[Design Focus] Barbarian Rage


Classes: Barbarian, Fighter, and Ranger

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Jason Bulmahn wrote:

Hi there Everybody,

Option 2: Modified Rage Powers.
Keep rage points, but only use them to track rounds of rage. Modify the number of rage points to equal 4+Con bonus at 1st level, +2 per barbarian level after 1st (do not add Con bonus for later levels). Ditch the increased cost for higher level rages. All rage powers can now be used once per rage and no more than one per round. Some rage powers get level limits that say when they can be chosen. Others get slight adjustments to work in the new system.

Option 2a: Suboption of 2
As option 2, but rage powers can be used as often as you like while rage, but no more than one per round. Some powers would need a bit more modification to make them work with this, more open system.

This option is what I would like to use for any barbarian I would play. It keeps the simplicity of tracking your points (how many rounds of rage you were in). additional rage abilities just attach to the base rage ability. Simple to comprehend, simple to implement, and consistant to other class abilities enhanced with feats or higher level class abilities.

Dark Archive

Personally I prefer the Rage system as it currently stands. (Option 1)


I am most definitely in favor of #1.

As a suggestion for balancing powers, look at similar powers from the Psychic Warrior and Psion and the casting classes. Make the Rage Powers of similar level to their equivalents, with similar boni, duration, etc. Then figure out a Rage Point cost for each "level" of ability. If you don't want to break them down by level, try the Least, Lesser, Greater, Dark/True breakdown like the Warlock, and cost them accordingly.

Melayl


I support option 1 because of the possibilities it creates.

Here’s an example: While playing ROTRL’s the party is returning to Sandpoint after a few days away adventuring. As they enter the city Ven’s daughter calls out to the PC she’s hooked up with from the second story of an inn. Now these two have been driving the Barbarian PC crazy since they hooked up (they’ve created a lot of aggravation and difficulty for everyone in the party).

Before anyone has a chance to react the Barbarian PC rages, strength surges, grabs the boyfriend PC and throws him through the second story window. The PC dusts off his hands, calms down, rests for a moment, and continues on towards beer.

When you can use rage in RP situations like this you know it’s working.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
ZeroCharisma wrote:


...
That being said, would it be over complicating matters to suggest making rage powers the "specializing" version? This would give people who didn't want to use rage powers a "generalist" barbarian type bonus whereby they got a small allowance of extra rage points (or lingering rage: get a free round of rage for every three spent in rage...)or something.
...

Actualy a rage power that just gives you more rage points in your pool might go a long way to making "Vanilla-Barbarians" (now ain't that a cute image!) and help backward compatibility and DMs to.

Scarab Sages

Jason Bulmahn wrote:

Option 2a: Suboption of 2

As option 2, but rage powers can be used as often as you like while rage, but no more than one per round. Some powers would need a bit more modification to make them work with this, more open system.

I vote for this one. It's the easiest one to administer on the fly, keeps later powers on par with earlier ones, and gives the player greater flexibility in tactical decisions.

I do agree that some powers would need review under this system.

Liberty's Edge

Looking through other posts, I understand the desire to have "little rage" multiple times. Option 2a seems to be the best compromise from rage points and X/day. Rage powers being "constant on" for a round solves the problem of having to micro-managing rage points to get the effect, which is my biggest grief with the Rage point mechanic.

Granted, this would mean a review of Rage powers to see how they would work with the change.


Cainus wrote:

Before anyone has a chance to react the Barbarian PC rages, strength surges, grabs the boyfriend PC and throws him through the second story window. The PC dusts off his hands, calms down, rests for a moment, and continues on towards beer.

When you can use rage in RP situations like this you know it’s working.

Perfect.


Definitely, "one round" usages of Rage add alot that Rages/Day doesn't. (roleplay scenes, STR boost to swim a raging river, etc...)

Making Powers free during Rage/ per Encounter would necessitate weakening them considerably, AND make them something you would use EVERY Rage, instead of when you REALLY need to go all out. Less interesting, IMHO.
Having free/per Encounter Rage Powers would mean NPC Barbarians SHOULD logically always use Powers vs. the PCs, instead of it being a reasonable choice for them to "straight Rage" (most efficient use of Points) - most DMs would probably like the option to have not-quite-so-lethal Barbarian opponents.

All the complaints about "Rage Points are hard to track" seem to miss one point: You don't actually need to know the exact number of Points remaining. If you're using 'chips', you just take a chip out at the start of each Round (just as you track Rage Exhaustion anyways) and when you use a Power, and put it in your Fatigue cup.

Players who are opposed to the thought of their Barbarian being so "intellectual" as to manage abstract numbers, equally should be opposed to their Barbarian meta-gaming several rounds ahead to figure the optimal usage of their points. If you have enough chips to pick up and put in your Fatigue jar, you can do it. Otherwise, you can't. No need for more worries than that. (Of course, you MAY want to "hold out" if you know a BBEG is coming up, but there's no reason to need a CERTAIN AMOUNT of Points, just a "guesstimate" if you reasonably have enough "juice" left)

I prefer to keep Rage Powers in the Rage Point mechanism BECAUSE it makes you less likely to use them, and just straight Rage instead (="simple"). Straight Rage is EASILY the most efficient option, and I'd BE SURE to use it UNLESS I REALLY NEED A POWER.

Liberty's Edge

Quandry wrote:
..."one round" usages of Rage add alot that Rages/Day doesn't (roleplay scenes, STR boost to swim a raging river, etc...).

Again, after reading through some of the posts here, I agree. And as a supporter of "X/day" (because of backwards compatibility), I find that Option 2a is a fair compromise between Rage Points and the original SRD Rage mechanic. Especially if the number of rounds a barbarian can rage (i.e. 4 + CON modifier rounds at 1st level, +2 rounds per every level after) can be spent in single round increments, paying the fatigue cost (X2 rounds per every rage round) and allowing another rage later. Adding in Rage Powers at no round cost (excpet only one can be astive in any given round)is icing on the cake.

Quandry wrote:
I prefer to keep Rage Powers in the Rage Point mechanism BECAUSE it makes you less likely to use them...

A mechanic unused is not worth the time printing. Incouraging Rage powers makes the barbarian interesting. Subtracting the bookkeeping makes it darn near perfect.

Dark Archive

I think something like 2a would be ideal. I dislike the way option 1 works, where you have to carefully calculate your rage expenditure on a round by round basis. It just seems antithetical to the concept of a barbarian. But using rage points just to track rounds of rage sounds great. Better than rages/day. Greater and Mighty rage definately must cost the same (actually just replace) regular rage. I like the "often as you like" i.e. "just turn it on and smash" idea of 2a.


I think that low-light vision, night vision and any power that adds scent should last the whole rage. You should have the option to simply pay extra rage points for dark vision at the appropriate level if you have the low-light power, rather than take the night vision power as well.


Just to elaborate . . . 1, i.e. staying the same is by far my preference by a long shot, but if, and only if, something has to change, I'd rather see 2a than 2 or 3.

But really, just stick with the current set up.


Option 3 is best suited to providing new options and to retaining backwards compatibility. It meets all of the design goals of PFRPG while the points system makes the game needlessly complex for slight return in flexibility of use. The fact that Option 1 requires special guidelines for Barbarian NPC use is a clear-indication of heading in the wrong direction.

Scarab Sages

Jason Bulmahn wrote:

Option 3:

Go back to the old system of rages per day, but increase the number of them that you get. Some rage powers can be used once per rage while others are always on (this might be a possibility for all of the options) so long as you are raging. A few rage powers might actually use up one of your rages per day, but these would be higher level.

Playing Barbarians often (last night in a PF Society game, for example), I find that a player has enough head-messing stuff to keep track of with the increasing STR and CON when raging, including the many other calculations that you need to do in a rush (to keep up game flow) when Power Attacking (the staple Barbarian feat).

So I vote for Option 3 - the simpler the better. I agree with the 'always on' and the 'one per round' powers.

However, I cannot figure out a decent thematic reason for allowing some powers only once per rage - surely a raging Barbarian would try anything they can to kill something, even if its the same thing over, and over, and over again.

Suggestion: maybe when you get high enough level, 2 or more can be used per turn?

Cheers! :D


I would like to see what sort of guidelines we can get for option 1 (current system). As of the moment I favor going back to the old rages/day system (option 3). This is for a couple of reasons:
1) Thieves of Badabaskor (JG1) and Assault on Stormbringer Castle (DCC#21) were both run in last years' campaign. Both had areas with large numbers, two dozen or more, of barbarian NPCs. At least half a dozen other encounters had a handful of barbarian baddies. Each were a task to DM for as they were and adding a point tracking system seems to overly complicate the scenario.
2) As a player I want barbarians to be HulkSmash, dont worry about intricacies too much, characters. Point systems may or may not be more complicated then spell lists but there is a reason barbarians dont have spell lists either.
3) My third party supplements that use alternate abilities eat up x-amount of rage/day. It seems like an extra bother to retcon these abilities.

Scarab Sages

Put me on the list for Option 1.


Option 1, collapse the Rage/Greater Rage,
give some good game play tips for players and DMs...

Dark Archive

Option 1 or 2a if compramise is needed


Well I am going to throw a curve ball here and say option 1 and 2a. I think most powers should use the point system, but some of them like ther vision power should be always on when raging.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

Elrond wrote:
With option 1 you can rage longer if you do not select a power.

If the only argument for the superior versatility of Option 1 is that you get to do cool stuff by refraining from using your class powers, then I'm even more opposed to Option 1 now. This should be a game about doing cool stuff with your class powers, not doing cool stuff by refusing to use your powers.

Also, if you really must have barbarians who rage longer by holding back, you could always just use Option 2a and add a rage power that says: "When you activate this power, you gain half a rage point. Whenever your rage ends, round your number of rage points down to the nearest whole number."


Jason Bulmahn wrote:
Which one seems the most fun?

My group has very much enjoyed the current system. It's really not much trouble to keep track of rage points (for me as DM or for for our barbarian player, even at higher levels) and it's fun.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32

Melayl wrote:
As a suggestion for balancing powers, look at similar powers from the Psychic Warrior and Psion and the casting classes. Make the Rage Powers of similar level to their equivalents, with similar boni, duration, etc. Then figure out a Rage Point cost for each "level" of ability.

This analogy right here is why I hate, hate, hate barbarians having to spend a variable number of points on "powers." They play like psychic warriors now. I've playtested them and that's been my experience every time.

If you absolutely must have rage powers that aren't always-on or free-once-per-round, then make every single rage power cost one point. You spent one rage point per round to rage/greater rage/mighty rage, and spend one additional point if you want to also use a rage power this round. No variable costs for anything.


I gave option 1 some consideration. I no longer support option 1 (the rage system as-is). The points per power/per rage thing does add some needless complication. I don't like the idea of using lesser forms of rage when you could go berserk. That goes against the concept of a raging barbaian imo.

What works best right now is a variant of option 2: keep track of rage points/rage rounds and don't limit rages/day or use points for rage powers.

Rage rounds are strictly 1 point = 1 round of whatever Rage you are capable of. The Rage you enter is automatically the most powerful one you can possibly use, for example if you get Greater Rage you always enter Greater Rage (there is no reason to use Rage at that point). Higher forms of Rage don't use up more rage rounds than Rage.

You can always enter a rage while fatigued, but you add rounds to the duration of fatigue and you add levels of fatigue - 2 rages without enough rest = exhausted for the appropriate number of rounds. You must wait at least 1 round between rages; if you end a rage, you become fatigued and must wait 1 round to "re-rage".

This will make it somewhat costly/risky to rage repeatedly without resting, while not overcomplicating the ponts/per rage/per round/per power type of thing. It also makes Tireless Rage feel like a milestone when you get there.

Rage powers can be always on, activated with a swift action, and used at will during a rage, depending on the power description. Some super powerful rage powers can be used once a day or once per rage.

This is a fun system that makes your barbarian feel powerful and adds some strategy to powers use, without having to keep track of points costs or decide what type of rage you will enter. It also lets barbarians spend their rage rounds in a more free fashion than either the points system or rages/day, while the double fatigue caveat prevents players from splitting up their rage rounds too much.

You do need SOME depth to avoid the "melees are boring" syndrome. As long as the Rage powers are fun and interesting, the barbarian will be a cool character.


A friend of mine suggested we chuck out the rage point system and build our own rage domain system. Works like a cleric's domain powers and goes by rage/day.
Since I'm already violently opposed to rage points and am bound to have to houserule them out anyway, we're going to go ahead and go this route.
I fail to see how rewriting the character classes is such a compelling reason to purchase Pathfinder.


I still strongly support option 1, however if a compromise is necessary then upon further consideration I would be willing to accept option 2a, especially if Low Light Vision and Dark Vision were made always on while raging and not counted against the 1 power per round limit. It becomes the least limiting of the options available.

Liberty's Edge

Jason Bulmahn wrote:

Of the following choices, which one do you prefer and why? Which one seems the simplest to use as a player? As a GM? Which one seems to over the most flexibility? Which one seems the most fun?

Option 1: The current system.
Keep rage points and powers working pretty much as they currently work. Adjust some of the rage powers for balance and add a few to round out the system. Add some simple guidelines in the NPC section for GMs to use Barbarian characters quickly and easily.

Option 2: Modified Rage Powers.
Keep rage points, but only use them to track rounds of rage. Modify the number of rage points to equal 4+Con bonus at 1st level, +2 per barbarian level after 1st (do not add Con bonus for later levels). Ditch the increased cost for higher level rages. All rage powers can now be used once per rage and no more than one per round. Some rage powers get level limits that say when they can be chosen. Others get slight adjustments to work in the new system.

Option 2a: Suboption of 2
As option 2, but rage powers can be used as often as you like while rage, but no more than one per round. Some powers would need a bit more modification to make them work with this, more open system.

Option 3: Rages Per Day
Go back to the old system of rages per day, but increase the number of them that you get. Some rage powers can be used once per rage while others are always on (this might be a possibility for all of the options) so long as you are raging. A few rage powers might actually use up one of your rages per day, but these would be higher level.

You will notice that changing the rage powers into feats is not really...

Regarding Option 3 - I don't like that it lacks flexibility. I like the idea of a character raging to open a door, but not 'wasting' 7 more rounds of rage that were totally unnecessary. I'm against this option.

I like a combination of 1/2/2a. Let me explain:

First of all, I believe that rage/greater rage/mighty rage should cost the same in terms of points. I think as a baseline, any 'rage' should cost 1 point per round. If people prefer to think of it as 'total rounds of rage per day', that's fine as well.

All rage abilities should either have a cost of 1 to activate for a round, or a cost of 1 to activate for the duration of rage. Essentially there are only two 'types' of rage powers - most of the attack powers would cost 1 pt/round and most of the 'sensory powers' would cost 1 point to benefit from the entire rage.

Since the point cost of each ability is set at 1, as rage becomes more powerful, the rage ability becomes less beneficial, unless it increases in power as well.

So, for example, at 1st level you might choose 'low-light vision' as a rage power. That would fall into the 'pay 1 point and gain the benefit for the duration of the rage. When that character gains Greater Rage it might provide 'dark vision' at no additional cost, and at Mighty Rage might provide 'blind sense' or even 'blind sight' at no additional cost.

If the costs are generally fixed, there is little math to do. To maintain backwards compatability the number of rage points provided can be similar to the number of rounds a character in 3.5 could rage. Thus special powers do reduce the amount of time you could spend in rage, but usually their benefit is better than that 1 extra round of rage (especially since I have yet to see a barbarian use up 6 or more rages per day).


Option 2a or 3, preferably 3. Please do not complicate the barbarian!


Please please PLEASE 2a!

*One round per point and one 'always on' power changeable each round is flexible without excessive bookkeeping.

*Backwards compatability is better than 1, but not 3

*Very few people really dislike 2a. It may not be everyone's first choice, but it seems to be most people's second.


I vote for 2a. It seems the best compromise between simplicity and flexibility. I don't like the current PF system; I liked the Barbarian being simple. As well as reducing the workload on the DM, it made it an easy class for new players, and it fits the flavour of the class.

With that in mind, whichever system is chosen I vote for Greater Rage/ Mighty Rage being free upgrades which do not cost any extra rage points. A lot of the headache of the current system comes from having to keep track of several different sets of stats for high-level Barbarians.


Epic Meepo wrote:
Melayl wrote:
As a suggestion for balancing powers, look at similar powers from the Psychic Warrior and Psion and the casting classes. Make the Rage Powers of similar level to their equivalents, with similar boni, duration, etc. Then figure out a Rage Point cost for each "level" of ability.

This analogy right here is why I hate, hate, hate barbarians having to spend a variable number of points on "powers." They play like psychic warriors now. I've playtested them and that's been my experience every time.

If you absolutely must have rage powers that aren't always-on or free-once-per-round, then make every single rage power cost one point. You spent one rage point per round to rage/greater rage/mighty rage, and spend one additional point if you want to also use a rage power this round. No variable costs for anything.

I don't get the feeling that they play like Psychic Warriors. To me, they play like Barbarians. Barbarians with more choice, more flexibility, that are more fun to play.

As for having all powers cost 1 point per round, how would you balance that? For example, how would you balance Low-light Vision, or even Animal Fury against Mighty Swing or Powerful Blow or Surprise Accuracy if they all cost 1 point?


I really prefer the (Option 1) for keeping things as they are now.
Keeping track of rage isn't that big a deal but the added versatility that it gives is absolutely awesome.

-S

Liberty's Edge

Melayl wrote:
As for having all powers cost 1 point per round, how would you balance that? For example, how would you balance Low-light Vision, or even Animal Fury against Mighty Swing or Powerful Blow or Surprise Accuracy if they all cost 1 point?

I would suggest having each rage power cost one point, but have a different duration based on the level of the power. Thus low-light vision would cost 1 point and last until the end of rage. Mighty Swing would cost 1 point per use. I would not limit the number per round, so if you need to activate low-light vision and use a mighty swing in the first round, that would be fine, but you'd be burning through rage points (or rounds of rage) more quickly.


DeadDMWalking wrote:
Melayl wrote:
As for having all powers cost 1 point per round, how would you balance that? For example, how would you balance Low-light Vision, or even Animal Fury against Mighty Swing or Powerful Blow or Surprise Accuracy if they all cost 1 point?
I would suggest having each rage power cost one point, but have a different duration based on the level of the power. Thus low-light vision would cost 1 point and last until the end of rage. Mighty Swing would cost 1 point per use. I would not limit the number per round, so if you need to activate low-light vision and use a mighty swing in the first round, that would be fine, but you'd be burning through rage points (or rounds of rage) more quickly.

I don't like the idea of adding new powers to the game where you have to track duration. Either make them always on, for the duration of the rage, or instant. No more duration tracking please.


I prefer option 2a. Forcing people to spend rage points on abilities is unnecessary bookkeeping on a simple system. That and you have to balance the costs against one another which you haven't had much luck with as of yet. (Elemental rage still irks me. Far far too expensive.)


Dennis da Ogre wrote:
DeadDMWalking wrote:


I would suggest having each rage power cost one point, but have a different duration based on the level of the power. Thus low-light vision would cost 1 point and last until the end of rage. Mighty Swing would cost 1 point per use. I would not limit the number per round, so if you need to activate low-light vision and use a mighty swing in the first round, that would be fine, but you'd be burning through rage points (or rounds of rage) more quickly.
I don't like the idea of adding new powers to the game where you have to track duration. Either make them always on, for the duration of the rage, or instant. No more duration tracking please.

Yes, duration tracking is more bookkeeping. It is in fact worse than the rage points currently are because since you aren't actively choosing to use the power it is easier to forget to "tick off the round" as opposed to spend per use. Spells that last for x rounds are bad enough.


Melayl wrote:
As for having all powers cost 1 point per round, how would you balance that? For example, how would you balance Low-light Vision, or even Animal Fury against Mighty Swing or Powerful Blow or Surprise Accuracy if they all cost 1 point?

Buff some, gimp others, tiny American flags for all. I mean, acknowledge that not all powers will be equal.

Change low-light vision so that when a barbarian rages, it's on all the time. Why not?

Animal Fury might end up scaling up as the barbarian levels up, so that it doesn't get left behind.

We can also just accept that the higher-level rage powers will get better than the earlier ones, and not worry about balancing them too precisely. Lower level spells and abilities get left behind.

I do like the idea of allowing higher level barbarians to use multiple rage powers, but perhaps that should be a higher level power that incorporates two lesser ones, but better. That would bloat the page count, though, and I don't think anyone's too worried about the barbarian power level getting out of hand?


I am currently playing a barbarian , in the curse of the crimson throne, I have played Dungeons and Dragons since 1st addition, and have played barbarians in all 3 (+ 3.5) editions of the game , the rage point system is wonderfull! Paizo has come up with an excellent mechanic for rage, the versatility FAR outweighs the minor book keeping. Im sorry, but I believe if you are too lazy to keep track of a simple point use chart, then perhaps tabletop gaming is too much for you. The rage powers are good, they need some tweaking , but it is a worthwhile system. I vote method 1. And if paizo changes it , im still using the system in my game (My DM and I are of the same opinion on this) , I will then simply modify the rage powers with my Dungeon Master. We have been gaming together since College , so I dont forsee this being a problem. I truly hope Paizo keeps the current system, and simply tweaks the powers a bit.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Option 2A.

When making a Beta Barbarian, picking powers, tracking effects and points spent, etc, I felt more like I was making a caster than a warrior, let alone a warrior that is supposed to be impulsive and short tempered.
Although the powers certainly fit the fluff (Elemental Rage being a bit hard to swallow), the mechanics would be great for a class that had a military theme or was especially tactical. So when I vote for 2A, it isn't a vote to scrap the system but to hold onto it and wait for a more appropriate class.

Option 2A does keep Rage points, but more as a Rage-o-Meter than a spell pool. I want to keep the option to chew on a gnoll's face or knock a rogue around the battlefield and out of flanking position, and I think one rage power a round is the right way to go.

There are a few points I would like to address about the format of the Rage Powers. By listing them alphabetically, it made choosing them for my barbarian hard. I would see a power I like and only find out I did not qualify for it by the time I was finished. If they were more like the bard music, listed in order the glass qualifies for them, it would make a lot more sense.

Liberty's Edge

I think I'd prefer all the powers to be 'toggle' powers. Where they cost the same to activate as they would to maintain from round to round during the rage. I don't like 'one round' powers or other durations other than "as long as you keep spending the points you keep getting the power".

If we're going to stick with rage points it'd be a lot easier for me running an NPC to say "OK, he's going to be using these abilities while raged, I'll stat him up with these abilities added in, and his rage will cost 4 pts per round, and he has 32 points, so 8 rounds". Something along those lines.

I don't like the 4pt and 8 pt 'burst' powers.

Liberty's Edge

Dennis da Ogre wrote:
DeadDMWalking wrote:
Melayl wrote:
As for having all powers cost 1 point per round, how would you balance that? For example, how would you balance Low-light Vision, or even Animal Fury against Mighty Swing or Powerful Blow or Surprise Accuracy if they all cost 1 point?
I would suggest having each rage power cost one point, but have a different duration based on the level of the power. Thus low-light vision would cost 1 point and last until the end of rage. Mighty Swing would cost 1 point per use. I would not limit the number per round, so if you need to activate low-light vision and use a mighty swing in the first round, that would be fine, but you'd be burning through rage points (or rounds of rage) more quickly.
I don't like the idea of adding new powers to the game where you have to track duration. Either make them always on, for the duration of the rage, or instant. No more duration tracking please.

In the system I'm suggesting, there is no tracking of durations. You have only three possibilities:

1) You spend a rage point and the ability lasts until you stop raging.
2) You spend a rage point and the ability lasts until the beginning of your next turn (1 round)
3) You spend a rage point and the ability works for an instant only (like first attack in a full attack action).

The point cost is the same, but the relative utility differs. But there is no need to track rounds of duration. If you start low-light vision with rage, it lasts until you come out of rage. If that's 20 rounds or 2 rounds there is no tracking of duration - only whether you're in rage or not.


I think Option 2a is a good compromise for DMs and players alike.

Regardless of what option is used, I absolutely think that the three levels of rage need to be collapsed into one. i.e. When you get Mighty Rage, it replaces Greater Rage, which in turn replaced the Rage gained at 1st level.

I'd like to add that I'm fond of DeadDMWalking's idea too — keep powers as either pay-per-swing OR pay-per-rage. That way, there's no more tracking of durations, yet we retain the flexibility to use which powers we want when we need them.

On a side note, the whole idea of barbarians channeling elemental energy when they rage really strains my sense of immersion. I'd like to see a more thematically appropriate replacement fulfilling the similar mechanic.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

I'd go for 2a.

My personnal favorite is 1 but that's just little number fiddling me and I know that most of the people I play with who go for a barbarian PC would prefer doing it with less math.

Just make using most powers a Swift action but some as Free Action (the Low-light and Drakvision powers).

And since a lot of people seem to get irritated by the "Rage Points" mechanics (I was at first) you could go with simply a Total number of rounds of Rage per day that don't have to be consecutive. Many domain and school powers in Beta already use that type of wording.


DeadDMWalking wrote:

1) You spend a rage point and the ability lasts until you stop raging.

2) You spend a rage point and the ability lasts until the beginning of your next turn (1 round)
3) You spend a rage point and the ability works for an instant only (like first attack in a full attack action).

This would be ok. I do like the idea mentioned about of having powers either always on or once per encounter with the once/ encounter abilities being instant. Then you just need to track rage rounds.


I give my vote to Option 1. Yea, it requires a bit of bookkeeping but I like the versatility.
Imho it also encourages staying with the Barbarian class longer than the other options.


For those who feel x/day rage is more spontaneous and barbarian like than points I would like your opinions on the following.

Door is locked, thief is unable to open it (Dex damage, unconscious, bad rolls).

Barbarian character with x/day "I could rage and bash it in, but if there is noting but an empty room I just wasted one of my rages per day."

Barbarian character with points "Stupid door. 3 rage points (1 to rage and 2 for strength surge and goodbye door."

If there's nothing on the other side "6 round of fatigue while we search the room."

If there is something, "I'm already raging so charge."

Which is more spontaneous and barbarian like?

Is a barbarian more likely to conserve rage for best effect, or tap into it on a whim?

Rage x/day has less tracking but more resource management and planning, Points have more tracking but less management and planning as it is on call at an instant so long as you have points remaining.

Paizo Employee Director of Game Design

Hey there all,

I have posted up an alternate rage system in this thread. Please check it out and comment.

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing


Option 1.

It works fine, but some of the powers are to little powered, too expsesnive, too level restrained, and too short lived.

For example low light is too short lived, and should be active the duration of the rage for a cheap cost. Also elemental strike is only 1d6 damage for a 12th level ability??? It seems more like a 1st but be able to improve in dice, for a slightly greater cost, as they progress in level.


I am all for Option 1: The current system.

One of my players has a barbarian which has gone up to level 7 and we think the additional math is absolutely no problem. It adds an element of planning and gives so many more choices. Please do not go back to the original bland flavor of the original rage. This way is great if a few of the powers are simply balanced out and maybe adding some more.

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