Class bloat, yup it's happening and I hate it


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Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Xum wrote:

Sorry I had to bring that up, and it's been a while since I last wrote, specialy regarding TOZ... but all I can say is WHAAAATTTTTT!?!?!? What kinda of RPGist are ya that never saw Blade Runner!?!? DUUUUDE, what are you waiting for!? Please, please, please watch it for your own sake and sanity!!!

Ok, back to your usual programing...

threadjack:
I was born in '83 and had a Catholic mother who didn't like me watching anything not G-rated. My first and only job is the Army, and I started in '01. Blade Runner never came up on my list of movies.

Maybe I'll get it sent to me on this deployment and check it out.


Blade Runner is boring. I imagine I find it even worse because I actually read the book it is inspired by first.


Cartigan wrote:
Blade Runner is boring. I imagine I find it even worse because I actually read the book it is inspired by first.

That is because the real value of the movie, is the look of it. The style. Not the story.


pres man wrote:
Cartigan wrote:
Blade Runner is boring. I imagine I find it even worse because I actually read the book it is inspired by first.
That is because the real value of the movie, is the look of it. The style. Not the story.

The look being... standard grunge?


Cartigan wrote:
pres man wrote:
Cartigan wrote:
Blade Runner is boring. I imagine I find it even worse because I actually read the book it is inspired by first.
That is because the real value of the movie, is the look of it. The style. Not the story.
The look being... standard grunge?

Right, but which came first? See how influential it was?


Oh please do not get into a Blade Runner debate. I'm pretty sure the Internet has a ban on those.


You know, I've heard a few comments that make me scratch my head in this thread. Some people have said that they don't think the number of classes/archtypes/alternatives is a problem (well a lot of people have said that) because paizo has said they don't have any immediate ideas for any more at the moment. You realize that as soon as some one comes up with some new ideas, they are going to put them out right?

As memorax would, I'm sure, tell you paizo is a company and if it will make them money to put it out, they will. So if you don't see a problem because you think paizo won't be putting more out for a while, I think you might be deceiving yourselves (I think someone might have even said there weren't any more character types left to explore, what?). Now if you think it isn't a problem because the more options the better, great that makes sense.

But if you think that they have finished for the most part on this idea, you are just setting yourself up for disappoint like the people that posted about being disappointed in this thread. memorax told you, a RPG company is going to put out stuff to make money, that is the nature of the beast, thinking otherwise is foolish.


Please do TOZ, and don't listen to Cartigan, we all have to not listen to him one time or another. :) (Jesting with ya matey, not need to get defensive there)

Regarding the Bloatedness of the subject. I think the way things are going is good, there are things I don't like so much and see little need, but I'm sure someone will.

As long as they all remain balanced, fun and interesting, I have no problem with it whatsoever.

And let's make one thing clear, the ALTERNATE classes are NOT base classes, so, the only Base class that's gonna come out this year (as far as I know) is the Magus (Which is the most AWESOME name for a class EVER, yes it was I who named it and I'm proud of it, sue me :))


I have to disagree with that tenuous distinction.


Dunno if I'm the minority, but I'd like to say that I'm excited about the new class Alternates/Archtypes/New Classes/whatever. It allows you to try and play new things without having to change everything yourself.

Also, by definition, fantasy should not have borders like "You can't have samurai and wizards together!" or "Guns and swords! Together! Blasphemy!"

So to all the haters! peace out!


Cartigan wrote:
I have to disagree with that tenuous distinction.

Of course you do :)

And I agree with the TENUOUS part, but it is there.

Antipaladin is the best example of an Alternate classe we have, it's not as free and will have way less options than a Base class, that's the way I see it. I don't they will even be able to create archetypes for those, and even if they do the number will be way down there. But hey, I may be wrong, but that's the way I see paizo thinking.


Even though the only one of these classes likely to see use in any game I play in is the Samurai (reworked to be an elven knight) they do provide a very good study in how to create more involved archetypes. If I want to work with my GM and try to make an actual, working fighter-based swashbuckler (to use one example) instead of the rogue version I now have examples to draw from. IMO archetypes, advanced or not, are superior to prestige classes 90-95% of the time. Remember the bloat of prestige classes in 3.5 was even worse than the class bloat, and Paizo has really cut down on hose.


Deanoth wrote:
Tambryn why do you have to act like this when someone says something that you don't agree with? It does boil down to the fact if you do not like it you don't have to buy it. The fact that you are trying to make change for the better in your opinion are wiped out when making comments like the one above. Some people actually DO worry about their own home game and that is the true import to them and them alone. Why is this a problem for you? You alone can not make a change to Paizo and the way they publish or choose to publish their rules and how many classes they think they should release and the timeline as to when they do. As much as you like to think that you can, all you can do is to sway others opinions to your way of thinking. Acting like the above... gets you no where in that regard other then showing the ones who don't believe the way you do that you are not acting very mature and thinking that the internet is a place where a bunch of people come and say what ever they want and hide behind the cloak of anonymity.

Where are you even getting all this? He asked if Blackerose had read the thread simply because it was rather obvious that he hadn't. That's all.

There are people who have read the thread, taken time to understand the positions, and have something thoughtful to add. Then there are the people who pop in and type "I like new classes." Is it any wonder the former grow weary of the latter?


Jason Ellis 350 wrote:
Even though the only one of these classes likely to see use in any game I play in is the Samurai (reworked to be an elven knight) they do provide a very good study in how to create more involved archetypes. If I want to work with my GM and try to make an actual, working fighter-based swashbuckler (to use one example) instead of the rogue version I now have examples to draw from. IMO archetypes, advanced or not, are superior to prestige classes 90-95% of the time. Remember the bloat of prestige classes in 3.5 was even worse than the class bloat, and Paizo has really cut down on hose.

I completelly agree there.

I hated all those poorly worked out prestige classes, and in fact only 15% of them was even worth a shot, the fluff was terrible and it started an arms race, not even gonna talk about the feat madness, there came a time that there were feats that did the same thing as others but better! It made no sense whatsoever...

So far I see no bloat, there are classes there that could be worked out as archetypes (Cavalier for one) but work out just fine the way they are, and for sure they will have some pretty neat archetypes coming up.

Liberty's Edge

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

This whole thread should have just been this.

"Paizo please be aware that I don't want you to add more classes then you can support, the last few books you released for the RPG line all had classes are you going to continue this trend?"

*Paizo's answer to address this and calm you down*

"Thank you very much for addressing my concern"

Any arguments beyond that concerning this issue is moot at that point.


Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Just one thing to add to this discussion I keep seeing, how Paizo and WotC are releasing new Base Classes at the same rate (around 10 a year). However in the same time period for 3.5 WotC had added 18 new base classes and several variant classes. Paizo is at 6 base and one alternate (and however you want to count archetypes), with 1 more base class coming and 3 alternates. I know for a fact WotC added at least 3 more base classes, and possible more in the first 8 months of their second complete year of 3.5.


Well paizo is already removing non core content from the Adventure Paths and replacing it with lines telling you the page number for the thing they did not include. And this is with just the AGP and B2 out. Now add in two more books and it gets much worse.

I am opposed to this anyhow, but it will only get much, much worse as the bloat grows.


seekerofshadowlight wrote:

Well paizo is already removing non core content from the Adventure Paths and replacing it with lines telling you the page number for the thing they did not include. And this is with just the AGP and B2 out. Now add in two more books and it gets much worse.

I am opposed to this anyhow, but it will only get much, much worse as the bloat grows.

That is a problem of implementation, not one of the action itself.

Pathfinder material released in those big books like APG and B2 are in the SRD. Referencing a page number in a book is dumb, but they could reference the material and it could be taken from the internet where it exists as a matter of course.


Cartigan, you are a conundrum. Half the time you say things which completely infuriate me, the other half you have valuable insight or excellent points. Thank you for always keeping me on my toes. :)

Silver Crusade

Thomas Austin wrote:

As a DM, class bloat is much easier to deal with than feat bloat.

Agreed. i can know what a class' ability is off the top of my head, especially since many are the same and they get used over and over again. Feats.....too many and you're constanly having to look them up, cause lord forbid any of your players actually writing them down:)


WarColonel wrote:
Cartigan, you are a conundrum. Half the time you say things which completely infuriate me, the other half you have valuable insight or excellent points. Thank you for always keeping me on my toes. :)

Cartigan Filters ON!


Those of you that think the core rulebook and bestiary are the only books you should need to run a game, why are you on the forums? Why log on to the Paizo website? You have what you need already.

This "bloat" crap is stupid. Use it or don't. Just because you're terrified of some perceived overflow of content doesn't mean it's going to be put on hold indefinitely just because you want it to.

I am so enamored with Paizo's methods of introducing new material, I wouldn't give a damn if they released a Circus Performer base class in my long-awaited "Laser Swords and Starships" supplement. I can ignore that crap and get on with the material that I do want (namely the laser swords and NOT-force powers).

Grow a pair and tell your players "No, this book's classes are off-limits because I don't like them." I told my players they couldn't be wizards unless they wanted to be brain-washed automatons, and that if they chose to be sorcerers, they'd be hunted down or watched eternally by epic-level scryers who wanted to dissect them and use them for experiments. They didn't like that at first. "But it's the CORE RULEBOOK! ...! This is blasphemy!" But guess what, I'm the DM, and that's part of my setting. Now, they're fine with it.

Seeing this playtest has at least half of my players on board for an Asian inspired campaign, and I didn't even propose the idea. New rules in the books opened that up to them.

Every time a playtest has come up on this forum since I started haunting the place, there are people that come out and tell Paizo just how crazy they are for coming up with [this thing] and [that thing] doesn't fit what I think it should be. "Shut down the presses because you're wrong, Paizo." There is one sane person for every five that cry out "broken" or "Paizo's going down the crapper."

And then the book is released. A month later we're writing about advice on builds, and everything is quasi-normal. Nobody is complaining "I have TOO MANY OPTIONS! I quit!"

Someone, for the love of all that is fun and inclusive, close this thread.


WarColonel wrote:
Cartigan, you are a conundrum. Half the time you say things which completely infuriate me, the other half you have valuable insight or excellent points. Thank you for always keeping me on my toes. :)

Someday Cartigan hopes we will all believe black is white.Then his mission will have been accomplished


sirmattdusty wrote:
Agreed. i can know what a class' ability is off the top of my head, especially since many are the same and they get used over and over again. Feats.....too many and you're constanly having to look them up, cause lord forbid any of your players actually writing them down:)

Hey, my group and I always right everything down! Especially because of the excellent reason you just gave...

Anyway, feats and PrC abilities were the main complexity problem w/3.5. Pathfinder is already much easier to keep track of. Alternate class abilities or builds have mostly replaced PrC's, perfectly fine in my book. And feat/spell bloat hasn't happened yet. I am worried UM and UC might actually do this with too many feats or spells, but if they introduce different feat types, like it seems with 'martial arts' and 'grit' feats and whatnot, it should be easy to regulate how fast things enter your game.


DM Wellard wrote:
WarColonel wrote:
Cartigan, you are a conundrum. Half the time you say things which completely infuriate me, the other half you have valuable insight or excellent points. Thank you for always keeping me on my toes. :)
Someday Cartigan hopes we will all believe black is white.Then his mission will have been accomplished

If black wasn't white, then why is it gray? Well? Well?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Cartigan wrote:

That is a problem of implementation, not one of the action itself.

Pathfinder material released in those big books like APG and B2 are in the SRD. Referencing a page number in a book is dumb, but they could reference the material and it could be taken from the internet where it exists as a matter of course.

Fair enough... but then again, with online resources, do you really NEED something like a web address? Isn't it easier to, say, search one of the many online resources (either our own PRD here at paizo.com/prd, or one of the many fan-built sites) for the rule in question than it is to manually copy a website address from the pages of a print book into the window up at the top of the web browser?


Well James we know about it, but you sell to other people then just those who lurk on your site. And you have people who have been playing 3.x for 8 years who still do not know places to download that content.

How are new gamers or those who do not lurk on this site suppose to know what is out there? Sure you can find some stuff n fan sites, but assuming someone will stumble across your website and find out he can get the missing info here is bad. They will flip though the book, see it needs a book they do not own and put it down.

Some folks just do not visit the websites of companies they buy things from.


James Jacobs wrote:
Cartigan wrote:

That is a problem of implementation, not one of the action itself.

Pathfinder material released in those big books like APG and B2 are in the SRD. Referencing a page number in a book is dumb, but they could reference the material and it could be taken from the internet where it exists as a matter of course.

Fair enough... but then again, with online resources, do you really NEED something like a web address? Isn't it easier to, say, search one of the many online resources (either our own PRD here at paizo.com/prd, or one of the many fan-built sites) for the rule in question than it is to manually copy a website address from the pages of a print book into the window up at the top of the web browser?

I will admit I was making the statement in ignorance and may have improperly imagined the methodology used; in which case I withdraw what I said in regards to that - though the objection to the objection stands. There is obviously no need to include an URL at every, or any, location. I imagine a note would be somewhere that all out-referenced material can also be found at paizo.com/prd. And if it isn't, it really should.


Is it just me or does it seem like James is always lurking on the boards?
::Checks over shoulder::
I'm pretty sure the Ninja class was specifically created to stat out James as a PC. He S.A.'s a thread with his +3 Dagger of "Oh, I get it" and ::poof:: vanishes.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Foghammer wrote:
Those of you that think the core rulebook and bestiary are the only books you should need to run a game, why are you on the forums? Why log on to the Paizo website? You have what you need already.

There's this thing called 'community' you may have heard of...


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

My $00.02:

'Class bloat' and 'rules bloat' are nigh meaningless terms. There is no such thing as an actively supported RPG which doesn't present new rules and mechanics in virtually every sourcebook they publish. And if it's a class-based system, new classes or variations on existing classes will be common among those new mechanics. And I love that. More options are great.

The real problem with this is not the so-called 'bloat' of mechanics. Rather, it is worries of balance, and making sure the new rules are supported going forward. So all I ask of Paizo is to maintain their standards of quality--playtest your new mechanics, as you have done an excellent job at so far. And expand on what has come before as much, if not more than introducing completely new things.

Really, keep doing what you've been doing: bring great ideas to life!


Heymitch wrote:
Tom S 820 wrote:
Well let me corect you it been 1 year and 5 month to date since path core book came out. Also it will be 2 year on nose when Advance combat guild come out. Core book came out at Gen con 2009 and by Gen con 2011 there will be 21 base class.

I think it's kind of fuzzy math. 11 of those classes were the very same base classes that existed in 3.5 (albeit re-imagined). It's not like they would have had a playable game if Paizo chose not to include those in the Core Rulebook, and they're certainly not new.

After the initial 11 classes that made the game a playable game, WotC produced 41 more in 5 years for 3.5 (about 8 a year). Paizo produced 10 more in two years (more like 7 more, plus three fleshed out archetypes that are being referred to on the boards as base classes), and they've said that they have no immediate plans for additional base classes.

If Paizo continued to produce new base classes at the rate of 5 a year, then I think that there would be some cause for concern regarding class bloat. I think that's unlikely, though. In reality, in the year and a half(?) between the APG and Ultimate Combat, Paizo has produced one new base class (Magus), plus a Fighter archetype (Gunslinger), Rogue archetype (Ninja), and Cavalier archetype (Samurai). I call them archetypes, and not alternate classes, because I'm afraid that the word "class" is setting some people off unnecessarily.

When we talk about the APG, we generally refer to six new base classes, not seven, because we recognize that the Antipaladin isn't a base class. It's an alternate class, which is essentially a fleshed out archetype. They could have listed the Antipaladin in archetype format, and it would still be the very same class. It's the same with these three new alternate classes.

Sorry for the ramble. Just my two cents...

Well I counted same for Wotc as did for Pathfinder count 11 base or not up to you. And I did not count the anti-pal and Palidian as 2 only as one class.

If you take 41 divde by 8 that 5.1.25 per year for WoTC
If take 10 and / it by 2 the 5 for Pathfinder.
And yes it / by 2 years not 3. 2009 Core Book thourgh 2011 August.
If you realy what mees with the #s 10 / 1 year cause it August 2010 though August 2011. Which realy make bloat side point. I want more class, Feat, Traits, spell, Monster, Items I am smart enough to not use want I do not like. I may not by it all But the more you put out more chosee I have to by what I like.


Tom S 820 wrote:

[That is 21 Classes in roughly 2 years. These folks make money by selling us ideas that there job. That roughly 10.5 per year

WoTC did 52 in 5 years roughly 10.4 per year.

Let me correct you on this.

Well let me corect you it been 1 year and 5 month to date since path core book came out. Also it will be 2 year on nose when Advance combat guild come out. Core book came out at Gen con 2009 and by Gen con 2011 there will be 21 base class.

Ok are people actually going to count the core classes towards class bloat? So in order to reduce class bloat, let's simply cut the fighter, cleric, bard, monk, rogue, and wizard. It seems that the alchemist, antipaladin, oracle, and cavalier are pretty unnecessary too. Just for kicks and giggles, let's cut the ninja and samurai as well. There we go that's only 10 classes!


Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
erik542 wrote:
Tom S 820 wrote:

[That is 21 Classes in roughly 2 years. These folks make money by selling us ideas that there job. That roughly 10.5 per year

WoTC did 52 in 5 years roughly 10.4 per year.

Let me correct you on this.

Well let me corect you it been 1 year and 5 month to date since path core book came out. Also it will be 2 year on nose when Advance combat guild come out. Core book came out at Gen con 2009 and by Gen con 2011 there will be 21 base class.

And in the same time period for 3.5 WotC had added 18 new base classes and several variant classes. Paizo is at 6 base and one alternate (and however you want to count archetypes), with 1 more base class coming and 3 alternates. I know for a fact WotC added at least 3 more base classes, and possible more in the first 8 months of their second complete year of 3.5.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber
Cartigan wrote:
I will admit I was making the statement in ignorance and may have improperly imagined the methodology used; in which case I withdraw what I said in regards to that - though the objection to the objection stands. There is obviously no need to include an URL at every, or any, location. I imagine a note would be somewhere that all out-referenced material can also be found at paizo.com/prd. And if it isn't, it really should.
Pathfinder 41, Page 2 wrote:
This product makes use of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook, Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Advanced Player's Guide, Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary, and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary 2. These rules can be found online as part of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Reference Document at paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd.


deinol wrote:
Cartigan wrote:
I will admit I was making the statement in ignorance and may have improperly imagined the methodology used; in which case I withdraw what I said in regards to that - though the objection to the objection stands. There is obviously no need to include an URL at every, or any, location. I imagine a note would be somewhere that all out-referenced material can also be found at paizo.com/prd. And if it isn't, it really should.
Pathfinder 41, Page 2 wrote:
This product makes use of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook, Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Advanced Player's Guide, Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary, and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary 2. These rules can be found online as part of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Reference Document at paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd.

Fair enough, but if they are referencing something outside the book, they should probably make it clear (where applicable) that it can be found on the PRD - you know for the vast majority of people who don't read stuff like what you quoted.


@Cartigan and seekerofshadowlight: I think you haven't quite accepted the new model that they are working under. The original model was that the RPG was meant to push the APs, modules, etc. That model has changed to the new model, where those things push the RPG. So it is not in their interest to say, Witch (go to prd to get rules for it). Instead they want people purchasing the AP to be motivated to go and purchase the book with the class that they are using in the AP. It is basically "product placement".


If u guys really want to be fair and see who bloated more, count the prestige classes too. Now THAT count I would like to see.


pres man wrote:
@Cartigan and seekerofshadowlight: I think you haven't quite accepted the new model that they are working under. The original model was that the RPG was meant to push the APs, modules, etc. That model has changed to the new model, where those things push the RPG. So it is not in their interest to say, Witch (go to prd to get rules for it). Instead they want people purchasing the AP to be motivated to go and purchase the book with the class that they are using in the AP. It is basically "product placement".

1) That has nothing to do what I was saying Sure, they may want people to buy the books but if they don't have the books but do have the AP, then it is important to know they can go to the PRD to find rules that don't exist in the AP. In fact, that is important for Paizo too because people aren't going to keep buying APs if they have to buy other books to use them, no matter how much Paizo wants them to buy those books - people will just stop buying EITHER.

2) Paizo is going to have to deal with that genie eventually. By making most everything, until now, part of the PRD, people don't need to buy the books. Paizo will either keep accepting that in hopes of encouraging good will and getting people to buy APs or they are going to have to reconcile and deal with what they are doing right now in the future.


Xum wrote:
If u guys really want to be fair and see who bloated more, count the prestige classes too. Now THAT count I would like to see.

Does anyone here have a computer powerful enough to do all the calculations needed to figure out how many prestige classes were in 3.5?


Jason Ellis 350 wrote:
Xum wrote:
If u guys really want to be fair and see who bloated more, count the prestige classes too. Now THAT count I would like to see.
Does anyone here have a computer powerful enough to do all the calculations needed to figure out how many prestige classes were in 3.5?

Yes, they've been making spreadsheet programs for 20 years.


Cartigan wrote:
es, they've been making spreadsheet programs for 20 years.

Sarcasm is lost in print <sigh>


Jason Ellis 350 wrote:
Cartigan wrote:
es, they've been making spreadsheet programs for 20 years.
Sarcasm is lost in print <sigh>

I agree.


Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Xum wrote:
If u guys really want to be fair and see who bloated more, count the prestige classes too. Now THAT count I would like to see.

Yea that gets ridiculous, but does call into question how to you count archetypes.

Liberty's Edge

Cartigan wrote:
Jason Ellis 350 wrote:
Xum wrote:
If u guys really want to be fair and see who bloated more, count the prestige classes too. Now THAT count I would like to see.
Does anyone here have a computer powerful enough to do all the calculations needed to figure out how many prestige classes were in 3.5?
Yes, they've been making spreadsheet programs for 20 years.

Excel '07 only holds 1,000,000 rows, though.


Justin Franklin wrote:
Yea that gets ridiculous, but does call into question how to you count archetypes.

I'd count archetypes as something similar to the 3.5 "racial substitution levels". And I would put the Forgotten Realms "religious substitution levels" (making a paladin of Torm different than a paladin of Mystra) in the same boat. That is the closest approximation I can think of.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

The Crystalkeep Index of PrCs (taken down on WotC request, sadly) clocks on 137 pages.

That's an index, you know.


Gorbacz wrote:

The Crystalkeep Index of PrCs (taken down on WotC request, sadly) clocks on 137 pages.

That's an index, you know.

Crystalkeep also included stuff introduced in the magazines and included more details than just a list so your page count doesn't show anything.


Assuming 20 per book (some had more or less, I believe) and 10 for campaign specific supplements I can count a non-scientifically arrived estimate in the low hundreds, and that doesn't count the ones introduced by alternate rulesets such as psionics,and the book of 9 swords. I also think I might be lowballing these numbers.

I wouldn't be surprised if counting every 3.5 book made by WotC you came up with a number approaching 1000.


But seriously, I think the bloat fear comes from the ridonculous amount of crap that WotC produced during the years being they Prestige Classes (unecessary ones), feats (OP ones) and spells and whatnot ... that brought tears to my eyes, seriously...

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