Smite Evil IS EVIL!


Rules Questions

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Brodiggan Gale wrote:
tejón wrote:
Maybe do rangers last. Or first to get them out of the way... I just see Favored Enemy being a bigger pain than Smite to evaluate!
That's actually not that bad, since I have the big database of all the mobs from the MM, I can do some fairly decent evaluation of the odds of running into a favored enemy by types.

Don't forget to take into account those DMs such as myself who are taking Paizo's suggestion and are telling their players ahead of time what they are most likely to encounter during the campaign.

Sovereign Court

kyrt-ryder wrote:
Honestly I rather like the smite evil as it is, my one complaint is that it favors piling on attacks per turn in any way possible.

I haven't finished reading this thread, so I apologize if someone else has brought this up, but aren't combat maneuvers and their ease of use part of the balance against iterative attacks? I realize it wouldn't work in all situations(much like smite evil), but an enemy that CAN bull rush or grapple probably should. If the main source of damage is the mystical power granted to a paladin and not overwhelming strength, that dragon is just going to step on them and keep grinding, if it needs to recharge its breath weapon anyway. Sure, using a turn to bull rush is less damaging(in most cases) than a full attack, but with a really good result, that paladin might have to fight his way past a few enemies again and combat will be a lot more exciting as a result.

Just a thought I hadn't read yet. With all the alignment and code of honor restrictions, I'm just happy to see a paladin get something worth all that chivalry.


Xum wrote:
I think it's pretty strange when people still say Pallies are overpowered, specially now. Numbers DO NOT lie, this is pure and simple math.

Actually it's very easy to make numbers lies. I could hold a survy on teenagers taking drugs and could garantuee that I could get results saying "100% have taken drugs" or "0% have taken drugs", simply by asking at a drug rehab center or asking at a place like a nursery where the kids aren't even old enough to know what drugs are.

My point is that with the right tweeking or the right lies of omission, it's easy to switch numbers into your favour, this is also partly why some statistics just plain don't work at all.

Xum wrote:
And yes the pally has some nice saves and other nice stuff, but the fighter has 10 more feats armor and weapon bonuses AND some pretty neat fighter only feats.

A handful of fighter only feats. Besides, even if you prove anything with a fighter, at best you prove that other classes can reach that level of damage output as well. Try comparing a paladin to a ranger with Favoured Enemy (Evil Outsiders), Dragons and Undead.

Besides, even if you throw raw damage out the window, the paladin still auto-overcomes Damage Reduction, can use spells to boolster himself (Bless Weapon comes to mind), can use his divine bond to get even a little more edge over damage (My weapon already has a +3 enchantment on it? Think I'll add flamming and holy then for a potential 5-20 points of damage per hit on top of everything else), not to mention that his AC and attack rolls get higher whilst smiting.

Xum wrote:
As far as Evil are the uber vilain, I get that, hell we all do, but I'm pretty sure that there are plenty more stuff to enjoy there.

So? Even if you add other stuff evil is still going to be the common option. Besides, it seems a bit silly when a player says "I want to play a paladin" and the DM's first reaction is "Better limit the number of evil foes". It's also a clear sign that smiting is overpowering since many claim that without fighting evil often the paladin is balanced, even though, barring a few spells, smite is the only thing the paladin gets that he doesn't get against non-evil creatures.

His auras, his bond, his lay on hands etc function fine without evil foes, so if he's balanced when he's not fighting evil then cleary some/all of his features which only function against evil creatures have some fault.

Xum wrote:
and trust the Math, again, it does not lie.

What about math's like this?

Ranger20 with Favoured Enemy Dragons maxed out - Bonus to Damage = +10
Paladin20, unspecializesed - Bonus to Damage = +40

Or this?
Fighter20 with fighter only feats - Bonus to Attack/Damage = +7/+9
Paladin 20, again, unspecializsed - Bonus to Attack/Damage = +Cha/+20

Math is showing that the paladin is better by miles.


A paladin at level 20 does get +40 damage on an evil dragon, but how much does he get against a non-evil dragon? Why is the dragon playing the paladin's game? Archerdin, sunder his bow with that nice bite reach or disarm it. Chargadin, fly around breathing fire til he falls over. Said paladin may be immune to charms and compulsions, but his rogue buddy's crippling strike after the dragon charms him.. the paladin will never see that coming. Didn't even hear the wizard die.

The ranger can kill anything with the dragon type with that extra damaage, share the damage with his companions, and can even master strike the dragon for a one shot kill, so it's not really a fair comparison. Rangers can also pick any type of enemy where paladins it is simply "evil" Some campaigns this is great, others.. ranger may be the better choice if hunting down human bandits who are neutral chaotic as one example.

Also the ranger ability isn't against one enemy X times a day. It's when he gets up in the morning to when the alarm spell goes off second watch.


Come on Nero, you are smarter than that. You did see the graphic right?
I understand it's a lot of damage, but it has been proven that compared to a fighter the paladin is COMPLETELY balanced.

We are not taking into acount any other abilities, but I gotta say in a fight against evil the paladin will have a greater damage output, sure. But I still think the fighter will have much more tricks up his sleeve.

Dark Archive

The point being made by that graph, is the majority of the time when the paladin doesn't smite, he's behind the curve damage wise. This means that no matter what the argument that a paladin over the course of a campaign will devastate everything in his path is bump kiss. He's actually WORSE than the other classes, until such time that he finally reaches the favored enemy of his, namely an evil aligned creature. Then he spikes in damage until the fight is over, and pays for it by going back to subpar for the next few fights.

The arguement is that smite isn't this horrendously broken thing everyone has made it out to be. Sure the spikes can be startling at first, but when its all said and done the point is everyone has fun right?

Right?

If you want to argue that the changes to lay of hands + smite might be overpowering that's fine. But that's an entirely different argument than the fact that smite on its own is overpowering. That is the argument EVERYONE has been making. They aren't saying smite and lay of hands this, or smite and immunity to compulsion that. Very often, what I see, even in this very thread, is people saying that smite all on its lonesome is horrendously broken, and its a travesty to let paladin do what they do.

That graph shows Paladin which is the damage he does normally.

Then Paladin Average, this is times smiting averaged with times not smiting, and at that point the Paladin is roughly equal to the fight.

The smite portions are obviously the damage spike against a single creature.

This is however, nothign we haven't seen wizards do anyways. Wizards, Clerics, and Sorcerors are more than capable of taking care of these things without a paladin getting involved. Infact they acknowledge magic is so tough to handle that monsters start getting automatic partial immunity to such tricks merely so the melee classes don't have to worry about charging the front lines, and doing diddly squat.

If we go to such lengths to accomodate magic, why all the complaints about having to finally take melee into account?

Dark Archive

Nero24200 wrote:

What about math's like this?

Ranger20 with Favoured Enemy Dragons maxed out - Bonus to Damage = +10
Paladin20, unspecializesed - Bonus to Damage = +40

Or this?
Fighter20 with fighter only feats - Bonus to Attack/Damage = +7/+9
Paladin 20, again, unspecializsed - Bonus to Attack/Damage = +Cha/+20

Math is showing that the paladin is better by miles.

I'll bite.

Ranger with Preferred Enemy Dragons maxed out +10/+10.

Archery Build and full bab, so four attacks at +10 +10, thats 40 damage...

Wait a second...that means, wow that EQUALS the damage bonus the Paladin gets off smite, and he HITS more often than the Paladin too. I mean its right there man, the Ranger gets +10 on EVERY attack.

Granted the Paladin could potentially full attack as well, but in a standard encounter a ranger will be full attacking while the paladin gets one attack on the first round of combat.

And since the Ranger is more likely to be full attacking with his bow its all good.

I mean, yes you could argue a paladin could easily take up a bow and do much the same, but not with the ability or finesse the ranger can. Its more in the ranger's favor the more you try to make the paladin play the ranger's game.


My two cents:

The paladin isn't mathematically unbalanced in the long haul, but rather is too swingy in the situations that their Smite comes into play.

For example, I sent a 10th level party up against a Gelugon (CR 13 demon) while playtesting the rules, and it would likely have killed them, but the archerdin killed it in a round and a half after the first Cone of Cold hit the party. By himself.

The cool Smite ability of the pally is balanced by its situational nature in terms of the other classes... But not in terms of encounters. A palladin effectively reduces the CR of encounters by ~2 to ~3, especially once higher level abilities come into play. This is not appropriate imo, as it drastically alters the way the GM has to think of designing encounters and the play experience of the rest of the group.


rydi123 wrote:

My two cents:

The paladin isn't mathematically unbalanced in the long haul, but rather is too swingy in the situations that their Smite comes into play.

For example, I sent a 10th level party up against a Gelugon (CR 13 demon) while playtesting the rules, and it would likely have killed them, but the archerdin killed it in a round and a half after the first Cone of Cold hit the party. By himself.

The cool Smite ability of the pally is balanced by its situational nature in terms of the other classes... But not in terms of encounters. A palladin effectively reduces the CR of encounters by ~2 to ~3, especially once higher level abilities come into play. This is not appropriate imo, as it drastically alters the way the GM has to think of designing encounters and the play experience of the rest of the group.

So would you fix this with lower bonus attack,damage(better than weapon specialization), and saves against all evils instead of lots of bonus damage against some evils X times per day like a ranger's favored enemy?


rydi123 wrote:

My two cents:

The paladin isn't mathematically unbalanced in the long haul, but rather is too swingy in the situations that their Smite comes into play.

For example, I sent a 10th level party up against a Gelugon (CR 13 demon) while playtesting the rules, and it would likely have killed them, but the archerdin killed it in a round and a half after the first Cone of Cold hit the party. By himself.

The cool Smite ability of the pally is balanced by its situational nature in terms of the other classes... But not in terms of encounters. A palladin effectively reduces the CR of encounters by ~2 to ~3, especially once higher level abilities come into play. This is not appropriate imo, as it drastically alters the way the GM has to think of designing encounters and the play experience of the rest of the group.

That is no different than what any other class does. When a ranger is up against his favored enemy the CR is lowerd. When a Wizard is flying and throwing out all his power spells the CR is lowered.

Hell if you have a cleric in the party AT ALL the CR is lowered.

That is effectively what should happen when one of the characters gets to do what he is supposed to do!

If you lowered a paladins bonus to 1/2 his level to damage against evil then all you are doing is making him ONLY as good as a fighter (or ranger with favored enemy) but the paladin still only gets it against evil and he still only gets it a few times a day.... this is not balance.

There needs to be a destinct variance between what a paladin can do when he gets to do "his thing" and what another class can do "all the time".

I guess it would also be unbalanced if a wizard got to drop all his fireballs on mobs that for some reason were all grouped up. Man that would be a TON of damage! But of course we know if a wizard is in the party we are gonna spread out the baddies as to not have this occur.

This is not simply a quantitative issue (which even if it was has been proven by the graph to show balance). There is more to think of, and if something is changed about smite you are slapping the paladin in the face and refusing to let him have anywhere to shine. That is not balance and that is not fair.


Vult Wrathblades wrote:
rydi123 wrote:

My two cents:

The paladin isn't mathematically unbalanced in the long haul, but rather is too swingy in the situations that their Smite comes into play.

For example, I sent a 10th level party up against a Gelugon (CR 13 demon) while playtesting the rules, and it would likely have killed them, but the archerdin killed it in a round and a half after the first Cone of Cold hit the party. By himself.

The cool Smite ability of the pally is balanced by its situational nature in terms of the other classes... But not in terms of encounters. A palladin effectively reduces the CR of encounters by ~2 to ~3, especially once higher level abilities come into play. This is not appropriate imo, as it drastically alters the way the GM has to think of designing encounters and the play experience of the rest of the group.

That is no different than what any other class does. When a ranger is up against his favored enemy the CR is lowerd. When a Wizard is flying and throwing out all his power spells the CR is lowered.

Hell if you have a cleric in the party AT ALL the CR is lowered.

That is effectively what should happen when one of the characters gets to do what he is supposed to do!

If you lowered a paladins bonus to 1/2 his level to damage against evil then all you are doing is making him ONLY as good as a fighter (or ranger with favored enemy) but the paladin still only gets it against evil and he still only gets it a few times a day.... this is not balance.

There needs to be a destinct variance between what a paladin can do when he gets to do "his thing" and what another class can do "all the time".

I guess it would also be unbalanced if a wizard got to drop all his fireballs on mobs that for some reason were all grouped up. Man that would be a TON of damage! But of course we know if a wizard is in the party we are gonna spread out the baddies as to not have this occur.

This is not simply a quantitative issue (which even if it was has been proven by the graph to...

I think rydi123 makes a great point, though: the paladin's smite ability is more encounter-changing than any other class's ability against equal CR creatures. Yes, a <i>fireball</i> GREATLY changes encounters with groups of foes, and sneak attack can make an enormous difference against a single foe. But this singular special ability makes an enormous amount of difference against foes that are traditionally the BBEG types. It DOES seem to make one character seem far more important than all the others at the table at what is often a climax that has been built up to for some time.

The paladin was too weak in 3.5 - I haven't seen many arguments about that. But the combination of smite, bonded weapon, and lay on hands makes this character shine TOO brightly in what tend to be the most dramatic encounters. To (it seems like) a lot of people, they have enough unique features (and advantages over fighters - heck, the bonus to will saves ALONE is huge) that the magnitude of the boost to the smite ability just seems like far too much.

No one said classes have to be perfectly balanced, and obviously every campaign is going to have its unique challenges. But from a design standpoint, every class should have its time to shine, and ideally those times (and the brightness of the shining) should be about equal to maximize the fun for everyone involved. I think it is a verey legitimate concern that the paladin now tends to shine so brightly as to drown out many other characters at the most dramatic moments in the game.


Xum wrote:
I love the new Smite, it's finally worth something and it is by far the most powerfull ability of the Class, and of lot's of classes in that matter. My question is: I feel like dreaming, am I rerading it right?

Here's my question. Is smite evil good? Yes. Is it game breaking? No, I don't think so.

My pathfinder paladin is only 5th level, so at Max he can do it 2x per day. I think in the howl of the carrion king I used smite evil 4x possibly 5x in the whole book. Now once resulted in an x3 critical and a 1 round kill for a tough enemy, but you can't really plan for a x3 critical, smite or not. Said enemy did however get initiative and severely wound the paladin first.

I havn't seen it work at high levels, if you think it's too powerful and don't want it to take out the main enemy, force the paladin to use them earlier in the day or risk dying to conserve them with other (less)powerful evil enemies.

I guarantee regardless of age category (at this level) if my paladin gets attacked by a chromatic dragon(or anything else that looks evil and scary) he's smiting. If he chooses not to use them and save them, and it's not a TPK, then he gets to use it on the BBEG.


Xum wrote:


We are not taking into acount any other abilities, but I gotta say in a fight against evil the paladin will have a greater damage output, sure. But I still think the fighter will have much more tricks up his sleeve.

But that's just my point, it's too easy to shuffle maths to your favour if you want (granted I didn't need to try too much). How is my assmenent different from someone elses just because I don't have a chart for it? Saying "It's Maths" isn't always going to put people at ease.

Dissinger wrote:

Ranger with Preferred Enemy Dragons maxed out +10/+10.

Archery Build and full bab, so four attacks at +10 +10, thats 40 damage...

Erm..have you looked at the ranger? If the ranger maxes favouered enermy dragons out (in otherwise, tailoring his main class feature against a single foe) he gains +10 damage per hit. A paladin, against the same foe, gain's +40 damage per hit.

Dissinger wrote:
I mean, yes you could argue a paladin could easily take up a bow and do much the same, but not with the ability or finesse the ranger can. Its more in the ranger's favor the more you try to make the paladin play the ranger's game.

I know what you mean, it's not like paladins are proficent with bows, or that they gain a bonus to attack whilst smiting, or that they can even take archery feats.

They can do all that pretty easily. Only 1 or 2 feats are needed to be on par with the ranger as far as archery is concerned, since they, at best, will get 3 archery feats.

What's more, a paladin gains that +40 bonus just by being a paladin, a ranger has to specialise entirely to get that, and that's his main class feature. If the paladin had to specialise to the same extent I might ease off a little.

Vult Wraithbaldes wrote:
That is no different than what any other class does. When a ranger is up against his favored enemy the CR is lowerd. When a Wizard is flying and throwing out all his power spells the CR is lowered.

"Other classes are unbalanced" is, quite frankly, poor justification for adding in an overpowering ability. If you think spellcasters are overpowering, nerf them, not the other way around. And just a note: Yes rangers are more powerful against their favoured enemies...but evil creatures will be more common than a handful of specific racial types and the paladin's bonuses are bigger.

cmaczkow wrote:
I think rydi123 makes a great point, though: the paladin's smite ability is more encounter-changing than any other class's ability against equal CR creatures. Yes, a <i>fireball</i> GREATLY changes encounters with groups of foes, and sneak attack can make an enormous difference against a single foe. But this singular special ability makes an enormous amount of difference against foes that are traditionally the BBEG types. It DOES seem to make one character seem far more important than all the others at the table at what is often a climax that has been built up to for some time.

Quoted for truth. I've never seen anyone having to re-write encounters purely because of a rogue's sneak attack or a wizard knowing fireball. This new smite however, requires too much change to really justify.


If the paladin smite evil is too powerful for an encounter you can always sub out some high CR enemies for lots of lower CR enemies if you're really worried that smite's going to destroy the encounter. He can't smite 8 dretches without resting. or as stated before, add some neutrals. Big Evil lich uses dominate person to gain neutral/good fighter for his cause. Then he acquires a displace cloak and casts mirror image and laughs as that same paladin misses again and again.. smite doesn't overcome miss chance.


Okay matey, you simply want to be right now, that's not an argument anymore.
I will agree to disagree with you.

EDIT.: That's for Nero ;)


How LotR:FotR might have gone, with a paladin:

Gandalf: "Fly you fools! This enemy is beyond you!"

Aragorn: "Hey, no, we aren't leaving... Listen, Legolas, toss me your bow for a second..."

Gandalf: "Didn't you hear me?! I said run, this demon will kill you all!"

Aragorn: "Just... Take care of the bridge, will ya? Break it or something."

Thwang-thud.
Thwang-thud.
Thwang-thud.
Thwang-thud.

Balrog: *Cocks head quizzically, then disappears in a puff of foul smoke*

Gandalf: *mouth drops open, no words come out*

Aragorn: "The race of men is not to be trifled with lightly. Come on guys, lets get going. Its a long way to Mount Doom, and I've got me a big burning bullseye to shoot..."

Edit: Apparently you can't say that something c0cks its head to the side on here. How odd.
Also, Aragorn was technically a Ranger... but kind of a Pally too. Anyway, the point remains. Mary Sue, the friendly paladin tag-along could have been used in the above example to the same effect. You still get my point.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Don't be silly, Aragorn is a Ranger! :)


Majuba wrote:
Don't be silly, Aragorn is a Ranger! :)

Doh! I tried to edit that in before anyone gave me that response... Alas, you win.


I would say he is a Ranger / Pally ;)


rydi123 wrote:

The paladin isn't mathematically unbalanced in the long haul, but rather is too swingy in the situations that their Smite comes into play.

For example, I sent a 10th level party up against a Gelugon (CR 13 demon) while playtesting the rules, and it would likely have killed them, but the archerdin killed it in a round and a half after the first Cone of Cold hit the party. By himself.

The cool Smite ability of the pally is balanced by its situational nature in terms of the other classes... But not in terms of encounters. A palladin effectively reduces the CR of encounters by ~2 to ~3, especially once higher level abilities come into play. This is not appropriate imo, as it drastically alters the way the GM has to think of designing encounters and the play experience of the rest of the group.

For what it's worth, I do kind of agree with this. Smite, as it stands now, might be balanced over the long haul (assuming you're fighting a fairly random selection of opponents) but it is borderline overpowered in specific circumstances and only balanced by long stretches of borderline suck. I'd much rather see Smite's damage lowered and give Paladins some other bonuses or abilities to increase their damage the rest of the time.


Xum wrote:
I would say he is a Ranger / Pally ;)

But why would he multiclass out of paladin when that will lower his smite damage? Unless he's taking favored enemy burning eye in the sky..


grasshopper_ea wrote:
Xum wrote:
I would say he is a Ranger / Pally ;)
But why would he multiclass out of paladin when that will lower his smite damage? Unless he's taking favored enemy burning eye in the sky..

He started as a Ranger dude. And then he saw the Smite power and changed classes ;)


rydi123 wrote:

My two cents:

The paladin isn't mathematically unbalanced in the long haul, but rather is too swingy in the situations that their Smite comes into play.

For example, I sent a 10th level party up against a Gelugon (CR 13 demon) while playtesting the rules, and it would likely have killed them, but the archerdin killed it in a round and a half after the first Cone of Cold hit the party. By himself.

The cool Smite ability of the pally is balanced by its situational nature in terms of the other classes... But not in terms of encounters. A palladin effectively reduces the CR of encounters by ~2 to ~3, especially once higher level abilities come into play. This is not appropriate imo, as it drastically alters the way the GM has to think of designing encounters and the play experience of the rest of the group.

How is it drastic? The ice devil can fly and has reach. I know its does not have improved disarm, but the pally still gets no attack of opportunity since he is not threatening the monster. His CMB is at least a 21. By the time the pathfinder version is made it might have improved grapple making it even higher. You take his bow or at least know it away, and cone of cold the party from the air. You might want to ice wall part of the party first so you are fighting less people.


Or icewall in the paladin, kill the rest of the party, and set an ambush for when he breaks/burns his way out of a sphere of ice.


Nero24200 wrote:
.....I've never seen anyone having to re-write encounters purely because of a rogue's sneak attack or a wizard knowing fireball. This new smite however, requires too much change to really justify.

They dont have to be rewritten for paladins either. Just use tactics instead of trying to trade blows with them. The paladin is now written to beat up your bad guys if they sit there in front of it.

If you allow any class to do its thing your bad guys are in for a short night.
When I start making PC's and they are in their element,(like the paladin is in the past few examples) and the bad guys just don't care I might think my PC is broken, but not on the powerful side.


The Paladin's entire point is to be the hammer of righteousness against the big bad evil. Their faith and determination give them hitting power that should NOT be equaled by any other class.

But using the example of a 20th level Paladin is patently false. If you start at level one, how long is it going to take you to achieve 20 levels? Probably quite a long time, even if your party is very active. If you figure that a level of experience is worth roughly a year of in-universe experience, than means that 20th level paladin will have 20 years of facing the evil of the world under his belt. He SHOULD be amazingly formidable. He SHOULD be extremely dangerous against Big Bads. That's the whole point. How many 20th level Paladins could there be in the world? Perhaps a handful, maybe 10? Certainly not more than a dozen. To have that long a career without dying, without succumbing to temptation, and without retiring from the adventuring life, is going to be exceedingly uncommon.

Of course, the Big Bad shouldn't exactly be running into the fray against them, either. That's for his minions, summoned monsters, etc. Using the example of a Lich, for example. Shouldn't a lich be able to summon, say, a few Death Knights (or whatever the 3.xx equivalent is) or major demons? The Paladin blows through his smite evils on those, and only then MIGHT the Lich engage directly. You can't run the big bad as a video-game monster that squares off with whatever is in front of it. Even evil dragons only attack directly against beings that aren't a real physical threat. There are any number of spells, distractions, etc that a quality villian would use to negate or minimize a Paladin's advantage. The Paladin is only overpowered when you run a Lich or a major demon the same way you run a Troll or an Owlbear.


Xum wrote:

Okay matey, you simply want to be right now, that's not an argument anymore.

I will agree to disagree with you.

Or it could just be that "Evil isn't common!", "The paladin has to follow a code" and "Other classes are broken" don't seem like good points at all, yet they seem to be the only points that everyone here uses to justify the new smite. Oh, and my favourite excuse, "You're playing it wrong" simply because I have evil creatures as common enemies in my campaigns especially when a player wants to play an evil hunting class.

Maybe if someone used some sort of reasoning outwith these arguments I'd be more willing to say "Okay, maybe it isn't broken". As it stands, theres nothing here to make me think that.

And well...if you think I'm only being arugmentative, why respond? If you're right, responding would only encourage me.

Wraithstriek wrote:
They dont have to be rewritten for paladins either. Just use tactics instead of trying to trade blows with them. The paladin is now written to beat up your bad guys if they sit there in front of it.

Works for some, not for all. For one thing, not all evil creatures are going to be watching the party, and if they are, it's possible that their spies won't have seen the paladin in action. Is the first response of every melee focused outsider, dragon and undead going to be "Keep my distance just on the off-chance one is a paladin".

Wraithstriek wrote:
If you allow any class to do its thing your bad guys are in for a short night.

False, rangers can fight favoured enemies, rogues can sneak attack, and barbarians can rage without getting such high bonuses. Class features are meant to be used, otherwise I'd just make my players play NPC classes - if I'm needing to put a class in a situation where it can't it's main class feature due to it's power, it's too powerful.

Lyingbastard wrote:
But using the example of a 20th level Paladin is patently false.

Alright, what other level ranges would you like? A 5th level paladin can gain +10 damage on attacks against undead, outsiders and dragons. Which hurts those low-CR undead quite a bit, especially with him auto-overcomming DR. Especially when compared to the fighter, who, at best, will have a +1 bonus to damage from class features (up to +3 if he takes fighter only feats). How does +3 compare to +10? Or a specialist ranger gaining +4? Also, at low levels the paladin gets more milage out of that Cha bonus to attack and damage rolls, since the PC's and monsters are Auto-Hitting alot less then.

In fact, at lower levels the paladin won't need to rely on smite as much just to keep up damage-wise with other classes, since lower levels rely more on chance than higher ones, so he's able to save it for when he really needs it.

Dark Archive

Nero24200 wrote:
Dissinger wrote:

Ranger with Preferred Enemy Dragons maxed out +10/+10.

Archery Build and full bab, so four attacks at +10 +10, thats 40 damage...

Erm..have you looked at the ranger? If the ranger maxes favouered enermy dragons out (in otherwise, tailoring his main class feature against a single foe) he gains +10 damage per hit. A paladin, against the same foe, gain's +40 damage per hit.

1) The Paladin on the first round of combat is going to hit once, if at all.

Quote:
Dissinger wrote:
I mean, yes you could argue a paladin could easily take up a bow and do much the same, but not with the ability or finesse the ranger can. Its more in the ranger's favor the more you try to make the paladin play the ranger's game.

I know what you mean, it's not like paladins are proficent with bows, or that they gain a bonus to attack whilst smiting, or that they can even take archery feats.

They can do all that pretty easily. Only 1 or 2 feats are needed to be on par with the ranger as far as archery is concerned, since they, at best, will get 3 archery feats.

What's more, a paladin gains that +40 bonus just by being a paladin, a ranger has to specialise entirely to get that, and that's his main class feature. If the paladin had to specialise to the same extent I might ease off a little.

Rangers don't need to qualify for their feats and so can do things like have composite longbows, something that the Paladin can't do if they wish to have an okay time hitting.


First off, I never said the other classes were broken. Just by your example you are saying anything is broken if it gets to do what it is good at.

The next thing we need to look at is that the naysayers seem to continue on the thinking that this is a party vs one enemy all the time. The majority of the time you are gonna roll initiative and see that you are facing off against a half dozen to a dozen oponents.

Now one of these is gonna be your BBEG. Of course the paladin will put a smite on that guy. So against everything else he is doing base damage and the other characters are pulling off their moves on everything else.

If you total all the damage for the whole fight then it is going to look like Brogan(sorry if I spelled it wrong)'s chart. It is going to average out.

I think everyone is just upset because the paladin MIGHT get to do the most damage against the BBEG. This is a big might and even if he does the most that does not mean the other characters will not take part or maybe one of them will get the killing blow.

His power against these creatures is also going to make him a target, thus freeing up everyone else a bit to do their thing.

There is nothing wrong with Smite, its just funny that paladins dont have to be the ones that are standing around jealous of everyone else for once. We actually have something we can do that other classes cant say "hah, I can do that all the time all day long, agianst everything! And I dont loose it if I miss."


Vult Wrathblades wrote:
There is nothing wrong with Smite, its just funny that paladins dont have to be the ones that are standing around jealous of everyone else for once. We actually have something we can do that other classes cant say "hah, I can do that all the time all day long, agianst everything! And I dont loose it if I miss."

Yup.. just finished first book of legacy of fire, guess who killed the BBEG, you guessed it... the bard. Scorpion whip for 5.. dead. In fact the fighter and paladin were having a rough time combined and hasted keeping up with the BBEG damage on full attacks. If you want overpowered, bard is the way to go in pathfinder.. they are so sweet now.


Wraithstrike wrote:

They dont have to be rewritten for paladins either. Just use tactics instead of trying to trade blows with them. The paladin is now written to beat up your bad guys if they sit there in front of it.

Nero24200 wrote:


Works for some, not for all. For one thing, not all evil creatures are going to be watching the party, and if they are, it's possible that their spies won't have seen the paladin in action. Is the first response of every melee focused outsider, dragon and undead going to be "Keep my distance just on the off-chance one is a paladin".

wrathstrike wrote:


The paladin and the cleric wear holy symbols so if some adventurer has gotten to you it and it has a holy symbol then it is most likely a paladin or cleric. Monsters do recognize classes on sight most of the time. Even in the MM in the tactics session it suggest which ones a monster might attack first. If it know which ones to attack first then it has to know the class's abilities, so there is no off chance unless the fighter just happens to wear a holy symbol, or the paladin is hiding his, but the holy symbol seems to be a point of pride and power for spells among clerics and paladins so hiding them is not likely.

Wraithstriek wrote:

If you allow any class to do its thing your bad guys are in for a short night.

Nero24200 wrote

False, rangers can fight favoured enemies, rogues can sneak attack, and barbarians can rage without getting such high bonuses. Class features are meant to be used, otherwise I'd just make my players play NPC classes - if I'm needing to put a class in a situation where it can't it's main class feature due to it's power, it's too powerful.

wraithstrike wrote:


If my rogue is flanking your bad guy he is in for a short night. If my raging barbarian is getting full attacks against your bad guy and you just sit there you can almost guarantee a short encounter. That was my point. If you just let players get the bad guys right where they want them, and dont try to negate it then of course the BBEG will fall easily, and if they(PC's) get to the sweet spot(tactics wise), and the bad guys dont care the main class power is not worth having.


I have stated my opinion, and won't belabor it further. However, I will note something that increases the swingy-ness of the class: archerdin. I've already alluded to this, but the fact that they can use their smite at range, anywhere on the board, and if they get initiative can basically drop most things in a round when they have multiple attacks... well, that is a lot worse than the melee examples people have been bringing up. They don't even have to specialize in the bow to be solid, with a full BAB and their Cha bonus, but if they do then they are even more devastating, and also more likely to be getting initiative on the monster (high Dex). And if they have even an inkling that combat is coming up, they can go ahead and further enhance their bow...


rydi123 wrote:
I have stated my opinion, and won't belabor it further. However, I will note something that increases the swingy-ness of the class: archerdin. I've already alluded to this, but the fact that they can use their smite at range, anywhere on the board, and if they get initiative can basically drop most things in a round when they have multiple attacks... well, that is a lot worse than the melee examples people have been bringing up. They don't even have to specialize in the bow to be solid, with a full BAB and their Cha bonus, but if they do then they are even more devastating, and also more likely to be getting initiative on the monster (high Dex). And if they have even an inkling that combat is coming up, they can go ahead and further enhance their bow...

Wind wall

Cover or concealmeant
Miss chance SLA's such as mirror image
Disarm
There are probably a few more.

If is not a good word to base an argument on. What if my raging barbarian wielding a scythe crits? Highly unlike, but if it happens the fight could be over.

Even if the pally wins init on average not all of the attacks hit. Then he loses his bow or the ability to use it effectively depending on how hard the DM wants the fight to be.


wraithstrike wrote:


Wind wall
Cover or concealmeant
Miss chance SLA's such as mirror image
Disarm
There are probably a few more.

If is not a good word to base an argument on. What if my raging barbarian wielding a scythe crits? Highly unlike, but if it happens the fight could be over.

Even if the pally wins init on average not all of the attacks hit. Then he loses his bow or the ability to use it effectively depending on how hard the DM wants the fight to be.

You are using quite a few more "ifs" than me (such as that the pally won't hit, the monster is buffed, and that the monster will get initiative). And also are in some way proving the point, that you have to design encounters around the pally.


rydi123 wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:


Wind wall
Cover or concealmeant
Miss chance SLA's such as mirror image
Disarm
There are probably a few more.

If is not a good word to base an argument on. What if my raging barbarian wielding a scythe crits? Highly unlike, but if it happens the fight could be over.

Even if the pally wins init on average not all of the attacks hit. Then he loses his bow or the ability to use it effectively depending on how hard the DM wants the fight to be.

You are using quite a few more "ifs" than me (such as that the pally won't hit, the monster is buffed, and that the monster will get initiative). And also are in some way proving the point, that you have to design encounters around the pally.

A lot of the higher level monster have improved init. Some have buffs such as true seeing that are always on. Full attacks lead to misses at the end. This is what normally happens because of the penalties. The paladin could hit on all the attacks, but that is not the norm, so it should be used as a valid example.

I have not designed anything around the pally. If its a caster giving it one spell is not going to change the encounter. If there is cover use it. If the monster has a way to obtain concealment it should be doing that anyway. Disarm with no AoO to risk is just a smart move.
I dont see any special concessions being made. If it were a fighter I would do the same thing.


Paladins are only overpowered if the GM doesn't use any of the evil monster's abilities, and just smashes them together like a toddler with a pair of Tonka Trucks. That doesn't seem like a game balance issue at all.

The reason I say using the 20th level Paladin as an example is false is because you throw out the +40, which is a big, impressive sounding number - but most of the time, players aren't going to be getting that. Your 8th level Paladin's going to be getting +16, only against evil foes. That might make fighting that Vampire a smidge easier, but it's not gonna be cake. If things seem really powerful at max level, well, uh, it's max level!


Lyingbastard wrote:
Paladins are only overpowered if the GM doesn't use any of the evil monster's abilities, and just smashes them together like a toddler with a pair of Tonka Trucks. That doesn't seem like a game balance issue at all.

+1.


Xum wrote:

Come on Nero, you are smarter than that. You did see the graphic right?

I understand it's a lot of damage, but it has been proven that compared to a fighter the paladin is COMPLETELY balanced.

We are not taking into acount any other abilities, but I gotta say in a fight against evil the paladin will have a greater damage output, sure. But I still think the fighter will have much more tricks up his sleeve.

The last thing the graph shows is that the Palladin is balanced. It shows the opposite, how unbalanced it is. It is to weak against anything non-evil. And it is to strong against everything of the evil dragon/outsider/undead subtype. The Palladin is balanced against all evil creatures that are not undead/dragon/outsider.

Fighter is balanced, that is correct.

Brodiggan Gale wrote:


For what it's worth, I do kind of agree with this. Smite, as it stands now, might be balanced over the long haul (assuming you're fighting a fairly random selection of opponents) but it is borderline overpowered in specific circumstances and only balanced by long stretches of borderline suck. I'd much rather see Smite's damage lowered and give Paladins some other bonuses or abilities to increase their damage the rest of the time.

You, my friend are completly right.

wraithstrike wrote:

They dont have to be rewritten for paladins either. Just use tactics instead of trying to trade blows with them. The paladin is now written to beat up your bad guys if they sit there in front of it.
If you allow any class to do its thing your bad guys are in for a short night.

There is no logic in your argument wraithstrike, you give yourself too much credit for making superior opponents. How bright is your party? In my campaigns, every character in- and out- of game knows that the Palladin will slaughter any evil creature (especially undead/outsider and dragon) within 2 combat rounds. So all they do is make sure the Pally gets into melee combat with the evil guy and has full round actions. And once he is there, the combat is over. Especially with a belt of battle. With a Palladin in the party, no other character should do anything else than making sure the Pally gets into melee.

Playing dumb, and as a wizard trying to burn a devil that is immune to fire is rather silly. While teleporting the Pally into range will completly neutralize the critter. There is not even much tactics in this.

grasshopper_ea wrote:


Yup.. jut finished first book of legacy of fire, guess who killed the BBEG, you guessed it... the bard. Scorpion whip for 5.. dead. In fact the fighter and paladin were having a rough time combined and hasted keeping up with the BBEG damage on full attacks. If you want overpowered, bard is the way to go in pathfinder.. they are so sweet now.

Wow, I love the Bard and would like to force any of my players to play one, but according to us its so weak. When there is a bard in the party he usually has to stand back and watch out while the big guys take care of the monsters. Maybe you could give me some advice how to make a 'ok' Bard.


wraithstrike wrote:


The paladin and the cleric wear holy symbols so if some adventurer has gotten to you it and it has a holy symbol then it is most likely a paladin or cleric. Monsters do recognize classes on sight most of the time. Even in the MM in the tactics session it suggest which ones a monster might attack first. If it know which ones to attack first then it has to know the class's abilities, so there is no off chance unless the fighter just happens to wear a holy symbol, or the paladin is hiding his, but the holy symbol seems to be a point of pride and power for spells among clerics and paladins so hiding them is not likely.

I never realised that was a black and white rule, paladins and clerics must have their holy symbols on display? Religious fighters, rangers, druids, etc cannot wear holy symbols? (even though two of the classes I just listed there have divine spells?) what about incognito clerics or paladins? Is a cleric of a god of trickery really going to be walking about with his holy symbol in plain sight?

Besides, if you enforce that then every time special circumsatncse come up, the paladin will suddenly be falling. I remember once playing a paladin who had the symbol of his god tatooed on the back of his hands (paladin of Tyr) and on the back of his gaunlets. There was quite a few times where his armour had to be removed, and during those times he had to make due with substitue armour, which didn't have the holy symbol and cover his tatoos. So in such a situation, you're telling me for the sake of balance my paladin shouldn't wear the armour and walk about without any form of protection?

wraithstrike wrote:


If my rogue is flanking your bad guy he is in for a short night. If my raging barbarian is getting full attacks against your bad guy and you just sit there you can almost guarantee a short encounter. That was my point. If you just let players get the bad guys right where...

It's funny, I've seen rogues flanking and barbarians raging yet the badguy has plenty of tricks to prevent this. Moving can throw off a rogue, or effects like Blur can make them unable to get their sneak attack. A well-placed confusion of blindness spell can not only turn the babarian away, but against the party (and yes, this is something I've seen IG). A bad-guy can only stop a paladins smiting by running.


The Invisible Man wrote:

There is no logic in your argument wraithstrike, you give yourself too much credit for making superior opponents. How bright is your party? In my campaigns, every character in- and out- of game knows that the Palladin will slaughter any evil creature (especially undead/outsider and dragon) within 2 combat rounds. So all they do is make sure the Pally gets into melee combat with the evil guy and has full round actions. And once he is there, the combat is over. Especially with a belt of battle. With a Palladin in the party, no other character should do anything else than making sure the Pally gets into melee.

Playing dumb, and as a wizard trying to burn a devil that is immune to fire is rather silly. While teleporting the Pally into range will completly neutralize the critter. There is not even much tactics in this.

The teleport and attack is not foolproof. Why is there the assumption that a full attack means all the attacks will hit?

If the paladin gets into the face of a dragon I can almost guarantee him a new character sheet if I want to kill his character. As a DM I have to make sure the paladin has fun what is stopping the dragon from grappling the paladin and flying off with him. The simple act of taking his weapon is still there. At higher levels they(dragons) are also spellcasters. If the paladin draws a dragons wrath there are to many ways to get rid of him. The belt of battle is nice, but you are assuming the charges will still be available when you get to the BBEG.
The monsters I mentioned were the 3.5 monsters from the MM so how are they superior. A fighter or barbarian with a belt of battle could also kill an outsider if all their attacks hit by the way. The only difference between the 3.5 paladin, and the PF one is that the paladin now has to be accounted for, like it should have been all along.


Nero24200 wrote:
wraithstrike wrote:


The paladin and the cleric wear holy symbols so if some adventurer has gotten to you it and it has a holy symbol then it is most likely a paladin or cleric. Monsters do recognize classes on sight most of the time. Even in the MM in the tactics session it suggest which ones a monster might attack first. If it know which ones to attack first then it has to know the class's abilities, so there is no off chance unless the fighter just happens to wear a holy symbol, or the paladin is hiding his, but the holy symbol seems to be a point of pride and power for spells among clerics and paladins so hiding them is not likely.

I never realised that was a black and white rule, paladins and clerics must have their holy symbols on display? Religious fighters, rangers, druids, etc cannot wear holy symbols? (even though two of the classes I just listed there have divine spells?) what about incognito clerics or paladins? Is a cleric of a god of trickery really going to be walking about with his holy symbol in plain sight?

Besides, if you enforce that then every time special circumsatncse come up, the paladin will suddenly be falling. I remember once playing a paladin who had the symbol of his god tatooed on the back of his hands (paladin of Tyr) and on the back of his gaunlets. There was quite a few times where his armour had to be removed, and during those times he had to make due with substitue armour, which didn't have the holy symbol and cover his tatoos. So in such a situation, you're telling me for the sake of balance my paladin shouldn't wear the armour and walk about without any form of protection?

wraithstrike wrote:


If my rogue is flanking your bad guy he is in for a short night. If my raging barbarian is getting full attacks against your bad guy and you just sit there you can almost guarantee a short encounter. That was my point. If you just let players get the bad guys right where...
It's funny, I've seen rogues flanking and barbarians raging yet the...

The holy symbol is needed to cast spells, but if he is not going to cast spells then know he does not need it, and normally only the cleric or pally will have one. If the DM let that tattoo work that is up to him, but by the logic the spell component pouch could be tattoo'd also.

If the bad guy moves so the rogue can't sneak attack then he is no longer allowing the rogue to do as he pleases. Stop trying to move the goalpost.


wraithstrike wrote:
The only difference between the 3.5 paladin, and the PF one is that the paladin now has to be accounted for, like it should have been all along.

QFT!!!

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Nero24200 wrote:
It's funny, I've seen rogues flanking and barbarians raging yet the badguy has plenty of tricks to prevent this. Moving can throw off a rogue, or effects like Blur can make them unable to get their sneak attack. A well-placed confusion of blindness spell can not only turn the babarian away, but against the party (and yes, this is something I've seen IG). A bad-guy can only stop a paladins smiting by running.

Or wall him off. Use Blur effects. Flight. Dimension Door. Mooks. The same tactics that have always been used against melees. Also, cover against Archerdin.


wraithstrike wrote:
The holy symbol is needed to cast spells, but if he is not going to cast spells then know he does not need it, and normally only the cleric or pally will have one. If the DM let that tattoo work that is up to him, but by the logic the spell component pouch could be tattoo'd also.

Only spells with the Divine Focus component require a holy symbol. I wasn't trying to say the tatoo should cover them, in fact I agree that holding a holy symbol is reuqired for such spells. But it's only a handful of spells.

Also theres a bit of a difference in your examples. A holy symbol is just that...a symbol, I don't see why a tatoo should be a problem since showing a symbol and a tatoo have the same effect. It could be argued that a tatoo is better, since it's permanent.

Unless the components for a wizard's spells can be turned into ink, it shouldn't acheive the same effect in tatoo form.

Besides, it's a moot point. Requiring a holy symbol doesn't make the paladin more balanced, since it's not unreasonable for other classes to have them as well. Out of 11 core classes 4 have access to divine spells.

TriOmegaZero wrote:


Or wall him off. Use Blur effects. Flight. Dimension Door. Mooks. The same tactics that have always been used against melees. Also, cover against Archerdin.

But they don't have the same effect. A rogue cannot sneak attack anyone with concealment - A paladin might hit a little less, but he still gains the benifits of smiting against a foe with blur.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

That still proves that the enemies have more options than running away.


I love the argument that goes "Unless all classes are comparably effective in all circumstances, the game is imbalanced."

Which has been used, in this thread, as "The paladin is underpowered when not using his smite, and overpowered when using it."

Earth to messageboard posters: This has been true of every class that casts spells since 3rd edition. They are overpowered when they have high level spells, and underpowered the rest of the time.

The difference between them and Paladins is that their spells work on damn near everything, and they run out of them a lot slower.

So before all of this silly carping distracts from Broddigan's excellent work, could you all go make a "SPELLCASTERS ARE OVERPOWERED" thread? Thanks.

-Cross

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