Revised Investigator Discussion


Class Discussion

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Designer

Danbala wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:


As for the your idea of stacking, to be honest it may be too much bookkeeping, and it doesn't give the investigator the flexibility that it needs.

Could the extra damage effect be reliant on a successful knowledge check? Perhaps the amount of damage could be based on your degree of success?

You know, we did think about that, but decided against it because another roll in combat is well, slow and clunky.


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cuatroespada wrote:
Javaed wrote:
while the offered weapons are good thematic choices, you're somewhat limited in good options.
how exactly are these thematic choices? the quintessential investigator doesn't have a particular weapon (other than maybe hand-to-hand combat because you always have your body on you)... also, agility and dexterity are two different things (the former is essentially strength since it's gross motor), but both could be used to fight smarter rather than harder. in fact, since you're so smart, you should know you're probably going to be more combat effective by using PA and a two-hander... like a twinkie rogue... like a twinkie rogue... (edit: sorry, sometimes i accidentally channel morgan freeman.)

You will be more deadly with a 2-Hander, but you won't be terrible with a one handed weapon or dual wielding. As for how the current weapon options are thematic?

I've read a ton of P.I. fiction, and really the only weapons missing from the list are guns, baked in hand-to-hand combat and the occasional use of a longer sword. Holmes tended to use a lot of guns, and I think he made use of a sap or truncheon. Garret (from Glen Cook's book series) makes use of a sap or club most often, but occasionally pulls out a crossbow or a sword. Bunches of "Steam Punk" novels bring out cane-swords or rapiers, along with crossbows and guns. Oh, and the combat parasol. Might want to add that as a new exotic weapon Paizo devs.

If we go to the more magical end of things we've got Constantine, Dresden and even Sandman-Slim. They tend to make a greater use of magic obviously, but when they mix it up we see hand-to-hand combat, saps, improvised weapons and a ton of guns.

Really what the class needs to round itself out are a gun using archetype and an unarmed fighting archetype along with the ability to use ranged weapons and studied combat. I'd like a couple more weapons added from the get go just to add some variety to class during the early levels.


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Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Danbala wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:


As for the your idea of stacking, to be honest it may be too much bookkeeping, and it doesn't give the investigator the flexibility that it needs.

Could the extra damage effect be reliant on a successful knowledge check? Perhaps the amount of damage could be based on your degree of success?

You know, we did think about that, but decided against it because another roll in combat is well, slow and clunky.

A single roll wouldn't add that much overhead. If you make it part of the standard action to study the target, then you're already pausing for a few moments for the Investigator to declare that action; he can easily roll right then and that can be the value used for the remainder of SC's duration.


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Danbala wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:


As for the your idea of stacking, to be honest it may be too much bookkeeping, and it doesn't give the investigator the flexibility that it needs.

Could the extra damage effect be reliant on a successful knowledge check? Perhaps the amount of damage could be based on your degree of success?

You know, we did think about that, but decided against it because another roll in combat is well, slow and clunky.

That what I was thinking last night too, but just to play Devil's advocate, what if the knowledge check happened at the same step as a Concentration Check roll or a Critical Confirmation roll? You're only adding a single extra D20 (and possibly a D6/D8) and was part of your Studied Strike mechanic. That's only one extra roll every 2-4 rounds, and would wind up being fewer extra rolls than my Magus makes already.


Javaed wrote:
You will be more deadly with a 2-Hander, but you won't be terrible with a one handed weapon or dual wielding.

at the moment, deadlier=more combat effective. but i agree, you won't be terrible with a one handed weapon or dual wielding and i still intend to do one of those things.

Javaed wrote:

As for how the current weapon options are thematic?

I've read a ton of P.I. fiction, and really the only weapons missing from the list are guns, baked in hand-to-hand combat and the occasional use of a longer sword. Holmes tended to use a lot of guns, and I think he made use of a sap or truncheon. Garret (from Glen Cook's book series) makes use of a sap or club most often, but occasionally pulls out a crossbow or a sword. Bunches of "Steam Punk" novels bring out cane-swords or rapiers, along with crossbows and guns. Oh, and the combat parasol. Might want to add that as a new exotic weapon Paizo devs.

If we go to the more magical end of things we've got Constantine, Dresden and even Sandman-Slim. They tend to make a greater use of magic obviously, but when they mix it up we see hand-to-hand combat, saps, improvised weapons and a ton of guns.

Really what the class needs to round itself out are a gun using archetype and an unarmed fighting archetype along with the ability to use ranged weapons and studied combat. I'd like a couple more weapons added from the get go just to add some variety to class during the early levels.

my point was that, like with the swashbuckler, the more important part is how he fights rather than the particular implement. it seems like we're being too narrow with weapon choices for the base classes (as opposed to archetypes) in some areas. i don't think that an unarmed fighting investigator should require an archetype because i really can't think of what changes other than that he's using his fists (i.e. what do you take away for IUS and at that point would it even be worth it over eating the feat?). unless the mechanics of studied combat/strike changed, firearms/other ranged weapons would require an archetype and i'm okay with that. (though it's probably also unnecessary.)

The Exchange

Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Xaratherus wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Danbala wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:


As for the your idea of stacking, to be honest it may be too much bookkeeping, and it doesn't give the investigator the flexibility that it needs.

Could the extra damage effect be reliant on a successful knowledge check? Perhaps the amount of damage could be based on your degree of success?

You know, we did think about that, but decided against it because another roll in combat is well, slow and clunky.
A single roll wouldn't add that much overhead. If you make it part of the standard action to study the target, then you're already pausing for a few moments for the Investigator to declare that action; he can easily roll right then and that can be the value used for the remainder of SC's duration.

If this route is taken, could you make sure Kirin Style feats get to go off on that same roll?


xevious573 wrote:
Xaratherus wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Danbala wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:


As for the your idea of stacking, to be honest it may be too much bookkeeping, and it doesn't give the investigator the flexibility that it needs.

Could the extra damage effect be reliant on a successful knowledge check? Perhaps the amount of damage could be based on your degree of success?

You know, we did think about that, but decided against it because another roll in combat is well, slow and clunky.
A single roll wouldn't add that much overhead. If you make it part of the standard action to study the target, then you're already pausing for a few moments for the Investigator to declare that action; he can easily roll right then and that can be the value used for the remainder of SC's duration.
If this route is taken, could you make sure Kirin Style feats get to go off on that same roll?

yeah, i was thinking along these lines... i really don't think the extra roll is a big deal considering the high prevalence of kirin style i expect in investigator builds if no additional damage is added to the studied mechanics. (not that i care about more damage as much as some other combat utility like debuffing.)

Designer

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Xaratherus wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Danbala wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:


As for the your idea of stacking, to be honest it may be too much bookkeeping, and it doesn't give the investigator the flexibility that it needs.

Could the extra damage effect be reliant on a successful knowledge check? Perhaps the amount of damage could be based on your degree of success?

You know, we did think about that, but decided against it because another roll in combat is well, slow and clunky.
A single roll wouldn't add that much overhead. If you make it part of the standard action to study the target, then you're already pausing for a few moments for the Investigator to declare that action; he can easily roll right then and that can be the value used for the remainder of SC's duration.

Sure. Agreed...sort of. But what if the roll is lower, or lower than what the player wants. Is he stuck with it? Do we do it once per combat? Or do we keep so you can turn this thing on or off? Do we keep it at once every 24 hours? Open that up?

So if we keep it as once every 24 hours, and you roll low, that seems unsatisfying, and I'm sure I would get people on this board and through playtest tell me so. It's pretty much a non-brainer.

So if we don't have it once every 24 hours, you are likely to reroll low rolls in the hope that you get what you want, expanding the rolls.

Okay, all that being said, where do we put the lower and upper limits of this sliding scale? Do we take into account all the spells, traits, feats and such that can boost the Knowledge score? What is too low and what is too high? Hmmm.

Putting the right mean on the ability and the right upper and lowers would be difficult and finicky, and given that the game is still being expanded, and Knowledge skills are basically a free market economy for flavorful design that doesn't touch the combat game, it is basically given out like candy. Given that the investigator has a random generation for bonus's on those skills adds extra complication. In the end, the system would be needlessly complex, possibly unsatisfying for those who don't delve into secondary sources to optimize, and potentially broken for those that do.

This leads to the idea of just having a binary "I get or I don't" roll, similar to other abilities involving skills (like determining a monster's strengths and weaknesses). But this ability needs to be a little more consistent than that, as it affects your attack and damage potential, not just what you know. In battle, unknowns create uncertainty, and uncertainty is life or death (and possibly the need for a breath of life) or worse.

Now, as we all know, the investigator does have some of that in combat through the combat inspiration talent, but that is something that you buy into, and, when you do, you always get some benefit from.

You could have something that does a similar thing, have the skill check always determine the degree of success, except for the fact saddling such a thing with a skill check seems weird if you don't even reach the normal DC for a really easy question (DC 10) and stupid flipping insane when you roll a 1.

I guess you could delve into other strange mechanics that you roll a die on top of a supposed take 10, but that is a rabbit hole of "why bother?"

Why bother, when you can give someone an ability that is based on Intelligence, skill, and has some variability (in the amount of damage) and works with certainty. After all, in many ways, the investigator is a class built upon a degree of certainty.

And because of that, I tend to stray away from (and by "stray away from" I mean freaking avoid) the grand variance ball that is the d20 for determining such things such as the bonuses to accuracy and damage you get during combat. It comes into play at just the right spot when you make an attack roll.


Starfinder Superscriber

This conversation is reminding me of the Knowledge Devotion/Iaijutsu Focus debates that happened for 3.5, which is likely not the route you'd want to take with this.


I really like Studied Combat and Studied Strike, it is beautifully flavorful. There is an option I thought of that I don't believe has been mentioned, excuse me if it has.

What if Studied Combat gave like a D6 to every attack in addition to the accuracy bonus, or simply Int to damage, and then you still get the big pay off Studied Strike at the end? Basically, small bonus to make it a little more palatable, but not Sneak Attack every round regardless of positioning?

Another idea would be to make it only usable on one target per encounter. Then give it a smaller progression, but full D6's damage every round.

I would just really love to keep Studied Strike's flavor and not revert back to Sneak Attack.


@SRM: Fair enough. I had not really evaluated the specific idea under discussion; I was more making a general comment that adding a single die roll does not necessarily add that much overhead to combat, but that depends on how the system is implemented. :) If the specific mechanic would wind up too complex and\or too variable to be dependable, then obviously it's not a good idea.

Designer

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Okay,

So studied combat and studied strike have been weigh on my mind a lot lately. People like the flavor and there seems a general condenses that it does not do enough damage, or at least consistent damage.

Here are my current thoughts on how to change the ability.

Studies strike stays the same (sort of, see below).

Studied combat becomes a move action to activate (with the quick study bumping it down to a swift). You then gain a half your investigator level bonus to melee attack rolls (as it is now) and as precision damage to the target (not multiplied on critical hits). You gain that precision damage even when you make studied strike. In other words there will be some wording that needs to be changed in studied strike to make that clear, because its time does not.

Thoughts?


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So the idea is that you get some small extra steady damage, and then you end it with one strong hit?

First thought is that I like that, and perhaps more importantly, I'm interested to playtest it.

Is it still limited to once per enemy per 24 hours?

Duration = to Int Modifier? Well, Int Bonus, I guess.

Designer

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Cheapy wrote:

So the idea is that you get some small extra steady damage, and then you end it with one strong hit?

First thought is that I like that, and perhaps more importantly, I'm interested to playtest it.

Is it still limited to once per enemy per 24 hours?

Duration = to Int Modifier? Well, Int Bonus, I guess.

One enemy per 24 hours. Yes.

Duration is Int bonus. That's an official change that is in the first post of the boards.


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:

Okay,

So studied combat and studied strike have been weigh on my mind a lot lately. People like the flavor and there seems a general condenses that it does not do enough damage, or at least consistent damage.

Here are my current thoughts on how to change the ability.

Studies strike stays the same (sort of, see below).

Studied combat becomes a move action to activate (with the quick study bumping it down to a swift). You then gain a half your investigator level bonus to melee attack rolls (as it is now) and as precision damage to the target (not multiplied on critical hits). You gain that precision damage even when you make studied strike. In other words there will be some wording that needs to be changed in studied strike to make that clear, because its time does not.

Thoughts?

Hmmm...this is getting very interesting.

The one thing is, the extra static damage is proportionally high compared to the Studied Strike "final blow" damage, so I think most Investigators will definitely not consider ending early unless they are quite certain it will be the difference in dropping the enemy or that this will be their last hit before duration expires.


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:

Okay,

So studied combat and studied strike have been weigh on my mind a lot lately. People like the flavor and there seems a general condenses that it does not do enough damage, or at least consistent damage.

Here are my current thoughts on how to change the ability.

Studies strike stays the same (sort of, see below).

Studied combat becomes a move action to activate (with the quick study bumping it down to a swift). You then gain a half your investigator level bonus to melee attack rolls (as it is now) and as precision damage to the target (not multiplied on critical hits). You gain that precision damage even when you make studied strike. In other words there will be some wording that needs to be changed in studied strike to make that clear, because its time does not.

Thoughts?

So when I study, I get a bonus to attack rolls and damage for the duration and then I can do a mega attack at the end of it for a little more umph.

That sound much more useful. At 4th level thats a +2 to attack rolls and damage with an extra d6 of damage I can burst out. Very comparable to a Inquisitor's Bane and the Slayer's Favored Target at 5th level. At 10th level its a +5 to Att/Dmg on a 3/4ths BAB character so I think its evened out. To limit crazy combat builds, I'd drop Mutagen actually.

I like it.

Any chance of getting Studied Combat but not Studied Strike at a lower level?

Edit: I am very okay with the 24 hour lock considering the strength and flavor of the ability.


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:

Okay,

So studied combat and studied strike have been weigh on my mind a lot lately. People like the flavor and there seems a general condenses that it does not do enough damage, or at least consistent damage.

Here are my current thoughts on how to change the ability.

Studies strike stays the same (sort of, see below).

Studied combat becomes a move action to activate (with the quick study bumping it down to a swift). You then gain a half your investigator level bonus to melee attack rolls (as it is now) and as precision damage to the target (not multiplied on critical hits). You gain that precision damage even when you make studied strike. In other words there will be some wording that needs to be changed in studied strike to make that clear, because its time does not.

Thoughts?

Will the levels when bonus die are gained be delayed to every third level, or are they staying at every second level after level 4?

On the whole, I really like this ability and the extra damage winds up making the class a very solid damage dealer. My 16 Strength, Rapier Wielding Elf winds up dealing 1d6 + 5 (Strength) +2 (Power Attack) + 2 (Precision) damage at fourth level, after one round of buffing. He'll get two attacks in with a +9 attack bonus (+3 BAB, +5 Str, +2 Studied Combat, -1 Power Attack), and that second attack will end be a Studied Strike for an extra 1d6 damage. Solid.


Still melee only, I presume.

I like it. Seems a bit weird that it's sort-of-stronger than the Slayer's Favored Target/Foe/whateveritisnow when you compare to-hit and bonus damage. But the short duration of this ability probably counteracts that as the Favored Target bonus is really good due to how long it lasts, letting you scout ahead of time and not use actions in combat. So that's probably OK.

Funny how the smallest changes can have big effects.


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Cheapy wrote:

So the idea is that you get some small extra steady damage, and then you end it with one strong hit?

First thought is that I like that, and perhaps more importantly, I'm interested to playtest it.

Is it still limited to once per enemy per 24 hours?

Duration = to Int Modifier? Well, Int Bonus, I guess.

One enemy per 24 hours. Yes.

Duration is Int bonus. That's an official change that is in the first post of the boards.

Okay, so just to make sure I've got this right:

Studied Combat: Move Action (can increase to Swift with Talent). Gain ½ Investigator level as Insight Bonus to Attack and as Precision Damage to a target (once per target in 24 hour period)

Studied Combat: Free Action. End Studied Combat against target to get +1d6 Precision damage to target (+1d6 for every two levels)

Both abilities are gained at level 4.

Designer

Javaed wrote:
Will the levels when bonus die are gained be delayed to every third level, or are they staying at every second level after level 4?

It would stay at the current progression.


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I would gladly swap Trapfinding with Studied Combat for levels earned at.

Although I guess trapfinding is more important at earlier levels...relatively speaking.

I spent a long time looking for ways to help in combat at first level with my playtest investigator. The out of combat abilities were top-notch.


That's not a bad idea. I pick a target, and for a short duration I get a bonus to hit and damage, with a nice bit hit at the end. That's pretty cool. I'm more than happy with that. The only problem is, you're still useless in combat during levels 1-3. In an AP, that's not too bad, because you're useful elsewhere and it's only one adventure. During Pathfinder Society, however, that's nine adventures.

Designer

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redward wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Cheapy wrote:

So the idea is that you get some small extra steady damage, and then you end it with one strong hit?

First thought is that I like that, and perhaps more importantly, I'm interested to playtest it.

Is it still limited to once per enemy per 24 hours?

Duration = to Int Modifier? Well, Int Bonus, I guess.

One enemy per 24 hours. Yes.

Duration is Int bonus. That's an official change that is in the first post of the boards.

Okay, so just to make sure I've got this right:

Studied Combat: Move Action (can increase to Swift with Talent). Gain ½ Investigator level as Insight Bonus to Attack and as Precision Damage to a target (once per target in 24 hour period)

Studied Combat: Free Action. End Studied Combat against target to get +1d6 Precision damage to target (+1d6 for every two levels)

Both abilities are gained at level 4.

Yes. Basically. You also get the flat precision damage from studied combat on your studied strike.


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
redward wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Cheapy wrote:

So the idea is that you get some small extra steady damage, and then you end it with one strong hit?

First thought is that I like that, and perhaps more importantly, I'm interested to playtest it.

Is it still limited to once per enemy per 24 hours?

Duration = to Int Modifier? Well, Int Bonus, I guess.

One enemy per 24 hours. Yes.

Duration is Int bonus. That's an official change that is in the first post of the boards.

Okay, so just to make sure I've got this right:

Studied Combat: Move Action (can increase to Swift with Talent). Gain ½ Investigator level as Insight Bonus to Attack and as Precision Damage to a target (once per target in 24 hour period)

Studied Combat: Free Action. End Studied Combat against target to get +1d6 Precision damage to target (+1d6 for every two levels)

Both abilities are gained at level 4.

Yes. Basically. You also get the flat precision damage from studied combat on your studied strike.

Considering the flat damage bonus, I think we can delay the extra damage progression of Studied Strike.


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Starfinder Superscriber

Cheapy, also the Slayer's Favoured Target gives bunch of bonuses to various skills and DCs of abilities.

I'd also chip in a vote for gaining Studied Combat at 1st. Thinking it over, if you're going to give him a Studied Strike boost every three levels going:

1st: Studied Combat
4th: Studied Strike +1d6
7th: Studied Strike +2d6
10th: Studied Strike +3d6
13th: Studied Strike +4d6
16th: Studied Strike +5d6
19th: Studied Strike +6d6

Could work out fairly well (I've haven't done the maths yet).

Grand Lodge

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Cheapy wrote:

So the idea is that you get some small extra steady damage, and then you end it with one strong hit?

First thought is that I like that, and perhaps more importantly, I'm interested to playtest it.

Is it still limited to once per enemy per 24 hours?

Duration = to Int Modifier? Well, Int Bonus, I guess.

One enemy per 24 hours. Yes.

Duration is Int bonus. That's an official change that is in the first post of the boards.

Stephen, to clarify what you just wrote, is it:

1. Once per enemy per 24 hours? Or
2. One enemy per 24 hours?

Do you mean that this is now a once per day ability, or still an ability that can be used multiple times a day providing it is used on different targets?


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Javaed wrote:
Will the levels when bonus die are gained be delayed to every third level, or are they staying at every second level after level 4?
It would stay at the current progression.

In this case I think the Investigator class works out rather well. While I would still like a ranged option, I understand from previous posts that you'd like the Slayer to have a bit more of a focus on that combat style.

I'll try to get a play test post up later on with detailed encounters, I've been wanting to run these new classes through a fairly challenging home brew campaign I ran for my group last year. The first encounter had them stuck on a ship while poisoned fog rolled across the deck, fighting off waves of enemies(25 total) =P.


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Keeping the same core mechanic and theme of building up combat dealing a massive blow, with, possibly, a debilitating effect, I have the following suggestion for Studied Combat and Studied Strike:

Studied Combat (Ex): With a keen eye and a calculating mind, an investigator can measure the mettle and combat skill of his opponent, and take advantage of any gaps in talent or training. At 1st level, an investigator can take a move action to study single enemy that he can see.
Upon doing so, he adds half his investigator level as an insight bonus to melee attack rolls against the creature and 1d6 additional damage for a number of rounds equal to his Intelligence modifier (minimum 1 round), or until he chooses to make a studied strike, whichever comes first. The extra damage is 1d6 at 1st level and increases by 1d6 for every three investigator levels thereafter (to a maximum of 7d6 at 19th level).
An investigator can only have one target of studied combat at a time and each repeated attempt at the same creature in a 24h period provokes an attack of opportunity on the Investigator from the target.

Studied Strike (Ex): An investigator can choose to make a studied strike against the target of his studied combat as a free action upon successfully hitting with a melee attack to deal additional damage. The damage is double the bonus of his Studied Combat and immediately ends the Studied Combat. The damage of studied strike is precision damage and is not multiplied on a critical hit; creatures that are immune to sneak attack are also immune to studied strike.
If the investigator’s attack used a weapon that deals nonlethal damage (like a sap, whip, or an unarmed strike), he may choose to have the additional damage from studied strike be nonlethal damage instead of lethal damage. If the investigator chose to make an attack with a lethal weapon instead do nonlethal damage (with the usual –4 penalty), the studied strike damage may also deal nonlethal damage.
The investigator must be able to see the target well enough to pick out a vital spot and must be able to reach such a spot. An investigator cannot use studied strike against a creature with concealment.

Debilitation (Ex): Upon reaching the 4th level, the Investigator can chose to inflict a status effect when performing a Studied Strike. He selects a Debilitation at 4th level and can chose another for every three investigator levels thereafter. Unless noted otherwise the duration of the effects is equal to the investigator’s INT bonus in rounds. The save to avoid the effect is (Fort. 10+1/2 the investigator lvl. + INT mod.). Effects:

At 4th level, the Investigator can select from the following initial Debilitations:.
Fatigued: The target is fatigued.
Shaken: The target is shaken.
Sickened: The target is sickened.

At 7th level, an Investigator adds the following Debilitations to the list of those that can be selected.
Dazed: The target is dazed.
Staggered: The target is staggered,

At 10th level, an Investigator adds the following Debilitations to the list of those that can be selected.
Exhausted: The target is exhausted.
Frightened: The target is frightened.
Nauseated: The target is nauseated.

At 13th level, an Investigator adds the following Debilitations to the list of those that can be selected.
Blinded: The target is blinded.
Deafened: The target is deafened.
Paralyzed: The target is paralyzed.
Stunned: The target is stunned.

Pros:
- The damage provided is not too high, being lighter than the rogue or the spell based attacks. Getting a one hit (if it hits) mid-to-high damage follows the concept.
- This mechanic allows the class to be viable in a fight from the 1st level.
- The debilitations add flavour causing status that are already available at the required level (and not breaking the balance).
- The rogue (or vivisectionist or alchemist) will still deal more damage in most situations.

Thoughts?

Designer

Aberrant Templar wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Cheapy wrote:

So the idea is that you get some small extra steady damage, and then you end it with one strong hit?

First thought is that I like that, and perhaps more importantly, I'm interested to playtest it.

Is it still limited to once per enemy per 24 hours?

Duration = to Int Modifier? Well, Int Bonus, I guess.

One enemy per 24 hours. Yes.

Duration is Int bonus. That's an official change that is in the first post of the boards.

Stephen, to clarify what you just wrote, is it:

1. Once per enemy per 24 hours? Or
2. One enemy per 24 hours?

Do you mean that this is now a once per day ability, or still an ability that can be used multiple times a day providing it is used on different targets?

Just like it states in the document right now, once per enemy per 24 hours.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:

Okay,

So studied combat and studied strike have been weigh on my mind a lot lately. People like the flavor and there seems a general condenses that it does not do enough damage, or at least consistent damage.

Here are my current thoughts on how to change the ability.

Studies strike stays the same (sort of, see below).

Studied combat becomes a move action to activate (with the quick study bumping it down to a swift). You then gain a half your investigator level bonus to melee attack rolls (as it is now) and as precision damage to the target (not multiplied on critical hits). You gain that precision damage even when you make studied strike. In other words there will be some wording that needs to be changed in studied strike to make that clear, because its time does not.

Thoughts?

Much better. I still think giving it a duration is not really necessary and neither is the 24 hours limitation. But the rest sounds great.


Stephen, will you still be keeping the idea that there could be talents or upgrades to Studied Combat allowing it to be used on an enemy more than once a day?


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:

Okay,

So studied combat and studied strike have been weigh on my mind a lot lately. People like the flavor and there seems a general condenses that it does not do enough damage, or at least consistent damage.

Here are my current thoughts on how to change the ability.

Studies strike stays the same (sort of, see below).

Studied combat becomes a move action to activate (with the quick study bumping it down to a swift). You then gain a half your investigator level bonus to melee attack rolls (as it is now) and as precision damage to the target (not multiplied on critical hits). You gain that precision damage even when you make studied strike. In other words there will be some wording that needs to be changed in studied strike to make that clear, because its time does not.

Thoughts?

first, i'll say that this would be a definite improvement. thank you.

anyway, as others have said, it would still be nice to get studied combat (but not strike) sooner... like 1st or 2nd.

also, i know you've read the ideas and that the idea of debilitating your studied target seems popular (at least among the most vocal here). i am curious how you feel about that idea since you haven't commented much on it. i would honestly prefer that to the damage boost. (though i am grateful for that.)

Designer

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Tels wrote:
Stephen, will you still be keeping the idea that there could be talents or upgrades to Studied Combat allowing it to be used on an enemy more than once a day?

There may be talents that allow you to do that at the cost of inspiration. Still working that out.

Designer

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cuatroespada wrote:
also, i know you've read the ideas and that the idea of debilitating your studied target seems popular (at least among the most vocal here). i am curious how you feel about that idea since you haven't commented much on it. i would honestly prefer that to the damage boost. (though i am grateful for that.)

I would imagine the ability to do that would live in investigator talents the same way it does for rogues with rogue talents.

Grand Lodge

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Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Just like it states in the document right now, once per enemy per 24 hours.

Ok, cool. Yeah, I'll totally playtest this new version with my group when I get home from work tonight.

Just eyeballing it, I do think that being able to add a status effect as part of the Studied Strike is something worth considering. It would give the ability a bit more oomph and a good reason to consider ending Studied Combat early.

Also, it would fit well with the Holmes-style fighting from the Robert Downy Jr. movie:

"Two: throat; paralyze vocal chords, stop scream"

As it is right now, there isn't a lot of incentive to take your Studied Strike as anything except your final hit against the target. Milk that static bonus for as long as you can. But, if a Studied Strike could temporarily deafen, sicken, silence, or otherwise mess with an opponent then you'd have a lot more temptation to use the strike earlier.

Higher level investigators would have more status effect choices, and talents could provide additional effects to choose from or make the effects last longer than, say, 1 round.


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Tels wrote:
Stephen, will you still be keeping the idea that there could be talents or upgrades to Studied Combat allowing it to be used on an enemy more than once a day?
There may be talents that allow you to do that at the cost of inspiration. Still working that out.

I guess that's not too bad then. I would like to see the flat damage be something other than precision (though it does fit the theme) if only so that it can multiply on a crit, that and things like concealment, elementals, some aberrations etc. will negate the damage entirely.


Aberrant Templar wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
Just like it states in the document right now, once per enemy per 24 hours.

Ok, cool. Yeah, I'll totally playtest this new version with my group when I get home from work tonight.

Just eyeballing it, I do think that being able to add a status effect as part of the Studied Strike is something worth considering. It would give the ability a bit more oomph and a good reason to consider ending Studied Combat early.

Also, it would fit well with the Holmes-style fighting from the Robert Downy Jr. movie:

"Two: throat; paralyze vocal chords, stop scream"

As it is right now, there isn't a lot of incentive to take your Studied Strike as anything except your final hit against the target. Milk that static bonus for as long as you can. But, if a Studied Strike could temporarily deafen, sicken, silence, or otherwise mess with an opponent then you'd have a lot more temptation to use the strike earlier.

Higher level investigators would have more status effect choices, and talents could provide additional effects to choose from or make the effects last longer than, say, 1 round.

This reminds me a lot of the Rogue Talents and Ninja Tricks that inflict effects in addition to or in place of sneak attack damage, and I think would be amazing as extra utility in fights.


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:

Okay,

So studied combat and studied strike have been weigh on my mind a lot lately. People like the flavor and there seems a general condenses that it does not do enough damage, or at least consistent damage.

Here are my current thoughts on how to change the ability.

Studies strike stays the same (sort of, see below).

Studied combat becomes a move action to activate (with the quick study bumping it down to a swift). You then gain a half your investigator level bonus to melee attack rolls (as it is now) and as precision damage to the target (not multiplied on critical hits). You gain that precision damage even when you make studied strike. In other words there will be some wording that needs to be changed in studied strike to make that clear, because its time does not.

Thoughts?

*Rocky Theme plays as I jump around with fists raised*

I almost got it!


I'm liking the feel of this possible change. It even has a certain degree of cinematic feel to it- the Investigator studying his opponent, gradually wearing him down (along with his friends) while he takes advantage of openings and weaknesses in the enemy's defenses, then finally laying in the critical blow as he pieces together the opposition's lowest point.

It reminds me a little bit of Karnak the Inhuman, too.


Starfinder Superscriber

Do they have any of those Rogue Talents available as Investigator Talents (I don't know the Rogue Talents off the top of my head)? Either way, let them count Studied Strike as Sneak Attack for any prerequisites.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

The new version is a great boost,definitely makes the ability worth using :-)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:


Putting the right mean on the ability and the right upper and lowers would be difficult and finicky, and given that the game is still being expanded, and Knowledge skills are basically a free market economy for flavorful design that doesn't touch the combat game, it is basically given out like candy. Given that the investigator has a...

What if the Knowledge roll opened up additional uses of the ability within the 24 hour period? Maybe the roll could determine the number of times the additional damage could be used during the duration?

That might make it feel less like a single "knock out" strike. But it would also give it added punch without making it seem like simply a sneak attack.


On the knowledge roll stuff: Why not an automatic value, like 10 + 1/2 inquisitor level + knowledge skill ?

Quick, easy to remember and can help to plan what you're gonna do. And I think we should plan with an investigator.

Anyway, I'm really uneasy with the fact that you can't study more an enemy. I would even say that the more you see an enemy, the more data you should have.

Quote:
Studied combat becomes a move action to activate (with the quick study bumping it down to a swift). You then gain a half your investigator level bonus to melee attack rolls (as it is now) and as precision damage to the target (not multiplied on critical hits). You gain that precision damage even when you make studied strike. In other words there will be some wording that needs to be changed in studied strike to make that clear, because its time does not.

I still think it's not enough... Or maybe not appropriated. I don't know. I still find that studied combat and studied strike a bit silly, but I can't point out exactly why.

Maybe create debuff or control effect with that studied strike. Inspired from dirty tricks or else ? I can't say. But it could be a good option with a reduced number of d6 (5 or 6d6 SA ?).

Or, if you would lower the damage dealer problem, why not d3 or d4 SA with a normal progression ?
I know it would be a "step back" to the previous concept, but... Meh, I can't help it I came from "Woot! I love this class! Just a little less SA, and some tinkering and it should be OK" to "Huuuuu... >.>"

Designer

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Danbala wrote:
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:


Putting the right mean on the ability and the right upper and lowers would be difficult and finicky, and given that the game is still being expanded, and Knowledge skills are basically a free market economy for flavorful design that doesn't touch the combat game, it is basically given out like candy. Given that the investigator has a...

What if the Knowledge roll opened up additional uses of the ability within the 24 hour period? Maybe the roll could determine the number of times the additional damage could be used during the duration?

That might make it feel less like a single "knock out" strike. But it would also give it added punch without making it seem like simply a sneak attack.

Ah...no. You can use the ability as much as you want, you just can't use it on the same creature twice in a 24 hour period.

And again, for all the reasons I pointed out, I'm not going to link a combat ability to a successful Knowledge roll.


I like the new changes to Studied Combat and I really like the idea of applying status effects with it. The advantage that the rogue and ninja talents have is that they can be applied to ANY attack with sneak attack. If you're strictly replacing damage die of the studied strike with a status effect, that's still only one status effect for a limited duration and you're still losing studied combat versus that enemy for 24 hours. I would like to see maybe giving up some or all of studied combat's bonus damage instead of giving up studied strike. Maybe different status effects require the sacrifice of different amounts of damage or the sacrifice of additional damage to increase the duration (which could help to restrict more powerful status effects and longer durations to higher levels). Perhaps, in order to even attempt to apply a status effect, a reduction to your bonus to hit is applied as well.

Scarab Sages

Is there going to be anything that makes the investigator at least somewhat viable for 1st-3rd level? That's my main concern for the class (after the Studied Combat/Strike changes).


Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:

Okay,

So studied combat and studied strike have been weigh on my mind a lot lately. People like the flavor and there seems a general condenses that it does not do enough damage, or at least consistent damage.

Here are my current thoughts on how to change the ability.

Studies strike stays the same (sort of, see below).

Studied combat becomes a move action to activate (with the quick study bumping it down to a swift). You then gain a half your investigator level bonus to melee attack rolls (as it is now) and as precision damage to the target (not multiplied on critical hits). You gain that precision damage even when you make studied strike. In other words there will be some wording that needs to be changed in studied strike to make that clear, because its time does not.

Thoughts?

This is moving in the right direction. I'd still like to suggest pushing Studied Combat to 1st level.

I think that adding in an inspiration to perhaps extend the duration of Studied Combat to a full combat, or allowing it to be used on a target more than once per day, would be a good idea.

Just brainstorming: Since the basic visual here is that the Investigator does some study on the target and then ends a number of precision strikes with one massive blow, what would be the possibility of giving him an inspiration with a mechanic similar to Hammer the Gap?

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32

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Hey Stephen,

Thanks for the updates in regards to Studied Combat/Strike, and the insightful analysis as to why you want to avoid tying Knowledge rolls to combat.

Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:
And because of that, I tend to stray away from (and by "stray away from" I mean freaking avoid) the grand variance ball that is the d20 for determining such things such as the bonuses to accuracy and damage you get during combat. It comes into play at just the right spot when you make an attack roll.

Very wise words that.

On another related topic, are there any plans on the cards to shuffle up the first 1-3 levels of the Investigator? 1st level - especially - is overstuffed with utility effects (30+ class skills, inspiration, alchemy, trapfinding) and provides no combat support.

My personal opinion is that Alchemy should be pushed back to 4th level. It helps distance the Investigator from its parent the Alchemist, Inspiration is too key to the Investigator's flavour, and Trapfinding isn't powerful enough to swap for a combat ability.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:


Putting the right mean on the ability and the right upper and lowers would be difficult and finicky, and given that the game is still being expanded, and Knowledge skills are basically a free market economy for flavorful design that doesn't touch the combat game, it is basically given out like candy. Given that the investigator has a...

It occurs to me is that the other way to do it is to treat it like an Intelligence based "feint":

You make a knowledge skill check. The DC of this check is equal to 10 + your opponent's base attack bonus + your opponent's Wisdom modifier. If your opponent is trained in Sense Motive, the DC is instead equal to 10 + your opponent's Sense Motive bonus, if higher. If successful, the next melee attack you make against the target gets the precision bonus to damage for some number of turns as described above. We could debate whether it starts as a standard action like a feint and then is improved with feats or starts as a move action.

Edit: to clarify, which knowledge you used would be consistent with the "lore" rules for knowledge. The rest would work like a feint. So the advantage to this proposal is that it would dovetail nicely with rules that we are already familiar with. (I believe it could even be treated as a "feint" for any rules that effect feints).

Grand Lodge

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Stephen Radney-MacFarland wrote:

Okay,

So studied combat and studied strike have been weigh on my mind a lot lately. People like the flavor and there seems a general condenses that it does not do enough damage, or at least consistent damage.

Here are my current thoughts on how to change the ability.

Studies strike stays the same (sort of, see below).

Studied combat becomes a move action to activate (with the quick study bumping it down to a swift). You then gain a half your investigator level bonus to melee attack rolls (as it is now) and as precision damage to the target (not multiplied on critical hits). You gain that precision damage even when you make studied strike. In other words there will be some wording that needs to be changed in studied strike to make that clear, because its time does not.

Thoughts?

I'll playtest this soon-ish but right now seems great! But I'd give him the poison stuff at 4th level and studied combat at 2nd level. (studied strike still at 4th level).

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