More content for combat maneuver PCs?


Pathfinder First Edition General Discussion


Lately there were some complaints about the recent changes to the lore warden archetype. I was puzzled that a 'lore warden' was considered a common solution for a CMB build, but it made sense mechanically. With this option (more or less) gone, maybe we could use new content for such characters. Ideally something where it thematically fits better?


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The Lore Warden is still a good option for combat maneuvers -- it is just no longer the sole reasonable option.

Since the Lore Warden was adjusted to use a core feature of the Brawler class for bonuses to combat maneuvers, I would assume that any Brawler should be able to compete as a maneuver specialist now.


if combat maneuver prcs are going to be playable they need to fix monsters having unhittable CMDs


Surely monsters are a problem for combat maneuver builds over a certain CR, even ignoring the numbers.

Sure a CMD of 50 is a problem but what about a Wraith? It has no gear to sunder, disarm, or steal, it flies so can't be tripped, it's incorporeal so can't be grappled. What's left? Dirty trick I guess?

Combat maneuvers are great against humanoid opponents with gear, but if it is going to be your character's one big thing (in the sense that you might describe the whole build as "a trip build") then there are going to be lots of encounters where your trick doesn't really work. It's the same problem as deciding your blaster sorcerer is only going to take direct damage fire spells and finding out the adventure takes place in the City of Brass.


Ring_of_Gyges wrote:

Surely monsters are a problem for combat maneuver builds over a certain CR, even ignoring the numbers.

Sure a CMD of 50 is a problem but what about a Wraith? It has no gear to sunder, disarm, or steal, it flies so can't be tripped, it's incorporeal so can't be grappled. What's left? Dirty trick I guess?

Combat maneuvers are great against humanoid opponents with gear, but if it is going to be your character's one big thing (in the sense that you might describe the whole build as "a trip build") then there are going to be lots of encounters where your trick doesn't really work. It's the same problem as deciding your blaster sorcerer is only going to take direct damage fire spells and finding out the adventure takes place in the City of Brass.

Yes, certain encounters mean your trick can't work. With some maneuver types (trip, disarm), the number of "it just doesn't work" encounters go up sharply.

The numbers just take the sorcerer's situation from "single adventure in the City of Brass" straight to "let's have a campaign on the Plane of Fire!"


The problem of CMB doesn't come from numbers. The numbers certainly don't help.

-Grappling is just a giant headache for this game, but it interrupt casters well enough. The main problem is this becomes a constant CMB check every turn.
-Tripping is useful until you have a ton of enemies vastly larger than you or they start flying.
-Sunder/Disarm/Steal is all fine, until you don't fight NPCs and fight random monsters.
-Bullrush/Reposition is just... why? The others combat maneuvers attempt to do something useful outside of straight damage. Moving your opponent around?


My sincere hope is that they do a "Pathfinder Unchained 2" and do a section on "unchained combat maneuvers" so as to fix some of the problems in the system.

I think a lot of the issues with combat maneuvers are systemic and trying to fix them stuff without revamping the system isn't a great fix.

Considering the investment you need in order to be good at combat maneuvers, "Bull Rush" and "Overrun" might be different things if you're running say, an American Football RPG and you're trying to highlight different pass rushing techniques, but it's not really needed in your fantasy RPG.

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