Do you actually care about Balance?


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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It is a pretty bold claim to say that everyone who says the rogue does not get sneak attack much has been playing wrong, or has not thought of invisibility potions (For one attack?).

What are the right feats btw? Maybe everyone has been wrong for years!

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

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Dark_Mistress wrote:
Except how the GM runs will always trump the game system. If someone makes a beast of a combat character in a game, no matter the game system. Then if all the GM runs is social encounters and investigations, said combat beast will never have a moment to shine regardless of the rules.

This actually kind of works against its own premise. Regardless of what style of game a GM runs, the wizard will be able to participate, and do so very well. So will the druid, the cleric, the summoner and a few other classes with similar capabilities. Conversely, it's really easy for the GM to create a game where the Fighter finds he has nothing to do, or where even when the game is presenting a challenge that's in his wheelhouse, for him to find that the guy who had the spotlight during the non-combat encounters is equally or more effective in combat as well.

If the GM is having to force spotlight balance, it means that he's got to create these deus ex machina contrivances to allow Jimmy the Shoeshine Boy to feel just as important as Dr. Manhattan from the Watchmen. The reality, of course, is that Dr. Manhattan is an NPC, because it would be impossible to tell a good story where he hits the streets with Silk Spectre, Nite Owl, and Rorschach. Unfortunately, Pathfinder doesn't really acknowledge that and instead presents Rorschach as an equally valid option to Dr. Manhattan (or vice versa), where the two of them can hit the streets together. Only the most contrived scenario where Dr. Manhattan decides to humor Rorschach by not looking into the future, incinerating the bad guys, etc. would actually allow those two to successfully share a group narrative. Even in the movie where Dr. Manhattan's vision of the future is clouded by a cleverly contrived scenario, he's still not actually "adventuring" with the other characters, because again, there would be no movie if he were, just a bunch of scenes where DM goes around solving things before anyone else gets a chance to chip in.
It works in that movie, because the characters all have their own screen time and there's little need for the fighters and rogues to cooperate with the god-like being creating his own cities on inhospitable planets. It doesn't work in a tabletop RPG where everyone is expected to be roughly equal contributors telling a continuous story from the same perspective.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

My personal opinion on balance in RPGs -

I have a great deal of experience with a lot of tabletop games since 1980. Balance and equality are somewhat important, or at least being on the same page.

Although there is a discrepancy of power with Pathfinder by-the-book PCs, it is nowhere as great as the power discrepancy possible in Rifts, or superhero tabletop games. As long as the players have fun, feel useful, and have a concept that isn't constantly overshadowed by another player's PC, all is well.

The illusion of balance is paramount, so I often set out campaign rules for making characters for a particular campaign. Some might go off the rails (25 level PCs, rolled stats, and lots of special snowflake options for those wanting to play half-celestials, or young dragons). Some might have a gritty, no-hero feel (1st level NPC classes with a 10 point stat array. Don't get attached because your PCs are going to be playing fantasy horror victims. Bring backup PCs). Still, it is important that PCs have the same chances to select from a certain expectation for a campaign, and for players to have a character creation session so they can plan together.

I'm not saying Pathfinder lacks balance issues, they just seem very minor to me when compared to the balance issues I had while running or playing superhero RPGs.


Liranys wrote:
Orfamay Quest wrote:


It would be one thing if the rogue archetype came with a warning label saying in large print "THE SURGEON GENERAL HAS DETERMINED THAT THE CHANCES OF YOUR RELIABLY GETTING SNEAK ATTACK DAMAGE IN COMBAT AGAINST A LEVEL-APPROPRIATE FOE ARE SMALL." As is, many people look at the possibility of getting a fist full of bonus dice, not realizing how hard it is to set up and how much your lack of BAB hampers your chance to hit successfully, and they think it's a lot better than it is.

If they aren't getting sneak attack damage in combat against level-appropriate foes, they're playing the rogue wrong or haven't taken the right feats.

My rogue got it all the time against level-appropriate foes. You just need a Flank buddy! Or invisibility potions.

I once played a ninja with a big WBL bonus and 5 gestalted class levels to get martial maneuvers as a Swordsage. Those last two factors are why she was able to sneak attack most (not 100%) of the time. Downing extra potions or dumping a lot into scrolls wouldn't have helped either. Your supposition of "Your result is different so you're doing it wrong" is in error.


Cerberus Seven wrote:


My rogue got it all the time against level-appropriate foes. You just need a Flank buddy! Or invisibility potions.
I once played a ninja with a big WBL bonus and 5 gestalted class levels to get martial maneuvers as a Swordsage. Those last two factors are why she was able to sneak attack most (not 100%) of the time. Downing extra potions or dumping a lot into scrolls wouldn't have helped either. Your supposition of "Your result is different so you're doing it wrong" is in error.

By "doing it wrong" I meant they weren't taking full advantage of the class. The BEST way to sneak attack an opponent is to flank them. There are feats that make flanking easier. There are also feats that make stealth easier (skill focus, etc). My point is, if this person is RARELY sneak attacking, then they aren't using the full potential of the class. I was able to sneak attack on a regular basis, but not all the time. And an invisibility potion is almost always an auto-sneak attack because they can't see you. Only if the monster your fighting has some kind of ability that negates that does it not succeed, and there really aren't a whole lot of those.

There are ways to do things and then there are ways to do things. Some ways get better results. Either that, or the player's dice absolutely hate them.


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CWheezy wrote:

It is a pretty bold claim to say that everyone who says the rogue does not get sneak attack much has been playing wrong, or has not thought of invisibility potions (For one attack?).

What are the right feats btw? Maybe everyone has been wrong for years!

With a decent bluff, and feats or a flanking buddy and a feat, or a mage and a spell our rogue can get SA almost all the time.


DrDeth wrote:
CWheezy wrote:

It is a pretty bold claim to say that everyone who says the rogue does not get sneak attack much has been playing wrong, or has not thought of invisibility potions (For one attack?).

What are the right feats btw? Maybe everyone has been wrong for years!

With a decent bluff, and feats or a flanking buddy and a feat, or a mage and a spell our rogue can get SA almost all the time.

Exactly my point. It's possible if feats and skills are taken full advantage of. If the rogue is still not sneak attacking, then the DM isn't understanding the rules for the Rogue abilities or is being a total dick.


I care about balance.

I GM quite regularly in my group. I run APs because I don't have enough time to make my own games.

In one of my groups in the past, one PC destroyed most encounters in the AP I was running. There was an imbalance between PC power and the encounters in the AP.

I tried to ask the player to tone down the character, but most of the players really liked the OP character, so I had to adjust the encounters instead*. I ended up spending many hours during my free time after work trying to adjust the encounters within the AP to work with my party. Preparing the encounters was time consuming and not very fun (especially in mid-late levels).

Had the game been more balanced, maybe I could have spent those hours used in preparing for session to do something else. Or maybe that's just not possible for Pathfinder, or any Table Top RPG for that matter, and GMs just have to spend a lot of time preparing.

* During one session where I didn't adjust the encounters, most of my players were disappointed in how weak the enemy was.


Liranys wrote:
Orfamay Quest wrote:


It would be one thing if the rogue archetype came with a warning label saying in large print "THE SURGEON GENERAL HAS DETERMINED THAT THE CHANCES OF YOUR RELIABLY GETTING SNEAK ATTACK DAMAGE IN COMBAT AGAINST A LEVEL-APPROPRIATE FOE ARE SMALL." As is, many people look at the possibility of getting a fist full of bonus dice, not realizing how hard it is to set up and how much your lack of BAB hampers your chance to hit successfully, and they think it's a lot better than it is.

If they aren't getting sneak attack damage in combat against level-appropriate foes, they're playing the rogue wrong or haven't taken the right feats.

My rogue got it all the time against level-appropriate foes. You just need a Flank buddy! Or invisibility potions.

Sneak Attacks are essentially a kind gift the GM gives you or a early occurrence that no longer happens without intense investment after 5th level.

There's just a massive list of counter tactics to being Sneak Attacked it's simply not funny. Any kind of concealment, compact hallways/corners, blindsight/tremorsense(In regards to stealth or invisibility), moving away, difficult terrain, the 6 monster types who are simply not affected, uncanny dodge...

And then we get to the crux of the problem later on too. A high level Rogue without sneak attack does damage equivalent to a 1st level Barbarian or Fighter when they don't get sneak attack. At that point they're just a glorified expert in a stage of the game where Skills just aren't as handy anymore.

Meh. Seeing how Paizo saw fit to not add any Rogue Talents in the ACG and only two lackluster archetypes, I've simply stopped caring.


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My point on "balance" is the the caster/martial discrepancy has been around since 1974, in every Ed but 4th. For forty years.

I dont think it's much of a issue, since yes, casters are more powerful at the highest levels- where few games are played, and weaker at the lower levels, where more playing happens. There is little issue in the games I play in, and according to the Devs, little or no issue with it in their games.

For forty years, D&D has been by far the best selling RPG in the business. Same balance issues. Only one Edition "fixed" the balance issue, and that is the most controversial Edition of all- 4th. There are many RPGs out there which are "balanced" but they are gathering dust on the 25% shelf at your FLGS.

Some posters here have claimed to see a huge balance problem, while other have stated there is no significant issue.

Thus, there's only a few possibilities:

either "Balance" is not a very important issue in the minds of the game-buying public.

Or

the game is far out of balance at only a few tables

OR

the issue is blown out of proportion by a few posters

OR

some combo of the three. I suspect a combo of #2 & 3, myself. I think a few of posters here have seen this issue become a problem, and have thus become a crusader about it.

That being said; PF and D&D is not gonna change. The caster/martial disparity (at least at high levels) is part of the game, now. The game buying public do not see it as a big issue, nor do the Devs in their own games. Thus, there's no reason to change, just to make a few people happy (if indeed, that would even work).

So-why the outrage over it? Why the claim that Pathfinder is at fault?

Why not just play another system, or 4th edition?


voideternal wrote:


* During one session where I didn't adjust the encounters, most of my players were disappointed in how weak the enemy was.

In those situations, run APs meant for higher level characters. Sometimes that's the easiest solution. It's much easier to tone a monster down during a game than make him tougher.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Liranys wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
With a decent bluff, and feats or a flanking buddy and a feat, or a mage and a spell our rogue can get SA almost all the time.
Exactly my point. It's possible if feats and skills are taken full advantage of. If the rogue is still not sneak attacking, then the DM isn't understanding the rules for the Rogue abilities or is being a total dick.

This isn't a thread about the Rogue class specifically, so I'll say my piece and be done.

I have to actually build and play my characters specifically to support the rogue. Otherwise, I find that flank opportunities don't come up enough, and when they do other characters kill the enemy before the Rogue can attack. And when he does attack, he still has to hit, which is a rare occasion.

So I disagree that the DM is at fault for a Rogue not getting sneak attack. Much of the blame is on the class itself.

Shadow Lodge

DrDeth wrote:
Why not just play another system, or 4th edition?

Because they aren't balanced either. This attitude of 'the game doesn't have to be balanced' is endemic to the entire tabletop roleplaying genre.


Scavion wrote:
the 6 monster types who are simply not affected,

which six are those?


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DrDeth wrote:
Why not just play another system, or 4th edition?

Paizo is more than capable of creating incredibly well balanced classes that are true testaments to DnD Design that are capable but not all encompassing in both areas of the game, out of combat and combat. It is most unfortunate that they haven't been skewing more classes towards these well designed classes.


TriOmegaZero wrote:


So I disagree that the DM is at fault for a Rogue not getting sneak attack. Much of the blame is on the class itself.

I will admit that you have to have the right mix of characters for the rogue to work. I've been lucky and have never had the wrong mix as I only play a rogue if I know what the other players are playing and if there's the right mix involved. Plus, having a Bard in the party with a rogue is a TOTAL plus. Having a Bard and a Cleric is even better. The Rogue does need support characters, but it's still possible to play it and sneak attack.

And I have seen a DM make it impossible to play a rogue well because the DM didn't understand some of the most basic features of a rogue, like flanking = Sneak Attack damage. But that's probably a special case.

Also, a rogue has got to have a good Initiative and too many fighters can spoil flanking for a rogue because they do take down the monsters too quickly. A fighter heavy campaign is no place for a combat rogue.


DrDeth wrote:
Scavion wrote:
the 6 monster types who are simply not affected,
which six are those?

Oozes

Elementals
Incorporeals
Swarms

I forget the other two.


Scavion wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
Scavion wrote:
the 6 monster types who are simply not affected,
which six are those?

Oozes

Elementals
Incorporeals
Swarms

I forget the other two.

I believe one is Constructs

Sovereign Court

DrDeth wrote:
Only one Edition "fixed" the balance issue, and that is the most controversial Edition of all- 4th. There are many RPGs out there which are "balanced" but they are gathering dust on the 25% shelf at your FLGS.

Except 4th didn't really 'fix' the balance issues. They made them a non-issue by making all of the classes symetrical. Same amount of powers. Same amount of abilities. Defenses all within a few points of each other for both players & monsters. Etc.

There are things I like about 4th. But the symmatry of the classes is the thing I like least.

The easiest way to balance a game is to have every choice to be the same, or for each choice to have a precisely equal choice at the same time in the progression.

The problem with trying to balance Pathfinder is that the classes are asymmetrical. Classes do entirely different things. And frankly - that's what makes me like Pathfinder better than 4e. (though again - I do prefer a few things from 4e) In the end - symmetry is boring after awhile. Balanced asymmetry is awesome! However, it's hard to achieve - think of how often RTS's and other computer games have to be patched in an attempt to achieve it.

Could it be done better in Pathfinder? Yes. But most (not all) of those 'more balanced' systems out there are only more balanced, not because they're better designed, but because the choices are far more symmetrical. (And until high levels - Pathfinder isn't too bad.)


Liranys wrote:
Scavion wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
Scavion wrote:
the 6 monster types who are simply not affected,
which six are those?

Oozes

Elementals
Incorporeals
Swarms

I forget the other two.

I believe one is Constructs

I wasn't going to mention it, but many many people play the game without a full understanding of the rules. I actually find people have more fun this way before learning that they had been doing it wrong.

Constructs are not immune to Sneak Attacks.


DrDeth wrote:


Some posters here have claimed to see a huge balance problem, while other have stated there is no significant issue.

You have a huge post of false pretenses, but I will point this one out specifically. It makes it seem like there are an equal amount of people on both sides, when in fact, the opposite is true.

Here is a fun fact: A multiple other forums, pathfinder is basically accepted to be unbalanced. They don't come to paizo for a few reasons, but it is not just here that pathfinder is known to be unbalanced.


DrDeth wrote:
Scavion wrote:
the 6 monster types who are simply not affected,
which six are those?

Oozes, Elementals, Incorporeals.

Proteans are 50% resistant, as are Swarms (they can't be flanked or Feinted, leaving only Stealth/Invsiibility as an option...if then, sinc eif anything falls under the "Not able to pick out a vital spot" clause, Swarms are it).

Guess that's only 5, but the three that are flat out immune are fairly common.

Then there's others certain tactics don't work on (Vermin and mindless Undead can't be Feinted, things with All Around Vision can't be Flanked, creatures with Blindsight/Sense or Tremorsense are hard to sneak up on).

So you're spending Feat after Feat after Feat (Shadow Strike, Combat Expertise/Improved/Greater Feint, Dampen Presence) to get options to get Sneak Attack that only work sometimes against certain types of creature, and often deny you your full attack.

There's not 6 creature types IMMUNE (I believe there were in 3.5?), but there are certainly more than that that make it harder for you to get your main class feature to work than any other class in the game.


DrDeth wrote:

My point on "balance" is the the caster/martial discrepancy has been around since 1974, in every Ed but 4th. For forty years.

I dont think it's much of a issue, since yes, casters are more powerful at the highest levels- where few games are played, and weaker at the lower levels, where more playing happens.

True in 1974 but not now.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

Liranys wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
CWheezy wrote:

It is a pretty bold claim to say that everyone who says the rogue does not get sneak attack much has been playing wrong, or has not thought of invisibility potions (For one attack?).

What are the right feats btw? Maybe everyone has been wrong for years!

With a decent bluff, and feats or a flanking buddy and a feat, or a mage and a spell our rogue can get SA almost all the time.
Exactly my point. It's possible if feats and skills are taken full advantage of. If the rogue is still not sneak attacking, then the DM isn't understanding the rules for the Rogue abilities or is being a total dick.

In my personal experience, it's when the GM doesn't understand the rules that the Rogue gets more Sneak Attacks, not the other way around. Invisibility generally only gets you one sneak attack (it disappears after the first attack, so unless you snuck into flanking while you were invisible that's all you get), and flanking can be a rough proposition for the squishy little guy in leather armor. During our Rise fo the Runelords campaign, literally every time a Rogue got into the fray deep enough to flank, he died. Literally every time. There was a running gag about the replacement characters getting Sense Motive checks to have a sense about why we were looking for a new skill monkey. The cycle didn't end until our "Rogue" came back as an Oread Terra Cotta Monk with (the old) Crane Wing, the alternate racial trait that let him deflect ray attacks, and the best saves and AC in the group. It might have been overkill, but he was a little tired of being the running joke in the group (and making new characters). I'm sure that eventually he could have made it to the point where greater invisibility was an option, but surviving until then was an issue.

So, in my personal opinion, if you played a Rogue who was regularly sneak attacking and not getting murdered, it was probably your GM who didn't know what he was doing, or who intentionally threw softballs so the Rogue could feel better about himself. Even Jason Buhlman at the PaizoCon banquet dinner stated that "the Rogue needs help and we all know it", and they wrote a book with, among other things, the stated purpose of fixing the sadly underpowered Rogue. So, even the design team knows that the Rogue isn't up to snuff.


Scavion wrote:
Liranys wrote:
Scavion wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
Scavion wrote:
the 6 monster types who are simply not affected,
which six are those?

Oozes

Elementals
Incorporeals
Swarms

I forget the other two.

I believe one is Constructs

I wasn't going to mention it, but many many people play the game without a full understanding of the rules. I actually find people have more fun this way before learning that they had been doing it wrong.

Constructs are not immune to Sneak Attacks.

There are 11 creature types. Of those, exactly one is immune to SA, ie Oozes. Not six.

There are over 50 subtypes- of those, 3 1/2 are immune. (proteans are 50% immune).

Even including subtypes, that only makes 4 1/2, of some 60. Not really a big issue.


Rynjin wrote:


There's not 6 creature types IMMUNE (I believe there were in 3.5?), but there are certainly more than that that make it harder for you to get your main class feature to work than any other class in the game.

Yeah, I may be getting confused with 3.5 again. I think Constructs were immune in 3.5 and so were Undead. It's been a while since I played the rogue or played 3.5 and I have a tendency to mix up rules once in a while.

I keep a rules lawyer around to keep me straight. lol
They actually make pretty good Co-DM's. I let him run/build the monsters and I get to do the story telling and it works out pretty good.


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Ssalarn wrote:
and flanking can be a rough proposition for the squishy little guy in leather armor.

Pssst. Rogues can wear chainshirts now. Since the year 2000, or actually before with variants.


IMHO, the problem is not that sneak attack is hard to do, the problem is the Rogues overly reliance on sneak attacks.


Man that extra +1 AC is hot stuff yo


Nicos wrote:
IMHO, the problem is not that sneak attack is hard to do, the problem is the Rogues overly reliance on sneak attacks.

I agree, they do rely on that a bit much, but they can still be super useful in a campaign even if they aren't doing a whole lot of damage. I prestiged mine to Shadowdancer as quickly as possible and man that class has some cool stuff. The level 3 or 4 ability (can't remember which) that allows you to shadow jump 40 ft is nice. You can sneak up on a something with tremor sense as long as there are shadows around (including the creature's shadow btw) because you're doing something akin to a teleport, basically, step out of the shadow and poke it. They also have the ability to hide in plain sight even if someone is watching them. A rogue should have pretty good AC because Dex should be pretty high.

Anyhow, there are a lot of classes that aren't perfectly balanced. Most classes aren't perfectly balanced. What makes the game balanced is the mix of classes you have in the group. Too many of one type of class makes the game very unbalanced in one direction or another. It's why I always get the players to talk to each other about what they are making so they can try to balance the group as it is put together.

Anyhow, I just like having fun and I like my PCs to have fun and as long as that's happening, who cares whether the game is balanced or not?


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Liranys wrote:

Anyhow, I just like having fun and I like my PCs to have fun and as long as that's happening, who cares whether the game is balanced or not?

This whole "the game won't be fun any more if it's balanced =(" farce has gone beyond being amusing and into being annoying.


In my experience an unbalanced party is less fun. It was sad when the party rogue almost rage quit when the Party Ranger could do everything except disarm traps better than the Rogue.


Liranys wrote:
Nicos wrote:
IMHO, the problem is not that sneak attack is hard to do, the problem is the Rogues overly reliance on sneak attacks.

I agree, they do rely on that a bit much, but they can still be super useful in a campaign even if they aren't doing a whole lot of damage. I prestiged mine to Shadowdancer as quickly as possible and man that class has some cool stuff. The level 3 or 4 ability (can't remember which) that allows you to shadow jump 40 ft is nice. You can sneak up on a something with tremor sense as long as there are shadows around (including the creature's shadow btw) because you're doing something akin to a teleport, basically, step out of the shadow and poke it. They also have the ability to hide in plain sight even if someone is watching them. A rogue should have pretty good AC because Dex should be pretty high.

Anyhow, there are a lot of classes that aren't perfectly balanced. Most classes aren't perfectly balanced. What makes the game balanced is the mix of classes you have in the group. Too many of one type of class makes the game very unbalanced in one direction or another. It's why I always get the players to talk to each other about what they are making so they can try to balance the group as it is put together.

Anyhow, I just like having fun and I like my PCs to have fun and as long as that's happening, who cares whether the game is balanced or not?

Well,

1) You are multiclassing your rogues, wich is a good idea.
2) Other calsses can be as or more useful than rogues and still do good in combat.
3) About your last sentences. If you are having fun with an umbalanced class that is cool. Other people do not. I have seen people totally regeret to choose rogues or monks.

on the other hand, if the calss were more balanced you still would have your fund, and other people wold have their fun playing those classes.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

DrDeth wrote:
Ssalarn wrote:
and flanking can be a rough proposition for the squishy little guy in leather armor.
Pssst. Rogues can wear chainshirts now. Since the year 2000, or actually before with variants.

Maybe he decided to put an 18 into his DEX and then add his racial modifier so that the chain shirt would have actually been a waste of his DEX. Because, you know, he realized the weaknesses inherent in his class and decided to use Weapon Finesse and get the most out of his point buy. And maybe on top of that he didn't want to suffer additional armor class penalties to his relevant skills for no benefit.

Alternatively, maybe the first time he died he was first level and didn't have enough cash to cover his thieve's tools, weapons, various other paraphernalia, and an expensive chain shirt.


Rynjin wrote:
Liranys wrote:

Anyhow, I just like having fun and I like my PCs to have fun and as long as that's happening, who cares whether the game is balanced or not?

This whole "the game won't be fun any more if it's balanced =(" farce has gone beyond being amusing and into being annoying.

I never said it wouldn't be more fun if it was balanced. I said, who cares as long as we're all having fun. Balance is great. Certain types of people really prefer it. Some DMs are GOOD at keeping things balanced for the game. There is nothing wrong with a balanced game. However, there is nothing wrong with an imbalanced game if the party and DM are all having fun. What's the point of playing the game if not to have fun?


Nicos wrote:


Well,

1) You are multiclassing your rogues, wich is a good idea.
2) Other calsses can be as or more useful than rogues and still do good in combat.
3) About your last sentences. If you are having fun that is cool with an umbalanced class that is cool. Other people do not. I have seen people totally regeret to choose rogues or monks.

on the other hand, if the calss were more balanced you still would have your fund, and other people wold have their fun playing those classes.

I have no issue with someone trying to balance the rogue a bit more. I would love to see that. But it really does depend on the player. Some people can have fun playing a rogue, others can't. It also depends on how much besides killing things you end up doing. Our group did a lot more than just kill things. Also, my rogue was a bit... insane would fit. She was totally fun to play because you never knew what she was going to do next.

Play style has as much to do with liking a class as does the class's balance.


I care about balance up to a point. I do not mind if a class is out right better than another class if there is a downside like different xp rates.

I'm not a fan of 3.x type games balance at higher levels (7+) but I would rather have that than say 4Es attempts to fix the game.

5E tried for balance but it doesn't seem that much better being honest but at least its easier to run which is a big + for me as I am barely playing PF anymore and have not run it since 2012.

The lack of balance and the complexity is large reasons I prefer not to play PF now though as I have been playing 3.x based games for 14 years now.

I want to play BECMI again or 2E but my players want to play 5E so go figure.


Liranys wrote:
Rynjin wrote:
Liranys wrote:

Anyhow, I just like having fun and I like my PCs to have fun and as long as that's happening, who cares whether the game is balanced or not?

This whole "the game won't be fun any more if it's balanced =(" farce has gone beyond being amusing and into being annoying.
I never said it wouldn't be more fun if it was balanced. I said, who cares as long as we're all having fun. Balance is great. Certain types of people really prefer it. Some DMs are GOOD at keeping things balanced for the game. There is nothing wrong with a balanced game. However, there is nothing wrong with an imbalanced game if the party and DM are all having fun. What's the point of playing the game if not to have fun?

The thing is - and this has come up a lot when I've been working - if you create a balanced game, the people who don't mind or even enjoy imbalance are never going to notice. It's easy to take a well-made system and then tweak it how you like; it's hard to take a bad system and fix it.


Liranys wrote:
Nicos wrote:


Well,

1) You are multiclassing your rogues, wich is a good idea.
2) Other calsses can be as or more useful than rogues and still do good in combat.
3) About your last sentences. If you are having fun that is cool with an umbalanced class that is cool. Other people do not. I have seen people totally regeret to choose rogues or monks.

on the other hand, if the calss were more balanced you still would have your fund, and other people wold have their fun playing those classes.

I have no issue with someone trying to balance the rogue a bit more. I would love to see that. But it really does depend on the player. Some people can have fun playing a rogue, others can't. It also depends on how much besides killing things you end up doing. Our group did a lot more than just kill things. Also, my rogue was a bit... insane would fit. She was totally fun to play because you never knew what she was going to do next.

Play style has as much to do with liking a class as does the class's balance.

What you say it just half true. Some players do like other things besides killing things. The issue is that other lcasses do this better. Everything you describe can be done at least as good as with other classes.


Nicos wrote:


What you say it just half true. Some players do like other things besides killing things. The issue is that other lcasses do this better. Everything you describe can be done at least as good as with other classes.

So? If you're having fun does it really matter if another class could do it better? And not many classes do trap-finding/disabling better than a rogue. Or breaking and entering without letting the entire neighborhood know. Also, rogues are pretty good skill monkeys. It entirely depends on what you're doing, who you're doing it with and if you're having fun or not. Even if another class can do something "Better" it doesn't mean I can't still have fun playing a rogue.


As a player I'd rather have an Urban Ranger, Archeologist Bard, Slayer, Investigator or Trap Breaker Alchemist at my side than a rogue.

All of them are as good or better at scouting, equally as good at disarming traps stronger in combat, have more out of combat roles.

Even if we throw away archetypes and the ACG classes I would still rather have a Ranger as it does everything a Rogue does, but better. Except disarm traps, but traps don't need to be disarmed, just avoided.


You can also have fun playing a commoner. Why play a rogue when you can have just as much fun playing a commoner?


Rynjin wrote:
Liranys wrote:

Anyhow, I just like having fun and I like my PCs to have fun and as long as that's happening, who cares whether the game is balanced or not?

This whole "the game won't be fun any more if it's balanced =(" farce has gone beyond being amusing and into being annoying.

Not everybody shares your opinions. That doesn't make those people wrong. If you're annoyed by that, that's on you, not them.


Liranys wrote:


So? If you're having fun does it really matter if another class could do

Yu have said it, "If", other posters have mentiones casses when the "if" do not happens.


Prince of Knives wrote:
Liranys wrote:
Rynjin wrote:
Liranys wrote:

Anyhow, I just like having fun and I like my PCs to have fun and as long as that's happening, who cares whether the game is balanced or not?

This whole "the game won't be fun any more if it's balanced =(" farce has gone beyond being amusing and into being annoying.
I never said it wouldn't be more fun if it was balanced. I said, who cares as long as we're all having fun. Balance is great. Certain types of people really prefer it. Some DMs are GOOD at keeping things balanced for the game. There is nothing wrong with a balanced game. However, there is nothing wrong with an imbalanced game if the party and DM are all having fun. What's the point of playing the game if not to have fun?
The thing is - and this has come up a lot when I've been working - if you create a balanced game, the people who don't mind or even enjoy imbalance are never going to notice.

This is asserted a lot on these boards, but I've yet to see it backed up by anything but repetition and insults. I hope you can do better.

Shadow Lodge

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DrDeth wrote:
My point on "balance" is the the caster/martial discrepancy has been around since 1974, in every Ed but 4th. For forty years.

Perhaps, but it got a lot more pronounced in 2000. And its gotten even more pronounced in each iteration of the v3.x life-cycle.

And while I'd need more playtesting across the entire range of levels to be sure, I think that 5e manages to be pretty balanced, without resorting to the 4e solution of symmetry across the board.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

Liranys wrote:
Nicos wrote:


What you say it just half true. Some players do like other things besides killing things. The issue is that other lcasses do this better. Everything you describe can be done at least as good as with other classes.

So? If you're having fun does it really matter if another class could do it better? And not many classes do trap-finding/disabling better than a rogue. Or breaking and entering without letting the entire neighborhood know. Also, rogues are pretty good skill monkeys. It entirely depends on what you're doing, who you're doing it with and if you're having fun or not. Even if another class can do something "Better" it doesn't mean I can't still have fun playing a rogue.

Perhaps not for you, but as others have noted, some people really do get frustrated when someone else at the table can do everything they can do, sometimes better, plus do other stuff as well. If the Rogue were fixed (as it seems they're attempting with Unchained), nothing changes for you, but for those people stymied by the class' inferiority, it can make a big difference, allowing them to play the class they want to play without needing to rely on having a GM who'll pitch them the easy balls to have a good time.


blahpers wrote:
Prince of Knives wrote:
Liranys wrote:
Rynjin wrote:
Liranys wrote:

Anyhow, I just like having fun and I like my PCs to have fun and as long as that's happening, who cares whether the game is balanced or not?

This whole "the game won't be fun any more if it's balanced =(" farce has gone beyond being amusing and into being annoying.
I never said it wouldn't be more fun if it was balanced. I said, who cares as long as we're all having fun. Balance is great. Certain types of people really prefer it. Some DMs are GOOD at keeping things balanced for the game. There is nothing wrong with a balanced game. However, there is nothing wrong with an imbalanced game if the party and DM are all having fun. What's the point of playing the game if not to have fun?
The thing is - and this has come up a lot when I've been working - if you create a balanced game, the people who don't mind or even enjoy imbalance are never going to notice.
This is asserted a lot on these boards, but I've yet to see it backed up by anything but repetition and insults. I hope you can do better.

I'd point to Rule of Cool's work with Legend for a D20 example. Outside of D20, there's FATE (I know the name is no longer officially capitalized; I like capitalizing things), or the Window. Legend in particular makes for an interesting comparison; it, like Pathfinder, arose from the skeleton of 3.5. Unlike Pathfinder, they made balance and ease of play their primary goals ("We want this game to be so comprehensible that aliens could play it."), with the main focus being a principle they call "A = A`"; that is, any two characters of the same level, even if they have wildly different capabilities, are roughly equal in power.

And it worked.

And if you don't feel like taking my word on it (and really, why should you?) it's free.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

blahpers wrote:
Prince of Knives wrote:


The thing is - and this has come up a lot when I've been working - if you create a balanced game, the people who don't mind or even enjoy imbalance are never going to notice.
This is asserted a lot on these boards, but I've yet to see it backed up by anything but repetition.

I'm just going to clip the unnecessarily inflammatory bit out of there and address the meat.

The proof is all over the place. Literally every Tier 3 class (Alchemist, Bard, Inquisitor, Hunter, etc.) is a testament to that statement. The evidence is plain within the system itself, it's only outliers like the Wizard (too strong/versatile) and Fighter (no real versatility, weak chassis) that create the issues. You never see posts about how so and so's bard made what's his name's inquisitor feel bad.


Pathfinder has balance issues but there are subtle things that you as GM can do to give every character spot light.

For fighters, you just have to have enemies charge the party. If things are in fighter full attack range, the fighter is generally happy.

For rogues, just allow your monsters to get flanked (it is really easy to 5ft step out of flanking full attacks). You also need to have opportunity for those rogue skills to work. Actually allow the rogue to party scout reliably (it's really easy for enemies to have full vision through an area, making the stealth check irrelevant. Let them have blind spots).

For wizards, allow there magic to work. You will find it is very hard to let other classes shine if you are rules lawyering the wizard into the ground. It is also important to let them do their thing so that they don't decide to encroach on everyone else's niche.

Lastly, encourage the party to not have overlapping niches. If one player wants to play a slayer/trapper ranger/ect. and someone else wants to play a TWF rogue. Make sure both of those players understand that those classes fill the same niche and that there are a lot of bases to cover. If that doesn't work just come out and say that your campaign requires a balanced party (or ban the rogue class).

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