off in terms of effect. More crowd-control, debuffs or simply something they gain after releasing some fancy attack. I doesn't need to be like anime and manga, with insane abilities that must be shouted, but something akin the Iaijutsu Strike from the Sword Saint archetype for Samurais is a good baseline, although the ability was horrendously implemented (too convoluted for low reward, unbeatable combo).

Varying from early adulthood to old. But it also depends on what type of character I'm making.

There's nothing wrong at all to have an older character (in its fifties, human years or equivalent) at first level, still learning the ropes of adventure. Everything it takes is a good backstory.

Before playing RPG's, I thought my favorite part would be min-maxing the hell out of the game and creating mechanically sound characters, like I used to do in MMORPGs and RPG's in general. But after starting, I quickly realized that the best part was coming up with an interesting character and a well developed backstory.

So, having "age-appropriated" character does not feature in my character creation, although they so far, have been within a reasonable spectrum (young adult to mid-life). But I'm yet to make an old character and a very young one.

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I feel like companions should be handled by the GM and the story. Not people you travel constantly. It's the perfect way of having temporary allies, convenience alliances and all that nuanced stuff you can't do with the standard (good aligned PCs) party since they will be pretty tight.

This thing of carrying an extra NPC (often with class levels) because of a mechanical feat and that benefits you as an item is simply stupid. Gathering allies and making friends should be roleplay-oriented. It's even worse when the cohorts are exploited to generate more wealth.

We had a "cohort" of sorts in the party, it was entirely random and it was initiated by the GM (he didn't expect to turn into a permanent cohort), but after a few sessions in, the NPC was being treated as an extra PC, which only got us harder encounters. I think it was reasonable, after all it was a fully-fledged Oracle at APL-1 working with us.

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Arachnofiend wrote:
It's a problem for a player to get to play two characters. Minionmancy got out of control real fast in PF1 if the player wasn't specifically trying to regulate themselves, it should come as no surprise that Paizo put some strict limits on it in the new edition.

I remember actually avoiding cheap tactics when playing my Conjuration Wizard at 12th level. I was only using my strongest summon spell to bring an extra monster, but I definitely could be summoning packs of lions, aurochs and stuff like that, but since turns were taking forever. I even thought of buying a cauldron of overwhelming allies, but thought it would be too inconvenient.

But I still think that the way its restricted is terrible. Summoned monsters aren't like Mechanic's Drones, that have a very limited AI that gets better over levels.

So... Why not take the bard approach? The normal command lasts only one round, but if you manage to pass a charisma-based check (handle animal) the duration is extended for two rounds, three if it's a critical success. The mechanic is already in the game, it helps charisma and seems like it's not that gamebreaking to have one to two rounds of freedom in the action economy, right? Specially since spells are way more limited now and the summons aren't such a huge threats to their enemies.

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I think it's perfectly reasonable to gloss over the logistics of handling one animal companion that's an extension of your character. But it's an entirely different matter when a player wants to buy a unreasonable amount of animals to fight for him.

This is something that would never fly on my table. Not much because I wouldn't allow it, but because I would make a point of enforcing the rules of the situation. It would get tiresome real fast for the player.

Well, that certainly makes me happy.

As long there is a meaningful trade-off for the damage, I'm all on board. But I also had a lot more expectations regarding the traits, which is why things that reduced penalties or added extra dice for critical hits, didn't actually excited me. Traits like Parry (could easily be a +2 and spend a reaction rather than an action spent for a +1), Reach (always neat), Forceful and Sweep actually brought a little bit of a different playstyle, but they're still just minor bonuses, which wasn't what I expected when it was stated in teases for the playtest that fighters with different weapons would play differently.

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Dreadwalker wrote:
Lightning Raven wrote:
Voss wrote:
Lightning Raven wrote:
Well, I guess Striking runes may not be the "got to" choice for weapons with small dices, which can make these elemental dice more appealing. Hopefully, the game's environment breeds these types of choices.
We will see. The playtest damage rules just meant that using a weapon with a smaller damage die was just a flatly bad decision. Rogues got use out of shortswords, but not daggers, and d12s and d8s ruled two handed or one handed, respectively, with a choice of S,B or P, with a bias toward S/P from swords.
That's was one of my worries indeed. If in PF1e the dice size almost didn't matter since the bulk of damage came from bonuses, now the size does really matter a lot. This may take more effort to circumvent if the game expects a lot more dice being added.

It seems to be the case. Looking at the stat blocks from the bestiary, it looks like maybe some of the lost damage from the lack of potency runes is going to be made up for inherently in your character, through additional damage dice like we see in one of the ranger spoilers, and additional damage bonuses and ways to deal additional damage on your turn, as in the barbarian’s thrash ability.

As touched on by now, there’s also the benefit of other weapon upgrades. A striking dagger may only deal 2d4, but that makes it better than weapons that are a die step or 2 above the dagger. Not to mention, things like flaming which would make your dagger deal an additional d6.

So as a ranger with that precision hunter’s tactic, and a striking dagger of flame, I’d be dealing 2d4 + 1d8 piercing + 1d6 fire damage. Which isn’t bad at all for a dagger.

Sure, it requires some upgrades to the weapon itself, but I like the idea of better weapons being deadlier. Of course a longsword will deal more damage than a dagger, but a character that wants to use daggers can find ways to make their damage at least comparable I think.

My whole issue with weapons having smaller dice is because there's no other metric other than damage to evaluate that benefit. Often, weapon traits aren't enough of a compensation for choosing a significantly lower damaging weapon.

If there were balancing factors such as higher accuracy with lighter weapons, DR penetration, special attacks, increased attack rate and other variations, this could easily create a more robust attack system.

I think there should be more benefits for a particular playstyle. For example, weapon+shield is higher defense (that's already in the game), two-handed higher damage, but there's nothing much in-between, at least not unless you're creating builds solely investing in some maneuver (disarm, trip, etc, that can let you take advantage of the weapons) or looking for higher crit chance, which is not even a thing anymore (so far).

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Voss wrote:
Lightning Raven wrote:
Well, I guess Striking runes may not be the "got to" choice for weapons with small dices, which can make these elemental dice more appealing. Hopefully, the game's environment breeds these types of choices.
We will see. The playtest damage rules just meant that using a weapon with a smaller damage die was just a flatly bad decision. Rogues got use out of shortswords, but not daggers, and d12s and d8s ruled two handed or one handed, respectively, with a choice of S,B or P, with a bias toward S/P from swords.

That's was one of my worries indeed. If in PF1e the dice size almost didn't matter since the bulk of damage came from bonuses, now the size does really matter a lot. This may take more effort to circumvent if the game expects a lot more dice being added.

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Well, I guess Striking runes may not be the "got to" choice for weapons with small dices, which can make these elemental dice more appealing. Hopefully, the game's environment breeds these types of choices.

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Mark Seifter wrote:
On the surveys, you guys resoundingly said that you wanted to reduce the amount of damage and bonuses the PCs got from items and rather have more of it be from your progression in your class and your choices in building the character, but you also resoundingly did not want to remove those +items entirely, so we did what you guys asked. That being said, I've been pushing for options to remove those bonus items entirely since my first days here (when I asked to find space and get the ABP added to Unchained after the text all came in); even though not many people wanted that option percentagewise, that's still a lot of people that did, so we're going to get that to you as soon as possible. We've announced our first RPG book after launch is the GMG this winter!

Well, I'm definitely happy with this. It was a big deal for me and one of the items on my really short list of dislikes of PF2e. So now I can say I'm definitely pleased with what we got with in this second edition.

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citricking wrote:
Lightning Raven wrote:

I expected the designers to take advantage of building a new system from scratch.

This was an issue in PF1e and it's been in every system where you create the christmas tree effect. It was said several times they wanted to do away with it. Over and over and over.

Yet, here we are. Potency runes (i'm assuming they still do what they did) and Striking runes made it into the final release. Now, I'm eagerly looking for ways to get rid of them and enjoy the rest.

Fortunately they've hinted at an optional automatic bonus progression system being in the core rulebook, which should take care of weapon/armor concerns.

If true, then this is very much welcome for me and my group. We've been playing for a while now with ABP and it will stay for good.

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I expected the designers to take advantage of building a new system from scratch.

This was an issue in PF1e and it's been in every system where you create the christmas tree effect. It was said several times they wanted to do away with it. Over and over and over.

Yet, here we are. Potency runes (i'm assuming they still do what they did) and Striking runes made it into the final release. Now, I'm eagerly looking for ways to get rid of them and enjoy the rest.

Frankly. I would love if instead of keeping these in the game, they spent more effort making weapon traits that actually changed the way a martial character engaged with combat. The ones in the playtest were mostly minor conditional bonuses... They definitely didn't show the idea of "play differently depending on the type of weapon you choose".

It would be way cooler to choose your weapons based on its utility, rather than pick one of them and sink all your gold keeping it relevant. Because that's what it is. You spend your money as a martial character, to stay relevant.

The best way to implement extra dice, for me at least, would be having all the named weapons offer different variations of the base weapons. Extra dice, different dice, bigger benefits that normal weapons give. Etc. On top of them offering cool magical effects. You get a +1 dice and it's a actual benefit in the grand scheme of things, not a +4 (striking) to keep the damage relevant.

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Nah man. Buying power just cheapens the whole value of having a magical item. Specially when items that don't offer any unconditional and mechanical benefits like these are never going to compete. On top of them not competing, the math of the game actually expects the players to have these items at the intended levels, which makes them catch-up items and not actual benefits. Hence the term "mandatory choices".

I would rather spend my character's money on stuff that let me do things that he can't already do... Which the Big 6 (or whatever the number) don't do at all, they just let you keep doing what you're doing. The huge difference now is that if in PF1e you did -5 dmg because you lost your best weapon, now you're dealing with a loss of 4 whole dice to your attack. This issue has been brought up often here with people actually making math to showcase the huge disparity that is losing a weapon in PF1e and PF2e. In PF2e the disparity is so huge that your back-up weapon to bypass DR will actually net you LESS damage, than just simply swing your best item at the monster.

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Be either 5 or 4. It still makes martial classes just some random using a rare magical weapon, which is a shame.

This will definitely will be the first rule I'll remove. Hopefully, it doesn't require a lot of effort, but even if does, it's being scraped. No more mandatory "choices" anymore for my group.

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Pogiforce wrote:

It really depends on your table. For example, that will never happen where I live because no one who plays here has a mystic. I don't think anyone but me and my sister have even given them a serious look. So no Mystic Cures. And the only weapon fusions anyone has taken are called and throwing.

What your character does for the amount of investment they have in healing seems incredibly inefficient. I get trying for the theme I just don't think the mechanical support for it is really there yet.

You could always try the spellthrower infusion trick yourself. If you're a pacifist anyway just get a level 4 stun gun plop on the infusion and try it out.

Needing a healer seems to be a self fulfilling prophecy. Most groups with everyone contributing to damage can burn down most non boss encounters before going too far into HP.

Only when things go well. But if no attack is landed, then things can devolve into a dire situation quite fast.

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I think the idea is to use Improved Get'em as a move for the +2 and then use Clever Attack for a total of +4 to hit for everyone. Also, it's because there's very little good options, so applying flat-footed while not insanely great because Operatives can also be in a party, it will only become an issue when the Operative will be able to apply the debuff for a whole round, but you can simply focus in another enemy to spread the focus.

As a pacifist, Hurry will definitely be your bread and butter in my opinion, because it's more proactive than the "fixing problems" playstyle that a pacifist type of character will have. You may not be attack with your standard action, but you're allowing your party members to attack more and get in better positions. For someone not joining the fight in the standard manner, it may be a valid substitute.

BigNorseWolf wrote:
I don't get why people are so dismissive of hurry. Yes it's situational when it's a standard action but even then it has its uses. Once it's a move action its tactical implications are pretty big.

Honestly, its first version has a pretty steep cost. But in a world where the Envoy is not obligated to spend every single action just keeping its minor buffs running, it's a great choice. In fact, I think Hurry is better than most (if not all) 8th level improvisations, specially when you take into account that Haste is not as insane as it is in PF1e. I think the problem is the steep cost competing with other proactive choices that can be done every time and is not so conditional.

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Metaphysician wrote:

Frankly, the first six months of this forum convinced me Paizo was 100% right to avoid having an open playtest. Whatever legitimate information they'd have gained, wouldn't be worth the 90% deluge of "It is wrong for not letting me play in my accustomed broken Pathfinder style!"

I have no idea how they managed the Pathfinder 2e playtest. Hopefully they brought earplugs.

There's some middleground between "i want the game broken" and "hey, there's no reason to use offensive readied actions like... at all. So you kinda need to tweak the envoy ability that uses them so it does something"

Or.. hey. Where's the level 9 through 20 stuff?

Noise to signal ratios are admittedly a problem.

I think it's safe to assume that everyone participating in this discussion is trying to make the Envoy more up to par with other classes. That can fill in its intended role in different ways. Because right now, you only have two effective lanes (Get'em/Clever Feint) and another that seems great (Dispiriting Taunt) but has a lot of restrictions, while everything else is just things that hurt less to choose.

We want the Envoy to be a fun class to use and that offers actual variations in playstyle not just a couple of useful options and everything else completely subpar in what they are useful, not one that completely overtakes the other classes' intended role with ridiculous free bonuses and amazing combat prowess on top of interesting class features, you know, like a certain class that was also printed in the same book and doesn't have any of the Envoy's problems, so much so, that feels like they were designed with two different paradigms in mind.

Wrong thread, mate.

Pogiforce wrote:
I don't remember a Starfinder playtest is all I'm saying...

Certainly not like it happened with PF2e. Maybe they didn't have the same type of structure for it, after all, the playtest was a huge endeavor that took serious effort on their part.

Quentin Coldwater wrote:

As someone who greatly enjoys his Envoy (in Society play), I'll add my two cents.

I do think Envoys could use a boost in some way, but personally, I don't think action economy is what's needed, but either a small injection of power or long(er)-term buffs.
To me, the action economy feels nice. I wouldn't complain if more things became move actions, but in general I don't feel like I'm dragging the team down by playing my Envoy. My main beef is that nearly all Improvisations only last one round. Pathfinder Bards were absolute buffing monsters, where the longer a fight lasted, the better the team became. But here, you can basically have only one or two buffs running at a time. Applying the same buff over and over feels a little tiresome. If I'm spending my standard action on it, I either want it to actually do something, or last longer, so it's a worthwhile investment. I haven't played high level yet (she's level 7), but I feel like Get 'Em is a trap. It's a bonus of only +1, or +2 if you choose it twice. I'm pretty sure the math works differently than in Pathfinder, but at least there Inspire Courage leveled up along with you. Once you combine that with Clever Feint, that's a swing of 3 (or 4), that's something, at least. If that Get 'Em bonus was higher, I'd consider taking it, even though it's only a move action. I'm already losing lots of standard actions, but if I can't move at all during my turn, things become too static. And same with longer-lasting Get 'Em. As it's only one turn, I wouldn't bother with it. But if it lasted two or three rounds (or, say, half your level), I can throw it up, move around some, and refresh it when it's either run out or I don't have a better use for a move action.

I've heard people complain about Envoys being "boring" because they can't participate in the most fun part of combat: shooting. For me, that's not true. Envoys are a little puzzle: what buff do I need to hand out this turn? Those buffs are usually better than trying to hit the thing myself, but I can...

Your second paragraph pretty much encapsulates what we're talking about when we mean "The action economy sucks". Action economy is not only what type of action you're using, but how much of it you need to be spending to do your job. The Envoy must be doing the same thing over and over and over, because otherwise he's not doing his job properly, after all, an Envoy will hardly be carrying his weight if he's just occasionally using his Improvisations and choosing to shoot every round, the class doesn't have the BAB, class features or spells to enhance its performance in combat. Which is why everyone here is advocating for making an Envoy, more of an Envoy, not a discount Operative.

The Envoys shouldn't be paying so much tax. Their choices should mean more and they need to have a better "gameplay loop" for a lack of better term. I don't know why, but I feel the class really has a "beta testing" quality to it, everything is just "almost there" and need some changes to make it play smoothly (the biggest problem). I mean, when the class features themselves exclude potential synergy, you know things aren't as elegant as a finalized class should be.

Well. Honestly, there shouldn't be an "improved" version anyways. Because this is just making the previous version obsolete. So the first and only version of "Get'em" you would pick up would progress naturally over levels. Until it reached the status of free action when used with other action. Casters are still quadratic, why not add a little more spice for non-casters as well?

There's plenty of them that do that... Sadly they start out as very underwhelming and improve to usable very later on. I get that they wanted to keep high-level in control and tame. But I find it very unnecessary to keep the "cool" stuff - a HUGE stretch when we're talking about Improvisations- for later when not only the game is more often player at lower levels, but it's also when you choices impacts your character the most, due to the lack of any other features beside your Improvisations.

Ascalaphus wrote:
So from what I hear, in the beginner box, Get 'Em is a free action. I'd have gone with Swift, but I don't know the BB even has swift actions. But I do think it's an improvement.

Swift is a good spot of it to be in. Free Action is a bit too much. Unless it becomes a free action when it's done together with other actions (like it currently is with "Improved" Get'em).

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Ascalaphus wrote:

I think in broad strokes, you could improve envoys a lot by adopting some principles for giving them abilities:


Everything said here sums up everything I feel about the state of the class. It even brought some issues I didn't stop to think more thoroughly.

Couldn't have said it better myself.

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BigNorseWolf wrote:

Expert attack is expensive but amazing if you've invested in your offense (and there really is very little lost by NOT investing in your offense)

Improved hurry is amazballs. Your meatshield (who probably has a haste circuit) can now 5 foot step into combat, full attack, and then 5 foot step OUT of combat , nearly halving the damage they'll take while still full attacking.

But yes, the rest are bad and what makes it even worse: 8 is the highest level of envoy ability there is. So... what are you supposed to take for the next 12 levels?

Expert Attack, Expanded Attunement, Universal Expression, Long Range Improvisations and Clever Improvisations are in my pool of things that should've been inherent abilities for the class. They are just abilities that enhance your main shtick and are also very underwhelming as an option.

Also, I don't think the class is weak as a whole or anything, it's just that it has so little and what it does have is for some random reason, either full of restrictions or don't do enough. I just wish the class had more reactions, swift actions and ways to contribute to combat without doing Get'em EVERY round.

The Bard in PF2e has a similar mechanic, but it's miles superior, you not only have the opportunity to extend the duration of your buff so you are not just a slave repeating the same task each 6 seconds, but it's also a way stronger (+1 hit and +1 dmg, for the party not against a target), I really can't see a reason why the Envoy must be shouting every 6 seconds over and over, repeating orders (or "quipping" if you're playing a silly character).

I can't think of a good reason why they made such an important ability (I know that Get'em benefit is premium) so restrictive, and it's not the only feature. It's just silly. And I used it a ton when I played, the first round it was kinda nice, my character would just pick the most suitable target and rally the party to focus fire on the guy... Then the next rounds it was just "I used Get'em..." to keep the bonus going. Just a chore. I'm focusing Get'em because it's one of the best things about the class and everything else was just "meh".

Meanwhile, the other aspect of the class is overshadowed by Operatives. That can do the social aspects quite well (except the handful of choices an Envoy picks) and are miles better at combat (Even though I'm also not a huge fan of trick attack, it at least offer different ways to approach the same ability and it's not must use every round).

My two cents on the matter:

I think that for a class without any spellcasting, good chassis and completely modular (Improvisations), the Envoys options as a whole range from no-brainer (Clever Feint line, Get'em line and mostly because it's the only source of SP heal instead of actually being good:Inspiring Boost) to almost useless (Most 8th-level improvisations).

I think the class has a sever lack of inspired features and mechanics built into it. Honestly, I find it's very hard to actually look at an improvisation and think "wow I really want to USE THIS!!", instead you're mostly just paying taxes (Clever Attack and Improved Get'em/Dispiriting Taunt) or looking for options that would hardly come up and not be as useful as something that's the core of your class should be. For Example: Look Alive (This ability is simply boring), Watch Your Step (Should be re-roll at 1st level), Duck Under (should be a reaction that initially gives bonus AC), there's way more that could be changed without making the class insane.

I feel like that when you look at the Envoys improvisations ,that aren't the main ones (undeniably useful, but could be implemented better to allow a more smooth play from the get-go), everything else is just subpar or something that is interesting only in its latest form and even so, they aren't even as powerful as spells (which, in my opinion, they should, because they're the ONLY thing that the envoy has).

My dream is to have an Envoy class that has a lot more actual tools that shape the way they play. Not just a combo of Get'em/Clever Feint with whatever else you're less annoyed to pick up.

To paint a clearer picture, it would be great to play an inspiring Envoy that issue orders/battlecries into battle and have the freedom to do other things that are also meaningful. Because currently, the Envoy that does that is the one focusing on Get'em... But it must be used EVERY round, otherwise, you're not doing your job because you don't have BAB, neither combat features that will make it worth NOT get'em every round. It's even more exacerbated when you need to take any action that is not Get'em. Cut the taxes, I'm pretty sure that the envoy will not be overpowering any class with it, it will only be more reward to choose your part.

Wanna keep the Envoy's progression strictly improvisation-only? Fine. But make them actual tools in the Envoy's belt, not just minor situational bonuses that aren't worth the action or choice.

Okay, this ended being more than two cents. Sorry. But I wanted this out, because I really like the type of character that Envoys could represent (I'm more of a Firefly/Cowboy Bebop/Hitchhiker's Guide kind of guy) and I really want them to be a fun class to play. Creating a character you love is really easy and doesn't matter the class, but a good chunk of this game focuses on combat and playing a class that's stuck between a limbo of strong but seriously limiting and highly situational yet almost negligible abilities is not ideal, to say the list, specially for someone that wants to be a support character that doesn't have spells.

I don't understand why go for a flat check instead of going for something Constitution-related. It's more flavorful and it can be used as a trade-off. Some people would want to invest more in CON and less in STR/DEX to have longer rages, while others would go for the burst damage. This could mean a small difference in earlier levels, but as they go on, the gap would increase and making it an ever significant increase and reward.

After all, they wanted to eliminate rocket-tag and this translates into longer fights, specially late-game, so a Barbarian with investment CON would either not worry at all about it running out or having significant chance of extending it way past over the threshold of those the trade-off for damage and AC.

But one thing is for certain. It may be a balanced mechanic to have rage lasting 3 rounds... But I'm sure it makes Barbarians lame fighters in-world. In PF2e, not only they are just glorified thugs with a magical stick doing all the work, but they also have minor tantrums that randomly ending. It's not looking good for martial classes and Barbarians if heavy changes in this department don't come with the final release.

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BigNorseWolf wrote:
Claxon wrote:

Archetypes in Starfinder are generally for flavor, rather than mechanical advantage.

They're a lot more like Prestige classes from Pathfinder, than archetypes in that regard.

But what it overlooks is that the player can just add the flavor. If you want to be a steward, poof be a steward. Just have a character that could reasonably do it (bluff, intimidate, not a murderhobo etc) since they don't have any class features like calling in a favor or some kind of legal authority the class is only as good at being a steward as it's mechanics allows.

That was exactly what I did with my Human Envoy. A part of his story was being an former Steward, because he got inspired by the way they handled things with violence only as a last resort. Of course, this only translated as mechanical benefit a couple of times (once when they arrived and I used the justified knowledge my character would have about their procedure and how to deal with the situation at hand and managed to save the party a lot of trouble with the authorities), which is pretty much the same amount of instances in a "normal" campaign that you would get the same benefit for having the actual Steward archetypes and therefore officially belonging to the faction.

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Dragonchess Player wrote:
Lightning Raven wrote:
I don't want straight up better versions of the base class, I want things like Archaeologist Bard, Warrior Poet, Urban Barbarian (played and liked it), Mutation Warrior, Zen Archer, Divine Hunter Paladin, Dervish Dancer. All of them great in their own way and not an straight upgrade like "Invulnerable Rager".

Archaeologist Bard -> Xenoarchaeologist or Xenoseeker theme envoy with the Pathfinder Forerunner archetype?

Warrior Poet -> envoy with a soldier dip or the Star Knight archetype?

Urban Barbarian -> considering that Starfinder lacks a rage mechanic, you probably won't have a close match; solarian (or vanguard) fills a similar design space.

Mutation Warrior -> Cyberborn theme soldier with the Augmented archetype (permanent implants instead of temporary mutations); SRO or verthani are probably the most optimal races for packing in as many augmentations as possible.

Zen Archer -> soldier (Arcane Assailant, Hit-and-Run, Sharpshoot, or Shock and Awe fighting style depending on the character's focus); the Tempered Pilgrim theme might be a good match for the "Zen" mindset, but the Dream Prophet, Priest, or Solar Disciple themes may also be appropriate; possibly with the Arcanamirium Sage or Phrenic Adept (for a "psychic" feel) archetype.

Dervish Dancer -> soldier with Hit-and-Run fighting style is probably closest to the concept.

Note that several concepts in Starfinder don't require an archetype. Some concepts are captured in themes or class options, rather than archetypes.

Literally, and I mean literally, none of the archetypes released so far even came close to make me excited to play them and create a build for them. Let alone create a character.

Also, you completely missed my point. I don't want to replicate these characters in Starfinder. I want archetypes that offer interesting changes and flavor, some of those I mentioned are strong, others aren't as much. But all of these caught my interest because they change the main class in a interesting way, it's a trade-off not a trade-up (like Invulnerable Rager and other similar archetypes).

Current archetypes are simply not for me and as long as they remain like that, I will probably never try them out at all. And I wish future material goes back to releasing class specific archetypes.

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My initial thoughts on them were mostly just something that was there, but didn't entice me enough to come up with a character for them. I just didn't like their themes well enough, but beyond that, I didn't care much for them.

But, after going back to pathfinder for a long while now and spreading my net of options with Archetypes. I've been slowly going through types so of characters you can do and so far I used: Core Classes, Hybrid classes, alternate classes and now I'm creating characters with Archetypes and after digging for fun stuff (Hello warrior poet samurai!) and interesting ideas, I came to the realization that Starfinder's archetypes (even the new ones) aren't exciting at all, they don't offer fun new things to do that are actually exciting to use, just some minor and very conditional bonuses. To me, and that's just my opinion, is that they offer a vision but when you're looking at the execution of this vision for your character it just comes off as lacking.

I certainly hope that this new trend of all-class archetypes either stops or is significantly reduced, so that the focus on class archetypes can come back. I certainly want to see what variations of Solarian, Mystics, Envoys and Operatives look like. There will definitely be concepts that require much more than just a class-path and I'm certainly hopeful that we get to see some new and exciting stuff for the classes.

I don't want straight up better versions of the base class, I want things like Archaeologist Bard, Warrior Poet, Urban Barbarian (played and liked it), Mutation Warrior, Zen Archer, Divine Hunter Paladin, Dervish Dancer. All of them great in their own way and not an straight upgrade like "Invulnerable Rager".

Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:

Critical hit effects only allow saving throws if the critical hit effects says it does. This is also how you know what kind of saving throw the critical hit effect allows.

The sidebar specifically says only some critical hit effects allow saves. No critical hit effect calls it it does not allow a save. Several call out that they do allow saves.

That's great to know. That makes them a little better then, since you can simply choose to apply the fusion effect with guaranteed benefit rather than the weapon's effect.

Nimor Starseeker wrote:
WatersLethe wrote:

Even if you ignore the saves, there are loads of problems with crit fusions.

I ask myself all the following questions:

What is the probability of getting a critical? (1 in 20 per attack)

What is the likelihood of the effect mattering? (What if they're immune? What if the effect is only situationally useful?)

What is the probability that the critical outright kills the target? (Most non-boss enemies die in, what, ~4 hits? A crit counts for 2, so something in the range of half of all crits kill the target?)

How likely is it that a team mate finishes off the target of the critical, without the critical effect helping in any way? (Sure, I blinded them, but their AC didn't change and now they're dead before their turn anyway.)

How long will I have the weapon and its enchantment? (Two levels? Four? How many attacks with that weapon do I make during that time?)

During the time that I have the enchanted weapon, how many times is it likely to matter, given all of the above? (Once? Twice?)

What it boils down to is that I'm very likely to never see a critical based fusion make any difference whatsoever.

For real? You have listed all these “problems” but they are not really problems at all.

Yeah, sometimes it will not matter as much if you scored that critical hit and sometimes it will. There is an element of randomness to scoring critical hits, the equivalent of rolling dice. That’s part of what you do in this game. I have never heard someone complain about so much about critical hits and fusions. It almost sounds like you don’t like critical hits, or are you trolling?
Or am I misunderstanding you?

You're completely misunderstanding. Everybody does like to dish out a mean critical hit, that's just obvious. But the huge problem with Fusions, the discussion at hand, is that they require a ever-increasing significant chunk of your currency and they get obsolete as you level up.

The issue is, for such a huge amount of your wealth by level, they, as the main way of customizing your weapon (specially in pre-Armory Starfinder), they offer very little and are mostly meaningless, with a just a small fraction of them offering interesting effects that are worth their investment.

They are magical effects you attach your weapon, I think it's reasonable for the players to expect them to be something truly magical. But reality is often disappointing and what we got wasn't even as interesting as the old elemental effects from Pathfinder (conditional extra 1d6 of damage).

This is the whole issue. The same with grenades. They're way too expensive, offer almost nothing in return and the ideas behind both Fusions and Grenades is ripe with interesting ideas, but the execution has been subpar to say the least. Gladly, seems like there's some new ideas popping up in recent books that has been making the game as a whole more interesting.

The key point is that when you crit, you must choose which effect you want to apply. I think this is indicating that the developers were going for the same rules. So yes, based on that CRB sidebar, I think it's safe to assume that all critical effects given by weapons (with fusion or otherwise) allow a save, unless stated otherwise. This is a general rule that is only ignored by a specific rule. So if the Fusion is saying "no saving throw allowed", then there's no saves, otherwise, you need to stick to the established rules.

In short, critical hit fusions are boring and definitely not worth the money spent.

Damanta wrote:


Only critical effects that state they require a save can be saved against.

Weapons: (2 out of 11)
- Deafen (Fort or deafened)
- Staggered (Fort or staggered)

- Ominous (Fort or shaken)
- Venomous (depending on the injectable)

Weapons: (7 out of 16)
- Blind (Reflex or blinded)
- Confuse (Will or confused)
- Fatigue (Fort or fatigued)
- Irradiate (Fort or radiation sickness)
- Leech (Fort or off-target)
- Nauseate (Fort or nauseated)
- Sicket (Fort or sickened)

- Malediction (Will save vs Bestow Curse)
- Mind Rending (Will or psychic trauma)

Core Rulebook Page 181 on the small block on the upper right side.

And I quote:
"Some weapons that explode or cause critical hit effects (see page 182)
allow the target to attempt a saving throw. The DC of such a saving
throw is typically equal to 10+half the weapon's item level +one of
your ability modifiers. Unless stated otherwise, the ability modifier
corresponds to the ability score you'd normally use to make an attack
with that weapon (Dexterity for a ranged or thrown weapon, and
Strength for a melee weapon). Any penalty you would normally take
to your weapon attack roll also applies to this DC, including penalties
from the weapon's range increment."

Don't forget that all critical effects can be avoided through Saving Throws. Couple that with huge bonuses monsters get and weak ass saving throws based on the items, not character, and you have the perfect money sink.

Well, this one definitely seems really interesting!

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They're extremely boring. Gladly there's some better options on the Armory (best book for Starfinder to date), but the fact that most of them are just crit effects is unbearably terrible. I would much rather have a significantly smaller pool of choices that had actual impact in the playstyle. Having expensive effects (that aren't even added, actually only giving you a choice) on critical hits is terribly lackluster for such a money drain, it's even worse when you barely have enough money for your necessary gear and heaven forbid you to think of buying something actually fun or spending your money in grenades, that gets more expensive and less worth it by the level.

So yeah. Aside a few of them that are actually interesting like Glamered, Spellthrower, seeking, blasting, rebounding and bombarding, the rest are too boring and weak to be worth it, I know that I didn't mention all of the fun ones, but the main problem I have are those that only offer critical hits and very situational (and insanely weak) bonuses.

The lower damage dice on top of 1/2 level of Weapon Specialization was overkill. I don't know how extensive the playtest for Starfinder was, but here's some very questionable design choices in my eyes regarding its items, starship combat and the Operatives.

I little bit with Operatives, yes. But I wouldn't mind raising everyone else's to the Operatives level rather than nerfing them. Everyone else gets to also have cool options and be cool, rather than everyone having choices that don't excite you.

Ixal wrote:

Having a class that is better of not to max its prime stat is not very well designed. But saying that you have to multiclass is a bit too much min-maxing as it completely ignores the character concept.

And honestly, instead of finding (and demanding) ways to make Envoys better at combat, you could also alter your game to be a bit less combat focused (although I admit the Starfinder adventures and general design does not really invoke an image of it supporting non combat very well as even their futuristic cities feel like dungeons).

While I see your point and kinda agree, I think the Envoys SHOULD definitely get better at it, they're subpar on it and even as skill monkeys, they're below Operatives except in the handful of skills they can apply expertise on. The problem with the class, for me at least, is not exactly in being ineffective in combat, but how it plays out, because unlike other class (even if they just are attacking), Envoys are forced to pick a lane and basically be forced to do that and only that in order to meaningfully contribute in your combat. I've tried to fight once only using Get'em sporadically and unlike having a combat play style, it felt more like I had to spam my thingy otherwise I wasn't doing what I was supposed to be doing, despite buying my way to Longarms (a whooping unnecessary feat tax for a class that could use the proficiency and doesn't have spellcasting to justify its absence from the base chassis) I still was thoroughly outclassed by everyone else, but it wasn't as bad as when I used pistols. I think if the class worked a little bit more like Bards from PF2e, in which you have means of extending the duration of your buff (btw a buff that's hundreds of times better than Get'em, and it's inherent to the class) in order to free up your action economy, that would feel so much better, because you'll be using your stuff and having options next rounds. The same would also be true if Clever Feint was never a thing and there was only Clever Attack, but without the guarantee of success, granted, that would be just like trick attack... But it already is like trick attack, ain't it?

It would also be nice if the other option, Dispiriting taunt, didn't exclude potential synergies within the class itself! As if the

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It's a matter of being reasonable for me, when I create my characters, do I wanted my envoy to be an ex-steward because I wanted a lot of contacts in the force that would circumvent a lot of challenges? No. I wanted it because it would enrich my character's story and would help set his story inside the setting we would be playing. It's a huge difference, for me at least, in trying to get vast mechanical benefit without investment through your backstory, and using something of the setting in your backstory that would add a new layer to it.

The same thing goes for the ex-Soldier bard. He quit because he was bad, which means he must not have a lot of physical prowess to keep doing the job, so having a multiclass in fighter/etc wouldn't fit. Lacking the skill Profession (Soldier) definitely was a far fetched stretch on the player's part. It's not like you're playing a 2+Int class that doesn't invest in it, like Clerics, it was a bard, so the skill point in the profession would certainly be something I would do as part of my backstory. I would never not put my skill points in it for the sake of Perception/Stealth because the latter give me mechanical benefit. In fact, my Urban Barbarian(32 year old) had Profession(Innkeeper) at level 1 and zero stealth, because not only he was an innkeeper, but he also fought in arenas as a slave when he was younger.

To me, players and GM's should be focusing more on creating interesting characters and stories, rather than shooting down each other to avoid exploitation. As far as I know, the whole point is creating a story that everyone will enjoy, right? Having a fun character to play is also a part of the process (which is the source of my gripe with Envoys, I was thoroughly disappointed on how it played out in combat, on other hand the PF2e bard was a blast despite sharing a similar action economy investment).

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