Fighters, Rogues and Monks - Finding the Problem


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion


There have been numerous threads about these three classes, usually attempting some kind of fix, and they usually devolve into a debate about whether or not we really need a fix. Anecdotally, since there are way more threads about these three classes than any others, it suggests a problem. I don't want this thread to be another one about fixing it, rather I want to seek a consensus on what exactly the problem is. To this end, it would be helpful to give examples (e.g. from books, stories, films or TV) of what the class should be like, and show where it fails this stereotype.

My view is as follows:

Rogue.: With the improvement in access to cross class skills and the bundling of many skills together, Rogue has lost his monopoly on skills. Other classes can approach or exceed his skill levels, so while he can still achieve some pretty impressive skill levels he no longer feels like the go-to man for a skill solution.

More generally, Rogues cover a wide variety of archetypal heroes: swashbucklers (from Errol Flynn to Captain Jack Sparrow), Anarchists (Zorro-though he is also a swahbuckler- or V), artificers (Da Vinci from Da Vincis demons), Cat burglars (too many examples to count). All should be represented as achievable with the class, but they are not. There is no option to exchange sneak attack for a swashbuckling style, for example. (I include swashbucklers here because they rely on Dexterity, maneouvre and, crucially, light armour). There is no real option to play an artificier type Rogue (some of this could be roleplayed), there is no option for anarchists.

Fighter.: Similarly to Rogues, fighters have suffered from the general increase in feats. Most Combat styles rely on 3-4 feats, which means that in the olden days (Pre-PF) a non-Fighter had to reach level 6-9 to complete their combat style mastery, while Fighters had comleted and polished it. By this time Critical feats were becoming available that were competing with the last feat in the combat style, after that advanced Feats started coming on line, so Non-Fighters were continually playing catch-up with Fighters to be at the same basic combat level.

Now most Fighters have got their basic combat style feats by levels 3-4. Advanced Feats haven't kicked in, so the next few feats are of increasingly sub-optimal value until critical feats/Advanced Feats kick in.
Meanwhile other Martial classes have completed their required Feats levels 5-7 and are ready for critical Feats coming online at level 9. In fact from this stage on, they are pretty much able to keep up with the Fighter as most of the Feats they need for their build don't come online much faster than the speed with which they get Feats. They don't have to take in sub-optimal feats to fill in gaps while they are waiting for the next batch of decent fetas to become available. They also get several nice abilities that help them shine both in and out of combat.

Fighters are kind of the everyman hero. Most stories (whether they are from books, films, tv, traditional, or whatever) have typical examples of the fighter, battling the odds and getting lucky. Fighters often attempt heroic stunts that save the day and are most likely to "get the girl" (apologies to female players; I am generalising). They don't tend to use clever stratagems but rather bravely charge in and somehow muddle through. There is a nod to this in that Fighters favour a charge in and fight style (though other builds are possible), but there is no ability for the Fighter to pull off incredible stunts, etc. unless you use the hero point system.

Monks.: Monks suffer from a great many problems. Comparing them to a TWF Fighter (which is considered a sub-optimal build), we see that (a) They have less AC, (b) they have less hit points, (c) they have a lower to hit chance. They still do more damage when they hit, and they have some nice maneuvre options and abilities as well as good saves. However the maneuvre mechanics of pathfinder are generally weak and do not make up for their weaknesse. They should be a frontline alternative, but they are not.

Examples include any Martial arts film (from Bruce Lee to Jackie Chan), The water Margin (think Salmon leaps and days spent staring one another with combat over after one pass), Monkey (to be fair, Monkey was also an accomplished sorceror, but when he fought it was as a staff-wielding Monk. Pigsy also fought with a rake, while sandy fought with some exotic weapon).


I am of the opinion that if more higher level spells that own the combat were full round castings, the martial classes would feel more on par. If you are a spellcaster you should have to eat a sword to the face (or at least the chance of one) more often that you currently do. That would make the tactical game more interesting IMHO.

The Exchange

Ah, the Conan method: "Magic is mighty, but swords are swift."

Look, this meat has been chewed many a time. There are three ways to approach magic when you're designing a fantasy RPG: in the first, the most powerful feats of mortal magic are on par with the abilities of a highly skilled non-magician (this is the 'low magic' option). In the second, magicians are capable of reality-altering effects - therefore, all PCs are wizards and only lowly chump NPCs waste their time becoming black-belts or master thieves (this is the 'exclusive club' option). D&D (and Pathfinder after it) chose a middle road in which characters capable of great magic adventure alongside characters who will never, ever learn even the simplest spell (the 'Lord of the Rings' medium). However, the structure of the game was such that the magicians would occasionally need to be bailed out - everything from "no armor" (clerics got a pass, but back then clerics spent most of their time healing, not blasting), to "no spellcasting within sword's reach of an enemy," and even the existence of "magic resistance" (now spell resistance): all these tropes were applied to ensure that casting spells was not the end-all and be-all of victory. The skill- and weapon-oriented characters aren't expected to stand by with their hands in their pockets: they contribute, even if it's not by shattering city walls or tearing holes in time and space. All this foof about spells being powerful is accurate but rather beside the point: spells are supposed to be powerful, but they suffer limitations that help make the non-magicians into key elements as well.

I hate to use football metaphors, but here I go: the spellcasters are quarterbacks - sure, they're versatile and critical to success, but they don't go out on the field alone... for good reason.


Incidentally with rogues I have seen a lot of conversation revolve around them "not being any better at given skill than anyone else" and I think there is some "meat" to that critique. Rogues aren't "better" in the skill arena so much as they are "broad".

One fix that I have been thinking of is granting rogues a free skill focus feat every 3 levels or so (starting at 3rd, probably). That would mean they pick 6 skills over their careers to be "better" than the average person. Not sure how that would mesh with trapfinding, such as it is.


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Ok, monk has gotten a scad of fixes by the developers. But having read similar rants and complaints from the monk-o-philes, I can tell you they will never be happy until the monk can ons shot deities. I just put my fingers in my ears and start humming now.

Rogues suffer mostly from two things:
Their niche can now be filled by others classes with archetypes.
Their niche is no longer so critical due to the fact that PF adventures are no longer filled with Gygaxian traps. Still, they are a fun and very popular class.
I have suggested a minor fix for them in other posts.

Fighter? Still rocks at lower levels where most playing is done. Sure some extra skill points, and some boost so that they lose so much when not full attacking, but again, they are a very fun and popular class.

If we give these classes a huge boost, then another three will become the bottom , then another three,


Anburaid wrote:

Incidentally with rogues I have seen a lot of conversation revolve around them "not being any better at given skill than anyone else" and I think there is some "meat" to that critique. Rogues aren't "better" in the skill arena so much as they are "broad".

One fix that I have been thinking of is granting rogues a free skill focus feat every 3 levels or so (starting at 3rd, probably). That would mean they pick 6 skills over their careers to be "better" than the average person. Not sure how that would mesh with trapfinding, such as it is.

That would certainly be one solution, though I would be concerned about power creep. They still would not have a monopoly on those skills; I don't think it is possible to give them that without turning the clock back or causing serious power creep problems. That was why I was asking what people expect from their Rogues - it seems better to build towards a class that can be what people want than a class that is shackled to what it once was.


Fighters: Have literally next to nothing they can do out of combat. You either take UMD and invest WBL out of combat and start falling behind in combat, you pump into int, where you're going to be weaker in combat as a fighter, or you accept having 2 skills and be on par with the other classes (maybe a little lower) in combat)

Rogue: Low to hit, no self buffs, traps are nearly non existent and are not tpk's, horrible saves, the consolidation of skills means a party no longer needs as many to have a functional group, the fact that other classes doing everything they do better.

Take your pick, there's plenty of arguments, but I think the biggest one is that paizo seems to have tried to do away with the skill moneky as a whole, and furthermore given out stereotypical rogue things so you don't "have" to have a rogue, and left each class with something to do in and out of combat. Because of this rogue lost its skill monkey niche, but is still subpar at combat.

Monk: Are not as weak as they once were. Ultimate combat has helped them out. However, they're still on the lower rung just because they're typically front liners who need a 20 dex and 18 wis (or other way around) just to match people who wear full plate. Gold is easier to come by than high attributes, feats, and anything else associated with skills but monk is built around the idea of replace gold with high attributes. Furthermore, unarmed fighting suffers because of the horrific costs and limitations on the amulet of mighty fists (which also means because of the slot limitation that they can't get an amulet of natural armor, lowering their AC even further).

Basically, they just need too much in the way of attributes to be good at things. Their low HD means they need a solid Con, horrible AC means they need great wisdom and dex, strength (or gold here) for damage.

All in all I feel like Paizo did a slightly subtle shift in the premise of the game and these guys just never got the memo.


DrDeth wrote:

Ok, monk has gotten a scad of fixes by the developers. But having read similar rants and complaints from the monk-o-philes, I can tell you they will never be happy until the monk can ons shot deities. I just put my fingers in my ears and start humming now.

Rogues suffer mostly from two things:
Their niche can now be filled by others classes with archetypes.
Their niche is no longer so critical due to the fact that PF adventures are no longer filled with Gygaxian traps. Still, they are a fun and very popular class.
I have suggested a minor fix for them in other posts.

Fighter? Still rocks at lower levels where most playing is done. Sure some extra skill points, and some boost so that they lose so much when not full attacking, but again, they are a very fun and popular class.

If we give these classes a huge boost, then another three will become the bottom , then another three,

...Until eventually all classes are in equilibrium.


For fighters I think I would take something from Evil Lincoln and adapt it more as a class feature. Some of you might remember the Battle Adaptation feat.

I might adapt it the following way:

Battle Tactics
Fighters are adept at adopting new tactics or combat strategies in the heat of battle. At 2nd level a fighter can "borrow" a combat feat or teamwork feat that they qualify for, for a number of rounds equal to their level. Style feats and performance feats cannot be chosen as a battle tactic as they require more training to fully utilize. A fighter can use a battle tactic a number of times per day equal to his Wisdom modifier (minimum 1). A fighter can regain 1 battle tactic use per day when he scores a critical hit.

At 7th level a fighter can choose two feats to use as a battle tactic. One of these feats may be used as a prerequisite for the other. At 15th level three feats may be used as a battle tactic.


DrDeth wrote:

Rogues suffer mostly from two things:

Their niche can now be filled by others classes with archetypes.
Their niche is no longer so critical due to the fact that PF adventures are no longer filled with Gygaxian traps. Still, they are a fun and very popular class.
I have suggested a minor fix for them in other posts.

The rogue 'niche' was never just traps. It was effectively skills, finding secret doors, using magic items that only bards and primary caster could otherwise, rapid advancement.

Their niche has been completely blasted into oblivion. Rogues are no longer particularly skilled compared to a great number of the other classes at these things.


I think that you don't want to count out traps. I can't remember if haunts count as traps in terms of trapfinding-perception or trap sense, etc, but I have certainly seen some deadly haunts.

Traps, when used most effectively, don't kill the players (because that's kinda cold), but instead put them on poor footing for the next encounter. So they MIGHT actually TPK groups, just not directly.


DrDeth wrote:
Ok, monk has gotten a scad of fixes by the developers.

If by " a scad of fixes" you mean "A couple of FAQS explaining that things worked exactly how people figured they worked (and one reversion of a nerf), one item lowered in price to merely 'too expensive' rather than 'ruinously expensive' and a single actual buff" then sure.

DrDeth wrote:
But having read similar rants and complaints from the monk-o-philes, I can tell you they will never be happy until the monk can ons shot deities. I just put my fingers in my ears and start humming now.

Yes, I understand that it would be quite hard to have proper reading comprehension if you decided to ignore what other posters say. But that's not a fault with the other posters, just so we're clear.


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For monks I would do a few things (though I don't think monks are that terribly off, they are just hard to optimize so optimizers hate them). I would reverse their BAB functionality. Grant them a full BAB and d10 HP, but say that when not using monk weapons, they use a 3/4s BAB (making some feats unusable when they do, based on BAB prereqs). That would hopefully free them up to move and attack at full BAB and stand toe to toe with fighters at the front line.

I would change Maneuver Training to only make AoO from attempting maneuvers only happen when the maneuver fails. This would hopefully incentivize maneuvers even when you don't have improved/greater feats.

For handling their damage issues I would allow monks to choose to increase their unarmed crit chance every 4 levels in place of increasing their damage dice. Since monks get A LOT of attacks, that would hopefully allow them to push up their damage through flat bonuses such as power attack. I am not sure, though, if this would be too much of a boost. I think part of the appearance of their weak damage is that they have lots of attacks but often a not so great hit chance. So rolling to miss so much gives the perception that they are weak, when they might actually be doing ok over time. More crits would hopefully counter that image.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Thomas Long 175 wrote:
Fighters: Have literally next to nothing they can do out of combat. You either take UMD and invest WBL out of combat and start falling behind in combat, you pump into int, where you're going to be weaker in combat as a fighter, or you accept having 2 skills and be on par with the other classes (maybe a little lower) in combat)

<Yawn> This argument again? "How can this weakling fighter survive with only a 17 Str instead of an 18 Str at 1st level? Woe and lamentation..." [/sarcasm]

Human, 15-Point buy: 17 Str (7 points for 15 +2 race), 14 Dex (5 points), 12 Con (2 points), 13 Int (3 points), 10 Wis (0 points), 8 Cha (-2 points); you could even go with 12 Wis, 7 Cha if you feel the need for an extra +1 on Will saves in addition to taking Iron Will at some point. Take the Fast Learner feat (Advanced Race Guide) and Toughness (plus whatever fighter bonus feat you want, probably Power Attack); with favored class bonuses, the Skilled racial trait, and ability scores, you effectively gain +3 hp and +3 Skill Ranks per level.

Sucks to be such a horrible combatant for those extra skill ranks... [/more sarcasm] In other words, if you focus all your resources to exclusively develop the character's combat abilities, don't complain that you didn't develop the out-of-combat abilities.


Dragonchess Player wrote:
Thomas Long 175 wrote:
Fighters: Have literally next to nothing they can do out of combat. You either take UMD and invest WBL out of combat and start falling behind in combat, you pump into int, where you're going to be weaker in combat as a fighter, or you accept having 2 skills and be on par with the other classes (maybe a little lower) in combat)

<Yawn> This argument again? "How can this weakling fighter survive with only a 17 Str instead of an 18 Str at 1st level? Woe and lamentation..." [/sarcasm]

Human, 15-Point buy: 17 Str (7 points for 15 +2 race), 14 Dex (5 points), 12 Con (2 points), 13 Int (3 points), 10 Wis (0 points), 8 Cha (-2 points); you could even go with 12 Wis, 7 Cha if you feel the need for an extra +1 on Will saves in addition to taking Iron Will at some point. Take the Fast Learner feat (Advanced Race Guide) and Toughness; with favored class bonuses, the Skilled racial trait, and ability scores, you effectively gain +3 hp and +3 Skill Ranks per level.

Sucks to be such a horrible combatant for those extra skill ranks...

Congratulations, you still have a horrible will save, and had to spend your favored class bonus, a racial trait, a feat and 3 of your point buy in order to be just above the equal of the barbarian in skills and less than his equal in combat. Even your fort saves are going to be lower than most martials.

Thanks for proving me right. You took 2 feats, a racial trait, a favored class bonus, and some point buy and you're about the equivalent of other people out of combat and weaker than them in combat.

Edit: BTW even if you didn't spend like that you'd be on the lower tier of full BAB. And the yawn wasn't rude at all. Flagged.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Thomas Long 175 wrote:
Dragonchess Player wrote:
Thomas Long 175 wrote:
Fighters: Have literally next to nothing they can do out of combat. You either take UMD and invest WBL out of combat and start falling behind in combat, you pump into int, where you're going to be weaker in combat as a fighter, or you accept having 2 skills and be on par with the other classes (maybe a little lower) in combat)

<Yawn> This argument again? "How can this weakling fighter survive with only a 17 Str instead of an 18 Str at 1st level? Woe and lamentation..." [/sarcasm]

Human, 15-Point buy: 17 Str (7 points for 15 +2 race), 14 Dex (5 points), 12 Con (2 points), 13 Int (3 points), 10 Wis (0 points), 8 Cha (-2 points); you could even go with 12 Wis, 7 Cha if you feel the need for an extra +1 on Will saves in addition to taking Iron Will at some point. Take the Fast Learner feat (Advanced Race Guide) and Toughness; with favored class bonuses, the Skilled racial trait, and ability scores, you effectively gain +3 hp and +3 Skill Ranks per level.

Sucks to be such a horrible combatant for those extra skill ranks...

Congratulations, you still have a horrible will save, and had to spend your favored class bonus, a racial trait, a feat and 3 of your point buy in order to be just above the equal of the barbarian in skills and less than his equal in combat. Even your fort saves are going to be lower than most martials.

Thanks for proving me right. You took 2 feats, a racial trait, a favored class bonus, and some point buy and you're about the equivalent of other people out of combat and weaker than them in combat.

Edit: BTW even if you didn't spend like that you'd be on the lower tier of full BAB. And the yawn wasn't rude at all. Flagged.

Well, if your expectation is that a fighter needs a 20 Str at 1st level with 15-Point buy at 1st level to be "good" or that a 5% probability difference makes a save "horrible" (you did read the bit about Iron Will, didn't you?), you're arguing from a completely different set of assumptions. Instead of just complaining, why don't you post what you consider an "acceptable" 15-Point buy distribution for a 1st level fighter for comparison?

As for the flag, your argument isn't new. It's something that I've seen many times over the years. Flagging for mild snark? OK, whatever...


Meanwhile, the Human Ranger with 7 Int who uses his FCB for HP still gets just as many skill points per level than you do.


Dragonchess Player wrote:
Well, if your expectation is that a fighter needs a 20 Str at 1st level with 15-Point buy at 1st level to be "good" or that a 5% probability difference makes a save "horrible" (you did read the bit about Iron Will, didn't you?), you're arguing from a completely different set of assumptions. Instead of just complaining, why don't you post what you consider an "acceptable" 15-Point buy distribution for a 1st level fighter for comparison?

If you want to do this, then be polite to the OP and take it out of forum with me. He already said he didn't want this in here.

BTW Will save, 6 Base +1 trait +2 feat + 5 resistance + 4 wisdom (after headband). Congratulations you have an 18 Will save after items, traits, and feats and investing in it at level 1. You're still at a terrible will save. That is downright abysmal for a level 20. A Barbarian with just superstition is at 13, and with the cloak and headband is up to 21 with no pointbuy or trait investment. Proper weaponry will kick it to 24.

Are we even going to bother with a paladin, who is immune to a lot of will save effects and has great saves to boot?

P.S. You're still being rude, so I don't feel like it. Go "complain" on your own. Flagged again.


Have to agree with Thomas. Nobody has ever denied that with enough character resources, a Fighter can get passable skills. The problem is that it takes a substantial investment of resources just to bring him up to the level of any other martial class. Intelligence, favored class bonus, feats, and traits to get more class skills are all using up character resources that any other martial can put to other uses.


I think the rogue problem isn't that rogues lost their skill monopoly, it's that it revealed the fundamental problem which was the rogue's main asset was it's skill monopoly. The fighter actually has a similar problem, that their main asset is their ability to hit things (which I think is why 4+int skill points per level is a necessity for fighters), but you spend a lot more time fighting things than you do using skills (by which, I mean, skill rolls are usually one-and-done, as I've seen them played; usually 1 diplomacy check when trying to convince the captain of the guard to let you visit the prisoner, even if the roleplay of the conversation took longer. Combats take much longer, since you're rolling every attack, and then damage on that attack, and the like). As such, Fighters spend more time playing to their niche than rogues do, but it's still the same problem, conceptually speaking.

This is why I think the rogue needs, as some people have suggested in other threads, something like a "guile pool" which can make them able to do things non-rogues can't, both in and out of combat. Right now, there's very little reason to play a rogue ahead of a vivisectionist alchemist, or an archaeologist bard.

The fighter definitively needs more skills. The other classes which have 2+Int skills are Paladin, Cleric, Wizard, Sorcerer, Magus, Summoner and Witch. Wizard, Magus and Witch all rely on int, so they will have more skills. Clerics are full prepared casters, with the plenty of utility spells on their list, so they have more out of combat versatility than just skills. Summoners have eidolons, which gain 4 skills, and the summoner can use bond senses to make them good scouts and sorcerers are spontaneous casters, which means they have less versatility with utility spells than clerics, but they still can learn the same caliber of Out of combat spells as the Wizard. Paladins are almost as bad in terms of this, but detect evil and spells (even only 4 levels of spells) mitigate it.

But besides just skills, the feats that a fighter gets are useful, but I find that by the time I get to the point that I get enough feats to make my fighter able to do cool battlefield control stuff with some of the feat trees, casters are getting to the point where they begin to overshadow fighters a lot. I don't want to turn this into a "mundanes suck, casters are OP thing" but if feats are a fighter's main features, feats don't match up. The minimum a fighter can get a cool feat like Step-up-and-Strike, which requires two other feats prior. But honestly, this is much less an issue than the skills thing.

As for monks, it's mostly that monks are designed to be mobile fighters, but the system is designed for full attacking, and monks even more so with flurry of blows. The MAD issue is second to this. Even with good stats, monks are underpowered. It's surely an issue, but in my eyes, monks shouldn't be able to go toe to toe with a heavily armed and armored fighter, but should be able to be mobile, attacking multiple foes in a round, or use stunning fist to inflict a condition on the Wizard, to make them an easy target for the Fighter, before tying up the enemy Fighter.


Fighter needs thematic out-of-combat utility so they can dedicate feats to combat like other martials. Solved by giving non-combat feats and extra skill ranks, plus enemy-knowledge to fit the Sun Tzu fanboy theme.

Fighter:

  • 4 skill ranks/level. Add Knowledge (History) and Knowledge (Geography) as class skills.
  • +1/2 Fighter level on all knowledge checks to identify an enemy and/or their abilities.
  • Gain Bonus Feat at levels 3, 6, 9, 12, 15 and 18. Select from among [Acrobatic, Alertness, Animal Affinity, Athletic, Deceitful, Endurance, Fleet, Iron Will, Lightning Reflexes, Magical Aptitude, Persuasive, Run, Self-Sufficient, Skill Focus, Stealthy]


Monk needs to properly reflect combat role, and be able to synergize speed & flurry abilities. Gave full BAB, the ability to pounce by using Ki, and the ability to recover Ki throughout the day. Also options for better flurry-friendly weapons.
Monk:

  • Full Base Attack.
  • Flurry with any weapon that the monk has proficiency in, including weapon proficiencies acquired through feats or race (but not other classes).
  • Spend 2 Ki as part of a charge action to perform a pounce maneuver.
    Recover all Ki in 1 hour of meditation, as many times per day equal to 1+CON bonus


Rogue is lacking combat style befitting the theme. Also want to offset hidden easter egg of "must pick TWF to be competitive", so gave Murderous Strike feature.
Rogue:

  • Combat Style - At level 4, select a combat style, and one feat from the list for that style. At levels 10 and 16, get another feat from the same list. The Rogue need not take Combat Expertise as a prerequisite. When using any of these feats and they depend upon CMB or attack rolls, treat Rogue levels as Warrior levels for the Base Attack portion when calculating CMB:
    .1. Cheater [Catch Off-Guard, Improved Dirty Trick, Greater Dirty Trick, Improved Trip, Greater Trip]
    .2. Thief [Improved Disarm, Greater Disarm, Improved Steal, Greater Steal, Skill Focus - Sleight of Hand]
    .3. Thug [Improved Unarmed Strike, Improved Grapple, Stunning Fist, Intimidating Prowess, Skill Focus - Intimidate]
    .4. Coward [Dodge, Mobility, Run, Skill Focus - Bluff, Fleet]
    .5. Showoff [Antagonize, Dazzling Display, Skill Focus - Intimidate, Shatter Defenses, Weapon Focus]
    .6. Killer [Improved Initiative, Quickdraw, Skill Focus - Stealth, Improved Feint, Greater Feint]
  • Murderous Strike - at level 6, the Rogue’s Sneak attack dice are doubled on a standard attack action.


Anburaid wrote:
So rolling to miss so much gives the perception that they are weak, when they might actually be doing ok over time. More crits would hopefully counter that image.

Agreed. I don't mind being a Dex/Wis Monk at all - Good AC among other things, and with Agile enchant on the Amulet of Mighty Fists it really helps in static damage. The only thing I really have an issue with, is hitting. Other than that, I truly love how the Monk is built. He's a squirrelly little dude!


Malignor wrote:


Monk needs to properly reflect combat role, and be able to synergize speed & flurry abilities. Gave full BAB, the ability to pounce by using Ki, and the ability to recover Ki throughout the day. Also options for better flurry-friendly weapons.
** spoiler omitted **

If they did give full BAB, chances are Flurry would scale and still be better. At 20 their BAB is +15/+10/+5. Flurry's is +18/+18/+13/+13/+8/+8/+3. If it was scaled, we would be at +23/+23/+16/+16/+11/+11/+6 which would be absolutely perfect!:)

Flurry is a hassle to acquire sometimes, but not everyone can get off a full round attack every round anyways. Trip, Stand Still, and Stunning Fist are great options to keep it consistent(assuming one hits). It kind of feels like a necessity though. Also depending on what Style a Monk acquires, Panther and Snake could plausibly allow a CMB to replace the AoO depending on the reasoning with the DM.


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Some interesting points; I'll contribute a few things here.

First and foremost, Monk and Paladin have been my favorite classes since AD&D, and I really couldn't care less about the mechanics or power within. I absolutely love the discipline approach - through faith or dedication. That being said, after playing all the previous editions of Monk, I find Pathfinder's actually incredibly overwhelming and powerful. I've never been happier. I mean, 2d10 damage, rogue's attack bonus, teleportation, elemental damage on your fists - or stunning... and that's not even including the strength of the dual-wielding flurry. I've never had complaints here, except that my CMD is always ridiculously high. Anyway, my point is - I don't feel its broken from my perspective, but thats all we're really talking about here isn't it? Perspective.

As far as Rogue, with the simple task of flanking, you're doing a Fireball on hit with no save - nuff said, tactically. In fact, more often than not, Rogues take the tactics out of a combat scene when its just a hack-n-slash fest. Flanking - death. But you're absolutely right in the skill department, they do need a way to hammer home their skill expertise. Then again, taking Skill Focus every even level instead of a nifty little perk can easily fix this, if that's your concern. Everything should be a trade of sacrifice and gain. Then again, lots of ways to be immune to sneak attack...

Fighter... is fighter heh. Perspective strikes again here. From my perspective, if you're running a hack and slash game where swing sword :: kill monster techniques thrive in your campaign, fighter will reign supreme as they should. However, our campaigns tend to be much more story-driven with combat using very carefully designed fields of combat where turning over an oil barrel or a table is more important than 1d8+q damage. Fighters in my campaigns do tend to have little diversity and end up multi-classing habitually. Because of multi-classing, fighter has pretty much become the way to 'combatify' your character who otherwise wouldn't be =/


Ndar wrote:

Anyway, my point is - I don't feel its broken from my perspective, but thats all we're really talking about here isn't it? Perspective.

The world is certainly all about perspective. :)

Of course when those perspectives pile up to great numbers... they could possibly be proving a valid point.


Kazumetsa wrote:

The world is certainly all about perspective. :)

Of course when those perspectives pile up to great numbers... they could possibly be proving a valid point.

Oh I'm not saying anyone's complaints are invalid - if it breaks your fun, then it needs be fixed for you. Its all a game, afterall, and what is it if not fun? Was merely my observation and lack of needing it changed. If people wanted to make it yet stronger, in my perspective, I'm surely not going to complain, though others might haha.


Kazumetsa wrote:
Ndar wrote:

Anyway, my point is - I don't feel its broken from my perspective, but thats all we're really talking about here isn't it? Perspective.

The world is certainly all about perspective. :)

Of course when those perspectives pile up to great numbers... they could possibly be proving a valid point.

Perspective is what this thread is all about. Don't really want solutions at this stage - want perspective on (1) What is wrong with said classes and (2) Conceptually, what should these classes be?

Does anyone have any conceptions on what these classes should be?


I think that the problem, at its core, is not with the classes but rather with the monsters.

Ex.: If the monster at hight CR, very often, can fly then the classes with no way of flying whatsoever are behind those classes that can fly by default.

In my opinion, there ought to be monsters so resistant to magic that the smart thing to do -if you are playing the caster- is to buff the fighter/barbarian/insert-mundane-damage-dealing-here and let him/her do the killing.

That left me thinking, there ought to be monsters weak to rogues as well! And what have rogues that the others classes don't? Sneak attack! (Well, there are archetypes... but you get my meaning)

Why there are no monsters resistant to magic, and resistant to physical damage (for example reducing the damage from those sources to just a single point of damage) except the sneak damage (they receive the whole number from the damage of a sneak attack)?

I imagine a monster covered in thick fur or hard scales all over its body and maybe tiny eyes open at some points in the body of that thing... and only the deadly accuracy, a.k.a. sneak attack, of the rogue can hurt it effectively.

I imagine an eldritch abomination that can only be hurt where all the tentacles join together in which supposedly is its mouth, and only... well, you, guys, get my point.

Regarding monsters resistant to physical damage and weak to magic we're already covered. But we need other kind of monsters that can offer other scenarios.


Actually many monsters have wonderful saves and spell resistance, which doesn't hurt them nearly as much as it hurts PC's.

As for damage reduction, that does exist, though taking all damage that isn't sneak attack to a single point is horribly extreme.

It might not be a bad idea to have monsters with DR/Precision though.


Kazumetsa wrote:
Malignor wrote:


Monk needs to properly reflect combat role, and be able to synergize speed & flurry abilities. Gave full BAB, the ability to pounce by using Ki, and the ability to recover Ki throughout the day. Also options for better flurry-friendly weapons.
** spoiler omitted **

If they did give full BAB, chances are Flurry would scale and still be better. At 20 their BAB is +15/+10/+5. Flurry's is +18/+18/+13/+13/+8/+8/+3. If it was scaled, we would be at +23/+23/+16/+16/+11/+11/+6 which would be absolutely perfect!:)

Flurry is a hassle to acquire sometimes, but not everyone can get off a full round attack every round anyways. Trip, Stand Still, and Stunning Fist are great options to keep it consistent(assuming one hits). It kind of feels like a necessity though. Also depending on what Style a Monk acquires, Panther and Snake could plausibly allow a CMB to replace the AoO depending on the reasoning with the DM.

(bolded part is mine)

Nope, they already get full BAB on flurry. They will keep the same bonuses, but also get a good bonus when they don't flurry (for example when they move + attack, or on opportunity attack).

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