5th Edition vs Pathfinder Critique


4th Edition

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It would be kinda nice to have an iconic fighter or wizard in the artwork. But with 5th edition's class paths, would they have to do one for each? 3 iconic fighters, 8 iconic clerics (or was it wizards that had 8 and clerics with 7?), since there is no plain baseline fighter like there is in Pathfinder?

And speaking of iconics, I think Paizo goes a bit too overboard with their iconics. Not in their designs, but in their usage. There is a small amount of artwork in their books that doesn't include at least 1 iconic. Sometimes generic character #2 would be a nice change of pace.

Shadow Lodge

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bugleyman wrote:
I thought 5E's change to Knock was inspired.

Agreed. It's so simple yet brilliant. Hell, the name of the spell is KNOCK...how did this slight nerf manage to take 40 years?

Shadow Lodge

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I kinda like the lack of iconics...hopefull that will mean more variety in the art, instead of recycling the same characters over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over.


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bugleyman wrote:
David Bowles wrote:
I dislike the lack of dynamic range of 5th edition greatly. Getting rid of all the "+1's" makes 5th ed combat pretty boring to me. Also, clerics got eviscerated. No thanks. I honestly prefer 4th ed to 5th ed. At least 4th ed was a good tactical combat game. 5th ed feels like a time warp to 1988, and I've already burned out on 2nd ed.
I respectfully suggest that you may not remember 2nd edition all that well. ;-)

Agreed, particularly because 2E wasn't released until 1989 not 1988 as the OP stated. ;)

I'm going to hitch up my pants to my chest, fiddle with my hearing aid and give a little mini rant/diatribe about my feelings re: gaming today...

One of the things that concerns me the most about modern gaming is that the game seems to have moved away from a collaborative game where a few friends got together and played some "make believe" in a fantastical world all while having some fun to the point where it is almost a competitive exercise to see who can "build" the most bad-a** PC and "win the game".

I absolutely cringe when I see "optimization guides", DPS calculations and people bragging about how their PC "one-shoted" Orcus on message boards. Interestingly enough, modern gamers seem to spend a lot more time talking about things like "narrative" and "story" (I think many modern gamers are frustrated novelists/screen writers) which weren't that important to my gaming group back in the 80's, so I am not trying to say that modern gamers are just "roll" players.

I sometimes wonder if this more competitive spirit to the game has evolved because more people are gaming either via organized play or online in play-by-post format usually with total strangers so the feeling of camaraderie among ones friends simply isn't a factor and people become more competitive as a result.

Silver Crusade

Those competitive concepts mostly come from MMORPGs. If your DPS is not good enough, your guild will boot you.


David Bowles wrote:

Letting combatants take a full move and take all their attacks has a lot of unforeseen consequences. Something like a dragon just got nearly impossible to deal with. Fly 80 feet, take seven attacks with power attack, good night.

Clearly people should play what they enjoy, but if my only option for tabletop gaming were 5th ed, I'd just go play more Starcraft. That game holds zero interest for me. They tried to be everything to everyone and came up with something I feel inferior to even 4th ed. But as I said, I've been there, done that with 2nd ed, and by extension, 2nd ed redux. I have no interest in playing 2nd ed again.

I think you just made Dragons more interesting, especially when their whole turn consists of Fly, 1 attack, done and then 4 or 5 turns of concentrated attacks and then one attack from the dragon and rinse-repeat.

Silver Crusade

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Diffan wrote:
David Bowles wrote:

Letting combatants take a full move and take all their attacks has a lot of unforeseen consequences. Something like a dragon just got nearly impossible to deal with. Fly 80 feet, take seven attacks with power attack, good night.

Clearly people should play what they enjoy, but if my only option for tabletop gaming were 5th ed, I'd just go play more Starcraft. That game holds zero interest for me. They tried to be everything to everyone and came up with something I feel inferior to even 4th ed. But as I said, I've been there, done that with 2nd ed, and by extension, 2nd ed redux. I have no interest in playing 2nd ed again.

I think you just made Dragons more interesting, especially when their whole turn consists of Fly, 1 attack, done and then 4 or 5 turns of concentrated attacks and then one attack from the dragon and rinse-repeat.

Interesting or not, a lot of classes/monsters would have to be rebalanced. The CR system isn't perfect, but playing with that house rule destroys it.


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David Bowles wrote:
Diffan wrote:
David Bowles wrote:

Letting combatants take a full move and take all their attacks has a lot of unforeseen consequences. Something like a dragon just got nearly impossible to deal with. Fly 80 feet, take seven attacks with power attack, good night.

Clearly people should play what they enjoy, but if my only option for tabletop gaming were 5th ed, I'd just go play more Starcraft. That game holds zero interest for me. They tried to be everything to everyone and came up with something I feel inferior to even 4th ed. But as I said, I've been there, done that with 2nd ed, and by extension, 2nd ed redux. I have no interest in playing 2nd ed again.

I think you just made Dragons more interesting, especially when their whole turn consists of Fly, 1 attack, done and then 4 or 5 turns of concentrated attacks and then one attack from the dragon and rinse-repeat.
Interesting or not, a lot of classes/monsters would have to be rebalanced. The CR system isn't perfect, but playing with that house rule destroys it.

Oooo....rant/diatribe bullet point #2: Encounters don't have to be "balanced" to ensure that the PC's can overcome all challenges. Sometimes the best option is to *gasp* avoid a fight or, if you are already involved in one, **double gasp** run away.

Back in the old days, fighting monsters was usually a suboptimal choice as the XP gained was minimal compared to the risk of dying. Now, killing things is the primary way to gain levels. I think this was a poor design choice...

EDIT: My complaint about player optimization and the one in this thread about fighting everything are linked, of course. When the primary method for player advancement is killing stuff, gamers are going to shift their focus heavily to optimizing the damage their PC's can dish out.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

the best phrase i learned from pathfinder APs "gain experience as if you defeated it in combat" if my players can figure out a way around bloodshed i always embrace it and doll out the experience, in fact i even use it if they say they fight until dead.


Logan1138 wrote:
David Bowles wrote:
Diffan wrote:
David Bowles wrote:

Letting combatants take a full move and take all their attacks has a lot of unforeseen consequences. Something like a dragon just got nearly impossible to deal with. Fly 80 feet, take seven attacks with power attack, good night.

Clearly people should play what they enjoy, but if my only option for tabletop gaming were 5th ed, I'd just go play more Starcraft. That game holds zero interest for me. They tried to be everything to everyone and came up with something I feel inferior to even 4th ed. But as I said, I've been there, done that with 2nd ed, and by extension, 2nd ed redux. I have no interest in playing 2nd ed again.

I think you just made Dragons more interesting, especially when their whole turn consists of Fly, 1 attack, done and then 4 or 5 turns of concentrated attacks and then one attack from the dragon and rinse-repeat.
Interesting or not, a lot of classes/monsters would have to be rebalanced. The CR system isn't perfect, but playing with that house rule destroys it.

Oooo....rant/diatribe bullet point #2: Encounters don't have to be "balanced" to ensure that the PC's can overcome all challenges. Sometimes the best option is to *gasp* avoid a fight or, if you are already involved in one, **double gasp** run away.

Back in the old days, fighting monsters was usually a suboptimal choice as the XP gained was minimal compared to the risk of dying. Now, killing things is the primary way to gain levels. I think this was a poor design choice...

EDIT: My complaint about player optimization and the one in this thread about fighting everything are linked, of course. When the primary method for player advancement is killing stuff, gamers are going to shift their focus heavily to optimizing the damage their PC's can dish out.

Encounters don't have to be perfectly balanced, but they do need to have some kind of reasonable workable boundaries for the average encounter. Having to run away or avoid a fight occasionally won't irritate most people, but having to do it routinely would definitely get on most people's nerves, even those that have been playing long enough to play the older systems. Trying to shoehorn full attacks with a full move into PF would break it beyond the point that balance of any kind, which is necessary at some level, would be near impossible without rewriting large sections of the rest of the ruleset. I would do no more than half movement with a full attack; that would still have a reasonable chance of preserving some semblance of balance.

I like that they made martials more useful, but they did the same thing they did with 4E in making the solution the new problem. From what I've seen, I would probably not bother playing a caster in 5E; the argument that PF is too reliable and powerful is valid, but it seems to me that 5E made it not reliable or powerful enough over the course of a multilevel campaign. I don't like that WotC can't seem to find a solution without creating new problems. It's not a bad system, and I could get used to it if I knew people who really wanted to play it, but the magic system has most of the same problems that pre 3rd edition did, so it just swapped out which set of problems it chose to live with; it didn't actually solve much of anything.


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Logan1138 wrote:


Oooo....rant/diatribe bullet point #2: Encounters don't have to be "balanced" to ensure that the PC's can overcome all challenges. Sometimes the best option is to *gasp* avoid a fight or, if you are already involved in one, **double gasp** run away.

Back in the old days, fighting monsters was usually a suboptimal choice as the XP gained was minimal compared to the risk of dying. Now, killing things is the primary way to gain levels. I think this was a poor design choice...

Regardless of whether you "balance" the encounters to the PCs can overcome all challenges or not, it's a very useful thing for the GM to know roughly how tough a particular fight will be for the PCs. In all but the most sandbox games there will be some encounters that really need to be dealt with. And even then, the GM needs to be able to signal to the PCs how tough encounters are likely to be.

CR is a useful tool for that, rough though it is.

Even in the old days, other than wandering monsters, most of the treasure and thus xp was gained by beating monsters and taking their stuff. Being able to just sneak and take it away was rare - vanishingly rare in published adventures, most of which had goals that required beating enemies.

Besides gp as xp was even more frustrating than current versions, if you wanted to play a character motivated by anything but greed.

Leveling by fiat or xp for overcoming challenges without killing is a far better solution to this problem than the old one. It's also a solution that some of us were implementing as far back as 2E. I seem to recall Dragon articles suggesting it back in the day as well.


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David Bowles wrote:
Interesting or not, a lot of classes/monsters would have to be rebalanced. The CR system isn't perfect, but playing with that house rule destroys it.

This. Presumably it works fine for D&D 5E because they designed the monsters with the rules in mind, but just applying it to Pathfinder would break the CR system.


FYI a dragon can still do a ton of damage in Pathfinder with a single attack if it has certain feats- power attack, improved natural attack (bite), vital strike chain. I've recently run some gargantuan and huge sized dragons with this combo, and their damage output with a single bite attack isn't that far behind their full attack damage output. Plus if they hit they are almost guaranteed to force the PC to make a massive damage save.

sunshadow21 wrote:
Logan1138 wrote:
David Bowles wrote:
Diffan wrote:
David Bowles wrote:

Letting combatants take a full move and take all their attacks has a lot of unforeseen consequences. Something like a dragon just got nearly impossible to deal with. Fly 80 feet, take seven attacks with power attack, good night.

Clearly people should play what they enjoy, but if my only option for tabletop gaming were 5th ed, I'd just go play more Starcraft. That game holds zero interest for me. They tried to be everything to everyone and came up with something I feel inferior to even 4th ed. But as I said, I've been there, done that with 2nd ed, and by extension, 2nd ed redux. I have no interest in playing 2nd ed again.

I think you just made Dragons more interesting, especially when their whole turn consists of Fly, 1 attack, done and then 4 or 5 turns of concentrated attacks and then one attack from the dragon and rinse-repeat.
Interesting or not, a lot of classes/monsters would have to be rebalanced. The CR system isn't perfect, but playing with that house rule destroys it.

Oooo....rant/diatribe bullet point #2: Encounters don't have to be "balanced" to ensure that the PC's can overcome all challenges. Sometimes the best option is to *gasp* avoid a fight or, if you are already involved in one, **double gasp** run away.

Back in the old days, fighting monsters was usually a suboptimal choice as the XP gained was minimal compared to the risk of dying. Now, killing things is the primary way to gain levels. I think this was a poor design choice...

EDIT: My complaint about player optimization and the one in this thread about fighting everything are linked, of course. When the primary method for player advancement is killing stuff, gamers are going to shift their focus heavily to optimizing the damage their PC's can dish out.

Encounters don't have to be perfectly balanced, but they do need to have some kind of reasonable workable boundaries for the average encounter....

Liberty's Edge

They had to offer something new with 5E. Or at the very least not another rehashed 3.5. with house rules added on. Otherwise why bother buying the same system twice. Give that their is 3.5 and Pathfinder. I'm hearing the same complaint with Call of Cthulhu 7E. That it's not exactly the same like the previous editions were. If 7E was just going to be better art and layout and the same rules. Well I have 6E I have no interest in buying the same game twice. I did it for Pathfinder. I might do it for some of the World of Darkness material. That's it. 5E is not perfect by any means. While I still play PF. I do find 5E better in many ways.


P.H. Dungeon wrote:
FYI a dragon can still do a ton of damage in Pathfinder with a single attack if it has certain feats- power attack, improved natural attack (bite), vital strike chain. I've recently run some gargantuan and huge sized dragons with this combo, and their damage output with a single bite attack isn't that far behind their full attack damage output. Plus if they hit they are almost guaranteed to force the PC to make a massive damage save.

I don't usually worry too much about outliers like dragons because they are going to be nasty in any system if done right. It's when that becomes the norm to the point where the party can't go anywhere or do anything without spending two hours of the game session doing recon unless the DM also reworks large parts of other rules in the system that I start getting annoyed, and importing some of the things in 5E directly into PF would just that. Full move and full attack probably works just fine in 5E, where the rest of the system was designed to work with it, but it would cause considerable problems in PF, where the rest of the system is designed with a completely different expectation in mind.

The only thing I've really seen that bugs me about the actual 5E system is the magic system that everyone claims fixes everything when as far as I can tell it replaced the problems that 3rd and PF have in that system with the problems that the earlier editions had instead. I don't know if it's WotC or something inherent to the magic system in general, but I have yet to see any version of D&D magic (including magic items) that could be considered even remotely balanced while still being interesting. Every version I've seen ends up either weak, unreliable, uninspiring to my imagination (I'm sorry, but 4E's power structure was boring as heck to me), or overly strong and all too often, very confusing in the presentation of the rules and corner cases that develop out of those rules. 5E's version does not appear to me have broken that trend.

It hasn't done any worse, but it hasn't done any better either, which I guess is my biggest hangup with 5E as a whole. It's interesting, but there's nothing there that's particularly unique or capable of generating fresh excitement for me. It's better than 4E in that it doesn't actively turn me off, but it doesn't have anything that makes me really have reason to choose it over any of the other version already on my bookshelf. It's still basically the same classes and races with some tweaks to the combat rules and character creation. Every new strength comes with a new weakness, leaving the overall balance pretty much the same D&D always has had, which is to say barely any at all without heavy DM judgment calls and house rules.

Sovereign Court

Fake Healer wrote:
Pan wrote:
captain yesterday wrote:
i like the picture of the halfling in the player's handbook, makes me laugh every time i see it at the bookstore:-)
Yeap, I laugh too as I toss the book on the shelf and pass on buying it.
I hated 4E, but I gave 5E a chance and I am glad I did. If you pass it up for a drawing without even looking at it, then you do yourself an injustice and should be cursing your closed-mind. It isn't perfect but is a good game with some good ingenuity and some nice mechanics. I was staunchly Pathfinder and now I am swayed to 5E and it's elegant simplicity and a return to D&D.

Sorry to send folks over the edge with my post lets back up a sec. Let me apologize for making a joke at the expense of 5E pixar fatling artwork. If you read my earlier postings you'd know my group is too invested into PF so for the time being I wont be playing 5E. I have no strong opinions of it one way or another. I did not choose to not buy 5E because of a single picture lol.


Diffan wrote:
memorax wrote:
Kthulhu wrote:


I'm sorry it doesn't default to your expectation of "Casters rule, martialz drool!"

Happily for you, that still seems to be one of the.cornerstones of Pathfinder.

Out of all the rules to complain about 5E. That martials can actually move and still get all their attacks. casters are still powerful. They are not the do all that they are in Pathfinder. One of the main complaints about PF is that it did almost nothing to fix the fighter. 5E does and it's a flaw. Well different tastes and all that.

Gotta agree here. Since playing 5e I've gone back and made significant changes to my v3.5/PF games that I run. No more "Full-Attack Action" for characters. If they have 2, 3, or 4 attacks they get them on a move (however a move more than 5' still provokes Opportunity Attacks). Some other ideas have filtered in too like Advantage/Disadvantge and the entire Traits/Flaws/Bonds have gone into both 3.5/PF and 4E games.

As for At-Will cantrips in 5E, I suspect that they're quickly out-classed by 5th level and beyond as Fighters get more attacks that they add their stat-modifier to. Not to mention Action Surge which they get to make all their attacks again. Except for the sever lack of skills for the Fighter and the bad save (who requires Strength saving throws?!) it's probably one of the most powerful classes (damage wise) in the game.

I can't say I'm fond of 5e, but that attack option sounds like a good choice. Sounds like a GOOD idea to put into PF games. Do you have them all at the full AB, or is it the descending BAB?

As for others saying it's going to make monsters so horribly overpowered...

If it's a problem with monsters, just make it so that the full attack option only applies to martial characters or something like that. It's already a houserule, so why not houserule the heck out of it?

People complain about martials being too weak (not that I agree, BUT, I do think that they could be beefed up a little at higher levels). If spellcasters are the "I win" in your game that you run...I don't see how letting martials have this ability should be any sort of problem AT ALL.

Maybe someone would play a martial in your game then instead of having a party full of wizards and clerics/druids.


GreyWolfLord wrote:
Diffan wrote:
memorax wrote:
Kthulhu wrote:


I'm sorry it doesn't default to your expectation of "Casters rule, martialz drool!"

Happily for you, that still seems to be one of the.cornerstones of Pathfinder.

Out of all the rules to complain about 5E. That martials can actually move and still get all their attacks. casters are still powerful. They are not the do all that they are in Pathfinder. One of the main complaints about PF is that it did almost nothing to fix the fighter. 5E does and it's a flaw. Well different tastes and all that.

Gotta agree here. Since playing 5e I've gone back and made significant changes to my v3.5/PF games that I run. No more "Full-Attack Action" for characters. If they have 2, 3, or 4 attacks they get them on a move (however a move more than 5' still provokes Opportunity Attacks). Some other ideas have filtered in too like Advantage/Disadvantge and the entire Traits/Flaws/Bonds have gone into both 3.5/PF and 4E games.

As for At-Will cantrips in 5E, I suspect that they're quickly out-classed by 5th level and beyond as Fighters get more attacks that they add their stat-modifier to. Not to mention Action Surge which they get to make all their attacks again. Except for the sever lack of skills for the Fighter and the bad save (who requires Strength saving throws?!) it's probably one of the most powerful classes (damage wise) in the game.

I can't say I'm fond of 5e, but that attack option sounds like a good choice. Sounds like a GOOD idea to put into PF games. Do you have them all at the full AB, or is it the descending BAB?

As for others saying it's going to make monsters so horribly overpowered...

If it's a problem with monsters, just make it so that the full attack option only applies to martial characters or something like that. It's already a houserule, so why not houserule the heck out of it?

People complain about martials being too weak (not that I agree, BUT, I do think that they could be beefed up a little at...

Right now I've kept the scaling BAB system though removing it from PCs might be an interesting way to keep things a bit more balanced. As for messing up the CR system, I really don't mind. I use it more like a guideline anyways and encounters with dragons SHOULD be dangerous. Besides even as things are now, if your playing dragons that drop to the ground to use their full-attack I feel you're doing it wrong. 1st round is fly plus breath weapon. Turns where the breath weapon recharges should be spent air borne with grappling attempts to pick up PCs and drop them several hundred feet to their deaths. So I think allowing full-attacks all the time, the PCs are probably getting the better deal as long as they play it right.


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Having played PF for years have switched to 5th about 2 months ago
Play it twice a week with 2 different groups

It plays fantastically well. Can easily do 12 fights in a session if it's that sort of session

The good news is PF is still very popular so I got more than 20 quid each on eBay for the PF books I have now sold

I do find it odd that people who do not care for 5e keep posting about it

Vive la internet

If you try to play 5e try to forget previous editions, don't compare too much during play, and play it in the lighter, more narrative vein it is created for

Also keep playing whatever edition you adore if it floats your boat!!

Silver Crusade

"If you try to play 5e try to forget previous editions, don't compare too much during play, and play it in the lighter, more narrative vein it is created for"

Sorry, I couldn't do that. I compare everything to HERO system. Everything. Also, I have to compare 5th to Pathfinder since they are direct competitors.

The bottom line is that I can make Pathfinder narrative. I can make HERO system narrative. If I want a light rules system, I'll use Storyteller from White Wolf, not another WoTC brain child.

"I do find it odd that people who do not care for 5e keep posting about it"

THIS IS WHAT THE THREAD IS ABOUT.

" Can easily do 12 fights in a session if it's that sort of session"

I've never had a session that called for 12 fights. Ever.

Silver Crusade

memorax wrote:
They had to offer something new with 5E. Or at the very least not another rehashed 3.5. with house rules added on. Otherwise why bother buying the same system twice. Give that their is 3.5 and Pathfinder. I'm hearing the same complaint with Call of Cthulhu 7E. That it's not exactly the same like the previous editions were. If 7E was just going to be better art and layout and the same rules. Well I have 6E I have no interest in buying the same game twice. I did it for Pathfinder. I might do it for some of the World of Darkness material. That's it. 5E is not perfect by any means. While I still play PF. I do find 5E better in many ways.

But it's not really new. It's a 4th/3.X mash up stripped down to 2nd ed depth. If it WERE new, I'd be more interested. But it's a serious case of deja vu for me.


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David Bowles wrote:

"If you try to play 5e try to forget previous editions, don't compare too much during play, and play it in the lighter, more narrative vein it is created for"

Sorry, I couldn't do that. I compare everything to HERO system. Everything. Also, I have to compare 5th to Pathfinder since they are direct competitors.

The bottom line is that I can make Pathfinder narrative. I can make HERO system narrative. If I want a light rules system, I'll use Storyteller from White Wolf, not another WoTC brain child.

There are degrees of "rules light"ness.

HERO is more complex than Pathfinder which is more complex than 5e which is much more complex than Storyteller.

If I wanted to play rules light I'd play Storyteller, but I don't want rules light. I want rules lightER than pathfinder.

Note: This is from a gm perspective. I don't mind playing pathfinder, I just don't want to gm it.

Silver Crusade

Ganryu wrote:
David Bowles wrote:

"If you try to play 5e try to forget previous editions, don't compare too much during play, and play it in the lighter, more narrative vein it is created for"

Sorry, I couldn't do that. I compare everything to HERO system. Everything. Also, I have to compare 5th to Pathfinder since they are direct competitors.

The bottom line is that I can make Pathfinder narrative. I can make HERO system narrative. If I want a light rules system, I'll use Storyteller from White Wolf, not another WoTC brain child.

There are degrees of "rules light"ness.

HERO is more complex than Pathfinder which is more complex than 5e which is much more complex than Storyteller.

If I wanted to play rules light I'd play Storyteller, but I don't want rules light. I want rules lightER than pathfinder.

Note: This is from a gm perspective. I don't mind playing pathfinder, I just don't want to gm it.

5th edition has a level of GM fiat that makes me want to skip it entirely and go to Storyteller. It already ripped off the advantage/disadvantage system, which is fine, but if that's the case, why even be shackled by classes? Just go Storyteller.

Note that there are more ways to build a PC in Storyteller than in Pathfinder or 5th ed. Builder systems for the win! Classes for the fail!

Grand Lodge

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David Bowles wrote:
I have seen them. And casters are eviscerated in 5th. No channel. No summons.

You can still summon as a Caster. (Conjure X spells exist) And they do have channel?

Summoning is powerful, but I wouldn't even say it's the most powerful thing you can do as a conjurer. (Black Tentacles, Pit spells, Glitterdust, and so on.)

I guess it is a pointless argument - different strokes, and all that - but I've found casters to still be incredibly powerful.

Shadow Lodge

David Bowles wrote:
stuff

Since you seem to like complexity for it's own sake, might I suggest that FATAL might be a good fit for you?

:P

Silver Crusade

EntrerisShadow wrote:
David Bowles wrote:
I have seen them. And casters are eviscerated in 5th. No channel. No summons.

You can still summon as a Caster. (Conjure X spells exist) And they do have channel?

Summoning is powerful, but I wouldn't even say it's the most powerful thing you can do as a conjurer. (Black Tentacles, Pit spells, Glitterdust, and so on.)

I guess it is a pointless argument - different strokes, and all that - but I've found casters to still be incredibly powerful.

A lot of the conjure spells aren't combat spells. They have casting times of one minute.

The point is that they have taken away a lot of caster choice and enhanced martials tremendously. I see no reason to play a caster at all in 5th ed. Because some martial is going to come pound me like railroad tie.

Silver Crusade

Kthulhu wrote:
David Bowles wrote:
stuff

Since you seem to like complexity for it's own sake, might I suggest that FATAL might be a good fit for you?

:P

Not just for complexity's sake. What HERO system costs you in complexity, it gives back in options. 5th edition has more complexity than Storyteller, but actually fewer options for character building.

Shadow Lodge

David Bowles wrote:
The point is that they have taken away a lot of caster choice and enhanced martials tremendously. I see no reason to play a caster at all in 5th ed. Because some martial is going to come pound me like railroad tie.

Let's pretend for a moment that 5e actually was weighted in the favor or martial.

Is that so g#&~!!n bad? And if it is, then the bad news for Pathfinder is that it's way WAY more unbalanced, just in the opposite direction.


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Heh. I wouldn't go Storyteller for worlds, and I used to write for those guys.

Really it's a matter of what you like! For me, 5E is right in the sweet spot of "rules are robust enough to create what you want, without requiring a calculator to use." It's not as arbitrary (and occasionally flat-out nonsensical) as 1E/2E, and it's not the giant mathematical exercise of something like HERO.

It doesn't have the baked-in multigenre utility of Savage Worlds, which I would like to see. Give me a "build your own class" module, and I'd be using it for everything. (SW has a lot of good things going for it, but it also suffers from feeling like there's basically only one or two effective character builds for everything.)

-The Gneech

Silver Crusade

Kthulhu wrote:
David Bowles wrote:
The point is that they have taken away a lot of caster choice and enhanced martials tremendously. I see no reason to play a caster at all in 5th ed. Because some martial is going to come pound me like railroad tie.

Let's pretend for a moment that 5e actually was weighted in the favor or martial.

Is that so g@*!~%n bad? And if it is, then the bad news for Pathfinder is that it's way WAY more unbalanced, just in the opposite direction.

Perhaps. I find that high level DPR must be performed by martials in Pathfinder, because all the attack spells just bounce off the opponents. In Pathfinder, caster strength is diversity of effects. That's why I dislike sorcerers in homebrew games.

The whole full attack after full move combined with how disengaging from an opponent in combat works means that a caster can never get away from a martial in combat. The can't even mitigate the incoming damage. Combine this with gimped casting, no channeling, no meta magic and it adds up to a bunch of classes I would never play.

Grand Lodge

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David Bowles wrote:
Kthulhu wrote:
David Bowles wrote:
The point is that they have taken away a lot of caster choice and enhanced martials tremendously. I see no reason to play a caster at all in 5th ed. Because some martial is going to come pound me like railroad tie.

Let's pretend for a moment that 5e actually was weighted in the favor or martial.

Is that so g@*!~%n bad? And if it is, then the bad news for Pathfinder is that it's way WAY more unbalanced, just in the opposite direction.

Perhaps. I find that high level DPR must be performed by martials in Pathfinder, because all the attack spells just bounce off the opponents. In Pathfinder, caster strength is diversity of effects. That's why I dislike sorcerers in homebrew games.

The whole full attack after full move combined with how disengaging from an opponent in combat works means that a caster can never get away from a martial in combat. The can't even mitigate the incoming damage. Combine this with gimped casting, no channeling, no meta magic and it adds up to a bunch of classes I would never play.

That is helpful in recommendations, at least.

If you think martials got shafted in 3.5/Pathfinder, you'll probably see 5E as a godsend.

If you think PF is balanced already, you'll probably find 5E completely unfair.

Liberty's Edge

David Bowles wrote:


But it's not really new. It's a 4th/3.X mash up stripped down to 2nd ed depth. If it WERE new, I'd be more interested. But it's a serious case of deja vu for me.

See this is what bothers me about fans in the hobby. I respect your feelings on 5E. Yet seeing posts like this make me ashamed of every getting into the hobby. As well as damn glad I'm not a rpg designer.

Wotc offered a almost new system with 4E. Then some in the hobby crucified them for it. Mostly it was "it's not 3.5". Now they offer some new material as well as older material and fans still complain about it. Now because it's not new or different enough. Wotc just can't win. Damned if they do and damned if they don't.

David Bowles wrote:


5th edition has a level of GM fiat that makes me want to skip it entirely and go to Storyteller. It already ripped off the advantage/disadvantage system, which is fine, but if that's the case, why even be shackled by classes? Just go Storyteller.

I agree with you about the classes. Except once again if they removed classes fans would be unhappy that they removed classes. See as much as fans want D&D to change. Or pretend to be open minded about the subject. Many don't ever want it to change. Going so far as to tell you to go play another system. .

David Bowles wrote:


Note that there are more ways to build a PC in Storyteller than in Pathfinder or 5th ed. Builder systems for the win! Classes for the fail!

Very much in agreement. Even more so with the Hero System. Though the system could use less complexity imo.


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5E sorcerers have meta magic.

But ultimately, what does it matter? If someone doesn't like 5E, they don't like 5E. There is no "wrong" answer when it comes to preferences (Miracle Whip excepted -- that's just wrong).

Liberty's Edge

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Kthulhu wrote:


Since you seem to like complexity for it's own sake, might I suggest that FATAL might be a good fit for you?
:P

Now that's just being plain mean and evil. You might as well suggest he gouge out his eyes and pour acid in them. As that is less painful then reading FATAL imo.


My recent comparison between 5e and Pathfinder

Using a 4th level Bugbear sorcerer in a Pathfinder game for an encounter, and went to select a couple of feats for him...

gave up and selected two I could remember would be okay, since he was going to get creamed by the party anyway

But, seriously have you looked at the number of feats available?

Silver Crusade

Give the 4th level bugbear some help so he doesn't get creamed.


memorax wrote:


David Bowles wrote:


5th edition has a level of GM fiat that makes me want to skip it entirely and go to Storyteller. It already ripped off the advantage/disadvantage system, which is fine, but if that's the case, why even be shackled by classes? Just go Storyteller.

I agree with you about the classes. Except once again if they removed classes fans would be unhappy that they removed classes. See as much as fans want D&D to change. Or pretend to be open minded about the subject. Many don't ever want it to change. Going so far as to tell you to go play another system. .

David Bowles wrote:


Note that there are more ways to build a PC in Storyteller than in Pathfinder or 5th ed. Builder systems for the win! Classes for the fail!

Is there a storyteller system that doesn't have defacto classes? Maybe a more generic version?

My experience was with some of the various WoD games fairly early on. As far as I could see, the various clans and tribes and schools or whatever were essentially classes. Classes far more tied to the fluff of the game than any D&D classes were.

Silver Crusade

"Wotc offered a almost new system with 4E. Then some in the hobby crucified them for it. Mostly it was "it's not 3.5". Now they offer some new material as well as older material and fans still complain about it. Now because it's not new or different enough. Wotc just can't win. Damned if they do and damned if they don't."

I did mention I preferred 4th to 5th. However, the *new* aspects of 4th were not what I disliked. Again, it was things they took away for no adequately explainable reason. And the homogenization of classes. It was the REVERSE of a builder system. They provided too many classes that were too similar.


Oh, sorry I should have explained that it is an encounter with four Bugbears (Standard) and a fourth level Bugbear sorcerer - supposed to be a very low threat encounter (nuisance) for a party of five fourth level characters.

Liberty's Edge

David Bowles wrote:


I did mention I preferred 4th to 5th. However, the *new* aspects of 4th were not what I disliked. Again, it was things they took away for no adequately explainable reason. And the homogenization of classes. It was the REVERSE of a builder system. They provided too many classes that were too similar.

Classes feeling the same as well as the lean size of the books turned me away from 4E as well. It's strange though that at the start I was a huge fan of 4E. Still am to a lesser extent. Yet have not given much thought about it at as of late.

I just think that Wotc is between a rock and a hard place. No matter what they do it never seems enough imo.

Whatever you or anyone else does DO NOT READ FATAL! Seriously don't you will thank me. So much so that you might even give me a money reward.


Eben TheQuiet wrote:
Yep. i get that—and to a certain extent agree—I just don't know that I'm sold on 5e's solution, for the stated reason.

One thing worth noting - levels 1 and 2 are intended to be somewhat incomplete levels. You are designed to blast through them in a few sessions. They are generally there to help you get used to the system and the fundamentals of your character before hitting levels 3 and 4 and getting to start make some key choices that really start to differentiate the characters. (As things like archetypes and feats come into play.)

All that said, I think some of those same concerns will remain so throughout one's levelling career - one of the goals is to keep 'optimized' PCs from being on a completely different level from 'average' PCs. That doesn't mean there is *no* difference between them, however. Nonetheless, especially at levels 1 and 2, the situation is likely to be exaggerated beyond how it works in the course of a normal game.


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memorax wrote:
I just think that Wotc is between a rock and a hard place. No matter what they do it never seems enough imo.

I agree with this to a point, but they are the ones that determined they have to completely reinvent the wheel every edition, and frequently during the entire lifetime of each edition as well, unlike pretty much every other rpg out there, so it's hard to feel too much pity for them.

I think that 5E is a decent enough blend of the older editions, which is great for those burnt out on PF and looking for a supported system that plays more like the older systems. However, it doesn't offer anything notably unique that can't be accomplished by a skilled DM in PF or any of the older D&D systems, nor does make it notably easier for a newer DM to put together a long term campaign, even if the individual encounters are easier to manage. I hope it gathers enough support to last a while, unlike 4E, as I do think that the different worlds are a major strength that no other system can offer, but the core system itself is pretty generic at this point. While I can see this being a major selling point for some, unless they really ratchet up support for the different worlds, it's not going to be enough to sustain itself in today's crowded market, just like 4E had a good solid core system once they settled into it, but was unable to get the level of support it needed to truly sustain itself. They need to make far better use of the worlds than they have since taking over the brand; relying solely on the core rules, which are at their core the same material in each edition with a few tweaks, is not going to be enough.


memorax wrote:


See this is what bothers me about fans in the hobby. I respect your feelings on 5E. Yet seeing posts like this make me ashamed of every getting into the hobby. As well as damn glad I'm not a rpg designer.

Wotc offered a almost new system with 4E. Then some in the hobby crucified them for it. Mostly it was "it's not 3.5". Now they offer some new material as well as older material and fans still complain about it. Now because it's not new or different enough. Wotc just can't win. Damned if they do and damned if they don't.

I played 4E (specifically, the WotC published modules from early on) through the first tier and 1 modules worth of the second tier. Ultimately we stopped there and did not adopt 4E over Pathfinder. This was due to two things:

The group, overall, preferred Paizo adventure paths. No one viewed the WotC modules favorably. Secondarily, the group preferred the broader options available in Pathfinder for character creation.

Personally, the initial marketing and behavior of WotC during the lead up to and launch of 4E is what lingers with me more than any dislike I had for 4E. If and when I can get PDF or similar versions of 5E which continue to be udpated with errata/updates, I will probably look into buying a 5E product. Pathfinder is my last paper-based game.

Most of us aren't discounting things out of hand, just because they are new, or just because they are not new. So please, don't label every long time player as being so shallow in their decisions.


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David Bowles wrote:
I have seen them. And casters are eviscerated in 5th. No channel. No summons.

Casting power has definitely been toned down. That doesn't mean they aren't perfectly viable alongside martial characters, especially at higher levels.

Now, there are certainly some differences in what they can do and how they can do it. Someone who was a huge fan of a summoner will definitely be in for a big change. That doesn't mean a summoner can't exist.

It does mean that you don't really get to start combat summoning until the middle levels - and that summoning is specifically the domain of the Druid and the Wizard.

At the same time - keep in mind that the design of 5E means that summoning a pack of small animals can actually be quite effective against high level enemies. So directly converting summon spells from 3.5 just wouldn't be a good idea. Instead, summoning is rarer, but is quite effective - and the 'non-combat' summons (which take a minute to cast, but give you an ally for up to an hour) are potentially even more of a big deal.

I can definitely understand specific concerns about some playstyles having changed or gone missing. 'Save or Lose' spells are a lot more restricted (in many cases incorporating the 'save ends' mechanic of 4E). There is a lot more versatility in your spell casting (everyone has a psuedo-spontaneous element to the way casting works) - but in return, a much stricter limit on spell slots. Your Int 20 Gray Elf Focused Specialist with a Ring of Wizardy... they probably have double or even triple the number of spell slots as your 5E character. That can be a big adjustment.

On the other hand, spells are still a big deal. And even if you can't crank up save DCs so that enemies are auto-failing, the same is true for enemy saves - even high-level monsters will usually have a decent chance to fail a save. Some awesome monsters have specific protections that might let them auto-save, or be immune to conditions like charm or fear. But there are still spells that can have an impact even then - you don't have to worry about being shut-down entirely by spell resistance or magic immunity.

You can't devote half your spell slots to uber-buffing yourself and the rest of the party. But in light of that, when you do cast a buff spell, it is usually a pretty big deal.

If the 5E caster isn't something you are interested in, that's entirely fair. But a lack of *choice* is certainly not a real problem, nor is the threat of getting beaten up by a martial character.


I actually love 4e a bit.

I got into PF with the beginner box. The simplified rules won me over, but that doesn't mean I don't still love 4e.

Even now, (well, as long as you don't count APs and Modules, only count the hardback rulebooks) my 4e rulebooks outnumber my PF ones.

I play mostly PF these days, but absolutely love 4e still.

Truth to say, when I DM'd 4e, since I like knowing exactly what the players characters look like, there was actually more paperwork (and the headaches associated with it, if you are one to gripe about it in PF) for me in 4e.

I love how the monsters are handled though, and the ease of setup. Never really liked the pogs though, still use minis for combats.

Silver Crusade

Matthew Koelbl wrote:
David Bowles wrote:
I have seen them. And casters are eviscerated in 5th. No channel. No summons.

Casting power has definitely been toned down. That doesn't mean they aren't perfectly viable alongside martial characters, especially at higher levels.

Now, there are certainly some differences in what they can do and how they can do it. Someone who was a huge fan of a summoner will definitely be in for a big change. That doesn't mean a summoner can't exist.

It does mean that you don't really get to start combat summoning until the middle levels - and that summoning is specifically the domain of the Druid and the Wizard.

At the same time - keep in mind that the design of 5E means that summoning a pack of small animals can actually be quite effective against high level enemies. So directly converting summon spells from 3.5 just wouldn't be a good idea. Instead, summoning is rarer, but is quite effective - and the 'non-combat' summons (which take a minute to cast, but give you an ally for up to an hour) are potentially even more of a big deal.

I can definitely understand specific concerns about some playstyles having changed or gone missing. 'Save or Lose' spells are a lot more restricted (in many cases incorporating the 'save ends' mechanic of 4E). There is a lot more versatility in your spell casting (everyone has a psuedo-spontaneous element to the way casting works) - but in return, a much stricter limit on spell slots. Your Int 20 Gray Elf Focused Specialist with a Ring of Wizardy... they probably have double or even triple the number of spell slots as your 5E character. That can be a big adjustment.

On the other hand, spells are still a big deal. And even if you can't crank up save DCs so that enemies are auto-failing, the same is true for enemy saves - even high-level monsters will usually have a decent chance to fail a save. Some awesome monsters have specific protections that might let them auto-save, or be immune to conditions like charm or fear. But there are still...

I disagree with your last statement. I think there is a VERY real chance of getting crushed by a martial, because once they are adjacent, you can't get away. And cranking down spell slots seems to me to be cranking down choice. Maybe I'm just looking at it very differently.

Grand Lodge

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David Bowles wrote:
I disagree with your last statement. I think there is a VERY real chance of getting crushed by a martial, because once they are adjacent, you can't get away. And cranking down spell slots seems to me to be cranking down choice. Maybe I'm just looking at it very differently.

I actually like that quite a bit. Essentially, D&D is a party based system, meaning that no class should be a one man show. You need every member of a party to effectively do different things.

So casters really shouldn't be able to get away from martials. In a party, the martials should be killing opposing casters or trying to prevent the other beat sticks from killing their caster.

The caster, depending on the type, should either be killing scores of smaller enemies, buffing their allies and debuffing opponents, or shaping the battlefield so it is more advantageous toward their group.

Casters should cast and martials should . . . uh, martial. I could see a two-adventurer party with a Battle Master Fighter and Diviner Wizard being more dangerous than the standard group of 4.

Silver Crusade

If your party has no martials you should just automatically lose, then? Sounds fun to me. Casters can't rely on their own martials to protect them anyway, since neither 5th nor Pathfinder have a threat mechanic. 4th didn't really have an effective one, either.

Grand Lodge

They're still limited by action economy. A party of casters could remain viable, although it's probably stronger to have a variety.

Shadow Lodge

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A spellcaster shouldn't be able to ignore the enemy that's standing right next to him when he's trying to cast. Whether that enemy be a martial or a spellcaster.

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