Things you would change about Pathfinder


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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-Do not nerf spellcasters but give fighters more they can do such as swift, immediate, and maybe even a counter/parry type actions.
-full attacks even if they move but at a penalty to hit.
-Get rid of CMB/CMD.
-Curses should be the only thing that needs a chack to cure with a spell not poison or disease.
-All spellcasting classes should get cure light wounds and maybe even cure moderate.
-Necromancery should have more positive energy based spells and arcane casters(or at least necromancers) should get lesser restoration, regenerate, and raise dead.
-Get rid of weapon finesse as a feat and instead make it an option any can use.
-If the class is a rouge or dex based fighter let it use dex to damage with any weapon that it can use dex to hit with.
-Make sorcerers more focused on there bloodline powers.
-All skills are class skill but some classes get bonuses with the skills that fit there class.
-Make how many skill points they get based on the class type: martial 6+int, spellcaster 4+Int, and skill monkey 8+Int or even 10+Int.
-A stat point per level with a stat max of 20 at level one but the max increases every odd level to 30 at level 19.
-A feat every level, combat feats at odd levels only except for the fighter class.
-No more wealth per level.
-Make magic items special again so no such thing as a regular +1 weapon or armor, all items have special abilities minor and/or major.
-Make clerics abilities more based on what kind of deity they worship so there weapon prof, armor prof, type of spells they can cast, etc. is more based what type of cleric they are.
-No more extra domain spells for clerics just let them spontaneously cast any of there domain spells.
-More and better domain powers.
-less feat tax in fact just make some of those powerful feats have a level requirements.
-Make the classes less reliant on magic items for AC, saves, etc.
-Give the Samurai ki powers he can use through his blade or to improve his senses, will saves and sense motive checks.
-If a character gets a breath weapon ability through his class or race let it be useable every 1d4 rounds, in fact get rid of a lot of once per day limitations for abilities.
-Maybe have an option of wich of two stats apply to saves such as Str or Con for Fort, Dex or Int for Ref, and Wis or Cha for Will.
-The monk class is not the only one that gets a AC bonus based on a mental stat, in fact all classes should have this option if unarmored and not just wisdom ether. Though the monk should still be best at it.


There's a lot of interesting ideas being tossed around in here. Some of them I can get behind, and some I might state as differently.

1) I agree that spells need to be toned back. In practice they're not all that limited a resource unless you're in a surprise encounter marathon. The design decisions to make individual spells be weighed heavily based on the expected number of encounters and number of uses per day seems to yield questionable results in practice.

2) Not a fan of stat scaling and the hunt for static bonuses. Scale back all of the maths such that it is never assumed that you will need bonuses of +X to +Y in order to succeed or be meaningful. The end result appears to yield situations where what you roll is largely meaningless. If rolling is part of the fun (and I think it is) then the effects of rolling should matter.

3) More meaningful feats. +1 and +2 feats to a specialized activity, feat taxes, and other such things are not as FUN as feats that alter or grant new abilities (such as metamagic feats).

4) Currently the system rewards specialization by requiring (sometimes extensive) investment in feats, spells, class abilities, stats, and/or magic items in order to be able to perform a given task reliably. If a person feels like there is a good chance that they will waste their turn because they're trying to do something Cool or Flashy, they probably won't.

5) I'd like to see the Cure line of spells changed to actually reflect the severity of the wound healed. Cure Light Wounds heads 1d8+X. Even at minimum, it can bring an average commoner from 0 to 2 hit points. Half his hit points isn't a light wound. CLW might barely touch the hit point total of a high level barbarian. Again, not a light wound. I realize this is a nomenclature thing, but the Cure line of spells is one of only two places in the rules that really screw with hit points as a coherent cinematic system.

6) Environmental hazard damage is stat damage (not falling though, because heroes standing up from long falls is cinematic).

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So many of these suggestions I don't want...just goes to show how different people's play experiences and preferences are.

I'd like martials to have more narrative power, and I think high skill ranks should be able to perform superhuman feats. Really I think the design philosophy should be like Star Wars Saga edition - martial PCs are just as effective as caster PCs, because they are the exceptional ones.

I could support a change that made wizards more like 3.x psions, or 1e magic-users and illusionists - the generalist gets a truncated spell list, mixed from all schools, but if you want the best stuff at each level you must specialize.

I'd like to see WBL go away, or at least broken down into separate tiers with a nod to how those tiers affect the CR system.

I'd like more support for high level play.

I'd like all ability scores to have real detrimental effects if dumped, for all characters. Choosing abilities should be a process of give-and-take, not "I'll put a 7 in Cha and never talk." Having a 7 in any stat should be as bad as having a 7 Con.

Things I want to retain: 9 level, Vancian spellcasting. "Zero to Hero." Items with pluses (they should be nice but not needed). Few enough skill points that you can't have everything you want.


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-Vancian Casting: Oh dear heavens I would love to be rid of the "spells per day" for something like a mana pool or casting simply requiring fatigue saves by the caster or something else.

-Ability Scores: Just use the modifiers

-Magical items/WBL etc: If the +whatever bonuses are really needed, then just make them inherent to character progression. I'd rather imagine my character getting more awesome rather than he found a better sword while his actual skill hasn't changed.

-Fewer bonus types: so many different bonus types just to figure out what stacks with what.

-Iterative attacks: I'd rather see this removed and replaced with something that keeps combat quick and allows for more mobility in combat for everyone, not just those with specific feats

-Broader feats and spells: Every new product introduces at least a few (usually a lot) of new feats and spells, many of which have very circumstantial uses or just give a bit of improvement over the previous version. And then there's the whole unnecessary feat tree/feat tax issue. I'd rather see a lot of these simplified into single feats or spells that automatically get stronger as you level.


alexd1976 wrote:
Make martial characters better. Add level to damage for Fighters, for example. As a start.

fighters already out DPR everything that isn't novaing, which i think is good, just wish they did more than fight...

I would probably shift the reliance away from feats and instead have everything require stats and you can just automatically do them if your stats are high enough.

then also move spell casting down in power, I like how some of the unchained stuff works. maybe equalize sorcerer types and wizard types by making them both acquire spells as a wizard in the same way but cast as a sorcerer, but at diminished casting and lowest possible CL and attribute DC, where sorcerers can push the spells to make them potent and wizards can use the spell materials.


I'd rather not focus on small changes, none of this nickel and diming.

If we can seriously dream big, I want to see Pathfinder separate into two different rulesets. Low level and High level get their own books AND their own 20 levels of progression. In 3.5th it was epics, but it did not work because epics was tacked on.

It is time to take epic levels and actually embrace them. If people truly want to play high level, give them a whole new system where it actually WORKS. If people want to play low level, give them a system where it is actually FUN.

After all, this is the crutch. Everyone wants to progress, everyone wants to get levels because unlocking new things is very much fun. Just rolling dice is what you can do already at lvl 1, meshing together different class abilities and spells to get amazing narrative combos together has always been where I see people mots enjoying themselves. This should happen at all stages of the game, no matter what kind of story the DM wants to run.

My prime example for wanting this is the 40k RPG systems. If you want to play the world at its lowest, you can. If you want to straight jump into the ridiculousness of the setting, you just pick the appropriate book for it. You get to start at "level 1" instead of starting at like lvl 15, completing your build in character creation and collection any item you might ever care for with just WBL.

If you want to play Zero to Hero, I can't help you. If you want to play go from peasant to Hercules in 10 session, you must be either ready to jump the hoops and jump levels pretty fast or something. Currently Pathfinder hits a sweet spot somewhere in the middle while the beginning and end points are slogs.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Meh. I don't really find anything I would change. I work around the system now.


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Remove WBL and Expected gear. Basically R.I.P. christmas tree effect. Possibly eliminate all items that grant flat bonuses, i.e. no more stat belts/bands/+weapons/+armor or shield.

Mathhammer the whole system from the ground up. CMB vs CMD saves VS DC's Attack VS AC all need redone.

Rewrite the combat rules, eliminating the idea of Reality or "making sense". Write it solely as a game and use specific game terms none of this attack action vs attack as an action nonsense or wield vs wield.

Rewrite the magic chapter and spells to lower overall power level and remove "Gotcha" spells such as Simulacrum, Create Undead, and Planar Binding.

Rewrite skills to be worth something and to be something a character can be based around.

Rewrite weapons and armor so that there are valid weapon choices beyond 1 or 2 per category and more than one best armor choice.

Condense and enhance feats so having more is a good thing rather than "Yeah I can trade for another Rage power/Exploit."

After rewriting all of this mathhammer again.

And just to be clear do all of this with the focus on creating a readable, understandable, and internally consistent rule-set, not a setting. All of this should be done based on what makes the game work not on "reality" or "this book was cool" or "I don't/do like that."

This is just what I want, I am not saying it is a good idea or even doable, but I can dream.

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While in many ways I agree with getting rid of all the magic items - or at least the big 6 - I can see why it's there too. It lets the game cash in on Skinner box theory. :P


Pan wrote:
Rynjin wrote:
Pan wrote:


1. Everyone MAD and no more "use x instead of y"

Interesting. I would prefer something of the opposite, myself.

Make everyone SADer. Or at least DAD.

Monks Dex/Wis, Rangers Str or Dex/Wis, Paladins Str/Cha, Fighters Str/Int, Wizards Dex/Int, and so on.

Then make all their mechanics work off those two. Monks can attack/damage with Dex, Wizards need Dex for Casting Defensively or maybe for Concentration checks for spells with Somatic components, stuff like that.

See this is one of my least favorite design paths. Id sooner just get rid of ability scores all together than design classes to run off only two of them and ignore the rest. At that point they serve nothing more than offense and defense sliders.

True, but it's better than the current set-up, and it's better than making even more classes suck harder because they need more stats to function.

I'd probably scrap the current 6 stats system entirely if I could. Maybe implement a "combat" stat instead of having Str/Dex do everything that way.


Make it Savage Worlds.

Seriously, if I wasn't so disappointed with the quality and quantity of Pinnacle's version of APs compared to Paizo, my group would never touch PF again.

If I'm homebrewing these days it's usually my go-to system, but as so many people say, everyone plays Pathfinder, so...

...Also, Paizo's community support is awesome, and their APs, while not perfect, are quite deep with a lot of details for multiple possibilities. I tried to run The Flood for a Deadlands group a couple times, by comparison, and it just felt slapped together.

But as a system, yeah, I'd just scrap Pathfinder and run SW. Classless, HPless, super swift initiative, much less exponentially progressive level ups, plug and play generic format, and combat that takes about 1/3 the time at low level, 1/5 the time at mid level, and dang near 1/10 the time at high level....MMMM, delicious.


ryric wrote:


I'd like all ability scores to have real detrimental effects if dumped, for all characters. Choosing abilities should be a process of give-and-take, not "I'll put a 7 in Cha and never talk." Having a 7 in any stat should be as bad as having a 7 Con.

YES! And for those who say that would make PC's too weak, obviously you then have higher CR's for a given difficulty of NPC in exchange.


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I would change Pathfinder back to a roleplaying game from the battle-game it's become.


I like the idea of allowing people to place their saves bonus increases from leveling where they please.

DR as a new armor system would be cool. I almost wonder at a system where being hit is WAY more deadly, and instead, much of the rolling involves the process of not being hit, parrying, dodging, etc.

If you keep blocking with your shield, eventually the minotaur will smash it to pieces... :P

Sovereign Court

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Owly wrote:
I would change Pathfinder back to a roleplaying game from the battle-game it's become.

That's more of a personal game issue rather than a system issue. You can do as much or as little roleplaying as you want to when playing Pathfinder.


Owly wrote:
I would change Pathfinder back to a roleplaying game from the battle-game it's become.

Look into FATE.


Anzyr wrote:
Owly wrote:
I would change Pathfinder back to a roleplaying game from the battle-game it's become.
Look into FATE.

*nod*

Not to be disparaging at all, but FATE will scratch the free-form RP itch much better than crunchy pathfinder.

It is a good system.


Personally, I always thought BAB, Saves, AC, Caster Level, and even ability scores should be skill based. Armor should be DR. And class abilities should all be work as D20 Modern/Star Wars Saga style talent trees. So your class really just determines your hit dice, skill points, class skills, and which talent trees you can access. Increase skills/level for all classes to account for the extra need.

Except then I also think everyone should skip classes and advance by racial hit dice instead. Class would simply be a kind of template that would apply a modifier to hp rolls and skill gains each level. Talent trees would be accessed by feats, so class would provide initial feats.

And then I think, why even use hit points? Go with the Unearthed Arcana system where you make a check to determine whether you survive a blow; this would also be done as a skill. Attacks no longer do damage, they just provide a penalty on this check. Increase skill ranks accordingly based on current hit dice.

So now your character is purely a function of racial level, and your class simply determines class skills, initial talent tree(s), and how many skill points you get per level. But then, most classes are going to have roughly the same number of skill points, talent tree feats, and class skills, just to help balance between them. Why not dispense with class, let players pick a set number of class skills and talent tree feats to develop a custom class on the fly?

But why feats at all? You could honestly make most of the feats talents as well, and require players to spend skill points to gain either skill ranks or talents. So now all players need worry about is racial level, and where to spend the skill ranks they get each level. Even though the essential mechanics are the same, characters are still widely differentiated by where they spend their skill points and what class skills have been chosen. Increase skill points/level to account for the need to now buy talents with them.

Then again, what is the purpose of class skills in a system? Why not just make talents that provide a bonus to that skill? An extra helping of skills will let people choose class skills - or have more capability in future skills. Right? At this point, level simply serves as a check on game balance, preventing anyone from dumping all their skills into a few skills and breaking the game.

But do we need experience to work with level in this form? Why not just award skill points each game session as experience, and level is a function of skill points awarded rather than vice versa. Every 20 skill points you increase the level by 1 - or some other number determined by the GM. After all, so long as everyone uses the same values it should be fairly balanced. So now all characters and NPCs are built using the same mechanics, where level caps skill point spending, and skill points are used for everything from ability scores, class features, spellcasting, weapon capability, defensive skills, etc.

Wait, I think I just reinvented Mutants & Masterminds... ;-)


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1. Remove Power Attack and all its variants (Piranha Strike, Deadly Aim).

2. Calculate Crit Damage by rolling your dice, adding the weapon's enhancement bonus, multiplying by the crit number, *then* adding stat bonuses.

Why, you may ask? I remember 2E D&D epic fights where the fortunes of battle waxed and waned. Fights where lucky rolls turned the tide and unlucky ones were a huge setback. Fights where round-per-level buff spells ran out. Fights where, when it was all over, the victory felt substantial.

In Pathfinder now, there are about a half dozen ways to make an 8th level character who can do well over 100 points of damage in a single round (and few 8th level characters have anywhere near 100 HP), and some of the bad guys follow suit. Unless there's a metric crapton of bad guys, the fights are over before they have even begun. There's no flow. A lucky roll means the fight is over and you win. An unlucky one means you are dead.

Could just be my Ruby Lenses of Retrocognition, but I miss that playstyle.


Charon's Little Helper wrote:
For this thread - I'd like people to explain things that they would do differently from Pathfinder if they were designing a similar but new system from the ground up.

I am! Well sorta; my personal heartbreaker is not quite a re-write of Pathfinder, but Pathfinder(/3e) is one of the two biggest influences, along with 4e. With a splashes of other editions (and a pinch of Shadowrun, and a soupçon WFRP...). It is a slow process, so some of this is mission statement rather than established fact...

Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Split the Dex score into Dexterity & Agility. Dexterity = hand-eye coordination/accuracy/etc while Agility=tumbling/dodging etc.

I have done this, although I have called them Finesse and Agility. I have also combined and then re-split up the mental stats. The current list is:

  • Strength
  • Health
  • Agility
  • Finesse
  • Reason
  • Wits
  • Intuition
  • Spirit
  • Fellowship

Although Strength might get renamed "Brawn" or "Body" or something. The reason for the extra mental stats is to make casters a bit more MAD without them all using the same stats.

Other bits and pieces:

Divine spellcasters use AE/5e-style readying. Arcane casters use a variety of schemes, including traditional vancian.

Hit points are not meat points. This has been true in every edition of D&D, but the mechanics have not always been completely coherent. I am committing to the notion moreso than any edition (even 4e). So for example things like poisoned attacks only work on people below certain hp thresholds (contact poisons require a glance, which requires you to be below 50%, while injection poisons require a 20%). Crits count as being the next threshold.

_
glass.

Grand Lodge

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I feel like a lot of these changes would mean you're no longer playing Pathfinder. Honestly, I love 5E and a lot of the things it changed - but I don't want to turn Pathfinder into 5E. Too many people are eager to turn Pathfinder into something else and that's just not fair.

That being said some changes I would like to see:

1. Combat Expertise is the worst example I have ever seen of a rule remaining simply due to legacy. It's beyond worthless - it is actively detrimental to building martial characters who do anything besides "I hit with my stick!" I have already houseruled it out of my games, as have most GMs I know. Similarly -

2. Too many feats, especially maneuver feats, are nickel and dimed. When a trait is worth more than a feat, the design has failed somewhere.

3. Many of the super high level spells should be relegated to GM options only. The narrative shattering stuff like Simulacrum should not be assumed to be available to players, but as villainous options for BBEGs to use. Players could always take at GM's discretion of course.

4. Get rid of full attack/standard. If you have 2 attacks, you have 2 attacks. Period.


Which trait are you referring to, EnterisShadow?

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Owly wrote:
I would change Pathfinder back to a roleplaying game from the battle-game it's become.

The whole thing STARTED as a battle minatures war-game. We've been spending the better part of the last half century bolting role-playing onto it.


EntrerisShadow wrote:
I feel like a lot of these changes would mean you're no longer playing Pathfinder.

Well of course. That is kinda the point of the thread.

_
glass.


The entire spell system.


Zhayne wrote:
The entire spell system.

Could you please elaborate?


-Play nothing that requires full attacks, gear, min/maxed stats, or tons of buffs to be viable in combat.


For me, I would like something like that:
- Vital Strike works with Mythic's Sweeping Strike and charge, but not any other charge attacks such as spring attack,spirited charge.
- Make combat feats such as Vital strike to scale up like power attack.
- Better saves for everyone. +6 on a poor save is too unfair especially with how powerful magic gets later on.
-Better weapon special abilities for non casters (that's one of the reasons why casters are so powerful.)
- Some high level spells will require more casters to complete. However, some will increase the spell's effect depends of how many casters assisting.
- Rogue gets bonus to stealth against magic detection or spell casters equal to the number of her sneak attack dice.
- Fighter gets blindsense within his weapon's reach and may use Sense Motive to locate hostile enemies that are not visible to him(vs Stealth). Fighter add double the bonus of Bravery if he makes such checks.
- Full casters should have a free level 1 wand with 10 charges added to their starting wealth.

I think that would be interesting.

Grand Lodge

kyrt-ryder wrote:
Which trait are you referring to, EnterisShadow?

The ones that spring immediately to mind are the ones that let you use a different stat for 2-3 skills, but really anything that gives you a flat +1 is superior to a very conditional + 2, especially if you have to blow more than one feat to get there.

glass wrote:
Well of course. That is kinda the point of the thread.

Yes the point was things you'd change about Pathfinder, but come on - there's a big difference between dump/add these abilities or rules or whatever, and eliminate every single thing that actually makes the game what it is. One guy literally said make it Savage Worlds - I just think it gets a bit ridiculous to a point where you're less looking at what to change and really just looking for a different game.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber
EntrerisShadow wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:
Which trait are you referring to, EnterisShadow?
IThe ones that spring immediately to mind are the ones that let you use a different stat for 2-3 skills, but really anything that gives you a flat +1 is superior to a very conditional + 2, especially if you have to blow more than one feat to get there.

I was expecting Wayang Spell Hunter and Magical Lineage, myself. ^_^

I am far more bothered by Student of Philosophy and its ilk, though...

Grand Lodge

Kalindlara wrote:
EntrerisShadow wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:
Which trait are you referring to, EnterisShadow?
IThe ones that spring immediately to mind are the ones that let you use a different stat for 2-3 skills, but really anything that gives you a flat +1 is superior to a very conditional + 2, especially if you have to blow more than one feat to get there.

I was expecting Wayang Spell Hunter and Magical Lineage, myself. ^_^

I am far more bothered by Student of Philosophy and its ilk, though...

Holy crap "Magical Lineage" should definitely be a feat.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber
EntrerisShadow wrote:
Kalindlara wrote:
EntrerisShadow wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:
Which trait are you referring to, EnterisShadow?
IThe ones that spring immediately to mind are the ones that let you use a different stat for 2-3 skills, but really anything that gives you a flat +1 is superior to a very conditional + 2, especially if you have to blow more than one feat to get there.

I was expecting Wayang Spell Hunter and Magical Lineage, myself. ^_^

I am far more bothered by Student of Philosophy and its ilk, though...

Holy crap "Magical Lineage" should definitely be a feat.

Right? (Both should. The lv. 3 cap is meaningless in practice, trust me.)

Even better, in Organized Play, they stack. Two levels off the metamagic of your shocking grasps or fireballs... it's ridiculous. Lot of orc-blooded wizards come from Minata. ^_^

The ability-changers (other than the Heal one, and to a lesser extent the UMD one) bother me a little more, though. I mean, if you're going to make an entire ability score irrelevant, and make wizards even more single-score-dependent, at least charge them a feat.

Sovereign Court

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Kalindlara wrote:


Even better, in Organized Play, they stack. Two levels off the metamagic of your shocking grasps or fireballs... it's ridiculous. Lot of orc-blooded wizards come from Minata. ^_^

Yeah - that part is ridiculous. It wouldn't bother me much if they had 'at least one level is added' - but I really see no reason that they should stack.

They should each be considered 'trait' bonuses - therefore not stacking.

Scarab Sages

Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Most of the changes I would consider are addressed in Unchained.

However, I would change very little. Once I start tinkering, I find that I might as well just go to another system.


Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Owly wrote:
I would change Pathfinder back to a roleplaying game from the battle-game it's become.
That's more of a personal game issue rather than a system issue. You can do as much or as little roleplaying as you want to when playing Pathfinder.

You can, but it's harder. The combat rules from 3rd Ed require much more tactics and "chess-like" maneuvers. Combat requires more optimizing. Most of us have only so much time and brain power.

Thus, while though it is certainly possible to have scads of RP in a 3rd Ed variant (which PF is) and all combat dungeon hacks used to occur in AD&D, generally there was more time to do RPing.

This is a very general rule of thumb mind you and your mileage may very.

But I see Owly's point.

I'd get rid of many combat maneuvers and AoO. I'd pit movement back on a hexboard.


LazarX wrote:
Owly wrote:
I would change Pathfinder back to a roleplaying game from the battle-game it's become.
The whole thing STARTED as a battle minatures war-game. We've been spending the better part of the last half century bolting role-playing onto it.

Not really. Yes, there was Chainmail (a rather bad miniatures war game) but D&D was a completely new game. And OD&D and AD&D had almost no tactics or war-game like movement at all.


glass wrote:
EntrerisShadow wrote:
I feel like a lot of these changes would mean you're no longer playing Pathfinder.

Well of course. That is kinda the point of the thread.

I dont think so. Look, if you dont want to play PF, there are dozens of FRPGs moldering away, dusty on the 30% off shelf at your FLGS. Many are classless, level-less, use spellpoints, etc.

If you dont want to play Pathfinder, why not just play one of those? (and some of them are quite good.)

Why would you want a game called Pathfinder but is classless, level-less, has spellpoints and so forth?

Nothing wrong with classless, level-less, spellpoints etc. But they arent D&D. PF is a D&D variant, specifically a 3.5 variant.


DrDeth wrote:
Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Owly wrote:
I would change Pathfinder back to a roleplaying game from the battle-game it's become.
That's more of a personal game issue rather than a system issue. You can do as much or as little roleplaying as you want to when playing Pathfinder.

You can, but it's harder. The combat rules from 3rd Ed require much more tactics and "chess-like" maneuvers. Combat requires more optimizing. Most of us have only so much time and brain power.

Thus, while though it is certainly possible to have scads of RP in a 3rd Ed variant (which PF is) and all combat dungeon hacks used to occur in AD&D, generally there was more time to do RPing.

I've yet to experience repeated instances of 'chess match' mentality in the games I run, but I do run them battlefield of the mind [with AoO's and combat maneuvers and all of that] and make a point to discuss story elements with my players and encourage them to remain in character at all times.

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kyrt-ryder wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Owly wrote:
I would change Pathfinder back to a roleplaying game from the battle-game it's become.
That's more of a personal game issue rather than a system issue. You can do as much or as little roleplaying as you want to when playing Pathfinder.

You can, but it's harder. The combat rules from 3rd Ed require much more tactics and "chess-like" maneuvers. Combat requires more optimizing. Most of us have only so much time and brain power.

Thus, while though it is certainly possible to have scads of RP in a 3rd Ed variant (which PF is) and all combat dungeon hacks used to occur in AD&D, generally there was more time to do RPing.

I've yet to experience repeated instances of 'chess match' mentality in the games I run, but I do run them battlefield of the mind [with AoO's and combat maneuvers and all of that] and make a point to discuss story elements with my players and encourage them to remain in character at all times.

I'm with you kyrt-ryder - I don't see that having more combat options prevents role-playing. However - I could see a more crunchy combat game attracting more players who aren't as interested in roleplaying. A case of correllation and not causality.

There are only 2 ways I can think of to really push roleplaying more

1. To have an intricate set of rules defining roleplaying moreso - but they'd likely feel awkward and I'm not sure if that would really be 'roleplaying' at all then - just a sort of social game puzzle.

2. To give all sorts of circumstancial modifiers based upon roleplaying. This seems like a horrible idea, as it's both entirely subjective and therefore easily subject to the GM playing favorites etc, and also makes it so that the players who are more introverted would have significant mechanical disadvantages.


Charon's Little Helper wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Owly wrote:
I would change Pathfinder back to a roleplaying game from the battle-game it's become.
That's more of a personal game issue rather than a system issue. You can do as much or as little roleplaying as you want to when playing Pathfinder.

You can, but it's harder. The combat rules from 3rd Ed require much more tactics and "chess-like" maneuvers. Combat requires more optimizing. Most of us have only so much time and brain power.

Thus, while though it is certainly possible to have scads of RP in a 3rd Ed variant (which PF is) and all combat dungeon hacks used to occur in AD&D, generally there was more time to do RPing.

I've yet to experience repeated instances of 'chess match' mentality in the games I run, but I do run them battlefield of the mind [with AoO's and combat maneuvers and all of that] and make a point to discuss story elements with my players and encourage them to remain in character at all times.

I'm with you kyrt-ryder - I don't see that having more combat options prevents role-playing. However - I could see a more crunchy combat game attracting more players who aren't as interested in roleplaying. A case of correllation and not causality.

There are only 2 ways I can think of to really push roleplaying more

1. To have an intricate set of rules defining roleplaying moreso - but they'd likely feel awkward and I'm not sure if that would really be 'roleplaying' at all then - just a sort of social game puzzle.

2. To give all sorts of circumstancial modifiers based upon roleplaying. This seems like a horrible idea, as it's both entirely subjective and therefore easily subject to the GM playing favorites etc, and also makes it so that the players who are more introverted would have significant mechanical disadvantages.

I would add a third option [the one I use.]

3. communicate openly with your players about the level of immersion you want to create in the game, speak openly and excitedly about the world and the adventures that await and the relationships to create.

Then live it out, strive to bring the world to life through your own roleplay and drag the players' minds into their characters' perspectives.

Sovereign Court

kyrt-ryder wrote:

I would add a third option [the one I use.]

3. communicate openly with your players about the level of immersion you want to create in the game, speak openly and excitedly about the world and the adventures that await and the relationships to create.

Then live it out, strive to bring the world to life through your own roleplay and drag the players' minds into their characters' perspectives.

Oh - I agree entirely, and I believe that to be the correct answer should you want more role-playing in your game. My previous post was in reference to changing the system itself to push role-playing more, not a change to an individual game.


...I really hate when I mix threads up. That could've been slightly embarrassing.


As I've seen said several times: I don't play Pathfinder because its good. I play Pathfinder because its popular.

My current favorite system is Fate Core, but that's hard to get anyone else to play.


I love how this thread became everything the OP asked it not to; but I do love skipping through 20 nerf caster posts.

Things I really like as ideas:

Armor as DR, maybe Dex could add a miss chance instead.

3d6 for almost all skill checks would be great.

I wouldn't necessarily have a problem with a more modular system; but maybe just making multiclassing easier would be preferable.

Better options for non or low combat games. It's hard to get people into this sort of thing in the long term. Needs to be for the right table; and rules may not improve it.


kyrt-ryder wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Owly wrote:
I would change Pathfinder back to a roleplaying game from the battle-game it's become.
That's more of a personal game issue rather than a system issue. You can do as much or as little roleplaying as you want to when playing Pathfinder.

You can, but it's harder. The combat rules from 3rd Ed require much more tactics and "chess-like" maneuvers. Combat requires more optimizing. Most of us have only so much time and brain power.

Thus, while though it is certainly possible to have scads of RP in a 3rd Ed variant (which PF is) and all combat dungeon hacks used to occur in AD&D, generally there was more time to do RPing.

I've yet to experience repeated instances of 'chess match' mentality in the games I run, but I do run them battlefield of the mind [with AoO's and combat maneuvers and all of that] and make a point to discuss story elements with my players and encourage them to remain in character at all times.

you have to think more about what you do in a turn and where you are positioning is a lot more important in this. thus combat is RPed less.

Sovereign Court

Create Mr. Pitt wrote:
I love how this thread became everything the OP asked it not to; but I do love skipping through 20 nerf caster posts.

I figured that the caster/martial thing would be brought up anyway - but thus far it hasn't been the primary focus at least. :P


Bandw2 wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Owly wrote:
I would change Pathfinder back to a roleplaying game from the battle-game it's become.
That's more of a personal game issue rather than a system issue. You can do as much or as little roleplaying as you want to when playing Pathfinder.

You can, but it's harder. The combat rules from 3rd Ed require much more tactics and "chess-like" maneuvers. Combat requires more optimizing. Most of us have only so much time and brain power.

Thus, while though it is certainly possible to have scads of RP in a 3rd Ed variant (which PF is) and all combat dungeon hacks used to occur in AD&D, generally there was more time to do RPing.

I've yet to experience repeated instances of 'chess match' mentality in the games I run, but I do run them battlefield of the mind [with AoO's and combat maneuvers and all of that] and make a point to discuss story elements with my players and encourage them to remain in character at all times.
you have to think more about what you do in a turn and where you are positioning is a lot more important in this. thus combat is RPed less.

Where you are positioning is part of the roleplay.

[Player-in-character-thought-process]Oh man, oh man, we're in deep s@!& right now. Wizard's being suppressed by that funky dude in the robe and we're being swarmed by f!~$ing goblins and hobgoblins! Think, quick, where should I go and what can I do to get us out of this mess the fastest! and the choice is made, the turn is taken, and combat continues.

Sczarni

2 people marked this as a favorite.

If we're making minor changes:

1. Attacks of Opportunity hit flat-footed AC. The whole idea behind them is that you're finding an opening in your target's defenses, right? This also helps out rogues and ninjas, especially if they take Combat Reflexes.

2. Attempting a combat maneuver doesn't provoke an AoO. FAILING the attempt does. Feats can negate that provocation. Speaking of...

3. Completely gut and rebuild the Combat Expertise line of feats, and also all the "Improved Combat Maneuver" feats (even the ones that don't use CE as a prereq). Make them more interesting beyond flat bonuses and "you are no longer punished for attempting this tactic."

4. Weapons no longer have critical multipliers, they now have critical damage dice. A rapier, for example, might be "18-20/+2d4" while a wakizashi is "18-20/+1d8" and a scythe is "20/+2d12". This would allow different weapons to have more visibly different stats and thus make more room for new weapons to be released in previous books. It would also mean your Strength bonus et al. aren't multiplied on a crit anymore, which would make crits much less of a novablast and make the crit range of a weapon less important than it currently is.

5. Give the core (and ARG) races racial hit dice. So at character creation, a human character gets an extra 2d6 HP, while an elf gets 2d4, a dwarf gets 3d6, and a gnome gets 2d8 or whatever. An extra HP buffer at 1st level would really help make me feel like I've got a decent shot at making it to 2nd level, and actually getting to, y'know, PLAY the character I dreamed up, planned out, and built.


kyrt-ryder wrote:
Bandw2 wrote:
kyrt-ryder wrote:
DrDeth wrote:
Charon's Little Helper wrote:
Owly wrote:
I would change Pathfinder back to a roleplaying game from the battle-game it's become.
That's more of a personal game issue rather than a system issue. You can do as much or as little roleplaying as you want to when playing Pathfinder.

You can, but it's harder. The combat rules from 3rd Ed require much more tactics and "chess-like" maneuvers. Combat requires more optimizing. Most of us have only so much time and brain power.

Thus, while though it is certainly possible to have scads of RP in a 3rd Ed variant (which PF is) and all combat dungeon hacks used to occur in AD&D, generally there was more time to do RPing.

I've yet to experience repeated instances of 'chess match' mentality in the games I run, but I do run them battlefield of the mind [with AoO's and combat maneuvers and all of that] and make a point to discuss story elements with my players and encourage them to remain in character at all times.
you have to think more about what you do in a turn and where you are positioning is a lot more important in this. thus combat is RPed less.

Where you are positioning is part of the roleplay.

sure if you want to define it that way.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

10 people marked this as a favorite.
Silent Saturn wrote:
4. Weapons no longer have critical multipliers, they now have critical damage dice. A rapier, for example, might be "18-20/+2d4" while a wakizashi is "18-20/+1d8" and a scythe is "20/+2d12". This would allow different weapons to have more visibly different stats and thus make more room for new weapons to be released in previous books. It would also mean your Strength bonus et al. aren't multiplied on a crit anymore, which would make crits much less of a novablast and make the crit range of a weapon less important than it currently is.

I really really really am intrigued by and like this idea.

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