I agree completely with this assessment, especially on Rangers, who allow a new player to explore the game from multiple angles.
However, I would steer new players away from TWF, especially for the Ranger. Not only is it a suboptimal way to fight, but it also forces a certain feat path and makes players use different bonuses for different types of attacks, which can be overwhelming for a new player in an already numbers-heavy game.
I remember the first time we introduced one of my friends into the game, and she excitedly rolled up a Ranger, only to be discouraged because she kept forgetting what bonuses she needed to add and when. She had trouble with when she could make two attacks, when she could make one, when she needed to apply the TWF penalties, which weapon she declared as her main hand and her off-hand. I remember seeing her change from enthusiasm to discouragement and lack of engagement because she felt her turns were overly complicated when they had no reason to be.
Later on in the campaign she lost her two weapons and picked up a greatsword, and decided never to TWF again.
After we stopped playing that campaign she still refuses to go back to playing Rangers because of the needless penalties and complications of TWF.
A level of 20th level characters, non-mythic can kill Cthulhu, easily. Though it obviously depends on optimization levels of the party.
Cthulhu really is not that hard.
Add in a single mythic tier, and well, Cthulhu can die in the first round. Mythic is absurd.
I like the idea of hemming in wizards to fit a specific idiom (frost mage, fire mage, summoner, necromancer, etc.), but finding a way to do it without simply making certain wizard builds T1 and others T2 or T3 would be difficult.
Many classes already split what the wizard can accomplish into specific themes, kind of like the kineticist being basically any elemental mage, and the summoner.
The problem is that the wizard is all of these at once. They can have several specialties and switch them every day, while also occupying the top end of power. Spontaneous spellcasters are better, since they're locked down in what spells they can take and don't increase in power for every rulebook released, but even they are getting increasing amounts of ways to add new spells. They are better in terms of appropriate power compared to prepared spellcasters, though still too strong.
But basically yes I agree with this statement. Each of the schools of magic can easily occupy an entire class. If nothing else, prepared spellcasters should have to choose their specialization and have to focus on them, to avoid them being not only capable of everything, but best at everything.
That's also because 3/4 BAB 6th level spell classes are more easily able to be made unique, with class abilities that allow them to do things no other class can, without making them overly strong.
9th level spellcasters lack class abilities because so much of their power is located in their spell lists, so adding more abilities will give them more power than they should. Considering the fact that even without many class abilities, they still dominate the high end of the power spectrum indicates that their spell list alone gives them so much power that adding more in class abilities is too much.
Full BAB martials without spells tend to be unable to do much more than full attack without spells, and abilities that give them more options just tend to be spell-like in nature, which means that they might as well get spells in order to gain variety.
Not to mention that since the CRB, classes focus on more specific and narrow niches in gameplay and theme, which favors 3/4 BAB 6th spell levels.
A lot of people use RAW because it's the easiest method of playing. Each house-rule added also adds to the complexity of running and playing the game. To some, they'd rather use their limited time playing the game and not 'fixing' it with home rules. You get a stack of your own rules going and you can spend a gaming day explaining them all to a new player. RAW isn't just for PFS, but the common ground that allows everyone to play.
I find myself agreeing with this.
In my home games we tend to follow RAW, especially in Pathfinder since not even my players, who have played for years, can remember every single rule. A lot of the times we even brainfart on some of the most basic rules. Adding on a home rule adjustment to a class, ability or item would be another layer of, "What does this do? Oh yeah, here's what it does. Oh yeah, we adjusted it to this. Let me find that piece of paper/note/something else where I recorded what we changed it to."
If a rule is problematic or unclear, we just disallow it before continuing. With erratas, I'm glad I can allow some of the options that were unclear before.
Personally, the deformity's origin looks perfect for the Sorcerer, who gains strange abilities from some sort of heritage or influence on their ancestry. Even bloodrager could work, if you see the demonic influence granting her abilities and strength that she can summon.
If you don't see this character being a spellcaster, you could always take the Eldritch Heritage line, or variant multiclass into Sorcerer with the right bloodline (Abyssal seems to fit).
Her survival skills and living in the wild seems to suggest that Ranger or Slayer could be an appropriate class.
I think just sticking with elf as a race would be fine, take a martial-inclined class for weapon skills and Eldritch Heritage or VMC Sorcerer for the demonic influence.
I enjoy Pathfinder a lot, though at times I have issues with certain parts of the system that I find needlessly complex. I GM most of the time, and some of my players have told me that at times doing character building work feels more like homework than fun, and a lot of the time, I'd agree.
Regardless, I enjoy the variety of options the system offers, and I'm experienced enough with the game to be able to quickly sift through the options that are mechanically bad or needlessly complicated.
I am also probably in the minority in the fact that I like most of the recent errata.
I doubt it. TWF sucks up feats and requires a big investment in dex, which takes away points that can be otherwise allocated into str. The Unchained Barbarian, while slightly less focused on THF, still doesn't have enough to make TWF worth it.
Sword and boards seems like a better idea. You do get somewhat more ability to shrug off hits with the temporary hp.
I would avoid playing Hunters at all if animal companions are banned. Synergizing with it is basically the entire point of the class, after all.
The Hunter is pretty powerful as a fighter, but at first glance it seems really weak because it's not obvious. But when you think of the possibilities like Pack Flanking+Outflank+Precise Strike+Broken Winged Gambit+Paired Opportunists while using Snake Focus you can see that the Hunter's fighting power can be pretty impressive.
Pretty much this. They still inherit the over reliance on Sneak Attack for combat power that the Rogue does. Before level 10 their options for Sneak Attacking that the Rogue doesn't have really is just burn 1 ki point for 1 Sneak Attack. At high levels they run into the trouble of every creature and their mothers having some way past invisibility.
I haven't actually built classes for it but after looking at the final encounter of this AP I'm certain its possible to build a level 20, non-mythic 4-man party with appropriate WPL that could defeat it. You'd need to avoid the weaker classes since they'd be deadweight and you'd also need some good teamwork but it's definitely doable.
Add in two more characters and make them all 25-point buy would make it much easier. If you allow it, allowing them to cast Ascension for a tier of mythic also would make the fights easier if they're struggling.
Having an out of character chat with your players could be helpful. If you suspect that they are being influenced by faster paced games, let them know that the game they are playing is different, and that their characters represent living, breathing people in the adventure world. Mention to them that their characters would likely consider their inexperience with the cold and should consider looking for help, at least until they adapt to such conditions.
Just be sure not to come off as too confrontational. If they don't heed your advice then, let them learn by experience.
The only classes I'd consider doing TWF with is the Ranger and Slayer, who can bypass the dex requirements for the TWF feats and get bonus feats.
You can pull off some pretty good damage with classes that add extra damage per hit, like a smiting Paladin or something with Sneak Attack, but good luck pulling off a good build without bonus feats and needing to split your ability scores to reach the high dex requirements for some of the later TWF feats.
I would avoid Bloodragers and Barbarians for TWFing. Their rage synergizes better with two handed weapons, and they don't have bonus feats to help dampen the feat heavy TWF chain.
As much as I would love doing that, I'm also hesitant on just trying outright to avoid character deaths. My players always know it when I'm pulling my punches, even when I'm not rolling in the open, and they've said that, while they hate dying, they also hate it when I'm just blatantly trying to avoid killing them. It takes away from the drama and tension in the game when they know that I just won't kill them.
I may try Hero Points one day, but some don't like it, and most of them will likely forget about it anyways, so I doubt that would actually change anything in my group.
I had a pretty funny moment in Reign of Winter at the end of book one.
After clearing out pretty much the entire tower, my players readied themselves for the final confrontation with Radosek, who they had gathered a fair bit of dislike on the journey to him. When they got to the top floor of the Pale Tower, they were assailed with multitudes of ice elementals and Radosek blasting spells with his Icicle Wand. After fighting through it, eventually Radosek sealed himself with walls of ice behind a corner of the room and continued to throw Ice Spears from behind it. Without an easy way to get through, the gunslinger of the group (and the sole remaining member so far with the Black Rider's mark), decided to look around to see if he could find anything to help in the fight.
He wandered to Nazhena's treasure room and was threatened, but he went, "Eh, I'll deal with her when she comes to fulfill that threat," and then just walked into the room. Nevertheless he was shortly -6 to his Con, which dropped his hp to exactly negative his Con score, killing him. Oops.
We decided to raise him as a ghost bound to the Black Rider's quest and to give everyone else a story reason to continue, since he had not shared his quest with any of the other characters. Meanwhile, Radosek had escaped out a window to play his last trump card. My party, joined by the ghost of our gunslinger, went to the courtyard to confront Radosek and his animated dragon. After a harrowing fight with the entire party low on resources, Radosek emerged victorious, having slain my entire party.
Then, triumphant, Radosek limped away from the courtyard of the Pale Tower at 3 hp, with all of his items used up and his useful spells cast, returned to the top floor, and then was promptly punched out by Nadya, who the party had left up there.
Most of my players commented that, at that moment, Nadya basically got the entire dungeon's worth of loot plus all of the possessions of the AP's BBEG as well as all of the belongings of all my player's characters. Talk about a good turnout for her.
My party has been struggling through Reign of Winter for the most part as well. It's the campaign that has caused the biggest amount of character deaths that I've run so far. Quite a few people are on their third characters already, and we've only finished the first book.
The environment caused them a lot of problems at the beginning. They got the hint before trekking out of Heldren to get cold-weather gear, but even then the multitudes of saving throws eventually caused them to take a fair chunk of damage. I didn't get any character deaths from this, but it certainly softened them up enough to make fights tougher.
I also had trouble keeping the players focused on the quest itself. After finding themselves in deep winter most of them immediately thought something along the lines of, "Oh crap we're in way over our heads. We should get out ASAP." I had to have the winter spread to cover Heldren before they decided they should go back into the forest.
I also had the trouble of characters who had the Black Rider's mark dying. All of them died, and after chatting with the group we decided to have the last remaining member with the mark to be risen as a ghost to continue the quest. But I know the amount of character deaths have discouraged some of them, especially one who joined when they were about to storm of the Pale Tower. He had a detailed backstory tying into The Shackled Hut, but then died in the final battle against Radosek. With his next character he just kind of gave up making any sort of backstory and is just going along with it just for the sake of it.
The main concern is that if you put that same amount of effort into another class, you always get better results. And whatever class you use to compare to this Fighter can still fight just as well.
I'm sure anyone can make any class work at least viably if they tried hard enough. But if the result is still worse in comparison to a similar class, what is the point?
This is not a thread to point out the overall flaws of the Fighter. We already know what they are. It is about suggestions on how to improve the out-of-combat (or argue that no such changes are needed).
I don't understand. This contradicts your statement:
First you say that this is for suggestions of out-of-combat improvement. But before you questioned why they needed to be in the first place.
What is your point?
If the Fighter is supposed to be a master of arms, but doesn't feel like it, then by default there is a serious problem with the class itself.
I have a feeling this wasn't directed to me, but I'll respond in case it was.
I personally am neutral on the Fighter's capability outside of combat. You'll note that I did not make any suggestions for how to improve the Fighter, both in and out of combat. I merely commented on what I saw was a flaw of the Fighter's thematic concept.
If you were to ask me what to do with the Fighter, I'd say a complete rework of the class might be necessary. But at the same time, I also think that one could even do away with the Fighter altogether, but I can imagine that suggestion would result in some heated discussions.
The thing is, it doesn't feel like the Fighter is a master of arms. For one to be a master of arms, I'd expect them to be able to overcome limitations and perform feats with their chosen weapon that no one else can do. The Fighter does not get this, since all they do is simply increase damage with one weapon. This is not special, since any class that fights has a way to increase their damage.
For example, I could say the Zen Archer is what I expect a master of bows to be. They can, using the bow, perform actions like shoot around corners or negating an enemy's invisibility through their training with their weapon. I'm sure someone can come up with even better examples of a character that has mastered a weapon, since the Zen Archer still isn't even that great of an example.
It probably wouldn't change anything unfortunately. The Monk is full BAB in many situations that matter. Pretty much if they have troubles without full BAB, they'd still have troubles with full BAB.
But honestly they should, by all means, have full BAB. There isn't much reason why they shouldn't be. They're not casters, and their main role is to fight. It'd be nice to just have the consistency.
Saigo Takamori wrote:
In practice the extra feats that the Fighter has are not as numerous as expected. They are forced to go down the Weapon Focus, Weapon Specialization line. Without these feats, the Fighter loses out to rival martials in terms damage. Since damage is all the Fighter excels at, it should be clear why this is to be avoided.
Saigo Takamori wrote:
That's why I said ''chances''. Sure, if he want to do whirlwind attack, he will not get those feat. But a classic two handed weapon fighter will probably get 3 ''support feat'' at level 6 (and I'm pretty sure an fighter archer will do better than the swatch in DPR...)
I haven't run numbers to compare. But the Swashbuckler still can add their Precise Strike damage to ranged attacks, so their ranged DPR should be no slouch if they pack a few javelins or something.
Ah, i neglected Precise Shot because I assumed that if one guy could hit an enemy in melee, so could you.
In terms of attack bonuses, the Barbarian can get some really nice ones using Reckless Abandon. The downside of it that ability is negligible since you're attacking from range. I also figured that the Barbarian can afford one or two archery feats if they were so inclined; unlike the Fighter, the Barbarian has few feats that must be taken, so they're pretty free in terms of what feats they wish to take, despite their small feat pool.
My main concern about Fighters is that a fair portion of their damage comes from feats that specifically affect a single weapon. Switching out of that weapon to a secondary weapon will cause a hit in power more than what other classes would be affected by.
Though to be honest, if you want to switch hit, Rangers are better than either class anyways.
Saigo Takamori wrote:
Feat. It's really easy for a fighter to get some ''save boosting feat'' early.
And what, exactly, is preventing a Swashbuckler from doing the same? What pressing options is the Swashbuckler forced to take that prevents them from taking such feats?
Also, note that I said class-unique options. There are no feats, to my knowledge, that are Fighter only that boost saves.
Saigo Takamori wrote:
Sure, he may have a bow, and probably should. But the chances are that he will not have any feat in that, while the fighter can easily get the Point blank/Precise/rapid combo, and probably more. Chances are, the fighter will do far better than the barbarian with a bow, and that was my point.
This is actually incorrect. It is quite easy to have a Barbarian that is good at archery. In fact, it is probably easier than a Fighter. All you need is Reckless Abandon, an Adaptive bow and Deadly Aim.
Fair enough. Although to clear it up, Dazing Spell relies on the original save of the spell. Failing that causes you to be dazed in addition to spell's original effects. It's only if the spell does not already have a save that it defaults to forcing Will saves.
How does the Fighter get a decent Will save in ways that the Swashbuckler doesn't? I may be missing something, but outside of the very limited Bravery, Fighters do not have class-unique ways to boost their saves.
I am curious, though. Why do people think that Reflex saves are unimportant? I get that when it was just the Core Rulebook, failing Reflex saves tends to only do damage, rather disabling you like a Fort or Will save might do.
But with additional books, there are more spells requiring Reflex saves that failing causes severe consequences. This is even more true with the existence of Dazing Spell, which turns any spell, including Reflex saves into save-or-suck spells.
I get that Swashbucklers are bad at saves, but they are the same as Fighters in terms of base saves: one good save and two bad ones. But the Swashbuckler has Charmed Life to bolsters their saves a bit. Yeah, it's terrible, it's limited, it sucks hard. But it's still something compared to basically the nothing that the Fighter gets.
I'm not really taking a stance for the Swashbuckler or Fighter, but this post is very strange and does not seem to be fueled by any sort of understand of what the Swashbuckler actually does.
It goes by the misunderstanding that Swashbucklers are mobile. They are not. They abide by the stand-still-and-full-attack ideal as much as most other martials.
Also, attempting to explain the Fighter as versatile is not the best ideas. The Fighter is good at only one thing: doing damage. There is a reason why they are considered weak, because this is the only thing they can be good at.
The Fighter is not more party cohesive. It offers nothing to the party but damage, and any other martials, Swashbucklers included, can fill this role and still contribute more (though how much more depends on the class).
I agree with you, especially when rocket tag is brought up. I don't understand why rocket tag is something that is considered to be a problem at high levels, when rocket tag begins at level 1.
What I'm doing for a campaign I'm running now is making use of the table that suggests base values for settlement sizes. They can buy pretty much anything within that gp limit, but the limit is actually fairly small for the gear that they need, so what is happening now is that they actually have quite a bit of money but cannot spend it on the powerful gear that they have because the gear is too expensive and no one is selling it.
They only have a few ways of getting past that limit, one is the small pool of items that is randomly rolled according to that table. Another is putting in an order for an item that they specifically want, which takes time. Or they can take their own feats and make it for themselves.
I have never run into "Magic Shop" problems.
Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:
He smacks the baleful polymorph, dominate person, geas, and other such spells off his allies. That takes some finesse and magic know-how.
That idea works fine. I just find more amusing to think that the Barbarian is just hitting spells so hard that they fail.
I'm waiting for the day when I see a Barbarian dispel a Wizard's demiplane using Spell Sunder by getting angry and punching the ground so hard the entire plane blinks out of existence. Come to think of it, it'd be pretty epic too.
You can explain it as Rage being a very heightened state of mind so that the Barbarian is just reflexively resisting all spells cast on them, no matter who is casting it. Once they drop Rage they are no longer in such a state of mind where they immediately resist the moment they feel a spell being cast on them.
It may be legal for the superstitious barbarian to deliberately stop raging just so the party wizard (or cleric) can cast a spell, but it's not very good roleplaying.
Why? Barbarians clearly have the ability to control their Rage. Otherwise they would not be able to call upon it at any time and drop it as a free action. Are you saying that Barbarians cannot think tactically while they Rage?
It's not really an accomplishment to kill Cthulhu if you have that many mythic tiers. Mythic Vital Strike can output enough damage to kill Cthulhu in a single hit, and Mythic Improved Initiative ensures that you always go first. The only thing that might be a roadblock for a Fighter is the DC 40 save or die aura that Cthulhu has, and I'm sure that problem is easily solved as well.
Unfortunately that was one of the issues with the Warpriest from the very beginning. It was coming into a crowded thematic zone of "Holy Warrior" that already had the Paladin, the Cleric and the Inquisitor in it, all class that are already good. By all means, they did not need yet another class in this area.
I can't really justify anyone playing a Warpriest unless you wanted to play a holy warrior type class with slightly different mechanics than an existing one. But at the same time, it's not as if the class itself is inherently bad. From what I can tell, it compares well to the Inquisitor when looking at both classes as a whole. Since the Inquisitor is considered one of the best balanced classes, that's not really too bad of a comparison.
Darksol the Painbringer wrote:
Where did I claim that Sacred Weapon gave the Warpriest an incredible amount of choice? Did I not, in that very post, state that I thought Bane was better? I have also stated that Sacred Weapon is inferior to the Magus' Arcane Pool. I was merely pointing out to another poster that Sacred Weapon was not as bad as they thought it was, and that they used a poor example to make it sound worse than it actually was.
Yeah, Sacred Weapon pales in comparison to Inquisitor Bane and to the Magus' Arcane Pool. But let's at least objectively examine it for what it is and not just disregard it just because another class' abilities are better, like some people seem to be doing.
I was only considering the active enchantment of Sacred Weapon, not its damage die increase. The weapon die increase is not useful until higher levels anyway.
What's useful about Sacred Weapon is the abilities to stick abilities on it. You can stack extra d6s on your weapon using the alignment or elemental enchantments as long as it works on the enemy. Later you can screw any enemy that relies on armor with Brilliant Energy. Obviously Sacred Weapon is much more limited in application compared to Bane simply due to its nature and weaker, I would agree. But your example was hardly doing Sacred Weapon justice. It looked like you were deliberately ignoring some of its abilities to make it sound weaker.
Now, I'm not saying the Warpriest is better than an Inquisitor, it's not. But it also does not fall short very far.
You're right about the Arcane pool for the Magus, but to be fair, they probably have the best weapon buffing ability out of every class in the game.
It's not really fair to compare Sacred Weapon to Judgment. They do vastly different things. It's better to compare Sacred Weapon to the Inquisitor's Bane, which is much more similar both in damage increasing output and duration.
From the ACG playtest, the Brawler looks easier to make effective than a fighter because of the flexibility of picking feats on the fly. A fighter's feat tree has to be planned out from 1st level to be effective at 8th level and higher. For the first four levels it's easy to play a fighter, many combinations of feats work well. But the feat trees have to focused around a concept to be effective from 8th level on. And a Hunter looks like it requires less system familiarity than a Druid. A Druid gets spells, an animal companion, and wildshape. Without optimization a Druid can be effective at medium and higher levels (compared to a non-optimized martial, for example) but it requires a fair amount of system familiarity to make effective (animal companion, summon nature's ally, buff spells, battlefield control spells, damage spells, healing spells, wildshape, etc.).
What the Druid needs to keep track of the Hunter also needs to. But in addition, it must also keep track of teamwork feats as well as two spell lists. In combat the Hunter needs to also coordinate its actions with their animal companion to make use of its class features.
I'm not saying the Druid doesn't have much to keep track of. It does. But the Hunter probably has to keep track of more.
If anything, the ACG requires that you know a lot more about the system as the characters themselves are more complex.
The Brawler is not the best example, especially compared to the Fighter. You're expected to have a lists of feats that you can apply on the fly with Martial Flexibility. Some other classes, like the Shaman, have a lot going on compared to the Core classes.
The Hunter is not a good example of a class that's simpler to play. A lot of the more negative reviews of the class are due to the fact that its power is easy to miss. Like the Cavalier, the Hunter probably will never be popular due to both relying on a feature that's hard to appreciate and hard to immediately see the benefits of (Teamwork feats) and also due to the fact that people will always see it as "Oh, it's just a druid/ranger that's weaker" even if it isn't.
I like most of the classes in the ACG, but I'd hardly recommend it for those who don't already know the system and know it well.