Power Level for PFS


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Muser wrote:
Don't forget the #1 rule of PFS: You are not alone. Comparing estimated foe abilities vs your character capabilities is a fine guideline, but remember that those CR+2 or higher opponents are facing a party.

Thinking of one's character and his or her stats in a vacuum also likely contributes to a large portion of the loss of table-wide fun due to overpowered PCs at the table. When a player builds his character as if he will have to solo everything, he often can, and often does.

-Matt

Silver Crusade

Mattastrophic wrote:
Muser wrote:
Don't forget the #1 rule of PFS: You are not alone. Comparing estimated foe abilities vs your character capabilities is a fine guideline, but remember that those CR+2 or higher opponents are facing a party.

Thinking of one's character and his or her stats in a vacuum also likely contributes to a large portion of the loss of table-wide fun due to overpowered PCs at the table. When a player builds his character as if he will have to solo everything, he often can, and often does.

-Matt

I think the intent and direction of this thread have been successfully defended as entirely opposite of that characterization. The OP wanted to make a character that could pull her own weight without overshadowing other PCs. If the goal is to build a character who is not overly powerful, it is good to have benchmarks for an appropriate level of power, don't you think? Otherwise this is like saying that speed limits causes excessive speeds while driving (more appropriately, maybe, the yellow caution signs with recommended speeds).


The Fox wrote:
If the goal is to build a character who is not overly powerful, it is good to have benchmarks for an appropriate level of power, don't you think?

I totally agree. The problem is, when someone thinks of his or her character in complete isolation, and does not account for the group, such as the arcanists with haste who are in the character's Subtier and who tend to end up at the same table, the end result is often a character who, in practice, is well beyond the benchmark.

In addition, I would say that the ability to hit a CR = level+2 monster at least 50% of the time and deal at least 1/4 of that monster's HP in each hit is a rather inappropriate benchmark for a character who wishes to not dominate the table, especially in a campaign where a majority of the content was not written under the Season 4/5 six-man assumption, and the higher CRs that came along with it.

I would suggest dropping that down to CR = level.

-Matt

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Mattastrophic wrote:
deal at least 1/4 of that monster's HP in each hit

Waitwaitwait, when did that become part of the benchmark?

Shadow Lodge 4/5

Yah, at least for me the benchmark is contribution. Doesn't matter how much or how little, but a bit every turn. Advancing the combat in question, adding to overall damage, etc.

For instance, I have an archer magus(myrmidarch) whose rote is trying to make every arrow count. I'd never take Deadly Aim for that character, since hitting is so important. He doesn't do much damage because of that, but hits often(+11/+11 d8+8 at level 6) and tries his darnedest to have the correct dr-piercing implements and maximize the use of terrain(shooting down from the ceiling!).

Silver Crusade

Jiggy wrote:
Mattastrophic wrote:
deal at least 1/4 of that monster's HP in each hit
Waitwaitwait, when did that become part of the benchmark?

He was referring to my post here, I think. And that is a fair criticism of what I posted. (For what it's worth, I chose 1/4 precisely because we are expecting a party of 4. Maybe, I should have used 1/6 for PFS since that is the norm. I don't know.)

Matt, what is an appropriate benchmark?

Shadow Lodge 4/5

Jiggy wrote:
Mattastrophic wrote:
deal at least 1/4 of that monster's HP in each hit
Waitwaitwait, when did that become part of the benchmark?

I think he's referring to the breakdown the Fox posted, where he listed average damage as being one quarter the monsters HP. That is counting the total possible if every attack hits though, not per attack.

Basically it's saying that if you were hitting a target dummy, with AC and hp of a cr=your level+2, then you should destroy it in 8 rounds (on average).

---------

I would set the bar at cr+1 myself. If you look at the encounters I listed earlier, single monster fights are cr+1. Multiple monster fights are going to be against your cr or less. Only in boss fights will you go up against a cr+2 or+3 enemy.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

gnoams wrote:
I would set the bar at cr+1 myself.

But are we still talking about a 50% success rate? Because if we're looking at how a PC fares against a "typical" fight, I don't know if I'd be satisfied with only a coin-flip's chance of contributing anything at all on a given round.

Shadow Lodge 4/5

50% is mostly an easy number to calculate for. You could instead hit way more often, but do less damage per hit. Or you could have more attacks, but a lower chance to hit, etc. Which can all average out to defeating 1/8th of the encounter per round.

Shadow Lodge 5/5 5/5 Regional Venture-Coordinator, Northwest aka WalterGM

gnoams wrote:
50% is mostly an easy number to calculate for. You could instead hit way more often, but do less damage per hit. Or you could have more attacks, but a lower chance to hit, etc. Which can all average out to defeating 1/8th of the encounter per round.

So my idea for a Diplomacy specialist is a plausible combat character? Because they beat the encounter in 10 rounds.... so 1/10th of the encounter a round. Only a little shy of this benchmark ;)


yes, but you have to apply the penalty for hostile actions and would likely be knocked back one step in the diplomancy check the following round.

Shadow Lodge 5/5 5/5 Regional Venture-Coordinator, Northwest aka WalterGM

Talon89 wrote:
yes, but you have to apply the penalty for hostile actions and would likely be knocked back one step in the diplomancy check the following round.

Pssh, hostile actions?

"I'm just talking here, friend! Oh them? Those other Pathfinders attacking you? No, no, they're not really 'with me' if you know what I'm saying."

Shadow Lodge 4/5

Walter Sheppard wrote:
Talon89 wrote:
yes, but you have to apply the penalty for hostile actions and would likely be knocked back one step in the diplomancy check the following round.

Pssh, hostile actions?

"I'm just talking here, friend! Oh them? Those other Pathfinders attacking you? No, no, they're not really 'with me' if you know what I'm saying."

As long as you have other things to do for all those times when you have to fight vermin, undead, constructs, plants, animals, oozes, things whose language you don't speak, and GMs who don't let players roll diplomacy checks in combat.

Shadow Lodge 5/5 5/5 Regional Venture-Coordinator, Northwest aka WalterGM

gnoams wrote:
Walter Sheppard wrote:
Talon89 wrote:
yes, but you have to apply the penalty for hostile actions and would likely be knocked back one step in the diplomancy check the following round.

Pssh, hostile actions?

"I'm just talking here, friend! Oh them? Those other Pathfinders attacking you? No, no, they're not really 'with me' if you know what I'm saying."

As long as you have other things to do for all those times when you have to fight vermin, undead, constructs, plants, animals, oozes, things whose language you don't speak, and GMs who don't let players roll diplomacy checks in combat.

I starting to think that my kind of humor is very hit and miss these days.


yes yes, whatever... diplomancy with the right source allows communication with even the simplest of life forms, you just have to have the right tongue for the job.

Shadow Lodge 4/5

And have a minute to talk. Only Bluff is quick(and demoralize of course).

Silver Crusade 4/5

Since all my early creations have been melee characters, I decided to do a comparison based on level 4 of the baseline, the pregens, and my characters.

Baseline: (Averaging numbers from 3 and 5 from The Fox)
AC: 22
HP: 35
Saves: +5
To Hit: +8
Damage: 17.5

Amiri (Raged)
AC 16, HP 52, Saves 8/3/2, Hit 7, Dmg 25
Valeros
AC 20, HP 44, Saves 7/5/3, Hit 7/6, Dmg 17
Seelah
AC 22, HP 40, Saves 9/4/8, Hit 9, Dmg 8.5
Harsk
AC 17, HP 40, Saves 9/8/4, Hit 7, Dmg 6.5
Merisiel
AC 19, HP 35, Saves 4/9/3, Hit 8, Dmg 13.5 (sneak)
------
Elf Ranger 4
AC 22, HP 32, Saves 4/8/2, Hit 8, Dmg 12.5
Human Bard 1/Fighter 3 (Dawnflower Dervish)
AC 19, HP 34, Saves 4/8/3, Hit 9, Dmg 8.5
Human Swashbuckler 4
AC 17, HP 31, Saves 2/8/1, Hit 7, Dmg 4.5
Dwarf Magus 4 (Staff Master)
AC 14, HP 43, Saves 8/2/5, Hit 6, Dmg 7.5
Human Rogue 4 (Knifemaster)
AC 17, HP 31, Saves 2/8/2, Hit 7, Dmg 13.5 (sneak)
------

So some quick analysis:
AC - Looking at 5 fighting pregens, only 1 hits the threshold. Out of my first 5 characters, only 1 will make as well.
HP - All pregens at least make, with Merisiel barely squeaking by. I find I come up short on 4 out of 5 characters.
Saves - Most pregens are sitting pretty good for saves. I find my characters come up much more lacking in this area.
Hit - No pregens miss the to hit by more than 1. I actually have a magus off by 2 when unbuffed, but all others are within 1 point.
Damage - Amiri is the only one that makes the damage threshold, although Valeros is only .5 off. 2 pregens and 3 of my characters are half the threshold or less.

I had figured my characters were on par with the pregens as far as a power level. I now find myself questioning that pretty heavily.

Scarab Sages 4/5

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What I like about this thread is that it's a mechanics thread filled with people who want to make sure their characters are at least average, not people looking to over optimize.

1/4 a creatures hitpoints in a full round might be high. Maybe 1/6 is more appropriate. But even 1/4 is far from optimized. The optimized characters I'm seeing are doing 1/4 a creature's hitpoints per attack and hitting on what seems like a lot more than 50% of their attacks. Having an average total damage per round, if all of your attacks hit, of 1/4 a creatures hitpoints is really not that much.

Dark Archive

Ferious Thune wrote:

What I like about this thread is that it's a mechanics thread filled with people who want to make sure their characters are at least average, not people looking to over optimize.

1/4 a creatures hitpoints in a full round might be high. Maybe 1/6 is more appropriate. But even 1/4 is far from optimized. The optimized characters I'm seeing are doing 1/4 a creature's hitpoints per attack and hitting on what seems like a lot more than 50% of their attacks. Having an average total damage per round, if all of your attacks hit, of 1/4 a creatures hitpoints is really not that much.

There are some barbarians, fighters, and sorcerers that'll do a lot more than 1/4th of something's HP per hit. I've seen some, and I will admit that I am guilty of building a few of these, that pretty much end combat the second their turn comes up in the initiative order. It's also very fair to say that these high damage builds incidentally end up with very high hit chances, and will more often than not be able to hit stuff on a roll of 2 by the time they're getting near level 10.

Dark Archive

11th Level

Attack Bonus +17
Average Attack Damage 45
AC 33
HP 87
Saving Throw Bonuses +10
Offensive Ability DC 27
High Skills +19

My Brother of the seal at level 11 (note I am 12th now, and average damage went up significantly).

Attack Bonus +15/+15/+10/+10/+5 (has boots of speed and ki to make it) +16/+16/+16/+16/+11/+11/+6 (5 times/day for Ki and 10 times for haste)
AC 24 (28 MA, 30 Barkskin, 31 Haste)
Average damage Each attack does 2d6+20 (first attack) or 2d6+17 (all others), average is 27 on the primary and 24 on all others, total of 147 damage average if all 7 hit (not counting my 19-20 crit range), Unbuffed damage is 119 average from 5 attacks

HP 96

Saves +14/+14/+14

Ability DC (Stunning fist DC 19)
High Skills (Per + 19 DD +24 not counting trapfinding or runefinding)

Shadow Lodge 4/5

Hmm, might as well

Ekewadu Oditobe a-Namtambu, Zenj Magus(myrmidarch from UC) 6

CR+2
HP 100
AC 21
High Attack 15
Avg dam 35-26
Ability DC Primary 18 Secondary 12
Good Save 11 Bad Save 7

Based on this guideline, Ekewadu(hereon referred to as "Eke") has a 50 percent chance(+11/+11 using only arcane pool) to hit, needs to hit (avg. damager per arrow 13) 8 times to fell the opponent. Therefore, killing a cr+2 takes anywhere from 4 to 8 rounds, depending on how the dice fall. With some buffs, notably Cat's Grace, this becomes easier to do.

Eke's AC is a measly number, 19, but he's an archer so the primary opponent very rarely goes for him. In any case, high attack hits 80% of the time(discounting natural 20's and 1's) low 60 % of the time. He goes down on the second hit! AC needs some thinking, I see. I usually try for 18+lvl.

Saves, on the other hand, are decent, giving him a 50% chance to save against primary abilities with any save. Ekewadu doesn't have any spells that require saves except Glitterdust(dc 15), but even so the CR+2 saves against that 85% of the time with good or 70% of the time with bad. No go, mang.

Reading ahead on the monster ability table, this 50% chance rate goes on for a while, until Eke hits 9th level and gains Manyshot, Heroism (from the Spell Blending Arcana) and buys Gloves of Dueling, then it's
+18/+18/+13 d8+13 or +19/+19/+19/+14 d+15 with Haste and Bull's Str(both fulfilling my general guideline of having double your level to-hit). AC goes up by 4, which doesn't help at all, but saves turn from 50% chance to 70% chance thanks to money and heroism. This is assuming he doesn't get killed more than once, of course.

After that boring tirade, have Eke's theme song to soothe your tired tl;dr -faculties.

The Exchange 5/5

a side observation:

Sometimes my son plays overpowered combat types. Last game we played together (some months ago), we got 6 friends and played a 5-9 scenario with his 9th level grapple specialist... and yeah, he nerfed most of the combat. But we all knew that going into the game, and we picked PCs to play around it. You could say we set the "Power Level" for the party of adventurers. Going in, we didn't worry about combat, 'cause he had that covered. Just like we didn't worry about Traps, 'cause I was running my Trapsmith ("I not only OWN the traps in here, I installed most of them!"), and we didn't worry about healing or face skills, 'cause one friend had his Bard, and another brought his Healer Oricle. During the combats, the rest of us stood back, making sure to not get in his way, keep ourselve out of harms way and let his PC "pull out the stops", (something he normally can't do with that PC - he usually has to "self-limit" that PC so that he doesn't "hog all the fun").

And you know what? It was kind of nice to run my Trapsmith in a game where I could concentrate on what he does best, and not worry about those parts of the scenario that other people said they could handle.

SO... I have to ask the following questions:
By trying to find the "correct Power Level", are you limiting the other players options?
Are you effectively saying to the other players reading this "you have to have a PC that can do XXX, that has at least this much 'power', that is able to 'carry your weight in combat' like MY PC can"?
Are you building expectations onto what other players will bring to the table?
Are some of the people reading this viewing it that way (looking at this thread and reading guidelines on how to build PCs?)?
And if so, is this bad? I'm not sure.


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The Fox wrote:
Matt, what is an appropriate benchmark?

I would say take the Core pregens and let them be the benchmark.

The campaign staff believes that the power level of the campaign's opposition is at a level such that a player playing a pregen should and will have a good time, making them the best thing PFS has, and a very appropriate thing, for players to compare their characters to.

-Matt

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

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@nosig - Just to speak for myself, when I threw out those benchmarks, the idea was that if someone wanted a guideline, they'd have something to look at. Then they could decide for themselves if they wanted something higher or lower, or not even applicable (like a buffer or skill monkey). The goal was not "everyone should be aiming for this, and those who fall short have done something wrong". Rather, there are often players who are capable of building to a wide range of power levels and want a baseline to start from; that's all I meant to provide.

The Exchange 5/5

from the OP, the first post in this tread...

"So I'm looking for that happy middle ground. I'm wondering what other people's baselines are. Are my expectations too high of what is minimally necessary to be a contributing member of the team?"

...

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Mattastrophic wrote:
The Fox wrote:
Matt, what is an appropriate benchmark?

I would say take the Core pregens and let them be the benchmark.

The campaign staff believes that the power level of the campaign's opposition is at a level such that a player playing a pregen should and will have a good time, making them the best thing PFS has for players to compare their characters to.

-Matt

Seems good, though in practice I'm not sure how helpful that is.

Think of the players who are looking for benchmarks: mostly newbies. Now, what's going to be more helpful for a newbie looking for guidelines for their PC?

Downloading all the pregens, assessing the whole group and trying to extrapolate how your own build compares is going to be a fair bit of work.

Looking at a single chart (that you don't even have to download) and seeing how comfortable you are with your numbers seems much easier.

Wouldn't most people unfamiliar with a game rather be told "compare against this one set of numbers" than "take these half-dozen other characters, compile enough data to come up with a set of numbers yourself, THEN compare against it"?

Silver Crusade

Mattastrophic wrote:
The Fox wrote:
Matt, what is an appropriate benchmark?

I would say take the Core pregens and let them be the benchmark.

The campaign staff believes that the power level of the campaign's opposition is at a level such that a player playing a pregen should and will have a good time, making them the best thing PFS has, and a very appropriate thing, for players to compare their characters to.

-Matt

Good idea. I compared one of the pregens, Amiri, to the benchmarks that I posted earlier. Here are the results.

Level 1 Benchmarks
Attack Bonus +4
Average Full Attack Damage 8
AC 17
hp 12
Saving Throw Bonuses +3
Offensive Ability DC 17
High Skills +7

Amiri, human barbarian 1:

Attack Bonus +3 or +5 raging
Average Full Attack Damage 15 or 18 raging (++)
AC 15 or 13 raging (–)
hp 15 (+)
Saving Throw Bonuses +4/+1/+1 (+/–)
Offensive Ability DC NA
High Skills +5 or +6 raging (–)
Bottom Line Mostly above the benchmarks.

==================================

Level 4 Benchmarks
Attack Bonus +8
Average Full Attack Damage 17
AC 22
hp 34
Saving Throw Bonuses +5
Offensive Ability DC 20
High Skills +11

Amiri, human barbarian 4:

Attack Bonus +7 or +9 raging
Average Full Attack Damage 16 or 21 raging (+)
AC 18 or 16 raging (–)
hp 45 (++)
Saving Throw Bonuses +6/+3/+2 (+/–)
Offensive Ability DC NA
High Skills +9 (–)
Bottom Line Still pretty solid.

==================================

Level 7 Benchmarks
Attack Bonus +12
Average Full Attack Damage 28
AC 28
hp 57
Saving Throw Bonuses +7
Offensive Ability DC 23
High Skills +15

Amiri, human barbarian 7:

Attack Bonus +13/+8 or +15/+10 raging
Average Full Attack Damage 36 or 44 raging (++)
AC 20 or 18 raging (–)
hp 75 (++)
Saving Throw Bonuses +7/+4/+3 (–)
Offensive Ability DC NA
High Skills +13 or +15 raging (–)
Bottom Line Pretty much on par.

I will look at Valeros next.

Silver Crusade

Here is Valeros. Solid.

Level 1 Benchmarks
Attack Bonus +4
Average Full Attack Damage 8
AC 17
hp 12
Saving Throw Bonuses +3
Offensive Ability DC 17
High Skills +7

Valeros, human fighter 1:

Attack Bonus +5 or +3/+2 (+)
Average Full Attack Damage 7 or 11 (+)
AC 17
hp 16 (+)
Saving Throw Bonuses +4/+2/+1 (+/–)
Offensive Ability DC NA
High Skills +5 (–)
Bottom Line Mostly above the benchmarks.

==================================

Level 4 Benchmarks
Attack Bonus +8
Average Full Attack Damage 17
AC 22
hp 34
Saving Throw Bonuses +5
Offensive Ability DC 20
High Skills +11

Valeros, human fighter 4:

Attack Bonus +9 or +7/+6 (+)
Average Full Attack Damage 10 or 17
AC 20 (–)
hp 44 (++)
Saving Throw Bonuses +7/+5/+3 (+/–)
Offensive Ability DC NA
High Skills +8 (–)
Bottom Line Still pretty solid.

==================================

Level 7 Benchmarks
Attack Bonus +12
Average Full Attack Damage 28
AC 28
hp 57
Saving Throw Bonuses +7
Offensive Ability DC 23
High Skills +15

Valeros, human fighter 7:

Attack Bonus +15/+10 or +13/+8/+10 (++)
Average Full Attack Damage 27 or 35 (+)
AC 24 (–)
hp 74 (++)
Saving Throw Bonuses +8/+6/+4 (+/–)
Offensive Ability DC NA
High Skills +13 (–)
Bottom Line Solid.


The Fox wrote:
Good idea. I compared one of the pregens, Amiri, to the benchmarks that I posted earlier. Here are the results.

Sweet deal. I'm glad you're doing this. I would suggest changing "Average Attack Damage" to "Average Full-Attack Damage," though.

It's worth noting, though, that the pregens help with creating standards for each class. When comparing to a single standard of, say, attack bonus, a player with a Rogue will obviously have a harder time of meeting that standard than a player with a Barbarian. It's easier for a player to compare his Rogue to Merisiel and his Sorcerer to Seoni than it is for him to compare his PC to a single, class-less set of numbers.

-Matt

Sczarni 5/5 5/55/5

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Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Hehe, Harsk please?

Silver Crusade

Mattastrophic wrote:


It's worth noting, though, that the pregens help with creating standards for each class. When comparing to a single standard of, say, attack bonus, a player with a Rogue will obviously have a harder time of meeting that standard than a player with a Barbarian.

-Matt

True.

And if you go back and read where I originally posted these benchmarks, you will see that I tried to say something to that effect. Basically, if melee damage is your schtick, then look at the attack bonus and attack damage benchmarks, and probably consider AC and hp as well.

Note that the two pregens I posted here are both melee damage dealers. Valeros meets or slightly exceeds the average damage values that I originally posted, and Amiri blows them out of the water.

If you were to look at Merisiel or Kyra, of course they are going to fall short (though, I suspect Merisiel will do okay if you include her sneak attack—maybe I'll post hers next).

Silver Crusade

Nefreet wrote:
Hehe, Harsk please?

Okay, since you asked nicely. Harsk, then Merisiel.

Silver Crusade

Here is Harsk. For levels 1 and 4, I only considered his ranged attacks, but for level 7 I added melee for comparison.

Level 1 Benchmarks
Attack Bonus +4
Average Full Attack Damage 8
AC 17
hp 12
Saving Throw Bonuses +3
Offensive Ability DC 17
High Skills +7

Harsk, dwarf ranger 1:

Attack Bonus +4
Average Full Attack Damage 5.5 (–)
AC 16
hp 12
Saving Throw Bonuses +5/+5/+2 (+)
Offensive Ability DC NA
High Skills +6
Bottom Line At or slightly below the benchmarks, except in damage (damn crossbows).

==================================

Level 4 Benchmarks
Attack Bonus +8
Average Full Attack Damage 17
AC 22
hp 34
Saving Throw Bonuses +5
Offensive Ability DC 20
High Skills +11

Harsk, dwarf ranger 4:

Attack Bonus +9 (with Point Blank Shot)
Average Full Attack Damage 7.5 (– –)
AC 17 (– –)
hp 40 (+)
Saving Throw Bonuses +9/+8/+4 (+)
Offensive Ability DC NA
High Skills +10
Bottom Line Still weak damage. Weak AC, but hp and saves are good.

==================================

Level 7 Benchmarks
Attack Bonus +12
Average Full Attack Damage 28
AC 28
hp 57
Saving Throw Bonuses +7
Offensive Ability DC 23
High Skills +15

Harsk, dwarf ranger 7:

Attack Bonus +13 or +10/+5 melee
Average Full Attack Damage 8.5 or 15 (– –)
AC 19 (– –)
hp 67 (+)
Saving Throw Bonuses +11/+10/+8 (++)
Offensive Ability DC NA
High Skills +13 (–)
Bottom Line At this point, Harsk should throw away his crossbow and just use his axe. Great hp and fantastic saves!


The Fox wrote:
Note that the two pregens I posted here are both melee damage dealers. Valeros meets or slightly exceeds the average damage values that I originally posted, and Amiri blows them out of the water.

I seem to have found the point of misunderstanding. In your initial benchmark post, you mentioned "Average attack damage is 1/4 the total expected hp..." and I interpreted that as for a single attack, not a full-attack. So of course I freaked out, hehehe...

-Matt

Silver Crusade

Mattastrophic wrote:
The Fox wrote:
Note that the two pregens I posted here are both melee damage dealers. Valeros meets or slightly exceeds the average damage values that I originally posted, and Amiri blows them out of the water.

I seem to have found the point of misunderstanding. In your initial benchmark post, you mentioned "Average attack damage is 1/4 the total expected hp..." and I interpreted that as for a single attack, not a full-attack. So of course I freaked out, hehehe...

-Matt

I see!

Silver Crusade

Here is Merisiel.

Level 1 Benchmarks
Attack Bonus +4
Average Full Attack Damage 8
AC 17
hp 12
Saving Throw Bonuses +3
Offensive Ability DC 17
High Skills +7

Merisiel, elf rogue 1:

Attack Bonus +4
Average Full Attack Damage 7 ranged or 9 melee
AC 17
hp 10 (–)
Saving Throw Bonuses +2/+6/+1 (+/–)
Offensive Ability DC NA
High Skills +8
Bottom Line Right at the benchmarks, more or less.

==================================

Level 4 Benchmarks
Attack Bonus +8
Average Full Attack Damage 17
AC 22
hp 34
Saving Throw Bonuses +5
Offensive Ability DC 20
High Skills +11

Merisiel, elf rogue 4:

Attack Bonus +8 ranged +9 melee
Average Full Attack Damage 13 (–)
AC 19 (–)
hp 35
Saving Throw Bonuses +4/+9/+3 (+)
Offensive Ability DC NA
High Skills +13 (+)
Bottom Line Lowish damage (but better than Harsk!). Good skills, of course.

==================================

Level 7 Benchmarks
Attack Bonus +12
Average Full Attack Damage 28
AC 28
hp 57
Saving Throw Bonuses +7
Offensive Ability DC 23
High Skills +15

Merisiel, elf rogue 7:

Attack Bonus +11
Average Full Attack Damage 20 (–)
AC 23 (–)
hp 59
Saving Throw Bonuses +5/+11/+4 (+/–)
Offensive Ability DC NA
High Skills +20 (++)
Bottom Line Not too shabby, actually.

Sczarni 5/5 5/55/5

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

When we TPK'd in Haunting of Hinojai, the Merisiel pregen was the only one to get out alive.

Grand Lodge 5/5 Venture-Captain, Arizona—Phoenix aka TriOmegaZero

I assume she couldn't retrieve the bodies in her flight. Too bad.

Silver Crusade

Nefreet wrote:
When we TPK'd in Haunting of Hinojai, the Merisiel pregen was the only one to get out alive.

She's slippery like that.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Sorry, what was that about the slippery elf chick?

Shadow Lodge 5/5

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Do NOT google that.

5/5

TOZ wrote:
Do NOT google that.

Too late...

Silver Crusade

TOZ wrote:
Do NOT google that.

But then I would not have learned about this mixed drink.

Silver Crusade 4/5

Jiggy wrote:
@nosig - Just to speak for myself, when I threw out those benchmarks, the idea was that if someone wanted a guideline, they'd have something to look at. Then they could decide for themselves if they wanted something higher or lower, or not even applicable (like a buffer or skill monkey). The goal was not "everyone should be aiming for this, and those who fall short have done something wrong". Rather, there are often players who are capable of building to a wide range of power levels and want a baseline to start from; that's all I meant to provide.

That's why I decided to take the pregens and measure them against it (at level 4 at least) to see how well it holds up. The pregens actually were a lot closer to the benchmark than I expected going in.

(I also saw that my characters were generally weaker than the pregens when comparing to that benchmark across the board.)

Dark Archive

I will say that the cleric pregen is a terrible benchmark for clerics. Not only is it poorly built, it actually prepares cure spells as opposed to taking full advantage of its conversion class feature.


The Beard wrote:
I will say that the cleric pregen is a terrible benchmark for clerics. Not only is it poorly built, it actually prepares cure spells as opposed to taking full advantage of its conversion class feature.

I actually gave this some thought this morning when I was typing up the post about using the pregens as standards of power level. Yes, there are some issues with the pregens, like Valeros's two-weapon setup, Lem's Weapon Finesse, Kyra's spell selection, etc.

I then realized that the "quality" of the choices made by the pregens doesn't actually matter. What matters is that those choices are the baseline expectation used by the campaign.

The problem with wanting to "fix" the standard is that, suddenly no standard would exist, because everyone would want to "fix" the pregens differently. In addition, even if a new, "fixed" standard were arrived up, the "fixed" standard would be different than the standards that the campaign uses as a baseline when creating the campaign's content. A standard that's different than the standard that's in-place right now would fail as a standard.

It's also worth noting which choices were not made with the pregens, as well as the choices which were. For example, the Gunslinger pregen doesn't have Deadly Aim. That really says something about the campaign's baseline expectation for a Gunslinger's damage. By taking Deadly Aim, a Gunslinger can very quickly exceed the damage expectation set forth by the campaign, and as we all know, problems can occur when characters push too hard past the baseline.

-Matt

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Taking one feat is "pushing too hard"?

Liberty's Edge

Jiggy wrote:
Taking one feat is "pushing too hard"?

No, but playing a gunslinger can be! ;-)

5/5

Mattastrophic wrote:
I then realized that the "quality" of the choices made by the pregens doesn't actually matter. What matters is that those choices are the baseline expectation used by the campaign.

I am not really seeing how that is true. A group of 4 or 6 pregens is going to be crushed in many scenarios, especially 5-9 or 7-11's.

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