Why do you dislike the playtest version of the Vigilante?


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion

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Rhedyn wrote:
These contradictory stances devalue your feedback because it seems to me that there is no pleasing you and you won't explain why 4-class in one is BS. Since this is a discussion thread, I want to know why you feel that way.

Other classes are one class in one, because they're a class with a clear theme and concept. They have (mostly) many class features, their abilities (mostly) build on one another, and their features can be traded away and customized with archetypes, or doubled up on with feats.

The vigilanteks conept is that you have a lot of skill points and renown, and then staple some other stuff on top of it.

The Vigilante is four "classes" in one. Each class is a watered down version of an existing class, you only get "Vigilante" abilities every other level, you have to spend your talents that you only get every other level to even become the watered down class in the first place, your abilities don't build on one another (Most of the abilities don't scale. If you want vII then you have to spend another one of your limited talents on it.).
The four classes in one means that the "base" doesn't really benefit from any version, the class is constantly pulling in different directions...really why aren't the four different specializations just archetypes?
If they were archetypes you could actually make a functional base class.

Imagine the Stalker as a base class. You get your skill points, you get to sneak around, you get to FEEL like a vigilante. Then you overlay the Warlock on it, or the Avenger, or the Zealot. You build on yourself rather than having to start from the ground up and being horrifically delayed.

Some of the most frequent comments were that the specializations should be combined or that there should be a shared pool of talents between all the specializations, and that there needed to be a feat to gain extra talents.

You're playing a vanilla fighter/caster/inquisitor///commoner multiclass with extra skill points.

Renown also doesn't scale for some asinine reason. You have to spend your social persona talents on each passing level. There weren't enough enough persona talents to choose from in the playtest, so there was zero reason to give us the false choice.

False choices false choices false choices, that's the class in a nutshell.

Sure if you build one high level it might look okay, since you're getting everything at once, but playing one and having to level up only to see "Well...I kind of HAVE to do this. Boy, sure would be nice to just play the class I'm emulating and get real class features" is extremely disheartening.

Also, I know this is a discussion thread for you to learn opinions, but have you read through the playtest threads? They give a lot of the info that's been posted here.


chbgraphicarts wrote:

So, a non-Magic mystic-bolt Warlock...

Again, "why not just play a Kineticist?"

Didn't get to this part.

6th level wizard spells. Kineticist is cool, but it doesn't have wizard spells. (Also, I meant non-mystic bolt not non-magic, mystic bolt).


chbgraphicarts wrote:
My honest reaction is: 4 separate classes in one is bad because it gives no singular identity to the class, and so it shouldn't be designed this way.

WHY!?

Let's forget your conceit. Why is what you are saying here true. ALL your justification so far seems to be "this is how it was always done, so different = bad". So why does the class need a singular identity? Why is every specialization being drastically different a bad thing?

I understand if you just don't like the idea, but you said it shouldn't be designed that way. That it is wrong. why?


Some snips for space

Flame Effigy wrote:

The vigilanteks conept is that you have a lot of skill points and renown, and then staple some other stuff on top of it.

The Vigilante is four "classes" in one. Each class is a watered down version of an existing class, you only get "Vigilante" abilities every other level, you have to spend your talents that you only get every other level to even become the watered down class in the first place, your abilities don't build on one another (Most of the abilities don't scale. If you want vII then you have to spend another one of your limited talents on it.).
The four classes in one means that the "base" doesn't really benefit from any version, the class is constantly pulling in different directions...really why aren't the four different specializations just archetypes?

You're playing a vanilla fighter/caster/inquisitor///commoner multiclass with extra skill points.

Renown also doesn't scale for some asinine reason. You have to spend your social persona talents on each passing level. There weren't enough enough persona talents to choose from in the playtest, so there was zero reason to give us the false choice.

False choices false choices false choices, that's the class in a nutshell.

I do not feel like they are watered down, but I do agree that the social stuf doesn't synergize.

I see a complaint about strength of the class, and a complaint of "false choices", both are valid complaints. I do not see why that means 4-class in one is inherently bad.

Now, I feel that each specialization is strong except for maybe Zealot (don't mess with divine casting that much). I more or less like the builds I am making with the class.

I concede on false choices. There is some wiggle room, but it does seem like that you are intended to take certain options. And I will agree that that is a fault of the current class.


Rhedyn wrote:
chbgraphicarts wrote:
My honest reaction is: 4 separate classes in one is bad because it gives no singular identity to the class, and so it shouldn't be designed this way.

WHY!?

Let's forget your conceit. Why is what you are saying here true. ALL your justification so far seems to be "this is how it was always done, so different = bad". So why does the class need a singular identity? Why is every specialization being drastically different a bad thing?

I understand if you just don't like the idea, but you said it shouldn't be designed that way. That it is wrong. why?

Rhedyn isn't wrong here, this is an appeal to tradition, which invalidates the argument.

That said, the premise of a class that has two separate personas that basically can't interact in the same scenario does make me question the general weakness of each persona on its own.

The class basically comes down to being a poor man's gestalt that allows for both a social character and a combat character on one chassis, but by making each persona far weaker, you end up always being second fiddle in everything you try to accomplish.

In the end, I guess I don't have issue with the idea behind the class the way cbh does, but the fundamental balance assumptions its built upon.

Does that help?


Trogdar wrote:

The class basically comes down to being a poor man's gestalt that allows for both a social character and a combat character on one chassis, but by making each persona far weaker, you end up always being second fiddle in everything you try to accomplish.

In the end, I guess I don't have issue with the idea behind the class the way cbh does, but the fundamental balance assumptions its built upon.

Does that help?

Well, yes. When I went into the playtest document my thoughts were "could I take this into a dungeon crawl heavy campaign?"

Honestly, it's not that strong of a class if the campaign has basically no social elements. It hits the right cords for me in such a campaign because each specialization seems to be competent in a fight. It plays at the optimization level I find the game to be fun at. Now in an intrigue campaign, I would call the class balanced next to even a wizard.

As NPCs this class would make for fantastic BBEGs or morally grey enemies. It's hard for me to see such a great villain option and discount it as too incompetent for a player to use.


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Rhedyn: Why did you start this thread?

If it's to convince us non-believers that the Vigilante is the best thing since sliced bread then you can stop. We aren't going to change our mind. We've played it and come to our conclusions. There is no way your insights and experiences with it trump our own.

If it's to actually see why we didn't like it, you already have heard it. Arguing with us isn't going to change what we like. Remember the question is "why do you dislike" it.

Personally, this class floats someplace between an NPC class and an actual PC class. Better to play than an expert but clearly second place to any other comparable PC option. Call it NPC+.

"Well I didn't know that the arcane strike feat makes magical weapons!" That would be somewhere close to a point if the ruling actually said ANYTHING about an actual 'magic weapon'. It says "nor can a mystic bolt be made with magic weapon special abilities." YOU are adding the part about magic weapons as it's not in the rules.

And to point out where YOU don't get it I'll quote you. "It doesn't make weapons." and "2. Make bolt". It made an "impermanent" weapon that the rules said can't be made with "magic weapon special abilities." Feel free to wash your hands of the conversation if you wish but that don't change the words written in the PDF. They are pretty clear you're doing it wrong. (and they are contradicting themselves by saying you can use arcane striker but at least the first part works)


It probably is a great tool for GM's, but the social aspect can, at the very least, be accommodated in a class with a solid chassis like the slayer. It's certainly not going to perfectly emulate the social persona, but with some planning you can get pretty close, which is why I think a number of posters question the validity of the class.

Just having a hat of disguise on a slayer checks off a number of boxes which is worrying.


graystone wrote:
Personally, this class floats someplace between an NPC class and an actual PC class. Better to play than an expert but clearly second place to any other comparable PC option. Call it NPC+.

Probably want to discuss this part. It doesn't seem weak to me.

We can't discuss that though. You're attacking this class so aggressively that you won't talk about how abilities actually work. Could we talk about the merit to at least 6 of your 10 talents in warlock are taken up by mandatory options? (You don't have to go mystic bolt to be strong, but you must have arcane striker) Sure. But you instead want to go off on a tangent of how you don't think the abilities work as written in a playtest document. Should we have a back and forth on Warlock spells known? The table says spells known, but warlocks have spell books. Should we just assume the warlock has limited spells known or should we ignore a typo and treat it like arcanist casting?


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It is possible that arcane striker was never meant to interact with mystic bolt the way you assume Rhedyn. I can't argue either position conclusively because I'm not a developer, but the wording of mystic bolt is definitely problematic if the two abilities are meant to work together well.


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I guess this guy found some secret formula that two playtest worth of playtesters havent found...

Im sorry but everything you are proposing has already been mentioned and the overwhelming majority have said that it has problems...

The only spec that i saw much praise for was Stalker in V2. The others were full of complaints..


Trogdar wrote:

It probably is a great tool for GM's, but the social aspect can, at the very least, be accommodated in a class with a solid chassis like the slayer. It's certainly not going to perfectly emulate the social persona, but with some planning you can get pretty close, which is why I think a number of posters question the validity of the class.

Just having a hat of disguise on a slayer checks off a number of boxes which is worrying.

Idk, I found the stalker to be a lot more mobile and more assassin like than the slayer. The slayer seems to have the "stand still and full attack" problem like most martials. The avenger even gets pounce. I just like the way those specializations seem to play better than Slayer or Fighter. Between the skill list and social grace the vigilante could net a +7 to certain skills over the slayer which is a significant mechanical difference. I also like the +20 to disguise that holds up to magic.


Rhedyn wrote:

I rather dislike PF and 3.5, so something not following that mold is not a reason for me not to like it.

(bold my emphasis)

Then why are you here? If you "rather dislike" Pathfinder then why are you on their forum championing a class.

People's unnecessary vitriol aside, you asked for opinions/reasons why people don't like something that you do. Your response to those opinions was, as quoted above, to say that you don't like Pathfinder anyway. If you don't like the game why would you care about how people who do want it to change going forward?

I'm not trying to be a jerk, I got as far as the above statement and now I can't tell why this thread should even continue. If you don't like the basic mechanics of a system then what value could you possibly place on opinions that are based on how it functions?


Trogdar wrote:
It is possible that arcane striker was never meant to interact with mystic bolt the way you assume Rhedyn. I can't argue either position conclusively because I'm not a developer, but the wording of mystic bolt is definitely problematic if the two abilities are meant to work together well.

I can't ignore this line, "Abilities that affect all weapon attacks, such as the arcane striker warlock vigilante talent, function with mystic bolts." If they meant arcane strike they could have said arcane strike.

And this line "Because mystic bolts are impermanent, a spell that targets a single weapon (like magic weapon) can’t affect it, nor can a mystic bolt be made with magic weapon special abilities." seems problematic, but you aren't making the bolt with magic weapon special ability.

To quote arcane strike: "As a swift action, you can imbue your weapons with a fraction of your power. For 1 round, your weapons deal +1 damage and are treated as magic for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction. For every five caster levels you possess, this bonus increases by +1, to a maximum of +5 at 20th level."

The feat that gets enhanced by arcane striker effects all your weapons. You aren't making a bolt with magic weapon properties, you are applying properties to your weapon attacks. That would seem shacky, but the ability specifically says it works with arcane striker.


Errant_Epoch wrote:
Rhedyn wrote:

I rather dislike PF and 3.5, so something not following that mold is not a reason for me not to like it.

(bold my emphasis)

Then why are you here? If you "rather dislike" Pathfinder then why are you on their forum championing a class.

People's unnecessary vitriol aside, you asked for opinions/reasons why people don't like something that you do. Your response to those opinions was, as quoted above, to say that you don't like Pathfinder anyway. If you don't like the game why would you care about how people who do want it to change going forward?

I'm not trying to be a jerk, I got as far as the above statement and now I can't tell why this thread should even continue. If you don't like the basic mechanics of a system then what value could you possibly place on opinions that are based on how it functions?

To be fair, I personally have issue with the balance assumptions of the game as well. I post here because the community is full of people who are far better at it than the developers(in my opinion). It is a great place to work on the system and figure out how to polish your home brew. I have far more faith in the opinions of my fellow posters than the people who gave us the jewel that was the ecclisitheurge class.


Errant_Epoch wrote:
Rhedyn wrote:

I rather dislike PF and 3.5, so something not following that mold is not a reason for me not to like it.

(bold my emphasis)

Then why are you here? If you "rather dislike" Pathfinder then why are you on their forum championing a class.

People's unnecessary vitriol aside, you asked for opinions/reasons why people don't like something that you do. Your response to those opinions was, as quoted above, to say that you don't like Pathfinder anyway. If you don't like the game why would you care about how people who do want it to change going forward?

I'm not trying to be a jerk, I got as far as the above statement and now I can't tell why this thread should even continue. If you don't like the basic mechanics of a system then what value could you possibly place on opinions that are based on how it functions?

Because I do like this class. I was playing a DSP psion the other day and liked it too.

As much as the warts of PF have begun to infuriate me, things like this class and DSP psionic classes seem to address those problems. I basically hate the skill system because barely any class can do anything decent with it. The vigilante comes with skill support so that people can actually be apart of that aspect of the game. I hate the stand still and full attack mechanic. The vigilante avenger and stalker seem to both circumvent that. The stalker is nice and mobile, while the avenger gets pounce without doing game breaking damage to have pounce. I hate needing to pump spell DCs to be effective. The warlocks main stay of damage is DC independent and has access to all the utility spells normally held just out of reach of 3/4ths casters (looking at you MAGUS).

One of my buddies was like, "Oooh this class is going into my PF-like system rewrite because it is very much like my idea for classes".

PF is souring on my group. We still play it because we have campaigns going. We like 5e, but we never feel right saying it is better. It's just too different to make that kind of comparison.

But yeah, for as much as PF rubs me the wrong way, I was surprised by dislike for the vigilante by people that have the same criticisms about PF I do. Building a vigilante was first time I had fun building a PF class in a long time.

/ramble


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I have this vision that the developers have some kind of formula that spits out a "power level" for each class based on a composite of the class abilities. And that the developers pay attention to this number rather than intuitively looking at the class.

Otherwise, I can't see how someone who is supposed to be knowledgeable about the game can put out this class and not see that it's garbage.


Rhedyn wrote:
Trogdar wrote:

It probably is a great tool for GM's, but the social aspect can, at the very least, be accommodated in a class with a solid chassis like the slayer. It's certainly not going to perfectly emulate the social persona, but with some planning you can get pretty close, which is why I think a number of posters question the validity of the class.

Just having a hat of disguise on a slayer checks off a number of boxes which is worrying.

Idk, I found the stalker to be a lot more mobile and more assassin like than the slayer. The slayer seems to have the "stand still and full attack" problem like most martials. The avenger even gets pounce. I just like the way those specializations seem to play better than Slayer or Fighter. Between the skill list and social grace the vigilante could net a +7 to certain skills over the slayer which is a significant mechanical difference. I also like the +20 to disguise that holds up to magic.

That could all just be plugged into a slayer or a rogue as talents though, because they're talents for this class (except the persona, which could also be an archetype or talent). That's really the gist of it. Since all of the abilities feel like talents, or are talents, and we have a number of classes that already fit the mold and have customization options that are similar or are literally talents, it doesn't make a case for the class so much as it makes a case for the talents. Slayer is already built. If they got access to the pounce talent, if they could take an archetype that trades out, I dunno, Track and the first talent for a social persona, then there wouldn't be much of a reason for the Vigilante.

I think more than anything it's less disliking what the talents do, and more concerned with there being a new class that does other classes by taking talents; talents that those other classes could just get, while taking this opportunity to do something new. I like the Stalker talents, Avenger has some nice stuff, but if we hand those off to the rogue and the slayer, respectively, you'd be playing a better version of that character! Warlock is really just sort of invalidated by a lot of what OA is doing, I think, and Zealot doesn't do much we don't already have; I'd rather have a full base class that's just a divine bloodrager, which I actually built.

But there is the potential for the class to have two or three separate specs that do something no other class can do from the get-go, like cast divine AND arcane spells from level 1, make sneak attacks with spells and be an illusionist rogue (though Mesmerist gets kinda close now), and a rogue character that gets scaling minor teleportation in shadowy environments and specializes in the first round of combat and bouncing in and out of sight from day 1.

Edit: also, Unchained does have a lot of options for alleviating what seem to be your main gripes with PF. The Revised Action Economy is great, and I've been using that a lot, and Background Skills are a lot of fun.


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I'm pretty much with the "it's not a class, it's a disguise check" crowd. I can't see the point of having a whole class based on such a narrow concept and when you add that it also gets to be a pale imitation of some other class it seems doubly pointless. It seems like the whole concept could be boiled down to a Dual Identity feat, and maybe a couple other feats that build off that if you really want to concentrate character resources on a secret identity.

And if you have a full campaign focused on secret identities, then it should be a campaign system like kingdom building or relationships, not a class ability.

Now if you want to make a class that does something unique with the vigilante concept like take batman's devices and make a class that uses mechanical and/or magical gadgets to create spell-like effects - I'm all for that. Especially if you can attach them to arrows like hawkeye and green arrow. Or any other concept as long as it is actually how you fight crime, not what you do when you aren't fighting crime.


You kind of missed my point. This is really 'debate me until you love the vigilante class' rather than a 'why don't you like it' thread. But ok, I'll bite.

Almost every one of the warlocks abilities are worse than other classes.

Mystic bolt vs Kineticist.
Spell vs any caster. Paladins even get a better deal as they don't pay for it.
Bombs vs alchemists or even rogues as they can pick ALL bomb discoveries. A mean it's just sad.
Arcane striker: A nice talent. Actually worth a talent.
Bond of Blood: blood armor 1/day is ok. When it's up it's almost an ok power.
Caster’s Defense: It's a travesty that they have to pay to use their armor.
Concealed Casting: Interesting. Maybe worth it.
Educated Defense: Nice talent
Elemental Battle Armor: With everyone and their brother having resistance, it's meh...
Familiar: it's fine.
Living Shadow: Cool but 1/day. Until 14th, not really worth it.
Bolts: sadly useless. I'd LOVE it to be worthwhile.
Shadow Jump: nifty. thumbs up.
Signature Spell: Pass. Not enough casting to really focus on DC attack spells.
Social Simulacrum: Interesting in an intrique type game.
Tattoo Chamber: Best talent EVER.

tangent: I'm sorry but it clearly disallows what you where doing to make bolts look ok. If you don't try to prove bolts are awesome that I'm not going to tell you you're doing it wrong. Pointing that out isn't a 'tangent'. It's how the ability is written. it's in black and white. No weapon special abilities for bolts. Unless it's rewritten, that's how it is. If you wish to have to stop saying so, I'd suggest not bringing up arcane striker for bolts again. and then we're both 'happy'.

If the blurb "Abilities that affect all weapon attacks, such as the arcane striker warlock vigilante talent, function with mystic bolts" is meant to allow what you think it does, they need to word it differently as it directly contradicts the statement that you get no weapon special abilities. Again, if it meant you can't enchant them as a magic weapon, they should have said so and made it clear because that isn't what they wrote.


@Puna'chong

I think the issue is that giving these talents to other classes would just make them too strong. Fighter's and Slayer's bonuses to-hit make pounce like mechanics too strong. It's rocket tag at that point. Rogue will now be held to the the unchained rogue standard. With the all those debuffs, stalker like ease of precision damage becomes problematic.

I feel like vigilante fills a lot of already filled niches, but does it correctly. The Avenger is a fighter that feels like a hero to me, not a town guardsman out of his element. The Stalker is what I've always wanted from a rogue.Rogue and Fighter are apparently too hard to fix, so I'll take vigilante. Warlock really does seem fine when compared to an alchemist.

Another note: Power attack and it's ilk seems like a trash choice for a vigilante which I find exciting. I hate those feats. Zealot might need them, which seems sad.


Rhedyn wrote:
chbgraphicarts wrote:
My honest reaction is: 4 separate classes in one is bad because it gives no singular identity to the class, and so it shouldn't be designed this way.

WHY!?

Let's forget your conceit. Why is what you are saying here true. ALL your justification so far seems to be "this is how it was always done, so different = bad". So why does the class need a singular identity? Why is every specialization being drastically different a bad thing?

I understand if you just don't like the idea, but you said it shouldn't be designed that way. That it is wrong. why?

Last year, the Medium was playtested.

It had much the same problems the Vigilante did - it didn't have much going in the way of non-Spirit-based abilities, no spells unto itself, etc.

Everything was about the Spirits, and there were to be 52-54 of them.

That was a bad design, because if the Spirits turned off, the Class was left with no identity or utility unto itself.

The as-printed Medium is a much-more solid and manageable class that works on 6 spirits, has its own abilities, skills, and spells unique of the Spirits that make it a functioning member of the party without those abilities.

The Medium ALSO, even in the Playtest, at LEAST had/has the ability to switch roles day-by-day, so it's at least malleable in applications and can switch roles if one proves to be ineffective in the party over others.

The Vigilante does NOT have this malleability. Once you chose your Specialization, you're stuck with it.

The Vigilante has no real identity beyond what its Specializations define. Worse than that, the Specializations are just-worse versions of 4 popular Classes anyway, meaning that the reasons to take the Vigilante besides saying "I'm a vigilante!" are all-but nonexistent.

---

This is not the first class to be proposed that's 4 or more disparate Classes shoved into one - there are countless examples of such classes to be found on forums, on other sites, etc.

They're all met with the same questions/comments:

•Why not just play the real class that this is mimicing?

•What is this Class trying to be? There's no cohesion or solid theme behind it.

•This class isn't very strong - there's no unifying nature to this class to have its abilities all build on, so everything involved is left mediocre-to-bad.

•This Class ads no mechanical value to the Party, and no flavor value to the game as a whole.

---

Name any Class - it's fairly easily describable and has its own niche to fill:

Barbarian - Rager/Berserker & meat shield
Bard - Musician-mage
Cleric - priest / divine spellcaster
Druid - Nature mage
Fighter - Man-at-arms
Monk - Martial Artist
Paladin - Holy warrior / paladin
Ranger - Nature Warrior
Rogue - Dungeoneer
Sorcerer - Talent & bloodline-based
Wizard - Studied mage
Alchemist - Mad scientist / alchemist
Cavalier - Knight / Perfect Soldier
Gunslinger - desperado
Magus - Mage-knight
Oracle - Crippled prophet
Inquisitor - monster-hunter
Summoner - otherworldly-monster summoner / Outsider Battle Buddy mage
Witch - Witch (duh)
Ninja - freakin' NINJA!
Samurai - ... it's a Samurai (mounted archery + katanas & clubs & honor)
Antipaladin - Unholy Warrior
Arcanist - consumate arcane mage
Bloodrager - Rage Mage
Brawler - bare-knuckle, back-alley brawler / action movie star
Hunter - Animal battle-buddy mage
Investigator - Sherlock Holmes with Alchemy
Shaman - White Witch
Skald - Heavy Metal mage
Slayer - Assassin / Hitman
Swashbuckler - Errol Flynn
Warpriest - Super Saiyan
Kineticist - Telekinetic / Bender
Mesmerist - mind-manipulator
Medium - ghost-channeler
Occultist - relic-based psychic
Psychic - mind mage
Spiritualist - Ghost battle-buddy mage

---

The Vigilante? The Vigilante HAS no identity.

The Vigilante COULD be the Super Spy class, but instead it's just... 4 things rolled into one.

It says "I'm a vigilante!" and then doesn't bother to explain this mechanically in any degree - it says "I have a secret identity!" and then fails to differentiate how it's any difference than any class using the Disguise skill or using a Hat of Disguise.

It's a conglomerate of already-existing classes that don't share even the vaguest of themes (well, the casters do, but only insomuch as they're casters - that's all). It, as a Class, doesn't add any unique or interesting flavor to the world, and it doesn't add any mechanically unique qualities to the game.


chocobot wrote:

I'm pretty much with the "it's not a class, it's a disguise check" crowd. I can't see the point of having a whole class based on such a narrow concept and when you add that it also gets to be a pale imitation of some other class it seems doubly pointless. It seems like the whole concept could be boiled down to a Dual Identity feat, and maybe a couple other feats that build off that if you really want to concentrate character resources on a secret identity.

And if you have a full campaign focused on secret identities, then it should be a campaign system like kingdom building or relationships, not a class ability.

Now if you want to make a class that does something unique with the vigilante concept like take batman's devices and make a class that uses mechanical and/or magical gadgets to create spell-like effects - I'm all for that. Especially if you can attach them to arrows like hawkeye and green arrow. Or any other concept as long as it is actually how you fight crime, not what you do when you aren't fighting crime.

This was basically the feeling I had when I glanced at the playtest.

"Oh look more pointless bloat"

Then I actually read through it and thought "this is actually pretty cool"

At a glance you would assume it's "light versions" of other classes, but even thought they get fewer combat abilities, I found those abilities to be a lot better than the glut of abilities I would get from other classes. I much prefer having a few abilities that I actually like over a bunch of abilities I feel that are uninspired because you can have 20 of them with "extra X" feats.

The social stuff seems kind of pointless until you realize that this is the dev trying to give narrative power to mundanes/not-fullcasters. The talents boost skills. It's not "you get a dual identity". It's "you get plus 20 to disguise to have a near perfect dual identity". Many of the other talents are just number bonuses to skills. They help you with the "it's a skill check" activities.

But yes, the social stuff is only nice. Maybe sprinkles on the cupcake. I welcome it, but it does seem like filler to avoid dead levels.


Rhedyn wrote:
Errant_Epoch wrote:
Rhedyn wrote:

I rather dislike PF and 3.5, so something not following that mold is not a reason for me not to like it.

(bold my emphasis)

Then why are you here? If you "rather dislike" Pathfinder then why are you on their forum championing a class.

Because I do like this class. I was playing a DSP psion the other day and liked it too.

As much as the warts of PF have begun to infuriate me, things like this class and DSP psionic classes seem to address those problems. I basically hate the skill system because barely any class can do anything decent with it. The vigilante comes with skill support so that people can actually be apart of that aspect of the game. I hate the stand still and full attack mechanic. The vigilante avenger and stalker seem to both circumvent that. The stalker is nice and mobile, while the avenger gets pounce without doing game breaking damage to have pounce. I hate needing to pump spell DCs to be effective. The warlocks main stay of damage is DC independent and has access to all the utility spells normally held just out of reach of 3/4ths casters (looking at you MAGUS).

One of my buddies was like, "Oooh this class is going into my PF-like system rewrite because it is very much like my idea for classes".

PF is souring on my group. We still play it because we have campaigns going. We like 5e, but we never feel right saying it is better. It's just too...

Yeah so my point remains. I LOVE Pathfinder, you don't. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that. What could I ever say to you to convince you that it is a good game? Probably nothing. Just like you could never convince me that 4e is a good game (I haven't tried 5e yet, but my rough perusal of the rules made me not super interested).

So anything I could say to you about my feelings on the Vigilante (shocker: I think it's a terrible bard by day that has to choose whether to be a terrible; fighter, rogue, magus, inquisitor by night) would be based in a fundamental difference in opinion about table top gaming, how it should be, how it could be.

You have to recognize this. Your thread was called "Why do you dislike the playtest version of the vigilante?" To me that's asking people to give opinions and observations hosted in their own assumptions of how table top gaming should be, or at least within the confines of this game. You then set yourself to argue against these opinions/observations despite not baring the same assumptions and therefore criteria for judgement.

One of your strong arguments has to do with feel of combat, the class feels more mobile to you. There is nothing wrong with that, but if the core assumptions of the people you are arguing with have no issue with inter-combat mobility or lack thereof then the argument has no utility.

The biggest argument I see against the vigilante is that I would need to spend to much of its customizing ability "talents" just to make it comparable to the combat efficacy of another class it emulates, which denies the player the ability to instead use them to customize the character. However if you feel that such talent/trick/etc. selection that many classes have is an overwrought part of class construction (please note here that I'm not saying this is how you believe, just an out of the blue example) then of course you wouldn't see that argument as valid.

My understanding of 5e (taken from friends that play it and fully admitting that I have not done so myself) was that it has less customization. Everyone I know personally who has played it has said that to me. Usually accompanied by a glowing recommendation. A recommendation I can't understand because "less customization" is hard for me to accept and why I hated 4e.

This class on the surface seems very customizable but many of the choices you make mandate or necessitate the choices of others, ruining the class for me. Which is sad because I'll have to go back to my Slayer/Brawler build to be Fantasy Batman. So maybe giving up half of your talents just to get all of your spells (which should be just something you get as that path IMO) is something that you can appreciate because that is your playstyle and the lot of us will never understand that.

Does that make any sense?


chbgraphicarts wrote:

•Why not just play the real class that this is mimicing?

•What is this Class trying to be? There's no cohesion or solid theme behind it.

•This class isn't very strong - there's no unifying nature to this class to have its abilities all build on, so everything involved is left mediocre-to-bad.

•This Class ads no mechanical value to the Party, and no flavor value to the game as a whole.

I like the abilities better than the mimic'd class.

Who cares? The specializations have different flavors. That's not a problem.

Each specialization is pretty strong. I have compared it to other classes and builds, and it gets the job done, while being useful in the rest of the game that isn't combat.

You could play an all vigilante party and be well rounded. The specializations do retread some old flavor, but I found the old mechanics for that flavor to kind of suck. So bravo Paizo for bravely just making replacement classes!


Errant_Epoch wrote:
Does that make any sense?

No.

Many people are saying the vigilante class shouldn't be design the way it is, not that they merely do not like it. That can be discussed.

Many people are saying vigilante class is objectively weak. That can be discussed.

I'm not getting the hate. When I sit down and make a vigilante, it's pretty strong and has a deverse skill set. The lack of real customization within specializations could make building a vigilante less fun, but when it comes to playing the class and comparing it to classes that are static after you build it, then I begin to wonder what the problem is.

Vigilante v Medium - Obvious lack of real choices. Medium can change on the fly. Vigilante can't

Vigilante v Slayer/Fighter/Rogue - Those classes have more build options but their play is still static

Warlock v Magus/Bard/Unchained-Summoner/alchemist/investigator - Warlock has more spell options, but has less build options

Zealot v Inquisitor/Hunter/War-priest/Paladin - This comparison suffers more because the Zealots spells are static and you have little build wiggle room. Probably out of all the specializations this one wows the least. But with as unfamiliar as I am about inquisitor spell combos with paladin smite, I can't make a good judgement.


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So you don't think core mentality about a systems function affects your judgement on pieces of the system?

You don't like the way the system is, yet you like this class.

People who like the way the system is seem to hate the class.

You don't think that observation is relevant?

Rhedyn said wrote:

Errant_Epoch wrote:

Does that make any sense?
No.

Many people are saying the vigilante class shouldn't be design the way it is, not that they merely do not like it. That can be discussed.

Many people are saying vigilante class is objectively weak. That can be discussed.

Gotcha but you aren't really discussing it with any more merit than the others in this thread, from my observation.

I mean ultimately, if you like the class get the playtest version, print it out, have your GM put their stamp of approval on it and have fun or go play a system that you enjoy a lot more and probably have more fun.

As a note I would like to add that I feel that I have gone out of my way to be respectful to you and I feel that was not met in kind.


Whoa, wait.

Vigilante as a class gives you +20 to all disguise checks?

I thought it was just to disguise yourself as your alternate identity...?


It's says "to appear as a member of polite society", which in one identity you arguably are. Who knows what that even does.


SunstonePhoenix wrote:

Whoa, wait.

Vigilante as a class gives you +20 to all disguise checks?

I thought it was just to disguise yourself as your alternate identity...?

social identity only. If it ACTUALLY gave it to all checks I might be willing to take a 1 level dip into it. Maybe.

"Should anyone suspect him of being anything other than what he appears to be while in his social identity, he can make a Disguise skill check with a +20 circumstance bonus to appear as a member of polite society."

Note where it states "while in his social identity"


SunstonePhoenix wrote:

Whoa, wait.

Vigilante as a class gives you +20 to all disguise checks?

I thought it was just to disguise yourself as your alternate identity...?

A series of social talents broadens the bonus farther and farther out with levels.

It also helps out with divination magic, so at high levels you can disguise yourself as a monarch and take over the nation or as the pope and rule the church.


Errant_Epoch wrote:

So you don't think core mentality about a systems function affects your judgement on pieces of the system?

You don't like the way the system is, yet you like this class.

People who like the way the system is seem to hate the class.

You don't think that observation is relevant?

I recant. You are right that does effect it.

What I am more curious about is that there are plenty of people with same frustrations about PF that also dislike the class.

Obviously if stand-still and full attack is a satisfying mechanic to you then the vigilante stalker/avenger seem like weaker versions of other classes. If you like the buff-mancer mentality of most 3/4s casters then the Warlock and the Zealot have problems for not being like other 3/4 casters. If the skill system doesn't bug you, then the vigilante's skills seem OP.

So yeah, obviously re-treading all the topics that formed my opinions on large parts of PF would be a seemingly endless conversation. I just assumed I am talking to the same people ranting on caster/martial disparity threads. My mistake.


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graystone wrote:
SunstonePhoenix wrote:

Whoa, wait.

Vigilante as a class gives you +20 to all disguise checks?

I thought it was just to disguise yourself as your alternate identity...?

social identity only. If it ACTUALLY gave it to all checks I might be willing to take a 1 level dip into it. Maybe.

"Should anyone suspect him of being anything other than what he appears to be while in his social identity, he can make a Disguise skill check with a +20 circumstance bonus to appear as a member of polite society."

Note where it states "while in his social identity"

That's another problem I had.

I like that they added a bonus to Disguise checks, but it's +20 at lv1.

That's... kind of a knee-jerk reaction.

There's no build up? No "Bonus to Disguise Checks equal to your Class Level" or anything?

There's no reason to NOT just take a single-level dip to get a +20 on a Disguise checks; if there were a build-up at least there would be incentive to go several levels in (like how you have to play a Rogue to level 3 just to get natural Dex to Damage).

That's some of the most hilariously-awful design I've seen in a while.

It's bad enough that the Gunslinger is often a 1-2 level dip so you get the Gun, the proficiency WITH the gun, Gunsmithing, Grit, AND all the lv1 Grit abilities (which are some of the best) - I can imagine tons of people who would dip into a Vigilante to get a +20 Disguise and never even bother LOOKING at the rest of the class.

Hell, a single level dip that gives you +20 to Disguise and then 6 other Skills means you're basically getting 7 Skills right there, 'cause with a +20 at lv1, who'd ever want/need to put Ranks into Disguise ever again? (unless you want to enter the Master Spy at some point later, but... meh, details).

Shadow Lodge

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Rhedyn wrote:
chbgraphicarts wrote:
My honest reaction is: 4 separate classes in one is bad because it gives no singular identity to the class, and so it shouldn't be designed this way.
WHY!?

Let me reverse that on you. Why should four separate classes with little in common besides frequent use of the disguise skill be awkwardly shoehorned onto the framework of a single class?

Hell, it even kind of fails at being a vigilante. It's fine for rich playboy by day, adventurer by night like Batman, Iron Man, etc....but what about adventurer by night, all-but-unknown by day like Spidey?

Shadow Lodge

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chbgraphicarts wrote:


I like that they added a bonus to Disguise checks, but it's +20 at lv1.

That's... kind of a knee-jerk reaction.

There's no build up? No "Bonus to Disguise Checks equal to your Class Level" or anything?

There's no reason to NOT just take a single-level dip to get a +20 on a Disguise checks; if there were a build-up at least there would be incentive to go several levels in (like how you have to play a Rogue to level 3 just to get natural Dex to Damage).

That's some of the most hilariously-awful design I've seen in a while.

Yeah...that's just...WTF?!?

Is there even a point to playing a rogue that doesn't take a single level dip into Vigilante now ?

Fine, it's only as the "social identity". That's still insane. I have to wonder if this is Paizo trolling the community at this point.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

I view this a very poor entry into the superhero genre, not a fantasy adventurer like all the other classes.
This isn't a bad thing, per se, it's just that use of the vigilante pretty much demands a very specific type of game to use it effectively, with the exclusion of all the other classes.

IMHO, of course.


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One of my players was looking forward to the vigilante, because... doing alternate identities at low levels when your a non-charisma class is hard. He could get maybe +3 with his disguise check, anything more would've reduced his combat ability severely. So he hoped that the vigilante would help his concept... but.... the class tried to do too much while at the same time only giving a very small pool of options, nearly no direction, and ended up lacking any substance.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 16

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It felt like the real star of the class should be the social identity, not the vigilante identity.


Kthulhu wrote:
Rhedyn wrote:
chbgraphicarts wrote:
My honest reaction is: 4 separate classes in one is bad because it gives no singular identity to the class, and so it shouldn't be designed this way.
WHY!?
Let me reverse that on you. Why should four separate classes with little in common besides frequent use of the disguise skill be awkwardly shoehorned onto the framework of a single class?

There is no reason they should be nor any reason they shouldn't. The idea of the class is not the issue, it's whether or not the execution is good.

Criticism I have heard about mechanics not ideals:
Avenger - No bonuses to hit. I think mad rush and the other talent make up for that. Full slayer/fighter bonuses plus pounce seems OP to me, but just pounce plus other good features seems like it would be more effective than spending every-other round (or more) moving and doing one attack at higher to-hit

Stalker - It seems like people want the rogue and slayer to have these toys, not that the stalker itself is bad. No one appears to actually be saying the stalker is a worse rogue/slayer just that the rogue/slayer would be so much better with these talents.

Warlock - Energy resistance can gut a core ability. They don't bring the same level of buffs as other 3/4 classes which compounds the first problem if you have to resort to a weapon because of it. The lack of build flexibility doesn't effect how useful the warlock is, but does bring up the issue of false choices.

Zealot - No one in this thread, but others have reported that the to-hit is hard to raise for Fey zealots. Smite gives you relevance against BBEGs but all the other mooks are difficult to handle. The rest of the zealots seem to have a fine array of combat boosters via spells. My buddy who plays an inquisitor has to pick spells that give bonuses that don't overlap with his class features. But really my experience with the list is too low.


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I'm with cbh on this. I honestly turned off the playtest forums right around the same time that round 2 came out. Bear in mind that I genuinely enjoy playtesting material like this.

I looked, I played briefly, I decided that the class is a trainwreck. Prior to R2, I tried to like it. I reviewed the R2 doc. It didn't fix a lot of the core problems of the "class," which will always be in quotes because it's a hot mess that doesn't deserve the word.

  • It's directionless and built fully on level-by-level selections, which means that it requires a high degree of system mastery to play even moderately well. As such, new players should not be touching the class. If new players should not be touching the class, you should question why you're printing it.
  • The options presented in the playtest were so limited as to be worthless. I have a level 8 GM credit baby to make and I considered this "class." At level 8, I had either run out of options to take for a cohesive build (avenger, stalker) or had spent nearly all of my talents on taxes (zealot, warlock).
  • It lacks unique mechanics. I think this point has been hashed out enough, but it bears repeating. There's nothing here, other than the social identity (trolololololol), that this "class" actually does.
  • Even built with a cohesive selection set, the class underperforms compared to similar options with consistency. Other than bolts, why make a warlock over an arcanist? If you want bolts, why not build a kineticist? Why would you make a grappling and unarmed strike focused avenger when you could do better with maneuver master or tetori monk, brawler, or any of several existing fighter options?

In that regard, cbh hit it out of the park. As someone who works in a sales-like role, one of the chief questions we have to answer is "what makes us different from our competitors?" THIS IS THE SAME QUESTION YOU NEED TO ASK IN THE DESIGN PROCESS. The theoretical answer is that the vigilante is differentiated by the social/vigilante identity binary. To steal from Kant, existence is not a predicate. Saying that your differentiator is that you're 2 alternating things really isn't saying anything.

From there, the next differentiator appears to be that the vigilante is Schroedinger's class, but that's not even fair to say because it lacks versatility after you make your selections. A wizard changes his spells. A vigilante gets stuck at step 2 of the underpants gnome problem. You could say that the vigilante is anything you want it to be, as long as what you want it to be is a sub-par slayer, rogue, arcanist, kineticist, or inquisitor. Maybe tack on a couple other things here and there as you hyperspecialize your generalist.

Ultimately, I feel like the same complaint that JB has put forth about the APG summoner's eidolon applies to the vigilante playtest: it has 10 tentacles and 2 butts. It's amorphous, devoid of actual design, and lacks differentiators because of it. It is the worst version of Nintendo's Kirby you can imagine. After making Mark rewrite the entire Medium class after the playtest because of wordcount, I believe the least you could do is scrap this monstrosity and start over.

I wanted to believe that the vigilante could be Batman. It turns out the slayer was there for me all along.


Serisan wrote:

Ultimately, I feel like the same complaint that JB has put forth about the APG summoner's eidolon applies to the vigilante playtest: it has 10 tentacles and 2 butts. It's amorphous, devoid of actual design, and lacks differentiators because of it. It is the worst version of Nintendo's Kirby you can imagine. After making Mark rewrite the entire Medium class after the playtest because of wordcount, I believe the least you could do is scrap this monstrosity and start over.

I wanted to believe that the vigilante could be Batman. It turns out the slayer was there for me all along.

I may disagree, but I understand why you feel that way. IMHO give me stalker over slayer. It screams Batman to me. I would be curious why you feel slayer does it better, not whether or not stalker does it differently enough.


Open question: It seems most specializations are defined by their pool of talents and one initial talent. What would you think about getting one vigilante talent at 1st level and having all the talents pooled together into one pool that you pick from? I see some immediate balance problems from being able to get multiple "first level" talents, but aside from that?


Your thread asks a question and doesn't say "lets have a debate on why you should love the vigilante." So of course, we came into the thread assuming the first and not the second. If you meant the second, saying that would let people know that's what the thread's about.

If you wanted to talk about mechanics, again, that might have been something to note up front.

Avenger: no native attack/damage buff. 'pounce' is good, but it's the worst pounce possible. Look at flying kick from the monk. Starts at 5th. Doesn't drop your AC by 6. Has a range of 40' by the time the avenger gets his.

Overall talents are ok but doesn't stand out as better at anything over other full BAB classes.

Stalker: hidden strike worse than sneak attack until invisibility all the time is possible. Overall comes the closest to being a real class but just doesn't seem to jell as a unified class.

Warlock: Guts? Energy resistance, Resist Energy and Protection from Energy gut it, stomp it into the ground and does a jig on it's corpse. Bombs are worse than you can get as a rogue. You spells per day are less than other 3/4th classes AFTER you spend most of your talents on them. Tattoo chamber is cool.

Zealot: Spellcasting is at least better than the Warlocks... It really didn't feel like it had enough to stand on it's own. There are some nice features but not enough for a full Divine Power class.

Overall: IMO, the social side is dead weight. Past what get at 1st, it could not be there and I wouldn't notice. To be relevant, you'd need a game tailor made just for this class. Meh...

Batman: I don't think this can make aquaman or howard the duck, let alone batman... Maybe one of the wonder twins without the other one...


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chbgraphicsarts wrote:

A Master-Spy-Made-Base-Class with SPONTANEOUS ALCHEMY!

Look at that - I just blew your freakin' mind with a Class that would cause people to HUMP THIS BOOK.

If you have 6th-level Alchemy, it opens up a WHOLE WORLD of possibilities for Archetypes that STILL sticks with the idea of messing with Specializations:

You trade out the Alchemy for an Archetype that grants you both Divine AND Arcane spells, where you have to know an equal number of Arcane & Divine spells (whenever possible from leveling), where you use Spell Slots to cast either Arcane OR Divine as you so choose, and you have a unique Spell List for both Arcane and Divine that doesn't overlap so you always know what's Divine and Arcane; AND you have a few abilities which modify spells based on whether they're Arcane or Divine. (HI, MYSTIC THEURGE!!!)

You trade out Alchemy for an Archetype which grants you Psychic abilities. You lose your Spells Known list and instead Prepare and Cast spells like an Arcanist, meaning you Prepare your Psychic Spells Known and then cast them freely using Spell Slots. (HI, ARCANE TRICKSTER!!!)

You completely drop most of your abilities that are based around Disguising and instead gain a metric f$!*-ton of abilities based around blending into Shadows, MELDING into Shadows, hopping BETWEEN Shadows, making living Shadows and Summoning Monsters with the Shadow Template. (Helloooooo, Shadowdancer, you sexy, sexy BEAST!)

You even drop Alchemy ENTIRELY and gain a Rage-Like ability, a Flurry ability to up your BAB equal to your Level, and abilities focusing on acting as a Bodyguard to other characters (STALWART DEFENDER, WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL MY LIFE!?)

This is what the Vigilante should be.


Rhedyn wrote:
Open question: It seems most specializations are defined by their pool of talents and one initial talent. What would you think about getting one vigilante talent at 1st level and having all the talents pooled together into one pool that you pick from? I see some immediate balance problems from being able to get multiple "first level" talents, but aside from that?

I'd much rather have each one have meaningful options. Right now, there is really only one right choice.

Not that Vanishing Step and hidden strike combined wouldn't rock, but one big pool would leave it kind of a mess and up the chances of new people makes a gods awful mess of suboptimal combinations.


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Rhedyn wrote:
Serisan wrote:

Ultimately, I feel like the same complaint that JB has put forth about the APG summoner's eidolon applies to the vigilante playtest: it has 10 tentacles and 2 butts. It's amorphous, devoid of actual design, and lacks differentiators because of it. It is the worst version of Nintendo's Kirby you can imagine. After making Mark rewrite the entire Medium class after the playtest because of wordcount, I believe the least you could do is scrap this monstrosity and start over.

I wanted to believe that the vigilante could be Batman. It turns out the slayer was there for me all along.

I may disagree, but I understand why you feel that way. IMHO give me stalker over slayer. It screams Batman to me. I would be curious why you feel slayer does it better, not whether or not stalker does it differently enough.

There are a couple core elements of Batman that I'd like to focus on here:

He's an unarmed combat master. As in, numerous forms of martial arts. This is better emulated by a full BAB class, as well as being supported by ranger combat styles. In addition...

He adapts to his opponents. While the brawler's Martial Flexibility class ability best emulates this, Studied Target is a close second for combat. There are no analogous talents for the stalker.

Combat gadgets can typically be emulated through Dirty Trick combat maneuvers. Guess who has an archetype devoted to that and taking people alive.

He's an intelligent detective. As it turns out, Studied Target helps out here, as well. The only thing that comes close here is Case the Joint on the stalker side, which is much more about breaking and entering.

There are a ton of other facets of Batman because he's a complex character. Many of them can be covered by both the stalker and the slayer. The issue is that a lot of the critical ones (like being highly effective in unarmed combat) don't lend themselves to a rogue-like class.

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