Using Beta in RotRL (Stop buffing the fighter class)!!!


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Wrath wrote:

Agreed. Fighters do their job fairly well, but I still think some tweaks along this line are needed. I'm very much looking forward to the feat section of this playtest.

The improve in their attack and AC bonuses means they can actually spend some loot elsewhere to make them more versatile at higher levels btw, but it would be nice to have some of that ability without needing the gear to do it.

I'll be in a playtest group to see if that's true, but in 3.5, it's been my experience that melee types don't do their job very well. For years now, my high level group's basic tactics have been to identify wizards and clerics and beat the stuffing out of them. Fighters are mop-up time. I play a fighter-type and I'm always delighted when a caster wastes an action on me. I'm combat leader in our mid-low level group (5-6th level) and, again, I'm delighted when enemies waste time on the hard outer shell of our party (me) and don't attack our soft yummy center of artillery (warmage, cleric).

Consider standard warfare tactics. Generals who focus on wiping out infantry at the expense of other goals lose the vast majority of the time. Generals who focus on using and/or taking out the cavalry/tanks, longbowmen/artillery, and aircraft tend to win. (Supply lines too, but that's not usually a concern in DnD small arms style combat.)

It's great that the game replicates those tactical choices, but there's a reason why the grunts hate the glory boys who never face the enemy at short range. And it's not great to be a grunt and have your nose rubbed in it every single second of the game.


Guy with a sword = Big Stupid Fighter (BSF), no way around it. That entire archetype has an expiration date of level 5. You are the reason Fighters do not get nice things.

You must be able to do things 'comic book style' to keep up.


Aubrey the Malformed wrote:
Snorter wrote:

Is this part of the problem? That everyone is approaching the game from a different genre of fantasy?

I think there are issues with style of play that are related. Squirreloid made a comment about how fighters should be able to trip giant scorpions and so on. That is uber-heroic, almost comic-book style. Nothing wrong with that, but it strikes me that it colours a lot of the issues with the fighter that he has. For me, and others, the fighter is a guy with a sword, not a superhero. A lot of stuff about "balance" seems to me to be more about aesthetics and expectations. These are valid criticisms but it is debatable to what extent D&D can accommodate all of these styles of play - Golarion, for example, seems to be a fairly downbeat sort of place and PF would likely reflect that more than maybe a pulpy sort of setting.

True enough, but it depends on what level we're talking about. If we're talking 6-8th level, then fine. Guy with a sword, built right, can work. But as soon as you hit 9th level, you're in myths and superheroes land. At that level, casters are talking to angels, scrying, going anywhere in the world in an instant, flying, creating squads of undead, using telekinesis, changing their enemies into toads, and raising the dead.

And the fighter's still a guy with a sword. With no skills.

And that's not a problem if you explain to the players at the start of the game that they are going to be much less dangerous in combat and have no skills just when the adventure path arc is heading towards its climax at the end of book 3.

My problem with the fighter is that it is so often misleading to players. It's one thing to decide to play a bard or a healer because that's what you want your character to do, which is selflessly help others. But it's another thing entirely when NOTHING about the class indicates that you'll be selflessly helping others. You have to be an experienced gamer to see that while this class that works at levels 1-6, it will stop working.

The Exchange

Crusader of Logic wrote:

Guy with a sword = Big Stupid Fighter (BSF), no way around it. That entire archetype has an expiration date of level 5. You are the reason Fighters do not get nice things.

You must be able to do things 'comic book style' to keep up.

Nice to see you have obfusticating jargon for this too. I wasn't aware that I had so much influence either - I didn't realise my personal preferences had been so taken into account in this. But I disagree with the point you are making, and you are dressing up your personal preference as objective fact.

I certainly do not deny that high level fighters have problems, nor am I in favour of the status quo. But I don't see that a fighter should get magic powers.

The Exchange

Dryder wrote:

I also think, that not all classes should be balanced. Wizards are more bad-ass since the very beginning of fantasy.

No need to be able to fight a balanced fight between a high-level wizard and a high-level fighter. the fighter will loose and that's fine.

D&D is not about one balanced class vs. another one, it's one team vs. different threads, where the role of every class helps to overcome a given thread, how minor that help will be though.

What I meant while starting this thread is, that I think the Beta-Fighter is fine, I just don't want him to be buffed further. Maybe a single class feat to add, but that'll be enough in my eyes.

do NOT want you logic. I take away all of your internetz! ^^

seriously, 2nd ed was not that far ago (all you young whipper snappers!)
and the Fighter was king there EVEN HIGH LEVEL. your saves actually GOT BETTER versus the wizard as you got higher level.

so a wizard can change the face of the world, but by then you survived so many of their tricks you got them down pat. 2ed wizards were still nasty mid level, but at the highest reaches the Fighter ruled the day.

give me all primary save NOW! (oh yeah if you took a POINT of damage as a spellcaster, your spell FIZZLED. THAT took tactics to get though!)


Sneaksy Dragon wrote:
(oh yeah if you took a POINT of damage as a spellcaster, your spell FIZZLED. THAT took tactics to get though!)

Yeah, that's the main deal. In 1e, if you hit a wizard, he lost his spell. And you had a chance to do so before he cast it, without needing to "ready actions" or whatever -- you just walked up an hit him. Also, as CoL pointed out earlier, critters had a lot fewer hp, so the fighter could still mow them down at high levels.

In 3e, he lost BOTH of those advantages. To get back up to par, he needs a way to reliably disrupt enemy spellcasting, and a way to deal enough damage to kill high-level critters. The second is easy enough: make the weapon training damage bonus +1d6 instead of +1. The first issue requires a rewriting of the defensive casting rules.


Aubrey the Malformed wrote:
Crusader of Logic wrote:

Guy with a sword = Big Stupid Fighter (BSF), no way around it. That entire archetype has an expiration date of level 5. You are the reason Fighters do not get nice things.

You must be able to do things 'comic book style' to keep up.

Nice to see you have obfusticating jargon for this too. I wasn't aware that I had so much influence either - I didn't realise my personal preferences had been so taken into account in this. But I disagree with the point you are making, and you are dressing up your personal preference as objective fact.

I certainly do not deny that high level fighters have problems, nor am I in favour of the status quo. But I don't see that a fighter should get magic powers.

Ain't nothing obfuscating about it. My language was very clear. Auto attack is not viable beyond level 5. All guy with a sword can do is auto attack, because he is just a Big Stupid Fighter. You must have options, and you must have super human abilities to be remotely relevant beyond this point. No opinion about it. That's pure fact buddy. You want the class to be more than five levels long, they get 'Weaboo Fightin' Magic'. Or you disregard their existence. There is no other way.

Edit: Back then, Fighter guy did 1d8 + small number with his sword, and 1d8 + small number with his bow. He got a lot of attacks though, I believe more than he gets now. I believe they did not take iterative penalties for said extra attacks, and 88 HP was the absolute high end which you would expect from things like demon lords and the eldest dragons. So you do say... 1d8+6 5-7 times vs 88 HP, that's actually pretty relevant. The Mage's 10d6 Fireball is also non trivial. He also could get through most battles just by auto attacking as the potential tactics back then were far simpler. Later editions require more intelligence to function in. Naturally, BSF is left behind.

Scarab Sages

Crusader of Logic wrote:
Edit: Back then, Fighter guy did 1d8 + small number with his sword, and 1d8 + small number with his bow. He got a lot of attacks though, I believe more than he gets now. I believe they did not take iterative penalties for said extra attacks...

A 1E specialised Fighter (which most were, right from level 1) got +1 to hit, +2 damage (ie the effects of two 3E feats), and got a free attack every second cumulative round of combat (ie 1, 2, 1, 2). These extra attacks were at the same bonus (no iterative -5 penalty). At Level 7, this increased to 2 attacks/round.

This stacked with extra attacks for 2-weapon fighting.
A character with Dex 16+ could ignore any penalties for TWF, if the off-hand weapon was light.
You could make full attacks as well as a normal move, and these attacks could be split up any way you liked during that move.

Add to that;
Full Dex bonus in heavy armour,
Auto disrupt spells if hitting a caster at any time between start of round and caster's initiative (with divine spells, and/or high-level spells taking longer to cast, naturally),
Less spells in the game, so less ways to stack attack/damage/AC bonuses, making the un-buffed baseline scores more relevant.

So the typical 1E/2E Fighter, at Level 1 (with his 4 weapon proficiencies spent on Longsword, Shortsword, Two Weapon Fighting and Longsword Specialisation) was a Weapon-Focussed, Weapon-Specialised, Two-Weapon, Spring-Attacking, Great-Cleaving, Spell-Disrupting, threshing machine, with better relative attack bonuses.

If he spent one of his non-weapon proficiencies on Ride (again, very common), he was able to carry out the effects of 3E Ride-By Attack, Spirited Charge, and Trample.

Yes, the 3E Fighter gets extra feats, but he has to spend all of them trying to play catch up with what his predecessor could do, straight out of the gate.

The Exchange

(In response to CoL)

Or you adopt Kirth's rather more conservative approach (which actually provides a fairly neat solution rather than a vague "I want stuff") or something similar. I accept your analysis of the problem but not your solution.

Scarab Sages

Crusader of Logic wrote:
88 HP was the absolute high end which you would expect from things like demon lords and the eldest dragons. So you do say... 1d8+6 5-7 times vs 88 HP, that's actually pretty relevant.

Lolth, Queen of the Demonweb Pits, worshipped as a goddess by one of the oldest and most powerful races on the planet...

66hp (or was it 60?). Either way, ouch.

Considering her demonic resistances, immunities and Magic Resistance, the wizards really were better off clearing away the mobs of spiders, rhagodessas and pedipalps, and throwing the Fighter at her.


Snorter wrote:
Crusader of Logic wrote:
88 HP was the absolute high end which you would expect from things like demon lords and the eldest dragons. So you do say... 1d8+6 5-7 times vs 88 HP, that's actually pretty relevant.

Lolth, Queen of the Demonweb Pits, worshipped as a goddess by one of the oldest and most powerful races on the planet...

66hp (or was it 60?). Either way, ouch.

Considering her demonic resistances, immunities and Magic Resistance, the wizards really were better off clearing away the mobs of spiders, rhagodessas and pedipalps, and throwing the Fighter at her.

now THATS what im talkin about!


Aubrey the Malformed wrote:

(In response to CoL)

Or you adopt Kirth's rather more conservative approach (which actually provides a fairly neat solution rather than a vague "I want stuff") or something similar. I accept your analysis of the problem but not your solution.

Solutions solve problems. What does his do? Oh right, nothing, because 'I auto attack' ceases to solve problems the moment enemy IQ exceeds that of a small soap dish. Now, what does your post do? It is completely vague while claiming mine is the same. Yet I very specifically state what is required, and you just... oh right, attack my words without reading.

For the record, Aubrey = Authority. Aelryinth isn't the same person though.


Hey, at least I offered a suggestion other than, "everyone else's ideas suck!" For the record, I'd prefer fighters to get 9 levels of ranked combat abilities analagous to, scaled with, but distinct in flavor from, spells -- but that throws most of the stated goals of Pathfinder out the window, so barring that possibility, I'm doing what I can in terms of battlefield control feats (on other threads), etc.

If you don't think any of those will help, that's fine, feel free to propose some actual game mechanics. Until then, what fleshed-out mechanics have you proposed so far? "Oh, right, nothing" back atcha.

The Exchange

Crusader of Logic wrote:

Solutions solve problems. What does his do? Oh right, nothing, because 'I auto attack' ceases to solve problems the moment enemy IQ exceeds that of a small soap dish. Now, what does your post do? It is completely vague while claiming mine is the same. Yet I very specifically state what is required, and you just... oh right, attack my words without reading.

For the record, Aubrey = Authority. Aelryinth isn't the same person though.

Well, I'm not quite sure why you are trying to bait me, other than because you actually still have offered no solution and don't actually have one. Kirth's solution reduces the caster's overpower my making it more difficult for them to cast, and increases DPS. It probably needs working on and and playtesting, it may not work, but it is an actual offered solution. I'm still waiting for yours. You have identified a problem, but that is always the easy bit - I have still seen nothing much in the way of a solution couched in terms of the mechanics of the game from you.

And can we stop these absurd guessing games as to who is who? I'm not the Authority, for what it is worth. I don't care who you are.

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Crusader of Logic wrote:
For the record, Aubrey = Authority.

Riiiiiight...


In fact, Aubrey, I seem to recall that you've been a well-respected "regular" here since long before most of the others on this thread first arrived... so why you'd want or need a "sock" completely eludes me, I must admit.


Kirth, Aubrey wrote:
*Evidence neither of the above read the thread*

...No comment.

The Exchange

Yeah, I've been around a while.

The Exchange

Crusader of Logic wrote:
Kirth, Aubrey wrote:
*Evidence neither of the above read the thread*
...No comment.

OK, I read it. At no point have you offered a solution to the problems you have pointed out. Let me reiterate - at no point.

If you seriously cannot tell the difference between saying there is a problem and saying how to fix it, then your analysis is a bit feeble, to say the least. Rather than sulking, maybe you should expand upon your fixes for the fighter, since I and others would be interested to see them.

Scarab Sages

You know you've crossed the line when...Kirth the Buddhist gets testy. :)

I happen to like the spirit of Kirth's suggestion, although as said elsewhere I prefer multiplying the base damage of the weapon to have some variety with weapon types.


Snorter wrote:
Yes, the 3E Fighter gets extra feats, but he has to spend all of them trying to play catch up with what his predecessor could do, straight out of the gate.

I remember once trying to convert my 2nd Ed Elven Fighter (Vylnerral) to 3.0 and I had to squeeze every last bonus to make it even close.

You remember Vyl don't you Snorter? Two longsword wielding instrument of blurry death. A character prepared to take the 8d6 damage falling off a cliff to reclaim his lost sword, and then fight his way back through 80 orcs to get back to the party.

He was hard.


Snorter wrote:
Yes, the 3E Fighter gets extra feats, but he has to spend all of them trying to play catch up with what his predecessor could do, straight out of the gate.

And don't forget what happened when Skills & Powers got introduced...

Basic D&D had weapon mastery at high levels, which made damage dice and specials even more absurd for fighters.

This is making me very nostalgic, so I'd better stop wallowing now. Especially seeing as I'm at work.


First, here is a fun quote for you.

Another Man That Knows His Stuff wrote:

I agree. Points that Paizo missed about the Fighter Class:

1: Feat selection. Their choices are limited to a select few viable feats that make the class dip-worthy. 20 levels for 11 bonus feats is nice, but their choices are extremely limited in value. Power Attack, Improved Trip, EWP (Spiked Chain), and a handful of others (about 6 feats in all, most of which can be easily gained with your normal 7/8 feats). The more feats they are given, the less a Core Fighter will be worth. Adding in splat just makes it worse, as you will quickly find that a lot of feats are not worth the effort it takes to gain them (High Sword Low Ax, anyone?).

2: Swift and Immediate actions. The caster's best friends are the Fighter's red-headed step-children. They get virtually nothing from those two types of actions, something the Bo9S tried hard to correct with the Boost and Counter options. Giving them something to do with these is a great way to improve the class, as it allows them to make effective use of their actions/turn.

3: Movement. Spellcasters can freely take Move actions without being seriously penalized. Fighters? Can't move more than 5ft/round without feeling the hurt. Reducing the Full Attack to a Standard action is a bit much, but something does need to be done about this. Rangers can get away with this (both when ranged and with TWFing due to Travel Devotion being so useful for Swift Hunter builds and Tumble being a class skill), and every Martial Adept can make up for taking move actions via strikes.

And that's just the tip of the iceberg. Paizo did not do the right research. Power Attack isn't broken, the rules are.

No, none of the above are fixed in Pathfinder.

With that said since it is apparently necessary to repeat the obvious since it hasn't gotten through the first few times...

1a: Delete the Fighter class from the game.

1b: Copy paste the Warblade class from Tome of Battle into its place.

1c: (Optional) Rename the Warblade to Fighter.

Any working Fighter fix is going to end up at least 90% identical to the Warblade anyways. There already is an overabundance of failed Fighter fixes that do not do the above because for example they thought that small numeric boosts aka making them a slightly better Big Stupid Fighter was enough to make problems not solvable by a Big Stupid Fighter no longer be an issue. Said poorly thought out fixes are produced in multiples every day on the WotC forums and immediately and universally identified as ineffective. The Pathfinder Fighter is exactly like one of these fixes, the only difference is it is being accepted better simply because a 'professional' wrote it. Therefore we can reasonably conclude that being Warblade like is the key to success, and since anything new is going to end up almost the same a lot of unnecessary effort can be avoided by just using it directly. What makes a character Warblade like? Options, first and foremost. If a problem isn't solvable with a gun, getting a bigger gun won't make any difference. You need a different tool. Warblades get that, so they can deal with things like saving throws, touch AC, and so forth on both themselves and their opponents well.

2a: Realize Money is Power due to the Wealth By Level system.

2b: Realize that as a class that lacks magic itself, magic is required to patch up its weaknesses.

2c: (Corollary) Ensure that they have said magic.

This means that in addition to that solid baseline, you must still build up. The Warblade must have the exact items he requires to function, and he must be able to get them without issue. In other words, he needs to be able to buy any item he has the cash for whenever it is required for him to have it. Further, he must be an expert player that knows exactly what he must buy to avoid wasting his limited resources, and even then he'll probably still need about 25% more cash to cover his bases fully so that he has the money in the first place. Read as: He also requires a crafting buddy to function in addition to flawless gear selection.

If the DM thinks letting the melee have exactly what he needs is overpowered instead of merely necessary, Fighters Do Not Get Nice Things.

If the DM doesn't like 'Magic Item Marts' for any reason, Fighters Do Not Get Nice Things.

If the DM makes use of any highly adversarial tactic such as stealing loot, having enemies break it deliberately, using enemies that break it via other means... Yes, you guessed it. Fighters Do Not Get Nice Things.

So already we have:

Completely replace the underpowered current example of a Fighter with a viable, yet not overpowered one that is about as good as melee gets without spellcasting ability.

Ensure that your DM has the correct understanding of how things work, and isn't out to get you. Even a little bit. Because any misconceptions about what balance is he has will bite you in the ass.

Ensure your DM is specifically setting out to help you by giving you extra stuff above and beyond WBL or alternately that you have a buddy at the table you can convince to craft a minimum of 50% of your equipment, devoting quite a few months of their lives to the task.

Oh and then you need to play perfectly to make use of your perfect tools and special favoritism, just to stay at par level. Under anything less than ideal conditions, you can pretty much forget the idea of playing a viable melee character. Unless of course, you're a caster. Because spell casters do everything better. Even the stuff the spell casters aren't supposed to do well. If you're anything less than an elite player, there's your ticket to success.


Pretend for a minute that Bo9S is not open content. Materal from that source therefore cannot be used in Pathfinder, except by individual players. Then what?

Option 1: Play 3.5 and use Bo9S. No problem, except that this thread is the Pathfinder Beta Playtest forum, not the 3.5e discussion forum.

Option 2: Play Pathfinder, but use Bo9S. No problem for an individual table, but Paizo can't put Warblades and Crusaders in its adventures, nor in the rulebook (not even if they change the names), so that puts us back to Option 1.

Option 3: Try and make the best of a very bad situation. See if specific feats and class features can be proposed to at least salvage the fighter for a few more levels' worth of use. If he can make it to 10th level now without sucking, we've doubled his life span, and that would be good.

Most of us are approaching this from an Option 3 standpoint, because Option 2, despite being maybe the most attractive choice, isn't going to work for the Pathfinder game as a whole, for the reasons listed.

The Exchange

Crusader of Logic wrote:
Some stuff

So Bo9S is your solution? It might have been quicker just to say so, rather than talk around the subject.

If we leave aside the problems with OGL, the stuff in Bo9S is not everyone's cup of tea, plus it has been found wanting by some in subsequent play due to it being overpowered. The problem with the overpowered caster is actually not addressed by this. Instead it puts the fighter in an arms race, rather than addressing the fact that he cannot currently neutralise what the caster can do. That's more taxing for DMs since they then have to cover off more options in play - not just the casters' spells, but the fighters powers and how they might affect the outcome of the scenario. 3e is already time-consuming to prepare for without added complication.

In addition, while the quotee is right about feats at high levels, it has already been stated that this will be addressed in the relatively near future. If this aspect of the PF beta fails to come up with anything useful, then the observation will be apposite, but it seems too early at this stage to be critical when feats haven't been addressed yet in detail.


Kirth Gersen wrote:

Pretend for a minute that Bo9S is not open content. Materal from that source therefore cannot be used in Pathfinder, except by individual players. Then what?

Option 1: Play 3.5 and use Bo9S. No problem, except that this thread is the Pathfinder Beta Playtest forum, not the 3.5e discussion forum.

Option 2: Play Pathfinder, but use Bo9S. No problem for an individual table, but Paizo can't put Warblades and Crusaders in its adventures, nor in the rulebook (not even if they change the names), so that puts us back to Option 1.

Option 3: Try and make the best of a very bad situation. See if specific feats and class features can be proposed to at least salvage the fighter for a few more levels' worth of use. If he can make it to 10th level now without sucking, we've doubled his life span, and that would be good.

Most of us are approaching this from an Option 3 standpoint, because Option 2, despite being maybe the most attractive choice, isn't going to work for the Pathfinder game as a whole, for the reasons listed.

In which case you're going to be trying to emulate the Warblade as closely as possible without toeing the line into ripoff. Which is a whole lot of extra effort to do the same thing.

Aubrey the Malformed wrote:
Crusader of Logic wrote:
Some stuff

So Bo9S is your solution? It might have been quicker just to say so, rather than talk around the subject.

If we leave aside the problems with OGL, the stuff in Bo9S is not everyone's cup of tea, plus it has been found wanting by some in subsequent play due to it being overpowered. The problem with the overpowered caster is actually not addressed by this. Instead it puts the fighter in an arms race, rather than addressing the fact that he cannot currently neutralise what the caster can do. That's more taxing for DMs since they then have to cover off more options in play - not just the casters' spells, but the fighters powers and how they might affect the outcome of the scenario. 3e is already time-consuming to prepare for without added complication.

In addition, while the quotee is right about feats at high levels, it has already been stated that this will be addressed in the relatively near future. If this aspect of the PF beta fails to come up with anything useful, then the observation will be apposite, but it seems too early at this stage to be critical when feats haven't been addressed yet in detail.

I have said this multiple times in multiple different places. I also said more than that, so don't oversimplify me by claiming being a martial adept is all there is to it. Having a solid base is just the start. There is nothing overpowered about the Tome of Battle. It is actually one of the most balanced books WotC ever published. It certainly has the core books beat, as the entire book contains less wtfbroken than a single chapter of a single core book. Unless you're saying that letting Fighters do something meaningful besides auto attack is overpowered, in which case you are the reason Fighters Do Not Get Nice Things.

Not kidding about the non broken bits. There's only about two things in the entire book that just warrant a huh and a headscratch, and both are due to very poor wording. However, both of these are such blatantly obvious errors you cannot help but notice them, easily gauge what was meant, and problem solved. Unlike say... the core again where there really is no non broken interpretation of some things and it is much harder to make sense of.

The first is Iron Heart Surge. The huh comes from the fact that since it requires a Standard action you cannot use it against the things it would logically work against such as being nauseated (no standard actions) or stunned (no actions at all) but does work against things it has no business affecting such as the Orc Warblade putting out the Sun with a 'roar of effort' since he has Light Sensitivity and therefore the Sun is a negative condition affecting him.

The second is White Raven Tactics. The huh actually doesn't come from the book here. It comes from the Sage and his 'You are your own ally' ruling meaning that due to having an incompetent guy trying to make sense of the rules you can create some infinite action loop with it.

Given WotC's track record, only two natural 1s in an entire book is incredible.


Crusader of Logic wrote:

In which case you're going to be trying to emulate the Warblade as closely as possible without toeing the line into ripoff. Which is a whole lot of extra effort to do the same thing.

Quite right. But that's the situation we're in, given that 4e has been released and that Paizo is creating Pathfinder. Instead of crying over the lost Bo9s, I figure it's better to face forward and see what can be done with the things that Paizo IS permitted to use. That means a fair amount of re-inventing the wheel, but there you have it.


Aubrey the Malformed wrote:
Snorter wrote:

Is this part of the problem? That everyone is approaching the game from a different genre of fantasy?

It seems, in the older Sword & Sorcery tradition of the pulps, that most wizards and sorcerors were almost invariably villainous cowards, who had sold their souls to Dark Powers, through perverted rituals, and whose purpose in the story, was to make bold threats, before dying, screaming, under the blade of the hero.

I think there are issues with style of play that are related. Squirreloid made a comment about how fighters should be able to trip giant scorpions and so on. That is uber-heroic, almost comic-book style. Nothing wrong with that, but it strikes me that it colours a lot of the issues with the fighter that he has. For me, and others, the fighter is a guy with a sword, not a superhero. A lot of stuff about "balance" seems to me to be more about aesthetics and expectations. These are valid criticisms but it is debatable to what extent D&D can accommodate all of these styles of play - Golarion, for example, seems to be a fairly downbeat sort of place and PF would likely reflect that more than maybe a pulpy sort of setting.

Part of it is about level of play as well. A guy with a sword from levels 1-5 is fine. He has to be a superhero to play the 10-15 game, otherwise he can't do anything relevant.

Edit: Re: Golems
The problem is that the golem isn't capable of reasoning, so if you create an illusionary wall either he (1) treats it as a real wall and never interacts with it or (2) Runs into every wall he sees to determine if its an illusion or not. While golem creators are probably quite familiar with the 'silent image to make an apparent wall block the golem's way' trick, having your golem frequently run into walls is going to be loud and possibly damaging to your creation. And 99.9% of walls it sees will not be illusions. As such, it really is unreasonable to expect the golem to interact with the illusion of a wall. (I'm willing to be convinced on the illusion of a pit trap - pit traps being rarer anyway).

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 8

Squirrelloid wrote:

Edit: Re: Golems

The problem is that the golem isn't capable of reasoning, so if you create an illusionary wall either he (1) treats it as a real wall and never interacts with it or (2) Runs into every wall he sees to determine if its an illusion or not. While golem creators are probably quite familiar with the 'silent image to make an apparent wall block the golem's way' trick, having your golem frequently run into walls is going to be loud and possibly damaging to your creation. And 99.9% of walls it sees will not be illusions. As such, it really is unreasonable to expect the golem to interact with the illusion of a wall. ...

I do for some reason remember some clarification, response, or something similar that interaction could include any close examination, (spot checks, search checks) which, if ruled that way, would mean there are more than those two options.

If you limit interact with to touching the visual part of the illusion then there would be very little reason for ghost sound to have "Will disbelief (if interacted with)" since would be never be able touch it.

The Exchange

Squirrelloid wrote:
Part of it is about level of play as well. A guy with a sword from levels 1-5 is fine. He has to be a superhero to play the 10-15 game, otherwise he can't do anything relevant.

I think we will have to agree to disagree at this particular point. I'm keen to see what happens with the higher level feats. If that turns out to be a damp squib, I will be forced to agree.

Squirrelloid wrote:

Edit: Re: Golems

The problem is that the golem isn't capable of reasoning, so if you create an illusionary wall either he (1) treats it as a real wall and never interacts with it or (2) Runs into every wall he sees to determine if its an illusion or not. While golem creators are probably quite familiar with the 'silent image to make an apparent wall block the golem's way' trick, having your golem frequently run into walls is going to be loud and possibly damaging to your creation. And 99.9% of walls it sees will not be illusions. As such, it really is unreasonable to expect the golem to interact with the illusion of a wall. ...

I don't think that illusions are useless - a clever use of illusions is fine by me, and golems are more vulnerable than an intelligent creature. A golem doesn't have the intellect to study an illusion, so it can only disbelieve what it interacts with (sensory dissonance). Walls suddenly appearing might not fool it (it might know the floorplan, and a wall where there wasn't one before, or which suddenly appears, might make it pause) but something that might reflect "reality" (I forget the spell, but there is one which turns you invisible and provides an illusory double as a distraction - or even just good old Invisibility plus Silent Image, but not a sudden pit form nowhere but maybe figures running away) would be perfectly fair game.

The main issue I was disagreeing with was that a golem cannot disbelieve a figment under any circumstances, which struck me as wrong. In fact, a figment would proably scare the hell out of an animal even if it had disbelieved it, or at least confuse it. A translucent mouse, having been disbelived by the cat, would probably not be recognised as not real. It would probably still stalk and attack it for a while until it got bored, as it doesn't know what an illusion is. A golem, on the other hand, can be programmed to react appropriately.


Zynete wrote:
Squirrelloid wrote:

Edit: Re: Golems

The problem is that the golem isn't capable of reasoning, so if you create an illusionary wall either he (1) treats it as a real wall and never interacts with it or (2) Runs into every wall he sees to determine if its an illusion or not. While golem creators are probably quite familiar with the 'silent image to make an apparent wall block the golem's way' trick, having your golem frequently run into walls is going to be loud and possibly damaging to your creation. And 99.9% of walls it sees will not be illusions. As such, it really is unreasonable to expect the golem to interact with the illusion of a wall. ...

I do for some reason remember some clarification, response, or something similar that interaction could include any close examination, (spot checks, search checks) which, if ruled that way, would mean there are more than those two options.

If you limit interact with to touching the visual part of the illusion then there would be very little reason for ghost sound to have "Will disbelief (if interacted with)" since would be never be able touch it.

Interact with means a relevant sense receives (or fails to, really) sensory data from it other than sight (seeing something is not interacting with it). Silent Image requires you at least touch it to get a save at all, because no other senses will contribute (unless you do something stupid like make a silent image of something which should make sound. Ok, I suppose you could try to taste it as well... (Smell may also work in certain circumstances - but probably not against an illusory wall in a dungeon).

Ghost Sound requires attentive listening (just hearing it isn't 'interacting').

Basically, allowing 'looking at it' to generate a save is a stealth nerf of illusions which makes them unplayably bad. Interacting is clearly more involved than just standing there, and presumably means *doing* something to facilitate interaction with the illusion. The whole point of illusions is they 'look like' the thing you've chosen perfectly. They just obviously don't have material, and thus won't generate other properties that objects will (possibly smell and/or sound).

The Exchange

Crusader of Logic wrote:
More stuff

I get what you are saying, and I understand that it is a possible solution - it is certainly the approach that 4e has used. But for me, to introduce something like that in a 3e context would be effectively creating a new character class, rather than a rejig of the fighter as such. A total rewrite of the fighter class will inevitably cause problems with backwards compatibility (to be fair, the concept is a little stretched now, but a whole new fighter class would effectively rip that up). While I appreciate that some people have issues with the notion of backwards compatibility, it is a stated aim of PF and can't really be ignored.


Aubrey the Malformed wrote:
Squirrelloid wrote:
Part of it is about level of play as well. A guy with a sword from levels 1-5 is fine. He has to be a superhero to play the 10-15 game, otherwise he can't do anything relevant.
I think we will have to agree to disagree at this particular point. I'm keen to see what happens with the higher level feats. If that turns out to be a damp squib, I will be forced to agree.

I'm curious what you think fighters are doing at level 10, or 15, or 20 that is at all productive. Use the SRD for appropriate monsters to encounter as a benchmark.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 8

Squirrelloid wrote:

Interact with means a relevant sense receives (or fails to, really) sensory data from it other than sight (seeing something is not interacting with it). Silent Image requires you at least touch it to get a save at all, because no other senses will contribute (unless you do something stupid like make a silent image of something which should make sound. Ok, I suppose you could try to taste it as well... (Smell may also work in certain circumstances - but probably not against an illusory wall in a dungeon).

Ghost Sound requires attentive listening (just hearing it isn't 'interacting').

Basically, allowing 'looking at it' to generate a save is a stealth nerf of illusions which makes them unplayably bad. Interacting is clearly more involved than just standing there, and presumably means *doing* something to facilitate interaction with the illusion. The whole point...

I said close examination (which would be attentive spotting or whatever).

How is this any different from requiring attentive listening to detect ghost sound? Smell, taste, touch, and sound are the only ways to interact? How were you able to separate sight from that list? Which rule?


Zynete wrote:
Squirrelloid wrote:

Interact with means a relevant sense receives (or fails to, really) sensory data from it other than sight (seeing something is not interacting with it). Silent Image requires you at least touch it to get a save at all, because no other senses will contribute (unless you do something stupid like make a silent image of something which should make sound. Ok, I suppose you could try to taste it as well... (Smell may also work in certain circumstances - but probably not against an illusory wall in a dungeon).

Ghost Sound requires attentive listening (just hearing it isn't 'interacting').

Basically, allowing 'looking at it' to generate a save is a stealth nerf of illusions which makes them unplayably bad. Interacting is clearly more involved than just standing there, and presumably means *doing* something to facilitate interaction with the illusion. The whole point...

I said close examination (which would be attentive spotting or whatever).

How is this any different from requiring attentive listening to detect ghost sound? Smell, taste, touch, and sound are the only ways to interact? How were you able to separate sight from that list? Which rule?

Because looking at a wall doesn't constitute interaction with a wall. Unless you're claiming the rules aren't written in English.

Also, because Silent Image specifically makes something that looks exactly like "X", so looking at it will only tell you that its an "X". You make a spot check - 'yup, still looks like a wall'. Because it does look like a wall, that's entirely the point.

Honestly, Ghost Sound allowing a save is stupid. You're right, listening to it shouldn't really qualify as interacting with it - it really does sound like whatever sound you're making. At which point there is no way to interact with it so the save should never come up.

The Exchange

Squirrelloid wrote:
I'm curious what you think fighters are doing at level 10, or 15, or 20 that is at all productive. Use the SRD for appropriate monsters to encounter as a benchmark.

I've seen fighters be pretty effective with the right equipment. We may not fall into the camp of "expert" players but I have seen an high level fighter lay down over a hundred points of damage a round with a fair degree of reliability, and be the primary killer of the party (funnily enough, he was crap at level 4 and mighty at 15 or so). The fighter in question did two-weapon fighting with holy weapons and an appropriate bane, and it was nasty.

I suspect (and feel free to correct my supposition) that you may have written off the fighter without properly exploring what he can do (and I really don't buy the one-on-one stuff, even if your analysis steps beyond PvP to be PvE, since I consider that to be an unrealistic test of what actually happens in-game). Your methodology is interesting but since it relies on the fighter having certain gear when a PC caster can just buff him, he not only loses actions but has to devote resources to stuff he wouldn't actually need in a party context. That's why I don't really buy heavily into your conclusions because it doesn't seem an appropriate test. I know you did the solo wizard thing but all it really demonstrated was that the module wasn't well written, and a few tweaks could have changed everything.

Scarab Sages

Squirrelloid wrote:


Because looking at a wall doesn't constitute interaction with a wall. Unless you're claiming the rules aren't written in English.

Also, because Silent Image specifically makes something that looks exactly like "X", so looking at it will only tell you that its an "X". You make a spot check - 'yup, still looks like a wall'. Because it does look like a wall, that's entirely the point.

Honestly, Ghost Sound allowing a save is stupid. You're right, listening to it shouldn't really qualify as interacting with it - it really does sound like whatever sound you're making. At which point there is no way to interact with it so the save should never come up.

Yes, but looking at silent image gets a save precisely because it is what the name implies - an image that is silent. Hmm. Wonder why that guy standing over there is making absolutely no noise?

As for ghost sound, as a musician I can attest that there is a fundamental difference between a sound and a reproduction. Despite the mages best efforts there will be flaws in the sound - maybe it doesn't follow the acoustics, maybe it is obviously coming from a place where no sound should be coming, etc. Hearing is interaction.

However, in a way you are correct. You need to be using the correct sense to interact with the illusion in order to get the save - in many cases this might be one of a few options. Illusions have always relied on DM discretion. 3rd Edition toned things down some, but still leaves it a bit open.


100 a round at what level? 15? Because that's about 40% of a single enemies' HP. Not that great, especially since he can't move more than 5' while doing it and therefore can't even start until round 2.

Just to give you an idea, here is a fairly weak melee character's relevant outputs:

+22/+22/+17/+12 (2d6+11 + 1d6 cold + 2d6 Vicious and 1d6 to self + 2 negative levels).

+23/+23/+18/13 (2d6+7).

If everything actually hit (it won't) and everything worked (again, it won't) that's 100-240 which I know someone is going to strawman into saying it is good despite my specifically stating the bit about it not all hitting and not all working when it does hit. Minor energy resistance blocks the cheap weapon crystal's cold damage, for example. It's also doing 4-24 to self, but that's not that big a deal since the shield heals a 5 hit, max 50/day. More likely he hits about twice with each if that much which brings that to 50-120 (85). Only useful because it also delivers 4 negative levels with no drawback to the wielder, and the only reason this is possible is because the Life-Drinker property does not affect things immune to energy drain such as Constructs. Hello, Warforged. It wouldn't work otherwise, and it only comes out that well because of a crapload of house rules that make TWF as a style suck far less.

This is actually a level 12 character, but since he has over double equipment (hello, being an Artificer's cohort) the only difference is he might be down a point of to hit (gear makes up the small damage differential). Otherwise, he's on a level 15 level. Which he needs to be, because that's what he's fighting.

Edit: You do realize 'the PC caster can just buff him' is the same as admitting he's not good enough and is a resource sink just to get up to par, right? Because that's exactly what that is you see. Having to bug the caster to give you your staples because you can't get them yourself means you're a drag on everyone else. Now had you advocated certain cash saving methods such as getting a +1 lots of special properties weapon, armor, and floating shield then got the Cleric a few PoP 3s for 9k each instead of blowing far more than that on plain meh enhancement bonuses I'd be with you as that is more a mutual and clever effort. Not just leeching.


Jal Dorak wrote:
Squirrelloid wrote:


Because looking at a wall doesn't constitute interaction with a wall. Unless you're claiming the rules aren't written in English.

Also, because Silent Image specifically makes something that looks exactly like "X", so looking at it will only tell you that its an "X". You make a spot check - 'yup, still looks like a wall'. Because it does look like a wall, that's entirely the point.

Honestly, Ghost Sound allowing a save is stupid. You're right, listening to it shouldn't really qualify as interacting with it - it really does sound like whatever sound you're making. At which point there is no way to interact with it so the save should never come up.

Yes, but looking at silent image gets a save precisely because it is what the name implies - an image that is silent. Hmm. Wonder why that guy standing over there is making absolutely no noise?

Um, that's a really bad example if you want 'looking' to give you a save - you're getting a save because it should make sound and doesn't. This is usually known as 'listening', not looking.

Jal Dorak wrote:


As for ghost sound, as a musician I can attest that there is a fundamental difference between a sound and a reproduction. Despite the mages best efforts there will be flaws in the sound - maybe it doesn't follow the acoustics, maybe it is obviously coming from a place where no sound should be coming, etc. Hearing is interaction.

What you're talking about here is the problem with non-analog recording and/or digital attempts to emulate sounds. The second has even more problems than the first, and I could go into excessive technical detail as to why both of them are inferior to the real thing or an analog recording. However, magic isn't bound by any of these technological restrictions, so why should the sound quality suffer. Analog recording is as good as the real thing - magic should be capable of that.

Scarab Sages

Squirrelloid wrote:


Um, that's a really bad example if you want 'looking' to give you a save - you're getting a save because it should make sound and doesn't. This is usually known as 'listening', not looking.

Actually it is the combination of sight and sound that provides the save. And that's just one situation - you oculd argue touch by the air disturbances or lack of heat, etc. I never said which ones applied to this example.

Jal Dorak wrote:


As for ghost sound, as a musician I can attest that there is a fundamental difference between a sound and a reproduction. Despite the mages best efforts there will be flaws in the sound - maybe it doesn't follow the acoustics, maybe it is obviously coming from a place where no sound should be coming, etc. Hearing is interaction.
Squirrelloid wrote:
What you're talking about here is the problem with non-analog recording and/or digital attempts to emulate sounds. The second has even more problems than the first, and I could go into excessive technical detail as to why both of them are inferior to the real thing or an analog recording. However, magic isn't bound by any of these technological restrictions, so why should the sound quality suffer. Analog recording is as good as the real thing - magic should be capable of that.

Yes, I'm perfectly aware of the limitations of non-analog recordings in reproducing frequency variations and upper/lower end limits. That wasn't the only thing I was referring to (but it's cool you picked up on it!) Magic has the limitation because it must - if it didn't the spell would be too good as a decoy. If you need an in-world explanation, then the spell is not powerful enough to account for all the subtle variations in sound production that a real object would produce - much like a synthesizer still sounds like a synthesizer. Analog recording produces the sounds equivalent to the real thing, but the actual sound production never matches it. A speaker cannot match the resonance, sound production, and complex harmonics of a real instrument as it is not affected by the external environment. Simply put, analog records perfectly, but will never be reproduced perfectly.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 8

Squirrelloid wrote:
Because looking at a wall doesn't constitute interaction with a wall. Unless you're claiming the rules aren't written in English.

I do believe closely examining the wall does count as an interaction, the studying being the act.

I am not claiming the rules aren't written in English. If they weren't I wouldn't be able to read this particular section.

Player's Handbook: pg. 173 wrote:

Saving Throws and Illusions (Disbelief): ...

For example, if a party encounters a section of illusionary floor, the character in the lead would receive a saving throw if she stopped and studied the floor or if she probed the floor.

...

I can only assume study includes making a visual inspection. Any of the methods of tactile inspection would probably fall into the second category of probing the floor. If visual inspection was out then I would say that should only grant a saving throw for probing the floor and not have mentioned studying the floor at all.

---

A link to the Rules of the Game article about illusions.

The Exchange

Zynete wrote:
Squirrelloid wrote:
Because looking at a wall doesn't constitute interaction with a wall. Unless you're claiming the rules aren't written in English.

I do believe closely examining the wall does count as an interaction, the studying being the act.

I am not claiming the rules aren't written in English. If they weren't I wouldn't be able to read this particular section.

Player's Handbook: pg. 173 wrote:

Saving Throws and Illusions (Disbelief): ...

For example, if a party encounters a section of illusionary floor, the character in the lead would receive a saving throw if she stopped and studied the floor or if she probed the floor.

...

I can only assume study includes making a visual inspection. Any of the methods of tactile inspection would probably fall into the second category of probing the floor. If visual inspection was out then I would say that should only grant a saving throw for probing the floor and not have mentioned studying the floor at all.

---

A link to the Rules of the Game article about illusions.

Apart from all the interaction stuff, a golem is mindless in its pursuit of its last stated order. If a wall pops up in its path which prevents it from reaching its stated goal (say the magic user who cast it), it may look for a shorter route, or possibly try and smash its way through. This would be a DM call and probably upset some people depending how it went. In my games if another route isn't immediately visible then the creature tries to smash ts way through. My players know this from experience though so it's not an unfair call for them.

Let's say it tries to smash its way through the illusion. Now it has conflicting sensory input. The wall poses no obstacle to its pathway, but it still blocks vision (assuming it fails its will save for interacting, which it probably will). So now we come to the problem. Which sensory receptor is overiding. Visual (wall blocking) or Touch (no physical barrier). Once again this probably comes down to a DM call, but since the creature has orders to kill the spell caster and isn't intellligent at all, once there is no apparent barrier it would walk towads the last point it saw the wizard until it could see them again (my call anyway). It isn't meeting any resistance at all from the illusionary wall so just passes through it to continue its pursuit.

Now a wall of force or stone wall, that's a different story. That would hold your golem up almost indefinately (wall of force at least). Of course if you have to get past the wall to get to your destination, then thats different.

Also, an illusionary image of the target themselves, combined with said target vanishing from sight (invis or great stealth or whatever) could hold up the glem far longer. It keeps wailing on the image until it is destroyed or passes a will save.

On a side note, boards are pretty screwy today, I can't read half the posts on this thread anymore.

The Exchange

Crusader of Logic wrote:

100 a round at what level? 15? Because that's about 40% of a single enemies' HP. Not that great, especially since he can't move more than 5' while doing it and therefore can't even start until round 2.

Etc....

I could have predicted a response like this. I'm also thinking you didn't bother to read my post, since I never mentioned the items you do and the PC didn't have them. 40% of an enemy's hp in a round is not that great? If you say so - personally, I prefer encounters to last a little longer than one round, and so do my players. Again, the "shortcomings" of a fighter seem to revolve around play style.

And no buff? Who exactly do you think Haste is designed for (for example)? It doesn't help casters much anymore. And what exactly is Mage Armour, if not a buff - or do your characters not actually cast defensive spells at all, ever? And buffing is no big deal for a caster with supposedly so many spell slots he can cast any spell imaginable at any point, which usuaslly also comes up at this juncture. The game is intended to be a team excercise, not about the look-at-me casters. I bury my head in my hands when I read this stuff - have you actually played D&D with more than one person (i.e. yourself)? Buffing a fighter is leeching? I don't think you understand team play at all. Or the actual dynamic of a D&D game.

The Exchange

And another thing....

I find it vaguely amusing that you are have "proved" that what I saw happening couldn't happen. Ivory tower? Plus, your complaint that the fighter only does 40% damage being bad - he wasn't by himself, and it wasn't a one-on-one thought experiment but a series of actual gaming sessions. So if he did 40% and the other handed out more damage besides, it's not that big an issue. In fact, 40% is pretty good if you leave aside the notion of one-on-one bouts. And his output was swingy but fairly reliable over a series of rounds.


Crusader of Logic wrote:
100 a round at what level? 15? Because that's about 40% of a single enemies' HP. Not that great, especially since he can't move more than 5' while doing it and therefore can't even start until round 2.

40%? Just which Monster Manuals are you looking at?

In the 3.5 MM, that 100 hp/ round is good enough to reduce even most CR 16-23 monsters by at least 50% of their HP.

And any fighter worth their salt is going to have a weapon that can get through most if not all of the resistances of a specific entity at that level. Unless the DM is being a prick and throws a dragon at you when you've spent the last 5 levels fighting demons.

How reasonable does a 20th level fighter being able to solo a Balor sound? Particularly when he's got a better than 50% chance to resist even Will-save SLAs and is otherwise untouchable by the Balor, while hitting with all attacks? And make him an archer, engaging at 200 feet, the Balor is an exploded pincushion while the fighter walks away.


Aubrey the Malformed wrote:
Crusader of Logic wrote:

100 a round at what level? 15? Because that's about 40% of a single enemies' HP. Not that great, especially since he can't move more than 5' while doing it and therefore can't even start until round 2.

Etc....

I could have predicted a response like this. I'm also thinking you didn't bother to read my post, since I never mentioned the items you do and the PC didn't have them. 40% of an enemy's hp in a round is not that great? If you say so - personally, I prefer encounters to last a little longer than one round, and so do my players. Again, the "shortcomings" of a fighter seem to revolve around play style.

And no buff? Who exactly do you think Haste is designed for (for example)? It doesn't help casters much anymore. And what exactly is Mage Armour, if not a buff - or do your characters not actually cast defensive spells at all, ever? And buffing is no big deal for a caster with supposedly so many spell slots he can cast any spell imaginable at any point, which usuaslly also comes up at this juncture. The game is intended to be a team excercise, not about the look-at-me casters. I bury my head in my hands when I read this stuff - have you actually played D&D with more than one person (i.e. yourself)? Buffing a fighter is leeching? I don't think you understand team play at all. Or the actual dynamic of a D&D game.

40% of one enemies' HP. How often do you face a single enemy? Not very, at least once the DM figures out being out actioned means it dies very easily. You are also entirely dependent upon the enemies being evil (insert creature types) as you've apparently sank at least a +4 into each of your weapons to get largely conditional effects. Now, in some campaigns most of what you're facing being evil isn't such a stretch, but then you'll still find neutral mercs, guard animals, etc. One specific creature type is a lot more of a stretch though as now you need to fight that type of creature over half the time to justify the existence of bane against it.

Buffing someone is leeching when they are incapable of returning the favor by helping you in some way. Your guy cannot help anyone, he's just some mobile and moderately annoying difficult terrain. My guy can help others a bit (See: Life-Drinker) which is the sole reason why he's useful. If they can help you back, that's teamwork.

Anyways, here are your options:

1: Find a way to somehow be useful to your party, so that buffs on you are justified. Taking 3 rounds to kill a single enemy if it doesn't out full attack and maul you before then (it will) doesn't count. 2 negative levels a hit does count (notice, my stats include haste, yours can include it too if you have the boots and can get through an average combat in 2.5 rounds so it will last all day). This will almost definitely require multiple house rules to buff you up.

2: Don't find a way to be useful to your party, but take advantage of it from a more business like perspective. Get a PoP 3, hand it to the Cleric, and ask him to Magic Vestment you. Or something. 9k is cheaper than 24k or more, and it also means you don't have to blow your enhancement slots on junk straight bonuses. You still save cash, but not as much so. Use it to attempt to rectify your uselessness.

3: Fail at life. This statement will quickly become literal, as your character is crunchy and tastes good with ketchup.

modus0 wrote:

40%? Just which Monster Manuals are you looking at?

In the 3.5 MM, that 100 hp/ round is good enough to reduce even most CR 16-23 monsters by at least 50% of their HP.

And any fighter worth their salt is going to have a weapon that can get through most if not all of the resistances of a specific entity at that level. Unless the DM is being a prick and throws a dragon at you when you've spent the last 5 levels fighting demons.

How reasonable does a 20th level fighter being able to solo a Balor sound? Particularly when he's got a better than 50% chance to resist even Will-save SLAs and is otherwise untouchable by the Balor, while hitting with all attacks? And make him an archer, engaging at 200 feet, the Balor is an exploded pincushion while the fighter walks away.

MM1. Other MMs will raise the average as creatures there are more optimized.

Your statement is false. Here are the correct numbers. Percentages are how much 100 damage takes off. The number after it is the expected number of rounds for a kill, assuming he gets a single attack on the way in since he won't be full attacking on round 1, and can actually outlast it in a full attack contest (yeah right). Any number higher than 3 is unacceptable, as 95% of combats end in 3 rounds and the other 5% are CR +4 material he won't survive anyways.

CR 16 (11 monsters): Average 239.09 (41.825%, 4), max 378 (26.455%, 5).

CR 17 (7 monsters): Average 244.86 (40.84%, 4), max 337 (29.674%, 4-5).

CR 18 (8 monsters): Average 302.25 (33.085%, 4), max 375 (26.667%, 5).

CR 19 (10 monsters): Average 355.8 (28.106%, 5), max 445 (22.472%, 5-6).

CR 20 (9 monsters): Average 409.33 (24.43%, 5), max 858 (11.655%, 10).

CR 21 (13 monsters): Average 393 (25.445%, 5), max 522 (19.157%, 6).

CR 22 (9 monsters): Average 452.33 (22.108%, 6), max 536 (18.657%, 7).

CR 23 (11 monsters): Average 480.09 (20.829%, 6), max 893 (11.198%, 10).

What sort of gimped enemies are you fighting? Your estimates are horribly off target.

The fact you think a DM is a prick for actually sending more than one type of enemy at the party ever makes me question your judgment and competence. Did it occur to you that maybe, just maybe the demons would have human cultists, constructs (Retriever, anyone?) and other creatures they would feasibly be encountered with? Or perhaps that the demon adventure arc was over, so now something else is coming up?

If the Fighter wins 50/50 vs the Balor by himself, he's fine. He won't though. How are you hitting with all attacks by the way? It has AC 39 (Unholy Aura at will, remember?), therefore you must have a +41 with your fourth attack to get it to auto hit levels. That means your actual attack bonus is 56. A gish can do that fairly easily, but a Fighter? Yeah right. Anything less than that means you're dependent on luck in addition to being dependent on the thing actually sitting there and trading full attacks with you and is therefore irrelevant.

The Exchange

Firstly, you assume the fighter is alone - he isn't. The others in the party will contribute to defeating the monster(s) so the solo damage of the fighter is not that big a deal by itself. Remember, D&D is meant to be played by more than one person - you have a habit of forgetting that.

if you are fighting neutral mercenaries and guard dogs at the levels where you have holy bane weapons, I suspect you are doing something wrong – hardly surprising you find it easy with your wizard. Most meaningful enemies at high level are evil. That is the way the game works. Yeah it’s conditional, but it works about 95% of the time. The bane stuff is more conditional but many campaigns have a theme and it is often clear what the big baddies are. AoW – undead. ST – demons (in fact, you could throw axiomatic into the mix too). RotRL – giants. So a bane effect, which is anyway pretty cheap at +1, is a reasonable buy.

As for leeching/teamwork and so on. <shrug> It is clear that playing D&D is just about you. For others it is the enjoyment of teamwork. A reasonable level PC wizard (and others) will have the slots available to buff and still be effective as an angel of death, especially as buff spells will often occupy lower level slots than his higher level offensive spells. Why should a character spend on Boots of Haste when a wizard can cast it for free? That’s not leeching, that’s using party resources effectively. Yes – party resources. You simply invite the fighter to waste money on equipment he doesn’t need and then tell him he can’t contribute. That’s just stupid. Even your definition of teamwork is “How does that help me” not “How does this help the group”. The cost of a single spell slot, occupied by a buff spell, does not equate to thousands of gp. In fact, there is no real comparison at all.


It is not hard to understand. The Fighter is not contributing at an equal level. He cannot do so, barring perfection on his part. Since he cannot perform at par, he cannot do enough to matter, he cannot take part in any teamwork at teamwork is by definition a mutual and equal effort, not a one sided resource sink.

Further, by guard animals I clearly meant dire beasts, magical beasts, and other stuff that was CR appropriate. You of course strawmanned that to some CR 1 dogs. Neutral mercs aren't any weaker than the evil ones ya know. Granted, humanoid anythings that isn't a caster isn't much of a threat, but there's also nothing saying mercenaries have to be humanoid. Seriously. What kind of DM can't work out that just because the primary foes are demons doesn't mean there will not be associated non demonic creatures along with them? That is a pure lack of creativity. No opinion about it.

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