TH Fighter mid-high level (12) sunder math broken?


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Hello All,

One of PCs in my group is fighter (TH archetype).
With Power Attack, Furious Focus, and all other bonuses he basically has following stats on his first sunder attempt in round:

CMB: +12(base)+6(str)+1(weapon)+1(focus)+2(training)+3(shattering)+4(gr.sunder) = +29
Dmg: 2d4(falchion)+9(str)+1(enchant)+2(specializ)+2(training)+12(power)+3(shatte ring) = 2d4+29

So, basically he always hits (85-90%) any level-appropriate enemy with sunder attempt and with his adamantine falchion destroys any weapon that doesn't have +3 enchantment with 1 hit. There is no issue in repairing weapons after combat with Make Whole, as party caster has 12 CL and it's enough to fix +1 and +2 weapons.

I don't know what to do actually. Math looks completely broken for my taste. Even in 3.5 (that was clearly more unbalanced) I don't remember such ridiculous situations.
Furious Focus just needs to be nerfed (+12 dmg on sunder without any tradeoff is HUGE)


Use fewer enemies who have things worth sundering.

Also your PC's are level 12, most of their serious opposition should probably be flying or greater invisible or both by this time.


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andreww wrote:

Use fewer enemies who have things worth sundering.

Also your PC's are level 12, most of their serious opposition should probably be flying or greater invisible or both by this time.

Ok, so I shouldn't use humanoid NPCs at all? Well, its bad design for a game...


I said use fewer, not none. If you consistently use opposition you k now your players can crack then you will continue to have the same problem.


Sunder. Back.


hiiamtom wrote:
Sunder. Back.

adamantine weapons are notoriously hard to break


Blackvial wrote:
hiiamtom wrote:
Sunder. Back.
adamantine weapons are notoriously hard to break

Not when they're equivalently enchanted, impervious, impervious and better enchanted ... and the victim returns the favor.

Or, heh heh, the sunder-monkey faces a disarm-monkey. ;)


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Turin the Mad wrote:
Blackvial wrote:
hiiamtom wrote:
Sunder. Back.
adamantine weapons are notoriously hard to break

Not when they're equivalently enchanted, impervious, impervious and better enchanted ... and the victim returns the favor.

Or, heh heh, the sunder-monkey faces a disarm-monkey. ;)

now a disarm-monkey would be a great weapon to use against him


Backup weapons. Carry non-magical backup weapons.

And as a GM, "cheat" on to hit values.

At least from APs I have to raised their to hit values by about 8 to make them capable of hitting PC characters with any reliability (at low levels).

As levels increase AC doesn't scale as quickly and becomes less of a problem, but that was merely an example. Sometimes presenting an adequate challenge as a GM means bending the rules.

Now, the PCs efforts shouldn't be trivialized. So, do decrease their bonuses to hit and damage, but have NPCs carry backup weapons so their not trivialized into nothingness.

And remember, anyone with +1 BAB can draw a weapon as part of a move action.

Edit: Also "friendly clerics" which cast greater magic weapon on NPCs weapons can be a great way to give the normal bonuses of magically enchanted weapons without having to give away valuable loot. Oil of Greater Magic weapon (made with higher caster level and thus greater value) also work well too.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber

Are we really arguing against SUNDER and furious focus of all things?


Nope (I hope). As an aside, I don't know how bad the CMD of weapon-wielding foes is at CR 11-15, but I don't think it's low enough that a +29 constitutes a reliable threat.

Edit: Ok, yeah, +29 CMB to sunder is pretty decent. At CR 12, that'll work more often than not. Against CR 15, not so much.


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Sunder is a problem but the various 6th level spells aren't?


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Don't pick on the Fighter.

Worry about the casters.

The fighter can't fly, can't teleport, can't polymorph, HECK, he can't cast ANY spells.

He's a FIGHTER!

He's good at FIGHTING!

Don't take that away from him.


Turin the Mad wrote:

Nope (I hope). As an aside, I don't know how bad the CMD of weapon-wielding foes is at CR 11-15, but I don't think it's low enough that a +29 constitutes a reliable threat.

Edit: Ok, yeah, +29 CMB to sunder is pretty decent. At CR 12, that'll work more often than not. Against CR 15, not so much.

Giants are sitting at 40+ CMD in that range, and at level 12 you should be facing more and more monsters which don't have anything to sunder anyways. And the around 50-70% hit chance he is at with a lot of the larger enemies is a risky move to waste a standard action on.

The ultimate solution still is sunder back at the party.


Mrakvampire wrote:

Hello All,

One of PCs in my group is fighter (TH archetype).
With Power Attack, Furious Focus, and all other bonuses he basically has following stats on his first sunder attempt in round:

CMB: +12(base)+6(str)+1(weapon)+1(focus)+2(training)+3(shattering)+4(gr.sunder) = +29
Dmg: 2d4(falchion)+9(str)+1(enchant)+2(specializ)+2(training)+12(power)+3(shatte ring) = 2d4+29

So, basically he always hits (85-90%) any level-appropriate enemy with sunder attempt and with his adamantine falchion destroys any weapon that doesn't have +3 enchantment with 1 hit. There is no issue in repairing weapons after combat with Make Whole, as party caster has 12 CL and it's enough to fix +1 and +2 weapons.

I don't know what to do actually. Math looks completely broken for my taste. Even in 3.5 (that was clearly more unbalanced) I don't remember such ridiculous situations.
Furious Focus just needs to be nerfed (+12 dmg on sunder without any tradeoff is HUGE)

What is +3(Shattering)? Is it this...?

Shattering is a +2 bonus that gives extra critical damage and can act like a Breaking weapon.
Breaking is a +1 bonus that gives extra damage on a hit.
Neither Breaking nor Shattering give a plus to CMB. Shattering only gives extra damage on a critical.

How is he getting +12 damage? At BAB 12, PA gives -4/+8. Two hands gives 1.5 strength, but does not apply to PA.

Adamantine Falchion Sunder vs. Mithral weapon with a Fortifying Stone:
Adamantine bypasses hardness less than 20
Fortifying stone ups Mithral weapon's hardness to 20
Each hit now has 20 points knocked off.
The party does not get this stone, since it only lasts for 20 temp hp of damage. About 2-3 hits.

Add in a casting of Hardness by a 12th level caster.
Sundered weapon hardness is 26.

Also, not all magic weapons are CL12 or less. Gloom Blade: CL13, 8810 gp.

What is good for the goose is good for the gander. Hit him with a sunder specialist once.

Ways to defeat sunder:
Opponent has multiple weapons
Opponent has miss chance (concealment)
Opponent stays away from party (flying?)
More than one opponent
Opponent does not use weapons (unarmed attack or natural attacks)
Opponent casts Grease on Falchion
Opponent casts Enervation on fighter
Opponent casts Hold Person/Hideous Laughter/Confusion on fighter
Opponent casts Bestow Curst on fighter
Opponent makes fighter fatigued/exhausted/nauseated/etc.

/cevah


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Shattering is a Class Ability of 2HF Archetype:
Shattering Strike (Ex): At 2nd level, a two-handed fighter gains a +1 bonus to CMB and CMD on sunder attempts and on damage rolls made against objects. These bonuses increase by +1 for every four levels beyond 2nd. This ability replaces bravery.

Not sure what you mean about Power Attack, it expressly increases with 2HF (and decreases with off-hand):
You can choose to take a –1 penalty on all melee attack rolls and combat maneuver checks to gain a +2 bonus on all melee damage rolls. This bonus to damage is increased by half (+50%) if you are making an attack with a two-handed weapon, a one handed weapon using two hands, or a primary natural weapon that adds 1-1/2 times your Strength modifier on damage rolls.

The 2HF Archetype eventually gets 2x STR bonus on 2H Wpns, but not until 15th level.

Try using opponents who have Reach advantage vs. the 2HF Fighter to get in AoOs in.
Or use Barbarians with Unexpected Strike and/or Come And Get Me to get AoOs when they are attacked.
AoOs can be Sunder/Disarm, or Trip/Bullrush(Knockback) to not let him get in range for attacking...
Or Swashbucklers with Parry/Riposte... Or opponents using Crane Wing style.
You can't just throw NPCs with "Power Attack" + "Toughness" etc and expect them to be a challenge against Archetyped optimized Feat builds.
So give the NPCs some love in that department.

You might also want to try debuffs, either against 2HF specifically, or on the party as a whole, those reduce the numbers.
And if you are talking about weapon using NPCs, try building them for more CMD/miss chance?
As well as buffing their weapons (adamantine, fortifying stone, furious weapons in hands of Barb increase their HPs from increased enhancement bonus).


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Also, NPCs tend to be used because of more social context than 'monsters'.
More social context means they MAY tend to already know of this PC's reputation and fighting style.
Such characters being prepared specifically as best they can is not unrealistic.
(whether from personal knowledge, being informed by allies/underlings/bosses, or just seeing the aftermath of the PC's fights (with discarded broken weapons))

Also, I wouldn't worry about loot issues, if you want to follow WBL you can give them wealth by other means than 'looting enemies' (or take it away from them by various means as well).


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Quandary wrote:

Shattering is a Class Ability of 2HF Archetype:

Shattering Strike (Ex): At 2nd level, a two-handed fighter gains a +1 bonus to CMB and CMD on sunder attempts and on damage rolls made against objects. These bonuses increase by +1 for every four levels beyond 2nd. This ability replaces bravery.

Not sure what you mean about Power Attack, it expressly increases with 2HF (and decreases with off-hand):
You can choose to take a –1 penalty on all melee attack rolls and combat maneuver checks to gain a +2 bonus on all melee damage rolls. This bonus to damage is increased by half (+50%) if you are making an attack with a two-handed weapon, a one handed weapon using two hands, or a primary natural weapon that adds 1-1/2 times your Strength modifier on damage rolls.

Did not know of the archetype.

Since I have never played THF or PA, I did not know the rule as well as I should.

Learn something new every day.

/cevah


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Don't worry about the Fighter. You can vary the encounters quite easily to get around this tactic. I worry about the CL 12 Sorc/Wiz or Cleric in the party that's casting Make Whole afterward. There's obviously something they're not doing right if you're not concerned about them.

Plant creatures, elementals, something that flies...all of these things shut down Sunder pretty easily. You don't need to do it most of the time, mind you. Just enough to make the other players shine from time to time.


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Congratulations, you have a basic martial character. Is this really a serious problem? Because if it is, you have a serious problem with encounter design. Not with the character.

The spreadsheet (here) shows an average CMD of 35 for CR 12s. That's a bit useless though, since sunder only matters for things with weapons or armor. A quick scan of those (giant, cyclops, and valkyrie) shows a CMD of 39, 38, and 39. So 60% at best. Everything else has a @#$%load of SLAs, spells, or natural weapons... all of which are immune to sunder (unless you're a barbarian).

If you mean humanoid NPC opponents, presumably the ones who use weapons are smart enough to carry more than one weapon. Sure they'll lose a couple points of attack/damage, and? The sunder focused player spent a couple feats to do exactly that. They should benefit from their investment. If your humanoid opponents don't carry backups, well, that's their problem. Not the player who smashed their stuff.


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Bob Bob Bob wrote:

Congratulations, you have a basic martial character. Is this really a serious problem? Because if it is, you have a serious problem with encounter design. Not with the character.

The spreadsheet (here) shows an average CMD of 35 for CR 12s. That's a bit useless though, since sunder only matters for things with weapons or armor. A quick scan of those (giant, cyclops, and valkyrie) shows a CMD of 39, 38, and 39. So 60% at best. Everything else has a @#$%load of SLAs, spells, or natural weapons... all of which are immune to sunder (unless you're a barbarian).

If you mean humanoid NPC opponents, presumably the ones who use weapons are smart enough to carry more than one weapon. Sure they'll lose a couple points of attack/damage, and? The sunder focused player spent a couple feats to do exactly that. They should benefit from their investment. If your humanoid opponents don't carry backups, well, that's their problem. Not the player who smashed their stuff.

yeah, don't punish him for doing the ONE thing he happens to be good at. Let him destroy their weapons, because that is probably ALL he is good at.

Focus on the casters.


I'm surprised no-one stated the obvious, casters, alchemists, opponents at range, & traps.


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So your problem is your Fighter is making the fights last longer because he's debuffing enemies (with a relatively mild debuff, mind you, compared to what a lot of classes can put out) instead of outright killing them?

Destroying someone's weapon at best imposes a penalty to-hit equal to the enhancement bonus of the weapon (so, like -2), and probably a drop in damage dice (for a lot of stuff, something like -2 to -4 damage).

Most things should have something like a gauntlet or Cestus as a backup weapon they don't need to draw AT LEAST.

Breaking their armor, meanwhile, might be a bit heftier, imposing a maximum of -4 AC (if they're wearing Full Plate). Though more likely imposing a -2-3 AC for something like a Breastplate or Chain Shirt.

This is a solid debuff, yes.

It does not break encounters in any way though. Imposing a simple Shaken or Sickened condition from any number of spells or abilities has much the same effect.

Sovereign Court

Mithral Weapon +2 = 19 hardness hardness
Reinforce Armaments (level 1 spell) = Doubles hardness of masterwork and magical weapons (and armor) for 10 minutes/level = 38 hardness
Max damage on 2d4+29 = 37 (without critting) so zero damage.

Heck, a regular steel mace +2 with Reinforce Armaments = 28 hardness and 40 hp, ~7 attacks to actually destroy it.

Moral of the story, a level 1 spell shuts down sunder for 10 minutes/level. 50 gp oil and done.


Ok, thank you for all your responses. Let me sum up several key points that need to be highlighted:

1. We are playing urban-heavy campaign that involves a lot of humanoid threats. At 12th level I personally try to use APL +2 encounters. This means that I usually pit my PCs either versus 4 NPCs of CR 10 (level 11) or versus 8 NPCs of CR 8 (level 9) or versus 3 NPCs of CR 11 (level 12). I don't use single enemies due to action economy issue.
Using only monsters is not an option for me, thank you.

2. "Just give everybody adamantine weapons" - is not a solution IMHO, it will just look strange fluff-wise.

3. "10/min duration buffs" - same as above. Why would suddenly all NPCs will have this specialized buff? After all it works only 1,5-2 hours at this level and let's say when "its buff time" they have more important buffs to drink/cast.

Quote:
Destroying someone's weapon at best imposes a penalty to-hit equal to the enhancement bonus of the weapon (so, like -2), and probably a drop in damage dice (for a lot of stuff, something like -2 to -4 damage).

Most of the time it also forces enemy to draw a weapon (say goodbuy to full-attack). As for gauntlets - imagine how ineffective is a fighter with all his weapon focuses, trainings, specializations, etc with gauntlets? no he's basically a warrior of his level.

But again, assume that it all works as intended. Imagine this PC faces enemy with same stats. What would their duel look like?
Turn 1
PC: I destroy your weapon
Enemy: An I destory yours
Turn 2
PC: I destroy your weapon...

...

Turn X
Someone: Ok, I don't have any weapons left, you win.

Quote:
Let him destroy their weapons, because that is probably ALL he is good at.

This is not true. He also kills things very very quickly with his uber damage per hit.


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So, again, seriously what's the issue?

If he's strong enough to just wreck some guy in a fight, why is it an issue that he's taking a round to make an enemy weaker when he could have already killed him?

Also, why is everyone a Fighter? Fighters are pretty much the only class with such a dependence on specific weapons. Barbarians don't need 'em, Slayers don't need 'em, Cavaliers don't need 'em, (Anti)Paladins don't need 'em, etc.

If you're running a game where everyone is a Human Fighter, TBH it sounds kinda boring anyway. And even then, have them take that favored Class bonus that adds to your CMD against certain combat maneuvers. There's +11 to their CMD vs Sunder.


So how exactly is this worse than a pouncing CaGM barbarian?

Your fighter has a single trick that works against some enemies and is crippling to only a fraction of them. Unless you are only throwing low/no magic classes at your PCs who can't 5ft step out and smack the fighter with a charm monster or something in return for sundering their longspear.

At that level a lot of classes will be 1 rounding mooks. Full BAB archers will be good at this, and so will lancers, pouncers and pseudo-pouncers. The fighter spends their first round making the opponent spend a move action to draw a slightly worse weapon, and then they kill them in the next. Sounds like a subpar option to me. All it is doing is allowing the fighter to get within range without immediately eating a full attack.


Mrakvampire wrote:

Ok, thank you for all your responses. Let me sum up several key points that need to be highlighted:

1. We are playing urban-heavy campaign that involves a lot of humanoid threats. At 12th level I personally try to use APL +2 encounters. This means that I usually pit my PCs either versus 4 NPCs of CR 10 (level 11) or versus 8 NPCs of CR 8 (level 9) or versus 3 NPCs of CR 11 (level 12). I don't use single enemies due to action economy issue.
Using only monsters is not an option for me, thank you.

2. "Just give everybody adamantine weapons" - is not a solution IMHO, it will just look strange fluff-wise.

3. "10/min duration buffs" - same as above. Why would suddenly all NPCs will have this specialized buff? After all it works only 1,5-2 hours at this level and let's say when "its buff time" they have more important buffs to drink/cast.

Quote:
Destroying someone's weapon at best imposes a penalty to-hit equal to the enhancement bonus of the weapon (so, like -2), and probably a drop in damage dice (for a lot of stuff, something like -2 to -4 damage).

Most of the time it also forces enemy to draw a weapon (say goodbuy to full-attack). As for gauntlets - imagine how ineffective is a fighter with all his weapon focuses, trainings, specializations, etc with gauntlets? no he's basically a warrior of his level.

But again, assume that it all works as intended. Imagine this PC faces enemy with same stats. What would their duel look like?
Turn 1
PC: I destroy your weapon
Enemy: An I destory yours
Turn 2
PC: I destroy your weapon...

...

Turn X
Someone: Ok, I don't have any weapons left, you win.

Quote:
Let him destroy their weapons, because that is probably ALL he is good at.
This is not true. He also kills things very very quickly with his uber damage per hit.

So if I'm reading you right, the issue is not that the fighter is good at sundering, but more that the campaign is in an urban setting and A LOT of the enemies are humanoids with gear dependency?

if that's the case then: ... Monks and Brawlers? a disarm specialist every now and then? adding a sniper to some encounters?
In short: adding challenges that aren't weapon dependent or that can outmanouver him, letting the rest of the party help him out/shine.

Like many have said: your guy is good at this thing, don't take it away from him. Let him be " the Bladebreaker - most ruthless man I've ever seen in a fight!" and play to his strenghts.
But add other types of opponents to make the fights less rote might be a good idea.


Look, my problem is with game design math, not actual PC.
This character is not uber-optimized for sunder. 2 feats - and that's all. And even vs dedicated full BAB martial classes he has 95% of success.

Imagine NPC of same archetype with power attack and furious focus. Is it fun to see as your weapon is destroyed with uber attack and uber damage?

My problem here is Furious Focus. It may seem not powerfull feat as it doesn't work for iterative attacks, but in fact it is insanely effective for sundering. In 3.5 there was broken feat that allowed to trade Power Attack attack penalty to AC penaly, but Furious Focus is even more broken. No penalty at all! Smash enemy's armor/shield to pieces (you can't miss) and then your iterative attacks will just destroy him.

I simply refuse to belive that math is working as intended. Something is clearly wrong in this Sunder vs. CMD situation. Ok, I don't mind power attack to creature's hp as creature's hp has good scaling per level, but objects doesn't get good scaling per level.


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Mrakvampire wrote:


I simply refuse to belive that math is working as intended.

That's your problem, not the game's.

Mrakvampire wrote:
Look, my problem is with game design math, not actual PC.

Then we're done here.

Next time don't obfuscate "I feel like b%*!@ing about a Core Feat" with a bunch of nonsense about how supposedly a single PC using a sub-optimal tactic is wrecking your campaign.


Rynjin wrote:
Next time don't obfuscate "I feel like b@@*+ing about a Core Feat" with a bunch of nonsense about how supposedly a single PC using a sub-optimal tactic is wrecking your campaign.

You just don't even try to understand me. Maybe my English (not native) is not good enough...

As I said, imagine the same build of NPC enemy. You think that this is fun to fight against him with this kind of math?


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I understand what you're trying to say, but Pathfinder have loads of examples of this. And everyone of these so-called "Uber" builds or examples have at least one if not several achillies heel and counters.
-Some would say it's a feature, not a bug.

As an example, the often mentioned slumber witch with a scythe and the shocking grasp magus - buth quite impressive in their field with minimal effort and available at low levels (or even 1st? I'm not an expert)
Both of them can be disarmed or countered of their favorite tactic, but when they get to do their thing they are impressive.

Your sundering 2-handed fighter is the same, impressive in his field and his specilization has born fruit but ...

What is he going to do against a dragon flying over him and spamming its breath weapon? sunder space and time to get on it's back? :p

And to Rynjin: I don't think any "obfuscation" was intended, let's stay civil here.

-But yeah, maybe the topic should have been "Is this how sunder and the PA-feats interact? Do you think that's balanced?" or something like it ...?

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

one of the easiest ways to stop this is to use a brutal pugilist barbarian archetype. they get a free AO against anyone who attempts a combat maneuver against then even with improved sunder. they rage hit the sundering fighter for a ton and then that is added to your CMD against the check.


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Mrakvampire wrote:
Rynjin wrote:
Next time don't obfuscate "I feel like b@@*+ing about a Core Feat" with a bunch of nonsense about how supposedly a single PC using a sub-optimal tactic is wrecking your campaign.

You just don't even try to understand me. Maybe my English (not native) is not good enough...

As I said, imagine the same build of NPC enemy. You think that this is fun to fight against him with this kind of math?

Sunder is annoying for PCs, sure.

I would rather deal with that than a caster tossing out Dazing lightning balls for 3xDC22 save or be dazed for the entire combat. If the caster wins initiative (lol Diviner) then this is heading towards TPK territory. At the level your players are at, two level 11 wizards doing this is a CR=APL encounter.

There are a lot of tactics that are absolutely horrific in Pathfinder. Especially in the double digits. Sundering is a joke compared to a lot of them.

EDIT: and the only reason sunder is annoying as a PC is because it destroys equipment, which has long term repercussions. If the PC didn't care about their equipment beyond the current combat (as a lot of NPCs effectively don't) then Sunder would be about as annoying as the attack action.


Mrakvampire wrote:

Look, my problem is with game design math, not actual PC...

I simply refuse to belive that math is working as intended. Something is clearly wrong in this Sunder vs. CMD situation.

There are many ways the game balance tends to break down at higher levels. An optimised damage dealer would be killing one of these guys every round. An optimised caster would be dazing, paralysing or mind-controlling them. An AC-focused character might only be getting hit on a natural 20.

As a GM your options are to end your campaign at a lower level, to house-rule it (bearing in mind that in many campaigns combat manoeuvres are virtually worthless because they're fighting flying monsters with high CMDs and no weapons), or to vary the encounters more. Melee fighters are about the least versatile opponents in the game - they're entirely dependent on being able to close in and attack with their one specialist weapon - and with NPCs you usually can't even give them the equipment they need because it will fall into the PC's hands and make them seriously rich.

Varying the opponents more is probably the best way - whether that means unarmed monks, two-weapon-fighting characters with spiked gauntlet backups, a disarm specialist who removes the problem character's weapon, or an evil wizard who sends demons to hunt down the PCs. But you don't have to do that all the time - a character being good at doing what he does doesn't stop the game from being fun for the players.


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As a player playing a martial character I have a @#$%ing adamantine weapon for this exact reason. Throw on impervious for the odd rust monster or similar problems. But let us take the "ignore hardness below 20" out of the equation. The standard one-handed sword has hardness 10 and 5 HP. That's... well, half of the damage your player does with a single hit. A +1 weapon bumps that to 12 hardness and 15 HP... or still less than his static damage. Making it a two-hander only adds 5 HP to that. Ignoring the hardness doesn't actually change how easily he wrecks standard gear. Giving the mooks adamantine weapons would give them hardness 20 and 6 HP. Or still destroyed in a single hit.

If you want to fix this you either need to give objects a lot more HP (for a targeted screwing of this specific player because you don't like what he can do) or accept that as you reach higher levels the damage that PCs and NPCs can inflict far outpaces mundane materials. You don't notice it because nothing damages weapons unless it specifically targets them, but the damage is there. Imagine if every player inflicted the damage they just did on the weapon they were swinging. At what level do the players ignore everything but super hard weapons and just keep using throwaways? 8th? Hell, maybe even 1st (except for the money). Greatsword v itself. 18 Str, 2d6+9 to 10 hardness and 10 HP. That can actually shatter itself in a single lucky hit. Always causes damage though, and on average gives itself the broken condition. So this is a problem from level 1. Then there's things like lance charges for +150 damage that should explode the lance being used to make the hit into a million shards. But they don't, unless something specifically target the weapon or otherwise says it hurts it.

As for what the universe expects of martials, I like to grab Megafauna for this, as they're big, beefy, and nothing else. CR 12 GIANT WHALE OF DOOM. You could change the feats around but with 20 feet of reach it probably doesn't even need to take improved sunder to attack someone's weapons at +31 for 4d6+15. Or power attack for +27 and 4d6+23. And that's a nice stock bestiary monster, not at all built for this except having strength and power attack. That's what your player needs to be compared to. A 60 foot whale with teeth. Because that's the threat they pose.

And the comments on it being a city campaign don't make sense. Presumably people who spend their time in a city take Quick Draw, because you don't walk around holding a weapon in a city and being able to draw your weapon faster is super useful in those circumstances. And they also keep backups for weapons, as they're facing other NPCs who might pull all the combat maneuvers "monsters" don't usually do. Or even just plain old having their stuff stolen somehow. And anyone who's dependent on a single weapon type like a fighter carries more than one of that weapon. You know, in case something happens to the first. Because they're presumably not a moron.

Yes, a fighter with no weapons they have trained in and at least half their feats dedicated to weapons they don't have is equal to a warrior. This was true well before a sunderer appeared, and always has been. Why did you bring this up?

As a player, it's neither fun nor not fun when my stuff is sundered (provided it's eventually replaced/upgraded/substituted). It's a little annoying because there's probably a dozen different numbers that change based on what was hit, but fun doesn't enter into it. The sunder-off would be lame, yes, but only because by the time you hit that point there's nothing good left to steal. The proper response to having your weapon sundered by an equal or better weapon is to disarm the opponent and use their weapon. Oh, and your player versus their duplicate would take minimum 2 hits to break each other's weapons. 22 hardness (that can't be ignored) and 23 HP. Each hit would do 2d4+7 (effectively) and iteratives would drop the attack bonus by 9 (since no furious focus). What's their CMD versus sunder? Because I have a feeling only their first sunder a turn would hit vs themself.

It's not bad game design. It may be game design you disagree with, but that doesn't make it bad. They've decided to keep real world objects fairly close to their real world counterparts while allowing "people" to free fall from orbit into a pool of lava and stroll out singed. So when those "people" meet the objects, is it any surprise the objects come out the worse for it? If you want magic there's a permanent spell (6th level) and a low level magic item. But if you expect objects based in reality to stand up to people based on myths, you're going to be disappointed.

Oh, and the stuff you're complaining about from 3.5 is back. It's called reckless abandon, and it's a rage power. Even better even, because you can choose to not power attack and just trade AC for an attack bonus. And then there's strength surge, which lets you add your barbarian level to a single CMB or CMD check as an immediate action. I'm sure your fighter wasn't using their swift action anyway. I guess what I'm saying is, like always, this would be way more awesome with a barbarian. Who could also be sundering their weapons with an AoO before they even get a chance to swing it. That would actually be pretty hilarious. I think I'd call it Gort.


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The game assumes the party will fight a variety of different enemies. If you only use one type of enemy, don't be surprised when tactics that are good against that particular type of enemy become too good.

That's like only having ice-based enemies in your campaign and then complain about how the math of Fireball is broken.


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Lemmy wrote:

The game assumes the party will fight a variety of different enemies. If you only use one type of enemy, don't be surprised when tactics that are good against that particular type of enemy become too good.

That's like only having ice-based enemies in your campaign and then complain about how the math of Fireball is broken.

I had that problem running the 'crossing the North pole' section of an AP...

Anyway, even if you're restricted to mundane human opponents it should be possible to make a variety of encounters that aren't so vulnerable to this technique. A dozen lower level enemies - destroying all their weapons would take too long. Someone who specialises in disarming. A grappler who prevents the use of two-handed weapons. A Trip user with a reach weapon who doesn't let the PC get close enough. A couple of archers up on a rooftop.


Lemmy wrote:

The game assumes the party will fight a variety of different enemies. If you only use one type of enemy, don't be surprised when tactics that are good against that particular type of enemy become too good.

That's like only having ice-based enemies in your campaign and then complain about how the math of Fireball is broken.

*cough* Reign of Winter *cough*


Ok, ok, I understand.

Now about homerules.

What do you think of this change to Furious Focus:

Furious Focus allows to reduce penaly to attacks from Power Attack by 50% (min reduction by 1) for first 2 attacks in round.

:)


Mrakvampire wrote:

Ok, ok, I understand.

Now about homerules.

What do you think of this change to Furious Focus:

Furious Focus allows to reduce penaly to attacks from Power Attack by 50% (min reduction by 1) for first 2 attacks in round.

:)

I see absolutely no reason whatsoever to nerf fighters. They're a focused class with very little to do outside of combat. Let them be awesome in combat.


MeanMutton wrote:
I see absolutely no reason whatsoever to nerf fighters. They're a focused class with very little to do outside of combat. Let them be awesome in combat.

Hmm, it's not a nerf per se as I see it, its giving less bonus on more attacks than bigger bonus on 1 attack.


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That's not really a nerf. For most fighters, you need the boost to hit more on the second attack than the first.

Not sure whether it will actually do much to help this situation though.


Matthew Downie wrote:

That's not really a nerf. For most fighters, you need the boost to hit more on the second attack than the first.

Not sure whether it will actually do much to help this situation though.

Every penny counts! :)


Are the players having fun? Is the fighter bored? If no one is bored and the players are having fun then don't worry about it.

On the other side, the player did spend a feat to be good at something. Why not let them be good at it? How good are they at ranged combat? There is always a trade off with specialization.

I would also aim to mix up the encounters. Having a mix of ranged, melee, and magical opponents should keep things interesting. Don't forget the use of difficult terrain for slowing movement, pits and obstacles to funnel movement, and hazardous environments.


Mrakvampire wrote:

Hello All,

One of PCs in my group is fighter (TH archetype).
With Power Attack, Furious Focus, and all other bonuses he basically has following stats on his first sunder attempt in round:

CMB: +12(base)+6(str)+1(weapon)+1(focus)+2(training)+3(shattering)+4(gr.sunder) = +29
Dmg: 2d4(falchion)+9(str)+1(enchant)+2(specializ)+2(training)+12(power)+3(shatte ring) = 2d4+29

So, basically he always hits (85-90%) any level-appropriate enemy with sunder attempt and with his adamantine falchion destroys any weapon that doesn't have +3 enchantment with 1 hit. There is no issue in repairing weapons after combat with Make Whole, as party caster has 12 CL and it's enough to fix +1 and +2 weapons.

I don't know what to do actually. Math looks completely broken for my taste. Even in 3.5 (that was clearly more unbalanced) I don't remember such ridiculous situations.
Furious Focus just needs to be nerfed (+12 dmg on sunder without any tradeoff is HUGE)

A little adjustment to your math here: Shattering only applies to CMB (and CMD), not damage rolls, so it would only be +26.

Make Whole will only work on items half the caster's Caster Level. If you're giving them magic items whose CL is 7 or higher, the Spellcaster cannot repair them, full stop. So, if your enemies are running around with some more powerful stuff (i.e. the Big Bad), your Fighter will be foolish to destroy them, as the only way to repair them would be to spend gold to do so, and I'm sure the fellow PCs wouldn't appreciate that.

On that same note of powerful Magic Items, such as Artifacts, or even Cursed Items (that some enemies might possess), if he attempts to destroy them, and is somehow successful, most Artifacts usually emit a destructive explosion, and they're no joke.

Additionally, Furious Focus only applies to the first attack in a round, and only for a Two-Handed Weapon (or a One-Handed Weapon held in two hands). That means his highest (+29) alters the iterative gap significantly, making his next 2 attacks function as +20/+15. Throwing typical 35+ Large-sized CMD monsters means he has to roll a 15/20, respectively, to Sunder; in most cases, it'd be easier to just deal damage. Even with Haste, he still has to roll approximately average to actually hit them, and quite frankly, most people don't bother spending feats to do this. The factor that he's spending feats to do this shouldn't really be a cause for concern, especially when he could be more terrifying in other areas (damage-dealing, primarily).

He's not optimized in the least; most two-handed 12th level PCs will have stronger enhancements on their weapons, he could be pumping out much more damage with feats like Hammer the Gap (which can be delayed further), Greater Weapon Focus/Specialization, etc. There's also the lack of Gloves of Dueling, which would provide an extra +2 to hit and damage. This is actually a standard grunt as far as optimization is concerned.

If you want broken, try a Fighter who, for 5/day can make all of their attacks target Touch AC for 1 round, whose Power Attack was actually 1 step higher than normal, and was able to buff themselves with spells like Divine Favor and Haste via Magic Items; and Fight Defensively for Damage Reduction, and still be the same level.

I have to say, dealing 90+ damage on a boss who took only half damage from my attacks felt pretty damn good, and is especially true when basically every iterative attack I rolled there was a 2.

Also note that Larger creatures will have more durable weapons, and a significantly higher CMD/CMB; it will require more hit points to damage/break them (and they might typically have more hardness). Magical Items also have increased Hardness based on their Enhancement Bonuses.


Quote:
A little adjustment to your math here: Shattering only applies to CMB (and CMD), not damage rolls, so it would only be +26

I'm sorry, but you are wrong.

Quote:
At 2nd level, a two-handed fighter gains a +1 bonus to CMB and CMD on sunder attempts and on damage rolls made against objects. These bonuses increase by +1 for every four levels beyond 2nd.
Quote:
Additionally, Furious Focus only applies to the first attack in a round, and only for a Two-Handed Weapon (or a One-Handed Weapon held in two hands). That means his highest (+29) alters the iterative gap significantly, making his next 2 attacks function as +20/+15. Throwing typical 35+ Large-sized CMD monsters means he has to roll a 15/20, respectively, to Sunder; in most cases, it'd be easier to just deal damage.

You are correct, but sunder goes as first attack.

And to summarize:
Guys, I totally understand your points. I've learned a lesson by participating in this thread. Thank you.


Mrakvampire wrote:

Ok, ok, I understand.

Now about homerules.

What do you think of this change to Furious Focus:

Furious Focus allows to reduce penaly to attacks from Power Attack by 50% (min reduction by 1) for first 2 attacks in round.

:)

I can say several things about that change. However, the most important one would be...

Do you really think an extra -2 penalty is going to stop the fighter from sundering the weapons of mooks reliably? Because I highly doubt it will.


Snowblind wrote:
Do you really think an extra -2 penalty is going to stop the fighter from sundering the weapons of mooks reliably? Because I highly doubt it will.

Idea is not to stop fighter from doing it, idea is to normalize chances. Make them more even and not 100%-ish.


Mrakvampire wrote:
Quote:
A little adjustment to your math here: Shattering only applies to CMB (and CMD), not damage rolls, so it would only be +26

I'm sorry, but you are wrong.

Quote:
At 2nd level, a two-handed fighter gains a +1 bonus to CMB and CMD on sunder attempts and on damage rolls made against objects. These bonuses increase by +1 for every four levels beyond 2nd.
Quote:
Additionally, Furious Focus only applies to the first attack in a round, and only for a Two-Handed Weapon (or a One-Handed Weapon held in two hands). That means his highest (+29) alters the iterative gap significantly, making his next 2 attacks function as +20/+15. Throwing typical 35+ Large-sized CMD monsters means he has to roll a 15/20, respectively, to Sunder; in most cases, it'd be easier to just deal damage.

You are correct, but sunder goes as first attack.

And to summarize:
Guys, I totally understand your points. I've learned a lesson by participating in this thread. Thank you.

I thought it was the weapon property you were talking about. Shattering, the Weapon Property, and Shattering Strike, the Class Feature, are separate things, and is a little important to disclose that so as to not create further confusion.

Sunder doesn't have to go as a first attack. By RAW, it only allowed you to do so as a Standard Action (the Attack Action), so it synced quite well with the Vital Strike chain, but this FAQ here clarifies that Sunder can be replaced with any attack you make.

And re-evaluating, it would still be better for him to Sunder, since he gets more bonuses for Sundering than standard Attacking, but a creature's AC is generaly lower than its CMD, and is doubly true/effective for larger-sized creatures.

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