Wizard doesn't know enemy weakest DC. How to beat enemies?


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So, I'm face with this issue. Despite having knowledge my DM of course won't tell me Giants are weak against Will save, or this enemy has high Fort Save.

So, I'm left deciding on the spot what spell is best to affect an enemy.

Last session we fought a Lamia in Rise of the Runelords, with SR! Holy cow, I had to roll at least a 15 to make my spells work. I also suffer from the following:

Bad positioning between Slayer/Ninja. They don't flank often, and Slayer honestly is failing at least 50% of hits. (bot 2WFighting)

Oracle only healer > He's NOT support. He JUST HEALS. The only notable spell he used in combat was Prayer, and it took him at least 6 rounds to cast it because he wanted to affect everyone.

I'm a Wizard Evocation Admixture. I HAD to go damage because if I use Haste the party doesn't like it, and also they can't reliably hit the enemy.

Besides the fact that I lost half my spells trying to bypass SR, I had no idea what to target.
I had no idea whether the Lamia was susceptible to WILL or REF and I ended up wasting a of of spells.
The only Fireball I landed was Empowered and she even saved despite having a 21 DC.

Finally we got lucky and my Glitterdust ended up blinding her for 3 rounds and avoided her going invisible.

Unless I have Meta knowledge how am I supposed to know what Save is the best?
I know REF is always the best but that covers only damage, and if my party lacks damage I can't throw that many fireballs to cover that up.


Does your character have knowledge skills? If so, roll them on sighting an enemy or once you have evidence of what creatures might be around.

If you your GM won't tell you anything based on the DC and your roll, inquire why not.

However, your party sounds pretty disfunctional and you should probably not worry about the details and just treat it all as a bit of fun and have a backup character or 5 ready to play.

Or have a full, in depth discussion about how you and the other people want to play the game. And maybe find another group to play with.


ANY character with knowledge should know the Creature Statistics by Type in the monster subtype section.
Go study at a magic library in game to learn the weak save of many creatures.


Gilarius wrote:

Does your character have knowledge skills? If so, roll them on sighting an enemy or once you have evidence of what creatures might be around.

If you your GM won't tell you anything based on the DC and your roll, inquire why not.

However, your party sounds pretty disfunctional and you should probably not worry about the details and just treat it all as a bit of fun and have a backup character or 5 ready to play.

Or have a full, in depth discussion about how you and the other people want to play the game. And maybe find another group to play with.

On a high roll my DM will tell me that the enemy has DR, resistance to damage, maybe that can turn invisible or use spell like abilities but won't tell me "you know they're susceptible to charms".

The party is disfunctional. Having 1 guy healing as the main action each turn is not good.

Also Slayer is Longsword+Shield, and even having PA his damage is not that high, around 1d8+1d6 (if flanking)+ 10 probably. Sure, he has 2 attacks, but he miss more than he hits.

Ninja of course only deals damage when flanking, 4d6 each hit + 1d6 weapon.

Chess Pwn wrote:

ANY character with knowledge should know the Creature Statistics by Type in the monster subtype section.

Go study at a magic library in game to learn the weak save of many creatures.

But doesn't that fall under cheating? I mean, I know Giants have weak Will Saves because people say it here, but that doesn't mean my character knows it.

And how can I ask my DM to inform me of this? I can't straight ask "do they have weak will saves?" because he won't tell me.


You cast spells that doesn't allow SR or saves. Admittedly, if your can't cast spell such as Haste, one of the better spells in that category is already lost and you're going to contribute to the party in a sub-par fashion because of it. If you, as the Wizard, needs to be the damage dealer, you will need to invest in SR piercing and DC heightening feats.

These are some of my favorite spells, spells that I found myself consistantly prepare and use as a Wizard: Sleet Storm, Fly, Haste, Fireball, Aqueous Orb and Wind Wall. But from them, it seems like you only really "can" cast one.

Talk to your group and DM about this. The others clearly prefer a very sub-par strategy, the DM should adjust the difficulty if he wants to avoid a TPK.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Wait a sec...your party doesn't like +1 atk/+1 AC/+1 Ref save/+30 movement/and extra attack on a full attack action?

I think that there are other issues here. But anyway:

Invest in knowledge skills. Or have party members do so.
If you get enough to learn something/ask a question then as for:
Best way to kill it?
Weakest save?
Etc...

Or you could go by rationalizing though this is a slippery slope.

You KNOW that casters typically have better will saves than martials.
Is the enemy that you are facing (even a giant) slinging spells (better will save) or flailing a weapon about/using brute force attacks (probably better fort save).

Regarding SR...
My wizard has a simple approach to SR. Don't cast spells that are resisted by it. If I see a spell bounce (more likely I made a knowledge check and asked, "any special defenses, DR/SR?") then I switch to spells that bypass it...such as almost the entire Conjuration school. Or summon critters (a bite or claw doesn't care about SR) or buff your allies.
Spells such as Grease and Glitterdust are great staples and even have uses at higher levels. Say if your martials are all over the place and you cannot Grease the floor...Grease your enemy's weapon/wand instead. Glitterdust ignores SR and blinds the enemy...almost always a good go-to option.

You don't have to blow up stuff every session. There are going to be times when you face high SR foes. But if you have to do damage with a direct damage spell...

Varisian Tattoo: +1 CL
Spell Pen: +2 to overcome SR
Greater Spell Pen: another +2 to overcome SR.
If you have the cash: Orange Ioun Stone for a +1 CL.

Note if they are magic immune (golems), then you have to switch.
Acid Arrow is core and ignores SR.
Non-core:
Stone call: 2d6 in an area.
Snowball 1d6/CL (max 5d6) plus stagger (more dice if you Intensify).

Hope this helps.


Letric wrote:
And how can I ask my DM to inform me of this? I can't straight ask "do they have weak will saves?" because he won't tell me.

Roll Knowledge. Go to a library to read about giants.


It seems like information about saving throws (not specific numbers, just high or low) shouldn't be that hard to figure out. That giants are real tough but not very nimble should be apparent from watching them (or remembering the past.) That they aren't real smart shouldn't be too far from common knowledge.

This seems like a GM/player problem that you should maybe talk out with the GM? Just suggest that the GM can encode this information in descriptions about how they move, how they react to getting hit, the look on their faces, etc. if they don't want to just out and tell you.

Personally with a successful knowledge check I will always tell a player which save is their highest and which save is their weakest. I think this is reasonable.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2015 Top 32, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Letric wrote:
So, I'm face with this issue. Despite having knowledge my DM of course won't tell me Giants are weak against Will save, or this enemy has high Fort Save.

Well, what does the GM tell you when you succeed on Knowledge checks? Even if it's not save statistics, it should be something relevant that you can leverage to your benefit. Or if not, then the GM has chosen to ignore the word "useful" in the rules for what information a successful Knowledge check gives you. That's not inherently bad, but it's a big enough thing that it should have been made clear at the start of the game, so some ret-conning of skill rank allocations might be in order if he houseruled away the usefulness of Knowledge skills without telling anyone.

But again, if the GM is giving you genuinely useful information, it's okay if that information is something other than their saves.

Quote:
So, I'm left deciding on the spot what spell is best to affect an enemy.

Sometimes you can make reasonable assumptions based on appearance, even without a Knowledge check. For instance: a big, lumbering brute is likely to have a high Fort save, while something with a more visibly frail body (perhaps relying on magic to fight) is likely to have a lower Fort save. It's not metagaming to see a strong or weak body and use that to inform your decision on whether to attack their body or their mind.

Quote:
Last session we fought a Lamia in Rise of the Runelords, with SR! Holy cow, I had to roll at least a 15 to make my spells work.

To be prepared for this situation, you can carry some spell options that don't care about SR (often from the Conjuration school). Depending on which sources are available, options include glitterdust, create pit, or wall of stone, among others.

Quote:

I also suffer from the following:

Bad positioning between Slayer/Ninja. They don't flank often, and Slayer honestly is failing at least 50% of hits. (bot 2WFighting)

Oracle only healer > He's NOT support. He JUST HEALS. The only notable spell he used in combat was Prayer, and it took him at least 6 rounds to cast it because he wanted to affect everyone.

I'm a Wizard Evocation Admixture. I HAD to go damage because if I use Haste the party doesn't like it, and also they can't reliably hit the enemy.

So you have weapon-users who routinely miss their targets and actively resist receiving buffs? And you have someone who prefers to do nothing but heal?

It sounds like there's a pretty big difference either between your and their expectations for what a fun game looks like, or between your and their proficiency with the system. I suggest talking to them directly about what kind of experience they're looking for in the game (including the GM).

Best of luck!


It's possible that you're "too effective" compared to the rest of the party and the GM wants to make it hard for you so that you don't auto-win encounters.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Oh FYI, how does your GM run Knowledge checks?

PRD Knowledge skill:

Knowledge
(Int; Trained Only)
You are educated in a field of study and can answer both simple and complex questions. Like the Craft, Perform, and Profession skills, Knowledge actually encompasses a number of different specialties. Below are listed typical fields of study.

...

You can use this skill to identify monsters and their special powers or vulnerabilities. In general, the DC of such a check equals 10 + the monster's CR. For common monsters, such as goblins, the DC of this check equals 5 + the monster's CR. For particularly rare monsters, such as the tarrasque, the DC of this check equals 15 + the monster's CR, or more. A successful check allows you to remember a bit of useful information about that monster. For every 5 points by which your check result exceeds the DC, you recall another piece of useful information. Many of the Knowledge skills have specific uses as noted on Table: Knowledge Skill DCs.

What your GM and you consider useful may vary...but I am guessing the focus of YOUR studies would have been "how do I stay alive?" I don't think whether the giant prefer dandelions over red roses, or that his name is Georgina qualifies as 'useful.' Granted YMMV.


Or the GM just doesn't think the saves are relevant? Remind him of it. It happens all the time that a GM looks at the monster's stats, tries to give all information that is useful but misses some of the more obvious ones


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One of my GMs does this thing with monster knowledge checks. Depending on what your knowledge check is, he'll tell us how many questions you can ask. The rules say "For every 5 points by which your check result exceeds the DC, you recall another piece of useful information." so his implementation is letting the player ask questions.

I think its a pretty good way of doing it.


Things like saves, hit dice, level, etc. are all game terms that players and GM's use, but characters would not have any concept of.

With that said, your character would usually know a few basics about physical stats just from looking at a creature. If I see a 12 foot tall muscular humanoid swinging a 50 pound sword like a boss, I know about how strong he is, and can guess that he has a robust constitution. If he is stomping around smashing into things, it is safe to assume he is not very dexterous. These conclusions don't rely on game mechanics knowledge, just basic common sense.

The mental stats are a little harder to get a feel for, but a minute or two of conversation should be able to give you a general idea about whether they are more or less intelligent, wise, charismatic, then the average person. Again, these are just observations, not things you need to roll for.

Try to come up with a few leading questions to get a feel for new creatures you meet. Are they clumsy? Do they look like it would take a lot to make them drunk? Do they understand a really basic turn of phrase?

Finally, as others have mentioned, have your character do a little in-game research. Visit the library, talk to other adventures, use divination magic, etc.

PS It sounds like the other members of your party are operating on a laid back, beer and pretzels level. Don't feel you need to do everything, or operate at a high level of optimization.

Oh, and get that healing character to start off every combat with a summoned creature. They won't have to alter their playstyle much, but having a celestial wolverine smiting away will help the groups effectiveness tremendously!

EDIT: "He's a maxed CHA Oracle of Life that cannot hit enemies directly (because of an achievement feat) and also doesn't flank (he doesn't own a weapon). "
"I may adhere to a strict vow of non-violence, but my celestial Ankylosaurus is a strong believer in physical brutality!"


It's not something the GM needs to tell you.

If you make a standard knowledge check the first thing you learn is a creatures type which let's you know the base traits of that type and for giants you will know there racial hit die offers a low will.

If that giant also happens to be a 6th level monk with a cloak of resistance and the Iron Will feat you will find out the hard way.


Rerednaw wrote:

Wait a sec...your party doesn't like +1 atk/+1 AC/+1 Ref save/+30 movement/and extra attack on a full attack action?

No. When I first hit level 5 they were all cheering for fireball. Now they're happy I'm throwing Fireballs.

Lamia caught me off guard with SR, I think it was around 19-21, I'm level 7.
It was wielding a Spear and using things like Mirror Image, Major Image, Scorching Ray, I honestly had no idea her weakest save.
She was also rolling 30 on the first attack, our Slayer has 22 AC.

We barely made it alive because I landed Glitterdust and failed the save like 3 turns.

Jiggy wrote:


Well, what does the GM tell you when you succeed on Knowledge checks?

Maybe it will mention DR, Energy Resistance, some spell like abilities, but he never mentioned saves.

Jiggy wrote:
So you have weapon-users who routinely miss their targets and actively resist receiving buffs? And you have someone who prefers to do nothing but heal?

I usually read a bit more about rules, but it's not like they're open to many suggestions.

I told the Slayer to just go 2 Handed Weapon. But to me having PA on a 2WFighting character seems useless.

We had to convince the Oracle to take Resist Energy, Communal because he thought that Resist Energy was useless. He doesn't have Protection from Evil, but at least he's taking the Communal version.

I already told the Oracle that he needs to decide a role. You're either supporting or throwing around things like Hold Person (which he took).
He's a maxed CHA Oracle of Life that cannot hit enemies directly (because of an achievement feat) and also doesn't flank (he doesn't own a weapon).
I think Prayer has been the first support spell he has cast in combat, but taking 6 rounds to cast to affect everyone it's meh.

Should I just start asking what its the weakest save on each creature that I roll +20? I have 15 on Arcana, Dungeon, Nature and Planes, all the others at 9.
Is there a way to ask this without directly asking it?

Overall I can't tell people how to play their characters. If we die, we die. I'm probably gong to survive because I have Invisibility, Fly and many spells on scrolls.
I can make suggestions, but they only go so far.

We're also starting to catch up on enemies dealing way far more damage than the Oracle can heal.

I will check Conjuration School. I'm not gonna use Summons, my character doesn't and I just don't wanna deal with all the Summons.


Monster knowledge checks are of the utmost importance. At least in my games.


NoTongue wrote:

It's not something the GM needs to tell you.

If you make a standard knowledge check the first thing you learn is a creatures type which let's you know the base traits of that type and for giants you will know there racial hit die offers a low will.

If that giant also happens to be a 6th level monk with a cloak of resistance and the Iron Will feat you will find out the hard way.

I can't find this on Subtype. Is this information somewhere?

Me as PLAYER don't know each creature weakest save. But if I can argue EVERY Giant is weak against Will Saves I can use the generalization to make my character know it.
Otherwise each time we're fighting an enemy I have to check PFSRD for that particular creature, and that feels like cheating, and badly.


Creature Types

I don't think your character would know all of that information however. Most of it is meta-game stuff, not in-character knowledge.

Looking at monster stats during the game is cheating to me, but other groups might view it differently.

You should not know what every creatures weak save is (or other specific stats), but there are some general rules which should give you important clues.

I would aim for knowing what save NOT to target, (Fort for giants) and have fun experimenting.


This gets into some heated topics, but could be very important to you and your group having fun.

You are now at the level where your characters power is going to skyrocket. I recommend talking to your GM about how he plans to handle that. For example, many GMs will fudge dice rolls if they don't want you to successfully cast Dominate Person on the boss monster. You GM might consider it disrespectful of his game if you instantly solve problems with spells like teleport, or one shot tough opponents.

Talk this stuff over with your GM, and come to some conclusions about how to limit your power. If your GM assures you that he can handle anything you come up with, it means that they are not aware of what a well played wizard can do, and you should deliberately power down your character, or it will upset his game.


Letric wrote:

I think Prayer has been the first support spell he has cast in combat, but taking 6 rounds to cast to affect everyone it's meh.

Maybe I missed something. Why is this happening?

Grand Lodge

Your character should start doing research. Start taking extensive notes on enemies. Giant this spell stuck, rogue this other spell stuck, etc. Once you have enough you can just start making rational in game decision. By level 5 or six you should not have to ask if mind effecting works on undead or vermin, if elementals have resistance, if animals have bad will saves.

You can also record when sneak attack works for your friends.


Stone Dog wrote:
Letric wrote:

I think Prayer has been the first support spell he has cast in combat, but taking 6 rounds to cast to affect everyone it's meh.

Maybe I missed something. Why is this happening?

There were 4 enemies, Lamia and 3 enemies.

The first 3 turns I faced the Lamia alone. She took around 50 HP from me, after I threw an Empowered Fireball at her. Oracle healed me. Meanwhile Slayer and Ninja were trying to kill the other minions.

I went, threw a Fireball, finally they killed them. Meanwhile Oracle was looking for perfect spot to affect everyone. > let's not even get into the fact that he got asleep during flight (deep slumber) and he would've fallen down (we were on a tower) because he was standing away from the tower, but we didn't know what happened so DM ruled he'd fall 60 ft/round.
Around round 6 he cast it, and it was too late for the minions, they were already dead.

Then, despite having 5 attacks each round > 3 from Slayer + 2 from Ninja I think it took us around another 5 rounds to remove all of her Mirror Images, she had 7.


was this some kind of special lamia? they don't normally have SR...

what level are you guys? a slayer really shouldn't be a missfest even with TWF

Liberty's Edge

Letric wrote:
Gilarius wrote:

Does your character have knowledge skills? If so, roll them on sighting an enemy or once you have evidence of what creatures might be around.

If you your GM won't tell you anything based on the DC and your roll, inquire why not.

However, your party sounds pretty disfunctional and you should probably not worry about the details and just treat it all as a bit of fun and have a backup character or 5 ready to play.

Or have a full, in depth discussion about how you and the other people want to play the game. And maybe find another group to play with.

On a high roll my DM will tell me that the enemy has DR, resistance to damage, maybe that can turn invisible or use spell like abilities but won't tell me "you know they're susceptible to charms".

The party is disfunctional. Having 1 guy healing as the main action each turn is not good.

Also Slayer is Longsword+Shield, and even having PA his damage is not that high, around 1d8+1d6 (if flanking)+ 10 probably. Sure, he has 2 attacks, but he miss more than he hits.

Ninja of course only deals damage when flanking, 4d6 each hit + 1d6 weapon.

Chess Pwn wrote:

ANY character with knowledge should know the Creature Statistics by Type in the monster subtype section.

Go study at a magic library in game to learn the weak save of many creatures.

But doesn't that fall under cheating? I mean, I know Giants have weak Will Saves because people say it here, but that doesn't mean my character knows it.

And how can I ask my DM to inform me of this? I can't straight ask "do they have weak will saves?" because he won't tell me.

the DC shouldnt be that high to know stats. the DC is 10+CR of the monster under the rules for the knowlege skill. also you can just infire that the giant slow dumb monster would have a high fort save and low ref and will even if you dont know what it is


plaidwandering wrote:

was this some kind of special lamia? they don't normally have SR...

what level are you guys? a slayer really shouldn't be a missfest even with TWF

We're all level 7. I know the Slayer has Shield Master, Power Attack and pretty sure WF Longsword and Improved Shield Bash.

Ninja I have no idea, but he only deals damage when Sneak Attacking, otherwise his damage is 1d6.

I can't tell you why, but the Slayer is either really unlucky but he always rolls 4-5.


cdkc wrote:


the DC shouldnt be that high to know stats. the DC is 10+CR of the monster under the rules for the knowlege skill. also you can just infire that the giant slow dumb monster would have a high fort save and low ref and will even if you dont know what it is

Lamia was a Snake wielding a Spear doing 2-3 attacks per turn, casting Major Image, Scorching Ray, Invisility, Mirror Image.

I had a bit of difficulty knowing what to cast.


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plaidwandering wrote:
was this some kind of special lamia?

the one from the second book of RotRL? Yeah, she is kinda special


Hythlodeus wrote:
plaidwandering wrote:
was this some kind of special lamia?
the one from the second book of RotRL? Yeah, she is kinda special

SR 19 AC 25.

DM didn't use the Wisdom Drain, he could've easily killed the whole party.

He didn't use Weapon Special property and 1 item because it wasn't listed on Combat Gear, it was listed at the end when reading loot.

And I can tell you, the party missed a lot.


plaidwandering wrote:

that's rough, he should likely only need a 7 to hit, so misses shouldn't be common

maybe it was a lamia matriarch, it actually has SR, but only 19...so your roll shouldn't have had to be so high

I needed 12. That's 55% missing chance.

And my Slayer doesn't have +18 to hit, there's no way


no, but he should have +13 on the longsword

that was based on a normal lamia, this lamia apparently has more 4 AC than even a lamia matriarch. I hope this was some kind of boss fight.


Second the recommendation for finding some spells with no-SR or no-save. There will always be some opponents that are just very difficult to directly hit with magic (wait till you fight a golem...) and you need to be able to do something when that happens.

You mentioned the slayer/ninja don't get enough flanking -- why not summon something nice into flanking position for him?

Against someone throwing out lots of illusions and spells, sometimes dispel magic is a good try.


plaidwandering wrote:
I hope this was some kind of boss fight.

It is the final one in the second RotRL book. A hard one at that. I think it used to be a minor boss in the third book, but was switched in later iterations.

EDITED


Rub-Eta wrote:
plaidwandering wrote:
I hope this was some kind of boss fight.
It is. A hard one at that.

possibly the hardest one in the AP, if done right


Didn't you post about your new (post-character-death) PC class? And apparently, you decided to go Wizard rather than Arcanist after all?

Or are there two parties with these classes that are this inept in the entire universe? (Seems unlikely...)

~~~~
My GM (when I play) doesn't usually hand out saves either, and I don't know that I do as GM. I believe that creatures with high Will saves are casters (possibly just with SLAs). Certainly, that should be something you could ask your GM: "Do I suspect this thing can use magic?" And yes, "Does it look unusually nimble?" should check for a high Reflex save. Failing those two, well, Fort it is. My usual language as player in requesting info on a Knowledge check is "Does this critter have any special defenses or vulnerabilities?" That should get damage & energy resistance, and energy vulnerabilities. Not numbers, no -- just that one kind of attack would be better than another, or at least that one would not be recommended.

SR is a bit freaky, and maybe a GM should demand a higher check result before divulging it, because it's not really a function of monster type as much as CR. For instance, I just checked Lamia (CR 6), and discovered that they don't have SR. It's Lamia Matriarchs (at CR 8) that have SR 19. Now, they're pretty easy to tell apart with a bare glance, having different lower bodies. So I'd be willing to tell a player with a decent check result, "This is the Matriarch, who can often shrug off spells." I certainly hope that you realized that she had shrugged off your first fireball after she did so!

I'm finding out with my 10th-level sorcerer that SR is going to be an increasingly common problem from 10th on out. (A CR-8 monster with SR is unusual, I'll grant you.) I think that being able to use your principal arsenal -- evocation spells -- against a foe with SR is an important concern. In terms of feats, there's Spell Penetration, although a +2 bonus on a d20 roll isn't much of a swing. Of course, that will get doubled if you go for Spell Perfection. You may want to consider Piercing Spell (metamagic), at least as a rod. In fact, as a Lesser Rod, it's really cheap (3,000 gp). In terms of wondrous items, anything that will raise your caster level is a good thing! If you can use things from d20PFSRD (unlike me), there's additional equipment there that will help a lot. If you can get even +2 CL from other gear and use a Piercing Rod for +5 CL, you'll need only a die roll of 7 the next time you encounter a Lamia Matriarch, in order to incinerate her.

Uh, dumb question time, but were you going up against a single foe with a fireball? Had you already used your rays?

~~~~
On the Slayer, I'm going to be offering the class to a complete newbie, and I've been told it's the second easiest class to play. The good news for you is that the Slayer who can't get their sneak attack in still has a class feature to hit more often and do more damage. Uh, assuming that the player is willing to spend a move action to study their target LOL. At 5th level, they're only forfeiting 1d6 in sneak, while still collecting +2 Attack & damage every round, IF they are up against a studied target.


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

If you're not getting the info you're looking for, follow the big body = small mind theory until you get no-save spells worth casting. Even though your party is seemingly up in arms about being good at their jobs, it's worth preparing and casting spells on them that they (as players) aren't cheering for. Heroism and Haste could very well make your slayer or ninja a significant damage dealer. As long as neither is in an opposition school, you should probably have one or both of them prepared each day.

Eventually, you can get the really big guns, like Greater Object Possession (lol golem problems, now you're my body for 10 min/lvl off of my Spellcraft check, no save, no SR) or the Persistent Spell metamagic feat. Until then, I would focus more efforts on things that are less likely to be resisted, and those tend to be buffs for your front line.


plaidwandering wrote:

no, but he should have +13 on the longsword

that was based on a normal lamia, this lamia apparently has more 4 AC than even a lamia matriarch. I hope this was some kind of boss fight.

13 Yes, I think he can reach that, but remember he's TWF and that's a -2 to hit.

I'm guessing BAB 7 + 4 STR + 1 WF + 1 Studied Target = 13 -2 TFW, that's 11.
When full attacking it's hard. Lamia has 25 AC. So he missed a lot. I'm gonna be more thorough asking about enemies. I've noticed Lamia has +8 NA and that's a lot!

bitter lily wrote:

Didn't you post about your new (post-character-death) PC class? And apparently, you decided to go Wizard rather than Arcanist after all?

Yes I did. I eventually went Wizard because of Knowledges and access to higher level spells, mostly.

I didn't have any rays prepared, but after I threw the Emp Fireball (highest damage spell) Lamia used Mirror Images, and there was no chance for me to hit.
Also once I knew she had SR having to roll to hit and to bypass SR didn't seem like the best option.

It's like I need to have CC Spells, deal damage at the same time and also have utility spells. Plus we're always fighting close doors, so things like Black Tentacles don't seem so appealing.

Piercing Rod is a GREAT suggestion, I'm gonna buy one just in case.

Someone mentioned summons. I mean we should be Ok without summons, if the party doesn't have enough damage just better to die and be done with it.
Plus I get annoyed at needing every stat on them and knowing every single ability. We already have a Slayer who takes around 30 seconds to figure out his damage (don't ask me why), I can't slow down combat more.


Serisan wrote:

Heroism and Haste could very well make your slayer or ninja a significant damage dealer. As long as neither is in an opposition school, you should probably have one or both of them prepared each day.

I'm gonna have the party buy a Wand of Haste+Heroism and the Oracle will cast them. If they want it we can all pay for it.

The Oracle is already delaying most of his actions since he's only healing, so unless someone takes damage he doesn't do much.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I suppose I should have added if the GM has a problem with you asking "what's the weakest save?" because of immersion...then phrase it differently.

Are these creatures known for being stout of heart or body?
Is this one of them critters that can dodge spells or area attacks really well like my roguish companion?
Does it looks like this fella casts spells or uses a great deal of magic?

Seriously though it does sounds like you have a GM, players and yourself with a different idea of the type of campaign. I'd down and have a chat with them.

What's the style of game? Are we gritty? Black and White (Good vs. Evil?) Shades of Grey? Are we big darn heroes or the extras/support staff? Why are the various party members on this shindig anyway? This may matter far more in the end. Especially as the power gap widens.

EDIT: grammar and dang this thread got busy fast. TL,DR if my answers already suggested all righty then.


Saves are dependent on creature type (baring class levels and/or very uneven ability scores). Creature type should be something a successful knowledge check reveals (if it's not immediately apart) simply because of how badly Rangers get boned otherwise.

"I studied fighting aberrations. Are the flying manta rays an aberration? How about the pulsing green fog thing?"
"Roll Knowledge(Dungeoneering)"
"23 total"
"You have no idea which, if any, are aberrations, but you know the manta rays are called Cloakers which can smother you. You also know the Fog is a Hungry Fog which is weak to wind and hurts to touch"


Letric wrote:
plaidwandering wrote:

no, but he should have +13 on the longsword

that was based on a normal lamia, this lamia apparently has more 4 AC than even a lamia matriarch. I hope this was some kind of boss fight.

13 Yes, I think he can reach that, but remember he's TWF and that's a -2 to hit.

I'm guessing BAB 7 + 4 STR + 1 WF + 1 Studied Target = 13 -2 TFW, that's 11.

I was figuring 13ish with the TWF penalty, but if STR is still only 18 at level 7, then it'll skew that by one from my estimate. His STR mod really should be getting above starter levels by now though.

Studied target is +2 at this level, and a swift, make sure he knows that

Should also have magic weapons by this point, the shield costs the same to get to +2 as the longsword to get +1, so that should even out the weapon focus.

BAB 7, +4 STR, +1 WF, +1 Enhancement, +2 studied target =15, TWF 13, if PA 11m but PA is super questionable as TWF on a high AC target.

This boss also has way more AC than expected for your APL, so yea he's going to miss more than normal

Honestly, it sounds like this encounter was designed to be an extreme challenge for your party - and you're right if the wis drain was applied, it very well may have wiped you.

A normal lamia matriarch is cr8, this had +4 AC, so cr9, then 3 mooks, which could make the total 10-12 depending on what they were....rough for a very non-optimal playing party


Rerednaw wrote:
Seriously though it does sounds like you have a GM, players and yourself with a different idea of the type of campaign. I'd down and have a chat with them.

DM plays by the book: using creatures according to their description and strategy. He's also quite good at strategy, so smart enemies are actually smart. And like every DM he's lucky when rolling.

I'm usually a rules-lawyer as well, but I'm neutral, I try to favor both the DM and the party, except rare occasions, like last session.

Oracle would've probable died. Also spoiler on AP:

After killing the Lamia, we head down the tower. There were 4 Bells. The Oracle had no better idea than to ring one of them by pulling the ropes. DM made him roll and he fell 120 feet.
He also did something stupid like this when facing a Quasit, he touched "corrupted water" entering into a killing frenzy and becoming useless for the entire fight.
He took 12d6 damage and landed next to a Flesh Golem which started attacking him.
I had feather fall memorized and told the rest of party to jump. DM gave me a choice of casting the spell mid air, really close or really high. I went mid air to be sure and we arrived in 2 rounds.
When we arrived Oracle dropped to -13 (14 CON, 1 damage and he's dead).
Realistically no one could've saved the Oracle because:
1 move action draw Potion, 1 Move action to get next to him, 1 move to use potion on him. I eventually got next to him and saved him.
I could've said "nope, it's impossible rules-wise, unless you're already holding a potion on your hands", but I decided to shut up.

We've played together for quite a time and I really like how the DM run things. The party lacks strategy and sometimes individual decisions are not the best.
I'm there to be the strategist guy, sort of, and try to make them work together but I can't control their choices regarding combat, feats and spells.
Most of the time we have a Slayer who ends up fighting defensively because he's scared, a Ninja that goes crazy 1v1 on the boss and things like that.
I feel like the Slayer is playing a class he either doesn't enjoy or never played, because he's literally taking 20-30 seconds to know his bonus to hit every time he rolls a dice. Honestly it gets annoying mid fight. Even if you have 2WF and PA, it shouldn't be that hard.


As an evoker, you'll find a lot of metamagic rods useful. Only one at a time, sadly, but... useful in different situations. I just went on a major shopping trip. If you want me to share my shopping list with you, I'll be happy to. Meanwhile, I'm glad you like the idea of a Piercing Rod. Good luck!


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The fact that your group doesn't want Haste tells me you're running so far off the beam that it's hard to advise.

I have yet, yet, in all my Pathfinder experience not to find a group that sings hosannas when they know they've got a haste caster.


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Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:

The fact that your group doesn't want Haste tells me you're running so far off the beam that it's hard to advise.

I have yet, yet, in all my Pathfinder experience not to find a group that sings hosannas when they know they've got a haste caster.

and the rogue and slayer don't like to flank with each other too...

and the oracle delays until he can heal...

not a good match for a GM wanting to go full bore with strategy and intelligent enemies


Letric wrote:

Realistically no one could've saved the Oracle because:

1 move action draw Potion, 1 Move action to get next to him, 1 move to use potion on him. I eventually got next to him and saved him.
I could've said "nope, it's impossible rules-wise, unless you're already holding a potion on your hands", but I decided to shut up.

Smart choice, obviously. :) Although... can't you draw the potion while you're moving? RAW, I mean. You can certainly move & draw a weapon in the same Move Action.

Does the Slayer have all of his bonuses added up on his character sheet? You know, "single-attack longsword" on one line; "TWF-longsword" on another; and even a PA line? With totals. It's easy to get all of the to-hit bonuses precalculated. Then of course someone throws a buff in, and you have to do math in your head again. For some of us, it's easy, but maybe he's math-challenged.


Letric wrote:
NoTongue wrote:

It's not something the GM needs to tell you.

If you make a standard knowledge check the first thing you learn is a creatures type which let's you know the base traits of that type and for giants you will know there racial hit die offers a low will.

If that giant also happens to be a 6th level monk with a cloak of resistance and the Iron Will feat you will find out the hard way.

I can't find this on Subtype. Is this information somewhere?

Me as PLAYER don't know each creature weakest save. But if I can argue EVERY Giant is weak against Will Saves I can use the generalization to make my character know it.
Otherwise each time we're fighting an enemy I have to check PFSRD for that particular creature, and that feels like cheating, and badly.

The information is in the Pathfinder Beastiary.

Every creature is made up of racial and class hit die.

For example if you made the basic knowledge check check on the Treant you where fighting you would know that it is a plant creature and know all the basic plant traits.

Good Fortitude saves. Low Reflex. Low Will

You may then think of using suggestion, a mind affecting spell on it but you would also know this.

Low-light vision.
Immunity to all mind-affecting effects (charms, compulsions, morale effects, patterns, and phantasms).
Immunity to paralysis, poison, polymorph, sleep effects, and stunning.
Proficient with its natural weapons only.
Not proficient with armor.
Plants breathe and eat, but do not sleep.

These are all basic plant traits. Knowing the creatures type lets you know it has all the basic features of it's creature type. So using your knowledge skill you cast grease, a spell that targets reflex.

If you had rolled well enough you would be able to gain more specific knowledge about the creature beyond it's type. Including it's weakness to fire and using that knowledge you then use fireball, a spell that targets reflex and does fire damage.


Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:

The fact that your group doesn't want Haste tells me you're running so far off the beam that it's hard to advise.

I have yet, yet, in all my Pathfinder experience not to find a group that sings hosannas when they know they've got a haste caster.

I mean, their complain was I didn't have Magic Missile and Fireball. My position (previous wizard) was that casting that at level 7 for 12 damage on a Save or 24 on success wasn't really useful.

I'm gonna try to convince them to buy Wand of Haste now that we got like 7k gold each before I lose the opportunity.

Maybe after this boss things will get easier and the party damage will be enough to start using other spells besides Fireball


bitter lily wrote:


Smart choice, obviously. :) Although... can't you draw the potion while you're moving? RAW, I mean. You can certainly move & draw a weapon in the same Move Action.

Well, you can only draw a weapon-like item, and potions isn't there. Also if you have it stored (like me in Handy Haversack) you need to use Retrieve Item action.

bitter lily wrote:


Does the Slayer have all of his bonuses added up on his character sheet? You know, "single-attack longsword" on one line; "TWF-longsword" on another; and even a PA line? With totals. It's easy to get all of the to-hit bonuses precalculated. Then of course someone throws a buff in, and you have to do math in your head again. For some of us, it's easy, but maybe he's math-challenged.

He does, that's the worst part lol!

These are my items at level 7:

+2 INT Fly 4k -
Lesser Rod of Selective 3k -
Handy Haversack 2k -
Cloak of Resistance +2 4k -
Cracked Dusty Rose Prism Ioun Stone 500 +1 Initiative -
Eyes of the Eagle 2.5k +5 Perception -
Spells 2332 Gold -
Unnecessary Scrolls 1275 -
Ring of Sustenance 2.5k -
Wand of CLW 750GP -
Pot of CLW 50GP -

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