Everything is overpowered!


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:
Muad'Dib wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
How do you feel about how crazy overpowered everything has become? ;P
Our group unanimously quit Pathfinder around level 8 as the power creep just got out of hand. We had a lot of fun up to around levels 6 and 7 when it just became overly complicated to run and cartoonish in what was happening at the table.

I wished more people realized that this was an option. The game is very different at different levels. The creatures you face aren't just recolors with bigger numbers, they use fundamentally different mechanics against the party. This sets the tone for fundamentally different stories. For example, your average chase scene becomes impossible with teleport as an option. LoTR is trivialized by a combination of mind-blank, invisibility, a hobit friend to hold the ring, endure elements, and greater teleport. All three books of epic story could take place in in less than a minute, shorter if you don't want to be as careful.

Really. It's OK to stop at lower levels if that is where your good stories are as a GM. IMO a great story > getting levels when it comes to having a good time.

Likewise though. It's OK to skip lower levels if that is where your good stories are as a GM. One of my best campaigns had the party start at level 20 and ended at 38. My other good campaign started at 1 and ended at 20. I've learned that it is important to use the levels appropriate for the story, not to use the story appropriate for the levels.

The thing that bugs me about low-level PF is that classes don't even come into their own until a few levels, but then everything breaks down! I prefer starting games around level 3 or 4 anyway. As borked as high level play is, I really don't like games like P6 or P7 because it sucks if you play a late-blooming class and you don't get access to a lot of goodies.

But as to unanimously quitting, I don't know how you managed that. I can barely get people to try another system if I run it, let alone that.

Sovereign Court

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Roleplaying is overpowered. Getting arbitrary bonuses based on real life social skills and intelligence rather than playing by the rules. Meta-gaming munchkins every one ;-)


Muad'Dib wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:


How do you feel about how crazy overpowered everything has become? ;P

Our group unanimously quit Pathfinder around level 8 as the power creep just got out of hand. We had a lot of fun up to around levels 6 and 7 when it just became overly complicated to run and cartoonish in what was happening at the table.

I still enjoy Pathfinder as a player. But when I sit behind the screen I'd rather run something else.

It's not any one class that is overpowered, but rather the entire game is overpowered. The damage output seems too high in relation to armor and hit points making for combat that is too quick and lacking drama.

Again, its a very fun to play but just not my preferred game.

-MD

I've just recently found out about E6, and I may try it out soon. For me, PF works best at lower levels. Above about 10th level, I'd rather switch to something like Mutants & Masterminds, which I think handles ultra powerful characters more smoothly. (And doesn't have a martial/magical disparity problem.)


Venture Munchkin wrote:
Roleplaying is overpowered. Getting arbitrary bonuses based on real life social skills and intelligence rather than playing by the rules. Meta-gaming munchkins every one ;-)

You say that as a joke but many people actually feel that way. That somehow it devalues the legitimacy of one's roleplaying if one uses something beyond explicit mechanics to play the game.

Generally this idea seems to come from more "rules-purist" who also believe making the fighter roll diplomacy every time he speaks helps to balance out the game for rogues by not trivializing skills.

IMO: skills are a mechanic in social situation much like BAB. The ability to converse and make persuasive arguments is a skill similar to putting ones character into a tactical position on the battle map. Your attacks and skill checks are more effective depending on how you use them, you aren't good at combat or social encounters just by having them. Player skill is something that effects your efficacy in every facet of the game.

EDIT: Wow I need to go find something to do before I argue more of my own straw men.


Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:

IMO: skills are a mechanic in social situation much like BAB. The ability to converse and make persuasive arguments is a skill similar to putting ones character into a tactical position on the battle map. Your attacks and skill checks are more effective depending on how you use them, you aren't good at combat or social encounters just by having them. Player skill is something that effects your efficacy in every facet of the game.

EDIT: Wow I need to go find something to do before I argue more of my own straw men.

+1. I roleplay out social encounters and give the PC a modifier on their skill roll based on how compelling their reasoning is. Usually it's in the range of +/-2, but it can occasionally go higher or lower. (Illogical or silly arguments can also gain a bonus if they make everybody at the table laugh. I believe in rewarding good entertainment.) If other players contribute to the conversation I'll let them roll to Aid Another as well.

Shadow Lodge

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In my experience the cries of overpowered come from people who attempt to run published material straight without altering it to fit the players in the group.
It's like you get a group of 6 of your friends together. You buy them all the same size t-shirts, then are surprised that they don't fit. Then you complain to them that they are too fat or too short and why can't they all just be the same size.


Muad'Dib wrote:

...

It's not any one class that is overpowered, but rather the entire game is overpowered. The damage output seems too high in relation to armor and hit points making for combat that is too quick and lacking drama. ...

Personally, I agree with you on this. However, several people I know like it specifically for that. Their point of view is that other systems (or modified 3.x and PF) that keep the damage down to reasonable levels make fights take too long. They were spending entire gaming session is 1 fight.

I haven't tried those systems, so I have no clue as to how valid of a point it is. But it seems to be a fairly common opinion.
.
.

Marcus Robert Hosler wrote:
Muad'Dib wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:
How do you feel about how crazy overpowered everything has become? ;P
Our group unanimously quit Pathfinder around level 8 as the power creep just got out of hand. We had a lot of fun up to around levels 6 and 7 when it just became overly complicated to run and cartoonish in what was happening at the table.

I wished more people realized that this was an option. The game is very different at different levels. The creatures you face aren't just recolors with bigger numbers, they use fundamentally different mechanics against the party. This sets the tone for fundamentally different stories.

...
Really. It's OK to stop at lower levels if that is where your good stories are as a GM. IMO a great story > getting levels when it comes to having a good time.
...
I've learned that it is important to use the levels appropriate for the story, not to use the story appropriate for the levels.

Wish I could.

My group seems to think starting above level 1-3 is somehow cheating and if you're not playing until level 15+ (and getting the powerful goodies) there isn't any point.


gnoams wrote:
In my experience the cries of overpowered come from people who attempt to run published material straight without altering it to fit the players in the group. ...

I used to sorta be one of those guys. To be fair, that used to be possible. Back in my younger gaming days, a module or series would have a reputation associated with it. "Hey this one is fine for beginners. Don't run this unless your group is really good and prepared for lethal!" Then you could run them without any modification and they worked!

That was the primary reason I liked them. Yes, I preferred home made adventures, but I didn't always have time to make something up. I have substantially less time now.

Can't seem to do that in PF. Other than the introductory very low level parts of an AP or low level modules (levels 1-2), it seems to always require substantial work to scale up virtually every encounter to challenge the party. (May be it wouldn't if I had a group of noobs that ran charactes at about pregen power levels. But then I think I might have to go the other direction.)

This bothers me for a couple of reasons.
1) The time required is substantially more. I can only GM about 1/3 to 1/2 as often when I have to do a bunch of rewriting.

2) It also bothers me from a logical world building perspective. What I used to do when designing an adventure my self had virtually nothing to do with the party. Ok, I've got Mr Bad with personality X. He has Y resources. He is trying to accomplish Z. What does it make sense for Mr Bad to do? He wants to succeed and stay alive and free. He hires these people. He buys this equipment. He makes those contingency plans. I always approached it like that. The set-up occurred prior to the PC's even entering the picture.

The PC's had to figure out how to get around or through his plans.

Yes once the PC's make an appearance and, for example, start burning all his businesses to the ground; he uses some of his discretionary funds to buy resist element scrolls for some of his guys.

Almost no one seems to want PF like that and/or it won't work like that. I have to decide on encounter builds specifically for the PC's to challenge but probably not kill them. If a different group went through the same adventure I would be expected to use completely different encounter builds.
That bothers me from a logical perspective. How does Mr Bad know the capabilities of some opposition that has not been encountered yet? It is not a major thing, but it does bug me.


Kydeem de'Morcaine wrote:

Almost no one seems to want PF like that and/or it won't work like that. I have to decide on encounter builds specifically for the PC's to challenge but probably not kill them. If a different group went through the same adventure I would be expected to use completely different encounter builds.

That bothers me from a logical perspective. How does Mr Bad know the capabilities of some opposition that has not been encountered yet? It is not a major thing, but it does bug me.

I understand what you mean. On one hand the PC's should play the hand they are dealt, but at the same time if they have the combo to trounce the adventure as written to include any bosses I can see some GM's wanting to alter things. I try to have some middle ground. Some things I just let them struggle with, and some times I help them. On the other hand I will also adjust an encounter if I know they will run over it despite it being APL +3


Kydeem de'Morcaine wrote:
A bunch of stuff I feel the same about...

Seriously, this is why I always run homebrew when I can. I occasionally run APs when asked, but only if they have a plot that interests me, such as Iron Gods (want all 6 books NOW!), Shattered Star, Carrion Crown, Jade Regent, and Curse of the Crimson Throne. Beyond that, I run my own home made stuff... Where the encounters and plot of the world are already set, and it's up to the party to figure out how to get around X, stop Y, and kill Z.

As you say... Why would the lich with a typical wizard's tower NOT use his vast resources to ensure his projects and experiments remain undisturbed by nosy adventurers? It makes no logical sense.

That said, I have no problem is the PCs can trounce one or two mid-bosses/events of the entire adventure... What I have a problem with is when they trounce the entire adventure. That's when I start seriously adjusting things.

That said, in the vein of "OMG Everything's OP! /sarcasm"... It seems Metamagic Rods are now OP! Well DUH! The COMMONER is OP! That's it! Next time people show up to game, EVERYTHING IS BANNED!

Silver Crusade

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Everything is overpowered!/
And it shouldn't be a problem if you work as a team!/
Everything is overpowered!/
Fixing it is a dream!/song


I feel like people are getting off-track. I mean, everything is in dire need of nerfing to re-balance the set-up. I propose that the E1 given in this thread doesn't go far enough. The players must be forced to amputate their limbs and blind themselves before play and roll dice by grabbing them with their teeth, if they can find them.
And no communicating with each other.

For goodness' sake, I hope no one takes that seriously.

Really though, as given here - most issues are due to a lack of correct adjustment. You're hardly going to challenge the party with a river crossing when flight is an option. A Paladin will just eat Carrion Crown and shrug, run as is. And that'd be great, if the entire campaign wasn't like that. On the other hand, Kingmaker doesn't accommodate them so easily.
A wizard can be argued to have the means to respond to everything, but really, shut down magic and they're little more than a pretentious commoner (that said, such a move lacks finesse; aim at certain aspects - mind-affecting immunity anyone?).
So to put it, everything in the game is rock in some equation. With appropriate scissors and paper. Sadly, with the sheer breadth of things; many people fail to identify paper since most mechanics are written with salience to their scissors.


Physically Unfeasible wrote:


Really though, as given here - most issues are due to a lack of correct adjustment. You're hardly going to challenge the party with a river crossing when flight is an option. A Paladin will just eat Carrion Crown and shrug, run as is. And that'd be great, if the entire campaign wasn't like that. On the other hand, Kingmaker doesn't accommodate them so easily.
A wizard can be argued to have the means to respond to everything, but really, shut down magic and they're little more than a pretentious commoner (that said, such a move lacks finesse; aim at certain aspects - mind-affecting immunity anyone?).
So to put it, everything in the game is rock in some equation. With appropriate scissors and paper. Sadly, with the sheer breadth of things; many people fail to identify paper since most mechanics are written with salience to their scissors.

But with a basic rock vs rock battle you can at least understand what the complaint is.

-MD

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber

I believe that the power creep we see in most RPG system is not due to RPG developer decisions, or at least intentional from basic design perspective, but rather due to the catering of society's wishes.

As a society, we have become "hit first, talk later". We value classes that provide a clear game mechanics advantage over classes that provide "fluff" or "prestige". We are going further and further away from a Howard the Duck or Goonies puzzle solving investigative adventure and more to a combat based resolution of all problems.

Not sure if a show like MacGiver would work these days - we are stamping out creativity and ingenuity everywhere we find it in favor of standardization and level playing fields. In Pathfinder, fighting is how you get your point across, despite the very detailed and colorful NPC development performed in every adventure. As a DM, I see all those beautifully fleshed out NPCs as absolute waste when the adventure calls to have the PCs destroy them. Perhaps the setting would be best served by less "EVIL STUPID" NPCs and more "EVIL REASONABLE" NPCs. Despite being evil, most of these NPCs will love their children, some will like beer, and other will have a sweet tooth. Sure, maybe a small percentage of them will be un-redeemable monsters hellbent on rampaging that should be shackled for the rest of their lives and not let within 500 ft of other sentient creatures. But most adventures I see from Paizo have beautifully crafted NPC backgrounds, and it should be ok for good aligned PC to resolve things without combat.

I remember many years ago when it was kinda standard for the good guys to issue warnings of surrender to the bad guys. Nowadays, not so much as far as I can tell: you don't want to waste that one attack during surprise round on such as silly thing like talking to the bad guy!


Wrath wrote:
RL tables aren't sterile environments where conditions remain constant between rolls. It effectively means any stat analysis is pointless for reality (but do make good reads at times for things to be prepared for if arguments pop up).

I don't particularly agree with this, but I do feel that theorycrafting generally has to be tempered with playtesting to hold much weight.

However, the same goes in reverse. Claims that something is or isn't working just fine at the home table, without the ability or willingness to analyze and discuss why that is the case, are of little value for balancing the game.


Muad'Dib wrote:

But with a basic rock vs rock battle you can at least understand what the complaint is.

-MD

It's "why are these kids hurling rocks at each other?! Someone stop them before they get hurt!", right?

Jokes aside, I can see the idea of that; but failing something being underpowered, I'd say you never have an issue of rock vs rock in PF. The only example I can think of where a class is outclassed completely on all fronts by some classes is the Rogue, where the argument primarily exists from the Rogue having deficiencies, as opposed to something being very strong.


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Physically Unfeasible wrote:
Muad'Dib wrote:

But with a basic rock vs rock battle you can at least understand what the complaint is.

-MD

It's "why are these kids hurling rocks at each other?! Someone stop them before they get hurt!", right?

Jokes aside, I can see the idea of that; but failing something being underpowered, I'd say you never have an issue of rock vs rock in PF. The only example I can think of where a class is outclassed completely on all fronts by some classes is the Rogue, where the argument primarily exists from the Rogue having deficiencies, as opposed to something being very strong.

You and Purple Dragon Knight both touch on something.

unfortunately much of modern fantasy gaming stresses a parity between the classes. You even stress this in your comment about the Rogue being underpowered. Much like MMO's the worth of a class is determined in combat.

In the early RPG's the class value was in the role/function it played for the team. No one would argue in 1st or 2nd edition D&D that a 10th level thief could take on a 10th level warrior in one on one combat. In no scenario would that thief leave that combat alive. However the thief's scouting and trap finding was vital to a group. Each and every class filled a role and was respected for that role. Combat was not the only way to measure one's value. The warriors skills just happened to be in fighting. That was his function.

In modern games that class respect is only given to how much damage the they can do. And thanks in large part to MMO's young players expect all classes to have some measure of combat parity.

-MD


Artemis Moonstar wrote:
Kydeem de'Morcaine wrote:
A bunch of stuff I feel the same about...
Seriously, this is why I always run homebrew when I can. ...

Wish I could. I just no longer have the time or dedication required for that. That was kinda the point of purchased AP's or modules in the first place. "Hey I can just spend a few hours reading and mapping then we're good to go!"


Purple Dragon Knight wrote:

I believe that the power creep we see in most RPG system is not due to RPG developer decisions, or at least intentional from basic design perspective, but rather due to the catering of society's wishes.

As a society, we have become "hit first, talk later". We value classes that provide a clear game mechanics advantage over classes that provide "fluff" or "prestige". We are going further and further away from a Howard the Duck or Goonies puzzle solving investigative adventure and more to a combat based resolution of all problems.

Not sure if a show like MacGiver would work these days - we are stamping out creativity and ingenuity everywhere we find it in favor of standardization and level playing fields. In Pathfinder, fighting is how you get your point across, despite the very detailed and colorful NPC development performed in every adventure. As a DM, I see all those beautifully fleshed out NPCs as absolute waste when the adventure calls to have the PCs destroy them. Perhaps the setting would be best served by less "EVIL STUPID" NPCs and more "EVIL REASONABLE" NPCs. Despite being evil, most of these NPCs will love their children, some will like beer, and other will have a sweet tooth. Sure, maybe a small percentage of them will be un-redeemable monsters hellbent on rampaging that should be shackled for the rest of their lives and not let within 500 ft of other sentient creatures. But most adventures I see from Paizo have beautifully crafted NPC backgrounds, and it should be ok for good aligned PC to resolve things without combat.

I remember many years ago when it was kinda standard for the good guys to issue warnings of surrender to the bad guys. Nowadays, not so much as far as I can tell: you don't want to waste that one attack during surprise round on such as silly thing like talking to the bad guy!

I am not entirely sure what you're trying to say here. Are you saying that people don't look to fluff, don't try to reason with NPCs or try to not murderhobo everything? 'Cause I see a lot of people trying to dodo that sorta stuff. In fact, I'm not entirely sure what any of this has to do with the notion of things being overpowered or not.

'Cause I mean, like, if you're in a system, and that system has rules, there's things you can do and things you can't. And I mean everyone can be creative, just some people get more toolboxes than others. I also find it funny you mention the thing about giving warnings or talking to enemies, as I have seen plenty of GMs and scenarios call for ways to prevent PCs from trying that. Heck, I once saw a guy who had a houserule that if you tried to talk to an enemy, they get a surprise round, so I'm not sure if that's the players being murderhobos or just being conditioned to not try those things.


MechE_ wrote:
The game needs to remain fun for all involved, and if one character is significantly overshadowing the others, no matter how rules legal it may be, it is highly likely that someone will be unhappy in time. In this case, it's best to talk out any concerns, person to person, preferably before it becomes a major problem.

And sometimes, people need to learn that just because you aren't the center of attention every freakin' second doesn't mean you're being overshadowed. Honestly, it's the loudmouthed Barbarian that takes center-stage most of the time. Because he's loud-mouthed and amusingly insane. Just ask his harpy girlfriend.

And that's just fine, because he's fun.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber
Muad'Dib wrote:
Physically Unfeasible wrote:
Muad'Dib wrote:

But with a basic rock vs rock battle you can at least understand what the complaint is.

-MD

It's "why are these kids hurling rocks at each other?! Someone stop them before they get hurt!", right?

Jokes aside, I can see the idea of that; but failing something being underpowered, I'd say you never have an issue of rock vs rock in PF. The only example I can think of where a class is outclassed completely on all fronts by some classes is the Rogue, where the argument primarily exists from the Rogue having deficiencies, as opposed to something being very strong.

You and Purple Dragon Knight both touch on something.

unfortunately much of modern fantasy gaming stresses a parity between the classes. You even stress this in your comment about the Rogue being underpowered. Much like MMO's the worth of a class is determined in combat.

In the early RPG's the class value was in the role/function it played for the team. No one would argue in 1st or 2nd edition D&D that a 10th level thief could take on a 10th level warrior in one on one combat. In no scenario would that thief leave that combat alive. However the thief's scouting and trap finding was vital to a group. Each and every class filled a role and was respected for that role. Combat was not the only way to measure one's value. The warriors skills just happened to be in fighting. That was his function.

In modern games that class respect is only given to how much damage the they can do. And thanks in large part to MMO's young players expect all classes to have some measure of combat parity.

-MD

I'm starting to realize that all the "Rogues are under powered" arguments do in fact look at the rogue as a single, puny, scrawny little street mouse, as opposed to the rat swarm that is a thieve's guild. Maybe this is partly due to Pathfinder going away from the home campaign concept in favor of Adventure Paths... When I ran Council of Thieves years ago, I was fully expecting lots of stuff related to thieve's guilds, and the rise of the PCs within such a guild... to my disappointment, the PCs were not involved with the guild, but rather were the appointed guild smashers.

If APs in the future could contain a "if you are a rogue section" or "if you are a druid" section, which info on local guilds and druid circles, etc., and how a PC can leverage those organisations at various levels, that would be a step in the right direction.

(i.e. yes, you can be an underpowered rogue again, 'cause you have lots of other underpowered rogues that have your back! ;) )


I always wondered; Normally my players are noobs so I don't have to worry about it, but if power gets out of hand what happens when the NPCs start showing up with similar power?

For example; people have problems with higher level wizards because they can do anything but unless your level of power is particularly rare wouldn't the enemy have god wizards too? What happens when you Scry and Teleport only to find that the enemy has been scrying you ever since you set off some magical alarms and immediately casts Black Tentacles? Do the threats and counter threats just escalate beyond reason? In that case wouldn't nothing be overpowered because everything in the setting is overpowered now?

I've had this problem with a party of all casters. Since the entire party were casters I assumed that casters were frequent enough for enemies to have that in mind when going after them and immediately target CMD and Fort saves and Con scores, going straight for wands/holy symbols to disarm and chucking status effects that hinder casting. I consistently had to hold back because the party got murdered pretty fast.


swoosh wrote:
Simon Legrande wrote:

Given the complexity of the rules for every version of D&D, including Pathfinder, it is not unreasonable to say that the systems are designed for people with above average intelligence. The "problem" is that it is played by people who aren't. Obviously this isn't a real problem, it's just a matter of perception. When a person of above average intelligence makes full use of something geared towards him/her a person of lesser intelligence will generally see it as unfair because they can't grasp the mechanics at the same level.

Cries of "OVERPOWERED!!!11!1!!11!" simply indicate that not everyone at the table is playing at the same level. That isn’t a mechanics problem, it's a player problem.

It does go both ways.

Lots of threads on this forum consist of someone presenting reasonable argument as to why a class is problematic than three or four people showing up and shouting "NUH UH POOPYHEAD ITS FINE PATHFIDNER IS THE BEST GAME EVER (sic)" over and over until the thread gets locked.

Swoosh, I would ask that you please stop quoting me. Just because I happened to get 9 other threads locked with that comment doesn't mean its not justified.


Muad'Dib wrote:
Physically Unfeasible wrote:
Muad'Dib wrote:

But with a basic rock vs rock battle you can at least understand what the complaint is.

-MD

It's "why are these kids hurling rocks at each other?! Someone stop them before they get hurt!", right?

Jokes aside, I can see the idea of that; but failing something being underpowered, I'd say you never have an issue of rock vs rock in PF. The only example I can think of where a class is outclassed completely on all fronts by some classes is the Rogue, where the argument primarily exists from the Rogue having deficiencies, as opposed to something being very strong.

You and Purple Dragon Knight both touch on something.

unfortunately much of modern fantasy gaming stresses a parity between the classes. You even stress this in your comment about the Rogue being underpowered. Much like MMO's the worth of a class is determined in combat.

In the early RPG's the class value was in the role/function it played for the team. No one would argue in 1st or 2nd edition D&D that a 10th level thief could take on a 10th level warrior in one on one combat. In no scenario would that thief leave that combat alive. However the thief's scouting and trap finding was vital to a group. Each and every class filled a role and was respected for that role. Combat was not the only way to measure one's value. The warriors skills just happened to be in fighting. That was his function.

In modern games that class respect is only given to how much damage the they can do. And thanks in large part to MMO's young players expect all classes to have some measure of combat parity.

-MD

You say that, but my premise was not, by far, solely based on combat. Yes, it is considered to be poor at delivering in combat excepting very specific set ups*, but consider what else we might expect it to be competent at:

Cover a wide array of skills.
Find traps.
Scout.
Etc.
In each of these, I can options that will cover these quite comfortably and be better in various aspects. That is where the problem comes in. It does fill a role, but that role can be stolen from it. An issue endemic to it as options increase.
That said, it's not fair to say "this option limited creation is exacerbated by increased options elsewhere." So, being fair - going beyond core and considering more than combat, the Rogue does manage to fill a cross-section of tasks with an ease that isn't so easy to match (its competence in various roles boosted by talents). Perhaps it isn't a combat beast but it has use; and this is where role comes in and should be highlighted.
Anyway, I'm disgressing heavily by going on and on about one little thing.
The problem is that combat has, as you and Purple Dragon Knight (and I'd like to think myself), are touching on - the normative is that combat dominates more of the scene than it has previously. Part of this being a paradigm I have seen that combat is the only thing you expect in a campaign. Not that combat is the sole activity, but that all else may or may not occur, combat is guaranteed.
Such a paradigm, inevitably means players work to be good at combat and assess it primarily because it is the salient part of the game. As someone has said above, situational power is recognised far more quickly and the situation of combat being the salient one means that situational combat power is the most salient power in the game. Ergo, endless arguments on it.

*However, this by no means, means the Rogue (or any such class looked at as bad) is terminally useless at combat. The problem arises more with things like organised play. Which, while a novel idea, reduces the ability of a GM to compensate for disparities and encourages play with strangers for short periods. The latter is problematic because it promotes less strategic play; the former because it means those who use less versatile classes never have strengths played to.

Incoming list of things I am vastly wrong about!


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Everything is Awesome


Malwing wrote:
I've had this problem with a party of all casters. Since the entire party were casters I assumed that casters were frequent enough for enemies to have that in mind when going after them and immediately target CMD and Fort saves and Con scores, going straight for wands/holy symbols to disarm and chucking status effects that hinder casting. I consistently had to hold back because the party got murdered pretty fast.

That sir, is what we call an arms race. Kudos for holding back on victory.

I remember a very good post (or blog) I saw once that pointed out that with higher power levels, a simple mano-a-mano combat is insufficient for actually presenting threats. The players can scry and fry and, as you offered, it can just be turned around and done likewise.
But (in a poor attempt to make the point) consider: If the villain is so powerful, where are the minions? Don't these guys have anything to manage? Seems rather poor work if you ask me. Can't go having some big evil plan without underlings to carry out details. Just not doing it right.
As to the players; alright - so they can kill the big bad. But what is going to happen while they devote time to that? Who wants a hero to save the world if they're going to die in the meantime? Would take all your personal investment out of the adventure really. Heck, at least that villain guy was going to make your body useful as an undead slave. The heroes were just going to have a party while claiming it's so very sad your village got burned. Dicks.
Heck, such a wide problem seems a good way to curb the excesses that 9th level casters can be capable of. Make them actually use the toolbox they have rather than just the hammer.

Edit: Because I never addressed the highlighted bit: Really, the option is to do the same, I'd have thought. Don't just use a hammer. The NPCs don't want to die either, wouldn't you prepare defence before risking offence when the stakes are so ridiculously high?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Expressing your opinion on messageboards is overpowered.


Kydeem de'Morcaine wrote:


Wish I could. I just no longer have the time or dedication required for that. That was kinda the point of purchased AP's or modules in the first place. "Hey I can just spend a few hours reading and mapping then we're good to go!"

I can understand what you're saying here. But it also is saying something else.

"I do not have/want to spend the time necessary to create adventures and conflicts that are complex and challenging to players who are exploring what exactly can be done with unusual combinations or choices, so we're going to do APs and modules. SO, you players, DON'T do the combination thingy. It will upset the applecart."

If you're going to be running prepublished stuff you need to understand that the choices your players are making aren't "overpowered" they are simply playing the game on different setting. The AP is medium difficulty and they're prepping for expert. It's important for the DM to be open about what running APs should likely mean in campaign. Unless everyone involved wants to simply to walk through the stories on God Mode they probably need to tone down their choices much the same way the DM did.

I've done it in my games. I don't run pre-published, I do straight homebrew settings. BUT, I have three players who are SICK GENIUSES when it comes to creating frighteningly effective mechanical builds. I consistently run CR+4 and they are rarely actually challenged. So, I've had to accept the fact that I cannot match them for sheer cleverness and asked them to tone it down. They have. Are they still pretty damn scary? Oh hell yes. But not as sickingly so as in the past. And we all seem to be having fun.

Communication, pretty awesome stuff.


blackbloodtroll wrote:

Expressing your opinion on messageboards is overpowered.

Having and opinion to share is overpowered.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Muad'Dib wrote:


In modern games that class respect is only given to how much damage the they can do. And thanks in large part to MMO's young players expect all classes to have some measure of combat parity.

-MD

Given that pathfinder is a combat centric game that's not an unreasonable assumption to make though. Plus it doesn't help that when it comes to "other stuff" usually someone else can just do that better than the 'bad' class too.

You don't need to be a new player to complain about a class not being good. The whole bit about there being some split between old, smart, wise players who know the game is perfect and new, dumb idiots who only care about combat is honestly getting a bit trite, at least IMO.


Physically Unfeasible wrote:
Malwing wrote:
I've had this problem with a party of all casters. Since the entire party were casters I assumed that casters were frequent enough for enemies to have that in mind when going after them and immediately target CMD and Fort saves and Con scores, going straight for wands/holy symbols to disarm and chucking status effects that hinder casting. I consistently had to hold back because the party got murdered pretty fast.

That sir, is what we call an arms race. Kudos for holding back on victory.

I remember a very good post (or blog) I saw once that pointed out that with higher power levels, a simple mano-a-mano combat is insufficient for actually presenting threats. The players can scry and fry and, as you offered, it can just be turned around and done likewise.
But (in a poor attempt to make the point) consider: If the villain is so powerful, where are the minions? Don't these guys have anything to manage? Seems rather poor work if you ask me. Can't go having some big evil plan without underlings to carry out details. Just not doing it right.
As to the players; alright - so they can kill the big bad. But what is going to happen while they devote time to that? Who wants a hero to save the world if they're going to die in the meantime? Would take all your personal investment out of the adventure really. Heck, at least that villain guy was going to make your body useful as an undead slave. The heroes were just going to have a party while claiming it's so very sad your village got burned. Dicks.
Heck, such a wide problem seems a good way to curb the excesses that 9th level casters can be capable of. Make them actually use the toolbox they have rather than just the hammer.

Edit: Because I never addressed the highlighted bit: Really, the option is to do the same, I'd have thought. Don't just use a hammer. The NPCs don't want to die either, wouldn't you prepare defence before risking offence when the stakes are so ridiculously high?

Minions are the main reason why my players don't get 15 minute workdays. They come across a lot of CR= 1/2 x APL before hitting some bigger things. Also they hit big bads surrounded by 'royal guards' specialized in disabling enemies.

But I guess the better question is, when players get overpowered does this mean that the 'hate to lose' and wouldn't like constant counter escalation or that they like arms race games? I had a party who had two full casters relying heavily on Black Tentacles, so I created a minion that was a Barbarian with the Highest CMD I could muster at that level and he nearly TPKed the group before I made them roll wisdom/knowledge checks for meta information against him. They didn't like that.


swoosh wrote:
Muad'Dib wrote:


In modern games that class respect is only given to how much damage the they can do. And thanks in large part to MMO's young players expect all classes to have some measure of combat parity.

-MD

Given that pathfinder is a combat centric game that's not an unreasonable assumption to make though. Plus it doesn't help that when it comes to "other stuff" usually someone else can just do that better than the 'bad' class too.

You don't need to be a new player to complain about a class not being good. The whole bit about there being some split between old, smart, wise players who know the game is perfect and new, dumb idiots who only care about combat is honestly getting a bit trite, at least IMO.

And that goes back to the point that someone made earlier that character classes don't have defined niches anymore.


Malwing wrote:
But I guess the better question is, when players get overpowered does this mean that they 'hate to lose' and wouldn't like constant counter escalation or that they like arms race games? I had a party who had two full casters relying heavily on Black Tentacles, so I created a minion that was a Barbarian with the Highest CMD I could muster at that level and he nearly TPKed the group before I made them roll wisdom/knowledge checks for meta information against him. They didn't like that.

The highlighted bit is really a personality question. I can't answer it any more than I can answer if someone asked the empirical formula for DNA. I'd need to study every individual case, between the vast different information each time.

Even then,, I'm not sure I'd get it right.

Heck, being on topic - it's why "x is overpowered because y happened" is the often flawed way the parodied discussion opens. And usually (to my experience) it's followed by someone wanting more context. All cases vary.


swoosh wrote:
Muad'Dib wrote:


In modern games that class respect is only given to how much damage the they can do. And thanks in large part to MMO's young players expect all classes to have some measure of combat parity.

-MD

Given that pathfinder is a combat centric game that's not an unreasonable assumption to make though. Plus it doesn't help that when it comes to "other stuff" usually someone else can just do that better than the 'bad' class too.

You don't need to be a new player to complain about a class not being good. The whole bit about there being some split between old, smart, wise players who know the game is perfect and new, dumb idiots who only care about combat is honestly getting a bit trite, at least IMO.

Come on Swoosh, be fair. I never said I was old & wise nor did I claim new players are dumb idiots.

You unfairly are dismissing the concern of a fellow hobbyist and not taking a moment to consider the other points of view.

Look, I get it you love PF. I'm happy for you. Fact is I enjoy it as well...just not past level 8 lol.

-MD


Craig Bonham 141 wrote:
Kydeem de'Morcaine wrote:


Wish I could. I just no longer have the time or dedication required for that. That was kinda the point of purchased AP's or modules in the first place. "Hey I can just spend a few hours reading and mapping then we're good to go!"

I can understand what you're saying here. But it also is saying something else.

"I do not have/want to spend the time necessary to create adventures and conflicts that are complex and challenging to players who are exploring what exactly can be done with unusual combinations or choices, so we're going to do APs and modules. SO, you players, DON'T do the combination thingy. It will upset the applecart."

If you're going to be running prepublished stuff you need to understand that the choices your players are making aren't "overpowered" they are simply playing the game on different setting. The AP is medium difficulty and they're prepping for expert. It's important for the DM to be open about what running APs should likely mean in campaign. Unless everyone involved wants to simply to walk through the stories on God Mode they probably need to tone down their choices much the same way the DM did.

...

Communication, pretty awesome stuff.

I do adjust/re-write many of the AP encounters. It just means we can only game every other week rather than every week.

Hmm...
Well I would say the AP's I've read are on easy mode not even medium.

I could ask my players (when I am the GM) to tone down their PC builds. I have other concerns about that.
I have one guy that gets very upset about any restrictions in building his PC's. I still put in restrictions when helpful to the campaign, but he always complains about it. On the other hand even with every option he still is usually not the most powerful guy.
The group is just learning to stay in relatively the same ball park of optimization combat power level. I think if asked to tone it down, they would end up all over the place from very nearly the best of the current to so gimped nearly non-functional.
Plus I know many people really enjoy the building of effective characters. I don't want to reduce their level of satisfaction.

I will just continue to re-write even if it takes much more time for me to prep.


Our only experts are bards...and corn.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber
HarbinNick wrote:
Our only experts are bards...and corn.

Only, our bards are not real bards (you can't bring an auto-tuner studio on the battlefield) and thus pretty much have the nutrition value of corn

Paizo Glitterati Robot

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Removed a post and the replies to it. Don't drop contentious real world topics into threads like this.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Corn is overpowered. I mean, it's so powerful it has a second name: Maize.

Maze is an 8th level spell. I don't think I need to go into detail of how getting an 8th level spell as a racial ability is overpowered.

I don't know what Paizo was thinking.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Non-NPC Classes are overpowered.

Feats are overpowered.


Simon Legrande wrote:


And that goes back to the point that someone made earlier that character classes don't have defined niches anymore.

That's very true too. Every spellcaster is expected to be carrying around SoL, buffs/debuffs and/or battlefield control... and every martial is expected to get in the right spot and full attack over and over.

Half casters get a bit of a break by being able to mix and match the above two, but even so it ends up being very easy to make a class feel "overpowered" or "underpowered" simply because there's only a few things a class needs to do on its own.

And of course, that's all compounded by a design that emphasizes over-generalization. Too many classes are designed with the intent at being strong in combat, strong support and skillful all at the same time. That both degenerates niches (because you don't really have a niche when half the classes are supposed to be at least decent at everything) and creates a lot of the overpowered/underpowered language.

That is to say, when worrying that the support and skillmonkies have enough raw combat power, the pure combat classes who sacrifice in other areas sometimes feel like they're not exactly getting a fair trade anymore and I think it's a big part of the reason we see some of the bitter "fighters suck" style language.


D20 is overpowered. I think we should use d12's. Think about it, if you are playing a crit fishing character then you threaten a crit on 15-20! That's 3/4 of the difference between d12 and d20! Only the d20 has 15-20 on it so if we switch to d12's then it wouldn't be so overpowered.

Plus casters would get better because it would be harder to make saves than with those stupid OP d20's. Casters are the only not overpowered thing in the game, they need a buff.


blackbloodtroll wrote:

Non-NPC Classes are overpowered.

Feats are overpowered.

No way dude, NPC classes are OP too. Heal as a 5th level spell? Really?


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Pencils and papers are overpowered! EVERYONE MUST NOW WRITE IN BLOOD! The more you write, the less powerful the player becomes, till he passes out from blood loss!


CrystalSpellblade wrote:
Pencils and papers are overpowered! EVERYONE MUST NOW WRITE IN BLOOD! The more you write, the less powerful the player becomes, till he passes out from blood loss!

Hemoglobin is overpowered, in order to write in blood you need to covert all your oxygen carrying proteins to hemocyanin.


CrystalSpellblade wrote:
Pencils and papers are overpowered! EVERYONE MUST NOW WRITE IN BLOOD! The more you write, the less powerful the player becomes, till he passes out from blood loss!

Blood is overpowered; it's part of blood money!


Look at these spineless GMs letting their players write things down.

Pfff

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