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Pathfinder Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber. 2 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists.


Pathfinder Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

In all honesty I agree with Paizo's decision to pull back from the political threads. In recent times, from my perspective, politics in the USA have become increasingly bleak and violent.

As I like to tell my friends when they ask me why I started open carrying, it started becoming socially acceptable for some reason for people to let out the crazy and I prefer something obvious to help dissuade the crazy from coming out around me.

To add some context to that statement: Due to my work I'm in a position where I am occasionally on site in some locations which are decidedly unfriendly. Initially I felt comfortable walking into these areas unarmed, primarily because I grew up in a very unfriendly neighborhood, however with recent political changes I observed an uptick in violence in those less than friendly locations as did a number of my coworkers, up to and including at least one coworker requesting company issued body armor on top of armed escort and open carry when in such unfriendly locations.

It also may not help that my personal political views are mostly in direct contrast with the political majority of where I live and work. Said political majority are quite vocal about their political opinions.

Pathfinder Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

The problems that I see with the class, are primarily involved with three areas. Those are equipment, feel, and actual combat

The first and least notable is equipment. The gunslinger's starting equipment is far too expensive for a first level character. My take on it would be to reduce the overall price of the weapons based upon the fact that the weapons already are quite limited to 1 shot /round at least as listed in the play test. The issue that seems to be brought up earlier in this vein is about the starting cash available to characters at level 1. IMHO the extra gold is nice, sure burn a character level for some hp and a nice reflex and attack bonus for a short term gain. In one shot games this is a problem, in a longer term game it's easily adjudicated to the point where a gunslinger PC will be paranoid about thieves and spend much at least a portion of their finances looking to secure the firearms up to and including burning feats and cash to improve their perception checks if the values remain unchanged. If the weapons are as rare, assuming the rarity as noted in the pathfinder campaign setting, as said the gunslinger faces the larger issue of equipment as he progresses. Exotic weapons users all face the same issue of weapon availability, exotics are just that exotics. (this next part is my personal view on exotic weapons please take it as such, only an opinion and please don't try to change my view on this) Personally as a GM within the range of wealth according to town size I work with my pc's on the rule of if it makes sense and it's within the price range you can get it easily. As an example you're in a port town and want to pick up a katana or a jitte or other equally rare weapon for a european style sword and sorcery location, if the town is at least on a conceivable trade route from an area where the weapons are common, read oriental based societies sure you could pick one up. If the pc's are in podunk middle of nowhere in a blank spot on a map that is more a place for farmer's to live and die and never get noticed, read this as a blank spot in the map that I got bored with seeing and dropped a farming village in order to give the pc's a bed, the pc's won't be able to pick up exotic and rare weapon types, they would have to be commissioned from a weaponsmith and yes they have to wait the time for crafting. This is fine between adventures but anything more and the problems arise. Simply put my opinion is common weapons are common for a reason, exotic weapons are exotic a reason, because the society in that geographical area doesn't like to use them means they probably won't make them and probably will not have every village shop carrying a few dozen elven curve blades. (my personal opinions are for this section are complete, yes I felt like stating them and think not many will care about them, but I wanted to voice them, please pay more attention to the honest critique of the class than the opinion)

The second issue in my eyes is that the gunslinger feels more like a 3.5 fighter burning feats into weapon specific luck feats who in order to remain effective must exercise a significant lack of judgement rather than the pulse pounding adrenaline junkie of a daredevil that the fluff leaves me wanting the class to be. The fluff wants the gunslinger to be a wild west hero running and gunning with weapons that are so scary and new they might just kill him. The class skills do not lend themselves to the types of things that are listed to allow a gunslinger to regain grit points, this may be purposeful. The class does not have much in the way of skill points, this may also be purposeful. The combined lack means that the character will generally be trying to perform acrobatics, climb, etc checks without the skill or much in the way of skill points to help with the options. The class feels most like a slightly crazy and somewhat crippled ranger or rogue variant due to it's secrecy and reliance on ranged weapons without the skill to back up the firepower.

The combat with the class beyond level 5 quickly becomes how many pistols can I carry with leather thongs attached to them. To explain further a character in close combat, 30 ft or less range, firing a big noisy weapon, firearms, has one rather large and notable issue firing when already in melee. Sure at low levels burn a grit point to pistol whip or rifle butt the goblin, read soccer ball or baseball according to your preferences, but once you reach a higher level say 3-4 the gunslinger will have to rely on non-existent skills to move and shoot which is fine for a few levels, until that 1 shot /round issue comes up. This is most likely solved, based upon the rules for firearms in the play test, by multiple barrel weapons, turret guns, which are fine until the gunslinger realizes that the weapons are rare outside of a small geographical area and that the gunslinger has the choice of replace the exotic rare and exorbitantly expensive weapon with another of even greater rarity and exorbitant price which is not too bad until the gunslinger realizes that they burned feats to make the one more effective only to make those feats useless (read weapon focus, improved critical etc under the assumption that the turret versions are different weapons and different weapon proficiencies) or work with a substandard rate of fire, read carrying half a dozen plus pistols on leather thongs, or to think far ahead hoping that the gunslinger doesn't manage to blow him or her self up obtain a weapon that will more than match their attacks per round making them very effect at short ranges and anything longer less effective than an archer without using a scope at least in ranges under 200 ft. This coincides with a different issue the reload times which are a standard action, move action with rapid reload, apply this to a 4 barreled gun, 2 rounds to reload after a full attack action, sure they were touch attacks, and sure you hurt them, now unless you burn grit points you're running away in order to reload for 2-4 rounds unless your party steps up to take the heat for you or you did carrying half a dozen pistols or rifles in order to keep up. (the prior section assumes that the gunslinger takes rapid reload and precise shot as feats as soon as possible as required feats, the reload comments assume that each barrel is it's own reload rather than reloading 4 barrels as a move actions, refer to the double crossbow as an example, the short range comments assume that quick draw or something akin to it is taken as well.) Given this information I can easily see a gunslinger packing a shortbow to use when he or she is at longer ranges just to keep up with the feel of a ranged combatant due to the ranged penalties, however the maintenance costs enough that most players won't bother with.

The long and the short of it, now that you've gotten through that book of a critique riddled with opinions, is that the gunslinger faces quite a few difficulties to being effective at what the gunslinger does. Between the issue of one shot low level games being used for burn money to higher level games where what once was cool now drops him from the fight for a few rounds and causes the gunslinger to become a liability, to the builds which when operating on certain assumptions based around the different weapons which may be printed in the book make the gunslinger face the choices of effective now or effective later if I live that long. The gunslinger in one night games is potentially just a burn level for a few thousand gold or in longer games eventually ineffective and underpowered and potentially suddenly very poor if the player exercises bad judgement with bad luck.