Seaweed Leshy

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Mummy Guardians are my go to because of their despair aura. No save frightening is quite handy. Being permanently on can be pesky for the party so it’s a prime candidate for Animate Dead to hurl towards the enemy and sustain only when needed. But now with undead PCs, you can go wild with a horde of them. Having mummy minions as a mummy is the dream.

So in this instance, the Undead trait supersedes the Negative Essence line that “renders it a living creature”? The Eidolon is fully Undead unlike Dhampirs?

Gisher wrote:
1.) Elixir of Life has the Healing trait, but not the Positive trait. If undead were only immune to healing effects with the Positive trait then Elixir of Life should work. It doesn't.

To be fair, Elixir of Life specifies living creatures so even if Undead weren’t immune to Healing effects, it still would not work on them..

Undead Eidolons I thought worked just like Dhampirs. They have negative healing, but they’re still alive. However, I completely forgot that Undead Eidolons, unlike Dhampirs, still have the Undead trait. Doesn’t that cause major targeting issues?

Negative Essence even has a line that says it has a bonus against “non-damaging effects that target only undead” showing they can be targeted as undead. Negative Essence is also the same ability that labels them as living. I need some help processing this.

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For Oracles, a single line that says they get a free Divine Access feat at level 1 is all that's truly needed. The amount of issues it solves for many people and the class itself is crazy for how tiny of a change it is.

Other than that, a reevaluation of curse benefit/penalty ratios in some subclasses would be a nice bonus. Just bring everything in line with Cosmos mystery as close as possible. But if nothing else, let's just revamp the Lore mystery's whole curse mechanics.

Dismissing Life Link was surprisingly relevant at later levels, especially with the multiple targets. I don’t do it often but the option to do so has saved my life each time.

Another thing about Life Link is that it’s really good at keeping everyone else standing during and by the end of the encounter. Sure, everyone is potentially left at critical hp, but no one ever went down and wasted actions trying to recover. Healing is so much easier outside of combat anyway.

The only catch here is that keeping the Oracle alive becomes a priority and hectic goal for the party. In my experience though, playing protect the Oracle is a worthy investment for the rest of the party to have extra hp to work with. Having mindful Life Linked party members helps ease this task. In general, this means players that know when to back off when they know a Life Link damage transfer can put the Oracle in a dangerous situation while understanding the extra freedom they have being Life Linked and taking full advantage of it.

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Thorn wrote:
Bones: I don't have any difficulties with the curse, and it isn't unusual for me to purposely advance it quickly. The minor curse is only really annoying at lower levels when magical healing is less readily available. The hit point loss from the drain on the moderate curse, is mostly made up with a single application of Soul Siphon if the target has a successful save. On a failed save, you gain more than you lost. The minor negative to fortitude saves is more than made up with the various bonuses versus disease, poison, and death effects...most of which are fortitude saves. The major curse could get you killed, but, in my experience, is scarier than it seems. Sure, you're one step closer to death, but you can choose to directly control every other step along the way.

It took me a bit to get to this point on Bones. I thought the curse was too scary to keep high at first but actually, it peaks at the Drained condition on moderate. In practice, at least for me, the rest of the penalties are easily manageable. I even thought I needed Diehard to play. It does make it a lot safer but it ended up not being an auto pick depending on party composition.

Soul Siphon really is the MVP at mitigating the Drained hp loss. I thought it was Armor of Bones at first but Soul Siphon was more universally useful in my experience. Keeping the temp hp up is easy, even out of combat, since it has no duration. It’s fairly easy to spam willy-nilly to constantly refresh the temp hp but there’s always a best target for the most temp hp.

I do like Cloudkill shenanigans with Bones but mostly for fun. It’s often enough that somebody else on the party that likes to cast disease, poison, or death aoe spell to make full use of your curse bonuses.

aobst128 wrote:
The one thing that bugs me about the battle oracle is the greater revelation spell.

Right? In a vacuum, it’s action costs are are steep and in context of being a revelation spell, the Battle mystery can barely afford to cast it with how situational its major curse is. I don’t think it can compete with any of its starting focus spells in most situations either.

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I’m an advocate for Enduring Alchemy getting the Powerful Alchemy treatment as well. On top of what HumbleGamer mentioned, it would really smoothen out Double Brew and Alchemical Alacrity as class features.

The last thing for me is their signature items from the errata. Remove the last line from their description like this:

Your research field adds a number of formulas to your formula book; these are your signature items. When using a batch of infused reagents to create your signature items using advanced alchemy, you create three items instead of two. Each time you gain a level, you can swap one of your signature items with another formula in your formula book. This new signature item must be on your research field's list of possible signature items.

I get it’s meant to patch up the levels before you get Field Discovery, but it irks me how signature items becomes completely obsolete and meaningless afterwards even though you can still them out every level. Anything to make signature items meaningful at all levels, really. It was a neat idea beyond being an early level crutch.

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Alexander Augunas wrote:

2) Feats

I hate how class feats are split up, so there's a new category at every opportunity. It makes me feel like if I don't take a new feat from the highest possible category, I'm playing wrong. And oftentimes I would be; the power level between a 1st-level rogue feat and a 2nd-level rogue feat is pretty crazy by itself.

This whole section speaks to me on a cosmic level. But especially this part I’m experiencing first hand. There are very few class feats that feel good taking if they aren’t on-level. The exceptions are often innately unique or part of feat chains/trees.

Alexander Augunas wrote:
Just wanted to say this is basically a perfect summation of pf2s issues (as is evident by the number of likes it has). I have a couple other smaller ones, like how abp should have been he norm, some monsters shut classes down way too hard in an unfun way, and unclear or silly rules such as crafting, hands needed, battle form math. But really this is like a master list of the biggest issues.

The only other major unaddressed issue I can think of is Recall Knowledge rules. Both in terms of clarity and structure.

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Alfa/Polaris wrote:
Oh, and Wizard getting a Thesis which integrates Spell Trickster stuff would be sick :3

My god, that would be my forever thesis.

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This is rather minor, but Effortless Concentration not available to Clerics and Oracles seems mostly arbitrary. It was interesting that it somehow affected the two full divine casters when I first found out about it, but now, I don’t think there’s a really good reason for it. I still wonder if there’s a lore reason. Otherwise, it has the same vibes as Druid not having access to Cantrip Expansion.

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Not a subclass and more of a potential class archetype, but for the Oracle, I want a style that mimics the curse advancement in the playtest while still interacting with the focus point mechanic.

Something along the lines of revelation spells only requiring you to advance your curse; no focus point cost. BUT, if you do use a focus point to cast a revelation spell, it doesn’t advance the curse. With how much fun a bunch of the Oracle focus spells are, I want style where they aren’t constricted by the curse rules. I don’t know what it should take away from the Oracle though, but with how curses are already, I’m all-in for more punishing penalties for more bolstering boons.

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Alfa/Polaris wrote:
Now that I've gotten a bit more experience with my (Lv 3) Life Oracle, I've found that the server tends to have fights that are either fairly trivial or get very desperate due to lots of crits. (Nothing specific to that server; the GMs I've had for that character just express weird all-or-nothing luck.) As silly as it may be, when the dice are hot you can't always be too conservative with estimates, and if you're the primary healer you also have to recognize how stretched your actions are, and in my case (having Wellspring Mage as well), how stretched my spell slots are too.

I hope you get to 5th level soon. Life Link with two targets will make your life so much easier on blanketing the party. The extra padding it gives grants so much battlefield positioning freedom for its targets, you don’t have to chase down your partymates just to be in support range as much. And if you do need to, everyone gets more time to react to emergency situations.

Being a Wellspring Mage is interesting though. The reduced spell slots really scares me for the Life mystery just because of having no Healing Font and all. How has it treated you so far?

I’m majorly excited for everything in the book. I have so many undead/necromancy-based casters shelved that I’m pumped for all their new toys.

If had to pick, Undead Summoner is on the top of my list. I’m on a Summoner binge, and I’ve already played all the eidolons types I wanted to try (playing the last one right now). It’d be nice if I didn’t have to cycle back already.

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yarrchives wrote:
You're overwhelmed. You refocus to regain focus points and reduce your curse level from your max curse level to minor. You're still overwhelmed. You can't cast revelation spells, but you can cast a 5th level spell with mystery conduit to progress your curse from minor to moderate. You're still overwhelmed.

This has only come up for me on my high level Tempest Oracle with Blaze of Revelation. The risk of being overwhelmed just isn’t worth it outside of activating that feat.

It’s a neat interaction to be aware of, though. To know that your focus pool isn’t completely screwed once you’re overwhelmed. Still a bummer you’re stuck at your minor curse for the rest of the day with no cursebound focus spells; I don’t recommend it.

WatersLethe wrote:
Bog Striders are dope. I'd be totally cool with them being stated up as an ancestry

Swamp bugs, hmm? My desire for a moth ancestry is truly being tested.

There is a way to reduce your curse mid-combat for all of these mid-combat focus point recoveries. The one and only way is with Scapegoat Parallel Self from Fists of the Ruby Phoenix. Disclaimer: It's a level 20 feat.

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I got a lot of mileage from spells that gain a huge chunk of additional targets at a certain spell level. Pick one from the likes of Slow, Day’s Weight, and Command. All were stellar at higher levels.

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I’m no Battle Oracle optimizer, but in fairness to it, once you go major curse, you’re not a full caster anymore. I wouldn’t dare risk casting a spell to just lose it to stupefied 2; I’m going full martial mode.

Then again, you’re indeed a full caster before that. You’re supposed to cast all your spells before using your major curse as a last resort.

Ascalaphus wrote:
Just like there is no way to mid-combat get rid of the Wounded condition. I don't think it's an accident that it doesn't exist.

The most we get is prevention, like effects that prevent wounded from increasing when you remove dying.

Perpdepog wrote:
We have an orc oracle in my AoA game too. She wound up joining our group because she left her clan in shame after realizing the life energy she constantly radiated was causing her fellow orcs' scars to fade away and heal up. With scarification being a big status symbol among orcs, it didn't make Dura Scar-Taker very popular among her friends.

Love it. The RP potential and variety of the curses is always a joy to both play and witness.

Do you know how long her clan tolerated her curse, or was the curse more of a recent occurence?

Gortle wrote:
I've been looking to play a depressed Mushroom (Fungal Leshy)character for a while now. Cosmic Oracle is perfect thanks.

Heh, that reminds me of my first Oracle, a Cosmos Fungus Leshy named Earth Stargazer based on the earth star fungi. I made him just because of the name and nothing else but he turned out to be lots of fun.

aobst128 wrote:
It's been fun. The fast healing is superficial wounds "overriding" more serious wounds as it's difficult for his body to keep track of what's actually hurting. You like leshy characters then? Lol. They're pretty cool. Versatile heritages are fun to rationalize for them too. Dhampir as a venus flytrap is a good one.

Ooo that’s neat. Some sort of spectral scarring. Have you had to go major cursed yet? It’s often a last resort, but I’m curious how you’d flavor that one.

And yeah, I couldn’t resist playing such an aesthetically unique ancestry. I get to squeeze in other ancestries here and there. I love my Orc Oracle that I only made so I can say I’m playing an Orcle. It’s actuallly with the Oracle I spam the most Leshies in; the ancestry fits very well with the class.

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aobst128 wrote:
What are some fun ways to flavor a oracles curse outside of the given flavor of it? I'm playing a battle oracle and I like to describe the damage he takes is proportional to what is currently attacking him but is inexplicable in how it effects him such as pulling an spectral arrow out of his shoulder after fighting some definitely not archers.

That’s very creative Battle. I wouldn’t have thought of that, but it’s now noted.

Lots of options based on ancestry as well, at least yhat’s what I do. For a Bones Leshy, I went for the obvious rotting plant. I also played a Cosmos Root Leshy that, much to his dismay, had a hard time staying grounded despite his natural root system. For a Life Leshy, I had an onion Leshy constantly growing and shedding their many layers. I also figured this was why they were difficult to heal, having no stable form to truly patch up.

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Gaulin wrote:
I forget about the free extra focus spell oracles get all the time. Love the variety in focus spells (and the free refocus feats later). Definitely the best focus spell class

On top of that, any archetype that grants focus spells has phenomenal synergy with the Oracle. Those focus spells not being cursebound and given your free refocus feats, your options with your focus pool becomes incredibly diverse.

My best example is the Blessed One archetype. For just one feat, you get a non-cursebound healing focus spell. It’s amazing when you have excess focus points but can’t afford to enter a certain curse level. At later levels, the Divine Inspiration spell can replenish your focus pool but does not reset your curse. Not a problem when you have a non-cursebound focus spell.

You can basically treat these archetypes as honarary Oracle feats. Because of that, the release of one is also an exciting moment for the class, and I hope there are more to come.

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I’m always surprised when I remember Obscuring Mist is not available through Divine Access.

Anyway, Solid Fog is another fog option through Hanspur, available to Bones through the Death domain. It creates difficult terrain so movement through can be a pain, but that goes for your enemies as well. I didn’t take it on my Bones, but I loved it in my Tempest Oracle. With Hanspur, it comes with Aqueous Orb; two fun control spells for one deity is quite the deal.

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Eoran wrote:
I have done similar with Sanguine Mist. It has to be sustained though and it doesn't move. Not having it move can be somewhat of a benefit at times though.

Cool thing about Sanguine Mist is it naturally doesn’t damage the caster. But if it is popular with your fellow casters like it was for one of my games, shrugging off the friendly fire is quite the boon.

batimpact wrote:
I guess its good too if you have other party members casting poison, death, and disease area spells. I wouldn’t feel like I’m getting in the way of those!

Similarly, resisting the popular and conic Vampiric Exsanguination was a highlight in my experience, and that’s without going with negative healing for the day.

Bones is an interesting mystery that took me a while to be comfortable maneuvering. Death domain gives you great Divine Access spells. The curse penalties just aren’t as scary as they look on paper. The non-magical recovery penalty is a mostly post-combat issue that can be managed. The higher curse penalties were naturally manageable with your overall kit and corresponding curse benefits. Best lesson for me was to let those revelation spells rip and confidently stay major cursed most encounters with little worry.

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HumbleGamer wrote:

I like the summoner, mostly because every feat the class has is really good.

But this is also his major weakness in my opinion.

I tried different approaches, but without the free archetype variant rule I couldn't really find any good feat spot to sacrifice in favor of a dedication/archetype.

This is 100% me. No level where I felt unsatisfied with class feat choices other than wanting to pick more. I dread the day I have to play one without free archetype. I don’t think it’d be that bad because the feats are good. Just less fun, which is the opposite of what I’m looking for when playing the summoner.

HumbleGamer wrote:
I 2) shared hp pool, making you easier to be targeted with spells and healing effects. Being 2 different targets result into different battle medicine Immunities.

This was a boon I didn’t expect to be quite so relevant before playing. I really focused on just the bad part of being two bodies initially. Great with multiple healers in the party.

I’m really excited how the Undead eidolon turns out. Having the above dynamic with negative healing sounds like a blast.

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batimpact wrote:
Instead of making an advice thread, I was wondering if I could get some advice here for my bones oracle.

I forgot to add, Cloudkill has a fun interaction with Bones's moderate curse and up. It gives you a high chance of taking minimal to no damage from your own Cloudkill. I've spent several encounters just standing inside my Cloudkill, confidently concealed and souped up with temp HP. It's also easier to maneuver the Cloudkill when you're already in it.

So yeah, when you get 5th level spells, I recommed Cloudkill from Nhimbaloth who also gives you Grim Tendrils and Entangle.

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Deriven Firelion wrote:
I may just make that a Summoner Cantrip they get at first level and see how that works. I want to make it real easy to break the connection and not cost anything costly. Summoner's can't afford a spell slot tax with 4 slots.

Yeah, I feel that and that's why I've never taken it. Although I also haven't made a true frontline eidolon yet. The damage reduction from Protect Companion has been enough for me, have you dabbled with that as well?

But yeah, Summoner's Precaution wands sound great.

If you're going to homebrew, start with a free Reactive Dismissal feat or something similar like you've been considering, but make it once per day first and see how that goes.

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Has anyone tried out Summoner's Precaution like Perpdepog suggested? I haven't personally but it seems to be the best solution to the eidolon and master going down together without costing a feat.

It's a spell slot tax rather than a feat tax though, so there's that.

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The Raven Black wrote:
How come they're all Rahadoumi ?

Haha. To be fair, being a divine caster without a deity is a neat option. I can understand why its concept is a big draw for some players.

And still, those true neutral deity worshipers are similarly swindled out of same spells.

Onkonk wrote:
Doing some quick math vs an on-level enemy with moderate saves, a Soul Siphon is worth about resisting 3 attacks with Armor of Bones. So depends on how much you expect yourself to get attacked.

Cool math. Didn’t even know that. Also imagine the huge chunk of temporary HP if your target gets drained 2 on a critical fail.

I’ve played with and without Armor of Bones. While Armor of Bones AND Soul Siphon together is great for tankiness, I found myself preferring to just refresh my temp HP when needed. Because of Soul Siphon’s permanent duration, there’s less pressure to get hit to get the most out of it unlike Armor of Bones. Personally, Armor of Bones feels like a luxury pick. Fun and effective but isn’t vital.

I’m with Onkonk though. It’s situationally useful dependent on how much you expect to get hit.

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neurogenesis wrote:
My perspective on this has always been that you're allowed effects that would always function, you're not allowed effects that specifically cancel other effects.

Thankfully that’s the attitude most of us eventually landed on. At least in my experience, the use of the word mitigate does seem to be the main and common point of contention against that ruling.

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Perpdepog wrote:
When occult gets aberration, ioton, shadow or some manner of tulpa eidolon though, I'll be all over that in a heartbeat.

Oh yeah, I'm feeling all of those.

I had my money on aberration before anything was announced, but I'm glad the Plant eidolon is a decent proxy for a tentacle monster.

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I've played a few Summoners now. Plant, Fey, Dragon and Demon. Two of the four clicked and I really enjoyed both.

I'm obviously biased toward the Plant eidolon but I honestly thought it would boring at first. Apparently, its reach and simplicity is the key to what makes it effective. Its range means it can go in and out of danger easily, keeping our shared hp safe. It only has one two action ability and it doesn't come online until later levels. All other abilities only pushes its strengths further making it both easy to manage and efficient.

Fey makes the most efficient caster eidolon which required a different playstyle and mindset. Offered a lot of utility and flexible turns. Honestly, I think I just enjoyed having an option that deviated from the rest of the eidolons.

Dragon and Demon were not for me. I thought the two action abilities would be the most fun but turned out to be more of a hassle to me because of the less flexible turns. Probably just my playstyle preference though. To be fair, I played these two after Plant and Fey, so I think I just couldn't function having less reach or having no spell options.

Summoner, so far, has struck me with the most feat choice dilemmas out of any class. I think I overall enjoy this aspect though. Probably why I'm looking to play Construct next. If I have to throw my eidolon in the front lines, might as well have it souped-up with as many feats as possible. I think I just like having more choices to customize my eidolon, which was also prevelant when I played Fey.

Biggest personal disappointment for me are the occult eidolons. Just didn't do it for me thematically and mechanically, all while I've been itching to try out more occult casters.

yarrchives wrote:
Frankly, I didn't think gaining resistance via resist energy would count as reducing the weakness from the curse. I thought it would simply be additive like bonuses and penalties yet here we are. I am unsure on its integrity as official ruling, however. It's an official character sheet but I remember a few of them having several mistakes fixed with errata.

At first, I wasn't sure how to rule that but I leaned on being more lenient when one of my players speifically wanted to be a Stormtossed Tengu Tempest Oracle. The Tengu resistance would pretty much cancel out the Tempest weakness which felt very much textbook mitigation. But I figured it would also mean his heritage practically wouldn't have a benefit either so I let both effects stack as normal. Hasn't been a problem and his intentions turned out to be more aesthetic than trying to cheat the curse so I'm glad I allowed it.

Great find though. I didn't think to look at the iconic character sheet for clues like that.

neurogenesis wrote:

My biggest issue with the Oracle is that it's a Divine Only class. Tempest and Fire should've been Primal list; Cosmos and Lore should've been Occult; Ancestry, Battle, Bones, and Life are fine as Divine (though an argument for Life being Primal could also be made). I know that gets into Sorcerer and Witch design spaces, but Divine Access could be limited to the Divine spell list mysteries and Sorcerer ends up with more flexibility without needing to manage a curse.


Or maybe make it so that Oracles can always choose the Divine spell list regardless of their mystery, but some mysteries (as listed above) can instead choose the Occult or Primal spell lists.

I've heard of that take several times before I even started to look closely at the Oracle class. It makes sense, and I really don't think it would step on the Sorcerer's shoes as much as it seems.

I do think it's too late for it though which is why I'm advocating for earlier Divine Access. Although, I do think this modular spell list idea could be a really good class archetype for the Oracle in the future. Even something along the lines of the archetype giving out free Divine Access feats at certain levels. The trade off I'd think would be less spell slots or something even more thematic like extra curse penalties or faster curse progression.

Gaulin wrote:
I'm curious how many people have managed to play a high level oracle without a deity. I love the idea of being a divine caster without a deity, but there are very few high (like level 8, 9) spells that don't require a deity. Just curious if it was a pain or not really.

I'm in the same boat as Cozzymandias but mostly because I keep gravitating toward the true neutral deities, which practically means the same thing for the deity reliant divine spells. The only thing I regretfully missed out on was Spiritual Weapon. But after the errata that made it not require a deity, it's no longer an issue.

Otherwise, I do think no deity Oracles are doable. Still, I wish there were no spells that required deities. I'd take it if the spells gave deity bonuses but to completely invalidate a spell on an already limited list just because of deity absence rubs me the wrong way, at least in context with the Oracle.

There is one spell that which gives me hope: Divine Armageddon. It still gates out casters with no deity but it's a step forward for true neutral deities.

The Raven Black wrote:

What I would love is a guide (or guides) for PFS2 characters. Taking into account that most PCs there rarely reach 8th level, if ever.

All the current guides tend to optimize your high level character. Much of their advice does not really apply for PFS2 characters.

Not a PFS player nor a low level conoisseur but this would be incredibly useful for many groups and individuals I know.

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I do encourage groups that find this to be an issue to try ABP. Getting items offer a new and fun vibe. Currently not a dealbreaker like free archetype, at least for me.

I’ve played in several games with ABP but haven’t used it as GM yet. Usually too many newbies in my games for me to try. Hopefully someday though since I want to experience it from the GM perspective.

Yeah, I'm not expecting much Oracle erratas with how soon the APG one is supposed to come out.

Out of anything, I have my fingers crossed for clarification/extra examples of curse mitigation. I think it's one of the most visible concern for the Oracle I've witnessed since it's release. It's almost always one of the first questions any player with interest has about the class, and they always come with specific interaction examples.

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Super biased here but my super serious argument for Leshies is their incredibly customizable aesthetic, all before clothing is involved.

With just the nine official Leshy heritages we currently have, I’ve seen at least a hundred unique designs. Not even counting versatile heritages.

Sorry, I was on a no-internet streak.

Good to hear about Whirling Flames! I was looking at Angradd specifically for Blistering Invective. Looks like a great spell for Flames.

Cosmos is a really good intro Oracle mystery imo. One of the most straightforward combo of good benefits and manageable curse penalties.

It is a bit of a bummer the new spells aren’t immediately accessible until we get new deities that provide them. I am hoping for a good wave of deities with SoM spells sometime. SoM has so many fun and effective elemental spells perfect for Flames and Tempest!

Yup. I really can’t complain about the Oracle offering interesting themes and mechanics. It’s the main reason why I can’t stop playing them.

I know when it comes to the APG classes, Witch has the most eyes on it for critique. I personally haven’t played it so I can’t say much on it. Ironic since it was the APG class that gave me the best first impression while Oracle gave me the worst.

Anyway, the Divine Access issue is only a low level problem. Nice that it’s alleviated with levels, but unfortunate in that it stacks with the universal caster problem of an uneventful and lackluster early game.

aobst128 wrote:
I've played a kobold flame oracle and had a blast. Kobold breath with incendiary aura is nasty. I'm currently playing a battle oracle too. Oracle is probably my favorite caster. I agree the class could use some better early level feats. The feat list feels pretty generic for a caster.

I’m hoping to squeeze in Flames one of these days. Have you tried Whirling Flames yet? It looks fun on paper, especially with that scaling. I’m just crossing my fingers for a high level game.

Perpdepog wrote:
We've got a life oracle in our Age of Ashes game. They ended up taking Champion Dedication at 2nd, but I could see them having been bummed they couldn't get a fire spell earlier if that heavier armor hadn't been factored into their decisions. They are going for a blessed of Sarenrae deal, so blasting is something they wanted to do early on.

To be fair, Life has many good options at level 2. Champion Dedication is a good one. Medic and Blessed One too. It’s the mystery I think I can tolerate delaying Divine Access the most because of it. It’s best Divine Acess spells are also conveniently higher level so it works out.

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Mitigating Oracle curses open-endedness

This is from Gortle's Pathfinder 2 Rule Problems

Gortle wrote:

Mitigate Oracle Curses. The intent of Oracle curse rules is not totally clear. You can't mitigate, reduce, or remove the effects of your oracular curse is a bit open. I mean one of the curses provides you with a status penalty to AC. Technically you could argue putting armour on mitigates that penalty. There is some interpretation required here. Mitigate is a very broad term.

Not allowing any modification or reduction of the penalty is fine. But other modifiers in that area are allowed. You can’t get rid of the -2 status penalty to AC, but you can wear armour and apply other modifiers.

I do believe the word mitigate without further clarication is the main culprit here. "Mitigate" can easily apply to almost anything that opposes a curse effect. Lore under moderate curse has their initiative penalized and is flat-footed so anything that boosts their initiative and AC is mitigating the curse and thus cannot apply? Tempest under minor curse gets a weakness to electricity can't get a resistance it at all anymore? And yes, how about Battle referred to above with the AC penalty?

While those sound silly and vibes too-bad-to-be-true to even be considered, I have personally witnessed those very discussions in some of our games involving Oracles. The Battle mystery example actually got heated as the GM really pushed for even armor mitigating the curse but we got him to make an exemption for the base AC bonus in the end; DEX bonus still didn't apply and eventually discouraged the player to play something else. My regular playgroups thankfully have a more lenient mindset to it, letting numerical opposition like bonuses and penalties and weakness and resistance to just add up to normally add up as long as the curse isn't being directly reduced or ignored (reduce penalty/weakness by X, etc.). But then, that's just our interpretation and after witnessing the rampant ruling disparity, we're still not confident on it.

Also note that mitigating curse effects applies to, well, all effects. Both good and bad. This means that the curse benefits are also unmitigatable if ruled as extremely as the penalties. Several myseries sport status bonuses that would effectively make them immune to penalties for that statistic. A crazy interpretation would be Battle's fast healing making you immune to what, all persistent damage?

Still, the fact that this is more common than I ever expected between completely different groups makes me feel more clarification is needed for these. Flames has a couple specific examples that are noted and actually helps us interpret some interactions with other mysteries. However, I do wish we could have a few more different examples like those to really set a limit on just how far "mitigate" is supposed to be and to cover as much ground as realistically possible. I don't think we'd ever have a truly exhaustive list but for such an important, and apparently contentious, aspect to the class, I think this could use some more attention.

Life Link's heightened scaling

I realize this is totally petty so take it with a grain of salt because Life is my favorite mystery and I've spammed it more than anything else in 2e. I love its unique healer playstyle and the risk that comes along with it, most of which can be credited to the Life Link focus spell. I'm having a hard time not playing it now whenever a healer is good party candidate.

Anyway, its biggest limitation imo is its number of targets and how slow it scales up. It also scales a tad erratically. A 1st level spell, it heightens at 3rd, 6th and 9th with a line for each heightened level. You'd think it should just heighten every two levels after the first. The numbers end up the same at 9th except for the extra target which imo is mostly negligable at that level. Well, it's actually a holdover from the APG playtest where it was a 3rd level spell that heightened at 6th and 9th.

I think it'd be perfect if it heightened like this.

Heightened (+2) You can target 1 additional creature other than you. Increase the initial healing by 2d4 and the maximum damage reduced and Hit Points lost by 3.

It heightens at 3rd, 5th, 7th, 9th. The can confidently say the earlier extra target at 5th level would be a godsend. The redirected hit point amount in particular scales more neatly, along with everything else. Shameless errata buff request? Absolutely. I'm just putting it out there. Do note it would save some bookspace while making the numbers more pleasant to the eyes.

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I'm the resident Oracle apologist in our playgroups. I'm pretty much the only one who plays since everybody else is either afraid of its complexity or considers it weak. I've exclusively played the class, for the most part, since their release and have only recently taken a break to mostly dabble with the Summoner. Other than Ancestors and Flames, I've played every Oracle subclass and have done so multiple times.

There is that one game I GMd a full Oracle party campaign, played with close friends coaxed with food. It was a success in that a some of them have now tried out the class in several games without my friendly coercion. Since then, they've reminded me how I can tone down my persistent and biased shilling for the Oracle. And that really got me thinking how I should do an honest reflection on the class after playing so much of it for so long.

I'm a huge fan of the whole Oracle package, from the roleplay flavor to the curse mechanics. Coming from 5e just looking for some Sorcerous fun, this was the last thing I expected to happen. But now, no longer a full-shill for the class, I want share a few Oracle aspects that I reflected upon, not-so-flawless aspects I honestly think could be better.

Divine Access as a level 4 class feat

So Divine Access is one of the best aspects of the class imo. Being able to swipe spells from outside of the limited divine spell list is a great boon. And you can do it multiple times! It's a great feat for customization that doesn't feel forced for most builds. The glaring exceptions being Flames and Tempest, both of which have effects that bolster certain elemental spells accessible as early as level 1. But due to the nature of the divine spell list, elemental spells are naturally limited and even more absent early on. Divine Access is meant to alleviate that, albeit through a feat tax. It's one of the earliest and still common concern for players new to the class looking to do some blasting. Understandably, the focus is on the feat tax for the two elemental mysteries, but I think it wouldn't be as egregious if Divine Access was accessible even earlier, say as a level 2 feat.

For perspective, Divine Access's early iteration in the APG playtest was a feat named Divine Element. Exclusive to Flames, it granted three fire spells. Like a limited Divine Access with no deity choice and the spells chosen for you. It's a level 1 feat which shows there was a sense of urgency getting synergistic and thematic spells for certain mysteries that sadly didn't make it to the final product. Certainly not fully comparable with Divine Access as it is now. Still, I didn't realize how being a level 4 feat was such a huge limitation on certain builds and mysteries until I played Tempest a few times and watched Flames and Tempest players struggle with disappointment before 4th level.

After the full Oracle party campaign and a few other games, we also realized just how empty early level Oracle feat choices were. At level 2, the class feat of choice was always just Reach Spell. It is one of only six level class feat choices at that level, the smallest pool out of any class, and by quite a noticeable margin last I checked. Now imagine Divine access as a level 2 feat. Even if it became the universal feat choice, the nature of the feat creates diverse options players can choose from each different game for each different mystery early on. It helps both the limited class feat choice at level 2 and the Flames and Tempest issue. I'm trying this out for our next full Oracle party campaign and, if it goes well, highly considering it for every future game.

The Only Sheet wrote:
Lini's Leafstick (page 167) lists Plant Form both in the 5th level and 6th level sections!

Plant Form does have a heightened effect at 6th so it makes sense.

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Argazhon wrote:
scyfir wrote:
Possible errata candidate: Pg 130 of Gods and Magic, Hanspur's 2nd level cleric spell is aqueous orb, a 3rd level spell.
Any position about this topic?

It seems to be an issue with some deity-given spells. Charon, Naderi, and Sifkesh have Crushing Despair, a 5th level spell, listed as a 4th level spell. There are three other deities, Ahriman, Groteus, and The Lost Prince, that give out Crushing Despair but do so at 5th level. Other than Ahriman, all five deities came from Gods & Magic.

This was also briefly discussed on the first page of this thread btw.

Nature’s Reprisal with Tangling Creepers is a fun and easy combo to set up with two casters. Reprisal turns Creepers into difficult terrain, stacking nicely with Creepers’ speed penalty.

I’m a fan of Geyser. The chance to cause prone has been very useful as is the 1 round concealment.

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Gortle wrote:

ELemental Confluence how does the earth effect work?

Is the benefit granted to everyong within the confulence? Or one target with a range.

It doesn't say.

It looks like it just applies to the confluence itself.

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I've definitely ran into each issue you've pointed out at least once. And I agree, we don't need a new set of rules. Just a little bit of polish and structure would go a long way. I'd looove it if we could get even a brief list of examples for the more bizzare but possible interactions.

The only thing I can add is that personally, I'm not a big fan of this particular line: "Once a character has attempted an incredibly hard check or failed a check, further attempts are fruitless—the character has recalled everything they know about the subject."

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Malikor wrote:
The spell does say in its first sentence: You splash a glob of acid that splatters your target and nearby creatures.

I somehow never noticed that. Or at least, it never really registered in my brain completely. Good catch!

As the evidence piles up, the only weird part about the spell now is that the splash damage is stated together with the on hit damage.

Unless I'm misreading, you can only create a custom weakness if the creature lacks an existing weakness equal to at least 2 + half your level.

It's probably better to always set an existing weakness higher when you can than a custom weakness that only you can exploit. But the whole flavor of the custom weakness is so fun, I'd like to be able to apply it even if it's a suboptimal choice because there's a thematic choice in jeopardy.

Any thoughts on making the custom weakness an option even if there is a weakness you can set?

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