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Temperans wrote:

Btw I always found it weird that:

The solution to the problem people come up with is almost always make more feats/spells; and by the nature of PF2 being having nerfed magic and some other things getting those abilities would be power creep.
Which people would then complain about because "why are you ruining my games with your splatbooks".
But in the end it's still a fix to Paizo's choices.

I still remember the huge "swashbuckler are just fighters we dont need a new class or archetype" discussion. Which would cut out an entire class nd all its lore from the setting.

Not saying it's bad, just kind of weird human behavior.

Well, this is a specific solution to this specific issue with the transition to PF2 in the context of my game. I don't need to see it in a splatbook, nor do I need to make it available to my players in this or another campaign. Not only that, but PF2 even provides a nifty rule that makes it 100% legit: I can label it as rare.

Deadmanwalking wrote:
gwynfrid wrote:
The example of the Goodberry spell is clear: A low level druid used to be able to feed a large family in times of famine, this is no longer possible.

Uh...yes it is. A 3rd level Druid can get 16 meals in a day with Goodberry by spending about 9 hours. They can probably get up to an easy 27 if that's all they do all day.

The mechanism and how much time/resources it takes certainly differ, but feeding people via goodberry (the important bit in-universe) remains very doable.

OK, but then the druid has to be level 3 for this. More importantly, they can't travel at the same pace as other characters. Bit of a problem if the idea is for the group to cross a desert. OK, maybe they wouldn't find fresh berries in the desert anyway, so this is possibly a moot point. Still, the story definitely changes.

Deadmanwalking wrote:
gwynfrid wrote:
Another example is Wild Shape: The druid used to be able to change into an eagle for hours, and so explore a large expanse of land from the air with ease. This is now out of the question. It doesn't take lab notes to notice these things, they're obvious.

Actually, this is still completely doable. It does require being a much higher level Druid at the moment (11th level, to be specific), but it remains an option for Druids in-universe. Specifically, Form Control allows you to Wild Shape for an hour, and effectively stay in that form pretty much indefinitely (or, at the very least, only need to come out of it for a few seconds every hour), and can use Pest Form to have a Fly Speed while doing so. Soaring Shape also helps with this, improving the fly speed dramatically.

Now, that's certainly much higher level, but how often in the world lore (as opposed to 'how often do PCs do this') have we heard about low level Druids doing this?

I'm not actually thinking of a single example of a low level Druid doing this in any Golarion content.

Well, there's an important NPC ally of my group in my current Kingmaker campaign and she's a level 6 druid, so that single case is enough to change the story in a major way. I can't recast her as level 11 without causing other, deeper continuity issues.

Deadmanwalking wrote:
And even if there is, that just implies the existence of a Feat we haven't seen yet, not the world...

Yep. My plan is to make a feat up, or a ritual. If there aren't too many issues like this, I'll be able to handle them.

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I think 99% of the rule changes are perfectly fine from a continuity perspective. Numbers are different, that sort of thing. Even the details of how smite evil works can be explained away by the fact the paladin does good damage, thereby harming evil creatures.

There's a small portion of the rules that are really breaking continuity, however. The example of the Goodberry spell is clear: A low level druid used to be able to feed a large family in times of famine, this is no longer possible. Another example is Wild Shape: The druid used to be able to change into an eagle for hours, and so explore a large expanse of land from the air with ease. This is now out of the question. It doesn't take lab notes to notice these things, they're obvious.

I don't think it's the end of the world, but if I change editions mid-campaign (and I really would like to), I'll need to come up with a few fixes to explain away the most glaring problems.

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Shed Tail is genius. Can't wait to play that trick :-)

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All the best, and enjoy! My advice is 1) have a cheat sheet at the ready for stuff that comes up often, like basic actions, detection vs stealth, and conditions; 2) don't sweat the details, be easy on the players and yourself. We're all beginners with these rules, and a heck of a lot of that stuff is new, plus many of us need to "unlearn" PF1 habits. If you miss the effect of a manipulate trait or a non-stacking bonus here or there, it's no big deal, just roll with it and move on.

Interesting discussion. Sounds like a takeaway could be that martial characters can easily be built to be pretty strong, while casters require more expertise and thought for the players to leverage their strengths within the system in order to be fully competitive. If confirmed over time, I would rate this a big success for the game’s design.

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A superb job. Thank you!

Already deep in my pdf CRB, I much like what I see so far (I started with the Playing the Game section).

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A few I have noted:
- The rule for counteracting effects has been greatly simplified. You don't take a penalty depending on the counteract level. It's much cleaner now.
- Attack of Opportunity no longer takes a -2 penalty. It only disrupts the triggering action on a critical hit (not just a hit).
- Cover is clarified and more finely detailed with the addition of lesser, standard and greater cover.
- The conditions have changed pretty significantly.

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Whoever predicted a disaster on the site was completely wrong. It took me less than 2 minutes to buy, pay, and download. Delighted!

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I remember how impressed and excited I was, reading the 3e PHB for the first time. This system had a really long run, and that comes to show how strong it is. A good portion of the audience will continue playing it for years and I'm not surprised some don't wish to move on to PF2.

As for me, I won't forget these good times, even though I embrace PF2 as a welcome modernization.

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Cool. There seems to be room for notes and descriptions in the attacks, spells, actions, and saves, this is great.

Now, just this as a form-type fillable pdf and I'll be all set. Meanwhile, my handwriting will have to do (ouch).

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Mark Seifter wrote:
Anyway, there's a lot of non-temperature goodies in the blog too, and thanks to everyone for reading and responding. Every week, Logan wonders which thing in the blog will become the big side discussion, and I sometimes guess right, but this time I thought it would be the Pathfinder baseline, not temperature. :D

People are going to talk about their reaction to temperature, and about the importance of using their preferred measurement scale, because those topics are about them. Likewise, the Pathfinder baseline is a topic related to people's identities, so it's got great potential for generating a long, heated thread. But you didn't provide any details about it, so it's a bit of an abstraction at this point, and harder to comment on. (Yes, this is a shameless bait to get you to say more about it).

Anyway, the blog has plenty of great stuff for us to remark on. For example, I love the idea of the ghaele as an embodiment of freedom to bear arms against oppression, while the lillend is all about freedom of expression: A pretty clever concept, and great flavor.

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Eoni wrote:
Oh wow. When I read about Bards having Muses I was thinking it would be a more abstract concept but to see Nymphs giving out actual bonuses for Bards who use them as Muses is getting me extremely excited to see what other possible Muses are waiting in the bestiary.

I remember writing in a survey (or was it on the forum) that a muse should be a person (possibly an imaginary one), not some abstraction. Very happy to see it happening!

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This is a superb blog, thank you Mark. As expected the monsters are juicy! And the art is very, very cool. I also appreciate the DC table, so much more sensible and easy to understand than the playtest's. Kudos also on the excellent GM guidelines.

I second those who would have appreciated a column with temperatures in Celsius. I have adjusted to feet and pounds without excessive pain since the conversion isn't hard (5-ft = 1.5 m, 1 lb = 0.5 kg), but for Farenheit I have to use Google, and I hate having to do that during a game. Trying to "think" directly in F is extremely counter-intuitive and not workable.

By the way, a wind adjustment, for cold temperatures, is as necessary as a humidity adjustment for high ones. That said, these are minor quibbles. Some sweat about environment effect rules isn't the end of the world.

Now, yes, this preview makes it really attractive to run adventures with this ruleset. Earlier I thought I couldnt afford to switch mid-campaign... Now I think it would be worth it, if I can bring my players on board with the effort required for the change.

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sherlock1701 wrote:
gwynfrid wrote:
sherlock1701 wrote:

And why not? It's just like any other subject. If I spend an extra 20 hours studying statistics, would it be unfair for me to perform markedly better on an exam than someone who did not? I certainly don't see a difference.

If you work hard, you should do well. If you dont, then you shouldn't complain.

This approach is perfectly valid on its own logic. However, it implies that the game is designed for an elite group of heavily invested players. Other players don't need to apply, unless they don't mind their PCs being vastly outclassed at the table. Your exam analogy is telling, in that perspective. You have those who pass, and those who, well, fail or drop out.

I don't agree with this philosophy. It's appropriate to reward mastery, but that reward should be moderate in scope. Otherwise the difference between hardcore and casual players becomes so large that they can't play together.

So then the casual players ask the hardcore players for help. Back to the metaphor, I used to study with and help classmates all the time. You can do the same thing with character builds. Think of it like tutoring.

Yes, of course. In my group, I've been one of the players who do that, for many years.

But this process is time-consuming, and I'd rather spend time in, you know, actual play, or looking after my own character. As the GM, I'd rather spend time thinking about the next developments I want to introduce in the campaign, rather than advising the less expert players so their PCs don't fall hopelessly behind.

So, among the things I'm looking forward to in PF2, there's the time freed from having to fix issues with the group's power balance.

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sherlock1701 wrote:
RussianAlly wrote:
I feel that system mastery should be rewarding when it shows through intelligent strategical and tactical application of the systems in play to achieve unexpected and interesting results. It should not be a reward for having extra 20 hours to spend on manuals or the SRD reading build options.

And why not? It's just like any other subject. If I spend an extra 20 hours studying statistics, would it be unfair for me to perform markedly better on an exam than someone who did not? I certainly don't see a difference.

If you work hard, you should do well. If you dont, then you shouldn't complain.

This approach is perfectly valid on its own logic. However, it implies that the game is designed for an elite group of heavily invested players. Other players don't need to apply, unless they don't mind their PCs being vastly outclassed at the table. Your exam analogy is telling, in that perspective. You have those who pass, and those who, well, fail or drop out.

I don't agree with this philosophy. It's appropriate to reward mastery, but that reward should be moderate in scope. Otherwise the difference between hardcore and casual players becomes so large that they can't play together.

In that regard, PF1 was poorly balanced: Not only was system mastery well rewarded, but lack of experience was severely punished. PF2 tries to reward expertise while reducing the gap between experts and beginners. Time will tell if it was successful with that goal.

graystone wrote:
gwynfrid wrote:
Others have said something similar, but I find it interesting how completely I disagree with sherlock1701's issues with PF2.
PF2 is more of a mixed bag for me: pro's and con's. For instance I agree with him on bulk and have some issues with minions.

If we go back to sherlock's twenty items I think those two are among the minor ones. As for me, I'm much in favor of the bulk system (not really worse than pounds for realism, and much less fiddly), but I think it wasn't very well implemented in the playtest. I'm fine with downgrading minions relative to PF1 but the playtest was a bit too restrictive in that respect. For both, I'll wait to see the released book before passing judgment.

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Others have said something similar, but I find it interesting how completely I disagree with sherlock1701's issues with PF2. With very few exceptions, everything he sees as a downgrade I see as a major improvement over PF1 (I hasten to say I've been playing PF1 for years, still love it nearly as much as I did when I started, and still consider it vastly superior to any other version of the game published so far). Clearly a big difference in play style and preferences across the board.

There are many things I look forward to in the new edition, but the biggest ones are:
- As a GM, a much easier time prepping for high-level play for my group.
- As a player, a much easier time creating and up-leveling characters.
- A much easier time teaching the game to complete newbies.

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I would certainly give a long try (like, a whole AP chapter at least) to the rules as written, before I start house-ruling, except for things that the rules don't cover yet, like the aforementioned technology rules.

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Name: Gurgarmuskh

ABC: Goblin, Acolyte, Cleric of Irori

Weapon of Choice: Dogslicer

Mount: A goblin dog named Zen

Catchphrase - a mantra he recites to maintain his self-control:
"Impassive, my face
Respectful, my language
Orderly, my thought
Relaxed, my breath
Impervious, my mind."

Personality: Gurgarmuskh renounced his native tribe's disorderly, dirty, loud, destructive mindset. He found faith in the deity most in opposition to that: Irori. He received a great monastery education where he learnt the way of rigorous order, cleanliness, silence, and discipline. Always impeccably dressed, polite, calm and polished, his only concessions to his ancestry are his traditional goblin weapon and mount.

Weakness: He completely loses his well-rehearsed self-control in the presence of fire. This is anathema, so, when that happens he needs to discipline himself in a variety of ways to atone for the lapse.

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The list of conditions isn't much shorter than in the playtest (1 less if my count is right) but it's been greatly clarified, by removing redundancy and unclear language. Well done.

- The playtest had Drained and Enervated, now down to Drained.
- The playtest had Accelerated and Quick, now down to Quickened.
- The playtest had Entangled, Hampered, Slowed and Sluggish. This is now just Clumsy and Slowed.
- The playtest had Asleep and Unconscious, this was simplified to just Unconscious.
- The language used for degrees of concealment (Hidden, Unnoticed, etc) is also more clear than the playtest's (Sensed, Unseen).

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- Every time you sneeze or burp, flames come out of your mouth, causing 1d4 fire damage to creatures and objects in the adjacent 5-ft square of your choice.

- No matter how hard you try to be discreet, you always speak with an annoyingly loud voice.

- Once per minute or so, a cockroach crawls out of your clothes and scurries away.

- The contact of water with your skin causes a strong tickling sensation.

- Your hair grows 1 cm per minute. For males, this includes facial hair too.

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This may be an out of order release, but who cares? It's just great!

Meraki wrote:

I'd totally be willing to pay cash money for a bonus add-on detailing all the companions we didn't get in the hardcover. Just sayin'. ;-)

(I know, might not be likely...but I can dream!)

Likewise. Unfortunately this would require us to travel in time to yesterday, together with a few hundred like-minded friends.

Kubetz wrote:
gwynfrid wrote:

I'd very much like to reach the $450k (Ekundayo) goal and even more, $475k (kingdom expansion), but that seems a little too far away.

I would love for the campaign to hit the $475k goal, but the chances are low. Fingers crossed tho.

Unfortunately high reward tiers were not interesting enough for the backers for that price. Getting 5/5 High Priests would help a lot :).

Well, maybe there just aren't enough super rich backers...

Also: 2000 backers now. That took just 15 minutes since my last post.

Wow, there has indeed been a strong acceleration over the past 2 days. 2000 backers will definitely happen (only 9 to go right now) and $400k looks very feasible.

I'd very much like to reach the $450k (Ekundayo) goal and even more, $475k (kingdom expansion), but that seems a little too far away.

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I agree, this is one of the most sensible updates we've seen coming out the playtest so far. IMO, with this finishing touch, the skill rules for PF2 are definitely a major improvement over PF1, in every way.

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There’s no way to make everyone happy. Some want more encounters (new dungeons) and don’t care as much about extra background or kingdom development (companions). Some want more companions and don’t care as much about additional story (new chapters). Then some want more story and don’t care as much for more physical goodies (maps, unique dice, etc). Then some would like more goodies and don’t care as much about more encounters. Or any combination of the above.

So the devs just offered a mix of everything. This guarantees they’ll get complaints, but at least they didn’t leave any potential fan out in the cold. In fact with this campaign Paizo has really gone out of its way to offer at least something to every faction out there.

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Very nice piece. Kudos!

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Marco Massoudi wrote:
NielsenE wrote:
I'm getting a little annoyed at how just about everything is copied form the CRPG. Dudemiester's enhancements felt so much better to me as a starting point for Paizo's writers/designers/etc to build off of for what works better in pen and paper. I liked the CRPG but so much of their changes made it feel more solo player than party based. While I want more foreshadowing, the CRPG was too much by quite a long way.

I agree about it feeling that everything added is exclusively from the computer game.

The prologue is, the epilogue is (that one seems cool) & now a new middle chapter?

Actually, from what we've heard so far, a lot of what's going to be added remains open at this point. For example, look at this thread in the Kingmaker subforum, where Mark Moreland asked for folks' preferences as to what should be added.

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There was a definite acceleration in pledging yesterday. I think this was because Owlcat sent out an update on their own KS project pointing to this one.

As for the companions, I'm all for them including sidequests. After all, what is a sandbox, if not a large pile of sidequests for players to choose from? Even if not used for such purposes, the companions provide color and depth to the Kingmaker world, which is always welcome.

Frencois wrote:

Hi to you O beloved DM.

Agreed. This said since indeed it should be an easy "translation", would make sense to have one person in Paizo to do it rather than thousands of backers having to do the same stuff in parallel in Canada (smile), France (double smile) and elsewhere... IMHO.

PS: Don't blame me Vic, I'm trying to win some xp with my DM.

In the interest of those who don't wish to see this forum turn into a venue for a private discussion between the two of us (ie. everybody else), I will simply say that I can see a couple of flaws in your reasoning, and leave it at that :-)

Marco Massoudi wrote:

The campaign is halfway through - 8 of 16 days are over - and has over 1,100 backers and collected over $200,000!

If we reach double that at the end (over 2,000 backers & $400,000), we need to see some additional stretch goals.

I really wish we'd get a reprint of the "Bandit Outpost" flip-mat which depicts Oleg's trading outpost - the base of the pcs in book one.

I don't want generic campsites but flip-mats of relevant adventure areas.
I also like bonus content for the Kingmaker hardcover campaign, but don't care for the companions and their sidequests.
I hope we'll get some nice new stretch goals in those directions after Nok Nok.

We may not reach flip-mats for "The house at the end of time" from book 6, but i hope we'll get something for book 2 at least. ;-)

I'm afraid you may have set your expectations a little higher than is realistic. The first $100k or so went fast, but after that things have been more at a pace of about 100 new backers and something like $10k per day.

Frencois wrote:

I really really hope that the 8 scenarios will be converted in Pathfinder V2, else I do not see the point since we already have them.

Offering them converted in PF2 however would be a really great idea. Or even better let the backers select in which version of PF they want it.

I expect PF1 to PF2 conversion to be really easy, so I don't think converting older books should be the priority. Given that they will have a fixed amount of time for this project, I'd rather have the developers create new content instead, so they can give us the biggest possible Companion book, the Barony expansion, etc.

Vic Wertz answered that question here.

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denigreur wrote:

Started running it last year. PLaying the CRPG. Aiglos made a bunch of good comments, so i'll go another way. Emphasis on dudemeister change to Hargulka.

My main comment :
- Fill the empty hexes.

Agreed! This doesn't mean every hex needs to have its own encounter. For this purpose, I used 1-paragraph locale descriptions which I found on this very board. Some great folks have compiled a whole bunch of descriptions, some basic, some intriguing or magical, all pretty fitting to the setting. I just rolled like for random encounters. In most cases, this was just for flavor. In some cases, it inspired me to add an encounter. In other (the best!) cases, it inspired players to look for something more, and I went on improvisation mode. I remember great fun with a place where oaks grew to phenomenal heights. So, the acorns where huge, too. So, there had to be... giant squirrels. The players had a great time trying to chase / speak to the giant squirrels!

So I think the anniversary version could have like 1-2 pages per chapter worth of landscape descriptions along with the random encounter tables. This really helps flesh out the land, and therefore the story, since in Kingmaker a lot of the story is really the land itself.

I also wholly agree with the idea that various political and religious factions, Brevoy powers, potential allies/enemies, etc, negotiate with the new barony, offering BPs in exchange of various benefits. This really installs the reality of kingdom building into the game by linking roleplay with the mechanics of kingdom growth.

CorvusMask wrote:
Joana wrote:
CorvusMask wrote:

Anyhoo, if this version gets updates from CRPG version, I hope it doesn't get plot points adaptions from CRPG version.

Mostly because CRPG version changes things radically, and not always for better. I mean, most of it is cutting content, like centaurs, bog striders, Fort Drelev and then changing everything to connect to Nyrissa in more obvious way while making the big bads feel less independent.

{my bold}

This was most likely 100% in response to customer feedback. One of the (few) major complaints on the boards about Kingmaker was that the BBEG "came out of nowhere" in the last book and wasn't foreshadowed enough in the earlier volumes.

Yeah, but it also makes them all feel like pawns, and two of them are even more sympathetic than the original version. And they changed lot of details in general for different reasons, like because they can't have war mechanics, there isn't really straight up "war" war in War of the Kings.

For the CRPG to make changes is only natural. Not just because it's on a computer rather than on tabletop, but because otherwise it would be just a boring copycat of the books. I would expect the anniversary edition to make changes too, for the same reason.

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There are many pieces of the CRPG I would love to see in an anniversary edition, and I'm far from finished with the game! (Right now I'm in Vordakai's tomb). In fact, a number of the CRPG's subplots are cooler than certain portions of the original AP.

Let me mention a few from the top of my head:
- The battle with the Lamashtu cultists, especially the fact that they were recruited from the barony's citizens. There should be a bit more of an opportunity to convert them back to humanity's side.
- The fey's invitation to the baron under the condition that he comes alone.
- Most of the companions, especially Jubilost's much expanded personality and role.
- Pretty much all of the companions' special events and subquests. Special mention to Linzi's printing press, just hilarious.
- The visiting Numerian barbarians. Great NPCs.
- The troll who genuinely tries to make peace with humans (I forgot his name).
- The expanded role of Tartuk (I did something similar in my own campaign before I knew of the CRPG).
- The goblin village.
- Candlemere.

A few things not necessarily in the CRPG which I feel would be good additions:
- Most of Dudemeister's ideas (check out the Kingmaker subforum)
- Something to happen under the lakes, like ancient underwater temple or submerged elven village... Colossal, ancient monsters in the depths..
- A lot more ties to Brevoy and River Kindgom politics, especially in the Kingdom Building portion, but also in the adventure. I felt Brevoy was under-utilized in the original AP.

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DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

Hi! Hello. Um I might have a few ideas for content to add to an updated compilation edition of Kingmaker that have been loved by many groups over the years ;-)

Stolen Land Toolbox
Hargulka’s Monster Kingdom
Dudemeister’s Varnhold Vanishingly Additions and Changes
Dudemeister’s Blood for Blood
Irovetti’s Clockworks Kingdom

I also have Legendary Beasts that stalked the Stolen Lands as optional bosses for each region. My additions and changes are very much expansions on the original spirit of the adventures and I would love to help bring them to the next edition of Pathfinder and 5e! :-)

Enthusiastically seconded :-)

There's also some great ideas for subplots in the Kingmaker CRPG that I would totally plug into this anniversary release.

Now, as someone who's still running a multiyear Kingmaker campaign... I will buy this for sure, but will I convert my players to 2e mid-campaign? I didn't think I would, but 2e is really promising. Choices, choices...

MusicAddict wrote:
Looking at these, I feel like I'm looking at a misrepresentation of this, tbh. Your copies of the new art have a noticeable quality drop, whether it's intentional or not, lines not being as clean as they should be and the whole image feels blurry instead of faded. I appreciate the images being side by side, but I don't know how I feel about how it's currently presented.

Correct. I think the OP picked up the images from the blogs, then had to scale them up. However, higher resolution images are accessible via the links.

For example, Sajan's picture on the blog is 519x360, a very low resolution. Click on it and you'll see the 1200x832 rendition, which is way better.

Comments on style are another matter.

I like how Lini's hair looks like wild grass. This idea was already there in the earlier iteration, but it works even better here.

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Fully agree, this works very nicely as a teaser, and it's a cool read on its own right too. Kudos.

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pjrogers wrote:
Deadmanwalking wrote:
The point being made is that PF2 it will be harder for players to make such an error and character capabilities at a particular level will be more comparable to each other even when comparing the optimized and non-optimized. Which is an unambiguous good.

And here's where we clearly part company on what is really a subjective matter, aka what makes a good set of rules. I would prefer one with a wider range of options, including ones that aren't really all that great, while others would prefer a set that, to my mind, "coddles" players and protects them from themselves.

Also, by the time a player has a 14th level character, they should not be "accidentally" making characters with such a poor Will save.

In my view, a system with 1000 character build options, 50 of them great or good, and 950 disastrous, isn't a good set of rules for either experienced/careful players, or inexperienced/negligent players. The latter will fall into traps and have to be rescued by their GM or fellow players. The former will have to go through a lot of homework, not all of which is fun, for their own build, and sometimes for the other characters' (unless they don't want to help and are content with dominating an unbalanced group).

Besides, such a system places too much emphasis on building characters. This can be a fun activity on its own, but not everyone enjoys that. It is also a solitary activity, while the game is meant to be social.

I much prefer a system with 500 options, 250 of them being at least OK. It's easier on everybody and places the focus where it should be, that is, around the game table.

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Very nice piece, and inspirational. Well done!

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Mark Seifter wrote:
oholoko wrote:

If that is correct it might be lovely, powers are one of my favorite new addictions. Even if i think they could have been done better xD

Whether that's correct or not, I am incredibly excited for people to try these things out with all the adjustments you guys asked for (among other things, you guys let us know on the surveys that power was too confusing a name, so hence I say "these things").

Also, while the mystery chapter may not be a rituals chapter, I'm excited about some of the new rituals we have, especially since it was close. A spread (that means two pages that you can see open at the same time in the book biz) of rituals were on the cutting room floor back when the decision between 632 and 640 pages was being made, but ultimately cutting a spread of rituals, a spread of the all-important intro, a spread of mystery chapter, and a spread of backmatter (weakening the index) for too high a price to pay, so I was on the edge of my seat about some of these rituals until pretty recently!

The DoEM just pressed the red Skyrocket button here. :)

N N 959 wrote:
This isn't rocket science. Paizo can change anything they want up until the books are sent to the printer. It's not like there is some launch window that requires planetary alignment. If Paizo has the will, they can change it.

Well, of course they can, it's clear they intend to, and I hope and trust they will succeed. By that I mean I trust they will bring a ranger definition that will be appropriately thematic and compelling to the great majority of players. But this isn't the same thing as giving you precisely what you're asking for (such as, for example, open access to a spell list). Their decisions have to remain consistent with the overall design of the classes.

By the way, let's not forget that next to nothing of the debates we're presently having will influence the final rules. Jason was very clear that the window for actionable comment closed with the playtest on Dec 31. The team is now busy writing the final rules, leveraging the playtest feedback. There is indeed a launch window, which is Gen Con'19. The game has to be ready for that exact time and the logistics of the publishing business impose a number of hard intermediate deadlines.

N N 959 wrote:
I think it's possible to solve those problems in the context of the new game. Based on forum feedback, it would appear Paizo improved several classes compared to PF1. But none of those classes experienced a fundamental change to their core mechanics.

Every single class underwent fundamental changes. Everyone got adjusted to tighter math, 3-action economy, UETML, +level, +10/-10, and class-tied feats. All spellcasters had to take sharply reduced spell power and decreased spell slots. All martials saw a big change, mostly a reduction, in their main iconic feature (except the fighter, who didn't have any to begin with): Smite Evil, Sneak Attack, Flurry of Blows, Stunning Fist, Rage, all of that changed for something less powerful. The bard and alchemist were completely overhauled. It's not like Paizo had something against the ranger in particular.

That said, it's true that the ranger got a fairly bad deal compared to other martial classes. Other classes that got a less than great deal, in my opinion, are the sorcerer and alchemist. But at this point, there's nothing left to do about it, except wait for the devs to show us a few spoilers on the upcoming fixes.

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N N 959 wrote:
Someone made a comment that I really wanted Ranger 1.5, not 2.0.

That someone was me. And I think it's not just Ranger 1.5 you want, it's really Pathfinder 1.5. Which makes sense, since I don't think it's feasible to create Ranger 1.5 in any framework other than Pathfinder 1.5.

N N 959 wrote:
I think the vast majority of people who play PF1 wanted version 2 which kept the best things about PF1 and reduced or eliminated the bad things.

Of course, if you ask players about the idea of a new edition, you're going to get a majority of answers along these lines. Problem is, there is a vast array of opinions about what bad things need to be removed or changed. Some will loudly call for non-LG paladins; some will ask for the end of Vancian casting; some will want caster-martial disparity fixed; some will want a simpler game; and there will be those who oppose any change since they're delighted with the present edition.

In the case of the PF1 ranger, my opinion (that's just me) about "bad things" is primarily about general issues with the game at large:
- Hard to play and design high level adventures for, due to what Jason called "fractional math" in the Know Direction interview.
- Overshadowed by spellcasters in many respects, after level 10 or so.
- Requires a growing magic item collection, made primarily of boring items (ie the kind of item that provides a permanent, flat bonus) to be viable past mid levels.

Then, there are a few issues specific to the ranger:
- Iconic abilities that rarely see use because they're narrowly focused to particular situations (tracking, etc).
- Favored enemy (and terrain), a key ability that is 100% situational. This problem is so annoying that the designers came up with a band-aid: Instant Enemy.
- Weak and frustrating spellcasting capability, primarily used through wands.
- Weak animal companion, which requires a feat to remain viable (Boon Companion).

It would have been possible to build a PF 1.5 to fix all the ranger-specific problems listed above. But this would not have been enough to fix the broader issues with the game. This is unfortunate, and I can see how some might say the playtest ranger is an unlucky casualty of necessary, broad reforms. Other classes, particularly rogue and fighter, got a lot more lucky. I'm hopeful that the final rules will make the necessary adjustments, but I do think the PF2 ranger will have to be fairly different from its predecessor. I fully understand this is hard to accept for fans of the old class.

N N 959 wrote:
I don't want the Ranger's entire combat philosophy to be focused one Target at a time. For me, that makes my Ranger feel simple minded. He can't asses the combat in totality, he's only able to focus on one creature at time, and failure to do so, robs him of his combat effectiveness. How is that the Ranger?

I agree with you on this. Like you explained that the PF1 ranger was powered up when facing a favored enemy, but still perfectly good when confronted with another creature: This should also be the case for Hunt Target, the ranger should remain an able combattant even when faced with a crowd of weaker opponents, or when choosing not to focus on a single opponent.

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N N 959 wrote:
I've also used Gravity Bow, Lead Blades, Resist Energy, Shield Companion, Feather Step, and Longstrider, to tremendous effect and benefit. That's excluding the ability to use CLW wands which comes directly from having a spell list. So spells have had a substantive and demonstrative effect on my ranger's story telling. In fact, spells are a bigger factor in my game play than Tracking is by an order of magnitude. And on paper you'd think Tracking was far more important to the concept.

I appreciate the concrete examples. They're convincing, regarding your story-building experience. They don't match with my understanding of the ranger, however. I think what you describe here is more thematic for the druid than ranger (but that's just a personal opinion). The mention of the CLW wand makes this even more apparent.

I also note the inherent contradiction in your statement that the ranger should be primarily a tracker not a hunter, when you admit that tracking doesn't play nearly as much of a role as spellcasting in your ranger's career.

N N 959 wrote:
No, it's not. Not in the way you mean True Ranger. There is no "True Ranger." There is class concept which supports different play-styles and there are attributes/abilities given to the class that are designed to support that concept, as is true with every class in every RPG. The fact that some people aren't aware of them or don't recognize them doesn't mean they aren't there.

Please don't tell me what I mean. That doesn't come across well. You can ask me to elaborate on what I mean if it's not clear, but not assign intentions to me.

What I read in your statements about the class concept, I feel like you're asserting some immanent nature of the ranger that nobody is allowed to question (you did claim in the other thread that your description was fact, not opinion). Sorry, there is no such thing. There is a history of the ranger since the class was invented in 1975. That history has had a number of twists and turns, the class was recognizable throughout, but it evolved, and will evolve again in the future. Hopefully, the majority will continue to recognize the class as an inheritor of that long history. Some may disagree - that will be a matter of opinion. It's the job of the designers to keep as broad a consensus over such things as they can, but they will never achieve unanimity. Game design isn't an exact science.

N N 959 wrote:
The survey asked what people preferred.

Yes. They preferred a ranger with optional spells. Optional implies they need to choose spells over some other abilities.

N N 959 wrote:

Do you think if the Survey had said:"

A - "You get NO spells and nothing else to compensate"
B - "We're going to fix spells for the Ranger and make it default but with an opt-out"
The majority would be taking A as Paizo seems to suggest?

In any survey, closed questions are always leading, that's unavoidable. A well-designed survey will make them as little leading as possible. Your suggested questions are more than leading, they're forcing. Of course no one would do a survey that way, so I'm not sure where you're going with this.

Now, when I read your other posts on this thread, I'm tempted to think what you really wish for PF2 is more of a PF1.5, an incremental evolution only, fixing issues and not much more. Am I mistaken in that assumption? Or is it just about the ranger evolving more than you would have wished?

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N N 959 wrote:
But here's the rub, hunting isn't really a thing in Pathfinder. It's not a means to an end is more like a Profession than a heroic endeavor. Granted, it's really about the Ranger using the hunting skills as an adventurer ...

Yes. "Uses hunting skills as an adventurer" is the most exact definition of the ranger class I can think of. There you have the ranger's identity in one phrase that applies to all iterations of the class since it was first invented (refer to Jason's quote in the Know Direction thread).

N N 959 wrote:
...but as I said in the other thread, the "first and foremost" mindset feels like we are off on some tangent. What's more, the pivot for the class is Hunt Target. The entire time I played this class, i felt forced into this simple-minded approach of focusing on ONE target ALL THE TIME. It felt so incredibly limiting.

Now, this is a compelling objection to the PF2 ranger. There is a risk of being a one-trick pony, indeed.

N N 959 wrote:
First, thank you for focusing on the salient point. Second, it is a bad thing if Paizo is telling me to come play PF2 and I can tell the "same stories" as I told in PF1, because I can't. Not having spells has already precluded that option. Paizo says they'll add them? If they aren't in Core, then who knows when you'll get them.

I'll continue the focus on the salient point and let go of the debate on hunting vs tracking skills (which feels like terminology for its own sake). I find it hard to believe that the PF1 ranger's pitiful spellcasting ability was ever important to any story. Sure there will be exceptions, but wouldn't they be incredibly rare? In the campaign I'm running (level 8 right now) the ranger will cast some buff spell like Gravity Bow or Aspect of the Falcon before combat, and that's it. Not a bad buff, but the story would be the exact same if she didn't have spells.

N N 959 wrote:
I never used the term "True Ranger." But the fact remains there is a game endorsed concept of what the Ranger is

Different words, same thing.

N N 959 wrote:
... and the truths is a lot of players are not in tune with that, but instead view what they want the want their "Ranger" to be as the same thing as what the Ranger was intended to be. The class has had spells since Day One. The fact that someone can't imagine their Ranger character having spells doesn't change the class is designed with the concept of using spells.

I'm afraid the surveys don't support your view.

Mark Seifter wrote:
in terms of the question about survey results on spells and rangers, basically the results were the "Default no spells, with add an option to get spells like monk" option won by a landslide (and that'll guarantee we add that option at the soonest possible juncture we can fit it in), followed by the "Ranger never get spells" option with a sizeable chunk but nowhere near enough to challenge the leader, and in last place was the "Ranger has mandatory spells like in PF1" option.

In other words: For the vast majority of people, spells are either an option, or should not be part of the class at all. This is a definitive vote against making spells a baseline class feature for the ranger.

N N 959 wrote:
I never said it was a "key characteristic" I said the class has spells and is literally one of the things that defines the class

Different words, same thing. Let's not get bogged into that sort of word play, it serves no practical purpose.

N N 959 wrote:

I'll also point out that with spell use, comes wand and scroll use. And this adds a tremendous amount of "power" (in the sense of Deadmanwalking) to the class as compared with Fighters, Rogues, and Barbarians. When Paizo removed spells, they removed a Ranger's access to all that classification of stuff. Even if the nature of those items is not going to be carried over to PF2, the Ranger has lost that axis of agency. I think Paizo underestimates the impact that has on the viability of the class. More so that Paizo gave absolutely NOTHING to compensate.

Now, I like your arguments much more when they're about concrete things. You have a point here. But I always felt that this isn't the kind of agency for the class. It is a crutch, to try and make it differentiated from other martials, with something that doesn't really belong there, and isn't implemented well at all (I think we will at least agree on that last point). Access to a long spell list is more of a frustration than anything else, when the number of spells per day is ridiculously low, and anyway you don't have time to cast them because you need to get into the enemy's face already.

Rather than access to a spell list, I think the option to bring powers, like Mark promised, and like the survey suggested, is the right path. This will allow for iconic abilities (animal speech comes to mind) and give the ranger just the right sense of the supernatural. For those who want more of this magical feel, a druid or fey sorcerer dedication will be the answer.

That said, this doesn't fix the other issues with the PF2 ranger, such as the constrained nature of Hunt Target and its related feats, or the lack of skills. On those, I agree with you.

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