Jason Bulmahn wrote:
I'm extremely pleased by the shield tanking aspects of the fighter thus far, but reading this has me surprised.
I'd really like to hear more about the treatment of AC, mitigation and the concept (or non-concept) of tanking in PF2e, to try to put it into context?
The number one playstyle I was interested in seeing expanded was a Fighter with heavy armour, and control type abilities.
The line to walk here is "just as viable without being greater than the sum of its parts". If they approach the cap to scaling abilities carefully, they can make that happen.
If they're too lenient or too harsh with curtailing the scaling, we end up with a situation where either multiclassing is bad, or multiclassing is the only optimal way to play: neither of those options are good.
It should be a sidegrade, in as many respects as possible.
I think there's a middle ground here.
The big 1/2 level dips are so strong because they function independant of the parent class level.
1 level of rogue for a non-scaling sneak attack isnt a problem.
2 levels of rogue for evasion that scales mostly independantly of any further rogue levels is less clear-cut.
Divine Grace (level 2 paladin) being another good example.
I'd rather have multiclassing do something than nothing, but there could be more care taken to ensure the first few levels don't have abilities that scale amazingly well outside of their parent class.
Things like capping divine grace's benefit to the lower of charisma bonus or paladin levels can go a long way to ensuring that the ability is still usable without being a massive dipping power spike.
The biggest papercuts really amount to rules that don't explain how to use the rules properly.
The second biggest are ones that explain how to use them, but the rules are effectively useless, due to lack of options, or them not being functional in practice.
The third type are the "Just decide as GM" ones, which make running sessions harder for no reason, and unnecessarily dissuade prospective GMs from the task.
GM Fiat should never be required to make a core rule system functional.
Trim the fat off the feat system, like in Starfinder.
Leave the feat system with 50% less feats, like in Starfinder.
We want the system improved: and paring off the feat taxes, must haves and generic stacking +1 bonuses is great. Those were a massive problem in PF1e.
However, we also don't want to run into a system where a regular character looks at the list of feats and sees a whole bunch of generic, non-synergistic feats for their character.
Iron will is a good feat, but it's a generic one: if you're looking to focus on one specific category of feats (ie. ranged combat, defense, whatever) and you're already giving up and just taking iron will at 5th level because there aren't any, a ball has been dropped.
If fighters still get more feats, make sure there are a whole bunch of combat feats that each type of fighter will want to fill the ranks with (and will complement their specific combat style, if PF2e uses a system similar to the Starfinder Soldier). If weapon specilization becomes baseline, and all the TWF lines etc get removed (like in starfinder), we need something else that's tasty to put into the build: otherwise you're just nerfing feats overall, and leaving fighters with a really poor class "feature".
If a regular character gets stumped well before 20, a character with twice as many feats is going to be very, very unhappy with planning builds. Make sure "Core" lets you build a full level 20 character, feat-wise, without hitting a wall of "What the hell do I take now?".
Splatbooks should make more options, yes: but the baseline level of flexibility should be higher than Starfinder, feats-wise.
Don't get me wrong, I like Starfinder: but the scarcity of feats in the CRB is a bit of a hurdle for me. I'm aware that most of the glaring removals are aimed at making the system better (removal of crafting lines, TWF and so on) but if you remove systems that classes rely upon in order to have a functioning class feature, you need to replace the content with something else.
There are three problems with the paladin class, each of which contributes to the issues/debate on this forum:
1. People want "Paladin" to be a Class, not a subclass/archetype/feat/prestige.
2. People want "Paladin" to be LG, so anything not LG but similar should have a different name.
3. People want the core "Paladin" to not be a pain to run in a game, so that means not restricting it to LG.
While it's obvious to many that attachment to a name should not dictate mechanical design: it's important from a marketing perspective to sell the "LG Paladin" as a core option.
The most practical way to do it is obviously a parent class with a different name: but since that's a marketing no-no, we're probably going to have to settle for an identical sister class that's obviously the same, but "Paladins" get a special name, and get to be called a core class, just because.
The majority of other arguments that paladins should be special delicate flowers with original mechanics that no one else can have are glossing over the idea of what a core class is meant to represent: there's a reason we don't have core classes for all specializations of wizard, or all sorcerer bloodlines, and this is no different.
TLDR: make it a clone class of the real "sister" class, which is also core, and suspiciously located right after Paladin in the CRB, but they're totally different guys, totally! ;)
Not rude! I agree with what you wrote, we're comparing only an extremely narrow portion of the two specializations here.
The alternate skills allow flexibility of focus, so you can try to max out something other than stealth.
If you gave ghost no bonus, or gave thief/daredevil the same +1 bonus, ghost would be worse than those two, in addition to not having the flexibility offset: so while it would only affect one specialization, the gap would be wider.
Dex is the best route for trick attack because it's linked to everything. Why even try to compete by upgrading something like Wis?
It is relevant to the system as a whole. The system gives larger bonuses to things that take less convenient perks.
Dex is the most convenient due to it being linked to resolve and attack bonus, true: hence the question of what daredevils/thief get to replace the fact that they are 1 behind on the trick attack race. This convenience means the bonuses are smaller in impact.
But the actual trick attack bonus is higher for non dex, assuming a score of 14 or higher, as I already mentioned.
A level 1 spy with 10 charisma has the same trick attack check as a daredevil/thief with 18 dex, if the spy takes 14 charisma, it's higher than the maximum check a ghost can achieve, already.
Its obviously a system where you are trading apples for oranges, and deciding that the flexibility is not worth the simple extra point is totally fine, but they've done a reasonable job to even things out, in my opinion.
Though they are still relevant from a character-building perspective.
Really all that change does is streamline the rules and throw simulationism to the wind.
There are some aspects of starfinder rules where I find that irritating (armour and environmental conditions are too far in this direction for my tastes), but in this case it doesn't particularly bother me.
I like the way that general play of an operative isn't becoming overly encumbered with justifications, and if you can RP it still, you RP it. The flavour is still intact at least some of the time, without you worrying about nerfing an archetype by running a campaign against creatures that don't understand your methods of communication, etc.
At the end of the day, it's all varying nuanced forms of feint/distraction/misdirection flavouring the rule, the options just allow for more freedom of character building.
They had to err on the side of caution to avoid the whole "sneak attacks dont work on a lot of monsters" thing in the future, and I think this is a simple enough way to achieve that.
I imagine the line between too little/too much simulationism falls differently for different people, however.
With this change, the mentality seems to be:
New skill for trick attack that is dex based? No Bonus.
New skill for trick attack that is not dex based? +4.
If it was no bonus, Ghost would definitely be worse than Daredevil/Thief in this aspect. With this at least there's some form of tradeoff.
You are correct that Daredevil and Thief lose out in a numbers game of minmaxing, but I suppose the benefit is one of versatility?
Just be aware that if you want to max Trick attack bonus, you're actually better off specializing in the non-dex skills, and raising your relevant other stat to 14 or above, at which point you will outpace ghost: so it's not the winner in that race either.
It seems we missed the boat on today's FAQ bonanza for this topic.
It's probably worth mentioning that a lot of the system design of Starfinder seems to be aimed at ensuring that you can't stack too many of the same bonuses together, to avoid situations where parties have ACs or attack bonuses with a variance greater than 20.
While I'm of the opinion that stacking boost selections helps to fix the problem with lack of enticing boost options: it is worth keeping in mind if you are one of those that hopes to get a FAQ that is in favour of them stacking.
False. It just makes it so there are not 5 selections you WANT to take that will improve your build. That is not the same thing.
You are correct.
I cover this in more detail in the lets talk about soldier gear boosts post, as mentioned: my summary should have instead said:
"...does not provide enough selections to avoid redundancy or incompatible weapon choices".
Oh yes, I forgot about that :)
Basically, the ranged restriction is already a surprisingly strong factor in grenade use: and it's twice as restrictive as normal in this case.
I think this is all fine: I don't really see any cause for concern here, the monetary offsets are limited to specific consumables only, and it's not like you can sell them.
Basically, you can turn some unwanted gear (ranged energy or powered melee) into low-quality, bulky, cheaper grenades with less range and more tendency to scatter.
They're also only "cheaper" because if you tried to sell them at 10% value and buy the same grenade, you'd not have enough money.
The resolve cost is only necessary for speeding up the action, you can stockpile all you want. It lets you pump unwanted weapons into bulky sub-par consumables, which might have some RP uses like handing a weapon out to an enemy and getting them to fire it.
If you overload a weapon, the grenade it creates will be "cheaper" than if you'd try to sell the weapon and buy an appropriate proper grenade, but due to the 10ft range increment, you'll have a less useful grenade.
Throwing a grenade safely involves hitting a low AC of 5, but making sure that you throw at least 20 ft + radius, so that if you flub your roll, it can't scatter back to you and hit you in the face. This also assumes you are in front of the rest of your group, so if you're 10ft behind, add 10ft to that.
Max range on thrown weapons is 5 increments making the max range 50ft. So for a standard grenade, you'll need to throw between 35-50 ft for a safe throw, increasing your positioning requirements to be safe. You'll also be throwing at a -6 to -8 to hit, which is still only AC11-13, but does mean that scatters will be more frequent, overall.
Using them from behind the rest of your group will also be harder to pull off, as you'll need them to be aware of the narrow restrictions on your makeshift grenades.
You can't change the damage type. It has to be a grenade that does damage that matches the weapon being used. Now: Technically, this means you will need to select a correct type of grenade from the list that is below the weapon's level, further restricting the damage output, as the levels don't really match up.
This means that you can't use a lvl 4 Frostbite Zero rifle as a cryo grenade, as the lowest level cryo grenade is lvl 6.
Some might argue that the wording allows you to match another grenade type and just make it cold damage... but that's open for debate.
Revengeancer, Quindraco and some others have made the point in another thread that RAW they stack, and Quindraco has done two posts summarizing how they would stack (if you read it RAW that they do, in fact, allow all the stacking) in the Lets talk about soldier gear boosts thread.
If you take the stance that they DO stack:
If you take the stance that they DON'T stack:
There's a problem that you can easily encounter where the CRB doesnt provide enough boost options in order to fill out 5 selections by the time you are 20 (which basically sums up the OP of the Lets talk about soldier gear boosts thread, if you want more detail).
Since I think this particular point is a very strong candidate for a FAQ request, but this is the general forum (so we cannot flag the posts as FAQ candidates) I've created another thread in the rules forum here:
If you agree that the wording should be clarified, regardless of your opinion as to which way it should be interpreted now RAW/RAI, please hop on over and hit the FAQ button.
1. Can a Soldier take the same Gear boost multiple times, and do untyped effects provided by these boosts stack?
2. Do multiple applications of an effect generated by a gear boost, such as flash freeze, stack upon an opponent?
Soldier gear boosts do not provide language to explain whether:
Most other similar abilities provide something along the lines of:
"If a character somehow has the same feat more than once, the benefits of these feats do not stack unless indicated otherwise"
Similar rules that follow this pattern (not stackable unless the text says otherwise), but all have that text in the rule itself:
When exceptions occur allowing you to take the item more than once, it generally does not stack, and you need to apply it to another item/resist/whatever.
Similar language is also omitted from boosts that provided a numerical effect on an opponent, like flash freeze:
"When you hit a creature with a weapon in the cryo category, that creature’s speeds are reduced by 10 feet for 1 round, to a minimum of 10 feet."
Leaving the ability ambiguous as to whether multiple applications in a full attack would stack or not.
Stacking vs not stacking is usually explicitly stated in the rule, but in this case, it is not. Since most similar rules don't allow the stacking by default, I'd expect many people to make the assumption that the lack of wording is an oversight, not an implication of exception to the norm.
However, RAW: until we get an FAQ request on the topic, people have some pretty good grounds for arguing that the bonuses (outside of stacking same typed insight bonuses) do actually stack.
On page 111 of the soldier class it seems that by RAW multiple gear boosts of the same type could be taken twice and stack.
I just checked, you're correct insofar as there's no mention of stackability, so I could see some people making that argument for RAW.
However, the majority of the passive bonuses are typed, so still won't be stackable.
From how similar benefits work, such as mechanic tricks etc: I'd be inclined to assume that the intention is that they don't stack, but that doesn't really get supported in the text, so it's certainly a valid point.
There's also the aforementioned question of whether multiple applications of the same effect (such as flash freeze) can be stacked on a target with successive hits, as well.
It's interesting seeing people rank one class highly, and another poorly - particularly when there's disagreement over which is which.
It probably boils down to how you value skills, DPR, class features and so on in relation to one another.
I, for one, am very keen to try out the soldier class, but find that while the class itself is well designed: it is let down by the restrictive selection of feats (50% of the quantity available in pathfinder, and a large majority of "core" combat feats are simply gone) and gear boosts that really only provide cursory weapon benefits that are often redundant with one another.
I look at the mechanic tricks list with envy (with mechanics being mentioned by others in the thread as weak) and then seriously reconsider to go exocortex mechanic, as I feel that the class features are more fleshed out straight out of the CRB. They have solid stat buffs, offensive abilities, defensive options and actual trick chains (feat chains being the fighter's original forte, but now mostly removed without replacement).
But, there will probably be other people who look at the DPR capabilities of a soldier and call me a crazy person.
It's probably an interesting discussion to have "what is the most glaring weak point of each class, as it stands right now?".
I could see two people who value the skill system differently having very different opinions over operative vs soldier, for example.
What would be the operative's most glaring weak point?
Tarik Blackhands wrote:
Tarik Blackhands wrote:
Not particularly. At least going off the assumption that you aren't being showered with plentiful on level (or beyond) gear, there's not a single chance in hell I'm ever going to buy an ultrathin doshko over near any other melee weapon outside CQC envoys. Full attacking just does more work,
If you look at wealth-per-encounter and wealth-per-level in a vacuum, and try to shop from that (indirectly by allocating NPC loot), it's easy to make the assumption that you're short on quality gear.
But there's a disconnect that often occurs along the way to reach that conclusion:
2. Encounters often involve CRs that are above APL.
3. While Wealth-Per-Encounter comes up short for at-level gear for an at-level-combatant, remember that if you are fighting a mix of NPCs and monsters without loot, that the Wealth-Per-Encounter over time gets moved onto the NPCs, or into lump-sum quest rewards.
4. Any loot that the party recieves that they will sell at 10% is only factored into WPE/WBL at 10%, any loot they are likely to keep is factored in at full cost. Over time, this means that loot total value should eclipse WBL by some margin.
You can expect some encounters per level to be well above CR+2 wealth-wise, and that's before you try to factor in whether people will sell stuff.
Even if a CR+2 NPC is carrying loot that's 3 levels behind the CR (or 4 behind the NPC's actual level) that's still only 1 behind APL. If you've done encounters with no loot elsewhere, that pads that encounter's loot further and you'll quickly end up with loot=APL.
If you start factoring in CR+3 'boss fights' you can even start handing out loot above level.
Unwieldy weapons win out on any round where you have to move (and dont have pounce-style abilities), and they're also more relevant vs creatures with good DR.
Kasatha's have the option of skipping quick draw and carrying 2-3 weapon setups at all times, so an unwieldy one can be put into the mix alongside a regular longarm, melee, pistol, whatever: and can allow you to get more damage out on rounds when you move, are staggered, or want to stand up from prone.
Can you full attack? use the regular rifle.
Did you move or take a move action? use the unwieldy weapon which probably does more damage.
They also can be used in conjunction with things like mechanic overcharge, and can be fit into rounds where you want to use a separate move-action ability more comfortably.
The best method I can come up with without over-complicating things:
Most of the BPU are handed out from destroyed starships.
Between Level 1 and 2 there are 20 BPU to hand out.
Lets say there are 3 starship encounters that level for simplicity's sake (pulling that number out of nowhere):
This way they feel encoraged to work for more loot, without the feeling that WBL will be identical no matter how lazy they are.
It also leaves you room to salvage an unexpected capture of a fully intact ship you had assumed would be destroyed instead of captured.
I'd stray away from trying to convert BPU to credits under the idea that it would only sell for 10% of value, and you'd quickly run out of money attempting to buy them. Simply tell people that if they want to do more starship stuff, they've got to seek out more starship fights: and then use up your extra 25% of the BPU/level there.
They had a lot of ground to cover in the CRB, and I can agree that sometimes it's a bit light on the options front, but hopefully that gets solved by them putting out a bunch of new feats and equipment options in a PHB/UE style supplement soon.
But yes, I think the problem is less relevant to actual play right now, and more about noticing that you run out of feats you want 5 levels into a character when you'd like to plan it to 20.
There are some definite holes in certain classes: soldier gear boosts being a prime example. And soldier gets hit harder by a lack of feat selection than the other classes too.
Don't get me wrong: the feat system is better than pathfinder (less dead weight) but the trimmed down list doesnt really cater to finishing characters very well yet.
I also really appreciate the few tactical-style feats that are there, there's just not that many.
On the equipment front, its really nice to see such a full table of weapons and armor from the CRB (there's holes, but its still really comprehensive). However when looking to grab other useful equipment, armor upgrades and so on, the list of options does feel very light in comparison.
So yes, I think I agree with other posters here that it's just symptomatic of only being able to fit X amount of content in the 2 books we have so far.
They've actually been very good books, and I hope they continue the trend they've set thus far: it's just that there's a certain critical mass of character options that hasn't accumulated yet, and probably wont for another couple of books.
Bombard actually looks entertaining, though I wish there was a way to scale it's number of uses.
Having it on a refresh like a spell instead of a credit sink is a really nice way to mix things up from the Pathfinder alchemist that just spammed bombs, though I do wish there was something like 1 utility grenade and 1 offensive grenade later on in the style.
I think they should have pushed more grenade-centric things in the later abilities of Bombard, and separated the heavy weapons/blast stuff into another style.
If you want it to be an improvement over full attacking, onslaught or quad attack, it's going to come up lacking.
However, in turns where you don't want to full attack, it's actually quite nice. If you consider rounds spent not full attacking to be wasted, then this actually lessens the blow of that.
ie turns like:
There's some nice action economy things you can pull off with the combined action, provided you aren't fixated on full attacks.
The move action to use on a friend also allows you to contribute offensively even when you're spending your standard actions defensively or to achieve something else.
The standard action to use it and attack allows you to use your move action abilities more liberally inside combat by lessening the damage drop off.
Also bear in mind that you are effectively gaining a bonus to hit (or removing the penalty) when you don't full attack, so the gap closes further, when combined with combat tracking, you can actually be better at single attacks than a soldier in some respects (just as accurate, with extra damage), while simultaneously freeing up extra actions.
In the case of sniper rifles, you can even remove ranged increments from the equation, for the most part, making that one attack very accurate, if you wanted.
Hida Fubuki wrote:
The CRB specifies that loot that is likely to be sold only counts against WBL at 10% anyway, so you're intended to hand out more loot to compensate.
If you want to fix the problem without making the decision on every item:
If you are following WBL, compare the WBL value to the characters wealth after they have sold some of the items.
Then, either hand out additional credits (pad existing loot with extra credits) and call it a day, or multiply your WBL going forward (and hand out more loot) by a % that will close the gap.
You can even make it more fun and increase loot by only part/none of that value, but have a 'secret stash' of loot that characters can find if they come up with exceptionally fun/clever ideas of ways to handle in-game tasks. This can serve to make players feel like they still get rewarded for good play, and not feel like they'll still get the same reward regardless of diligence. It also can serve to curtail tables where the party always tries to get more than they should, while still making them feel like they're winning that battle ;)
Since weapons sell for 10% of their price, instead of 50% of their price, this opens up a lot more room for GMs to hand out better weapons, more often, but restricts people from always being able to buy the exact piece of gear they desire, all the time.
I don't see this as a bad thing, personally: it leaves room for loot to provide interesting avenues of play that you might not otherwise entertain, without breaking the economy every time the GM gives you something cool. With that said, if you're playing a custom game, it can be worth having some level of communication with GM/other players as to loot you might be specifically interested in.
The attack is made "as if" you had full BAB, and the bonuses dependent upon BAB should react accordingly.
"Scanning" the enemy ship is a helm phase (science officer) combat action on CRB p325, which grants you information about the ship, and the info covers what you've asked for.
The higher the check, the more info you get: it goes sequentially down a list through basics -> defenses -> weapons etc. so if you beat a DC by 10+, you get basics, defenses and weapons in one go.
As far as I can tell, RAW, the only information you have about the ship is that it has become hostile.
CRB p316 wrote:
This is clearly obvious to all other starships in the vicinity with working sensors,
Whether a GM decides to give you additional info that might otherwise be obvious is probably up to him/her, but RAW you get basically nothing, not even the frame/size.
Gray's cannot speak, and only can communicate telepathically (p56)
Yet there is no mention of their telepathy ability, nor an inability to speak on the PC version (p57). They do have access to "telepathic message" as an at will spell (which could be used to cover speaking at very short range), but the ommission is somewhat confusing.
Yep, I missed that rule and it's actually really important, so thankyou for pointing it out Xenocrat :)
As for range, we haven't seen many long range encounters work. Either they ended with the side that showed a slim chance of losing just retreating behind terrain/smoke or with the enemy closing the gap into melee. Generally the range of fights quickly becomes manageable. It also helps that some fights take place indoors or in environments with a lot of obstacles (alien forests, caves, back alleys in a city, etc) so the max range is small.
For me - even if 90% of fights still start in charge range: it doesnt actually matter. The systems of melee and ranged are easier to mix now that precise shot is baseline.
It doesnt matter to me if there's long range firefights or not: I just care that ranged attacks work out of the box, without feeling like the rules are stacked against them.
I'm not disputing your reading of the rules RAW, but there are several reasons:
One of those might be considered insufficient for doubt, but it adds up: it's obviously insufficient for you, and that's fine: RAW will back up your interpretation until we know otherwise.
I personally don't mind either way the chips fall: I'm not a big fan of readied actions to disrupt spells already, I believe it slows down play, and if they give options for ranged characters to do it, I'd prefer them to be automatic class features that dont require a readied action. I can totally see why they might have made such a change.
With that said: I disagree that there's "No reason" for doubt.
We've had a discussion above speculating that the readied action rules will be errata'd back into a state where readied actions are functional methods of interrupting casting.
Since the existence of certain things like combat casting seems to imply an environment where combat casting should still work in some manner.
It's just as possible that combat casting would have made sense before the rules were changed/refined into their current state, and it's simply a vestigial feat that accidentally got included, or didn't get an update pass that it should have prior to the CRB being released.
My comment was more about the fact that in comparison to pathfinder, you don't have to contend with the precise shot problem, where you need to burn a feat to fire into melee effectively.
Whereas before you'd be facing -4 for shooting in melee, -4 soft cover, and ranged penalties, it would really start to stack up.
Since ranged characters no longer immediately get shafted by melee occurring (other than directly being subjected to pummeling) they play better together.
I don't see melee characters reaching melee in the first round as problematic: though I'd argue that starting within 5ft should only happen as often as starting outside of charge range, as a point of balance.
Do remember that basic charging is worse now, and even as a Blitz, you don't get to offset the penalty until level 5 (and you still don't get the attack bonus from Pathfinder).
Also, the math in your comparison is a bit off (not that it actually matters, the point you're making doesnt rely on it being 100% accurate. Just thought I'd let you know.)
If you do care at all:
your charge range as a lvl 2 blitz in heavy armor should be 70 - unless you're getting a bonus from something odd, and the average max range of guns in Starfinder is about 700ft, not that anyone lands shots at max range.
I think you're applying your heavy armor penalty once to your entire charge, rather than once to your speed, which is then doubled.
'Range' in weapon tables refers to range increments, not max range. When you shoot further than that, you take a -2 for each additional increment outside: so you can feasibly shoot quite a lot further than basic charge range. Max range for non thrown weapons is 10 increments, though considering that's -18 to hit, we're entering silly territory there, for the most part.
I think she is saying that the AP shows that you often end up in close quarters so the feat is actually useful.
My question was mainly aimed at the fact that the readied action rules prevent you from disrupting spells with readied actions, as written, as the attack goes off after the spell is already cast.
(and yes, I hope its an error that's symptomatic of the nonsense readied action vs readied action situations suggested on these forums, and not a desire to remove spell disruption)
You are going to have people up in your face (very often) and thus bonuses against opportunity attacks is going to be very easy.
I have no problem with melee being relevant, so I think that's gratifying to hear. Having it all ranged would be just as annoying as the melee fest that pathfinder was a lot of the time.
They seem to be trying to mix the two more comfortably.
Rysky the Dark Solarion wrote:
Rysky the Dark Solarion wrote:
I'll probably be playing the AP at some stage, so if you could keep your reply spoiler-free, I'd be very appreciative: but can you give some general context as to why saving throws against readied actions are meaningful?
Is it a spoilerific monster ability?
Does it affect non-full round action spells?
The rules in the CRB dictate that readied actions process after the action, so they cant be used to disrupt spells, generally in starfinder. This may or may not be something that get's modified in an errata later: i feel they tried to fix a different problem and created a new one.
Don't have the odd in front of me, but do gear boosts work on grenades?
Powerful Explosive works with the explode property, which grenades have, so that's fine.
However a cryo grenade doesn't have the 'cryo' category (they're in the grenades category), so RAW they won't function with things like flash freeze even if they have the word in their name.
I could see some people reading it differently, but RAW it's a no.
Step up -> step up and strike is an interesting one.
On the one hand, it's good that it's only two feats now.
On the other hand, since step up doesnt provide extra reaction/AoO, it's only purpose without the next feat is to maintain a cover bonus from using your enemy as a meat shield.
Step up, by itself, is no longer a marking/AoO feat at all: unless you get an additional reaction from a different source outside the CRB, or take the second feat.
The feat really needed to provide the extra reaction AoO with the first feat, and a selection of minor improvements with the second (10ft movement and +2 to hit on the AoO, and the ability to take an attack instead of an AoO would be good).
Instead we've converted a:
Good -> mediocre -> Good chain
mediocre -> Good chain
Which is an improvement on the chain once it's finished, but an obvious detriment on the single feat.
Their intention was good, but the implementation was a bit uncomfortable.
Jack, that fricking Rogue wrote:
For now, Power Armor just seems like something you bring out when you need to repel a boarding party. Until it gets more fleshed out, I see a lot of homebrew happening.
Fleshing out the boarding party rules would be a great way to make power armor feel more relevant.
The two concepts seem perfect for one another:
They don't all have to revolve around 'hero centerpieces' that only one person will enjoy: but they can present methods of solving situations outside of the regular combat/skillcheck/social trio, particularly if you provide multiple tasks to be achieved.
It also provides a mechanism for making athletics or similar checks a bit more 'grand', allowing for classes like soldiers to feel less left behind in the out-of-combat skills department after the first few levels.
I'd still like to see more suits at more levels as people have already requested, but opening up avenues for gameplay from a shipboard, structural or large-scale-architectural perspective is what I think would really sell people on the idea of integrating power armor in their session-to-session consciousness.
Prone is a lot more relevant now in ranged fights (and getting to melee through ranged fire).
Being able to go prone in situations where you're advancing under fire, and then kip up and take a full turn is actually not bad. It really puts prone in the 'free' action with no downsides bucket: even if you can't do it every turn due to only having one swift action.
Round 1: Run/Jet Dash > prone
I think Kip up is aimed at melee or hybrid melee/ranged (blast weapons like shotguns and flamethrowers), not just because it helps vs trip, but because it allows you to use prone a lot more freely.
these let you manage soft cover from enemies a lot more effectively, if someone uses a guarded step to give a firing lane to an ally, step up helps with that.
Improved step up is an accessible way to disrupt standard action spells without needing reach: you can't achieve this with the old pathfinder methods like readying ranged attacks, or combat reflexes. It also lets you AoO ranged attackers obviously.
It's a lot harder to create situations where you can disrupt spells in starfinder (due to rules changes), but when you can make the attempt within the new rules, it's a LOT easier - as you only need to do 1 damage to guarantee failure of the spell.
These are in addition to their flanking/locking in combat purposes.
There's a bit of an apparent meta shift from pathfinder->starfinder to facilitate more ranged combat, as it was pretty clunky to fit into Pathfinder. Now it's easier: but the understanding is that cover, prone, gap closing, different spell rules, and so on will shift the way you run encounters slightly.
In theory this should change from 'everyone starts in pounce range' to something a bit more dynamic.
In practice, it will depend on GMs, players and module-writers to provide avenues to make this system flow the way it seems to be intended.
At a bare minimum, I see relative positioning and cover availability as being a key component of most encounters in starfinder: whereas before it was not for many groups.
I feel like gear boosts are a revamped (more focused, more powerful) version of combat & equipment tricks from pathfinder.
Since they're not competing for feats now (at least, until they start giving out 'extra gear boost' feats) and they're less about having 5 mediocre/eclectic bonuses for 1 feat, and closer to about 1 for 1, they seem to thus far be more attractive from a power standpoint.
I think it has the potential to be a really nice system: once we get a few more options :)
It would be cool to have a soldier with a weapon boost, a targeting computer boost, a power armor boost, a jump jets boost and a sprayflesh boost - or whatever.
p169 has the general rules, treat them as club (archaic, -5 damage unless target is using archaic/no armor), but there's room for GM discretion to treat certain items as specific weapons with a -4 attack modifier: other than that there's a rule to treat power weapons as improvised if they're out of power, and you can use flare guns as an improvised weapon for 1d2 fire damage.