Average PFS combat duration?


Pathfinder Society

Shadow Lodge

For reference/spell selection, is there any rough estimate of how long PFS fights last? I'm building my first Combat class (and first PFS agent) with access to L3 arcane buffs, and in choosing these buffs, I'm wondering whether great ones like Haste or Displacemend (duration: 1 rd/level) are worth it when you have only moderate caster levels (7 CL). These, as opposed to Heroism (10 min/level) and Monstrous Physique (1 min/level).

(With Monstrous Physique --> Popobala, you get +2 Str, +2 AC, Darkvision 60, Fly 30 Average, Climb 30)

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Maps Subscriber
Khashir El'eth wrote:

For reference/spell selection, is there any rough estimate of how long PFS fights last? I'm building my first Combat class (and first PFS agent) with access to L3 arcane buffs, and in choosing these buffs, I'm wondering whether great ones like Haste or Displacemend (duration: 1 rd/level) are worth it when you have only moderate caster levels (7 CL). These, as opposed to Heroism (10 min/level) and Monstrous Physique (1 min/level).

(With Monstrous Physique --> Popobala, you get +2 Str, +2 AC, Darkvision 60, Fly 30 Average, Climb 30)

Depends on table composition. Anywhere from sub-round to out-of-ammo.

Worry about level 5+ when you get a feel for the rhythm of levels 1-3.

It's a game where organic character growth is OK.

Dark Archive

On average a PFS fight is "over" in 1-4 rounds (there are some occasional exceptions in which the opponent has options that can allow him to win an extended battle and thus prolong it). That being said my longest battle to date was 20+ rounds with only 2 PCs still being alive at the end (however after some expensive raises we could continue the scenario).

You pretty much have 1 round for buffing in the big fights if you spend more you will have missed half the fight (or maybe even all of it), so ensure you only have 1 required buff spell and prebuff everything else (especially at higher tier in which the monsters can reliably hit the party and the only way to survive is to kill the monsters in 1-2 rounds)

Shadow Lodge

Awesome, thank you guys :)


Haste is the most useful spell in the game.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

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Funky Badger wrote:
Haste is the most useful spell in the game.

Don't you mean cure light wounds? :D


Jiggy wrote:
Funky Badger wrote:
Haste is the most useful spell in the game.
Don't you mean cure light wounds? :D

Second most useful... :-)

Shadow Lodge

Funky Badger wrote:
Haste is the most useful spell in the game.

Hahaha, possibly, although the build I have in mind (Snake Fang: whenever an opponent misses you, make an attack of opportunity) has better synergy with Displacement.

Any dedicated caster worth his salt (especially non-spontaneous) would obviously grab it, so, I'm hoping they do. Due to my lower caster level, it would be less effective than others (although I'd still have enough levels to buff the entire party).

Unless we have a catastrophically epic coordination problem, where everyone stops grabbing Haste because they expect everyone else to grab it.


Khashir El'eth wrote:

Hahaha, possibly, although the build I have in mind (Snake Fang: whenever an opponent misses you, make an attack of opportunity) has better synergy with Displacement.

Got to be 9th level for Snake Fang - barring Master-of-Many-Styles cheese flannage...

...Mirror Image would work well for that though, and leave you another slot for haste or fly...

Shadow Lodge

Funky Badger wrote:
Khashir El'eth wrote:

Hahaha, possibly, although the build I have in mind (Snake Fang: whenever an opponent misses you, make an attack of opportunity) has better synergy with Displacement.

Got to be 9th level for Snake Fang - barring Master-of-Many-Styles cheese flannage...

...Mirror Image would work well for that though, and leave you another slot for haste or fly...

Yeah, it's MoMS (cheese flannage?)

I asked in the rules forum, apparently mirror image doesn't work because the enemy wasn't attacking me, he was attacking an image of me (so, he didn't 'miss me'). That seems reasonable given the way images work: if the guy hits my AC, but the %d says he hit an image, then it was because he was attacking the image in the first place (and not me). It would be like rolling a %d to determine which of two creatures you attack (a party member or myself), and hitting the party member. Snake Fang wouldn't trigger there.

Then again, I just happen to agree with their unofficial interpretation, maybe official rules differently.

2/5

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I would hazard to say an "average" encounter is 2-3 rounds if the party is well-preppared. That said, 1 round is not totally uncommon, nor are ones in the 5-8 range if the encounter is particularly tough. Rarely have I seen encounters go beyond 8 rounds and if they do, well, it usually means the PCs are getting the worst end of it.

Silver Crusade

If it isn't over within 4-5 rounds, its gonna get ugly for the PCs. Now, mind you, if you play in specials or modules, that time estimate can go waaaaay up. Heroism is always *always* a good buff. +2 to hit, saves, and skills? That's a little something for everyone, and a barbarian or monk will love you for that.


Khashir El'eth wrote:
Funky Badger wrote:


I asked in the rules forum, apparently mirror image doesn't work because the enemy wasn't attacking me, he was attacking an image of me (so, he didn't 'miss me'). That seems reasonable given the way images work: if the guy hits my AC, but the %d says he hit an image, then it was because he was attacking the image in the first place (and not me). It would be like rolling a %d to determine which of two creatures you attack (a party member or myself), and hitting the party member. Snake Fang wouldn't trigger there.

Cheese Flan. http://www.kingstone-high.hereford.sch.uk/page_viewer.asp?page=Cheese+Flan& amp;pid=109

You could use the same argument against Displacement, I suppose. I'd let it work in a game I was running. But then I wouldn't stop sneering at a MOMS... ;-)

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